The last few weekends I haven't been the best dog mom in that most of the activities I've been doing were not dog friendly. So this weekend I wanted to make it up to Woody. Saturday we took him to Edgewater Beach to watch the sunset and get a little bit of ice cream. I try to take him for ice cream once a summer as a treat - just a little bit of plain vanilla is all he needs. Edgewater serves Honey Hut, one of Cleveland's local ice cream staples.
Sunday we checked out the Hingetown Sunday Market. I go to a lot of markets in Cleveland - Cleveland Flea and Night Market are a few of my other favorites - but I personally feel that this one is the best for a solid mix of vintage finds and handmade artisan goods. It is also really laid back and features some of the best food trucks and beverages for a nice Sunday Funday. This chill vibe is great for dogs because you aren't fighting the big crowds of other events so you don't have to worry about your pup getting trampled. The market takes place on the third Sunday of every month through October, so definitely check one out before 2015 is over. Woody not only got to eat the bacon off my breakfast sandwich from Off the Griddle, but also got a souvenir from Ohio City Dog Haven.
What are some of your favorite outdoor activities that you have to do with your dog before summer is over? Comment below!
Today I learned of a new cold-pressed Juice and smoothie place that a few blocks from my apartment. Restore Cold Pressed opened on Huron Ave. and amazingly sold out of everything in 6 hours. Who knew Cleveland was all about that juice! Woody and I walked by tonight to peek in the location and we like what I see. The smoothies seemed a little pricey (it looked like they were $8) for someone like myself who can make them at home, but the blends sounded delicious and from everything I'm reading are worth the money for those without a premium blender or those who haven't figured out the appropriate fruit-to-yogurt ratio. However, I am excited to give their juices a try on a hot Cleveland day, and the avocado toasts sounded delightful. Oh, and have you heard of the bone broth trend? Well, they're making a fresh batch.
It's finally nice outside, so Woody and I have been enjoying our walks. Note to self: Get one of those fancy dog cameras and really see Cleveland from the dog perspective.
Maybe I'm late to the game, but did you know Cleveland has a bikeshare program?? Typically you've seen iterations of these like Citi Bike in NYC, which got a ton of good and bad press. But unlike the high-tech looking bikes in NYC, Zagster bikes actually look pretty normal and are much more low-key. According to Cleveland.com (and the sign in the picture on the left) bikes can be rented with a mobile app instead of the touchscreen docking stations. I have a bike and am pumped that it's now warm enough to start doing more riding and less driving. But, if you don't have one, I suggest checking these out. That is, if you actually know how to ride a bike. That is definitely step 1.
New Year, Same Fun
I hope everyone had a safe and wonderful New Year! We celebrated Woody's 9th birthday on New Year's Eve. I still can't believe he's that old! I got him when he was nearly 5 and he has just as much energy now as he did then. I don't even want to fathom what it will be like when he starts slowing down.
A lot of people create New Year's resolutions, but it seems that just as many people complain about how stupid New Year's resolutions are. I like to live by the rule that you don't have to wait for a fresh start. Whenever "now" is, you can change your mindset and create goals. I get that it seems cliche to create resolutions when most people throw them out the window a few months in, but the idea of a fresh start to the start of the New Year can be a good benchmark. For example, maybe you want to lose weight as your overarching goal. Instead of thinking of the big picture, think of how you can make small steps to get there. Each month have a new, smaller goal that is related to health and wellness - in January you make it a goal to go spinning twice a week, February you swap soda for tea, March you say no to fast food, etc. Doing these things by a monthly basis is much more manageable and can give you some new perspective on what you like and don't like about trying to lose weight rather than going cold turkey on everything all at once and buying expensive gym memberships.
