whatever wednesday: thoughts on a writing prompt

Some random thoughts on the above essay request from my yoga teacher training application:

– I only get 1000 words?!

– How do I really share what brought me to yoga?

– How do I really share what keeps me coming back to yoga?

– If I’m so dedicated to my little nook of the yogic community, how do I open myself to the broader one?

– With all this yoga, when the heck am I going to have time to run? The Cleveland Marathon is less than 81 days away…

– Am I ready to take this leap from student to teacher?

– Is it wrong to include how much hip openers make me want to throw something?

– Why do I keep asking these questions and not writing the answer to this essay?

– Is it March 23rd yet?


On a side note: Chardon High School & its community was rocked on Monday the 27th after a student opened fire in the school cafeteria, ultimately killing three and injuring others. My thoughts and prayers go out to all affected by this horrific tragedy. As we all mourn, go hug your loved ones – spouses, parents, kids, pets, whomever. Show them the love you have while you can.

March events for you to enjoy around Greater Cleveland

As February flies by, I’m prepping for the month of March a few days early. The winter weather is warming up and event organizers around town are getting ready for you to come out of hibernation! Here’s just a fraction of what’s going on around town in March 2012:


Nishkama Yoga “Yoga 201” Workshop

  • WHEN: Sunday, March 4 from 12:00pm until 2:00pm
  • WHERE: Nishkama Yoga (6595 Brecksville Road, Suite 3, Independence, OH 44131)
  • WHY: This workshop taught by our teacher trainees Susan and Whitney is a continuation on the basics of yoga, meant to further your practice no matter your level.
  • COST: FREE!! (It will sell out, so reserve your spot in advance!!)
  • MORE INFO: Visit the Facebook event page.
  • TO RSVP: Visit Nishkama’s Mindbody reservation site (click under the Workshops tab)

Yoga for Athletes & Runners Workshop at Nishkama Yoga

  • WHEN: Monday, March 5 from 7:30pm to 9:30pm
  • WHERE: Nishkama Yoga (6595 Brecksville Road, Suite 3, Independence, OH 44131)
  • WHY: From the site: Join Nishkama Yoga Teacher Melanie Tessmer as you flow through a series of poses designed to improve flexibility in your hips, hamstrings, and low back which will allow you a pain-free running experience and keep you running for life. The workshop will also focus on breathing techniques to increase lung capacity and a meditation practice to improve mental focus for increased endurance during your long runs.
  • COST: $35
  • MORE INFO: Visit the Facebook event page.
  • TO RSVP: Visit Nishkama’s Mindbody reservation site (click under the Workshops tab)

Street Yoga Teacher Training in Cleveland

  • WHEN: Friday, March 30 – Sunday, April 1
  • WHERE: The Studio – Cleveland (1395 W 10th Street, Ste. 120, Cleveland, OH 44113)
  • WHY: From the Facebook event page: In this training, you will receive practical, real world knowledge and techniques for teaching yoga to at-risk youth and other vulnerable populations. You will also be encouraged to dig into your personal experience in order to draw out your own joy, courage, and compassion as a teacher.
  • COST: $290
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Check out the Street Yoga site at http://streetyoga.org/training/teacher-training


Winter Chowdown 2012!

  • WHEN: Saturday, March 3 from 4:00pm until 10:00pm
  • WHERE: Agora Theater (5000 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44103)
  • WHY: From the Facebook event page: Trucks will parked in the back parking lot of the Agora (parking lot is on Prospect Ave). The dining room of Umami Moto’s new restaurant inside the Agora will be open! Come eat inside, the bar will be serving all night!
    Trucks participating will include Umami Moto, StrEat Mobile Bistro, Dim & Den Sum, Seti’s Polish Boys, Sweet! Mobile Cupcakery
    and more!
  • COST: Free – you pay for your food and drink at each truck.
  • MORE INFO: Visit the Facebook event page.

Main Street Cupcakes Group Wedding Cupcake Tasting

  • WHEN: Three opportunities to attend – runs 12:00PM to 2:00PM each day.
    • Saturday, March 3rd at the Medina location
    • Sunday, March 4th at the Rocky River and Hudson locations
    • Sunday, March 11th at the Rocky River and Hudson locations
  • WHERE: at one of the three locations of Main Street Cupcakes in Medina, Rocky River & Hudson
  • WHY: For all my brides out there: Try an array of our cupcakes and learn more about Cupcake Wedding Cakes: the cutest trend in weddings! Plus, do you really need a reason to eat cupcakes?!
  • BONUS: Book your wedding with MSC and receive a comploimentary 6” cake topper! ($45 value!)
  • COST: $5 – reservations are required so purchase in advance! (limit of 4 persons per reservation)
  • MORE INFO: Check out the MSC events posting.
  • TO RSVP: Please Call 440.331.3661 for the Rocky River shop, 330.342.0833 for the Hudson shop and 330.725.6421 for Medina shop.

