If I had a theme song, this could be it. All I’m missing is the backup band….and the ability to sing. LOL
If I had a theme song, this could be it. All I’m missing is the backup band….and the ability to sing. LOL
Lots of good news this month, and a lot of updates that are really just speculation and rumours. But at least there’s some news. There are three new locations opening this month (listed below). Also, don’t forget that Easter is coming up and that means adjusted hours or closures for locations in the US, UK, Canada, and Australia, probably Mexico too but I can’t confirm that. Some Costco Korea locations will be adjusting their hours this month due to district mandates; I’ve listed the affected locations towards at the bottom of the post.
Locations opening in April:
|HITACHINAKA, JAPAN||April 10, 2014|
|EUIJEONGBU, KOREA||April 12, 2014|
|BATON ROUGE, LA||April 25, 2014|
It is anticipated that the new Costco location in Cumming will be opening in August 2014. Costco has finalized the land deal and re-started construction at the site. The early prep work for the site had begun in May 2013 but all of that came to a halt when the land negotiations stalled. The new 148,000 square foot location, off of Georgia 400 at Exit 15, will include a gas station which will be located near Bald Ridge Marina Road. All of the utility and sewer changes have already been completed by the city, so the project should be able to move ahead without any further delays.
The Woodlands, Texas
The new 150,000 square foot Costco location at the northeast corner on Texas 242 and Interstate 45 in The Woodlands looks like it is moving forward with an opening date targeted for November 2014. To entice Costco, the Township Board of Directors agreed to grant the company $2.3 million plus interest to be funded with sales tax receipts created by the business.
Sunbury-on-Thames, England, United Kingdom
The new Costco location at The Sunbury Centre has been approved! The new store will be 140,000 square foot/13,006 square metres with a parking structure and tyre centre located beneath the store, as well as the usual store things like a bakery and food court. You can view all of the fun planning documents on the Spelthorne Borough Council planning site. Now that planning has gone through, I am sure they will be able to open by the end of the year.
Costco had proposed building a new 154,300 square foot warehouse with a 16 pump gas station near the southeast corner of State Route 25 and Eckel Junction Road. And while there were some concerns about traffic congestion (like there always are with a big store like Costco) and some residents have reacted quite negatively to the location. But, despite that, the Perrysburg planners have approved the project. The next big issue for Costco is to reach an agreement with Columbia Gas Transmissions to reroute a natural gas pipeline; they are apparently close to a deal. Even after that agreement is reached, though, they will still need the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to approve the plan and that could take up to a year, or even a year and a half. The city will also begin their project to widen the road to five lanes to the intersection, and lengthening the existing lanes at the junction of Route 25 and Eckel Junction to ease some of the traffic congestion that might accompany the new location. Costco is hoping to open the new location by Fall 2015.
Costco will be one of the anchor tenants in the Florence Heights retail development on Mall Road in Florence. It is expected that Costco will be submitting plans for the site in the next month or two. The developers are in the final stages of acquiring the land but the Florence council has already approved infrastructure changes to accommodate the development. The other anchor tenant will be a Menards and they are also hoping to bring in a Cabela’s or Bass Pro Shop. Construction is expected to begin this summer, with a targeted completion date of early to mid-2015
Costco is hoping to build a new 148,000 square foot warehouse in Auburn near Willow Creek Drive and First Street. However, this depends on them being able to lease land from the county at the location. The county has proposed a lease deal with Costco that will have them paying $325,000 for the first decade with a 10-percent increase after that, with a total lease term of 20 years with three options to extend it by 10 years. Costco also would need to contribute $530,000 toward a new home for the county’s senior center, which is currently on land Costco would occupy. As well as working out the lease agreement, Costco still needs to do the regular planning stuff, including an environmental impact report, and those can take over a year in themselves. The other issue is with the demolish of the old DeWitt Theatre in Auburn that sits where Costco is planning their parking lot. Some residents are against this, of course, but the county supervisors board has agreed to move forward with the demolish plans. Supporters of keeping the theatre are hoping that before the demolish occurs they can reach a compromise and save the theatre during the planning stages.
