Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Ebb & Flow: August

The highs and lows of the month.

Lasting Scent Candles Beignets

FlashPoint English Pear

Serge Lutens L'Orpheline

Haus of Gloi Birthday Amber

Diorshow Iconic Curl mascara 

The Naked Bee Nag Champa, smells and feels amazing.

Body Oil:
Tauer Rose Delight

Nail Polish:
Rescue Beauty Lounge Small, Dim Summer Stars

The Sybil in Her Grave, by Sarah Caudwell

Afternoon thunderstorms and Doctor Thorne

Cotton Candy grapes, yes I am always late to the party but our store just got them.


Tielman Susato, Dansereye 1551 by the New London Consort, Phillip Pickett

Taking the fall decorations out of the attic and going to town making the house full of autumn. 

More hot and humid days ahead.

Urban Mysticism Mental R&R/Sleep Myst, love the tingle of peppermint and the soothing lavender right before bed.

Bailey's Coffee Creamer in Bourbon Vanilla Pound Cake, it had such an awful aftertaste and chemical feel on my tongue I threw out a whole large bottle of it.

The annual back-to-school illnesses that swept through the house. I hope it will be it for the rest of the year. 

A good start to the new school at work. Enjoying the job and thankful for it.

How was your August? Any hits or misses? Highs or lows? Favorite products?

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Olfactif Artisan Perfume Subscription: August

I almost forgot to post about the August Olfactif box! I got so excited I started wearing it willy nilly and then realized this morning that I had yet to blog it. Olfactif is still $18 per month for a carefully curated trio of handcrafted artisan fragrances that are themed each month. This month included:

Still Life in Rio by Olfactive Studio- Notes include: Yuzu, ginger, mint, lemon, mandarin, Jamaican hot peppers, pink pepper, coconut water, Brazilian copaiba, white leather and rum.
Olfactive Studio takes an incredible photo and builds a scent around it. Still Life in Rio glows with the gilded oranges and reds and yellows of sunset and so does this scent. It opens with energetic citrus and ginger. The capsaicin sting of pepper is cooled by creamy coconut milk in the heart. A dry down of woods and soft leather with a drop of rum warms the dry down. $195

Eau Fraiche by Monsillage- Notes include: Verbena, yellow mandarin, lavender, white thyme, rosemary, lilac, vetiver, white cedar, white musk and ambergris.
Eau Fraiche indeed smells like the "fresh water" filled dew drops that dapple the green plants in a meadow of lavender, herbs and vetiver. A beautiful scent for spring or when that calming zen of herbs is craved. $95

Pichola by Neela Vermeire Creations- Notes include: Cardamom, cinnamon, saffron, juniper, magnolia, neroli, clementine, bergamot, orange blossom, rose, tuberose, jasmine sambac, ylang-ylang, benzoin, sandalwood, driftwood and vetiver.
Shades of citrus open the top, neroli and bergamot having prime roles. Spice, saffron and warm tones bridge the top notes to the heart, at which lies a large white bouquet of jasmine, tuberose, ivory roses and pale ylang-ylang. Some of these blooms lean tropical with a slight banana creaminess. The white blooms fade into musky greys and sandalwood taupes and smudges of blackened vetiver and driftwood. A coastal evening full of serene scents. $125

Of these three, I could see myself wearing Still Life in Rio the most often. Especially in Florida's climate. I do enjoy the other two on their own merits. Have you sampled anything unique lately? 

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Diptyque: Baies Candle

This small 2.4 ounce Diptyque Baies candle accompanied me yesterday afternoon during a thunderstorm. It sat right on my nightstand and gave off an elegant throw of green blackberry brambles, tart currants, unripe berries and woods.

I had purchased this on Hautelook as part of a two pack and I am glad I did. It was lovely to experience, but I don't think I would repurchase this particular scent at full price. 

I would buy it again if it popped up on discount. There are other scents from Diptyque I would want to try first, however. 

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Melting Basket 73

Wax from the last basket I would repurchase include: SMT Pink Peppermint Swizzle Sticks, Glitterati Violet Sugar Cookie, LSC Pink Sugar Vanilla, Snow Globe, Universal VooDoo Wooden Wings, NeNe's Arabie, TBG Calypso.

