Why? American Heart Association Cleveland Heart Ball!

There are some amazing parties in Cleveland and the American Heart Association Cleveland Heart and Stroke Ball is sure to be a slam dunk. As we continue to celebrate Cleveland’s championship season, this year’s ball is themed Hoops & Dreams. The evening celebrates the work and mission of the Cleveland American Heart Association, as well as the volunteers and donors who advance the mission and the lives of those impacted by those efforts.

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The Cleveland Heart & Stroke Ball takes place on Saturday, June 10 at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown. The evening includes a cocktail reception, silent auction, dinner, and live auction.

Plus, you can keep the party going at the Overtime Party with the Young Professionals group, with open bar, concession-style food, and more. Tickets for the Heart & Stroke Ball are $500 and for an extra $50 you can join the Overtime Party fun! You can purchase tickets online.

So, how do you get ready for such an amazing evening? A black tie party takes lots of prep for a guest! Step one: find a great date!

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Matthew is out of town that weekend, so this pretty lady will be my perfect plus one!

Step two: Find a fabulous dress! Since it’s an American Heart Association event, I figured red would be the right choice. Rent the Runway has become my go-to for a black tie event. It’s easy to use, has great selection, and I can look fantastic without committing to a dress that I won’t wear all that often. I recommend getting the dress delivered on Thursday for a Saturday event. And the free second size is always a good idea, too!

My only problem is that I’m kind of in love with more than one dress! So, help me choose between this one, this one, and this one! Vote for your favorite in the comments!

 

Any of these dresses warrant some great bling! I love Bombay Taxi Boutique, Banyan Tree, and even Nordstrom for jewelry and will definitely be snagging something sparkly to compliment whichever dress I decide to wear.

Step three: Beautification prep. You want to look and feel your best for a big event! I love how barre3 makes me feel toned and strong, but it can also make me a bit sore, which is not ideal for a long evening in heels. So, I’ll stack those earlier in the week and then hit my favorite Harmony Studios class the morning of the event that will leave me feeling centered.

It’s always nice to have a facial, but make sure to leave enough time to allow any redness to fade before the big night. As for the day of, definitely a hair style and maybe a makeup application too. It takes the stress off, makes you feel lovely, and is just relaxing. That’s the best way to float into a magical evening!

Step four: Have a fantastic time! The best thing about events like the Heart & Stroke Ball is that it’s not just a great party, it’s for a great cause. You can feel good about your contributions to the cause and, if you follow the steps above, you can also feel good about how you look and feel for the night. Every girl needs a glamorous evening!

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I hope to see you at the Heart & Stroke Ball, fulfilling Hoops and Dreams!

***Disclosure: I was asked by the Cleveland American Heart Association to help promote the Heart & Stroke Ball. In exchange, I will receive 2 complimentary tickets to the event and the Overtime Party. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Mental Health Awareness Month!

Did you know that May is Mental Health Awareness Month? Mental illness is more common in the United States than cancer, diabetes, or heart disease, impacting one in four adults. With proper treatment, 70-90% of those affected by mental illness will experience a significant reduction in symptoms and an improved quality of life. (Source)

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Recovery Resources, a Cleveland non-profit dedicated to helping those struggling with addiction and mental health issues, is co-hosting a Client Art Show with the Cuyahoga County Justice Center now through May 31, to mark Mental Health Awareness Month.

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The works of art that are displayed were all created by Recovery Resources clients and demonstrate their creativity and determination. Some pieces of artwork are for sale.

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This Client Art Show is a wonderful way to celebrate the successes achieved with Recovery Resources, as well as highlight the prevalence and help remove some of the stigma of mental illness. In this video, Judge Deena Calabrese discusses the importance and impact of the Recovery Resources Client Art Show.

Be sure to stop by the Cuyahoga County Justice Center before May 31 to take a look for yourself.

If you or someone you know is showing signs of mental illness, have an open and honest discussion, without judgment. Offer your support and encouragement. Also, click here to find out more about Recovery Resources services, including the Warm Line Telephone and Mobile Crisis Team.

Mental illness and proper treatment for mental illness are critical issues in our country. Recovery Resources is helping to shine light on these issues and provide much-needed services, particularly in Mental Health Awareness Month.

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Why? Legacy Village Food Truck Mondays!

