Dralion Cirque du Soleil in Cleveland: a ticket giveaway

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Cirque du Soleil.

The name speaks for itself bringing the reputation, the acrobatics, the showmanship, the costumes, the entertainment. That being said, how on earth is it possible that with all that very well deserved hype I've never seen a show?

Well that's about to change now that
Cirque du Soleil Dralion is heading to Cleveland Wednesday, April 4th through Sunday, April 8th for seven unique performances at the Wolstein Center.

The show's moniker, Dralion (pronounced "Drah-lee-on"), is drawn from its two main symbols: the dragon, representing the East and the lion, representing the West.

With inspiration drawn from Eastern philosophy, Dralion also features an international cast with 52 world-class acrobats, gymnasts, musicians, singers and comedic characters who have perfected their craft.

The four elements that govern the natural order, take human form in Dralion representing air, water, earth and fire.

The show is going to be great, you guys, and while you can buy tickets online here you also can also win a pair to the Thursday, April 5th performance here on the plum!

To enter:

1. Leave a comment on this post telling me you'd like to attend (making sure to leave your contact information if I don't already know how to get a hold of you)

2. Tweet the following about the contest: " I want to win a pair of tickets to see @Cirque #Dralion at the @wolsteincenter from @clevelandsaplum http://bit.ly/yLaoWj " - you can tweet about this contest daily for extra entries leaving a comment on this post every time you tweet
3. Share a link to this contest on your facebook page (http://bit.ly/yLaoWj)
leaving me a comment on this post telling me you did so

You have until this upcoming Monday 3/5 at 5pm to enter the contest and I'll be announcing the winner of the pair of Cirque du Soleil Dralion tickets on Tuesday 3/6.

Good luck to all who enter - man, do I love a good giveaway!!

[Disclosure: In return for my posting about Dralion coming to Cleveland and hosting a ticket giveaway I was given a pair of tickets to see the show and I couldn't be more excited to check it out. As always the opinions are my own, yo!]

Jump Back Ball 2012

Monday, February 27, 2012

It was Jump Back Ball weekend at PlayhouseSquare in Cleveland which by default made it a great one.

It (JBB weekend) usually involves a wicked hangover on Sunday, but it's well worth the headache I'm experiencing while watching the Oscar's Red Carpet.

On that note, let's just post some pic of the fabulous evening that was Jump Back Ball so I can get back to my Angelo's Pizza.

Before we headed to PlayhouseSquare a group of us got together at the Wyndham Hotel in Lzone and Kelly's room for bubbles and shenanigans. The boys and girls shot really does make me feel like we were at an adult prom.

Some of my beautiful friends rocking their JBB best.

Every Jump Back Ball has a theme, this year was Through The Looking Glass and the Alice and Wonderland costumes and motifs were a plenty. The dude in the pink bunny costume? I have no idea who he is but was speechless when I saw him.

I had a fan moment when I got to meet Alan Cox (of the Alan Cox Show on WMMS) and his girlfriend Gwen (top left) - I mean I do listen to him everyday Mon-Fri. The other three pics are of my friends being gorgeous and handsome respectively.

Here's Allison, me and Shibani trying to take a nice picture of the three of us while CK photo bombs us.

The party continued after #jbb21 to Tina's Nite Club where I may or may not have karaoked Bohemian Rhapsody, very badly.

It was yet another successful Jump Back Ball - good work PlayhouseSquare, you guys never cease to amaze. My only complaint is there were so many friends that I didn't see - the State Theater is huge and when you're with 750+ other people roaming about no wonder you miss people.

And I'm officially already thinking about next year.

Good times, kids, good times - happy Monday!

an almost wordless thursday

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Wordless Wednesday? Nah, how about almost wordless Thursday...

My friends, being awesome (and serious), at ABC the Tavern in Ohio City.

What was the occasion last night? Well, all this fun on a school night was for my dear friend AJP's birthday - h
ope it was a good one, AJP!! xoxo

Happy Thursday, kids.

I love Bravo TV

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

My handsome boyfriend CK and I have a lot in common, we agree on all the big issues, we're good to each other, take care of each other, make each other laugh, think each other is dreamy and would rather be together then not be together.

I'm lucky to have him.

But while we may agree on 95% of things there's one glaring issue in our otherwise great relationship that will probably never be mended...

My love of Bravo TV.... much to CK's dismay.

