I guess we thought it was the 80’s

•March 26, 2011 • 2 Comments

Last weekend, my husband and I actually hit not one, but two parties on Saturday night. This was kind of a big deal, because I tend to be a social butterfly, while still shy on the inside, but it is painful for Nick to go out and socialize. And he doesn’t even indulge in alcoholic beverages to lubricate the social tension any. First, we went to the elementary school’s annual Parents Night Out fundraiser, which had an 80’s theme. Naturally, I already had everything I needed in my closet. I wore a lace prom dress ($1), a blace leather bomber jacket from the 80’s, which I just love ($1), Rod Stewart and Duran Duran pins that I had lying around in my jewelry box, a studded necklace I had picked up cheap at Halloween when my daughter and I went Goth, and some pearls and bright yellow hoops I also had around the house. Nick wasn’t up to dressing up (We kind of got ready at the last minute), but he ended up having a great time and didn’t complain one bit. We sat with my friend Tracey whom I’ve known since she was in 2nd grade and her husband Paul, and my other dear friend Kathryn, and her husband, also a Paul. There were so many hilarious stories of the 80’s, and everyone wore the best outfits!!

The Rockers

Tracey and Paul
Love Them!

Me and Nick
Me and my Man

Kathryn and Paul
Members Only

Rocker and Lucky Star
Lucky Star!

Aqua Rock, Baby!
Aqua Rock, Baby!!

We skipped out of the 80’s party a little early to head over to my friend Leslie’s (of Love Train fame) house. I should have taken more photos of the interior, because Leslie is a decorator, and her house is really done up so cute in modern cowgirl chic. I love it!! She threw a St. Patty’s Day party with corned beef, carrots, potatoes and lots of great music.

We stopped off at home for me to change and by a liquor store to grab a six pack of “mojitos” for me. I drank two over the course of the evening; I hadn’t drunk anything but water at the 80’s party. I find as I get older that not drinking much, if any is the key to being able to handle “going out”. Since it was BYOGreenB, I, naturally, had to bring a little green food coloring to doctor my mojitos for the occasion. Three of my sisters and my brother showed up to the party, along with a lot of people who had been at the earlier event.

Cute hostess (on the right)
IMG_1874Me with 3 of my sisters and my brother


Aaron and Carrie

Nick pretending to be shorter than our next-door-neighbor, Bobby

Unfortunately, in true Irish fashion, my brother got good and hammered and actually got into a bit of a tussle with another party goer. Those two were tossed into a cab and invited to leave early. And then the cops were called at 11:00 on a Saturday, and we were asked to stop playing music. This in a neighborhood which is almost exclusively commercial, and only has about 3 homes. Oh well. The music turned off, and everyone continued talking. We headed home around midnight, which was late enough for us anyway.

It was a lot of fun to get out and see so many friends in one night! I guess if there is a fight, and the cops are called, then it’s a great party. ;p And if you don’t drink too much (or in my husband’s case, at all), it’s even better. We not only partied hard, we got to wake up the next morning with no regrets!! It’s good to have learned something in my middle age.


Weekend Thrifting Finds

•March 21, 2011 • 5 Comments

I had a very fun filled weekend, which I will blog about soon, but I did manage to get in a wee bit of thrifting on Friday, and did a two-minute drive-by one yard sale on Saturday. The thrift shop is a new one in town, and their selection is poor, but the prices are generally good on their bric-a-brac. My favorite item was this darling vase with a red and yellow bird singing his heart out on the front and a smaller version of the same fellow in back.

Vintage White Vase with Singing Bird

I also found this cute little set of kissing salt and pepper shakers:
Vintage Salt and Pepper Shakers

A sweet wicker basket to hold my fabric softener sheets (Disclaimer: We rent. I didn’t pick the wallpaper!):
White Wicker Basket

A pretty brass cherub frame with just a bit of verdigris patina on it:
Vintage Cherub Frame

A plain silver frame–but isn’t it perfect for this old photo of my boy?

On Saturday I found these shabby chic syrocco bookends at a yard sale down the street. One is more worn than the other, but I don’t mind a bit.

Syrocco Bookends

Syrocco Bookends

I’ve linked up to Apron Thrift Girl for Thrift Share Monday.

A trip to the Castle

•March 18, 2011 • 4 Comments

My friend Mary Therese recently moved into a local home we jokingly refer to as “the Castle”. She says she will just keep an invitation open to us at all times as she is not one to stand on formality (very true). We got the not so grand tour the other day as she was unpacking boxes and her son was doing his homework. It is a wonderful Spanish/Mediterranean style, which I love, and it has five bedrooms and a great, huge basement where the giant TV and game systems will go. Are you ready for a partial tour?