It’s food truck season again! Food trucks have made grabbing a bite to eat outside not only fun, but really tasty. Which is why I’m so excited that for 8 Mondays over the summer, you can chase away your weekend-is-over blues at Legacy Village with the return of Food Truck Mondays.

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The inaugural Food Truck Monday takes place on Monday, May 22 from 11:30am to 1:30pm. There will be an expanded line-up of food trucks, with Orange Truk, Beachcomber, Barrio, Chef Grey Wolf, Proper Pig, Slyman’s, Wholly Frijoles, 216 Bistro, and Donut Lab participating in the opening event.

You’ll also be able to enjoy a variety of local bands performing at each Food Truck Monday to add to the fun, festival-like atmosphere.

Food Truck Mondays will take place on May 22, June 5, June 19, July 3, July 17, July 31, August 14, and August 28. Aside from the awesome line-up for opening week, other weeks will include food trucks such as KC & J Hawaiian, Manna Truck, Off the Griddle, and Smash Time. Food Truck Mondays are perfect for a lunch break, a lunch date, or a play date!

***Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village to promote their events. In exchange, I will receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

We didn’t let the rain slow us down this weekend, as there was lots to do and plenty of fun to be had! On Friday evening, Matthew and I took Jeffrey to a sneak peek of “Truck,” one of the shows that made up the International Children’s Theater Festival at Playhouse Square.

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The sneak peek was for Playhouse Square Partners Encore Society members and started with a cocktail and hors d’oeuvre reception, where Jeffrey caught up with some of his favorite Partners.

The performance was supposed to take place outside, but given the weather, the truck for “Truck” was relocated to a loading dock that made a pretty great makeshift theater. Bridgman Packer Dance put on a fun and interesting performance, all inside a U-Haul box truck, after which we had time to chat with the artists.

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They were even kind enough to let Jeffrey check out the truck and their cool video effects!

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The next morning, we were back at Playhouse Square for more International Children’s Theater Festival fun! While I volunteered at the craft room with fellow Partners members, Jeffrey, Matthew, and his dad went to see “The Moon’s a Balloon.”

While volunteering, I got to check out the imaginative, upcycled “The Junkyard,” a magical world made entirely of recycled materials.

The International Children’s Theater Festival has so many cool components, from theater performances to concerts to crafts to face painting and balloon artists.

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All of it opens the imagination to new worlds, both for adults and kids. Definitely put it on your must-do list for next year!

Saturday evening, Matthew and I met up with friends James and Jamie for dinner at one of my all-time favorite Cleveland restaurants: Momocho. We started with margarita and guacamole samplers, which are fabulous since I can never decide which margarita or guacamole I want to eat!

My margarita sampler had the red bell pepper, blood orange, and hibiscus margaritas, which were all fantastic (although the spicy mango remains my all-time favorite). Our guacamole sampler had the goat cheese, pickled corn and crab (my favorite), and smoked trout guacamole.

For dinner, Matthew had the scallops, with achiote creamed corn and cauliflower-hominy disco.

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All the elements of this dish work together so well! I had the Dos Equis-braised beef short rib tamales with red and green mole sauces.

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Smoky, tender, delicious perfection!

For dessert, we shared the Mexican chocolate pot de crème, which is a very sharable size and the perfect sweet and spicy way to cap off our Mod Mex dinner.

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The atmosphere, drinks, and food at Momocho are never anything short of fantastic and our dinner on Saturday was no exception!

On Sunday, Jeffrey had his final race in the Healthy Kids Running Series, a five-week program of races for kids from ages 2 through 8th grade.

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All the kids earned a medal at the end of this week’s race, which Jeffrey has been proudly wearing since. It was a great way for him to start an organized sport and have fun, too! The parents also had the chance to participate in a 1-mile Fun Run, which I did, mainly to earn this tasty Burger Fresh burger…

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…and some Mitchell’s Ice Cream after the race!

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Seriously, though, I’m really proud of Jeffrey for completing the series and think it’s a great way to get both kids and parents being active together!

So, that was our weekend! How was yours?

***Disclosure: I am the vice co-chair of Playhouse Square Partners. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Silver Spoon Awards Party!

On Wednesday night, Matthew and I attended the Cleveland Magazine Silver Spoon Awards Party. There is no shortage of great food in Cleveland and this party celebrates the winners of Cleveland Magazine’s Silver Spoon Awards in style, with plenty of food, wine, and fun.

