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The Friday Five, 7/19/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This has been a super long week, so I'm glad it's Friday. Unfortunately, I have my Crohn's infusion tomorrow, so I still have to be up early, but I can take a nap afterwards. Comerica Park, Detroit What I've been up to this week: Tigers game at Comerica Park . I actually got tickets for this through work—HI-CHEW, a candy brand, had a few activations (promotions) going on and asked if I would be able to attend. Our seats were great; it was a very hot day, so we did spend a lot of time in the concourse too. HI-CHEW was super generous and gave us some "Tigers fun money," as the tickets said, so we were able to get free concessions, and were able to ride the Ferris wheel and merry-go-round an unlimited amount of times, too, although we unfortunately only made it to the merry-go-round. The Tigers ended up winning in (overtime? 10th inning) over the LA Dodgers. This was only my second time EVER at Comerica (first time was in 2014 I think, for a game!) so it was a lo

The Friday Five, 7/12/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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Apologies for no Friday Five last week—this will be more of a two-weeks' version of a Friday Five, as I was in Traverse City last week for my bachelorette trip, which was a lot of fun.  What I've been up to [these last two] weeks: Bachelorette trip to Traverse City. This was a lot of fun, and I'm glad we did three nights instead of two, because Traverse City has a ton to explore. The last time I went to the area was in 2019, with friends, and that was more of a winery trip; this time, we had some nondrinkers in our group so it was a mix of good food and wineries, plus the beach and some other stuff. I went with two other Detroit-area friends, so we drove the 4-4.5 hours there together, plus a Birthright friend from the Chicago area, who drove separately, and my future sister-in-law, who lives in the Indianapolis area, who also drove separately.  Dining out . TC had a lot of great restaurants but my favorites were Stella, for Italian fine dining, which is located in what use

Upcoming and GIVEAWAY: MJ the Musical, Oct. 23–Nov. 3, Fisher Theatre, Detroit {ends 7/8}

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*Disclosure: I have an ongoing media relationship with Broadway in Detroit. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. MJ the Musical ("MJ") is coming to the Fisher Theatre this fall, and as a fan of Michael Jackson's music, I'm looking forward to it. Tickets go on sale July 12th at 10am.  Read more about the musical below, and also see how you can win two tickets  to opening night! About the show: Producers Lia Vollack, John Branca, John McClain and Broadway in Detroit are thrilled to announce that MJ will make its Detroit premiere at the Fisher Theatre October 23 – November 3.  Tickets go on sale Friday, July 12 and can be purchased online at BroadwayInDetroit.com at 10:00 a.m. or in person at the Fisher Theatre box office at noon. He is one of the greatest entertainers of all time. Now, Michael Jackson’s unique and unparalleled artistry comes to Detroit in MJ, the multiple Tony Award®-winning musical centered around the making of the 1992 Dangerous World Tou

The Friday Five, 6/28/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This has been an extremely long week. My fiance and I are both working a half-day today and then heading to Indiana for a belated birthday celebration with his parents and sister (all of them have April + May birthdays), which will be fun. What I've been up to this week: Walled Lake fireworks . Walled Lake, where my parents live, do their fireworks pretty early every year; this year was two weeks before the Fourth of July, this past Saturday. My fiance and parents have gone to them together for the past three years (including this year—2022, 2023, 2024) and show is always great, and lasts about a half-hour. This year, to sit on/near the dock near my parents' community, you had to actually live in that community (they even checked IDs) which was actually a little nice, because it wasn't quite as crowded as usual. The show itself was spectacular, too, and I got a few photos out of it. Cucina Lab Torino summer party . Last Friday, I was invited to Cucina Lab Torino's summe

Movie Review and GIVEAWAY - Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire {ends 7/1}

