Monday, May 31, 2010


I hope everyone had a wonderful Memorial Day. I sure did. It's always a great time when I get together with my family.

We had plans to stay home and BBQ but you know how things go. Sometimes, plans change.

This weekend I'm having a Garage Sale and it seems to be creeping up faster then I expected. I have so much stuff in storage to go through and bring home.

So, we decided to forgo the backyard BBQ and go out to eat so I would have more time to spend at my storage area.

But, we still wanted BBQ. There is a great restaurant that is near us called Lucille's BBQ. Some of us have been there before and loved it, while some of us have been wanting to go there. It seemed like the perfect place to go.

As it turned out, it couldn't have been better! The food was good, the decor was darling and everyone left feeling full and content.

Lucille's BBQ claims to have good ol' Southern food and I have to say they really do. Not only do they have BBQ they have great sides to go with it. Like roasted corn on the cob, sweet potatoes, coleslaw, baked beans, mac & cheese, fries and the list goes on and on.

So you may be thinking, what does a vegetarian eat at a BBQ place. Well, I had mac & cheese, roasted corn on the cob and sweet potatoes. Along with a biscuit with apple butter.

The drinks were served in Bell Jars and the dessert list was so tasty sounding. However, we had fresh strawberry pie at home so we didn't get that.

We all shared great food, great company and lots of laugh. Plus, I got a lot done at my storage too. Talk about a great day!


Sunday, May 30, 2010


Where ever you go, what ever you do, I hope you will take a minute to remember all the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

Yesterday, my sister, Maureen, and I went to visit the grave of my father. We put a flag on his grave and as we were leaving we ran into an older man and lady.

They were decorating the grave of her cousin who had fought in World War II. The lady told us the story about him and how he got hurt durning the war and was missing for a year.

Her family was so worried about him. They finally found out his feet were very badly damaged and he was finally set back to a VA hospital here in the USA.

The man told us a story about how he was in the Armed Forces one year before World War II started. He told us about the men he knew who flew supplies over to China with him.

There were over 600 planes that crashed and many men were lost. I had never heard these stories before. He explained that it is often referred to the Unforgotten War.

Sometimes we tend to forget or over look the loss of life that takes place when we are not at an "Official War". So many stories that we never even hear of.

This Memorial Day, while we are eating our BBQ, I will be thinking of all those lost life's and the families that were left behind.

May you all have a wonderful Memorial Day and May God Bless America!


Friday, May 28, 2010


There is a place, about 1/2 hour from where I live, called Black Star Canyon. I have heard about this place for years but have never gone.

It is said to be haunted, dangerous and is full of legends.

That is not why I have never been there. I just didn't really know where it was and never had a desire to go before.

Next week, I'm going to take a group of Paranormal Investigators there at night. Before I went I went I wanted to check it out during the day.

Today was that day.

I thought you might like to go along.

I went with my nephew, Jason. He had the day off and I was thrilled he was willing to spend it with me hiking through the canyon.

It's fairly hard to find this place and unless you know where it is you could easily get lost.

You turn down a road and it dead ends at a gate marked with a sign that says Road Closed. From this point on, you must either walk or ride a bike as vehicles are not allowed.

The hike was an easy one, for the most part. A nice path that is pretty flat most of the way.

I wasn't sure what the feeling would be like here as I've heard so many stories.

Back in 1831 the Tongva Indian tribe fled to the Canyon in the summer months to search for a break from the heat and to find acorns to eat. This area of the Santa Ana Mountains had a low population of grizzly bears.

Fur trappers also went through this area during their travels.

The bloodiest known battle in the history of the Santa Ana Mountains took place here over the fact that the Indians stole the horses from the Fur Trappers to eat as meat.

The Fur Trappers then went during the day and an armed conflict took place. Most of the Indians were killed and rumor is, those Indian spirits still roam the Canyon.

All along the path, you find signs that say Keep Out. These signs tend to add to the scary feeling that you are not wanted there.

However, the signs are not for the pathway. The areas on the side of the pathways is private property. There is also barbed wire fence and at times there even electrical fences put up to keep trespassers out.

There are areas where the trees grow over the path and form arch ways. Very pretty during the day but could be a bit creepy at night.

In 1899, a man by the name of Henry Hungerford, shot and killed James Gregg over a $2.50 conflict that was a result of a horse trade.

It is said, that at times, the Spirit of James Gregg can still be heard and seen looking for Henry in an effort to get revenge.

It was a beautiful clear day today. The hills looked very inviting but of course the hike up there was off limits due to the fences.

Many people claim to have seen figures of shadows walking around up there, watching over the land and following hikers through the canyon.

As we walked further into the canyon, we saw sign after sign that had been riddled with bullet holes.

One of the scary stories, of Black Star Canyon, is there is a homeless man called Black Star Bill that doesn't want anyone to disturb him and he will chase you off as he fires his riffle at you.

