Thursday, September 25, 2014

That cute puppy, she's a jerk, or things I learned about dog training

Apparently dogs don't have any shame, no matter how sad they look. With this new knowledge I have no shame in calling out my asshole little girl now.
She has been one thousand times more difficult of a puppy than Barley ever was.
She still chews, digs, poops in inappropriate places and doesn't listen at all. At least it's not runny and on the carpet.

I've spent more time on Cesar Millan's site looking up advice than I have spent sleeping the last few weeks.
One of the hardest things to remember is that unless you catch them doing it they have no idea why you're ranting and raving at them. Especially when you find a surprise hours after it happened.

The last couple weeks have been a little better with me enforcing as much of my research as possible.

I have taken away some key points:

• Don't take it personally. They aren't hardwired to hold vendettas for leaving them alone or punishing them for something else. They have small attention spans at younger ages like toddlers.

• Don't yell. Talk to them firmly and in an even tone. Which can be difficult at times of heated disappointment but is necessary to keep yourself in line as well.

• When they do bad correct them with then revert their bad behavior by encouraging good behavior. Like taking away something they aren't suppose to chew on, saying NO then handing them a chew toy and saying "GOOD dog!"

If you leave a puppy under the age of 18 months unsupervised whatever they do is your own damn fault. 

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


Saturday night my band .bipolar. got to play at the house of blues in Mandalay Bay Casino/Resort. again.

The whole experience was amazing.

The showcase featured all Las Vegas local bands and we worked our asses off to hustle the free tickets for over a month.

We had a great turnout and the crowd was fantastic.

One of my favorite moments of all time on stage for sure. Nothing blows up your head more than singing into a crowd of hundreds singing your lyrics right back at you.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

In The Moment: TiLT

1. On Monday I started a 30 day challenge of having one green smoothie a day. Motivated by I have found a lot of great recipes that are hassle free and super yummy. My smoothie today was a variation of the Pumpkin Spice smoothie with apple instead of banana.

2. I also started taking Forskolin to aide in circulation and thyroid issues I've been having as of late.

3. My son is now a 3rd grader. He's so smart and growing so fast my heart aches.

4. My wonderful husband is working a new job that is great but kicking his butt with twelve hour days and six day work weeks. This is the hardest job he's had in the almost fifteen years we've been together. I am so proud of him, but I miss him a lot now.

5. Our beautiful new house is amazing. We had a great house-warming party last weekend with our wonderful friends. My best friends Petrina and Erin made a hashtag for our dog Barley's balls which they felt were more prominent than usual. And they ARE referring to the balls you're thinking of.

6. Dany dog is getting huge and is a trouble maker for sure.

7. My band is playing the House of Blues on Saturday as the freaking headliner. I am beyond stoked and just a little nervous.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

No longer hating cardboard boxes...

There was a time when cardboard boxes frightened me. 

Not in an odd fear having type of way but in a way where I knew if my parents brought home cardboard boxes my life was about to be uprooted again.
By the time I was eight (my sons current age) I had moved at least four times that I am aware of.
By eighteen that number was up to twenty.
Different rooms, different schools, different friends every time. Never longer than three years sometimes as short as three months.

I've heard some people say "Kids are resilient. They become better adults by having those experiences." Which I say is bullshit. 
Most adults like me have a hard time making and keeping friends due to the social issues associated with constantly being thrown into situations as the new kid.
While I understand that some families don't have the luxury of staying put due to the type of jobs they have the parents of children in these situations need to be much more sympathetic to their kid's feelings and communication.

Since becoming a mom I have wanted more for my son than the constant upheaval of a moving lifestyle. This weekend we moved for the third time in eight years. The first was from Sacramento to Las Vegas for a fresh start after the economy drop kicked our butts in 2008. The second was because of an awful landlord foreclosing and then short selling the house out from underneath us while on a lease and this last one was for a bigger, better house with a pool.

While planning our move we discussed everything openly with our son. He got his feedback on the houses we looked at. We let him make the decision of switching schools or staying at his current one. We also let him upgrade his new bedroom with a few items he'd been wanting for a while.

We're all enjoying the new house and having our first pool. But most importantly Hayden loves it and has been raving about it every chance he gets. He enjoyed the move and will hopefully never hate cardboard boxes like I did.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Our trip to Big Bear, Ca

We needed a break from the grind. A refreshing visit to nature far from the neon lights, draining work days, and flashing electronic screens.
I planned a trip to Big Bear Lake. A short three and a half hour drive away from our bustling city, away from our jobs, our band, our television and computers.
We got in late Friday evening and didn't really get to see more than the cabin we were staying in. However bright and early Saturday morning we woke to the wonderful scent of pine trees and this view.

