The Beach Boys

Phoenix, AZ July 7, 2012

I washed down my Zin Burger with a Malibu bay breeze, in an attempt to calm my nerves.  I think I had less nerves on my wedding day.  A moment that I dreamed of for a decade was about to come true.  I never imagined it would, but when I found out the Beach Boys were touring for their 50th anniversary AND that Brian Wilson would be a part of this, my dream was in reach.  This dream I speak of… is to see Brian Wilson perform live – the extension of this dream was to meet the surviving members of one of my favorite bands.

Like many people from many different generations, I was raised on the music my parents listened to, namely The Beach Boys.  It’s fun, fun, fun music that has been completely recognizable and loved for 50 years.  Sorry about the pun, but I had to, hehehe.

As a child, I can remember my aunt playing it in the car for us, and  joyfully singing along.  The boys also made quite the impression on me when they appeared on the popular 90’s TGIF show, Full House.  My love and appreciation for the group grew tremendously when I was in high school.  I was so into them.  I even had a crush on drummer, Dennis Wilson, just four decades too late.  I got teased a little bit, but I didn’t care.  I downloaded every song, Bandstand and Sullivan performance, and any other video footage I could find.

You could imagine my excitement when I found out that they were coming to my New Jersey high school’s arena to put on a concert.  It was destiny!  This was December of 2003.  I saw Mike Love and Bruce Johnston perform, and purchased that license plate you see at the top of the page.  It was so amazing to me, but I told myself I needed to, one day, see Brian Wilson perform with them.  I think each of the members brings and have brought so much to the group to make it the magic that it is, but I have a special respect for Brian Wilson’s musical talent.

So, just 8.5 years later the stars aligned and the universe said that I am supposed to sit front row at the Beach Boys concert and meet:  Brian Wilson, Mike Love, Al Jardine, Bruce Johnston, and David Marks.  I was much obliged.

BTW, that guy behind me kept shouting out his love for Brian the entire concert.

As expected, when the crowd got seating, it looked like Tommy Bahama threw up in there; t’was a sea of Hawaiian shirts and flip flops.  It was great to see people of all ages having a blast.  Let me tell you, these guys who are all at or around 70 years old performed the shit out of 50 songs.   They really gave it their all (trust me, I was right there I could see it!), and the harmonies and energy were on point.  It was one of the most incredible times of my life, and I’m so happy I got to share it with my husband.

They even included the participation of the members who passed – brothers, Carl and Dennis Wilson – by playing original recordings, on which each sang lead.

Mike made the ladies swoon with his winks and smirks.  He really knows how to work a crowd.  All the guys did a great job getting everyone involved; on their feet and clapping along… even Wayne was clapping and swaying, as long as I was doing it – he needed a guide so he didn’t mess up.  He really cracks me up.

That’s the best shot I could get of Brian.  His hair is still the same.

David Marks did a wonderful job, and so did the rest of the band.

We didn’t learn John Cowsill(of the Cowsills) was drumming, until he was introduced at the show.  Very exciting stuff.  The rain, the park, and other things, was the song we played at the beginning of our wedding reception, so it was very special treat to have him there, too.  We actually saw him in the parking lot before the show, but didn’t know it was him.  He had a broken iPhone in his hand.  That’s all.

There’s Brian again, couldn’t you tell?

I tried to get a good shot of Mike Love’s  hand, full of “pimp” rings.  No, Mike Love is not a pimp – to my knowledge.  I just don’t know a better way to describe them.  He was such a flirt with all the girls and a very funny “host”, if you will.  He made a joke about loving his first car so much, but loving his new Bentley even more.  You could tell, they were such sweet guys, and so humble even after a lifetime of such success.

 This one makes me laugh.

My Beach Boys swag.

Some nostalgia.

This is pretty cool too…

Bruce Johnston, Alan Jardine, Brian Wilson, Mike Love, and David Marks

I LOVE THE BEACH BOYS! THIS WILL BE SOMETHING I’LL REMEMBER FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE.  I FEEL SO FORTUNATE AND HONORED TO HAVE HAD THIS EXPERIENCE.

HAVE YOU FULFILLED ANY OF YOUR DREAMS LATELY?

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS POST!

AND

I HOPE YOU ENJOY THE BEACH BOYS’ MUSIC!

Until really soon,

Renee

Five Dollars at a Thrift Store

A recent trip to Savers yielded some good things for me. If you’re not familiar with Savers, it’s a thrift store comparable to a Goodwill or Salvation Army. Among my finds was a $5 candlestick. I saw it and thought the shape was quite attractive. I didn’t like the color; because of the intricate detail I decided I would paint it white to look more clean and uniform. The Annie Sloan paint would create the perfect plaster or bisque look; matte and unglazed. I wasted no time.

I pulled out some of my white paint and delicious/greasy/salty/unhealthy/wonderful chips – for sustenance.

