Weekly Round Up: October 3 -9


Here is my round up of blog posts for last week!


Spencer Opal Mines -my first time mining for my own rocks!


Mint Sunglasses and Skinny Jeans -more thrifting and budget shopping fun. 🙂


My Adventures as a Mandalorian Mercenary -my escapades this summer in a Star Wars costume club.


Thrifting Tips: Create A Wish List! -my new blog series that gives thrift shopping advice


Spencer Idaho Opal Mines


One of my favorite parts of my trip to Oregon, was actually a road stop in Idaho. Ben and I went to the Spencer Opal Mines and had so much fun. 🙂 It costed $15 a person, and we spent a few hours searching for hidden treasure.


The type of opal found at the Spencer Opal Mine is the milky white opal. Unlike peacock opals from Las Vegas, these little friends do not need to be protected with moisture.


It was a lot of looking, spraying with water (so you can remove all the dust), and more looking. Randy, an opal expert showed us examples of opal, and helped us tell the difference between opal with color play, and “common” opal. I was excited to find a few pieces with opal.

Ben definitely found the best piece. He could have taken it to a jeweler to make a ring. But, Ben likes the raw, rough quality of the uncut opal. I do have to agree that it looks pretty neat.


I also found George, and couldn’t wait to bring him home! He is made out of rhyolite and obsidian, which the is matrix surrounding the opals in Spencer. I love the pink, blobby stripes running across the surface. He is probably my favorite find at the opal mine.


This was so much fun -I am definitely hooked on finding my own gems. I’d love to try panning for gold or garnets in the future!

Mint Sunglasses and Skinny Jeans

                                                  Shh… I know it’s dark! 🙂

Sigh. I have a problem with smashing sunglasses. So here is another pair, this time in mint green. I had actually looked all over down-town for sunglasses, and couldn’t find any. Apparently it’s the wrong time of year for sun wear…. But, thankfully, Wal-Mart always has sunglasses on hand. I was so excited when I found this cute pair sitting in the $5 section! I love to wear green whenever I possibly can. 🙂


Also, I promised to show some clothing from my yard sale post, so here is that pair of skinny jeans! They are so comfy, and so fun to wear. My button up is pretty simple, but it keeps the focus on the mint. 🙂 And alas, the grass decided to swallow my flats, but I assure you that they are leopard print. If you read my blog often, you’ve probably seen this pair of flats 8000 times.

My outfit deconstructed:

  • Mint Sunglasses: $5, New (Wal-Mart)
  • Navy Button Up Shirt: $2.50, Thrifted (Converse)
  • Mint Skinny Jeans: $.75, Yard sale’d (YMI)
  • Leopard Print flats: $9.99, “New”- bought in 2012 (Payless)

Adventures as a Mandalorian Mercenary



This summer, I have spent a lot of time volunteering in a Star Wars costume club, called the Mandalorian Mercenaries. It has been a lot of fun working with the local “clan,” and I have been able to be a part of some great causes.

If you remember, I first wrote about Ben building a set of Star Wars “Boba Fett” armor in my November 2015 post called My Love Affair With Green. The costumes and adventures have come a long way since then. Not only is Ben an official member -so am I!

Here is a summary of my Mandalorian excursions:

12.19.15 Custom Endodontics Private Showing 


The first event I went to was the Star Wars Episode VII opening night. This was before I had a suit of armor myself. Steve Osmond, dentist at the Custom Endodontics clinic in Bismarck, decided to host a showing for his patients. It was way fun to attend, and talk to the kids.

4.23.16 Imagicon Event


In April we were able to go to the Imagicon event in Minot, ND. It was my first time at a comic convention! By this point, I had a suit of armor, but was not officially approved. It was my first time wearing my armor period -and wow it was heavy!


We did an event called, Jail ‘N Bail, where people could pay to have one of their friends arrested by a bounty hunter. We raised money for juvenile diabetes at this particular event.


5.7.16 Free Comic Book Day


We were able to support an event Juke Joint Comics, a local Bismarck comic shop. As the store handed out free comics, we waved people over to the shop and took pictures with fans. The lines outside of Juke Joint Comics were way long, so we had the chance to talk to a lot of really cool people. I loved seeing the girls ask their moms to take pictures with me.


6.10.16 Corecon


We went to a second convention in Fargo, ND.  At this event, we didn’t earn any money, but we did promote the  group and participate in the wedding.


I enjoyed this convention much more. It was more fantasy than comic-book themed, and they had lots of cool vendors. I found a way cool corset and a steam punk Slytherin necklace.


Now more about this wedding. As I mentioned, this Star Wars-themed wedding was part of the Core Con, which was the main reason we came. The groom and bride were Todd and Denise Sheppard. The Mandalorian Mercs, along with the other two Stars Wars costume clubs, were asked to come as part of the procession and entertainment. Now that was memorable!

6.11.16 ND Autism Walk


I was able to act as a mascot at the ND Autism walk, which was super neat.

