Saturday, March 31, 2018

Have you signed up for Dosh yet?

Don’t miss out on this hot app that earns easy cash

I’ve been working with Dosh for nearly a year now. At first, it was a new application that had some glitches and not many stores. 

Now, they’ve given away millions of dollars in cash rebates and referral fees. They have also built up quite a list of participating stores, restaurants, and hotels.

Have you signed up and gotten your share?

This app is very simple to use. You can download it from the Apple, Android, or Google Play application store. 

You enter in your credit card in the secure system. Nothing gets charged, but you’ll get $5 cash just for entering your first card (and $1 for each additional card you put in). Then, when you use that credit card at a participating store, you’ll automatically get the cash in your Dosh wallet – no coupons, no scanning receipts, not codes.

I just got $2.88 for shoes I bought at Tom's for my daughter. 

Dosh cash is money, plain and simple. You don’t have to turn it in for gift cards or prizes. You simply have press on the dollar amount in the right top corner. If you have at least $25, you can transfer it right into your PayPal account. You can also donate the money to charity.

Earning money back from Dosh doesn’t take away from anything you already earn with your credit cards, it just adds more rewards too it. Participating merchants give back from 3%-11%. The offer is always clearly displayed on the app.

You can also get rebates with Dosh by clicking through and shopping online at their connected merchant.

New participants are being added to Dosh all the time. Payless is the latest. Just in time for spring and summer shopping, you’ll get 5% back into your Dosh account every time you shop at Payless Shoe Stores with one of your registered credit cards.

Two other fairly new – and very popular – offers are from Papa John’s Pizza and Chilis Restaurants. They are currently offering 5% and 7% respectively. You can always double check the Dosh dashboard in the application to see anything that has changed or been added.

Finally, I want to remind you that Dosh is giving $25 back – in addition to the rebate the hotel is offering – for your first booking at a hotel. Some of these deals will cost next to nothing for a great getaway, by the time you get your rebates.

Dosh has connections all over the world, and around the corner. I just booked a last-minute room a few days ago when my complex’s remodeling on my apartment forced me out. I just stayed a few blocks away.

There’s no better time than the present to get that Dosh account and see how easily everyone is making cash, without doing anything you aren’t doing every day.  Sign up now.

This is a sponsored post.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

A Deliciously Fun Day in Chicago

It’s always fun when I get to spend a day exploring with a good friend. Angela and I managed to eat our way around Chicago for this trip!

I had no idea what to expect when was invited to check out and sample the foods at the Chicago French Market.

I actually thought it was outside, so I was surprised to find it inside a building.

The market is actually conveniently located to the train station from the suburbs.  (it’s also only a 10-minute walk from Union Station).

They’ve also got something you will be hard pressed to find anywhere else in the windy city – free parking (you do need to spend $20 at the market).
I had set up a meeting with a rep from the market to take me around and provide us with some samples. 

Before she met us, I walked around and took a quick look at the variety of shops.
It seemed they covered everything among the 30 vendors. In some cases, it was the only location in the city.

I saw all types of fruits at City Fresh Market; meats and fish at Funare Meats & Deli; cooked and raw food at Vegan Now; and deli and soups (which I wish we had in Champaign) at Bebe’s Kosher Deli.
We than began our closer examination to some of the other spots.

I enjoyed watching Frenchman Antoine Elie make his FliP Crepes right before my eyes. He makes both sweet and savory, all of which are gluten-free.

The raspberry one we got to try was delicious!

Next it was Beavers Donuts, which had been featured on the Cooking Channel for its Donut Milkshake.

Before we tried that concoction (and it was as unbelievable as it sounds) we watched them make mini donuts, which customers can top with whatever they want. 
Some stayed with simple accompaniments such as chocolate and cinnamon, while others went for unique blends, like the Fluffernutter with peanut butter and marshmallow.

We continued the sweet snacking at Vanille, a bakery at the French Market that specializes in cakes and tarts. 

