Upcycle Chobani Yogurt Cups as Snack Bowls

My three-year-old son LOVES Chobani Greek Yogurt. Eating one a day makes for a lot of yogurt cups that go straight into the recycling bin. The containers that these delicious yogurts come in are perfect little snack cups for little ones.  After finishing the creamy goodness, you can reuse the container as a snack cup.…

Healthy and Easy: Laundry Detergent for the Frugal

Cheap, easy and healthy. Three things I can get behind. That’s exactly what making your own laundry detergent is. Run-of-the-mill laundry detergent is loaded with chemicals like sulfates, fragrances and phenols. Many brands contain petroleum distillates, which are linked to cancer and lung disease. Be that Susie homemaker you know is in you, and whip…

Hayes Art: A Toddler Gallery

Born 2010 in Scottsdale, Arizona, Hayes Rhinehart is a leading self-taught artist creating works both locally and abroad. Rhinehart’s works can be found hung on the refrigerator at his parents’ house, Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico, Slangshot.org and now Beach House Montessori in Tampa. He currently resides in the buzzing Channelside District of downtown…

DIY Buzz Lightyear Costume

Buzz Lightyear made the cut for this years Halloween costume.  And who doesn’t love the handsome, naïve space ranger? I went off the cuff and used my kiddos Buzz Lightyear toy as a model. I created the costume using mainly cardboard and foam. Most of the materials can be found at Micheals except the backer…

Road Trip from Arizona to Florida and Everywhere In Between

Maintaining Slangshot.org came to a halt as I became consumed with my move to the Sunshine State.  But now I’m back in hopes to shed some light on the gorgeous beaches that surround me and downtown Tampa living. The cross-country road trip from Arizona to Florida proposed never before seen sites, old friends and new…

It’s Business as Usual in Tombstone Arizona

Most teenagers had posters of pop stars on their walls. My wall was covered with gunslingers. Blame my obsession with the movie Tombstone, I guess. My first time in Tombstone was on the way back from a high school soccer game in Douglas Arizona. Our  bus pulled over in historic town for a pit stop on…

Through the Lens: Ecclectic Bisbee Arizona

On the way to Bisbee Arizona from Sierra Vista, I notice sign that read: San Pedro House. I pulled over thinking it might be a ruin but it turned out to be a 1930’s converted ranch house that now functions as a visitor’s center and bookstore/gift shop. A 100 to 150 year old massive Fremont Cottonwood…

Upcycle: Race Cars Made From Cardboard

What little boy doesn’t love race cars? Here is an upcycled version of a roadster that your child will love to help create so he can start his own Indy 500. Racer’s start your engines… Materials: Toilet paper or paper towel rolls Exacto knife Paint (I used acrylic) Paint brushes Glue Brads Circular Punch (Not…

Pretzels: Baking the Alphabet

What better way to learn how to spell your name than in pretzels? I think all toddlers and Germans will agree. It is edible playdough. A dream come true for little people. The warm, soft breaded delights are believed to be the world’s oldest snack. Originating from Southern France near 610 A.D., Monks created pretzels…

Watercolor Alphabet Stencil Art

Time to get artsy fartsy. I have persistently pilfered through thrift store bins and hoarded years worth of recycled crafts for a rainy day.  In Arizona, we don’t get too many rainy days so stuff piled up. If you are reading this, chances are you too enjoy creating with your hands and have a pile…

Payson Arizona is Home to Shoofly Village Ruins

Ruins were in the vicinity (as they always are in Arizona) when our camping trip in Payson was rained out. Our wet, defeated selves shuffled into a nearby hotel room with all the comforts of home. The camping gear lay untouched and soaked from the night before at Houston Mesa campground. We packed up and…

Hayes Photography: A Toddler Gallery

Born 2010 in Scottsdale, Arizona, Hayes Rhinehart is a leading self-taught artist creating works both locally and abroad. Rhinehart’s works can be found hung on the refrigerator at his parents’ house, Maria Montessori in Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico and now online. He currently resides in Pinetop, Arizona but will soon take his talents…

The Navajo Nation’s Capital: Window Rock

Window Rock is located about 27 miles northwest of Gallup, N.M., and about 6 miles southeast of Fort Defiance, Arizona, it is just across the New Mexico-Arizona state line, on the Arizona side, in Apache County. From the parking lot, tiny silhouettes of people can be seen hiking within the window taking in the view.…

Blameless Balls of Meat

Let’s be honest, Italian food isn’t exactly the healthiest of foods. Mama Mia! It tends to be loaded with carbs that put a damper on squeezing into that slinky dress or tight-as-hell jeans. Omitting breadcrumbs means fewer carbs if you are into that sort of thang. Fresh herbs bump up the flavor on this healthier version…

