Saturday, July 28, 2012

Delayed Grief

I don't know what's going on with me lately, but I feel like the grief of losing my dad has finally caught up with me. It's been almost a year and a half since I received that awful phone call. I hesitate to blog about my dad because I don't want to upset my mom. I've thought about many blogs about my dad for months, but put off writing them for one reason or another. Hurt. Ache. Pain. Longing. Sadness. Tears.

For most of this time, I've been putting off accepting that he's really gone. It's not SUPER hard to do when you live 2,000 miles away. I don't know if I've ever told how it happened. It's very surreal. The last time I heard his voice, was in the background of a phone call when my mom called to say they were driving to Illinois to visit her sister. They had just got back from a Florida vacation, so I told her "Ok, but your NEXT trip had BETTER be to California!!"

My dad had to go back to Ohio to get ready for work and my mom stayed the rest of the week because her sister was having her 50th anniversary party that weekend. After a couple of days (unknown to me because we'd said she would just call me when they were back home) of my dad not answering the phone, my mom had to take further action. Long story short, my brother and his wife had to drive over to their house in the middle of the night in a blizzard, have the police break the door, and found him. He was in his favorite recliner, with the phone still on the receiver right next to him. They assured us that even if an EMT had been sitting on the couch when it happened, there would have been nothing they could have done.

I HATE when I get a phone call from a family member late at night or really early in the morning. It makes my heart skip a beat now. My call came late at night, and I can still hear my brother relaying the news. Just six months earlier I had hugged him goodbye in his hospital bed, one day post-colon cancer surgery. I had no idea it would be my last hug ever.

After the initial several months of grief, the physical symptoms of anxiety (couldn't lay on the couch and watch tv alone at night because that's what I was doing when my brother called; limbs going numb; shortness of breath) went away. I think in the time between then and now, I shut it out. I still realized he's fully gone, I was sad, but for some reason...I stopped crying. Like, ever. You know in the movie The Holiday when she hadn't cried for years, even when she tried? Yeah, that was me. Until now.

I've faced a bunch of challenges lately, just various "not-so-easy" things getting the Etsy shop open, pure exhaustion, and a few other things. The other day I typed "Doobie Brothers" into Pandora. My dad LOVED classic rock music. He was in his 20's in the 1970's so he was all into that kind of music. He recorded hours upon hours of music onto his reel-to-reels and that's what I grew up listening to as a child. He had a dog named Zeppelin before I was born. I guess the dog growled at my brother when he was a baby and my dad got rid of him right away.

Now I've moved into this stage of welcoming the sadness. It's a weird place to be, and I certainly don't welcome the fact that he's gone. Not at all. But I feel like I am finally accepting it, slowly. It really DID happen. I REALLY miss him. But the heartbreaking and heartwarming thing is that my new Doobie Brothers Pandora station makes me feel like I am watching him sing (terribly, by the way) at the top of his lungs. I remember those days he would break out his reel to reels fondly, and I feel connected to him. I realized two things through this station: 1. The aliens must have been working overtime in the 70's because there are a TON of album covers with ufo's and aliens on them (there's a REALLY funny story in UFO's and my dad too...for another time!), and 2. I know more lyrics to Eagle's music than any artist in the last ten years. Miss you daddy, meet you in the basement with the loud music. ;)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kid's Crafting Party

Last week I hosted a small craft party for my daughters and their friends. I wanted to do something fun for them this summer, because the three of us work our butts off during the school year. I originally was going to have a sewing themed party, but then got REALLY busy once I decided to open an Etsy shop!  I decided to  broaden it into a craft party. 
 I really love the button candy suckers I made from a mold I ordered online. I also made cutout cookies with a button shaped cookie cutter. I am NOT a talented sewer, BUT I successfully made these zipper pouches. Beverly's had some of my favorite Amy Butler fabric on clearance, so I used that. I did half and half with the alternating the main and lining fabrics. Beverly's also sells mini clear tubes, so I filled those with gumballs. They also got a button sucker tucked into their pouch.
 I bought the value packs of canvas from Hobby Lobby when they were on sale, and each girl painted her own monogram and background scene. Then they glued on various flowers. We made ice cream sundaes and they each got two mini cups of toppings to add to their ice cream.

The mini easels and canvas are SO tiny! They were all on sale at JoAnns. I survived and the kids all had fun! ;)

Just in case you're wondering, the Etsy shop is now open! You can see a few of the offerings on the blog sidebar.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


Well, I have a bit of news! After much encouragement I've decided to open an Etsy shop! I am planning to be ready to open it August 1st. Right now it is closed, but being built behind the scenes everyday! I love my graphics {Thank you shout out to Susan of BrandSense!! She rocks!} and have JUST set up a matching Facebook page. Not only did she do the beautiful graphics for my Etsy shop, but she also made some for Facebook page.

For now, you can go to the DistressedBeautiful page on Facebook, and "like" it. Once you do that you will see my updates, sneak peeks, and SALE codes! See you soon!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Dog House Grill

Have you ever been to Dog House Grill in Fresno? It is our absolute favorite restaurant to visit when we are in town! I wish I had pictures of the food to go along with this post!

