Cleshopaholic Travels to Put In Bay

This past weekend, N and I went to Put-In-Bay for a volleyball tourney-- well, he played. I sunbathed. And I got some SERIOUS tan lines.  There were 10 of us at the Island Club, and as is the custom in Put-In-Bay, we partied like we were 21. I'm paying for it today.

The ride over

Early in the night....

Some (well, one) of us, didn't fare so well...

The 9 am start was ROUGH!

A little slice of tranquility... 

Look who I found!! 

Saturday night bar hopping! 

Dueling pianos! 

And just like that, the weekend was over, and it was time to go home! 

I hadn't been to Put-In-Bay since 2004, and I was pleasantly surprised this time around! Its more than a little frat-party-like, but fun nonetheless!!

Cleshopaholic travels.... to the wilderness

This past weekend, N and I joined is family for a little getaway in Hocking Hills, Ohio.  If you've never been, Hocking Hills is close to Athens, Ohio, about 3 hours from Cleveland. Its known for its camping and outdoors activity; if you know me in real life, then you know that camping is DEFINITELY not my thing. I like modern comforts. Also, some of Mother Nature's creations (mosquitos and other bugs that bite humans) and I don't really get along. So, with that in mind, we decided to go the cabin route instead. Our home for the long weekend was Pine Hills Lodge, a lovely log cabin with 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, and, most importantly, a hot tub.

The house was really quite lovely; there was plenty of room for everyone, and we could have easily fit in more than 6 adults and 1 child. Unlike a lot of vacation rentals, you didn't have to take bed linens or towels, and the house even had a washer-dryer in the event you needed it.

We had originally planned to go canoeing/kayaking, but the lack of rain has caused the water level is the river to drop quite a bit, which means we would have had to carry the boats in many instances, and so we decided to avoid that excursion. There's also ATV-ing, and zip-lining (which N and I just did in October in Costa Rica) and of course hiking.

We took a day to go hiking, and I actually have proof!!!

No trip is complete without a souvenir, and Hocking Hills has loads and loads of flea markets and antique malls, where we picked up this copper container. We're using it to hold our throws in our living room.

Overall, it was a fun and relaxing trip. I got quite a bit of reading done, which is good news for my next Reading Room post!!

Have you been camping? How about glamping (luxury camping- I could get into this)?


So, I sorta disappeared on you for a about three weeks there, didn't I? I had good reason for it though- N and I were visiting my family in INDIA!! We got back a week ago Sunday, and honestly, it took until this past Sunday to recover from jet lag. I don't know why this time was particularly bad, although I suspect it has something to do with the unexpected layover, and subsequent ass-crack-of-dawn flight from Toronto.

Overall, it was a great trip! We went to the beach for a few days, spent a lot of time hanging out with family, AND, I got LASIK!! Yes, I'm glasses and contact-lens FREE!!! Sunday will mark 3 weeks, an I will finally be permitted to wear eye makeup again. I honestly didn't think I would care about the no eye makeup part, but turns out I do. I've been wearing a bold lip over the past 3 weeks (and I mean BRIGHT- hot pink, to be precise), and its been ok, but I prefer a bold eye.  Not that it should be a reason to discourage anyone from exploring LASIK- it is AWESOME, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who's considering it. No, it doesn't hurt, and yes, you can smell slight burning.

I did some shopping while I was there- no shock- and this year's purchases included a mustard colored leather jacket, and a beige quilted bag. Incidentally, now that I have a quilted bag, I'm more than a little obsessed with the idea of getting a CHANEL some day. You know, that day that I win the lottery.

Now, for some pictures:

Scenes from the beach. Yes, they are training an ox on the beach. If you end up in India, Goa is a must-see!!!

Scenes from a market!

Hello again

Hi again!! It's been a while since I last posted anything- blame it on lots of work-related travel and some vacation!! This past week, N and I enjoyed some R&R in Costa Rica!!! We stayed at the Westin, an all-inclusive in the Guanacaste region. The rooms were very nice and comfortable, but I would say that if I had to do it over, I would only go the all-inclusive route for part of the vacation, not the whole 7 days. Costa Rica is known for its eco-tours and adventure offerings, and staying at an all-inclusive for the whole time is just sorta a waste when you end up leaving on tours that last the whole day!

Here are some pics from vacation. You will notice that it looks very cloudy in the pictures- we knew we were going in the "wet" season, but I was expecting the usual hour or two of rain. However, thanks to a hurricane that ran through Mexico, we had LOTS of rain everyday. From what I hear, a lot like Cleveland last week! However, it was nice and warm, so N and I spent time hanging out in the hot tub and at the swim up bar.

The waves were pretty rough thanks to the hurricane

The resort critters. Both the birds and the little mongoose/raccoon-type animals (Caoti) would come right up to you for food. There was a huge pack of about 20-25 of them around the pool, although only 1-2 of them were social. The little babies were really cute!

Beautiful tropical flowers

N and I took a day-long tour that included the Arenal volcano (you can't go up to the mouth of the crater- poisonous gases etc), a boat ride, a walk through the rainforest, time at the hot springs, and a delicious dinner at a restaurant overlooking the volcano.

 The Rainforest. Honestly, I was more afraid of the rainforest than the zipline tours!! I'm allergic to everything, and I was so nervous that I would get bitten by some crazy tropical insect and swell up!!! It was beautiful though, and I made it out unbitten, which made it even better!!

 N and I also did an ATV tour (I rode my own ATV- yay!!), and a zip line tour which was a MAJOR adrenaline rush!! Essentially, you fly through the rainforest harnessed to cables, and a lot of times you couldn't even see the other end. In case you're wondering, I didn't look down once, but I did keep my eyes open as I was flying across the cables! 

Overall it was a really nice vacation- some touristy stuff, and a LOT of relaxation!!!