Tijuana Flats Freebie: Today Only!

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Here’s a great deal for lunch or dinner today. I found this little gem in my mailbox this morning! This is one of the perks of being a member of restaurant email clubs. Enjoy!

Speaking of free stuff, you can always get a free insurance quote at http://www.patronsinsurance.com. You can easily get yours on your lunch break!

Review: American Classic Barbershop

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A friend and former co-worker of mine recently announced that her husband was opening a new barbershop. When she told me the prices (just $6 this week only!) he was going to charge and that he cuts kids’ hair, I knew I had finally found a place to send my husband and little boy. Adam Crowley and his business partner John (also a barber) opened up the doors to the American Classic Barbershop in Pinellas Park, Florida yesterday. Since Alistair’s hair was covering his handsome brown eyes, I was anxious to get him in. My husband Dan can go another time.

The shop is located at 4201 62nd Avenue in a short shopping strip. It was a little difficult to spot, though. You just have to look for 42nd Street because the plaza signs don’t stand out. There’s plenty of parking at the plaza so you can park in front of the shop. The shop itself is a work in progress, however it’s not a construction zone. They have two barber chairs and plenty of seats for waiting customers, including a church pew! They hope to mount a couple of TVs on the wall in the future so you can watch sports while you wait. They also have a kids section along the back wall of the shop, which includes a TV with kid-friendly movies, toys and cars. We had a hard time tearing Alistair away from the play area to get him in the chair. Once we did though, he loved the cute sea creature cape Adam put on him. He loves hammerhead sharks and sting rays.

Adam was very patient with my squirmy 3-year-old; it went much better than I expected. I thought for sure Alistair would be afraid of the clippers than he was. After using the clippers, Adam went back with the scissors to make sure it was perfect and to get around his cute little ears. His hair was a bit shorter than I like, but that’s okay because I rarely get his hair cut. So if you’re looking for a place in St. Petersburg/Pinellas Park to get your child’s hair cut, you need to try Adam at American Classic Barbershop. Don’t forget to tell him that Jenn at Patrons Insurance Agency sent you!

If you’d like your Florida business featured on this blog and become a Partner of Patrons, please call us at 727-394-1890 or email us at tim@patronsinsurance.com.

Win Giveaways

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One of my favorite coupon bloggers, Mindi over at Moms Need To Know, is teaming up with 10 other female bloggers to give away tons of prizes from their sponsors. All week long they’re announcing new prizes like laptops, $100 AMEX gift cards, backpacks, snapfish.com gift cards, and much more. All the winners will be announced this Friday. If you’d like to join the fun, “like” the Win Giveaways page on Facebook. There you’ll find out who’s giving away what prizes. Entering is easy and you can do so multiple times. They usually ask that you leave a comment…

1. about their post
2. that says you subscribe to their blog
3. that you shared the giveaway on Facebook
4. that you tweeted the giveaway

Sometimes you can enter more than 4 times. It’s very easy! I actually won a $20 Diapers.com gift certificate in one of Mindi’s giveaways last week and my order should arrive tomorrow. Some of the prizes can be won on all the blogs and other prizes can only be won on one or two. However, they’re all giving away a $100 AMEX gift card from Invisalign Teen, a Land’s End backpack and Belkin laptop messenger bag with accessories. Just keep checking the Win Giveaways Facebook page for the latest postings. Good luck! Don’t forget to let us know if you’re a winner.

Lunch At Bubbie’s Cafe

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Friday I finally had the pleasure of eating at Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe. I came after their lunch rush, so I was able to take my time and ask questions. Owner, Chris Dunn, encouraged me that “the menu is really just full of suggestions” and I could have whatever I wanted. You can choose your bread, meat, cheese and toppings. Chris made me his own variation of the Reuben, hot corn beef topped with homemade cole slaw and swiss cheese on toasted marble rye bread with homemade Russian dressing. It was a thing of beauty. I had to take a couple of photos before my first bite.

You won’t find this sandwich on the menu, but you can ask Chris how he likes his Reuben and he’ll make you one too. Most people fill up on just one half or have to take a break, but I just kept going. Nursing moms know what I’m talking about. This delicious beast of a sandwich also came with a dill pickle spear, a sample of coleslaw, a bag of chips and a tall glass of A&W rootbeer. The chips and drink were free with my sandwich purchase because I brought in my Patrons Insurance coupon. If you want to get the same deal, click here and print.

While I chowed down, I got a chance to get to know Bubbie, Chris and Amy (Bubbie’s daughter/Chris’ wife). This family is so sweet and welcoming. Bubbie sat down and fed my 6-month-old some organic applesauce so I could eat without a baby crying in my ear. Afterwards he fell asleep in her arms while we talked about having babies and Amy’s special egg salad. They also treated my 3-year-old to some baked (nothing is fried at Bubbie’s Cafe) chicken nuggets. He was so excited to be there, he couldn’t sit still. Thankfully, no one minded. I will definitely go back to Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe for lunch soon!

