Saturday, May 30, 2009


Good news! My sister-in-law Zoe's stolen van was recovered, a bit ransacked, but with no major damage. All her Santa Cruz thrift finds AND my book were still in the van... yay!

I fell in love with this book for its gorgeous melancholy illustrations. It was published in the 60's, my favorite decade in vintage children's books. I'm drawn to the sparse use of color and vaguely haunting images that seem to have been common in children's books of that decade.

Lucas jokes.. ok, "jokes" is probably not the right word... that maybe ALL of Clover's books don't need to be creepy... he may actually have a point there ;)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Santa Cruzin, Part 2

As promised, pics from my Santa Cruz camping trip and it only took me a week to get them up this time... yay for me ;)

We camped at Sunset State Beach just a few miles south of Santa Cruz and had a lovely woodland campsite bordering grassy, ice plant and shrub-covered dunes which separated the campground from the beach.

I took LOTS of pictures. Even this cluttered mess in the Duck somehow looked lovely to me in the morning sun.

We made the trip with my sister-in-law Zoë and her family
again, us in the Duck and them in their cute little teardrop trailer. I guess this probably makes them our official camping buddies.

It’s awesome traveling with them because Clover loves having her older cousins around to play with and they, being avid campers, really have the whole routine down.

Not only did Zoë make our campsite nice and homey with floral oilcloth for the picnic table and fresh roses from her yard, she also cooked ALL of our campsite meals for us and we’re talkin delicious stuff like fried potatoes and yummy cheese-y bacon-y eggs for breakfast!

Surrounding the campground were seemingly endless fields of strawberries...

That combined with the fact that I had just seen Across the Universe the day before we left, resulted in this song playing non-stop in my head throughout the weekend.

As far as songs-to-get-stuck-in-your-head go, I’d say I got pretty lucky and it actually just added a bit of a dreamy quality to the whole experience.

My niece and nephew zoning out on the campfire, over which we later made s'mores with roasted coconut covered marshmallows and chocolate graham crackers, mmmm. There were plenty of good trees for Vida, our resident tree climber, to enjoy as well :)

The best thing about our campsite was that we had a trail that went directly from our site straight up the dunes to a magnificent lookout point, perfect for surf checking and sunset viewing.

Since I was the one taking all the pictures, this is one of the few that I was actually in. I know the yoga pants under the dress are not very stylish but what can I say, it got cold, I was camping.

I do also realize that I have my daughter wearing an article of clothing straight from my own
list of Nevers *gasp* but I’d like to state that for the record, crocs can actually be kind of cute if they are pink and your feet are less than four inches long ;)

I think it’s safe to say that Clover has finally outgrown her dislike of the sand! I’m pretty sure the elaborate sand maze that Lucas and her cousins dug for her (as I lounged about) may have had something to do with it ;)

I totally broke down and got her sand toys and this little rash guard/shorts ensemble at Target before the trip. I know, not very thrifty of me, but look at her! How could I resist?!

I took everyone to the little natural history museum that I had fallen in love with on my previous trip. I was excited to see that they had a completely new exhibit, which was right up my alley, with cool scientific illustrations and curiosity cabinet type vignettes on display.

Can you spot me in the reflection on the right? (hint: that’s my shoulder in Darwin’s beard) and I love the reflection of Vida holding Clover on the left :)

Not a very thrift related post, I know, but we did actually head downtown for some thrifting after leaving the museum. The only item I ended up with though was a vintage children’s book.

Zoë had better luck and left with a bag full of stuff, though the luck ran out when her van with her thrift finds and my book still in it, was stolen (!!!) a few days after returning home. A bummer thing to have happen after such an awesome trip, but I think they’re already getting excited about the idea of getting a new car, so I guess there’s that!

If you’re still reading… hey, thanks for sitting through all my travel pics!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Nifty Thrift Picks of the Week (5.22.09)

Sharing my weekly faves from the Nifty Thrift flickr group where people post pics of their nifty thrifty finds. In other words a weekly spot for me to publicly covet the finds of others :)

new vintage sewing machine
Originally uploaded by

Buttons & Doilies
Originally uploaded by

cotton on.
Originally uploaded by

Trying to inspire myself to finally dust off the old sewing machine... I think it might be working. Also, this one didn't quite fit with the theme but since I'm still loving all things alphabet, take a look at these cool wooden letters too :)

Thursday, May 21, 2009

100% Thrifted Pick of the Week (5.21.09)

Endless Lilac, originally uploaded by anja louise verdugo.

