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Monthly Archives: December 2011

Baskets anyone?

Some people won’t be too pleased, I’m sure, but most on my list are getting specially selected or created products for Christmas. I did small gift bags for the kids and baskets for the families or adults. Plus one order is waiting for pick up with that family’s gifts, just to make sure that I don’t forget to give one or the other. Lol. Can you believe that 5 baskets aren’t included in this pile because they got shipped?! I finished the ordered baskets last night and took the pic, and realized that I have justification for being so exhausted. That’s a lot of little spurts of work. Albeit I’ve worked on stuff for months and now it’s just getting assembled, but I finally feel that there is proof positive that I do something. Lol. If people don’t like the stuff, I hope they give it to others that will, but I’m proud of myself. Good thing I stuck a bag of my “lump of coal” in each one just in case they don’t like getting the product for Christmas. *big grin*


Pop a Wheelie

I admit that I struggle with creating catchy or unique product names, just like I struggle with naming my poetry. Typically a poem will end up untitled or part of the first line. I suppose that all of my creative umph goes into the poem, so there isn’t much left for the title. Same with my products usually. Every so often I do really well though, I think. I love Acne Bee Gone and Have Your Cake and Bathe With It Too (long one for a small dessert cake soap, but it matches the work that goes into it and I love it too much to change it). I managed to come up with another perfect one.

I made some new mechanic bar soaps to give as Christmas gifts and used “Sand Dune”, one of the new FOs. Sand Dune just didn’t do it for me as a name, so I started going through my limited vocabulary of motocross terms. Suddenly I heard a friend’s little boy saying “pop a wheelie” over and over from my memories. Oh yeah, perfect! The guys will love it, it actually fits their moto lingo, and one of the recipients happens to be that little boy (not quite so little now though). Heel Clicker was the only other lingo that had a chance, since it was better than roosting, whoops, and hang on (exhausting my lingo knowledge for the most part *grin*, I suppose I should listen more instead of allowing the wah wah of Charlie Brown’s teacher to replace what is said). I’m pretty happy with Pop a Wheelie and the soaps turned out really nice. I had just one little issue with the soaps. I decided to change things up and use my new spa sayings mold instead of my usual “homemade” or plain bar molds. When I bagged the bars I had a little head scratcher when I realized that I’d have to figure out which moto enthusiast guy would get the one that says “romance”. *snicker* I totally forgot about that one. I got too stuck on refresh and uplift. Lol. Doh! I experimented a little on this batch too (as if I’d leave a recipe alone and just make something as I had previously). I decided to add some ground apricot seed to the pumice to see if that helps with the performance. The seed that I have is gentle enough for sensitive skin, yet is good at exfoliating, so I figure it has a good chance at improving the mechanic soap. Please cross your fingers! Since they were gifts I didn’t make testers, so I have no idea how they will turn out. I have 4 testers that I’ll have to check up on after Christmas, I suppose.

I used Oakmoss in sugar scrub that I made for gifts, too. I have to say that it’s way more of an ocean scent than woodsy. It has that dark undertone of the recesses of the woods, but mostly it has crisp, clean, and inviting notes of a body of water. There is a slight tang that I can pick up on that is in most perfume and cologne bases, but so far no one else smells that note thankfully. (I admit that my nose is sensitive. I can smell milk or bread turning days before it does. Sucks for me since I won’t touch them then, while others can finish it up before it actually turns. Comes in handy for my little hobby though.) I had a horrible time coming up with a name for such a contradictory and complicated scent. Plus, most that I liked I figured would be way over most heads, like mythological names. I like Oldies and was sitting there listening to them while finishing a few things up, when I heard “Beyond the Sea”. Booyah! To prevent any infringement I went the extra word and named it “Beyond the Sea, Somewhere” which amused me once sugar scrub was added, because it looks like “somewhere sugar scrub”. *smile* We’ll see if anyone takes it that way. Lol.

I have a list of names that I and others have brainstormed, but somehow nothing that I have been making fits any of those names. Murphy’s Law.

