A Weekend Celebration

A little over four years ago, I made the decision to go to Baldwin Wallace to get my MBA. Within that first month, I met a guy who caught my attention, and four years later he still makes me smile. Over the weekend we celebrated spending 4 amazing years together in the city where our relationship grew.

We headed to Wooster Saturday evening and started with dinner at my favorite restaurant, Broken Rocks Cafe.  As always I had the Spaghetti & Meatballs and Darren had the Tomato Basil soup and Cajun Chicken. Both great meals and highly recommended. Afterward we headed to City Square Steakhouse for additional drink(s) and dessert, which is where we finished up the night before heading back to the hotel. It was so great to get away to a place we love and enjoy some of our favorite sites of Wooster.

So here’s to 4 years and many, many more!


365 Days

One year, 365 days. A lot can happen in this small amount of time. A few days ago, Jen asked me to participate in a 365 day photo challenge. I’ve participated in a few monthly Instagram challenges, but trying a photo challenge that would last one full year sounded really exciting.  So I’ve decided to give it a shot. I haven’t decided on a theme, but I want to focus on taking pictures when the perfect moment happens.

We’ll be using 365project.org and you’re welcome to follow along. I’m sure I’ll update with my favorite pictures throughout the year, but to catch all the photos, feel free to follow me. We’re starting on February 1st and I’m excited to see what amazing things I’ll capture over the next 365 days.

And so we begin, 365 days of my life, filled with running, traveling, possibly some adorable cats, and so much more. I hope you enjoy it and hopefully you can start your own 365 day journey!

Weekly Fitness Update

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve done a weekly fitness update, but it’s because I wasn’t putting much time or effort into working out. With about a mile or two each week, it wasn’t worth it to post it, but that’s all changing now. With less than six months to go until my goal race, I need to start taking running more seriously. With the holidays and some work trips, I’ve got a few challenging months ahead, but I definitely think I can get back into it and have the best training cycle yet.

I may have had some extra motivation from this view as well. I pass this road every day on my way to work and it always screams “Run Me!” One day I’ll venture to it and I can’t wait to see where it goes.

So tempting

So tempting

This week went really well. I wanted to get at least three days in and I did. I even got Darren to run outside with me one night. Running with Christmas lights decorating the neighborhood was definitely a great distraction from the snow and cold.

Monday: 1.5 Mile Run & 2 Miles Cycling

Tuesday: Off

Wednesday: 1 Mile Run

Thursday: Off

Friday: Off

Saturday: 3 Mile Run

Sunday: Off

Total Miles: 5.5 Miles (Running) & 2 Miles (Cycling)

My favorite run this week had to be Saturday. Even though it was snowing and windy the entire time, it was the best and longest run I’ve had in months. The sidewalks were untouched and running sans music, I was able to focus on my breathing and enjoy how peaceful everything was. Saturday’s run was a huge confidence booster in getting back in shape.


I’m hoping for more great runs and more snowy adventures this week, and hopefully no falls on the ice.

Castle Noel, A Christmas Museum

It’s finally December, which can only mean one thing…Christmas is coming! If you didn’t know, Christmas happens to be my favorite holiday, so it was only fitting to start the month off on the right foot by visiting the new Christmas exhibit in town.

Over the past year, one of the shops and an old church downtown have been renovated into Castle Noel, a year round, indoor Christmas experience. It was on my list of things to visit this holiday season, so I gladly accepted the opportunity to go when Darren’s parents offered to take us. We got there around noon on Sunday and were greeted with a short line outside. In total I think we spent about 45 minutes in line, but to me it was worth it. Castle Noel has only been open since November 22nd, so long lines are to be expected, especially now that we’re in the holiday season.

Instead of going into detail about each exhibit, check out some of these pictures I took.

Walls of holiday characters

Walls of holiday characters

Hallway filled with "I Had That" toys from all generations

Hallway filled with “I Had That” toys from all generations

The original Elf costume worn by Will Ferrel

The original Elf costume worn by Will Ferrell

Old window displays from Saks Fifth Avenue

Old window displays from Saks Fifth Avenue

Cindy Lou Who's bedroom set from The Grinch

Cindy Lou Who’s bedroom set from The Grinch

The Grinch and Max the dog

The Grinch and Max the dog

The Grinch's sleigh, one of three they used for the movie

The Grinch’s sleigh, one of three they used for the movie

The slide from A Christmas Story

The slide from A Christmas Story

The original elves from A Christmas Story pushed everyone down the slide

The original elves from A Christmas Story pushed everyone down the slide


Overall I really enjoyed Castle Noel. From what I saw it was mostly geared toward an older audience until the last room which had the Grinch movie sets and Santa. However, there were a few rooms that smaller children would enjoy, including a separate Santa room that wasn’t set up yet.

Even though we had a 45 minute wait to get started, the line inside went smoothly, with tours starting every 15 minutes. Tickets, however were a little pricy at $16 each, but if you order online, you can save a dollar by using the code “Medinasquare”

I think Castle Noel is a great new attraction to add to the Cleveland area and will be a big hit during the holiday season. I definitely recommend checking it out and seeing all types of Christmas memorabilia from all generations. If anything, you’ve got to go to ask Santa for your official Red Ryder, carbine action, two-hundred shot range model air rifle

A New Hot Spot in Town

One of my favorite places on the West side has always been 87 West, the adorable wine bar inside Crocker Park. It was always the perfect place to catch up with friends or rewind after work. Since we moved to Medina, we’ve noticed that it was missing a wine bar, something I’m finding is hard to live without. That all changed when a new gastro pub & wine bar opened up this past week. Lager & Vine Gastropub & Wine Bar ventured out from the East side and has opened shop on the square in little ole’ Medina.

