Happy New Year!


Happy New Year, for all of us here at The Urban Daddy!  Okay, so that’s just me, but it sounds better when it’s coming for a bunch of people, right?

You might have noticed a few changes around here if you arrive at the blog via the URL http://www.urbandaddy.wordpress.com.  The theme and cover photo have been changed again and I’m taking this blog back to basics which means more content and less focus on what the heck I’m saying and how it’s being written.

I miss the old days when I would throw up a post and the only reader and only comment would be from my sister who would edit it for me in her comment.  LOL.

You might also have noticed that little “R” inside a circle after “The Urban Daddy” and that is because I have registered the trademark “The Urban Daddy”.  After 1200 posts covering over 12-years, it was only a matter of time, right?

Another new change is the URL.  You can access this blog via http://www.theurbandaddy.ca as well, as I finally had enough time to activate that URL which I’ve owned for the past 5-years.

I hope everyone has a healthy, wealthy and peaceful 2017, and I’d like to end this post with a tidbit of wisdom from my now 7-year-old daughter, who blurted this out on New Years’ Day for some unknown reason;

 

“In order to have money and not be poor when you are older, you need to earn and save money now when you are young!”

 

A fiscal conservative at the core!

 

My Favourite Time of Year: Top US and Canadian Google Searches for 2016.


This is my favourite time of the year, where all of the year-end lists begin rolling in.  Below you will find the top 10 US Google searches, and what is likely the top 10 Canadian Google searches.  Enjoy, and please do not hesitate to comment.

Google’s top trending searches of 2016 (US).

  1. Powerball – The lottery handed out $1.6 billion dollars in prizes in January 2016 alone.
  2. Pokemon Go – either for tips or to read stories of people who walked into holes, or traffic while playing this game
  3. Rio 2016 – Olympics were a popular search item because of many sub-stories such as the polution in Rio, the Russian athletes being banned for doping or bad sportsmanship on behalf an Egyptian “athlete” who was kicked out of the games for refusing to shake hands with his Israeli opponent.
  4. Election 2016 – US presidential election had so many sub-stories including everything Donald Trump and everything Hilary Clinton and the email scandal. The CIA got involved as did the Russians and Anthony(s) Weiner all played part.
  5. David Bowie who died in January.
  6. Prince, who died in April.
  7. Hurricane Matthew, which barrelled through the Caribbean and made landfall in the US in October.
  8. Brad Pitt was Google’s top trending actor searched in 2016 for “abusing” his child on an airplane while intoxicated and then being divorced from Angelina Jolie.
  9. Prince Harry’s girlfriend, Megan Markle, trended most among actresses as the American actress currently residing in Toronto as hounded by paparazzi forcing the Prince to step in and berate those in the media who are harassing her.
  10. Beyonce topped musical searches, and her song “Formation” was the top trending song in Google searches for 2016

 

 

Canadian 2016 Top Trending searches must have included the following;

  1. Justin Trudeau
  2. Justin Trudeau’s hair
  3. Justin Trudeau is so cute
  4. Justin Trudeau is so pretty
  5. Justin Trudeau stylish
  6. Who is Justin Trudeau
  7. Gord Downy
  8. Tragically Hip
  9. Kathleen Wynne is killing Ontario
  10. Which JT is cuter, Justin Timberlake or Justin Trudeau

The Amazing South Street Burger Co. Experience


My kids and I were invited to attend a local South Street Burger Co., for the launch of their “Dinner Just got Better” campaign, which was fantastic and quite informative.

Back on October 28th, South St. Burger launched a new creative campaign that distinguished the brand as the ‘better’ dinner choice, focusing on their commitment to best-in class burger customization, fresh, high-quality ingredients and top-notch sides as essential differentiators in a highly competitive market.

This event proved that to be true, and then some…

We learned that South St. Burger’s core philosophy is “Better Burgers. Fries. Shakes.”  We also learned that there is no need to compromise for ‘fast,’ when it comes to eating well.  We learned that the toppings are fresh, the food so tasty and the shakes get both adult and children’s approvals.

