Jewelry Storage and Travel

Since I’m traveling I figure it’s a good time to talk about jewelry storage and packing jewelry for travel. I must admit I was more excited to pack my jewelry for this trip than I was my clothes but actually that really shouldn’t surprise me or anyone else. So as I sit on the beach writing this in advance of posting it on Saturday I dream of what I have packed back at the condo. And maybe what we’ll find today on the beach! There is surely no shortage of sellers and I was just asked if I wanted to buy a necklace….No gracias.

I think jewelry storage is personal. You have to think about what’s important to you. Do you want easy access? Do you want to be able to see everything? Do you want everything in one place? I struggle with this right now. I have a stand up jewelry case that won’t fit everything. I would like to have one for gold and one for silver because organization is important to me. All of my gold is kept here. To make room for new gold ring purchases, I bought a case for my silver rings that sits on a jewelry box that holds some necklaces that sits on an end table that has a drawer that also holds more pieces and important boxes that held jewelry I’ve received. This drives me crazy. Having two stand up cases would be ideal for me I just have to make the investment. In the one case I have I try to keep all of my rings that aren’t real in little plastic baggies. I think it helps to keep them from turning. Side note – if you mix real and fashion like I do, it’s important to take off any rings that aren’t real when you wash your hands or have your hands in water or when using lotion. Nicole, the private jeweler behind
@ringconcierge, recently posted a photo of one of her jewelry drawers. I asked her if she had the storage made to fit the drawer and she commented that she got it at The Container Store and you can fit them to your drawer’s specs – genius! Was just asked again if I want to buy a necklace…again…No gracias.

And again…No gracias. This is what it’s like sitting on the beach in Puerto Vallarta. I’m not complaining! And then there’s the muffin man who just stopped by. We buy fresh jalapeño, ham and cheese pastries from him just about every day. On the beach. Two for 60 pesos. That’s about $3. LOVE IT!

Okay back to jewelry. For travel I purchased two pieces. One is a small box and the other is a fold up piece that kind of looks like a wallet. They are both small with limited space but I found them really cheap at Nordstrom Rack. I think I paid $5 a piece for them. I’ve used the box before but I realized on this trip that when I put my rings in the ring section, the mirror above hits them.

This isn’t good for stones or bands that could get scratched so I put a few little plastic baggies in between them. These travel pieces need to be small so you can pack them in your carry on if you’re flying. And I still recommend using baggies for rings even if you are packing them in your travel box. I love the little box but I think I’ll be on the lookout for something else for rings after noticing the mirror issue. In the meantime, I’ll use the baggies or a few soft tissues to keep the mirror from hitting them filled

One of my other favorite Instagram jewelry accounts is another private jeweler,
@stephaniegottlieb who has also talked about necklace storagejewelry storage. She travels with GORGEOUS pieces that are ALL REAL. She packs everything in baggies and keeps them together by category: rings, bracelets, earrings, etc. I’ve also read that packing necklaces in little baggies with the end of the chain sealed out of the bag will help keep them from tangling.

The baggies seem so easy and then I guess you just pack them in something soft to keep them safe. I also don’t find the roll up travel piece I bought as effective. I put some earrings in the one deep compartment but for me that was all I was felt comfortable putting in there. Maybe if I knew how someone else used it I’d feel better about using it.

Now that I think about the baggies that is actually exactly how I travel home from Mexico with gifts and personal finds. The guys put pieces in little baggies – some plastic and some knit. WARNING somewhat mild political joke coming… So these guys down here really know what they’re doing. If you need me I’ll be with Juan and Eggar (noted in a previous post) on this side of the wall. 


The Engagement Story – cont. from last post

The ring has been chosen. The diamond has to be set so we still don’t have it. We decide to head to Santa Barbara for the weekend to see friends there. It’s about a two hour drive north right through LA. It’s Friday night and it’s rush hour. My youngest cousin has just gotten engaged. Frank is trapped. A huge argument ensues. Is this EVER GOING TO HAPPEN? I’m seriously going to die of old age here.

We get our sh*t together by the time we get to our friends’ house. Okay by we I mean me let’s be real here. Saturday is beautiful and we head out for the day. I’m pretty sure we head out to do some wine tasting. We then hit this cool bar that if I remember correctly, is built into the side of a mountain. Next stop home. But not before another fight ensues. To my dismay I believe sure there were tears. This one wasn’t my fault. Clearly I had been overserved. Again, I got my sh*t together and we enjoyed the rest of our visit.

