A Midnight Baseball Game, A Bowling Birthday Bash and a Babysitting Adventure

If you want to know what B and I did this weekend, the title really says it all … we went to an Indians Game (which pretty much started after midnight!), went to a Bowling Birthday Party and borrowed our niece and nephew for a downtown sleepover/babysitting adventure. And we (and the kiddos) survived!

Midnight Ball Game

Friday night, B and I had plans to go to the Indians game with B’s sisters, B’s brother and a few of B’s sister’s friends (you follow?). B’s sister Katie’s boyfriend (or boy friend) was in town and the plan was to show him a night out in Cleveland. The plans were to meet for happy hour before the game, and then head to Progressive Field for some $1 hot dogs and cheap seats.

The plans didn’t quite work out … the weather turned Friday afternoon from sunny and 80s to chilly and torrential downpours – which caused a rain delay. And then another rain delay. And then another rain delay! We made it over to the game for the new 9 p.m. start time, and ended up watching two innings before another rain delay – this time for about two more hours! Determined not to waste our evening, we feasted on $1 — er, now 50 cent — hot dogs, pop corn, beer, and waited. At about 11 p.m. we decided to leave. JUST as we left the stadium, they lifted up the tarp – they were going to play again! We decided to wait the next hour at a bar while they dried up the field. B’s brother headed home, and I was getting tired, so I confess – I didn’t make the end of the game. B and his sister and her boyfriend were troopers – they stayed until nearly 3 a.m. when the game was over!

50 cent hot dogs? I’ll have 6!

Waited it out. For a long time. The game ended at nearly 3 a.m.! (I’m sure the people behind us in the photo are leaving. )

AH! Oh no. Not the tarp again!

AH! Oh no. Not the tarp again!

Bowling Birthday Bash

Caring Cubs, an organization that I’m involved in thanks to Bridge Builders (and posted about before, here) was hosting their 5th Birthday celebration this weekend. Part of my Bridge Builders project was actually to help them come up with something that would help them fund-raise (they mostly rely on community donations and occasional grants!)  – and the options were endless! We eventually came up with an event with a silent auction – and Saturday’s Bowling Birthday Bash was born. Even though I was volunteering at the event, B also attended and we brought our niece and nephew to the festivities. Why not? It included bowling, bumpers for the kids, pizza, birthday cake, crafts, facepaint AND even an appearance by a Care Bear! It was definitely fun  – and I’m proud that my efforts are contributing to the sustainability of this organization.

My helper at the check-in table!

My helper at the check-in table!

A real Care Bear! (Side note – I had to show them who the Care Bears were on my phone before the event)

Hanging out at the Bowling Birthday Bash!

Hanging out at the Bowling Birthday Bash!

What's a birthday party without cake?

What’s a birthday party without cake?

24 Hours in Babysitting

After the Bowling Bash, B and I had plans to have his niece and nephew sleep over. Their parents were out of town, and (admittedly, after a few Memorial Day glasses of wine) we volunteered to babysit them from Saturday through Sunday. I was a little nervous leading up to the weekend – I hadn’t officially babysat in years (in college I used to babysit an infant and eventually toddler pretty much once a week, and summers I would babysit two elementary school girls 2-3 full days during the summer — but that was years ago!) and B’s nephew can be a handful sometimes. It was actually a lot of fun and I have to give B credit – it seemed like he did most of the work, and I had most of the fun! From painting nails, to baking cookies, to walking to the lake and taking the trolley (the kids were super impressed with the “big trains,” “big buildings,” and pretty much everything about downtown), to running on the treadmill and B watching the kids (they did like watching me for a little!), to watching The Muppet Movie  to hanging out in the homemade fort – it was really a fun weekend! No temper tantrums, no bruises and we all (yes, all four of us) survived.

This photo is completely normal.

This photo is completely normal.

Some of the awesome ways we spent our night -  face paint, trolley rides, baking cookies, Muppet movies and fort making!

Some of the awesome ways we spent our night – face paint, trolley rides, baking cookies, Muppet movies and fort making!

Watching the boats on the lake

Watching the boats on the lake

They loved the trolley!

They loved the trolley!

Will we be watching them again anytime soon? I asked B – he said “that depends on what they report back to their parents.”  Hmm … not sure if that’s a yes, but it’s definitely not a no!