I thought I’d share my own version of Silver Spoon Awards, based on some of our favorites from the evening:

Most Creative (Plating): Trentina‘s mushroom terrarium was such an interesting way to present a dish with lots of textures and fresh spring flavors. And it seriously looks just like a terrarium!

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Most Creative (Food): Graffiti Social Kitchen’s soft pretzel bread pudding with stadium mustard ice cream, beer caramel, and house “cracker jacks.” It was baseball in dessert form, with sweet and sour elements that complimented each other perfectly!

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Best Use of a Cleveland Classic (Original Form): Jack’s Deli and Restaurant went as Cleveland as it comes with corned beef and pickles. And everyone LOVED it!

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Best Use of a Cleveland Classic (Elevated Form): Pier W‘s lobster pierogi took this classic Polish dish to a lobster-packed new level of delicious!

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Best Not Serving What You’d Expect Them to Serve: Red, the Steakhouse brought Korean BBQ ribs topped with rice noodle salad in a steamed bun. Proving steak is not the only trick up their sleeve.

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Best Serving Exactly What You’d Expect Them to Serve: Mabel’s BBQ brought pork spare ribs with CLE kraut and CLE pickles. YES!

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Best Combo Platter:  Around the Corner and Georgetown teamed up black pepper chicken wings and bacon truffle mac ‘n cheese for honestly one of my favorite plates of the night! Bar food meets haute cuisine beautifully!

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Best Flourish (Food): Washington Place Bistro & Inn‘s creative “W” and “P” basil oil atop the delicious red pepper and crab bisque.

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Best Flourish (Cocktail): Mabel’s BBQ‘s bartender had a dramatic finish to his VIP cocktail competition drink.

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Best Cinco de Mayo Prep: Nuevo Modern Mexican‘s ceviche with scallops, passion fruit, strawberries, and habanero got my palate all charged up for Mexican flavors!

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Congratulations to all the Silver Spoon Award winners! Keep making Cleveland’s food scene diverse and delicious!

***I was asked by the Arthritis Foundation Ohio to help promote the Silver Spoon Awards Party. In exchange, I received two complimentary VIP tickets for myself and two general admission tickets to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Goldfish Swim School Giveaway!

As summer approaches and pools and splash pads open again, it’s time to start thinking about water safety for your children. May is National Water Safety Month and there’s no better place to get your children learning about water safety than Goldfish Swim School.

Jeffrey has been taking lessons at Goldfish Swim School since July 2015 and we couldn’t be happier with the caring teachers, fun lessons, and sense of confidence and achievement fostered there.

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From his earliest classes when I was in the water with him to his more advanced lessons when he goes without me (that was a much bigger hurdle for me than him), Goldfish Swim School has focused not only on skill development, but also on water safety.

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The safety skills taught there make me feel more confident in taking Jeffrey to swim in a community pool or at a friend’s birthday party or at a water park. Of course we don’t let him swim alone, but his basic grasp of swimming skills and safety tips makes our jobs easier and gives him a good foundation for years to come.

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Plus, the lessons are fun, for both children and adults. Jeffrey loves going to class and loves showing off what he learned each week, sometimes just in the bathtub.

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Swim lessons are a great way to get your children to be both comfortable and safe in the water. And it’s the perfect season to lay that foundation. Which is why in honor of National Water Safety Awareness Month, Goldfish Swim School (with locations in Northeast Ohio in Fairview Park, Cleveland East, and Hudson) is giving away swim lessons to one lucky winner! You’ll be entered to win your choice of either one month of swim lessons or a Jump Start Clinic.

Here’s how to enter (you can do one, two, three, four, or all five entries, just leave a separate comment here for each):

1.Leave a comment sharing a way you keep your child safe in the water.

2. Visit your Goldfish Swim School of choice (Cleveland East, Fairview Park, or Hudson) and Why CLE? on Facebook and leave a comment here letting me know you visited both pages.

3. Follow @goldfishswimschool and @whycle on Instagram and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

4. Follow @goldfishswim and @WhyCLE on Twitter and leave a comment here letting me know you’re following both.

5. Tweet the following phrase and leave a comment here letting me know you tweeted:

I want to win swim lessons from @goldfishswim and @WhyCLE for National Water Safety Month: https://whycle.com/2017/05/04/why-goldfish-swim-school-giveaway #giveaway

You can tweet once per day for additional entries, just leave a separate comment each time you tweet.

The giveaway will end on Tuesday, May 9 at 11:59pm and the winner will be notified the following day. Winner will be chosen at random. Note that lesson dates and times are subject to availability.

