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GIVEAWAY: 4 tickets to The Music of Star Wars Performed by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra {ends 7/31}

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*Disclosure: I have an ongoing media relationship with 313 Presents. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) will be playing the music of Star Wars  at Meadowbrook on Friday, August 13th, and one of my lucky readers will win a four-pack of pavilion tickets  to see the show!  Star Wars  is a favorite movie franchise of mine, and I have seen all of the movies in the franchise.  About the show: Experience the music of Star Wars like never before when the Detroit Symphony Orchestra takes you to a galaxy far, far away at Meadow Brook Amphitheatre on the campus of Oakland University on Friday, August 13, 2021 at 7:30 p.m. Conductor Steven Reineke will lead the orchestra in a brand-new program that includes music from throughout the Skywalker Saga as well as the two anthology films, Rogue One and Solo: A Star Wars Story , all in chronological order. Don’t be a “stuck-up, half-witted, scruffy-looking nerf herder” and join us for this incredible c

The Friday Five, 7/23/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has seemed really long, for some reason, so I'm glad the weekend is almost here. Lots of stuff going on but this weekend should be a bit slower-paced; I have some plans, but not a ton.  Treats from Culinary Combo Bakery, Southfield: (L to R) S'mores brownie, cherry bar, magic bar What I've been up to this week: Yelp Elite event at Culinary Combo Bakery, Southfield.  Not really an "event," per say, but during the pandemic Yelp Detroit has been doing a lot of "pick up at your own convenience" treats, which has been fun. I never would have found this bakery otherwise: it's near the Franklin Rd. / Lodge area in Southfield and it's tucked away in the back of an apartment complex, on the first floor. It's a mother/daughter-owned bakery and all of the treats I selected were very tasty, although the magic bar was definitely my favorite (bottom left in the pic). The S'mores brownie was my second favorite but too rich for me. Check them

The Friday Five, 7/16/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has been busy and I also haven't been getting enough sleep, so as a result I have been tired every day. The weekend is also shaping up to be busy.  Van Gogh Immersive Exhibit, Detroit What I've been up to this week: Immersive Van Gogh exhibit in Detroit . On Saturday, my mom and I went to the TCF Center in Detroit (aka Cobo Hall, before they renamed it) to see the immersive Van Gogh exhibit. My mom had just read a book about Van Gogh and she was able to tell me a little about him; in addition, the first room of the exhibit has info about his life. The exhibit was smaller than I thought but the last room (pictured above) was VERY cool—it literally brought all of his paintings to life. The exhibit has just been extended through October, and you can find out more about it here . Seeing movies in the theater . Last Friday a friend and I saw Black Widow  in Dolby at the AMC Forum! It was pretty good—I'd probably give it 4.5/5 stars. On Tuesday, my boyfriend and I atten

The Friday Five, 7/9/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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I saw two movies in the theater this week, and I'm seeing Black Widow  in Dolby today, at the AMC Forum! I still wear a mask in the theater, just to be cautious, but I am enjoying getting back to seeing movies in theaters.  Island Lake Recreation Area, Brighton What I've been up to this week: Seeing movies in the theater.  As previously mentioned—last Friday I took the day off work and my parents and I saw the new Fast and the Furious  movie, at the EMAX theater at Emagine Novi (pretty much IMAX, they just called it EMAX for the Emagine "E" name). I would give that a 4 out of 5; some of the stunts they did were pretty crazy. On Monday, most people weren't working but I worked a bit and then saw The Forever Purge , which I would give 3.5/5. And today, I am meeting a friend and her family to see Black Widow  later at the AMC Forum, and we are also going to do UNOs for dinner—if you go to their website and sign up for their new e-club right now, they are giving away

