year in review

Friday, December 31, 2010
Ah, another year gone and done, which means it's time for another year in review. While this isn't going to be as entertaining as Jib Jab's yearly countdown, here is a quick look at my 2010.

January is always a great month because my birthday is on the 18th. I decided to switch my sign from capricorn to aquarius, purchased our house and saw my first Lady Gaga concert in Detroit - what a blast!

February started out with a bang with a night out with Cleveland's a Plum and her friends courtesy of Dove, screwed up my vision with contacts and had to wear glasses for what felt like forever, cleaned out my closet and retired my beloved Juicy sweatpants, and the BF left the unforgettable note to me about vacuuming.Oh, and I also received a kick ass look behind-the-scenes at Next in Beachwood and a shopping spree.

March was a big month. We purchased and moved into our new house. My friends and I surprised our friends with a trip to DC to see them before their tropical wedding. I attended the first family wedding of the year where I embarrassed myself dancing to Lady Gaga's bad romance.Then, I rounded out the month with my own Dove party.

In April, we attended the reception of our friends we visited in DC and was a server at Market Under Glass and gave away tickets to a lucky reader. If you live near Hudson, my friends opened B. Lux Boutique that month and I ran my first 10-miler.

May was the kickoff of all things wedding. My friends and I attended Erin's wedding shower and ate enough cheese for a whole sorority at L'Albatros with Cleveland's a Plum and Cleveland Foodie. Even with all that eating, I managed to finish running my first half marathon!

June kicks off the summer and fairs. Oh, how I absolutely love funnel cakes and festivals and gallivanted around Cleveland and laid myself out at the pool on a weekly basis.We also drove up to New York to stay the weekend at a cabin with the BF's family and he enjoyed himself quite a bit, as you'll see in pictures.

In July, I hopped all over Cleveland for two bachelorette parties in one weekend where one was in Put-In-Bay for a high school friend and the other was downtown Cleveland for a college friend and another family wedding - aren't those the best? Lady Gaga came into town so you know I had to see her again and I gave away a snazzy new pair of Gap jeans.

August was another busy month filled with two weddings - one in Cleveland and then one in Vegas and a short weekend trip to Chicago.. The whole month of August I drove around the Chevy Malibu and to attend a Browns practice, which made the BF smile.

Ever since June, it seemed like all I wanted was September to come because we planned a week long vacation to Mexico. It was beautiful and went by too quickly. September also brings new TV to the fall line up where I shared my favorite shows and attended a Gossip Girl premiere party.

In October (which is my favorite month), we attend our last wedding of the year, went to Brewzilla with friends and the Best of Cleveland Magazine awards and I hooked two girls up with a kick ass flat iron from FHI Heat with a giveaway.

With the year almost over, November sort of calmed down for me. I held a giveaway for Do Over Clothes, shared embarrassing stories of the BF and his childhood friends and promoted the Jump Back Ball kick off ticket event, which I'll be attending in February. We rounded of November with a preview dinner of Washington Place Bistro & Inn where the BF was said to be a dead ringer for Nicholas Cage.

Ah, and December. Finally. (Jesus, this post took a long time to write.) We searched high and low for our first Christmas tree, baked cookies with  my family and got stuck in Cleveland's first winter storm of the season.

My friends and I have already planned a few activities including a trip to New York City, another trip to DC and a trip to Charlotte for a wedding. Plus, we'll need to plan another vacation too! Here we come Cabo!

who brought chocolate strawberry shots to Christmas eve?

Well, that was fast. Christmas came and went so quickly this year and seems to go quicker each year, doesn't it?

Since we've been dating 4.5 years, the BF and I started to spend Christmas Eve together last year and spent Christmas together this year at the BF's family's house. Our families live 1.5 hours from each other so we've typically spent them apart.

We kicked off the holiday celebration at Greg and Jules' house on Xmas eve. Here are a few pictures from the evening.

classic family photo in front of the tree

well, we need one too

getting ready for the chocolate strawberry shots, which were the ultimate demise of my younger brother

My aunt decided to introduce chocolate strawberry shots to Christmas eve this year. Normally, we have Great Lakes Christmas ale flowing as you may remember from last year and my brother's antics. Well, let's just say a few shots of this can leave you sent up to bed at 10:30 p.m. by your mom when you are 26 years old. (I'm looking at you little Greg!)

We made multiple family members try this shots, including my mom, who describes the shot as "potent" after we had to explain how to do a shot by biting the whole thing at once. New concept, I know.

Strawberries, Three Olives chocolate and whipped cream
If you have to many of these combined with homemade Coquito and Christmas ale, chances are you also went to bed early on Christmas eve too! Just ask my brother who asked that I remove a hilarious picture of him nicely sleeping in his bed with Captain Jack, the coolest cat on earth.