Lasting Scent Candles- Beignets
Lasting Scent Candles-  Sweet Lavender Nectar
Up The Creek Scents- Welcome Home/Gingerbread Cupcakes/Marshmallow Bean Noel
SMT- Dragon's Blood
SMT- Pink Lavender Marshmallow Cake
CFTKR- Merlin's Forest
Universal VooDoo- To Whom it May Concern <3 gift
Pocket Full of Peonies- Satsuma Sandalwood Sugar Cookie <3 gift
The Scented Squirrel- Satsuma Sandalwood Sugar Cookie <3 gift
Country Lane Keepsakes- Guardian Angel <3 gift
A gift but not sure of the vendor, Green Tea and Lemongrass <3 gift

A smaller basket this time in anticipation of fall meltings beginning very very soon. If you would like me to review any of these, please drop a line below. 

Savanna has reached that age of peer influence. I find I am that parent who's child is the only one that does not have this or that item that everyone else in the class enjoys. In this case, Pokemon Go. 

Savanna has been into Pokemon for quite a few years now. She has the cards and battles with them. She has shirts, stuffed animals, pencils and paraphernalia. She watches the movies and TV shows. I send my bestie Ashely money once in a blue moon to pick up cool Pokemon things in Japan. She is utterly Pokemon spoiled.

I just can't let her play the game. 

I have limited data that I squeak by with each month as it is. 
I have a paranoia about turning on my location services. 
I tried to download it once for her to try and it froze up my phone several times before the game even popped up. 

It just isn't working for me. 
And last night she cried. She never cries about things like that. But through tears she told me how all her friends talk about it and she feels left out. How she really isn't even interested in the game but only wants to play because everyone else does. 

And I found myself telling her that unfortunately, this won't be the last time that she feels this way. 

It was one of those moments that is a shock to my system. Where I realize very clearly that she has grown into the next phase closer to being a teenager. When previously she could care less what was popular or in style. She wants to fit in. And I am in the way of that.

It is what it is.

What was the one thing you had to have in school that everyone else was sporting? Or place everyone was going, or thing everyone was doing? It was cell phones in high school and college for me. I was only allowed to have a pager or phone cards. I didn't get my first cell phone until I got my first job as a teacher. The Nextel walkie-talkie. Remember those? 

Friday, August 26, 2016

Mermaid Treasures: Appaloosa Designs

Appaloosa Designs runs out of Etsy and is a one woman show. Chelsea creates lovely nature-inspired silver and stone pieces by hand. I would love to have one of her large rings but prudence required I set my target on something smaller. For now.

The tiny feather necklace was just the ticket. I find myself reaching for its primitive yet delightful style on a regular basis. It goes with just about anything I wear.

The chain is 18 inches and the feather about two inches or so. I really love the delicateness of the chain and the hand wrapped fasteners and bail. 

The necklace came packaged in a muslin drawstring bag folded with her business card and placed in a brown jewelry box. 

I love this new everyday necklace and look forward to saving for one of her statement rings. 

Do enjoy nature-inspired jewelry?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Warmed Wax: Glitterati and Lasting Scent Candles

Lasting Scent Candles Snow Globe threw medium in my bedroom and smells like candy sweet vanilla to me. Maybe a little creaminess but not a whole lot. I enjoy it for its sweet simplicity. I try to get a scent shot of it anytime it pops up but it would not be brittle bag worthy for me, personally. Repurchase.

Lasting Scent Candles Pink Sugar Vanilla threw medium-light in my bedroom. Another simple blend of Pink Sugar and vanilla. Simple, yet good. I would repurchase but probably not in a Brittle Bag. I think I like Coco Pink and a few other Pink Sugar blends form LSC better. 

Glitterati Pink Marshmallow Fireside from my custom order last year. I ordered two scent shots in this scent and fell hard in love so I had been hoarding them. My sweet friend Sunnee sent me a couple chunks from her stash recently so I decided I could splurge and melt these. They threw medium-strong in my kitchen and living area. The gooey sweet and slightly smoky aroma of Bath  Body Work's Marshmallow Fireside with the extra cotton candy and musk haze from Pink Sugar makes this a wonderful blend. Repurchase for sure. Hoping I can pop on the customs list next go 'round.

