We spent the weekend in small, quaint Cedarburg, Wisconsin. Our accommodations were at the Washington House Inn in the historic downtown. We stayed in the Frederich Hilgen room 305. I spent some time choosing a room as they have such a wide variety. My other favorites were 210, 212, 214 and 216 (next time!). The Inn was neat because they had a hosted wine and cheese hour in the early evening and then a big breakfast spread that we opted to get delivered to our bed. Nothing beats sitting in a robe eating breakfast in bed. The shops downtown were great, our dinner at Anvil was spot on and spending the time on rest and relaxation was well worth it. I’d love to go back sometime.
I had 3 overripe bananas so decided to make this banana bread. It turned out so delicious it’s one that I’ll be sure to make more of in the future!
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
2 1/3 cups mashed overripe bananas
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl, cream together butter and brown sugar. Stir in eggs and mashed bananas until well blended. Stir banana mixture into flour mixture; stir just to moisten. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
3. Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 65 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack.
Recipe via Allrecipes.
I like to travel on the cheap but the inner Donald Trump in me likes my hotel room to be as posh as possible. Enter asking for a room upgrade. Some of the tips I have found that can be used to manipulate hotels and resorts to my advantage are:
1. If staying in a hotel that has a loyalty program, join it! Besides a better chance at an upgrade you usually get some free stuff or vouchers.
2. Book directly with the hotel. There is little chance for an upgrade on that $35 Priceline bid you won.
3. Contact the hotel before you arrive with a nice friendly email that explains how much you are looking forward to your stay. If you are celebrating a special occasion – birthday, anniversary, engagement – mention that. It does not guarantee an upgrade but it helps. This should be sent to the Guest Service Manager or Front Office Manager.
4. If you get a reply with a promise of an upgrade reply immediately with a thank you. Follow up a few days before your stay with an email that casually mentions the upgrade and how much you are looking forward to your stay. Done!
5. If you are asking for an upgrade at the hotel desk keep these things in mind. Be nice. Smile. Be genuine. Mention the special occasion if it applies. Appearance matters – do not wear a velour track suit or other trashy+tacky outfit. It helps to check in late, say 7:00PM or 8:00PM because there is little chance of a walk-in that is going to want a special suite later that night.
6. Last, complain. Go to the room and check it out. Call the front desk and tell them that the room was definitely not what you were expecting from a (insert hotel brand) hotel and why. If your room does not meet the description then it is reasonable to request an upgrade free of charge.
Remember, an upgrade is not guaranteed. The only sure way is to fork over the money.