Jay Gould, the founder and President of South Street Burger Co., said “We know our target is strapped for time at the end of their day, but keen to find ‘better’ meal options for their families that include fresh ingredients and don’t compromise on taste.”

The campaign highlighted all the ways South St. Burger makes dinner ‘better’ – from its fresh, 100% Angus beef, additive-free burger raised without the use of hormones or antibiotics, to its gourmet topping combinations and use of garden-fresh ingredients, to fresh-cut fries and hand-scooped milkshakes.

Does it make a difference?  Hell, yes.

Can you taste the difference?  See above.

Is it worth visiting again, and again and again.  Yup.  So very worth it.

I’m sure you have seen their eye-catching product photography and cheeky headlines, such as ‘A burger a day keeps the Kale away’ and ‘Like Frozen Burgers? Keep Walking’ on their Facebook, or Instagram pages.

So, I took my middle child to the event because, well, he LOVES his food, and not just in that – he’ll eat large quantities of anything, kind of way – and for a week prior to the event he kept checking in to ensure we were still going, and the night of the event, when it was time to create our own burger, he already knew how many toppings were available and what was good on the menu to eat with the burger because he “researched” that.

So we made burgers, had professional pictures taken of them, and then ate, ate, ate.

My son’s has a knack for building the perfect burger – he called it the “Boss 2.0” and it photographed well, but tasted even better.  The food was incredible and we learned what differentiates South Street Burger Co. from all the rest, and that is the quality of the products they serve.

Our experience was so pleasant that we’ve been back every week since then for a burger and have not been disappointed in the quality of the burgers or the quality of the toppings.  It really opened our eyes to what we should expect in a burger and gave us a few locations to visit and eat well.

ABOUT SOUTH ST. BURGER
South St. Burger serves premium food in a contemporary, loft environment. The menu features fresh 4oz and 6oz beef patties made with 100 % Angus beef, are additive free, and raised without the use of hormones or antibiotics. Grilled chicken breasts, veggie burgers as well as Oktoberfest sausages and all-beef hot dogs are also on the menu. Sides include hand-cut french fries and poutine, and hand-scooped milkshakes made from real, premium ice cream. With 30 traditional and gourmet condiments, from dill pickles to dijon horseradish, guacamole and mango chutney, customers can personalize their orders at no extra charge.

Premium toppings include a selection of five real cheeses, grilled ginger glazed pineapple, Applewood smoked bacon, and sautéed mushrooms.

There are 35+ restaurants in Canada including six franchised restaurants in Alberta; plus a location in Dubai. South St. Burger was recently named one of Canada’s Best Managed Private companies for their fourth year in a row.

For more information on South St. Burger, please visit http://www.southstburger.com.

With great food, healthy food and great press like that, how can you not give SSBC a try.  You won’t be disappointed.

Disclaimer: Along with the pleasure of being introduced to SSBC, we ate like royalty and were give a gift card to return to the restaurant.  My son, has a new favourite place to eat and he lights up whenever he sees a restaurant because he knows he might have the opportunity to eat a delicious meal / snack.

 

Starbucks For Life Sweepstakes is Back!


For members of the Starbucks Rewards™ loyalty program (like me!), it’s time for the annual return of the Starbucks for Life sweepstakes.

For the third consecutive year, Starbucks has featured this popular game of chance, which launched December 6th, 2016 here in Canada (also in the US).  Starbucks Rewards™ members have an opportunity to win prizes, including Starbucks for Life, Starbucks for a Year, Starbucks for a Month, Starbucks for a Week* and millions of Bonus Stars.

The Way to Play

From now through January 16th, 2017, eligible Starbucks Rewards™ members can earn game plays when they make a purchase* using either their registered Starbucks Card or the Starbucks® Mobile App in participating U.S. and Canada (excluding Quebec) stores.

Members can redeem their game plays and collect digital game pieces by logging on to www.starbucksforlife.com in the U.S. or www.starbucksforlife.ca in Canada. Starbucks Rewards™ members may earn up to two game plays per day by making an eligible purchase transaction with a registered Starbuck Card or App.

