Why? Weekends!

It was a pretty relaxed weekend, so here’s what we were up to…

Prismatica

On Friday, Jeffrey and I stopped by Cleveland Public Square to check out Prismatica. These life-size prisms were created by Raw Design of Toronto and allow you to play with light and sound and reflection in a really unique way.

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We went around sunset, which lit up the prisms in a really beautiful way.

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You can check out Prismatica for yourself through November 15 on Public Square. It’s free, open to the public, and pretty cool at any time of day!

Cleveland Monsters Game

After our walk around Public Square, Jeffrey and I headed over to the Cleveland Monsters game. Jeffrey really gets into the games, as well as the fun in between periods.

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He (we) ended up on the Humongotron twice due to his dancing and cheering!

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We also ran into our friend Maddie, who we know from barre3, but is also a member of the Monsters dance team!

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More on our Monsters experience later this week, so stay tuned…

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland Monsters to help promote their subscription service. In exchange, I received a complimentary subscription. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

Ghostbusters Birthday Party

On Saturday, we attended a birthday party for one of our favorite 3-year-olds. The party was Ghostbusters-themed and from the clothes…

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…to the cake…

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…to the treats…

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Mariah went all out on making this a super fun afternoon!

And that was about it for the weekend. Sometimes it’s nice to not have a ton of things to blog about, right? Don’t worry…that won’t last for too long, though! How was your weekend?

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Why? Nighttown!

Nighttown is a Cleveland classic, a celebrated jazz club that’s been open for more than 50 years. I’d been to a couple events there, but never just popped in for dinner, which I had the opportunity to do this week while celebrating my bestie Mariah’s birthday.

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The bar and restaurant have the feel of a neighborhood pub and you can tell that it’s frequented by regulars who are well-known by the staff. They have a great selection of cocktails, spirits, and wines to enjoy. I had an Old Fashioned that was simply made and simply delicious.

For dinner, I had the swordfish special with basmati rice, flash-fried cauliflower, and remoulade.

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Similar to the drink, the preparation was straight-forward and well-executed.

Mariah had the Halloumi Kebobs, with halloumi cheese, citrus couscous (Mariah substituted mashed potatoes), and chive oil.

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Delicious! I could serious live on halloumi.

Nighttown is participating in Cleveland Independents Restaurant Week through November 16, so you can get a three-course, prix fixe meal (only $33 for dinner) to try out something new. And you should definitely come for dinner and stay for the entertainment! Check out Nighttown’s awesome line-up of live performances here.

It might have been my first time dining at this Cleveland institution, but it won’t be my last. I loved being treated like a regular even on my first visit and look forward to actually making myself one at Nighttown!

jenclesig_pur

Why? Weekends!

Can you guys believe it’s November already? I definitely can’t! Here’s what the first weekend of the month brought…

Grunge Party

On Friday night, my friend Anne invited me to her law firm’s 20th anniversary party. Since the firm was formed in 1999, they decided to have a 90’s grunge-themed party.

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Never one to miss the opportunity to enjoy a good theme party, I snagged a Nirvana tshirt and flannel off Amazon, found some chokers and dark lipstick at Target, and channeled my inner angst.

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It was a really fun night and I was impressed that a group of lawyers could host a party with such a laid-back theme!

Playing With Fire

Saturday morning, Jeffrey and I caught an advance screening of “Playing With Fire,” which opens nationwide on Friday, November 8.

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The movie is about a group of smoke jumpers who end up having to care for three kids after a daring rescue. Predictable antics ensue. The movie was funny and heartwarming and featured some awesome supporting actors, such as Keegan-Michael Key and Judy Greer.

It’s definitely a great movie to see with your kids!

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***Disclosure: I was asked to help promote the advance screening of Playing With Fire In exchange, I received two complimentary tickets to the screening.***

Brenna’s Birthday Party

On Sunday, Jeffrey and I were transported to jolly old England at Brenna’s Peppa Pig-themed birthday party. Alicia did an amazing job with the theme and everything from the decor to the food was spot on!

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There were donuts from Brewnuts, cake from Michael Angelo’s Bakery, and gorgeous linens from L’Nique Specialty Linen.

Plus, good friends, prosecco, lots of laughs, and so much fun celebrating this very special three year old!

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So, that was our weekend! How was yours?

jenclesig_pur

Why? Weekends!

It was a busy, fun, pre-Halloween weekend, so let’s get right to it…

Designer Dress Days

On Friday morning, I stopped by the 51st annual Designer Dress Days sale to benefit NCJW Cleveland.

