Science After Hours/SpaceFest

Guys! Have any of you ever been to the Buffalo Museum of Science, Science After Hours events? A couple of weeks ago my sister and I attended the SpaceFest for Adults as part of the featured events for the museum. The event highlighted everything “space” related - I mean, like, viewing the City of Buffalo from the rooftop to having an opportunity to see the Kellogg Observatory and look through the Lundin telescope. There was a member of the science museum’s astronomy team on hand to tell us about the Kellogg Observatory and also tell us what we were viewing in the telescope (we got to see the sun before it set, which was pretty rad!)

photo thanks to my sister, Amber

photo thanks to my sister, Amber

Not only was the event fun, you learned more about the solar system, had a chance to be a part of interactive exhibits, could listen to talks taking place, got to see cool views of the City, and you were able to enjoy the museum after hours - for adults only.

just one of the views from the top of the roof deck at the Buffalo Museum of Science

just one of the views from the top of the roof deck at the Buffalo Museum of Science

The science museum hosts Science After Hours events almost every month with the next one taking place at Tifft Nature Preserve on June 20th - Tifft at Twilight- an event I attended a couple years ago, its a team effort in accomplishing a treasure hunt on the nature preserve. If you can, check. it. out!

AND if you’d like an opportunity to check out the Kellogg Observatory you can check it out with regular museum admission Wednesday’s (weather permitting) as the museum has extended hours. On Sunday’s you can gain access to the roof deck between 12-3 p.m. (also weather permitting). For all the details on the roof deck and K.O. click here.

-B

Friday Favorites

This week has left me questioning a handful of things, leaving me unsure of what my next steps may be, but I know I need to take a step back because it will all work out, it always does. I think part of my uncertainty may come from me comparing myself to others. While social media can be a great tool for many, it can also leave you feeling like you’re not doing as well or as much as you should and quite frankly it can make you feel low and want to quit when you really shouldn’t feel that way. As much as you want to use it, sometimes it may be best to take a break or step away from it so you can truly focus on you and nothing else.

As I was thinking of what to share for today’s post, it made me feel a little better seeing the simple things that happened this week and put things in perspective for me. Like last week, I’d love for you to share at least one positive thing that happened to you this week.

-B

my family had to say goodbye to Wallace our wiener dog at the beginning of the week. While we are still coping with not having him physically here, he lived a great life and brought a lot of joy and love to us and for that I am so thankful.

my family had to say goodbye to Wallace our wiener dog at the beginning of the week. While we are still coping with not having him physically here, he lived a great life and brought a lot of joy and love to us and for that I am so thankful.

I met with Kim and Ginny, owners of the Zero Waste Buffalo group on Facebook and Instagram page for a blog feature I’ll be sharing next week. This photo shows just some simple things you can carry in your bag to help reduce use of single use plastics. More to come on this..

I met with Kim and Ginny, owners of the Zero Waste Buffalo group on Facebook and Instagram page for a blog feature I’ll be sharing next week. This photo shows just some simple things you can carry in your bag to help reduce use of single use plastics. More to come on this..

I was able to catch up with an old co-worker, turned friend at The Little Club this week. Its always a nice feeling to surround yourself with great friends.

I was able to catch up with an old co-worker, turned friend at The Little Club this week. Its always a nice feeling to surround yourself with great friends.

Changed up my Thursday workout routine and took a class on lunch at Impact with my friend Kelsey. It was a nice way to break up the day.

Changed up my Thursday workout routine and took a class on lunch at Impact with my friend Kelsey. It was a nice way to break up the day.

Waterkeeper Wednesday

photo from Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper website

photo from Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper website

Today for Waterkeeper Wednesday I’m highlighting the importance of Waterkeeper Weekend, the “Un-Gala Fundraiser” and Shoreline Sweep which are all coming up next weekend - May 10th-May 12th, 2019.

Let’s begin with Waterkeeper Weekend as a whole, I want to provide you with some facts. Since 2017 thanks to the help of BN Waterkeeper’s donors 7,845 linear feet of shoreline has been restored. 2,200 volunteers have been engaged and donated over 9,000 hours of their time and $10 million has been launched for the Buffalo Blueway Project with Empire State Development. 40 tons of trash has been cleaned out of the river thanks to the help of people like yourselves in the local community participating in the shoreline sweep that Waterkeeper hosts, and while there has been great progress its not done yet. Monthly cleanups like the one being held on May 11th are vital in efforts to restore our waterways.

