About Enchanted Seashells, Confessions of a Tugboat Captain's Wife

Sometimes he's here, sometimes he's not. What. Ever. I''m married to a tug boat captain who travels the world, while I stay home, waiting and shopping. I'm the mom of a wonderful son we refer to as Angel Boy. I have a background in education, marketing, advertising, and public relations. I've been in a few films, helped my surfer husband with a surf-related radio show, owned a couple small businesses, and co-directed a non-profit organization. I'm and editor and proofreader. I love seashells and rocks, gardening and baking, Hello Kitty, Chanel, and anything sparkly or leopard print. I've been a veg since 1970 and an ardent animal activist forever.

MEMO to Blake Irving, Go Daddy CEO

Go DaddyDear Blake,

I’ll take the liberty of calling you by your first name, ‘cos I learned that you and I have something in common; we both matriculated from San Diego State University, although I’m sure you’re decades younger than me — in spite of that, your footsteps followed mine as we trod the hallowed halls of that light and fluffy party school.

You went on to achieve greatness at Yahoo and Microsoft before becoming Go Daddy CEO, and I dabbled a bit in film and teaching and marketing until I became a stay-at-home-mom and devoted my life to nurturing my Angel Boy. (But enough about me and my failed dreams of stardom and celebrity. Sigh.)

Many years ago, I was a Go Daddy customer. However, I switched to another company when your previous CEO, Bob Parsons, exhibited an incredibly crazed level of arrogance and selfishness by hunting and killing an elephant — an ELEPHANT! — that created a social media firestorm and backlash.

That action alone would be a HUGE factor in not choosing Go Daddy. How could I support a business that kills animals? No way. (http://gawker.com/5870851/has-godaddys-elephant-killing-ceo-finally-gone-too-far)

And here you go, new CEO Blake Irving, by approving and paying for a Super Bowl advertisement that was characterized as being heartless by Melanie Kahn, senior director of the Stop Puppy Mills Campaign for The Humane Society of the United States, who issued a statement, saying the story line highlights the heartlessness of many irresponsible individuals who sell puppies and other pets online.

“But the reality is often even more dismal. Those who sell puppies online frequently pose as small family breeders, when in fact many are operating filthy, overcrowded puppy mills where the breeding dogs live in small cages for years on end, solely to pump out puppies for the pet trade,” she said.

From one SDSU alumni to another, let me just give you a bit of advice.

Do your research. Instead of all the negative attention you’ve garnered for that horrible ad about the adorable puppy, who might have been sold into a dog-fighting ring (as so many of them are) or bred in a puppy factory, you could have used all your considerable assets to shine a light into the horrible and abusive life of a puppy mill female.

Here’s what you had to say:

“This morning we previewed GoDaddy’s Super Bowl spot on a popular talk show, and shortly after a controversy started to swirl about Buddy, our puppy, being sold online. The responses were emotional and direct. Many people urged us not to run the ad. 

Finally, rest assured, Buddy came to us from a reputable and loving breeder in California. He’s now part of the GoDaddy family as our Chief Companion Officer and he lives permanently with one of our longtime employees.” (https://garage.godaddy.com/godaddy/message-received-loud-clear/)

While I’m happy this decision was made, I’m also disappointed that your advertising team conjured this up in the first place. Are you so out of touch with the real world that you haven’t seen or heard the outcry against puppy mills? I’ll try to give you the benefit of the doubt and educate you here with information about National Mill Dog Rescue.

More and more cities and states are doing what’s right and humane by outlawing dogs (and other pets) that are bred in this fashion. We have an overabundance of dogs and puppies that have been abandoned in shelters and rescue homes — these animals need our love and support and publicity.

How about you do it all over again and create a Super Bowl spot that draws attention to their plight?

Here’s a wonderful opportunity to really set things right.

IF you want to position Go Daddy on the right path and become a hero, THIS is the perfect time.

P.S. Message me — I’d love to help you accomplish this worthwhile goal.

