Wednesday, March 21

Bye For Now, I'm Going to Disney World!

My Disney Pass - I'm ready to go!

I've been waiting so long to go on this trip. The last time I went to Disney World was in early high school, so when my good friend Char invited all of her friends down to Florida for her birthday, how could I resist!

We're all staying at one of the snazzy Disney resorts for a week and it will be amazing. Char's got our entire schedule planned, which includes all the Disney parks, Harry Potter Land (I'm so excited!), a fabulous semi-formal birthday dinner, and loads of other fun stuff. Plus, my sister Carin just so happened to be down there at the same time. Which was quite the pleasant surprise, because as some of you might know, I only get to see my family on special occasions because we all live so far away from each other.

So I'll see you all in little over a week. The weather's perfect down there right now, no rain and mid 80's. I'm so going to wear shorts... lots of shorts.

I best be off,
~Claudia

Tuesday, March 20

H&M Spring Collection

So sadly a my khaki pants bit the dust after 12 years. I loved them, and if it wasn't for the small holes in stressed areas I wouldn't have to replaced them. I'm pretty hardcore about not buying things unless I need or am completely in love with them. 12 years! Now that's how it's done. I love fashion very much and I've learned over the years that one can stay on trend, but true to themselves (because I'm a big believer in having signature pieces), and eco-friendly by "shopping your closet." Especially like older pieces from the 50-90's which are now considered vintage classics. I can't count the number of times I've thought, "Oh damn, I wish I still had that." Fashion doesn't have to be about going shopping every other month. Not at all, it's totally possible to achieve this with what one already owns and keep minimalistic values intact. It's all about layering, colors, prints, textures, proportions, silhouettes, and confidence.

So of course I had to go to H&M to see if I could replace my pants with something edgy and new, but still classic so that 12 years down the line they will still be considered beautiful. Unfortunately I'm not to the point that I can treat myself to Chanel and Burberry, so H&M is a great dupe. They're very on-point about high fashion influences and even have big names design for them. David Beckham is the highlight of their spring season, featuring his new line of bodywear for men. Got love it!

The new spring magazine is out. Pick one up for free at H&M.

 Light khaki cotton trousers with florescent lemon belt and dusty rose shorts.
 $64.99 for everything.

Spring's always an exciting time in the fashion world, because just like fall, we are switching over from cold weather to warm or vice versa. This season's all about the white, nude, bright metals, and vivid yellows.

Love Claudia xx

Monday, March 19

AMAZING MeatBot! Game Trailer

Oh boy! Amazing MeatBot is finally coming out soon. I'm very excited about it, because I worked a little bit on the icon art and play tested the game. It's a wonderful app, brought to you by Milkman Games, the same company that did Aqualux. Remember the illustrations that I did?

So check it out:


"A game made with lots of love, meat, and cat fur. If you've got a thing and the thing has a touch screen, you'll be playing this April 19th 2012! Find out more at www.milkmangames.com. Coming to iPhone, Android, Amazon Kindle, Nook Color, Blackberry PlayBook, and HP TouchPad." - Milkman Games

Hurray for indie games!
 ♡ Claudia

Thursday, March 15

10 Tips for Green Spring Cleaning

 "All the effort you are making will ultimately pay off." - Fortune Cookie

Ah, the springtime, isn't it a wonderful time of year! Snow is turning to rain, flowers are start to bloom, and the warmth can be felt in the air. For me this is always the time of year that I love to clean. Yes, that's correct, I love to clean. Our homes are a reflection of ourselves and it's the place that we spend the most time in. It's extremely important to be surrounded by a beautiful, tranquil, and clean atmosphere, because that physical environment has an impact on you. If you're in a dirty, chaotic place, you feel that chaos, in contrast to a gorgeous spa or hotel. Those places are inviting and fun, and we yearn to spend time there. The same goes for the home. It's not just about cleaning the house, it's house cleaning of the mind. 


Here are some tips to help tidy up the home in a natural way:

1. Stop buying stuff you don't need. - I know this sounds silly, but think about everything that might bother you in your home. At one point or another you purchased or received them gifts. A clean and clutter-free home starts with this simple step. Be selective about what you buy and bring into the home. Also, it doesn't hurt to tell others about your preferences. For example, my family is aware of this and tries to only buy me gifts that I can use. Carla gave me fresh cactus last year for my birthday and I was forever grateful. This is not only eco- friendly (if you buy less, less is thrown away), but it's easier on the wallet and the home.