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Held at the Mandel JCC, this sale has something for every fashionista, from exclusive designer labels to cashmere to furs to handbags.

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I scored an amazing deal on this stunning dress off the Celebrity/Influencer rack.

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It was donated by Kimberly of Modern Musings and I just cannot wait to wear it out on the town (perhaps to the event I’ll be blogging about tomorrow).

The sale is still on today, October 28, from 12-8pm and tomorrow, October 29, from 10am-7pm. And today, everything is 20% off the already amazing prices! So stop by and grab yourself some fabulous new finds for your wardrobe, all to benefit a great cause!

***Disclosure: I was asked by NCJW Cleveland to help promote Designer Dress Days. In exchange, I received complimentary admission to the preview day and compensation. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

Burntwood Tavern Dia de los Muertos

On Friday night, I met up with my friend Lisa for dinner at Burntwood Tavern to enjoy their limited-time Dia de los Muertos menu.

We both started with the Perfect Margarita, served on the rocks with Patron, Grand Marnier, lime, and a salted rim.

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We shared the Pacos Nachos, with smoked pork carnitas, colby jack cheese, crispy jalapenos, peppers and onions, avocado salsa, pico de gallo, and queso blanco.

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Hearty and filling, these were delicious nachos!

For my entree, I had the Baja Fish Tacos, with beer-battered cod, cole slaw, queso rico, chipotle aioli, and rice & beans.

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The rice & beans were not your typical Mexican rice & beans, but they were tasty. And the fish was tender and flaky, with a nice kick from the chipotle aioli.

The Dia de los Muertos menu is available at all Burntwood Tavern locations through Sunday, November 3, with options from tacos to burritos to chicken tortilla soup. Over on Instagram, I’m running a gift card giveaway for $50 to Burntwood Tavern to check it out for yourself. The giveaway closes on Tuesday, October 29 at 11:59pm, so hop over and enter!

***Disclosure: I was asked by Burntwood Tavern to help promote the Dia de los Muertos menu. In exchange, I received two complimentary entrees and two complimentary margaritas. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

Children’s Theater Series

On Saturday, we kicked off our fourth season as subscribers to the Children’s Theater Series at Playhouse Square.

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The first show was Jungle Book, a re-imagined version of the classic tale, with a great message about conservation mixed in. Every year, Jeffrey becomes so much more engaged in the stories taking place on stage!

While the season ticket packages are sold out for this year, stay tuned in March for when the 2020-2021 season is announced. This a great way to introduce children to live theater in a way that is friendly and accessible, while still challenging their imaginations.

Gesu Young Families Truck or Treat

Trunk or Treat events have become quite popular over the last few years with church groups and schools, where families can decorate their cars and let their kids trick or treat in an enclosed area.

The Gesu Young Families group hosted their Truck or Treat on Saturday night, but it turned into a Gym or Treat due to the weather!

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There was a DJ, pizza, and plenty of candy! Our Trunk or Treat design came from my friend Sarah who created this adorable Toy Story-scape and was kind enough to let me borrow it! It was definitely a hit with the kids!

Trunk or Treat was a fun night and a great precursor to all the Halloween action coming this Thursday.

Gesu Blue-Gold Game

On Sunday, we bundled up and headed to the last game of Jeffrey’s soccer season: the Gesu Blue-Gold game.

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All the Kindergartners played each other, enjoyed pizza and snacks, and generally celebrated the end of a fun season!

So, that was our weekend! How was yours?

jenclesig_pur

Why? Flavors of Northeast Ohio!

I’ve been really fortunate throughout this blogging adventure to get to attend a lot of fabulous fundraisers. One that has been on my must-attend list for a long time was Flavors of Northeast Ohio to benefit the American Liver Foundation Heartland Division.

This unique event brings together several amazing local chefs, who are each given a table of guests for whom they create a multi-course dinner, paired with wine. The menus and tables are themed with the chefs’ creativity, making the evening a full sensory experience.

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But before you even enter the ballroom and take a seat at your table, you can nibble on delicious passed hors d’oeuvres from the participating chefs, enjoy a signature cocktail (this year’s was a painkiller from Porco Lounge & Tiki Room), and bid on auction items or participate in the wine pull.

My table was created and catered by Chef Chris Kafscak of Nomad Culinary. The theme was Game Night and the tablescape was filled with board game fun.

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For our first course, we slurped up some delicious game of Life “College Ramen,” which was much tastier than any ramen I ever made in my dorm room! This course was paired with Kendall Jackson Avant Chardonnay.