 

 

Bright Blue Ukelele

One of my tugboat man’s many ukeleles…he makes music in the wheelhouse during those long and lonely midnight watches.

music, ukelele, tugboat

Pictures of a Garden Rose

…from many perspectives.

 

Drinking from a small Waterford crystal pitcher.yellowishrose6Sunshiny orange and yellow.
yellowishrose1 yellowishrose2 yellowishrose5Bashful
yellowishrose7Warm temps and big surf. Just another winter day in SoCal!

What’s your Sunday?

 

Empty Nest Moms, This One’s For You.

When Is the right time to clean out an adult son’s boyhood bedroom? (And I say “son” ‘cos I had one child, a boy, and never experienced what it’s like being the mom of a girl.)


This was the week I did it. Cleaned my son’s room, I mean. Fifteen years after he moved out, or as I like to refer to it, when my darling Angel Boy abandoned his mommy.

In case you haven’t figured it out by now, I’m the antithesis —  the total opposite — of a “free range” mom.

Need an example?

I carried Angel Boy until he was about seven-years-old, when his legs dangled to the ground, and he was ALMOST my size.

In this photo, he’s probably thirteen-years-old or so, my little Harry Potter look alike, already taller than me. See that MOMjoy? All it takes is being next to him to bring out that kind of a smile. (And that swishy track suit was all the rage in the 90s, I promise you.)

jasonroomom

So, don’t make me say the dreaded words; “moved out”.

That’s bittersweet and rife with sadjoy (my new word all moms should immediately start using in our daily conversations.)

Sad he’s gone, but joy and pride in his accomplishments and goals. Mostly sad, though.

The purge. Well, more accurately; the relocation.
jasonroomclean1From the first grade, a diorama of the Carlsbad sea wall that his dad built — dinosaur books, academic awards, handwritten spelling tests, report cards, a writing prompt about what the future might hold (potential editor of National Lampoon)…one of the last Valentine’s Day cards made for me before that tragic discovery of the wonderful world of females who are NOT Mom–jasonroomclean2

And so many books: Chaucer to Mann to Goethe to Faulkner, Welty, Shakespeare, all the books from fifteen years of college and graduate school.

In a bookish family like ours, it’s a tough Sophie’s choice kind of dilemma: how does one determine which book might not have value? It’s pretty much impossible.

But here’s the real question…

Is there ever a right time to clean out an adult son’s boyhood bedroom?

The answer to that — for me– has always and will forever be a resounding NO! NEVER! — until I came up with the brilliant idea of simply moving things to another area, saved and protected, organized into plastic tubs to be stored in the garage, thus not purging nor destroying parts of him which is really part of me, but preserving forever and forever my Angel Boy’s childhood which means he hasn’t really grown up and gotten married and moved away and doesn’t need his mommy anymore…SIGH.

Wait a sec, let me wipe away dust-streaked tears. SIGH.

Sniff.

Buck up, Princess Rosebud, there’s still hope, he might be back, adult children DO return home, sometimes they DO need to fly back INTO the nest, so all is not completely lost.

Something to cling to, to be prepared for. Happily.

Every picture, every single scrap of scribbled upon paper, every college application, all art projects from the age of two, baby books, envelopes of baby curls, baby teeth the Tooth Fairy saved, that fallen off shred of shriveled umbilical cord (yes, Angel Boy, I told you we were forever connected, how could you doubt me?)

Don’t get me wrong; it’s not like his room hasn’t been cleaned properly in the thirty years we’ve lived in this house, because it has, but we had stored everything that belonged to him in his closet — just in case he needed that one specific item for any reason.

Or in case he decides to start collecting baseball cards again–of which there are THOUSANDS.

I’m a hoarder, not a tosser;  he and I share this attribute. Although the one and only item we’ve ever tossed out will forever haunt tugboat man and I…his favorite skateboard.

Angel Boy hadn’t sk8d in years, the half pipe ramp in our backyard disintegrated and had been torn down; who would have known that it meant so much to him? Apparently, MOM should have known, but one summery day, tugboat man and I were cleaning out the garage, and did the horrible-est thing EVER — we put the sk8board out in the street instead of framing and hanging on the wall. This was about ten years ago, and my son won’t let us forget how we failed him.