But enough on that tangent. Every year I try to think of some new things to do with my dog and reflect on some of the fun we had in the year prior. This moreso happens because his birthday falls on New Year's Eve. In 2014, I said I would take him to 3 new dog parks. I didn't do that - I know, bad dog mom. I did, however, take him to the new Cleveland dog park a few times before it got too cold for him to walk all the way down there. And we went on much longer walks and runs than we did in 2013. I guess I learned that if he is getting exercise around here and he is socializing with other dogs at doggie daycare and out in the park in my building there's no point in driving him all over the city.
Since his energy level hasn't changed, I'm going to continue to focus on doing as much activity with him as I can. Things to improve upon are:
What are some goals you have this year? Anything your dog can be a part of?
It's been a busy last few weeks for the Woodster and me. From getting ready for the holidays to taking Woody on walks before the ice and snow make it unbearable, this December has been jam-packed. The other night we were able to walk through Playhouse Square, the temporary home for Cleveland's Christmas tree and light display.
Woody is wearing a stylish scarlet & grey fleece while I wore sparkly sweatpants and my best coat to get in the holiday spirit. We couldn't get a picture of the big tree because the other lights were drowning out the holiday lights, but you get the point.
I've only lived in Cleveland for a couple years, so I don't know if I can pinpoint a Cleveland holiday tradition just yet, but I do have one that's starting to become a thing that merges Cleveland with a family Christmas memory. You probably know that A Christmas Story was filmed in Cleveland. You probably also know that there is a 24-hour marathon devoted to it on TBS (which I LOVED to watch with my uncle, who recently passed away this year). But I bet you didn't know that, beginning last year, A Christmas Story House Foundation hosts a 5K/10K race to support the restoration of the house, the museum, and the neighborhood. I've now ran in it both years and will probably continue to do so for the foreseeable future. The race begins downtown, and the distance to the house is an exact 3.1 miles. The people watching is fantastic, as Pink Nightmares, leg lamps, robbers and elves go running through the streets of Cleveland.
Oh, and did I mention you can run with your dogs?? Woody can easily run a 5K but unfortunately his paws are a little too sensitive in cold weather for this type of race.
I've shown you a little of what I've been up to so I have to ask - what's your favorite Cleveland Christmas tradition (both dog or non-dog friendly) and what should I definitely make a point to do before the season is over, or even next year?
Jacket Season 2014
Winter came a little early in Cleveland, marking the start of this year's jacket season, aka the time period when Woody has to wear a little fleece to stay warm outside. He's BEYOND thrilled...
Despite the cold right now, it's supposed to be back in the 50s by the weekend. I am trying to be positive and embrace the winter because complaining about it isn't going to make it go away any faster. I am also grateful that we aren't dealing with the type of weather that's currently happening near Buffalo and am sending positive vibes and prayers to all those affected, including our four-legged friends like this guy.
In case you haven't heard, the Cavs kick off the season tomorrow and Cleveland is going to be one big party. I knew it was going to be wild, but I didn't know how wild until I heard that ESPN is taking over East 4th Street College Gameday-style and there's a special concert featuring Kendrick Lamar and Imagine Dragons. Woody won't be able to handle the excitement so I'll keep him at home, but I can't wait to see the atmosphere in person. Below are some photos of the setup, building that anticipation.
In case you hadn't heard, WE ARE OFFICIALLY GETTING A DOG PARK IN DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND! I received an email about this earlier this week, though it doesn't look like anything has been made public yet. Thank you to everyone who donated and made it possible for Cleveland's downtown pups to have a safe place to play.
Get all the official details on the DCA website and bring your dog down to play before winter comes!
This is going to be my only post for the week, as I will be busy at a conference the next two days and spending the evenings catching up on work. But what I discovered this evening needed to be shared immediately. Remember a few weeks ago when I shared my excitement about Barrio opening in downtown? Well, today I noticed that they are doing Food Truck Fridays, as if the anticipation wasn't already mounting.
If you look close you can see Woody's tail. I tried to get more of his reflection but he wasn't having it. Apparently he does not care about tacos.
I'm just a twenty-something female raising the weirdest dog I've ever met.