The 11th Annual Pumpkin Smash: Insanity In The Name Of Composting

So, Idaho Springs, CO is one of the wildest places I’ve ever lived. I lived in Dallas for four years and witnessed an active break-in across the street wherein the suspect was hanging out of a second-story window claiming, “I’M INNOCENT! I’M INNOCENT!” while a half-dozen armed officers watched and yelled back at him from the front yard. But somehow, Idaho Springs is even more buck wild than that.

Anyway, Scraps-to-Soil, a neighborhood composting group, puts on the Pumpkin Smash each year. (They’re rebuilding our community garden right now and I am PSYCHED! It’s coming along so quickly!) The idea of the Pumpkin Smash is that Idaho Springs and the surrounding areas will bring their used jack-o-lanterns and pumpkins from Halloween to the event and SMASH them with all the unbelievable tools available. From the mild and common baseball bat to the homemade long-arm smasher hooked to the back of a tow truck, the community can smash and destroy as much as they want.


When the smashin’ is done, instead of ending up in the landfill, the remains are composted and recycled. (Wonder if some of this compost will end up in our community garden?) NPR claims that about one-fifth of the 1.91 billion (!!!) pumpkins grown each year are actually eaten, which means the other four-fifths emit a shit-ton of greenhouse gas emissions in the landfill. In short, es no bueno. Plus, I just like beatin’ shit up.

The pumpkin remains of The Pumpkin Smash
Discarded jack-o-lanterns at The Pumpkin Smash

But because I’m an idiot and didn’t listen to Ben, we didn’t BYOP (pumpkins) and didn’t get to smash. Probably should’ve actually *read* the event deets. BUT, getting to watch an eight-year-old redhead go absolutely APESHIT on a pumpkin pinata completely made my entire day and I hope she is reincarnated as my child someday. (Redheads are the sHiT.) So instead, we walked around, drank beers and posed in front of squash carcasses.

Beers from sponsor TommyKnockers at The Pumpkin Smash
Posing casually in front of pumpkin remains.

To put this in perspective, Idaho Springs only has about 1,700 residents so the fact that something so, frankly, progressive happens here, and has happened here for eleven straight years, makes me proud to live here. However, mountain towns are wildly different from your average small, American town. We’ve got a doctor’s office, a dentist, a vet, a grocery store, multiple gas stations, fast food and Starbucks, an active main street with happenin’ bars, five dispensaries, a chiropractor, shopping and several natural tourist attractions. The small town of the same size I grew up in has a fraction of these things!

In short, this is such a genius and simultaneously wacky idea. But, I guess that’s Idaho Springs.

What do you think? Genius? Insane? Would you smash a pumpkin? Let me know and maybe promote this in *your* city! Let’s reduce, reuse, recycle, Rihanna, people.



The Best Day Ever

This day was about two years ago now. I’m bad at blogging

Last fall for my dad’s birthday we went to Martin Creek Lake to cookout and be together. We grilled hot dogs, drank beer and laid on quilts by the lake. We camped for years as a family there, but this was the first time I was able to bring the dogs! There’s a very small island on the lake connected by footbridge to the mainland. There are easy trails to ride bikes or walk on–even primitive camping sites. (No thanks, I’ll take plumbing.) We strapped on our shoes and headed to the island.

For the first little while I had the girls on their leashes, but they could hardly contain their excitement being in a new place and wanted to lead the pack. I trusted my instinct that they’d stay on the trail and let them go free. They trotted ahead of us and stopped when I called them to wait. They greeted everyone on the trail and even spooked some deer. The trail split off and ended in the lake and Ginger wasted no time running in. I could NOT believe it! This was the first time I’d seen so much personality in her while simultaneously watching her willingly leap into a body of water. She sprinted up and down the small shore soaking herself in lake water and plopping down to cool her belly. Pepper eventually followed suit with a little coaxing–out of character for the retriever in her and her love of rain. I was too giddy watching Ginger to take the time to grab my phone to snap photos of her in action, so these of her cooling herself in the reeds will have to do.

Seriously one of the greatest days.

Do you camp? Cause if you’re ever in East Texas you should make a day trip out to Martin Creek!



Red Rocks and the Moon

One of the great things about Colorado is all of the incredible backdrops for outfit photos. Since I’d taken a break posting outfits to Instagram this summer, Ben said he missed taking them for me. Probably one of the greatest things someone could tell me, tbh. So we headed out to Red Rocks Park (a MUST if you’re ever in Colorado) for a mini shoot. The sunset and weather were unbelievable. *drools*

jacket: Vintage (Goldmine Vintage), jeans: Madewell, shoes: Converse,
tee: Luella

These jeans are the most expensive piece of clothing I own. Earlier this year I finally splurged and bought the 10″ high rise crop and I LOVE THEM. They’re my new favorite pair of jeans! They’re on sale right now, too. If I had a job I’d get another pair. 😂

Also, happy Monday! I’m back on the blog, baby. Figured while I’m job-hunting I can use at least *sOmE* of my time wisely. 🥴 Let me know what you want to see on here because I’m rearing to go!