Costco currently leases their store in Torrance, but now they are looking to build a bigger store after purchasing a 23 acre plot of land on Lomita Boulevard, near to its existing location. The new location would be 161, 500 square foot with a gas station, car wash, and parking spaces for 874 vehicles. The new location will be about 13,500 square foot bigger than the existing location and have more than 100 extra parking spaces. No word on how quickly the new location will be under construction or when it might open.
There is nothing like official plans submitted or a land deal to report on the possible location in Wichita, however, engineers have been inquiring about local building codes for the Costco gas station, it seems. An engineering firm from Washington state contacted city planners to determine in a restroom would be required for a gas station with a nearby retail store on a site at Kellogg and Webb; no actual mention of Costco though. So, this is really just speculation but possibly a good sign. Previously the CEO of Beechcraft claimed that their former pistons plant at the corner of Kellogg and Webb would become a new Costco location. So, hopefully, we will hear something more concrete about this possible location in the near future.
Corpus Christi, Texas
There’s lots of building going on in Corpus Christi, and soon that may include a Costco location. It seems that Costco has agreed to purchase land on the south side of the city. This is still far from a done deal and it is hard to tell what is going on exactly since no formal plans have been submitted to the city. Since it pretty much always takes a while for planning, not to mention the actual construction, I’m guessing it is still at least a year before Costco will be opening its doors here.
There’s a bit of evidence that a new Costco location may be moving to the Marketplace at 2700 W. College Avenue in Appleton. Currently, the retail development there, the Marketplace, houses a Big Lots, Office Depot, and other retailers but lots of vacancies. However, it seems that some of those retailers may be moving to make room for a Costco location. The Big Lots spokeswoman has said that they have been asked to relocate as a result of Costco moving to the space.
Lower Macungie, Pennsylvania
Lower Macungie Township commissioners plan to vote June 5 to decide the fate of a tax increment financing district for a proposed Costco-anchored shopping center and determine whether tax dollars generated by the project should be used to finance it. The commissioners will hold a public meeting May 1 to discuss the proposal and allow the public to comment on it. Lehigh County commissioners have voted to reject the TIF for the project; but it is possible that Lehigh County need not participate for the project to go through. The TIF plan is not dependent on approval of all three government agencies with a stake in it — the township, county and East Penn School Board, but only the township can create the TIF district so they must be on board. The school board has already agreed to the plan.
Due to district requirements, opening hours will be changing this month for three Costco Korea locations: Yangpyung, Sangbong, and Daejeon. Starting April 1, 2014 the Yangpyung and Sangbong locations will be operating from 10 am to 10 pm. Beginning April 14, 2014, the Daejeon location will also change their hours to 10 am to 10 pm.
Upcoming Holiday Closures and Hours
I have a feeling that Costco Mexico will be closing for Easter as well, and possibly have altered hours for the days surrounding it, however, I can’t confirm that through their website. I would encourage you to check their hours and closures during this period so you aren’t disappointed.
|Tags: Holidays · In the News · Locations|
I can’t believe this month went so quickly and that it is already the end of March. I still feel like it should be February, maybe because I slept through most of that month. The current Costco US coupon expires after Sunday. If there was anything that you had your eye on in this latest round of coupons, you really can’t put it off much longer. I probably should have planned to go to Costco on Sunday, since Mother’s Day in the UK is on Sunday. If you’re a mum in the UK, Happy Mother’s Day!
