Made in Michigan: Small Business Saturday

You’ll never find me waiting in a line on Black Friday, that type of shopping just isn’t my thing at all. However, you will find me visiting some of my favorite shops supporting them on Small Business Saturday. Here are nine of my favorite local shops.

Gift Guide: for the Fitnessista

1. Hair Ties - these are my new favorite... seriously zero creases
2. Athleta Mod Block Pants - Athleta yoga pants are my favorite, they hold your booty in place while running
3. Custom Yoga Mat - I have my name on mine, and get so many compliments
4. Yoga Mat Wash - because ewwwww, right?
5. Athleta Cut Out Top - I am obsessed with open back tops (for everyday and working out)
6. APL Shoes - tons of colors to select from
7. Athleta Tie Back Top
8. TIU Booty Bands - because who doesn't want a hot booty?

Gift Guide: For Her

It’s that time of year again, for the official release of Fashion meets Food Gift Guides, and this year I am starting off with gifts for her. All the gifts on this list I personally love, and hope you do too.  This list has a little bit of everything from the homebody to the fashionista.

1. Gem Stone Phone Case - super trendy
2. Tieks - these ballet flats are the most comfortable pair of shoes I own
3. Kendra Scott Leanor Pendant - obsessed with the Iridescent Drusy/Gold
4. Monogram Sleep Mask - because everything should be monogrammed
5. Monogrammed Robe - love the look of this
6. Small Bar Necklace - simple, classy and elegant.
7. J.Crew Ribbed Beanie
8. Return to Tiffany Heart Ornament - seriously so beyond obsessed with this
9. Shinola The Birdy - love this watch so much
10. Initial White Marble Cutting Board - seriously how cute!
11. Ralph Lauren Flannel Sleep Shirt - anyone else love getting PJs for Christmas or am I the only one who likes that? 

Restaurant Review: Patty Burger

I recently had the opportunity to try Patty Burger in Orion Township, and let me tell you it just might be my new favorite burger joint. With so many delicious options it was so hard to choose, but I decided on the Cali Girl which is Fresh Sliced Avocado, Alfafa Sprouts, Applewood Smoked Bacon, Provolone & Wasabi Ranch (I got the ranch on the side). I also got an order Fresh Cut Sweet Potato Chips – which come tossed in their cinnamon Chipotle spice. Both of my selections were absolutely delicious. Dessert was Patty's Sweet Bites, aka little balls of sweet fried dough heaven... yum! What makes Patty Burger unique is they have a full bar and boozy milkshakes, hello new favorite date spot!

 Enter To Win
$50 to Patty Burger
*Must be local resident to enter

Restaurant Review: Chartreuse

Seedling Farms Pears
bosc, raspberries, tart cherries, cider, maple, almonds and bleu cheese

It’s the perfect time of year to head to a dinner and a show around Detroit, and recently I discovered an absolutely amazing restaurant -  Chartreuse.  Chartreuse Kitchen and Cocktails is located in Detroit and features a menu that changes daily based on the seasonality and availability of the freshest local ingredients. Two things I really loved about Chartreuse is they do not have a freezer, therefore everything is super fresh, and the restaurant is created to order a few plates and share them.  What did we order? Short Ribs (special of the day), Seedling Farms Pears, Madagascar Vanilla Pudding and Key Lime Pot De Crème.   Let me tell you, the food was insanely fresh and the flavors were out of this world. The Madagascar Vanilla Pudding was probably one of the best desserts I have had in a really long time. I highly recommend checking out Chartreuse even if it’s just for dessert.

Short Ribs

Madagascar Vanilla Pudding
Made with bourbon chantilly lemon basil syrup and rosemary basil cookies

Key Lime Pot De Crème
Michigan blueberries, graham cracker, sea salt and a chocolate bar

Giveaway: 2 Tickets to Mannheim Steamroller at the Fox

Mannheim Steamroller returns to the Fox Theatre in Detroit for a one night engagement Saturday, December 16 and I am giving away TWO tickets to see this amazing show.

Chip Davis, founder and creator of Mannheim Steamroller and the industry’s largest independent record label, American Gramaphone, announced that his annual Christmas concert tour will begin on November 13, 2017. The ensemble will perform at the Fox Theatre on Saturday, December 16 as part of the Fifth Third Bank Fox Theatre Series.

Tickets ($30, $45, $55 and $70) are on sale now and can be purchased at, The Fox Theatre and Little Caesars Arena XFINITY box offices and To charge tickets by phone, call (800) 745-3000. For additional information, call (313) 471-6611. Series subscription packages and discounts for groups of 10+ are available by calling 313-471-3099.