How was celebrating the holidays with your family and friends?

the worst wrapper

Wednesday, December 22, 2010
This past weekend, the BF and I did some major Christmas shopping. We kicked ass and took names in Beachwood with my brother in tow. He was home from law school so I invited him over to finish up shopping for my mom.

The mall was pretty hectic but not as bad as it could be seeing as it was the last weekend before the holiday. The three of us completed all our shopping and I even picked up something for myself at the YellowCake Shop's pop up shop in Beachwood.

I dragged two unwilling boys into the store because I read and watched all about Valerie from Project Runway on the most recent season, so I wanted to see what it was all about. I ended up snagging a t-shirt with one of her older illustrations on it.

See, cute shirt, right?

As I'm checking out, both my brother and the BF decide to point out that my mom's name is still on my check.

Sidenote: I have no idea why her name is on the check. She's been on my account since college. The bigger question is - who still writes checks anyway?

Both tweedledee and tweedledum start heckling me with comments like "Does mom know you are writing a check?" or "maybe you should check with mom to see if you can buy it?"

The girl behind the counter says, "You guys are all siblings, right?"

Seriously, the BF doesn't look my brother - see and judge for yourself.

Once we laughed hysterically and finally left, we headed home to wrap all the gifts, which is often difficult for me because I'm the worst wrapper in the whole world.

Many roommates can vouch for how terrible I am and the BF also doesn't understand how bad I am. Until he witnessed me wrap wine.

Great use of existing materials, right?

While I understand they sell cute wine holders, I completely forget to pick the up but had the brown bags and some decorations to make the wrapping that much more festive. Don't you agree?

The BF is ever so precise as he folds corners and adds ribbons to each gift. I can't even show you how absolutely terrible I am at corners. I just can't get it to lay completely flat!!

I should probably stand in line for gift wrapping for future gifts.

the music of 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010
While there are a lot of things I want to stay in 2010, let's talk about the music of 2010.

There was some good.

There was some bad.

There was some really bad.

Here are the songs that I hope stay in this year and the bands/singers/artists can stay here too.

Hey, Soul Sister-Train
I never liked this song when it came out. I had a feeling it would become like Drops of Jupiter when it stayed and stayed and stayed. The only way I like this song is when its sung by the cast of Glee. For some reason, it didn't bother me as much but if I hear it on the radio, watch the F out.

Just the Way You Are - Bruno Mars
Please, no more. We get it. She is beautiful just the way she is.

Tik Tok - Ke$ha
While I don't think this song was actually in 2010, I would like her, her eye glitter and trash bag outfits to stay in 2010. I bet if I used autotune, I could sound just like that. Dontcha think?

Need You Now - Lady Antebellum
I don't like country music although I sometimes like a Taylor Swift song now and then. However, this song has been beaten to death. My friend coworker Lauren refers to them as Lady Scarabellum. I can't change the station quick enough and it ALWAYS comes on Sirius.

What songs do you love or hate and wish they'd stay in 2010?

winter weekend

Sunday, December 12, 2010
Oh yeah, I'm back from not-so-snowy weekend like we had experienced earlier last week.

On Friday with about 6,000 other people, I laughed my ass off with my friend Erin and a bunch of new friends at the Q for the Chelsea Handler show. I had never seen her before and heard mixed reviews from friends the last time she was here. Some loved her and then some thought she was over-the-top raunchy or just drunk.

Having read two of her books and seeing as I watch Chelsea Lately on a regular basis, I was hoping to expect the same humor. She was on stage for about an hour and a half, telling some jokes from her book, mentioning Angelina Jolie and told the story about "the feeling" from Chelsea Chelsea Bang Bang. She makes fun of Ted a lot and that was probably the most entertaining part when she would imitate him and described the demise of their relationship.

Unfortunately, no pictures were taken from our sweet view it the suite because I was too preoccupied trying to get a package backstage to Chelsea on behalf of a client. Sadly, we came up empty handed but I still enjoyed her show and would definitely not turn down tickets to another show or to her show in LA.

On Saturday, I headed west to decorate cookies with my aunts. They baked everything earlier and I showed up to add my decorations to the cut outs. Seriously, I probably ate one too many but that's part of the fun, right!

i ate too many while i frosted

On Sunday, the BF and I met up with friends to watch the game and we attempted to do some Christmas shopping earlier. It was a mess. Legacy Village was a mess with parking and the stores were packed, so we knew it would be even worse at Beachwood Mall. We said screw it and headed to bar.