The Great Lakes are one of the world’s largest surface freshwater ecosystems. 84% of North America's surface fresh water comes from the Great Lakes - right in our backyard…

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

Before rolling up your sleeves and helping at one of the 50 sites for Shoreline Sweep Waterkeeper is hosting an “Un-Gala Fundraiser” at Lakeward Spirits at the Barrel Factory on May 10th to celebrate advocacy and access to our water. It’s a fun evening with food, beverage, raffles, distillery tours and live music supporting a wonderful cause. Tickets for the event can be found here

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

Whatever you choose to do, try to be a part of the celebration of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper’s 30th anniversary.

-B

As part of the Shoreline Sweep I’m raising money for Waterkeeper, if you feel generous no amount is to big or small, please consider donating to the cause - Just a Blonde In Buffalo’s team page

Waterkeeper Wednesday

It’s officially spring and with that people are leaving there homes and heading outdoors. Over the course of the next few weeks I’m going to be sharing information about a great organization in town who has and is continuing to do amazing things for our waterways.

Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper protects and restores our water and the surrounding ecosystems and helps prevent new pollution from forming. Getting the community involved and connecting people to the water through the variety of programs they lead inspires those involved to do more.

PROTECT. RESTORE. CONNECT. INSPIRE.

I sat down with Chris Murawski, Director of Community Engagement from Waterkeeper to learn more about the organization, programs and events that are coming up and just general information we should all know as we head to our waterways as the warm weather approaches.

One of Chris’s roles is to educate the community on issues with our waterways and how we can help. His role is also about listening to the community and addressing what the community needs, the problems we face and inspiring people to do more, get more involved and help with hands on activities Waterkeeper hosts.

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

photo courtesy of Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper

As most are aware this past Monday was Earth Day and Waterkeeper spent the day planting trees at Ellicott Creek Park. Why are trees important to us? “They help 1. Reduce pollution that goes into our waterways. 2. Provide habitat for wildlife. 3. Improve water quality along shorelines. “ - BN Waterkeeper

In case you missed out on Earth Day festivities, don’t worry this coming Saturday, Waterkeeper is hosting another tree planting event from 1-4 p.m. at Ellicott Creek Park. You can register for the event here - Ellicott Creek Planting

Image courtesy of BN Waterkeeper

Image courtesy of BN Waterkeeper

And if that’s not enough you can join Waterkeeper (and myself) on May 11th for their Shoreline Sweep from 10-12 p.m. There are multiple locations you can chose from and can find a complete list here - Spring Shoreline Sweep 

Next week I’ll be diving more into information on the Shoreline Sweep and why it’s so important to the region, the “Un-Gala” Fundraiser and Waterkeeper Weekend, so stay tuned!

-B

A Staple on the East Side of Buffalo

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I said this in my blog post from 2015, the Broadway Market has been a staple in my childhood. Growing up on Fillmore my family and I would frequent the Market on what seemed to be a weekly basis stopping at the comic book stand (Blind Eddie’s) to pick up the latest Betty and Veronica comic on the corner of Fillmore and Broadway afterwards. Since moving to the suburbs in my junior high years we still would visit the Market but not as often. Fast forward to my adult life now and I visit it multiple times a year and with this week being Holy week I am there a couple times within just a few days.

Seeing the Market back in the 1980’s-1990’s and comparing it to now - my oh my how it has changed, I can only imagine how it was when it first opened. From being a place that people would make a part of there daily and weekly routines to now only visiting during the Easter season, it makes me thankful for the time I was able to see it really active.

The Market was created “As immigrants flocked to the east side of Buffalo in the late 1800’s. They looked for the continuation of old world customs in their new and unfamiliar environment. While they wanted to enter the mainstream of city life, they also sought to preserve their Eastern European traditions and heritage. The Broadway Market would prove to serve these needs quite well.” (The Broadway Market -History).

“Started by a group of citizens on a city donated parcel at 999 Broadway in 1888, the Broadway Market quickly became a community meeting place–a place ideal for combining business with socializing and for sharing with one another the latest in gossip and news from the old world. “ (The Broadway Market - History).

As people visit the Market during this week to pick up their traditional Easter pieces, it makes me think what is being done during the rest of the year to help activate the Market. I know last summer they tried to host a series of farmers markets, how successful was that I’m not quite sure. In a news piece Spectrum News posted on 4/14/19 it sounds like plans to make improvements are in the works and over the course of the next couple of years visitors should be able to see those improvements, hopefully calling people to visit more often than just during Holy week.