Grammy Award® winner Davis will direct and co-produce Tour performances with MagicSpace Entertainment.  The show features classic Christmas hits from Mannheim Steamroller and multimedia effects in an intimate setting. 

In addition to being a holiday tradition for many families, the Mannheim Steamroller Christmas Tour regularly attracts repeat attendance from multi-generational guests. and is one of the longest running tours in the music industry.

“Our first Christmas tour was 33 years ago in 1974 when we played in five cities.  Currently, we play an average of 75 cities each year and it is a real privilege to continue sharing the holiday spirit through our performances,” said Chip Davis. 

PBS stations nationwide will be broadcasting “Mannheim Steamroller 30/40 Live” this year. The milestone special was filmed two years ago to mark the group’s 30-year anniversary of musical holiday magic and 40 years of groundbreaking Fresh Aire compositions.  This year’s tour includes many of the performances in the PBS special broadcast.

Mannheim Steamroller has sold more than 40 million albums, 28 million in the Christmas genre.  Their holiday CD’s have become synonymous with Christmas and occupy top positions on Billboard’s Seasonal Chart every year. 

Having 19 gold, 8 multi-platinum and 4 platinum-certified records, Davis is among an elite group of artists that include U2, Jay-Z, and The Beach Boys with such certifications.

Mannheim Steamroller Christmas by Chip Davis is produced by MagicSpace Entertainment. The company is headed by Lee D. Marshall, Joe Marsh, John Ballard, Steve Boulay and Bruce Granath and has been producing and presenting national tours, Broadway shows, concerts and museum exhibits worldwide for over 30 years. Consistently one of the top promoters in North America, MagicSpace Entertainment typically produces and presents more than 250 events in 75 cities per year.  They have offices in Park City and Salt Lake City, UT.

About Chip Davis and Mannheim Steamroller
From his longtime home in Omaha, Neb., Mannheim Steamroller creator and founder Chip Davis makes innovative music inspired by the sounds of another age.  This former teacher and jingle writer founded the music industry’s largest independent recording label, American Gramaphone, in 1974 when industry executives said Davis’ innovative 18th century instrumental rock sound would never sell.  In addition to a Grammy Award, Davis is largely credited with establishing the New Age music category. His first Christmas album in 1984, revolutionized the making and marketing of holiday music, the album’s success made Christmas records a “must do” for all music artists.  With more than 28 million Christmas albums sold, Davis is the #1-selling Christmas artist of all time with Elvis coming in at a distant 17 million holiday records sold.  He is also one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the music industry, offering a rich array of lifestyle products on including hot chocolate, food, apparel and novelty items.  His latest achievement is creating a cutting edge psychoacoustic technology that is being used in major medical institutions such as Mayo Clinic.

For more information and a complete list of tour dates, visit:

Enter to win
2 Tickets
to see Mannheim Steamroller at the Fox Theatre
Saturday, December 16
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Restaurant Review: Sweetwater Gourmet Deli & Bar

After adventuring around Lexington it was time to get something to eat. I had Jack with me, therefore carryout in most cases would be the only option. However the weather conditions were perfect, and right in the heart of fall patio dining could happen. Sweetwater Gourmet Deli & Bar looked like a cool spot to enjoy lunch, and they allowed Jack on the patio. Everyone outside and inside of the restaurant seemed to be enjoying pizza, so I think the only option was to get a pizza as well. We decided on The Sweetwater, which featured tomato sauce, pepperoni, ham, mozzarella/provolone blend, purple onion, mushroom, bell peppers, mild banana pepper rings, garlic, back, black olives (we said no to the olives) on a sesame seed crust. I have to admit that this pizza was probably one of the best pizzas I have ever had, and I can’t wait for a random winter road trip to eat it again. If you’re in Lexington or just driving through, I highly recommend making a stop at Sweetwater.

Broadway in Detroit announces Five Broadway Blockbusters

Broadway in Detroit just announced that tickets will go on sale Sunday, November 26 for FIVE, Broadway blockbusters that will be appearing at Detroit's Fisher Theatre. The productions and their engagement dates are as follows:

Finding Neverland
February 6 - 18, 2018

Les Miserables - saw this with 9th grade French class so good!
February 27 - March 11, 2018

Cinderella - my birthday is the 18th so super excited for this show
March 14 - 18, 2017

School of Rock
April 10 - 22, 2018

On Your Feet
May 1 - 13, 2018

Please note that all show dates may be subject to change.

