Monday, February 27, 2017

NOTD: FUN Lacquer Celebrate

There's nothing more eye catching than a shifty duchrome with a sprinkling of holo! 2 coats FUN Lacquer Celebrate.

Recent Wax Reviews

Pearl Rose Candle Co Pearl Rose- "fresh cut roses, whipped butter, blonde sugar cane, madagascar vanilla, maple and vanilla extract." I really loved this blend! A sweet, fragrant rose and vanilla bakery blend. Moderate throw for about 8-10 hours. Beautifully decorated too! Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

BBW Marshmallow Fireside: previously reviewed.

Olde Primitive Treasures Cashmere Woods: A warm and slightly masculine blend of woods and fragrant cashmere musk. Moderate throw for about 8 hour. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Rose Jam Tea & Cakes Sugar Cookie. Love this blend! Luxurious, warm tea and freshly baked cake, fresh roses & sweet lemon, vanilla sugar cookies. Moderate throw for about 12 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Country Lane Keepsakes Sweet Apples, Raspberries and Peaches. A lovely fresh fruit blend; all the notes were present. This was an older tart so unfortunately the throw was light for about 6-7 hours. Overall grade: B. Might repurchase.

Froggy Farts Candles & Tarts Cherry Bomb: A sweet candy cherry scent. Moderate throw for about 8-9 hours. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Maple Glazed Cinnamon Buns: warm cinnamon buns with a touch of maple glaze. Light throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: B. Might repurchase.

Long Cane Primitives Snickers Coffee: a rich peanut butter aroma with hints of chocolate and coffee. Fairly strong throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Cleanse Your Soul Baked Lemon Vanilla: This is an odd scent for me; this brand's vanilla scents tend to have a strange undertone. It smells more like sharp lemon fizzy soda than a vanilla bakery blend to me. Not bad, just not exactly what I'd expect. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: C+. Probably wouldn't repurchase.

Sniff My Tarts Buttercream Cheese Bread Blueberry Muffins Lemon Bread: a rich, warm bakery blend with hints of delicious lemon and blueberry. Strong throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Marshmallows Under The Moon- "warm toasted marshmallows, smouldering woods, rich vanilla cream, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg." A cozy vanilla marshmallow scent, heavy on the spices, especially clove. Warm and fall like. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: B+. Might repurchase.

Glitterati PPW Marshmallow Fireside- previously reviewed.

Sniff My Tarts Cinnamon Strudel Brown Sugar Zucchini Bread: a warm and yummy bakery blend. All the notes are present. Strong throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Jamianne's Banana Nut Bread: a super yummy banana bread aroma. Strong throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

February Wrap Up

Tea and wifi, my favorite companions.
It's certainly been a month of ups and downs. I haven't been sharing "goals" posts for the last few weeks because I'm not sure what my goals are right now. I did swimmingly at maintaining a no buy, trying new recipes and cutting back on sugar and processed foods in January. I felt proud of my small accomplishments, but once my self imposed limit of the month was up, I lost motivation to keep up the habits. I had a hard time with the sugar cravings throughout and was tired of feeling "deprived" without having any noticeable improvements in my health, so by the time Valentine's Day rolled around I was in "treat yoself" mode. Not only did I go through a couple of boxes of chocolates, but even worse a jar of frosting made it into my cart. I ate it with a spoon over a week and while it tasted good, it didn't make me feel very good about myself. I'm still trying to find the right balance of flavorful food and health conscious foods for myself I guess. Part of the problem was I didn't end up liking several of the healthier dishes I made myself and felt like I was wasting food and money.
I'm not sure where to go from here, but I have seen my doctor and made an appointment with a counselor for March 20th. I would like some guidance and some insight in to my behaviors that I currently feel I lack. I think I do better at sticking to goals in a structured environment so I would like to get a life plan of sorts together.

