Event Review: Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor

I am a big scare-dy cat.  I know this. Not only do I NOT watch scary movies, I typically don’t go to any type of freight fest & scary mazes. But this year, I decided to put my big-girl panties on and check out the Queen Mary’s Dark Harbor event. By the looks of this picture, I’m totally smiling on the outside and running from this Ghoul on the inside.

However, I must say I was very impressed with the cast {Freaks, Oddities, Monsters, & Sliders. Oh yeah! The sliders take it to a whole new level}. They were all true to character and played their roles very well. My worst and favorite was Scary Mary. Yikes! I couldn’t force a smile, but Mary gave me her best cheese!
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During Media Coverage, we were able to receive first-hand experience of:
The Freight Pass – where there was literally no wait in lines.
The VIP Experience – The R.I.P. Private Lounge sits high above Dark Harbor where you can view the entire park. We were able to enjoy cocktails, music, delicious pulled chicken and pulled pork sliders with a side of homemade chips. There were private scary encounters (the best one was our special visit from Graceful Gale & one of her “Soulmates”.

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Our Experience also included a souvenir light-up cup {we’re just grown kids, right?} which we received inside VOODOO VILLAGE

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& a private CREEPY CABANA full of delectable treats.

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Then there’s this guy {I suggest avoiding him if possible}…

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I must be honest; I wasn’t thrilled about (1) going on the Queen Mary and (2) walking through dark mazes. Coincidentally, there were 3 mazes that were on the Queen Mary and of course they all were in the dark: LULLABY {featuring Scary Mary & her “best friends”}, B340 & Soulmate {featuring Graceful Gale}.

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Let’s just say we held hands the entire time.

There were 3 mazes inside the Dark Harbor park: CIRCUS {which really made us feel like kids again with the Chuck-E-Cheese balls} LOL. DEADRISE {which I ended up not liking because one of the vengeful ghouls decided to “make it rain” on my fresh hair press…argh! I can laugh now, but I wasn’t a happy camper after that.
VOODOO VILLAGE, where you’ll find the FREAKS & ODDITIES SIDESHOW didn’t disappoint. You want to see freaks & oddities, that’s exactly what you will get.

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The slider show was absolutely wonderful!

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All in all…I recommend you go…go & be joyfully frightened.

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Kindergarten Rocked!

Today, my little love bug graduated from Kindergarten.  I woke up so happy and overwhelmed because she’s growing so fast! She so beautiful & smart. She’s so passionate about school & life & love… I truly love her life.  Most people know Hayli started Pre-school as soon as she turned 2 years old. By the time she was 4, she was already writing her name in cursive. She has always overachieved in school & is a really fast learner. Her memory has been top-notch since out the womb & she’s fearless with her vocabulary.

Today, my baby achieved a certificate in every subject. Spelling, Math, Science, Social Studies, Religion, Handwriting, & Reading.   She was one of four kids who received the Principals Honor Roll for having a GPA of 4.0 &….*drumroll*…. She made Valedictorian of her class!!!!!! Ok, here come the tears again!

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I cannot express how proud I am of her! She did the work, she applied herself, & she did it! I’m so happy God entrusted me to be her mommy.

Congratulations Love Bug! 😘😘

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It’s My Birthday!

Today is the Sixth Day of the Sixth Month of the Year in 2016 & it’s my BIRTHDAY! Today i’m 35 years old & I still feel like I’m 28. I wasn’t able to celebrate with my friends & family because I (like always) am Last Minute Lucy so no one was available. I did however, receive a plethora of love from family & friends via Insta, FB, Phone calls, & text so that felt great.  My Mom& Dad both gave me Apple gift cards because they know I want to purchase a MACBook.  My mother-in-law bought me a beautiful birthday charm for my Pandora bracelet.  My hubby gave a birthday card! Which he never does, but this was my first birthday as “wifey” so I can really get used to the “Wife Life” I ordered my birthday cake from Portos Bakery  it was an eight inch Strawberry Shortcake. Delish!

