About Enchanted Seashells by Princess Rosebud

MIDlifestyle blog. I'm the mom of Professor Angel Boy and grandma to Angel Boy 2.0 and Angel Girl 2.0. I love to camp and hike. I've been in a few films, co-produced a surf-related radio show, co-owned a couple small businesses, and co-directed a non-profit organization. I love seashells and rocks, gardening and baking, Hello Kitty, Chanel, and anything sparkly. I've been a veg since 1970 and an ardent animal activist forever. Fashionista...veganista...animal activista...If you don't find me crying myself to sleep, I'm off on a mission to find the perfect shoe! And...I met His Holiness The Dalai Lama, so def read that post!

Clouds Got in My Way

After the really stressful but eventually successful first Covid-19 vaccination experience, today was more serene.

My doc emailed two times to check on me, going above and beyond her Hippocratic Oath.

Just a girl with a sore arm and some clouds embellishing the blueblue sky.

Rainbows and IVs: My Covid Vaccine Experience

Day One:
Vaccination day….

My appointment for my first Covid vaccine was scheduled for 8:15 this morning. I chose the Jefferson Street Scripps location because it’s close and also brand new so I thought it’d be nice and clean.

I got there early like I always do and stood in a not-very-long line. I was the 9th person. The entire wait was about twenty minutes or so. Every so often, an employee came out to update us on the status and thanked us for being patient.

We had some rain and then a rainbow appeared!

When it was my turn to get checked in, the process was smooth and swift and I was sent to another short line waiting to get into an actual room for the vaccination.

I’m a very cautious person…trying to stay healthy, that’s all!

The RN explained that I would be receiving the Pfizer vaccine and was given a small card to save with the date and vaccine lot number.

The actual injection was absolutely pain-free and over in less than five seconds.

From there, I was escorted to another area to sit for about thirty minutes to determine whether or not I was going to have an adverse reaction.

Guess what?

I DID!

After about ten minutes or so, I could feel my tongue start to feel thick and when I talked to the nurse, my voice was hoarse. Since I have asthma, I’m used to what it feels like when I’m experiencing respiratory distress. I was also a little dizzy. The nurse decided it was time to take me downstairs to be further evaluated by a triage team in Urgent Care.

Vitals were taken. My blood pressure was 160/120 and my heart rate was 114. Oxygen was 99% which is good, but there was definitely some type of negative reaction to the vaccine. The doctor suggested, and I agreed, to an IV hydration drip. Since I can’t take steroids because of bad reactions to THAT, she thought I should have Benadryl. I opted to wait and see how I felt after the IV before doing that. I should say here that if I were counseling anyone else, I’d tell anyone to definitely get the Benadryl, but I’m a pretty stubborn girl and like to make my own medical decisions based on what I know about my own body.

I was nicely set up with an IV, a pillow, and a heated blanket tucked in around me. That was so lovely.

I rested for the next hour or so; every so often someone would pop their head in to check on me and my symptoms didn’t worsen. I started to feel a little better.

The doctor took my vitals again; BP and HR were back to normal and I was discharged to go home and take my own Benadryl, 25 milligrams four times a day.

So far, the only other symptoms I’ve noticed is that my vaccinated arm is starting to become sore and I’m tired, but that could be from the Benadryl.

Before I left Scripps, I had an email for my second Covid vaccination in three weeks. How efficient is that!

I spoke with Josh, one of the location managers, and told him what an amazing and organized job Scripps did with the vaccines. Everyone was kind, professional, and caring.

All in all, it was a satisfying experience. I hope everybody gets the Covid vaccine as soon as possible so we can resume living!

Day Two:
I woke up with a sore arm and no other side effects, fever, aches, or chills. Fingers crossed!

Fire in Carlsbad!

UPDATE: Forty-nine-year-old transient, Dawn Ann Crawford, was arrested for causing this and other fires in Carlsbad.
________________________________________________________________

What a day!

