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Simple Family Taco Night Party – #JuneDairyMovies

Did you know June is Dairy Month?… You guys know how much I love to entertain, right? And with summer finally showing it’s bright, cheery face around here, my entertaining schedule goes into overdrive! We have a big patio, in ground pool, and a really great, fenced-in yard and field. So what I’m saying is, we’ve got the perfect gathering place for all of our friends and family to come and cool off when it’s hot out! We celebrated last weekend with a little #GrabSummerFun party, as we took the winter cover off of the pool, and started prepping it for summer. This week we’ve had little shindigs almost every evening… I just love an excuse to get the family outside and enjoying the weather together in the evenings. And, since June is Dairy Month at Safeway, which means you get free movie tickets to see the new Ice Age flick when you buy $40 bucks worth of participating dairy goodies, I planned a family night dinner around that, to take advantage of the freebie!

Safeway Just for U

“In summer, the song sings itself.” – William Carlos Williams

Have you checked out the new Safeway Just for U program yet? If you’ve ever shopped at Safeway, I’m sure you already have the Safeway Club Card – the cool red card you swipe at check out to get your extra savings. But now, Safeway has made it even easier to save when you stock up on your families summer favorites – Sign up for Safeway Just for U today, and you get personalized savings tips, you can add digital coupons right to your club card, and right now you get a special coupon for a free dozen eggs added to your card just for joining. Super simple, very smart. {There’s an even an app for your phone too!}

dairy month

June Dairy Month at Safeway = Free Ice Age Movie Tickets #JuneDairyMovies

To get this sweet deal that’s going on this month at Safeway, look for the Dairy Month signs around the store. You’ll see it explained in their weekly sales ad, in big display signs in the dairy aisles, and each participating item will be marked with a little sale tag, so you know for sure what qualifies. I decided to go with a fun Taco Night family get-together, since things like shredded Mexican blend cheese, Dairgold sour cream, and nacho cheese were included in the dairy promotion. Then, since we were inviting Grandma and Papa over too, I picked up supplies to make Root Beer Floats, since those are her favorite. {And the Tillamook ice cream is also part of the promo!} Love getting little freebies like this, just for buying stuff we would have needed anyway.

dairy month taco night

“Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.” – Sam Keen

We loooooove us some Taco Night around here! And since we had a couple of extra friends over, plus Grandma, I made sure to stock up on lots of extra stuff – 3 types of chips to go with 3 different salsas {watch for my tropical salsa recipe tomorrow!}, cheese, sour cream, jalapenos and olives, lettuce, tomato, and onions, spanish rice and beans – and of course, FOUR pounds of taco meat!! Whew, I’m getting hungry again just thinking about it all….

fun with water

“Summer afternoon—summer afternoon; to me those have always been the two most beautiful words in the English language.” – Henry James

While I cooked up this simple homemade dinner, the kids cooked up their own fun outside. Since we hit a snag getting the big pool opened up for summer {we have to replace the pump. Ugh.} the kids have to make do with the kiddie pool and slip n’ slide. I absolutely LOVE this shot of Abby… She just learned about the hose, and that she can wave it around to spray the water, and thinks it’s the funnest thing of all time. And while I wish her face was in this shot, I love the way it catches the movement of the water. Very cool.

Dairy Month Taco Night Collage

“When you look at your life, the greatest happinesses are family happinesses.” – Joyce Brothers

Finally, dinner was ready – and everyone grabbed towels to gather up for dinner on the patio. Mmmm…. How can you not love a big double-decker taco, perfectly cheesy, topped with crisp lettuce and tangy salsa? So good! And the rootbeer floats were totally a hit – we haven’t had those in over a year. {The fact that I added glow-in-the-dark straws made them even cooler…}

free tickets for ice age

Have your own summertime family night!

Head to your local Safeway store anytime this month, {or any affiliate like Vons, Dominick’s, Genuardi’s, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Pavillions or Carrs} and buy participating dairy items. You don’t have to spend the $40 all at once like I did – if you use your Safeway Club Card, it’ll automatically add up your purchases each time you shop, and let you know how close you are to getting your free tickets. You could have a fun Italian night, with a yummy baked ziti covered in cheeses, partnered with gelato, or BBQ up some burgers, and top ’em with some delicious Tillamook sliced cheese. Then, once you’ve spent $40 bucks, the register will print out a Catalina coupon like the one above, that you can redeem online for two free tickets to see the new Ice Age movie in theaters. That means you’ll get another fun family night, almost free.

