Wednesday, June 30, 2010

If only I had an iPad

I'm not ashamed to admit it: I have iPad envy. And I would love to get one, except there's NO WAY I can justify one since I have a iPhone, netbook, and a nook, so getting an iPad is really not a priority right now, since clearly, I don't need it! That said, if I did have an iPad, I would totally get this:

The Gameboy iPad Sleeve $34 on etsy

*sigh* iPad envy.....

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Designer clothing

OMG you guys! Something happened to me yesterday, which is probably the most exciting retail experience I've ever had! My membership request to Rent The Runway was finally accepted!!!!!!!! If you're unfamiliar with RTR, essentially it allows you to rent designer clothing (and accessories) for 4-8 days for a small fee which is a fraction of the retail value of the outfit!!! Once you're accepted (oooooh, it sounds so exclusive!!), you go online, rent your fabulous outfit (you can pick an additional size for free), wear it, love it, bask in compliments, take lots of pictures of you in said fabulous outfit, and then return in a pre-paid envelope!!!

Rental prices range from $50-$200+, and you can rent Just Cavalli for $50 (retail value $800!!!!), or the Herve' Le'ger (sorry can't get the accents right) bandage dress for $150 (retail value $1,250!!!! for the one that Victoria Beckham is wearing below).

Seriously, HOW AWESOME IS RTR?!?!!? If you're looking for a membership referral, let me know via email or comments below (full disclosure: if you sign up using my referral, I get a $20 kickback when you place your first rental order). If celebrities can borrow fabulous outfits for the red carpet, there's no reason why you can't rent an outfit for the "red carpet" events in your life!!!

Watch Out!

I love watches. Some day I will buy myself a "jewelry expensive" watch, but in the mean time, I'm perfectly happy picking up super fun watches at wallet-friendly prices. My current obsession is this Michael Kors piece, available at Nordstrom (ON SALE!):

Michael Kors Chain Bracelet Chronograph Watch $135 (on sale!), regularly $225.

I'm also in the market for a large black watch. I'm probably not going to pull the trigger on this one for a couple of months, but here's a few that I have my eye on:

TOYWATCH "Mini Plasteramic" Bracelet Watch $195, Nordstrom

MARC by Marc Jacobs Jumbled Logo Watch $150, Nordstrom

Zodiac Speedragon Rubber Strap Watch $150, Nordstrom

Monday, June 28, 2010

Show your State some love

If you've been checking out gilt then you already know about Maya Brenner. Maya does some super cute pieces that are features on TV shows and in fashion magazines, but what caught my eye was the "states" collection that's on sale this week at gilt. Here's the catch: the gilt sale runs until 9:00 am EST tomorrow (Tuesday June 29th), so if you want to buy your State necklace for the ridiculously discounted price of $58 (regularly $120), you need to act in the next 12 hours! (all 50 states are being offered on gilt and at Maya Brenner's site).

Isn't it cute?! The one on Gilt is the Sterling Silver without the diamond, which I think I like better. And, it would make a great gift for any Ohio blogger who may be celebrating her birthday in July (wink wink:  plum, butnoteveryday, and I all celebrate birthdays in July!)

O H! I O!

Yet another reason why I love Banyan Tree

I think I've done a fairly good job documenting my love for Banyan Tree, and now there's one more: Figwood! This summer, Banyan Tree launched its house line of clothing, named Figwood. I missed the launch party earlier this month, but finally had a chance to take a look at the goodies this weekend. In a word, FABULOUS!!!!!!  The clothing is super fun and trendy, and is very very well priced!! There's a great selection of cotton knits, which is PERFECT for this ridiculously hot and humid summer we're having in Cleveland! There is a planned launch for the fall line in August, details to follow.

picture courtesy Banyan Tree

I picked up a super cute dress for $68 (seriously, how amazing are these prices) that I wore to hip-hop Saturday at Touch .

If you're a fan of old-school hip-hop, and you haven't been to one of Touch's Old School hip-hop events, you're seriously missing out! It's the last Saturday of every month, and is a guaranteed good time! If you don't believe me, you should just show up next month and test it out! ; )

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Involuntary Absences

You may have noticed, I wasn't around last week. Unfortunately it was not by choice. Last Friday, we finally adopted Clair, our little baby boxer. The weekend was great; Otto and Clair love each other, and she's a really good puppy. BUT, I overestimated Otto's reaction to Clair; based on the fact that he LOVES other dogs, and he's a really laid back dog, I assumed (incorrectly) that he would totally take Clair's arrival in stride. And he did, for the weekend, until he figured out she wasn't leaving.