By this time, we were on sugar overload, and they kindly packed up some for us to try later.
They were all fantastic, especially the white chocolate raspberry cheesecake.

For the ultimate in chocolate, Lolli and Pops, has the best truffles I’ve had, deep and rich, clearly made from fine chocolate.

Although I never complain about eating too many desserts, it was time to actually taste some food and The French Lunch Box at Chicago French Market is a wonderful place to do it.

I loved their Sweet Potato Gnocchi, which we brought to the back-seating area and relaxed with for a while.

This area is known for its happy hours, which feature live music.

Our final stop before leaving was at Pastoral, a wine and cheese outlet. They try to get most of their cheeses from the Midwest. You can ask for a sample of the latest finds.

After leaving the French Market, Angela and I went to the Chicago History Museum.

I had actually never heard of this one and was glad they approached me about their Race Exhibit.

The exhibit was fascinating, as was the rest of the museum. It explores everything from Chicago Cubs Baseball, to Chicago Jazz and Martin Luther King Jr’s history with the city.

We had walked off the morning’s tastings at the museum and were ready for dinner by the end of the day.

I had picked an unusual place for us to have a little fun with our meal.

Safehouse Chicago is a place to go with friends or family for the experience as much as the food.

The restaurant is hidden beyond a sign that just reads “60 E. Ontario.”

Once inside, you will be giving your reservation information and will be grilled by a member of the government.

If he determines you are not a spy, you can go through the office of International Exports Ltd and into the secretive headquarters – the restaurant.

Once inside, the fun continues with games, magic, and a chance to complete missions for free food and drinks.

Both are worth trying, especially the Friend Cheese Curds and The Provocateur Burger, which Chicago Magazine named best burger in the city. (It’s made with brie and bacon jam.)

I also thought the Raven, a Reuben sandwich, was quite good.

For dessert, we shared the Italian Job, a vanilla cake with mascarpone mousse, and Mr. Big’s Brownie Cheesecake which was sprinkled with walnuts and drizzled with chocolate ganache.

Needless to say, we left Chicago a few pounds heavier than we arrived, but it was a fun day discovering some new places.

Check for the best hotel prices in Chicago now at TripAdvisor. 

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Lodge Kohler Spa and Titletown Tour in Greenbay

My first trip to Titletown in Green Bay, Wisconsin, was winding down, but we still had a few things left to check out on the final day.

Rich and I had enjoyed breakfast at Lodge Kohler's Leaps & Bounds CafĂ© the day before and decided to go down and see what else we could try on the menu.

The thing I like most about Leaps & Bounds was that there were quite a few things that you rarely find on menus, certainly not on the menu of a hotel coffee shop.

For our Sunday morning, I chose the West Coast Wrap, with egg whites, avocado, spinach, tomato, inside a whole-grain wrap spread with a light herb cream cheese. It was delicious.

Rich had the Breakfast Sandwich. It has scrambled eggs, cheddar and arugula, with a bratwurst patty on a toasted English muffin, a combination he enjoyed.

We shared an order of the Classic Beignets, which had an unusual twist: they were served with a spiced chocolate sauce and an apricot-ginger jam. 

I thought both went very well against the sweetness of the powdered sugar beignet.

After I finished my latte, it was time to return to the Spa at Lodge Kohler.

This spa is the only co-ed spa I have been to in the Midwest. While it’s not unusual to have relaxation rooms that are co-ed, Kohler offers much more for you to share.

The water experience at Lodge Kohler, included with your services or available for a slight cost on its own, includes a very large hot tub that has a walkway to massage you, a cold plunge pool, a steam room, and a sauna.

Once we were warm and relaxed, it was time to bundle up and head out to check out Titletown.

From many of the windows in the hotel, we could see the tubing slide, but in front of it we could actually hear the shouts of joy as people came down in their inner tubes.

We also went by the rink, where everyone was having fun ice skating. 

(I was a bit jealous, ice skating used to be one of my favorite past times before ankle problems.)