Emerging Chefs present Corks & Cupcakes

  • WHEN: Thursday, March 8 from 6:00pm until 9:00pm
  • WHERE: Shaheen Gallery (740 W Superior Ave, Cleveland, OH 44113)
  • WHY: Details from the Eventbrite site: The Emerging Chefs are going to offer you a stunning selection of Italian whites, reds and proseccos. We will guide you through the rich tastes, aromas and whims of the Italian wines with the expert tutelage of Margaret Mann and Raffaele Scettro of Tuscany Distributors. They will work with cupcake baker extraordinaire Lilia Lipps of Indulgence Cakes to pair an amazing collection of wines with an insane selection of cupcakes.
  • COST: $40 plus handling fees
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Visit the Eventbrite site.

Brick & Mortar Pop-Ups presents Sweet Street with tour guide Cory Barrett

  • WHEN: Monday, March 19 from 6:00pm until 8:00pm
  • WHERE: Noodlecat (234 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44114)
  • WHY: Details from their team: Ever wish you could have dessert first? You totally can! This ALL DESSERT Brick&Mortar Pop-up features the best desserts from some of the most famous streets in the world!
  • COST: $75 – but use coupon code “NEOFOOD” for 15% off!
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Visit the Eventbrite site.

Dinner in the Dark at AMP150

  • WHEN: Monday, March 19 from 6:30pm until 10:00pm
  • WHERE: AMP150 (4277 W. 150th Street, Cleveland, OH 44135)
  • WHY: One of Cleveland’s finest monthly foodie events, here are the details from the Eventbrite site: We bring together Cleveland’s chefs and food lovers to share their passion and compassion. Once a month we host a six course dinner created by six local chefs. The menu fo rthe evening is not revealed until the guests arrive, keeping them “in the dark”.
  • BONUS: The ticket proceeds benefit a local charity chosen by the participating chefs.
  • COST: $65 per person plus tax and gratuity
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Visit the Eventbrite site.


OBA March Cleveland Blogger Volunteer Night

  • WHEN: Monday, March 12 from 6:00pm until 8:00pm
  • WHERE: Cleveland Foodbank (15500 South Waterloo Road Cleveland, OH 44110)
  • WHY: For our monthly meetup, the OBA bloggers will support the Harvest for Hunger campaign by donating some time and effort to our local affliate, the Cleveland Foodbank.
  • PLEASE NOTE: All volunteers must complete a volunteer registration form & release agreement. The form can be submitted ahead of time online at www.clevelandfoodbank.org.
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Visit the Facebook event page.

Meet, Eat and Tweet: Complementary Bloggers Event

  • WHEN: Sunday, March 18 from 5:00pm to 7:00pm
  • WHERE: Insight Learning and Wellness Center (25901 Emery Road, Warrensville Heights, OH)
  • WHY: From the event organizers: Feast on palate pleasing innovative food from Chef Rick at Nosh Eatery while you experience the newest, hottest and coolest healthy innovations and diversions in Northeast Ohio. Relax with Chair Massage, Reiki, Gluten Free Granola, New Yoga Products, Aromatherapy, and have your Aura read on the Aura Camera! Attendees will leave with a gift bag bursting with swag including all sorts of goodies from Twenty 4 Zen Granola, Bitch and Germ Yoga Mat Cleaner, Magnoodles, Namastay Yoga Mat Towels, Ascent Portable Aromatherapy, crystals, gift certificates and more.
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Contact Raizel Michelow at rmichelow@aol.com.

cleveland.com TweetUp with United Way

  • WHEN: Wednesday, March 21 from 5:30pm until 8:00pm
  • WHERE: House of Blues Cleveland (308 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44114)
  • WHY: It’s just a good old fashioned TweetUp! From the Facebook event page: We’ll have giveaways, including Cavs tickets and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame tickets, throughout the event and discounted drinks and free appetizers. You’ll also be able to make your Twitter handle a part of our GuitarMania guitar, designed by artist Garrett Weider.
  • MORE INFO & TO RSVP: Visit the Facebook event page.


Cleveland Public Theatre has two show openings during the month of March:

  • Darwinii: The Comeuppance of Man by Glen Berger, with story by Glen Berger and Brett Keyser
    • WHEN: runs March 1 – March 17. Show times are 7:30 p.m.
    • WHERE: Cleveland Public Theatre’s Storefront Studio.
    • WHY: Description from CPT’s site: Argentine Cristobal has stolen the original Charles Darwin manuscripts from rare book libraries around the world. Why? Because he’s convinced he’s the great-great-great-great-bastard-grandson of the father of Natural Selection. As part of his sentence he must deliver a public apology, during which he digresses into a fresh and outrageous take on the evolution of man and the inherent human need to understand his place in society.
    • COST: Tickets are priced $10-$25.
    • MORE INFO: Visit the CPT website.
    • TO PURCHASE TICKETS: Visit CPT’s online reservation system.
  • poor little Lulu: Conceived & Directed by Matthew Earnest
    • WHEN: runs March 8 – March 24. Show times are 7:30 p.m.
    • WHERE: Cleveland Public Theatre’s James Levin Theatre.
    • WHY: Description from CPT’s site: This vintage circus of comic debauchery is based on Frank Wedekind’s revolutionary plays Earth Spirit and Pandora’s Box. poor little Lulu chronicles the exploits of Lulu – a sexual outlaw in a society riven by lust and greed – who is tossed like a frisbee from man to man, ultimately landing in the clutches of Jack the Ripper. poor little Lulu is simultaneously a cautionary fable and freewheeling peepshow.
    • COST: Tickets are priced $10-$25.
    • MORE INFO: Visit the CPT website.
    • TO PURCHASE TICKETS: Visit CPT’s online reservation system.