We brought the dogs along with us.  This being the longest road trip either had been on they were pleasantly surprised when they saw the view as well.

We took the dogs to the lake where they reveled in the beautiful waters and garnered attention from all who watched. 

After the lake time we headed to some stables to go horseback riding. Hayden had told me prior to the planning that he wanted to try a new adventure and do something he had never done before.
He was nervous at first with the horse being much larger in person than he imagined. However once on the horse and riding steady he enjoyed it. 

After our ride we drove back to the cabin and relaxed for the rest of the night.
The drive home on Sunday was also beautiful and relaxing. The kids all chilled in the back resting together.

It was a grand adventure and we all had a great time away from the grind.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Puppy Problems. The book Hayden wrote.

Our son Hayden wrote a cute little book about the problems with puppies. You can buy a copy and support his literary career by clicking the link below.

Thank you!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The $400 Lesson

About 13 years ago we met this group of guys in a band that were immensely talented and right out of high school.  We quickly became friends and hung out quite a bit. They even played mine and Brian's joint bachelor/bachelorette party.
One of the guys was Shaun. He was a super talented guitar player, hilarious smart ass, and after a while was like a brother to Brian and I. He moved in with us as a roommate and we had a blast together.
He moved out for about eight months and moved back in while I was nine months pregnant with Hayden.
Right after I had the boy and was getting used to taking care of a new baby Shaun had moved his girlfriend into his room without talking to us, and they were causing HUGE messes and not cleaning up after themselves. Also, Shaun starting taking pills. His attitude and his respect for everyone completely changed with the pills; a lot of back stabbing, disrespect and lying. We tried to talk to him about everything but he didn't give a crap what we thought and conversations turned to arguments and he moved out.
Our bands still played shows together occasionally over the next few months but not without him making rude remarks and being a real dick to us. Soon thereafter we heard that his girlfriend broke up him, he was kicked out of his band and he got fired from his job.

Lets fast forward now to two weeks ago.  We hadn't seen Shaun in eight years. He had reached out last year via phone and facebook telling us he had been through some shit and wanted to come visit us in Vegas soon but he didn't follow up with it. But two weeks ago he reached out to me via facebook and said he was about to be homeless and needed some help. I immediately offered to get him a bus ticket and get him here. It took him two extra days due to him having issues like "having a seizure while getting off the bus and hurting his knee causing the driver to make him go to the hospital" and "not being able to get on the second bus because thats same bus driver had reported him to security."

So as soon as he got here we hugged and listened to his stories of all this bad shit and crap luck he had. Most of it seemed like he had some moments of bad judgement and had a few bad friends that had attributed to the issues. He also seemed really appreciative of the time he had lived with us before and had missed that over the last eight years.
We had a friend that could get him a job right away and we started the process he needed to get an id.  But for a week he sat around the house not wanting to work, not wanting to go anywhere with us or get the paperwork done to finish the process. He also didn't shower, brush his teeth and drank all the alcohol we had in our freezer.
Sunday we had our son's birthday party. When we returned Shaun was belligerent drunk. He went upstairs to his room and we heard him fall or drop something super heavy. We tried to check on him fearing he had a "seizure" which he had claimed to have often. He didn't have a seizure but had made the room a mess and couldn't even stand up.
The next day when I got home from work I tried to talk to him and asked out of respect for us trying to help him that he get off his ass, stop getting belligerent drunk, and start helping himself.
That night at like 9pm we heard a huge crash from his room. When Brian checked on him he  was drunk again, had taken a bunch of advil pm and had thrashed the room even further completely destroying a whole bookcase with stuff from our wedding on it. He also thrashed our bathroom.
Brian had reached his breaking point and told him he was done here and that we would be taking him back to the bus station in the morning.
So at 7:45am the next morning I gave him $200 and dropped him off at the bus station.

So my $400 lesson= Never helping out a former friend again. 
-$150 for the bus ticket here from Washington
-$50 for his rushed birth certificate (charged but he never completed the process so I paid for nothing)
-$200 for him to leave our house.

We figured out after he was gone that he had been drinking rubbing alcohol on top of regular alcohol. He left some pretty gnarly dirty clothes stashed in our guest room, thrashed the room, and lied to us about a lot of stuff.
He's not the first friend we tried to help that took advantage and let us down but he is the last.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Truly out in the desert

 Our definition of family has changed a lot in the almost fifteen years Brian and I have been together. 

When we first met I was close to my grandma, uncles, and aunts and young cousins. Brian spoke to his family quite often on the phone but hadn't seen them in years. When we moved in together we didn't really see our families all that often but then they all (mostly) came out for our wedding.