The Friday Five, 7/2/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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I almost forgot to write this today, because I took the day off work and I slept in—and so it feels more like a Saturday than a Friday.  Chicago dog and onion rings from Portillo's, Sterling Heights What I've been up to this week: Dining out.  Quite a bit, although I'm also tracking calories and trying to lose weight. Last Friday my boyfriend and I went to Bahama Breeze for dinner—I was hoping to make it in time for happy hour but we were a little too late. On Saturday, I met a friend for brunch at 5th Tavern, in Bloomfield Hills, and we both ended up doing their breakfast buffet—I hadn't had a buffet in about 1.5 years and it was pretty good, albeit self-serve, so we both used hand sanitizer after. On Monday, my boyfriend and I showed up at La Saj in Troy hoping to get dinner there, only to find out that they now close at 4pm on Mondays, so we ended up down the street at Yard House for their happy hour. I had been to Yard House in other cities (LA and Indy) so I knew t

The Friday Five, 6/25/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This work week has seemed long, because I was out Monday and Tuesday for my Portage trip so then yesterday and Wednesday was spent playing catch-up. Today I am finally starting out with inbox zero (or, close enough to it) so it shouldn't be as crazy, fingers crossed.  Pie FLIGHT (yes, flight) at Crane's Pie Pantry, Fennville, MI What I've been up to this week: Visiting friends in Portage, MI . One of my college friends lives there with her husband, and pre-pandemic we would visit and stay over at least once or twice per year. We visited last year but only for a second, to bring a pie from Crane's Pie Pantry in Fennville and play some games, so it was nice to see them and also not have to wear masks, since we are all vaccinated! We mostly did delivery (DoorDash, Chase gave me a free paid account for a year recently), but on Monday my boyfriend and I drove an hour to Fennville to meet up with a Birthright friend and her husband. Crane's has the best pies, and also doe

The Friday Five, 6/18/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This Monday was the first day I actually tried eating healthy, with a break on Wed. night for an influencer foodie event ... and I weighed myself this morning and I was UP 2-3 pounds, which was pretty disappointing. I have "salt fingers" this morning, as I call it (had salty foods yesterday, fingers are bloated) so I'm hoping that has something to do with it. I'll be on vacation Sunday through Tuesday though and won't be watching calories those days.  Chili-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin and Corn Salad, from Marley Spoon What I've been up to this week: Cooking . I had Martha & Marley Spoon this week, which I've only tried one other time before, and so far both of the meals have been pretty good—the Chili-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin that you see above as well as a Chicken Curry with Buttered Naan. Next week I'm going back to Home Chef—like once a year they sent me discounts, and this time it was four weeks at $25 off per week (so, $35 per box; more than I usuall

The Friday Five, 6/11/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has been super busy, both work-wise and non-work-wise, so I'm glad it's Friday. I'm becoming a Crumbl addict and I'm getting delivery from them today, only because they're doing free delivery this week, ending Saturday—it's $9.95 otherwise, which is very pricey. Last week's Crumbl: Samoa, PB Brownie, & Strawberry Shortcake What I've been up to this week: Eating out. I'm starting to slowly dip my toe back into the waters of indoor dining. Last Friday, my boyfriend and I checked out Kimchi Box, in Sterling Heights; unfortunately, and maybe this was because I had built it up in my head a lot beforehand, it was just okay, although all of the food was decent. After that, we headed to Crumbl (see pic above) to get my four free Yelp cookies, as Yelp was running an event for Elites—during the pandemic, they've been doing a lot of "Elite Perks" where you can pick up freebies at your convenience, which has been really nice. On Sunda

GIVEAWAY: Beyond Van Gogh, June 25-October 3, TCF Center, Detroit

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*Disclosure: I am receiving something of value in exchange for this post. The opinions expressed here, however, are my own. So although I am not a big art or museum person, I do like Van Gogh's paintings. An interactive exhibit, "Beyond Van Gogh," will be coming to the TCF Center (aka Cobo) this summer, and one of my lucky readers will win a 4-pack to attend! This honestly looks very cool, and I'm excited to check it out. About the show: Show dates: June 25– August 15 EDIT: as of 7/13/21, the show has been extended until October 3, 2021! Buy tickets here: https://vangoghdetroit.com/ Beyond Exhibitions proudly presents “Beyond Van Gogh: An Immersive Experience” coming to TCF Center in beautiful downtown Detroit, produced in partnership with 313 Presents. Opening for a limited engagement Beyond Van Gogh: An Immersive Experience was created by French-Canadian Creative Director Mathieu St-Arnaud and his team at Montreal’s world-renowned Normal Studio. This immersive exp

