Why Are All The High End Fashion Stores Leaving Downtown Areas In The Twin Cities?

Well, it’s official, the last vestiges of Saks, Saks Off Fifth, has left the Nicollet Mall.  First to leave the Twin Citiess was Neiman Marcus, next Bloomingdales–even from their location at the Mall of America, and now Saks Outlet Downtown Minneapolis store.  Now one can understand the former stores leaving during the economic decline, yet, one would have thought Bloomingdales would have kept their MOA store with all its’ international traffic, and Saks Outlet is a popular chic, designers bargain basement store–perhaps the downtown location was not the most advantageous, but hopefully we will see them return at a more strategic location in the Twin Cities.  As of now, its’ location will be filled with another super Walgreens store as part of the city’s downtown revitalization.

Perhaps this is yet another sign that the sick economy has not fully recovered.


Near County Road C in Maplewood, Minnesota, in one half of a brick building, is housed a meat market that not only carries spectacular cuts of meat for the dinner table, but also items that cater to the gourmands among us. The Angus Meat Market assaults your senses and eyes when you walk in with the smells of hickory and smoke, and an array of meats including every cut of steak imagineable, jerky in a variety of flavors made from beef, turkey and chicken, and double-smoked hickory bacon. What drew MarkdownMom to this site was their large sign heralding “Double Smoked Hams.” For the holidays, this is a must have and your quests will rave at the moistness and flavor of their hams, and for that special occasion you can even order a whole pig for roasting!
For those who culinary tastes are more adventurous, this market carries specialized meats such as alligator and smoked alligator and kangaroo (delight for all those Crocodile Dundee fans), bison, elk, kobe/wygu (Japan) patties and steaks, farm raised venison, wild boar, goat and grass fed beef can be ordered! Besides free range chickens and turkeys, they carry small birds including quail, cornish hens, and partridge.
.For the hunters, The Home Market processes all kinds of game. For you favorite pooch, they even have dog treats–the lists goes on and on. And what ‘s equally important, prices were more than competitive–like 95% ground beef for $4.99/lb!
Oh, MarkdownMom mustn’t forget that the other half of the brick building houses the family’s liquor store. One stop shopping to pick up that special beverage to go along with your delicious meals.

This Is One Family-Owned Business where family pride is shown in the quality of their product!!!

MarkdownMom Exclusive: SR Harris Designer Fabric Outlet Opens Store In Burnsville!

SR Harris is known to crafters, fashion designers, and interior decorators alike as a premier outlet of fine fabrics.  Located in the Twin Cities suburb of Brooklyn Park, they have expanded by opening another store in the Burnsville community–about 10 miles (13 minutes)  SW of Mall of America at 3715  Hwy 13 with 15,500 sq. ft. of sheer imagination!

Embroidered fabrics laden with swarovski crystals, real and faux fur, batiks, silks, quilting cottons, etc., and all the accoutrements to finish that special project.  Plus get these fabulous fabrics at 60% off msrp. and always look for their special coupon deals!

To be one of the first customers through their new store doors  sometime this fall, follow them on Facebook!


Beauty & The Bargain

Beauty schools, or more  properly, cosmetology schools not only  provide the  next generation of stylists, but provide folks on a limited budget or simply looking for a great bargain, affordable beauty services.  MarkdownMom recently visited Aveda Institute in Minneapolis, Minnesota for a little pampering.

The Aveda Institute offers not only hair styling and hair cuts, but facials and message, and waterless manicures.  Plus they use their fabulous line of products to achieve your beauty refresher or makeover.  Prices are usually 50% below the market.  It can get crowded on weekends, so MarkdownMom recommends if at all possible make an appointment during the weekday. And when you do,be sure to tell Mike & Courtney “hi” from MarkdownMom!

Click On Photo Above To See Slideshow of The Aveda Institute


Service Hours:  .
Monday   12:30pm to 9:00pm
Tuesday to Friday    8:30am to 9:00pm
Saturday    8:30am to 5:00pm

Someone's In The Kitchen At The Global Market

  With more and more of us cooking at home which is not only economical, but healthier since you  can control the ingredients and portions, inevitably there comes a time when you need to expand your meal  repertoire. If you have ever heard the words such as “not again” to your dinner  selection, then you know it’s time to make a change, to spice  it up, and take your family’s palate to where it has not gone before.   However, buying new exotic ingredients does not spell success in and of itself, you need to know how  to play with your food  menu like the professionals. 

Just entering Midtown Global Market in Minneapolis an array of colors and delicious aromas assault your senses bringing to life your urge to explore.  Conveniently located in the Global Market next to stores with exotic cooking ingredients is the appropriately named Kitchen In The Market™  where you can learn to create and eat spectacular fare from professionals. Learn what it is like to work in a professional kitchen, incorporate  those exotic Global Market ingredients,  expand your palate by exploring the world and honing your culinary skills.  Classes are a great way to circle the world one dish at a time.  

Classes continue throughout the summer. 

Check them out, say hi to Tracy and Molly, and when you do tell them MarkdownMom sent you!  Continue reading “Someone's In The Kitchen At The Global Market”

Eating Healthy In The Twin Cities

Food Co-ops are a great source for fresh organic food, but not all are created equal–some are more equal than others.  Seward Co-op, located at 2823 East Franklin Avenue, Minneapolis,MN, offers an array of fresh food and new products.  This store not only continues to offer spices and teas in bulk, has one of the best deli buffets where you can sample the hot before buying, but continues to look for new products worthy of their customers. MarkdownMom recently visited the Co-op and experienced a sensory overload to all the wonderful aromas and bright colors of its current inventory. Can’t find something?  Just ask their knowledgeable and friendly staff, but above all just enjoy!