Here's too a long week that will end with a holiday work party!

the one where i lose my mind on my daily commute

If you don't live in the midwest of the east coast, you can't truly appreciate how snow can really eff up your morning or evening commute.

You may say, " you should be used it" or "it comes everywhere, you dummy," but nothing can quite prepare you for what would normally take 20 minutes maybe 30 minutes to get home in snow to 2 hours and 23 minutes. My journey started at 4:27 p.m.

According to Mapquest, my house is 10.4 miles from work. Now, if you are in LA you are probably thinking, "that sounds about right in rush hour."

Well, folks, this is Cleveland, not LA. My biggest decision is to get off or not get off at Cedar/Brainard and for those of you who live on the east side can appreciate what a cluster f*ck that exit normally is.

So? What did I do on my 2 hour and 23 minute commute home?

Let's take a look at my tweets during that fun-filled time:

I'm just beginning my journey and blown away by all the snow and how crappy the roads are this point.

 I'm now completely astonished that it's taken me this long to go one mile.

By this time, I'm past the part of having a dance party in my car, have gone through the whole new Rihanna album once and realizing I'm going to be here awhile.

 For anyone that was also stuck in their car or parking garage, I felt it was important to share that I wasn't in fact driving, just sitting in my car wishing I was driving.

At this point, I was way over my dance party phase and people started laying on their horns as if that was going to stop the snow or make people start moving. Fact: It didn't help one bit.

I saw this on Twitter which made me turn on my Lady Gaga playlist to make it another few inches closer to home.
After 6 p.m. slowly came and went, I soon reached a familiar landmark.

almost home!   

 When I finally turn on my street, I glanced at the lock and it read 6:51 p.m. Seriously. Is that even possible? I gangstered up the driveway because it was covered in snow with my little Mazda 3 (bad decision to share for another post) to hopefully get it in the garage. I lunged forward toward the garage to see the BF shoveling snow and barely hit him as I finally pulled into the safe zone.

To find this hilarious boy, sliding all over the place with his shovel.

It's good to be home. It's good to be home.

christmas tree hunting

Sunday, December 5, 2010
If you are in the midwest, chances are you got a little or a lot of snow this weekend. I convinced the BF that this would be the perfect weekend to go purchase our first live Christmas tree.

When we lived in the apartment, we had a little dwarf fake tree that didn't quite cut it so when this holiday season came around, I knew we needed to kick it off with a bang.

First things first - the BF is somewhat of an organized person. Like when we were looking at Xmas lights, he needed to strategically think about which lights work the best on the front bushes and calculated how long of an extension cord he needed. (I was huffing and puffing to get the hell outta Home Depot and just pick up some lights and cords, hoping it would all work out.)


Let's just say I wasn't sure how much patience he would have for me and my tree hunting. When I'm shopping for anything, I like to look at all my options whether that's buying toilet paper, purses, shoes or cereal. I like to have options.

I was looking for the right tree that I only I could picture that was 6-7 feet and the right fullness. He was picking out short and fat ones but I really saw something with more height and fullness. I also almost saw the snow up close and personal because I almost fell twice and one of which was caught on film. Of course.

Picking a Christmas tree from Allison Peltz on Vimeo.

And, here it is, all dressed up. When we were shopping for ornaments, I let the BF pick silver versus gold but lucky for him, I had more ornaments my mom gave me.

Ice blue, silver and gold
Do you have a fake or a real tree

mistaken identity (all at a dinner)

While at a delicious 5-course preview diner at the Washington Place Bistro & Inn, a new friend, who I called channel 19 (bet he never hears that), otherwise known as  Jason pointed out something about the BF.

(He doesn't know my family so he couldn't possibly know about the brother/dad comparisons.) Could he?

Oh no. He couldn't.

Jason says to the BF, "Could you saw a few sentences? I want to test something."
So, the BF starts to act as if he's giving the weather to the weatherman and Janet and Jason bust up laughing and say, "You look and sound like Nicholas Cage. Almost right from National Treasure."

Sean and Alexa agree and the BF has another feather in his cap for being told he reminds them of  Nicholas Cage.

But, back to the dinner. I apologize in advance to anyone following me on Twitter Monday night because I tweeted throughout the whole dinner, including pictures of each and everyone one of my dishes.

