Once in awhile, when darkness falls, I will sling my trusty hedge trimmers over my shoulder and march up and down my street looking for neighbors whose brush encroaches on the sidewalk. I will snip, snip, snip as fast as I can and scurry off to the next offender.
Before you think I’m that one weird-ass neighbor every has, let me explain.
A handful of my neighbors do not regard their lawn as something that deserves care or maintenance. Fine and dandy. It’s their property to do what they see fit. However, when their overgrowth overtakes the sidewalk, it’s a slap in the face of all neighbors. When elderly people and children are forced to walk in the street, it’s downright villainous. VILLAINOUS, I SAY!
But day after day, no neighbor comes forward to speak to the offenders and the growth continues to expand.
Except for me.
I’m coming forward, mother f’ers.
I realized that in order to take care of business, there were a couple avenues I could pursue:
1.) I knock (more…)
I joined NextDoor in September of 2015. At first, I was thrilled to have an additional resource to help me get more involved in my East Austin neighborhood. NextDoor was a great way for me to discover urgent matters, when the next neighborhood association meeting was, what volunteer opportunities & meet-ups were available and which neighbors needed support or assistance.
NextDoor has and continues to fulfill this role, but I quickly learned that it is also a dumping ground for people’s implicit racism. In my gentrifying neighborhood of East Austin — a historically black neighborhood — implicit racism and culture insensitivity is becoming so commonplace, that I deactivated my NextDoor account out of disgust and frustration.
This post written by a young white woman was the first red flag:
“I was walking — — – on — — – around 6pm as it was starting to get dark when a red sedan approached me, coming south. The front of the license plate read “Don’t Panic” but it was not like (more…)
I received a message on Instagram to check out an upcoming bar in East Austin. Since I live in East Austin, I was curious and went to the bar’s Instagram account.
And I saw this:
There are so many things wrong with this photo:
-Why does this person think that what he perceives as “run down places” in East Austin are just screaming for a new bar or restaurant? Last I checked, East Austin has an assload of them.
-Why does this person think that the owner of this well-liked and well-utilized neighborhood grocery store is not an entrepreneur? (This is the neighborhood grocery store at Comal & 3rd.) Definition of entrepreneur: A person who organizes and operates a business or businesses, taking on greater than normal financial risks in order to do so.
-Why does this person think that East Austin “needs” entrepreneurs who could put a little elbow grease into all these “run down places”? East Austin needs saving by people with money, I guess. Forget all the folks who have (more…)
“See that blue cat over there?” Jacques Casimir, co-owner of Blue Cat Cafe in Austin, Texas, asks me with a hint of pride in his voice. “That’s Big Sexy.”
Big Sexy is indeed big and sexy. At eight years of age and almost 20 pounds, he carries his girth with ease and confidence. We watch as he plops himself onto a coffee table and backs his wide hips between smiling customers, akin to a tractor trailer going in reverse.
His eyes chase the younger cats, all waiting to be adopted just like Big Sexy, as they prance and dart through the brightly colored cafe. Is he laughing at their youthful ignorance, or is he mesmerized by the shiny ball three feet from the table? We may never know.
Casimir confides in me that he hopes Big Sexy will be a permanent fixture at the cafe, alongside Gollum, a sandy-colored, green-eyed fluffball with folded ears, and Balthazar, a soothing tabby who enjoys nesting on customers’ (more…)
So, I didn’t win the Snap Kitchen #21DaysforGood Challenge, but I did learn a lot over the past 21 days. Because of this challenge, I completed volunteer opportunities and physical challenges that I had been too lazy/fearful/forgetful to do. I’m becoming a regular volunteer at the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless, I’m attempting to walk to work at least one day a week and I’ll being signing up for more aerial silk classes at Vamps Dancein the new year. I also learned that low dairy and low gluten makes my belly less poofy.
In the end, everyone won because Snap Kitchen donated $6,000 to charity!
One of the highlights of the challenge was doing an aerial silks class taught by Tolly (from Austin Eavesdropper). Kelly from SXSW was my partner in crime.
(Here is a picture of Tolly from her website, looking all gorgeous!)
Not only was this wildly fun, but it was also liberating! First, you use muscles you forgot you even had (my hands are so weak!!!). Second, it feels kind of sexy. (more…)
I took a photo of it on Instagram and it got a lot of shares and comments. Who doesn’t appreciate a sense of humor when it comes to tragedy?
I discovered that the creator of the flyer is a man who goes by the name America Y’All.
From the American Y’all website: “America Y’all was started as a way to inspire others and most importantly ourselves to get up and get out. We made it our mission to explore the land around us, all the while documenting our experience. What started as a husband and wife rambling’ through this beautiful country is now just the journal of one. Young love, magical moments in awe-inspiring places, and now divorce and its effect on a footloose soul. Start from the beginning or jump in now; the focus of American Y’all is in a transition period, but I hope you’ll follow along.”
I’ve never been nor ever will be an adorable lifestyle blog.
No model-esque baby has exited my womb to photograph and share with viewers day after day (however, I do have a “baby” whose eyes I gouged in with a screwdriver).
Our house is filled with stacks of paperwork, dead plants and the American tradition of Ikea furniture mixed with vintage, solid pieces.
I used to have fashion, but now wear shorts and t-shirts every day due to the Texas heat. When not wearing shorts and a t-shirt, I “embrace” my 90s Gwen Stefani with sweatpants and tank top. I did have a very short-lived “What I Wore Today” series on my blog- it mostly consisted of the previously mentioned attire.
However, I do get crafty sometimes!
Occasionally I make something that is manic pixie lifestyle blog worthy. I don’t do this to show off my crafting skillz; I mostly do it because I’m cheap.
For example, I was going to buy a $50 succulent book planter this weekend, but realized I could make one for under (more…)