Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Busy Birthday Weekend!

Hi everyone!  I hope you all had a great weekend!  I had an awesome weekend hanging out with my both of my sisters for Ashley's 23rd birthday :)  not only does she share her birthday with the City of Cleveland, but now with the new royal baby!  Haha

Anyway...her birthday celebration began Saturday.  After my 8AM barre class, I took her for mani-pedis - Groupon had a fantastic deal for a cute little place in Tremont called Addictions Salon and Spa.  The salon was super cute and offers a variety of services, from hair and nails to massages and waxings.   This was the first Shellac manicure for both of us and we both loved it!  I would definitely enjoy getting another one.  My nails have not chipped yet and whenever I paint my nails, they don't even make it through the day.  I will definitely be back again :)
 The birthday girl enjoying her massage chair during her pedi
 Ashley's red hot shellac manicure
My favorite color!

After our mani-pedis we stopped next door at Lilly Handmade Chocolates to grab a box of specialty chocolates.  They are as delicious as they are beautiful!  Definitely check out the shop if you can - they do wine and beer pairings with the chocolates and they even sell the wine and beer and they have a lot to choose from!
Clockwise from top left: Sweet Cheeks - salted caramel; PB Monsters - fresh peanut butter, clover honey, feuilletine crunch, Himalayan pink salt; Jimmie - triple chocolate ganache, vanilla bean, salted caramel; Red Planet - red wine soaked strawberries, freeze dried raspberry powder.

These chocolates are the best chocolates I've ever had in my entire life!  We actually ate two of them before we even drove off, but I did find the pictures on Lilly Handmade Chocolates Facebook: Cheers - rose champagne, blackberry powder, confectioners sugar and Sour Flower (ingredients below)

So, we've had manis, pedis and chocolates and our day still wasn't over... Ashley, Tiffany and I got ready for a sisters-only birthday dinner.  
Me and the birthday girl - Tiffany changed right when she walked through the door

I wanted to go somewhere we haven't been before, after some research I realized the Flats are coming back and my sister picked Lago - one of the new three restaurant choices. Lago is an Italian restaurant and has an amazing menu!  We decided to get appetizers so we could try a few different things.  Everything tasted phenomenal and we cannot wait to go for what sounds like would be an awesome happy hour :)
taleggio, valle d'aoste and gorgonzola 

White Bean Puree

Salerno Family Meatballs

Sofia - Pizza Classico
oyster, cremini, shittake, taleggio, chive, truffle oil on a whole wheat crust - also have gluten-free, but was not available that day

And we just had to get dessert - it was a birthday celebration!  The creme brulee was wonderful and made with real vanilla bean :)  Delicious!

My sister wanted to make s'mores later that night...indoor s'mores ;) I usually use a banana, cacao nibs and whole wheat pita 

On Sunday, we went to a tea house for high tea - Ashley has always loved tea parties and it has become a tradition to go every year for her birthday.  We went to the Emerald Necklace Inn - a 150 year-old tea house and bed and breakfast.  The tea house is so cute with mismatched tea cups and lace everywhere.  The food selection is wonderful - tea sandwiches, scones, pastries, etc.  And the tea menu is never-ending!  I ordered the Cream Au Caramel Rooibos - sweet toffee notes building to a full symphonic caramel - I think this is my favorite tea now :)

 I am in love with this awkward center-piece 

 Celebration champagne tea - Tiffany liked off all of her pink sprinkles

 Summer berry salad
 Our beautiful tea pots and my dad's boy-coffee pot

 I just love this chandelier so much - I am putting it in my room ;)

 strawberry-blueberry scone, Irish soda bread, cucumber sandwich, egg salad sandwich and chicken salad sandwich
 vegetable quiche and fruit salad
lemon curd and devonshire cream
lemon madeleine, brownie, chocolate-covered cherry, mini cheesecake and some rainbow cake
 The family  :)

Later that evening I made gluten-free almond blueberry crumble bars - love them!  I also made cherry ones not too long ago.  I made my own blueberry jam for the bars...I will share the recipe later on :)

Well, this weekend was awesome and super busy!  I am happy that Ashley had a great birthday and it was a lot of fun spending most of the weekend with her and the family.  Now I am ready for the next weekend :)  And I really need to get to sleep...cheer practice bright and early :/ yay..

Have a great night!! 


  1. I love Emerald Necklace.... we still need to go to the one in Mentor. Glad you enjoyed it!

    1. We definitely need to pick a day!! Maybe a nice fall afternoon, when a nice cup of hot day would fit right in :)