2. Get rid of the clutter. - Ever step into a cluttered room and feel overwhelmed to even start cleaning it? Well, the first step is to remove the clutter. I don't condone throwing things away, that breaks my heart when other minimalists tell people to take a trash bag and start pitching things. Whatever you throw away stays in or on the ground for hundreds, if not thousands, of years if it's not biodegradable. Instead, give your unwanted belonging to friends or family that might need or want them. Or try Craigslist or Ebay to sell unwanted things. Your junk is someone else's treasure, and I'm sure a grateful buyer is out there somewhere. Lastly, you can donate to charity if you want to get it out fast. My preference, because I know where it's going, is to donate to cancer funds, missionaries, or special-needs children. They are always so thankful.

3. Go one room at a time. - Make life easier by starting with a small room first. That way it's not too daunting, and even rewarding when you finish. This will prepare you for larger rooms later on.

4. Let fresh air and light in. - Letting fresh air and natural sunlight inside will not only help you to see things more clearly when you're cleaning, but it will help keep the air you breathe a little fresher if a lot of dust and dirt is being stirred up in the process. It will also help get all of the stale winter air out of the house which may be contaminated by carpet fumes, chemical paints, poisonous household cleaners, pressed wood toxins, and mold. Fresh air is always better than indoor air. It helps revitalize the cells in our bodies. So keep those windows open if it's warm.

5. Use natural cleaning products. - Vinegar and water can be used for almost everything. It's nature's little miracle cleaner and can be used on floors, counter tops, dishes, sinks, and windows. Also, adding a few drops of tea tree oil to water can be used to kill mold because it's an anti-fungal. Isn't nature amazing!

6. Hydrogen peroxide can be used instead of bleach. - I've had some bad experiences with bleach and I won't use it for cleaning. Specifically the strong fumes burning my eyes and bleaching my carpet on accident. Instead, earth-safe (meaning if you pour it down the drain it won't destroy rivers or plants the way bleach does) hydrogen peroxide works just as well, it brightens without bleaching towels/fabrics, and it isn't as smelly. Also, this is how hotels keep white towels so new and fluffy. Bleach just wears them out over time.

7. Use eco-friendly biodegradable sponges and old rags. - Personally I use natural plant-based fiber sponges in the kitchen, sanitizing them weekly in the dishwasher when I do a load. Using the dishwasher is preferred because it uses less water than what would be used for hand washing dishes. So when the sponges get too old for kitchen use I then use them for the floors, throwing them out only when I can't possibly use them any more. That's why it's good that they're plant based, because when they're thrown away they will degrade fast if exposed to the elements. Other than that, I use old t-shirts, holey socks, and torn up pajamas that are too ragged to give to charity. All you do is cut them up into squares and use them as dust rags and they can be easily thrown in the washing machine for reuse.

8. Clean out the refrigerator and the pantry. - A dirty refrigerator or pantry is not awesome. Vinegar is great because then if any residue is left behind it doesn't matter if it comes in contact with food. Also, this is a great time to reorganize and get rid of unhealthy foods. Just eat it up or give it to a friend, and stop buying it. Replacing it with fresh fruits, herbs, and veggies every week will help maintains the refrigerator's cleanliness because it's easier to clean if there's less stuff cluttering it.

9. Pack away heavy blankets and clothing for next year. - This is a great way to mentally prepare for the warm new season. Just pack them away in the closet, but be aware not to horde. If it won't be used next year then it's time to give it to someone else.

10.  Use flowers and essential oils instead of air fresheners. - This is a great way to help keep the home chemical free, and who doesn't love flowers and essential oils? It's an instance pick-me-up. Flowers and potted plants are the best air filter one can buy and helps to provide fresh oxygen for inside the home. I absolutely adore the smell of fresh roses, gardenias, or lilies when I walk into a room. It makes me so happy. Also, try adding a few drops of your favorite essential oils to water in a spray bottle for spritzing on carpet, couches, and upholstery. These oils will not stain them, and make your home smell delicious. Some of my current spring- time favorites are pink grapefruit, vanilla, and wintergreen.

As always, be patient and mindful about cleaning. It will definitely take a few days, if not weeks, 
to finish the entire house. Spring cleaning can be a wonderful stress reliever and a great workout. Relax and make a fresh batch of homemade organic green juice, to help revitalize the body and celebrate after all that hard work.

Cheers and happy cleaning.
~Claudia

Wednesday, March 14

Nyeira


A quick 45-minute sketch using Photoshop and a Wacom.