Visiting my friend Shanna in Milwaukee this past Fall she took us to Milwaukee Public Market - a gathering place where people can eat, get fresh food and even take a cooking class from time to time. To have something like that in Buffalo I think would be great and I think taking ideas from that Milwaukee Public Market and applying to the Broadway Market may be what it needs to reactivate and reinvigorate that area on Broadway and the Market in general. Right now in my opinion Its the dedicated vendors who have been there for decades and the families who are passing down there traditions to the younger generation that keep the Broadway Market thriving. Hopefully if the City invests in the East Side and allots money for improvements in the Market it will last for many more years to come, I guess only time will tell. Maybe its because its been a part of my life, but I feel that at the end of the day the elected officials need to invest more time and efforts in seeing the Market improve.

Lastly here is a shameless plug - follow me on Instagram as I visit the Market this week and come visit me on Monday, I’ll be one of the judges for Buffalo’s Best Kielbasa contest at the Market beginning at noon. Come join in the Dyngus Day festivities.

-B

A special thank you to Aniela Baj from Council Member, Fillmore District David Franczyk’s office and Beverly McLean, President of the Friends of the Broadway Market District, for providing me with information for this piece.

Women Who Move Buffalo - Shawna Stanley

DON’T LET YOURSELF FEEL SMALL
— Shawna Stanley

On this International Women’s Day, that quote above says it all, don’t allow yourself or anyone else to make you feel small.

photo credit - @David_Jaan

photo credit - @David_Jaan

On a Saturday morning at Five Points Bakery I sat down with Shawna Stanley, a photographer (specializing in Birth Photography, Shawna & Co.) and entrepreneur, building The Vanguard House - a co-working community & social club for the modern woman, right here in Buffalo. I was introduced to Shawna through Carrie Rinehart, owner of Rusterior and creator of Buffalo Boss Babes. Meeting Shawna when I did, comes at a time in my life when I need to surround myself with inspiration and positive people. She reminded me that the current situations I am faced with professionally should not have the power to dictate how I feel, make me feel little or make me second guess my talents, hard work and integrity.

From Southern California, Shawna moved to Buffalo with her children to live with her Mother (who is originally from Buffalo and moved back) during a difficult time in her life, looking for extra support. Once being here, Shawna was drawn to the east coast - the people here - it’s a sense of community and she loves the culture of Buffalo.

So you may be asking yourself what is The Vanguard House? What is the idea/concept behind it?

The Vanguard House is a community space here in Buffalo offering support and possibilities to the modern day working woman. Woman will be able to go here and feel empowered and be productive.

Why did Shawna start this?

Because she moved to Buffalo with her kids in tow, 5 boxes and no income. It was through her diligence in connecting with people in the photography business that she realized there needed to be a place to work - a space that would offer child care opportunities, a place to work and a place to connect. She began by doing her research, visiting other cities (like NYC), sending out surveys (which you can find here) and building great connections.

So where did the name come from?

Her and her fiancee have talked about opening a community garage and using Vanguard, which means a group of people leading the way in new developments or ideas. Since the community garage didn’t happen yet, she took the name of it. The Vanguard House is supposed to feel like a second home to women.

What is Shawna’s favorite thing about Buffalo?

Buffalo gives entrepreneurs an opportunity to put there dreams and ideas to work. They go a long way here.

What are the next steps for both The Vanguard House and Shawna & Co.?

In regards to Shawna’s photography business focusing and dialing in more on family and birth photography are more her passion. As Shawna’s vision for the The Vanguard House continues to grow and her dreams and ideas turn into reality you can follow The Vanguard House on Facebook .

The Vanguard House is about women connecting with themselves. Going through this process has showed her how evident it is that women need this space .

Her favorite quote?

“The things you are passionate about are not random, they are your calling.” - Fabienne Fredrickson

What motivates her to keep going?

Shawna is thankful to have a tight knit group of people to give her pep talks, keep her going, push her and remind her on those tough days to not give up.

Shawna’s favorite women to follow on social media?

  • Katie Campofelice (partner and friend in The Vanguard House)

  • Mover and Shaker - Miki Agrawal - she started following her through Instagram and connected with her through an online book club.

  • Laurel Flynn - an intuitive coach who helped Shawna push her vision to a more scalable vision

Other local groups that have helped Shawna along the way - Block Club who helped with the branding and a lot of different processes, Small Business Development Center, The Women’s Business Center at Canisius, NAWBO and some private consultants in the business realm.