My Early 1900s Apartment: The Before

I love that my blog feed here is full of home and apartment renovations lately! I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s my dream to buy and gut a house and start from scratch! Preferably an old baby like the one I live in now. My dream friend, Sarah Rhodes of Arrow and Apple, out in Phoenix renovates homes for a living now with her wood-making husband, Josh. They and their two perfectly adorable desert babies (let it be known my computer wants to correct it to ‘dessert babies.’ I do not want to eat your children, Sarah. Promise.) are livening up Phoenix with wood, concrete and cactus and her feed kills me. I’d snap one of those houses up so fast if I lived out west!

So in an effort to be like Sarah, it is with great pride that I share the beautiful before of my eventual before and after of my 1900s apartment. Try not to drool on yourself too much.

(Psst! See my previous tour here!)

Apartment Before:

Living Room

Before: 1900s apartment

This fireplace is original to the apartment. While it doesn’t work anymore, it’s an incredible feature and I’m so glad it’s been preserved! This is what you see right when you walk in. My apartment actually used to be a house, then it was a duplex, then a four-plex which is what it is now. Amazingly, most of the original features have been kept! The hardwoods, interior doors and doorknobs, windows and trim. It can be difficult to find apartments like this some places. I’m thankful for historical societies that protect these places!

Before: 1900s apartment

Here’s the other side of the living room. The hardwoods are all original and have been redone. They’re in decent shape actually! These windows get gorgeous indirect light and out the two corner windows is a pink crepe myrtle in full bloom. In the afternoon it gives the prettiest dappled light.

Before: 1900s apartment

The living room is a really good size. I can fit my entire family in here and we all have a seat! Something I couldn’t say for my old place. That dark stained door you see is in my bedroom and goes to the balcony which is the size of my old living room! I haven’t gotten a good shot of it just yet, but it’ll be it’s own tour. It’s that big!


Before: 1900s apartment bedroom

Swing through those little double doors and you get to my bedroom. This shot makes it look a lot smaller than it actually is. I can fit a large mid century desk, a long IKEA dresser and my queen size bed with tons of room to spare! The walk-in closet has two windows and an original bench storage seat that I store my winter stuff in. All the doors and interior knobs are original. I can’t believe I get to live here. What insane luck.

Before: 1900s apartment

The doorknob on the balcony door is sparkly, clear glass. So pretty. The hardwoods in the bedroom could stand a refinish, but since I don’t own this place I’ll pass on that job. Lying in bed at night, I can see straight to the sky through the windows on the door.


Before: 1900s apartment

My landlord told me he and his nephew spent dozens, probably hundreds, of hours sanding down the old linoleum to find this gorgeous original hardwood underneath. They added a fancy dishwasher, a gas stove and the cute stained glass feature above the sink. This kitchen is big enough to hold almost everyone in the Dugger family. Like, no one has to back out butt first so the person at the end of the kitchen can get out like my old place. It was more like the stall a bull is in before he gets ridden in a rodeo than it was a kitchen. THIS is a kitchen. I plan to add a stainless steel island in the middle for extra counter space and to take up all that free space. I feel it will make the space feel more closed in than so open.

Before: 1900s apartment

Swing a little to your right and here’s the door that goes down to the yard. YES. THERE’S A YARD! It’s in really bad shape, though. It’s pretty shaded and bamboo from the neighbors has crept over and all but taken over the soil. When it rains it gets flooded in parts, but crushed granite will be there by the end of the summer to take care of that. I’m looking into grasses that can withstand shade. St. Augustine seems like a good possibility, but what about the bamboo? Would it kill it? I hate bamboo.

Before: 1900s apartment

All the way around again and here is the fridge and where the dryer will go once I buy a set. The washer is just a few feet away in the hallway. Because it’s an old building, there were only ever hookups for a washer. The dryer was added later.


Before: 1900s apartment

Here’s the hallway off of the kitchen. See that nook to the right? That’s where the washer goes. There are cabinets up above that provide a lot of extra storage for this craft lovin’ (dog) mama. I plan to add some neat hook storage on the far right side of the hallway for my novelty bags. On the left I plan to add some kind of pattern. I was thinking small black cactus? The whole apartment will likely be white at some point this year, so keep that in mind!


Before: 1900s apartment

The bathroom. Oh! The bathroom. That tile. The original hardware on the closet door. The light. Ugh. It’s sickening how gorgeous it is in here! There weren’t any outlets when I moved in, bizarrely enough, but I’m having an electrician come out to add at least one. I’d love at least two in here but since my landlord doesn’t currently have a sheetrock person I’ll settle for one for now. I like the light blue color. It looks beautiful in the natural light, but I’m all for a new paint color. What would you do in here?

And that’s it! This is just the before. I have some ideas already, but there is just so much more space in here than my old place that my want for more shelves just isn’t needed. That means I get to fill up the walls with ART! Wahoo! Point me in the direction of some of your favorite pieces because that hallway is begging for some brightly colored art!