On any given day Bravo is probably playing on my television 75% of the time. It could be a rerun of an episode of the Real Housewives of New York from two years ago, a Millionaire Matchmaker Reunion show or Top Chef - anything really. I'm watching it if it's on Bravo.

Half the time channel 237 is just playing as background noise while I'm working/blogging/talking on the phone/getting ready for bed - I mean who wouldn't want Andy Cohen to talk them to sleep every night on Watch What Happens Live?

Additionally, the excitement I had over the season premiere of Bethenny Ever After this past Monday night was ridiculous. I'm kinda sorta obsessed with Bethenny and CK hates it - I think she's awesome, a wickedly smart business woman, absolutely hysterical and above all real.

CK? Not so much, in fact I don't even want to type what he says about her. (Don't worry Bethenny, I got your back)

Confession #1: I'd totally wait in line to see Bethenny speak, sign a book, dance with a bottle of Skinny Girl Sangria, whatever - I'm there.

Confession #2: I was at a wedding this past October with Bethenny's assistant Julie, I chatted with her for approximately 2.5 minutes and was saddened by how not so nice she came off. I truly hope she was just bombed and really not that condescending on a regular basis.

Moving on.

I supposed when you boil this post down and we are talking relationship deal breakers I think it's safe to say my obsession with all things Bravo isn't going to ruin my relationship. That is as long as CK doesn't ever have to worry about "a cobweb situation"...

I love Bravo TV and I don't care who knows it.

happy little weekend in the CLE

Monday, February 20, 2012

'Twas a low-key few days for me in the CLE this past weekend. Low-key doesn't mean low fun though, not by any means.

Friday night I headed to
Market in Rocky River for the first time. I've heard wonderful things about this place and it surpassed my expectations. The ambiance was awesome with a big bar, lots of space and TVs, large wine/beer selection, complimentary valet and excellent customer service. The food was good, not amazing, but nothing to complain about - I had a nice meal. I'll definitely be back, perhaps for 1/2 price bottles of wine night on Tuesday.

The reason for my visit to Market was for two reasons, one was to hangout with these fine ladies.

Addison Montgomery was visiting Cleveland from Denver and thus was cause for us UD gals to get together for some vino - including Addison, MOB, Foxx, Holler, Muffin and Beaver.

In addition to my GNO it was also Lverdova's birthday celebration at Market and who doesn't love birthdays? Communists, that's who. It was an all around wonderful evening with some of my best girlfriends and I wouldn't have changed a thing.

Saturday brought errands and a fun and fancy dinner at CK's with his little one where we ate well, played hard and watched a movie - family fun night, you guys.

Sunday I cooked my first meal in a crock pot.... no comment.... I mean, you know how I feel about the crock pot.
It was a recipe CK found, also his crock pot and it involved short ribs, parsnips, and turnips... let's just say it wasn't that good. It wasn't the crock pot's fault though, more so the recipe. But the fact that it was made in a crock pot didn't necessarily help my case against the dreaded crock pot... so bland, so so so bland.

Pre-dinner I headed to
Allison's with Shibani for our PlayhouseSquare Jump Back Ball dress runway show - Allison and Shibani have their dresses... me? I'm still torn between two, who knows what I'll end up with come Saturday.

One thing I do know though is that next week's weekend recap post will be a hell of a lot more lively with Jump Back Ball involved.

Happy Monday, kids!

Nothing like a welcome gift to get the party started

Friday, February 17, 2012

You guys, day one at the new gig went awesome - thanks so much for all the kind words and support, you have no clue how much it meant to me.

Additionally, walking into my office first thing yesterday morning and being greeted by this gift of fun definitely helped....

This would be my welcome to D&E present from Lzone - beyond thoughtful? Of course, and very much appreciated. It made me all warm and fuzzy inside.

But for the record, I DO NOT like Bieber, let alone folders with his face on them. In fact, I would like to flick him in the ear.

My new colleague officially set the tone though, I'm thinking a Bieber war could be in the works...

... to be(ieber) continued....

Happy Friday, kids!

running through my head

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Random things that are currently going through my mind on the eve of my first day at my new job:

1. What if I'm not as smart as they think I am?

2. Did I make the right decision, can I do this?

3. What "sensible" shoes am I going to wear tomorrow?

4. Thank god I bought those two new black work dresses yesterday, because after cleaning out my closet tonight I'm nervous that the other 8 aren't going to be enough. (sarcastic thought, natch)

5. I wish I wasn't sick during the majority of my freedom days between jobs.

6. How am I going to remember everyone's names?

7. I'm going to be doing what I already know how to do, just somewhere else. I'm going to be doing what I already know how to do, just somewhere else. I'm going to be doing what I already know how to do, just somewhere else.