For more information on The Vanguard House subscribe to the mailing list on their site.

And remember “Hold Fast to Your Dream”

.

photo cred - Shawna & Co

Women Who Move Buffalo - Carrie Rinehart

“HERE’S TO STRONG WOMEN. MAY WE KNOW THEM.

MAY WE RAISE THEM. MAY WE BE THEM.”

On a Sunday afternoon a few weeks ago I met up with Carrie Rinehart, founder & director of Buffalo Boss Babes and owner of Rusterior. I met Carrie at the first Buffalo Boss Babes Speaker Series event - Growth last April at Buffalo Distilling Company and have since followed her and all the amazingly cool things she has been and continues to do in WNY. Carrie embodies a positive, can-do attitude, is an inspiration to me (and many more!) and is a kick ass business owner, mother, wife and friend (and did I mention she also has full-time job).

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Since attending that first Boss Babes event last April it has truly left an impact on my life. It may be crazy to think attending one networking event can make all the difference, but for me it has. Like many of the women who have attended & spoke at the Boss Babes events, we all struggle with similar worries, ambitions, etc. Being able to have a networking group to turn to, to ask for help, to get advice or feedback, to vent to one another about bumps in the road, or to celebrate achievements, makes all the difference in the world because it reminds us that we aren’t alone. It helps us continue to keep going & pushing towards the goals we set for ourselves vs. giving up & throwing in the towel. We are all hard on ourselves, especially because we all want to succeed & play a role in making a positive influence in our community, but we need to remind ourselves that its OK to take breaks, to go at your own speed & to keep doing you & not worry about the “outside noise.” Its thanks to Carrie creating this blog & providing encouragement & inspiration to us that we have this strong network of women learning about one another & helping each other as we move toward the course we have set out for ourselves.

For those that may not know a lot about Rusterior and Buffalo Boss Babes, let me tell ya a little bit about both. Rusterior is a Goods and Wearable’s shop located in Fredonia, NY (you can find Carrie’s storefront inside Fredonia Farmhouse Finds) you can also shop online. Carrie hand prints cool clothes and goods to have in your everyday lives, so make sure you check her site out! Buffalo Boss Babes is a woman run blog and social media feed that features awesome women in and around Buffalo. The mission of Buffalo Boss Babes is to inspire and empower the creative woman who help build the resurgence in Buffalo.

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Below is my Q&A with Carrie about both Rusterior & Buffalo Boss Babes (BBB).

HOW DID RUSTERIOR HAPPEN?

I KNEW I ALWAYS WANTED TO OPEN A BUSINESS SO I STARTED (7 YEARS AGO) BY CREATING ALL DIFFERENT THINGS - SCARVES, ACCESSORIES, THE SEWN BUFFALO ON A SHIRT & IT HAS EVOLVED INTO WHAT IT IS TODAY.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ITEM YOU SELL?

THE BUFFALO HATS . THEY ARE A UNIVERSAL PIECE THAT EVERYONE LIKES AND THEY DON’T NEED A SIZE.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR CUSTOMERS FAVORITE PIECE(S) & WHAT PIECE(S) DO YOU LIKE TO MAKE?

THE BUFFALO HATS & SWEATSHIRTS ARE FAVORITE CUSTOMER PIECES. MAKING T-SHIRTS IS SOMETHING I ENJOY DOING THE MOST- SCREEN PRINTING IS A FAVORITE OF MINE.

WHAT ARE SOME GOALS/CHANGES HAPPENING IN 2019? WHAT WILL BE EVOLVING WITH RUSTERIOR AS WE MOVE FORWARD?

A LOT OF CHANGES ARE HAPPENING AT RUSTERIOR. WE ARE MOVING IN THE READY TO SHIP DIRECTION SO CUSTOMERS HAVE A QUICKER SHIP TIME (5-7 DAYS). CUSTOMERS WILL BE ABLE TO ORDER CUSTOM SCREEN PRINTS STILL BUT MAY HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL PRINTING HAPPENS AGAIN.

*NOTE TO YOUR SELF - CARRIE HAS A BUNCH OF ITEMS UP ON HER SHOP LIKE THESE GOODIES:

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SO MAKE SURE TO SNAG YOURS BEFORE THEY’RE GONE.

WHY DID YOU START BUFFALO BOSS BABES?