I haven't figured out if he was acting out or if it was just that he had been drinking a lot more water, but OTTO had a BUNCH of accidents in the house. Then the day of the earthquake (Wednesday. Did you feel it? I did. It was wierd!!!) I came home to a massive Clair-accident in her crate!!! So, in a nut shell, I spent every evening last week cleaning up after the dogs. FIRST WEEK FAIL! And it was such a massive fail, that I had to break down an invest in this:

Bissell Little Green ProHeat Turbo Carpet Cleaner, 1425B

Bissell Little Green Carpet Cleaner ($99 at Target, Amazon)

If you have a pet that has accidents (or poor digestion), this is an absolute necessity. You can use this in conjuction with the pet stain and odor remover, and it will work miracles on your carpet!!!!!

The good news is that Otto and Clair have now sorted it out, and we're back to a more normal schedule!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Cure For Bad Hair Days

Last fall, I had bangs cut in my hair. Ever since then, I've had a love-hate relationship with them. Some days (its the humid ones) I really hate them; they won't lay right, they get poufy.... on the days that Mother Nature will not work with me, I turn to hair accessories.

A few days ago, I picked up some SUPERCUTE ones on Etsy.

$3 each (plus shipping). Both are available here

Obviously, these are not work-appropriate, but they will be perfect for football Sundays (GO BROWNS!)and St. Patty's Day!! Also, little side note, the actual hair pin is pretty small, so if you have really thick bangs, they may not work very well for you. These would be a great "just-because" gift or stocking stuffer for a young girl or a young-at-heart woman! So next time you have a bad hair day, just pin that hair away with something cute and fun!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Guess Who Just Became Parents (again)?

I am so ridiculously excited right now, I can barely type. Remember when I talked about what I wanted for our anniversary? WELL, IT HAPPENED!!!

Meet the newest addition to our family!

All together now, "aaawwwwwwwwwwwww" : )

Her name is St. Clair (named after St. Clair Ave in Cleveland, her nickname will be Clair) and she comes home for good tomorrow!! She's 4 months old, and weighs 27 lbs. (Incidentally, all our dog names are Cleveland related; Otto's named after former Browns QB Otto Graham). Big brother Otto loves her already:

A big thank you to the wonderful staff at Gateway Animal Clinic (Chris and Dr. Bob) for introducing us to her, and to Mel McGrath from Paramount Dog Training for helping us with Otto and helping us evaluate Clair.


If you want to meet Clair, we will be at yappy hour at Tremont Tap House on Tuesday.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Great Fire of 2009: Lessons I Learned

This is going to be an a-typical post. However, I feel so strongly about thus topic, that I think it's worth discussing. Exactly one year ago, N and I experienced something that most people never have to go through; we survived a fire.

It was 3.00am when we woke up to a massive BOOM! There was a gas leak in our neighbors apartment, and as she lit a cigarette, her apartment exploded, subsequently causing her wall to collapse into out yard and onto our wall. As N, Otto and I evacuated our apartment, we had to crawl under burning debris; it was surreal. Luckily, there was only one serious injury (she has since recovered) but no casualties, and in the end, everyone's lives rebounded and returned to normal. But here's the lessons i've learned.

1. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE INSURANCE! It's a pre-requisite if you're a homeowner, but for all my renting readers PLEASE get renters insurance. It's not a lot per year, and will be worth it should you ever have to suffer through a fire or robbery. You may be thinking "oh, my stuff isn't worth much", but trust me, every pair of jeans and shoes, every book, every piece of furniture adds up, and would be very difficult to replace all at once (unless you have a trust fund or have been VERY financially responsible). Besides, you are responsible for clearing the hazardous debris, so at the very least, your insurance will cover that.

2. Order of importance
(b)Pets: make sure you have extra collars and leashes/carriers by all your exit doors.
(c)cellphone: sounds silly, but you WILL need it. A lot.
(d)your purse/wallet

This is going to sound callous, but beyond a and b, NOTHING is important. It's all stuff, sentimental or not. c and d are just practical and make your life easier in the immediate hours following the fire, but you can and will be ok without them.

3. Don't be afraid to ask for and accept help
This is not the time to be proud or shy. There are so many details to take care of that they can get almost overwhelming. Lean on your support system.

4. If people and pets are safe, long run, everything will be fine.

If you shop for anything this week, please let it be renters insurance if you don't have it already. I hope you never have to go through a fire, but if you do, insurance will help make sure all your "stuff" is replaced. This I know from experience.

