Monday, December 1, 2014

Giving Back


As I was driving in my car Sunday I was listening to NPR's show TED radio hour. They were talking to Roz Savages, the first women to row across the atlantic by herself and Philippe Petit who walked a tight rope between the trade tours. There lives and stories are inspiring....Philippe said in his talk "the impossible is a human invention". So fitting for this blog post!!! 

December 1st is World AIDS day and for World AIDS Day I've decided to give back by joining my AIDS/Lifecyle family once again! That's right I've signed up for the 2015 ALC!!!! And since December 2nd is Giving Tuesday I'm giving back. All items will be 40% off with promo code GIVEBACK and 10% of all my sales will go to the AIDS/Lifecyle. And if you'd like to just give directly here is the link.

I've also created a team this year....more info at the end of this letter but heres a link to join my team (our team)!!

I know this is over due and I apologize for the is my recap from 2014 AIDS/Lifecycle...thank you to everyone for your support and love, this was not possible without you!!!

As you know, my friend Sylva asked me to join her on this crazy venture and I jumped at the chance. Bike touring and for a fantastic cause, hellz yeah I'm game! We raised over $7k together in less than two months by having a drag party, movie night and other FUNdraising events....thanks to all of you for your support!!! We thought the money raising would be the hard part. Ahhh no. While I was packing for the trip, it finally hit me, we are going to try and ride 545 miles in 7 days, are we nuts!!! Guess we were!!!

Getting all my tools together (which I really didn't need, this ride had bike mechanics and supplies above and beyond my expectations)...and Hidalgo flying her PCL pride!!

Once we got to San Fran (thanks to Deb and Tish for taking us up there...go fantastic) we road our bikes from the hotel to sign in. That's I think when it became real. At sign in, wow, we are really doing this and how!!! Back to the hotel to try and sleep so we can get up early in the am. Okay lets do it!!! We arrived at the event center the next morning at 5am ready (ish) to role. I had butterflies rolling like crazy. I knew I had to eat and drink water even if my body won't let me. I am thankful for bike racing, it has helped to center my nerves so that I could take care of my body, which is imperative to events like this and racing.
The nerves and the miles I was ready for, the impact that this event was about to have on my life, I was not ready for. The impact hit the moment I stepped into the main stage with over 2k other riders and is still with me. This is what happened.

AIDS/LifeCycle 2014 Begins
Watch the Video
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It became very apparent that the 545 miles was the setting for the most loving, supportive, motivated, organized that had one thing in common, to fight AIDS/HIV. As the miles started I began to notice other riders and the photos they carried on their bikes in remembrance of those that had past or the ones they were riding for. I got to thinking, I don't know anyone with this illness so how can I make an impact, how can I help and at times why am I here???

As the day went on, I felt the struggle of riding, the emotions, the doubt but at the moment of wanting to give in there was an outburst of love and support. When we rode into Santa Cruz, our first camp  stop, there were people yelling "you're our heros, thank you for riding" while holding photos of their lost ones. The flood gates opened, at that moment I knew that I belonged here!!!!

As the days rolled on the miles became harder but with every hill or challenge we all became more connected and more supportive. And with each rest stop the drag shows starting trumping each other.

At one point,  I think it was about day 4 or 5, we had been battling a head wind, all day long. The last 5 miles were the worst.   When I finally rolled in I was done, completely beat to shit. Thinking I won't, actually that I couldn't ride any more miles, my AIDS/Lifecyle ride was over. But as I parked my bike and stumbled towards the luggage truck a women put this letter in my hand. She was a teacher at the local school and had asked her students to write the riders letters. After I read my letter from Hannah I folded it up, put it in my pocket and with a smile I wiped my tears away and began my prep for the next days ride. I was back in. Thank you Hannah!

If I had to pick the best part of ALC I'd say the drag shows...or maybe the bike mechanics. The costumes are damn rad...there are events, movies, cheerleaders and the views, ahhhh man....oh and the FOOOD!!!! We got to eat as much as we wanted...I can't tell ya if it was good or not but there was plenty!!! Nothing better than stuffing your face after a day full of the day I  rolled in and Sylva and I just looked at each other with the same look of "holy shit that was soooo hard" but we made it. This was day 6, into Venture, the hardest day I had had yet. About 10 miles out I was breaking down, bonking HARD!! Bonking is what happens when you mentally and physically can't go anymore, it usually means you need more water, food and a break. I've found  that if I eat a bit, sip some water while on the bike that after 5 or 10 minutes (which feels like hours) I can usually break through this block. This wasn't happening for me, my little racing tricks weren't working. I just wanted to curl up in the ditch with my bike and sleep til the end of time. As I was looking for a place to literally ditch my bike  the remembrance pictures that decked out the other riders bikes came into my head and I couldn't get them out!!! As I fought to clear my head so I could find my escape route It hit me, if those people in the photos were here they won't be complaining about the miles, thinking they wanted to tuck away in the ditch. They would be happy that they could even just be on the bike.  I had nothing to complain about, to cry about. I am here, alive, healthy and able. I can do this!!! Those amazing positive thoughts stayed with me not only for the next 10 miles but still today. This is why we ride, this is why we are all here.