***Disclosure: I was asked by Goldfish Swim School to help promote National Water Safety Month. In exchange, I will receive one month of swim lessons or a Jump Start Clinic to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Plum City Designs!

There is nothing I love more than getting a card in the mail from a friend, except perhaps popping one in the mail to send to a friend. There’s something really special about snail mail. Which is what first drew me to Plum City Designs on Instagram (which is how I meet people these days apparently ;-))

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Plum City Designs offers beautiful hand-lettered cards, some of which are Cleveland-centered and all of which are adorable and charming and heart-warming.

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Plum City also sells Cleveland shirts (I need this one and this one, stat).

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So, since I love what Plum City Designs is putting out there, I thought I’d share it with you!

I’m going to let Marnie Fletcher, the creative force behind Plum City Designs, tell you about it Plum City Designs her own words (my questions are in bold and Marnie’s answers are in italics):

Tell me about Plum City Designs. How did you get started?

Plum City has been brewing for a long time, but only recently became a reality last July.  I’m a self-taught calligrapher, and a constant doodler, and the two together brought me here.  It all started with a few handmade cards followed by what felt like a gutsy move to ask a local boutique to carry some cards in their store.  Before long I had a couple of accounts and was selling cards to friends and family.  One of my Cleveland designs was pretty popular and I had a lot of people suggest that I get shirts made.  It took me about a week to connect with a local company, Image by Design, to get a run of shirts printed.  That was a pretty big instant success that I didn’t really expect.  Since that first design back in August, I’ve designed and delivered five other shirt designs in a variety of colors and styles.  Plum City is now in about ten boutiques in the Greater Cleveland area.  I’ve had a tremendous welcome into the world of design, sales and business, something I never would have anticipated, and definitely don’t take for granted. My family has been wonderfully supportive of my work.  My kids help with packaging and inventory, my husband, Eric, is in the process of building me a custom workshop/office so I can move out of our dining room.

What are some of your most popular items?

I do a lot of custom work (invitations and artwork), which I don’t advertise too much, because it’s a little more stressful 🙂  I put a lot of pressure on myself to make things just so, and when I know I have to please someone else’s specific tastes and requests it adds to the pressure.  So far, though, my customers have been fantastic, and very enthusiastic about my work.

Our most popular sellers are our Cleveland heart t-shirts, and the CLE compass t-shirts. They seem to appeal to a wide audience from kids to seniors, and we offer them in a wide range of sizes. In terms of cards, that seems to be dependent on the location and current need.  One of my birthday cards, which has a cupcake drawn on it is hard to keep in stock.  My favorite, however, is the mama and baby Joey card.  That was one of my first color designs that I tried, and I just think it’s sweet.  Not to mention, my oldest son is named Joey, and I have his name hidden in the design.  

Where can we buy Plum City Designs products?

Plum City Designs products can be purchased on my website and through Facebook.  In person, they can be found at Knuth’s in Pepper Pike and Westlake, Blush Boutique in Coventry and Chagrin Falls, The Green Roots Collection at The Cleveland Clinic Main Campus, The Nest in Chardon, Sophia Boutique in Concord, Munch CLE in Solon, and Artisans’ Corner Gallery in Newbury.  (When I listed these I just realized that we are really spreading out!)

Tell me your Cleveland story. What do you love about the city? Favorite places to go, with or without your children?

I’m a lifelong Clevelander other than my years in Athens, Ohio as a Bobcat.  I grew up in Mayfield Village, moved into my grandparents’ old home in University Heights when we got married, and then moved to Moreland Hills just a few years ago.  Our parents and siblings are all in the Cleveland area as well.  I can’t really imagine, nor have I ever considered living anywhere else!  In Cleveland I feel like I know someone wherever I go, and that’s comforting to me.  I feel connected no matter where I am. 

When our kids were really little we did all of the usual Cleveland-family stuff: The Children’s Museum, the Zoo, the Natural History and Science Museums.  We love all of the local parks and playgrounds and those were always part of our circuit.  We live close to the Metroparks and in the last few years have spent a lot of the summer in the parks.  The Art Museum is a definite treasure that we have here, and I could easily lose myself in there. 

For me, I think it’s mostly the people.  I’m a people-person, and I like making new connections.  A natural by-product of starting up your own business is meeting lots of new people with lots of different experiences to share. Cleveland has been the perfect place for that – I’ve been amazed and humbled by the generosity I’ve been shown.

