Local Love – Holiday Edition

One thing I love about my city is all the great local talent and shops we have!  Here are some of my favorites, with a little holiday twist for your last minute shopping, baking, and hosting ideas!

(Links in main headers)

Snicklefritz Bakeshop
These cookies are to die for, seriously the best cookies I’ve ever had! Not to mention the attention to detail and designs are perfectly custom – she even offers cakes. I especially love these Christmas Story inspired batch she created.  If you ever want some special and custom cookies for a party and to make everyone’s taste buds scream, check out Kendra at Snicklefritz Bakeshop.

The Wandering Wardrobe
Originally a food truck turned into a clothing boutique touring local neighborhoods and festivals, she now has a ‘small box’ boutique within walking distance of my office! Perfect for a holiday outfit or fun winter wear that’s unique and limited quantities!  You can even shop online if you can’t make it to her locations.  Perfect for every fashionista in your life or if you need a little something special to wear!

Lucy Williams Illustrations
If you want something super unique, custom and insanely beautiful – check out Lucy Williams Illustrations.  Her hand-drawn letters and illustrations are simple and elegant, an import to Cleveland she’s dived head-in illustrating for many brands and companies, including one of my favorite’s Mitchell’s Ice Cream.
Email her at: lmwilliamsillustration.com
Instagram @lucymarshall

CLE Clothing Co.

Yes – I’ve bragged about these guys a few times before on my blog. They’re clothing and shirts are the softest I’ve ever felt! I seriously wear mine religiously.  Every year they release some Christmas (and CLE) specific pieces that are perfect for any gift giving ideas for friends and family!

Share some of your local brands and stories in the comments below! Whether they’re near or far, I love seeing people’s ideas and dreams coming to life.

A Weekend of CLE

This past weekend was a busy one, but it was so much fun!

It started on Friday, with Cleveland Magazine’s 10th Anniversary Best of Cleveland party! This was the fifth year I’ve attended the #BestofCLE and every year it gets better. There was one point in the night when I was in complete awe, looking around at the hundreds and hundreds of people just dancing and partying – and thought “This is my Friday night.”

In case you’ve never been to the #BestofCLE; it’s a gathering of all of Cleveland’s best restaurants, boutique’s, bakeries, clothing shops, car dealerships, clubs, and apartments. Samplings of great food, drinks and beers, along with other little goodies and discounts!  This year, I was all about the sweets, so I really only consumed a number of cupcakes and sushi over the course of the evening (I know, a horrible combo).

My Stops: 

Campbell’s Sweets Factory – I grabbed one of their ‘Wedding Cake’ flavored cupcakes, because it’s my favorite and it is delicious!

A Cookie & A Cupcake – Mini cupcakes! I went for a chocolate and vanilla, this little shop in Tremont never disappoints.

Main Street Cupcakes – It was their birthday, which meant sprinkles all over their cupcakes, which in my opinion is a perfect combination.

Jack Frost Donuts – I did not have these, simply because I would’ve been in a sugar coma. They had full-size, elaborately decorated donuts they were impressive and so beautiful (picture below).

A bunch of our friends were at the party so we had a fun time catching up with them, dancing and singing and sipping some cocktails! This party never disappoints and my absolute favorite part was when DJ EV came out, I seriously could’ve danced the entire night.  The music was so good.

Saturday AM we woke up to run the Dawg Pound 5k – it was an unwelcoming 43 degrees out with some intense winds, although it was much better than the cold rain we had last year.  A group from my office met up early to go down to the start line, the weather did not keep away the sold-out crowd.  The course was similar to last year, a good route with minor hills,the wind definitely tempered down once you got running, which was a good thing! B and I ran the whole time to finish just under 30-minutes, not bad for not training!  Then the group of us went up to a favorite local spot, Nauti Mermaid for Bloody Mary’s and brunch! The Bloody Mary came out with a fresh fried, Lake Erie perch, it was surprisingly delicious, the food was amazing too.  It was a fun start to our Saturday!

