Wednesday, April 27, 2011

I like to cut Coupons and it's turning into an Addiction


It's a little term that I'm becoming obsessed with.  I used to just cut the coupons out of the Sunday paper.  Then I saw an episode of Extreme Couponing and immediately got on the computer and signed up for every website possible that has coupons.

Then I realized that I spend almost 2 hours doing this and it was way late and I needed to get some sleep (for more couponing to commence tomorrow).  I know, it is embarrassing and I am made fun of for it.

I have a friend at work and she is a great saver.  So her and I got to talking and we shared some coupon websites and ways to shop and save.

I'm pretty sure you know you're old when thinking about cutting coupons is the conversation at lunch, but I accept it and I will continue to save!

I'll keep you updated on the savings.  Only 2 more work days this week!!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Ok rain, now I'm angry

So I've been complaining a lot about the rain lately.  Yes I know it's spring and it's supposed to rain, and the rain is good for the flowers and yadda yadda yadda.

I can deal with all of that.

What I can't deal with is rain water in my basement!  Not cool rain, not cool at all.  When there is so much rain that the ground is completely saturated and it starts coming into my basement, I'm mad.

So let's make a deal.  Can you please stop?  I promise to plant lots of flowers and be good to Mother Nature if you would just stop.  I know you are forecasted to keep coming until Thursday but I can't take it anymore!!

Thanks so much...Rachael

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Yesterday I saw the Sun!!

Aren't four day weekends wonderful?  Mine started off Thursday after work with a happy hour stop at the one and only Prosperity, which happens to be my favorite stop in Tremont.  They always have Blueberry Ale in the bottle and their Good Samaritan (Dirty) is the best dirty martini.  Happy hour with work friends is always a good time and a way to catch up with things that have nothing to do with work.  It was great!

Then I made a stop at ABC The Tavern in Ohio City to meet up with the boy for a drink.  I had never been there before and it was quiet for a Thursday night.  I had a nice Apricot Ale which I enjoyed and then we headed out.

We decided to hit up pretty much every little neighborhood possible and headed over to ABC's sister XYZ The Tavern.  The food was great and it was very busy which is a lot more fun!  We got a nice spot at the bar, enjoyed some more adult beverages and a good meal.  All in all, it was a good Thursday night!

Friday I did something stupid and got the itch to paint.  There is only one room in my house that has not been painted, so I figured why not.  After painting the woodwork and the ceiling, starting to paint the walls and realizing I did not have enough paint and then making a third trip to Home Depot in two days, I remembered how much I hate painting.  It's almost done though, and as soon as I finish this post that is what I will be doing!

I attended my last Friday Fish Fry of the season with the parents this week.  We switched it up and went old school to a good old fashioned church basement fish fry.  It was a nice way to end the fish fry season.

Saturday in the midst of painting the sun came out! Yes, the sun!!  It does exist here in Cleveland still.  So I took a break from painting and went outside to soak up some much needed Vitamin D.  Since it was so nice out and we don't get to go out Saturday night together, we got take out lunch from Melt.  If you have not been there yet I highly suggest you going, like yesterday.  And don't worry, they are opening a new one in Independence soon that used to be a huge Winking Lizard, so hopefully you won't have to wait 2 hours to sit down!

After a nice long walk in the Metroparks with a very happy dog I did a little more painting and then called it a night.

Now off to more painting and then a Sunday night out just because I don't work tomorrow!

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good thing I was alone...

I woke up this morning and was looking forward to enjoying the day off work, going out for the afternoon and shopping while the sun was shining.

Then I woke up in the real world (Cleveland in the spring time) and it was cold and rainy...again.  But I still had the day off, had some great coupons and knew of a few good sales.  So I put on my scarf and jacket and trudged out in the rain.

I made my first stop at Old Navy where I had a 50% off coupon for anything in the store!  After an hour of shopping and looking through the store at least 3 times to make sure I did not miss anything that I just had to have for this summer, I finally left.

I walked out to my car.  I pressed the unlock key and it wasn't working.  So I pressed it again and of course pulled harder on the door, as if that would actually help.  Then I noticed that someone had put some bags on my passenger seat that did not belong to me (how did that happen???)  Oh yea, it took me until then to realize I wasn't trying to get into my was some other car!!!!

In my defense, it was my car, same color same style basically the same car.  So there I was walking away hoping no one was watching me like an idiot.  And then I found my car, right next to the one I was trying to get into!  So I told myself that it really wasn't my fault.  Someone parked right next to me in the same exact car and I couldn't even see my car because theirs was in the way.

I drove away laughing at myself because what else do you do when you do something that dumb?

