Someways this is exactly how I feel when having to figure up the ratios and cruddy math equations just to make something that smells nice or helps 😉 lol
Monthly Archives: April 2012
I ran my first payment via GoPayment, my new credit card processor. I absolutely love that I was able to enter all of my product codes, descriptions, and costs into it, so when I create an order I can just tap on the items. It tallies them up and then you either swipe the card or go to the keyed page. There is definitely a down side to it though. A carryover habit from being a billing consultant is to write “via text” or “via phone”. Well, when I went to “write” that on the screen it seriously looked like a kindergartener had written it. Rofl. I bet customers will get a laugh when they have to sign, although I think we’re all pretty used to electronic signatures turning out wonky. I definitely didn’t expect careful print words to look so bad though! *grin* I was able to text the receipt immediately and love that feature. I never could get the email receipt function to work properly. My customer didn’t want it, but it was a perfect opportunity to familiarize myself. It kept saying that I had entered an invalid email. Um, all three of those were mine, Intuit! I know my own email addresses. Lol. I’ll have to check on that next time. In the meantime I’m tickled that there are extra fraud protection steps with this processor, than Paypal did. This requires the security code and it took more steps to do a keyed card. PayPal was certainly user friendly, but in that I felt it was disturbingly easy to do a keyed transaction. This app sure makes me feel a lot better about working to protect my customers. I was even able to zero out the sales tax, since I added it into my prices to make it easier for everyone, which is a really nice feature in my opinion. Overall, I definitely will be recommending this processor to any and all. 🙂 Now if I could only fall asleep or get the umph to go make some bath cookies….*grin* Happy Sunday!
Yesterday my helpers (two helpers now!) were in the mood to work and learn, so I was able to get several things done with their help.
I utilized the tween energy to make some goat’s milk lotion, since she could stir almost nonstop without it bothering her. I experimented with my new Coffee Bean FO, which definitely needs a lot of experimentation to find the right ratio! Anyway, a ml was so eye-watering that I added three versions of vanilla to mellow it out a bit. It still needs a lot of help, but anyway…My new helper enthusiastically loved it, while my nose was wrinkled and I turned the fan on to get the stink out of the room, so that experiment became her gift for helping, and she will be the tester for the Coffee Bean. (Did you know that some Tweens drink coffee before school?! I couldn’t believe how young the coffee drinkers are getting. Whoa, I’m out of touch.)
Anyway, I needed to make a batch of lavender GM samples and had her follow my recipe (a great chance to teach about measuring liquids, reading mililiters, reading recipes, and observing thorough cleanliness), and I commented about being glad to be done with the lavender items, since I can’t stand lavender. My helper took a sniff and suddenly I almost saw a light bulb come on over her head. “It smells like baby wipes!” Hm, that’s not really what I aim for when making products. Lol. She made a few comments about how neat it was to be able to make stuff smell like things from the store (which, admittedly, it is, but please not something associated with butts *sassy wink*) and we did a little lesson about the importance of chemistry, the difference of FOs and EOs, and how to read/apply ratios. I was still mulling over baby wipes when I noticed her over by the mechanic soaps.
Apparently Tweens still retain the childhood curiosity that makes them want to poke stuff. Lol. Thankfully she understood the importance of not touching or disturbing the sellable items, but that tester bar would have been crying from being poked and prodded so much if it was alive. *grin* The poor bar has wrinkles, fingerprints, and bits of soap dripping UP the mold. I had to keep reminding her to wash, because she was over there playing in it as it set anytime I turned, and rubbed it in like lotion. It was rather funny and I think it was intriguing to watch a liquid solidify in person. Actually seeing the process, “like making an ice cube”, seemed to make her day. I do think that I’ll avoid soap making with the girls over though, since I haven’t developed the eyes-in-the-back-of-my-head thing yet. *grin*
By the way, a great way to get a tween to handle processes carefully is to say that you could go to jail for not following the instructions. I doubt that it was so much about me going to jail, but more of not being able to be around the product making anymore, but I’ll take what works. Lol. It really worked for stressing the importance of every quarter mililiter being exact and I don’t feel guilty at all. It gave me a smile to hear “we can’t have you going to jail” after the baby wipes kick to the ego. *grin* I’ll take what I can get 😉
Lava soap has nothing on me
*grin* I couldn’t resist spouting off. I decided to alter my mechanic’s soap a bit after some reading and exploring textures. My original mechanic’s soap focused on the pumice, just like the traditional soap. I played a bit with the recipe for Christmas gifts and took it a step further this time. Now I have finely ground oatmeal, the pumice, finely ground apricot seed, and now milled flax seed. It definitely made an odd looking slurry, although my helpers thought it was “so weirdly cool”. It has a grainy texture from the pumice and then a real sloughing ability due to the other additives. I can’t wait to see how it works against Goodyear residue. Usually that’s my big test for male items. Lol. My scrubs sell decently for men strictly because I can honestly attest that it is (hopefully was *crossing fingers*) the only product to ever remove the Goodyear residue on my husband’s hands and arms. No commercial item has ever worked well. I had a heck of a happy dance when he tested the scrub and was in awe as he showed me the results. I’m really hoping that testing of this version works as well. I’m also thinking about using this recipe with my luffa slices to make an extreme exfoliation combo. Top it off with my new Twilight Woods for Men FO and I might have a new best seller. (Dude, it smells soooo sexy *dreamy sigh*) Anyway, I couldn’t wait to share. They’re not pretty, but hopefully they work wonderfully. I know that I was happy to use some goat’s milk lotion after handling it, since I definitely got an exfoliation lol. Sweet dreams!