8. What if working with Lzone doesn't go as smoothly as we hope?

9. Where are my tweezers?

10. This pizza sure is taking awhile to get delivered, the diet definitely starts tomorrow.

11. The 14th floor is really high up.

12. There's going to be a lot more experience in the room than I'm used to, I'm going to be one of the youngest verse one of the oldest....

13. I hope I can sleep tonight.

14. I can do this, LET'S DO IT.

Sickness + an evening in Lakewood + Reggae Brunch

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

As I mentioned in my last post I'm in the middle of an exciting job transition which, lucky for me, means a few days off in between ending the old and starting the new - last Friday, yesterday, today and tomorrow to be exact.

It's a wonderful thing... when you're healthy.

I've been a sicky-poo for nearly a week now and while thankfully I'm feeling better I ended up not leaving my house from Thursday night after my last day at t::t till Saturday night completely wasting my first "freedom week" day of Friday - which isn't going to make this the most interesting recap post.

Friday brought Romeo's Pizza (um, YUM!) for dinner with CK and his little one at my house where we ate, watched a movie and played dress up - pretty standard Friday night in.

Saturday, still not feeling the best was spent on my couch before rallying for dinner with CK at Jammy Buggars in Lakewood - if you haven't been you should check this place out, good food and beer selection and the Harvest Salad I had for dinner was super tasty.

After dinner we headed to Deagan's for my friend Katrina's (aka Bite Buff) birthday party - good times had by all, even if we didn't make it to Tina's. Next time, Katrina, next time.

Me and Courtney with bunny ears courtesy of Alana and Seanski, me, Alana, Katrina and Courtney.

We called it a semi-early night on Saturday because a full day was planned for Sunday - a full day of Reggae music to be more specific.

Sunday was the annual Reggae Brunch featuring Carlos Jones and the PLUS Band at Parkview Nite Club, the fabulous dive(ish) bar with great food in the Detroit-Shoreway Neighborhood. A group including myself, CK, JoeG and Pagezell meet to actually participate in the brunch part of Reggae Brunch at 11am and when you consider Carlos didn't go on until 3pm and we didn't leave the bar until almost 8pm it was a long, glorious, happy, and reggae filled snowy Sunday in Cleveland.

AJP, me and Muffin enjoying our Red Stripes and Reggae Brunch at the Parkview.

After our day of fun at the Parkview the Pagezell's, CK and I picked up pizza from Papa Nick's (that's two dinners of pizza in one week if you're keeping count) and headed to my house for Grammy watching and falling asleep on the couch - it was the end to a perfect day.

Monday, oh Monday, was shop till I drop day as I needed to pick up some new threads for this new job as my current wardrobe doesn't exactly scream "professional" - I'd say I had a successful trip has I had to make not one, but two package drop offs to my car so I could continue shopping. Nordstrom, Gap and J. Crew? You're welcome.

And now as I'm typing this and catching up on my DVR I'm a happy girl - today is Valentine's Day after all and I can't wait to spend the evening with my main squeeze, my love, and my handsome Valentine CK.

Happy Valentine's Day, you crazy kids, you - go kiss someone you love!

on new jobs

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Today is my last day as an Account Executive at thunder::tech.

Which is strange as I still don't think I've 100% come to terms with the fact that I'm not going to be working there anymore. I've been a thunder::techy since 2007 which was before I started this blog, before I bought my house, before I met CK - before, before, before...

Meaning I did a heck of a lot of growing up during my tenure at thunder::tech, both personally and professionally. I have so much to thank t::t for because quite frankly, if it wasn't for my body of work and experience gained there I wouldn't have even been considered for the position I'm moving into.

And for that I will always be indebted to the team at thunder::tech, specifically their President, Jason Therrien. Actually, come to think of it, I wonder if now that I'm not going to be Jason's employee anymore he'll actually friend me on Facebook...

The next chapter of my career will be as a Vice President at Dix & Eaton, an integrated communications consultancy firm in Downtown Cleveland, where I'll be working specifically in the Customer Communications practice.

Or as I like to call it, a grown up job - slacks, pumps, blazers and all. Not that thunder::tech wasn't, but the fact that I could wear flip flops to t::t will never be lost on me.