I continued shopping in the rain and made sure to double check before I attempted to get into any cars the rest of the day.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Rain Rain Go Away

I miss the sun!  I am definitely feeling a lack of Vitamin D over here.  We have had so much rain the last few days I'm starting to feel like a wet mop.

What can you even do in the rain?  I can't take the dog for a walk...well I guess I can but it's very messy.  I cleaned the house which wasn't fun.  I just want to get out in the yard.  I want to cut the grass and smell that great smell.  I want to put the new ceramic pots out on the porch and get them ready for flowers.  I want to plant new plants and get the mulch delivered.

Soon Cleveland, very soon, you will be showing us what spring weather is.

I know this is just one big complaint, but it's my blog and I will complain when I want to.  Really, does anyone actually like the rain?

circa we heart it

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Brunch and Shrub Shopping

Since Friday and Saturday date nights are not an option for the boy and I, we chose to spend Sunday morning/afternoon at a Sunday Funday brunch.  We headed to Market in Rocky River and had a wonderful time.  I had dinner there recently with my mom and saw that they had a brunch menu that was right up our alley, so we decided to start our Sunday their.

We sat at the bar and had a nice time chatting with our bartender who just happened to be from London.  He was great and lots of fun.  I started with a Mimosa and he started with a Bloody Mary that you get to add all your own toppings to using their Sunday Funday Bloody Mary cart...very awesome.  After tasting that I realized I needed my own and quickly enjoyed my drink so that I could join in the fun.

We had a Pigs in a Blanket appetizer and I ordered the Eggs Benedict (a go to breakfast for me whenever it is on the menu) and he had one of their Market Skillets.  Great food, great service, great time.  We will absolutely be going back and hopefully sitting on their patio in the sunshine.


Eggs Benedict

Market Skillet

We then spent the rest of the afternoon shopping for shrubs.  There is this garden in the backyard that I just cannot decide what to do with.  I love flowers and I love gardening but I am indecisive and really wish I could just have someone come in and say put this here and this here and it will look fabulous.  Ok, that's not exactly true because I do like putting things together and feeling as if I contributed and helped to accomplish something.

Today we got pretty far though.  A very nice salesman at Petitti's showed us some things that we liked and he said if we bring in a picture of the space with dimensions they can help us plan things out.  Exactly what I wanted to hear!  So we left with four red planting pots for the front yard and enjoyed the ride home with a little dog in the back seat who loves the sun and car rides.

Happy Sunday!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Happy Anniversary Stone Mad!

Yesterday I met up with some friends for dinner at Stone Mad.  I have been there before for drinks and once on a last day of school lunch/adult beverage celebration.

Last night, they were celebrating their third anniversary.  There was a band playing and the bar was packed.  After visiting the bar and getting a delicious Harp, we sat down and ordered dinner.  The food was great and so was the service.  The only that could have been better would have been if the weather was a little nicer and we could have spent time on their amazing outdoor patio.  This is definitely a place I will be visiting as a summer patio spot.  The patio has a beautiful fireplace and everything is (yep, you guessed it) stone.

We had lots of fun at dinner and left at about 9:30.  When I say we, I mean everyone else went out to XYZ The Tavern, which is also a great time, and I left and went home to go to bed like the old person that I am.  Well there is always Friday night right?

Or not...considering it is 11:15 p.m. on a Friday night and I am in my PJ's blogging.  I did have a nice dinner tonight with my mom though.  Since it is Lent we usually go to a  local church fish fry, but I decided to try to switch it up a bit this week.

Bar Cento is a place that I visit quite often.  They have lots of great food and because of one particular boy, I tend to go there a lot to visit and hang out for the night (more on that later).  Tonight, I decided to take my mom out to dinner.  We went for the fish fry which was very tasty and ended up with a huge plate of their potato fries to share.  We also had a dessert that tasted like a lemon creme brulee, but had lots of flavor.

All in all, it was a nice dinner with my mom.  She was happy to be treated to dinner and I was happy to take her.  I was home by 8 and have been putzing (yes, i said putzing) around the house for the rest of the night.  I'm not even mad.  I'm actually thinking that I'm going to head to bed soon, which means I get to wake up in the morning rested and feeling great without any tired/hungover regrets about all the fun I had the night before.

Every once in awhile you just need a Friday night in!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Just because I knit doesn't mean I'm old

I have a confession: I LOVE to knit.  The worst part about it, is when people ask me when I learned to knit and I have to tell (insert laughs and jokes about how lame my college life must have been).

College was a great time, and knitting was just something I happened to pick up thanks to my roommate my sophomore year.  Really, I could not be happier about it.  I've been able to make scarves, hats, baby booties, and baby blankets for some very special people.  I truly believe that a gift that is made for someone has so much meaning and people appreciate it.

