Monday, October 15, 2018

Witches: The Wizarding World of Harry Potter


Today's October Prompt is:

Witches

Something magical happened last Friday, Adam and I surprised the girls with a trip to Universal Studios. His cousin from Ohio was down with their new baby girl and we all met up at the theme park to spend the day together. It was nice taking the day off and having the girls miss school. What was even nicer was that we bought seasonal passes that day too so now we have 15 months of Universal in our future.


This warbling witch featured in background of The Burrow as Molly Weasley's favorite singer. Molly reminisces about how her and Arthur danced to Celestina Warbeck when they were eighteen. 

Oh, come and stir my cauldron,
And if you do it right,
I'll boil you up some hot strong love
To keep you warm at night.


I actually did tea up when I watched her sing that song. But that should not be surprising at all. I cry like a baby every time I ride Gringotts or Hogwarts.


My own little witches cast lots of spells with their wands that day. And you can spy Adam's cousin's new baby Maisie just behind. She is so cute.


Any witch worth her salt shops for her potion making supplies at Mr. Mullpepper's Apothecary in Diagon Alley.




Diagon Alley also offers a menagerie for to shop for a familiar.



This sassy fiend was in the market for a new cauldron from Pottage's.



We had a witchy fun day and look forward to riding the Hogwart's Express into Hogsmeade next time we go. I am trying to save my sickles, knuts and galleons so I can get some Felix Felicis and a trinket or two next time.

Have you had any witchy fun lately?

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Hay Rides, Corn Mazes and Ghosts


Sorry about being behind on the October word prompts. Things got a little busy the past few days. 

Hay Rides

The last hay ride I can remember was a couple years ago at the Green Meadows Petting Farm in Kissimmee. Actually no, I take that back. We went on a hay ride just last year at the Hunsader Farms Pumpkin Festival. It was was a nice day for it and the girls enjoyed it. We have not gone on one this year and so far no plans to, but that may change.


Corn Maze

About four years ago at Fox Squirrel Corn Maze we wandered through the tall stalks. But oh lordy it felt like we were walking through the tall crackling and licking flames of Satan's labyrinth. The corn was dried and dead, it was easily 100 degrees outside and the flaming ball above scorched our faces with tongues of fire. It was so unbearable about halfway through, with the salt of sweat stinging my eyes and the girls moaning of their thirst that we burst through the stalks pell-mell in order to get the heck outta Dodge. No plans on going back. 


Ghosts

I do have a happy trio of ghosties with yellow-orange glowing eyes in the house. They might just be one of my favorite decorations. 

I did tell you guys about the laughing children Adam encountered in Savannah, Georgia right? That would be the only ghost encounter I ever was associated with other than the Holy Ghost. 

My favorite ghosts were probably in Harry Potter. The Death Day Party was an interesting scene in the books and I did feel really bad for Nearly Headless Nick. 


My sisters and I had our Five Sisters Crafternoon last night. Unfortunately, Lindsey had the stomach bug and could not come so we were one sister down. This is two years in a row where it was a Four Sister Crafternoon, so hopefully next year we can all make it. I am not quite done with my craft but I will show y'all soon. 

How is your fall going? Any fun plans or festivals or outings? 

Friday, October 12, 2018

Fall Fun Fridays and Three Ravens Co.


Three Ravens Co. came to my attention a month or so ago in the Poisoner's Guild group on Facebook. Now, before you lock me away for plotting evil doings let me tell you that the Poisoner's Guild is a brand of scentcrafters that builds a themed box each month full of fragrant goodies. You will learn more about them soon. Very soon. Back to Three Ravens. The Poisoner's Guild asked what other perfume houses they should include in their box and the Three Ravens was mentioned. I fell down the rabbit hole of searching up each of the perfume houses mentioned so of course I looked into Three Ravens. I was so enamored of the styling, scents and stories that I picked up several samples ($4.50) and one full sized bottle ($16.50). 

Old Toby- Notes: The sweet and powdery scent of fresh pipe tobaccos, not unlike a walk through a tobacco shop. 
Old Toby is certainly a sweet pipe tobacco aroma. Dark sticky shreds of vanilla tobacco and toasted sienna ribbons of cherry tobacco beckon from various colored tins around the tobacconist's shop. This scent is pretty linear and stays a nice blending of vanilla and cherry tobaccos while being mellow and sweet. I feel like I am hanging with Bilbo and Gandalf and their long pipes full of pipe weed.