"Nyeira" - Painting Demo
Level: Intermediate


Content, editing, and compositing by Claudia Sutton.
Music composed by Wiley Camper.

Tuesday, March 13

Earth Conscious Organization

Recently, Alex the founder of ECO contacted me about their new site: www.earthconsciousorganization.org.  It’s just taking off, and I want to raise awareness about the website as well because it’s informative and important. I love nature, people, and animals. “Be the change you want to see in the world”, that’s my favorite Gandhi quote and I try my very best to live by it.


“We are a non-profit organization - our main goals are to raise both funding and awareness for animal-rights, environmental and civil rights organizations. With the help of our supporters we are able to keep this site running and continue funding various charities. We are strong believers in the welfare of animals, the importance of environmental awareness and care, fair trade, and the equal rights of individuals regardless of religion, sex or race.” - Alex Townsend ECO Founder


For instance, I never knew that live animals were being sold in key chains. That's so sad, it breaks my heart. Read more here:


Who would do such a terrible thing for money, and who in their right mind would buy it! So that means that someone out there is supporting this buy purchasing the animals. It’s no different than puppy mills/pet stores.

Also, the article about breaking elephant’s spirits is heart wrenching as well. Elephants are such social creatures and I have learned that they have excellent memories. I’m reminded of other sad stories where elephants would lose a family member because they were killed by people. So the traumatized animal would wreak havoc on the villagers that killed their beloved relative until they had their revenge. Of course it was like a suicide mission for the poor thing, because it probably would end up dead as well. Animals aren’t stupid and there is cause and effect to everything.


On a more uplifting note, I can't wait for them to update their Beauty, Fashion, and Travel sections of the site. I would love to hear more tips and tricks, because I can always learn to improve my eco habits in some way. Also, the recipes look yummy! I'll have to check in when they have more up.

So head on over to the site, it's very education. I spent a lot of time there learning myself. 
Be kind to one another and the planet. 
Something as simple as that can make the world we live in a better place.
~Claudia

Monday, March 12

Wine Tasting at V. Sattui Winery in Napa Valley

I've been living in the Bay Area for years now, and one of the things I've never found time for was traveling up to Napa Valley for a little wine tasting. It's been on my bucket list forever it seems, and was a dream come true to finally go for the first time. It fascinates me how fast time flies, and reminds me to live life to the fullest and do the things that I want to do.

I love wine, only in moderation of course on special occasions. I remember the very first wine I had was with my dear friend Eliina. Her amazing mother had been saving an old bottle of White Zinfandel for years and she let us partake on Thanksgiving. What a treat! I'll never forget it. Perhaps that's why I like dessert wines best, because it takes me back to that innocent time with my close friend. So I love a good wine with some awesome conversation. Perhaps with candles, a lite fireplace, or even better, a warm summer's night complete with a crackling bonfire. So if anyone wants to join me, we can totally rock it! Wouldn't that be delightful. It keeps me young.

Also, I learned a lot from the tasting. I surprised myself by identified the subtle hints of blackberry and peach from some of the selections. I have some new favorites now, again all dessert wines, with the California Moscato and Angelica (which is grape juice fortified with brandy) being top on the list. Learning about proper wine glasses was fun too. I now know that it's important to drink from specifically sized, crystal glasses for acquitted swilling and smelling. 

So yes, if you've been putting off that trip to Napa for one reason or another, why wait any longer. It's worth saving up for and it's loads of fun. The "high season" in California is June to October, which will be here before you know it. Perhaps I'll have to go back as well. 

Some photography from my trip:

The beautiful V. Sattui Winery in Napa Valley.

Isn't the stonework pretty? It's the little details that make it grand.

Zinfandel anyone?

V. Sattui wine and cheese shop.

Ancient Gouda! Alas, I didn't want to break my diet.

Exquisite Reds.

Glasses for every type of wine.

The wine tasting bar, in which I left very happy.


I want to go back already. What fun indeed.

 Cheers and happy living.
~Claudia

Friday, March 9

Ducks in the Pool

I was walking outside today because it's so warm and sunny out, and look what I see: Ducks in the pool! Bwah! These same two mallards are always chilling, and it's good to see that they're back year after year to enjoy the warm weather. I just always find it to be humorous that they love the pool so much. At least somebody's enjoying it today, but as you can see now they made a mess of things. Oh well.