Once we had our son we got a little closer to our family and I tried to get us out to see Brian's at least every year for 4 years straight on top of making efforts to see my mom and stepdad as often as possible. My father and I have had a rocky relationship and sometimes we're close and sometimes we're not. He has got to spend the most time with our son but will soon be away.

Currently we are far from most of our family. My mom and stepdad live in Florida, my dad is close here in Las Vegas but is moving back to California soon, Brian's family is all in Washington and the rest are pretty distant.

Our son doesn't have the traditional sense of family. He isn't close to cousins or aunts and uncles. He doesn't get to see his grandparents as often as he should. I worry at times about this distance from family and the effect it will have on him especially as an only child. Both Brian and I wanted more for him than the distance we had.

Our family has been reformed to include our closest friends. Unlike family; friends come and go. Some stick around through the ups and downs of life, some are fair weather friends. Babysitters also come and go. Currently my 17 year old brother watches our son on show nights or nights out and he is the closest family member Hayden has. They get along great and I believe they mutually enjoy hanging out. But my brother will be gone next month living in California.
I'm a little heart broken that the bond will be broken and am starting to feel like we are truly out in the desert on our own.

Don't take your crazy family for granted no matter what your definition is.

Thursday, June 26, 2014


I've been at my new job for almost 3 weeks now. It's been pretty amazing and the honeymoon hasn't worn off yet.
I have a wonderful office with a view of Red Rock Canyon and some posh Summerlin houses in the foreground.

I got a massage my second week and I have pretty awesome company during lunch. 

Also we do fun stuff like watch the World Cup in the conference room and I got to play softball with a client on Sunday.  Overall things are great and I am very happy I made the decision to switch when I did.

The band is doing quite well too. We have a crap load of shows this Summer and we're prepping to record a new ep soon.
The balance of family, job, band has been pretty easy as of late.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

#doggyproblems Upset Dog Tummy and Treatment

A month ago my wonderful husband accidentally bought a different brand of dog food for our golden retriever Barley. Usually when you switch dog food there's a chance that the dog will vomit and have diarrhea. To avoid this it's best to mix the old food with the new food to make the switch gradual.
Fast forward to the other day where yours truly had to make the switch back to the better food he was originally on. However, my wonderful husband didn't leave any of the old food for me to mix with the new food.
Poor Barley had the adverse reaction to the food switch this time. So I did some research to find a treatment for the doggy tummy problems. I found through a few different websites that you can give your dog pepto bismol. Make sure you research how much to give per the weight of your dog.
Also its best to withhold food for 12 hours after the vomiting and diarrhea. However make sure they have more than enough water to ensure they don't get dehydrated.
After the twelve hours I found that dogs should have a bland diet to ease the stomach when they have such issues and ease them back into the dog food.
A couple different recipes for the bland diet can be found here.
I made 2 cups of boil in the bag white rice mixed with some chicken baby food and Barley ate it right up.
Good thing I have a few days off before my new job starts to take care of him.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hiatus over

Blogging for me isn't just about putting a bunch of words onto the screen and hoping people read it. I write from my heart and try to share my experiences to better help those maybe dealing with the same type of stuff. So I took a break to deal with some stuff and in turn had sort of a writers block.
So now that the stuff has been dealt with I can clear away the blockage and share once again.

A few months ago new management came in at my job and started rearranging things, changing things, and in turn I started to not feel comfortable in my career there. Without getting into the dirty details I felt it necessary for me to move on.
This wasn't an easy decision for me. I am walking away from the newspaper industry that I have been in for 15 years. Switching jobs is nerve racking and has been giving me some pretty weird dreams.

Yesterday I accepted a position at a new company that I am super excited about. I start in a week and a half. I have a few days off so I am catching up on some needed ME time.

I also need to share our awesome new addition to the family. Our new puppy Daenerys.

She's the most awesome little puppy and she's getting spoiled by all of us. Its been nine years since we had a puppy in the house and I think the cuteness made us forget about the every four hours pooping, the little sharp puppy teeth and the shots. But it's definitely worth it in the overall.

I will be trying to post on a regular basis now that the smoke has cleared.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Things musicians should read

1. 17 annoying things you do that make your bandmates secretly hate you
Personally, 17 is probably my magic number.

2. Reasons why local artists don't get signed.
Most of these are no-brainers but even if you feel you're not one of the "local artists" every artist could use to do more of what works.

3. Marty Friedman's advice to up and coming guitarists. 
The zinger is that he says not to write instrumental music. Mostly because there's a small amount of people who are into it.

