Why? Weekends!

It was a Christmas crazy weekend! The fates conspired to give us festive fetes every day this weekend, so we are officially stuffed with hot chocolate, candy canes, and good cheer!

On Friday, we headed to the Lake Metroparks Farmpark for Country Lights. One of Jeffrey’s favorite phrases is, “There’s so much to see and do!” And that is certainly true at Country Lights!

We started at Santa’s Workshop, where a cadre of volunteer elves help children construct the wooden toy of their choosing.


Jeffrey made a tractor, which his elf Brian helped him put together, then Jeffrey got to paint and liberally glitter to his heart’s content.


From there, we headed to the Toy Testing Room with tons of wooden toy fun from car ramps to Christmas trees.


Then it was on to a horse-drawn wagon ride through the Farmpark to see the beautiful Christmas lights.

We ended our evening with decorating Christmas cookies and a visit to Elfland.

All of these activities, plus Christmas horse shows and a Santa train room, are included with your admission (Christmas cookies to decorate are an additional $3). As members, we paid $11 per ticket and I can honestly say this is one of not only the best Christmas event deals around, but also truly one of the most magical.

Kudos to Andy and his staff at the Farmpark for putting on another wonderful event! Country Lights is sold out for this year, but put it on your must-do list for next year!

Friday night after Country Lights, I dashed up to John Carroll University for a party celebrating the 15th anniversary of my sorority chapter‘s installation.


As one of the original members of the chapter (along with the ladies in the picture with me), it was great to be able to see how far the chapter has come in that time and to reminisce about our fun college days! Kappa Delta was a huge part of my college and immediately post-graduate life, so it’s always nice to have a chance to reconnect with that.

On Saturday morning, we headed to the Connor Palace Theatre for Tinsel Town, put on by Playhouse Square Partners. This event takes place in the beautiful Connor Palace Theatre lobby, with holiday crafts, toy raffles, and a chance to visit with Santa!


The craft tables are staffed by Partners members (they put me on cookie decorating this year after an unfortunate incident with a glue gun one year) and the raffle baskets are made with donations from Partners members, too. This is one of my favorite Partners events, not only because I can see Jeffrey enjoy it, but because it provides such a fun and festive morning for families. Kids dress up in their Christmas finery and really seem to have a blast!

Jeffrey was also very proud that he won the candy-filled snowman from the guess-the-number raffle. It’s a major award!


I’m pretty excited too…those are Dove chocolates in there!

From there, it was off to our niece Leila’s sixth birthday party: a swimming party at the Wadsworth YMCA. I was really impressed with their kids swimming area, which has water slides, a current pool, waterfalls, and more. Jeffrey had a great time and kept showing off his new swimming skills from his more advanced lessons at Goldfish Swim School.

Sunday morning, we went to the John Carroll Alumni Breakfast with Santa. This event combines so many aspects of the John Carroll experience: faith (the event begins with Mass), service (attendees donate toys to Bellefaire JCB), and fun (brunch and a chance for photos with Santa and Christmas crafts).

My favorite part about this year’s event is that we went with friends that I met on day one of my freshman year, as we all lived on the same floor of Dolan Hall. I’ve stayed friends with these ladies for all these years and through a lot of life changes.


It was so special to be at John Carroll not only with them, but with our kids too! This really felt like what the holidays are about!

What a festive and exhausting weekend! How was yours?

***Disclosure: I am the vice co-chair of Playhouse Square Partners and the president of the John Carroll University Cleveland Alumni Chapter. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***


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