Weekend Recap – Sunshine & Friends

It was another perfect summer weekend. The weather was gorgeous and the company was enjoyed.  Friday night started with some porch drinks with our neighbors and a late dinner date!  It was a great kickoff to the weekend.

Saturday morning we got up early to attend a yoga class and volunteer through our friends new venture, Yogatta Give Back. It’s a combination of yoga and volunteering. First you start with the class, followed by volunteering wherever the spot is, it’s a wide variety of places and causes. We volunteered at Habitat for Humanity, and spruced up their community area. It was the perfect morning outside!

Saturday night we attended our first wedding of 2017! It was a dear former co-workers wedding, and it was the perfect night for these two to tie the knot.  They exchanged vows in front of a breathtaking back drop of endless views, and the reception was in a rustic and charming lodge on the property.  We had breakfast for dinner and they made 150 mini cakes, of their cake, for guests to enjoy. The bride is an insane baker (Snicklefritz Bakeshop), and so is the groom, so decadent treats were of plenty! It was a sweet night for a very sweet couple, their love and the love of everyone attending was so evident!

Sunday was filled with some pampering, sunshine, neighbors and even a run! I can’t believe it was the last official weekend of June, another perfect one for summer.

How did you spend your last weekend of June?

Weekend Recap – CVNP Topography

B and I had the honor of being guests at the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s Topography event, Saturday night.

Not knowing what to expect, I was quickly blown away by the array of food, all supplied and catered by Spice Kitchen & Bar and the interactive cocktail experience while enjoying the trail system, leading us to an open field of beautifully dressed tables set for 200. A seated dinner was served at 8:15, it started with a salad and then family style dishes for the main meal. The food and service was exceptional.

We were lucky to be accompanied by a great group of friends for this incredibly unique dining experience. After dinner we were able to sit around camp fires, sipping cocktails and enjoying the perfect summer night. A band played in the distance, while various tents were set up with bars or desserts!

The event supports and raises money for Trails Forever, with helps protect and preserve the CVNP trails.   B and I will definitely be heading back to check out the park in the future to enjoy some hikes.  If you have a chance, keep this event on your radar for next year, especially if you want to enjoy an unforgettable evening at a beautiful, local, national park with the best local cuisine.

Weekend Recap – Now This Is Summer.

The weather this past weekend was quintessential summer; sunshine, cloudless skies with a mix of patio drinks, a summer festival and friends. Friday night was a late one, celebrating a much needed Cavs win in Game 4 of the NBA Finals. But we will leave it at that.

Saturday was spent doing things around the house, and then dinner and drinks on the impressively large patio at Collision Bend Brewery – the latest hot spot in CLE.  With a well known chef, like Zack Bruell behind the business, this place was bumping. We had a great spot outside, but under the awning, perfect views of the river and the warm night.  We ordered a mixture of food to share with the table, but the standouts were the roasted brussels sprouts, oven roasted mixed olives, and the salami and green olive pizza. They had a great selection of beers and cocktails, although I opted for some Rose.  We will definitely be going back to soak in more drinks and the fabulous patio.

Sunday we enjoyed some more local food at the Taste of Lakewood, an annual event that has transformed over the years, and is now a free event to the public offering tasty snacks at affordable prices to sample. We had VIP tickets, which for a toasty sunny day was the perfect way to enjoy the festival feel, without fighting the lines, sore feet and the glaring sun. With VIP we were in a private tent, with plenty of tables and able to order 2-different food vendors, that volunteers would run and cut the lines to collect! Not to mention, 2-drink tickets with our own private bar. Our neighbors joined us, so it was a nice little outing to break up our Sunday afternoon.

Beyond the summer cold, I’ve been fighting off it was a pretty great weekend with lots of sunshine, friends/family, and just enough nap time in between all of that!

Cheers to the first real summer weekend!

Local Love – Banyan Tree

Sharing some local love to all my CLE readers; and giving them some inspiration for upcoming Christmas shopping while #ShoppingLocal.  Banyan Tree was first mentioned on The Bee Life from the Best of CLE recap – I finally  made it to their brick and mortar in Tremont it was everything I imagined and more!

Banyan Tree is your one stop shop for adorable unique cards, organic baby swaddles and soft cuddles, unique statement and everyday jewelry, holiday dresses to comfy lounge ware, personalized home decor and fun gifts! You’ll be able to get big gifts for a number of people on your Christmas list AND find fun stocking stuffers or thoughtful gifts for all your loved ones. It will be hard not to shop for yourself!

Banyan Tree is a non-stop shop for those perfect gifts especifally if your trying to find something for those hard to shop for family/friends!  You’ll also be visiting Banyan Tree for future baby gifts, anniversary cards, clothes, wedding and birthday gifts.