In my opinion, the BEST thing on the menu is their Tri-Tip Sandwich. NO ONE has ever made a tri-tip sandwich as good as them! Their tri-tip is unbelievably tender and juicy. Not only is it flavorful, but it's PILED HIGH with meat. The french roll is dipped in some kind of melted butter and toasted on the grill. It is what my husband orders, without fail, every single time we go.

While I LOVE their tri-tip, I almost always order the Grilled Chicken Sandwich. It's completely delicious! It's a seasoned, grilled chicken breast with cheese, lettuce, ranch, a PILE of alfalfa sprouts, etc. and it's served on a wheat roll. It is SO good!

We order a big side of their seasoned shoestring fries, which are to die for! Sometimes we get the Dog House Salad, which has red bell peppers, tomatoes, red onions, feta, and pine nuts! It's SO good! There is so much more to the menu that we honestly haven't even gotten to try because we always eat out favorites! My kids love the chicken strips and fries!

Dog House Grill is also the same food as Firestone Grill in San Luis Obispo, and Main Street Grill in Cambria. You can check out their website here. I wasn't paid for this blog post, I just seriously LOVE their food! The line out the door should confirm this! ;)
Dog House Grill on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

DIY Vintage Coffee Can Candle

Recently I saw candles made out of vintage coffee cans! You know my complete love for old stuff, so I had to look into it, to see if I could make my own. A quick search on Etsy revealed that this was very possible! You can find many brands/colors from $5+ on Etsy. I bought this one from MoontowerVintage for $7. I wanted red since I'm trying to mix more in with my turquoise kitchen and dining room. Plus the red Folger's reminds my of my coffee-loving daddy. ;)
This was SUPER simple, I didn't even look it up, just played it by common sense. I used a coupon on my soy wax flakes from Hobby Lobby, making it $6. The wicks (10 pack of 3.5") and scent bottle were each a little over a  $1, all from the HobLobster.
I simply melted the wax flakes in a pan and added several drops of the scent oil. 
 Sprinkle a bit of wax in the can, and hold your wicks in place. I ended up using metal skewers to sandwich the wicks in place while the wax dried.

I also had a milkglass goblet that had stains in the bottom. Not sure if you can actually see them in the picture.
 Here's what they look like dry. I LOVE the coffee can one!!!
 I had extra wax, so I made the milkglass one as well. I think they're super cute!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Aqua Distressed Monogram Frame {Vaseline Method}

UPDATE! I'm now gradually making these and adding them to my Etsy shop, Distressed Beautiful. Check out the sidebar! You can request your color and letter...wait until you see the red too! The Etsy version might be a slightly different shape of frame moulding, depending on availability (see the pictures on Etsy), and the letter is not on "spacers" so that it won't risk breaking off during shipping. 

Today I completed one of my favorite projects ever! Last week I received my large metal letter in the mail. It was a Groopdealz, for $4.50. Surprisingly, I didn't have any thrift store frames on hand to paint, so I decided to try to make one. 
 I had leftover trim boards from framing my bathroom mirror last week. I had enough to make a 16x20 frame. Having a laser on my saw makes this the easiest thing ever! I lightly sanded any rough edges on the cut ends.
 I used Gorilla wood glue to hold it together and taped it in place.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Framed Bathroom Mirror

Forgive the less than perfect pictures, this bathroom needs new lighting desperately, and there was not a lot of room to back up and take a picture. ;) I have had this project on my to-do list FOREVER. I even bought two trim pieces LAST YEAR a long time ago. In the meantime, I used one of those pieces for my Casablanca headboard. We somehow always end up needing something from Lowe's when we're on date night. Last week was no different, and I decided to buy new trim pieces and try again. The ones we decided on were called Colonial chair rail moulding. It was $12.99 for 8 ft. and I needed two of these pieces. I didn't take step by step pictures, because I was kind of playing it by ear. I tried using wood glue to make the frame one piece on the ground, before painting. I taped them together, but only one of the four corners adhered together. I'm not sure if I didn't use enough glue, but I decided to attach them to the mirror without first making a frame. 
 I painted them two coats of Paramount White that I had on hand. I went back and forth between using a dark stain, or painting. I decided to paint white and then add distress ink. I attached the trim to the mirror with Liquid Nails. By the way, I LOVE how cheap liquid nails is, I've never used it before! It was less than $2 for the big tube you put in a caulking gun. That's a big bonus when the trim is so expensive.
 I used painter's tape to keep it tight on the mirror overnight. This morning I removed the tape and was ready to distress.
 Who knew you could use INK on wood? I think it's quite effective! The first time I used it was on the Sunshine art and I loved it! It's fun to have a new trick in your bag. Try it on a scrap piece of wood before you do a whole project, to see if it floats your boat.
 Like I said, bad lighting, so it's hard to see the finished product. It looks wayyy better than the plain builder grade mirror. Next I'll do it to the master bathroom mirror. I'm thinking about doing it with a cheaper wood, and adding decorative corners to make it cheaper, because it's at least twice this size. We'll see how it goes.
It totally changed the way my bathroom looks!

By the way, did you know that Lowe's has a new My Lowe's card that will track your purchases for you? You scan it when you pay and it will keep track of your paint colors (!!!!), allow you to return without a receipt, etc. Its free, and it's great! I just used it right now to look up the name of my trim. ;)