What’s New This Holiday?

Members can complete challenges found within the game to earn extra game plays. Examples of challenges include “Jump the Line,” which rewards customers for making a purchase via mobile order, and “Hot Streak,” which provides three extra plays if a purchase is made five days in a row. Also new this year is the ability to trade three duplicate game pieces for one new game play.

Exclusive Prizes

Starbucks Rewards™ members can win prizes by collecting all of the game pieces in a given row on their digital game board. Only seven lucky customers (five in the U.S. and two in Canada) will win the grand prize of Starbucks for Life. 45 customers (25 in the U.S. and 20 in Canada) will win Starbucks for a Year. 250 customers (125 in the U.S. and 125 in Canada) will win Starbucks for a Month. 800 customers (500 in the U.S. and 300 in Canada) will win Starbucks for a Week.

Customers can also collect game pieces to win Bonus Stars in increments of 125 and 50 Stars. Instant-win prizes with Bonus Stars in increments of 5 Stars will be awarded as well. When Starbucks Rewards™ Gold Members collect 125 Stars, they earn a Reward, which they can redeem for a food or beverage item of their choice at participating stores.


*“Starbucks for Life” means the winner will receive a daily credit for 30 years for one free food or beverage item redeemable at participating Starbucks® stores in the U.S. Alcoholic beverages excluded. Winner must present a registered Starbucks Card. Credits are non-transferable and expire within 24 hours.

“Starbucks for a Year” means the winner will receive a daily credit to his/her Account for one year (three hundred sixty-five days) for one free food or standard menu beverage item (excluding alcoholic beverages) redeemable at participating Starbucks stores in the U.S. (and likely Canada although not mentioned in their blurby). Food and beverage credits expire daily.

“Starbucks for a Month” means the winner will receive a daily credit to his/her Account for one month (thirty-one days) for one free food or standard menu beverage (excluding alcoholic beverages) item redeemable at participating Starbucks stores in the U.S. Food and beverage credits expire daily.

“Starbucks for a Week” means the winner will receive a daily credit to his/her Account for one week (seven days) for one free food or standard menu beverage item (excluding alcoholic beverages) redeemable at participating Starbucks stores in the U.S. Food and beverage credits expire daily.

Abbreviated Canada Rules

*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. LEGAL RESIDENTS OF CANADA, 18 AND OLDER AND WHO ARE MEMBERS OF THE STARBUCKS REWARDS™ LOYALTY PROGRAM AT THE TIME OF ENTRY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED. Starbucks Partners are not eligible to win prizes. Participating stores only. Promotion ends 1/16/17. For Official Rules, how to enter without purchase, prizes, and odds, visit https://www.starbucksforlife.ca. Limit for earning Game Plays:  2 transactions per day or up to 2 requests without purchase per day. Mathematical skill-testing question must be correctly answered to win. 300,000 instant win prizes (approximate retail values of $0.20 available to be won. 14,947 collect and win game prizes (approximate retail values from $2.00 to $51,574.50 available to be won.  Sponsor: Starbucks Coffee Canada, Inc., 5140 Yonge Street, Suite 1205, Toronto, ON M2N 6 L7, Canada.

Limit of one instant-win-game prize per day. “Starbucks for Life” means the winner will receive a daily credit for 30 years for one free food or beverage item redeemable at participating Starbucks® stores in Canada. Alcoholic beverages excluded. Winner must present a registered Starbucks Card. Credits are non-transferable and expire within 24 hours.

Former live-in caregiver jailed for exploiting migrants who wanted to follow in her footsteps to Canada.


A woman who came to Canada from the Philippines as a live-in caregiver has been jailed for exploiting would-be immigrants in a stiff sentence designed to thwart a wave of bogus immigration consulting. “She lied to them, cheated them, and, in some cases, even threatened them. By doing so, not only did she harm the…

via Former live-in caregiver jailed for exploiting migrants who wanted to follow in her footsteps to Canada — National Post – Top Stories

This is such a shame!  Taking advantage of those in need is terrible and not the Canadian way.