Well there’s a light in your eye that keeps shining, Like a star that can’t wait for the night…” ~Led Zeppelin

Happy holidays! And, apparently I don’t blog enough.

K and I were having dinner the other night with some dear friends that we haven’t seen in almost a year, and the topic went from, ‘How have you guys been? What’s new?’ to… ‘You need to blog more! Do you know how long it’s been?? Much too long!’ Haha! Sorry, Hannah, had to throw you under the bus for that one. 🙂
But seriously, sometimes life is just WAY more exciting than the internet, and I just can’t seem to sit down long enough to pour out an entry. However- I am going to make this my New Years Resolution. I resolve to blog more. Because, in all honesty, I really love to do it. But sometimes I don’t even visit my own blog for weeks on end. And then I have beautiful comments from awesome readers and I feel like poop because I haven’t responded fast enough. And then the guilt sets in about abandoning the blog for so long and that makes me really want to stay away, because how many times can I say sorry for not blogging. Or is it Sorry for Party Rocking? But alas, here we are again. And yet again… Sorry for not blogging. Moving on…

We are enjoying this holiday season SO much! No stress, no rushing around, no angry shoppers fighting for parking spaces or the last DVD set of Sons of Anarchy Season 2. Ah… just bliss with my love being home, our sweet little Christmas tree, and lots of yummy vegetarian dinners at home. See, this year we decided to not buy presents for anyone, not even each other. No consumerism = no holiday stress. We did allow each other presents ONLY if they were hand-made by us. So instead of Christmas morning being the pinnacle of the holiday because thats when the presents are opened, we are enjoying every single moment just being together. And the days up to Christmas seem to last longer. They are being savored rather than having the feeling of rushing around to buy things for everyone. It is so nice. We are so relaxed and happy to just watch the chaos fly around us while we just look at each other and smile. I recommend this to everyone.

Until today. I did something completely out of my comfort zone, and far from my usual routine. I went to the mall today. Yes, December 26th, the Day After Christmas…! One of the cra-zaaziest shopping days of the year. WHY? I need a new coat for Alaska. And I figured I could sneak in under the radar and hit up the one store that was sure to have my perfect coat in stock for Uber-cheap, my color and size of course. And then I would whisk myself up to the register, pay and be out and on my way home in 30 minutes or less. Because I AM that confident and a total positive-thinker, and I only want one little thing, right?

{How I imagined my shopping experience was going to be...}

{What I actually saw when I got there}

Of course I asked K if he wanted to join me and get some new gloves. HA! He looked at me like I was looney and said no thank you love, but good luck. In fact, he actually suggested I bring my badass knife he got me for Christmas (Yup, of COURSE he broke the rules and gave me gifts). Anyway, I drive to the mall, happy as can be, calling upon the Parking Fairies to grant me rockstar parking right in front of the one store I knew would have my coat. Well, that didn’t quite happen. But I did get to see two older ladies scream at each other from their cars, fighting over a parking spot, obvs. That’s okay, I’m still cheerful and optimistic.
I can now see my store, but crap, with all the parking traffic, I am barely inching my way through the lot. I decide to park further away and walk. It’s a beautiful day out and I could use the walk after all the coconut milk egg nog I drank. SO I pull down an aisle and voila! A parking space appeared right in front of me! Thank you parking fairies! I get out of my car and start the pretty far walk to the store. I cut between cars and move to another aisle, then another. A car pulls up in front of me and a guy leans out of his car to yell at me for taking him on a goose chase. What the..? Apparently, he had been following me from aisle to aisle thinking that I was looking for my car to leave. Oops, I had no idea. Whatevs, dude. Two altercations in under 5 minutes but I am STILL having a good time. I just wave and carry on.
I finally get to my store and a whoosh of reality washed over me as I walked in. There were SO many people with angry, maniacal, and pissed off looks on their faces that I had to pause and find my courage to go on. Crying kids, yelling moms, people flinging through the racks with reckless abandon, throwing coats that didn’t fit them on the floor, others grabbing 5 at a time, not even looking at sizes, just so they could go take them to a corner to try on without having to shank someone for it. It was complete madness.
I took a deep breath…
And I walked over to the nearest rack that (miraculously) had only one person digging through. I found a couple nice ones, but my eyes were glazing over, my palms were getting sweaty, and my bottom lip was getting ready to pucker. Yes, my friends, I was thisclose to losing it. I wanted to either A. run for the door while screaming: “You’re all a bunch of f#*@ing lunatics!” or B. give up and sit down somewhere, where they would eventually find me rocking in a corner.