Here are some photos for you:

A side view of the house

The arched window in the living room (there’s a ginormous fake Christmas tree that came with the window):
"The Castle"

The dining room chandelier:


The foyer:

A settee from the previous owner:

A tiled staircase:

Zack climbing the stairs:

The “welcome home” banner looks tiny!:

Love the stained glass!:

She kept a photo of the street where she used to live (and we still live). Isn’t it gorgeous?

Another chandelier:

A pink tiled bathroom:

Seriously, these tiles are amazing!

Love these 1920’s houses. Lots of work, but really worth it.

A chandelier and built-in storage in one of the many closets:

And a built-in dresser:

A black bottom pool:

Lovely little side yard:

Thank you for having us! We’ll be back to take our prom pictures here.
Thanks again!! Actually, this dear friend is a doctor, and she was sweet enough to fill a prescription for me today after a quick exam. I am actually off to the pharmacy to pick it up. Thank the Lord for good friends and good neighbors. I hope you enjoyed the tour half as much as we did.

Thrifting with a new friend

•March 11, 2011 • 2 Comments


Vintage gravy boat , originally uploaded by Temeculamom.

Thank you for your encouraging messages and prayers. They have meant so much! It looks like my son’s records have finally gotten to the expert in Los Angeles (I am just awaiting confirmation today), so that is great. And the other good news is that he hasn’t had any episodes of tachycardia (rapid heart rate) in several weeks, so while he still has the condition, he may well have it to a lesser degree than he did before. That is what we are hoping.

In the meantime, I have been busy as usual with life and love and children. My oldest will be starting high school next year. We are so lucky that we have some of the best high schools in the country here, but you really have to jump through hoops filling out paper work and getting the forms done correctly. I spent much of this week making sure we didn’t miss a thing. Despite my hectic schedule, I was lucky enough to meet up with a new blog friend, Karan. She is just as much fun as her blog in real life! We have gone shopping together twice together now, and I could be in real trouble, because I need to behave myself and not give in to temptation!! She is a real kindred spirit. She had me over for tea one morning with gorgeous vintage tea cups, real whipped cream with vanilla and Earl Grey tea. Yum!! Her house was so full of amazing vintage finds, altered books and other artwork she had created, you could just explore for hours. I think I almost had a lust attack.

I need to restrain myself to only shopping one or two days a week with a really strict dollar limit, so I don’t get into trouble. Here are a few of the goodies I came home with recently. I also found a great old galvanized mop bucket for planting in, 3 stackable black pyrex mixing bowls, a vintage porcelain and brass clock (that I stood up and shattered!), a stack of vintage sewing patterns, a wood and glass serving tray and a whole lot more. Karan is going to be a whole lot of fun!! And she has art parties at her house too!!

Love this chippy little ironstone gravy boat:

Vintage Gravy Boat

How about this old silver clock?

Vintage Clock

Or an apothecary jar full of vintage French embroidery floss?

Vintage Embroidery Floss

A Month of Love

•February 26, 2011 • 7 Comments

As February draws to a close, I have to say that this was a month for celebrating family ties and drawing my loved ones close. We’ve been fighting through a nasty cold that’s been going around for the past couple of weeks, but more importantly a couple of my kids have some really serious health issues. We discovered in December that my son, who is thirteen today, has a heart condition called Wolff Parkinson White. Basically he has an extra electrical pathway in his heart which was causing rapid heart rates and chest pain. In the end of January, he had a catheter procedure done to try to ablate this extra pathway. Usually this procedure has an 85-95% success rate, and the doctor was very confident he had taken care of the situation. However, when he reexamined Zack at the beginning of February, it turned out that the pathway had grown back. We are not sure what the next step is. The doctor wants to see him again in April. We know that there is a small risk of sudden death with this condition. I had surgery for this myself at 25, because they were unable to perform the ablation on me either.

I am in the process of getting his records to another doctor for a second opinion. We will have to go to Los Angeles, because pediatric specialists in this condition are few and far between. As if this wasn’t enough, my youngest daughter, who is nine, has just started experiencing rapid heart rates as well, so I am now worried she may have the same thing. Twenty years ago they believed this was not genetically transmitted. It seems they were wrong.

Despite the medical worries and the cold weather, we have had a busy month bursting with family activities. Sophia, the youngest has sold over 200 boxes of girl scout cookies by setting up a table in front of her dad’s office and waving to cars going by. She and her troop are trying to earn a trip to swim with the dolphins. I am so proud of her!