Finances are becoming a concern again which is causing a lot of stress. We're nearing our credit limit and hubby is currently only working 4 days a week which is making things very tight. Plus taxes will be more complicated this year with him doing Uber and while we usually get a decent sized return we are concerned we may not get much this time or even owe. The costs associated with seeking mental health care are concerning too, but hopefully it will be worth it. We are tired of feeling stuck.

I've always had a best friend relationship with my husband and the positive side of him having 3 days off is that we've gotten to spend more leisure time together. My husband has been taking a medication for the past couple of weeks that seems to be helping him feel a lot happier. He has been enjoying his hobbies more, especially flying his camera drone and making videos of the local landscape. If you would like to watch his videos, please click here. I'm happy for him, but I have been taking the same medication for about a year and haven't really noticed a difference, good or bad. I do hope to find a better solution to manage my anxiety. 
Anyway I have had some nice experiences this month as well. Hubby and I really enjoyed the movie John Wick 2, and we also discovered a new Indian food place that we really enjoy.

I made a new friend that lives locally. She gave me a beautiful haircut and I painted her and her daughter's nails and had a fun time attending her baby shower.

Life may have its ups and downs but overall I'm so grateful for the tremendous blessings I've received. Sometimes when I'm feeling down I have trouble blogging but I really appreciate all of you that read my musings and especially those that have sent words to of encouragement. I have made several online friends and my life is richer for it. Love you all!

How have things been going for everyone else recently? Any highs, lows, or lessons learned you wish to share?

Saturday, February 25, 2017

February Sephora Play Box

Here are the contents of February's Sephora Play Box:

I have not tested any of the products yet, except Prada Candy which I have worn before. I like it but am not in love with it.
I get a very light sweetness; a faint caramel opening note which then settles into a lovely freshness like a cool afternoon breeze, and dries down to have a touch of white musk. Not a strong silage and only lingers about 2 hours on me. My husband really like it on me though; so I like to have sample vials like this on hand.
For more info on the February box products you can click here.

It is with a heavy heart that I have cancelled my Sephora Play subscription. I did look forward to seeing what beauty goodies were inside every month, but I chose to unsubscribe for a couple of reasons. I usually like to give a subscription box at least 3 months to determine how many of the products I tend to use and how good of a value it really is for me. While I liked most of the samples I received, there was nothing I couldn't live without. 
Finances are tight right now so I wanted the option to be able to allocate those $10 to something I might want more.
Plus Sephora will make free samples of different products you may want to test and has other frequent freebie deals, so I don't really need to pay to sample many of the products I could try for free. Plus I already have accumulated so many free sample sized products from various sources that I'm running out of room to store them and often end up giving some away. Lowering the volume of "stuff" coming in the mail would be good.

I haven't made any fun buys since my 2 wax purchases at the beginning of the month. There are several things I'm interested in but am undecided as to where I'd like to spend the money. I do really enjoy the concept of subscription boxes but am only currently subscribed to the Walmart box that is $5 every 3 months. I plan to do a future post listing info about several subscription boxes I'm interested in, and I will let you know if I choose another one to subscribe to.

Any subscription boxes or services you would recommend?

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

NOTD: Mauve & Bronze Glitter

Glitter is Pure Ice Witching Hour over 1 coat Zoya Odette. I think the glitter is really pretty against the mauve.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Glitterati Haul & Giveaway

For those not familiar with Glitterati Wax, they are a wonderful wax vendor with high quality products that operates exclusively through their Facebook group. They do not have a website to order from; they have weekly "flash lot" sales every Sunday from 3-3:30pm EST where you comment "me" on the sale post and a set number of winners are selected to purchase a wax mystery box. Winners usually receive a mini loaf 5-6 oz, 6 approximately 3 oz chunks and 6 2 oz scent shots in a random variety of scents for $36 plus shipping. The only other ways to buy Glitterati are to get on the sign up lists for mystery lots or custom orders (which usually only open one a year or less.)
If you are interested in Glitterati Wax the next mystery box sign ups will be this February 28th- March 2nd. 
Other than that, you may be able to but a "destash" of wax from some kind soul.

