Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Do you strive for balance or harmony?

My life style is laid back, and as much as possible I try to run my full time business without a rigid routine. PB+J by the creek, silly dance contests, and mid-day cuddles are all mainstays in my week long plans. I have to be honest, I think balance is bullshit. It's challenge to create, edit photos, respond to emails, cook breakfast/lunch/dinner, pitch magazines, blog, vacuum, coordinate community events and nurture the inquisitive minds of a 3 and 6 year old- but it can be done. It doesn't have to translate to an orderly date book (or be done all on the same day & it's okay to ask for help) When you strive for this illusion of balance- you get a deadline, ear infection, or a genius idea. I work on weekends, forget birthdays, and sometimes my hamburgers end up like hockey pucks (and you already know I can't bake!) It's not balance I'm looking for in my life- its harmony. How about you? How do you achieve it? 

Life balance is a myth, and the pursuit of it is causing us more stress than the craving for balance itself. - Danielle La Porte

This is how 3yr old Pirates Party.

Over a month ago my littlest dudeman, turned 3! We celebrated like any swashbuckling pirate would- with a Jake & the Neverland Pirates Party. I crafted up a storm, and had a blast doing it. The boys even helped along the way. 

Treasure Maps: Maker, Paper, Tea Bags

I used toys we already owned as props & decorations for some of the activities too! On the tables were Melissa & Doug Treasure Chests, Imaginext Pirate ships, and Playmobile Pirate Sets. Some of the activities included walk the plank, a sand table full of treasures (necklaces, fake coins, etc), miniature under the sea golf, and an inflatable bounce house!

Here is the progression of the "bomb the shark" toss game I created using cardboard, newspapers, and no-cook paper mache'. Which is actually just 2 parts water + 1 part flour. I have gobs of those multicolored ball pit balls- and spray painted about 15 black to make the bombs. The boys stood at different spots and launched their bombs trying to get a direct hit by landing inside the mouth. Needless to say it was a hit. The shark head now hangs emerging from a wall in the bedroom ready to attack! 

Every pirate needs a felt mustache! 
Birthdays always call for special TrashN2Tees themed tees too, remember Sammy's hot rod party? Our pirate tshirt bounty below. One for the birthday boy and one of me. Sam didn't want one of my shirts, and opted for a Jake tee from The Disney Store instead.

 I picked up several of the food ideas on Pinterest, check out The Boys Board.  After the fact, I realized I didn't take pictures of the scrumptious banana cupcakes I made... but the recipe came from Martha. The kids had a total blast & they are already making plans for the next party- it's not until December!! 

Love these ideas? (Hi-five) I hope you'll share them- but first please read my content & disclaimers.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Eco Fantabalizing Your Closet

Need some lazy day reading? Swing by rikrakstudio's blog where TrashN2Tees is featured today as a Great Greenie!  I share some tips to eco fantabalizing your wardrobe without adding to your carbon footprint. 

How do you keep your carbon print down when it comes to your wardrobe? Laundry? Shopping?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

It's a Factoid: Denim

Flickr/ Creative Commons 


Putting a pair of old jeans back into use rather than in the dump can save valuable resources. One company estimated that it takes as much as 8,000 liters (or 2110 gallons) of water to grow the cotton used for just one pair of jeans.

... a few of my favorite tutorials to get you started: 

How stinkin' cute is this? 

Love love love, she even reused an old belt for the strap!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Ultimate Upcycled Tshirt Tutorial List Grows

DIYers, fashionistas, boarder line hoarders, and craftoholics alike- Rejoice! I've been collecting the best upcycled tshirt tutorials around and pinning them right here on the TrashN2Tees Ultimate Upcycled Tshirt Tutorial List Pinterest Board. You can find how to's for a ton of innovative, creative, and down right sexy ways to repurpose a tee. Here are a few of my new favorites-
Braided Belt from love maegan


Tshirt Bracelets from

Drop in & scope out the list- did you find something you'd like to try? Let me know if you have a great tutorial that you'd like to share on the pinterest board, I'd love to check it out!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

TrashN2Tees Top Secret Plans to Change the World

"There is a deeper fire burning inside- a mission to create, accomplish, inspire, conquer and save the world." -me

I shared that thought with you in my Spark Retreat Recap post, but I didn't share the top secret plans on HOW I was doing it.  I've been plotting, doodling, scratching out ideas, making important business phone calls, hanging out in my hammock day dreaming, skyping famous people, and taking action.  No, I'm not a super hero... I'm just me, but I believe 1 person can make a difference.  