05.19, originally uploaded by d.arlingdarling.
Whether worn saccharine sweet or with a bit of edge, I am loving small floral prints right now. I absolutely adore both of these outfits, with their great floral pieces and both so gorgeously styled.

For more fabulous fully thrifted outfits check out the
100% Thrifted flickr group :)

Now for some (not necessarily thrifted) floral inspiration from
my flickr faves:

(Images sources: 1. the snail and the cyclops, 2. variationsonthewordsleep, 3. elinkan, 4. klipomaniaco, 5. anja louise verdugo, 6. anja louise verdugo, 7. Margo Ovcharenko, 8. lifeamundo)

Monday, May 18, 2009

Santa Cruzin, Part 1

We had a great time camping over the weekend and there will be pictures from our trip soon (I promise this time) but first I thought I’d share the pics from my last trip which was now like two months ago that never made it onto the blog.

Clover and I took our first solo mother/daughter road trip to Santa Cruz to hang out with my friend Kristen and her daughter Zoe for a few days back in March. With all the craziness of becoming moms for the first time, we hadn’t seen one another since we were both pregnant and it was so much fun to get to spend time with her and meet eachother’s little ones, only a few months apart in age. They hit it off splendidly!

Kristen and I first met twelve years ago when we worked together at the UC Davis Marine Lab in Bodega Bay. So it was fitting that one of our destinations would be a UC marine lab discovery center. Interesting to us as biologists, yet plenty of neat stuff to keep the girls entertained, perfect!

Kristen’s husband who works out at the lab took a little break to come say hello and I got him to snap a picture of us sitting on the giant elephant seal statue out front. Those starfish, by the way, were HUGE and very cool.

Peeking into a classroom that was apparently set up for some sort of sea otter lab made me feel a little nostalgic for my days as a UC Santa Cruz marine biology student.

The full skeleton of a blue whale next to the building was pretty amazing too.

If the fact that Kristen lives just a short walk away from a pretty awesome beach wasn’t enough to make me envy her situation a little then you can bet the fact that right across the street from said beach is the cutest little natural history museum in existence sure as hell did!

Oddly enough, it too had a life-sized whale out front (see Clover for scale ;) and that little girl sitting on it kept making me think of the film Whalerider.


Luckily all the taxidermied critters were very cooperative in posing for pictures. My little critter on the other hand… not so much. Her and Zoe were zipping from one thing to the next taking it all in.

They even had a live beehive with clear Plexiglas walls so you could look in and watch the bees doing their bee business. There was a tube that went outside through the wall and you could walk up stairs along the side of the building to get a close look at them going in and out of the hive. Why they are not wearing their sweaters, I do not know ;)

The Excavation

As mom to a very curious toddler, I loved how geared towards the little ones the place was with small stepping stools strewn about to boost them up to the displays and plenty to interact with. They even had a box set up like a prehistoric excavation site complete with sand and paintbrushes for the kids to take part in the excavation.

There were visits to numerous park playgrounds as well. Can you spot little Clover trying with all her might to get up onto that play structure with those short little legs?

Getting to hang out with an old friend while watching our daughters become new friends made the trip all the more special :)

Before heading home, Clover and I cruised around downtown Santa Cruz where we hit up the Goodwill and the Salvation Army (I’ve already shared most of my finds) before getting on the road to drive back north up the coast where we stopped off in Half Moon Bay to meet up with my sister Shayna for lunch.

On the way into town, I saw a van parked in a field with a big sign that said THRIFT STORE, so of course before getting back on the road I had to go check it out. Unfortunately, the place turned out to be pretty creepy but not in a good creepy thrift store kind of way where hidden gems are to be found, just crap and lots of it.

The sign on the side of the building that bordered an overgrown empty lot turned out to be the coolest thing about it. I do really like that photo though, so that’s good enough for me.

P.S. Looking forward to catching up on all your lovely blogs!