well that was fun.

It's July 28 and the month has absolutely flown the hell by. 

Where have I been? Where have you been?

I've been all over in Cleveland, drove 12 hours southeast to the Outer Banks then just a quick 5 hours west to Chicago for a weekend.

My family descended upon the Outer Banks for a week where we successfully avoided the hurricane, had daily dance parties by our pool, celebrated LeBron's return back to his hometown and went crabbing every night on the beach with my mom and aunt. If you have ever vacationed with your family, I hope you do this - it's absolutely ridiculous where you walk in the beach with flashlights and get "surprised" every time you come across a big ass sand crab. 



Pool time; selfie for Lebron coming home!!!; Peltz family; toddler Ethan looking fierce with water wings


Greg modeling; sunscreen is a family affair; couples; family bonding time

Every Sunday so far this summer has been pretty much spent on the volleyball courts followed by corn hole and our new favorite game, the list, over lots of summer shandy's. We win some games, we lose some games but we always end at Sunset Grille to finish out the weekend. 

This is an intense game.

One Saturday night, we all decided to throw it back like it was Thursday straight to 1983 or '85 or '87, depending on what you were born and partied in our best neon, denim and spandex combination for the Ultimate 80's party.  A little rain couldn't keep us away (or our hair flat) and we danced to Madonna and Whitney mashups like it was nobody's business. 

Don Johnson and me; Tony posing with his flock of seagulls hair; Madonna wins with the best costume of the group; taking over the dance floor like a champ

One of two of my favorite "tastes" happened in Tremont on an absolutely beautiful 80 degree day where I ate my way through the streets of Tremont. And, interestingly enough put on a banana costume and tried to do my best Timberlake impression of "bring it on down to bananaville" instead of omeletteville. Why not I ask you???

View of Professor; my best impersonation; so many choices of where to eat

It's been a busy summer, people! Let's keep it going!


your summer = planned Part II

We are halfway through the summer. Are you bored?

I hope the answer is a resounding "No!"

It's absolutely impossible in my book with the 80 degree weather Cleveland has been receiving, the RNC announcement and the LeBron is coming back any day now to his castle in Bath.

So, you say you need some more events to go to? Choose wisely!

Booze your face off and eat events:

12th annual Taste of Tremont - It has been a long two years since I've been to the Taste of Tremont. Being out of town the past two years, it is a truly fun and normally sweaty as hell event where Professor Street is packed with people of all ages and parking lots filled of local bands.

When: Taste of Tremont, This Sunday, July 20, 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is free, parking is just about hilarious over there so I suggest you Lyft of Uber.




Burning River Fest - It's a beer festival to literally remember when our river infamously caught on fire in 1969. I mean...it seems to the be the only thing the national media likes to report on so you might as well as take yourself plus friends to the best little part of Cleveland in the summer - Whiskey Island and Wendy Park.

When: Burning River Fest, Saturday, July 25, 6 p.m to 11 p.m. Tickets are $12 to $50. And if you are coming from the west, expect long delays to actually get there because the exit is closed. CLOSED for six months.




Twilight at the Zoo - Years ago I went and had a smashing time with friends but haven't been back because it's the conundrum of two events back to back - Krusty's Summer Camp is the next day. Can you do both? Say it with me, YES YOU CAN! There are 18 brands throughout the zoo and numerous drink stations. See your favorite animals, take some selfies and enjoy a Friday night at the Zoo.

When: Twilight at the Zoo, Friday, August 1, 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. Tickets are sold out but you can try your hand at the giveaway here.

Tastings on the Terrace at the Cleveland Museum of Art - The Art Museum is at it again with a new series of summertime events that I can get behind with Tastings on the Terrace.  Each Friday through 8/29, Provenance will feature a select drink “tasting” menu and pair it with complimentary small bites from the chef served outside on the rooftop terrace. What sounds better than that? Absolutely nothing!