What’s next for Plum City Designs?

What’s next?  Someone needs to rein me in!  I have no shortage of design ideas – the only thing I’m working against is time.  But who isn’t? I plan to expand my market this summer including the Westside of Cleveland, and other parts of Ohio.   I’d love to branch out a little with my clothing ideas and styles.  I keep trying to come up with some new designs for shirts and apparel that would appeal to the guys a little more too.  My pen usually gets the best of me and I wind up with a finished piece that’s either too delicate or something else that I can’t quite identify.  I just like a mix of patterns and styles, particularly with my lettering.  

One thing I’ve learned about myself is that there’s nothing that I’ve ever felt like I can’t try to do or figure out.  That sums up how I got here and will hopefully keep me moving forward.  It’s very satisfying to have an idea and see it all the way through to a finished product.

I hope Marnie’s excitement, creativity, and love for Cleveland spark you as much as they spark me. Check out their great cards and shirts today!

jenclesig_pur

Why? The Lakehouse Inn!

When you get invited to a “VIP Food and Wine Tour,” including an overnight stay at a lovely inn, spa time, and more food and wine than you thought anyone could possibly fit into two days, you do whatever you can to attend. Which is exactly what I did the last couple of days at The Lakehouse Inn in Geneva on the Lake.

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With beautiful views of Lake Erie, cozy patios, and comfortable guest rooms, I immediately felt at home and relaxed there!

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My experience started on Sunday evening with a delicious coursed wine-pairing meal at Crosswinds Grille, the restaurant attached to The Lakehouse Inn. I had dined at Crosswinds last summer and was excited to try a broader selection from their ever-changing menu.

The menu at Crosswinds is the height of seasonal deliciousness and will change as often as 6 times per year to keep up with the freshest bounty provided by local farmers. Crosswinds doesn’t just talk the farm-to-table talk. They continually source the freshest and most local produce and meats they can find. Two of Crosswinds farm suppliers were on hand at the dinner (from Red Basket Farm and Miller Grass Fed Farms), showcasing their products and the restaurant’s commitment to locally-sourced, quality food.

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Our first course was a wilted kale salad with grilled onions, poached egg, and vinaigrette.

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Chef Nate added some asparagus in to the salad at the last minute because it arrived fresh and was a perfect addition. Of note, all the items at our dinner are available in some form on Crosswinds current menu.

Next up, shrimp and grits with nduja and a bit of Chardonnay.

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Salty, creamy, sweet, and delicious! I love me some shrimp and grits! Every course was paired with a Lakehouse Inn wine, my favorites of the bunch being the Riesling, the reserve Pinot Noir, and the Cabarnet Sauvignon. And the Pinot Rose will be perfect for hot summer days.

Our next course was grilled pork tenderloin with jasmine rice and mustard cream. Chef Nate told us he focuses more on food than on plating, but every dish not only tasted great, but looked lovely too!

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Not realizing another meat course was on it’s way, I devoured every bite of this tender pork and then had to find room for the rich beef navel (think pork belly texture, but beef) served with potatoes and collard greens.

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There were simply grunts of happiness all around the table with this dish!

Our dessert was the creatively-named Heavenly Kathy Joe, a scoop of house-made maple ice cream over a cocktail of Seven Brothers whiskey and maple. I’ve always thought I didn’t like whiskey, but this was delicious and I drank/scooped every drop!

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After a restful night’s sleep, we were back to the hard work of eating and exploring The Lakehouse Inn, with breakfast at Crosswinds (the housemade sausage is to die for)…

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…and then spa time!

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My toes are now ready for spring/summer open-toed shoes! And I’m supremely relaxed!

From there, we took a little field trip to Na*Kyrsie Meats, run by Chef Nate of Crosswinds Grille. Chef Nate taught himself how to butcher and brings in beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, and pigs for his cuts of meat and charcuterie.

We got to sample a variety of charcuterie and it was hard to pick a favorite, although I do confess I brought some of the lamb salumi home with me.

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Na*Kyrsie meats are of course used at Crosswinds Grille, but you can also stop in at their retail monthly meat sale (where you can enjoy Lakehouse Inn wines too). 

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And you can also find Na*Kyrsie this season at the Tremont Farmers Market.