Stay tuned for the progress reports!


Goodbye 5301, Hello 4813: Moving to an Early 1900s Fourplex

If you’ve been keeping up with my move on social media, you’ll remember my moaning and groaning about packing up by 500 square foot apartment and moving shells into a much, MUCH larger one. We’re talking almost twice the space here, people. Would you be surprised if I told you I can fill it up no problem? Didn’t think so.

This time, I had the presence of mind to snap some photos of my very empty, but still happy looking, 5301 apartment. I was surprised at my lack of feeling seeing it so desolate. This was my first apartment. The place that allowed me to move to Dallas at all. The place I stood in front of on the sidewalk crying as I watched my family drive away, realizing I was really alone. The place I ran to when I was upset or depressed. The place I hosted parties and family and friends. The place I made a lot (a lot) of stupid mistakes. The place I first met Paden. The place I adopted Ginger. The place where Paden’s dog Butter peed on my Christmas tree. The place I had my first Christmas on my own. The place I realized just how dark loneliness can get and just how scary suicidal thoughts can be.

The place I reached out for help and the place I grew into who I am right now.

But when I walked around that empty place, I felt nothing. I didn’t want to cry, I didn’t want to stay there anymore. I wanted to move. Nothing about that place was begging me to stay anymore. Too much pain and tears and sorrow and not enough happy happened in that place and it was just time for me to go. I needed a new start. I needed a physical representation of letting go. And this move was that for me. I’m in a brand new (to me) place and I’m able to truly start over here. I don’t have to look around at those walls and see the pain or remember words that were said in those spots. I get to really let it all go and forget it. For real this time.

So. Just for the record, here are the empty photos of my 5301 apartment. It served me well.

But it’s not you 5301, it’s me.

DIY eye statement wallblush pink bedroom wallnatural light and white walls


So, there she is. Empty and ready for the next soul to inhabit it and make it their own. Oh, btw. The photos are straight the floors just really are that crooked. 😛

I loved living here because it gave me the opportunity to discover my passion for styling, DIYing and my desire to gut a place and start from scratch. (A literal dream of mine since I was young.) It allowed me to change things I wanted to and to dream of what the space could be. I feel like I did a pretty damn good job of turning it into home for the two years I spent there. I hope the next person loves it as much as I did.



Love you, 5301. Bye forever!


PSSST! Click HERE to see the latest apartment tour of this space!


End of Summer Goals: Saving Money and Sleeping Better

edgy plus size style

HAPPY HUMPDAY! It’s time for some goals, bbs! We’re almost there. So. Close. We can do this, guys! The closer we get to the end of the week means the closer we are to the end of July. And the closer we get to the end of July means the closer we get to August. And the closer we get to August means the closer we get to TEMPERATURES UNDER 100 DEGREES.

So because of all that and also because we’re literally almost halfway through July already (HOW?! AND YAY!) I decided to motivate myself a little bit and do a little goals post inspired by Valery Brennan and her small goals posts! Also, you should really check her out. If you’re into quirky feminist shirts she’s got a shop for that, too. The girl does it all!

I decided to share some small goals because 1. I love lists, and 2. I really love lists. I recently discovered I have pretty horrible A.D.D. and a suuuper low brain score (check yours HERE) (I know. This is such a wide range of topics, but WHATEVER. It’s my blog and I do what I want.) so lists help me stay “organized.” Which is my word for actually just makes me neurotic and stressed because I haven’t completed the whole list.

For the last eight months or so I’ve been waking up stressed. Like, can’t get it all done can’t have coffee because it makes me anxious daily overdraft notifications from my bank stressed. Last Friday morning I’d finally had enough. With my move and everything comfortable changing so quickly I decided I have to start taking care of myself. No more staying up super late and waking up when I should be leaving, flying by the seat of my pants with my money and eating whatever I want so none of my clothes fit. YOU’RE NOT FIFTEEN ANYMORE, MELODY.

So here they are. My small goals for the rest of July! (Vacation excluded.)

  1. Get to sleep by 10:30
  2. Get up by 7:00 (I know this may seem late for some, but it’s honestly a really big challenge for me!)
  3. No more having the TV on in the background when I fall asleep
  4. Drink at least 150 ounces of water daily
  5. Walk the dogs five days a week for thirty minutes
  6. Keep frivolous expenses to a minimum


I know these may not seem super hard to some, but they’re a daily, hourly, minute-ly (?) struggle for me. I’ve made these goals before and just given up the first day. But I feel like utter $hit daily and Paden is tired of me complaining so these are some very small things I can do to make my quality of life better.

A bonus goal I already completed is using the Clarity Money app to comb through my monthly subscriptions and cancelling what I didn’t need or use! I saved myself $30 a month and countless dollars in overdraft fees for subscriptions I forgot to budget for. (Not sponsored! Just a super cool app!) Yay for no more overdraft notifications when I wake up!


What do you hope to accomplish by the end of the summer?