However, I pulled up my big girl panties and did C. Made one last scan of the coats with authority, wearing a confident smile while still being ready to fend off the crazies if I found My Coat. And then… there it was. The only one of its kind in the store, Michael Kors, down, mid-thigh, puffy but fitted with a faux fur trimmed hood,  in MY size, marked down from $400 to $109. True story. It was only a coat, but the victory I felt in that moment could only have been better if there was a soundtrack playing in the back ground, like in a Katherine Heigl movie. I took my starry eyes and my new favorite coat EVER up to the register. Where I waited.

Yep, still waiting.

But that’s okay because I WON. I wrapped my arms around my coat to snuggle in its warmth while I waited. I walk up to the register and she sweetly tells me that My Coat is now only going to be $85 because it has been marked down yet again for today only. Ahhhh sweet victory. I abandoned the rest of my plans and just went home to have lunch with K. My day was complete and oh so sweet. BUT- I vow to NEVER do that again. I have no idea what I was thinking…

So me and My Coat are heading up to Anchorage with K on Thursday for their New Years Eve concert. I am so excited! See, I was born and raised in Hawaii. However, for a couple of wild years when I was a little one, my parents, my dog and I were nomads and went from Hawaii to California, then up to Maine and all the way through Canada (in a van with shag carpet walls!!) to Nome Alaska where we lived on the tundra for a year or so. I don’t remember any of it, but I have some great photos, and I love hearing the stories…

{Yes, that is me. Could I look any more uncomfortable?}

Then I came back to Hawaii, all before I was 3 I think? Mom, dad, you can probably fact check me here. But I have never been back to Alaska, and now we have the chance. I’m very excited to see the Aurora Borealis again, and to visit a glacier south of Anchorage. It wasn’t on my Life List, but I am eager to experience it just the same. Are any of you readers out there in Anchorage? Anyone coming to the show? We will be there for about six days and would love to have some recommendations of restaurants, fun things to see, etc. And wouldn’t you know it… there is a yoga studio next to the venue. Boom. 🙂

It has been such a wonderful year, and one word sums it all up for me. Gratitude. I am so grateful for everything in my world: My love, my family, my friends, my studio, our travels, our life together. It’s been a fabulous ride so far, and I am so excited to see what the New Year brings! I would love to hear from all of you… What are your plans for New Years Eve? Are you making a resolution this year? Of course, mine is to blog more, blah, blah. But other than that, I really don’t have another one in mind. Just to Live. Live happily, live healthily, and honestly and lovingly. Enjoy every. single. moment of this beautiful life and to appreciate and love my closest like it’s the last day of the world.

Happy New Year. Peace to all.

Currently…
Reading: Jimmy Page. Magus. Magician. Man.
Listening to: Chris Cornell- Live acoustic tour. Swoon…
Eating: Homemade Vegan Harvest soup (basically any veggies I have on hand)
Grateful for: Kaleo making me delicious breakfasts every morning. I’m spoiled.

 

“When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears.” ~Anthony Robbins

On June 21st, the afternoon of the Summer Solstice, we officially welcomed the arrival of summer! We had our 108 Sun Salutation Mala of Intention event at the studio and raised $381 for the Oceanside chapter of Stand Up For Kids, yay! This is the second time I’ve held a 108 event and I can tell you, it doesn’t get any easier. I was so sore the next day and two days after… Well Hello, hamstrings! Three of our wonderful teachers helped me by each leading one round, with me closing the event with the final round of 27 Sun Salutations. It’s such an empowering experience, I highly recommend it to everyone! I will be holding a similar one 2-3 times a year, with all proceeds benefitting charity, so if you are ever in the area when it is happening, come and check it out. 😉