On this auspicious January 20, 2021 when we welcomed President BIden and Vice President Harris along with their beautiful families, the weather here was warm and super windy.

I saw a notice on PulsePoint that there was a vegetation fire down the street from me. Hmmm, I thought to myself, should I go see what it’s all about?

And then I saw another alert for another fire just a couple blocks from the first one and then all hell broke loose around here with the sound of sirens and fire engines and police cars speeding down my street.

I didn’t even change my clothes. I was wearing old animal print leggings and a “Someone at Yale loves you” t-shirt. My hair was in a messy bun and I was wearing my glasses, but I couldn’t resist being nosy, so I got my good camera and jumped in the car.

Streets were already blocked off and homeowners were being evacuated so I had to turn around and find my secret pathways (not gonna tell). I was able to get super close and take incredible video and photos.

A couple structures were slightly damaged but I had to leave after the planes dropped fire retardant because it was hard to breathe.

I don’t have official confirmation but off the record, I heard it was arson.

All the firefighters and the police did an absolutely amazing job. Many thanks to Cal Fire, Vista Fire Department, San Marcos Fire Department, San Diego Fire Department, and Encinitas Fire Department.

If not for their heroic efforts, this entire neighborhood would have burned up.

Here’s my raw video and a bunch of photos:

And a few videos:

Out of Darkness

The last five years have been a collective dark night of the soul for this country as well as for many people who have endured their own somber and murky life experiences.

We were collectively ravaged by a malignant sociopathic narcissist. By all rights, in 2016 Hillary Clinton should have been our president; there’s no argument that she won three million more votes, but because of our weird system of the Electoral College process, for whatever reason it didn’t turn out that way.

Ultimately she conceded, not by inciting riots and insurrection, but in a super classy way. However, she knew. She KNEW. And so did I.

Today we’re witnessing the tortuous climb out of the depths of hell, reaching toward light out of darkness.

Do you think I’m being melodramatic?

I don’t. We’ve all witnessed an absolute decline in humanity, of empathy, of compassion, of civility, and now, the universe is setting things right.

The kaleidoscope shifted just a bit, but enough.

Part of President Biden’s inaugural speech:
“Our better angels have always prevailed”

As above, so below.

Did you know that a good friend of mine recently died from Covid-19? He was only fifty-two years old and in good health. It was a mere three weeks from the first day he felt sick to the day he died in hospital in a medically induced coma on a ventilator and dialysis. I went to RiteAid for a sympathy card and noticed that all those racks were empty. There were a lot of birthday and anniversary cards, but slot after slot of folded pieces of paper designed to express our care and concern were empty. EMPTY. I went to another store and another and found the same scenario. That’s when it really hit me. There are so many deaths, now 400,000 — that we can’t keep up with the demand for condolence cards.

Witnessing Joe Biden and Kamala Harris take the oaths of office as President and Vice President will once again allow us to feel proud of being Americans. We’ll have rational humans in charge again. Thank goodness.

I regret not being able to see and hear Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Namaste and I’ll end this with the great and beautiful Lady Gaga singing The National Anthem

The BEST Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have a friend who keeps bugging me to bake something so I decided to develop a vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe.

My favorite kind of chocolate chip cookie is one that is 90% chocolate chips bound together by as little cookie dough as possible. The cookie dough is merely a vehicle to transport as many chips in my mouth as possible.

I think I achieved that today with this vegan recipe.

Assemble all ingredients first, this really saves time. I ran out of sea salt, so I had to use this kind…You could use coconut oil instead of veggie oil, but you’d have to melt it first, and I’m allergic to coconut and don’t really like it anyway. Another option is to use shortening or vegan butter, which is more traditional, and then it would be necessary to first cream the butter with the sugars.

(Recipe below with a cool Canva template.)

Combine sugars and wet ingredients.

Add dry ingredients and chips. Of course you can add fewer chocolate chips if you choose, or add nuts.

Cooling on the rack. I can’t wait to try them!

YUMMY. Crispy on the outside, chewy and sublimely chocolatey all the way around. Pretty much the PERFECT vegan chocolate chip cookie!