It’s another busy month in and around Cleveland! What events are you looking forward to attending in March?

Full disclosure: I am a team member at Nishkama Yoga, serve as the Cleveland Chapter President of the Ohio Blogging Association, was asked by several of these organizations to share this info, but share these events out of the goodness of getting you out to enjoy our town. My thoughts and opinions are 100% my own – at all times.

A Night Out in Lakewood with Ride + Workout, Deagan’s Kitchen & Bar and Secondhand Mutts

As you can see by the array of event postings this week, I’ve been out and about more than usual the last few weeks! It’s hard to believe it was already a week ago that I enjoyed a lovely evening in another one of Cleveland’s fine suburbs. Lakewood has plenty to keep you busy, as proven by my Friday night activities.

Before things got started, I snuck in a visit to Ride + Workout for a solid EasyRider session with my favorite yogi spinner Bethany. If you’re looking for a sweaty workout with amazing tunes, please check out one of her classes. I’ve never been disappointed with the music selection. Nothing quite like Eminem’s “Lose Yourself” to keep you going in those last five minutes when you don’t think you have anything left.

After forty minutes on the spin bike and a great yoga stretch, I took the quickest shower of my life and traveled down Detroit to meet up with my crew for the evening. A humble blogger meetup was on the docket as Jen, Amanda, Julie and I planned to drag our significant others (Matt, Scott, Todd and Hans respectively) for a quadruple date. Our Girls-Night-In group missed our boys and wanted to show them off around town!!

We met at one of my Lakewood favorites: Deagan’s Kitchen and Bar. The restaurant was hoppin’ on this Friday night as the bar was packed and the tables were all taken. I have to admit I was grateful we were sat in the side room so we’d have a chance at having a conversation without yelling across the table!

There’s no doubt about it: I’m a creature of habit. I ordered the assorted olives, peppadews and house crafted pickles to start:


…and the Baby Lettuce Salad and the Prince Edward Island Mussels for my meal:


Always so good. Hans tried something new-to-him. Since the next six Fridays of Lenten fish fries around the Parma area weren’t going to be enough, he ordered the Fish and Chips. He exact words to Deagan on how he felt about the dish: “AWESOME”.

Speaking of Deagan, he surprised us with this dessert board of utter goodness:


Starting at the top left going clockwise: Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie, Cinnamon Bun Bread Pudding (w/ Makers Mark bourbon ice cream), Tahitian Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee, and the Lake Erie Creamery Key Lime torte. We didn’t even wait for our server to bring us plates – we all just dug right in. I ate what I could: the bourbon ice cream was exquisite and I single handedly finished off the remains of the crème brulee.

Bellies full, we snapped a few photos before heading out.


I left Deagan’s planning my follow up visit (a father/daughter brunch date is in the cards) and wondering if the OBA folks would mind a return appearance to their side room. I always feel so at home there that I never want to go anywhere else when I’m on the West side!

The second half of the quadruple date was at Madison Square Lanes as we attended the 2nd Annual Secondhand Mutts Smooches & Pooches Valentine Bowl-A-Thon benefiting the animals of Secondhand Mutts and The Friends of the Cleveland Kennel. Jen and I had a ball at the event last year and put together two teams so we could share the pup love again in 2012.

The pups themselves even got in on the bowling fun as they greeted us as we got our bowling shoes and settled into our lanes:



For the $20 entrance fee, we got unlimited bowling for two hours plus an array of treats including pizza and desserts. In addition, you could purchase Secondhand Mutts apparel and raffles tickets for some great theme baskets:


Properly fueled, we were ready to bowl. It was the girls team (our team name: the Bowling Blogger Betties) vs the guys team (their team name: The Wesley Crushers – fans of The Big Bang Theory rejoice!!). Considering all but one of us hadn’t bowled in a very long time, we did our best to reach triple digits. I even had the highest score out of everyone during the second game!! However, Hans wasn’t too happy about how they spelled his name in the scoring system:


In our two hours of bowling, we fit in three solid games. As much as we tried to keep it guys versus girls, we couldn’t help but feel all lovey-dovey:



Before we knew it, it was 11:30PM and our quadruple date was over. According to the Secondhand Mutts Facebook page, the event raised over $3400 to share between Secondhand Mutts and The Friends of the Cleveland Kennel. What a wonderful way to raise funds for two great organizations while spending time with some of my favorite people!

What’s your favorite activity for a group night out? I’m considering gathering the troops for a toboggan night at the Cleveland Metroparks before the weather warms up!

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