Speaking of summer, I feel like a flower who has just been put out in the sun and given fresh water. The weather has been so lovely with the sun shining and the warm temperatures, and especially the long days. I’m thrilled to be able to come home from yoga and go for a walk on the beach, and still be finished with dinner before the sun goes down. There is something undeniably heart warming about summer in southern California. I love living here. I love driving down the wide, palm tree lined streets as the sun is inching its way closer to the ocean. Sun roof open, sunglasses on, favorite happy song of the moment playing loudly… Everything is so warm and golden, and sparkly, and it invites the feeling of limitless possibilities. It’s no wonder people come from all over the world to reinvent themselves and try their hand at becoming famous. It’s definitely not my dream, but in that moment, I get it.

On this holiday weekend, I have been out enjoying the sun, people watching (which is so fun down here), doing lots of yoga, and getting ready for Kaleo to come home tonight. Yay! Home for the holiday, and I couldn’t be any happier. It’s amazing to be in a beach community on a holiday weekend. Things get cra-zaazy. I kind of like to have some personal space when I am out in public. You know, maybe even like a bubble of, oh I don’t know, 4 feet radius?? 4th of July at the beach? Not going to happen. It’s the wildest thing, people are all up in each other’s business! And by business, I mean almost laying out on top of each other. Umbrellas and tents are almost touching, if not battling for space, and the beach goers are pretty much raging. I’m not just talking about partying and drinking, I’m talking about the kids who have been consuming sugar and hot dogs all day who are screaming like banshees and running around throwing sand at people. Whoa.
It is a sight. But who am I to put my idea of a good time on anyone? Just because it isn’t for me and you will not see my butt in a bikini sandwiched in between the Joneses (all 12 of them) and the 50 year old uber-tan creepy guy who is checking out the 12 year old Jones girls, doesn’t mean that I don’t have a blast people watching while on my walk.

{yesterday}

In honor of summer and being able to wear sunglasses at anytime, I got contacts. I’ve tried them before and struggled with them horribly. So I am giving them another shot, and I am actually loving it this time around! It is so freeing to be able to wear sunglasses and… SEE at the same time! Who would have thought… And now I can see my feet in a yoga class, wow! It’s been pretty fun. I’m not wearing them all the time because I do love my glasses, but it’s a nice change to be able to get dressed up and not ruin the outfit by putting on glasses that don’t match. Or have someone make a comment like, “Oh I see you’re trying to go for the sexy librarian look.”  No, actually. I’m terribly blind and if I want to make my way around with everyone’s safety in mind I have to wear these things. Smartass.

One major bonus of getting contacts is riding a bike. Yes, I know, it’s the simplest things that I haven’t been able to do! In the sun, I can’t wear sunglasses because I needed to see. But also, if I just wear my glasses, I have awful, if any, peripheral vision. Which is no bueno when you’re riding a bike on a busy street. So- I am really looking forward to riding my bike everywhere now that I can see and am not a vision-impaired menace to society.
And of course, with my newfound freedom of sight, I kind of want a new bike. Because it’s only the cutest bike ever. It’s made by Linus, which is also the cutest name ever. I want her to be cream-colored with a brown basket (for the farmers market) and a bell. Yep, I am that girl. I want a bell on my bike. These bikes are the most adorable Euro-looking bikes I have ever seen, and I am manifesting one to come into my life. I did that with my car, exact color, interior, everything. So now I am doing the same with my bike, who I will name Lucie. Too much information? Well here is a photo…

{photo courtesy of beaux-monde.com}

{Linus Dutchi 3}


Love, love, love. And she even has the bell. Swoon. The Linus website has all the little bells and baskets to outfit your bike properly, and from my research, you can find the bikes used and refurbished, which is what I am going to do. Because they don’t come cheap.
Who else is excited for summer?? What is on the schedule for this holiday weekend? Lots of sun, friends, good food and music? Sounds like a good time to me. And the fact that I am spending it with my love? Even better.
I will leave you with a fun song that keeps popping up on my random iPod shuffle…. Have a safe and fun-filled weekend!

