Tuesday, June 30, 2015


Being fully engaged with the BBBS of Los Angeles for the last few years, my husband and I were awarded the "Big Sis" and "Big Bro" of the year in LA. We were so humbled by this honor, yet felt terrible about taking on this new journey with so much space and time away from our "Littles". So we decided to fly them both out to our new house and stay with us for the summer. They have never left California btw...

(Horse Riding Lessons)

(Tea Parties)

Being in this part of the country, they are discovering things that seem second nature to me (as I grew up in the country of Illinois, so it's very familiar here). Lightning and thunder seem so foreign to Mya. Everytime it rains, she thinks a tornado is going to hit :)
Mya and Hassan have never seen lightning bugs, and are absolutely fascinated by them. It reminded me of a time my sister and I collected a jar load to use as a night light while staying at our great aunt's house... she thought we were too old for night lights and made us sleep in the dark (but I swear to this day that her house is haunted).

In the kiddo's eyes, they have been living "Amishly" compared to their lives in North Hollywood. We even took away their video games to a limit of 10 minutes a day. Though they are a bit dramatic at times, I have been trying to live in the present moment without judgment. Being guilty sometimes of spending a bit more time in the virtual world rather than this beautiful land myself.

I remember as a child, I would occasionally play Mario Karts, but still understood the world of make-believe and enjoyed adventures with my sisters in the wilderness. We would save wounded birds that have fallen from nests, pick them up and care for them in our radioflyer ambulance wagon-- We harvested our own pumpkins and would sell them in the neighborhood-- Had our own paper route by the time I was 9-- We even created roller coasters, using our radioflyer wagon and created tracks and incline drops out of plywood planks. 
(Exploring entrances to other worlds)
(Tree Housing)

It's a different world now. As soon as the kids got off their devices, video games and TV, they are fully hypnotized. "I'm bored... what can we do now?" is a common phrase I often hear, usually in a zombie tone.
Everytime Mya and I would get together in LA, we did outdoor hikes and Sticktivities. She seemed to have so much fun every weekend. Since she has had her new iPod and I have been away traveling, things have changed. Or maybe it's because we have been living together since June 1st and her true colors of childhood shined brighter than I would have liked with pixels. 


(Swimming at our new neighborhood pool)

I'll continue to do my part in breaking this cycle, and cherish every day we have together, after all, they head home to Cali on July 10th.
(Picnic Party)Time is like a river, you can't touch the same water twice, so be current and go with the flow.

Recycle, Reduce, Reuse.... and close the button loop!

Button Tree


Howdy everyone! It has been a while since I've connected on here. I have been receiving lots of messages from my Sticks and Stripes followers, and apologize for the delay in words.
A few transitions are happening in my life at the moment. After a long 6 month book tour on the road, we have recently relocated from Los Angeles and are now growing our roots in Nashville, TN.
I'm so grateful for this moment of stillness, and love the fact that we now live in the country, rather than the city of concrete. It truly feels like Naturehood here with a yard full of trees, greenery and an enchanted forest all over town. There will be plenty of Log Chillin' going on:-)
As you can see, the trees were a major selling point in getting our new bungalow;-)
(Mya's Favorte spot in the backyard... reminds her of the Secret Garden)
...Though all these new blessings,  I am saddened by a farewell to one of my favorite friends...
...and will miss the sun. LA, you sure have been a comfy home these last 8 years. 
But off I go into the great unknown!