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Thursday, May 05, 2011

Family Tradition: Friday Pizza & Movie Night

This post brought to you by FRESCHETTA®. All opinions are 100% mine.

Read to the bottom for a cool product give-away I am running.

We have a tradition in the Larrison household where every Friday night we all gather in front of the family room television and enjoy a pizza for dinner and watch a movie on our amazing Samsung HD entertainment system.   I strongly recommend this as a family activity because it is a low stress way for us to spend some time together, enjoy some good food,  and the kids don’t have the pressure of having to talk for a couple of hours.   Of course we have conversations during the movies and seem to enjoy each other’s company, but we all know the main reason for the tradition is to make sure we are seeing each other and spending downtime together.  The rest of the week is where we run around like crazy and high-five from one sporting or school event to the other. 
These days the kids are at an age where we don’t have to just watch cartoons or Pixar movies any longer.   Though it is not always easy to pick out a movie we all will like, we have come up with ways to make sure everyone gets a voice in the selection process (with Jennifer having the final veto).   Of course it is mostly family or kids movies, but it is a fun time for everyone and something we all look forward to.  We watched Water World the other night, and I was able to tell the kids about how they filmed the movie and how expensive it was.   Of course, because of my work and starting a company, I do end up having to only attend parts of the family movie night, but I am there just also trying to get a business up and running.   I find it very relaxing also, even with a ton of work to do.  
Now, when we moved from Chicago to DC the one thing we had to give up was good pizza.   We knew this was the case and accepted it when we decided to move.   I have traveled across the United States and tried pizza (and wings) in almost every major city over the past 10 years and there is no true pizza like a Chicago deep dish pie, or even the thin crust at a place like La Rosa in Skokie.    Because we are not able to order Chicago pizza for our family movie night, we end up either cooking a frozen pizza or ordering from the local pizzeria, or if we are really lazy we will order from Pizza Hut (yuck). 
A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to be able to try a new frozen pizza that is just coming out from the good folks at Freschetta.   We had never tried the Freschetta brand pizza’s before, partially because we were caught in old habits and partially because I am always worried about trying something new with the kids.   Anyway, this new pizza that is called FRESCHETTA® Simply…Inspired™ is really great, and has officially made it into our family tradition.   Though I am not ready to change the name to the Larrison Family Pizza and Movie Night, sponsored by Freschetta… I am considering it :).   
The good thing about the FRESCHETTA Simply Inspired Pizza is it tastes great!   The name is perfect, the first thing I noticed was how fresh the pizza takes.  Everything from the sauce to the toppings and cheese are fresh and taste like they are fresh from one of the better Italian restaurants in Northern Virginia.   Once in a while we would splurge and order pizza from the Homemade Pizza Co. and of course we loved those nights, there were never any leftovers.    Now we can get that same fresh taste without the huge credit card receipt.   I feel it tasted similar to a gourmet pizza from the local Homemade Pizza Company or one of the better Italian pizza restaurants in Alexandria.

The FRESCHETTA® Simply Inspired pizza is not only fresh and bursting with flavor, but I love the taste of the sauce and the entire family loves the thin and crispy crust.   I tried to figure out how they kept the pizza so fresh, even though it was frozen.  I think it must have to do with the packaging they use, it is in a really thin and vacuum sealed package, which is called the FRESH-TASTE SEAL™ on the package.  The smaller packaging makes it easy to store in the freezer and also less cardboard and plastic to go into the trash when you are done.
They have eight different flavor combos, including: Classic Bruschetta, Southern BBQ, Farmers Market Veggies, Harvest Supreme, Rustic Peperoni, Hawaiian, and they offer limited editions such as: Tuscan Farmhouse and Chicken Bianco.  I have not tried them all, but they look delicious.  If the Farmers Market Veggie and the Rustic Peperoni are any indication of the others, I am going to be eating a lot of pizza this year.
I strongly suggest you try out a Family Pizza & Movie night of your own.   If you can’t do it every week, or can’t do it on Friday night, try another night and maybe try it with a TV show instead.   The pizza is critical to bring everyone together, so make sure to include whatever pizza you like.   You should try out the FRESCHETTA Simply Inspired pizza as I think you will love it.  
Give Away Details: For my blog readers and twitter followers I am giving away a coupon for a free FRESCHETTA Simply Inspired pizza and a really cool bamboo cutting board.   All you have to do is follow me on twitter and follow @FreschettaSI on Twitter.  I will pick from my 6K+ followers (and blog readers) a random person to win this free pizza and cutting board (estimated value $120).  I will send you a DM when I select the winner at the end of next week.  I will announce the winner and the prize on this blog and my twitter feed (@jlarrison). 
Let me know if you have any traditions you and your family enjoy. 
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