About Momophd Momofphd

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 1971 and an ardent animal activist.

Like a Virgin…a BlogHer Virgin, That Is: Tips From Princess Rosebud

Like a virgin, touched for the very first time by the lure of a blogger conference, I DO know the way to San Jose for #BlogHer14.

Why am I going? I HAVE NO IDEA. After blogging for two years and meeting lots of awesome bloggers online, it SEEMED like a gathering of like-minded women all together in one location focused on similar goals of monetizing and socializing was a good thing. So I bought a ticket the day the conference was announced.

And then I vacillated…I would go, I wouldn’t go, I should go, I don’t want to go, I need to go, I won’t go — back and forth in my mind for months until my tugboat man came home and it was time to MAKE A DECISION AND STICK TO IT.

He offered to drive me up and hang out, surf Santa Cruz, and be my support system.

How could I turn that down?

And if he wasn’t already the most wonderful husband in the world, he is now, because next Saturday is his birthday and I’ll be hanging around a convention center all day and going to parties at night and he’ll have to wait ’til I come back to the hotel to celebrate.

He’s still deciding if he wants a guest pass to accompany me to the parties…probably not, though. But maybe he’ll change his mind when we get there.

So I’m going. I think. No, I’m really going. I’m screed, but I’m doing this.

The hotel has been reserved, the shoes have been chosen, three days worth of outfits have been selected with laser-like precision…

As a former marketing professional, I’ve paid my dues at trade shows and conventions. Even though I’ve never attended a blogging-specific conference, I’ve been to dozens of other events and even organized several trade shows and expos.

THIS IS A VERY IMPORTANT LIFE LESSON…

“You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.”

It’s true; I live by it and it’s served me well during my life.

  • Dress for success; you ARE your brand, you ARE your own best PR person — and this is an opportunity to SHINE.

I know what’s important NOT to forget. Since I’m driving (being driven), I won’t address the issues of flight travel; I’ll focus on the hotel and fashion choices.

HOTEL TIPS

  • Bring antiseptic wipes. No matter whether it’s a five-star hotel or an off-the-beaten-path “no tell” motel, you can never be too careful. I wipe down everything; light switches, TV remote, toilet seats, bathroom faucets, chair arms (everything!)
  • Bring flip flops especially for wearing in the shower. I refuse to allow my feet to touch the shower/bath floor. It’s just too icky to think about.
  • Slippers to wear in the hotel room. And I usually throw them away. Nuff said.
  • Hub always always checks for bedbugs before I bring anything in the room.
  • I’m crazy, but I bring my own pillows. (Because I’m crazy.) And sometimes I bring my own sheets and blankets, again because I’m totes cray. And because I hate other people’s germs.
  • A bottle of my fave champagne, Gruet. Just ‘cos.

PACKING

I like to be prepared, so I always figure on 3 outfits a day times 3 days = 9 outfit changes. That sounds about right to me. I’m bringing two skinny jeans; white and deep green, two four fancy/evening/cocktail dresses (no evening gown, I was just kidding), two three summery casual dresses, two maxi dresses, work out clothes, panty hose (yes, sometimes I still wear them), 10 tops and blouses to mix and match with skinny jeans, a variety of sweaters, (cashmere/silk/cotton), and one black awesome business suit with a pencil skirt. Neutrals with a pop of color and sparkle is my personal fashion trademark.

blogherclothes

Pre-packing pandemonium

bloghershoesShoes: Mostly everyone else says to bring shoes that are comfortable, and I agree to a POINT. I’ll always carry a pair of flats and flip-flops in my bag, especially since I like to walk back to my hotel room during the day to freshen up and change, but I don’t think comfort is my ONLY criteria — being fashionable is important, too. Yes, I’m bringing all of these shoes. Even if I don’t wear ALL of them, I like to know they’re there, waiting in the wings, just in case…

Accessories: I have a special travel bag to keep earrings and bracelets and necklaces from becoming tangled. I’ll bring a strand of pearls and a few pairs of earrings that complement several outfits.

Handbags: A small Chanel that’s a great crossover body bag during the day and wonderful for evening events, too. A shoulder bag for my computer, business cards, gifts (brand-related of course), water, flip-flops, and another bag that folds — just in case. I like to be prepared.