Foxwood Chicken Tenders with Sauces – I wanted to like these more than I actually did. I like my chicken like this to get crunchy in the oven when you cook it, and these just never seemed to crisp up for us, even when I left them in longer or tried a higher heat. The chicken part itself is quite good though because it is made from a chunk of chicken breast, so not so type of chicken paste or suspect thing like that. You can tell it is real chicken and it was tender and juicy after cooking, even when I did it a little longer to crisp up the coating. They’re free from preservatives, artificial colourings, or flavourings, which is all very good. It was just the coating that didn’t really please me or Dave. It didn’t have any real flavour or add much to the taste, but always seemed kind of not soggy exactly, but closer to that than to crispy. The chicken is accompanied by three different packets of sauce: tamarind, hot and sour, and BBQ. I wasn’t overwhelming impressed with any of the sauces, they were okay but nothing special. I usually think of chicken tenders like this as something that is marketed, at least somewhat, towards kids, so I’m not really sure those sauces are going to appeal to young palates either. Although, they all tend toward the sweeter side, so maybe that is good for kids. The worst for me was the BBQ sauce though because it seemed far too sweet. I would have preferred that they had a better coating than include the sauces. We had these around the same time as the Flamin’ Chicken Tenders that we really like, so maybe that tainted our view and tastebuds. They’re good, but they could be better certainly. £9.39 (US: $15.62). Item #: 0017421.
Arcan 1/4″ Drive Bit Set – When we moved from Austin to London, we brought a little tiny set of tools with us, including a set of maybe 20 bits for our electric screwdriver. However, Dave was recently doing some stuff with electronics and a few other assorted projects and realized that our little set was rather limiting and that they didn’t even fit what he was trying to do. Luckily though, we found this set the next time we were at Costco. It is a huge set of 208 pieces which should just about cover any type of thing you are screwing or unscrewing around the house. There are 15 different fastener types that you can unscrew with this bit set, including the important electronics type fasteners that we really needed. And obviously there are a range of sizes for the fastener types that require it (like regular screwdriver bits and similar things). It has a nice plastic case that handily organizes all of the bits and makes them easy to take with you or store. The bits are made out with chrome vanadium steel construction so their lifespan should be much greater than the little sets that you will find at a lot of hardware and home improvement stores. Plus, they are heat treated to prevent wear and breakage. Since the set we replaced was having serious issues with wear, this was a big plus for us. This is a much nicer set than our previous little bit set for sure, but was still a pretty good price I think. When I compare it to B&Q for instance, their driver sets are more pricey and do not include the number of fastener types or the amount of bits that this set has either. It’s also hard to tell what kind of material the bits are made of, so these might be the weaker stuff that starts to wear sooner. So, it might not even be comparable really but is still more expensive. 208 pieces for £16.49 (US: $27.44). Item #: 0697870.
Kirkland Signature 33 Gallon Trash Bags – For the last four years, I haven’t had to buy trash or rubbish bags, at all. At our former flat the management company provided us with trash bags, usually like two to four per week. As a result, when we left we actually had amassed a huge surplus of bags, which we (perhaps stupidly) left in our flat when we moved out. Right after we moved in to our flat, we bought the “emergency” roll of bags from our local Tesco. They weren’t as big, they weren’t as strong, and while they did have a drawstring at the top it was more likely to break than not. But they didn’t cost very much, so we just dealt with it until we could get to Costco. We used to buy these KS trash bags when we were in the US, so we knew that they were sturdy. Really, the size isn’t the big issue for me because they pick up our rubbish pretty much every day but Sunday here, so that isn’t as important as being very sturdy. But these bags are really large, especially in comparison to the large sized rubbish bags here which are 90 litres, or 34 litres smaller than the bags from Costco. I like that they are super sturdy and even when I chuck a pointy piece of clamshell product packaging in there, or something sharp like that, the bags don’t tear. Sometimes something will stretch the bag but we’ve never had one tear or rip open on us. And if you have ever had that happen with a lesser bag, you’ll know it really is not something that you want to repeat. The drawstring at the top of the bag is a great way to make sure the bag is securely tied and then you can use them as handles to carry the bag too. The drawstring is made of a very sturdy material as well. The worst part about the bags is that we have to do some fancy tucking and tying to get the bags to fit into our bin without peeping out and looking rumbled. But I can manage that most of the time. The bags also come in a box that acts as a very nice dispenser, really dispensing just a single bag at a time. You don’t have to worry about pulling out a new bag and end up with two or three in your hand or half way pulled out of the box. I like that because it makes it much easier for me to store them under my kitchen sink without them taking up too much space. The price is good and quite competitive with the smaller, not as strong bags that I’ve found in the local supermarkets. For a single bag at Costco you’ll pay about £0.14, which is pretty comparable for similar bags at Tesco for instance, though theirs aren’t as big and are more likely to rip (from my experience). 90, 33 gallon/124 litre bags for £12.39 (US: $20.61). Item #: 0384324.
