Beach Bits,  Bug,  crazy stuff,  sewing catastrophes,  spilling my guts

foggy-morning, costume-sketching, kelp-popping beach walk

we always make sandcastles in our pajamas

We went for an early morning beach walk today, as we often do. We don’t really have a regular routine. (Sorry, stalkers.) Sometimes I’m just sitting on the couch, groggily tuning out her pleas for a breakfast of gummy bears and the light hits me from the window with a call to action. It says, “Get off your butt and take some pictures!”

I always try to obey the light calling me. Ever since there was that one time when the light was so perfect and I was able to take that photo that came in handy for Christmas cards. I can’t really describe it. It’s just brighter, glowier, magical… something like that.

Other times I just want to get out of the house and get a latte. The beach just happens to be on the way home from Starbucks. Tough life, I know.


Just as we got to the beach, the fog started rolling in. It wasn’t that perfect morning light that I was looking for but it was something else entirely magical itself. Fog is nothing new, it always comes and goes, but I love it. I always say it makes my beach private. It keeps away the hordes of beach-goers and kind of soft-filters all the harsh edges of things like the encroaching McMansions and ugly dumpsters full of the weekend’s rubbish. You feel like you are a dancing in a fairy’s meadow or flouncing around in clouds with the Care Bears. Maybe that’s a stretch but you know what I mean.

where ideas come from

I’m so glad I finally finished up the first book of the Twilight Series and I haven’t gotten my hands on the second one yet so I can actually spend moments like this at the beach not absorbed in the lives of Edward and Bella. I’m rolling my eyes too. I hate it when I jump on the pop-culture bandwagon but I had to know what all the fuss was about!

the Eva* costume idea #2

So I sat on the beach and sketched all the other things my brain is filled with. You guys can discuss Sarah Palin and global warming and I’ll be over here in la-la-land thinking about Eve costumes. You know, the robot Eve (or as we call her, Eva) from the movie Wall-E? We’re obsessed.

the Wall-E mask she insisted I make

Which is sort of funny to my sister-in-law CC, who reminds me frequently that I was the blowhard who said my kid would never prance around in Disney character costumes. People who don’t have kids should never make statements about parenting, that’s what I’ve learned. Because everything I once said has come around to bite me in the butt.

Wall-E is technically Pixar. There’s a huge difference, right? I love Wall-E. I think I’m going to have to qualify my earlier statement about Disney characters and say I just don’t want her to like characters that I don’t like. I’m the boss here.


modeling her Eve costume head

The beanie cap idea (a white cap with felt sewn on for her black face panel and blue eyes) is actually idea number two. Idea number one made it to production but was rejected by Baby Bug. So I guess I can share the big secret of how I made this incredibly creative Eve head number one that has been rejected so wastefully.

You’ll never guess.

You see, I’m on a strict budget these days and I have to make everything out of things I already have. It’s hard! I hate it! Money, why can’t you grow on trees!? Why can’t some neighbor throw out something modular and plastic that would be perfect for an Eve costume? (Trash-digging is totally acceptable now. It’s very “green.” It’s called foraging now.)

I rustled up some of the old couch-cover fabric (of which I have plenty) and then searched the house from top to bottom to find something mesh and black for the face panel. It had to be see-through. Hmmmmm… what could I use? There is nothing in my house that is black and see through!

Or is there?

You probably guessed it. The elusive and yet perfect fabric was in my underwear drawer. Don’t be grossed out. They were very very very clean and barely worn black Victoria Secret panties. I didn’t really like them anyway. Snip snip snip and the back panel became the perfect Eva mask! Yes, my butt is that big. So yeah, poor Baby Bug had to look through the same material that my butt cheeks use to sit in so cutely. But it was so perfect! Where else am I going to find something so perfect for free?!

Too bad Baby Bug won’t wear it. I guess nobody’s going to buy it on ebay now that my secret has been revealed. Pffft. Oh well, it makes an interesting story. I’m getting used to my ideas failing anyway. I have a feeling she won’t wear any costume I want her to wear and will want to be a princess like her cousin when Halloween actually shows up. I’m prepared for the rejection. It happens every day when I try to get her dressed.

prepare for destruction

But I really want her to be Eva. Doesn’t she look like Eva? She’s got the eyes down.

I figure I might as well blog about it anyway since I get a ton of traffic over the whole merbaby costume. I might not get to see my idea come to fruition but that doesn’t mean somebody else can’t. Just don’t tell anyone where you got the black mesh fabric from.

ready to roll

Back to our foggy morning walk.

After I sketched a bit and Baby Bug made a castle or two we both decided it was time for some real breakfast and headed home. Except the tide was really high and that meant I had to push the stroller high up on the beach along the bumpy dry sand instead of the hard-packed wet sand. With all the fog it felt like I was pushing a moon buggy on the moon which is kind of cool but a whole lot more work.


I like to think I’m a local and I can time the waves just right. I know all about sets and how usually three small waves are followed by three big waves. So I took a liberal risk or two onto the wet sand and then totally got washed in by a big surprise wave! Arg! Pants and all.

showing you my drenched pants
(photo by Baby Bug)

I LOVE stepping on these

I may have been distracted from my vigilant wave-watching while trying to take a photo of this sea kelp bulb. I just wanted to capture how they glisten on the sand like little jewels waiting to be crunched with a satisfying pop under your grippy rubber running shoes. It’s the BEST feeling ever.