Once we rolled to the finish, it was so surreal! We did it, I can't believe it!!! As I sat with my family at the finish, I was over taken with thoughts. I couldn't talk, really think. I had become a part of something bigger than I could have ever imaged. It brought my friends and family together and gazillion other strangers. I felt like the world was together as one, full of love. And then I had to go home, I didn't want to go. I thought, why can't we just do the same thing tomorrow and just keep going. We could ride to Antarctica. Come on, let's go.  I didn't want to leave my new family. After my struggles of moving to LA and not feeling like I fit here, I finally belonged somewhere!!!

2014 AIDS/Lifecylce Finish

The AIDS/Lifecycle is a life changing event. It reminded me that anything is possible, just close your eyes and jump!!! So if you are wanting to jump, join me. I've started a team this year Team "Iron Maiden", no this is not an all female Iron Maiden tribute band, this is a male, female, transgender, all gender, homosexuals, bisexuals, pansexuals, old, young, black, white, red, blue and live in LA, nebraska, Paris or India and want to spend a week in sunny Cali, see breathe taking views and be apart of something damn rad then join me as a rider or as a roadie!! Click the link below for further details and please contact me with any questions, concerns or comments....let's ride to end AIDS!!!


Riders Info: raise at least $3k and $95 to register

Roadies Info: no fundraise amount required but know yall join in and $95 to register

For more information:

To join Team Iron Maiden:

Use Promo: GRATEFUL for $20 off


Who knows maybe I'll trying riding across the US next....anythings possible, right!!!!

Thank you after party, yes that's MY name!!! Gotta say, Thank you ALC!!!!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Black Friday Radness

 Oh happy time of year, I find myself wanting to do good for others. Treat my kith and kin with good fortune. Snuggle up with the warmth of a spiced cider next to the glowing blaze of a winter fire.
Others find themselves camped out on frozen concrete, sandwiched between the D&D obsessed guy who's longing for the newest electronic stimuli and the middle aged mom who's determined to get whatever trending must have toy her little tikes just can't live without. Before the butt crack of dawn the doors are open and everyone is off like a shot!!! Dragging, pulling, pushing, snatching, tackling....Ohhhh All hail Black Friday!!!!

Ready to get in on the fun!!!! That's right, I'm taking part in the madness!!!

I'll be posting photos to my instagram and facebook page as a preview...make sure to check them out!!!

Etsy Shop:



Pass along the word and let's make this Black Friday Rad, not mad!!!! (okay a bit cheesy, I agree but wait til you see the next video...and get on it!!)

Sunday, September 7, 2014


Charlton Heston did it right...even when he was the last man on earth it didn't stop him from gettin' all spiffy and playing chess with a mannequin. Think Andrew McCarthy had a better idea of what to do with a mannequin but there is no judgment here!!!

Before I get too off point let me get to the point!!! I am super excited to share with you all my debut article as a writer!!! That's right kiddies, this girl can write (somewhat, thank goodness for editors cause I can'ts really spell that good!!!)!!! In the current issue of Art Jewelry Magazine (September 2014) on page 48 read my how to article on how you can create an Omega Clip!!
Why the Omega Clip??? Well....I was fumbling around with the idea of adding omega clips to my earrings since I am always wanting to go bigger and bigger....but I couldn't find any place or book that could show me how to make one by hand. All the information I found was on how to buy the mechanism and solder or place it on the back of an earring. So with the screeching sounds of apes in my studio (was watching Gorillas in the Mist, India may look like an ape but she's not allowed to screech inside) I spent an afternoon figuring out how to conquer this beast!!!

One of my favorite things bout the jewelry/metalsmithing community is sharing information!! So I am soooo happy to share this with you all!!! Please check out the issue and a big big thank you to Hazel, Annie, Theresa and everyone else at Art Jewelry Magazine!!! You all are RAD!!! Now show up Charlton by putting on your flashiest garb and create these clips for yourself....come on now!!!