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Next up was “Professor Plum & Colonel Mustard in the Kitchen with the Salad,” a fun play on classic Clue characters in the name and a tasty salad too. This course was paired with Robert Mondavy Private Select Rye Barrel Aged Red Blend.

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Our next course was simply titled “Lox,” a high-scoring Scrabble word. In reality, the course featured salmon two-ways with a tasty faro, asparagus, and olive salad. This course was paired with Beringer Bros. Tequila Barrel Aged Sauvignon Blanc.

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From Candy Land, our next course was Gloppy’s Pierogi with Chocolate Red Wine Beef, paired with Juggernaut Hillside Cabernet Sauvignon. You had me at pierogi, but the tender, flavorful beef was delicious too!

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Our last course, themed on Sorry, was White Chocolate Cheesecake paired with Dark Horse Sparkling Brut. The game-board presentation of this dish made it almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

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All of this delicious food and culinary creativity helped to raise $116,000 for the American Liver Foundation Heartland Division and put the 15-year total for this Flavors of Northeast Ohio event at $1 million!

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I may have checked this off my must-attend bucket list, but I’ll certainly be attending this amazing event again!

***Disclosure: I was asked by American Liver Foundation Heartland Division to help promote Flavors of Northeast Ohio. In exchange, I received two complimentary tickets to the event. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

jenclesig_pur

Why? Weekends!

What a glorious fall weekend! We were out and about enjoying lots of seasonal fun!

Halloween Hayrides

On Friday night, we went on the Halloween Hayrides at the Lake Metroparks Farmpark.

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I’m always impressed by the number and creativity of the various stations you pass on the hayride, especially when you consider that they’re all staffed with volunteers!

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Jeffrey enjoyed the corny jokes and various just slightly spooky things we saw on the hayride.

He also loved the Glow Stick Dance show and made his way through his first haunted house in the festival field.

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Lake Metroparks Farmpark’s events are always top-notch! Halloween Hayrides are sold out for this year, but stay tuned for next year’s offerings. And I’ll definitely be grabbing tickets for the holiday Country Lights event when they go on sale (November 2 for Farmpark members and Lake County residents, November 3 for others).

Halloweekends

Well, you might have heard on the news that it was a crazy weekend at Cedar Point. I’m here to confirm that it was!

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The park was so crowded that it was temporarily closed to new guests on Saturday! Between the weather and the great deal with the new Gold Pass, it’s easy to see why.

We actually went both Saturday and Sunday and had a blast! Jeffrey trick or treated through Kiddie Kingdom, checked out the pumpkins, and generally enjoyed the Halloweekends fun.

But the big excitement was getting his 48″ wristband, which meant he was tall enough for roller coasters! We went on the Iron Dragon…

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…the Blue Streak (which was my first roller coaster)…

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…and Cedar Downs with his new height access.

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He absolutely loved the rides and I know he’ll be a ride warrior next summer too!

Halloweekends continues this coming weekend (October 25-27) and is worth checking out for both family fun and spooky shenanigans!

So, that was our weekend! How was yours?

jenclesig_pur

Why? Crepes in the City!

Yesterday, I met up with my friends Robin and Amy at this charming little spot in Downtown Willoughby: Crepes in the City.

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Serving a selection of crepes, waffles, and ice cream, this is the perfect spot to indulge either your sweet or savory side (perhaps both!)

I chose the cannoli crepe, filled with cannoli cream with chocolate chips and strawberries and topped with strawberries and a chocolate drizzle.

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This was decadent without being over-the-top sweet. And the crepe was thin, crisp, and made to perfection.

Robin got the s’mores crepe, with marshmallows, chocolate chips, and graham cracker and upped the ante by topping it with chocolate ice cream!

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Holy indulgence!

Amy got the savory Greek crepe, with chicken, tomato, onion, green peppers, feta, olives, spinach, and Greek dressing.

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Hearty and satisfying, the savory crepes make for a great lunch option!

Crepes in the City also offers Belgian waffles, breakfast crepes, and ice cream sundaes, so there’s something for every time and taste.

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We discovered their cute little back patio, which was the perfect spot to eat and chat.

Crepes in the City is charming and delicious. Give it a try!

jenclesig_pur

Why? Weekends!

It was a mostly nostalgic weekend around these parts…

Magnificat Reunion

I celebrated my 20-year (eek!) high school reunion this weekend. On Friday night, I met up with my Magnificat High School Class of 1999 classmates at Townhall.

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From old yearbooks to 90’s music to a montage of old pictures and memory books, it was a trip down high school lane.

