PlayhousesSquare Cinema at the Square Groupon

I had just posted about PlayhouseSquare’s Cinema at the Square Series for the summer and then today came across this:

If you are planning on heading downtown for a show, I suggest you check out the Groupon for half-price tickets, with three days left to buy.


Cinema at the Square Returns to Playhouse Square

Along with several classic favorites of adults, take the kids to enjoy this unique movie-going experience with these family-friendly flicks:

The Muppet Movie – Aug. 5th at 2pm

Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory – Aug. 12 at 2pm

Mary Poppins – Aug. 19 at 2pm

Tickets are $5.  For a full list of Cinema at the Square movies, visit

Half Off LEGO Camps Next Week

Here are a couple of deals on a Parents’ Night Out for tomorrow as well as two LEGO Camps taking place next week at Bricks 4 Kidz in the Brunswick/Medina area:


Friday, June 22, 2012 6:00pm – 9:00pm

HUGE DEAL!!! Kidz ages 4 to 12 years old can join us for our Bricks 4 Kidz Parents’ Night Out Party, and they can do it for 1/2 price.  Just bring a friend and split the cost of this 3 hour event.  Games, LEGO Building Time, Movie, Pizza and Refreshments.  The cost is normally $25 per child, tomorrow night ONLY is buy one get one free night.  Pre-registration is required online at or by calling
(330) 722-2223 before tomorrow at 4pm, or until it sells out.


6-12 Year Olds
Grab your Friends and come hang out with us for a girls-only week of crafting and creating with LEGO bricks.  Introduce your friends to our “Friends” as we get to know LEGO brands newest line of girl themed models.  We’ll do lots of other unique things with bricks from jewelry making to brick art and origami, with take-home projects each day.  And don’t worry…there are “NO BOYS ALLOWED!”  BECAUSE THIS WEEK IS ALL ABOUT THE GIRLS!

6-12 Year Olds
If you are facinated by the weird but true, wild and wacky, gross and yucky, then this is the camp for you! Spend the week discovering the zany biology of our animal friends. Each day we’ll explore fascinating facts about the animal kingdom, focusing on a “creature of the day”. Build a different animal model each day and fill your very own “Animal Grossology” booklet with crazy and cool facts you learn, complete with a picture of each model, to become a cerifified Bricks 4 Kidz Grossologist.

Both camps are BOGO Free next week only.  This means bring a friend and split the cost.  
The cost of camp is $160.  This can not be combined with any other offer and friends must participate in the same camp.
Registration and payments can be done online or by phone.  Mention the Bricks 4 Kidz email for the discount.

Easy Family Activities For the Summer

I am always amazed by my friends’ abilities at scheduling summer camps and activities for their children.   My calendar is a complete mess, I could really use some white out with the activities that are scratched out, rescheduled, cancelled, added, etc.     And I only have two.     But there are two programs I really love because they allow you to commit to a short period of time (only one morning), are ala cart so to speak, are inexpensive, and are family-friendly, meaning I get to participate and spend time with the kiddo and if I need to, the two-year old little brother can join us.

The first program we actually did last year.    It is the Cuyahoga Valley National Park’s Junior Ranger, Jr. program.    I wrote about it here.  Each session is two hours and is $8 per child.

For details on this year’s programs, visit

The second I just found out about.    It is the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo’s Family Discoveries.  Programs are 90 minutes long and cost $15 per person (Zoo members $10 per person).  Program fee includes admission to Zoo and RainForest.

You can find all of the info on the various programs here:

Are you aware of more programs like this?     If so, please share the info below in the comments section.

Until next time,


Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland’s® “Jazz for Kids”

Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland’s® “Jazz for Kids”

LOCATION:  The Children’s Museum of Cleveland

DATE: Saturday, April 21, 2012

TIME: Two Performances to choose from: 11:00 am or 2:00 pm

TICKET FEE: $5 per person for Children’s Museum Members
$10 per person for Non-Members
Infants 11 months and under are free

(Tickets include admission to one performance and full-day use of all of the Museum’s exhibits. Only those with Jazz for Kids tickets will be admitted to the performances.)

MORE:  This year’s family-friendly event is sure to be the best ever! Now in its sixth year, the “Jazz for Kids” concert is an entertaining and educational experience for families with young children led by pianist and Cleveland native, Joe Hunter and his friends. Enhancing the concert through hands-on interaction with the audience will be early childhood music educator Becky Ogden, guaranteeing that this event will get young minds
involved in and excited about jazz!

(Due to increasing attendance the Museum has decided to limit the number of attendees to ensure the best possible experience for all. Ticket sales have been limited to a total of 200 per performance.)