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Here’s what I’m reflecting on today:

Since astrologers say that we’re in another Age of Aquarius, I hope 2021 marks a new desire to stop killing people because of the color of their skin.

This injustice needs to STOP once and for all.

The last few years have revealed a very dark and ugly side to the United States of America that I honestly thought no longer existed.

But parts of this country are as racist and filled with hate as they were one hundred years ago, and that’s incredibly disturbing. And disgusting. And ignorant.

Personally, I’m weary of the constant spewing of delusions and distortions intended to incite a base of brain-dead cult followers.

In the words of Martin Luther King, Jr….

Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.The time is always right to do what is right.

In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.

We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

I know where I stand. Where do YOU stand?

After Abcission, What’s Next?

My ash tree might be slightly confused.

Although leaves appropriately dropped during autumn’s abcission, I assumed it would lie fallow and stay calm until springtime, but that’s not what’s been happening.

This particular tree seems to be on its (his/her?) own schedule or maybe the mild weather is confusing the internal timeline, because in the last two weeks, it flowered, dropped the flowers, and is showing all new green leaves. In January!

Read about abcission HERE:
https://enchantedseashells.com/2020/11/20/the-process-of-abscission/

And then the flowers fell…

Covered in bright green newly birthed leaves.

If you listen very carefully, you will hear the buzzing of hundreds of bees who love the little flowers. We peacefully co-existed.

We might get a bit of rain next week and the temperature won’t stay as summery warm as we’ve been enjoying; I wonder what my ash tree will do?

Here she is, in all of her glory. (I decided she gives off intense fertile divine female vibes; definitely not an “it” nor male, for sure.)

Winter Veggie Garden

Today’s temperature hovered around eighty degrees and we’re in the middle of a Santa Ana heat wave. I’ve known a few January days that have been this warm, so I’m not exactly sure if it’s climate change related or if it’s simply because it’s Southern California.

It’s the perfect time to pick fresh garden veggies and make a salad.

My lettuce crop is thriving; so are the ruby red radishes.

I also started growing celery from the base of the stalks. It’s really easy. One method is to cut off the base and place in a cup with water to watch it sprout, or you can do it my way, plant it directly in the ground. The ribs aren’t as fat and wide as the original, but it’s super fresh and tasty and the leaves are deliciously herby. They’re surrounding by protective spicy mustard green leaves.

These pepper plants are two years old and still producing. There were almost completely destroyed by squirrels when they were in another location, but I rescued and replanted them in a safe location that was critter-free, and they’ve thanked me by continually producing tasty little green peppery jewels.

How does YOUR garden grow?

Well, this was an adventure…

I think by now I can safely assume that y’all figured out that I’m a tiny person with very curly hair who lives in a Southern California beach town.

You know that I love seashells and rocks and being outdoors. I have an amazing son and brilliant DIL who combined their DNA to create two of the most adorable humans to ever exist.

Moreover, I’m a passionate animal protector and defender.

My dad was an attorney and my mom was a SAHM — an RN who went back to nursing when I was in junior high. With certainty, I admit to living a less than edgy life. More like ballet or the symphony and learning to bake my mom’s best ever apple pie than drunken brawls and broken windows on Saturday nights. My memories are of a slightly quieter and more genteel childhood. You get the picture, right?

Maybe that’s the reason why, every so often, I crave a bit of excitement or an adventure or maybe the truth is that I’m too naive (or stupid) to know what it really means when I put myself in potentially dangerous situations.

So this happened.

Would you be at all surprised if I told you that I watched a burglary in progress and then I offered to chase after the guy with the store manager (yes I really did and FYI he declined my offer.)

Definition: Burglary (entering a building with the intent to commit a crime inside) and larceny (theft) are two different crimes, although burglaries are often committed for the purpose of theft. Shoplifting is typically defined as the unauthorized removal of merchandise from a store without paying for it. In certain cases, the intent to steal, along with an act in furtherance of that intent, can also result in criminal charges for shoplifting (or retail fraud). 