“I don’t care how poor a man is; if he has family, he’s rich.” – Dan Wilcox

Collective BiasI am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Safeway #CBias #SocialFabric. All photos and opinions shared here are 100% my own. For more info on this June Dairy Month promotion visit


Family Game Night: Super Mario Bros Wii #CouchCritics #CBias

Super Mario Bros

Super Mario Bros Family Game Night

These are my nephews – Mario and Luigi. I mean, Cade and Cole :) For this weekend’s family game night, we rented the new Super Mario Bros game for the Wii from Redbox, and the boys really got into character. They are BIG fans of Super Mario Bros! And I admit, so am I. I’m a child of the 80’s, and you just can’t help but think of your childhood when you play this new version of Super Mario Bros – So much fun! It was a perfect choice to bring the kids AND adults together.

Shopping with toddler, shopping at Walmart

Shopping for Game Night Goodies

I was super excited about this week’s game night – My dad moved to Seattle a few months ago, so the kids haven’t seen him since last November. He had a really serious surgery recently, and is finally feeling better again. He was coming over to stay with my brother and I for the weekend, and I was SUPER excited to see him! So, Abby and I headed to Walmart on Friday afternoon, to pick up some great goodies for our game night with Grandpa. Here’s what I had on my list – and you can see our whole shopping trip on Google+ for more pictures too:

  1. Lasagna, garlic bread, and salad for dinner: Because, you know, Mario is Italian and all. I also got some mini-pizza rolls for appetizers, and drew little mustaches on them with tinted sour cream :)
  2. Star Cookies: Sugar cookies cut into stars, frosted yellow, with little faces drawn on. To look like the stars in the game. Um – ended in disaster. I’m not sure how to get the cookies to stay really pointy and sharp – mine turned into puffballs, and looked NOTHING like the stars on the game, lol.
  3. Mushroom Cupcakes: I planned to make yellow cupcakes, frost them red, and then add little white polka dots – like the mushrooms on the game. Another disaster! I could NOT get the frosting for the spots to set. I made little dots on waxed paper, and put them in the freezer, so I could have great disks to place on the frosted cakes. Nope – they wouldn’t set. I made totally sloppy looking mushrooms. They were yummy, but not pretty. I get an A for effort, right??

Candy Bowl

How can you mess up a candy bowl?

I figured I’d also make a big Mario-themed candy bowl too, for everyone to much on through the night. You’d think that there is no WAY to mess this up, right? But – we couldn’t find ANY of the candies I wanted! The holiday candy we were shopping in above, had been switched out to only Easter – but I’d been hoping to find gold coin candies in with St. Patrick’s Day supplies. Then we headed to the “regular” candy section, for Fireballs and bright M&M’s, but no Fireballs either! So, I settled for the mixture below – M&M’s to feature the Super Mario Bros bright colors, gold-wrapped Rolos instead of coins, and Cinnamon Disks instead of Fireballs.

Game Over for Game Night??

Well, even though most of my desserts didn’t work out the way I planned – they did all still taste good! And everyone had a BLAST. I even went to Amazon later that night and ordered the new Super Mario Bros Wii game for the kids – it was that fun. Like I said – it’s such a great game for kids AND adults, since pretty much all of use remember playing this as a kid. This brand new version for the Wii is similar enough to make you feel nostalgic, but new enough to feel fresh and fun.

Redbox Rental Kiosk

Redbox Makes Family Nights Easy!

You can find a Redbox Rental Kiosk at just about any grocery store these days. That makes it super easy to put together a family game or movie night – Head to the store to pick up supplies for dinner and snacks, and then grab your favorite movies and games on your way out. You can even check out the selection online from home, and reserve your favorites before you shop – if you want to plan a theme night like we did! I used to think that Redbox was only for movies, but lately we’ve been changing up family night to include games too, and it’s a blast.

Love Redbox? Follow them on Twitter and Facebook to get updates on cool new products and promotions – even free rental codes!

{Disclaimer: This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias. #CBias. All photos, opinions, and kitchen catastrophes are totally my own.}