Anyway, I woke up way too early and am getting cranky, so I’m going to go finish my last two orders. Huffing some sexy smells should turn the day around. (Both orders are for seduction baskets. Too cool! Both get a little customized, too, so it takes more of my abilities than just putting stuff from a list into a basket. Have I ever mentioned how much I like to be challenged and mentally stimulated? Lol.) Have a wonderful weekend and be safe if fighting those holiday crowds.

Buttered popcorn

My wholesaler was running massively behind, so when I put in my replacement order a couple of days ago I didn’t expect anything until after Christmas. (I still haven’t received my order from B&N from Black Friday after all.) Much to my surprise my box arrived and I got to unwrap my own present *grin* I ordered some new scents that were on sale and couldn’t wait to start sniffing.

Out of all of the new scents I was so excited to get Candy Corn. It’s been on my wish list on the site for months and once it was down to a few bucks for a big bottle, that baby was mine. *smile* Anyway, the blurb describes it as a soft vanilla with sweet notes. Um, I think my bottle didn’t get that memo. *pout* I swear to you that it smells like buttered popcorn! I have no idea how that will make a decent soap or lotion, that’s for sure. Lol. Any ideas? Maybe I should make a group of gag gifts with the positively awful scents that I’m beginning to gather (about one per every ten I order anymore *sigh). Buttered popcorn, stinky gingerbread that smells like an odd bread pudding, and the rank Cafe Latte…

And my mind wanders…sorry. *grin* I got two amazingly great scents that I’m tickled about. Pumpkin Spice isn’t quite as mellow as the Perfect Pumpkin that I have (which I had to restock in this order too, since it’s awesome!).

My customer loyalty gift from the wholesaler was Oakmoss and it is divine. It has a gentle earthiness to it, but such a clean, uplifting top note. It’s almost like sitting on the side of a waterfall, on the rocks by the pool area, and taking a deep and cleansing breath. *happy sigh* I think it’ll make a phenomenal unisex scent. Not too sweet or musky, not too heavy, not sharp…nothing but simply great.

So I’ll switch my thinking to the wasted FO was free and Oakmoss as my new, great purchase. *grin* Makes me feel better about the cost. Lol.

Anyway, I have a replacement scale battery, extra clear soap base, bath whip base, and lotion base, so I need to really get into gear if I can reign in my symptoms. *smile* I want to make the mens sugar scrub in Oakmoss now. Tonight I’ll stay quiet and laying down though, enjoying my Tizanidine, and play with name ideas. It’ll be hard to not go with the predictable line. Lol.

I hope you have a wonderful day!

The kitchen just might explode

I haven’t been overly productive the last few days, since I haven’t felt well, so I decided to really give a push last night to get a few things done.  When I got off of the computer I sanitized my workstation in the kitchen and then started to get things out to start working.  I really want to make a more masculine scented scrub option, so that was my main priority.