With a restaurant, spa, inn, winery, and tons of gracious hospitality all in one spot, you hardly need to go anywhere but The Lakehouse Inn any time of the year! That said, the entire area is rich with wineries, the Harbor with lots of shops and restaurants, The Lodge which is building a canopy tour experience to be completed by the end of the summer, and lots more to explore and enjoy.

The thing that impresses me the most about The Lakehouse Inn is there commitment to local products. From Crosswinds Grille’s sourcing of local meats and produce to the cocktail menu featuring local distilleries…

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to the gift shop with tons of local items…

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…supporting local businesses is not just a byline here. It’s a focus and you can tell how much respect and admiration these businesses have for each other. When you support local businesses that support each other, you do something amazing right in your own backyard! And you’ll likely have a fabulous, delicious, relaxing time doing it!

The next time you need a romantic getaway, a girls weekend, a family fun weekend, or maybe just a sip of wine and a delicious dinner, you can’t do better than The Lakehouse Inn.

***Disclosure: I was invited to a VIP Food and Wine Tour at The Lakehouse Inn. I declined part of the Sunday experience due to scheduling conflicts. My lodging, food, drink, and spa services were complimentary. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Weekends!

While I spent half my weekend in DC with Jeffrey, I still managed to pack in a lot of Cleveland fun into the other half of the weekend (with a little assist from Matthew). On Saturday, Matthew went to the Beasts ‘n Brews Chilifest at Legacy Village.

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Beasts ‘n Brews is a fundraiser for North Union Farmers Market and brings together local chefs with their fabulous chili, as well as craft beers and cocktails and local musicians. Matthew’s favorite chili choices came from Momocho and Fire Spice Co.

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And while the weather might not have been perfectly ideal for an outdoor event, the chili warmed everyone up. Plus there was fun to keep the whole family entertained!

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Jeffrey is super bummed he missed those bubbles (I’m super bummed I missed chili with pork belly croutons).

On Sunday, I was off to a private shopping party at kate spade at Beachwood Place. I won the opportunity to host this party at a charity auction earlier this year. And I couldn’t wait to get some of my favorite ladies together at one of my favorite stores.

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We had the entire store to ourselves, plus “sips and sweets” to enjoy while we shopped. Store manager Francine was the perfect hostess and we all went home feeling a little prettier and more sparkly with the addition of some fabulous new pieces to our wardrobes.

The May collection is now out in the store, plus there are some fabulous items on sale as well!

No girly Sunday Funday is complete without brunch, so we were off to Cedar Creek Grille for mimosas and talking and yummy brunch fare. I had the veggie omelet, with asparagus, mushrooms, and Boursin cheese. Delicious!

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So, despite arriving back in Cleveland at 6pm on Saturday, I still managed to pack in lots of fun, including an adventure I’m currently on that you can follow on social media (or stay tuned for a post tomorrow).

How was your weekend?

***Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Legacy Village to promote their events. In exchange, I will receive compensation in the form of Legacy Village gift cards. I also received two complimentary tickets to Beasts ‘n Brews. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.***

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Why? Masthead Brewing Co.!

There are so many new breweries popping up in Cleveland that it’s hard to keep up with them all! I had been hearing great things about Masthead Brewing Co., so earlier this month, Matthew and I stopped in before a show at Playhouse Square to check it out.

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Located in the historic Bryant Building, Masthead is renovating this gigantic space to house both a restaurant and production brewery space.

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We decided to start with a four-beer sampler, with the Wit, Coffee Stout, Poblano Chili Stout, and Midwest Red IPA.

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While I chose to get a glass of the easy-drinking Wit to accompany my dinner, I really enjoyed both of the stouts too. For our dinner, we chose to start with the cherry peppers, stuffed with smoked mozzarella and wrapped in speck ham and topped with spicy honey.

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Somewhat surprisingly to us, the peppers were cold, but very tasty with a nice spice from the honey.

We started with the Hawaiian pizza, with rosemary ham, jalapeno peppers, and pineapple. The perfect balance of spicy and sweet, with a deliciously thin and chewy crust, right out of the huge pizza oven, this was the perfect pie! We devoured it and almost immediately moved on to the spicy soppressata pizza, with fresh mozzarella and giardinera. Yum!

Masthead Brewing boasts a huge space, good beers, yummy pizza, and a laid-back vibe that all spell taproom success in my book. It’s in a great location for a pre-game or pre-show bite or an after-work happy hour. Cheers to one of the new kids on the brewery block!

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