Left: My Cousin Celeste; Middle: My Cousin Shadd; Right: My Aunt Debi

This event was chosen by the clan leader, Rick Carmen. But the Autism walk has a special meaning for me too. My cousin Shadd has autism, and he is one of the most beautiful souls that I know.


We were able to take pictures with kids, and Ben even participated in one of the walks.



7.29.16 -Movie Night at the Hoskins



The Hoskins’ movie night was my first event as an official member of the Mandalorian Mercs. It was also my 5th year anniversary. I’m pretty sure that this makes me the coolest wife ever. 🙂


Jamie Hoskins decided to host a Star Wars movie night at their house every Friday during the summer. They projected the movie on the side of the house, and lots of people would attend. We were able to come to the final night, when the movie was Episode VI, Return of the Jedi. Ben, Robert and I showed up to add some fun for the kids.

8.27.16 Prevent Child Abuse North Dakota 5k



I was super excited to go to the Prevent Child Abuse 5k. At this event, I did not dress up in my armor, as I wasn’t feeling super well. Technically I was a “handler,” which meant that I helped with armor issues and other errands. Mainly I strapped on my blasters and handed out trading cards to the children.


Speaking of which, by this point, I had my own trading card!


It was fun to see all the kids dressed up as super heroes. 🙂

9.25.16 Support the Badge


The most recent event I attended was the Support the Badge /Hops for Cops event. It was a family-friendly fair that focused on building better community relationships with the local police department.They had country singers, lots of food vendors, and other activities.


One of the things we did was take pictures with kids and their families. We had a pretty good club turn out at this event. 🙂


Our main event was the Blast A Troop/Mandalorian activity, where kids -of all ages -could come and shoot Mandalorians with nerf guns.


I mostly manned the table, and talked to fun people.

And that’s it for my Mando adventures so far!

Ben has a whole blog about the Mandalorian Mercs -it’s called Mandalorian Armor. Head on over if you’d like to take a peek.


Thrifting Tips -Create a Wish List!


I love the mystery and intrigue that comes with thrift shopping -I never know what I am going to find! This can be both a blessing and a curse. If I’m not careful, I will end up with a wardrobe full of super cool, super random clothing. If I can’t mix and match  my wardrobe easily, I feel like I have nothing to wear. Thankfully there are ways to combat this.

One way that I make sure to keep my thrift shopping in check is to shop with a wish list. When I look for specific items at thrift stores, it helps me be more discerning, and buy what will really benefit my wardrobe. Also, I am more likely to find amazing things when I am consciously looking for them.

A few tips:

  1. Keep your list under 10 items. This will make thrift shopping with a wish list less daunting.
  2. Think about colors -and neutrals -that can enhance your wardrobe. Right now I am looking for more green and more navy.
  3. Look for “filler” items. These are the so-called boring clothing staples that can stretch your wardrobe -like white button up shirts, black t-shirts, etc.
  4. Think about occasion pieces. Do you need more work clothes, more dresses, or more casual clothing?
  5. Silhouettes are another great way to shop. I tend to buy a-line skirts, so I make a conscious effort to look for other silhouettes, such as pencil skirts or maxi-skirts.

This wish list tip is one of the key components of my thrift shopping strategy. Let me know if you take a thrifting wish list on one of your thrift shopping adventures!


Weekly Round Up: September 26-October 2


Here what’s happened at Dana Maye this week – I wrote about my trip to Oregon, my summer adventures, and my favorite thrift shop ever. 🙂


Seeds of Hope Thrift Store

Finding the Seeds of Hope website is a bit difficult, so I created a basic information page for all those looking for this awesome thrift store. I plan on writing a future post about why I love Seeds of Hope so much. ❤


My Summer Adventures

I did a lot of fun things this summer, and wrote a recap about all of that fun. Some of my adventures included a wedding in California, sanding a dining room set, a colonial-themed 4th of July party, and more. 🙂


A Family Reunion in Oregon

My trip to Yachats, Oregon was just amazing. The town was so much fun, the beach was lovely -and I was so happy to be able to see my family. 🙂

A Family Reunion in Oregon


I went to the first Gooss family reunion this summer. We went to Yachats, Oregon, a lovely beach town. It was pretty much the best vacation ever. Here are some of the things we did:

  • There were fun restaurants in the area, and little shops to visit.
  • The beach was just beautiful! I’ve never been to an Oregon beach before. I loved all of the little black stones scattered across it (I learned that they were basalt).
  • We had a family bonfire, where we talked about our crazy driving stories. We spent a lot of time talking and catching up throughout the week. 🙂
  • I enjoyed visiting sites like the Sea Lions cave and the Heceta Head lighthouse.
  • That sweatshirt in ended up in half the pictures! I swear I changed my shirts underneath. It was a bit chillier than I expected. 🙂
  • I found a super neat rock shop called Nature’s Bling -my Nanny loved the tall amethyst cave. I came home with some real beauties.
  • I got to spend so much time with my nieces and nephew. They are growing up so fast.
  • We played pool in the beach house, and had fun making meals (I made my curry recipe!)
  • Most of all, it was so nice to spend time with my family. I miss them so much. ❤