Exploring Gorgeous Canyon de Chelly in Northeastern Arizona 1/3

From White House Overlook the 80-room White House Ruin, inhabited between 1040 A.D. and 1275 A.D., appeared to be swallowed by the massive burnt orange canyon wall. We hiked 600 feet down to the canyon floor passing smooth sandstone buttes along the way that looked something straight out of National Geographic Magazine. Stunning and unearthly.…

How Vegetable Gardening Benefits Children

My three-year-old son has been gardening since he could walk. I can recall living in the historical district of downtown Phoenix in a 1926 tudor house with blue trim that allowed for oodles of gardening room. My son loved to hand the germinated plants over to me as I stuffed it in the soft, black…

Upcycle With A DIY Whiteboard

Personalizing your own dry erase board is childsplay when you think about driving down to Walmart or Office Max to pick out an imported cookie-cutter whiteboard wrapped in a heap of misused plastic. Choosing to whiteboard scrap wood means upcycling (environmentally friendly) and also scores you mega points for creativity. I chose a fragmented piece…

Hidden Petroglphys in Show Low Arizona

The quest began when I was browsing Facebook for hikes in or near the Arizona’s White Mountains when I noticed a picture that someone eagerly posted on their homepage. Magnificent, vivid petroglyphs carved into dense lava rock glowed on my computer screen. It was thrilling to know its location was essentially in my backyard. Clearly,…

Poem: Void

I am being carried by southwest hairlines Receding into the west. Going from green to brown- Flat chested to massive voids. Dried up trails Represent ancient laugh lines. I envision a rucksack revolution started by Zen Lunatics.

Lyman Lake Petroglphys Dazzle in an Outdoor Art Gallery

Lyman Lake, located in eastern Arizona’s St. John’s, becomes lower by the day due to a dry season. The lake continues to lose up to two feet per day according to the State Park’s Ranger. From the bank I notice a couple of water skier’s gliding through the shallow water below. Near-empty Lyman leaves wide-open…

Pizza Sauce Express

Tailored to your liking, nothing beats homemade pizza. Making pizza is something the entire family can participate in, reaping the benefits as triangle pieces are passed around the table and satisfyingly devoured. Most people think pizza is time-consuming to create, which is simply not the case. Here is a speedy pizza recipe so you can…

Hiking Ice Cave Trail in the White Mountains

Ice Cave Trail set in the White Mountains of Arizona is a refreshing hole in the ground. The trail leads to Blue Ridge Cave (a.k.a. Ice Cave) located off Porter Mountain Road in Lakeside, Arizona. The trailhead starts as a dirt road leads to a vulnerable, picturesque meadow where Porter Creek carves out the land…

Acoma Pueblo Countinually Occupied for 2,000 Years

Atop a steep, 367-foot sandstone bluff sits an age-old city known as Acoma Pueblo or Sky City. The gorgeous and historic pueblo is a registered National Historical Landmark in New Mexico. Since 1150 A.D., Acoma Pueblo has earned the reputation as the oldest continuously inhabited community in North America (source). At the top of the…

Travel Snack: Avocado and Tuna

Avocado and tuna: Sound nutritious but not delicious, right? Go with me on this one when I tell you the combination is pretty darn tasty. It is packed with Omega-3’s and offers the “good fat” (monounsaturated fat) that your body craves. The quick and easy snack is even doable on long hikes or road trips.…

Petroglyph National Monument Through the Lens

New Mexico offers many hidden treasures in its culture-ridden state.  Petroglyph National Monument is one of those gems. The monument is an art gallery carved in volcanic rock that overlooks clusters of cookie cutter homes. Within the monuments boundaries sits Boco Negra Canyon, a 70 acre section of the 7,236 acre park. The canyon provides…

Father’s Day Handprint Tree Inspiration

It’s Father’s Day again. Here is some DIY inspiration for the phenomenal man (or men) in your life. So bust out the colored pencils and paint to create a masterpiece he can admire all year long. Material used: pencil, colored pencils, paint, sketching paper, letter stickers and a frame and little hands. Happy Fathers Day!