Tickets for School of Rock, On Your Feet and Finding Neverland start at $39. Tickets for Cinderella start at $35 and tickets for Les Miserables start at $45.
Tickets for all shows will go on sale Sunday, November 26 at all Ticketmaster locations, by phone at 1-800-982-2787, and online at or  Tickets can also be purchased at The Fisher Theatre Box Office starting Monday, November 27.
A limited number of premium seats for all shows will be available through Ticketmaster and at The Fisher Theatre Box Office.  For group sales information please call 313-871-1132 or email For information about open captioned performances please call phone at 313-872-1000, ext. 0.  

For information about each show as well as its performance schedule, please visit Performance schedule, tickets prices and cast are subject to change without notice.
Patrons who sign up for Broadway In Detroit email alerts will be notified about exclusive opportunities to purchase tickets before they go on sale to the public. Sign up at
Broadway In Detroit Holiday Gift Certificates are also now available for purchase at The Fisher Theatre Box Office or online at
Ticket buyers are reminded that The Fisher Theatre and Ticketmaster are the only official retail ticket outlets. Ticket buyers who purchase tickets from a ticket broker or any third party should be aware that the theatres are unable to reprint or replace lost or stolen tickets and are unable to contact patrons with information regarding time changes or other pertinent updates regarding the performance.
The Broadway In Detroit Series at The Fisher Theatre is sponsored by the Chrysler Pacifica.  As part of this sponsorship, the Chrysler Pacifica will be on display this season at The Fisher Theatre.

Apple Cider Muffins

One of my favorite things about fall is heading to the cider mill and grabbing some cider and donuts to enjoy on a crisp fall day. Recently, I was given a gallon of cider from Yates (my favorite!) and decided I would use some of it to whip up a batch of apple cider muffins. The result wasn’t as good as a greasy hot donut, I mean nothing compares – but they were pretty darn good.
Apple Cider Muffins
1 cup flour (I turned old fashioned rolled oats into flour)
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground clove
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
dash of salt
¼ cup honey
½ cup applesauce
1 egg
¼ cup apple cider
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Combine all dry ingredients.
3. Blend together wet ingredients.
4. Add try ingredients to wet and combine.
5. Spray mini muffin pan with oil.
6. Pour batter into the tray.
7. Bake for 15 minutes.
8. Sprinkle a little cinnamon and sugar on top.

Travel Diaries: Lexington

Being a Michigander I have made my way adventuring around the state, discovering new cities – however I have NEVER been to the thumb before (oh in case you’ve never been to Michigan or met a Michigander before we will tell you where we are from by pointing it out on our hand). Everything has been super overwhelming lately, we just found out my grandma has cancer, Jack spent 17 days being extremely sick (he’s okay now), and my personal life hit some serious hardships. I knew it was time to get out of dodge for a hot minute and headed to Lexington. I have never been to Lexington before (obviously – first time visiting any city in the thumb!) and the quaint town was just what I needed.  The beach seems to be what cures both Jack and I because that little puppers had just as much fun as I did. We walked around Lexington, and enjoyed all the sights. Seriously this town is super adorable. Lake Huron looked absolutely gorgeous, and the weather was even nice enough for us to enjoy a delicious pizza outside at Sweetwater – this restaurant is amazing as they let me have Jackers on the patio. Here’s some pictures from the adventure….

Man with a Marker

Imagine being a storyboard illustrator working for major accounts in the Detroit area (Detroit Tigers), and then the great recession hits, you lose it all – your job, car, home. You find yourself homeless and with everything you own in a single suitcase. It’s a completely heart breaking story, but with the help of a new kind of family David Smith will hopefully find permanent housing. The owners of Michigan Mittens and Earth to Earth held a fundraiser for David Smith this past Friday at Alleycat Café in Pontiac. The evening showcased Smith’s gorgeous artwork for sale, delicious appetizers and live jazz music, with hopes that enough money would be raised to provide Smith with a stable housing environment. Here is a look at Smith’s beyond amazing artwork and if you would like to commission him for your next project he is of course available.

Detroit Giveaway: Cirque Dreams Holidaze

Disclosure: I have an ongoing partnership with 313 Presents. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Cirque Dreams Holidaze is heading to the Fox Theatre in downtown Detroit for a three day engagement and you have the chance to WIN a 2-pack of tickets to the Friday, December 1st show at 7:30pm. 
One lucky winner will have the opportunity to win a 2-pack of tickets to the Friday, December 1st show at 7:30pm –hello amazing date night… am I right?

About the Show:
Cirque Dreams Holidaze lights up Detroit in 2017 at the Fox Theatre with its 10th anniversary national tour for five unforgettable performances Friday, December 1 through Sunday, December 3 as part of the Fifth Third Bank Fox Theatre Series. This critically-acclaimed holiday stage extravaganza is a Broadway musical, new cirque adventure and family show wrapped in one. 