Something that I was able to do this year that was even better than giving someone a handmade gift, was teach about 25 nine and ten year old students how to knit.  Watching them over the course of a few months learn, fail, get frustrated, succeed, and produce something that they were so proud of was amazing to see.  When they come up and ask for help with a project or just want to show off their new work, seeing them proud of themselves is so great.

With the school year getting ready to end (it will be here before I know it) I think I am going to miss the Tuesday Knitting Club.  I look forward to what we can do next year and hope to create a project that we are able to donate and share with others.  Hopefully more on that later!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Weekend Wrap Up

After a Saturday of hard work in the yard I took some time out to have dinner with a girlfriend.  Now, if you have read any of my previous posts you will know that I love to go out to dinner, and I love my friends.  So it was pretty much a great Saturday night.

We went to Salmon Dave's in Rocky River, which is one of my favorite places to eat, walk, shop, etc.  I adore my little house and neighborhood, but spend lots of time in River.  We started with a yummy bottle of Dr. L Riesling, which is delicious if you like a sweeter wine.  We shared a shrimp cocktail stack with a bloody mary cocktail sauce with lots of horseradish.  It was so good and we both commented on the fact that we never eat a really good shrimp cocktail and even though it was so simple it hit the spot.  For an entree I had the pan seared shrimp and scallops (I love love love scallops and probably eat them way to often) with lobster mashed potatoes.  It was a nice dinner with a great friend and good wine.  What could be better than that? 

It would have been nice to finish off with a dessert, but someone gave up desserts for lent, so I was a good friend and said I would pass too.

Today it was finally SUNNY!!!!!  I could not help but just want to be outside.  I made a little trip to Petittis to check out what they had and get some ideas for my project of a flower garden.  I'm thinking hydrangeas, butterfly bushes, and maybe a little tree.  Still working out the kinks and pretending I can landscape and make flowers look right.  Once I figure something out, I will post pics so the work in progress can be documented. 

After that we went for a nice long walk in the Metroparks.  This is one of my favorite things about living in Cleveland.  The Metroparks are such a great place with so many things to offer.  It is a 10 minute drive from my house and the walking trails are awesome.  Everyone is so friendly and people were just so happy that the sun was shining and it was 80 degrees.  I love walking past total strangers and being greeted with a hello or a smile.  It is even more fun to take a beautiful blue eyed puppy with you, because everyone loves to see her.

The day ended with a dinner for two on a patio!  First patio dinner of the season!  Si Senor's is a great Mexican restaurant with large portions and $2 beers on Sundays.  The service is extremely fast and pleasant, and if you are craving large plates of Mexican food with never ending chips and salsa this is the place.  I have been there once before last summer right after it opened and it was just as good.  On Saturday's they offer $14 pitchers of margaritas...sign me up!

Hope you weekend was just as wonderful as mine...and that the sunshine continues tomorrow.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Saturdays are for yardwork

Call me crazy but I actually like doing yardwork.  I was super excited when the weather forecast was calling for a dry sunny Saturday.  Well, the sun just decided to come out...around 5 pm, but it was dry this morning and afternoon so I have nothing to complain about.

The first time back in the yard after a long winter of shoveling is the best!  Yes, it is all clean up and pick up of garbage that somehow was left behind, but it is the start of a nice spring/summer/fall of time in the yard.  Today I was able to pull some weeds, rake some leaves, and clean up a bit around the little tree stump I am left with.

I have daylillies coming up and the grass in the backyard is green (too bad I cannot say the same for the front).  The gardens have all been raked and turned over and are ready for planting.  I have three small vegetable gardens and one large garden that sits in the back corner of the yard.  Last summer it was used as a veggie garden, but I am currently working on some ideas to create a beautiful perennial flower garden.  The beds in the front have yet to be touched.  They really could just be left alone, but that's no fun at all.  I love changing things up and moving things around to make things look even better.  I am most definitely a green thumb wanna be, so I am still working on making things actually look like they belong together.

Now I am off to what I know will be a delicious dinner at a lovely little place.  You will hear all about it tomorrow!

One more thing, all of my hard work today was not done alone and would not have been possible without one wonderful boy, and one crazy little dog.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Monthly Dinner

Sometime around my sophomore or junior year of college, I was lucky enough to meet three friends who are so important to me and I feel so happy to have in my life.  We see each other as often as we can, but since I am now back to being a westsider and they all live on the eastside, it does make it a little more difficult.  The leader of our group, KT, has made a point to always break out the calendar and set up times for us to see each other.  These are our Monthly Dinners.

Last night we got together and for the first time we able to see MR's new house!  She is engaged and just finished building a house with her soon to be husband.  It is finally finished and even though there is no yard, no driveway, and barely any furniture inside, she let us come over and see the (almost) finished product.  It is so perfect for them and I am so happy to see her as excited as she is about this new step in her life. 