TWO COATS OF PAINT LATER…

HOW ROMANTIC? RIGHT?

A candlestick like this would easily go for $40 at mid-range retailer. Before you think about spending a fortune, stop into a thrift store and see what you can find and make your own for a bargain price.

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS POST!

Until really soon,

Renee

China Cabinet: Before & After

Before we moved to Arizona we didn’t have a need, or space, for much furniture. Everything we had was second-hand and random besides our awful couch- which we don’t have anymore, buh-bye! Anyway, we we’re shopping at a local antique … Continue reading

The Art of Packing: Chicago Bound

So I’m going to Chicago for the first time and I’m only allowed one bag, so says my husband.  We’re only going to be there for four days but he’s gotta know a girl needs options!  I’m never good at packing, and by good I mean – I wait until the last minute and I bring everything I own.

Some people “pack in outfits.”  That doesn’t work for me; I just bring stuff without a thought of what I’ll pair it with.  I don’t know what I’m gonna want for lunch tomorrow, so how am I supposed to know what I’ll want to wear.  I usually end up throwing a fit and changing anyway, not in regular life, but when I’m away somewhere special.  In order to rule out packing sweaters, I’ve looked up the local weather of my midwest destination, and it seems to be in the 80’s.  I’m well aware that it’s Summer, but it can be easy to forget this – living in a year-round sauna.

Since I can’t decide what I’m NOT bringing yet, here are some things that will definitely make the cut…

I love Alice + Olivia and I love things that stretch, especially when traveling.  That’s why I’ll be wearing these wonderful jeggings, and flats so my feet don’t freeze on the plane.  Since I’m a wannabe fashionista, I may even wear the hat 🙂

Here are some fun/flirty tops, that are nice and light for the heat.  I can barely stand how cute the collar is on the cream-colored top.  I’m thinking I might wear that to our anniversary dinner on Saturday.  We’ll be celebrating five years together.  It’s especially cool because the 13th falls on Friday this year, just like the day we met.  See, it can be a lucky day.

Here are my age-appropriate shorts.  I snagged both of them from the JCrew factory store, for $20 each.  They fit great and are super-comfortable.

It’s neon if you couldn’t tell.  Another reason why JCrew is awesome.  A great fit and a great style.  I think I’ll add a few more dresses to the suitcase, it’s a good way to cut down on extras because it’s pretty much a two-in-one deal.

To sass up these outfits, shoes and accessories are a must.  These wedges are comfortable and give my stubs for legs some length.

These shoes are currently my favorite.  Jessica Simpson knows how to do a shoe.  They might be my favorite ever.  I’m not a heals girl, but these are easy to walk in and the leather and sparkle combo stole my heart.

I always bring a small bag for a night out and a cross-body bag for shopping and sightseeing.

Rose gold bangles are a staple for me, a watch and these “oh so summery” earrings will go great with my colorful attire.

Kate Spade bow and bead bracelet is so darling, I think it’ll be great for the anniversary dinner too!  Another great Nordstrom Rack find.

 

Now, last but not least, I never go anywhere without my retro-blue necklace from Forever21.  These complementary earrings can come along too.

HERE’S ONE MORE THING, THAT I WISH I COULD BRING, BUT SADLY CANNOT.

This is my Sea Shell(Sheldon).  He’ll be staying in Arizona and I already can’t wait for Monday to pick him up.  He’s my air.  I hope he’s not too upset with us.  It’s possible I’m getting misty-eyed as I type this…

I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO SHARING WITH YOU, MY EXCITING TRIP TO THE “WINDY CITY.”  I WONDER WHAT I’LL FIND.  I HAVE A COUPLE OF MAKEOVER POSTS COMING THIS WEEKEND AND A REALLY KEWL DIY PROJECT FOR NEXT WEEK.  STAY TUNED FOR UPDATES AND FOLLOW ME ON INSTAGRAM AND TWITTER IF YOU WANT TO JOIN IN ON MY CHICAGO FUN!

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS POST!

Until really soon,

Renee

FOURTH OF JULY: FASHIONS

I don’t know about you, but I’m so excited for the month of July.  Tomorrow is our independence day – Saturday, Wayne and I will be sitting front row at the Beach Boys Concert – next week brings a trip to Chicago – AND we have a Northern California wedding to round out the month!

SWEET!

As we all know, celebrating the Fourth of July has a lot to do with expressing one’s patriotic spirit through attire.   I’ve put together some outfits that will suit our Country’s birthday very well.  I had a blast having my husband take pictures of me, and by blast  I mean he’s lucky I didn’t strangle him… just kidding, kind of!

For the first look, let me just say, I’m not a “red person.”  I never like the way the color red looks on me, but I found this dress and that changed my mind.

Nordstrom Rack is my absolute favorite place to shop.