Here’s the whole story:

Monday is my pandemic grocery shopping day; I try to do it all early while there are fewer people out and about to reduce the amount of viral aerosol drops. Traders and Sprouts are my go-to stores for my vegan food; stuff like tofu and hummus and veggies and lentils and beans, along with pea protein powder, coffee and tea. Not very exciting food, I guess, but I stock up for a couple of weeks, because you never know when stores will close again, either for the pandemic or because we’re in an insane civil war.

After that, I went to ATT because I was having a potential issue with the charging port on my phone which decided NOT to exhibit the malfunction while I was there so it was a wasted trip.

After that waste of time, I drove to one of my favorite retail stores because I need a new black zippered hoodie. I love to bleach pretty much everything, but made the mistake of wearing my black hoodie to bleach the kitchen tile and I ruined it.

Since the recent alarming surge in Coronavirus cases, retail stores again limit the number of people that can shop at the same time, so there was a very short socially distanced line. We were all masked. The masked employee was counting people in and out. From my vantage point, I could see a man walking very fast on the sidewalk toward us. For some reason, the hair on the back of my neck stood up. He was dressed all in black with a black hoodie pulled down low over his forehead, black sunglasses, and a black backpack. He had a black mask that wasn’t on correctly. He flew past the employee at the front door. Uh oh, I thought. What a jerk.

“Sir, there’s a line. Sir, Sir, Sir, there’s a line.” He completely ignored her. We looked at each other and said, “What the hell was THAT?”

Hmmm. That’s when I got the gut feeling that I normally ignore and this time was no different. I had a totally random thought that he gave off REALLY dangerous vibes and I bet he had a gun in his backpack. I thought to myself that SOMETHING might happen and it would probably be a really good and prudent idea to simply avoid it all by walking back to my car. I mean, I could fulfill my desire for a new hoodie on another day; it’s not important. Not at all.

But I didn’t do that.

It was my turn to go in the store and I thought I’d be like Nancy Drew, Junior Detective, and keep my eyes and ears open and be aware of my surroundings. I searched for the guy and saw him walking up and down the aisles really fast, pullings items off the racks and piling them in his arms. He never looked up. When he walked toward the handbags, I went up to an employee who was stocking the area and said,

“Do you see that guy over there? (I pointed.) He’s going to run out of here with a lot of things.”

She said, “Yes, I’m watching him, he’s taking the expensive purses with the security tags.”

At that exact moment, he flew by us and bolted out the door, just like I predicted. The stolen handbags with the security tags set off the store alarms. The employee who was outside tried to stop him, but he kept running.

The manager came to where I was standing with the employee and I said to him, “Let’s go after him, I’m a witness. COME ON! We can catch him.”

“Thank you, but I can’t do that. He could have a weapon.”

The manager told me the video cameras at the front captured a picture of him as soon as the alarm was tripped.

I then told him I would wait there while he called the police.

Now here’s the crazy thing. He said he wasn’t going to call the police because that wasn’t “corporate policy”.

Have you ever experienced anything like that?

I was shocked by what he said, and when I went out to my car, I called the nonemergency police number who told me they couldn’t do anything unless the store called and it’s apparently their choice whether to do that or not. She agreed with me that it was not a great decision but law enforcement’s hands are tied. Unless the store calls, they can’t do their job.

I told dispatch I wanted to run after him but the store manager didn’t and she started laughing at the thought but warned me to NEVER do that. Even thought my intentions were noble, there’s always the chance that I’d be harmed. I’m no hero, but sheesh! Right is right, right?

I still can’t believe this thief got away with armfuls of stolen items with zero consequences.

WTF.

It was a sort of adventure, slightly thrilling with a touch of danger, but nothing really happened except that I watched a guy run into a store, brazenly steal a bunch of stuff, and get away. It was like a movie and I was an extra or a bit player. Like most of my acting career, my scene will probably be cut from the final edit.

What would you do?