This may seem like a rather exclusive or even odd business model, but the owner Janine is a one woman show and this is what works for her as her product is in extremely high demand. She is a lovely person with excellent customer service and I have greatly enjoyed many of her scent blends and have gotten strong and long lasting throw from the majority of them. I was lucky enough to win a flash lot back in October and I become hooked on this great wax.
Coming off of my wax ban earlier this month I entered another flash drawing on a whim and wouldn't you know it, I won again!
I'm glad this wax purchase was a special one; it will probably be my last for a while due to finances.

These are the scents I received:

Amish Kitchen- "vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, allspice, sugar, bakery and fruits."

Apple Mango Tango (type)- apple and mango mixed with a fresh laundry aroma, just like the Gain laundry detergent.

Marshmallow Fireside- "toasted marshmallows by the fire" (BBW dupe).

Tahiti Treat Citrus Herb- "zesty tropical fruits and berries with a slight musk base note" + "sweet basil, lime, geranium, linden blossom and cyclamin."

Plum Tart Vanilla Buttercream Crunch- "rich pastry, heady baked plums and light spices" + vanilla buttercream.

Peppermint Vanilla Buttercream 

Banana Cookies 

Little Black Dress- "white carnation, blood orange, sandalwood, black rose, smoky wood, patchouli, toasted vanilla bean, vetiver, amber and musk."

Citrus Shower- a Lush Avobath dupe.

Lavender Lemon Verbena

Grape Soda Vanilla Ice Cream 


Glazed Donuts Caramel Apple

Have you ever tried Glitterati wax? Would you like to? I would like to give away a small wax goodie package including some Glitterati scent shots from my personal stash to one lucky winner! All you have to do is leave a comment below telling me whether or not you have tried Glitterati wax and a few of your favorite wax scents in general. A name will be drawn from the comments and random and the winner will be announced on March 1st. Thanks for reading!

NOTD: Teal & Glitter

WnW glitter for theme week. 1 coat Sinful Colors Rise & Shine and 1 coat WnW Fergie XOXO. Both nice formulas.

Really enjoying the spring blossoms out today!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

NOTD: Post Valentine's Holo Skittles

I ended up keeping my pearl mani for Valentine's dinner; I can't believe it lasted 5 days! 
But I didn't want to miss out on doing Valentine's colors so I did this quick mani today. 2 coats each of Color Club Harp On It, Cloud Nine and Miss Bliss, Superchic Lacquer Trap Queen, and Cupcake Apple-y Ever After.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Recent Wax Reviews

Kitty's Konfections My Father The Inventor Of Toaster Strudel- strawberry jam, pie crust, cream cheese frosting. This was a very yummy smelling scent. Sweet strawberry and cream cheese frosting notes were prominent. Moderate throw for about 6-8 hours. Overall grade: B+. Cannot repurchase.

Wonderberry Wax Melted Marshmallow Cookie: This was an older tart I had; I'm trying to melt through some of my older tarts that I just have small quantities of. This one had a light throw; vague vanilla cookie scent. Nothing special in it's current state. Changed it out after 4 hours or so. Overall grade: D. Would not repurchase.

Rosegirls Peach Raspberry Coconut Vanilla Crunch Donuts: another older tart. I was pleasantly surprised this one had quite a bit of scent left. I could smell each of the fruity notes as well as a sweet bakery note. Moderate throw for a few hours and light thereafter. Overall grade: B. Would repurchase.

The Bathing Garden Candied Peppermint Petals: I adore this scent! Cool, sweet peppermint and sugared rose petals. Strong throw for about 10 hours. Such a beautifully decorated tart too. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Sugar Overload- sugar cookies and cinnamon donuts. A yummy vanilla bakery scent with a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Would repurchase.

Country Lane Keepsakes Sweet Sugar Cookies. Another older tart. An ordinary vanilla fragrance with light throw. Overall grade: C. Might repurchase.

