Our latest addition.

jack the spaniel

My husband and I have been looking to foster a pet for quite some time now — Jack, is lucky number one. This super friendly guy was found wandering around in the streets with no collar, no microchip, and in serious need of a bath. His ears, legs, feet, belly, and even a small section of his mini mohawk is matted and dirty, but it’s nothing a good grooming can’t fix.

He didn’t come with a collar, hence he didn’t come with a name. Since my husband loves the White Stripes (Jack White), and I have a small-ish obsession with the TV show Eureka (Jack Carter), it was a pretty easy decision.

Jack is an American Cocker Spaniel and the vet estimates him to be about 2 years old. Although I’m sure he has seen better hair days, the vet says he’s perfectly healthy and he’s now up-to-date with all of his vaccinations. He knows how to sit, listens to commands fairly well, and walks well on a leash. My two dogs seem to like him and thankfully he was smart enough to leave my cat alone. So far, so good.

In the next few days he’ll get the haircut he desperately needs, the neutering he should have received as a puppy, and lots of pets and love. Jack will be available for adoption through Lost Our Home Pet Foundation in the next couple weeks. If he seems like a good fit for you, be sure to contact LOH soon — full breed dogs are adopted very quickly.

As I type this now, he is sitting under my chair nestled up against my feet. Jack is going to make a great pet for one lucky family.

In the meantime, my family are the lucky ones.


If a new pet isn’t in the cards for you right now, please consider donating to Lost Our Home. This incredible pet foundation focuses specifically on pets that have been abandoned or surrendered due to foreclosure. They also help homeowners who are struggling to keep their homes, by supplying them with pet food, litter, and other supplies, free of charge. Just one bag of food or litter can make a difference. Jack, and many other pets just like him, will thank you.


Geek is in the air.

San Diego Comic Con, known to most as The Comic-Con, kicks-off tomorrow. And for those lucky enough to attend, it holds in store four unnatural, and completely unbalanced  days of awesome.

Sadly, I am not one of those fortunate souls. But I like to day dream of the sheer joy it would bring to frolic among 130,000+  attendees, all prepared to let their geek flags fly.

Too much jaw-dropping, kick-ass gaiety for one event? Perhaps.

If geekery were visible, this is what I imagine it would look like from space:

Geek Radiant Energy System

Have fun everyone! Maybe next year…

Earth image credit: NASA – Photoshop credit: ME

Ignited by Phoenicians

I was lit on fire. Not in the stop, drop & roll sense. But more in the holy-crap-I-really-wanna-DO-STUFF sense. Ignite Phoenix is billed as “an information exchange for fostering and inspiring Phoenix’s creative community” and it is truly one of the most inspirational, entertaining & educational events I’ve ever attended. It’s very much like a one-night, mini, TED Talks convention. (NOTE: If you haven’t heard of TED Talks, quit reading this blog immediately and do your uninspired soul a huge favor: watch some jaw dropping videos now. Just don’t forget to come back later.) Except instead of the typical 18 minute TED presentation, Ignite Phoenix gathers up 18 passionate speakers and packs them into one crazy-fun night.


ME: Yes. 18, I say.

Each speaker gets 20 slides and only 5 minutes to talk about the things that get them out of bed each morning, all with the goal of fanning the flames in others. Topics range from the love of fast food, to restoring Route 66, and from choir geeks to Japanese music. And those were only 4 of the 18 topics presented when I attended.

Their next event, Ignite Phoenix After Hours, is an uncensored, adults only version, which comes complete with a line up of taboo topics. The night of naughtiness starts at 7PM at the Radius Nightclub in Scottsdale on Friday, July 29th. The list of presenters has already been released and tickets are on sale now.

However, if you’re a timid kitten, and this unrated event seems too much for you, don’t let it scare you away from the next Ignite Phoenix event in October.

Be inspired. Get ignited.

The saurus.

I have some strange methods for remembering things. Ever since I was little, I’ve always found imagery and stories the easiest ways to recall things later. When I was about four or five years old,  I remember telling my Dad there was a tiny guy in my head named ‘Pen’ and every time I learned something new, he would draw it out on a big board in my brain to help me remember. And sometimes, he would even act it out. Yeah, OK. So I was a weird little kid. But Pen became a habit. And still to this day when I’m learning new software, or watching a video tutorial, I try to find some odd imagery to associate with it or find a way to create a storyline around it.

A few years ago, I realized that I had a really hard time remembering how to spell ‘thesaurus’. I don’t really recall what was so difficult about it now, but I think it was just one of those words I never truly made an effort to learn. Plus, I didn’t use it often. So one day when I went to find an online thesaurus, I got the ever so gracious and always lovingly gentle correction from Google,  ‘DID YOU MEAN THESAURUS? (DUMB ASS?!)’ I immediately realized it was about time to learn the correct spelling of this word.  I studied it for a bit and realized it easily breaks down into THE-SAURUS, which of course instantly made me think of dinosauruses –err, dinosaurs.

This is what pops into my head now, whenever I am longing for a synonym:

I’ve recently learned that visualization is actually a great method for encoding details in your memory and also greatly increases recall. So maybe I wasn’t such a weird kid after all… just a little genius with a Pen in her head, and a pet thesaurus.

Playing catch-up.

I must apologize to you interwebs. It’s shamefully been almost 3 months since my last post. I had good intentions for this blog when I first started it – but like always I got distracted, busy, depressed, uninspired, blah-blah-blah. The good news is, I’ve done quite a bit in the last few months so I have lots to share with you. Here’s a teaser of some upcoming posts:

The Renaissance Affaire.

