The Friday Five, 1/12/18: 5 things I've been up to this week

The "tenses" might be a little off in this post - I leave for vacation tomorrow, aka Thursday (Disney and Universal Studios!) so I'm writing this on Wednesday.

It's a heat wave in Michigan this week! ... and by that I mean, it got back to 30-35 degrees. Felt a lot nicer than the frigid temps we had last week, though.

What I've been up to this week:
Eating out and trying out new places. Last Sunday, my boyfriend and I went to Arkin's Sweet BBQ Pit, in Southfield, before a movie at Emagine Royal Oak, as I had won a $25 gift card from @chowdowndetroit on Instagram. It was delicious and there are actually NO pictures because we gobbled it up so fast, ha. My parents took me to Cheesecake Factory, in Novi, for an early birthday lunch on Saturday, and my boyfriend and I also went to Kona Grill with my $15 birthday coupon (you can join the e-club to receive this) on Saturday night. On Tuesday afternoon, some coworkers and I went to Mr. Kabob Xpress for lunch, too—if yo…

Review and GIVEAWAY: 3-month subscription to Mitten Crate {ends 1/18}

*Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Mitten Create. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

I have been receiving subscription boxes from Mitten Crate for a few months now, and every month, I'm excited to see their box at my doorstep. Though I'm not a native Michigander, I've lived here for 2/3 of my life and I've come to appreciate Michigan brands. Mitten Crate is a great refresher (or introducer!) to these.

I first started working with Mitten Crate when I ran across their pop-up shop at The Rust Belt Market, in Ferndale, but I had been coveting their products long before that—and you can now shop for individual products on their website, too.

The other option is to purchase a subscription, which is $35 per month, renews monthly, and is one you can cancel anytime. If you want to buy a one-time box or gift, it's $35 plus shipping, and if you want a 3-month subscription, it's $99 for 3 months.

Needless to say, all of the products featured i…

Upcoming and GIVEAWAY: Finding Neverland, Feb. 6-18, Fisher Theatre, Detroit

*Disclosure: I have an ongoing relationship with Broadway in Detroit. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

Finding Neverland will be coming to the Fisher Theatre next month, and I'm super excited about it! I love all Peter Pan-type stories, and this focuses on Pan's playwright, J.M. Barrie, and the family that inspired Peter Pan. You might have seen the movie version (with Johnny Depp) back in 2004, too.

About the show:
Broadway in Detroit is pleased to announce that FINDING NEVERLAND will play the Fisher Theatre, February 6-18, 2018. Tickets start at $39 and are now on sale at all Ticketmaster locations, by phone at 800-982-2787 and online at or Tickets are also available for purchase at the Fisher Theatre box office.

Based on the Academy Award-winning Miramax motion picture by David Magee, and the play The Man Who Was Peter Pan by Allan Knee, Finding Neverland follows the relationship between playwright J.M. Barrie a…

New Year's weekend with the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport #DriveMitsubishi

*Disclosure: I received the use of a vehicle in exchange for this post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.
After this past week dealing with Michigan weather, I can tell you this: my next personal car will have heated seats in them. The 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport, which I drove this week, did have them, and they were so nice to have—the weather today was "-2, feels like -18 degrees" when I woke up this morning, so I was definitely missing this vehicle.

One of the first things I noticed about this vehicle is that it "tucks in its ears" (side mirrors) when you lock and unlock the doors. This is a very cool feature and one that I'd recommend all vehicles to have—the chance of your side mirrors getting hit is therefore minimized.

The cargo space in the Outlander Sport is decent. I had looked up reviews of the 2016 Outlander (not sport), and the cargo space seemed very small; in this model, however, there is plenty of room for luggage, which was …

The Friday Five, 1/5/18: 5 things I've been up to this week

As I write this, it is "-2, feels like -18 outside" where I live. I have to take out the garbage but haven't yet because of the cold temperatures. On Sunday, it will be back up to 30, but this week has definitely been long.

What I've been up to this week:
Road trip to the west side of the state. On Saturday, my boyfriend and I drove to the Kalamazoo/Portage area to visit a college friend of mine and her husband - we enjoy playing board games with them, and we stayed over into New Year's Day. For New Year's Eve, we did cheese and chocolate fondue (see pic above) which was super tasty, too. Playing UNO & Friends. I like playing UNO and Monopoly Deal a lot, and I recently discovered an app where you can play UNO. However, I was playing it yesterday and a notification popped up that said it will be discontinued in June 2018 ... no explanation why! Definitely a bummer. Seeing movies. I saw Pitch Perfect 3 on Wednesday, with my MoviePass, and I'd give it 3 st…

The Friday Five, 12/29/17: 5 things I've been up to this week

I have had this entire week off from work, and while I have been doing a lot, really all I wanted to do was sit at home with a good book. Instead, I visited my parents for about 5 days, I'm going home later today, and then I'm headed to the Kalamazoo/Portage area tomorrow through Monday (New Year's Day) to visit some friends.