  • roasted beet and goat cheese salad (chef's garden beets and greens, almonds, mackenzie creamery ranch)
  • oxtail pierogies (oxtail ragout, ohio city pasta truffles potato pierogie, caramelized onion, horseradish creme fraiche)
  • dayboat scallops (butternut squash risotto, pearl onions, apple cider, beurre blanc, micro greens)
  • braised pot roast (c.a.b., chef's garden carrots, roasted garlic mashers, big red reduction)
  • pan seared wild pacific salmon (cauliflower gratin, fine herbes)
  • housemade chocolate brownie (chocolate jeni's ice cream, bittersweet chocolate drizzle)

Chef Jonathan Guest (right) and owner Scott Kuhn

My taste buds rated my favorite dish as the scallop then beet salad then the cauliflower gratin and chocolate brownie. I'm a sucker for dessert and anything with chocolate automatically gets my vote. Before we cleaned our plates, Scott took a few minutes to talk about dish from where the cheese is from to his love of beets to where the pea tendril came from on top of the scallop. It's all in the details!

But, let's not forget that Scott and his magical team didn't only redo the restaurant but renovated all inn rooms, too.

Scott Kuhn with the BF
Alexa bet me to take a few sensual pictures on the bed and I was totally going to take her up on it, but good thing Scott knew we had dirty minds and made sure to tell us that the bed was boxes. It wasn't an actual mattress to jump on. Anyway, we were adults, didn't jump on any beds and took a peek at the rest of the unfinished rooms with fireplaces! Sign me up for $159 on a Saturday night that includes brunch the next day.

Not bad for a Monday night after a holiday weekend, eh?!

there's still hope for me

I think I've openly shared how I can't dance.

I have no rhythm.

I can't even do a correct cartwheel.

I really can't.

I once thought it would be a great idea to join the cheerleading squad my senior year. Thankfully, I saved myself from major embarrassment and didn't end up trying out. I mean, I can't do a freaking cartwheel!

So, I have hope. Yes, I do.

Because of these commercials.

Let me introduce you to Dance Central for Kinect. It's saving women without rhythm all over the planet.

Based on the promo, I really feel like I can get out there and shake my tail feather to Cascada's Evacuate the Dancefloor. And not look like I'm convulsing uncontrollably with my arms and legs flopping all over the place.

Well, at least not as bad as I usually would convulse.

it's too early for Jingle Bell Rock

Wednesday, November 17, 2010
So, I'm in Cleveland.

And I assume other cities have already started doing this.

Why is there Christmas music playing? All. The. Time. Thanksgiving is next week and I swear that this Cleveland station as been playing it since November 1.

Now, I love a little Stevie Wonder Christmas mix (What Christmas means to me to be exact) with the rest of them, but don't you think it's a tad early to start playing Jingle Bell Rock?

I live in the part of the country where I think we should determine when the holiday music should start. Granted, we did have a quick snow last weekend, but I still think that was a little premature gift from the weather gods. They knew it was too early and it's been 50 here every other day.

Plus, I'm not hating on Christmas music. I love Christmas music, too. I really do. You better believe I'm jamming to "All I want for Christmas" and the whole first version of Mariah Carey's Christmas album. But, it's just a little too premature.

So, I will leave with you George and the other member of Wham! whose name I don't know, singing a song covered by everyone from Jimmy Eat World to Taylor Swift. Because they make down coats and ski lifts look, tough cheesy and cool all at the same time.

musical furniture

Sunday, November 14, 2010
I wish I had a more exciting weekend to share but I actually don't. It was calm with not too much going on, which is the way I like it as we all head into the busy holiday season. The most exciting thing I did  was watch Avatar. P.S. There are at least 7 people on Twitter that I know who have no interest in seeing it. I'm surprised I was able to sit still that long myself.

What we didn't do again this weekend was shopping for the house.

The next big thing our combined list (yes, he's involved) is purchasing bedroom furniture. While we put it on hold this weekend because the BF went to the Browns game, I stopped in a few stores but nothing caught my eye.

Have you ever shopped for this before? Holy expensive. I have expensive taste which really shouldn't surprise me at this point. Put me in a room with no price tags and I guarantee I will find the most expensive thing in the room by default. There must be some hidden radar that all women have when it comes to shopping because I can't be the only one with this issue, right?

Anyway, back to shopping. We decided on mattress we like. That was the easy part. The BF laid on a few and was happy with one. Well, I felt the need to pull a superman by getting a running start to jump on the beds, as if it would help me pick a comfortable mattress. The BF was discussing pricing and bug bed covers while I was holding a very scientific test on two of the mattresses via running and jumping.

Enter shopping for furniture. We went to two places and I was very underwhelmed. Extremely underwhelmed not to mention it still cost $2,000 for underwhelming furniture. Everything was very traditional, oak wood and too large for our bungalow slanted bedroom walls.

While we haven't made a final decision just yet, there is one thing I know for sure:

I want this headboard from West Elm or an upholstered head board like this. Now, if we can just find and agree on the rest of the furniture, we can check that room off our list!