After our jam packed fun, it was pretty low-key and relaxing for the rest of the weekend. The #BestofCLE and the Dawg Pound 5k are definitely two of the reasons why I love Cleveland so much and why I love the month of October!

Happy Monday!

Appendix:

click here: 2015 Best of Cleveland’s Participating Winners 

Local Love

One of the things I love about my city is that we have so many awesome local companies and the best part is that they’re strictly that, local companies. Here are a few of my favorite locals;

CLE Clothing Co.
Local clothing with unique designs specializing in all things CLE, especially our amazing sports teams.  What makes these tees so great is how soft they are, it’s absolutely incredible. My favorite t-shirts are from CLE Clothing Co., and their instagram account is the go to place to get updates and stay current on the latest releases and sales.

Cleveland Vegan
Although I have only tried their chocolate chip cookies and some other sweet treats, I would recommend this place to anyone.  They sell variety of their bakery items at other local grocery stores, their brick and mortar store is always packed – and serve a wide offering of vegan options.  We’ll be taking a trip in the near future.

Mitchell’s Homemade Ice Cream
Thanks to Mitchell’s I am officially an ice cream snob.  Mitchell’s uses locally sourced ingredients and has seasonal flavors like; Strawberry Rhubarb and Fresh Peach. Not to mention year-round flavors include Carmel Sea Salt, Toasted Pistachio, and Cookie Dough.  I also love that they offer vegan and low-dairy/yogurt options – which is great for dietary restrictions, plus sprinkles are free!

Dawg Pound 5k
Last year this was the Bernie Kosar Shuffle (5k) – not many 5k’s have amazing swag or a kick ass metal, but here in Brown’s town we do.  A sea of orange and brown; regardless of the weather will be running the downtown streets at this year’s Dawg Pound fun run.  A group of coworkers and friends are all signed up for this October, it’s going to be a blast!

Foundry Woodprints
Brings vintage images to life by his unique technique of ‘printing’ on wood – this amazing collection of century old photography is incredible and brings this city back to an era of it’s true roots. We have a few of these pieces around the house and absolutely love them.

What are some of your local loves?

Winterfest 2014

For the last four years it has become a tradition to attend Cleveland’s annual Winterfest and tree lighting. My parents are usually in town for Thanksgiving, so that means they’ve become part of the tradition as well.

This year, the tree lighting was moved down to the Theater District, meaning our beautiful outdoor chandelier could be included in the celebration. B works in the Hanna Building, so we were able to watch the lighting and fireworks from a warm view on the 7th floor.  It was amazing, especially being able to see how many people filled up Euclid Avenue!


After the tree lighting we headed down to 200 Public Square, at the Huntington Building for the Winter Wine & Ale Fest. Local breweries, wineries, and food samplings are available throughout the concourse. Each year we continue to get spoiled with the food samplings and also spoiled on the beverage samplings… they’re very generous!

My favorites:

Ken Stewart’s – Served Smoked Chicken & Gouda Endive Cups
Brewnuts – The Symon, The Bernie, The “Santa’s Little Helper”, The Apple-Teeny, and The Bumbler (and yes, I tried them all!)
Willoughby Brewing Co. – Peanut Butter Cup Coffee Porter. Enough said.
Lagerheads Brewing Co. – Winter Mischief, one of my favorite Christmas beers

Honorable mentions: My Dad’s favorite was Cleveland Whiskey, he loved the 100 proof, so we know what we are getting him for Christmas!  B also really like the up-and-coming Portside Distillery’s “Yule Shoot Your Rye Out” Christmas Ale… located down by Aloft, and behind the EY building, they should be opening mid-December, so be sure to check them out.

It was a really fun night, Cleveland was packed! Beside all of the Winterfest activities, the Cavs brought in a home victory and Playhouse Square had a show. It was a good night to be a Clevelander. And it was the perfect kick-off for the month of December and the official countdown to Christmas.