FINAL TIPS

  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Drink a lot of water. I carry powdered organic wheat grass whenever I travel and fill a water bottle with one or two tablespoons to each 16oz water. Great for energy and all around well being.
  • Remember, “You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.” If you always dress in sweat pants, torn oversized t-shirts, and flip-flops, kick it up a notch. SHINE on the outside like you do on the inside.♥ And SMILE!

xoxo Princess Rosebud
See you #BlogHer14

 

[tech neck. tweet pleat] wtf?

Blog news: Just a couple more fresh posts before I leave for BlogHer14 in San Jose.I’m scheduling posts of previously posted posts in advance; I’ve never done that before successfully – hope it works this time. If you’ve read them before, sorry for the reruns —  if you have NOT, this is a chance to learn a little bit about me and my tugboat man.


 Are you suffering from tech neck and tweet pleat?

Let’s figure this out together.

Have you heard of this affliction?

Neither had I until a few days ago.

Here we are — all of us — attempting to break through the learning curve and stay on top of ALL RELEVANT SOCIAL MEDIUMS — to be current, to be FRESH, on trend and on target, right?

Herein lies the problem.

Our heads are not held high.

Our heads are bent, as if in prayer to the gods of whatever device we’re on; phone, tablet, laptop, and our chinny chin chin is tucked into our neck.

This particular action, of constantly looking down, performed over hundreds of hours and weeks and months — has a side effect called “tech neck” or “tweet pleat”.

Now I agree that those terms are not very flattering, but then again, neither is the turkey gobble that’s forming in our my neck area.

Maybe some of you are young enough to have elastic and resilient skin in that area, BUT I DON’T.

Imagine my horror when I realized that I was doing the very thing that is causing MORE WRINKLES AND MORE LOOSELY HANGING SKIN.

No really, I want you to IMAGINE that for just a moment.

Put yourself in my shoes (not the Loubs, how about the ones I just got from Marshalls.)

I use Retin-A, I’m an unabashed admirer of Botox- hell, I’d even get some fat sucked out if I could afford it, but here I am, tweeting away with my chin tucked into my neck, fighting the very solutions I employ to RID myself of those nasty reminders of AGE.

I mean, you can’t wear turtlenecks and a scarf every single day, right?

There IS a solution and I’m not talking about giving up tweeting or texting.

It’s good old collagen!

There’s something called Ultherapy. {info from the Utherapy website}

This ultrasound procedure is the only non-surgical, non-invasive treatment that uses ultrasound and the body’s own natural healing process to lift and tighten loose skin on the eyebrow, neck, and under the chin.

Apparently, this is the only FDA-cleared procedure to lift skin on these hard-to-treat areas, Ultherapy uses the safe, time-tested energy of ultrasound to stimulate the deep structural support layers of the skin—including those typically addressed in a surgical facelift—without disturbing the surface of the skin.

The effect of focused ultrasound energy on the growth of new collagen over time. 

There’s no downtime, no foreign substances, no radical change; just a healthy revving-up on the inside for a natural, noticeable effect on the outside.

The downside? The cost. It’s about $1500-$3000, depending upon the area chosen for treatment. Too bad, I’d love to try it!

Hmmm. Instead of that, how about trying Face Yoga? Fans say it can smooth wrinkles, firm jawlines, and create a healthy glow. I first saw it on one of the Housewives shows, I think it was the New York version.

 

What steps will YOU take to avoid tech neck?

 

Wordless Wednesday: A Quiet Summer Evening

Shhh…we’re listening to the sound of silence.

supermoondeck

Except for the crackle and hiss of the fire.firepitsupermoonThe incredible super moon.

supermoon1Add a certain tugboat man, a glass or two of wine, and the evening was complete.