When: Tastings on the Terrace, Friday, July 18, 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Cost is $8-10 per drink. This week's event will feature summertime wines with a Mediterranean flatbread.


Hydrate, stretch and work off the boozing events:


Believe in CLE - The ladies of Inner Bliss are at it again with another evening outdoor event for early August on Mall B downtown Cleveland. Get ready for a 75 minute vinyasa flow with a surprise speaker to start off the night's event. Remember to sign up here FIRST!

When: Believe in CLE, Friday, August 8, 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. Free event.

Cupid's Undie Run Volleyball Tournament - You know how much I love playing volleyball if you follow my Instagram feed because Sundays at Wendy Park are my favorite activity in the summer. Join me, grab a team and sign up for the tournament. Last year, there were special drinks and lots of people playing in their underwear. Well, not really but the benefit is the Children's Tumor Foundation.

When: Cupids Volleyball Tournament, Saturday, August 10 at 11 a.m. $140 for a team, $40 for corn hole.

our losing team


Rooftop Yoga with Harness Cycle - My favorite spin studio is bringing rooftop yoga to Clevelanders every Sunday on top of the Federal Knitting Mill in Ohio City.  Make sure to sign up early because this Sunday's event is already wait listed.

When: Rooftop Yoga with Harness Cycle, Every Sunday at 11:30 a.m.









family vacation or bust

Family vacations.

Breathe that phrase in.

For some, it can cause major anxiety because one week with your relatives can be quite interesting, dramatic or down right ridiculous if your family knows how to have a good time.

As a teenager, I loved taking our yearly trips to the Outer Banks with my family, which always consisted of some mix of cousins, aunts, uncles and my brother and I battling it out for who got to bring a friend that summer.

Summer of 1999

Luckily for both of us, our parents were friends with their parents so we always had between one to three friends on our trips. Our first trip was in 1999 and the last one was somewhere around 2003 to the beautiful beaches of the Outer Banks.


Summer of 2001

As a 31-year-old, I haven't spent an entire week with my extended family in almost 10 years.


Family photo circa 2001

One beach house.

11 people.

2 kids under the age of 2.5 years old.

2 new significant others.

Even though Hurricane Arthur is threatening our Saturday arrival date, I truly believe we will have no problem at Saturday at 1 p.m. for check-in time for our Corolla beach house.

Why?

Because we are years over due for a family vacation and family vacations are where you make memories with the people you don't spend enough time with as an adult. We have work, friends, more work commitments and its easy to let that "other stuff" get in the way of the important parts of life like spending time with the important people.

get me to our pool. now.

I look forward to spending the next 7 days with my family and capturing moments that we will remember forever, laugh about at our next holiday gathering and refer back to for the next 10 years.

Now, Arthur, I'm going to need to swing away from the coast and head out more east. Please and thank you!




summer solsticing at the Cleveland Museum of Art

The first day of summer was quite possibly the most perfect summer weather night you hope for when you are planning to attend an outdoor event.

Two years ago at the Cleveland Museum of Art: Summer Solstice party, it was balls to the wall hot, humid and completely unbearable because I only lasted an hour with friends there.

It was the kind of heat when you stepped outside you started sweating immediately and any hope of your make-up staying put was pointless as your face literally would melt in a matter of minutes. The kind of heat where you need to be indoors or in a pool at all times.

Not this year, friends, not even close! It was a gorgeous evening outside celebrating summer and the "hottest summer music festival."

sea of the party people

Like past years, I opted for the late entrance tickets at 10:30 p.m. but after this year's event,  I'll upgrade next year to get the 8 p.m. tickets. The late tickets work well because you can grab dinner in Little Italy (or in our case Washington Place Bistro) and leisurely make your way to celebrate the first day of Summer.

Two reasons why it's time to go earlier:

1) You only have about 2 hours to see everyone and that's a TON of space to cover and friends to make sure you see.
2) More time to dance your ass off outside and inside the atrium.

