Monday, December 7, 2009

My Etsy Pick of the Day Recap

Any of these lovely handmade items would make a
wonderful, unique gift!

Yawn...I am definitely a sleepyhead in the morning before my coffee!

Never lose another pan at a potluck
I originally picked "Granny wants her pan back"
but it has sold out, but this one is just as fun!
Personalized 9x13 inch Baking Dish by sassyinteriors

It's a Bikini, it's a Dish's darn cute!

Dish Cloth Bikini Gag Gift by beesugarpie

Nothing says loviin' like the Double Double at In-n-Out Burger!

Cheeseburger Diagram Tea Towels by girlscantell
Admit it...this is what you were thinking as the family invaded your house this Thanksgiving

My Family is a Freak Show Without the Tent Pin by TheAngryRobot

Super cool as a necklace...totally off-the-hook as a mask...

I'm a Dirty Hipster Mask/Necklace by PunchDrunkPrincess

Add some unique style to your home with this

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My Etsy Pick of the Day Recap

Check out these great Etsy shops!

A great gift for a boss, teacher or friend!

Pen Pal Sea Glass Pen by Sea Shaped

Spot your luggage easily with this

Lime Green Hippo Suitcase by BrightWall

So cool, so chic...this Paris designer is hot!

Fingerless Gauntlets by Malam

For the modern bride, a beautiful button bouquet...

Puttin' on the Ritz by Really Bad Kitty

I love the modern design of this...

The Greens Cosmetic Pouch by Majkatree

Wouldn't this make a great stocking stuffer?

Soap Snapshot Vegan Friendly by Dennis Anderson

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

My Etsy Pick of the Day Recap

My dream job is to be an Etsy admin who has the insanely cool job of browsing the Etsy categories and picking their favorites. Until that happens, I'll just make do with tweeting my favorites on Twitter each day. Here's a recap of things that caught my eye!

For those long road trips with the kids in the car, a classic
Car Bingo Game by pilosale
The solution to running with keys in my hand...
"Wrist Cuff Wallet by Mary Zoom
You won't think of junk mail the same...
Rolled Recycled Paper Bead Bib Necklace by ReLoved Designs
Dogs should look pretty for the hoildays ,
"The Yuletide" collar by Lucky Fiona

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Top 10 Reasons You Should Do a Mud Run

10. Remember splashing in mud puddles as a kid? Here's your chance to tune into your inner child and not only splash in them, but crawl through them...something your mother would never let you do!

9. It's a great excuse to start a healthier for my first one made me realize I LOVE running and now it's a part of my life!

8. Bonding! You'll never be in another situation where total strangers now feel like your closest friends...the common thread of doing a mud run brings people together, now that's cool! Check out my twitter list of fellow OC Mud runners!

7. You may learn new things about yourself...I never thought I was a competitive person, but I've found out I am...passing by other runners is exhilarating, especially if they're men!
6. Halloween comes in any month when there is a mud run...dig out your angel wings and banana may just win the costume contest!

5. If you're lucky you just might meet a mud run celebrity...I did! James O'Brien is a veteran mud runner and a super nice guy...easy to spot, just look for the man in the suit!

4. You'll have something good to talk about on Monday morning...and you're co-workers will be jealous!

3. Spending your day outdoors, reconnecting with Mother Nature...and Father Mud!

2. You've been putting off cleaning your running shoes...after the mud run, no more procrastinating, my shoes are nice and clean again thanks to the garden hose!

And the number one reason you should do a mud run...because once you try it I promise you'll want to do it again! It's FUN!!!

So now that I've talked you into it, you have plenty of time to start your training...start slow then build up because when April 10th, 2010 rolls around you won't want to be missing out on all the fun at the next Irvine Lake Mud Run! See you there!

Want to see more?
Here's a video from the Irvine Lake Mud Run

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Turning trash into art

I am not a wasteful person, I try my best to keep my regular trash can empty and my recycle can full. My eco-awareness spills over into my art. If I can find a way to make something new, you can bet I will.
Remember Iris, the old broken clock? Or her offspring...who used to be croquet balls?
My latest art pieces both are an example of upcycling.