______________________________________________

Linking up with other Wordless Wednesday bloggers:
Wordless Wednesday
Wordless Wednesday @ The Jenny Evolution

1. posh– linky 35. Pheno Menon 69. Peek at My Week! (LINKY)
2. imaddy 36. Worth Casing Wed (linky) 70. Delightful Two- Bite Treats
3. bethere2day [Linkytasticated] 37. Park -Li NKY 71. Summer Cocktail Cake
4. CREATE WITH JOY w LINKY 38. Kay @ Infinite Curio 72. Pancua’s Beautiful World
5. Wordless Wednesday Wish 39. Rusty Ring: Old growth stump 73. Twisted Cinderella
6. MAMA TO 5 BLESSINGS W/ LINKY 40. Ileana 74. Enjoying This Life w/LINKY
7. Laugh Quotes 41. Gattina 75. The student is being sexy and comfortable … in the library?
8. Barefoot Mahala LINKY 42. Heather L ~ Wildflowers 76. Tiered maxi skirt @ The Flower Duet
9. Wordless Wednesday Wish w/linky 43. Gramma2Many 77. VDP On The Road 2
10. Such a Mama! Linky! 44. Ebridge Mill on Wordless Wednesday 78. Liberty Hill House – Alone at Fenway
11. SUMMER READING: AMELIA RULES (All Ages) 45. Stacy Uncorked {LINKY} 79.  from St. Nicholas´ fortress
12. EMMA AND BUSTER 46. Photo By Manka 80. Naomi @ Studio Treats
13. Frugalty Is Free: The Red Bridge In The City – LINKY HERE 47. Birgitta B 81. Sally
14. New Jersey Memories- Yurts at Allaire State Park 48. VDP On The Road 82. Nick, Melbourne
15. Shiju Sugunan 49. Jo, East Africa 83. Leslie @ Under My Apple Tree
16. Blooming (Linky) 50. Bill 84. Kisses moon traveling in the wind
17. Indrani 51. Jutta.K Deutschland 85. matilda magtree
18. Disney Toys, w/Linky! 52. Feed Me Dearly {LINKY} 86. Curious as a Cathy ~ linky
19. Colleen@ LOOSELEAFNOTES right one 53. Clairejustineoxox linky 87. Driller’s Place
20. Jackie 54. Christian 88. another jennifer – fort edgecomb
21. Sue@ SAHM w/ LINKY 55. Mittened Hands 89. Nix Mix Pix
22. Dagmar’s Home: So Busy with LINKY 56. KEITHS RAMBLINGS / EXTREME! / LINKY 90. Melanie @ M& M
23. Simple Sojourns – Swimming Disney Style LINKY 57. sabrina’s sea of colors 91. Heather @ Mrs. Southern Bride
24. { Sakura Haruka} Family Obento *LINKY* 58. Momfever 92. My Desktop
25. Angie in Yanchep 59. Nature Footstep Photo 93. Random Mommy {LINKY}
26. Coffee Jitters *linky* 60. Cathy (rambling in the garden) 94. M Denise Costello
27. Insta w/linky @ Images ByCW 61. Your heart already lives in my brain 95. The Bewitchin’ Kitchen W LINKY
28. aquariann’s Coneflowers (w/Linky) 62. Nishita’s Rants and Raves – Photographing the Piglet 96. Suzi Qoregon @ Whimpulsive
29. Cold desert of Nuts valley 63. Padaek 97. Watching The Sunset At The Beach
30. Cold desert of Nubra valley 64. Daryl NYC 98. Underneath The Shell
31. RMB – Garden Bounty w/linky 65. Daryl My Eyes 99. Elizabeth A
32. Beth @ Plant Postings 66. Sleeping Kitty 100. You’re next!
33. Carrie with Children *LINKY* 67. Cindi – an American in Norway
34. Beth F @ Beth Fish Reads 68. Lynn @ Stuff & Nonsense

twenty years of conversation: the condensed version

This isn’t an especially sparkly or edible post, no mention of retail therapy —  I thought of this as we were driving home from the gym and running errands.

We’ve had pretty much the same exact conversation fourteen billion times over the last twenty-plus years and now we’re gearing up for a long drive up the coast to San Jose for BlogHer 2014, which means we’ll be spending several hours in the car…here is a condensed version of what a lot of our “car” time sounds like.

(Don’t you think it’d be funny to record it and not have to say a thing for the first twenty miles?)

Tugboat man: “Buckle up.”

Me: “Did you bring water?”