I WAS LOOKING TO NETWORK MORE AND THE NETWORKING EVENTS I WERE ATTENDING WERE THE OPPOSITE OF WHAT I WAS LOOKING FOR. I WANTED TO TALK TO PEOPLE ABOUT BUSINESS. I ATTENDED A ROC GIRL GANG EVENT AND LOVED THE VIBE AND THOUGHT BUFFALO NEEDED THIS AND THAT IS WHAT INSPIRED ME TO CREATE BUFFALO BOSS BABES, WHICH STARTED AS A BLOG AND THEN GREW INTO EVENTS THAT BOSS BABES WANTED TO ME TO START.

WHAT DO YOU GET OUT OF BUFFALO BOSS BABES? & WHAT DO YOU WANT PEOPLE TO GET OUT OF IT?

BBB IS A TRUE COMMUNITY, IT’S RAW & IT’S REAL. IT’S A GROUP OF WOMEN COMING TOGETHER TO INSPIRE ONE ANOTHER, LEARN FROM ONE ANOTHER & SUPPORT EACH OTHER.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT FROM RUSTERIOR?

YOU’LL NEVER FORGET YOUR FIRST STRANGER ONLINE SALE. IT’S A “HOLY COW” MOMENT.

HOW FAR IS YOUR FURTHEST CUSTOMER? & DO YOU COLLABORATE WITH OTHER BOUTIQUES OUTSIDE OF WNY?

MY FURTHEST CUSTOMER WAS IN AUSTRALIA AND I COLLABORATE WITH BOUTIQUES IN IDAHO AND OHIO. FOR ME COLLABORATING FOR RUSTERIOR IS ABOUT ALWAYS REACHING OUT AND FINDING EACH OTHER VIA SOCIAL MEDIA (INSTAGRAM).

WHAT CAN PEOPLE EXPECT IN 2019 FOR BUFFALO BOSS BABES?

BBB WILL HAVE MORE EVENTS, COLLABORATIONS AND VOLUNTEERS. THERE WILL ALSO BE ONE BIG EVENT HAPPENING THIS YEAR SO STAY TUNED FOR MORE DETAILS!

BEST THING YOU LOVE ABOUT BUFFALO?

THE PEOPLE! YOU CAN’T GO ANYWHERE AND FIND GENUINE PEOPLE THAT YOU CAN BE FRIENDS WITH. BUFFALO’S VIBE IS MORE RELAXED AND CHILL.

FAVORITE QUOTE?

“FEAR KILLS MORE DREAMS THAN FAILURE EVER WILL”

WHEN YOU FEEL LIKE THROWING IN THE TOWEL OR TIRED WHAT KEEPS YOU GOING?

MY SUPPORT SYSTEM. YOU’RE ALLOWED TO TAKE BREAKS AND SHUT DOWN, THE WORLD WILL CONTINUE TO GO ON & THAT’S OK.

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FAVORITE SOCIAL MEDIA OUTLET? FACEBOOK OR INSTAGRAM?

INSTAGRAM IS MY FAVORITE OUTLET, ALWAYS ON IT. FACEBOOK FOR THE BUSINESS TRAFFIC . SOCIAL MEDIA WHETHER YOU LOVE IT OR HATE IT, IT BRINGS PEOPLE TOGETHER.

**Photo Credit shout outs go to: Seek Axiom, Lovern Photography, Alexis Mohr Photography

Art of the Brick at the Buffalo Museum of Science

Last night thanks to my friends at the Buffalo Museum of Science and Visit Buffalo Niagara, I got to attend a preview night for the new exhibit - Art of the Brick opening tomorrow - February 9. The exhibit is labeled as one of CNN’s Top 10 ‘Global Must See Exhibitions’ and I can see why. It is such a cool exhibit, like none other! Running through May 5th, make sure to check it out!

Here are just some of the gazillion photos that my sister and I took last night.

Lumagination 2019

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Its been a few years since I’ve attended the Lumagination event at the Buffalo Botanical Gardens so this past weekend my sister along with my niece and nephew went with me to see “The Magic of Air.” Running until February 24th I suggest getting there early (you may have to wait in line for a few minutes) but walking through the exhibits isn’t as crowded.