"Freckled Legs" came from an old 70's coffee table I found one day while driving down the street. The top couldn't be saved but I salvaged all four legs. A bit of sanding and filling in the holes where the screws once were and they were on their way to a new life. A few coats of black paint finished off with white "freckles" and voila! At the moment they look stunning on my mantle but if you really want them visit my etsy shop they're for sale!
"Thirsty" came from my collection of plastic beverage lids I had started awhile back. I played around with different ideas and designs and decided to go with a simple pattern with a black grout. As one twiiter friend described as "not pop art, but lid art"!
"Thirsty" would look really cool in a modern decor, it's also for sale in my shop.
What's next??? The kids are soon back in school so I'll have more time to create new things in my studio...stay tuned!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Vacation Gone Bad!

Most vacations go smoothly with a few minor things that go wrong, like a plane delay, but wait until you hear my bad vacation story! This trip to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico happened nearly 20 years ago but the scars will never go away...

We had a great one week vacation planned, we were young and in love...the surf was supposed to be great and the flight on Aero California was a steal!
We landed in Cabo on time, and proceeded to pick up our bags in this tiny little airport when the first strange thing happened...a 45 minute luggage delay. Seriously there were only a few gates at the airport back then, what is the hold up? After going finally getting our bags and going through the Mexican security (yes, they did search us going into Mexico), we caught a shuttle to our hotel. The hotel was nice with a beautiful ocean view, we dropped our things and stepped onto the balcony to enjoy it. Mysteriously a note appeared under our hotel room door...what is this I wondered? Maybe an invite to happy hour in the bar? It read..."Do not unpack your bags due to a Hurricane Warning. You may be asked to take cover in the lobby area." Hurricane? Didn't we check the forecast before we left? Of course we didn't, we were youngsters who only cared about the surf report. For the next few days we watched as storefronts boarded up their windows and the Hurricane report was issued in the lobby each morning (always a day late). My hubby really wanted to surf so each morning we'd peer out at the sky and think...should we go for it? The surf spots were a good 30 minute drive away. Too tempting...of course we went! The waves were huge and the sky was ominous looking but the Hurricane veered away from Cabo and we never got hit.
The skies turned turquoise blue and we enjoyed the rest of the week soaking up the sun, soaking up Margaritas and getting soaked in the warm and wonderful sea.
So you're reading this and thinking, hey...what was so bad about this trip? I haven't even got to the BAD yet!

The last day of our vacation we spent the morning at the beach and decided to just go straight to the airport and shower when we got home that night...BIG MISTAKE!!! We noticed as we arrived that the airport was really packed but figured it was because of the big fishing tournament that had been going on. We walked up to the ticket counter and checked in for our flight. "Now Boarding Aero California Flight #101, please proceed to the gate when we call your name." We waited, and waited...hmmmm...this is strange. Then they stopped calling names, closed the boarding door. A herd of passengers rushed the agent to find out why they weren't on that flight when they all held tickets saying they were.
Surprise #1-The previous flight of the day was cancelled due to mechanical trouble and they boarded our flight with those passengers. Surprise #2- After spending 7 days in Mexico (love the food) I couldn't wait to get home and have a good juicy American hamburger...instead we were issued $5 vouchers for a lunch in the airport restaurant. Surprise #3-A few hours pass and now we are the only people left in the airport...what does Aero California do to calm the stranded passengers? BEER! A full size trash can full of ice and cerveza is being hauled in by the Airport security guards!
Surprise #4-It's dinnertime, the airport restaurant has closed and the crowd is hungry...the flight attendants now wheel in the trays of our airline meal...chicken or fish? Surprise #5- We are told to go through the xray machines, the plane is coming and to have our boarding passes in hand...false alarm, go back...another delay! Surprise #6-Once again, back through security check(just in case someone found a weapon in the now darkened desolate airport) boarding passes's almost midnight. We see the plane land, passengers disembark...stand up to get ready to board..."Attention please, Flight 101 has been cancelled due to fog at LAX"! Surprise #7-They ask all thirty of us to board the plane and sleep in it on the runway until morning! Passengers refuse! Finally at 1:30am we all arrive at a hotel for some much needed sleep and a nice hot shower. Surprise #8- No Hot water...front desk explains that it's turned off until morning! Surprise #9-5:30AM wake up call to board shuttle buses back to the airport. Yes, we finally do board while the flight attendants "freshen" the seats with Glade spray. I would estimate the plane's age to be from the 60's ...can it make it back to LAX??? Surprise #10- We make 2 unscheduled landings in fishing villages along the way to pick up random people. While flying...which I love to do...we had a few too close for comfort views of mountain peaks...a wild ride!
When we finally landed in L.A., I literally felt like kissing the ground...that's how good it felt to be back home. We wait for our luggage and now my suitcase does not appear. It had been on the flight we should've been on and had been waiting for me all night...they even called my house to say they had it! Since our friends from Orange County had driven up the day before to pick us up...we had no way of contacting them...we were now stranded with no ride home. Stranded in LA? No problem, find me the nearest fast food place and shove a hamburger in my mouth!

