Looking for a Holiday Gift? Give the Gift of a Stress-Free Meal!

There are some people who are impossible to shop for. They either have everything, or they don’t need/want stuff.  Well, I’ve got a great solution!

Everyone has to eat! Gift your family and friends near and far with easy, delicious meals from Dream Dinners. There is nothing better than filling their freezer with meals and giving them a break from the kitchen.

You have a couple options:

  • Have Dream Dinners Delivered: Ship four delicious dinners directly to their home. *Available in select states and zip codes.
  • Dinner for the Night: Add an extra meal or two to your monthly order to gift to friends and family.
  • Gift Card: Not sure what meals they would enjoy? A Dream Dinners gift card is the perfect solution.

And if you’ve never tried Dream Dinners, now is a great time! January time slots are filling up fast and there are a lot of great options in January’s menu (including lower-calorie options if part of your 2022 plans includes losing weight/eating less).

I’ll be writing more about Dream Dinners later this Month and into January. I’m really excited that they have more vegetarian options! If you are a San Diego, CA area local, keep your eyes peeled on my Facebook page for more information about a Dream Dinners event in January at the location in La Mesa, CA. 

La Mesa Dream Dinners: Restaurant Week Deal Special Offer!

Did You Know Interesting Fact Instagram Post (Email Header) 3
OH MY GOSH Y’ALL! Check out this amazing offer! La Mesa Dream Dinners is participating in 18th Annual Restaurant Week with a special offer for you. This is a great way to participate in Restaurant week without leaving home.

Special Offer Price $35 – Serves 3: For a limited time you can purchase 1 medium meal from the selection below. The Dinner package includes Garlic Bread and a 6 pack of Hope’s Chocolate chip cookies to bake at home.

The staff will assemble and freeze your meals for you to pick up and take home to cook.

Choose from the following menu:

Maple Glazed Pork RoastThai Coconut Shrimp over Jasmine RiceChicken and Pasta with Lemon & Artichoke Sauce
  • Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin
  • Chicken & Artichoke Pasta
  • Thai Coconut Shrimp  over Jasmine Rice
This offer is not available online -please call/text 619-460-6800 or email lamesaca@Dreamdinners.com to place your order.

The staff will contact you for an appointment to pick up your meals at our curbside service.

I think we’ll be getting the Chicken and Artichoke Pasta- What option are you going to choose?

A Shift in Mindset: Being Cheap Versus Being Frugal

The last Monday of the school year (back in June), after I dropped the kids at their respective schools, I went to Target. I bought curtains. Now, for those who either know me in real life, or I’ve been reading the blog for a while, you know that prior to blogging full-time, one of the jobs I had in the past was a historical costumer. So I know how to sew.

Why did I buy curtains? I’m frugal.

Let me explain. I got really nice curtains for each kid kids bedroom. They are 63 inches long, they are black-out curtains meaning that they are treated with white plastic that once the curtains are closed at no light filters through. Each curtain panel was $11. So for two sets of curtains, they cost after taxes about $46. Which is decent. I could not walk into a fabric store and buy all the supplies I need it for two sets of curtains for the same amount of money.

For $46, I saved myself about two hours’ worth of measuring, cutting, and sewing. Plus a trip to the fabric store. For those of you who have been to a fabric store lately, you know how dangerous it is once you get in there. So many new ideas, craft supplies, cool fabric. And I try to have willpower, but I do love to make things.

I could have in theory found cheap fabric either at the fabric store or at Walmart, or I could’ve even gone to a thrift store and look for fabric, or old sheets. That’s not what I wanted. I wanted something that looked nice I wanted something or I wouldn’t have to spend hours getting something done just to save a few bucks. And that’s the difference between being cheap, and being frugal.

Everyone’s heard the old adage “Time is money“. And it’s true. Even though I may work at home, it doesn’t mean that my time is not worth anything. When I do paying gigs, no matter what they are, I won’t take them if I feel that my time is not being compensated well enough. And for this, new curtain project, I felt that $46 was well spent.

Now I know not everyone has extra money lying around to do whatever project that is looming on your horizon. There are other ways you can flex your frugal muscles.

  • If it’s a sewing project, you can go through your fabric stash if you have one, you can find coupons online for fabric if you wanna make your own project.
  • Look online and see if there are discounts available or deals or sales on whatever your project item is.
  • Check your local buy nothing group online.
  • Hit up your local thrift store. I have gotten many good pairs of sheets sets, bedding, and even curtains at thrift stores. A lot of people change out their curtains every year and wash and donate their “old“ curtains to a thrift store. My bedroom curtains came from the Goodwill in my town. And I paid less than $10 for both of the curtains. And they’re beautiful and I love them.

Prior to hitting up Target, for the past month, I’d kept my eyes open anytime I went out to a thrift store, or when I was out shopping to see if there were curtains that were perfect for our needs. I was not successful.  So instead of continuing the search even longer for something secondhand, I bit the bullet and spent $46. Because to me, getting a project done and checked off my to-do list for $46, was worth it. I didn’t need to keep going to thrift stores every week, trying to find the perfect set of curtains or the perfect fabric.