Tugboat man: “No, I thought you were going to get it.”

Me: Did you turn the alarm on?

Tugboat man: “No, I thought you were going to do it.”

Me: “I’m cold. Turn the AC up, OK?”

Me: “But don’t open the window. It’s blowing my hair.”

Tugboat man: “Did you see that guy race through the stop sign?”

Me: “It’s only a suggestion, remember?”

Me: “Look at the car next to us. She’s texting. The light’s green and she doesn’t have a clue.”

Me: (In Trader Joe’s) “Don’t talk to me while I’m thinking. ‘Cos you distract me, and I might forget something that I forgot to put on the list that I forgot and left in the car.”

Me: Can’t you walk faster? You are SO slow!”

Me: “What do you want for dinner?”

Tugboat man: “I don’t know, it’s only 9:00 a.m. How about if you ask me after lunch?”

Me: “You just missed the BEST parking spot.”

Tugboat man: Laughing…”Do you have any idea how annoying you can be?

Me: “It’s not as if this is breaking news. I’m the exact same person I’ve always been.”

Tugboat man: “Yes, and you’ve always been annoying.”

Me: “But you love it, don’t lie.”

Tugboat man: “Well, you got me there. But for the love of all that is holy, can you dial it down just a notch or two? Give a guy a break once in while, OK?”

Me: “Well, since you’ve asked so nicely…all right.”

I AM annoying. It’s one of the words that describes me perfectly.

But don’t worry, I’m not ALWAYS annoying, and I am a good traveling companion!

31503209

 

Stuffed Portobello ‘Shrooms Recipe

Portobellos — or portabellos or portobellas —  I’ve seen it spelled all three ways — are fat-free and very low in calories.

They’re also a rich source of selenium, copper and niacin. I learned that portobello mushrooms are the mature form of baby crimini mushrooms. They grow up to six inches in diameter with a dense, meaty texture.

It’s that “meaty” texture that vegetarians and vegans love. We’re definitely NOT trying to recreate meat in any fashion– at least my tugboat man and I aren’t — but quinoa and brown rice and lentils leave little in the way of a CHEWING experience — and this ‘shroom is beyond versatile on the grill or stuffed and baked.

This is how I prepared it last night for me and my tugboat man.

For two people:
Two portobello mushrooms
1/2 onion
One summer squash or zucchini
1/2 jalapeño
Chard and beet greens (from our garden)
One small tomato
Two slices whole wheat bread or 1/4 cup bread crumbs

portobello1 Prepare the mushrooms by carefully washing off all dirt — don’t soak any mushroom in water or they’ll tend to become spongy and/or mushy. Ick. Wipe dry. Remove the stem and set aside. Scrape out the gills to make more room for the filling. Place bottom side down (stem side up) on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle a teaspoon of olive oil over the mushrooms. Bake at 350 degrees for about twelve minutes. Immediately remove and drain off any water. Notice the shrinkage!

While the mushrooms are in the oven, chop the onion, jalapeño, tomato, greens, mushroom stems, and shred the squash.

portobello2

Using a teaspoon of olive oil to coat the pan, sauté all the vegetables except for the greens until soft. Add a pinch (or more) of dried red pepper flakes, cracked pepper, fresh basil, and oregano. Add the greens and a few tablespoons water or wine or low sodium vegetable stock. Put a top on the pan and steam until the greens are tender.

Take off the heat. If you’re using bread crumbs, add them now and stir. If you’re like me and ran out of bread crumbs, take the bread and shred it in a bowl, add about half cup of warm water. Allow the bread to soak up the water and then squeeze out all the water and add to the cooked vegetables. Mix well.

Place the mushroom cups on a baking sheet with a clean sheet of parchment paper. Fill each of the portobellos with equal amounts of filling and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan cheese (or vegan cheese), if desired.

Preheat oven to 350 degreportobello3es and bake for approximately fifteen minutes until heated through and cheese is melted.

 

 

 

Add a fresh salad of lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and feta cheese with a lemony vinaigrette to complement the “meaty” stuffed portobello mushrooms for a healthy and satisfying dinner.

portobello4

 Options: Use any leftover cooked vegetables, too. plus spinach, green peppers, shredded carrots, corn, brown rice, quinoa.