REGISTRATION: Advance registration is recommended and event tickets are required.

Purchase your tickets in person at the Museum, by calling 216.791.7114

or by clicking on one of the following links:

Buy tickets for the 11:00 am concert

Buy tickets for the 2:00 pm concert

Orchid Mania Lasts One More Week

I am feeling the need to get the toddler out of the house this week if the weather is so warm, and I love taking kids to the Cleveland Botanical Garden, and I absolutely love orchids, so I am hoping to make it to this:


February 11 – March 25

Tuesdays – Saturdays: 10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Sundays: Noon – 5:00 pm • Closed Mondays

Adult: $9.50; Child (3-12): $3
Members, Children 3 and under: FREE

Sophisticated ladies. Speakeasies. Busby Berkeley musicals. The 1920s was a time when America’s preoccupation with opulence, luxury and sensuality matched its limitless spirit of optimism and individual expression.

Sound like a certain exuberant flower you know?

Orchid Mania: This Side of Paradise celebrates those independent spirits of the floral world, orchids, in a setting befitting of Jay Gatsby himself.

Hundreds of bold, fragrant, blooming orchids will be on display throughout the Garden and in the naturalistic setting of the Garden’s Costa Rica Glasshouse.

It’s an occasion for flappers, Phalaenopsis and every other kind of orchid you can imagine.

I Love Living in Cleveland

First I must say that I am ashamed that I have not written anything in more than 3 months.   That’s just terrible.   Tonight is one of those rare evenings where I managed to get chores done AND the kids in bed on time, while my hubby is at work, so I get to write.    And apparently, based on an email I had sent myself on February 20th, I’ve been wanting to write about living in Cleveland, or at least, living in Ohio.

I need to begin with an explanation.  Thanks to the hubby’s work, we have been blessed to travel to Hawaii for two weeks each year for the past four years.   While we are there he works in the evenings but we get to enjoy family time together when he isn’t working.   Three years ago I had posted about returning from Hawaii and being grateful to be back in Cleveland and see the big fluffy white snowflakes and just to be home in general.    The PD linked to it and someone made a snarky comment and have since basically felt as though I committed blog suicide here:

Well, in February we were back to Hawaii for the hubby’s work.  This time, while we were there, I was fortunate to meet a lovely family who was renting a condo in the same building where we stayed.   She (Indonesian) and her husband (Canadian) had lived in Japan for the past nine years and had just relocated due to work to Honolulu.   They have two awesome little boys who my sons loved to hang out with, and while they all played I had so many wonderful conversations with their mom.   I loved to hear about their search for a home in Hawaii, and their lives back in Japan and everywhere else.  But what got me thinking about writing this, was our discussions regarding the cost of living.

I grew up just on the border of Cleveland, and I feel I should add I apparently grew up “below the poverty line”, though it wasn’t until I was a senior in high school that this was made apparent to me when someone pointed this out.    My mom was a housekeeper in an apartment building and my dad was retired from working for the City of Cleveland.  I grew up in a two-bedroom apartment but we were comfortable.

In Honolulu, the two-bedroom condo where we stayed would cost twice as much as my current house.   It got me thinking, you can’t really afford to be poor and live in Hawaii.   There are a lot of places where you can’t afford to be poor in the US.  In Cleveland, there are so many services, so many opportunities, and the cost of living remains relatively low.  I had no clue I was poor.   So out of curiosity I looked up some cost of living statistics on Hawaii vs. Ohio.   I am sure there is some equation for doing a comparison, but just looking at the numbers to me was interesting:


Homeownership rate, 2006-2010: 59.3%

Median value of owner-occupied housing units, 2006-2010: $537,400

Per capita money income in past 12 months (2010 dollars) 2006-2010: $28,882

Median household income 2006-2010: $66,420

Homeownership rate, 2006-2010: 69.2%

Median value of owner-occupied housing units, 2006-2010: $136,400

Per capita money income in past 12 months (2010 dollars) 2006-2010: $25,113

Median household income 2006-2010: $47,358

The difference in Median household income is small, particularly when compared to the significant difference in the Median value of owner-occupied housing units.    Money simply buys so much more here, compared not just to Honolulu or Hawaii in general, but to many other metropolitan areas.

Beyond the cost of living, I do love to hear my five year-old tell me all of the things he loves about each season.   And I love all of the things that, when I have the time, I write about that my family and I enjoy doing all around the Cleveland area.

Do you love living in Cleveland?    What do you love about living here?

Until next time,


PS.   I should add that, periodically, I love having a St. Patricks’s Day that allows me to break out the slip-n-slide!  Did you hear there were 500,000 people in Downtown Cleveland on Saturday???