Glitterati Violet Sugar Cookie threw medium-strong to strong in my living room and kitchen. Insanely delicious. I can see why this has a cult following. I will say it is very sweet like vanilla dusted cotton candy blended with cupcakes. I really don't get the tale tell Parma violets scent at all from this but it is still a scrumptious scent. Not floral at all. I would repurchase this absolutely.

I have a Kitty's Konfections order waiting to be photographed and blogged, and orders from Beezy, The Bathing Garden and Lasting Scent Candles that are waiting to be filled. I would like to order Dessa's new fall and holiday scents and possibly order from Sugar & Spice and Candles From The Keeping Room. Are you waiting on any orders? Plotting any orders? I think once the ones I am waiting for roll in, I should be good for a little while. I will still place small orders here and there but nothing substantial. I do have a new-to-me Etsy vendor that will be featured during the fall. And speaking of fall, starting in September I will be happily participating in a Fall Fun Series with quite a few bloggers and I hope you join in. If you are a blogger and would like to join our series, please email me in the contact form at the bottom. 

Monday, August 22, 2016

Dame Perfumery: Chocolate Man

Jeffrey Dame offered a free 5 ml sample of his newest release, Chocolate Man, during the 4th of July. Thankfully my friend Valerie tagged me in his post and I caught it in time. Dame Perfumery offers many beautiful fragrances that I adore, including the full bottle of Lime, Gardenia & Benzoin that I wear regularly. In his usual generous way he sent many other samples as well. 

Chocolate Man is utterly decadent. Powdery dark chocolate resonating with coffee bean depth and a drop of booze morph into dusky woods and crunchy cocoa nibs. As intoxicating as staring into deep brown eyes that always seem to hold a bit more of the soul in them than any other color, a swirling chocolate liqueur surrounding the inky dark patchouli pupil. I will easily wear the rest of this with glee in the coming fall and winter. A scent for closeness.

I have reviewed the other samples that were included with this order but these two are new to me:

Soliflore Mimosa- Apricot and peach, fuzz and flesh, honeysuckle headiness tempered by green leaves. The soft spray of tufted yellow mimosa blooms. Dreamy.

Verbena, Freesia & Musk- This was one of his eau de toilette for women scents that I had been eyeing. The verbena and freesia merge into the skin with elegance and a classic feel. This is one I will wear easily at work; green, fresh, powdery musk and purple stalks of freesia that almost remind me of paperwhites and hyacinths. Spring on the skin.

If you have not had a chance to try Dame Perfumery, you should sample some of Jeffrey's fragrances. I particularly love Herb man, Dark Horse, Black Flower Mexican Vanilla and of course Lime, Gardenia & Benzoin. He has an excellent sampling offering of his scents in 5 ml sprays for $8.50 to $10.00 each and free shipping. I want to sample Cassis, Rose & Sandalwood, Peach Blossom, Violet & Vanilla and his New Musk Man. Which of his offerings would you want to try?

Saturday, August 20, 2016

2016 Reading Challenge Update: Halfway There

I hit 20 out of 40 right here at summer's end. That leaves me five months to do 20 more. I might be able to complete it if I choose shorter books, but I keep grabbing these leviathan sized books. I must be a glutton for punishment, but I do so love them. I did switch up where I listed some of these from last time, but I am highlighting the new books in blue. The older ones are in red. 