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*Disclosure: I received product in exchange for this review. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. I saw Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire in the theater this past March, and really loved it; it inspired a rewatch of the entire Ghostbusters series, and I think either this one or Afterlife (the other one with the new cast, but with a variety of the former cast too) is my favorite. TWO of my lucky readers will win a digital code for Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire ! See below for more details. About the movie: In Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire , the Spengler family returns to where it all started – the iconic New York City firehouse – to team up with the original Ghostbusters, who’ve developed a top-secret research lab. But when the discovery of an ancient artifact unleashes an evil force, Ghostbusters new and old must join forces to protect their home and save the world from a second Ice Age. credit: rollingstone.com Special features:  4K UHD, BLU-RAY, & DIGITAL EXTRAS o Deleted &a

The Friday Five, 6/21/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has seemed busy, so I'm glad it's Friday. I have a few things lined up for the weekend too, though—Walled Lake fireworks, wedding dress alterations, etc. What I've been up to this week: Cinetopia Film Festival, Ann Arbor . This was my SEVENTH (!) time attending this festival, as I started attending it in 2014 and my last time was in 2019, which was the last time it was held; it took a five-year hiatus due to COVID. The film festival goes on for about a week and a half, and this Sunday is the last day, but I only had Saturday and Sunday to experience it, so I stayed overnight in Ann Arbor this past Saturday—my Delta credit card gives me a $150 statement credit if I book through them, so I found a hotel for $175 (aka $25!) which was nice—and saw five films total. You can read my reviews of the films I saw here . Seeing movies . Obviously the film fest ones, but last Friday I saw Tuesday , at my local AMC—it was actually a part of the film fest too, and looked good b

Film Reviews: 2024 Cinetopia Film Festival, Ann Arbor

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This was technically my 7th time at the Cinetopia Film Festival —I attended it every year from 2014 through 2019, and then of course in summer 2020 it was not held, due to the pandemic. Fast-forward to four years later, and it's now BACK, and will continue until this Sunday, June 23rd . I unfortunately was only able to attend this weekend, due to prior commitments, but I was able to see five films this weekend. Most people purchase passes for the festival, but you can also purchase individual tickets; see the Cinetopia website for more information. Janet Planet. All photos courtesy of Cinetopia Movies I saw this year: 1. Janet Planet . This was a rather slow coming of age film, with probably more of the most-recognizable actresses at the festival—Julianne Nicholson plays the mother in the movie, with a fantastic performance by Zoe Zigler as the daughter. Sophie Okonedo and Will Patton also have supporting roles. Although the movie didn't specify the year, we could tell it was

The Friday Five, 6/14/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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How is already mid-June? Time is going by super fast. I am headed (back; see below) to Ann Arbor this weekend for the Cinetopia Film Festival , which I'm pretty excited about; I used to go every summer from 2014-19, and this is the first time it's back since the pandemic.  Yo-Yo Ma at Hill Auditorium, Ann Abor (2nd from left) What I've been up to this week: Going to Ann Arbor to see Yo-Yo Ma in concert. This is maybe the 3rd or 4th time I have seen him in concert (or maybe 5th; I've lost track). I didn't know he was playing with a full orchestra, and only playing 1 of the 4 songs, which was a little disappointing, but he's always an amazing performer—the most memorable time I saw him was actually when I was a student at UM, and he did a week-long residency there with the School of Music kids. He had a paid concert, which I attended, but also a workshop with them which was free to the public, and it was really cool to watch. For this week's concert, he played

Upcoming and GIVEAWAY: Some Like It Hot, Oct. 1-13, Fisher Theatre, Detroit {ends 6/16}

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*Disclosure: I have an ongoing media relationship with Broadway in Detroit. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. I have seen the movie version of Some Like It Hot , with Marilyn Monroe, but have never seen the musical, so I'm excited that it's coming to the Fisher this fall. Read more below, and enter to win two tickets to the show! About the show: Broadway In Detroit announced today that single tickets for the upcoming engagement of SOME LIKE IT HOT , the “Super-Sized, All-Out Song-And-Dance Spectacular!” ( The New York Times ), coming to Detroit will go on sale Friday, June 21. Tickets will be available online at BroadwayInDetroit.com at 10:00 a.m. and at the Fisher Theatre box office starting at Noon. Set in Chicago when Prohibition has everyone thirsty for a little excitement, SOME LIKE IT HOT is the “glorious, big, high-kicking” (Associated Press) story of two musicians forced to flee the Windy City after witnessing a mob hit. With gangsters hot on their heel