There are some special themed nights, like, Family Night with the Buffalo Zoo where Zoo members receive Botanical Garden member prices. They also offer Lumagination Happy Hours for those looking to grab a drink or two before (or after) experiencing the exhibit

You can find pricing, dates, times and more information at Buffalo Gardens. com

Harlie & Me ...& Her Family Tree

It’s been a hot minute since I posted about Harlie. As I’m writing this post she’s currently curled up in a ball next to me sleeping (oh Harlie girl <3). Harlie turned three years old a few weeks ago and we celebrated with some of her best pals coming over (my niece and nephew). Harlie continues to do what she loves - chasing rabbits, eating snow and digging for socks out of the hamper and having me chase her around the house with them in her mouth.

For Christmas, my brother, Matt, got me an Ancestry DNA kit which I was super stoked for, but also got me a Wisdom Panel DNA kit for Harlie (which made me more excited). I didn’t even know they had DNA kits for your pets. The whole process overall, from collecting the DNA to sending it in was pretty simple. I received Harlie’s results a little over a week ago. Check it out…

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So to recap about Harlie, I adopted her from Diamonds in the Ruff (located in Niagara County) when she was about 10 weeks old. All I knew about her was her approximate age, that she came from Kentucky and that she was a boxer/spaniel mix.

When I read through the results I was surprised by some areas and not surprised in others. For instance, Harlie is part boxer (already new that), but she also has part Saint Bernard in her (how cool!). The results also showed me she is not only energetic and smart, but loyal. See below for more details.

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The DNA kit not only broke down the different dog breeds and explanations, but also broke down her family tree all the way to her great grandparents. Overall I’m happy with the results and knowing more about Harlie’s background.

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Until next time,

-B & Harlie

Hatchets & Hops

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As I get older I am more and more a fan of experiences and trying something new whenever I can. I have had on my (long) bucket list to visit and experience Hatchet and Hops when it opened over two years ago, so as a Christmas gift this year I decided I would book a Hatchets and Hops outing for my family and I.

A few weeks ago we made it to 505 Main St. (located downtown near the Hyatt) and had a pretty cool experience. For $40 a person and guaranteed two hours of ax throwing we went head to head with some family members and some strangers to see who could win that free drink from the bar and more importantly gloat about being the best ax thrower in the group (note - I did not win that title). Jake was our instructor and score keeper for the duration of the outing, teaching us the scoring system, how to hold and throw the ax and answering any questions we may have had.

Going head to head with my Dad (I let him win that round)

Going head to head with my Dad (I let him win that round)

You can host group parties, sign up for the weekly ax throwing league or simply go and cheer on your friends and/or family. It would even make a good team building or bonding experience for you and your co-workers. Overall the experience was unique, fun and memorable which are three things I always hope to get out of trying new things.

-B

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Buffalo Boss Babes

Cover photo - Buffalo Boss Babes Facebook page photo  This photo - Buffalo Boss Babes Instagram post

Cover photo - Buffalo Boss Babes Facebook page photo

This photo - Buffalo Boss Babes Instagram post

This Sunday 1/20/19  Buffalo Boss Babes Speakers Series: Community features a kick ass list of women

Beth Voseller from Ace Flag & Visual Promotion
Katharine Phillips from Roaming Buffalo & Exhale Events 
Lindsay Williams from Hoopla House Creative
Raelyn Woltz from West End Interiors

If you haven't been to a Buffalo Boss Babes Speaker Series yet, you have to put it on your list of things to do. This will be my third one and It is one of the best networking events in town, hands down. Not only do you meet amazing women leading the way in WNY but I also find myself more motivated and inspired each time I leave. 

Get your tickets right in the event page below
https://www.facebook.com/events/609412126165616/

-B

The Happiest of Happy Hours at the Strong Museum of Play

Just a couple weeks ago my friend Arica and I along with some of her co-workers attended the Happiest of Happy Hours (an after hours, adult event at the museum). Even though I was there for a special event, the museum was so much fun.

Maybe its just because I was excited to be attending an event at a place I haven't been before, who knows, but they had many exhibits for people to explore. I can't imagine you not having a good time, kid or adult there is something for everyone. So if you're looking for something fun to do while on break this week? Take a fun day trip to the Strong Museum of Play in Rochester.

-B

Christmas in Canada

This is such a busy time of year and the days just seem to blend together. Last week, the girls from work and myself went up to the Toronto Christmas Market to check out the lights, decorations and just get in the holiday spirit. We left in the early afternoon {and didn't hit any traffic, yay!}  walked around for a few hours, going in and out of shops in Toronto's Historic Distillery District.