* = meh ** = decent *** = read it

1. Based on a fairytale- Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas *** based off of the fairy tale Cinderella, it takes a heroine who has been orphaned and turns her into an assassin, full of fairies and drama with some immature writing and character idiosyncrasies but I enjoyed it none the less

3. YA Bestseller- Magnus Chase by Rick Riodan *** if you like a fun, light headed punny YA series

6. Translated to English- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky *** a beefy book that took me several weeks to ingest but well worth the time to experience such a heart felt and melancholy story of love and choices

7. Romance set in the future- Monsters of Men by Patrick Ness *** this was the last book in the Chaos Walking trilogy, humans settle a new planet at the expense of resident aliens

8. Set in Europe- Girl Reading by Katie Ward *** a chronicle of various girls/women through snap shots of time, their stories, struggles, and always present, a book of some sort, the seemingly choppy short stories are tied at the end, a unique and enjoyable read

13. Self-improvement- Redirecting Children's Behavior by Kvols and Riedler * I had to read it for work, but as a book from a parenting point of view it seems redundant, a lot of it seems common sense though I did like the "annoying phases" kids go through by age in the back just for peace of mind and "oh so that IS normal" moments

14. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by Rowling, Thorne, Tiffany *** yes I loved it, yes it was only the bones of the books in the past but it still made me laugh and cry and be thrilled to learn more about Harry's story as a father

15. Celebrity authored- Fragrant by Mandy Aftel *** for the scent enchanted, Mandy educates and enthralls using the power of aroma, best if read while using her companion scent box of actual 
essences and absolutes and resins, she is absolutely a celebrity in the world of natural perfumery, heck Leonard Cohen comes to visit her (love that man)

18. More than 600 pages- (I feel like most of them have been!) Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare ** it probably would have gotten 3 stars but it was just a bit too long and drawn out and I could predict who was behind the mayhem too easy, still a great new series that takes us back into the shadowhunter realm with returning characters, new ones and a cliffhanger in the end

22. Graphic novel- Loki's Wolves by Armstrong and Marr ** while not entirely a graphic novel, there are several illustrations throughout, giving it a graphic feel... a fun lighthearted Norse mythology based read that is a nice pallet cleanser after reading heavy material... looking at you Anna Karenina...

23. Published in 2016- The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater *** the last book in the Raven Boys Cycle, which I totally became engrossed within the pages of, there are elements of witchcraft, psychics, ley lines, paranormal, people who can dream things and pull them out into reality, and the story of four friends, five if you count the ghost

24. Protagonist with your occupation (teacher)- The Ghost in Love by Jonathan Carroll ** a unique book that straddles paranormal Stephen King with good vs evil quirky Dean Koonz

25. Summer Setting- The Sibyl in Her Grave by Sarah Caudwell ** I am only halfway through this one but it takes place during midsummer in the UK, and it is actually #4 in a series about a female detective type and it is totally out of character for me to start a series with a book other than the first but it seems to stand alone pretty easy, it is a quick mystery read and I love anything British 

26. Book & it's prequel- (so technically two books?) The Book of Speculation and "The Mermaid Girl" by Erika Swyler *** I am still not sure if I read them in the right order, "The Mermaid Girl" is obviously the prequal but I also feel like it would have been equally effective if read last, a more in depth review is here 

29. Dystopian- Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood *** mind twisting story along the lines of Animal Farm but resonates powerfully for me as a woman

30. Blue cover- Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli ** a great story for young people about the power of peer pressure and how subtle or forceful it can be

31. Poetry- Hurricane Dancer by Margarita Engle *** a short story about hispanic slaves and pirates and native tribes and their war with one another for freedom written in poetic style

34. Checked out from the library- Queen of Shadows by Sarah Maas *** this is part of the Throne of Glass series and carries on with the heroine's tale, this is not the final book but the next to last, the final book is out in September

36. Road Trip- The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova *** ok, so not a teenage carefree road trip but many, many road trips, and flights, and train rides across Europe to search out a multi-generational quest to rescue someone from.... Dracula, if you enjoy Dracula, you may well love this

39. Island setting- Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta ** a fast paced but semi-predictable fantasy story of a kingdom torn apart by greed and a curse, must read for fantasy fans

Hoping I can make my reading challenge goals this year. The rest of the categories I need to fill are: --National Book Award
-haven't read since High school was thinking Great Expectations
-set in home state
-under 150 pages
-made into a movie soon
-recommended by a new friend help new friends! I need one!
-political memoir ewwww
-100 years older than you
-Oprah Book Club White Oleander for this one
- Sci-fi
-recommended by family member
-murder mystery
-comedian author kinda want to read Amy Poehler's book
-classic 20th century
-culture unfamiliar
-guaranteed to bring joy