A little funk
I managed to get myself up and made a batch each of goat’s milk V2 and V3. Interestingly enough the silky emulsifying wax (V3) melted and incorporated much better and quicker than the pot of V2. That was admittedly a little surprising, since the first batch of V3 I ever made had odd little bulbs of wax that didn’t fully melt and incorporate. Granted that it looked really freaking cool in a colored bottle of lotion (think small tapioca pearls kind of look in a gorgeous lavender lotion).
Anyway, I made two batches of samples and then some 4 oz bottles to have on hand for the citywide garage sale next week (or the one after). I decided that I should make Soda Shoppe in V3 for those that love the scent, but don’t want the thick feeling of the V2 that I have on hand. Of course I was tickled making that and having a little to “test”. *wink*
I decided to do some unscented, dreamsicle, and spa; all best sellers except unscented. They smelled so good and made a tremendous mess. Lol. When I started cleaning up I had little blobs of lotion left behind and I hated to wash it out, so I figured I’d utilize the extras as I was washing the equipment up.
I really didn’t think about the funk from rubbing in dabs of these scents all over. Add some lavender, which I can’t stand the smell of anyway, and I’m a walking sensory what-not-to-wear example. *cracking up* I still like the spa on my elbow and it works well with most of the scents. The dreamsicle and root beer float make a horrible scent when mixed, I must admit.
I really need to think through these things. Lol. I need to make another batch of sample lotions and maybe some bubble wash. I’m not sure what I’ll have my helpers do other than attach lotion labels tomorrow. I planned on making bath cookies with them, which I think will be a super fun new product, but discovered that I’m out of cornstarch, so I’m back to the drawing board. I might let them help me pour Acne Bee Gone Soaps or Mechanic soaps, since they enjoyed the fact that they really had a hand in making the last batch of soaps. Whatever we do, I’m not wearing more than one scent, that’s for sure!!
Taxes – just a brief note
I had to share that KS Dept of Revenue finally recognizes me, so that I can pay my quarterly sales tax, which is now only a month overdue. Rofl. At least I’m finally recognized and can finish that nasty bit of paperwork for a little while. *grin* Hey Z, thank goodness for my spreadsheets that help me keep all of this in order *teasing smile*
Have a great day! I won’t accomplish much except a nap and some paperwork, but had to share that I finally got my email from them. I think they just finally realized that they can’t get paid until they issued my PIN lol
Rainbow piña colada
I got an order to make fruity, rainbow soaps like my “surprise” ones, for birthday party favors. I think these turned out pretty well, although I’m disappointed by the yellow embeds. I had two helpers that day that helped pour (first time pouring for my new helper). They wrinkled their nose at the scent until I unmolded a botched one, cut it in half, and said they could take them. Turns out these soaps are “pretty cool” then 🙂 I think a clear ballerina filled with rainbow embeds might be a nice touch for the special young lady who currently loves rainbows and is so sweetly feminine. I’m going to have fun experimenting. In the meantime my helpers think the jewel tone embeds are “amazing”. Tweens cut you down without a thought, but boy they can sure give a great boost the rest of the time. I still need to try the root beer float embed soaps *grin* We’ll see if they’ll ever make it to the shelf to sell, since all of my root beer products tend to disappear between my mom, husband, self, and helpers *grin* What a compliment!
Pretty Freaking Cool
So, with the insomnia and a pause in my pain, I’m able to finally get on my blog via my computer (insert gasp, since I’m always on via my Nook and iPhone lol). Anyway, the actual site has a ton of stuff that neither app lets me see and boy am I doing a happy dance! I found out that I have readers in other countries! If you happen to be one of those people, thank you so much and it is so incredibly cool! (Okay, I’ll cut down on the exclamation points from here on out, I promise. *grin*) I also found that I had posted something on a blog that I follow, completely unrelated to my stuff, and that I had a bunch of hits off of that. I’ve been staring at the computer in a total “Dude” moment. *grin* I’ve been tickled with the concept of the traffic booster that I got for my website for the main search engines on Saturday, but this blows that out of the water at the moment. This even beats selling a little over half a gallon of goat’s milk lotions within a week. *happy sigh* I hope you have a great day…I’ll be muting my phone in an hour and sleeping the day away I suspect. In the meantime I’m going to jam out to some Katy Perry “Firework” now, since I’m feeling pretty stoked.
A whole lotta V3
I got two big orders with the majority being goat’s milk V3 lotions. I’ve never made such a big batch. That snow on top is emulsifying wax that is silky and almost leaves a powdery feel. A lot of work followed this picture, but I wanted to take a picture to remember such an accomplishment (not to mention my first round of version 3). Booyah! That pot is over half a gallon of just base, btw. *bow* You may be in awe now *teasing grin* Anyway, just a fun tidbit that I wanted to share. Have a great evening!
Slap my hands
If I mention ordering new scents, please slap my hands. Lol. That entire shelf with the forest of pipettes is filled with FOs and EOs. Remember when I was amazed with the first flat of them? *blush* I think I need to admit that I am an addict and have a problem. Lol. The left flat is food, middle EOs, and right is for non-food FOs. I hate to think of just how expensive that shelf is! Lol. I’m so glad that I don’t have to worry about earthquakes shaking that shelf 😉 I must admit, though, that I am thoroughly stocked for summer, except for one more order of goat’s milk base. No matter how much insomnia I have, I’m going to avoid my wholesaler’s website like the plague and stop my late night shopping *grin*