Yesterday, I went back to Burke Williams simply massage…ahh! Need I say more? I decided yesterday it was my motherly & wifely duty to become a BW member so I can rejuvenitate once a month in order to give my family the best me possible.

Saturday, I enjoyed a wonderful dinner at Barton G with my always & forever. We had the most amazing time! I purchased a sexy new black dress from BEBE that blew my hubby’s mind. That dress was for his eyes only. Just Kidding, I just forgot to take a picture. Smh.

Barton G, in my opinion, is a boutique restaurant with a really sexy ambiance. It’s located on La Cienega in Los Angeles (right next to Nobu, where we plan to go next).  Each item on the menu is served as an intriguing presentation. We had the Mouse Trap Mac & Cheese to start & it was THE best Mac & Cheese I’ve ever eaten at a restaurant…hands down. I can literally go just to eat this & be happy about it. Ha! See the mouse trap!

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For my celebration cocktail I chose the Cotton Candy Martini. It’s not on the menu but our waiter suggested it and it was a real treat. You’d think it would be super sweet but it wasn’t. With the added nitrogen & sexiness of the cocktails, the Hubby opted for a manly top shelf tequila shot. Boo!!! Eventually, I would like to try all their other fancy cocktails. I’m just saying.

You can check out my Nitro Cotton Candy Martini on Instagram

Our dinner presentation…the super large fork & the Lured Salmon…cute!

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The bread donuts were very different but tasty. I enjoyed the cheese bread/donut more than the Mushroom & Basil.

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For dinner I had the Lured by Salmon…oh! The crunch on the top layer was delicious! It was served with Mashed Potatoes, Asparagus, & Chimichurri.  I warmed it up the next day. Shouldn’t have covered the entire piece in foil because it got mushy. Next time, I’ll put in the foil uncovered to keep the crunch.

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Hubby had the Rib Eye.  Even though he ordered it well done, it was very juicy & sliced like butter. It was served with a Bone Marrow butter for dipping and he lost his mind. & Those truffle fries! Oooh weee!

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Sorry, he took this picture while his fork & knife photo-bombed.

All-in-all “The Damage” wasn’t too bad.  It was well worth the price & I definitely look forward to going again.

Happy Birthday to Me!!!

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Review: Burke Williams – Simply Massage

Photo Credit: NWR

Burke Williams simply massage

Address: 13400 W. Washington Blvd., Marina del Rey, CA

Have you ever needed JUST a massage without all the spa hype?  Usually, when you think of getting a massage, you think of “spa day” with the girls, or couple’s massage with the Mr. because going to the spa alone is definitely a faux pas.  Then there’s an entire day catered to sauna’s, mud bath’s, and cucumber water, when you only require a deep tissue massage to help you unwind from a hectic week.  Please don’t misread this – I love a day at the spa!  There’s no better escape from the world of calendar’s and kiddies than a day of facials, reflexology, & hydrotherapy.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of being one of the first to experience Burke Williams’ simply massage location in Marina del Rey.  The idea behind the simply massage locations is that, like me, with a hectic lifestyle, being a full-time Secretary (Senior Secretary III to be exact), Mother, Wife, Daughter, Sister, Cousin, BFF, you name it, I can never find time to make an all-day trip to a spa.  However, what I do have is an hour – hour 1/2 to stop by Burke Williams simply massage for a quick unwind to help me be a better all-of-the-above.  Let me just say, I went shopping at Costco (across the street) before going to my session. Ha!

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Photo Credit: The Ace Agency

The ambience in the location was very relaxing.  The smell was delightful, the paint was a beautiful light turquoise with different hues of blue to bring in the closeness of the ocean.  There are also Burke Williams products for purchase if you’re into their skin care line.  My typical routine is Neutrogena (bar soap) & Ponds Dry Skin Cream so…I will not go in depth on their products right now.  hmmm…maybe I should try them out?