What are you reading? Have any recommendations for me that might fit this list? I may have to change political memoir for something more enjoyable. I really hate even the word politics right now. 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Sniff My Tarts: July Opening

Sniff My Tarts must really be in a wax making frenzy because my July order is already here and I KNOW I did not order that fast!!! I did keep my order pretty small this time, and really I have been the last few openings now that I pretty much know what I want. I ended up buying a loaf and four cookies. Shipping is invoiced after the order is complete and ready to ship. So actual shipping is paid. Mine fit into a Regional A box for just over $8.00.

This large loaf is supposed to weigh 28 ounces but mine weighed in at 30.7 ounces, these guys really are a great value if you love to stock up on a scent or scent blend. They run $33.60.

For my ginormous loaf I blended: Peppermint Swizzle Sticks, Marshmallow Noel & Candy, and Spearmint. Hoooo weeeee! It is a sweet minty blend with that handful of Wrigley's spearmint gum throw in. The jolly red and green with white tickle my Christmas loving heart. Sniff My Tarts still has my favorite peppermint out there. I will always grab a loaf of it as long as I can. It had a solid medium to medium-strong throw.

The frosted cookies are the smallest blending option and one of my favorites. For $5.00 you can easily get 2-4 melts. These each weighed between 4.0 and 4.5 ounces each. There is a limit of five cookies and I normally max out but this time I went with four. 

Cinnamon Sticks/Honey Gingerbread/Cinnamon Sugar is a fall delight! The extra cinnamon and cinnamon sugar help lighten the honey gingerbread bakery note. It ends up smelling like a homemade coffee cake with streusel crumbles on top. Delish!

Peppermint/Lord of Misrule/Spearmint was a blend that struck me right before I ordered so I rolled with it. Oh. My. Biscuits. Am I ever glad I did. Lord of Misrule can become heavy and cloying with vanilla musk and patchouli but adding peppermint and the slightly herbal freshness of spearmint really elevate the scent. This might just be my new Pink Peppermint. I cannot even believe I am saying that. But I am. Right now. This makes me want to blend Lush's Twilight with peppermint and spearmint soooooo bad. I am getting a loaf of this without a doubt.

Pink Sugar Baby/Sweet Lavender Marshmallow Cake/Sweet Lavender,  because I always need pink sugar and sweet lavender marshmallow cake. The extra sweet lavender gives the overall scent a cotton candy vibe that is surprising and still very much yummy. Yep, sweet lavender cotton candy. I like it.

Enchanted Forest/Pink Sugar/Frosty Pine reminds me that I missed out on my piped hearts. :-( Boo. I must have ordered in a scatter brain because I love SMT piped hearts. Anyways, it reminds me because that is how I discover single scent notes I have not normally tired and have a curiosity about- like Enchanted Forest. I bought it in a piped heart and fell in love with its pine and eucalyptus freshness. Adding Pink Sugar sweetens the blend and Frosty Pine contributes more sweet pine and light mint. It is like the best Pink Sugared Spruce to ever exist. I will be doing this one again too. 

Free Samples:

Lime Verbena Christmas Pine- Whoever created this blend is pure genius. Lime and pine are vibrant and brisk and before it smells like Pine-Sol it goes brighter then deeper. I can't quite wrap my head around it but I like it! I could see adding Frosty Pine to it. 

Serendipity Marshmallow Smoothie/Vanilla Bean Noel/Spearmint- Ooooo! Yum! Creamy sweet classic serendipity with a spearmint chill. Reminds me of Tiffany's Serendipity Splash that I used to love but this one I can blend on my own. Excited to get this one. 

Dragon's Blood- This right here is why I love Amy and Donna so much. They pay attention and treat their customers like gold. Solid gold. I had mentioned feeling like their original Dragon's Blood was a bit too floral and they sent me some new blends with it, but now I get to smell the new Dragon's Blood in its nakedness and I love it. It is much more deep with an almost Nag Champa earthiness. So so good. I definitely will be ordering this in piped hearts. It is so good on its own. I might blend with it too in some cookies. It was incredible with cinnamon. 