We decided to try it out last Thursday night and we were pleasantly surprised. The inside had a very cozy feel and already had a few holiday decorations up. We sat at the bar to get a good view of the football games, and were greeted by a number of people at the bar and from the kitchen. They had a pretty large drink menu and had everything from beer, cocktails and wine. The beer list was a decent size and included both beer on tap and from bottles. The bar tender mentioned they rotate beer regionally, but unfortunately didn’t have two of the most local beers on tap at the time, this meant no Great Lakes or Lagerheads. They had a better choice of wines than most restaurants, but for being a wine bar, they didn’t have as many as I had hoped.

We started off with an appetizer before our main meal, all of which had pretty quick service. We started with the lobster bisque, which came in a large bowl, definitely big enough for a lunch serving. I thought it was really good, Darren thought it was ok. I love almost all seafood chowders/bisques, so it’s pretty easy to make me happy.

Next we followed up our appetizer with dinner, which neither of us could decide on what we wanted for sure. I was in between the Chorizo Mac and Cheese and the Tomato Basil flat bread, but decided on the L&V Blanco flat bread. Darren chose the Asian Spice Ahi Tuna Tacos, but I think he was temped by the steak.



Overall the flat bread was really good, I ate almost most of it and wasn’t feeling too stuffed when I finished. Darren wasn’t the biggest fan of the tuna tacos, but that’s a hard meal to please everyone with.

Lager & Vine’s menu definitely has a great assortment of food that I know we’ll be back to try. The atmosphere is great, and I can tell this is a place where we’ll be spending a lot of time. I’m excited to see how the future of the restaurant grows and hope that Medina enjoys it as much as we did!

Have you ever tried Lager & Vine in Hudson?

October Rewind

October wasn’t your typical month, and so the review should reflect that. I only ran once in the month of October, and while I completely enjoyed chasing daylight along my favorite path, I knew it was best for me to take some time off. Recovering from ongoing planter fascistic and just plain feeling burnt out, distance (away) makes the heart grow fonder of running and I’m ready to jump back in.

These runs are my favorite

These runs are my favorite

October was a crazy month of stress, overworking and an emotional pull in every direction. If you missed my last post, then I’ll catch you up. We bought a house! A quicker than expected decision, followed by our closing date being changed three times, and honestly, I’m so glad that it’s finally over. But really I couldn’t be more excited. I’m absolutely in love with our house, our huge deck and the fenced in yard that will *hopefully* one day contain a dog.

Home is where the heart is

Home is where the heart is

You could say I’m borderline obsessed with our newest purchase, but I’m just thrilled that I don’t have to pack up and change apartments every year. We love Medina, and are looking forward to our next chapter of life, out in the country.

So there’s October, a month off running, but a month of preparing ourselves for the next stage in life. I’m looking forward to November, and getting back into running. But even more so, I’m excited that the Christmas countdown is on!

How was your October? Any goals for November? Starting the countdown to Christmas?

Home Sweet Home

After two months of stress, worry and probably every emotion I can think of, I’m excited to finally relax for a bit and truly call Medina my home. Because…

Home sweet home!

Home sweet home!

We bought a house! Now, time to unpack…


Happy Monday!


Running Local

Did you guys know that Medina is a mecca for runners? When we moved out of the suburbs, I was pretty convinced that I’d have to travel a long distance for every race I’d want to run. Luckily over the past year I’ve learned that Medina has a Second Sole, a running group, many running trails and hosts a bunch of races ranging from 5k to a double marathon. I had no idea that I had so much access to all things running and I couldn’t have been more excited. While I love the atmosphere of a large race, running a small local race just feels so much better.

I’ve run with the Road Runners group and have found new training routes as well as advice from all types of runners. It’s amazing what you’ll learn when you run with a group and how much more motivation you have for races. Sometimes the best thing for your running is to get out of your comfort zone…

Which leads me to my next point. I encourage you to get out of your comfort zone and try running somewhere new. As hard as it is to leave running next to Lake Erie or in the Cleveland Metro Parks, head South on 71 and run some rolling hills and country roads. You can start this Thursday when Second Sole Medina hosts Ladies Night. I definitely plan on being there and following it up with some sunset running and yoga.

If that’s not your kind of thing, there are plenty of races down in the Medina area to please all distances. Hopefully I’ll see you out there at one of these!

Upcoming Races:

October 5, 2013 – Running of the Ghouls 5k

October 26, 2013 – Paws for the Cause 5k

October 26, 2013 – Montville Police Patrolman’s 5k

October 27, 2013 – Run with Scissors Half Marathon/Marathon/Double Marathon

November 28, 2013 – Turkey Burner 5k

December 8, 2013 – Buckeye Woods 25k/50k

And don’t forget, May 31st is the Medina Half Marathon, it’s never too early to register!