Scotch Precision Ultra Edge Scissor Set – Our current flat here in London, isn’t really all that flat anymore. It is what is referred to here as a “maisonette”, meaning that there are two floors to our place now. And that means stairs. After living here just a couple of weeks, I quickly realized that our single pair of scissors, wasn’t cutting it (pun totally intended) anymore. No matter where I had the scissors, it seemed they were always on the other floor. I swear, they moved sometimes just so that I would have to run up and down the stairs. I was just getting to the super frustration point when, lo and behold, Costco had a coupon for a three pack of scissors. So, at last we now have enough scissors for every place we could ever need to cut, trim or open anything. And these are really nice scissors too. The scissors have 8″ titanium-fused blades and soft, comfort grip handles. The titanium blade is 4x sharper, according to Scotch, than a stainless steel blade! Plus, they will stay sharp for 100,000 cuts. Oh yes, the titanium blades will also have a greater resistance to corrosion than stainless steel blades. The handles have a soft-ish, rubberized grip area that means they are definitely more comfortable in your hand than other hard plastic or metal handled scissors. The cutting action is incredibly smooth and the blades don’t catch on the things that you are cutting. Plus, if you feel you need to adjust the tension, there’s a screw that can easily be tightened or loosened as needed for optimal performance. The “precision” part of the name of these scissors comes from the fact that they are sharpened more precisely than other scissors and thus can be used to make very exacting cuts for things like materials or craft projects. The three pack comes with three different colour grips for the handles, so you can even colour code your scissors if you are super particular about what you use for cutting paper or material, versus random household things. I bought this 3 pack of scissors when there was a coupon, so I got a really great deal. Just a single pair of similar scissors at Ryman is more expensive than the entire three pack from Costco. But even without the coupon, the three pack is still a much better buy than you’ll get at Ryman where a single pair is £7.99. And a single pair of these exact scissors at Amazon UK is a whopping £9.39, so that’s just insane. I know that Scotch sells these same scissors in the US, but I’m not positive that you can find them at Costco. 3 pairs for £5.77 (£7.69 – £1.92 coupon) (US: $9.60). Item #: 0509768.
|Tags: Food · Household Items|
If you have diabetes or you know someone that has been diagnosed with it, then you know how life altering it can be to people. Whether you are young or old, the changes in lifestyle, like what to eat, suddenly become much more involved. That is why I think it is great that Costco has an online “magazine”, CDiabetes.com, to help you navigate the difficulties of living with diabetes, and doing it well. This isn’t just a pamphlet or something about eat this but not this, exercise is important, watch your weight, etc. This is a great way to keep up to date on news that is important to those with diabetes, as well as expert advice on a myriad of topics, healthy recipes, and even a glossary of diabetes and general health terms. They publish a full magazine once every quarter, however, they also have all of the news, videos and a number of great resources that you can use all year round.