Guilt and shame compels us to regularly offer to replace the board; however, no new board could possibly subsume the sweet memories of that fave —  but we learned our lesson and promised to NEVER again summarily throw away any item that might contain a shred of sentiment without prior authorization. In writing.

Now that his room is so pristine. So vacant. So unoccupied.

I wonder.

What if…

For Rent: One room. Three meals, snacks, and yes, one very sadjoy empty nest MOTHER included…

jasonroompaint

Sea Turtle Conservation Near Todos Santos, Mexico

One year ago, we jetted down to the western tip of Baja California, Mexico so tugboat man could surf a giant winter swell.

This is where I was presented with the gift that kept on giving: XOXO From Mexico and went batshit crazy when a stupid girl put the moves on my hub. HERE: Bitch, Stay Away From My Husband Part One and HERE: Part Two: Bitch, Stay Away From My Husband

(Because I was so traumatized, I have yet to write about our encounter with Machete Man…THAT was one of the scariest episodes of our my lives.)

Before I became too sick to move more than a foot from the toilet (TMI?) we took a day off from surfing (him, not me) and drove to Todos Santos, home of the famous Eagles’ album cover featuring Hotel California.Hotel California

As we drove out of Todos Santos, we got lost, which was something we had been doing on a regular basis. Street signs that make sense must be a precious commodity south of the border, because we had a tough time navigating. If you venture off the paved road for just one second, you enter potholed dirt paths that have no end and twist and wind their way to what I was certain would be our deaths.

This time, however, it was fortuitous, because we saw a sign leading us to the Sea Turtle Sanctuary. 

Tortugueros Las Playitas A.C.
Environmental Conservation with Sea Turtle Focus

From their website:
“Our mission is to protect, conserve and replenish the fragile marine eco-systems of Baja California Sur, Mexico. In addition to our Sea Turtle population recovery program we place special interest on Habitat Protection, Environmental Education and Community Outreach in Todos Santos, Las Playitas and Agua Blanca.  

One of our goals is help restore the Critically Endangered Pacific Leatherback population which is on the verge of extinction. Our Incubation Greenhouse stabilizes sand temperatures creating an ideal nest habitat, where hatch rates are maximized and gender ratios are balanced. We invite you to join us as a volunteer, event participant or sponsor and help balance the fragile marine eco systems of Baja.”

tortuga1 And then we found it! There was a graduate student from Kansas collecting data with another scientist. They were very gracious and invited us inside for a private tour.

tortuga4

tortuga3

All the darling little turtle eggs were covered in palm fronds. It was as hot as a Bikram yoga class in the plastic covered hut.tortuga5 Babies!tortuga6Squeeeeee! More babies!tortuga7 We weren’t able to stay until sundown to observe their release and watch them march toward their destiny.tortuga8 Hopefully, they all made it safely down to the sea and out in the world for long and happy lives.tortuga9 And then back we walked. Not one single seashell. NOT ONE.tortuga10

How to get there:

turtlesmapThe Eagles’ Hotel California:

Salonpas: Effective Treatment for Pain

salonpasBack pain? Joint pain? Just ran a marathon? Paying the price for being a weekend warrior?

The nice folks at Salonpas sent me a variety of products to sample and review, including Salonpas Deep Relieving Gel, Salonpas Pain Relief Patch, Salonpas Pain Relieving Gel-Patch-HOT-L, and Salonpas Pain Relieving Jet Spray.

I work out a lot at the gym and not a day goes by that I don’t have a sore shoulder or knee. I was anxious to try the gel and the spray versions, and they did not disappoint.

Don’t let the name confuse you; this is a great product and not only do I recommend it, so does my tugboat man.

Here’s a positive testimonial from my hub, who LOVES this product,

“Salonpas is SO effective, I couldn’t believe it. I don’t know whether it was from surfing or lifting weights, but I had a lot of knee pain, and the Salonpas patches (and the gel) helped relieve my pain so that I could continue.”