{Campbell's soup to warm you up!}

We grabbed some drinks and a bite to eat before seeing all the lights on once the sun went down. Even if it was just for a few hours, listening to the Christmas music, being around friends and getting out of town for a little bit was one of the best things to happen to me over the last few weeks.

The Toronto Christmas Market is one of the best Christmas Markets in the world and its literally in our backyard. It runs until this Saturday, December 23rd... while that's just a couple days away, if you don't have plans or want to do a quick day trip, its worth it.

-B 

{just a blonde in buffalo photos}

Women Who Move Buffalo - Lindsay from Nickel City Pretty

Last week I met up with the wonderful gal, Lindsay from Nickel City Pretty. We met at her awesome studio {Black Box Studio} on Exchange St. and chatted about all of the exciting things she has accomplished and new ventures she is going to tackle in the future. It is one of my favorite interviews to date. Read more on Lindsay and all the fun things she does below.

What made you start Nickel City Pretty and the Buffalo Blogging Network?

Nickel City Pretty started about 5 years ago when I was looking for a hobby to help get me out of a funk. I always liked writing so as a new years resolution I began my venture into the blogging world. When I began I focused a lot on fashion, but over the years have branched out and now talk all about Buffalo and the great things taking place here. From there I began the Buffalo Blogging Network, a place where I could create a sense of community for other local bloggers to come and talk to others about the same interests. I host monthly meetings and networking events for bloggers to meet with one another, collaborate and just bounce ideas off each other. Since the inception there are now about 80 bloggers and vloggers in the network.

{part of her studio space}

On top of working a full time job, running a successful blog and blogging network, this past summer Lindsay opened up her own studio - Black Box Studio located at 567 Exchange St. so I asked her what made her want to open her own studio. 

Her response - I was itching for a bigger office, a place where I could come and put my full attention to my work. One thing I learned from Lindsay when we met is she loves old buildings and the architecture in and around Buffalo and with Larkinville being an up and coming area, when she found out the space was available her and her friend Heather {who is a photographer} jumped at the chance and did a complete reno. Having a studio space allows for me and Heather to bounce ideas off one another, to rent the space out to other people who are looking for a temporary spot to study, work, or hold a photo shoot to name a few things. My take away on the studio - it is super cozy, yet hip and I love everything about it! 

What is one thing you want people to take away from all of your initiatives and what do you enjoy most about each of them? 

Down the road I would love to see Black Box Studio grow and be a place for people to shoot videos, do more photography, host make up classes {Lindsay is a make up artist and still does classes, lessons and books for special occasions} and pop up shops and creative things. The studio is the missing piece to my puzzle. What I enjoy most about each thing I do - her blog - I love interacting with so many cool people, creating my "Nickel City Gritty" series and asking fun questions to get people to see those I features, real personalities. Just being able to work with Visit Buffalo Niagara {VBN} and local business owners and to go out and do all these cool things and be in the community is exciting. With the Blogging Network I love forming friendships, making people interact with one another and to see the collaborations created and the community that is forming is pretty awesome. Meeting Heather and having my own space and being inspired each time I walk into the studio is really exciting.

What do you love most about Buffalo? 

I love how friendly Buffalo is and how we help each other out. I love the old with the new, the architecture and old buildings and history with the new restaurants and technology. I also love how proud people are living here and of course the food. One thing I can say is Lindsay is apart of creating history here in Buffalo, her passion for her blog, the network and studio exude in everything she shares with the public. And I am so lucky to know her and am humbled to be apart of the network and learn from her. 

What is one thing people don't know about you? 

I was supposed to be on a Fisher Price box as a kid, but a few days before the photo shoot I fell and sliced my eyebrow open and needed stitches, needless to say because of that I didn't end up on the box.

Out of all of your initiatives is there one thing you enjoy more than another? 

I enjoy blogging, its my baby. And to be honest it is because of that, that it spawned me into these other ventures. It keeps growing, I enjoy being busy and working on new projects, like my Public Art Page.

What motivates you to keep going? 

The City - the vibrancy, my family and the people that I get to interact with everyday, Everyday life, that's what motivates me and keeps me going. Its all been fun and its a hobby and a job and my passion.

Lindsay is passionate about Buffalo, she gets inspiration from friends who own their own business and are living their passion. She loves local, small business and she screams Buffalo and just wants to show her love for the City in everything she does and I think she does a damn good job at it. The creativity out of Buffalo is amazing, but the dedication and love Lindsay has in everything she does is equally amazing and she inspires me and for that I am so grateful to know her. 