“I’ve got to admit it’s getting better, a little better, all the time.” ~the Beatles

Hi friends,

We are back from our trip home to Hawaii. Does anyone else feel a little relieved that the holidays are over? Is it just me? I’ve sat down to write a few times and I stop each time. I have gone through so many emotions in the past month that to corral them all into one coherent post would be a huge challenge that I honestly didn’t feel like conquering. Trying to stay on an even keel during a rollercoaster of events, emotions, delightful experiences and heart wrenching tragedy… All during the holidays. And when I tried to write, it just didn’t feel like I was coming from an authentic place since I was trying to find answers and bright-sides amidst confusion. So I didn’t write. But then I realized that sharing these very thoughts are what readers might need to hear. Not just the all-is-well happy stuff but the I’m-trying-to-follow-my-own-advice stuff too. So here I am.

First of all, I want to clarify that everything with me directly is great. Kaleo and I are happier than ever, we have our health, and home life is simply beautiful. However, a large number of my closest and dearest friends and family are going through rough times for many reasons. I don’t want to air anyone’s personal stuff, but there has been a tragic death of a friend’s family member, terminal illness, break ups, financial hardships, more unexplained death, and most recently, someone in my family passing away from Cancer. If you know me, you know that I nurture, and I want to make things all better. Well, I can’t. And it often affects me in the way that I feel anxious and I take on my loved one’s pain and suffering as my own. I hate to know that someone I love is in pain. It’s one of the hardest feeling for me to process. Even worse than my own pain. I love each and every one of these people so much, and it’s hard knowing that I can’t heal their hearts.

So this past month for me has been a huge learning experience. I am learning to just BE there for people instead of thinking I have to DO something. HUGE lesson. There are things that happen that I can’t change or help, except by simply being a source of love and support. Sometimes just a quiet ear is better than a word of advice. Sometimes a silent hug is better than a question of how to be of help. And so I wait, ready to love, ready to listen, and ready to give that silent hug to anyone that needs it… You know who you are, and you know how much I love you.

This year is almost over and I am really excited to see what the New Year will bring. Kaleo and I loved our trip back home so much that we had a very hard time coming back. Being in the ocean, spending time with loved ones, watching the sunsets… One thing I absolutely LOVE about Hawaii is that everyone stops what they’re doing to watch the sunset. And it happens every day! I’m talking about people driving will pull over, restaurant staff will stop and watch, it’s so awesome! People actually take the time out of their day to pause and reflect on the beauty of nature. Every.Single.Day. That is a beautiful lesson right there. It’s a practice that we can adapt into our lives no matter where in the world we live. It doesn’t have to be a sunset, it could be stopping to watch a bird splash in a puddle or listen to a child laugh, or pick some wild flowers and give them away to someone. Any little pause in your busy day, and little gesture that makes you feel alive and grateful.

I’ve definitely had my love for life strengthened lately. My gratitude for every moment I can spend with loved ones, and my appreciation for day to day things that I might usually take for granted. All these things make me happy to be alive and excited to see what’s next. I will be posting a photo year in review soon, maybe today maybe not.

I love you all. Now go tell someone you love them…

Peace,

Melanie

{Oceanside Sunset}

(my header image is The Tree of Life by Gustav Klimt, one of my favorite artists)

 

“Do everything with so much love in your heart that you would never want to do it any other way.” ~Yogi Desa

B e l i e v e     i n      Y o u r s e l f

How many times have we all heard this? So many that when you hear it, you just kind of nod your head and say, Yeah totally! Go Me! With a little fist pump, but then forget about it and go about your day? Yep, I’m as guilty as the next person. However- let’s take a moment to drink it in…

Believe in yourself.

As humans, we tend to be our own biggest obstacles. Why is it that we always seem to get in our own way? Maybe we are afraid of success, afraid of change, afraid of getting out of our comfort zone. I lived that way for years with my previous career. And the crazy thing was, I’m married to someone who has followed his dreams since he was a child, determined to make it or starve. One would think that with his influence, and his complete support for me to do any little thing my heart desired, I would have left my toxic work environment long before I did. Wait, hold up. I didn’t even leave my job, I was laid off because of “cutbacks”! So in a way, I was forced to believe in myself and I can honestly tell you, I will not live my life any other way. It was the best thing that could have happened to me. The Universe had much more confidence in my dreams than I did at that point, but now I’m a believer.
In myself, ha.  🙂

Since my emancipation from The Job, I have found my Dharma and started teaching yoga full time, then opened a yoga studio so that I could teach and do yoga in my ideal space, and hire teachers that I want to take classes from. My goal is to help others find peace, inspiration, happiness and love, and empower them to see what is so beautiful about themselves… And then of course still have the free time to travel with Kaleo. I’m living MY dream, and it happened because I got out of my own way and started to believe in myself.
Why, you might be asking, am I talking about this today? For a couple of reasons, actually.

