Birthday Celebrations

It’s a known fact I love birthday celebrations. And this year’s celebrations did not disappoint.

It included spending some time at BOMBA Tacos & Rum (one of our clients). It was so great to see the restaurant come to life and to be able to enjoy some mojitos and delicious tacos from the team. I actually went twice – once with the work ladies of lunch and for dinner with Justin (well dinner, more mojitos and a rum flight).





IMG_2465To continue the celebration, a night out at Hodge’s seemed appropriate. Of course, the team at Hodge’s were fab as always and provided lovely apps to go along with our delicious drinks (I do love me a bourbon cocktail).


All in all, not a bad birthday celebration this year.

Disclosure: BOMBA is a client of the agency I work for, hence the lunch and dinner during friends and family week. All opinions are my own.

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Feelin’ Country

I do love me some country music and the Academy of Country Music Awards Sunday night had me tuned in and checking tour dates along the way. Country music concerts that I’ll need to go to this summer: Kenny Chesney, Luke Bryan, Garth Brooks (fingers crossed) and Rascal Flatts.

A new fave that I can’t stop playing? Sam Hunt. (I mean, look at him…)

What are you currently tuned into?

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ReOpening Day

The sun was shining on Cleveland Friday afternoon.

What started as a sorta dull, gloomy day turned around quickly, just in time for the Cleveland Indians to take the field at the (sorta) new Progressive Field. Home opener is very much like a holiday in Cleveland, including taking time off of work, pre-gaming, running into friends at the variety of bars and post-game celebrations (even if we did lose).


Kim and I scooted out of work, grabbed an Uber and headed downtown a few hours before the game to meet up with friends, or in one case – run into friends at a random bar.

Random run in with Nicole and Jen.

Random run in with Nicole and Jen.


Grabbing beers with my favorite radio personality, Tim.

Grabbing beers with my favorite radio personality, Tim.

Once the game started, and after we had a chance to check out the Corner bar at Progressive Field, we grabbed our seats and soaked in the sun and Home Opener festivities.

The view from the upper deck of The Corner

The view from the upper deck of The Corner




There’s really nothing better than sitting in the sun, beer in hand, enjoying Indians baseball in the Spring/Summer. It’s the perfect way to kick off Spring.

In honor of our friend Jerry Kipnis, #SelfieTime

In honor of our friend Jerry Kipnis, #SelfieTime

Welcome Home.

Welcome Home.

Here we go Indians, Here we go.

Disclosure: The agency I work for is the official brand agency for the Cleveland Indians. I got to hang out with these cool peeps that I work with at the game as part of that relationship. But I’m a tried and true Indians fan either way. 

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Cleveland’s Finest

It’s that time of year again. Warm weather. Baseball. And a great fundraiser on behalf of Our Lady of the Wayside – Cleveland’s Finest!

ClevelandsFinest Brown with Climaco

Just a few days after home opener (and my birthday) on April 16th, the event is at Progressive Field’s Terrace Club and features some of the best Cleveland restaurants, as well as music and socializing. And as a girl that loves the baseball park that we have in town (and has seen a sneak peek of the renovated stadium), the location for the event really can’t be better. It gives you the chance to walk, chat, visit with the awesome celebrity emcees – New 102’s Jen Toohey and Tim Richards and Desiray – all while supporting an awesome cause.

So here are the details you need to know:
First things first – you can still get tickets! You have until the 14th to purchase a ticket which will get you all food, beer/wine and entertainment. Purchase here.

Second, you will have the chance to sample food from:
Carrie Cerino’s
Spice Kitchen & Bar
The Spread, Horseshoe Casino
The Tree House
Progressive Field
The Woods
Tartine Bistro
The Zack Bruell Restaurant Group


And last – and most important – it’s all for a good cause! Established nearly 50 years ago, Our Lady of the Wayside supports children and adults with developmental disabilities through a Family of Services which include:

  • Supporting 600 children and adults with developmental disabilities
  • Managing nearly 70 homes in more than 30 communities throughout Cuyahoga, Lake, Lorain  and Medina counties
  • Operating a transportation fleet of 100 vehicles
  • Becoming a major regional employer with 600 staff
  • Pioneering The Pathways Program, an innovative Day Program for adults with developmental disabilities

And if you can’t make it but want to see all of the excitement – make sure to follow along next week on social media – I’ll be live tweeting away!