Frugality versus cheapness is something that goes beyond purchasing home goods. Let’s look at groceries. I know back in the heyday of couponing, a lot of people would go from store to store to store to stock up on deals and bargains. I will admit that back before I had kids I would do that. Because I had lots of free time. But now that I have two kids, my free time is limited.

And couponing is not what it used to be. So I shop at the same stores every week. Unless something is free, I tend not to deviate from my usual shopping. I shop at three stores. Which, seems like a lot, however, two of the stores are in the same shopping center, right next-door to each other. And I buy specific stuff at each store because it’s the only place to find what I want within my budget. So every week I head to $.99 only, Grocery Outlet, and usually Food 4 Less.

This is just some of what we get each week!

We get our CSA box every week for $25. And it’s an amazing deal. It saves me both time in that I don’t have to try to go to two or three grocery stores that have decent produce to find exactly what I want, and it saves me money. A $25 produce box has everything we need for the entire week. And I am able to use what is in that box to plan my weekly menu. We seldom have waste from our CSA box. And what we don’t eat by the end of the week just gets rolled over into the next week. In the past, I was spending half or more of a grocery budget each week on produce, and half the time it was too much, and it will go bad or I would have to stash it in the freezer. I still stash veggies and fruit in the freezer, but not to such a large extent.

Another thing that for me is frugal but not cheap is Dream Dinners. Granted, Dream Dinners can cost upwards of $250 plus a month for a minimum order. And that’s either 12 dinners that serve 2 to 3 people each or six large dinners that are for 4 to 6 people each. I like Dream Dinners because from the time you start cooking to the time dinner is on the table it’s 45 minutes or less in most cases.

And there are times when I’ve had a long day and it’s just been so crazy that I don’t want to cook. But instead of going through the drive-through, ordering a pizza, I can just pull out one of our dream dinners and have food that’s ready to eat in 45 minutes or less. There are no difficult directions, and the food is always delicious. And one order with 12 medium meals is enough for a month for us.

I tend to use them on nights where I know that I’m going to want something that’s quick, something that’s easy. Dream Dinners are cheaper than take out for our family. If I was to do take out 2 to 3 times a week every month that would be upwards of $600. That’s based on an average of what we usually order when we get takeout.

These are just a few examples of how I am frugal. Obviously, these may not be the ways that you save time vs. doing it the cheapest way. Everyone has ways that saves time and money, and I’d love to hear from you!

Dream Dinners: Now Booking In-Store Events!

This is some pretty cool news! Dream Dinners is launching its new Meal Prep Workshop program in August!
This is an exciting new twist on their in-store party and it’s a great opportunity for you to introduce your friends to Dream Dinners and earn fun rewards!
Here’s how it works:
As the host, you attend the workshop for free! This includes three pre-prepped medium-size meals, our grill marinade trio, and a private, in-store event with your friends. You also have the opportunity to earn up to $75 in host rewards! You can bring wine, Dream Dinners will make appetizers and you can enjoy your evening!

Your friends pay $50 to attend and learn about Dream Dinners. They’ll each receive three pre-prepped medium-size meals (Each meal feeds 2-3 people) and assemble a seasonal grill marinade trio, plus they’ll enjoy delicious samples of our food. We also have some exciting perks for them if they place an order at the workshop!

That’s $50 for three meals and 3 marinades!
One of the best parts of the new Meal Prep Workshops is that you and your friends get to share an experience with our exclusive seasonal workshop! Our theme for August Workshops is Summer Grilling and we’ll be making a grill marinade trio that Chef Laura created just for these events.

This is a great chance for you to get out of the house and have a fun night out with friends!
Space is limited, so if you are interested, contact your local Dream Dinners for more information and to book your Meal Prep Workshop.

Here in East County, it’s the La Mesa location.  Call or Text (619) 460-6800 or email: lamesaca@dreamdinners.com

If you are located in East County and want to join a Meal Prep Workshop, I’ll be planning one in the coming weeks. Drop me a comment or PM via Facebook or Instagram and I’ll get you an invite once I get the event set up.

Dream Dinners: Host an event, get rewarded!

Dream Dinners is one of my favorite ways to save time and get tasty, healthy meals on the table in 45 minutes or less! And now you can win a prize when you share Dream Dinners with family and friends!

Host an event with Dream Dinners this summer and be rewarded with an Exclusive Summer Essential Kit full of fun gifts and exclusive summer recipes (a $50 value). Plus, you will earn up to $75 in store credit to get more dinners for your family.

Interested in hosting an event and earning a Summer Essentials Kit? Spaces are limited, contact your local Dream Dinners today. For most of my readers, the La Mesa Dream Dinners is the closest.

Dream Dinners La Mesa Call: 619-460-6800 Email: lamesaca@dreamdinners.com

Dream Dinners: Coupon Code $99 off Your First Order!

Dream Dinners is hooking new clients up with an incredible offer! If you’ve never heard of Dream Dinners, check out my post here.

Right now, you can save $99 off your first month’s order when you use coupon Code “REFER99“.  When you check out, use Coupon Refer99 at check out and enter my name  (Abby Hewes) and email (akeen02037@gmail.com) in the how did you hear about us when creating your new profile.