OmniChannel Health Media has been publishing the Costco diabetes magazine for 18 years now! I know, I can’t believe that I didn’t know about this and share it with everyone sooner. They have always published a print magazine before, but this is the first year that it has switched to being available solely online. All of the content is written and reviewed by top health educators, including doctors, pharmacists, dieticians, public health officials, and certified diabetes educators. In between new issues, they keep writing, updating, and adding news, recipes, tips, and videos. So, even though the magazine is a quarterly publication, the website is constantly being populated with new information.
All of the sections, aside from the actual magazine itself, are updated pretty regularly, with lots of new articles, recipes, tips and news items, being added every day or so. The News Briefs section, looks like they add new content every few days. And even though the articles there look like they are on just a single subject, I encourage you to drill down because they are really just broad topics that they use to capture a selection of news articles. I like that they post about health news that isn’t just about diabetes, because a lot of the health news has implications for diabetics but also for the rest of us as people trying to live healthy lives. Plus, just because you have diabetes doesn’t mean you can ignore other aspects of your health.
The Healthy Recipes section is great with lots of really yummy looking recipes! Plus, they have nutrition information for each recipe, which is certainly an important part of keeping your diabetes in check. They even have a recipe for Parmesan Stuffed Mushrooms! Maybe that doesn’t sound healthy, but they’re really not that bad for you, plus they suggest using the mushrooms as a main course on nights when you are skipping meat, which I definitely wouldn’t have thought of doing before. But certainly, if you are diabetic, knowing the nutrition information and/or the diabetic exchange values for the recipes is really important and a great help. And of course, it is nice to have such a wealth of recipes to choose from to make eating appropriately for your health situation not so bland and boring.
The sections on Healthy Living with Diabetes and Expert Advice both have a lot of articles on all types of lifestyle issues that are important when you’ve got diabetes. Some of the articles are really general healthy living stuff, but some of them are very specific topics that are always going to be a problem for anyone that has diabetes. I think it is nice that it isn’t all the same old stuff that you’re always being told. Of course, there is plenty of emphasis on things like weight control and exercise, but they present it really well and don’t make it sound like a lecture at all. Plus, there are so many articles on other topics that you might not have realized affect your diabetes that could prove new and critically important to keeping a good prognosis.
You can also find videos with lots of helpful information, including important things like tips for taking insulin and monitoring your blood pressure on the CDiabetes website. This is a great way to impart a lot of information in a fairly short span of time, plus this way they can demonstrate anything that just wouldn’t get across in photos or written words, which could be very important when you are talking about how to properly give yourself an insulin injection or monitoring your blood glucose levels. I have to take a weekly injection for something and was a little at a loss for the best way or place to do it the first time, but there was a video online that demonstrated the whole process from how to open the needle packaging safely, to what areas were suitable for this injection, as well as how to insert the needle, so it made giving myself that first shot something I was much more comfortable about doing. Clearly, this wouldn’t have been nearly as useful if it had been written instructions, the visual aspect is just really important for some things.
It’s so easy when you have a chronic condition to start tuning out sometimes with regards to your illness, but it is important to maintaining your health that you find new, and yes, educational, ways to keep up to date and well informed. There’s always new research, whether it be for drugs, medical devices, or about how certain lifestyle factors can affect your long-term health with diabetes (or any chronic illness really), so it is crucially important to stay on top of it and with CDiabetes.com, I think you can do that pretty easily. Plus, it is great when you can find a useful health resource that isn’t constantly pushing some other agenda than keeping you healthy; like what you will often find published semi-covertly by some drug companies, or even charities and non-profit organizations. I certainly prefer my health information presented without bias and a slant towards one organization or medicine. Even though this is published on behalf of Costco, it’s not all Costco, Costco, Costco, which totally just makes me respect them more. Of course, there are some articles about things you can buy at Costco or whatever, but they’re not so plentiful that it’s annoying or even that noticeable, I would say. I have a different chronic health issues, rheumatoid arthritis, and I would love for someone to have a similar online resource, with all of the tips, recipes, and news encapsulated in one place.