Upon receiving my massage, my masseuse (male) was very friendly & welcoming.  The room was dimly lit, the bed & covers were heated!  *sigh*  Quietude!  Just me, my warm covers, my masseuse & all my worries at a halt.   I definitely plan to becoming a member of Burke Williams Simply Massage.  I don’t think I can find a better way to spend $59 per month.  It’s cheaper than my $5 a day starbucks habit at $150 a month.  OMG! Was I really paying that much for coffee?  that explains a lot.

 For more details on Burke Williams simply massage & how to become a member, visit their website.

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Event Review: 5th Annual West Coast BBQ Classic at The Queen Mary

Event Date: Saturday, May 14, 2016

Event Time: 11:00am – 6:00pm

Location: The Queen Mary, Long Beach, CA

It was such a carnivorous pleasure for my husband and me to attend the Queen Mary’s 5th Annual West Coast BBQ Classic.  My Husband is such a BBQ fanatic so he appreciates good BBQ.  He was waaaay more excited than I was LOL.  I, on the other hand, love it, but am very critical of BBQ.  The meat must be cooked to perfection (not underdone, tough, or chewy).  It must be well-seasoned and the sauce MUST catapult the intensity of the meat.  If it doesn’t do that for me, it’s a waste of time.   

To top off the day, the weather was wonderful!  It was a little overcast so it wasn’t too hot. 

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Upon arrival I noticed the lot was nicely sized.  It was large enough to really get you excited about the event but it wasn’t over-whelming.  The price was $25 for admission with (5) tasting tickets, $40 for VIP admission with (5) tasting tickets (VIP allowed you take advantage of attending an hour before general admission & a spectacular lounging area).  If you were like me and needed more tasting tickets, they were $10 for (5) tasting tickets.  With each Pitmaster charging 2 tickets for Ribs & 1 for sides, (5) tickets dispersed quickly. 

When we first entered, we did an entire walk-through to get an idea which we wanted to sample first. 

We were a little dejected as many of the places were already out of ribs when we arrived.  The one’s we did try didn’t give us the WOW factor we came for.  We’re not a fan of pulled pork & candied bacon so we ate brisket.  Our first stop “Rooftop BBQ” we shared a brisket sandwich.  It had caramelized onions mixed with the brisket, on a soft bun, and the BBQ sauce was so lip-smacking good.  I was kind of sad we shared but I didn’t want to “appear” greedy – Although, I did come hungry.

There was live music, a DJ, scheduled games & activities for the kids (although I left mine with their granny). There was face-painting, and a bounce house.  That made the event family very friendly.  

We over-sampled & purchased a delicious Peach-Pecan Cobbler from Heavenly Delights.   It was over-priced for the size but it was deliciously worth it.  We took it home and smothered it with Haagen-Dazs Ice Cream…

 Under the shaded VIP lounge there were sofas for those of us who wanted to relax, listen to the band and or DJ, take in this gorgeous view of Downtown Long Beach…

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And drink a Dos Equis 🙂 It was my first one and really good! 

Check out this corn I got from Smokin Hart’s… 

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We used our (2) People’s Choice Award tickets to choose our favorite Pitmaster of the day, which also turned out to be the PEOPLE’S CHOICE WINNER OF THE DAY! It was none other than *drumroll*…

OUTTA GAS BBQ

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Not because the service was exceptional & they stuffed us with some really good watermelon as we waited line…

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But because EVERYTHING we sampled was beyond enjoyable.   It was borderline sinful!  I undeniably needed an entire plate of their baked beans, mac & cheese, short-rib tacos (oh! the tacos!), and their refreshing apple cobbler something…whatever the name…I was happy about it.  Their ribs were ok. They took home 7th place for their ribs.  Unfortunately, whichever Pitmasters took home 1st – 6th place, I’m sure we didn’t get to try.   

Overall it was a great event.  For anyone thinking they are coming to pig out, think again.  The samples were bite-sized & often left you wanting more.  In the end, with all the tastings, we left full & satisfied.

I give it  ⭐⭐⭐

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Photo Credit: NWR

 

 

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