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  The first annual Gathering for Good!

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Today I am so proud to share with you guys the story about the first annual Gathering for Good; raising funds for children’s pediatric cancer research at Cleveland Clinic Children’s.

A few months ago my dear friend Meg Nowlin invited me and my other friend Kim Crane for coffee. I showed up a few minutes late and in my gym clothes and was welcomed by a table full of executives from the Cleveland Clinic…I was in shock. Had I somehow missed that this meeting was a business affair on the text invite? Nope. Meg actually forgot to let Kim and I know we were meeting to brainstorm a new type of fundraising for “Children’s” all together. After the initial shock of yoga pants in professional mode (Kim showed up casual too!) we all jumped at the opportunity to get on board and help in whatever manner Meg and the development team needed us for.

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My friend Meg and her family have been so impacted by the work at the clinic, we all knew it was so important. The oldest of the Nowlin family, seven-year-old Maisie is exceptionally inquisitive, bubbly and caring. As the oldest of five children, she is the center of the Nowlin family. Shortly after Maisie’s sixth birthday, her world was turned upside down. Maisie received the diagnosis of a rare bone marrow failure disease called Very Severe Aplastic Anemia (VSAA).

VSAA is a life threatening illness affecting the bone marrow’s ability to produce blood cells and requires serious medical intervention and treatments. In September 2015, it was determined that none of Maisie’s four siblings were a bone marrow match, so in October of 2015 Maisie had to undergo immunosuppressive therapy treatment. Unfortunately, the treatment was ultimately deemed a failure, so the next hope for Maisie was to find a bone marrow donor. In early 2016, Maisie received what her family calls a “miracle”– a match had been found. Maisie underwent a bone marrow transplant, but experienced rare complications that left her requiring more platelet and blood transfusions, and in a hospital bed for weeks to months on end.

We are thrilled to report that today, because of research and experimental opportunities Maisie is attending school and loves hanging out with her friends and family just like any other healthy kid.

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I’ve known Meg and Kim for over 12 years and I am honored and humbled to have co-chaired this years Gathering for Good event along with them. It took us about five months from an idea to one of the best summer soirée events I have ever attended. Oh, and did I mention we raised around 40K  for pediatric cancer research initiatives? To say we were proud is an understatement.

11782The weather was perfect, not a cloud in the sky or even a touch of wind. We had the most beautiful clear tent, stunning vintage furnishings and delicious food and drinks. A steel drum, music man welcomed everyone to the party and then another talented musician took over half way for a variety of party tunes. There was a silent auction filled with unique CLE experiences of everything from a birthday party at Mitchell’s to a Flats East Bank, rooftop cocktail party for 40 guests.

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There are so many people to thank for helping us make the event a huge success but I will give it a shot. Thanks to Meg for coming to Kim and I to help with her vision. Kim & Ryan thank you for hosting the event at your lovely home. Thank you to my creative team at studio Chartreuse for developing such playful and fun creative to support the event. Thanks to Laura for all the behind the scenes work, we know those cookie bags were no joke! Thanks to Ruth and Ann for their party planning expertise, we don’t know what we would have done without you. And for all the attendees who believed in us and the cause, we couldn’t have pulled off such a successful fundraiser without you. Thank you for showing up and bidding on the evenings auction items.

Gfg_4125127Gfg_511986If you weren’t able to attend this annual fundraiser but would still like to make a donation to our cause, please donate here. We are hopeful we will do this event next year so keep an eye out next summer!

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Last but not least, to Mother Nature for providing us the most gorgeous evening to celebrate raising funds to support new opportunities for pediatric cancer research at Cleveland Clinic Children’s. (Thank you for the gorgeous photography K. Ardner!)

  Holiday discount : 2 Men & A vacuum!

Hello CLE! Hope you had a fantastic weekend prepping for the holiday week ahead. I was doing a bit of shopping and it was a madhouse everywhere we went. I mean I know a lot of you do Christmas on Thanksgiving…but it was seriously wild everywhere we went. Not to mention stores were extra full for Black Friday sale fun.