And more from him,

“I somehow injured my heel and again, the patches were an easy way to target pain relief to one specific location. They actually travel with me now when I go out to sea.”

By putting the medicine right at the site of pain, bypassing the stomach and liver, Salonpas can use less medicine to deliver an effective dose.

From the website …http://www.salonpas.us

  • Topical pain relief patches are now the fastest growing method for pain relief in the USA. Patches are applied right at the site of pain, so they don’t have to travel through your stomach and get processed by your liver before they start to work. They come in a variety of forms and sizes, so regardless of where your body pain is, there are products that are designed to fit.
  • Topical pain relief products require a lower dose of medicine, because they target relief where you need it. There’s no need to worry about incorrect dosing or side effects; it’s an effective and safe plan for pain management.
  • Hisamitsu Pharmaceutical Co., Inc., founded in 1847, has specialized in the development of patch technology to relieve everyday aches and pains since the introduction of Salonpas® in 1934. The Salonpas® product line gained early acceptance in Asia and now sells in 50 countries around the world.
  • The use of topicals for pain management is already high in other countries. Salonpas® is the #1 brand of patches in the world, and the largest marketers of pain relief patches in the USA. Hisamitsu has the only OTC pain patch on the market that has gone through the FDA’s new drug application process, so it’s been tested and approved for sale using the same methodology required of a prescription drug. And the Salonpas® Pain Relief Patch and Arthritis Patch are the only products in their class that can claim up to 12 hours of relief for mild to moderate pain!

As always, I was provided product and no compensation; the reviews are my own (and that of my family) honest opinions.

Living in the Shadows in Sunny Shiny Southern California

There’s another side of California that you might not know about.

Sandwiched between the manicured lawns of upper middle-class residential subdivisions in SoCal, there’s a microcosm of humanity living in the shadows — migrant laborers from Mexico in makeshift camps.

In my own neighborhood, just minutes from the beach and overlooking chaparral-studded canyons, hidden behind purple sage and giant coyote bushes, we recently went for a hike and found evidence that suggests there are still active encampments.

Mostly these men are invisible, ignored by us as we speed up and down our streets, shopping, caring for our families, and only sometimes do we notice these shadow people standing on the roadside waiting to be picked up for day work or at the local liquor store buying twelve packs of beer and money orders.

Like the crows that fly in and out of our trees in a raucous cacophony, there’s an exodus out of the canyons at dawn and back at sunset.

Whatever side of the undocumented worker discussion you’re on, it’s a  blight on our supposedly civilized society that in 2015, in this country of overabundance and excess, men and women live in the bushes without benefit of safe shelter or even running water.

When you scratch off the thin veneer of Pilates classes, weekly mani-pedis and facials, that fifty dollar bottle of pinot noir, and glance beyond Anthropologie and Sur la Table, in the hills behind The Forum, and probably most of the other open spaces that are clinging to life —  that’s where you’ll find them.

It doesn’t seem quite fair for us to have so much while others are living in squalid conditions.

It’s sad, don’t you agree?

kellytrail3

We especially liked the misspelling. There’s a certain poignancy.

There were several white rags hanging from trees along a certain path; we assumed it was to mark the way when it was dark.kellytrail2I think this is a creek, or it could be runoff from all of the developments.
Kellytrail Hard to see the turkey vulture among the clouds.
kellytrail4Do you know who and what lives beneath the surface in your neighborhood?

 

 

Thrifty Vegan Compost Soup

garbage soup1Don’t throw away those odds and ends! Instead, get creative.

Whether you call it Müllsuppe, Soup de Legumes Restes (Soup of Leftovers) Ordures Soupe, Garbage or Compost Soup — in any language, this healthy soup is a delightful melange of everything the refrigerator and pantry has to offer.

I love nothing more than the game of conjuring up a delicious concoction from available ingredients and not always running to the store. Being frugal means more shopping for me — that’s my logic!