TV review: Physical, on AppleTV+ {debuts June 18}

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I've said it before, and I'll say it again: AppleTV+ doesn't usually promote its shows much. So when I see a show on there that I love, I like to write about it.  Physical , debuting June 18, 2021, actually was promoted a little bit, mostly through its trailers, but it ended up being a really, really good show. Rose Byrne stars as Sheila, a bored housewife in 1980s California who seems pleasant on the outside, but on the inside, has a biting—and often hilarious—inner monologue. She stumbles across an aerobics studio in the mall one day and soon is hooked; she starts taking classes, and later, teaching them, all without telling her husband anything about it. Her husband is running for office and that's what's been preoccupying him, so Sheila is often the last person on his mind. Rose Byrne is fantastic as Sheila, and I'd be remiss if I didn't mention Rory Scovel, as her husband Danny, who seems harmless enough but is always overlooking Sheila's needs and

The Friday Five, 6/4/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has seemed really long for some reason, even though it's a 4-day work week, so I'm glad today is Friday. I'm planning on being a piglet later: my boyfriend and I wanted to try out Kimchi Box, in Sterling Heights, after seeing so many social media posts about it, and then we will stop by Crumbl Cookies (yes, again, haha ...) to pick up my four free Yelp cookies. Grilled chicken sandwich from Arbor Brewing Co., Plymouth What I've been up to this week: Getting the results of my antibody test! This surprised me because they said it was going to take 2-4 weeks, and instead it only took 9 days. If you have a result of 1.0 or above, it means you have at least some antibodies; mine came back at 4.7 and said "High," so I was excited at first, but in the study I'm in, some people have 30+ ... when I emailed the study coordinator, he said that some people even come back as 100-200. So my (layman's) opinion is that I have SOME antibodies, which of course

The Friday Five, 5/28/21: 5 things I've been up to this week

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This week has seemed long, and it's cold and miserable out today (47 and raining ... at the end of May? #PureMichigan), but this weekend should be fun. I forgot that I get Monday off of work, too, so I'm going to see my boyfriend and also see A Quiet Place Part 2 ...  in EMAX, at Emagine Royal Oak! Crumbl Cookies, from its Rochester Hills location What I've been up to this week: Antibody bloodwork and Crumbl Cookies . I finally had my COVID-19 antibody test on Tuesday, at the LabCorp at the Walgreens in Rochester Hills. Normally it takes them 2-3 days to provide results, but I'm in a study through UNC, and UNC said they batch ship blood samples, so I should have results in 2-4 weeks. I'm a little scared that I have no antibodies, even though I've been vaccinated, because that's been the case with a few immunocompromised people, but I try to tell myself that I shouldn't worry about it until I actually get the results. As a nice bonus, Crumbl Cookies was a

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

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This week has felt long so I'm glad it's Friday. I had been waiting for my colonoscopy bill from my provider and finally got it today ... it's higher than I expected so I'll be talking to them about it, yet again. I literally JUST finished talking to them about my Nov. 2020 colonoscopy bill. Fun times.  Citrus pork tacos from HelloFresh What I've been up to this week: Cooking.  I had my last free HelloFresh box last week and this week I'm back to slumming it with Dinnerly (kidding; I like Dinnerly, but HF is packaged nicer and also has better cards, with Dinnerly you have to print them yourself). I also cooked some triple mushroom gnocchi for my parents last Saturday (HF meal) and last night I cooked beef tacos with guacamole and pickled onions (Dinnerly), which was tasty but maybe needed to be seasoned better.  Dining in!  Last Sunday, I met my friend who lives in Rochester in downtown Rochester for lunch; originally we were going to go to Penny Black's, bu