Category Archives: Events

Beer Fest and Block Party

A couple months back, there was a voucher for purchase that peaked my interest– Stanley’s 1st Annual Craft Beer Festival. I shot out a quick email to guage interest and quickly scooped up to admission vouchers for myself and my boyfriend. It sounded like a fun event and anytime I can be outside enjoying the summer weather, I’m in.

I woke up on Saturday, rearing to go only to find that my backyard was Lake 10,001 (usually grass). With the forecast not looking so good, we trudged ahead, picked up a hearty lunch and crossed our fingers that the weather would improve. Much to our surprise, the rain cleared (humidity set in) and the sun came out just in time for the gates to open.

There were over 100 different beers offered by tons of brewers. There was live music, Hammerschlagen, Stanley’s food truck, hand-rolled cigars, and more! Oh did I mention 1/4 pound hotdogs?!





There were lots of interesting and exciting varieties from the Chocolate Milk Stout from O’Dell’s to Crispin’s Fox Barrel Pear Cider my senses were satisfied. Other than getting an entire beer spilled down the front of me by a very excited (extremely drunk) patron, I had a great time.

The beers were ice cold, the turn out was large, the bands were great, and the energy was awesome! After the festival ended, the street remained closed, the block party began and Orange Whip took the stage– nothing like a good ol’ street dance. Stanley’s did a killer job arranging the 1st Annual Beer Festival and I can’t wait to go back next year!!

Check out their website for details!


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“Blackbird singing in the dead of night…”

Let me begin by saying that I am not one for Halloween… simply due to the costumes. I don’t love the idea that people use it as an excuse to get scantily clad, nor do I love the idea of being uncomfortable. That being said when my girlfriend said she would be in the cities for Halloween and that I must go out, I had to oblige. Then panic set in; I had no idea what I was going to be. That is until she sent me a photo of a girl in blackbird makeup. I loved it! I thought I think I can do that… but when she offered to do the makeup for me, I was elated! I made wings and she did the rest and how incredible it turned out! Here’s a few pics of her awesome art! (please note–these were taken in the midst and at the end of the night)

I realize when looking at these pictures that there is no way I could have done this…! I have never worn more makeup, looked more bird-like, or piled on the lipstick like I did on Saturday– but I love ever minute of this dress up session.  If you need makeup done whether artistic or traditional, contact me and I will get you in touch with Chelsea herself!!

Lead us out John…

Blackbird singing in the dead of night

Take these broken wings and learn to fly

All your life you were only waiting for this moment to arise…

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“Celebrate good times… COME ON!”

My first time… cooking steak on the stove

This past weekend was filled with great celebrations. The first was a perfectly planned surprise 30th birthday party for my dear friend Emerson. His wife, Katie did a phenomenal job making arrangements for friends and family to come together and celebrate this killer dude! Pretty cute, huh?

The second was my sweet little Lucas Wiley’s 4th birthday “celebration”. The latter of which involved less pomp, less circumstance, and significantly less alcohol. By less, I mean none. But there was certainly still a celebration to be had. This little “man” has been with me for and through quite a bit. And for that he deserved his annual birthday steak!

I opted for the pan as there has been a cold snap in Minneapolis and I was not about to head outside to the grill. I know he understands, he hates the cold too. Anyway, a little garlic on this bad boy, 5.5 minutes on each side and perfection.

And in under a minute it was gone. Now for those of you who know Luke, no need to worry, all 22lbs of him did not eat that monster steak on his own. He had a canine buddy help him out. But next year, I think I am going to make myself one as well!

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Adventures in sleepovers

My first… sleepover (in years)

My girlfriend Ashley and her husband built a gorgeous house this summer that is just perfect for entertaining. So I was thrilled when Ash called saying her husband was out of town for a guys weekend and that we should have a girls night; sleepover, pajamas required!

We opted to do a progressive dinner with the main focus being fondue, and drinks of course. Everything turned out phenomenally. Ashley, Christine and I spent the night talking, laughing, eating, and more eating.

It was exactly what the doctor ordered. I love catching up with friends and not have to worry about when it it is time to head home. We kept the conversation lengthy, the wine flowing and loved every minute of it!