Tickets (range $29-$69) are now on sale and can be purchased at, The Fox Theatre box office and To charge tickets by phone, call (800) 745-3000. For additional information, call (313) 471-6611. Series subscription packages and discounts for groups of 10+ are available by calling 313-471-3099.

Broadway Director Neil Goldberg has reimagined the anniversary stage spectacle of Cirque Dreams Holidaze the New York Daily News proclaimed “A delicious confection of charm, sparkle and talent by the sleigh load.” Its “The perfect holiday gift and show everyone will enjoy” raved BroadwayWorld of the sold-out performances that “Dazzled…at The Kennedy Center” hailed the Washington Post.

Audiences around the country will celebrate the most wonderful time of the year at this multi-million-dollar live stage production with never before seen performances, over 300 costumes, 20 of the world’s best acts, the finest singers, original music and seasonal favorites.  Experience elaborate costumed characters, snowmen, penguins, candles, reindeer, toy soldiers, gingerbread men, Santa and ornaments…flying, balancing and stretching imaginations in this groundbreaking holiday celebration.  Exciting theatrical production numbers, illusions and gravity-defying feats will leave you on the edge of your seats at this “Las Vegas…meets family entertainment…meets musical theatre” Cirque Dreams Holidaze production declares the Boston Globe.    

Says Creator/Director Goldberg, “Our 10th anniversary season of Cirque Dreams Holidaze is not just an entertainment spectacle and uplifting holiday celebration filled with gifts of amazement but is our largest and most elaborate production to date with something for everyone in the family to share and enjoy.” 

For more information, visit:
Performance Schedule:
Friday, December 1 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, December 2 3 p.m. & 8 p.m.
Sunday, December 3 2 p.m. & 7 p.m.

Enter to win via the widget below (Giveaway is also being ran on Instagram). Giveaway ends Saturday, November 11, and the winner will be notified via email the next day and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen.

Winner will receive a 2-pack of tickets to the Friday, December 1st performance, 7:30pm at the Fox Theatre. Winner’s tickets will be available for pick up at the Fox Theatre Box Office the day of show.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Pumpkin Poppers

It's the most basic time of the year, and my cabinets are stocked with pumpkin puree which means anything I can add pumpkin to I do. One of my favorite recipes right now is pumpkin muffins - I used a mini muffin pan to make them so I can easily pop them in my mouth while I am on my way to work.

Pumpkin Poppers

1.5 cups rolled oats (I put them in a food processor and turn them into "flour")
1 cup pumpkin puree
1/3 cup apple sauce ( i make my own because I like it chunky)
1/4 cup almond + coconut milk combination ( you can use any milk though)
1/4 cup honey or maple syrup (I switch it up depending on what I have)
2 Tablespoons melted coconut oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
dash of salt
1 tablespoon cinnamon

1. Pre-heat oven to 350.
2. Lightly spray your muffin pan with cooking spray (I used coconut oil).
3. Combine all ingredients.
4. Mix until well blended.
5. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until done.

Pumpkin Carving

When it comes to Halloween there are a few traditions that I follow.
1. Head to the pumpkin patch and pick out the perfect pumpkin.
2. Spend way too much time trying to decide what to carve.
3. Eat pizza while carving pumpkins.
4. Make pumpkin seeds.
my favorite are coconut oil, cinnamon + sugar and salt.
5. Eat taco salad on Halloween.
I honestly have not dressed up for Halloween since 2007 (I was Strawberry Shortcake), so the costume part is usually out for me – however the pumpkin carving part is always a must.

Holland Ponds

Mother nature decided that she was going to bring in some winter winds and basically force me to drag out earmuffs, scarves, mittens and my winter jacket. While the temps dipped down into the low 40s, Mark and I decided to head out into the woods for a little fall adventure. We roamed around Holland Ponds where the trees looked less than stellar, but on the plus we discovered (thanks to his mom telling him) steps leading to a cute little bridge.  I am super excited for our next little adventure, which I am pretty sure will be carving the best pumpkins - seriously.... what should I carve?


Nestled away in the quiet little town of Romeo, you will find the busiest street during October. Tillson street is Romeo’s version of Halloweentown, homeowners on the street go all out for Halloween to create some of the most unique and terrifying Halloween displays that you will ever see. Here is a little peek at my favorite houses on the street….. oh PS for you clown loves (I haaaate clowns) there is a super creepy clown house, which also has equally as creepy clowns roaming the streets and display.