Zachary wanted nothing for his birthday except for a Fit Bike Brian Foster 1 Bicycle. Nick had a couple of windfalls and was able to get a great deal on the bike one step up from this one, but we made all sorts of noise about how we couldn’t afford a gift like this, and we swore we hadn’t gotten him what he asked for. He got his present a couple of days early, because his dad had to go out of town on a business trip. When it came to present time, we handed Zack a small box, and his face just fell. Inside the box was a note telling him to go look in his bedroom for his real gift. That boy has not gotten off his bike willingly since that moment. He is absolutely overjoyed, and we are loving every minute of it!

Zack as a little Boy

My oldest, Isabella, is on a baking craze and made us walnut chocolate chip blondies today. That could be dangerous, but she’s also taken to doing yoga videos with me. I’m just starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel where she’ll emerge from teenage hormonal hell and emerge a full blown person who is absolutely wonderful to be with. I get that person a couple of days a week now, and it’s a great teaser.

Nick had to work late on Valentine’s Day, so I made him his favorite dinner: chicken and dumplings and chocolate covered strawberries for dessert. I also found him a vintage Steely Dan T-shirt. I guess that gives his age away, huh? Then we watched TV together in peace.

Our big outing was a few days earlier, when we went to San Juan Capistrano with a group of friends on their annual Love Train outing. My friend, Leslie, is the Julie McCoy (are you old enough to remember the Love Boat?) of any occasion, and she had prizes for best hat, best individual theme outfit and best couple outfit.

Love Train

Nick and I took best couple (I wish I had a photo of the back of his shirt; it’s got great graphics of a pretty senorita), and I got best hat with my vintage flamenco hat dressed up with a glass glitter heart and tulle.

Love Train
Some friends (and my hat!). Can you tell which one is my sister?

Love Train
Okay, THIS one is my sister!

Love Train
My cute hubby and my friend, Rania, wondering how the weather is up there.

We all took the train down, then had a delicious Mexican lunch and later had our eardrums blasted at a little dive bar called the Swallows Inn. All in all, it was wonderful to be out with my man and a great group of friends.

I hope you all had a loving February as well. Hold your loved ones tight and remember to let them know how much you care.

My One World One Heart Winner Is…

•February 18, 2011 • 1 Comment

I had so much fun on this last One World One Heart journey!! I discovered so many wonderful blogs along the way and even found someone close to home who may turn out to be a flea market shopping buddy! At 9p.m. last night I used a random number generator and it came up with the number 79. My 79th comment came from Connie at She Dreams Big. So, I will be sending her my necklace soon. I hope she likes it. Boy, did I love the shabby wreath she was giving away! She has a really beautiful blog.

If you loved OWOH, don’t despair, because even though it has come to an end the wonderful Lisa Swifka will be hosting a similar blog party for artists and artisans next year called Our World Our Art, in which everything given away will be the handmade creation of the blogger. What a lovely idea!! So if you are interested in signing up for her mailing list, go check out her main blog: A Whimsical Bohemian.

5th annual One World One Heart giveaway

•February 12, 2011 • 138 Comments

Lisa at The Whimsical Bohemian is once again hosting her fabulous One World One Heart spectacular in which bloggers all over the world give something away for free with nothing to gain–no self-promotion–no tweeting–having to follow–just a comment to say hello and leave an email address. ¬†What a great way for people everywhere to get a peek into each other’s lives.

My name is Beka, and I live in sunny Southern California with my husband and three kids. My husband is self-employed, and I am a stay-at-home-mom. I love all things thrifty and vintage. I think if I won a million dollars tomorrow I would still be a thrift shopper, just for the thrill of those unique items you never see anywhere else.

I found out about OWOH last year and gave away a handmade bracelet to a lovely blogger in the Philippines. I was also lucky enough to win a couple of great giveaways too, which you can see in this post.

This year I am giving away a very simple necklace I made with a few beads strung on about 18 inches of black cord. The centerpiece is this beautiful vintage religious medal which I find very touching. The back side says “St. Dominic Pray for us” and features St. Dominic in a cowl, with flowers in one hand and a book in the other, but the side that I love features this beautiful Madonna and child and says, My Mother My Confidence. I think it is a sentiment that anyone who has ever had a mother or been a mother can share. Keep it for yourself or give it to a mother in your life.


If you are interested in the necklace, leave a comment on this thread, by 9 p.m. California time on February 17th. You must be an active blogger (with a link to your blog, so I can find you) in order to win. I will have a random drawing on February 17th to pick the winner, and I will contact the winner to let them know. If you would like to see more participants in this giveaway, check out the One World One Heart blog page. Today, at midnight Pacific time is the last chance to giveaway, but you can still enter to win any of these marvelous giveaways until February 17th, so go check out all the wonderful bloggers out there!