First, one of my dearest friends is going through a transition with her job. Without mentioning names or companies (ooh I could really talk some shit right now! But I’m taking the high road…), she has given her time, her heart, and her soul for this low-paying position. For people who expect too much and respect too little. And I want her to believe in herself and feel empowered to be strong and find something new. You deserve so much more, Love. They are not worth it and your health IS. I love you.

Secondly, Whitney just finished her Yoga Teacher Training! Congratulations sweetie, I am so excited about your upcoming class at Yoga Oceanside. If anyone out there wants to come take Whit’s first studio class it is on Friday, October 8th at 10:30am. I encourage you to go for it! Teach all the yoga you can and enjoy every minute of it… The world will be a better place with you as a teacher. 🙂

Anyone have stories about following dreams? Eden, I know you do. You made Girls Gone Global happen. You are an amazing inspiration! Let’s all make the choice today to believe in ourselves, step out of our own way, and be an inspiration to others.
A world of opportunity awaits you, my friend.
Enjoy this beautiful day!

~Melanie

“Tell me, what will you do with your one wild life?” ~Mary Oliver

I love that quote. Even though I do believe that we have more than one life, I think it is a beautiful question. For this life. Maybe this is your only wild one. 🙂

So the man is now well into his Like a Surgeon tour, and the send off was SO much fun. Two nights at the Grove of Anaheim, two nights at the Hotel Menage by Disneyland. Which, by the way, is such a fun place to stay at! We stay in the lofts, there is always reggae playing over the sound system and the restaurant is delicious. They have a menu that consists solely of “Street Food” from around the world. All served in small portions on little recyclable containers. It’s pretty cool, and I highly recommend it. In fact, I am going to do a review for the other blog I’m a part of, Girls Gone Global soon.

The shows were tons of fun and I did see some people dressed up as naughty nurses and surgeons! Awesome job, guys and girls (that means you too Alicia!). The opening bands were on fire. The Pricks were a new one for me, but they were really great! Pour Habit is such a fun band to watch, the music is incredible, and they guys are just all around good people. Then came Shwayze and Cisco, who are like family. I love their music, their style, and their smooth energy that they bring to the tour. Awesome humans. And then of course were our boys. This show has got to be one of their greatest performances yet. They have put so much into this, with lighting, new music, their costumes… It’s a fantastic event. I’m super excited about the NYC shows.

Other than that, I’m just getting back into the groove of things here at home. It’s a quiet, lonely first couple of days, for sure. Even though I get to see him throughout tour on the road, it’s an interesting feeling knowing that he won’t be in our bed, or on the couch, or walking to the beach by our house with me for 2 months. But after a few days, everything goes back to normal and I am fine. I know I’ve said this before, but I love taking this time for me and doing something either on my list or something I didn’t even know was on the list… Last time it was knitting a baby blanket (almost finished!), the time before that it was to open a yoga studio. This time I have started to write my book! Very excited about this one. Who knows how long it will take, but I have a very good feeling about it.

I haven’t downloaded the photos of the concerts from my iPhone to my laptop yet, so once again they are forthcoming. I’m having so much fun with the Hipstamatic app, it’s not even funny. Why is it that I can get better photos with that than my really nice Cannon camera?? Oh right, because I haven’t yet learned how to really use that camera, I forgot. Maybe next tour… 😉

~Melanie

You gotta dance closer to the ones that you love…

Quick update before Kaleo and I hop the train to Anaheim…

First of all, I wanted to share the song I was listening to this morning while I was packing my bag for the next couple of days:

Fantastic Nordic lounge music from a Swedish producer who goes by the name of Hird. I highly recommend  his stuff.