For A Quick Tour Of SEWARD CO-OP Click On Photo

MarkdownMom Exclusive: For those of us that have been looking for a local source of farro, MarkdownMom was told by the buyers at Seward that they expect to have a supplier in a month. Farro is one of the most nutritious grains and following the historic adage that an army marches on its’ stomach, this was the principle fare of the Roman Legions. Farro is usually soaked before being prepared, unlike spelt which it is often compared with, but also unlike spelt it remains  chewy not mushy when cooked. Farro is a very versatile grain and can be used in soups, salads, as a vegetable dish, or as a substitute for rice.


When You Visit Seward’s Please Tell Them MarkdownMom Sent You!

Erin Goes Twin Cities~One More Day For Great Homemade Irish Cooking!

Good Morning Twin Cities!  You must have the Luck of the Irish because the Java Train Cafe is offering its’ traditional Emerald Isle fare for two days!

  On March 17  St. Patty’s Day each year the Java Train Cafe in the Como neighborhood of  St. Paul offers delicious corned beef with cabbage and Shepard’s Pie with a side of irish soda bread,  all for under $7! 

Missed it on  Thursday?  Lucky you, try it on Friday! 

Locally owned, family friendly, and great service!

Famous Asian Dish Recipe

The weather outside is frightful and wouldn’t it be delightful if we could replicate a local asian dish that would warm our tummies and keep our food budget within reason.  Markdown Chics has uncovered the secret recipe for Big Bowl Thai Hot Pepper Shrimp and adapted it to their user-friendly version.  O-h-h s-o-o good, you may never go out this Winter.



MarkdownMom Chics Version of Big Bowl Thai Hot Pepper Shrimp/

with Basil and Peanuts 


½ c lime juice

2 Tbsp. of canola oil

¼ c of white sugar

1 Tbsp. red chili pepper flakes

1 tsp. salt

25-30 medium to large shrimp

2 cloves of garlic, minced

½ cup of red onion, chopped

1 red bell pepper, chopped

1 green bell pepper, chopped

½ c of freshly chopped basil

¼ c of peanuts (non-salted, non-roasted)

1 c of white rice



1. Add oil to frying pan and turn heat on to medium. Allow oil to warm.

2. During step 1, combine lime juice, salt and sugar in a bowl and mix. Set aside.

3. Add red chili pepper flakes and garlic to frying pan. Allow the garlic to brown.

4. Once garlic is done, add the lime juice mix. Stir the lime juice for 2-3 min until thickened.

5. In a pot, add water and allow it to come to a boil. Once boiling, add white rice and lower heat. Rice should be done in 15-20 min.. White rice can also be cooked in rice steamer.

6. Add shrimp to the frying pan. Coat the shrimp in the lime juice. Shrimp will turn pink-red when done, about 10-15 min..

7. Once shrimp are cooked, add peanuts, red onion, red and green bell peppers. Fry for an additional 10 min..

8. Add basil. Cook for 3 min..

9. Serve Thai hot pepper shrimp with basil and peanuts on top of white rice.

MarkdownMom On A Mission

The Arts and Craft Movement first started in Great Britain growing out of a desire to shed the ornate style of the Victorians.  Not as successful in G.B., it was embraced in the U.S. by Elbert Hubbard, founder of RoyCroft Press, who wanted to reproduce his book , Little Journeys, in the rich skilled style of William Morris’  Kelmscot Press.  He established an artist colony in East Aurora New York of craftspeople.  The Roycroft trademark was emblazoned on leather. metalwork. and furniture.  Later it produced furniture for Sears & Roebuck. making it available to the middle class. 

Later Mission Style and Prairie Stylewould identify arts and crafts design styles in architecture like Frank Lloyd Wright, furniture with the Stickley Brothers, and a number of potters, etc.  Mission to Victoriana is very much the first minimalist style with clean lines, utilitarian purpose.  MarkdownMom loves this style since it can be incorporated into several design themes, and one way to gain knowledge on this artisan inspired movement is to attend special showings similar to craft shows.  In St. Paul, Minnesota recently a gathering of merchants of vintage mission style and reproduced mission style furniture and accessories was held on the St. Paul Fairgrounds.   An entrance fee of $7 not only let you in to see the merchandise and talk with the vendors, but there was a free dog show with it!  Bargain hunters should avail themselves of opportunities such as these special events to learn more on the history, identifying authentic from reproductions, and pricing.

See what you missed at the Mission Style Show, Click Here→

Saving Money, One Dollar At A Time

For a couple of years, MarkdownMom has wanted to visit Aldi.  Some have referred to this grocery store as a thrift store grocery, but like their chain membership counterparts, Aldi provides an opportunity for customers to save money on staples and specialty groceries. 

For instance, lump crab claw meat usually sells for around $15.00/lb., MarkdownMom found it for $4.99 8 oz., carne picada great in burritos, tacos, and recipes requiring shredded beef for $ 3.29 /lb., 16 oz. frozen mussels $2.99, frozen huge akia eggrolls $2.49 pkg., vacuum packed sliced genoa salami $2.49/lb., 12 oz.can of frozen limeade 77¢, and fresh fruit such as seedless grapes 77¢ lb., bananas 39¢/lb., Moser Roth chili  flavored chocolate bar $1.69, and more. 

 This might not be huge savings, but when you factor in the quality, the savings mount up little by little; MarkdownMom recommends adding Aldi to your grocery resources to spice up  family meals for less!