Help me Grow- Answer my 10 Burning Questions

Here on the blog I share tips & tutorials that encourage and inspire you to consume less, and yes- I create a sustainable alternative to fun, cool, clothing & accessories in my shop TNTees- but now its time for action. This is how I'm doing it.
  • Grow TrashN2Tees Clothing Recycling - A version of TrashN2Cash on steroids! TrashN2Tees is now partnering up with several local recycling centers and charity based organizations to collect clothing & textiles to be recycled. These locations will provide drop off/collection for the communities in Central Kentucky. I will then collect the bales and bags of clothing & store them until I have accumulated several tons. (Whoa right?)  I reached out to Adam Baruchowitz of Wearable Collections (NYC) to tell him about what I was doing and crossed my fingers that he would have some advice. And boy did he ever! He's willing to send a truck all the way down to KY for pick up and processing in his facilities. Handling the back end of this operation also allows me to generate additional revenue which means we get to do more nice things for the world (not to mention the amount of clothing & textiles that we'll be diverting from the landfill!!) 

Photo/ Wearable Collections
  • Developing Iphone App- Surprise! I've kept this idea a little under the radar (unless you follow me on Twitter) With the help of Gianni Martire, co-founder & COO of Hotlist who has been a fast talking beam of inspiration & guidance - TrashN2Tees is in the process of developing this revolutionary Iphone App. The goal is to put genius, innovative, beautiful ideas and how to's at your  finger tips and inspire you to take action-  changing the face of recycling and maybe shed light on our consumption. *love a good epiphany* 
iPhone again
Flickr Creative Commons

  •   Community Events-   Hands on how to workshops and clothing swap events are now being scheduled. For more information about hosting a DIY Workshop or TrashN2Tees clothing swap event please email me at 
Stockholm Clothes Lines
Flickr Creative Commons

Epic awesomeness, right?  There are a few more tricks up my sleeve which include possibly rebranding TrashN2Tees + New Website + developing digital patterns + mucho more. I would really appreciate some feedback and hope that you might be willing to pass the bengay & shed some insight on a few burning questions I have. Got a minute? I created this Ten Burning ?'s Questionnaire. We all know I couldn't do it without your support!! I am asking you to share your honest views, debunk some myths, and maybe even sacrifice your iphone.

I would love expand on this conversation in the comments below (help brainstorm ideas for possible name change, new color schemes, website designs... do you want to purchase items from .com vs. etsy... these types of things) - your insight, ideas, and feedback are priceless as I spread my wings & find new ways to not only encourage and inspire you to consume less but hollar from the hill tops a call to action & create more opportunities to be a part of the change! Holy moly- I'm excited to reveal some of these revolutionary plans. Pressing "publish" now!


Monday, May 14, 2012

Spark Retreat Recap, Starting with Thank you.

Spark 2012! by Shiopeitience
Spark 2012!, a photo by Shiopeitience on Flickr.

As I imagine, many of you have been wondering where this post has been- 
my Spark Retreat Recap!
It's been hard for me to sit down & find all of the right words to describe what an awesome, uplifting, brilliant, inspiring, amazeballs, and utterly radical experience I had in New Mexico. Seriously- I don't even know where to start.

Thank you. Yes, that is the perfect place to begin. As many of you know my trip to the First Annual Spark Retreat was made possible because a little more than 20 strangers believed in the foundations of the retreat. They know just like our bodies need sleep and care in order to stay healthy, our creativity needs love and attention as well. These individuals graciously contributed to the scholarship fund- and raised nearly $1200! Generous people rock, and my heart wants to explode every time I think about it. I was gifted this priceless experience. I am forever and ever and ever grateful for that. Mucho gracias!

Check out more pictures of Spark Retreat on Flickr.

Thank you to Tania & Deanna for making it all happen & inviting me to join you at Spark! I could go on here- as we all know I love getting Tania crying with her crocodile tears of joy! I am extremely blessed to have both of you in my life. Thank you to Cassie & Marlene (of Pomegranate Cafe -Phoenix, AZ) for feeding my belly nutritious, whole foods and really giving me such an amazing foodie-experience. -These ladies catered delicious vegetarian/vegan meals throughout the retreat & its important to know that I'm a meat/potatoes kinda gal. The food was sometimes *way* outside of my comfort zone but I tried and like it all... with the exception of stinky tofu. Which I did try at least, and is pictured below.