My son made a spur-of-the-moment decision to visit for just one day (to celebrate his bio-dad’s birthday) before he leaves the west coast for a teaching position at Rutgers.

This meant that I had to spring into action; baking and cooking a day’s worth of meals.

When my tugboat man is gone, I don’t do very much grocery shopping; the cupboards were mostly bare.

I opened the refrigerator door and peered inside where I found a few carrots, celery, half an onion, a few mushrooms, a few heads of broccoli, a bit of fennel, a block of tofu, and most of a can of chopped tomatoes.

As soon as I looked in the pantry and found pearl barley and lentils, I knew exactly what to do.

Springing into action, I sautéed the vegetables in a bit of olive oil until they were tender. I added the tomatoes, about six cups of water, and the lentils.

Pearl barley takes a lot longer than anything else; cooking in a separate pot would make sure that it was completely soft before adding it to the rest of the ingredients.

While everything was bubbling away, I cubed the tofu and tossed it in with a few tablespoons of chopped cilantro, a bay leaf, pepper, and a sprinkle of freshly ground pink Hawaiian salt.

A couple hours later, the barley was ready to be incorporated into the big pot of soup.

With a salad of mixed greens dressed in my favorite lime vinaigrette, freshly baked foccacia, and a dessert of Banana-Blueberry Walnut Bread, my son was well-fed, and I was so pleased with myself for making something out of nothing.

(And it saved me from having to throw all the veggies in the compost bin!)

garbagesoup2YUM!

What successful dish have you created out of nothing?


Facebook Update: I’m sorry to report that I still have no access to any of my Facebook pages; Since it’s understandable that I’m unwilling to provide a birth certificate to prove that my name is Princess Rosebud, if you’d like to share my posts on your timelines or mine, I’d appreciate it. Otherwise, Twitter and Pinterest will be my only forums for socializing. It’s really unfair to be singled out, since there are many others who don’t use their real names on Facebook and they are allowed to continue.

Au Revoir, Facebook

For the last and final time, Facebook has thwarted my desire to be known far and wide by my nom de plume, Princess Rosebud.

For my friends who like me on Facebook, I am so sorry.

No longer will I be able to waste hours and hours with you.

I will miss you!

I thought the most recent ploy on their part to force me to reveal my true name was successfully sidestepped by christening myself Rose Bushes which I believed was a singularly brilliant albeit tongue-in-cheek gaming of their stupid RULES.

Today, out of the blue, Facebook shut me out again,

I give up.

This time, they demand I send them some form of “acceptable” identification, like a driver’s license or a passport, which I feel is a huge violation of my legal and privacy rights.

I will NOT be doing that.

Of course, they will say it’s their sandbox and their rules.

P.S. There’s a chance that my blog posts will still automatically appear on my now defunct FB pages but I won’t be able to comment or converse with anyone. My sincere apologies!

So be it.

Je suis Princess Rosebud.

Au revoir, my friends.

Of course, you can still be my friend on Twitter…

https://twitter.com/EnchantedCshel

Ello, anyone?

 

 

1000 Voices Speak For Compassion

1000voicesforcompassion

SAVE THE DATE: February 20

Too many horrible things have clouded our world recently — even more than usual.

It’s becoming increasingly more difficult to see the beauty with my rose-colored glasses.

What this universe is crying out for is a paradigm shift toward less violence and hatred and more kindness and compassion.

1000 Voices Speak For Compassion is a brand new initiative.

A few brilliant minds (not mine) conjured up 1000 Voices Speak For Compassion and set a goal to get 1000 bloggers coming together to write about compassion on the 20th of February.

The goal?

To flood the internet with love and help create change for good.

After only three days there are already over 600 bloggers (and videographers) on board.

If you blog or make videos, PLEASE join us.

You can find the Facebook group by clicking the link below.

1000 Voices for Compassion https://www.facebook.com/groups/306227992909657/

And if you don’t blog, please read the many wonderful posts that will be coming — both in the lead-up to the day and on 20th February!

Can we change the world?

Maybe.

At least we can try, right?