Oh I forgot, that ONE boy was invited… COOP A LOOP!!!

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“I’ve got thrills…”

My first time…at The Dakota Jazz Club

As a lover of live music I was so excited to be invited the Molly Dean’s show at The Dakota Jazz Club. All I knew of Molly and her music is that she is “amazing”, “incomparable” and that I would love it.

These descriptions were 100% accurate. I was truly blown away. Molly’s voice is soulful and soothing; like being wrapped in a soft, fluffy blanket. I found myself moving to the music and not wanting it to stop. When writing this I wanted to try and come up with some comparison so that you could get a better idea of her style but she is truly one of a kind.

The Dakota Jazz Club was the perfect venue–I was situated at a table right up front. Dim lights, lots of seating and great drink specials make this an ideal location for music and friends. Cheers to Molly Dean!

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“This one’s for the GIRLS…”




My first… wedding show (continued)


I owe huge apologies (I know you were all waiting with bated breath) but I forgot to post the wedding dresses that KG and I saw at the Unveiled wedding event a few weekends ago. Again, my apologies but here are some of the dresses we saw– also sorry that that there will be no pictures of KG trying on dresses as we must keep those under wraps!

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Here comes the bride…KG!

My first… bridal show

No, no, no, not for me, for my friend Kristin! I was absolutely over the moon when Kristin’s boyfriend (now fiancee) proposed this summer! I am so honored to be a part of her wedding party and was excited when she asked me to join her this past weekend at Unveiled

We had such a blast seeing all the different ways to personalize your wedding. From ice sculptures to bands and chalkboards to dresses the world really is an oyster for the modern day bride!


We had such a great time– the options were endless and ideas abounding, and I haven’t even shown you the dresses (those to come tomorrow)!!!

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“Baby, Baby, Baby…. OHHHH!”

My first time… meeting Malcolm and Lydia

Over the past two days I have been so honored to meet two of the newest editions to this beautiful world. Thus I have baby(sitting) on the  brain!! My great friends Casie and Jamie had babies within DAYS of each other and I can’t even begin to tell you how cute they are. I am so thrilled for them and love watching their families grow!

Malcolm Thomas

Lydia Pearl

After snuggling these two beauties (who will some day fall in love and get married) I am reminded how much there is in this world that I have still yet to touch; the world keeps changing and I can only imagine what it will look like when Lydia and Malcolm are my age!! Yea for babies!!! xo


My first time…. at the Brass Rail

Just like last year, I made it a point to get down to the  Pride Parade. Only this year I celebrated the festivities on the patio of the Brass Rail surrounded by new friends and more fun than one girl can handle! So thankful for Leslie and so lucky that she owns one of the hottest gay bars in Minneapolis–what a GAY celebration!

THE Brass Rail

Bring it on!

The parade is a normally a lot of fun and a huge celebration but there was a special feeling in the air and NY had just passed the law to allow gay marriage!


He's got legs!

I am so excited that I live in a country that is turning the corner on equality and that so many people I live are gaining the human rights that they should have never been denied.

Big bear, little pup



It was such a fun day! I had a great time being surrounded by so much love and celebration. While the actual parade was not a first for me my trip to the Brass Rail was and I will definitely be making trips back!


Artsy Fartsy…

My first… time at the Stone Arch Arts Festival

Two Sundays ago the weather was gorgeous and to take advantage of the sun and warmth I headed out to the Stone Arch Festival of the Arts. The festival featured 250+ artists of various talent levels and mediums. Having a hometown arts festival that is incredible (Des Moines Arts Festival) I had high hopes for Minneapolis!

St Anthony Main

Situated on old Saint Anthony Main provided a great (yet hazy view)


There were lots of pretty sights…

fountain on main

lots of people…

Pracna on Main

and of course, TONS OF ART!

Stone Arch @ Night

After a rather sticky arts festival I headed to Whitey’s for a great summer-time refreshment

a Minnesota original

All in all it was a great time at the Stone Arch Festival of the Arts, I am not sure it is as large as the Des Moines Arts festival but it was a great time!