Thank you Amy and Donna for another stellar Sniff My Tarts experience. You ladies have a life long customer in me. I am already anticipating the next opening. 

Did you order at this last opening? Do you have any Sniff My Tart staples you like to get? I think I need to go buckwild next time. If you have never tried Sniff My Tarts, I do recommend you try their mystery box sampler. You can even type in what scents you do not like so you can get a box of wax you will actually want to melt. 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Melting Basket 72

Wax from the last basket that I would buy again include: CFTKR Merlin's Forest (great earthy Nag Champa-like blend with a little extra woods and herbs) and Tokyo Nights, RG Vanilla Bean Noel Mini Melters, Universal Voodoo Horizontal Haze, TBG Brown Sugar Cream Rose Bouquet, Starlight Soda Pop, The Illusionist. 

Sniff My Tarts- Peppermint Swizzle Sticks/Pink Sugar Baby/Peppermint
Lasting Scent Candles- Pink Sugar Vanilla
Lasting Scent Candles- Snow Globe
Glitterati- Violet Sugar Cookies
Glitterati- Pink Marshmallow Fireside
Rosegirls- Strawberry Peppermint Coconut Ice Cream
Universal VooDoo- Wooden Wings <3 gift
NeNe's Kitchen Melts- Senorita Margarita <3 gift
NeNe's Kitchen Melts- Baklava <3 gift
NeNe's Kitchen Melts- Arabie type <3 gift
The Bathing Garden- Calypso <3 gift
House of Usher Wax Museum- Rougarou <3 gift
House of Usher Wax Museum- Jasper Shelton <3 gift
House of Usher Wax Museum- Gunner's Gun Powder & Lead <3 gift

If there are any requests for melted reviews on these let me know in the comments and I will whip up a post just for you. 

Whew. If you can tell from my basket pic, I am scrapping this post together by the skin of my teeth, using the last dregs of my energy. Totally camera phoned it in. We are only midway through the week but it has been a packed one.

I am loving my new job at the new school. The kids are awesome. Even with running on fractured sleep I have had a great experience. 

Scarlette was ill for a handful of days, needing various IV fluids and such for a possible salmonella poisoning. She had quite a few late night/early morning calls for help that had Adam and I up and rubbing her back, cleaning her and bringing her fever down. She missed her first two days of school but is healing now and went to class as an official 2nd grader. She is growing into a helpful and kind snuggle-bug.

Savanna loves her new 9-12 year old class (4th grade for her), her new teacher and new classroom. Montessori does 3 year cycles: 3-6 year olds in the same class (primary class), 6-9 year olds (lower elementary class), then 9-12 year olds. Savanna moved to the upper elementary with the big kids and it blows my mind. Her feet are the same size as mine now, she is reading over 800 page books, and she Skypes with her friends but she still loves to have me lay in bed and talk before she goes to sleep and will hold my hand in public.

This school year has started like a hurricane but I think it has finally settled into the new rhythm. The floors may need sweeping and the dishes may be dirty in the sink but I am happy in my work and the girls are both healthy at the moment. Before my eyes get much heavier I think I had better schedule this post to go out in the morning and call it a night. How has your week been going? 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Mermaid Treasure: Marta Oms

Marta Oms is a jeweler and gemologist that works in Barcelona, Spain. She sells her brilliant creations all over the world through her website. Her style embodies both vintage and contemporary as well as gothically whimsical. She offers pieces that can cater to many tastes and price points.

For her grand opening she offered a coupon code and I took advantage to purchase a set of small earrings and a ring. Her site, being out of Spain did have some bumps when I tried to order from my debit card (I think my bank saw it as red flagged since it was out of country) but she noticed I was trying to place an order and emailed me asking if I needed help. She kindly sent a PayPal invoice so I could complete my purchase.

Love the presentation.

These ultra tiny handcrafted sterling silver skull earrings were 15 Euros (about $16.60). I have been wearing them non-stop since they arrived.