Sunday we arrive back in Huntington Beach. We’re getting settled and I check the messages. You know back when you had a landline for your home. There is a message for a Mr. Frank Green, “sir, your ring is finished and ready to be picked up.” Oh my God, what do I do!? Besides first doing a little happy dance of course. I panicked. I told him there was a message for him and left it at that.

He checked the message and I heard a few expletives spoken under his breath. I was grinning from ear to ear. He made up some story and I just went along with it. It was finally only a matter of time.

I’m sitting at work one day and I get a call from Frank. “When are you coming home?” Uhhh, the same time I come home every day. “Okay, well just hurry home because I want to go out and do something tonight.” Like what? We don’t DO things. “I don’t know maybe we’ll play tennis or something.” Sure, whatever. Another call comes in while I’m driving home. “Where are you?” In the car, sitting in traffic. Just like every other day. I mean it’s California have you forgotten? Traffic is everywhere. “Okay, just checking.” About 25 minutes later, yep, another call. “So, where are you now?” In the car, sitting in traffic just in a different location. “Okay, well hurry home.” I’ll be sure to let everyone around me know I need to get home faster than they do. “I want to head out as soon as you get home so do you have to go to the bathroom or do anything?”

Obviously at this point I know something is going on. I have a feeling this is it. And per the usual I’m going nowhere fast. I finally get home, change and we head out. We lived about a mile from Pacific Coast Highway and we are heading that way. When we get there we start heading south. I have no idea what we’re doing but I’m not going to lie. I see the ring box in his pants pocket because I’m a woman and I’m using my CIA spy skills that we all inherently have. I may not be able to tell a lie but I can sleuth with the best of them.

Photo Source:

HB dog beach

We pull into one of the beach turn offs. It happens to be the Huntington Beach dog beach. He’s got a bottle of bubbles and some plastic cups. We fancy. As we walk out to find a place to watch the sunset I remember being super nervous and saying, watch out for dog sh*t….be careful where you sit. We sit and drink a little bubbly while watching the sun set behind the clouds which in California is really the smog. Honestly, it doesn’t matter because it always makes for a beautiful sunset.

promFinally, he pulls out the box and says something along the lines of how he’s loved me since the day I wore fuchsia; a nod to my prom dress way back in 1990-something – and we’ll leave it at that. He pulls out the ring and I can see it’s sitting on this adorable little white ring pillow. I don’t even really see the ring because I’m so smitten with the presentation! (That will be another post sometime in the future – jewelry packaging.) He finishes the rest of the proposal and takes the little ring pillow out and shows it to me. It’s not a pillow. It’s a freakin’ Rolaids. Excuse me? He proceeds to tell me that he needed something to give to the jeweler so they’d know my ring size. He said I’d know if something was missing from my jewelry box so out of every inanimate object he compared to my other rings, my ring finger is in fact the size of a Rolaids. I finally put on the ring that I had been waiting for, for so long. Then I looked at him and said, you probably need to eat that ring sizer now, huh?

Now tell me your story!!



My Engagement Ring Confessions

Okay, it’s probably no surprise that I love diamonds. I am easily distracted by their sparkle. What may be surprising is my first confession. Until it was really time to start looking, I wasn’t interested in them, for me. Like at all. I was much more intrigued by emeralds. But don’t even question for a second that once it was time to start looking – I was all in in under 3 seconds flat. At first my dream ring was an emerald cut diamond with an emerald cut emerald on each side. Then I came back down to earth and really started thinking about what cut I wanted. Enter Chicken of the Sea.

Newlyweds: Jessica and Nick was a hit and I didn’t miss an episode. Jessica Simpson was young, beautiful, and a complete ditz for the entire world to see. She was real and I got the biggest kick out of her and her goofiness. You’ve gotta love a girl who can laugh at herself. And of course through it all she was sporting a beautiful wedding ring set.  Nick proposed with a 4 carat pear cut diamond with pear cut side stones. That was it. I was obsessed. Confession number two, yes, the person who asked if the tuna she was eating was chicken, was my inspiration for wanting a pear cut diamond.