After we checked out the house we headed over to Willoughby Brewing Company.  We have dinner once a month and try to go to a variety of spots, but because of our four locations and always meeting on a week night, it seems like we end up in downtown Willoughby often.  For some reason, I am never really extremely satisfied with WBC.  It was not bad by any means, but it just doesn't impress me.  Our server was awesome, and as a former server who will probably be returning to her old habits this summer, I ALWAYS ALWAYS appreciate good service.  The food was pretty good as well.  I had the fried egg burger and I have come to find that putting and egg on anything makes it delicious.

The best part about going out with these girls is that no matter where we go or what we eat we have a great time.  We have been through breakups, engagements, houses, weddings, and even a baby together.  We make sure to continue to set aside time to see each other just because we love each other and need the support of our girlfriends.  Sometimes we see each other a few times a month, and sometimes we go a whole month without seeing or talking to each other, but that's okay.  That next dinner we have together let's us catch up and just enjoy having wonderful friends.

After dinner I traveled back to the westside and made a slight detour to Rocky River Wine Bar.  This is a place I could go on and on about.  Since I have already taken up a lot of your time, I will just say it is a perfect place to stop for a little dessert when you are just having a sweet tooth.  Don't worry, I can guarantee that you will hear about this place again.

And it's Wednesday, so happy hump day!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

April Showers

Ok, I have to be honest.  I have a huge case of the Mondays.  Having 6 days off work and having to go back  on a rainy Monday, well it really gives you a case of the Mondays.  I tried my best to be positive all day, and I think it worked as best as it could.

Besides going back to work, another reason it was so easy to have a case of the Mondays was because of all this rain!  Come one Cleveland, I know they say April showers bring May flowers, but sitting at work all day watching the rain pour harder and harder while keeping your fingers crossed that there is not water in your basement when you get home is not fun.  Luckily there was no water.  But the backyard is a mud puddle and the gardens are turning in to small ponds.  The daylilies are coming in nicely though, so maybe they are right.

Since the rain hasn't stopped I find the only solution to be to grab my book and being the nerd that I am, read for the rest of the night.

Hope you had a wonderful Monday :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Columbus Roadtrip for the Tribe

My best friend and her husband (both Cleveland natives) are currently living in Columbus.  They are both wonderful people and I love taking the long drive down 71 to go visit.

In honor of the Tribe's season starting, they had a little party to celebrate.  Of course you never know what the weather will be like in Ohio in April, so we had every intention to enjoy the day outside watching the game on a TV that was rigged with cable from the second floor bathroom, playing cornhole, and enjoying some summer style brews. 

We ended up spending small amounts of time outside in between short rain/hail storms with a few spots of sunshine.  We also were witness to the Tribe's second loss of the season, but we all have faith in the team and can't wait to see where they go this season.

One of the best parts of the party was the hot dog bar that included tater tots!  There were a multitude of toppings to choose was very Happy Dog-ish, which is a wonderful little bar that I love to visit and will of course be blogging about in the future. 

Here are a few pictures for your enjoyment.  As you can tell, we know how to have fun, and anytime I have the chance to see my best friend, a good time is had by all.

There's the hot dog bar in the background! And of course some beautiful ladies :)

Let's Go Tribe!

Of course a dance party broke out

It got a little serious
Just a little sidenote...I have another pic that I would love to include, but since I am new to this whole blogging thing and am figuring things out one post at a time I can't.  It is turned sideways and I can't figure out how to flip it :(  It is saved the right way but isn't uploading that way...ugh.  

Friday, April 1, 2011

Opening Day...Let's Go Tribe!

Baseball is back!  In Cleveland, opening day is basically a holiday.  We wait all year long for this day to come.  Most of the time it is raining, cold, and there is even the chance for snow.  This year it was a chilly day but the sun was out, and that is all we baseball fans can really ask for.

I've been to one opening day game, and after that have vowed to never return.  It was freezing out and about 3 innings into the game it began to pour.  When I say pour, I mean torrential rain coming down.  We were sitting in the upper deck hoping the storm would pass quick.  Boy were we wrong.  We waited about an hour, and then decided to just go to a bar to "wait out" the rain delay.  We managed to make it all the way back to the eastside before they even began to play again, so we were even able to watch the rest of the game.

This was the second game that I have been to, with my three girlfriends, that we got caught in the rain.  Don't worry though, we continue to go to one game every year together, and I can't wait for this years!

Tomorrow I will be headed down to Columbus for a beginning of the season Indians party.  I will be sure to post some pics and let you know how it goes.  For now, I leave you with this little video I found.  It is a great way to kickoff the beginning of baseball season...which also means summer will be here soon!

Check out The Ball.