This is the shortest update yet but things are a bit busy in the city......much more to come but for now gonna leave ya a little taste or feel of what Lola and I do all may not be running to save a life but I am running to create mine in LA (damn that was serious)...Happy Labor Day all....til next time!!!!

Friday, April 11, 2014

"Don't let me hear you say life's taking you nowhere...."

Life is so strange sometimes...I feel like it's taking me nowhere, well at least that's the way I felt over the last couple of months...but things are starting to have a bit of a golden feel to them...(I luuuuuve Bowie, just saying)....

I remember as a kid that every time I went to my moms office I would dig in her desk drawer to take a peek at this marble she kept. This wasn't an average marble it had the golden rule written on the side "do to others as you would have them do to you". I've always tried to live my life with that in mind. LA seems short of people that feel the same way, but I've lucked out. I'm taking part in this great event that will have me submerged in goodness. Plus I was invited to ride this event with one of the golden ones...

I'll be riding 545 miles in 7 days from San Fransisco to Los Angeles on June 1st but first I need to raise $3k to take part in this amazing event! If you'd like to help by donating, remember, no amount is too small. If you aren't able to donate and still would like to show your support then post this link to your facebook page.

Click to donate or see my profile page: 

As some of you might know, I'm an avid cyclist and bike touring is something I've wanted to get into. While I explore the intro to bike touring I will also be helping others in need. It's a win win for all. I created a new blog so you can see my progression. I will be posting updates, training information (I'm training on the streets of LA instead of what I've been use to, the countryside of Nebraska, a bit different) and about the event it's self. A friend from Nebraska who did this event said it was life changing and for such a great cause, to help end HIV/AIDS.

Follow my new blog bout my new bike adventure: 

In the myst of my training I will head to Minneapolis for the 43rd Annual SNAG Conference "From Grains to Gold". I get to meet all sorts of super rad people, socializing with metalsmiths from around the world!!! Plus my kickass jeweler friends in Minneapolis helped to set this up...way to go ladies...can't wait to see what you have in store for us!!!

"D Zed" will be featured in the "A Night of Glamour & Gold" Event, I will be showing at the trunk show and helping out by volunteering during the event!!! Gonna be a busy few days, can't wait....check out all the other amazing and happening things at SNAG... 

I've been working on new work that I am really excited about (photos soon), I have a great internship with an outstanding headdress artist and my etsy shop it bout to go live!! Starting Monday my shop will be a go!!! I need to make room for new work so there will be great sales and fun items. Also 10% of the sales will go to help fundraise my AIDS LifeCycle adventure!!! Another win win, rad jewelry and help others in need!!! Kick ass!!!

I hope this post leaves you feeling good inside, inspires you to help others or to just go get rad....oh and don't forgot bout the golden rule....

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Happy Spanking New Year

Well it's that time of year again, to pull out your Sweatin to the Oldies videos, start that fad diet, maybe even work on that sailor's other words turn into the person you think you are suppose to become....I say screw it....

I've decided that this year is gonna be filled with having fun, being yourself and just enjoying life...ohhh and breaking the rules a little (can't help myself)...
(quick side note, if you are a skinny white girl don't dress as a Harlem Globetrotter, afro and all, for might be mistaken for Richard Simmons and yes I'm speaking from experience)
Talk bout being yourself....or something like that.... 

 Inside the Madness....

Now that I feel a bit settled and in place (of sorts) in LA I finally have had some studio time!!! Hellz is a little peek into whats to come...

"Gimme Gimmes" Earrings 

 "La La's Land" Earrings  

Copper, Brass and Leather Cuff in the works...

Current and Future Radness....
Not only will a bunch of kickass jewelers be featured in this upcoming book by Lorena Angulo but I'm a part of it as well...
In February "Behind the Brooch" ...which explores the back side of jewelry...will be available for all your pretty little fingers to fondle over...and you can even pre order damn...Thanks so much Lorena, super excited to be a part of this...

For further details and info...

Photo OPPs....

While home for the holidays I was able to spend some quality time with family and friends...this time of year seems to bring out the inner demon...errrr...child in all of us...

Bro's new gnome alien sweater...rad...

Mo sharing some Holiday Cheer!!!

Seeing if I've got what it takes to be a Betty (Crocker)

Holiday Spirits with My Dad and Aunt, nothing says class like plastic cup wine glasses

Riding in La La Land, yep it's winter out...kind of digging SoCal right now...

There is so much in the works right now...I will keep y'all's gonna be an exciting 2014!!! Leaving you with a song by a kickass Lincoln band that, well, kicks ass...Mercy Rule...Hope that your 2014 is already filled with impossible greatness and muchness....