Speaking of holidays today I have a fun discount code to share with all of you from the team at Two Men and a Vacuum, 10% off all of their cleaning services through the holidays using the special code “IHEARTCLEVELAND” (first time bookings please, expires 1/1/17)

img_9672Established in 2012, Two Men & A Vacuum has become the go-to cleaning service in Ohio for residential and commercial cleaning. They are committed to raising the bar in the cleaning industry by employing cutting edge technology, using eco-friendly products and hiring team members in an industry that often relies on cheap labor and cheaper toxic cleaning products. Started in Columbus, Ohio…the Cleveland branch has now officially launched!

img_9671A few weeks ago the team at “Two Men” came out to our house to give it some extra love in the cleaning department. Things have been hectic since we moved in with an emphasis on unpacking and starting to work on decorating…rather than keeping up on daily household chores. The duo did an incredible job making our home sparkle from top to bottom and we will for sure have them back again soon!

Get your holiday cleaning’s scheduled soon, as those appointments are filling up fast. Also…looking for a gift for the person who has it all? They also offer gift certificates, I would love that gift…hint, hint mom! So, while I might not have a regular cleaning person…this service makes the perfect helper during this busy holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving, safe travels and happy shopping to everyone! May you have clean homes, fully belly’s and even lots of love with friends and family!

SPONSORED POST : I was invited to post about the new Cleveland businesses, Two Men & A Vacuum in exchange for a little house love as part of their social community outreach. Thanks for supporting this local business while allowing me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  Tidal Cool Fashion Show : THIS FRIDAY : Ticket giveaway

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Hey friends! I have a pair of tickets to give away to one lucky reader to THIS FRIDAY NIGHTS Cuba Libre fashion show, an evening of fashion, funk, and freedom, to benefit Cornucopia (“Natures Bin” in Lakewood) Want to win them? See how below. Not to worry, if you don’t win they still have a few pairs of tickets avilable for you and your stylish friends to snag. It’s gonna be a great show!

From their press release…”The evening will be filled with vibrant fabrics where bold prints marry classic style in this Afro-Caribbean journey. Within Cuba Libre you’ll find a variety of unique dresses, skirts, and sportswear to satisfy your craving for the sea. This 25 look collection made up of over 50 pieces is accented with jewelry, belts, and hair wraps, all designed to mix and match within the collection as well as your closet. Tidal Cool Cuba Libre, bringing the rhythm of the Caribbean into the heart of Cleveland!”

Friday, May 27th, 7pm at Lake Affects Studio (1615 East 25th Street, Cleveland, OH 44114)
For tickets visit their eventbrite page here.

Want to win the pair of tickets? Tweet me “@iheartclev I would love to go to #TidalCool #CubaLibre THIS FRIDAY to benefit @NaturesBin in Lakewood!” Winner to pick up tickets at the will call table.

  Pier W : Wine Dinner, April 12

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Happy Friday everyone! It is gorgeous outside today…hard to believe they are calling for chilly temps this weekend. So many fun happening around town these next few weeks don’t you think? I feel like when spring hits everyone comes out of hibernation and people want to get back to socializing.

With that said, why not grab a bunch of your gal pals and head over to Pier W on Tuesday, April 12th for the Annual Tour of Oregon Wine dinner. Pier W, the iconic Cleveland waterfront restaurant (that looks like a boat!) will host this multiple course dinner, paired with various Willamette Valley vineyard wines.

“The Willamette Valley is best known for the earthy undertones and mineral qualities in the soil and conveyed in the wines,” comments Stevoff (Pier W’s wine director). “Similar in latitude to Burgundy (France!), the Oregon pinot region produces some of the most exquisite flavors. I’m looking forward to walking guests through the nuances of the Pacific Northwest set against Chef Reik’s culinary creations in an intimate but approachable learning experience.”

Personally….I am especially looking forward to the dessert course of lemon cheesecake paired with a late harvest reisling…delicious!

And while I am talking about Pier W…if you are a runner…or want to be, you have plenty of time to train for their annual Copper River Salmon Run 5k run/walk, Saturday May 21st with proceeds to benefit Cleveland charity Malachi House. This is one of my favorite races because not only is it a great route through Lakewood, but you also get lunch post-race on their patio. Who want to run with me?

So like I said, grab your friends and reserve your spot for the upcoming wine dinner on April 12th…I’ll plan to see you there.

SPONSORED POST : I was invited to attend the Pier W wine dinner as part of their social engagements efforts. Thanks for supporting this restaurant as they bring in incredible wine (and lots of great seafood) to our city and allow me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  Shoes & Clothes for Kids Annual Campaign

Have you seen this focus group? Please help by donating to the cause. Cleveland kids deserve better.