DIY Garden Pesto

It’s  garden time again and I always get a little hasty when waiting for the veggies in my garden to mature. Herbs grow the quickest so the first dish of the season was pesto. Super easy. Super Delicious. Here’s my recipe: Thyme-Oregano-Basil equaling to a bunch Olive Oil Small Lemon Garlic Sea Salt Pepper Fresh…

El Morro is the Zuni Penthouse

El Morro National Monument in Ramah New Mexico was a stop on the way to Albuquerque from my state of Arizona. The landscape represents the state accurately with its high mesa’s and dry brush. Indian ruins are secretly tucked away in nearly every canyon wall crevasse. With family in tow, we drove into El Morro,…

Hopi Petroglyphs Endure at Homolovi

On my way back from attending a friend’s graduation with my husband and son in Flagstaff Arizona, we stopped at Homolovi State Park near Winslow. This was our second trip to the ruins in a month. We ran out of time on our first visit so I never experienced the magnificent petroglyphs that I had…

DIY Duct Tape Racetrack Reverie

My three-year-old does not have a shortage of Hot Wheel cars. Or an imagination. Of course,  he has space-taking tracks made of plastic that cramp his room that he seems to have lost interest in. I wanted to create a racetrack with no bulk that could go anywhere including travel. Hotel rooms become WAY more exciting with a racetrack your…

DIY Organic Summer Coconut Scrub

Here is a DIY a la’ natural body scrub that you can literally eat, just in time for Mother’s Day. Handmade gifts not only demonstrate thoughtfulness, they demonstrate the motivation you have to make things with your hands despite the daily grind. Yes, buying a gift is more convenient but being able to create something with your…

Kinishba Ruins Through The Lens

My summer home in the White Mountains of northeastern Arizona eventually became my primary residence to allow for my family and I to travel more frequently. Our Pinetop neighborhood is on the cusp of the Whiteriver Apache Indian Reservation near the Kinishba Ruins which are at a lower elevation of 5,000 feet just outside Fort Apache. The…

Boxcar Envy and Art at the La Posada Hotel

La Posada Hotel located off Route 66 in Winslow Arizona shrieks Fred Harvey. So who exactly is Fred Harvey? Harvey established and ran all hotels and restaurants of the Santa Fe Railway, eventually controlling a hospitality empire that spanned the region. He “civilized the west” through his flawless service to the railroad traveler. In the…

Exploring the Homolovi Ruins

My return to Arizona from a four and half month stay in the Yucatán peninsula still had me searching for adventure.  Digging all the Mayan culture left me with a hangover and wanting more. To curb my desire for exploration, I decided to explore relics that were nearby and found the Homolovi Ruins located a…

Investigative Reporting Strategies: How To Get People To Talk

Finding dirt on someone can be rewarding as well as exciting. It is the thrill of the hunt. Sometimes we really do need valuable information such as what the babysitter is doing with our  kids, why exactly two of your best friends are fighting or who’s next in line to get that promotion. Ample work goes into gathering reliable information…

Poetry: No Need for Ruby Slippers

This is a poem I wrote for a poetry class in college and the first to read aloud in an intimate environment.   Walking along cobble stoned A sea of mineral matter This yellow brick road don’t go where it used to Leading to an Emerald City full of green envy I am stone cold tripping…

DIY Travelers Art

Mexico Medium: Cardboard Anyone that knows me knows I love art. Without it covering my walls tend to be uninspired. Being an art lover is hard when you are also a traveler because you know you will have to finagle it back to wherever it was you came from. So I came up with this idea for disposable…

Mexico Upcycles Charmingly Out of Necessity

Businesses and locals in Playa del Carmen, Mexico are crafty. I mean impressively crafty. Locals reuse ordinary objects in a number of ways by recycling or upcycling by mixing fashion and frugalness. Why the process of upcycling may come easier for a more creative person, the idea is to take disposable items and create something useful…

El Rey Ruins in Cancún Through the Lens

Tourists go from driving through a lengthy strip of retail shops such as Louie Vuitton and Dolce&Gabbana to a hidden ruin site located in middle of the sleepless city where condos replace skyscrapers. Visitors can still experience small Mayan remnants of the pre-Columbian Maya civilization at El Rey (Las Ruinas del Rey) located in the…

DIY Flower Trinket Container Made from an Egg Carton

I eat eggs. I eat lots of eggs. Therefore I am left with a large quantity of egg cartons. Besides, recycling is boring so instead of throwing the cartons away I get crafty with its uses. Here is a DIY guide to making a recycled trinket organizer with a delicate feel that is also useful. What you will need:…

Ek’ Balam Through The Lens

Ek’ Balam is located in beautiful Temozón, Mexico and exhibits 45 Mayan ruin structures. The site lacks sightseers and gigantic tour busses as it is one of the less known ruin sites in the Yucatán making it an intimate experience for the visitor. The astonishing and remarkably well-preserved sculptures uncovered at Ek’ Balam date from…

Thrifting at Segunda Vida

Downtown Playa del Carmen is not absent of boutique shops, but it is missing an abundance of thrift stores.  In America, consignment shops seem to be on nearly every corner but here in Playa I was only able to find one: Segunda Vida (Second Life). The tiny, eclectic shop displays racks of specialty items from…