#portobello #recipe #vegetarian

Supermoon: A Study in Black and White

Looking toward the eastern sky.

Southern California at approximately 9:00 p.m. Saturday, July 12. 

I wish I was a better photog ‘cos the supermoon was white bright and amazing.

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How To Freshen Old Grout Between Tiles in 3 Easy Steps

If you didn’t already know, it should really come as no surprise to anyone that I am slightly OCD.

Yup, I’m the one who needs all the pictures perfectly straight, the furniture dusted, and my floors ARE clean enough to eat off of…for reals.

Our house is kinda old, built in the late sixties or very early seventies, and we haven’t done a major overhaul on the kitchen, so I still have the old porcelain tile with white grout, which poses difficulties keeping spotless and sanitary even for someone like me whose middle name is “Bleach”.

Every so often, I step out of my Louboutins, throw down my Chanel, and get my hands dirty for a purpose — to freshen and reseal the grout.

Until we remodel and tear out the countertops, this is an excellent method of keeping everything looking clean and fresh.

And it’s SO easy!

This is what I use; it’s bright white ‘cos that’s my grout color. I purchased it at Home Depot — it’s pre-mixed and EASY to use.
grouttutorial1STEP ONE:

I use my finger because I’ve tried a lot of other tools and nothing works better. I don’t even wear gloves, but you really should.

Just scoop up a mess of grout and push it into the space between the tiles, dragging your finger down along each square ’til it’s filled and even.

Make sure you really wash that stuff off your hands; it’s very drying and probably toxic!
grouttutorial3 STEP TWO:

Take a rag or a sponge (or both) and carefully wipe away the excess grout. Let it dry overnight and then wipe off the tiles again.

grouttutorial4 grouttutorialsealer

 

 

STEP THREE:
See the little brush? Turn the grout sealer upside down and squeeze just until enough sealer coats the brush; continue to squeeze, and paint all the grout with the sealer, let dry for about an hour and add a second coat.

When it’s dry, wipe the tile with a clean, damp cloth to remove any excess grout.

 

 

 

 

Voilà!

Beautiful grout again…sparkly clean and shiny, easy as 1-2-3!
grouttutorial2

Surfing Safari with Princess Rosebud

Or not.

I had high hopes of a RAD surf vid starring ME — hanging ten, claiming a gnarly barrel — something more exciting than always being my tugboat man’s Surf Bunny sitting on the beach taking pix and video of HIM.

I’m not sure why I thought that my third-time-only on a surfboard would miraculously “Matrix”-me the ability to stand up on a moving board of fiberglass — I guess it’s ‘cos my tugboat man, my son, and my DIL all make it seem so easy, so effortless.

You paddle out, you turn the board around, jump up, and ride the wild surf.

Easy, right? Wrong. Not easy.

I was a naive sixteen-year-old the first time I thought I could channel Gidget. My high school boyfriend handed me his board and said, “Go for it!”

Bikini-clad (string bikini), I walked the surfboard out from the shore. I was up to my knees in foamy white water when the first wave hit my board, causing it to fly up and hit me in the mouth, splitting open my lip. I turned around, walked out of the water, threw the board down, and spent the rest of the day icing my fat lip. Total surf time: less than two minutes.

Fast forward thirty-plus years…my second try at surfing wasn’t much of a success, either. My tugboat man took me out in the water and stood right next to me holding down his 9’6″ Bear longboard so the tip wouldn’t fly up and cause a repeat injury.

As a fresh wave was forming, he turned me around, promised NOT to let go, but guess what?  The force of the wave pushed me away from him too fast and he couldn’t hold on.

HE LET GO. Oops.

The last thing I remember was hearing, “Don’t let go and damage my board!”

The nose of the board pearled, which means the tip of the board went underwater, I went underwater, the board rolled over, I rolled over, the board was on top of me, I hit the ocean floor with the force of one thousand Gidgets and was dragged for a time over big rocks and small rocks.

Thump, thump, thump. NOT a graceful sight.