Jump back - Passport to Party

Wednesday, November 10, 2010
A few weeks back, I received one of my most exciting emails of my life for this little blog. It's been awhile since I've been this excited about getting pitched. The last time I did a dance was when I was introduced to my fairy fashion god mother, Justine, who introduced me to my new favorite jeans from the Gap. (I do believe the straight leg have been replaced by the jean legging.)

So, what has made me so excited you asked?


It's Jump Back Ball Time!

If you aren't familiar with it, let me introduce you to the event - 

Here are a few pictures to flip through from last year's event.

So, if you want to go, I suggest you free up next Tuesday night to purchase your tickets. You will be able to buy tickets at the deepest discount for one night only at the Kickoff Party. Tickets are $120 per ticket ($100 if you are a PlayhouseSquare Partner) with NO handling fees.(There is a 2 ticket limit per person at the Kickoff.) The following day, ticket prices will increase to $140 plus handling. So if you attend the Kickoff, you can save $20+ per ticket. (That's some shopping money right there.)

Kickoff Party details:

Where: Zinc, 668 Euclid Ave, Cleveland

When: Tuesday, November 16, 6-8pm

This is the first time I'll be attending with the BF and a group of newcomers too. You better believe I will Rent the Runway for this party.

Disclaimer: I was given two fabulous tickets for this event in exchange for this post and another one that will be happening in the future.

the one where we are the old people bowling

Monday, November 8, 2010
There are very few places I feel too old to enter. Some people might think that shopping at Forever21 at 27 is too old, but I'm still a fan of some of their clothes (what I can fit into) and like the jewelry. How can you go wrong with $7 necklaces?

I don't think I'm too old to wear leg warmers or leggings or even the occasional headband without all the sparkles.

Anyway, friends invited us to go bowling last Friday. I thought it would be an uneventful bowling night where I would terrible as usual and the boys would create some kind of contest to see who could do the best. I was right about the bowling contest and my terrible bowling. I was embarrassingly terrible.

What none of us expected was to walk into cosmic bowling. Filled with 50 teenagers. Only teenagers in the bowling alley. Plus my friends.

I do believe we were the creepy old people. What makes it even better was that I knew a 13-year-old there and she agreed we were the old people.

Cosmic bowling has come a lonnnnnnnggggg way from where I remember. Not only is there a DJ taking requests but there are text screens.

Notice the teens and text screens
You can text whatever you want on there. Well, at least within reason because it edits out certain words like "creepy." I know this because I tried to send texts like "who is the guy in the creepy browns shirt?" when referring to the BF in between seeing "beachwood rocks" or "orange girls are the best."

One girl was there with a group of girls celebrating her 16th birthday and I swear they didn't look a day over 13. They looked so young, I don't remember looking that young, but then again maybe we were.

Ahh, high school days.

childhood stories

It's funny how much more and more you can learn about a significant other when you spend time with their family. While my BF can look at my interesting outfit choices of my younger years with bright colors, huge earrings and bracelets going to my elbows, he would really need to listen to my parents and brother to understand how I was as a I grew up.

After spending time with the Bf's family a few weekends ago, I learned something quite interesting. Telling even. Good thing I'm not a psych major.

As his mom and I were walking out of the baptism, this older lady, who was singing loudly and off key throughout the mass, stopped us by tightly gripping on my arm.

"Who are you, my dear?" she asked as she adjusted a piece of hair falling from her bouffant updo.
"I'm Allison, the Bf's girlfriend."
"Oh my, I haven't seen him in years," she says to his mother.
I politely excuse myself and work my way out of the church while his mother continues to talk to her. She then comes up to share what will become one of the most hilarious stories I've heard about him. More funny than the time his older brother stabbed him in the hand playing "mean father" when all the boys had to come up with a lie as to why the BF was bleeding profusely in the basement. ( I don't remember what "mean father" is but I'm pretty sure it had something to do with beating the crap out of each other.)

"You will never believe what (insert old lady name's) just asked me about you," his mom said pointing to the BF. "She asked how Thurpy and Johnny were."

Now, his family started to laugh as I stood there thinking, who the eff would name their kid Thurpy?

As we headed to dinner I learned more about these "kids." Apparently  Thurpy and Johnny were his imaginary friends and the whole family knew about them. He would share their journeys with this grandfather who would tell the nice old lady who was singing off key on their weekly breakfast meetings.

"So, you had imaginary friends when you had two brothers to play with?" I asked, still confused.

"Yeah, I did, and Thurpy used to run away so I had to tie rope to my bed post."

Looking at his mother, "Is this seriously true?"