So today, on my last day, I'm going to clean my desk, give lots of hugs goodbye and then go home and cry in my Orville Redenbacher SmartPop! popcorn because I'm sick and smart snacking is always better. (<--- See what I did there?)

Thanks again to everyone at thunder::tech, and to everyone at Dix & Eaton?

Watch out! Lzone and I are sharing an office wall after all.... debauchery should ensue.

If you talk about these things online it will automatically become annoyingly popular

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Based on my very active internet habit obsession I'm generally ahead of the general curve in regard to happenings on the world wide web.

That video you posted today? I may or may not have known about it last week.

This isn't always the case, of course, but I'll say 8 times out of 10 I've already seen X internet piece before people I graduated from high school (or my mom, or... you get the point) start sharing it on Facebook.

I'm not bragging, in all reality it's nothing to be all that proud of as it just means I spend entirely too much time online, but it's an occupational hazard - aka I get paid to keep up on the internet.

That being said I can create a list a mile long of internet things I'm beyond tired of, for example cats, but I'm smart enough to know I'm never going to win that battle.

(Side-note: have you see the video of domestic cats and dogs Lion King-ing? Hilarious, and the only cat video I will ever love.)

See what I just did there? I'm guilty too!

Anyways, while cruising Pinterest these last few days now that everyone in the world is on it (I've been pinning for over 6 months and if you're not on it you should be because it's awesome), I'm noticing that people really enjoying pinning/sharing/tweeting/etc about a small handful of things incessantly and thanks to my fellow fed-up online friends I've come up with a list.

Talk about these things online and it will automatically become annoyingly popular:

1. Red Velvet
"OMG, red velvet pancakes, smoothies, bread, cheesecake, hair dye - to die for."

2. Chalkboard Paint
"Every wall in my kitchen is going to be covered with chalkboard paint now, it's going to be great to be able to plan my weekly dinner menu and plan for my upcoming marathon run training schedule"

3. Mustaches
"I bet if I put this mustache decal on the wall over my babies crib it'll make him extra manly and cute!"

4. Birds, or better yet Owls, or better yet French Bulldogs, or a whale...
"Look at this animal being an animal cutely illustrated"

5. Nutella
"Just add it to anything it will become better - nutella is the new peanut butter"

6. Mason Jars
"I bet if I drill a hole in this jar, add a candle and some twine I bet I could get rid of all the lamps in my house"

7. Bacon
"Bacon chewing gum? AWESOME"

8. Cupcakes or better yet, Cake Pops (just put a stick in it)
"EVERYTHING should be turned into a cupcake, even these ham and eggs, it's what a muffin tin was made for"

9. Long Wavy Hair
"If I tilt my head at a 45 degree angle, while holding a flat iron, have a second person insert bobby pins, and use organic hairspray I can totally look like Zoe Deschanel"

10. Your turn, what am I missing? What online trend are you just over seeing?

Additionally (and I tweeted about this yesterday), I've decided that if someone makes a red velvet cake with nutella icing in the shape of a mustache the internet would explode.

Now if you'll excuse me I have some more internet trolling to do...

the perfect combination weekend

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

This past weekend was the perfect combination of relaxation, family time and partying.

Thursday started off with dinner in my neighborhood with CK at XYZ the Tavern before we headed east to check out the Grateful Dead tribute band Into the Blue at Beachland Ballroom. The band was definitely good but I quickly realized I don't know as many Grateful Dead songs as I thought I did. There was lots of hippie dancing, the aroma of pot and glow sticks - yes, glow sticks.

Friday evening I stayed in, all alone, with only my DVR as my date - it. was. very. awesome.

Saturday morning I headed to Canton for the baptism of baby Olympia, the daughter of good friends of the family, at my home church of St. Haralambos. The reception was at the Canton Women's Club where I got to visit with my Dad's side of the family and essentially just stare at my godson Bobby.

Olympia being baptized and my little godson Bobby being beyond adorable - he's almost crawling!

Saturday night was girls night out with lots of my favorite gal pals at Southside in Tremont where we laughed, cried and generally just caught up on each others lives. Before Southside though I kidnapped MOB and Ahmed and we drank a few rounds at Prosperity Social Club - ya know, just to warm-up.

The two sides of the table at our "GNO", my friends really are the best.

