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Writing Samples

This is a small collection of short stories, articles, and city guides I have written for this or that. Most recently, the Gaylord Herald Times.

Cheap Valentine's Day Date Ideas That Are Actually Fun

Love isn’t about grand gestures and expensive things. Love is doing the dishes without being asked, shoveling the drive way, and somehow making tedious every day tasks fun because you are in it together. To this day my favorite date of all time was spending the day driving around South Florida in our beat up 1991 Caprice getting free “Stolen Base” Taco Bell tacos, making jokes and dreaming about the future. With that said here are some thoughtful ideas on how to spend Valentine’s Day loving instead of spending.

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New year...not so new me.

I used to go to the gym ... often. Then, life happened, and I stopped. However, I’ve never been gymtimidated. Yoga, pilates, boot camp, barre, Zumba, kickboxing — call me, it’s a date — as long as it’s after 6 p.m.

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Frances Eugenia
Art For Art's Sake: Downtown Gaylord steps up

We’ve all come to know Gaylord as a town of varied interests. Golf Mecca, growing foodie village and hub for a burgeoning music scene, but is Gaylord a breeding ground for a nascent underground art scene? All sign are pointing to yes. This week we hit the streets to dig a little deeper, and we found that our gorgeous downtown offers up more than just cocktails, fine dining and great shopping.

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Frances Eugenia
From gobble to wobble: Gaylord's Thanksgiving bar crawl

Thanksgiving is upon us. Gaylord’s sons, daughters, brothers and sisters return from their respective locations for tryptophan-laced celebrations with family... and a tsunami of feelings. Your mother sneak-dissing your weight, your dad just not getting it, your sisters openly, and aggressively hate your partner, your auntie asking when you're getting married, and grandpa's slightly problematic undercover racist comments all come together to create a perfect storm of potentially wild fury. But, here at Extra, we got you. Before you fling a handful of stuffing at your little brother let us help you plan your pre and post-meal escape. Here is Gaylord's ultimate guide to taking the edge off this holiday season so you can stay calm and party on.

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Frances Eugenia
Kindness, Community, Mindfullness: Better living comes through gratitude

As November comes to a close and we enter deeper into the holiday season, gratitude is something we all explore. This past month, Yoga-45 invited the members of the Gaylord community to participate in a gratitude challenge. When researching the challenge, Yoga-45 found a Harvard University study that revealed a daily gratitude practice had physical, spiritual, and social benefits. Surprising, no?! These benefits include stronger immune systems, lower blood pressure, better sleep, general alertness, positivity, and happiness, as well as, increasing compassion, generosity, and creating more forgiving natures.

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Gaylord is a cheese lover's paradise

Hot, gooey, cheese and crisp bread solve a lot of life’s problems. This childhood treat is seeing a renaissance with adult renditions popping up at trendy restaurants. Gaylord’s culinary elite are proving to be masters in the game. Here are some of our favorite picks.

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Frances Eugenia
Plan your fall color tour daycation

Fall foliage is coming! Week by week, billions of leaves will change color painting Northern Michigan's already spectacular scenery into something even more breathtaking. It happens every single year, but natural wonder never fails to please and draw crowds. Projected peak color for 2018 is Oct. 14-21. Let us help you plan the perfect trip. Here is the ultimate guide to taking in the fall colors without straying too far from home.

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Frances Eugenia
Local trivia nights increase in popularity

Downtown Gaylord is no stranger to regular crowds filled with tourists and locals alike. Each venue offers its unique brand of entertainment year round. In such a competitive climate where decent crowds are essential, a couple of places are standing out from the crowd with their signature trivia nights.

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Frances Eugenia
This dumb old farmhouse gets smart

Hey, Google where is...? Hey, Siri what is...? Alexa, can you...?

A couple of months ago I visited my mother. I found her fluttering about the kitchen in her particular way. Suddenly, she said” Hey Google, play Meghan Trainor,” in her endearing accented English. To my great surprise, the kitchen filled with the singer’s signature swagginess. The sound was shockingly rich for a device the circumference of a large drink.

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