You use the hashtag, your photo was shared throughout the museum

Party people partying with balloon hats and limbo

Tickets for CMA Solstice keep selling out quicker year after year just like the Jump Back Ball at Playhouse Square. I love this event every year - it's one of the first Cleveland events and kicks off the summer season with a bang.

If the weather is right, you are lucky enough like we were all on Saturday night to enjoy a beautiful summer night out with thousands of closest friends at one of my favorite places on the east side of Cleveland.

Why hello summer, it's great to see you again!


the best kind of book club

I would consider myself somewhat of an avid reader of fictional books and fashion magazines. Each month, I read Lucky, Glamour and Harper's Bazaar RELIGIOUSLY and include a book a month.

The book part can be iffy because sometimes I can easily fly through two or three books a month and other times I'm dragging out a book for two months.

I keep a very detailed list on my iPhone of what I should read next and that list keeps on growing and growing. With my upcoming family vacation, I plan to knock out three books that week - The Discovery of Witches, The Invention of Wings and Contagious - a fun little marketing type book.

Based on my inconsistent reading schedule, I am the least likely candidate to join any sort of book club that I have to complete reading the book because I will fail. It's like my juice cleanse try - great idea in theory but when it comes times to stick to juice, I simply can't!

Enter my friend Kelly and her genius idea of a book club. A book club to end all book clubs where you can't NOT read these books.

We are only reading books written by the Real Housewives of Bravo.

That's it.

The only books we will talk about each month are written by our favorite Bravo leading ladies.

That's right - anything and everything written by the riveting women who pull hair, cook and flip tables while dining with prostitution whores we will read.

Girls gone wild

Still my favorite cast even with Teresa

Our first book on the agenda was written by Brandi Glanville, author of Drinking and Tweeting, who loves her endless bottles of sauvignon blanc, educating readers on her vagina rejuvenation and coming up with hilarious insults for that child star turned country music singer.


First book done!

The book club discussed our first book over a breakfast of mimosas followed by pool time. It's a Cleveland summer and we crave our pool, beach and lake time like no one's business because we had one hell of a winter.


Bathing beauties

Technically I still haven't finished the whole book but you better believe I will finish it so I can start the next one from Brandi's other cast mate, Taylor Armstrong.




your summer = planned

I have one phrase and word I absolutely abhor - "it sucks" and "no."

It's almost as if I hear nails on the chalkboard, need to cover my ears and get goosebumps all over my body because I can't STAND when I hear that from people. There are so many other ways to eloquently describe a situation than "it sucks." You could say "well, that is just terrible" or "what an unfortunate situation" or "I'm not cool with that, let's kick his or her ass."

See? Sounds so much better.

Now, the word "no" just doesn't work for me in a lot of the times. I prefer a slow yes instead of an abrupt "no."

While I equally despise those words, it brings to my next least favorite phrase I hear people say, "I'm bored."

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce to several events happening in Cleveland over the next two months.  Get our your calendars, start the group text and buy tickets with your friends to make a memorable summer with a combination of events for you to rehydrate to dehydrate together.


Booze your face off options:

Luau on the Lake - It's in its 9th year and I've been ZERO times because I've been on vacation the past few years. I have friends who organize it and say it's a smashing good time and supports Shoes and Clothes for Kids. Do this!

When: Luau on the Lake, Saturday, July 12 at 4 p.m to 9 p.m. Tickets: $40 - $60

Scene Ale Fest - Two years ago, I went with friends and it was so much fun. People are incredibly intoxicated all afternoon, they will run out beer and then the attendees are left to meander around Tremont looking for a good meal. I recommend Prosperity Club and add a pitcher of Sangria to cap off your evening!

When: Ale Fest, Saturday, July 19 at 1:00 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets: $10 - $55.


Cheers to Ale Fest

Whiskey Island 80s on the Lake - My two favorite things - Whiskey Island and 80s music. May I suggest a mash-up of Eddie Money, Duran Duran and Madonna?