 Pomegranate Cafe
Now I'm seeing how this post could go on forever- (hey I can't help it I'm really thankful!)  so...  an intricate woven handmade blanket thank you to ALL of the amazing woman who shared their journey with me, their fears, doubts, desires, goals, and ideas. I hope that you each walked away as inspired by me, as I was with each and everyone of yall! 

I left New Mexico with some amazing gifts. Ya know, besides the swag handmade items. There is a deeper fire burning inside- a mission to create, accomplish, inspire, conquer and save the world. Game on!

Check out more pictures of Spark Retreat on Flickr.

DSC_3268 Dyana Valentine helped me pin point some of my Super Conditions. What the hell are super conditions you might ask? Super conditions are non-negotiables you need to be your greatest. Creating an environment (physically & mentally) that allow you to preform, lead, create, cultivate, inspire, act, and do your best work.  
She suggested one of my super conditions to be 'truth no matter what' - whoa? I think shes got me pinned. 

Deanna, Tania, and Jessika all lead hands on- creative goodness fun (and funny!) workshops. Checked off a few of my 2012 goals here as well, including... learn to embroider, screen/block print, communicating in gibberish language and I am now schooled on the international symbol for Hello Kitty. Note to self: Improve boring casual walking style to something outrageous & sultry hip swagger.

Jenelle  + her print
Shiopei & Jessika
Serious soul defining mediation and reflections underneath the star filled NM sky, was- like whoa. Which lead to some fun self expression & crazy hoopla dancing. Sarah's workshop lead helped us digest the breakthroughs and tough stuff that we had experienced earlier in the day. Bringing your best to the table, finding your strengths & uncovering weakness- that stuffs not for the faint at heart. We had a ton of fun, but I'm pretty sure everyone will agree we worked pretty darn hard too!
 Alexandra Frazen lead a workshop Write Yourself in Motion- the exercises were tough but damn, the questions are great! Her gig is to help you say the things you WANT to say. The things you NEED to say. She sums it up with this, "Think of me as your soul stenographer & secret business-building weapon—a copywriter-on-acid with ruthless (but loving) attention to clarity, aesthetics and poetic details."
 I'm still in awe of Alex- she's pretty darn awesome & full of wisdom & enlightenment. I held Alex at squirt gun point and forced her to sit down to help me work on a pitching project. With out a doubt that one conversation (sprinkled with a few revelations) has been pivotal for me personally & for the future of TrashN2Tees. Don't worry you'll get details on that to come. My parting words for Alex were, I will be stalking you. You should too, for real.


No doubt that you'll be hearing more about my Spark experience, its kind of ingrained in my being now. I'm excited to share the new adventures, friendships, and revelations. I'm excited to take action, to grow, to be, to try MORE new things, and to possibly go out on a date night.  For now I'll leave you with this: 

Do not let your fire go out. 
spark by irreplaceable spark. 
in the hopeless swamps of the approximate. 
the not-quite. the not -yet. the not-at-all. 
Do not let the hero in your soul perish. 
in lonely frustration for the life you deserved. 
but have never been able to reach. 
Check your road and the nature of your battle. 

The world you desired can be won. It exists. it is real. 
it is possible. it is yours. 
-Ayn Rand

Directly resulting from this experience---> Trashn2Tees Top Secret Plans to Change the World.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Spark... but before I go.

CC Flickr /Kossy@FINEDAYS
A lot of great things have been going on around here- I haven't had the chance to sit down and put everything into words. I have a few moments this morning to myself, the house is quiet... no tvs, no laughter, no fighter, no music it is still except for the sound of faucet dripping and my keyboard. I woke up today much like I do every day- thankful for a new day, another breath, another chance to really live.

What makes today a little different however, is the fact that in a few hours I will be boarding a plane. Leaving my family behind (first time ever) <--totally going to cry. Embarking on a new personal & professional adventure in New Mexico. (I'm attending the Spark: Creative Entrepreneurs Retreat.) You might be wondering how does it feel? Ecstatic and exciting first and foremost, a little bit scared, relieved to be able to face my truths, learn my strengths, and break out of the boxes that I've put myself in.

I'll be tweeting & posting via Instagram while I'm in New Mexico- I want to share all that I can with you! You deserve this too. With every cell in my body I want to thank you for support- I would not be here with out it. You better believe that.

To Do: 
1. Be Awesome.
2. Shave my legs
3. Ship packages.
4. Eat.
5. Fly. (reading Fire Starter Session from Danielle LaPorte)
6. Lunch in Dallas with my Aunt
7. Fly.
8. Sparkle. 

Are you grateful for something this morning? Starbucks, maybe? Tell me more about it.


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