If you are or know of any business that would like to work with Lindsay or know of any person who she should feature on her Nickel City Gritty series contact her here.

{she is always working}

Fishing in the Lower River

Brisk air and cooler temperatures made way for a new fishing experience for me yesterday up in Lewiston.  When Ryan from Brookdog Fishing Co. asked if I wanted to get back out on the water, I jumped at the chance and said of course! Not only was it fun this past summer when I went on an excursion with him, but I have never fished in cooler temperatures and honestly didn't know it was a thing to do until recent.

{out on the water}

There is something about just being on the water that makes you put things in perspective and clears your mind. Right off the bat we caught some steelhead and lake trout. What was the most exciting part of the trip, outside of sharing stories with Ryan and ease dropping on other boats conversations, was the fight of reeling in the fish when we caught them. The second favorite was holding the fish, I don't know why, but even when the fish fell out of my hands and I screamed like a little girl, it was fun.

Overall, its just a great experience and something different to do in the fall and winter time. Again, Ryan goes above and beyond providing all the amenities for the trip, including coffee and a mini space heater to warm your hands from time to time. I can't say enough positive things about this company, it is truly one of a kind and I'm already looking forward to the next trip. Thanks Ryan!

-B 

{rise and shine, its fishing time}

{holding the biggest fish I've ever caught}

{it was quite the experience}

{and I enjoyed every second of it!}

 

#digiPlaySpace

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen my Insta story last night on the newest exhibit to come to the Buffalo Museum of Science, digiPlaySpace. Open to the public beginning tomorrow {11/18/17}  digiPlaySpace is made for both kids and adults and is so.much.fun!!

The exhibit produced by TIFF {Toronto International Film Festival} is an interactive playground for everyone. Guests of the museum can explore new media technologies, get hands on with the 14 interactive digital installations and the Buffalo Museum of Science is only the third museum in the U.S. to host this exhibit.

If you're looking for something to take the kids to over the Holiday break or looking for a fun date night or just something to get you out of the house, I highly recommend checking digiPlaySpace out. It's on exhibit until April 22, 2018. 

A special thank you to the Tweet Team, Visit Buffalo Niagara and the Science Museum for inviting me to the preview night!

#travelBUF

-B 

 

 

Women Who Move Buffalo - Finishing Touches by Caitlin Krumm

{photo on Finishing Touches by Caitlin Krumm facebook page}

It was about a year and a half ago when I met Caitlin Krumm {now Mrs. Ring}, I met Caitlin through a mutual friend and helped organize her wedding, it was at that time that I was introduced to Caitlin's talent of art, but what I didn't know was that she has been an artist for a while. Back in 2007 she began creating pieces for fun, but always had a passion for it and in college took every art class she could.

She participated in the Elmwood Arts Festival for a number of years and built a customer base, she then began her Trendy Buffalo prints {I love them!} that started off as 4 originals and now she has up to 24. From there she participated in solo shows in pop up locations and created pieces for her clients. Fast forward to today and Caitlin is gearing up to open Finishing Touches by Caitlin Krumm, a pop up space inside the beautiful Ellicott Square Building that provides a purpose.

The concept is pretty simple, its to get art in the public eye, including her Trendy Buffalo prints, but also provide accessory basics such as scarfs, scented candles, wine tags and home decor items to complete your look for both your outfit and your home. And everything is $45 and under so you are getting a quality item for an affordable price.

When I asked Caitlin what her favorite piece of work is and why, she mentioned her Trendy Buffalo pieces. The reason why? They are fun to create. What I admire about Caitlin is her persistence and will to not give up. When she explained to me she will put in a full days work to create multiple pieces on top of working her full time job and still having personal time, it is quite impressive. Caitlin is genuinely a beautiful person inside and out, she has a huge heart and puts a ton of her passion into everything she does.

When I asked her my classic "What do you love about Buffalo?" question, her response -  I love Buffalo because of the people and the interaction and response I receive from my work. What she hopes people get out of her new venture at Finishing Touches is exposing people to her art by having it be part art gallery, part boutique, but also provide a convenience to those who are looking for unique pieces.

Store hours will be Wednesday's 11:30-7pm Thursday's and Friday's 11:30-3:30pm and available by appointment. There is a soft opening this coming Friday {11/17} from 4-7:30 pm.

To follow along, follow Caitlin's social media pages ---> Facebook Instagram

Thank you Caitlin for sharing your talent with WNY. xo

-B