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We were in the new upstairs room at Townhall, which was the perfect space for a group! From a private bar to plenty of seating and mingling space to cute decor, this is a great spot!

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The specialty drink for the evening was the Blue Streak, the Magnificat mascot (and a darn tasty drink, too).

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It was so fun catching up in person with everyone!

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On Saturday evening, I went back to Magnificat itself for the reunion weekend Mass. My dear friend Melissa was singing at the Mass and it was a wonderful chance to be reminded how much the mission of the school means to me still.

I also got to show Jeffrey around a little bit and he met some of my former teachers, which was really fun!

I was a bit ambivalent about attending reunion, especially since I’ve stayed so much more in touch with my college alma mater than my high school one. But I’m really glad I went and reconnected with that place and those women who meant a lot to me.

Patterson’s Fun Fest

On Sunday, Jeffrey and I went to Patterson’s Fruit Farm for their Fun Fest, which has become an annual tradition for us.

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From slides to pony rides to hay bale and corn mazes to buying pumpkins and the best apple cider on the planet, a trip to Patterson’s will leave you fully immersed in that fall feeling, no matter what the weather is going to be like this week!

Patterson’s Fun Fest is open daily through Sunday, October 27. Admission is $5 per person on weekdays and $8 per person on weekends. Don’t miss your chance for some good old fashioned fall fun!

How was your weekend?

jenclesig_pur

Why? Republic Food and Drink!

This week, I met up with fellow Playhouse Square Partners members for a dine-around in the Playhouse Square District.

At our dine-arounds, we select four restaurants that are geographically close together and split into small groups to enjoy a meal. Then we all meet up for an after-dinner drink together.

In the Playhouse Square District, we visited Ghost Light Restaurant and Lounge, Yours Truly, Puente Viejo, and Republic Food and Drink, all close to the theaters and great choices for pre- or post-theater dining. Our after-dinner drink was at Parnell’s Pub, a perennial Partners favorite.

I was in the group at Republic Food and Drink, which is a part of the Driftwood Group. This relatively-new restaurant occupies the former Otto Moser’s space and has transformed the old deli standby it into a comfortable, modern, delicious spot.

The list of bourbon cocktails alone had me happy! But the expansive menu of elevated comfort food sealed the deal. Our table shared the Pub Onion to start, a crispy-fried Vidalia onion with Carolina Gold Ranch.

I couldn’t pass up the Chicken Fried Chicken, with whipped potato, bourbon bacon green beans, and black pepper gravy.

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The chicken was tender and the breading was crisp. The potatoes and gravy were well-executed and the bourbon bacon green beans could make anyone eat their veggies.

Other comfort food favorites around the table included the Baked Mac ‘n Cheese, the Pork Schnitzel, and the Short Rib Stroganoff.

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As we head into Fall, the menu is perfect for cooler nights…warm up with an Old Fashioned and some Short Ribs!

And if you want to explore the Playhouse Square District with Partners, join us on Monday, October 7 for our Recess Scavenger Hunt to benefit arts education. Tickets are only $10!

***Disclosure: I am the Communications Co-Chair for Playhouse Square Partners. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

jenclesig_pur

Why? Weekends!

It was a low-key weekend, which after last weekend’s birthday busy-ness, was much-needed.

Sunrise Yoga

On Saturday morning, I headed down to the Cleveland American Heart Association Heart Walk for a sunrise yoga class with my girl Alicia.

GrooveRyde, where Alicia teaches on Monday nights (take her GrooveFlow class…your thighs will hate you, but thank you), was one of several local businesses supporting the Heart Walk with additional fitness offerings, fun booths, and more.

I forgot how different it is to practice on the grass, though. You’re using different muscles to stabilize and you’ll definitely feel the difference the next day!

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The view of the city at sunrise makes it worth it though!

Soccer

So, I’m officially a soccer mom!

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Jeffrey joined the school soccer team and had his first two games on Saturday morning. From learning which way to kick the ball (mostly because of kicking it the wrong way) to agreeing to play defense, then immediately asking “What’s defense?,” it was equal parts heartwarming and hilarious.

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But I’m so proud of Jeffrey for trying something new and for the coaches for doing a great job exposing the kids to soccer specifically and sportsmanship generally.

Birthday Dinner

I also snuck in one last birthday dinner at my parent’s house. We had delicious, huge crab legs from Lobster Brothers, tasty sangria, and a decadent ice cream cake from Mitchell’s.

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Despite the candles literally singeing my hair (the hazards of a bigger number birthday), it was a lovely celebration. My presents also added two new leopard-print items to my ever-growing collection!

How was your weekend?

jenclesig_pur