If you can’t make it into the shop you can also shop online! Although I would highly recommend visiting the store (Tremont or Uptown), the staff and environment is so inviting and warm – plus there is much more to look in the store!

World Series – Game 7

I can’t believe I went to the World Series.

Last night was full of pinch me moments it was all so surreal. Knowing we had Game 7 tickets at the beginning of the series was exciting but also a bit daunting, hoping we would wrap it up before, but at the same time I had a feeling we’d be going.  The entire night will never be forgotten, but these were the highlights.

1 – Pregame Drinks at Azure:  Since we were with the aunties we had to go all out in style and of course grab some drinks at the rooftop bar.  The views of downtown and stadium were amazing, just when I thought I’d seen CLE from all angles, there are still more breathtaking views! B and I also got to met Richard Jefferson from the Cavs! He was so friendly and took a moment to say hi, shake our hands, ask our names and listen to us act like giddy school girls. It was a hopping spot, definitely will want to go back when it’s a bit less crowded.

2 – The National Anthem: Singing the National Anthem and God Bless America at the opening of Game 7 at the World Series was full of goosebumps and good feels.  It was a moment of unity in a sea of Indians and Cubs fans and it was amazing.

3 – Two Outs, No Problem: There were multiple times in the game where our boys got into a 2-out situation with no runners on base and in need of some RBIs. But it seemed like that was when we really thrived when the odds were stacked against us.

4 – Bottom of the Eighth: Two outs, down by 2-runs and Davis hits a homer bringing in 2-runs and tying up the game, 6-to-6.  That moment in the stadium was electric; it was what we had been waiting for, what we knew was going to happen. It was amazing.

5 – Being With Family: Even though the game didn’t turn out how we wanted, I wouldn’t have wanted to be at the game with anyone besides my aunts, B and the Pauls. My aunts are the reason why I came to Cleveland, why I came to love this city and why I now come to call it my home, and that all started with baseball games at the Jake.

Because we’re from Cleveland we are tough and we work hard, we break molds and challenge the norm.  This is one more moment in our history as a city that we will never forget, that was memorable and amazing all at the same time.

We will always, #RallyTogether!

 

Weekend Getaway Must-Have’s

Planning any fall getaways?  October always seems to fly by, but one of our favorite to-do’s is getting out of town for a quick weekend trip, being in the middle of nowhere, no wi-fi, no traffic, no house work, just hanging out and escaping the world.  As much as I love a weekend away with B, it’s even more fun when you can plan it with some friends or family.  Here are a few must-have’s for your upcoming weekend away.

  1. Games:  This is a way to laugh, have some friendly competition and get away from the TV!  Having some good group games like Cranium, Wavelength, Cards Against Humanity or even just a deck of cards will kick your nights off right.
  2. Drinks:  Have a variety of alcoholic beverages, but if you can find a fun recipe that is season specific or a new recipe to try! Split the ingredients with your friends and join together in trying something new.
  3. Music: Whether an inpromptu Basketstreet Boys dance party breaks out or just some background music is needed during games and drinks be sure to bring some portable blue tooth speakers and have some tunes ready to go!
  4. Food: Be sure to have a variety of snacks to enjoy during games and drinks; you can’t go wrong with cheese, crackers, grapes and don’t forget some chocolate to snack on! For dinners and breakfasts, keep it easy, eggs, bagels, oven pizza’s or something you can throw on the grill. After all your away so enjoy the down time.
  5. Local Spot: If you go to the same weekend getaway spot, and you haven’t found your go-to local spot yet, get on it!  Whether it’s a place for breakfast, an ice cream spot, an antique store, or a local brewery (we opt for the local brewery part whenever possible).  It can be your spot away from all your normal local home spots.

What’re you favorite things to do or have on a weekend getaway? 

Cheers to the weekend!


 

#BestOfCle – 2016

We are just a few short days away from one of my favorite months. October is one of my favorite months for many reasons,  but one of those reasons is because of  Cleveland Magazine’s annual Best of Cleveland Party! I’ve attended this event for the last six years and I’m amazed that it keeps getting better, it’s such a fun time.

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Photo cred: Thom Sheridan, Cleveland Magazine

Reasons To Attend

You’ll Be Surrounded By The Best... for an entire night! The best food, best drinks, shops, local businesses, apartments, sweet treats, music and organizations. Nearly 70 of the best will be at your finger tips.

Giving Back. This event raises money every year to help benefit the Breakthrough Schools of Greater Cleveland. An organization striving to give back and excel our youth with high-quality education.