The Friday Five, 6/7/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has seemed rather long, for some reason, so I'm glad it's Friday.  Detroit-style pizza from Uncle Andy's Pizza What I've been up to this week: Getting takeout/dining out . Last Friday, I picked up some Uncle Andy's Pizza from their Orchard Lake Rd. location—a few years ago, they had a Clawson location, and always had Groupons available, so I was consistently getting their $20 Chicago-style deep dish pizza for $10, which was amazing. That location has since closed, but the Orchard Lake Rd. one is close to my fiance's house, in Farmington, so sometimes we do takeout. They had a free cheesy bread coupon, so we got the Detroit-style picture above and that for about $20, which wasn't too bad.  On Saturday, I met up with two friends at Crispelli's, in WB, for more pizza—they are two of the five friends going on my bachelorette party trip next month, and no one has met before, so this was an opportunity for them to meet each other. On Sunday, my paren

The Friday Five, 5/31/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This has felt like the longest month ever—I swear I've lived like five different lives this month—and today isn't even June, it's May 31st! Although this was a very fun month, I'm glad to have a quieter June ahead of me. HelloFresh trattoria pork chops with couscous and carrots What I've been up to this week: The last of the May weddings . Wedding #3, which was for one of my friends (weddings #1 and #2 were for my fiance's friends, although I am friends with the couple in wedding #1 too), took place at MotorCity Casino this past Saturday. It was the most "active" of the three weddings I attended—they got us up on the dance floor early—and it was a lot of fun, for one of the first friends I made when I moved to Michigan in 4th grade. I had fun at all three weddings I attended, but I have to say I'm glad there are no more weddings until our own, in September ... I am tired! Getting takeout . Last Friday, I got my fiance and I takeout from Pink Garlic

The Friday Five, 5/24/24: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This was a busy week and I came back from Chicago having lost my voice, which was not fun. There is ONE more wedding this weekend and then wedding season is done for us this year ... until September, at least. :)  Downtown Chicago What I've been up to this week: Trip to Chicago . I got back from Indianapolis last Wednesday from my work conference, and on Friday we flew on SWA (using points) to Chicago. We stayed at the Intercontinental—a hotel I actually stayed at in 1997, a year after we had moved to Michigan from Chicago—and because my fiance has status with IHG, they upgraded us to what I think was a junior suite, and it was super nice. We used IHG points to book it, and generally when you do that, the cost is covered, but unfortunately they did slap us with a $30/n "resort fee" (pool, wifi, etc.) upon checkout.  Wedding in Chicago . The reason we went to Chicago was the wedding of one of my fiance's friends from college. This was truly an EVENT: they had a pre-wed

Movie Review and Digital GIVEAWAY: The Fall Guy {ends 5/30}

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*Disclosure: I received a digital code in exchange for this post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. I saw The Fall Guy in theaters a few weeks ago, on May 8th, and it's already available to purchase for home viewing! Two  of my lucky readers will win a code to own the movie, too; see below for details. About the movie: As it continues driving pulse-pounding excitement at the global box office, the adrenaline-fueled, action-packed film, THE FALL GUY, is now exclusively in homes on digital platforms where you can buy or rent movies with a never-before-seen Extended Cut, from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.  From real-life stunt man and director David Leitch, the blockbuster director of Bullet Train, Deadpool 2, and Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, comes his most personal film yet, full of over-the-top action and jaw-dropping, practical stunts. Earning an “A-” CinemaScore and hailed as “an act of pure movie love” (Vulture), THE FALL GUY is a hilari