Next week...The Ugly!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Summer Vacations...the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

Ahhh...summer vacations, something you look forward to each year. I've had many and I thought I'd share some of my most memorable ones with you.

So many good, in fact great vacations to choose from in this category...Hawaii ranks up near the top, a week in Mammoth Lakes with no phone, tv, or computer one of my favorites, romping through the streets of Paris...amazing.

My number one best travel experience couldn't be written better...I like to think my angels had a hand in this one, or the spirit of my Mom more likely.

My family and I had planned a three week trip to Europe, with a stop in Southern Germany to visit my Grandmother's birthplace and the town she grew up in until she was nineteen and crossed the Atlantic to make roots in the U.S.

The only things I knew about this place was the name of the town...Weisweil, it was near the border of France and Germany close to the Rhine River. I had a copy of my Grandma's family tree...written in German, hoping to locate my descendants.

My biggest hope was to find some relatives in the local cemetery,by deciphering the German names on my family tree. We drove around and around this quaint, small town looking for the cemetery and lost hope of finding it until we spotted some bike riders. We asked them if they could help us...we don't speak a speck of German...I handed them my paper and they seemed to understand how to help us. Great! I was excited, my hand signals really worked!
We hopped back in the car and followed our German guides. As they pulled into a driveway of a house we just all looked at each other....hmmmm....I think something got lost in translation. I thought for sure my charades for a cemetery were clear...are my relatives buried in someones backyard?

My guides excitedly knocked on the door and handed "the tree" to the man who I presumed was a possible relative of mine.(I have to admit it started feeling like a scene right out of "European Vacation") ! I was wrong, same last name as my family but not related. Next thing I know my family is invited into this house and served refreshments while their family scan over "the tree" like it was a treasure map. Phone calls are made and people start showing up on bikes to also read "the tree".
A few hours have passed, it's like a crash course of German trying to listen and figure out what they're saying. Luckily a daughter translates most of the conversation for us and I'm finding out that my Grandmother's brother is someone they knew.
The last person to show up on a bike is this cute little woman...kind of resembles my grandma...her name is Ana. She is my Mom's cousin, my second-cousin! She reaches in her purse and pulls out a letter written to her from my Grandma from many years ago and a faded photo of my Grandma's garden.

It was a surreal moment for me to have this chance meeting and be welcomed into this charming house to meet family. Gosh, would I open my door if strange foreign people came to my house?

As we piled back into our rental car and turned our heads to see everyone waving goodbye with big smiles on their faces that's when I knew nothing could top this moment as my best vacation story.

Next week...THE BAD!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

My Daddy bought me a horse!

Every girl's dream is to have a horse of their very own and my Daddy made that dream come true...and for that Dad, I thank you! Look at me...4 years old sitting atop my beloved Dandy Patch...the envy of all my friends. Now you may be thinking that I was a spoiled little brat whose Dad forked out a bundle of cash for this horse. You are WRONG!!! Will you believe me when I tell you that my Dad paid $2.00 for this dandy horse? True...he bought a raffle ticket from a friend and won this horse I'm sitting atop! I used this picture to make a card for my Dad for Father's Day. While talking to him on the phone, he reminded me what a crazy horse this was that bucked and wouldn't cross the railroad tracks near the stables. I didn't care...he was my Dad was a hero...and I'll forever be able to tell anyone that cares to listen, "My Dad's the best because he bought me a horse!" Happy Father's Day!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

The Spoiled Princess

It's been almost a year since Lucy came into our lives, and she has become the princess of the house. I have no daughters so I can see why she gets to reap the rewards of being the only girl in a house of testosterone!
When we lost Buster I wasn't so sure that getting another dog would fill the void in our hearts, but I was so wrong! Lucy has nothing but pure love to spread and made us all smile again. So why wouldn't we spoil her rotten? She deserves it!
I know the family that moved away and had to make that heart-wrenching decision to leave her with us must miss her dearly but I can't thank you enough for giving our family sweet, sweet Lucy!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

I run like a girl

My team is complete and we are starting to train together. My latest treasury is in honor of the mud run! If you live in Orange County, sign up now at, it will be a blast!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Earth Day Mosaic Project

While cruising around the web I stumbled upon an interesting idea. The Earth Mosaic project was something I wanted to be a part of. I submitted two photos which were taken on Earth Day in my backyard, which were to be made into a worldwide photo mosaic.
The mosaic is complete (1630 images from around the globe) and you can view it here!
I searched far and wide and found my flower photo (it's up near Alaska), but I am still searching for Lucy's picture. Where in the world is Lucy? She could be floating in the Atlantic Ocean for all I know, at least she's a good swimmer!
My latest addition to my card shop on Etsy is a set of four blank notecards made with my Earth Day flower image, titled "California Sunshine" available for $12.00. My flowers may be fading, but I'll forever have this beautiful image!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The OC Mud Run is coming!

Last year I watched my son and his friends compete in a mud run. It looked like so much fun that I decided I would like to try it. So when I heard about the OC Mud Run coming to Irvine I was so excited! Trying to put together a

San Diego Mud Run 2008
Originally uploaded by smashgirl
team of 4 has been a challenge...but I'm determined to find my final teammate!
As my friends dropped out one by one with some excuse, I decided to use the power of Twitter to find "tweetmates". So far, I've found 2 total strangers, as crazy as me, that are willing to get down and dirty in this 5K. Now I'm on the final quest for that last fun and adventureous person to complete my "Team Tweet". I promise it will be a day you will never forget, plus you'll get a cool handmade team shirt from me, plus more surprises! Visit to check out the details, then leave a comment if you'd like the final spot! ( did I mention that some former Survivor contestants will be there?)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

San Clemente Beach Trail

The San Clemente Beach Trail which spans the coastline as a walking/biking trail while giving you breathtaking views of the ocean is one of my favorite walks. If you start at North Beach and continue to the end at Calafia and back it's a 4.6 mile trip. While on the trail you'll encounter lots of other dogs, bicyclists, locals, and tourists. People watching at it's best, plus the cool ocean breeze on your face! On our walk today I saw a lady with a beautiful macaw, a girl on a beach cruiser with a puppy in her basket (reminded me of Toto), and a teenager playing a ukulele on the beach. Enjoy my photo journey along the white sand beaches of San Clemente!

The girls can't wait to get there!

Our starting and ending point

An elevated platform that runs parallel to the train tracks keeps you safe while giving you an awesome view of San Clemente Pier.

Almost to the turn around point.

A San Clemente lifeguard on his watch, not a bad job!

My son on his training run, puts me to shame with a little 10 mile run!

Two tired dogs heading back to the car!