I don't know if Black Star Bill is a real person or not but we didn't come across him on our hike. Thank goodness!

The hills were still covered with wild flowers in certain spots. It's hard to tell in this photo but the whole area is covered in these purple wild flowers. It was breath taking!

The beauty made it hard to believe in the stories I've heard of rape, torture and murder taking place here.

These bright white flowers with big yellow centers were lovely. The flowers were swaying in the gentle breeze and the area seemed very peaceful.

Nothing like you think you would feel with stories of KKK meetings taking place here or extraterrestrials roaming around or the home of a demon called Black Star. Yes, those are all stories about what has taken place in this area.

It was odd to come across this old rusted out piece of equipment. How did it get there? Why would they leave it here? Strange.

Upon doing some research on the Internet, I found stories of the "haunted piece of farm machinery".

Hmmm, I wonder what is haunted about this?

More bullet holes to remind you that someone or something has been shooting a gun for some reason in this area.

One of the disturbing stories I heard was back in the 1970's the road was open and used often. It was a road that a school bus traveled daily.

However, on one fateful day, the bus lost control and went over the cliff and killed the driver, the teacher and most of the children on board.

When we came across this bus I did get an eerie feeling. A feeling of sadness and darkness came over me.

Many people have heard screams coming from this area and have seen shadows of children have been seen trying to get away from the bus.

There is a creek that runs through the area. It is along this creek that people tell about how they have seen and heard a Satanic Cult doing sacrifices.

My research shows that it is in fact true that this used be a known meeting place for them but it was back in the 1980's.

Could the sounds and sights be ghosts that people see and hear now days?

This is another sign that lets you know you are pretty much on your own here. Also, all cell phone reception is lost in this area.

As we were about an hour into our hike, I did start to get a bit freaked out thinking about how scary it would be to have anything happen in here. How would you call for help?

We reached an area where we found this old tiny shack and abandoned trailer. Or was really abandoned? We didn't go up to check it out. I didn't really want to know if it wasn't.

We would come across things like this big rusted pipe or whatever it was. I can see how going here at night would be scary with the moon shinning down and casting shadows through the trees on things like this.

With the sounds of nature creaking and cracking and little critters running through the bushes causing noises could be very unsettling I'm sure.

Let's not forget the sounds of running water or frogs croaking.

With people owning property in the canyon one could easily mistake a residence for a ghost or shadow.

Hollowed out trees seem spooky as you pass them in the dark evening, I'm sure.

I'm not saying Black Star is not haunted. Though I'm not saying it is either.

I do believe there are stories that are true about things that happened here but I have no doubt that many active minds have added to those stories.

Either way, I'm looking forward to going with my Paranormal Group to do some investigating. I do think it could be scary. However, I must admit I'm more scared of the living and what they may do then any ghosts.

How about you? Would you like to go to Black Star Canyon?


Wednesday, May 26, 2010


When I was just a kid, Memorial Day was really just another day off school. Signaling summer was just around the corner!

A day of BBQ's and picnics. Watermelon, chilled and ready to eat. Corn on the cob and strawberry shortcake for dessert.

Now, it means so much more. It's a day to remember those who gave their own life so ours can be better.

In doing my family tree, I found out that I have relatives that fought in every war our Country has been in, all the way back to the Revolutionary War.

Today's Tablescape is in their honor.

Full of red, white and blue. Stars and stripes.

My sister bought me the place mats and napkins for my birthday. I layered it over a white tablecloth so the other items could stand out.

It all started when I found this little statute at a thrift store. It says "Greater love hath no man then this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

So, we will still BBQ, have corn on the cob and strawberry short cake. Only this time, as we sit down to the table, we will offer up prayers to all the brave men and women who gave their all.

I also found these gold star napkin rings at the thrift store. I knew I was going to use them and have waited months to be able to do so.

I started with my red plates that I've used many times. Then put the blue and white striped plate on top of that. I purchased those from the same thrift store as the napkin rings.

On top of that went red salad plates that I found at a different thrift store (I love shopping at thrift stores for tablescapes). Then lastly, went a star shaped bowl in either white or blue.

Each place setting has a little spreader. I thought these would be great to use to put the butter on the corn on the cob. Yum! I can't wait.

This spreader has flags.

This one has stars. They are glittered so there is some sparkle to the table that you can't really see in the photos.

This one has Uncle Sam hats. I forgot to take a picture of the last one but it is of Uncle Sam himself.

The proud Eagles also play a big part in this tablescape. At each place setting is a trinket box with the Eagle on it and a flag. Inside will be some red, white and blue candy. These are the favors for everyone to take home.

There are two styles. One has a square bottom.

The other has an oval.

I think this is the first time I have not used flowers or candles on a tablescape.