Grue Church Fire- Notes: A moody, smoky scent inspired by the Grue Church fire in Norway of 1822 that took the lives of over 100 people. Olibanum and pine tar blended with burnt wood and smoke.
Pine and frankincense resin meld with the pleasant far off waft of woodsmoke. The pine possesses an almost sweet spruce nuance but it is still very much a dark and resinous perfume. The pitch in the pine gives it a touch of earthiness. I was not sure how this one would play out on my skin but it just might be one of my favorites in the bunch.

Pyre- Notes: The distinct scent of a bonfire. Wood smoke and firewood with a touch of leather.
The rustle and snap of fire gnawing on oak logs, red hot embers flush the cheeks and palms pink. The creosote soaked aroma easily glides into the tarry warmth of leather and straddles the two effortlessly. The line between fire and leather is surprisingly thin. Pyre lingers pleasantly on the skin, warming and primal.


Covenstead- Notes: A blend of clove, vanilla and woodsmoke.
Bonfire smoke curls its fingers around long locks of hair, pulling insistently on the senses as a reminder of last night's revelries. The smoke snakes out authentically at first dab then the cloves weave in. Perhaps from a clove cigarette that crackled just outside of the fire's glow? The smoke wafts downwind, allowing the clove to bloom in its own wooden sweetness. At the tail end there lingers just a touch of anise within the clove and vanilla woods. Covenstead is for the smoke lovers and spice lovers and I can be both.

Cerimonium- Notes: Cedarwood, frankincense, myrrh.
Medicinal and pungent myrrh offers up a bracing and beautiful opening. Gently the myrrh settles and gains some wooden depth with the addition of cedarwood and frankincense. Ceremonium smells of the bellies of creaky trinket boxes hidden in the shadows of antique stores.

Will-O-The-Wisp- Notes: A perfect fall blend of white pumpkin, orange pumpkin, squash, cinnamon and clove.
Fiery cinnamon and dusty bulbous gourds tumble about on the skin upon first whiff. The cinnamon spice tempers and sugar crusted pumpkins roll in to bring the scent from the patch to the kitchen table. Sweet cinnamon sugar and a base of pumpkin vanilla really makes for a classic fall experience. Delicious, simple and well done. I love the name too.


Myrkwood- Notes: Fresh turned earth, coniferous trees of pine, cedar and spruce with oud.
Pine, sharp and green, camphorous and bright, quivers with its spindly needles up from the loam. Damp humus and organic matter scatter like brown confetti under the thin pine tree's trunk. There is no sweet in the dark and eerie Myrkwood but there is plenty of bracing pine that clears the senses and yet befuddles the mind. This one burrows down into a dank and dusky cedarwood. I love how raw and true to its nature this one is. Myrkwood is not a place to take lightly.

Bellatrix- Notes: Leather and tobacco flower.
Rawhide leather right out of the gate. Firm, new and intense. This is the scent of the leather tent at the festival where hundreds of belts hang ready for your name to be engraved on the back, wallets and purses with foot long fringes and keychains and braided leather bracelets dyed all colors. Leather. Freshly tanned. 


Three Ravens crafts some lovely scents. I enjoy the unique packaging and the literary inspiration. I have recently purchased two bakery bags of wax tarts and look forward to trying their home fragrance line as well. I spy candles. Just waiting on those to come back into stock. The liquid hand soap is catching my eye too. 

Have you tried any new perfume houses or candle makers as of late? Which of these would you like to wear or perfume your home with?


Fall Festival

I have not been to a fall festival since last year when we took the girls to the Hunsader Farms Pumpkin Festival and I got the phone call once we set foot in the parking lot that my dad had fallen from a great height and almost lost his life. I don't think I really want to go back as the horrible news tainted the trip. We do have a corn maze and small festival here in town but I have not taken the girls yet. We have so much going on this time of year. I will say that today is a fall festival of sorts... we are surprising the girls with a trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Skipping school and all. What a great teacher example I am! LOL!

So cheers with a frozen Butterbeer clink! 

Do you have any fall festivals in your area? Do you like the frozen Butterbeer or the regular Butterbeer?

The Fall Fun Friday prompt was if I could plan any type of fall travel experience or get together what would it be? If I could make anything happen it would be this: an October trip to the Blue Ridge mountains for my family. We would drive the parkway, leaf gaze and toast marshmallows over bonfires and sip hot cozy beverages. 