Candles From The Keeping Room Crunchy Berry Cereal Milk: Another older tart that had quite a bit of throw left. Smelled wonderfully of fruity cereal, similar to Capt'n Crunch, and sweet milk. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade A-. Would repurchase.

Rosegirls Dunk My Donuts Struselkutchen Noel: another older tart. Not much scent left here. A vague bakery aroma with light throw. Overall grade: D. Might repurchase; would love to smell it new.

The Scented Squirrel Nymph: sweet patchouli, strawberries, whipped cream. A unique and yummy blend; smells like a spiced strawberry shortcake. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Would repurchase.

House of Usher Wax Museum 1340 Pennsylvania St.-  'Fresh strawberries, sliced and macerated in sugar, spooned over freshly baked biscuits, topped with orange whipped cream.'
It does smell like sweet strawberries; very pleasant. Moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: B+. Might repurchase.

Sniff My Tarts Pink Noel, Mallow Noel, Pink Sugar Baby Powder. A nice blend; perfumey opening notes of pink sugar with slight undertones of vanilla and soft powder. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Vintage Chic Scents Something To Love- Blueberry Cobbler Crunch. A pleasant fruity bakery blend. Modern to light throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: B. Might repurchase.

Scentsationals Love Letters- cedarwood, vanilla, almond. A cologne-y almost masculine woodsy vanilla blend with a nutty undertone. Rich and warm; I love it! Overall grade: A-. Would repurchase.

Rosegirls Coconut Caramel Pears- and really delicious blend of baked pears with a sweet caramel drizzle and a touch of tropical coconut. Fairly strong to moderate throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Lake Providence Lodge Fresh Pears- Justin as I would expect; sweet juicy pear. So yummy and fairly strong throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Pearl Rose Contest Winnings

You may remember me mentioning several weeks ago that I won a custom scent blend contest from Pearl Rose Candle Co. A few days ago a lovely clamshell with my scent idea arrived. It is tea & cakes, rose jam and toasted marshmallow. I find it absolutely delightful! Sweet sugared rose petals mingle with rich, warm tea cakes and gooey toasted marshmallow fluff. I think this scent combo was really well executed and smells strong on cold sniff; I can't wait to melt it! The complimentary clamshell and extra sample are packaged so beautifully and came with a handwritten card as well. 
Even the inside looks pretty.

Have you ever tried Pearl Rose Candle Co? Have you ever ordered a custom blend from a vendor?

NOTD: Frosted Pearls

2 coats Zoya Rayne with matte top coat and pearls. I think it turned out really pretty but took like 3 hours. The pearl placement was so tedious and quite a few ended up on the floor, lol.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Recent Wax Reviews

Glitterati Blue Raspberry Pink Sugar Twinkies- this is a fun, candy sweet type scent that was enjoyable. It had moderate throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

Super Tarts Jaws: sea grass, sea salt, fresh air, sliced plum and sweet pear. This is a very popular ST blend and I definitely agree with the hype now that I've tried it. It's such a unique and lovely blend; a very fresh sea air with some sweet yet rich and dusky fruits. Fairly strong throw for about 8-10 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Sassy Girl Aroma Sisters In Pink Ocean Breeze- "light & sweet florals, wild berry, vanilla, coconut and hints of sandalwood,  bright citrus, cotton candy, lemon drops, caramel, and raspberry jam with a muaky drydown + ocean breeze." This is a wonderful pink sugar/tropical/fruity type blend with a fresh aquatic breeze. It's very pleasant and unique. Strong throw for about 10-12 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Candy Panda Red Velvet Cake- a vague cake/bakery type scent. A bit too sweet and artificial; I'm not a big red velvet fan anyway. Moderate to light throw for about 6-8 hours. I love most CP scents but this one's not for me. Overall grade: B-. Wouldn't repurchase.