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How I Spring

The minute the weather starts to break, it’s like my calendar cannot get filled fast enough. I love Cleveland in the Spring. Once the weather breaks (which for us, means above 40 degrees), it’s like Clevelanders are automatically happy. We all walk with a bounce in our step. The sunroofs are open. Music is blaring. Jackets are left behind. And all is right in the world again.

And that’s how I’ve felt the last two weeks. As my Roommate pointed out to me recently, it’s been a rough month or so. But it’s time to shake it off.

Happy hours need to be had.

Screen Shot 2015-03-22 at 7.34.29 PM

More Cavs games are on the schedule (um playoff basketball in the CLE? What?!)


Monsters hockey and roommate nights out.


New makeup and lunch with friends.


Who else is ready for warm weather, patios, Cleveland sports and open sunroofs?

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Spring at Trentina

When you get an email on a Monday asking if you’d like to have dinner at Trentina to preview their Spring menu, you never say no. No matter how busy the day seems. (Even if it means missing the Cavs v. Heat game – which apparently was not that exciting anyway.)


I’ve been to Trentina a couple of times now and it has never disappointed. One of my favorite experiences at Trentina is when Chef Sawyer stops over to explain a dish or two. You can see the passion in his face that he has for the restaurant and the Northern Italy experience that he is bringing to Cleveland. (He even brought us a cheese that sounded similar to Charlene…cause, why not right?)

A pic with Chef Sawyer from my first time at Trentina

A pic with Chef Sawyer from my first time at Trentina

The menu bianco is a 12-course (yes, 12 courses!) tasting meal where each person has the opportunity to have a different dish. So essentially, you have the chance to try 24 different dishes from Chef Sawyer. Add in some great wine and/or beer, and you are set to have a delightful night.


Menu on gorgeous gold paper (I’m such a nerd.)


While I enjoyed each bite of the dinner, my absolute favorite was the scallop with koji and cherry bone marrow sauce – both Justin and I decided that it was the best bite of food either of us have had. (I think I’m still dreaming about how delicious that was.)

Ah-mazing. There are literally no words for this dish.

Ah-mazing. There are literally no words for this dish.

Trentina brings the tastes of Northern Italy to University Circle. James Beard nominee, Chef Sawyer and his team, offer a unique dining experience unlike any other in Cleveland. I personally love how small and intimate the dining experience is and the fact that Chef Sawyer is able to walk around and talk to each table, sharing more about the menu and dishes, as well as his inspiration for each. Two dinner menus are offered, including the menu bianco and an a la carte dinner menu. Trentina also offers lunch daily and brunch on the weekends (which I need to try ASAP).

If you haven’t yet been, find a date and time to spend a couple of hours in University Circle at Trentina. I can promise you, you will not be disappointed.

Disclaimer: In exchange for this blog post, I, and a guest, was invited to the media preview of the spring menu bianco by Trentina. All opinions are my own.

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It’s Go Time CLE

That’s the message from Destination Cleveland for our city – It’s Go Time.

What a year our city has had…well actually the last few years. But at the Destination Cleveland Annual Meeting, we were able to hear about all of the excitement that has been surrounding the city. Think about it: named a place to visit in 2015 by Travel + Leisure, New York Times and more, LBJ returns, we won the RNC National Convention bid and have hosted the Gay Games and the Senior Games.

My favorite Clevelander, Chef Symon, was a featured speaker and to hear him talk about the city – he just oozes love for Cleveland. And this is someone that is in NYC and travels often. One, of many things he said, was a reminder that we need to brag about this city. We need to remember the urban core of our city and stay out Downtown (something I happily do).


Michael Symon…he’s my fave.

Sure, we have work to do (especially before the RNC National Convention), but the great thing about this city? We know how to roll up our sleeves and get to work. While we all may not be involved in helping to renovate areas of the city or prepare meeting spaces, one thing we can all do is to go out Downtown, celebrate the progress of the city and be an ambassador – every day.

Let’s go CLE.


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Black Tie Affairs

One of the most hectic weeks for me is the last week in February. As luck would have it, every year, both the ADDYs and Jump Back Ball are in the same week. It makes for a fun, crazy, somewhat stressful week and this year was the same.

First up – the ADDYs. Otherwise known as the advertising community’s version of the Emmy Awards. This year we set a couple of different records – one for most entries ever (462 what?!?) and we also sold out the ADDYs. Almost two weeks before the show. We managed to squeeze everyone in (literally) thanks to the Lago Event Crew and come Thursday, I was ready for a great time with coworkers and friends. My good friends Jen and Tim hosted this year and they did a great job – I think they only made fun of me once (they just learned that morning how to say my last name….I’ve known them for years…)

Pre-Show Prep.