How was your weekend? Some questions to ponder:

  • Did you used to babysit? Did you ever take the Red Cross Babysitting Course? Yes I did! I took it in 5th grade and babysat through college. I’m a little rusty, though…
  • What’s your favorite kind of birthday cake? I love ice cream cake! Vanilla heath bar crunch ice cream please. OR I’ll settle for a cassata cake 🙂
  • What’s the latest you’ve ever watched a baseball game?
  • How many hot dogs do you chow down on during $1 dog night? Have you ever seen 50 cent dog night?
  • What’s your favorite baseball game snack? It used to be the pretzels with mustard – but now that I found the tri-colored popcorn stands (cheddar, caramel and regular) I may have a new treat!

DCA City Advocate Applications Now Available!

Love Cleveland? Wanna Do Something About It?  Want to meet others who love Cleveland? I highly recommend you apply for the DCA City Advocate program. It’s a two year program that fosters civic engagement among individuals who love living in, working in, or just visiting Cleveland.

I may be biased – because I’m in their current class – but I definitely recommend you apply. What’s cool about it? Each month, we meet for an hour as a large group, either for a working session or to hear from a local Cleveland speaker. We’ve heard from LAND studio about all the cool projects they’re working on in the community, Councilman Cimperman, and more. Not only has it proven to be educational (just ask my coworkers, I always know what’s going on in Cleveland!), but it’s also been great to meet so many other people passionate about Cleveland and doing something about it!

A two year program, the DCA City Advocate program also encourages its participants to work on a project with a small group. The project can be anything – that’s right, anything – that somewhat helps better our community. Stay tuned for more details on my project – I’m almost ready to share it with you and I hope you’ll be as excited as I am when it’s ready!

Got questions about the program? Visit the website OR ask me! Deadline to apply is February 3rd.

Hope to see you in the program with me this year!

PS – I also just learned the applications for the Class of 2014 Bridge Builders are coming out in early February! I’m also a member of the CBB Class of 2013 and doing some great things as part of the program. If it sounds like something you may be interested in, keep checking the website for the application.

Are you a Fire, Earth, Air or Water?

Thoughts from my first Bridge Builders’ session

NOTE: Much of this blog post originally appeared on the Fahlgren Mortine blog.

Recently, I was fortunate enough to be accepted into the Cleveland Bridge Builders Class of 2013. According to the Cleveland Leadership Council, Bridge Builders is “a 10-month leadership development and civic engagement program for committed civic leaders.” In short, that means over the next year I hope to develop the leadership skills and local business relationships that will help me on my way to being a better leader in the office and within the Cleveland business community.

How does one become a leader? At the Bridge Builders opening retreat in September, I was eager to find out and wondered what I would learn: How to manage others? How to adjust to different personality styles? What people look for in a leader?

Instead, the session was designed for us to learn more about ourselves, stemming from the idea that becoming a better leader requires an understanding and appreciation of oneself. To help us with this process, we all took a personality-type test to find out our leadership style. The TetraMap test revealed four personalities or leadership styles – Earth, Air, Water and Fire. Earths are confident and competitive and enjoy setting goals and having control. Airs are orderly and focused and excel where systems and order are in place. Waters are caring, quiet, loyal and emotional. Fires are energizing, passionate, easily distracted and love to explore possibilities. How did I do? I scored very strongly as a Fire, and second highest as a Water.

Though I was surprised to find out I identify as a Fire, learning more about this personality type put me at ease. There’s a reason that I often start a project and then jump to another one and then another one – it’s common with Fires, and probably one reason I thrive at a PR agency where I juggle a variety of clients and types of work each day. It also explains why I’m resistant to processes and procedures – Fires work better in environments where they are permitted to explore their ideas and try a new approach to problem-solving, another reason I fit in at an agency whose mantra is “Think Wider” and believes in working together across agency disciplines to provide customized approaches to our clients’ challenges. That doesn’t mean that we’re an agency of Fires, though – as I learned in Bridge Builders, a good leader understands how to empower all personality types to get things done. TetraMap’s website shares how each personality serves an important role:

  • Earth personalities move us forward so we can achieve our goals
  • Air personalities rely on order and design processes and systems to help us work and plan together
  • Water personalities help us acknowledge diversity for our well-being and caring
  • Fire personalities inspire and excite us to create brighter futures

We learned that we all contain character traits of each personality (nobody is JUST a Water), but sometimes one trait definitely stands out. After learning about the different traits, I realized that while I may be a Fire – this personality definitely shines (no pun intended) when I’m at work, but my Water traits come out more when I’m at home or with family.

Which personality type do you think you are? Are you a different personality at work versus with your friends and family?