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Our first time looking was in a lovely little jewelry store at a mall in Huntington Beach, California, where we were living at the time. They told us they’d check their other stores and find some rings for us to come back and check out. A few days later we went back. I was ecstatic. They showed us a 3 carat solitaire set in gold. YEP. DONE. SWIPE THAT CREDIT CARD. WE OUT. They also showed us a 2 ct. loose stone. One of the saleswomen took me across the way so Frank could talk cost. I was sure we were leaving with something. Maybe I wouldn’t see the box, but I thought he was buying something. I was wrong. Frank wasn’t too pleased with the fact that they showed us stones that were apparently larger than he had asked to see. OOPS on their part. GENIUS I thought…..

engagement ringAnd so the search went on. We ended up at another jewelry store and we looked at loose stones and settings. It was fun. Not quite as fun as looking at that 3 ct. ring but fun none-the-less. So, if I was going to look at smaller center stones, there were going to be side stones. Maybe my ring wasn’t going to be one big diamond that crossed my entire finger but it would be a few smaller diamonds that crossed my entire finger. Tapered baguettes it was. In the end close to Jessica but not exactly. Surely, just as beautiful.

Flash forward to moving home a little while later when I realized I chosen the exact same ring that my mother in law has. EXACT SAME RING. Pear cut. Baguettes. Gold. Pretty sure though she knows Chicken of the Sea is tuna.

I love engagement ring settings so please comment here if you had a say in choosing your ring and if so why you chose what you did or were you completely surprised?! Or post to the Instagram post! If you don’t have your dream ring yet tell me what it is. I’d love to hear your story!

UP NEXT: the actual engagement.



Beer Bottle Beach Jewelry

mexico mimosaWe are lucky enough to be able to take a vacation every winter to Puerto Vallarta on the west coast of Mexico. I’ve been on official countdown for our 2018 trip for more than six months. My husband and I go with my father and we literally lay on the beach all day. EVERY DAY. The people watching is great and so is the food (papas fritas because that is my favorite food and for some reason they are even better when eaten on the beach in your bathing suit for all the world to see) and drinks served directly to you at your beach chair. We read, nap, listen to music. And shop.

Mexico is probably well-known for the people who walk up and down the beach selling everything from fish on a stick, to snacks and hats, to jewelry. Our first year there we always just said, “No gracias.” The polite way of saying no thanks, we aren’t interested. Year two was a little different as we started looking at the jewelry, of course. We bought a few things. The quality is not great as you can imagine. When we buy gifts I always say, “Enjoy it until it turns your finger green.” Actually, I think it tarnishes more than turns green.

Over the years we have bought a lot of jewelry. We buy gifts mostly now because HELLO?! This blog is called GOLD by Green. Not Silver by Green! We have found two guys that we always look for now. Juan is just a nice guy who is always smiling. We buy stuff in particular from him in hopes of helping to put his kids through school. He always stops to say hi even if he knows we aren’t interested that day. mexico jewelry trayEggar is younger and you can always see him coming. He’s a big guy who always wears a trucker hat with a towel around his neck. His stuff is the nicest we have found yet there is still a little left to be desired but we know what we’re getting. I mean, can you just see me sitting on my beach chair with that tray of jewelry sitting there – kid in a candy shop. Or me in Bin 66.

My husband, being a salesman, LOVES the negotiating. That is the other reason we buy. He will let a deal go on for days with Eggar. It’s actually hysterical. Sometimes it’s not even for something that I want!

Every year we say we aren’t going to buy that much. Yet again, we come home with more presents than we need! But as I sit here I am already excited to see Juan and see what Eggar has to offer this year! EEEK! I do think each year his selection and dare I say quality, gets better. He tells us the stones are blue topaz or citrine. Frank tells him he thinks it’s beer bottle glass. I hope he has some good Grolsh or old Bud Light pieces this year.
mexico braceletmexico ringmexico pendant




Diamonds Should Sparkle

My friend, Suzannah, requested that I talk about cleaning jewelry. I really enjoy cleaning my jewelry. I mean really. Like seriously. It brings me pure joy. It’s my zen zone. I have excused myself from dinner before to clean a friend’s jewelry. My mother enjoys ironing. I would rather buy new clothes than have to iron the ones I already have. But cleaning my jewelry. I love to see it sparkle and shine. Diamonds should sparkle. ALL JEWELRY SHOULD SPARKLE!