Please check my friends and their blogs to read about their fall musings:

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Wick & Fable Candle: Middle Earth


Today's October word prompt is:

Candles

This tiny 2 ounce candle from Wick and Fable, Middle Earth, is not as "fresh and clean" as I had anticipated due to the notes. I am in fact quite happy about that. There is a smooth roundness to the scent that almost reminds me of vanilla somehow. This is an interesting scent to be sure but it is on the medium-light side. I stick it on my nightstand for feel-good ambience more than anything else. I do love these small candles from Wick & Fable. They normally burn really well. I think they can only be had by buying their monthly box. I am on pins and needles waiting for that Harry Potter box to arrive from September.

I am going to finally burn my Autumn Day candle from Bath & Body Works this weekend. 

I have not been keeping up on the candle scene... are there any good scents from Bath & Body Works this fall? Any new candle vendors? I did see Andy Tauer came out with some candles. They are $60 I believe, so if I get one it would be a splurge to be sure. 

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Mermaid Treasure: Little Sister Designs (LSD) Jewellery


I featured one of my new favorite rings from LSD Jewellery a little while back and I must say, that ring wasn't the only thing I picked up that day. Inside this sleek black box with a snapping lid and silver embossing lies a trio of hand crafted silver pins that my make Harry Potter loving heart go pitter pat as if I was in the Shrieking Shack.

>points wand at box<
"Reveal your secrets."


A Deathly Hallows pin made of bones that delights me.


A skeleton of a rat's paw pinching a faceted moonstone aptly named The Demented Pin.


A Seer Pin, which is a casting of a finch's claw grasping a faceted labradorite. With the blue hue of the stone and the bird claw I tend to think of this one as an homage to Ravenclaw.


The Demented and Deathly Hallows pins are currently available for $70 to $75 each. There is a coupon code right now for 25% off until October 17th using: HALLOWEEN18

Sweater

I have enjoyed wearing these lapel pins on a black cardigan sweater of mine. As you know from my fall fashion post, cardigans are my preferred sweater but I do have a couple geeky pull on sweaters that I love and this one I picked up on Etsy last year from Black Bird Supply:


I don't look nearly as cute in it but I like how soft it is. 

Please share your favorite place to get sweaters. Do you have any Harry Potter lapel pins? Where did you get them?

Monday, October 8, 2018

Vintage Chic Scents: Edelweiss


I was raving about Vintage Chic Scent's Edelwiess a haul or two or three ago (and really, probably every time I talk about VCS) and I noticed there were plain Edelweiss pie slices on the website. I scooped up four and gifted one of them to my sister to share the love. These layered pie slices run $4.80 and are about 5 ounces of wax. There are still some on the website right now.



Edelweiss mixes up gingerbread cake and tops it with cream cheese frosting. Normally I am not a fan of cream cheese anything in wax but in this scent there is no hint of sour milk. This smells just like it says, rich and moist gingerbread cake and frosting.


The spice is nice and warm and it throws well. 

And look how lovely it is?!

Apple Cider

I did talk briefly about apple cider when I was reminiscing about my wonderful apple cider experience in NYC. That is still my favorite apple cider to date. I do have chilled apple cider in the fridge as I type. We normally get the Honeycrisp version but I did the plain Jane version this time. Savanna and I love to sip it ice cold. 

I like to use apple cider in my pie crust when I make apple pie. I also like to braise pork roasts in apple cider. I have a recipe here for some Cider Braised Pork Roast

Apple cider in the form of home fragrance is always something I enjoy too. Bath & Body Works Spiced Apple Toddy was one that made my mouth water.

Do you enjoy apple cider? Do you cook with it?

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Cinnamon and Spice


Cinnamon

I am a spice lover. I enjoy it on my foods, on my skin and wafting about my home. 

Last night my sister Lindsey and my new brother Dustin came over and we carved pumpkins and hung out. I made some hot beef cheddar subs and for dessert I made some apple crisp with rum cream sauce. I made mine a la mode too. And sprinkled some cardamom and cinnamon on top. 

Lately cardamom has been my new favorite spice. My morning coffee gets an extra pinch of cinnamon and cardamom. If I make oatmeal it gets extra cinnamon and cardamom. And if I bake anything (even chocolate chip cookies) they get a pinch of cinnamon and cardamom. I have come to appreciate cloves, allspice and nutmeg too.