But, with the big Eagle sitting on top of the Liberty Bell, I felt none were needed. I wanted to give him center stage.

I hope this Memorial Day, you too, take a minute out to give thanks to the men and women who gave their life and to those who are still at war fighting.

For those of you want to know where everything came from:

White table cloth - Target
Place mats and napkins - gift from my sister but she got them at Kohls
Napkin rings - Thrift store
Large red plate - K-Mart
Blue and white plate - Thrift store
red salad plate - thrift store
red flatware - Target
Star bowls - Target
Eagle favors - 99 cent store
Big Eagle - Thrift store
Memorial statute - Thrift store
Flags - Target
Flag bowl- TJ Maxx
Spreaders - TJ Maxx
3 little red, white and blue bowls - TJ Maxx
Blue glasses - Thrift store
Red, white and blue stars on table - Michael's
Freedom sign - Michael's

I'm linking up to the Tablescape Thursdays at Between Naps on the Porch. Also, with Centerpiece Wednesday over at Style Sisters.
There are always so many pretty tables set up through out blogland so if you have not yet stopped by there, you may want to do so. I'm sure you will enjoy it.

God Bless America!


Tuesday, May 25, 2010


This past weekend, was my birthday. To celebrate, my two sisters, Trinity and I went to Newport Beach and had a wonderful breakfast.

We then headed to Balboa Island and went on a Whale Watching Tour.

As we left, the sun was shinning and trying to burn off the morning haze.

Once we got out into the sea the sky was clear, the water blue and the wind was blowing. It got a big chilly out there. Plus, the sea was really choppy, though it doesn't look like it in this photo.

I love being out on the water and getting to a place where you can't see land. I think that is why I love to cruise. Plus, I love the rocking of the boat.

We searched and searched but couldn't find a whale in sight.

Then we turned around and got closer to the shore. There were reports of dolphins there.

To be honest, I would rather see the dolphins then whales anyway. I was really hoping to see some.

Before I knew it, I heard my sisters yelling "There is one! No, there are two!".

It was really hard to capture them with my camera though. By the time it clicked the picture, they were already back under the water.

You can click on the photo above and then you should be able see them.

Off in the distance we heard the clanging of the bell on the buoy. So we went closer. Look what we found!

A bunch of lazy sea lions all sunbathing. How cute.

One the way back in this guy decided to take a rest and catch a ride with us.

After the tour was over, we walked around the fun zone awhile and had lunch at one of the pizza places. Then we got in our car and headed home.

We decided to take the ferry home.

Good bye Balboa! See you soon.

We didn't see any whales but we had a lot of fun and the best part was, we got free tickets to go back again. You see, they guarantee you will see a whale or you can keep going back until you do.


Sunday, May 23, 2010


I was planning on having a party to celebrate LOST's final show tonight. Then I decided not to as I wasn't going to have enough time to pull it all together.

However, yesterday I decided to have my family over for dinner and since everyone was LOST fans I would do a Tablescape with the LOST theme.

I didn't have to time to go shopping for anything and I didn't want to spend money to buy anything new anyway.

So, I used what I had and tried to be creative with what I could find and this is what I came up with. You would have to be a LOST fan to really understand any of these things.

I started with wicker chargers which represents the huts they all built and lived in. Then I had no idea what kind of plates to use. What would they have on an island?

I came up with printing out the Dharma logo for the cafeteria and put it under a glass plate.

For our utensils I thought I would go with plastic as that is what they had from the plane crash.

Most of the stuff I came up with was things I printed myself and used as different items.

It took me awhile to come up with everything but it didn't cost a penny! Plus I had fun coming up with silly things to use to symbolize different things to do with LOST.

I printed off the Oceanic logo and put them on plastic cups. Again, thinking they could use the cups from the plane.
Shells of course, had to be used since the whole show takes place on and island and the beach plays a big part.

For napkin rings used the same logo as the cups only much smaller. I thought that on most flights, the napkin rings were always paper so these worked just fine.

Pulling the centerpiece together was lots of fun. I had a business card from Sun.

A book with broken glasses taped together represents those used by Sawyer.

Of course all food items were covered with labels that looked like the ones on LOST. The Dharma Initiative food.

We had to have Hurley's winning lottery ticket.

Here is the ticket used by Lock to board flight 815.

Then, I got really silly and picked up one of the dog's toys. A squirrel. I thought it would be fun to see who got what this represents. Any idea?

If you said, the dead squirrel that Clair kept in her baby's crib, you would be right.

Then of course, there was the polar bear. I still don't understand how they came up the the idea of a polar bear on a tropical island. Do you?

So there you have it. A LOST theme tablescape, pulled together last minute. Full of laughs and hidden meanings.

I can't wait for the show to start. I have been lost this whole time so I'm looking forward to see how they pull it all together. Are you a fan?