For the next look:  I bought this dress for my engagement photos a little over a year ago at Forever21.  I haven’t worn it since and this would be the perfect occasion for a rerun!

I GAVE IT MY BEST “BLUE STEEL”

HERE’S A RECAP OF SOME OF THE DETAILS FROM THE FIRST TWO LOOKS:

HERE IS THE FINAL LOOK AND THE MOST COMFORTABLE…

DETAILS:

So those are the looks.  The great thing about them, is that they all have pockets!   What do you think?  Maybe I’ll just have to celebrate all week long and wear all three looks!

What are you gonna wear?

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS POST!

EVERYONE, BE SAFE AND ENJOY THE HOLIDAY!

Until really soon,

Renee

PS WAYNE SAYS HI!

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Decorative Decals: Shanna Murray & DIY

It’s another gorgeous and unbearably hot day in Scottsdale! How’s the weather in your neck of the woods?

I’m always looking for new ways to decorate, especially non-permanent ways.  I’m a renter!

Some of you may be familiar with Shanna Murray; I came across her decals at my local “treasure chest”, FOUND. in Mesa.  Once I laid eyes on the beautiful display in the front of the store, I was hooked.  And don’t be thrown by the word, decal.  Typical live, laugh, love; Shanna Murray is not.  These products take a beautiful, simple, and fresh approach to home embellishment.  Her decals can be used on walls, paper, chalkboards etc.  VERSATILITY!

I purchased two…

Take a look at her full collection of designs and colors.

HOW TO:  DON’T BE AFRAID, JUST TAKE YOUR TIME

Such beautiful sentiments inside these little cylinders.  Application is fairly simple, but it does take some patience.  I just took the backing off first, then applied gradually from left to right.  I made sure to use the supplied tool to evenly rub on, the decal.  Once applied, I slowly and carefully removed the top paper.

TADA!

They make the place THAT much more cozy.

CLOSE-UP

You know, If I could, I would buy a ton of Shanna Murray decals for every room.   That would break the bank.  After all was said and done, I was so inspired to play around with making some DIY decals!  I had some full sheets of self adhering shipping slips, scissors, an x-acto knife, a role of brown paper, Paint(computer program), and a printer.  This was all I needed to continue my decal decorating.

I’m sure there are nicer and more fancy ways to make your own stickers, but this way gets the job done.

DIY Decals

1.  I created a couple of simple wreath motifs on Paint.

2.  Since my printer doesn’t print in white(or, at least, I don’t know how to make it do so) I made the background a light grey and then changed the black wreath to white.

3.  I printed my work out and started cutting… 10 hours later I finished, JUST KIDDING! But it did take awhile.

4.  I rolled out the brown paper, then carefully removed the backing of the paper to expose the sticky side.  Then I stuck them on!

They don’t hold a candle to Shanna Murray products, but it was a fun project and they came out nicely… at least my husband says so.  This way, there are also no limitations on what you can do.

 

So, Whadayathink?

Are you going to try making some of your own decals, and integrate in some Shanna Murray decals, too?

GET TO CREATING AND/OR BUYING, AND HAVE A BLAST!

BY THE WAY

MY LITTLE LAUNDRY HELPER SAY HI!

 I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS POST!

This week brings some creative Fourth of July fun!

Until really soon,

Renee

A Couple of TWO-TONE, Annie Sloan Makeovers

By now, it’s probable you’re aware that I love to use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. I DO! I DO!  In this case, that’s particularly true, because I wasn’t about to lug my dresser outside for sanding.  No sir! The two … Continue reading

One Lovely Blog Award

YAY!

Being that I’m so new to blogging, I’m not really aware of a lot of the customs yet.  Yesterday, I got a pleasant surprise when my fellow blogger Jo, at wood & rope, nominated me for the “One Lovely Blog Award.”  I am so honored for her recognition, so thank you to wood & rope!

To accept this award:
  1. Link back to the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Paste the award image on your blog.
  3. Tell 7 facts about yourself.
  4. Nominate 15 other blogs that you would like to give the award to.
  5. Contact the bloggers that you have chosen and let them know about the award.

    HERE ARE 7 FACTS ABOUT ME:

    1.  I SPEAK IN MOVIE AND TV LINES WITH MY SIBLINGS

    2.  I HAVE A MOUTH LIKE A SAILOR

    3.  I LOVE THE BEACH BOYS

    4.  I HAD SHINGLES WHEN I WAS 18

    5.  I’VE LIVED IN 3 DIFFERENT TIME ZONES

    6.  I’M 5’2″ TALL

    7.  I’M MESSY

    HERE ARE 15 BLOGS OF ALL DIFFERENT TOPICS, THAT I JUST LOVE.  THEY ARE MORE THAN WORTHY OF “ONE LOVELY BLOG AWARD.” (just click on the name)
    6.  Dahnya

     Thank you again, Jo!
    Until Wednesday,

    Renee