We'll be back to more "normal" posts tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Dog Friendly in Cleveland, Part Deux

It appears I missed quite a few dog-friendly Cleveland spots in my first post; thank you to my readers and friends for pointing these out to me:

Garage Bar: On their wonderful patio, and inside.
Flying Fig: On the patio
Market Avenue Wine Bar: On the patio

Clifton Wine & Martini Bar: sidewalk patio

Wine Bar in Rocky River: Patio

Presti's: Patio
Cleveland Botanical Gardens: This looks like such a fun way to spend a Sunday: Every Sunday from June 6th- August 29th, you can stroll the Gardens with your pup!! For more info, look here

D'Vine Wine Bar: patio

As always, please be a responsible dog owner and keep your dog leashed at all these establishments. Otto and I look forward to seeing you at these places this summer!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Happy Birthday Otto!

My baby turned 2 today!! And boy, did he have a special day. He started the day with two new toys, had a super yummy dinner, got loads of treats, and had a little birthday party with his best friend Lexi.

Here were Otto's presents. I wish I could take credit, but these were all N's choices.

The Humanga Stache $12.95 at Moochie & Co


The Doggie Stogie Stick $9.95, also at Moochie & Co.

I absolutely LOVE the stache, its supposed to look like this:

Except that Otto absolutely REFUSES to put the ball in his mouth; he just goes for the handlebars instead!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekend recap and a look ahead

First off, a big thank you for all of you who showed up at the Reddstone Happy Hour on Friday night! It was so much fun!! And a big thank you to Reddstone for the free pizza and wings (which were delicious!)


After a few hours of patio fun, N and I walked over to the FABULOUS made in the 216, where I picked up this beauty

If you missed the made in 216 festival this time around, don't worry, it will be back in November, just in time for holiday presents. 

Saturday afternoon, N and I hung out at Flannery's with AJP, butnoteveryday, plum, JV, and others to watch The World Cup, where I introduced AJP to the hotness that is Cristiano Ronaldo (thank you iPhone!)

Later Saturday night, N and I joined DBB and Jess for a six-course tasting at AMP150. I especially loved the scallops, cookies with honey vanilla milk, calamari and semifreddo with homemade caramel corn, but I have to say that next time, we will stick with the four course tasting. After six courses of yumminess, I was ready to change into stretchy pants and lay down.

This morning, I woke up and took Otto for a nice hour-long walk, after which I was off to Beachwood for my three-hour hair appointment. A quick stop home to pick up Otto, and I was off to Luxe to participate in a doggy brunch to benefit Project Noah (an animal rescue and rehab run by the amazing vets at Gateway Animal Clinic). That was followed by the Sunday usual; groceries and laundry (blah!). It was a busy weekend to say the least!

On tap for this week, birthday celebration for Otto, yappy hour at Tremont Tap House, cookout, an important introduction, a going-away party, and hopefully, Grace Potter & the Nocturnals (if I can get anyone to go with me!). I will be doing nothing next Sunday!!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Dog-friendly in Cleveland

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is sitting outside, having a few drinks with friends. The only thing that makes this routine better is going places where I'm allowed to bring Otto. If you're a dog lover like me, and like to take your well-mannered dog places with you, here's a list of dog-friendly places where well-mannered dogs are welcome. This is by no means a comprehensive list, so please let me know if there are spots I'm missing. So here goes, organized by area:

Flying Monkey: I love Flying Monkey. Not only are dogs allowed on the patio, but they're allowed in the bar, year round!
Edison's: Like Flying Monkey, dogs allowed in the bar all year.
Civilization: on the sidewalk
La Bodega: Dogs welcomed at the sidewalk tables.
Tremont Tap House: yappy hour every Tuesday on the patio, from 4pm-9pm
Unconfirmed official policy (although I've seen or heard of dogs being seen here): 806 Wine and Martini Bar, TreeHouse, Bistro on Lincoln Park.

Bier Market: all year round, dogs permitted on patio, lounge, and on the Bier Market bar side
Great Lakes Brewery: patio. They even host a doggie festival in July.

Reddstone: Patio
Luxe: Sunday doggie brunch on the patio every summer. There's even a special menu for dogs!
Sunset Grille at Whiskey Island: outside

Hope you and your pooch have an opportunity to take advantage of these places this summer. Please remember to leash your dog, and please be smart about when you choose to take them (Saturday night is not a good idea; your poor puppy is likely to get stepped on).

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Best. Firsthalfofweek. EVER!

I'm having such a fantastic week, and guess what? YOU get to be the beneficiary of it this Friday at 5 pm if you live in Cleveland!!!!
So, Monday I received a text from someone with some fantastic news. I'm not quite ready to share the news yet (in case I jinx it), but let's just say that sometime in the next two weeks, something that I've wanted to happen for a long time, may, in fact, be happening.