Carol Kedzior of Titletown met as for lunch at 46 Below to tell us more about the plans for the future of Titletown in Green Bay.

The area will have more fun activities, such as outdoor concerts and movies in the spring, summer, and fall. They will also be building condos here.

While there we had an amazing Tomato Bisque with grilled cheese croutons and a grilled cheese sandwich. (Rich had the ham sandwich, but I don’t think there can ever be too much grilled cheese!)

I could have definitely stayed at Titletown longer, but it was time to head to the airport.  

I had no idea that my flight would get cancelled, but it worked out. (Thanks, Dosh, for making it easy, while saving money).

I’m looking forward to returning to Green Bay and seeing the beach side in the warmer months.

Check for the best prices at Lodge Kohler now at TripAdvisor. 

Start the story with Day One in Green Bay

Monday, March 5, 2018

Home of the Legendary Green Bay Packers

My introduction to Titletown was a good one (especially the spa treatment at Lodge Kohler) and I was ready to enjoy day two with my friend, Rich.

We started with breakfast at the hotel’s Leaps and Bounds cafe. It’s far from a hotel coffee shop and has a very unique menu.

Everything sounded great, but I had to go for the eggs with popovers. It reminded me of a restaurant I worked at while in high school, called 1890 Dining Car. They were known for their popovers and I haven’t had very many since.

They were as eggy, light, and scrumptious as I remembered. Rich shared them and also had a frittata with sausage and mushrooms.

After breakfast, we took advantage of the free, local car service Lodge Kohler offers to go to the other side of Lambeau Field, where our tour of the stadium was to begin.

The Green Bay Packers offer many levels of the Lambeau Field Tours. If you have the time (2-3 hours), take the Legendary Tour we did. It includes some extras, and entrance into the Hall of Fame.

Our tour was led by two men who knew everything there was to know about the Packers and the stadium. Our group of about two dozen was in good hands.

It started with some basic information about the team, which I confess I did not know (I don’t follow much NFL):

 “The tiny town of Green Bay, Wisconsin, 104,000 citizens strong, has their own professional football game… The little town that could. Thirteen National Titles…”

We then walked to just about every major spot in the stadium. We saw the suites and many photos from the start of the team.

We also went into the Champions Club and took a look at memorabilia, including Super Bowl rings the Green Bay Packers have earned.

It was also fun to be able to see the stadium from many angles from the top, including from the press room.

Since the season was just over, we were able to go into the Visiting Team Locker Room and walk through the tunnel and on to the field.

After the tour, we headed into the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame.

This museum has even more memorabilia and a detailed history about the team, and its most famous members, including Coach Vince Lombardi and Brett Favre.

We then went back to Lodge Kohler to crash for a while before dinner at the hotel’s Taverne in the Sky Restaurant.

During season, it’s a great place to watch the game (and even see the flyovers since the hotel is so close).

When there aren’t games, you’ll still find a great atmosphere, and the bar area frequently has live music on the weekends.

We sat in the main dining room for a dinner by candlelight, overlook Lambeau Field (how often can you say that?).

The waitress recommended some of the specialties, and we started with the Artichoke Fritters, which were delicious.

We both next enjoyed a cup of the chicken wild rice soup before our entrees came.

I had ordered the house specialty, rotisserie chicken, which probably wasn’t the best choice for me, as I prefer something with a sauce.

It was tender, but a little dry for me. I really loved the potatoes and vegetables accompanying it.

Rich was thrilled with his Poached Sturgeon, another house specialty.

We were pretty full, but, of course, couldn’t pass up dessert once we saw the menu.

We didn’t indulge in the milkshakes, which could include an addition of the Kohler Dark Chocolate Brandy.

We shared the Triple Chocolate Cake, topped with three of my favorite words, “Dark Chocolate Ganache.”

Equally satisfying was the Vanilla Bean Cheesecake, covered in a Door County cherry compote.

It was the perfect day, learning about Green Bay and there was one more to come in Titletown.

Continue the story with Day Three in Green Bay.