Pearl Rose Candle Co Sweater Weather- this is a nice scent that I find a bit difficult to describe. It's a little different than other versions of Sweater Weather I've tried. It's sweet but also musky and herbal. Fairly strong throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

Supertarts My Precious: blood orange, tangerine, strawberry, raspberry and bergamot. I've been impressed with the Supertarts scents I've been melted lately. This is another complex and unique blend; opening notes of bright and tart citrus, mid notes of sweet berries and a fresh herbal bottom note. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Scented Bliss Melts Officer Friendly-  mahogany, coconut, sandalwood, vanilla and oakmoss. I love this! It's rich and woodsy without being overly "cologne-y." Fairly strong throw for about 8 hours. Overall grade: A. Would repurchase.

Jamianne's Lavender Sandalwood: Another unique winning blend! A powdery herbal lavender and a smooth creamy sandalwood. I found this blend so relaxing and comforting. Strong throw for about 10 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Lasting Scent Candles Chocolate Mint Scone- one of the strongest and most delightful bakery blends that I've melted in a long time!  Rich, realistic chocolate and sweet mint with an impressive warm bakery note. This scent made me hungry all day. Strong throw for over 12 hours. Overall grade: A+. Would repurchase.

Glitterati Bananas Foster Ice Cream Scoop Bread- A candy like Laffy Taffy type of banana to me with hints of caramel and sweet bakery undertone. Moderate throw for about 8-10 hours. Overall grade: B+. Might repurchase.

The Scented Squirrel Rose Jam- a really wonderful sweet rose, vanilla and lemon blend and a great Lush dupe. Moderate throw for about 6-8 hours. Overall grade: A-. Might repurchase.

2017 Goals Week 5

I took an inadvertent breif hiatus from blogging for the past few days.
I've really enjoyed blogging on an almost daily basis for the past several months and was swimming along just fine throughout January, feeling optimistic and proud of my small accomplishments, but then February hit and suddenly so did a major case of the blahs.
Ever have one of those days where you can't face life and just want to go back to bed? I did a few days ago. I went to lay under the covers around noon and 40 minutes, 2 phone calls and a loud weather alert later I had to face the fact that I wasn't going to be able to laze the day away. So I got back up, showered, and did some household chores. I was glad I didn't waste the whole day but didn't really get joy out of anything.

I did stick with my no buy through January, and have so far made 2 wax purchases and no nail polish purchases in February. My hubby has been having less hours at work recently so money problems are starting to creep back up and nag at my conscience again. I probably shouldn't be buying anything I can't afford out of pocket; I feel bad for putting those items on credit. It wasn't that hard to resist buying things in January because I'm pretty good at sticking to short term commitments, but now that that specific self imposed time limit is over I suddenly want to celebrate by treating myself, but that really defeats the point of being mindful with my purchases. 

In my defense I could do a lot worse though; there are several things I'm holding off on getting.
I had only intended to make one wax purchase this week, but I happened to go on Facebook right when the Glitterati flash sale lots became available and threw my name in on a whim, not expecting to win.
For those not familiar with Glitterati, they are the "unicorn" of the wax world and their products are only available by signing up at certain times, mainly their weekly flash lot drawings.
I last won a lot back in October and found it to be wonderful quality wax. I hadn't entered many of their drawings since, but low and behold I won this time, not really expecting to. I could have passed on it, but as anyone in the vendor wax world knows, you never say no to Glitterati!

My food goals are still going fairly well; I'm still avoiding buying sugary and fatty snacks at the grocery store and have been cooking most of my meals from scratch. I may get the occasional saccharine Starbucks drink or something when I'm out, but I don't make it a habit anymore. I weight myself for the first time several months and while I'm not really focusing on the number on the scale, I was pleased to see I didn't weigh as much as I thought I would. I may be down about 10 pounds from my highest weight. 
I've been trying a few new recipes every week and I think I'm a decent cook, but I must say I don't feel like I've picked too many winning recipes lately. Things that look/sound good in recipes and photos keep ending up not tasting great to me. I make dishes basically because I have to eat, but I'm feeling disappointment that I'm not getting the same creative enjoyment out of cooking as I used to. I'm not sure if it's my tastebuds or poor attitude that's got me down recently, but to be honest I'm struggling with a profound lack of motivation to want to do anything lately. I sleep pretty well but still feel exhausted a lot and sometimes take a nap in the middle of the day. I dread doing the basic chores necessary to survive every day and anything additional or unexpected makes me feel really stressed.