I finally resurfaced on the shore like a beached whale, still gripping that stupid Buick-sized longboard. With bits of seaweed clinging to my hair and my bathing suit bottom mostly OFF, with sand in my mouth, my ears, my nose — everywhere that COULD be filled with sand WAS filled with sand.

I stood up, shook the water out of my eyes and looked around for that damn tugboat man. He was still in the water behind me, running to me as fast as he could — in slow motion —  his mouth agape, trying to not laugh, and then he said, “Do you have any idea how fast you were going?”

I squinted at him, spit out a mouthful of ocean, and marched my microdermabraded body back to our towels, studiously avoiding eye contact with dozens of spectators lining the shore.

As he recovered his precious and undamaged board and took it out for a successful surf sesh, I was occupied by watching the blooming of bruises from my hips to my ankles. I was a mass of purple and black and blue. Total surf time: less than two minutes.

You would think that I’d never want to recreate that humiliating scene again, and you’d be right. Well, sort of. For ten years, I refused to enter the ocean at ALL, but a couple days ago, I decided to face my fear AGAIN and give it a try.

I thought it would be different this time but I was clearly not thinking straight.

surfergirlhawaiian

 

This vintage poster adorns our bedroom — maybe it’s been subliminally infiltrating my subconscious —  embuing me with a foolish and misguided perception of my surfing ability. The truth? I possess NO water skills. I’m not a very good swimmer — I don’t like to put my head in the water.

 

 

What. Ever. Here I am at our Carlsbad beach. It’s a lovely, lovely day.

mebeach

I should have quit while I was ahead, that’s all I can say.

Notice the pretty aqua board to my right? A 9’6″ Ernie Higgins.

mebeachhair

Time to surf! I took off my earrings, changed into another bikini top, and pulled on hub’s extra spring suit. The water temp’s about 72-ish, but way too cold for me.

What a vision, huh?

surfmeAnd that’s my very last smile.

It was a rerun of my previous venture to emulate the life of a wahine.

Hub stands next to me holding the board. Hub says, “Do you want to take this wave?” and pushes me forward. I fall off the board IMMEDIATELY and exfoliate all exposed body parts as I’m dragged back to shore.

Once again, I spit out a gallon or two of sandy seawater and hobble back to our towels. Total surf time: less than two minutes.

I give up, I took out my beach read and my camera to snap pics of hub heading out to show me how it should be done.

Yes, he wears a surf hat. Don’t laugh.

surftugmanHunting for rocks and seashells is safe.
surfrocks

Not every attempt is a success, but it wasn’t exactly a failure either, because I overcame my fears and gave it a try. Will I do it again?

Maybe. ‘Cos you miss all the waves you don’t try, right?

Perhaps this is what I need. Hee hee. Chanel surfboards

 

 

Kidnapped! – Julia’s Story

Originally posted on Honk If You're Vegan:

stop-child-abuse-1

Julia Styles was kidnapped as a toddler. Although her basic needs were met, her life was lonely and sad. She was kept locked in a tiny room and wasn’t allowed to do the normal things kids do like make friends, play outside or go to school.

Once Julia reached puberty, her life got worse. She was raped and got pregnant. When she had her baby, she felt immeasurable love for him. For two days she cared for her baby, but then her captors took him away from her. Despite her plea’s, Julia never saw her son again.

Not long after this, Julia was raped again. She had a second child who was also taken from her. Then within months, she was raped yet again. This happened many more times causing immense physical and emotional strain on Julia.

By the time she was 28, Julia looked like an old woman. The physical trauma of her poor…

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On The Fourth of July – My Message to the Angry Mob in Murrieta, California

To the protesters…

You should all be ashamed of yourselves; you horrible, horrible people.

These are children. These are human beings.

There is too much hatred and abuse in this world – to animals in slaughterhouses, to our pets who trust us to love and care for them with compassion, to children who don’t deserve to be locked up in cages or left in cars to die in misery.

Think about THIS poem today on the 4th of July as you celebrate our country that offers you the freedom to scream at children who deserve food and shelter and running water.

What if this was YOUR family? Hmmm?

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses, yearning to breath free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore,
Send these, the homeless, tempest tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door.

 Author: Emma Lazarus