4. 5 Lessons to learn from Local bands
Again a list of no-brainers but still some people don't get it.

5. Give away music for free.
This is sage advice for bands just starting out. You want to get your music in as many hands as possible so diy reproduction and burning is the cheapest way. Be smart when giving your music away, don't waste it on uninterested people cause nothing can crush your dreams faster than seeing your cd on the ground, cracked with a piece of chewed gum stuck to it.

6. Advice from Chris Adler of Lamb of God.
Originally a bass player, now a drummer and producer this guy has a resume that should make you want to read what he has to say. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Thanks Cartoon Network

Last night Cartoon Network aired the Hall of Game Awards show. They promo'd the crap out of the show for weeks and Hayden was SUPER excited to watch it.

The show acknowledged athletes and some of their cartoons. Hayden was peeled to the TV and cheered and clapped with excitement when his favorites won.

Then smack dap in the middle, they throw this performance in the mix. Jason Derulo doing a song "Talk Dirty to Me." Hayden recognized that the song was, in his words "totally inappropriate."

Brian and I were definitely NOT ready to explain to Hayden what "talk dirty to me" means.

Brian tried to say that the guy liked to talk about mud,  gravel and dirt which made Hayden laugh hysterically. Great save, but yeah, I forsee that question coming up to his therapist in fifteen years.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Co-Habitation Anniversary

Yesterday marked 14 years of Brian and I living together. We moved into a cute 2 bedroom apartment in Downtown Sacramento on February 13, 2000.

We had been dating for about four months when we packed up a uhaul with hand me down furniture, hopes, and dreams.
We lived in that little 2 bedroom apartment for three years. Looking back at all our memories there it feels like those three years were a big party with lots of friends, laughter, cases of beer, and too many bruises from drunkenly stumbling up or down the cement stairs to the apartment door.

 Here's a couple photos from our time in the apartment. 

This was us last night enjoying Queens of the Stone Age. 

Our home now is still full of friends, laughter, but less stumbling and more mature domestication like dinner parties, white russians and rock band.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Me time

Mothers get just 17 minutes of 'me time' according to The Daily Mail.
Lately with my husband and I commuting together, band practice twice a week and catching up on chores on the weekends I haven't gotten any true ME TIME in weeks.  I really feel that as soon as you decide to be a mom you give up the "me time" mentality. Yes being a mom is work most of the time but it's work I appreciate.

I am blessed with at least an hour each weekend morning when my husband makes breakfast and my son is playing with his toys. I drink my coffee and watch my dvr'd shows but both my boys are in the same area as me and most shows are interrupted with "Can I have a glass of milk?" "Can you help me build this super amazing batman house that the joker and the green ninja will try to destroy ten minutes after we finish it?" or "I forgot to buy eggs can you run to the store? We also need twenty more things here's a list."

Often I am asked how I juggle a full time career, being a mom, being a wife and being in a band. Career, Mom, Wife, Singer those are just four words but there are millions more that define them. So many of us these days are much more than just a mom. We live in an age of consistent multi-tasking.
I owe a lot of my juggling ability to my husband. We are definite partners. He takes on his own responsibilities of having a career, being a father, being a husband and a drummer. We aide each other when it's needed. We lean on each other when we are tired or stressed or overwhelmed.
We also appreciate each other, like a lot.

I am lucky that I have an amazing partner, who when he reads this will definitely suggest I take some me time when ever I need it.
Some women are single moms and don't have someone else to aide the juggling.
I have a coworker who has twin four year old girls and is a single mom. She shows up to work every day clothed, with fresh hair and make-up, and does her job without falling asleep or apart. This is much more work than what I juggle and I commend her for her ability.
I asked her when the last time was that she had "Me time" and she answered September of 2013.
So yeah, things aren't bad in my life.

Monday, February 3, 2014

New Day

A couple weeks ago Brian's usually reliable truck decided it was done.
D.O.N.E! 250,000 miles and the Tacoma had enough.
This of course right before our scheduled trip to Los Angeles for our show and NAMM.
And also of course during the week he had job interviews set up.

But now it's a new day, and a new year according to the Chinese. A brand new engine came on Friday and Brian started a brand new job last Monday.
Today we throw a year of ups and downs behind us and look forward to some ups and ups.

Even our little man is super positive and always reminds us that "EVERYTHING IS AWESOME!"

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Yes, I like my job

I was asked yesterday what I like about my job. As most salespeople my first thought was "the money," but my words came out as "I enjoy working with a client to come up with a unique campaign and targeting the right audience for that campaign to be successful." Both are the truth but the latter is definitely more satisfying.

I work at a newspaper as a digital salesperson. I sell online marketing to big and little companies.