My husband and I have finally scheduled an appointment with our family doctor for tomorrow to discuss some of these issues and possibly get a referral to a therapist. I've never spoken with a professional before, but I feel like it could really be helpful to receive some guide. It also makes me anxious though because while we have insurance, I'm still worried about any costs this may incur. I guess we'll just have to take it one step at a time. My husband also is interested in speaking with someone because he too is feeling some feelings of inadequacy and melancholy that could be linked to depression. Wish us luck I guess.

Here are a few of the recipes from this week in case anyone is interested.
One thing I was happy with this week was that I discovered baking rather than frying produces delicious crispy hash browns. This recipe was actually a hit.

These Paleo breakfast/snackbars however were not. They didn't taste terrible per se, just so bland and taxing to eat. I ended up tossing out half the pan and felt bad because I hate wasting food.

I've been eating these slow cooker beef gyros for dinner. The meat turned out pretty well; the flavor is good but it's not super tender.

This is a recipe I've posted a couple times previously, but this honey walnut shrimp dish is great comfort food. Not particularly healthy, but one of the fee dishes I've enjoyed making and eating recently.

How are your goals for 2017 going? Any interesting happenings in life recently?

NOTD: FUN Lacquer Northern Lights

These FUN Lacquer glitters haven't been the easiest to apply but the end result always looks so spectacular that I would say it's worth it. This is 3 coats; could have done with a 4th but I feared it'd be so thick it would never dry.
Love the sparkles of this one; one of those polishes that glows from within.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Band of Bloggers February 2017 Volume 14

Welcome to the February edition of Band of Bloggers!  You're probably getting tired of winter already as we start this new month.  Maybe your thoughts are already turning towards spring, or maybe your all about Valentine's at the moment.  Hearts and roses, chocolates and cards, and special someones making you smile . . .   With all that love floating around, our question this month is quite simple.

What scent are you *loving* at the moment?
It can be anything from wax to perfume to body care to . . . whatever!

Recently I have been adoring various blends of tea & cakes, which is a rich, warm, freshly baked cake and robust black tea leaves, and rose jam, a fresh, sweet rose with a touch of tart lemon.

You may remember my post about my custom order of tea & cakes, rose jam and sugar cookies from The Scented Squirrel in both a wax loaf and a body spray. The blend idea just popped into my head one day and I just had to make it a reality. Jess from The Scented Squirrel  did a phenomenal job of executing my blend idea and I'm obsessed with it. I wear the body spray often and I look forward to melting the wax soon.

I also won a giveaway from Pearl Rose Candle Co. to receive wax in a custom blend of tea & cakes, rose jam and toasted marshmallow. I am so excited to sniff this blend and I'll be sure to share photos and my thoughts when it arrives! I love Hailey's wax and I'm sure it will smell wonderful.

I also have been getting to know a new vendor I have never tried before; Rebecca of Destination Wax . She had seen me mention the rose jam/tea & cakes blend and liked the idea so much that she made some and added it to her scent list! I have read many glowing reviews of this brand and I hope to order from them in February. Their travel themes and packaging look so cool and their scent list is very intriguing. I hope to try their version of my beloved blend as well as several other scents.

What scents can you not get enough of right now? Have you ever ordered a custom fragrance blend? Love a scent so much you ordered it from multiple vendors?

We hope you'll join the fun and leave your own answer in the comments below.
And we hope you'll visit these Band of Blogger blogs and help support the blogger community!

If you are a blogger and would like to join the Band of Bloggers for our monthly posts, please contact us.