The sterling silver skull ring I wear as a midi (or mid-joint ring) to wear on my index finger, it also works as a pinky ring. Here it is being modeled by the ever lovely Giovanna, my step-brother's daughter (my step-niece?). Either way she is family and beautiful and gracefully stepped up to the camera for me. 

I highly recommend browsing Marta's site and admiring her craftsmanship. There are a few more substantial pieces I would love to bring home. Maybe one day. <3

Find any treasures lately?

Monday, August 15, 2016

House of Usher Wax Museum: Shelton Box

A kind reader, Kevin, sent me a wonderful box full of waxy goodies and this was one of them. A Shelton sampler from House of Usher Wax Museum. I have reviewed them before but it had been a while since I have had them in my melters and I am happy to have more to fragrant my home. Now, I will admit I am pretty clueless about this Shelton sampler. At first I thought this was to celebrate Blake Shelton, then as I was reading the story of scents that came with it I recognized references to the Sookie Stackhouse novels I read. But I was still confused about Blake Shelton/Jasper Shelton thing and I did not recognize all the characters in the scent story. So I give up and I am just going to dive into the scents without trying to reference their names or determine if the scent "fits" the theme. I do see that this sampler is still up for purchase for $20 here. I love the serious attention to detail, the thought out scents and the scent story that accompanied the box. 

Gunner's Apple Ale comes in liquid tart form and for as ding dang long as I have been melting wax, I never got around to trying the liquid tarts! Front Porch used to carry them but I never sprung for them. I am actually ridiculously excited to try this stuff. Out of the bottle, it smells like apple brandy to me. I quite like it. There is a sweetness from the hops but not overpowering. It does smell flat which makes me think more of liquor than beer but it goes down smooth. I squirted probably just under 1/2 an ounce in the warmer and it threw medium in the kitchen and living room. 

Jace Shelton's Bonfire came in a clamshell format. Hot cocoa and marshmallow fireside pours out of the six cubes. I melted one in the kitchen and one in the living room and it threw medium-strong with the scent of Tootsie rolls blended with a pinch of fireside. Not badly done but still not my cup o' tea. I am just too weird about chocolate as a home fragrance 99% of the time.  

Dixie Diesel's Cornbread & Strawberry Jam- Yep. Buttered skillet cornbread with a shot of salt and topped with strawberry preserves. Takes me straight to Cracker Barrel. 

Sweet Ada's Pumpkin Coconut Cupcakes- Spiced pumpkin and thick coconut cream with a salty tang of zucchini bread. Now, I am sure there probably is not zucchini bread but that is how this comes across to my nose. Definitely stout. These are not dainty white cake cupcakes mixed with pumpkin.

Jasper Shelton- Whiskey, caramel and that outdoors scent of dry leaves. The Jim Beam is strong and reminds me of too many times in the club 8 Seconds or The Dallas Bull. Once, I was a bad girl and scampered off with a Jim Beam poster that hung the girls' bathroom at one of these establishments. Don't ask where I hid it. Let's just say I was not carrying a purse. It stayed on my college bedroom wall for a few years. I am interested to see how this melts. It is a funny changeling that screams booze on the top, autumn air on the side and caramel on the bottom of the scent shot. 

Rougarou- Pine, musk, a little ozone. Nighttime in the woods. Fresh yet dark. Nicely done. These can be hard scents to get across. This one is excellent.

Back at Sookie's House- Smokey banana bread. Ah! That's the bacon. Like that crazy Beezy tart I got years ago. Yep. Bacon. The banana bread still jumps out from the bacon. Definitely interesting and a realistic smell of breakfast in the morning. But I do melt tarts to get rid of the bacon smell so I will be passing this one one. I got bacon burnt once already. Dern Beezy.

Gunner's Gun Powder & Lead- Boy howdy is this a fun scent!!!! Gunpowder and leather and sweet hops. This gives me flashbacks of when I was dating my high school sweetheart who was an amateur bull-rider. George Strait, starched jeans with Copenhagen lids embossed on one back pocket and a Wrangle tag on the other, too much cologne, grease on the hands, leather chaps (yes he had leather chaps), and occasional runs for Boone's Farm Strawberry Hill or Natty Light. Good Lord, I don't know if I should melt it or run and hide. There was some dark magic worked here on this one. I gotta melt it. It really is one of the most creative blends I have come across as far as evoking a scent memory. 