Pre-Show Prep.

We won a few ADDYs (20!), I got to hang with Jen and my co-chair Anthony at the After Party and that's a sell-out crowd!

We won a few ADDYs (20!), I got to hang with Jen and my co-chair Anthony at the After Party and that’s a sell-out crowd!

We also added an after-party this year at Lago that was jam-packed, but also fun. I was able to finally relax (being cochair is stressful – thank you Gabe for hooking a girl up with a double jack and ginger).

Hanging with Gabe, Carmen and AJ at the after-party...then the Friday aftermath...Kim and I buying McDonald's for coworkers...

Hanging with Gabe, Carmen and AJ at the after-party…then the Friday aftermath…Kim and I buying McDonald’s for coworkers…

Friday morning though….well….little rough….

Saturday though it was time to prep and get ready for the annual Playhouse Square Jump Back Ball. Jess attended with me again this year and I, again, rented a dress from Rent the Runway (which I also did for the ADDYs). I’ve had such a great experience with Rent the Runway the past two years and was lucky that when I didn’t love my first choice, they sent a hot pink one which I pretty much was obsessed with.

Jump Back to the Future!

Jump Back to the Future!

Again, guests nibbled on food from Driftwood Restaurants and Catering and I have to say that I loved the late evening snacks brought out right as the second band hit the stage in the lobby (has that always happened? Have I missed it other years!?) It was perfect timing for us. While this year I didn’t partake in any of the casino games, Jess and I both had our tarot cards read (fingers crossed they were right!) and danced to both of the bands that the committee selected this year.

One of my favorite parts about JBB is running into so many friends that I often don’t get to see as often. My second favorite part? Carrie and I singing on stage with the band. Yes, that happened again as Stephanie was looking lovely off-stage saying “you two just can’t stay away.” (I mean, it’s tradition now).


Somehow this year though I didn’t take nearly as many pictures. I think that just means that Jess and I were again having a great time and were enjoying our friends, the music and being at Playhouse Square!

Disclaimer: I’m the co-chair of the ADDYs and one the board for AAF-CLE. I’m in no way required to write about the event. I also am a blogger for Playhouse Square and was invited to participate again this year in blogging about JBB. In return for my blog posts/promoting, I received a buy one, get one ticket. But as always – I love Playhouse Square!

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Hello Spring

And see ya later winter.

It’s been a low key winter for the most part, which included a lot of hibernating. And to be honest – it was beyond needed. Call it the season I was in, or whatever you’d like, but I was feeling a little more introverted than usual and needed some quiet especially after a crazy holiday season.

But February wasn’t going to end quietly, especially the last week. A brief breakdown of the week: 5 year Cancer-versary. Focus Group for work. ADDY Awards. Jump Back Ball.

To celebrate being cancer-free officially, we had some bubbles at work and then it was off to dinner and drinks with friends at one of my favorite locations – Hodge’s. While I was bummed Chris couldn’t be there, the team at Hodge’s brought back Raspberry Thyme which is one of my most fave drinks.

Work Bubbles

Work Bubbles


Erin, Alex and Kimberly 



Coworkers and clients. But more like friends.

Coworkers and clients. But more like friends.

Where's the whistle?!

Where’s the whistle?!



This girl. Wouldn’t be where I am without her.

Laughs were had. Tears almost happened, thanks to a speech by Jess and all in all it was a night to breath and realize that’s behind me.

More on the ADDY Awards and Jump Back Ball later. I mean, my feet are still recovering and I’m watching Chef Symon on All Star Academy.

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Screw You Cancer

Five years ago, at the crack of dawn when I was highly drugged up and talking nonsense about the operating room not looking like Grey’s Anatomy’s set, my surgeon and thyroid doctor cut my cancer out of my throat. A surgery that went more than a couple hours longer than it was supposed to (thank you tumor for wrapping yourself around my vocal cords) and that included having to stay at my parents until I could lift my head and eat somewhat solid foods.

New normal has included thyroid supplement pills, more doctors appointments than I think I had in my first 27 some years of life before the C-word, Google searching every symptom I have possibly had, learning how to understand my blood tests, not passing out at blood work anymore, not freaking out over the scar on my neck and accepting new normal.

But today…I celebrate. With friends and dinner at one of my favorite places. I’m sure bubbles will be had. And while there’s always still a chance the C-word returns, this feels like a milestone worth celebrating.


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