"Oh of course, he would run away so there was rope hanging from the bunk beds."

The BF isn't quite sure of when they went away but he can recall specific things about them like how one of them died in a train wreck years before the BF was even born. It's hilarious. I'm laughing as I think about our conversation.

All I can say is keep sharing all the details over the holidays - it makes for great blog posts, don't you think?

do over clothes: giveaway included

As I've mentioned before, I like to think I don't have a shopping problem, but I know I do. I belong to several online boutiques like Rue La La, Gilt Groupe and Haute Look.

If you are in the Cleveland area, I'm a regular at B. Lux Boutique in Hudson and pop in at least once a month to see what is available at Next. I'm big fan of owning clothing that no one else has - what girl doesn't! I like to buy from local boutiques and designers too. I have a handful of CLE Clothing t-shirts and even have a vest I picked up from Wrath Arcane at MADE in 216.

If you like unique clothes that won't break the bank, then let me introduce you to Rique, the creator of Do Over Clothes, where she has her whole line of cashmere and silk shirts for you to preview. (If you wanted to see them in person, she would probably arrange a quick meeting as well.) She has been altering clothes since she was a kid when her mother taught her how to sew. People will always tell her how cute and stylish her clothes were and they were shocked to know that she recreated them herself.

(I may not be able to sew but I can bedazzle the hell out of a pair of jeans.)

"My clothes have to be altered to fit me," said Rique."But I’m also fussy about necklines which I typically cut away and change. Button-downs never ever fit so I sew them shut. Same for cardigans. Tee shirt shoulders never land on my shoulders so I alter them. Waistlines hit me on my hips. I’m not sure how or why I began switching the cotton sleeves of tees for cashmere sleeves. When I love the pattern of something, say a floral pattern for example, the pattern is usually so over-scaled on me I look like I’m wearing a bedspread. I cut patterned clothing up and use small parts in combination with solid pieces of fabric."

A peak inside her workspace and other shirts:

Untitled from Allison Peltz on Vimeo.

She has an array of shirts, sweaters and tunics in her workspace and also working in her head, depending on the fabrics she can find to make the one-of-a-kind designs. So, are you wondering who is the do-over clothes customer?

Rique describes her as "someone who doesn’t want to see herself coming and going in the same clothes as everyone else and can tolerate some imperfection, easy, not sloppy, not formal, wants her clothes to be a second layer of skin, not armor or a uniform. Soft layers, sumptuous, not chunky, uncomplicated, but not completely destroyed."

So, here is where you come in? I have a special offer for three lucky readers. Share a comment of your favorite color or favorite design from Do Over Clothes and you may be one of three to receive 50 percent off one shirt good through 12/31/10.

Giveaway winner will be announced on Monday, November 8.

FTC Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this giveaway.

almond joy....not

Monday, November 1, 2010
For the first time in as long as I can remember, I didn't celebrate Halloween in a slutty costume with the BF. Our friends who normally host the party didn't this year so we decided to have a relatively low-key weekend with date nights with friends and then handed out candy to all the kids. ( I think I've shared before that we 25 kids on my block.)

After inspecting the candy selection, the BF pointed out that "the kids are going to laugh when they see Almond Joys."

BF: "Allison, you bought Almond Joys."
Me: "I freaking love Almond Joys and we needed more candy because you ate it all week!"
BF: "Noooooooooooo. The kids are going to know we give shitty candy. We can't be known as the shitty candy house.
Me: thinking, "really who gets this worked up over candy. "No way. Candy is candy. They won't know the difference."

candy removed from the candy bowl

As the BF started to hand out candy, I didn't believe this "Almond Joy" theory. I rushed to the door to hand out candy to an 8-year-old army sargent and asked, " I have bet going with my boyfriend. Do you like Almond Joys?" The little army sargent said, "Um....not today. I really don't like Almond Joys." Hmmmmm I thought. "Well, here is a Kit Kat. Happy Halloween!"

Because I wasn't fully satisfied with the little Army brat's answer, I decided to ask a few more kids. A zombie and football player approached and I asked them the same question again and they looked at me with these eyes like, "this lady is crazy and I'm never going to this house again."

Needless to say, Almond Joys are not a popular Halloween candy. So says the neighborhood kids and the BF, who is really just a big kid after all.

hocus pocus

With Halloween this weekend, I've seen a lot of costume ideas and it appears that everyone is going as Lady Gaga or as Snooki from the Jersey Shore. I joked awhile back that my friends and I should go as the cast. I don't know what we are doing as far as parties so I though I'd share a few past Halloween's for some inspiration for a new costume.