Keep On Celebrating… our NBA Championship! Every year has a theme and this year’s theme to no surprise is all about our huge and historical championship this past June. What better way to keep on partying and celebrating our win with 1,700 of your closest friends – it won’t be as packed as the parade. *winks*

Legendary Venue… Public Auditorium has been the host of legends and the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies, what greater stage and venue to enjoy the best than be in the presence of the best.

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Photo cred: Thom Sheridan, Cleveland Magazine

Tips for the Night

Go with Friends: Whether it’s a double date or a group of your closest pals grab some friends to enjoy in the fun! It definitely helps make the night.

Go VIP: If you’re really looking for a night out celebrating your favorite city whether you’re homegrown or a transplant this night will give you a taste of everything that makes us great!  So go all out and truly enjoy the exclusive rooms, treatment, drinks and eats.

Uber: You will definitely enjoy yourself and a few adult beverages especially if you go the VIP route, so be sure to play it safe and carpool or grab an Uber to and from!

This party is truly not like any other you’ll attend throughout the year. The atmosphere is infectious especially once the music really gets going; you can even jump on the legendary stage and show off your moves! Tickets are officially on sale and the countdown to Saturday, October 15th will be here before we know it.

For more tickets & information: CLICK HERE!

 

Local Love – Jammy Buggars

It’s been awhile since I’ve shared some local love, so I’m going to highlight one of our favorite spots, Jammy Buggars. Or as we like to call it, Jammys or JB’s.

Jammy Buggar: British slang for a lucky individual, charmed, blessed, favored, serendipitous.

For as long as I could remember B and I have gone to JB’s for date nights especially on Thursday’s for their 25-cent wing night. Yum! It’s the perfect place for a cheap date, good food and a fun atmosphere and perfect for viewing games on the big screen.  We go on streaks of consecutive wing nights and like to get the loaded fries (definitely a splurge) to accompany our wings with blue cheese! Beers usually flow and the waitresses always remember us, which makes it more of a neighborhood vibe, where everyone knows your name. *winks*

Our friends also have a soft spot for JB’s which has also kept us going back.  Not to mention when we were painting and working on the our house (aka eating out a lot) JB’s take out was our jam.  Not only do they slay up some mean wings, they also have amazing burgers, juicy with a wide variety of toppings and the ability to customize as you please. Their salads are awesome too when you are feeling the need to eat healthier, you really can’t go wrong.

Within the last year or so, JB’s started offering brunch on Sunday’s… oh. my. god. It was like a win-win in our opinion, one of our favorite spots was now offering one of our favorite meals! Again, they knocked it out of the park with their brunch menu, you truly can’t pick out a bad dish. B and I definitely have our go too’s.  For me it’s either the Breakfast Burrito or Sausage & Gravy Benny with a bloody mary. Their potatoes are cooked to perfection.

Jammys is definitely our go-to place when we are itching to get out and have a nice little date night to chat about our wedding plans, catching up on the day, celebrating milestones and sharing with our friends and family. If you’re ever in the neighborhood or haven’t been it should definitely be on your list!

 

Weekend Highlight: Kayaking

It has been toasty toasty this past week, but I know we haven’t been the only ones roasting.  Our humidity was nearly 80% on Friday. Gross! Not to mention, we don’t have AC … *smiles* … so it’s been even more unbearable, we broke down and bought a window AC unit for our bedroom, so we at least can sleep at night, after sweating all day! So a little mission this weekend was to ‘beat the heat’ whether it was going out to eat at a restaurant to cool down or hanging out at our neighbors to soak up some cool air!

Saturday morning we headed to the Metroparks with some friends and rented kayaks!! Living close to a large lake, I often take for granted the amenities or extracurricular activities that’re available to us within minutes from our house. So I was happy when some friends recommended we go kayaking.

It got off to a little rough start, with the oh so friendly woman at the kayak rental.  We luckily were able to rent kayaks for 1-hour, after she scolded us to make reservations and how you have to make reservations, especially on the weekend, oh and if we were even 5-minutes late coming back we would be significantly up-charged and it would throw off the rest of the day because they were so booked. She was so nice.IMG_4555So after we got through that, we were able to jump in two tandem kayaks and head out on the river with sights of the lake! It was relaxing after B and I got into our grove and  were able to enjoy the scenic views along the river of the private yacht club and large beautiful homes flanking the river. We were able to make it out to the lake with plenty of time, after the fear of god was instilled in us to not be a single minute late back to the rental area. So it was just enough time to paddle around the lake, enjoy the view and then head back down the river. IMG_4537FullSizeRender

The water and breeze from the lake was refreshing, while still being able to soak up some of the hot summer sun! After we dried off a bit, we headed for some bottomless mimosas and brunch at a nearby spot – yum!

Safe to say, B and I will definitely be doing this again before the summers end! We might just try out another rental spot and will definitely make reservations ahead of time, regardless of where we go! *winks*