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Sonny Acres & Ghoulish Homes

October 24th, 2022 Comments off

Late morning Saturday (10/22) we decided to make our annual visit to Sonny Acres, and it was crazy busy. So much so that we ended up parking on the west side of the farm which we’ve never had to do before.

We made our way over to the food area and I was shocked that they had raised the prices of their apple cider donuts once again. Last year they were $2.50 each and now they are $3. Where does it end? They already doubled the price of their haunted hayrides from $10 to $20.

Well, we people watched for awhile and decided to get donuts elsewhere. I called over to a local bakery but they were all out so we decided we’d try Costco. Well, we happened to be right in the vicinity of a Beef Shack, so we stopped there for lunch first. It was a nice day so we ate outside and then grabbed a dozen apple cider donuts from Costco for $8.50.

Later that evening we did the second half of the Gallery of Ghoulish Homes Tour in St. Charles (there were so many houses on the list this year we split the list in two and did the first half on 10/15). It was ok, but there were too many new houses participating with underwhelming decorations. I feel like if you’re not going all out then maybe a decorating contest isn’t for you. I dunno, I feel burnt out on all the previously fun fall activities we’d do. I don’t know if it’s the repetition, or that they seem to get more boring every year or what, but I think we’ll still go see houses but not bother with Scarecrow Fest or Sonny Acres anymore.

Categories: Excursions, Food Tags:

Retail Therapy

October 17th, 2022 Comments off

This weekend we decided to get out and do a little fun shopping which we haven’t done much of in the last few years. What I mean by that is we go out specifically looking for stuff to buy without an exact item in mind. Perfect places for this are used media stores, so we headed to an area that has both a Half Price Books and a Disc Replay within steps of one another.

Unfortunately we didn’t find much at either, but that’s to be expected since their inventory is always changing. The HPB by us is much bigger but our Disc Replay closed several years ago which is a shame as it’s really fun to browse there. They had two huge bins of Atari games that we rifled through, but no copies of Seaquest were found. I am well aware I can buy it on Ebay, but I like the thrill of the hunt. I’m still looking for seasons 5 & 8 of Scrubs as well. I found every single season except those two recently. What are the chances? We ended up with a $1 copy of The House Bunny but the entertainment value was worth much more.

I was craving soup on the way home so we stopped at Bulldog Alehouse to get a bowl of cream of chicken & rice. Despite it having a cheesy flavor, I really liked it. Price wasn’t bad either.

Categories: Food, Shopping Tags:

BBQ Scarecrows

October 10th, 2022 Comments off

I think we finally found our go-to BBQ place! Finally, after 17 years! I mean, Smoque in the city is amazing, but it’s just too far when the craving hits. I recently read about a place called Route 38 BBQ which is less than twenty minutes away, so we decided to give it a try on Saturday (10/08). Not only is it cheaper than Smoque (we got a meal of double meat plus mac & cheese, coleslaw, cornbread, and mashed potatos for $25 whereas a comparable meal at Smoque would run closer to $50), but dare I say their beef brisket tastes better. It’s so good you don’t have to drown it in sauce. Winner, winner, brisket dinner! (No photos were taken because we greedily ate everything up).

Sunday (10/09) we visited St. Charles for their annaul Scarecrow Fest. This may be the last time. Not only were the number of scarecrows shockingly low, but everything was just blah. I have lost my enthusiasm for the craft booths too, and the food vendors are ridiculous. The corn dog booth had a sign that read “Corn Dogs w/ free fries” but when we asked how much they were the girl goes “$5 for the corn dog and $10 for a corn dog with fries”. Ummm… I don’t think they know what free means! Needless to say, after a disappointing half hour of walking around we went to Atlas Chicken Shack in nearby Geneva to grab some rice balls that we took home to eat.

Categories: Excursions, Food Tags:

Labor Day

September 6th, 2022 Comments off

Not sure what most people did for the holiday weekend, but we didn’t do much – got some pizza, finished a few series, watched a couple of movies, listened to some music, and visited a nearby park.

I was bummed that I decided to leave my camera at home because I spotted some juvenile wood ducks! They were too far to capture with my phone’s camera, and if I hadn’t viewed them with binoculars, I would have assumed they were mallards. Joe didn’t believe that they were wood ducks but I’m 99% sure they were based on the extra feathers on the back of their heads, the white markings on their cheeks, and their distinctive red eyes.

They looked a lot like this (NOT my photo):

We had hot dogs, pasta salad, and corn on the cob yesterday.

We didn’t feel like firing up the grill or boiling anything, so we used the microwave for the corn and the air fryer for the hot dogs; everything came out great.

Categories: Food, Holidays Tags:

McDonalds

August 16th, 2022 Comments off

I really need to stop looking at the McDonald’s app because the deals draw me in all the time. For awhile I was getting an iced coffee 1-2x weekly because they had a $1 special. Then one day it disappeared and was replaced by an offer for a free coffee when you spend $1 or more.

At first glance it sounds like more for your money, but nothing is only $1 at McDonald’s. They were running a 2/$2 sausage McMuffin special so I ended up getting that and splitting it with Joe. He got himself a $1 iced coffee because his app still had the deal. I didn’t want to continue doing that, however, because it’s not healthy.

We surmised they change offers based on user habits which I confirmed when speaking to friends who noticed the same thing between their account and their spouse’s. It took me a week to have a lightbulb moment – we can use the new deal in my app to get two iced coffees for $1 each instead of each using the app separately, so that’s what we did this past weekend.

When I was at the vet this morning I pulled up the app to see a special one day only deal I could not pass up because I have no self control.

The chicken McGriddle isn’t bad (I usually get the bacon one). A bit spicier than I would like, but I added some honey to it which made it better.

Incidentally, I was pleased to see the correct location come up in the app automatically this time around. I have a specific location in my favorites, but I noticed that it will automatically select the nearest location without you noticing until you see the prices are higher. There’s one location in particular that charges almost $1 more for most items so we never go there.

A few weeks ago I was literally across the street from my preferred location and it still selected the more expensive location further away. I was so annoyed that I went home and immediately filled out their survey online to complain. I feel like that location is paying them to push them in the app. In any case, either they fixed a bug, or I got lucky, but the correct location came up this time even though in the past it would still select the restaurant three times further away.

Categories: Food Tags: