Welcome Home

Anything worth having, is worth waiting for…

It’s no surprise to anyone that I’ve been (in)patiently waiting for the day to come that we get to take home our little nugget, show him a life of love and blessings, and start our family! Something that people often do on a whim, is something that took Gary and I what seems like forever.

Living in a dog-friendly Hermosa Beach is great (if you like dogs). But, unless your a homeowner, or have a dog under 20 lbs. getting an apartment is nearly impossible. Then you say the word “Pit Bull” and it’s even harder. Let me just say there were many tears of sadness, and many frustrating discussions with landlords about the Pit Bull Breed. I believe so deeply in Pit Bulls that  I couldn’t help but take the stereotypes personally.

It took Gary and I 6 months of using every rental website and rental service around, many days viewing apartments, many applications, and many, many prayers to finally sign a lease with a pet-friendly unit (without a bully ban).

With the apartment checked off the list, there was about a month of looking on every website possible looking for our future little dog. Honestly, I was dreading the process of selecting our dog… The one dog that we can save out of so many.

But, I knew when the time was right, things would work out as they should. And they did.

After we moved, Gary and I chose the soonest day we could make it to a shelter, Tuesday. Then, with a referral from Mao and a late-night chat with Jennifer Rosen, I was put in contact with a couple who had Pit Bull/Shepard puppies who needed a home. Jenn sent me a few photos, and they were adorable (of course)! There was a little red one with a white spot on his forehead that caught my attention. Then, before you know it, I was talking to them on the phone, asking if I could come out that day to see the dogs.

I didn’t want to get my hopes up that we’d actually be taking home a dog that day, so I didn’t tell anyone what we were up to. But what a pleasant, surreal surprise Tuesday afternoon became!

We got to meet the amazing couple that has loved and nurtured the dogs, the mamma and daddy dog, and all the sweet, friendly puppies! The puppies were so cute, loving, and playful. We played around with them in the back yard for a while, closely observing each one and their different personalities.

After a while, Gary and I looked at each other, both admiring the little red one from the photo we saw, Biggie Smalls. He was playing in the dirt, rolling around, and being a little lazier then the rest of the bunch. Something about him was special, and we both knew it. I knew then he was the little nugget we’d be taking home, and I couldn’t even believe it was happening.

I had wanted a puppy for so long, that once it began to happen it didn’t quite seem real. He was ready to go home with us that day, and after an emotional and sweet send-off from the couple, we got in our car and headed home with our little nugget, Stig (Gary had chosen the name long ago, and was so excited to rename him the second we got into the car).

After a “shopping blackout” at PetCo and a bathie, Stig was settling in quite well to our little beach apartment. Welcome home Stig, we love you!

And, although the past few days have been heaven, just loving him and welcoming him into our home, we know raising a puppy is not easy- luckily, we’re more-than up for the challenge!

Thanks to Jennifer, Mao, and especially Christina and Juan Carlos or the best gift we could ever imagine…


the fraulein

so good, too goodWe were on a boat…

Two of my good girlfriends had a joint birthday party this past Saturday on the Tiki Too for a fun, day-boating extravaganza. It was full of friends, sunshine, beautiful marina views, oh… and did I mention an open bar?

Well, when life gives you an open bar… you make The Fraulein.

After lots of brainstorming german-inspired names, different versions of a long island ice tea, and a few taste-tests, here’s my new, favorite summer-drink recipe:

The Fraulein

1/2 oz vodka
1/2 oz tequila
1/2 oz rum
1/2 oz gin
1 oz sweet and sour mix
2 oz+ grapefruit juice
1 or more fresh lime slices
serve over ice

Please drink responsibly (on a boat if possible).

Happy Birthday Megan and Katie! Prost!

Beauties Supporting Bullies

Where My Vegans At?

Remember those “Bullies” I mentioned last week? Well guess what? They’ve got some Vegan-Friendly Beauties on their side.

For the rest of this month, Naked Eye Beauty is supporting Bullies and Buddies by donating a portion of their sales to the rescue! Now that’s support! And let me tell you, the dogs could use the help!

Naked Eye Beauty is a homemade, all-natural, vegan-friendly skin and cosmetics line based out of the Los Angeles area. From cosmetics to jewelry, they have quite the collection of beautiful, quality products to enjoy.

So get to shopping at the Etsy shop or website get yourself that fresh spring make-up you’ve been wanting. And, support our little Bullies and friends at Naked Eye Beauty while you’re at it!

Trust me, these dogs could use a helping hand!!

Etsy Shop: www.etsy.com/shop/nakedeyebeauty
Website: www.nakedeyebeauty.com

Xo, Melanie

Blessed by Bullies

A Desire To Serve

I have always been a “dog person” as I grew up with a sheltie, Cajun, and had 2 English Springer Spaniels (Champ and Skeet) keeping me company over the years. Champ has crossed over the rainbow bridge, but Skeet is my parents 3rd child next to me and my brother (seriously…he has more clothes and toys than me).

I have been wanting to rescue a dog for so many years, and since moving to California with my Hubby, we have yet to get a dog as our current apartment does not allow. (sad face) But, as our hunt for the perfect apartment has not yet been successful, we’re not giving up to find a perfect place to call home and start our family (with a 4-legged friend).

Over the past few years, out of curiosity, I began learning all about Pit Bulls specifically. I learned about their “nanny-dog” history, they’re current “bully” reputation, BSL (Breed Specific Legislation) and everything in between. Learning about this amazing breed, often victims of abuse and neglect, and their desperate need for understanding and second chances has landed them a special place in my heart. After learning the truth about this breed, far beyond the misconceptions about them, you can’t help but smile when you see them pouncing alongside their owners.

Long story short, I wanted to help. And, while I am unable to rescue a dog, I felt a little helpless (as my wallet was a little too thin to donate).

Ask And You Shall Receive
Holding a Pit Bull Puppy of Bullies and Buddies Rescue

I had heard about rescues in the Los Angeles area, but none that I could get to easily. Then, I finally came across a rescue group in my neighborhood, Bullies And Buddies. Bullies and Buddies is a Pit Bull-and-friends rescue supporting the animals-in-need of the South Bay area. Meeting Jennifer Rosen, the Founder of the rescue, and her amazing crew, was one of most exciting things that has happened to me, and a true blessing. They took me in, handed me a leash, and introduced me to some incredible dogs looking for a forever home.

I’ve been spending Saturdays helping them out with adoptions and it’s been so rewarding. As I cannot donate tons of cash, it feels so good to reach out and help someone other than myself. Fosters and Volunteers are what keep this rescue working, and anything helps (time, money, advocacy, and even your old blankets)! We have a lot of fun at the adoptions, and try to shine a light the entire rescue process.

It’s been so much fun meeting these passionate people and helping out the dogs in need. As easy as it is to fall in love with each and every one of them, it’s exciting to see them end up in a safe and loving forever home.

The dogs have taught me so much, and it’s been incredible to learn about their history and perseverance. We’ve watched abused dogs learn to love, bate-dogs smile and play with children, and a puppy covered in mites wiggle around and warm your heart. The things these dogs overcome on a daily basis inspires me, and reminds me what is truly important in life. I almost think these dogs have done more for me than I have for them, but that’s the blessing of animals, isn’t it!

So, take a moment to learn about the breed, donate, volunteer or foster, and let yourself be blessed by a Bully.

(A special thank you to the friends and family who listen to me talk about Pit Bulls… nonstop. I do apologize.)

2012 | first friday toast


to a new beginning

to the challenges we overcame and the lessons we’ll learn this time around

to another chance to change your life for the better

to the opportunities in the coming year, and the strength to make the most of them

to learning from our mistakes

and lastly, to chasing our dreams.

Wishing you an amazing year, xo.

my favorite things | 2011

Raindrops on roses…

It’s here already. The nearing of the new year, and end of a very eventful 2011.

Looking back on my experiences I’ve gathered my favorite-things list for the year to remind me of all my blessings and cherished moments of 2011.

My 2011 Favorite:

concert: bon iver

restaurant: the spot

experience: local farmers markets, nose piercing, blogging, tears of joy

geekery: new glasses

advice: if you compromise on everything, you’ll never be satisfied

proud moment: my hubby making music

discovery: eucalyptus essential oil

old habit, relived: playing guitar

book: the 5 love languages

test of patience: saving for new apartment and four-legged friend

blessing: my parents health

thing to share: lash love and auroshikha incense

routine: morning tea

trips: 4 weddings

date night: dodger game (complete with dodger dog and a beer)

introduction: meeting my amazing co-workers (in person)

So, cheers to all of your experiences, accomplishments, and memories of the past year, and for those yet to come…


a very etsy christmas

Your Holiday shopping, done.

A start to your gift-giving (inspiration) with a little help from our Esty Elves. Mostly hand-made, you can get some rockin’ gifts for your friends and family while supporting small business!

Disclaimer: If not already affected, an Etsy addiction may entail once shopping begins ….

all things natural

for those out-doorsy

all things mustache

for the fun lover

all things vintage

for the vintage lover

all things bridal

for the bride-to-be

all things manly

for the manly man

all things music

for the guitar player

all things yoga

for the yogi

all things boyfriends

for the boyfriend

words, words, and more words

for the journal keeper

all things newborns

for the expecting mom

all things caffeine

for the coffee lover

friends or more than friends

for the girlfriend

all things vegan

for the vegan

all things words

for the artistic writer

tradition | the holiday necessity

Tradition | It’s as simple as that, or as complicated as that, anyway.

During the Holiday months of November and December I find myself greeting my friends and asking “how’s your Thanksgiving” or “are you having a nice Christmas?” I’m surprised that often people aren’t enjoying the Holidays as much as you’d think. And then I ask myself why? Isn’t Thanksgiving and Christmas supposed to be a cheery, cozy, celebratory time of year?

Well of course it is.

I then realized it usually comes down to the little things that make the Holidays special. Holiday traditions… and the necessity to keep their spirit alive.

As easy as it is to stay in, stay warm, and avoid holiday crowds and traffic to experience your traditions, sometimes that exactly what you need to make it feel like the holidays.

I’ve found that my Christmas seasons keep getting better and better, and it’s because of all of traditions I’ve worked to keep, and those we’ve added (like our annual “Classy Christmas Party” where we gather our friends, holiday beverages, bring our cheer, and enjoy the city view together in a limousine- one of my newest, and most favorite traditions).

It’s these holiday traditions that have made each Christmas better than the last! I’m thankful for those friends and family that have helped make such wonderful memories…

So take the time to enjoy your Holiday season- whether enjoying these traditions or creating your own list… and make this year a Christmas to remember.
tis the season

Christmas Traditions To Enjoy In Cheer:

  • attending an annual holiday party with your friends
  • looking at your city’s historically lit neighborhoods
  • running the annual holiday 5k with friends (dressed in holiday attire of course)
  • baking your holiday cookies
  • enjoying a silent night… fireside
  • making homemade eggnog
  • watching the Christmas Parade and attending the Parade Of Lights
  • attending the Christmas Mass or church service
  • visiting your local cafe’s and bookshops to enjoy the festive scenery (while sipping a peppermint mocha or eggnog latte)
  • listing to the holiday music channels
  • deck the halls (with decor and lighting)
  • making snowmen
  • jingle bells (or attach one to your dog’s collar)
  • watching your favorite Christmas movies (on repeat)
  • sending out holiday cards
  • reading the story of Jesus’ birth or ‘The Night Before Christmas’ with your family
  • donating to your favorite holiday charity
  • experimenting with Holiday recipes and mulled wine
  • hanging mistletoe in your doorway (and making the most of it)

xo, Melanie