Some of my favorite perfumes have the classic cupboard spices in them or a warmth that mimics them:

Solstice Scents Conjure

Wylde Ivy Autumn Twilight

Arcana Mare Exalted: Courage and Venus Exalted: Tenderness

Nocturne Alchemy My Valentine, Halloween 2017, Santalum & Cardamom, Crystalline Holiday Spice Cake, Cardamom Chai Sandalwood and Bastet's Ice Cream Halloween Spice Cake Santalum Creme


This lip balm from Lip Freak in Sin-O-Mint will turn your lips inside out with its zingy cinnamon action. It is a pleasure/pain thing.

Some of my favorite wax is cinnamon focused. I love spices in my vanilla and bakery scents. Some of my favorite are: Celtic Moonspice, Amish Quilt, Cinnamon Broom, Cinnamon Garland, Dragon's Blood blended with Cinnamon, Warm & Cozy, Country Charm and Country Bumpkin. 

Don't forget to check out Deb's Blogtober Fall Word Prompts too. I am really happy she invited me to join her in doing this. <3

Are you a cinnamon and spice lover or hater? If you love it, what are your favorite blends or perfumes with it?

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Apples


Apples

Every year around September I get the urge to bake an apple pie. This year was no different. I like to use Granny Smith apples and homemade cornmeal crust that uses both butter and lard. Mmmmm.... lard. 


I also bought more apples to make some apple crisp this weekend. Heck, maybe even today. 


Some of my favorite apple moments include this hot apple cider with lemon and anise that I sipped in New York City. Bryant Park in the fall is truly a magical experience. There are food stalls and holiday shopping vendors, twinkling lights and a skating rink. 

My current favorite apple scent is still the classic Apple Clove Butter. Carol stocks this now and I will certainly be trying to pick some up on November 3rd. I also love Her Apple Dumpling and Apple Cobbler Delight scents. Oh! And Baked Apple. The new one of hers I want to try (well, new to me) is Apple N Spice. 

Some of my favorite apple perfumes include: Wylde Ivy's Autumn Twilight, Sixteen92's The Bell Witch and Sonoma Scent Studio's Equestrian.

What apple scents and flavors and experience delight you?

Friday, October 5, 2018

Fall Fun Friday: Fall Fashion and Cooler Weather


Today's Fall Fun Friday prompt was Fall Fashion and the October Word/Phrase for the Day was Cooler Weather. 

From the looks of it, the coolest weather I will be having for the next several days will be 89 degrees. The rain will help tremendously in helping the fall mood but the weather itself is still pretty dang hot. We do usually get a "cold" snap or two in October where it will be a high of 70 or 60 but so far there is no cold front in sight. 


I am by no means a fashionable person. I go for comfort but try to look presentable as possible without heading to high end stores. I tend to shop Target, Kohl's, Loft and such. Jeans, cardigans and Vans are life. Especially Vans with cats on them. I enjoy wearing black, gray, olive, maroon and dark blues but I am not afraid of color. I live for cardigans. Seriously. I have them with cats and stars, in solids and knitted patterns, fair isle cardigans and even bejeweled cardigans. It might the teacher in me.


I also like to wear jewelry. In fall I do wear bats and broomsticks, mandrakes and moons. Even wolves howling at moons. I have owls and crystals too. 

While I wait for cooler weather, I sweat in my jeans and cardigans and wear my spooky jewelry. 

Please check out my friends' blogs and their fall prompts today:
Sandra at Finger Candy

What do you like to wear in fall? Any fashion recs where I can get my cat/owl/moon/bat kicks in, in the cardigan department?

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Obscurus: Greater Secrets Fall 2018 Perfumes

These perfumes were sent gratis from Obscurus for photographs. All opinions my own.


The Greater Secrets Fall collection from Obscurus continues to follow inspiration from the Tarot as did the wax tarts. These perfume oils run $14.50 in US dollars. They come in 5ml green bottles with a rollerball applicator and housed in a tidy black box. 


The Star- Notes: Caramel, vanilla, cognac, pineapple, peach, apricot, nutmeg, fig and autumn spices.

Amber gilded fruits emerge wet on the skin. These fruits glow in the sunset hues of mango and pineapple. The cognac adds that suggestion of amber with its golden liquid silk. The fruits melt into the brandy leaving only the purple velvet skin of the fig and caramel musk. Star is a scent to bask in, warm and glowy. 