Happy (early) Holidays!

#BestofCle

Friday night was Cleveland Magazine’s annual Best of Cleveland Party, and for the second year was hosted at the Public Auditorium. This year’s theme was graffiti – and it was well represented, attendee’s could get faux tattoo’s, custom graffiti bags and hats (donations benefiting the Breakthrough Schools of Cleveland), and furniture and table tops were free for artistic expression. Photo booth’s allowed party goers to graffiti their own photo – or pick one of the custom backdrops (see ours below!).  BOC winners filled the hall offering up favorite treats and special promos.

The standouts:
Names link to BOC winner’s websites

Jack Flaps – served a fried pancake ball with cinnamon glaze – yum! Not to mention their menu is amazing.

Harness Cycle – first time BOC winner! Great to see them represented, plus they were handing out promo codes for a free class – you can never have enough spin in your life.

Brewnuts – their brewnuts tasted even better than they look … I follow their mouthwatering Instagram account, I was so happy to try these in person, definitely worth a visit.

Wine Bar Rocky River – they served beats and goat cheese on bread, not to mention handed out complementary tickets for a glass of wine during your next restaurant visit – always  a good spot for a date night.

Sheiban Jewelers (VIP Lounge) – only because they let me try on zillion dollar diamond rings (one ring was $460,000… the other was $93,000… a girl can dream right?)

Trentina (VIP Lounge) – the gentlemen did a great job at selling this place, B and I will be booking a reservation. The dining experience sounds like no other – 6 or 12 course meals!

CLE Clothing Co. (VIP Lounge Goodie Bags) – thee softest shirt ever + the drive, the return = love

The night ended with DJ EV on the turntable with some fun throwbacks. The Best of Cleveland is one of my favorite parties, and truly brings the best of Cleveland together under one roof, for one big party! If you have not been, I highly suggest it – mark your calendars for next October!

The Heart of Summer.

I feel like we are in the heart of summer… even though it seems like it’s just about over (as my coworkers so graciously remind me!)  This past weekend, felt like the stereotypical summer weekend, and it was so much fun! It started on Thursday night when a friend invited us out on her boyfriends boat. A bunch of us loaded up with yummy hors d’oeuvre, some drinks of choice, and then we cruised along the coast, singing, talking, and watching the sunset!  Not to mention the weather was perfect. It was nice to socialize with everyone outside of the office, and with our significant others!


Friday evening we went out with my aunts.  We have a recent tradition were we try and go out to dinner whenever they are about to go out of town, which is about once or twice a month (esp. over the summer)! We had happy hour dinner and drinks at Georgetown in Lakewood.  They have a great happy hour!  I would highly recommend the “One Drop” Martini – Vodka, Olive Juice, Tabasco Sauce, and Blue Cheese Stuffed Hot Pepper… it was so good!  I also had the Mushroom Pizza, which had Wild Mushrooms, Prosciutto, Basil, Parmesan, balsamic and olive oil drizzle, amazing!

Saturday, I road tripped up to Vermilion, OH with a bunch of girls for our friend Erika’s bachelorette party! Our days itinerary started with brunch on the beach followed by a winery tour via limo bus to a few different wineries in the Vermilion area.  We went to; Quarry Hill Winery, Vermilion Valley Vineyards, Matus Winery, and Paper Moon Winery.  I was very impressed with the wineries, although they were very spread out, so the limo bus was a smart move! The tour was an all day event! The boy came out and picked me up and we grabbed a later dinner at a local brew-pub.

Sunday, we got our morning workouts in and then headed to his parents house for a classic pool day, lounging out and cooling off in the pool when needed!  Plus we brought Moz and she went for a swim a few times (even though she is not a fan!) when she wasn’t playing with Haywood, his parents labradoodle.

The weekend was full of sunshine, good friends and family and good times!  It was definitely your typical summer weekend.  I can’t wait for more warm, sunny days!

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