I went to get out some bath whip, which is a main component in the scrub, but couldn’t find a jar.  I finally found some in my emergency stash “hidey hole” and gave a sigh of relief.  Then I began to bite my lip when I realized that I don’t have enough of the usual extra clear soap base that the recipe calls for until my order is delivered, who knows when, until I found an alternative that I think might be kind of nice, since it’s a creamy variation.  Okay, second crisis averted.  Cool!  I got out the little holiday print plastic buckets that I wanted to put the finished product in, so they’re ready to just pop a gift tag on and put under the tree.  I sanitized them and let them sit to dry while I got ready to cut the soap for melting.  I had to roll my eyes when I went to turn my digital scale on and it said “lo”, and shut itself off.  Seriously?  So, I chilled myself out and went to my battery drawer to get another battery.  Of course the scale has one of those special CR disc batteries and I have two, but not of the number that the scale needs.  I mean, at this point it was just totally an “of course” thing.  *grin*  Okay…quick thinking prevailed and I grabbed my household scale.  Hmm….won’t read mere ounces (and I don’t have much more than the needed 10 ounces of the soap anyway), so I sigh and step onto the scale with the soap on a lid, knowing that I’ll have to suck it up and see my weight if I want to get the measurement of this blasted soap.  Once the weight is flashing I put the soap on the cutting board while still on the scale and look back down to see the difference.  Seriously?!  The scale was so mean that it didn’t bother to read a difference in the ounces of me versus the ounces of soap.  Just stayed the same weight.  *sigh*  Appliances can just be so cruel.  lol.  Fine!  I’ll just scrap making scrub for now until I get the new battery and will make some of the pumice soap that I need, since I sold out.  Um, genius?  Knock knock…still no way to measure the soap to make the bars.  *rolling eyes*  Okay, so now that my spectacularly stupid moment was over I go to put the scale away and the glass top comes off.  The glue had come loose and now my scale is a bit wobbly.  No biggy….super glue is awesome and a quick fix.  I put the stuff away and then go to the now dry buckets.  They’re totally ready, so I figure I’ll pop the lids on and they’ll be ready for when I actually can make some base.  Yeah, cue eye rolling now…the lids didn’t fit.  *cracking up*  It’s a miracle that I wasn’t hyperventilating at this point and I was texting with my friend at the time about all that was going on.  She advised that I just get out of the kitchen before it exploded, the way that things were going.  *grin*  The guilt though is soooo strong that I haven’t done much more than read and pack a few boxes, so I decided to box up the remaining dessert cake soaps.  Oh yeah, you see where this is headed, don’t you?  lol.  I had three of the perfect favor boxes left and had some of the fat square soap boxes that I had found in my hidey hole that might just work for the rest, since I’d like to ship a few more.  First one I managed to cause the flaps to come apart, because adhesive now hates me, too.  Double sided tape is my friend, though, and that puppy got wrangled.  Second one went perfectly, so I should have been on guard, right?  The third one I could see almost in slow motion…I pick it up, move my hand the three INCHES to the box and suddenly I see my hand becoming weak, the fingers stiffening and beginning to spread…splat.  Apparently the cherry soap “sauce” has hardened rather well with the extra cure time and there’s just a bit of a dent in the bath whip “ice cream” below, but the sauce remains perfect.  lol.  No biggy…my mom has always embraced the little mistakes in my art, whatever medium I currently am into, as part of the gift of uniqueness of that item.  That one is in Mom’s Christmas stocking.  *grin*  Anyway, I used my other hand and got the third box filled.  Beautiful.  I assemble the soap box to test it out and it looks just great, although it is cardboard instead of something pretty, but I don’t care at this point.  I carefully wrap another cake soap in tissue to help protect and cushion it in case the postal worker has to hit the breaks suddenly or someone decides to play shuffleboard with the gift box my goodies are going into (hey, I’ve heard the stories of what goes on behind the scenes and received some seriously smashed up boxes myself lol).  As I am putting the soap into the box I notice that there’s a little bit hitting on the edge of the box.  Hmm….maybe I need to sacrifice some of the tissue?  Of course not!  I mean, it was a day to live on in infamy, right, so shouldn’t we add one more to the list?  Yeah, the soap is less than a centimeter too big itself to fit into the box.  *cracking up*  I tore a sheet of wax paper and covered the remaining soaps with it, and just walked away.  lol.  However, I couldn’t just walk away with a scrap of dignity and call it a crappy night.  Nope.  Nada.  I slipped on the way out of the room, so I crashed into the living room in utter defeat.  *grin*  Needless to say I sat and finished reading my book for the rest of the night.

I’ll get a new battery tomorrow and contemplate trying again.   I can switch to using the empty whip containers that I stash for putting tester products into.  I figure that they might not be as cute as the buckets, but they twist on securely and I can trust them.  I might have someone else cut the soap though, because if the universe is still hating me, I will probably cut my finger off.  Maybe when I’m melting the base I’ll actually cause an explosion in the kitchen, though….okay, maybe I won’t make anything new for awhile.



This is what fifty dollars can look like. Lol. I had to remove the bars of soap from their boxes to fit everything in the basket. I’m really proud of this basket. Might not look as spiffy as some of my others, but there’s a lot of work and me in that basket. That snowman soap in the middle, Snowman Cocoa Kisses, is one of my favs in this basket. You can’t see it, but there are layers of red swirls in it. I’d pour a little, put a drop, and draw the toothpick to swirl. Pour, repeat. *grin* Too cute!! Now, time to dread the bill at the post office. *grin*

