Monday, October 31, 2011

Mad Hat(ter)s all around

Happy Halloween all!! Hope you had a lovely weekend/day trick-or-treating/handing out candy or however you celebrated! N and I handed out 16 lbs of candy, AND we ran out!! Is that normal or does our neighborhood just get more kids?

This week, I'm really looking forward to Thursday night. Why, you ask? Well, its because is the Kickoff Event for one of my most FAVORITE parties in Cleveland, Jump Back Ball!!! If you remember, N and I attended JBB 20 earlier this year and had an ABSOLUTE blast!! This year I'm even more excited because (1) JBB turns 21, and who doesn't love a 21st birthday celebration, and (2) I absolutely LUUUUUURRVVEE this year's theme- Through The Looking Glass!!

Whether your inspiration is the Disney version or the Tim Burton version (LOVE LOVE LOVE), I'm envisioning some exceptional outfits- lots of white, red, suspenders, stripes, blues, headbands, and of course, my FAVORITE- HATS!!! I can't imagine a more perfect opportunity to debut an absolutely stunning headpiece!!!

Although Jump Back Ball 21 doesn't happen until February 25th, 2012, trust me when I say that its NOT TOO EARLY to plan your attendance. There's a limited number of tickets, and they absolutely do sell out (and have done so for the past few years!). So if you would like to attend, here's how you can get your tickets:
1. Starting Friday, November 4th, you may buy them online here . VIP tickets are $200 each, and General Admission Tickets are $150 ($125 for Partners)- Information on the difference between the two categories is available here.
2. And I HIGHLY recommend this- Join me at Market Garden Brewery in Ohio City on Thursday November 3rd from 6-8 pm to buy your tickets in person. General Admission tickets will be $130 (that's a 13% savings) AND no handling fee. The kickoff event will be the ONLY time Playhouse Square will be offering the tickets at this price (there is a two ticket limit per person). And besides, the event will feature complimentary appetizers, drink specials and prizes. What's not to luurve about that?!?

Full disclosure: Playhouse Square has offered me two VIP tickets in exchange for my help promoting the event on my blog. However, you should know that had I not received this offer, I would be at the Kickoff Party bright and early at 6:00 pm to secure my tickets!! I did just that last year, and it was totally worth it. The Kickoff Party was fun, and Jump Back Ball was a RIDICULOUSLY fun evening!!! I hope to see you on Thursday, and then again in February!!!

Friday, October 28, 2011

3x the LURVE

So the other little feature I'd like to continue with moving forward is "3x the LURVE"- a weekly post featuring my Top 3 from the preceding 7 days. My plan is to have this be a standing Friday post, so fingers crossed that I'm disciplined enough to stick with it!! Without much further ado, I offer you my first EVER 3x the LURVE:

1. Coming back to a beautiful day in CLE:

I absolutely LURVE fall in CLE!! Maybe its not as pretty as fall in New England, but then again, I don't live in New England, and there's no place like HOME!!!

2. Spending Monday cuddling with these two sweethearts:

They loved spending time with their grandma and grandpa, but they LURVE hanging out on the couch, and I LURVED spending Monday doing just that with them.

3. And last, but certainly not least, I LURVE my shiny new iPhone 4s. Its SO much faster than my old 3GS, and asking Siri to do things for me!! yay!!

So there you have it! What did you LURVE this week??

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A little buzz

One of my favorite things in Costa Rica was the AMAZING coffee we enjoyed several times a day. It probably has something to do with the volcanic soil, but Costa Rican coffee is DELICIOUS!! So delicious in fact, that N and I are having some shipped to us!!  And I'm happy to say that if you'd like to try some, Amazon carries a whole selection of the Cafe Britt coffees.

With the holidays coming up (this year is going by waayyy too fast), I've been thinking about gift ideas. If you have a coffee lover on your holiday list, you could always gift them some Cafe Britt Espresso with a stove-top Espresso maker and/or Espresso cups!