So, if you have diabetes, or know someone that does, you should certainly check out CDiabetes.com. The current Spring 2014 issue is out, plus you can look through previous issues as well. Or, you can check out all of the other great information they have available.
|Tags: Health & Beauty · services|
I wanted to make sure I posted about this safety recall because it isn’t yet listed on the Costco website and affects multiple stores and multiple products. Minnesota-based Parkers Farm is recalling all of their peanut butter, cheese, salsa and spread products produced within a certain date range due to positive testing for Listeria monocytogenes. Not all products are necessarily contaminated but the state testing revealed contamination in some samples from the recall period and Parkers Farm has taken the step to recall all products produced during that period. At this point no illnesses have resulted from the listeria contamination, but definitely DO NOT eat anything that is part of the recall and return it to Costco or wherever you bought it.
Parkers Farm products are sold at a number of retailers all over the US, including: ALDI, Brookshire, Byerly’s, Costco, Cub, Hy-Vee, Lunds, Price Chopper, Nash Finch, Rainbow, Target, Walmart, Whole Foods. The recalled products were sold under several different brands: Parkers Farm, Parkers, Happy Farms, Central Markets, Hy-Top, Amish Classic, Say Cheez, Win Schuler and Bucky Badger labels. That is quite a list of stores and brands, so be sure to double check your fridge or cupboard if you shop at any of these places. Here’s a full list of the recalled products, including the sell-by dates that are part of the recall:
• 16-ounce Parkers peanut butter in square plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including creamy, crunchy, honey creamy and honey crunchy varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 34-ounce Parkers peanut butter in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including creamy and crunchy varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
SPREADS AND SALSA
• 12-ounce Parkers spreads in round or square plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including jalapeño and pimento varieties with a sell by date before 9/20/2014
• 16-ounce Parkers salsa in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including hot, mild, garlic, and fire-roasted varieties with a sell by date before 7/20/2014
• 8-ounce and 16-ounce Parkers cold pack cheese in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including sharp cheddar, bacon, onion, smoked cheddar, Swiss almond, horseradish, garlic, port wine, and “Swiss & cheddar” varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 10-ounce Parkers cheese balls or logs (plastic overwrap), including sharp cheddar, port wine, ranch, and “smokey bacon” varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 10-ounce Happy Farms cheese balls (plastic overwrap), including sharp cheddar and port wine varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 16-ounce Happy Farms cold pack cheese in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including sharp cheddar and port wine varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 8-ounce Central Markets cold pack cheese in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including sharp cheddar, port wine, horseradish, and Swiss almond varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 12-ounce and 20-ounce Hy-Top cheese spread in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including pimento and jalapeño varieties with a sell by date before 9/20/2014
• 8-ounce Amish Classic cold pack cheese in round plastic containers (tub with snap-on lid), including sharp cheddar, port wine, and Swiss almond varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 14-ounce Say Cheez beer cheese in round plastic container (tub with snap on lid), including regular and hot varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 10-ounce Win Schuler original variety cheese balls or logs (plastic overwrap) with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 8-ounce,12-ounce, and 14-ounce Bucky Badger cheese spreads (tub with snap-on lid) including cheddar, port wine, bacon, garlic, horseradish, jalapeño, and Swiss almond varieties with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
• 5-pound foodservice products including cold pack cheese foods, cheese spreads and peanut butter with a sell by date before 3/20/2015
If you have additional questions regarding the recall, you can call Parkers Farm at 1-800-869-6685 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. CST for more information.
Listeria can be bad news for anyone that has a compromised immune system, including the very young or very old, or those that are pregnant causing serious and sometimes fatal infections. Pregnant women should be especially cautious as listeria infections can be passed on to the fetus even when the mother shows no symptoms. In utero infections have been known to cause premature delivery and can result in serious health complications for a newborn, miscarriage or stillbirth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A healthy person will usually experience short-term symptoms that include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.
For more information:
|Tags: Food · In the News · product recalls|