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Lifestyle branding for the guy-hot girl and the hot guy who loves her

Monday, December 31, 2012

Adios 2012

It was a big year. Here are some of my highlights. xoxo, MJ

Paid off my car and my college loans. 
Yep, that sweet Monte Carlo is all mine and I've got the title to prove it!
Still working on those house payments for another 20 years ;)
Quit my job in child care after 8 years of feeling unfulfilled with 
a heart full of bravery and NO IDEA of what would happen next.
Took an eight week sabbatical (also known as voluntary unemployment).
Slept until 9am everyday, watched a lot of Martha Stewart and regained myself.
With perfect timing, I found work as a Marketing Administrative Assistant!
Formed WetDesert with my bestest friend!!!!
So far, we have had sales in the US, UK, Japan and Australia. 

My motto from 2012: Just put one foot in front of the other and stop not telling people about it. 

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Vintage Video Friday (MJ's a day late)

There's a line in this song "everything I own is in the back in a Hefty bag". I love this song but I truly detest name brands being used in songs. I always sing "everything I own is in the back in an empty bag". It takes the desperation up a notch which I like and gets rid of that pesky brand name :)

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Thrifty Thursdays

Hi!  Kat here.  Check out my recent haul from (an undisclosed, underground thrifting location in) Central Texas!
 Whisky glass, the teensiest candle I have ever seen (lit for effect), vintage Garfield-playing-soccer figurine (look for it soon in our store!), pocket comb to groom my long, beautiful hair (it has glitter in it!), and this amazing personalized belt which is gonna look amazingly cute over my summer dresses.  By the way, my new name is Michael.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Traditions, Part 1

This is the fourth Christmas season MJ and I have lived in Texas.  Neither of us travel back to Iowa to visit our families, so over the years, we have developed a new set of traditions. Here are some:

1) Merry Christmas from the Family.  Every year, MJ listens desperately to hear Robert Earl Keen's holiday classic, "Merry Christmas from the Family" on KNBT, our local Americana music station here in New Braunfels, Texas.  We finally heard it last Saturday morning (Dec. 22) as we were pulling into the Shipley's parking lot for a half dozen doughnuts.  
Mom got drunk and Dad got drunk at our Christmas party
We were drinking champagne punch and homemade eggnog
Little sister brought her new boyfriend
He was a Mexican
We didn't know what to think of him until he sang
Feliz Navidad, Feliz Navidad

Brother Ken brought his kids with him
The three from his first wife Lynn
And the two identical twins from his second wife Mary Nell
Of course he brought his new wife Kay
Who talks all about AA
Chain smoking while the stereo plays Noel, Noel
The First Noel

Carve the turkey
Turn the ball game on
It's margaritas when the eggnog's gone
Send somebody to the Quickpak Store
We need some ice and an extension cord
A can of bean dip and some Diet Rites
A box of Pampers, Marlboro Lights
Halelluja everybody say cheese
Merry Christmas from the family

Fred and Rita drove from Harlingen
I can't remember how I'm kin to them
But when they tried to plug their motor home in
They blew our Christmas lights
Cousin David knew just what went wrong
So we all waited out on our front lawn
He threw the breaker and the lights came on
And we sang Silent Night, Silent Night, Oh Holy Night

Carve the turkey turn the ball game on
It's Bloody Marys
Cause we all want one!
Send somebody to the Stop 'N Go
We need some celery and a can of fake snow
A bag of lemons and some Diet Sprites
A box of Tampons, some Salem Lights
Halelluja, everybody say cheese
Merry Christmas from the Family

Feliz Navidad!

2) Picking pecans.  We're lucky enough to have a pecan tree in the front yard and a pecan tree in the back yard, plus one on the neighbor's property that extends into ours.  Every other year when the trees produce, we're out there on hands and knees filling up the nut bucket.  So far, from the front yard alone, we've got a bushel basket full.  I make pecan pies from a Betty Crocker recipe and they consistently turn out very well.  What I like is that they're so easy to make yet look impressive; they've kind of replaced pumpkin pie for the holidays in the WetDesert household.

3) Driving to Austin on Christmas eve.  The stores were so busy that evidently no Austinites had begun Christmas shopping before today.  We went to Whole Foods for some last minute Christmas dinner things, including corn syrup for the pecan pie.  Of course, though, the only corn syrup there was $5 for a very small bottle, so I didn't make that investment.  I was not yet willing to experiment making the pie with agave nectar.  Maybe next year.