What I've been up to this week:
Seeing a concert. Last Saturday, I headed to the new Little Caesars Arena (Detroit) for the Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert, which was fabulous. You can read about that hereHanging out with friends. I met up with my Disney World travel friend last Friday, at Sy Thai in Birmingham, and we also stopped by Starbucks Reserve for a minute, because she hadn't been. I met another friend for coffee on Tuesday, since he lives in my parents' area, and I'm seeing college friends this weekend when I travel to the Kalamazoo area. I'm also going to a dinner party tonight which should be funa friend is cooking an…

Everything you ever wanted to know about MoviePass, the movie subscription service

First off, this is NOT a sponsored post. I've been a member of MoviePass—the $9.99 a month program, not the new $89.99/year program—since the end of September, and people keep asking me if it's worth it. I figured I'd write a post about it that will talk about my experience with it, and also answer any questions that people might have.

I was one of the first people to sign up for MoviePass back in August or September when the $9.99/month deal was announced. As my long-time blog readers know, this blog used to be called Yes/No Films, because I see a LOT of movies. Matinees in my area (Detroit area) are around $6-7, and night movies are $10-12, so to see UNLIMITED movies (1 per day) with MoviePass for only $9.99 a month sounded like a great deal.

What you can do with MoviePass:
You can see one movie per CALENDAR day. I swear this used to be per 24-hour period, but now the app says it's per day. Pretty simple.You can either go to the theater and do a "check in" o…

Event review: Trans-Siberian Orchestra at Little Caesars Arena, Detroit

*Disclosure: I received concert tickets in exchange for this blog post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

This was my fourth year attending a Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert, but my first at the new Little Caesars Arena. It was also my second time at LCA (I went to a Halsey concert a few months ago there) and it's a great new arena, located right in the heart of downtown Detroit.

We ended up having floor seats, which I've actually had for the past three TSO shows, as well, and our seats were amazing. LCA is divided into the lower bowl, upper bowl, and floor (though obviously for sports events there is no floor seating available).

The new arena also has a variety of food and drink places if you want to grab something to eat before the show. I did notice after the Halsey show I attended that the eateries tend to shut down immediately after the show, though.

The TSO shows I've attended in the past have always been amazing, and this one was no different. They …

Review and GIVEAWAY: Michigan Mittens {ends 1/1/18}

*Disclosure: I received product in exchange for this blog post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

I recently saw a post on my friend Jennifer's blog about Michigan Mittens, and I was intrigued—the mittens looked so cute, and I love supporting local businesses. I reached out to them and they sent me two pairs of their mittens for review, and they also agreed to a giveaway for my lucky readers!

I was sent two pairs of mittens for review, the Original Michigan Mittens, in Fog Grey, and a pair of Superior USA Michigan Mittens. I tried out the Original Michigan Mittens, and they are very soft, which I liked. I usually prefer gloves to mittens, but I can definitely see myself wearing these this winter.

These would also make a cute gift for any Michigander, or perhaps a Michigander who no longer lives in-state.

The packaging on them is also really nice (see above), which is another reason to give them as a gift.

The USA mittens are a bit thicker and would be better for co…

The Friday Five, 12/22/17: 5 things I've been up to this week

I've been sick all week, and I am not a fan ... stuffy nose, headaches, and a sore throat. I am skipping everything (zumba, etc.) after work today so that I can just stay home and rest. I have a holiday party tomorrow and the TSO concert on Saturday, so that's probably the best course of action, since I don't want to have to miss either.

What I've been up to this week:
Seeing shows and movies. I saw ELF the Musical at the Fox Theatre on Wednesday night, and it was very cute. I need to rewatch the movie now. And speaking of movies, I took myself to go see Ferdinand on Saturday with my MoviePass, and really enjoyed that one; I'm a fan of kids movies that also are interesting for adults. On Sunday, I saw the new Star Wars at Emagine Novi's Super EMAX screening, which was huge! They say it's the size of a basketball court.

I saw a screening of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (and you can read my review here) on Monday, and I have plans to see both The Greatest Sho…

Cocktail recipes for the holiday season, from Jolly Pumpkin {and $25 giveaway! Ends 12/28}

*Disclosure: I received compensation for this post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own.

Jolly Pumpkin Cafe & Brewery (Royal Oak, Ann Arbor, and Detroit) has a few ideas for holiday cocktails, and they sound delicious. All of these cocktails can be found at Jolly Pumpkin this month, as well.

Read on for the cocktail ideas and also to enter to win a $25 gift card!

Bourbon Apple Pie – Follow up a holiday meal with this dessert cocktail featuring warm bourbon mixed with apple cider, cinnamon and clove infused simple syrup. If you're really looking to spoil your guests, consider topping the glass with caramel!

Jolly Pumpkin is also featuring other holiday cocktails this winter including:

Scorched Butter Mule – A gentle mix of vodka and butterscotch complimented with lemon juice and topped with Reed’s Ginger Beer. Sage Against the Machine – A simple winter cocktail that's sure to please everyone from Aunt Sally to Cousin Rick containing an even mix of gin, sage maple w…