The Chariot- Notes: Patchouli, Indian lotus, agarwood, teak, violet, musk and myrrh.

Mineral laden patchouli blooms alongside the watery orchids. Soon the patch drifts into the background and powdery violets and woods lift up. Sunning beside the river Nile like a desert lizard, the lotus blossoms float by and the papery Papyrus reeds scratch against each other. This translates into a sun-warmed skin scent, a touch powdery and musky with a hint of incense and woods.


The Empress- Notes: Creamy vanilla, tobacco leaf, fig, a hint of tropical coconut, lively autumn spices, patchouli and clove leaf.

Spooky spice, dark with damp and fecund soil, arises from the skin when freshly applied. The earthiness soon breaks down into brown coconut husk and slivers of green tobacco leaves, raw and freshly plucked, there is almost a vetiver hue to the scent. This is a soft lovely perfume that leans into a barely sweetened earthy musk.


The Madman- Notes: Dark and light chocolate, vanilla and autumnal spice.

Boozy dark chocolate filled with intoxicating spiced liqueur melts on the tongue. It is almost naughty in its indulgence. I pick up an almost animalic darkness in the sinful truffle. The chocolates swirl into bourbon vanilla, keeping the peppering of spice within it until it finally fades into solid bourbon vanilla cream. Normally I am a hard sell on chocolate scents but this one is very well executed. I will be holding onto this one.


The Lovers- Notes: Juicy apricot nectar, raspberry, chocolate, amber, spices and Egyptian musk.

Earthy chocolate and something a touch sharp, perhaps unsweet tangy fruit, first greets the senses. Soon the sour flavor dissipates and leaves musky chocolate behind. There is still an earthen aspect, almost like patchouli or vetiver, that hovers around the edges. For some reason this bings to mind the god Dionysus. I imagine him smelling thus. Fingers stained with aged fruits and cocoa beans while his bare feet crush earthen grasses and soil between this toes. God of the bounty. 


Colors

Grasses and trees and plants of green still dominate the landscape, halved with brilliant blue skies. I think the autumn skies in Florida are some of my favorite. Deep azure with cloudless days and feathery breezes.

My wardrobe takes on mustard and burgundy, browns and oranges, come fall. I love trying to coordinate with the seasons when I can. 

What colors do you gravitates towards or see in abundance around you?

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Melting Basket 128


Wax tarts from the last basket that I would like to have scent my home again include: Bohemienne Life Stache, VCS Cookie Monster in Salem, The Bathing Garden Sleepy, Beezy Apple Clove Butter, Dessa Apples and Cinnamon, CFTKR Fire Roasted Marshmallow, Country Charm and Ultimate Sugar Cookie.

Vintage Chic Scents- Hawkin's Lab (Autumn Wreath)
Vintage Chic Scents- Should I Stay or Should I Go? (Pumpkin Apple Clove Butter)
Candles From The Keeping Room- Butternut Pumpkin
Candles From The Keeping Room- Pumpkin Firewood
MooScents- The Rumpkin
Dessa's Homespun Scents- October (because, yeh yeah!!)
Ten Digit Creations- Practical Magic
Sniff My Tarts- Dragon's Blood/Nutmeg/Marshmallow Fireside
Lasting Scent Candles- Pumpkin Poke Cake
Lasting Scent Candles- Pumpkin French Toast
Lasting Scent Candles- Toasted Pumpkin Latte
Lasting Scent Candles- Pumpkin Spice Beignets


Leaves

Whelp. Being located in the heart of the Sunshine State does not allow for the typical temperate climate change that initiates abscission in deciduous trees. However, I do know where to find the odd colorful leaf. 

No, it is not here among the feathered leaves of my Rabbit Foot fern but I am so happy it is alive and thriving that I wanted to share. 


Here! This Camphor tree, even though it is technically an evergreen, always gifts me with the beautiful random red leaf. He lives in the woods behind my house and is beautiful. 


When I am craving fall hues I can always pluck them from my garden too. 

I burned through my Bath & Body Works Leaves candle and even began melting some of my Candles From the Keeping Room Leaves tarts (that just happen to come in a leaf shape). 

Some of my favorite "leaf" centric perfumes include: Solstice Scents Foxcroft, Sixteen92 Salem and Arcana's Leaves Falling Like Rain. 

I think that is the extent of my leafiness as of late. Do you get to see pretty fall foliage where you live? If not, how do you get in your colorful leaf desires?