cleanFor most jewelry you don’t need anything special. I have talked to jewelers, read jewelers’ Instagram posts on jewelry cleaning and read a few practices online. Everyone says all you need is a toothbrush and a gentle hand or dish soap. I am currently using an old (used) toothbrush. You may think EW but I figure it’s now softer than when I bought it, right? You can also buy a new one just make sure it’s a soft toothbrush. Ironically, I keep both my toothbrush for my teeth and my toothbrush for my jewelry in the same toothbrush holder. And in case you’re wondering, yes, I have accidentally picked up the wrong one to brush my teeth. Hazards of improper storage on my part. Have I changed that? Of course. NOT.

I put a little soap on the toothbrush, add a little water and then scrub away – gently. I always make sure to get in between all of the nooks and crannies, around the stone(s) and under each stone. Then I rinse it well and lay it out on a towel. I always use a bath towel that’s plush. When I dry them I make sure each angle of the ring (let’s face it you know I’m mostly cleaning rings) is rubbed firmly against the towel – top of the stone, each side of the stone and the under side if possible. I want to make sure all of those little plush fibers get into those same nooks and crannies to dry it. I don’t want any water spots left! Now you should see that sparkle.


When it comes to pearls and opals I’d stick to just a little warm water and soap – no toothbrush. Both are delicate stones and you don’t want to damage them. I have also read online not to submerge pearls in water mostly because of the string in which they are strung on.

When my silver tarnishes I either use silver polish, a silver cloth or the old trick using baking soda. Take a large bowl, line it with aluminum foil, add a few tablespoons of baking soda, lay your jewelry in the bottom and cover with boiling water. Leave it in for a few minutes and the tarnish should disappear. Then once again, towel it off.

bling brushBack to gold and gemstones, I have a Bling Brush by @baublerella that I won on Instagram from @gem_hunt. I love it. I use it when I need to do a quick cleaning of my wedding rings and I take it when I travel. I also have a little jar of cleaning solution from a jewelry store that I will soak my rings in before scrubbing with the little brush included. One of my BFF’s, Samantha, also gave me an ultrasonic cleaner. You fill it with water and a little soap, plug it in and let it do its thing. After a few minutes I follow with the towel drying. When she first gave it to me I spent a few hours cleaning just about everything in my jewelry box. It was a good day around here. If you decide to get one of these (they vary in cost) I’d suggest googling the gem stones in your jewelry before using it on everything. It’s safe for diamonds but better safe than sorry. And if it says not to use it on one of your stones it’s likely that warm water and soap are safe. You can look up stones on the Gemological Institute of America’s site,, and find out most of what you need to know for all kinds of gem stones.

I will say one of the MOST important things to do when cleaning any kind of jewelry is to use the drain stopper! I have had rings bounce around the sink before as my heart skipped multiple beats!!!

So, from now on if you see me your nails should be presentable and your jewelry sparkly. And if you think I’m judging your non-sparkly jewelry, I’m not. I’m trying to figure out how I can politely ask to clean it.



A lady’s nails….

This may seem somewhat off topic from jewelry but stay with me. Growing up my mother had these finger nails. It was the 80’s so they were long and super strong with rounded tips and they were real. They’d be painted bright reds or pinks mostly. I remember a picture of her holding one of our Siamese cats and all I could see was the red nails through the white fur. Flash forward to today and she still keeps them painted but they are short. Chemo did a number on them and they aren’t as strong as they once were so they don’t grow like they used to. But hey, more than a 20 year survivor so short nails it is.

I have her nails and my father’s fingers. We call them Landon fingers – long and thin. Regardless of being able to grow my nails pretty long I keep them short. And I keep them manicured. Always. And by that I don’t mean I go out and get manicures. I mean that I keep them looking presentable. Always. I’m really good at painting them so I do have them painted a lot but even when I don’t they are kept looking nice. This leads me to my point….