Today Kaleo kicks off his 9 week US headlining tour with two nights at the Grove in Anaheim. We will be getting a room up there for the next couple of nights, moving him back into their new tour bus, and saying our goodbyes Early Friday morning. (huge pout) But only for a couple of weeks, until I fly out to meet up with him again somewhere fun. Definitely NYC, other than that I have yet to decide. I am really looking forward to these next few days though. Some director is going to be filming a 3D video at tonights show which should be interesting. I am really curious to see how many naughty nurse outfits show up in the next couple of days, ha! I know what I am not going to be for Halloween. It’s always lame when you get all dressed up and there is someone else wearing the same costume as you, or something similar, let alone about 100 others wearing the same thing! But I think it’s really fun that people are willing to come dressed up to a concert. Major kudos. I sometimes even have a hard time changing from my jammies or yoga clothes while lounging on the tour bus, into an actual outfit for the show. Ahh the comforts of home on the road…

Happy birthday (yesterday)to my mom in Kona! We love you so much. I hope your day was wonderful!! Also, a happy birthday (yesterday) to Haj’s baby!! He was born at 10:55am and he is BEAUTIFUL. Perfect. Just precious… Mommy, daddy and baby are all doing well, and I can’t wait to meet the little heartbreaker when I get home on Friday.

Congratulations to Lauren and Sean on their wedding coming up soon! I really wish I could be there, but I’m grateful that I got to see you at the shower and in yoga! Eden… I’m super bummed that I will miss your birthday on Kauai with Emma and DeAnn. So tonight we celebrate! Love you all.

Okay, well I am off to the train station with my lovely husband and a backpack. Always ready and willing for an adventure! Life is good. 😉

~Melanie

Got a minute??

Because this is going to be a long one…

Hi friends! I am taking a break today to post my way past due photos and try to get up-to-date as much as I can. So many events, fun times, episodes of Sons of Anarchy Season 2 on DVD (finally!), yummy dinners with Kaleo, yoga classes, studying, has been happening lately as well as Kaleo getting ready to head back out on tour… That I have been, well, avoiding the blog. Not even looking at comments or blog stats or anything. So now I sit down to review all that I have missed and damn! There have been quite a few new readers and unique visits lately! So first of all, Hello! And second of all, Why now, when I haven’t posted anything? It’s kind of like going to the zoo and watching the bears sleep. Maybe waiting for it to twitch or scratch his butt, maybe swat a fly away. Not much happens. You COULD go over to the monkey cage and watch those crazy little buggers swing from branch to branch, make goofy faces and fling poop at you. Whee! But thank you anyway for your interest. 🙂 I am now going to channel my inner monkey and swing from topic to topic, make goofy faces while blogging and fling po… nevermind.

So I previously posted about a very busy week I had. Here we go…

As many of you know, Haj and Kezzie are having a baby anytime now. Like any minute. I mean, he is 10 days late, for crying out loud. Every morning if I hear either one of our iPhones, I immediately think that it’s Haj telling us Kezzie is in labor. I can’t wait for my little nephew. I can’t wait for anything, we all know that. Anyway, we held a co-ed baby shower for them at Remy and Whitney’s Riviera house. Here are some pics:

{baby's onsies}

Eden had the AWESOME idea of having everyone paint blank onesies for the baby. It was really fun and everyone got into the spirit. (Thanks Eden)

{painting them at the Tiki Bar on the lanai}

{hanging out to dry}

{papa Haj}

{Bret and Kaleo getting artsy}

{Whitney's creation}

{Remy with the mommie-to-be, Kezzie}

{Remy and Whit, sunset}

{drinking Primo from baby bottles}

{probably the only time you will see onesies hanging from a tiki bar}

{sunset... time for guitars by the fire}

It was such a great time with our family and friends. Thank all of you for coming out to support life. Looking forward to bambino’s first bday! Of course, he has to be born first… I mean, no pressure or anything.

So on to the day at the Del Mar racetrack gone bad. Whew. Did I mention this was going to be a long post? I totally understand if you want to take it in sections and go grab a snack…

First let me  preface this by saying I Know Better. I don’t know what I was thinking when I said, Yay! Let’s take the train to Del Mar and go meet Dave and Deedee at the racetrack for the last couple of races and see the beautiful horses then stay for Peter Tosh, it will be fun and then we can get dinner and hang out with our friends and it will be so fun oh my gosh, ahhhh! Kaleo agrees, and we get on the train heading south.