Just Chilaxing

Tsk Tsk, Messy Duckies

I scared them, so they ran away


Happy Friday everyone! Take time to enjoy the small things in life.
~ Claudia

Thursday, March 8

Had a Blast at the LucasArts Party

Yesterday was loads of fun! I spent the day with my amazing friends, had dinner at an awesome Indian food restaurant called Little Delhi which worth the diet cheating, and then headed out to the GDC LucasArts Party in the evening. It was everything I could have hoped for. A good crowd, wonderful music, lots of awesome Star Wars drinks (I had a "Darth Maul" and a "Brain-tail"), and of course staff with light sabers, and characters from the films. Not bad at all.

Here's some pics:

Standing in line on Ellis St. to get into the party.

Boba Fett was kind enough not to shoot me.

Waiting at the bar to get a drink.

Yummy Brain-tails served by Otto. He was awesome, and very friendly to me. 

 The drinks set on fire. See the flame?

Twi'lek dancers. Love them! My pictures together with them sadly didn't turn out.

It was good fun. Thanks for the memories LucasArts.
♡ Claudia

Friday, March 2

GDC and LucasArts Party

I can't believe GDC is here already, but that's what I always say. I won't be going this year, and I hope all of you that are going will have fun for me. It's always a good time.

San Francisco, March 5-9th

BUT... I will be going to the LucasArts GDC Party on the 7th. Will anyone else be there? Say hi if you see me. I'm super excited. My friends and I are going to make a day of it.

Can't wait! I hope there's Stormtroopers.
~Claudia

Thursday, March 1

Look of the Month :: Spring 2012 :: March

March is always going to be about fabulous Oscars makeup for me. The show takes place in late February, so I'm always inspired to try out my favorite looks. This time it's all about the blood red lips and black lashes. Ronney Mara was my pick for "best dressed" of the year and that includes her makeup. Everything about her look was so lovely. She's a punk, modern day Audrey Hepburn and I love that about her. She's not afraid to stand out. Angelina Jolie had a similar look as well. Except a little heavier on the eyes and less on the brows. Both ladies looked fantastic, but different in their own way. So here's my take on the same makeup, perfect for this time of year.

The current look is:
M A R C H  2 0 1 2


Color trends for this month:
Red, blackwhitesilver, and gold

Current motivation for the look:
The Oscars, Ronney Mara, and Angelina Jolie


Previous Looks this Year:

J A N U A R Y  2 0 1 2

F E B R U A R Y  2 0 1 2

Please feel free to express yourself as well! Share links, tips, or any other suggestions in the comments. I would love to hear from you.

 xoxo,
~Claudia

I've Been Improving My Diet

Hi everyone! I hope all is well. Recently I've been blending juice more for breakfasts and dinners, replacing some of the cooked foods in my diet. The reason I'm telling you this is because I'm starting to see results just within the three weeks that I made the changes. It's crazy! I wasn't even trying for physical improvements, it was more about just trying to be a little more healthy and cut out some of the cooked foods that I know aren't the best. Specifically, what most health educators call "transition foods."

First off, I have crazy energy. Good, pure energy. I feel like I'm high on life and this is coming from me, Claudia, the girl that's been blending juice for years now. But all it took was to eliminate a few more poor choices and blend more juice.

Secondly, my waist is starting to get slimmer. Remember my goal way back when I read The 4-Body? Here's the chart again if you're interest. Anyway, I have been at a standstill with my measurements for five years now, never going under 24 inches. Now I'm 23.75" and that's so awesome (my goal was 23" because that's what I was in high school). It's all because of the blended juice!

It feels like I was standing in the doorway all this time but never walked through to the other side. Now I have and it changed my life. I have learned so much this past three weeks.


Here are some of the things I changed:

- Started blending juice more, especially for breakfast, because it's easier to digest than raw
- Stopped eating bacon. I originally started because of The 4-Hour Body, but now I know it's no good.
- Only eat one egg, instead of two, with 26oz of blended juice for breakfast
- Stopped eating oatmeal
- Started soaking nuts and seeds before eating them
- Replaced most white sugar with raw honey
- Now blending dandelion, grass, sage, parsley, cilantro, arugula, mushrooms, kumquats, and blood oranges
- Replaced some lunches and dinners with blended juice
- Started making my own homemade rosemary and pine tea
- Sleeping earlier. Midnight to 8:00am


That's pretty much it. Not too much of a change from my usual habits, but it made a huge difference. So if you're having a hard time with weight lose or getting fit, try pushing just a little harder to improve the diet. It's the number one factor.

Cheers and happy living.
~Claudia

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