Phoenix Comicon – it’s a geek thing.

I’m so @Twitter #addicted.

I met the creator of Eureka in a bar.

Ignited by Phoenicians.

Yet another diet.

Books to change your life.

Netflix: The future of television.

Sore is spelled P-90-X.

Coffee, cookies, crafts & chain mail.

Wanted: Headphone Eater.

Designing the interwebs.

Poisoned Apple.

The day I made Wil Wheaton laugh.

Things I can’t talk about.

And of course I’ll tell the story behind the BAD ASS photo above. Oh yeah… PINK .22 cal. Oh, I KNOW you’re jealous.


Uhh –ahem– sorry about that. Pink just makes me rage.

Any-who, I hope all you tens of ones of readers accept my sincerest apologies for my inexcusable hiatus, and come back to read my bloggy-type-thing.

See you soon.

And seriously, get off my lawn.

EDIT: Has one of the above titles really peaked your interest? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll work on those posts first.

My clothes are too small.

Lately I’ve noticed my clothes aren’t very comfortable. My shirt sleeves are tight, my jeans seem short, and some of my shirt buttons are being pulled so tight they’re on the verge of becoming dangerous projectile weapons. Even my ‘fat’ jeans, aren’t so fat anymore –they actually fit me. I keep trying to convince myself that there must be something wrong with our clothes dryer. You know, that it’s getting too hot and shrinking everything. But the truth is… I’m just getting bigger.

I have finally come to realize admit, that I am an emotional eater. When I’m happy, I eat. When I’m sad, I eat. When I’m mad, I clean something really violently –then, I eat. And when I’m depressed, well let’s just say I usually end up sick for a few days. I’ve known that I have had a problem with food for quite a while. It’s actually been ongoing ever since I quit smoking 10 years ago. Back then, I was never really skinny, but I wasn’t overweight either. I never had to exercise or watch what I ate and always remained a healthy weight. But as soon as I quit smoking I started puffing up. My addiction to nicotine, morphed into an addiction to food, and now anytime I’m even slightly stressed, I turn to food for comfort.

So, it’s time to make some changes. I have made many attempts to lose weight in the past, but I always go overboard and make too many drastic decisions that I just can’t live with. So this time I’ve decided to set 3 simple rules:

1) Eat smaller, more frequent meals –portion control.
2) Eat more veggies & fruit and less sugar & processed foods.
3) Exercise at least 30 minutes, 6 days a week.

All last week I ate lighter meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner and had small fruit & veggie based snacks in between. I also started going for a bike ride every night after work. I didn’t lose any weight yet, but I feel much better already. Now all I have to do is get that consistency thingy down, and I just might be thinner soon.


Saturday night, Allen went out, and since he does 90% of the cooking, I was left to fend for myself. I was in a rather creative mood, so I just winged it and threw this together:

I’ve dubbed thee, Cucumber Carrot Salad. My ‘more veggies’ rule has had me eating a lot of salad lately, but I’ve been getting sick of lettuce. This was an attempt to make a delicious healthy salad, minus the boring romaine. I LOVED IT. I was somewhat in shock that I actually came up with this on my own. Usually, I can’t cook at all unless there are specific instructions for me to follow. I even read the directions for Ramen Noodles. It’s sad, really. But since this was such a success I figured I had to share it.

Cucumber Carrot Salad
1/2 cucumber, peeled, sliced & quartered
3 slices red onion, quartered
1 carrot, shredded (I ‘shredded’ it using my peeler)
1 slice bacon, chopped
1 oz goat cheese, crumbled

This turned out so well, I started feeling all Martha Stewart and whipped up a surprisingly yummy salad dressing too!

Honey-Lemon Vinaigrette
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup safflower oil
1 Tbsp golden balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp honey
italian seasoning
garlic powder

I don’t know the amounts on the seasonings. I just added a little at a time until it tasted right.

Here’s to hoping I can keep inventing delicious recipes like these to help me stay on track with my weight loss. Go ahead and give them a try. And be sure to come back and leave a comment with your feedback –I’d love to hear what you think.

A slight derailment.

I’ve been a naughty blogger. Correction: I haven’t been a blogger. A crazy whirlwind of projects has had me spinning around like dust devil, and eating up what little free time I do have. But I am determined to get back on the bloggity-blog railway –one way or another.

One project I am really excited about though, is my decision to open an etsy store. I have had a ton of different ideas for a store since I graduated last May, but something kept preventing me from going through with it. It turns out I’ve been betrayed by my very own mind. So I wrote this letter. It’s now the lock page image on my iPhone so that I can read it everyday.

Hopefully that’s the last I hear from that jerk.

Anyway, etsy store, YAY! I am thinking of creating recycled (or up-cycled) designs. The plan is to find interesting treasures at the local Good Will, and transform them into something spiffy & new. Right now I am working on some dog beds made from old hard-case luggage. This isn’t an original idea —I’ve seen these before, but I’m hoping to put my own spin on them.

And then this idea popped into my head last week.

It’s a lamp made from a used wine bottle and a short string of Christmas lights. It works really well as a night light and creates a soothing ambience. Mood lighting… my favorite!

So I’ve begun collecting wine bottles… again. I actually had a great collection started, but couldn’t think of a use for them, so in the recycling bin they went. It’s a pack rat’s worst nightmare come true. But at least now I have a good excuse to have a glass of wine every night! 😉

Besides dreaming up more product for my store, I need a name too. Here’s a few I’ve been considering:

– Rectified Designs
– Attic Nouveau
– Junk Jewels

What do you think? Leave a little somethin’-somethin’ below.

Oh and I promise not to go missing for so long again.