This offer is only valid for new guests. This offer is good for a Standard order and can only be used one time per customer, per household.

A standard order is at least 12 small meals (feeds 2-3 people) or 6 large meals (feeds 4-6 people).

I love Dream Dinners because it’s a great way to save time and still serve the fam a tasty healthy meal. We order 12 small meals each month and serve 2-3 a week. Between Dream Dinners, and our CSA box, our grocery budget is under control, and we aren’t eating out multiple times per week. Because we’ve been home 24/7 for the past year, our grocery budget has gone up, but we are not eating out often. Whenever we get the urge to eat out, I grab a Dream Dinner meal from the freezer, and in less than an hour, we are eating gooood.

There are Dream Dinners locations in 22 states, find your closest location here.

Hit Your Fundraising Goals with Dream Dinners!

Fundraising is usually not fun. Having kids sell wrapping paper, candy bars, Entertainment Books..ugh. It’s hard because it’s usually something that not everyone needs.

Dream Dinners wants to help you with a fun, successful fundraiser! Everyone eats, and this fundraiser not only supports your local nonprofit but gives caregivers extra time (most Dream Dinners take about 30 minutes to prepare and serve) around dinner time. The menu options for March are super yummy, and there are lots of kid friendly options!

March Matchness VR Email Header 2Host a fundraising event for you during our March Matchness campaign! In past years, Dream Dinners has raised more than $20,000 each March for non-profits around the country. This year, Dream Dinners will provide a match of up to $500 to the top ten fundraisers in March!

Due to COVID-19, they’ve adjusted their in-store fundraising events to take place as a socially safe, curbside pickup at our store. Here’s how it works:

Calendar IconChoose a date and time for your curbside fundraiser. Do you plan on having a lot of people attend? Dream Dinners can book multiple dates and times!
Chat Bubble IconInvite guests to your fundraiser event. Dream Dinners provides PDF invitations and content for you to share on social media!
Piggy Bank IconYour guests will pay $50 to attend and each attendee* will receive three medium-size meals (nine total servings) to take home and enjoy with their family. Your organization will earn a portion of the sales from each order!
Heart Plate IconRaise an extra $20 for each guest that places a follow-up order at Dream Dinners!
The Dream Dinners fundraisers are perfect for local nonprofits, including school groups, sports teams, animal rescues, food banks, churches, and other causes. Contact Dream Dinners today for more information and to book your curbside fundraiser event at Dream Dinners!

The La Mesa Dream Dinners Team can be contacted via phone at 619-460-6800

*One fundraiser order per household.

Talk Back: I’d love to hear about your favorite fundraising techniques for your local nonprofit!

Meal Prep and Menu Planning Made Easy With Dream Dinners!

My girl Brooke hooked me with Dream Dinners recently. Most of you know that I am a huge proponent of meal prep and menu planning. I also recognize that not everyone has the time to spare a few hours each week prepping veggies, marinating meats, preparing sauces and bagging it all up to cook later.

And when you don’t have time to shop or do prep work, you lean on fast food or take out. Once in a while, it’s ok, but any more than that and it’s not healthy or good for your pocketbook.

Enter Dream Dinners! For less than the price of take out or a drive-through visit for the fam, and in 30 minutes or less, you will have a tasty, hot, fresh homecooked meal! I’ve reviewed Meal Kits in the past, and there are a lot of inherent problems with fresh and frozen food being mailed to you. Frozen cucumbers, smashed produce… You don’t have these issues with Dream Dinners. This is one of the reasons that Dream Dinners is better.

A few other reasons Dream Dinners is superior:

Dream Dinners is less expensive than other Meal Kit Programs.  That’s a plus in my book!

With locations all over San Diego County (and nationwide), you order online and pick it up at your local Dream Dinner Location. Pop your trunk, and the lovely Dream Dinners employee will place your food in the trunk. You are all set to go!

Chicago style chicken with roasted red potatoes

Your meals are prepped locally in store just for you! No squished produce, accidentally frozen ingredients, or worse (and this was a big fear for me) having to rearrange your entire day so you are home when the Fed-ex guy delivers your meal kit box so the food doesn’t sit on your patio. Here in San Diego, it’s hot and sunny frequently, and that means food sitting out (even in a sealed box with dry ice) might go bad or be unsafe to eat.

Lasagna Soup & Garlic Bread

I’m hosting a Facebook Party to share my love of Dream Dinners. If you are interested in joining and taking advantage of some great deals, Message me on Facebook and I’ll add you.

If you don’t have Facebook, you can visit the Dream Dinners Website and you can take advantage of the great deal going on!

Right now when you use the coupon code 15OFF, you save $15 on the $99 Starter kit- It’s a great deal.

To take advantage of this deal, make sure to use the drop-down box and type in my email: akeen02037@gmail.com to take advantage of this sweet Deal!

And with locations all over San Diego and the US, you can order meals, pick them up and have one less thing to worry about! I plan on buying meals each month, so we are eating well on those nights when I would rather play legos or Playmobils with the kids, or go for a walk to the park.

Talk Back: Which Dream Dinners Entree has you interested? Menu for February is here