Thank you so very much Kevin for sharing this awesome box of smells with me. I appreciate it. House of Usher Wax Museum is stocked with many great scents and what looks to be a Halloween in July sampler that I keep eyeing. 

Have you tried House of Usher yet? Found any favorites? Kevin also shared with me a Sanderson's Sisters tart that has my eyes rolling in my head and will be featured in my Halloween Melting Basket. 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

FuturePrimitive: Summer Clearance

I picked up a couple of Conditioning Hair Rinses and Bathing Grains from FuturePrimitive's Summer Sale/Clearance a few weeks ago. I debated on whether to post about them or not, but once I opened up Dusty Dogwood and started using I figured I better let you guys know how great it smelled. Then I figured I may as well show the whole order. These scents have sold out but when and if they return next summer I wanted you to know how they smell. Tiggy is working on her Fall/Halloween releases right now. She is well stocked on General Catalog scents. 

You guys probably know that FuturePrimitive Conditioning Hair Rinse is my holy grail conditioner. Love the stuff. 

Dusty Dogwood is a scent I have never tried before. Tiggy's description: Inside Dusty Dogwood's flour mill and bakery, gooseberry and elderflower puddings are the order of the day with lashings of toasted coconut cream.
This is such a cool scent. The gooseberry and elderflower have a sweet muscadine grape and lemony tart vibe going on. Yet this is more deep than a fruity scent. The coconut cream has a burnished feel, almost like amber and there is a dustiness like musk going on in there. I will be buying this again. I am loving it for my summer to fall transition.

Cold Pillow- Another first for me. Tiggy's description: A cool, cotton pillow filled with Cotswold lavender buds, scented geranium leaves and Indian vetiver grass. The perfect place to rest your head on a hot summer's afternoon.
Yes. Herbs, fresh and dried and hanging by colored threads from wooden rafter breams. Dusky lavender, sharp green geranium paired with lemony woods from the vetiver. It feels clean and fresh to the nose but wholly natural. Perfect all the year through. But I can see the cooling effect with the airy herbs. Love. 

The Warrior Olfactory Bathing Grains smells pretty much like the soap and less sweet and more woody than the Hair Rinse. The Bathing Grains are highly fragrant and do foam and a fizz and lightly bubble but mainly scent the water and add skin softening ingredients. Basically super nice bath salts. 

How could I pass up my beloved Indian Temple Attar on discount in the Bathing Grain format? Same great scent but made for lazing in the bath. Love. I usually get 3-5 uses with these depending on how crazy I feel when pouring. 

The pound to dollar conversion is still pretty low and more favorable for us than it has been in the past. It makes it a nice time to splurge on some FuturePrimitive. I did buy a limited edition soap and bath milk tea last week ($17) and the shipping was $10. Not too bad for overseas. I am on pins and needles waiting for her autumn goodies. 

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Rosegirls: June Chunk Opening

Rosegirls is killing it with the faster TAT! These were ordered June 29th and they came this past week, so really only about a month and a half. These bags of chunks are $10 for about 8.1 to 8.2 ounces of wax (at least that is what these two weighed). A flat rate shipping of $9.00 is automatically charged. 

Pumpkin Pie Milkshake smells utterly scrumptious! Ultra creamy pumpkin, ala pumpkin creme brulee, pumpkin custard or yes, pumpkin ice cream and pumpkin milkshake. There is a sprinkle of cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice and an almost butterscotch richness. I did melt two cubes in the kitchen and living room, with about a medium throw result.

Caramel Apple French Toast brims over with Macintosh apples. There also lies within a smooth mellowness from soft caramel. I am not getting much French toast specifically at the moment, but it does combine with the caramel to give a thickness. It threw medium in my bedroom.

Jenny posted some teasers of scents she will be offering next opening in bags of chunks ($10) as well a few scents in one pound loaves ($20) with the same $9 flat rate shipping. Have you seen anything you must have? There are a few lavender, mint blends I am staring hard at but we will see.