As a coffee lover myself, there is nothing better than a GREAT cup of coffee on a cold winter morning (yes, I said the "W" word. I'm mentally preparing myself for the inevitable). Do you have a favorite coffee? Do tell!!!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Planning Ahead

I know its only the end of October, but turns out my social calendar has now extended out to March 2012. In the coming weeks, I will be telling you more about the things I'm looking forward to in Winter/Early Spring of next year, but in the mean time, I'm trying to figure out the best way to get all this stuff on my schedule. Now I could use the calendar on my shiny, new iPhone 4s (Yes, I LURVE Siri, and no, she will not marry me), but I still enjoy the good old fashioned paper versions. And oh so conveniently, yesterday I received my Kate Spade email featuring this:

Speaking of iPhones and Kate Spade, I picked up a cute iPhone case, but I think I may want this one too...

After all, polka-dots are totally ON TREND for fall, and this is SOOOOOO adorable!!!! BTW, these would make great gifts for the stylish tech-lover and traditionalist alike!! Hmmm, I might just have to add these to my ever-expanding Christmas list..... 

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Listening Now- The Joy Formidable

So while I was on hiatus, I started to think about ways to tinker with the blog. One of the ideas is a weekly feature on music that I'm listening to and that I absolutely LUUURRRVVEE. Now, it may not all be new music, but my hope that perhaps I will introduce to some music that you may be unfamiliar with, or remind you of something you haven't listened to recently. I hope that you will share some of your recent favorites with me as well!!

With that, I introduce my first ever Listening Now feature- The Joy Formidable. They're originally from Wales, and opened for The Foo Fighters on a few Foo tour stops this year. They're touring the U.S. in November and December, so if you live in, or are planning to visit these cities, you will have the opportunity to check them out live. I will say that I have NOT seen them live, and I'm more than a little bummed that they will be in Pittsburgh but are skipping over Cleveland. *sadness*

Of course their music is available for download on iTunes, but here is a little peak at one of my FAVORITE songs, Whirring.


I hope you enjoy the song and this new little feature, and I can't wait to hear your recommendations as well!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Hello again

Hi again!! It's been a while since I last posted anything- blame it on lots of work-related travel and some vacation!! This past week, N and I enjoyed some R&R in Costa Rica!!! We stayed at the Westin, an all-inclusive in the Guanacaste region. The rooms were very nice and comfortable, but I would say that if I had to do it over, I would only go the all-inclusive route for part of the vacation, not the whole 7 days. Costa Rica is known for its eco-tours and adventure offerings, and staying at an all-inclusive for the whole time is just sorta a waste when you end up leaving on tours that last the whole day!

Here are some pics from vacation. You will notice that it looks very cloudy in the pictures- we knew we were going in the "wet" season, but I was expecting the usual hour or two of rain. However, thanks to a hurricane that ran through Mexico, we had LOTS of rain everyday. From what I hear, a lot like Cleveland last week! However, it was nice and warm, so N and I spent time hanging out in the hot tub and at the swim up bar.

The waves were pretty rough thanks to the hurricane

The resort critters. Both the birds and the little mongoose/raccoon-type animals (Caoti) would come right up to you for food. There was a huge pack of about 20-25 of them around the pool, although only 1-2 of them were social. The little babies were really cute!

Beautiful tropical flowers

N and I took a day-long tour that included the Arenal volcano (you can't go up to the mouth of the crater- poisonous gases etc), a boat ride, a walk through the rainforest, time at the hot springs, and a delicious dinner at a restaurant overlooking the volcano.

 The Rainforest. Honestly, I was more afraid of the rainforest than the zipline tours!! I'm allergic to everything, and I was so nervous that I would get bitten by some crazy tropical insect and swell up!!! It was beautiful though, and I made it out unbitten, which made it even better!!

 N and I also did an ATV tour (I rode my own ATV- yay!!), and a zip line tour which was a MAJOR adrenaline rush!! Essentially, you fly through the rainforest harnessed to cables, and a lot of times you couldn't even see the other end. In case you're wondering, I didn't look down once, but I did keep my eyes open as I was flying across the cables! 

Overall it was a really nice vacation- some touristy stuff, and a LOT of relaxation!!!