{Kaleo on the train}

We get to Solana Beach where Dave and Deedee are going to pick us up but they are stuck in traffic. No problem, we walk over to the Wild Note to wait. When the finally get us, we head down to try and find parking at the races. As we head in to the track, we hear that it is the second to the last race of the day so we walk up to the Betting Man ( I don’t know the terminology here, so bear with me) to place our bets. Not knowing what we were doing, the Man was really nice and patient. We picked our horses by their coolio names and took our seats right at the finish line.

{Dave and Deedee}

{yay for horsies!}

{we actually did win on this ticket}

{the race is on...}

So after our race, we began chatting with some ladies in the box in front of us. One of them asked if I had seen the ‘accident’. Horrified I asked her what she meant. She said that the race right before we got there had a horse crash right at the finish line (yes, directly in front of us), and it was bad. I started getting hot and shaky. See, I grew up having horses, riding them, showing them, loving them so much that it was my entire world for years. And now I am here at the racetrack feeling like I’m going to be sick…

She said that the horse broke her leg and they put her to sleep right there. What they do apparently, is quickly drive in a tent to put over the horse while they euthanize, no wait. I’m not even going to soften it by using that word. They KILL the horse because it won’t be making them any more money. People take this time to mosey on up to the Betting Man to beat the lines for the next race and maybe grab a freaking glass of chardonnay and bag of popcorn, not even giving a shit that a horse much too young to be racing, and who has been pumped full of steroids and pain meds, and has been forced to run on a lame leg anyway has tripped after being beaten by the jockey in order to finish either Win, Place, or Show… and is now being put down. All because the owners have lost on this investment and don’t want to donate the horse to a sanctuary or take the time or money to rehabilitate her and give her to some lucky little girl who can’t afford a pony to love. It. Is. So. Wrong.

And I am guilty of going there. However, I will NEVER go back. I won’t go on and preach about all I have learned after this event, but I do know that this happens more than you would want to think. And everyone seems very callous and used to it, even though this season there have been (last time I checked) 14 horses put down at Del Mar alone. Disgusting and sad. I encourage everyone to find out more and don’t support this gross display of sugar-coated animal cruelty. Ok, I think I should go get my own snack now…

I guess that was kind of like me, as a monkey, flinging poop at you. So now I move on to something fun. The Playboy Mansion! There is a great cause called It’s All About the Kids that our friends Dave and Deedee of Dopamine Energy Drink support. Party for a Purpose is the NPO that holds events for the cause and each year they throw a party at the Playboy Mansion. This years theme was Lucky #7 since it was their 7th year. Kaleo donated a signed guitar for their auction and we, along with Dave and Dee headed to the mansion for the event…

{just getting there}

{Deedee, Kaleo and I in our cabana}

{the painted ladies}

{the acrobats and fire dancers}

{me, standing on the great lawn}

{I took this shot of Kaleo (with his wristband) to send to his skate sponsor, Sector 9}

Hef has an actual zoo permit and is a huge animal lover. So he has birds, monkeys, etc. Whenever I go to the mansion I visit my favorite bird, Nana. She is an older gal, but always so sweet…

{me and Nana}

{Monkeys!}

{Deedee and I by the birdcage}

{the signed Pepper guitar}

{bikini fashion show}

{fire dancer}

{Kaleo in the grotto}

{the brought Hef on stage to accept an award}

It was such a great time! Sorry for the blurry photos, but we both forgot our camera (I know, right?!) and I was trying to capture everything with my iPhone. There were fire dancers, snake charmers, pole acrobats (seriously), dancing, yummy food, and lots of beautiful people everywhere having a blast. We are so happy that we got to be a part of it again this year. 🙂

Well that’s it for part one. I have lots more to share but I have to go teach a yoga class so I will say adieu for now. And no, as of 3:12pm, September 9th, Haj and Kezzie’s baby STILL has not been born. This is killing me…

~Melanie