Partner of Patrons: Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe

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Last week Katie also interviewed another one of our partners of Patrons, Debbie “Bubbie” Scheier of Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe. They’re a Jewish-style deli in the same plaza as our office and you can view their ad here. Unlike Tom at Gulf Flooring, Bubbie and her son-in-law Chris Dunn (owner of Bubbie’s Cafe) have only been in business for a little over a year, but they already stand out from over bay area lunch spots. Bubbie’s Cafe provides nutritious lunches for many private preschools all over Pinellas County and they only serve certified Angus Beef.

Katie, one of our commercial insurance agents, talked to Bubbie about how their business came to be and how they are reaching today’s consumers. Did you know that Bubbie’s Cafe has a special coupon just for friends of Patrons Insurance Agency? Just click here and print out a coupon for a free bag of chips and drink with any sandwich purchase. If you’d like to see their menu before stopping by for lunch or you want to get more information about Preschool Catering, visit their website at www.bubbiesbrownbagcafe.com. You can also find them on Facebook here. To watch Katie’s interview with Bubbie, check out our You Tube channel here. You’ll also find Katie’s interview with Tom at Gulf Flooring as well as our Ask An Agent videos.

Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe is located at 11334 Seminole Boulevard in Largo, Florida. They’re open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.. Call ahead (727-319-3377) with your order if you want to grab your lunch and go. Don’t forget your coupon!

Partner of Patrons: Gulf Flooring

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Patrons Insurance Agency is partners with several bay area businesses, like Gulf Flooring. Recently, one of our Commercial Insurance Agents, Katie McGuire, sat down with the mastermind of the business, Tom Merryweather, to ask him some questions. He has 43 years of experience in floor covering and a love for his sons. Gulf Flooring is proud to be family owned and operated, just like Patrons Insurance Agency. We were excited to learn from Tom’s many years of experience in business and in radio. In a world of Facebook, Twitter and You Tube, they still do business the way they always have. They do their jobs with excellence and benefit from the best kind of advertising, word-of-mouth.

Gulf Flooring is located at 11310 Seminole Boulevard in Largo, Florida (right next door to us). For a free estimate, call them at 727-392-RUGS (7847). Because Tom appreciates how our agency handles their business insurance, he’s offering 15% off to friends of Patrons Insurance Agency. Just click here, print out the coupon and start saving!

Please check out our video interviews with Tom on You Tube to learn how their business was started and how they’ve kept afloat in this tough economy. You’ll also find videos of another Partner of Patrons, Bubbie’s Brown Bag Cafe. I’ll write a post about them soon. For now enjoy the slideshow.

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Our Trip To Sarasota, Part 1: Holiday Inn

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Last week we had the opportunity to get away as a family to Lido Beach in Sarasota. This was our first family vacation, not in Rhode Island (where my husband’s family lives). We loved the idea of going somewhere an hour from home because it didn’t cost much to get there, but it was far enough away to feel like a vacation. We have a very tight budget, but we were able to stay at a hotel because my day is a Holiday Inn Priority Club member. He earns points each time he stays at a Holiday Inn for his job and can redeem them for hotel stays, airline tickets, shopping certificates and more. If you travel a lot, I recommend you look into becoming a member. We had a lovely room on the sixth floor with a beautiful view of the gulf.

We weren’t directly on the beach, but we could just walk across the street to get to the soft sandy shores. We played in the water , jumping in and out of waves and hunted for pretty shells. We took a break for some Publix subs and a nap. Then we got some lunch at The Old Salty Dog on City Island, just 5 minute drive away from our hotel. There are several places to eat at within walking distance, but we wanted to go to the place where Adam Richman from the television Man vs. Food ate. We tried their signature dish, the salty dog, a quarter pound hotdog beer-battered and deep-fried. I topped mine off with grilled onions and pepper jack cheese. It was monstrous artery clogger and pretty tasty. Then we hustled back to the beach to watch the sunset.

The rooms were nice and the staff there was okay. We asked about a burger and hotdog place on the beach, but they didn’t know about it and didn’t offer to find it for us– a good concierge would. I was also disappointed with the internet speed; it was very hit or miss. Sometimes it was quick and sometimes it took 10 minutes to load a page. I was hoping they had a fridge in the room to help us save on food costs, but I guess it doesn’t come in every room. If we go again, I’ll make sure we bring a cooler for storing breakfast and snack items. All in all I give this hotel 3 stars.

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