A lady’s nails should always look presentable. And don’t get it twisted, I by no means think of myself as a “lady” but you know what I’m saying. And I know you can’t always keep your nails clean depending on your job; I follow quite a few jewelers on IG and you can see what working on the bench does to their fingers and nails. BUT (I know the word but defeats everything I just said right?) BUT if you are going to PAINT your nails, this is a PSA to you, know when it’s time to remove the polish. PLEASE. My own term for chipped nail polish is dirty whore nails. Terrible right?! But it just looks awful. I feel like it was a trend for a while a few years back. Hollywood starlets running around looking like they just got done digging through the garbage. I don’t get it. Just take it off, it takes less than five minutes. You probably spend more time every day putting on make up or doing your hair to look nice. Personally, I don’t. My hair is so fine I can dry it during the weather channel’s Local on the 8’s and there are days when I go out with no make up on – mostly weekend days. I like to call it no make up Saturday. But my rings are always on and my nail polish is never chipped.

nails2If you do like to paint your nails but seem to find them chipping a lot here are a few tips. Choose a neutral color like white/cream, light pink or gray/tan. You typically can’t see chips as well in these colors. Paint the tips of the nail to seal on the color on top of your nail. Do the same with a good top coat. If you do see a chip at the tip it is acceptable to paint the tip again and buy yourself another day or two. If you have to do something like wash dishes, wear gloves. This is probably the biggest offender for me. Yet I don’t have gloves. This is one of those do as I say not as I do. One last tip and it’s not to help keep polish from chipping it’s just good practice: do not paint your cuticle. This also looks bad because it looks messy. You should start just above the cuticle for a clean look. I see some people on IG posting that they just got their nails done and when I see the cuticle painted I think to myself, you paid for that? Oh girl.

From my standpoint if I’m going to be staring at my rings all day I’d like my hands to look good and that obviously includes my nails. Now the sunspots and kitten scratches…I try to ignore those. Note to myself to be better about putting sunscreen on my  hands. Please ignore the old, worn, torn sweatshirt as well. Today is another full scale comfort operation.

nails and tea


Snow day = sweats. And rings.

On days that I don’t have to leave the house, like today (thank you #winterstormgrayson) I am decked out in my most comfortable sweatpants.

Snow day Winter Storm Grayson

On days that I do have to leave the house believe me I know I am no fashionista, but if I’m just lounging it’s a full scale comfort operation around here. On days that I do have to leave the house but not for work, it’s about a moderate scale comfort operation. If I’m going to the store, running errands or just going to check out the beach, I’m typically in jeans and maybe a baseball hat. I’m almost always lucky enough to see someone I know at the grocery store during these visits. No matter who that person is, he or she has usually just come from the gym and looks great. Awesome.

The one thing I always do though whether lounging or just running to get cat food from the store, is put on at least my rings. Since I typically always have on a necklace or two that is covered. I may or may not put on my diamond studs and maybe a bracelet. Without fail though the rings are chosen. For me, it’s like wearing underwear. I mean I know not everyone wears underwear (why?!?!?!) but this girl does and I liken that to ALWAYS putting on my rings. It’s part of my daily routine. When I have to go to work I usually know what jewelry I’m wearing before I know what clothes I’m wearing.

So today, while I sit snowed in on my couch, I of course have on my wedding ring stack. For the day I also have on 2 bands I often wear on my index finger and I love. I got them at Nordstrom Rack. It’s one great place to find plated jewelry that’s decently made and won’t break the bank. My ring finger stack includes a previously loved gold band I found in a little store in Cape May during a girls’ weekend. It has four little diamonds, one set a quarter way all the way around. In the middle a gold band from someone on my mom’s side of the family but we aren’t sure who. Finally, one half of my mom’s ring guard from her wedding ring set. Since my parents are divorced she gave it to me. And I soooo love it. It’s a tiny little part of my parent’s history regardless of them not being together. It had meaning once to them and it has tons of meaning to me now.

Snow day stack

One last note is that I like to wear pieces that may be a little more delicate when I’m  hanging out at home. I can take them off for whatever reason, like washing my hands, without worrying about them. I’m also not doing anything that could damage them. The band in the middle is so beautiful and has a very delicate hammered affect to it. We know it’s old and I can see tiny cracks in it in some places so when I wear it I’m super careful with it. I do believe you should wear the special pieces and don’t let them just sit in your jewelry box. So for me, a snow day is the perfect day to enjoy it!

snow day band2


My Push Gift. To Myself.