With the cowardly lion, my brother, and me as the Wicked Witch of the West. Still scarred from this one mom. Thanks!

the closest I came to a cheerleader

A ballerina with a glitter explosion over my face

rocking a kick ass poodle skirt

As I got older, the costumes seemed to just get more and more slutty. Let's face it - when you are in need of a costume, just wear as little clothing as possible.

Slutty school girl meets Madonna I guess

this is just all sorts of wrong and reads "LAST MINUTE COSTUMES."
still love this costume
Just your average Lady Gaga costume

Well. There you have it. A rundown of my costumes over the years. The good ones, the bad ones and the very bad ones. The BF and I have never tried a group costume but maybe that's something we come up with before the weekend.

What was your worst or favorite Halloween costume?

beer weekend

I do believe my weekends keep flying by even more and more quickly as each one passes. And, it's almost Halloween! How the hell did that happen!

On Friday, a group of my friends and I celebrated our last bar party in our friends' basement. They are moving a short distance away to a new house, so we had one last throwdown in the bar.

Cleveland Beer Week officially came to a close and the BF and I headed to Brewzilla to close out the week with a bunch of other beer lovers. Last year, the BF and I went to a few events but this year we only attended Brewzilla.

Crowd below

with my friend Katie drinking Bumbleberry from FatHead's

view from below
Something to know about me is that I always carry a few digital products on me at all times. I have my iPhone, a digital camera and Flip camera or sometimes two. However, the only thing I seem to use at all times is my phone. Are you surprised? So. I've been on the quest to start taking more pictures, especially with the BF because we really don't take that many pictures together. I always rely on other friends to send me pictures. So, after being at the event for a few hours, I decided it was time to get a couple shot.

Well, below is what was captured.
Take 1 with the BF

Take 2
One of these days, we will get a frame-worthy photo!

because I love a good t-shirt

By now, I'm so incredibly over all the political ads that have been dominating my TV for the last month and holy crap are they ramping up!

Obviously, I'm not voting based on all those amazingly true TV commercials. I still can't believe they waste that much money on all those ads!

However, this is a cause I can get behind.

And get behind it I will when I order my t-shirt and maybe bust out my bedazzler for some extra sparkle! (Yes, I own a bedazzler that I used all the time in high school and had available in college in case we needed any quick studding on a Thursday night.)

Fall in Cleveland

Monday, October 18, 2010
While I don't have a lot of photos from this weekend, I swear I left the house for a few things.

On Friday, I attended the Best of Cleveland magazine awards with a group of girls who included Alexa, Always a bridesmaid, Cleshopaholic and I even finally met Heischic in person! Although, I think I had to coerce her off the escalator going down to come over to where we were sitting. As it turns out, we only live a few miles from each other and even work out the same gym.

The event was super cool because we were able to go all over the Rock Hall from the bottom all the way to the top, sampling different food from some new places I've never heard of on the west side. (I need to venture from the east side a little more.)

I tried a red velvet cupcake from Main Street Cupcakes and two macarons from Coquette Patisserie. Plus, a few glasses of wine and some food from a few other "best of" cleveland.

Here are the only two pictures I have to prove we were, in fact, present at the event:
Lisa and Alexa

proving we were in fact there

Saturday was a relatively relaxed day that started off with my second week of training with @jenarenschield, followed by a lunch with my aunts at Market in Rocky River and a lazy night in with the BF.

On Sunday, we visited a staple here in the midwest known as a farm, but more specifically, an apple farm where they make some of the best apple fritters.

Even though they didn't have the fairytale pumpkins I saw at Trader Joe's, we ended up buying two small ones with a lot more stuff then I anticipated. The BF is like a little kid in the candy store buying blueberry glazed donuts, cider, apples and some crazy chocolate-covered peanut butter candy.

Oh, and two caramel-covered apples, that I will gladly help him eat!

And, 30 years ago today, my parents were married and my dad accused me of forgetting! That's right people - these two are in it for the long haul. Thirty years of marriage, two awesome kids later plus three dogs (and one adorable cat) they are still together and having fun. For the past 10 days, I've been receiving text and pictures from my dad as they vacationed all over Florida from Jacksonville, the Keys and Fort Myer's Beach together. .

Greg and Julie circa 1976 or so
Snapped by my cousin on their Florida vacation

Happy anniversary to two of the best people I know! (Mom- no yelling about the 1976 photo either. I think it's cute and you will just have to deal with it.)

Friday fodder

Friday, October 15, 2010
Helloooooooo to the weekend!

It's been a long week filled with a lot of work, not a lot of working out or TV watching. Although I was able to squeeze in Gossip Girl with some great Chuck Bass oneliners and let's not forget about Modern Family and Cam's shiny blue bike shorts.

