Getting out and shopping during the holiday season is a little bit hectic right now. Maybe because there are 12 days left until Christmas! WOW! Luckily, I have chosen to avoid the evening crowds and shop a little earlier in the day besides I have been working on plenty of homemade edible gifts for my family and friends. But it's always nice to get out and do some retail shopping and peruse the stores with my favorite little helper. With all the window shopping that Elena and I had done, we made a pit stop to one of my favorite lunch spots, Panera Bread.
The extra bonus to our lunch visit was due to the awesome opportunity to review Panera's new line of soups. I knew it would make for a nice mommy and Elena lunch outing instead of our typical lunch routine at home. Elena kept herself entertained with her new favorite MUM crackers and slowly munched away while I was able to enjoy my lunch.
Panera Bread has partnered up with Feeding America? Panera Bread has been donating unsold bread and baked goods to local organizations for 25 years, and in 2010 they wanted to do more by opening Panera Cares community cafes that gave local communities the opportunity to share in the responsibility of of helping others out and raising awareness of food insecurity. How amazing is that? If you are interested in learning more or helping out you can easily make a donation at any of the Panera Cares Community Breadboxes by the registers the next time you visit. Your contribution might become the next hot meal of hot soup and a big helping hand to those in need.
The best way to end my meal was this spectacular red velvet crinkle cookie. I have only enjoyed red velvet cake or red velvet cupcake but never in the form of a cookie. It's a soft brownie-like cookie that is similar to the red velvet cake with a hint of chocolate and has cream cheese chips garnished with powdered sugar. Such an ahhh-mazing way to end your meal for only an additional 99 cents when you order a lunch combo!
Disclaimer: As part of the DailyBuzz Food Tastemaker Program, I received a gift card to Panera Bread to sample their soups. All photography and opinions are my own.