There is so much more seaweed on the beach this year. Tons of it and I love it! I don’t like the smelly seaweed or the flies that float in clouds above the clumps of seaweed that gather on the sand but I do love stepping on these poppy bulb things. It’s better than popping bubble wrap. If you don’t believe me, I’ll send you one in the mail—if you pay for postage of course, which could be expensive due to the “nothing liquid, breakable or perishable” rule.

Just take my word for it.


  • Camels & Chocolate

    OK, so here’s the difference between our lives: I live right by the beach, too, but can’t ever go out on it sans fleece and jeans. WAHHHH!

    Also just finished Twilight #1 over the weekend.

    I, too, am obsessed with Wall-E.

    Love Bug’s cute little green wellies.

  • Annika

    I’ve never stepped on one of those! Can you believe it? I will look out for one to step on in October, when I will be staying in Huntington Beach for a few days.

  • chris

    RE: Pixar vs. Disney

    Definitely not the same, however, Disney purchased Pixar some time back in a big stock deal. And since Steve Jobs owned 80% of Pixar he now owns the most Disney stock. I think Pixar is safe, and will continue on it its oasis in Emeryville, CA, making movies that will continue to blow everything else out of the water.

  • The Chatty Housewife

    I love Pixar. I saw that they put out a DVD of all their short films (the ones that are tucked in before and after some of the main movies) and I think that would be so fun to own!

    The sweater that Bug is wearing is adorable. The one with the scene embroidered on it. I love the tassels. And her shoes.

  • Glenda

    Ohhh B – BB has grown, her hair is longer! Such a cutie, and I do love and remember well those foggy starts at the beach and popping and throwing those kelp poppers! Such fun!

  • Gayle

    The pictures of BB are so cute! Especially the one of her in the sweater with the tassles! And, I love that she took the photo of you with wave-soaked pants!

  • Sonja

    I’m just always so impressed at how EARLY y’all get up and OUT! My 17 month old spoils me rotten and sleeps in til 10 am. I know by your standards I’ve probably missed a good chunk of the day, but since I like to stay up late, it works out beautifully! Good of you to pack an adventure in first thing!

  • erika

    I didn’t want to jump on the Twilight bandwagon either but I eventually did. Reading that series was the fastest I’ve ever read in my life. Read them all in one month.

    Enjoy and then we’ll talk! ;)

  • Barb

    I hate to jump on bandwagons too but I finally had to cave in and see what all the fuss was about too. Once I got in the mindset of reading a book written for teens I have to admit the Twilight series are hard to put down. I’ve got #3 on hold at the library now…

  • Becca

    I, for one, absolutely love the twiliht series. I have just finished Breaking Dawn, (book no. 4) And i am actually in love. Did you know the film is coming out near christmas?
    The next one you need is New Moon. Have fun reading, haha x

  • dana

    Hello! Glad you are back and blogging again – I love to read your stories. I love the photo of the fog on the beach. *sigh* I miss the beach. You are so lucky to live so close.

  • Melissa

    Now I have a new book to read, after so many people talking about it the last few days, I’m in.
    Love the Eve costume…I think she makes one of the best Disney princesses : P
    I have to laugh a bit at all the parents who think they will go ‘anti-Disney’…the thing is, I love Disney. Even did before my kid was born. Now I have turned my 14 year old son into a Disney nut. Honestly, if he can pull out a little ‘Disney Prince’ now and again I think he will have a very happy relationship in the future…god, please, far into the future.

  • Deidre

    What an awesome costume! I totally though you were going to use nylons as the see through mask part!

    I just got the first twilight book for my birthday – I’ve been living in australia and didn’t even know what it was! So i guess i am also jumping on the band wagon.

    Welcome back to the blogtown; I’ve missed you!

  • margalit

    We just happen to have a copy of Wall-E on a hard drive someplace secret. We could make a copy of it to convince Bug to be Eva, but then who is going to be Wally? Wito?

  • lynne

    A walk on the beach, what a beautiful start to the day. Sometimes I walk down the canal to get a latte in the mornings. It’s not at all like the beauty of the ocean but there are coots and goslings quacking away and having a fine old time and if I walk the long way back home I pass by a Chinese Pagoda and the wolves at the back part of the zoo. Sometimes I even hear the lions roar – which is a bit uncanny.

    Fog scares me rather. I’ve been in some really thick ones when it’s dangerouus to travel and you can’t see your arm in front of you. Also sounds get muffled and play tricks on you. As a child playing on the beach where I grew up I used to run for home when I saw it’s silent fingers trailing in from the sea. It out ran me every time. I think I saw the 70’s version of the movie The Fog at a wayyy too young an age. Scares me silly even now just thinking of it. Gibber.

  • BeachMama

    I love foggy days which are rare here. We had one yesterday morning and I remembered to bring my camera along. It was a magical walk to school and you are right, you feel like you are all alone, even though you can hear everyone else around you.

    Your costumes Rock and one day BB will look back and be so thankful for your creations :)