So, earlier this year we adopted a kitten. We had lost one of our cats and after a few Patchesmonths, thanks to our other cat’s foster mom we found the perfect little nugget. We got her at only six weeks and she immediately stole everyone’s heart….except for her new brother and sister. They tolerate her. We welcomed Patches Buford Royal in May. Could she have been any cuter? She’s much bigger these days.
More than a year ago, I became an Anna Beck lover. I love the jewelry and that it’s all handmade in Bali and that she gives back. I am always excited to see what her new gem of the season is going to be and what the new designs will look like. She mixes metals which also is one of my favorite things to do with my own jewelry. If you follow this group on social media you also see how much fun they have at work. They also document their travels to the studio in Bali which is cool to see since I’ve never been and not sure it’s somewhere I’ll ever get to. That’s one hell of a flight.
Last spring the collection featured malachite. Be still my heart. I mean, hellooooo!! It’s GREEN. However, I have admired this stone since I was little and way before I became a green!
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I think it’s the deep yet vibrant color and the movement of the stone that I am drawn to. According to Crystals by Jennie Harding, it’s supposed to protect against people who leech your energy. Whoa, a-ha moment. No wonder I am drawn to it. I am an empath so I take on everyone else’s energy around me and often feel people are sucking the life out of me. Okay universe I hear you!
Okay back to the purpose of this post. After we brought Patches home I was admiring the latest Anna Beck collection featuring rings, necklaces, braAnneBeckMalachitecelets and earrings made with beautifully cut and polished malachite. My husband and I decided a while ago we only wanted 4 legged furry children. So no baby showers for me (thank God). And, no push gifts. DAMNIT! I love any reason for my husband to buy me jewelry! But I’m a modern woman so I buy a lot (A LOT) myself. So I bought myself my first push gift. Just like when Carrie Bradshaw registered for her shoes although she didn’t have to buy those herself. I figured why not? I really didn’t need a reason but I thought it was a pretty good one.




Welcome to my first blog! I plan to talk about all things jewelry and probably a few other random things that come to mind. I seem to have tons of random thoughts throughout the day. I often hear Deeeep Thoughts by Mary Green in my head. I know you remember it from the SNL skit.

So, to start this off I’ll talk about where I get my deep love of jewelry. It dates back to before I can actually remember. Seriously. I had a baby signet ring that I lost at the roller skating rink in elementary school and I still remember what it looked like with its dainty M on it. I continue to feel the disappointment of losing it to this day probably close to 30 years later. I also still have a baby birthstone ring that I wore so much that I had to have the amethyst replaced because it was so beat up. It’s ironic that as I write this I realize my two main memories of my childhood jewelry are about rings!

My main influence comes from my mom. When I was growing up she always had these rings on. Diamonds. They weren’t huge or flashy but she always had them on. Her diamond engagement ring and the ring guard that surrounded it. Her three stone diamond pinky ring. Gold. Ironically again, rings.

She had this jewelry box. I swear light from the heavens shown down on it every time I opened it. Even though I knew every piece that was in it and exactly where it was kept in the jewelry box, it seemed like a new adventure every time I went into it. I would sneak out gold hoop earrings and put them on on my way to school. She had no idea until a friend accidentally commented that she had seen me wearing them in front of her. I got a stern look. Pretty sure I lied and said my friend was kidding. No doubt she was convinced by my Oscar worthy performance.

She has more jewelry now than I could ever keep up with and her taste has totally changed from when I was a kid. Her collection now includes previously loved pieces, thrift store finds and pieces found on deep discount at local stores. But it’s still fun to go to her house and rummage through all of her drawers, boxes, shelves, boxes, trays and baskets of baubles. These days I’m allowed to borrow things. I don’t though because we have very different taste in jewelry. sparkel

She’s more silver, funky and chunky and I’m gold, trendy and layered. I will say we both love sparkle in every sense of the word. I know I get that from her along with my love of and inability to share French fries. So when I saw this pillow I had to have it. To put among the other pillows on my porch that have sparkle on them. And believe me I never thought I’d be someone who A) was into pillows and B) wanted to spread sparkle around the house like glitter. I don’t though because let’s face it my house is not a strip club even though my husband thinks Miss Mary’s is the perfect name for one.