When: 80s on the Lake - Friday, July 19 at 2 p.m. until 12:00 a.m. Tickets: Don't need any!

Krusty's Summer Camp - It's been revived! We were told last year it would end but never fear - a group of people have brought back the end of summer drink fest. The question is - can you make it all day?

When: Krusty's Summer Camp, Saturday, August 2 from 12 p.m. until ???? Tickets: $50-$60.
last year's afternoon view


Hydrate, stretch and work off the boozing events:

Run the Bridges/Rooftop - Look, you have two options to kick your own ass with running with the Harness Cycle crew on Wednesdays and then namasting it out on the rooftop of the Federal Knitting Mill.

When: Run the Bridges, Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.

When: Hingetown Community Yoga, Sundays at 11:30 a.m. FREE, just sign up on the site.

Believe in CLE - If you don't know about this, you must live under a rock because every Lululemon west/east/southsider MUST know about it by now. But, in the event you don't, you should show up to join 800+ people again for an unbelievable night.

When: Believe in CLE, Friday, June 27th at 7 p.m. Tickets: FREE but register on the Inner Bliss.

Looking forward to this year's


And there you have it, now get planning!


the time I didn't spill anything on my all white outfit

Summer has quickly rushed in for me and most of my 12 weeks has been planned out pretty well from here on out.

It's funny how that works out. Between Cleveland outdoor events, weekly volleyball games and planned vacations and out of town weekends,  I have quite the amazing summer planned with friends over the next two months.


Friday: the first MIX of the summer
In the last two years, I have been exposed to more interesting movies, people and events at the Cleveland Museum of Art than I would have ever thought possible. I've been to the museum four times in the past six months for a movie viewing, MIX event, Mother's day and now MIX this past weekend.

Only this time, my friends and I seemed to miss the actual MIX event because we were too busy enjoying our meals within Provenance and the amazing cocktail list to join the rest of the party. I suppose we can make up for it at Solstice in just two weeks.....

On the upside, my all white outfit won against all food, dessert and alcohol consumed for the night, which was partly because I sipped only white or clear cocktails to increase my odds of winning against impossible odds.


moscow mule and lavender french cocktails and strawberry shortcake


Finally, I stand out from the decorations.


Saturday: a preview of The Shoreway Lofts and Yellowcake Shop designs
If you commute east on the shoreway, you have seen the huge sign that says "Shoreway Lofts" hanging up for the past 6 months. While most of the units are already rented (only 6 left), guests were given a tour of a model unit as well as an up close and personal seat to Valerie Mayen's latest work and great taste in music as models and mini models strutted down the runway with fun and fresh dresses in colorful and some even with giraffes on them. Who doesn't love a fun print?!?


Carnaval runway set and ready to start.


Obviously I was a fan of the candy table


Added my new favorite J'adore necklace to my jewelry collection from Oceanne


Sunday: a 57th birthday celebration
My mom invented the birthday week for us as kids so it's only fitting she take one herself. I don't know if she actually called it a "birthday week" when we were kids but there was always a tremendous celebration around our birthdays that typically consisted of two parties, which meant we had the option of choosing two cake designs.

This year, my mom wanted a Sunday Funday with her family on what was supposed to be a sunny day but the weather gods had different plans for the forecast on Sunday. Lots of rain to sprinkling rain to simply overcast for my mom's Sunday Funday but it's about the people you are with, right????? My mom also realized that this year was her ACTUAL 57th birthday. Last year, she thought she was celebrating her 57th birthday but after two glasses of wine of her calculations not quite adding up to the age she said she was turning, we did the math for her and corrected her birthday celebration seeing as she was actually ONLY 56 in 2013.

My mom, you have to love her and her crazy ways!



"Allison, isn't this a nice bow? Look how nice Matt wrapped the gift!"


Disclosure: I was provided a discounted dinner to dine at Provenance and free tickets to the Shoreway Lofts events. I was planning on attending both events without the discount.