After dinner we marched a few blocks down to Hotz's Cafe, where if you haven't been, you're missing out. It's the dive bars, dive bar with a shuffleboard table and the best jukebox around. More friends (and Hotz virgins) came and met us on "the dance floor" - the GNO suddenly became co-ed and all was well in the world.

That leather coat on the top left? That just screams 'merica. That pic on the bottom left? Please excuse Kpoor's "M.I.A. moment" before there even was an "M.I.A. moment".

Sunday (aka Super Bowl Sunday) was spent purchasing a handful of Jason Wu items from Target, and cooking some apps to take over Hartzell's place in Battery Park for a very low key get together - unbeknownst to the guests in attendance it was also Hawaiian themed, go figure.

Nothing says Hawaii more than slamming some cold ones and watching football....

Confession: I may have worn a lei for a small amount of time.

The two apps I made for the small gathering were both found on Pinterest. The left is puff pastry stuffed with avocado, cream cheese and salsa and the right are Hawaiian sweet roll ham sandwiches - no I did not know of the Hawaiian theme prior to making these delicious sammies. And finally, please note the Pagezell's wearing leis.

All in all I couldn't have asked for a better weekend, other than maybe winning the $200 million Powerball drawing on Saturday - hey, there's always Wednesday.

Happy Tuesday, kids!

Hey brands, quit releasing your commercials before the Super Bowl

Friday, February 3, 2012

So it's Super Bowl Sunday this weekend, time to put on stretchy pants, drink some beer and eat anything you want.

I suppose one watches the football game too, but until the day comes when my Cleveland Browns are in the big game I'm not going to care nearly as much of the sporting part of Super Bowl Sunday.

But that's not the point of this post.

As a woman in the marketing industry I'll be the first to admit that I enjoy watching all the new television commercials the national brands put out during the Super Bowl.

Or I did.

Until the majority of the national brands have decided to become all anti-climatic on us and in the weeks BEFORE the Super Bowl, rather than allowing consumers to experience the ads with virgin eyes during the big game, show their commercial cards.

Just yesterday morning the Today Show ran an entire segment previewing all the commercials, I've seen Acura's ad, I've seen Honda's, I've seen Volkswagen's, I've seen H&M's, the list goes on and on.

I would have been totally fine if Honda kept their CR-V Ferris Bueller spot with Matthew Broderick to the 10 second "tease" ad it was running - that is good marketing, building the anticipation, thumbs up.

But then they (Honda) went and ruined it for all of us with releasing the whole thing weeks prior to the big game - not cool Ferris, not cool.

Hell, TMZ even leaked what Madonna's halftime show stage will look like!

Is nothing a surprise anymore? This needs to stop! Stop ruining the Super Bowl commercials for me, brands - don't take away my joy.

Sigh, it seems like the only thing that is not a surprise when it comes to the Super Bowl is that the Cleveland Browns aren't ever participating.

HEY-O! Just kidding, I love you Cleveland Browns, I love you.

Happy Super Bowl weekend, you guys!

I can smart snack and do Zumba, right?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Maybe all this smart snacking and healthy living is rubbing off on me because I've worked out Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday of this week.

Maybe Bernie Salazar was right and all I needed to do was find something fun (and active) to do and working out wouldn't feel like such a chore - enter Zumba.

I know, I know, I'm super late to this Zumba craze but I'm kinda sorta obsessed. Plus the Michael J. Zone Recreation Center offers free classes on Mon/Wed nights and who cares if all the colorful characters of my neighborhood are there sweating with me in a high school(ish) gym - it's fantastic and so very much fun.

I'm glad I've decided to listen to Bernie and the fine folks at Orville Redenbacher because this healthy living stuff is where it's at - during the week at least, mass amounts of bubbles still need to be consumed on the weekends ;)

So remember when I gave you crazy kids the opportunity to ask Bernie Salazar questions about healthy eating, exercise and smart snacking with Orville? Well I have your answers, straight from Bernie via the following video for your viewing pleasure - Enjoy.

Oh, and you maaaaaaaaaaay want to know who won the fabulous smart snacking prize package, huh?

Drum-roll please (brrrrrrrrrrrrlllllllllllrrrrrrrrr) Congratulations to.....

Smitten in CLE!!

Whose comment, #44 out of #233, was chosen via random.org.

Sorry to those of you who didn't win, especially
Heather, who is going to be oh so disappointed - sad face.

Thanks again to Bernie for answering everyone's smart snacking questions and Orville Redenbacher SmartPop! popcorn for making the whole giveaway happen.

Happy Thursday, kids!