4) Driving around Austin on Christmas eve looking for a restaurant that is still open.  We knew our favorite, the Green Mesquite, was closing at 4.  We remembered that Guero's Taco Bar was closed for the day.  We were actually counting on the Magnolia (open 24/8 as the website advertises), but alas, they too had closed their doors.  Thinking desperately, MJ suggested the Baker's Street Pub and Grill by the Half Price Books on South Lamar.  It was indeed open and I had a Lone Star and fish 'n' chips. MJ had the Shepherd's pie.  
Frosted glass at the brewpub.

5) Kat insisting upon going to see the Zilker Park Christmas tree while MJ waits in the truck.  The lights are strung in a spiral pattern such that standing under it, looking up, and trying to spin induces immediate and extreme dizziness.  MJ and her delicate equilibrium prefer not to participate, as she does not want barfing in Zilker Park to also be a holiday tradition.  About the tree:
The Zilker Tree stands 155 feet tall and is composed of 39 streamers, each holding 81 multicolored, 25-watt bulbs - totaling 3,309 lights. At the top of the tree, a double star measures 10 feet from point to point. The double star displays 150 frosted bulbs. This unique spiral pattern of lights was created by City of Austin electricians. At its circumference, the tree measures 380 feet. The diameter is 120 feet. The base of the tree is made up of 19 utility poles, each 14 feet tall, arranged in a circle around the Moonlight Tower.
Kettle corn, tamales and glowsticks sold conveniently at the Zilker Park tree
Under the tree.  Use caution when looking up and spinning.
6) Driving around looking at Christmas lights.  I feel this one is fairly common.  We used to do it when I was growing up in northeast Iowa.  Saw a light up reindeer that was supposed to be flying but more just looked like it was stuck in a tree.  Actually, the real treat was peeping into people's houses at *their* family gatherings in lieu of having our own. 
Texas' oldest dancehall, Christmas Eve 2012
7) Shopping at Walgreens.  If there ever is a time to need a 24 hour drugstore, Christmas is it.  At about 8pm on Christmas eve, we hit up the Walgreens just a few blocks from our house and the place was packed.  We got the following: Alka Seltzer, corn syrup, orange juice (for Christmas morning mimosas and MJ's cold) and a couple of candy bars.  

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The gift about which I am most excited...

This is from our friend, Juju. She's six, and when I grow up, I hope I can be as awesome as she is.
We're waiting until Christmas morning to see what loveliness could possibly be inside!
I'll keep you posted. 

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Nearly There

 2012 has been such a huge year that I just
want to take a break and a deep, deep breathe. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

Vintage Video Friday (Kat's week)

I want to live in that trailer in the desert in this video; it's perfect.  My master plan is to spend my 70s drinking gin and playing my accordion on the front porch and I could do it perfectly here.

Through the course of the story in the video, it's really the dude to whom I can relate, though I do like the chick's truck and she makes me want to put on a silky little nightie and listen to my headphones in bed.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Hump Day Inspiration

These first two photos are from a fabulous Facebook page called Curves Ahead. The page embraces sexiness and health in ALL shapes and sizes. Below is some of the awesomeness that you'll see on Curves Ahead ;)

Hair and Hips. So good.
The Beauty of the Back Fat.
Let's be honest, we all know that's what we call it.
The ever glamorous Adele. She just brings it! 
And that's me!
 Rocking my very own plus-size model pose.
 I'm still learning;)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Monday, December 17, 2012


After nearly 4 years of living in TX, I have stopped screaming when I see lizards.
Kat is brave and can actually take their picture. I just tiptoe past them, paralyzed by fear.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

MJ's Image Icon: Natalie Maines

The gorgeous lady is Natalie Maines, lead singer of the Dixie Chicks.
 Always a bad-ass.
Former Texan, current Californian.
Former country music darling turned country music pariah.
Her pipes will blow you away. As will her external feistiness.
Her hubby, Adrian Pasder, looks hot in a beard ;)
She once wore a t-shirt that said "F.U.T.K" to call out country
 music blow hard, Toby Keith. Like I said, she's feisty. 
She spoke out against G.W. Bush and the war in Iraq. I didn't even identify with her politics 
but I was shocked (and oddly impressed) at how one statement changed her life.
When the Chicks returned after "the incident", Natalie wouldn't sing that she was sorry.
 Only that "it turned my whole world around, and I kinda liked it"
Beautiful and powerful. A woman after my own heart :)
And when it came time to take a break....
 Natalie could rock "the Sinead", focus on her sons and social justice.
And still sing your pants off when she opens her mouth.