Anyway, this weekend I'll be celebrating with Always a Bridesmaid and Alexa at Best of Cleveland party by Cleveland Magazine for Alexa's win of best blog for the second year in a row. So, if you are going tonight, look for a group of girls who are talking loud (because that's the only way we know how to), laughing and possibly dancing  and join in the on the fun.

because no one likes a bad hair day - FHI Heat giveaway

Tuesday, October 12, 2010
I would describe myself as a little bit of a hair snob.

I've always gone to great hair stylists and colored my hair since I was 16. You better believe I did several of the "trends" and then look back now at photos and think, "Really, did I need to add chunky blond streaks?"

But anyway, as I got older and wiser, my friend, Danielle, has been handling my hair since I was 19 and she graduated from the Brown/Aveda Institute. I was her model a few times for photo shoots and she turned my hair different shades of blond and red. (Not my best days and thank god I can't find any photos to show.)

With Danielle - my hair whisperer

But, she introduced me to the wide world of Aveda and I've been hooked ever since with their hair care products. I NEVER color my hair unless it's professional and always use good styling products.

About two months ago, I was lucky enough to connect with FHI Heat and have been using both the EPS flat iron and Nano Weight Pro 1900 hair dryer.

Holy amazeballs - I'm hooked. While I've used a CHI for the past 8 years (seriously, what did we do before flat irons) mine started to go bad. I had dropped it one too many times and the paddles were coming loose. And, if you use a good one, you know you can't replace it with some cheap model from Target. It's not the same - at all! Even though I have naturally thick, straight hair, I have an interesting wave that happens to one side of my head that doesn't happen to the other, so kick ass hair products are a must.

Not knowing too much about FHI, I took to Twitter to ask the question, "who uses FHI and do you like it?" People quickly responded that they loved their FHI flat iron because of the different heat settings you can set it on.

While I haven't left the house without it (even took it to Mexico in the sleek case), there are few things I've noticed right away about the EPS flat iron:
  • Multiple heat settings - I don't go above about 350 but it goes all the way up to 450.
  • No hair pulling - When I first fired it up, I instantly noticed it didn't pull at my hair. If you use a flat iron daily, you know what I'm talking about it. It almost can feel like you are pulling out your hair, but NOT at all with this one.
  • Looks and feels better. It's looks shinier and people have noticed. I've always used a gel or a styling creme prior my flat ironing and after. Before I blow dry my hair, I've been applying Hot Sauce to my ends

The same hairdresser friend had been recommending I get a better hair dryer for years. "Stop using that cheap one you have and invest in a professional one. You will notice the difference and it will give you more shine."

She was right. I've been using it and tried to explain the importance of a good blower to the BF. He has used it before and maybe I might've screamed like a little girl when he didn't replace it, but still, you understand how attached I am.
  • Dries my whole head. I have pretty thick hair and I always felt like parts were never dry but my scalp was ON FIRE from blow drying. The Nano Weight Pro 1900 has three heat settings, so you can adjust between warm and hot. And, there's a  
  • Weighs under a pound. Yep, no lie. Exactly.8 pounds if you are interested.
  • Quiet. My BF hates the sound of hair dryers. He likes to imitate my old one but I haven't heard him complain about this one yet. My friend is looking to replace hers at the salon and is looking into getting an FHI one, but probably the next step up.
So, here's where you come in- Do you need a new flat iron? Is yours dieing as you read this? You have a chance to win one of two FHI flat irons - Platform Styling Iron valued at $195 each.(I know, I know - you can thank me later if you win!)

How To Enter: Share your favorite hair care products -either styling tools or products you won't leave home without. Make sure to leave your email address or Twitter handle so I can easily contact you in your comment.Otherwise, how will I find you?

Tweet: I entered to win @allisonpeltz 's @FHI_Heat 's flat iron giveaway bc I need a new one! #fhiheat

Winner will be chosen on Friday, October 22.

Comments have been closed and winner has been chosen.

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post but was given products to test in exchange for this giveaway. All thoughts are my own and I'm still using the products daily.

four eyes

Monday, October 11, 2010
Jesus, these glasses are finally done. Kaput. The end.

This has been four years in the making and he has finally decided to replace his spectacles with two new pairs. I can't tell you how long I've made comments about these lovely glasses. The BF even nicknamed them the "pewters."

I mean, look at these things?

I think he's had these since 1995, don't you?

They sit crooked on your face and the once clear nose pads aren't so clear anymore.

Now. If we could only get rid of that chair with the leopard pillows.....

....and alarm clock with the lamest sticker NOT added by me.

RIP the pewters. You won't be missed.