Tuesday, we had a fantastic time at yappy hour at Tremont Tap House, which was only made better by the fact that I WON A HAPPY HOUR A REDDSTONE!!!

This is where you, as reader of my blog, benefit:

The Happy Hour starts this Friday, June 11th at 5, and runs ALL NIGHT! There's free pizza and wings from 6PM until 9PM, and happy hour specials ($1 off drinks) all night long!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! All you have to do is show up at Reddstone (1261 West 76th St, Cleveland) and let them know that you're there for CLEshopaholic's Happy Hour!!!!
(can you tell I'm really excited?! I'm really looking forward to seeing those of you I know, and meeting those of you I don't!)

See you there!!!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Yard Sale finds

There's this show on The Discovery Channel called "Pickers". Essentially it's these two guys that travel across the country buying other people's stuff and transforming it into somethig fabulous. That's kinda what I felt like this past Sunday at the Tremont Yard sale. There was so much stuff there; lots of fantastic pottery, old records, jewelry, and two vintange fire extinguishers, which were definitely the coolest items available. I was on a more strategic search though; I was looking for an umbrella stand. And lo and behold, I found it, and a cool vase; both for a whopping $7! I love yard sales!!!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Re-living your childhood through other people's children

As you approach your 30s, you reach the stage where more and more of your friends are in committed relationships. Some of these friends may be married, and some may even have kids. N and I didn't used to have too many of these "friends with kids", until last year. Suddenly it seems like everyone we know is pregnant or has a new-born (Congratulations to the new parents!!!). I know that its that time in our lives, but it still surprises me every time, especially when its my friends from college (Hi Clawson!). I haven't seen a lot of my college friends in over 5 years, so its almost like time is frozen in my memory.

Anyway, as I've mentioned before, N & I recently became uncle and aunt for the first time. Our nephew (I will now refer to him as Little F) is only a few months old, but already I can't wait to spoil him. Today I bought him a rocking horse! How fricking awesome is that?!?!?!??!!
Rocking Horse $65 on

Too bad Little F can't use it for a few years, but it got me nostalgic about some of my toys from when I was a little girl. My faaaaaaaaaavorite toy was my Wendy House (play house, for those of you who didn't grow up speaking British English). It was red and blue, with plastic windows, and a white plastic door. I llllllluuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrvvvvvvvvvvvvvveeeeeeeeeeeddddddddddd that thing.  So, when Little F is a little older, I think I'm going to have to get him one of these:

Pirate Pop-Up Tent, $47 at

Playhut Star Wars Contol Center $53 at

What was your favorite toy as a child?

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

This weekend in CLE

So I have a ridiculously busy Saturday ahead: invites to two housewarming parties and a birthday party for a one-year old (so cute), which pretty much gives me no time to attend anything else! But if you're looking for something to do this weekend, here's what's on tap:

On Saturday, Dragonfly is hosting the official Fashion Week Cleveland Launch Party, beginning at 9:00 pm. There will be complimentary sushi, dj's and no cover! There is a dress code though: fashion-forward; so dress to impress. (side bar: I've been to Fashion Week events over the past few years, and I still don't know how I feel about them. Some years they've been awful, but others have been fun. This year looks more promising than others, based on location. )

Sunday is the Tremont Yard Sale. Essentially, all of Tremont turns into one giant yard sale. There's tons of stuff, and a bunch of galleries even participate. Last year I picked up some great books at Village Voice and some really neat mugs with copper detail (that were subsequently lost if the fire). Check it out if you're around Tremont; you never know what you may find. The yard sale runs 9am - 4pm After perusing the yard sales, stop by 806 Wine and Martini Bar (806 Literary Ave) for the Spring into Summer Party to benefit the Tremont Arts & Cultural Festival. $30 at the door buys you 2 drink tickets and hearty appetizers. The event runs 2-7pm.

No matter what you do, I hope you have a great weekend and take advantage of all the stuff there is to do in Cleveland. Next weekend has LOTS of events, scattered all over Cleveland. Look for an update middle of next week.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

If you're going to day drink, you might as well have the right accessories

One of the things I love most about the summer are the weekend day-drinking opportunities when the weather is as beautiful as it was this past weekend. This weekend, I received a gift from clefoodgoddess that is the perfect accessory when day-drinking involves some vino: scrabble wine charms!

The front:

The back:

How cute and fun are these?!?!?! They are the perfect gift for the wine-loving woman in your life! If you're looking to get these (or a variation of them), they're available here. Salud!