When I was in high school I wanted to work at a newspaper or a magazine. It was my dream.
At fifteen I wrote for a newspaper in Washington's youth page. They wrote a bio about me and asked where I saw myself at twenty five. I said " Working at a newspaper or magazine and living in San Francisco." 
 At twenty five I worked at a newspaper as a graphic designer about 40 miles from San Francisco. After years as a zine publisher and over a decade as a designer I made a huge switch to the digital part of the newspaper and then to the sales part. I accomplished those dreams or rather a slightly different version of a better paid dream.

I really do enjoy my job. I enjoy being on top of the constantly changing digital world.

For so long I just wanted to be a graphic designer; a creative guru I didn't think I would enjoy the dark side of selling advertising to people. I was wrong and I was broke back then. There are many other ways I use my creativity in my job. And it pays the for my wonderful hobby of singing in a band.

A quote I found a couple weeks ago from the great Maya Angelou-
“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.”

Find what you like and do it. Be direct , be a bitch with what you want and need to be happy. It's your life only you can control your destiny. 

Monday, January 20, 2014

Loot Crate Review

A couple weeks ago I signed up for LOOT Crate. It was the first crate subscription I was even remotely interested in. I'm not into the fashion boxes, craft boxes, or healthy snack boxes, but you can bet that I'll sign up for the nerdy gamer toy lover boxes.

So I got my first Loot Crate this weekend.
It was AWESOME, just look at all this stuff!! We got a Superman Pop figure, a Minecraft Mini Calendar, Nasa Patch, Star Wars pocketmodel trading card game, Melting Rubik's Cube sticker that Brian turned into a magnet and a Star Trek Badge.

The subscriptions start at $19 if you want to be able to cancel at any time, but go down if you sign up for more. Check out the site here and indulge in nerdy goodness.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Jealousy is...

Jealousy is the tribute mediocrity pays to genius.- Fulton J. Sheen

Having been a tom boy for most my life I never understood jealousy. As a tom boy I was used to hanging with boys who were direct, less judgmental than girls, and not so much into competition outside of sports. Most people that know me can attest to the fact that I am a person who likes to be accepted for who I am or not at all. I don't like to play games and I don't pretend to be anything I am not.

Most females are brought up looking at other females as competition, who is prettier, who is thinner, who has the best boyfriend/husband, who has the better job, who can eat a shit ton of pizza and not gain a pound, who gets more free drinks at clubs, etc. Which is really just a waste of energy and time. It's not important.

My husband always tells me not to stress over the things I cannot change, with me that stress is wasted on bills, plans, etc. Hardly ever do I waste my time on jealousy. I've tried my best to realize that instead of being jealous over someone's accomplishments I should be positive and work harder to accomplish my own goals.

Not only does this translate into my life of being a woman, but in being a musician as well. We hear of bands we don't care for being signed or getting a break. Instead of wasting time and breath on negativity towards that I welcome it, if they can do it so can I.

I think a lack of jealousy definitely shines through as strong self-confidence. If you're happy with yourself you don't waste your energy being nasty or rude to other people, especially to other females.

I am also not intimidated by other successful women, I love them. I love that they have worked hard to get to where they are and they can probably teach me something awesome.

I mentioned before that these last couple years I have been able to find a great group of other down to earth, kick ass chicks that are my friends. Real friends not nasty jealous fake friends who feel the need to put other people down to make themselves feel good or talk bad about people behind their back.

If you're surrounded by the fake type, then you might be getting sucked into a nasty vortex of jealousy and negativity. Cleanse yourself, get some distance and reevaluate that friendship.

As you get into your late twenties/early thirties I believe you realize that strong positive friendships are far more nurturing.

I can tell you from experience, it's a great thing to wake up in a few months after mourning a broken friendship to realize all it was doing was holding you down.

Don't waste any time on vapid jealousy, it will cover you in a mask of bitter nastiness and you'll come across as insecure and miserable.

Thursday, January 16, 2014


This is the time of year when I don't like to leave my house outside of going to work, band practice, and the store. 
Mostly it's cold, I don't like crowds and I received some video games for Christmas and they aren't going to play themselves.
Unfortunately our son feels the same way. He doesn't want to go outside and play or ride his bike. He wants to get grubby fingerprints all over my new tablet while playing Angry Birds Go.

Before winter break his teacher sent us an email stating that he just wasn't trying at his school work and if he kept it up his grades would suffer.
So during winter break he had to earn his video game time by writing stories, reading books, and going outside to play.

The other day he brought home his most recent progress report and he had raised all of his grades to A's and B's. So yeah, video games as leverage can be pretty awesome.