Float My Soap

I finished making up all of the products that have been ordered so far. With free reign in making bars of soap I made a few new blends and one turned out phenomenal in my opinion. It’s a root beer float with a nice hint of vanilla. Oh man do I like it! My working name is “float my soap”. It might not be the best, but I think it’s a cute play on float my boat and root beer float. What are your thoughts?? I started out with using it in some regular bar soaps with nice raised lettering words. I couldn’t resist using the same scent then in some loofah soaps. I squished some loofah slices in some round guest molds, and then poured the soap over and in them. The moisture of the soap and when used will soften the loofahs very effectively, although I’m concerned about rough edges peeking up out of the soap and being too abrasive, so I need some testing before offering it on my site. I’ve been wanting to make loofah soaps since early summer, so I’m so excited! *grin*

I upped the awesome factor with some lemon powder. It didn’t change the scent, but caused a bit of yellow speckling and is really beneficial. I don’t think the speckling detracts at all, just helps with the homemade look, and I love how it helps the skin.

Sadly not all work was a success. *mock pout* The Acne Bee Gone facial soaps in Fruity Patootie for my brother’s stepdaughter may be something she will like (oh yeah, sooo crossing my fingers on that), but it makes me wince. Just 2 MLs to 6 soap rounds and my mold smells so strongly of fruit punch that I want to lock the mold away for a few months. Lol. If they like it, then it’s all worth it, but I might try to discourage future purchases of it. *teasing smile* I’d never do that, but boy would it be tempting.

I also decided to finally try blending floral with a more neutral, dark note, but I declared it an epic fail. I’ve been reassured that it’s “not that bad; still sellable” with a shrug, so maybe it’s my super sensitive nose that makes it seem so horrible. I’ll have Miss Ash give her utterly honest youthful opinion of it when she’s here and know if it’s going in the write off bin or on the shelf to sell. *grin*

I need to finish assembling my brother’s basket, tape up my stepmother’s order, and then work on family gifts. I’d probably finish the baskets up if it wasn’t going on 5 AM and my longing for the insomnia to end. I would really like a few hours of sleep before the roofers come to finish up. Maybe I’ll go huff some Sleepy Time spray ; ) I wish you a very good day.

Like a bakery

Despite the blahs I’ve managed to get a few items made. *happy dance* I made a big batch of dessert cake soaps and they smell phenomenal. Between them and the cake batter lotions, and the pumpkin buttercream lotion, it’s a delightful mixture like in a bakery. I experimented with rolling the “ice cream” scoop of bath whip for the dessert cakes in slightly cooled melted glycerin soap. Ummm…epic fail. *biting lip* There was whip everywhere and the texture as it cooled…ugh! The whip developed a tacky texture where it got coated with the soap. Oddest feeling and experience ever. Lol. Thankfully that was soap number 13, the experimental child of each big batch. *grin* I try to have an extra in case of something bad happening when I’m doing a big batch.

I also filled the orders for goat’s milk lotions. Wow! I’m completely out of goat’s milk base now. That’s pretty cool. *smile* Anyway, a few are the new version with emulsifying wax. That was a learning experience, let me tell you! Lol. It certainly doesn’t take much of the wax pellets even in a big batch, but it took almost an hour in warm base for them to melt and incorporate. I didn’t expect that. Lotion has to be warmed at a low rate or else it turns nasty very fast, but it was hard to hold my little patience and not crank the heat when I’d all ready waited half an hour to melt the lotion anyway. Lol. I measured and did my additives, and then poured each version. After they were done I got to take a swipe of the caked on lotion on the side of my lotion pot and tried it out. Holy smokes!! I seriously think I may have to add to all adult lotions now. It’s so creamy and leaves the neatest feeling. It’s this smooth and thick feeling like it’s really working, and will take awhile to soak in, but doesn’t have that greasy or tacky feeling that some intensive care versions of lotions have. *happy dance* So awesome!! I’m debating offering the wax as an a la carte option, but the nerd in me can’t resist giggling at imaging “Sex in the Shower 2.0”. *snicker* Of course, you have to have the robot voice announcing it in your mind. We’ll see which version of me wins on how to incorporate emulsifying wax into my line. *grin*

I have a few more things left to make, but I’m done for the day. I hope you have a fantastic weekend and hope your house smells as amazing as mine right now!!

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