Friday, October 24, 2014

Random Post: A Life Deliberate Soap Co. Haul #1!

A couple of my close wax buddies are also really into bath and body products, mainly homemade soaps! I have heard about A Life Deliberate several times within the past couple of years and have liked their Facebook page for some time now, and though I have had about 12 carts full of stuff throughout the years, I have never pulled the proverbial trigger and ordered. It might be TMI (??), but for some reason, I just haven't been able to use homemade soaps with any degree of success. They are always really drying on my skin. I don't know if it's because we have horribly hard water here in San Diego, but regardless, I have been deterred. The only soap I ever had any success with was one that my good pal Deb made!

Well, here we are today. At the end of September, I did it. I bought from A Life Deliberate! There was a scent I just could not pass up. Let's take a look, shall we?
Pumpkin Lager goat's milk bar soap: the one that drew me in! The description reads: "A warm fragrance blend of pumpkin puree, fresh ginger, crushed spice island's nutmeg, ground cinnamon, vanilla sugar, and sparking rum." Doesn't that sounds amazing enough to eat!? No matter how many times I took the photo, the pumpkin would never come out quite right, unfortunately! I love the brown swirls and colors, very fall indeed! This smells incredible, I almost don't want to use it. You pick up on the cinnamon first, then is transitions into a sweet vanilla pumpkin, Aghhh, so good! The ingredients sound like this will be a very moisturizing bar, so I have faith it won't dry out my skin!
Happily Sever After goat's milk bar soap: the description reads: "this fragrance is a cut above the rest with top notes of tangy lemon zest, blood oranges, and bubbly carbonation; followed by middle notes of Italian bergamot, fresh mint, gin martinis and lavender, sitting on a base of rosewood." WOWZA! I definitely pick up on the orange and lemon notes with a fizzy after scent, too. The fizz is more than  just carbonation, though, there is a slightly alcoholic bubbly to it! Love that. There is a complex woody note in there as well, but I can't tell if it's a rosewood or a bergamot type of smell. I love this way more than I thought I would, and I gotta admit, I really bought it because of the finger, LOL! And look at those colors and swirls, so gorgeous.
Creepy Cooties Wax Melts: the day I bought these soaps, she mentioned on her Facebook page that she was going to be stocking a couple wax melts, too. HELLO, MOMMY! After much debate, I went with the creepy cooties because they were so dang cute. Big mistake. I should have known that I wasn't going to like this scent but still bought them anyways. It's basically an oatmeal cookie scent, but this is not your typical oatmeal that is toned down scent...all I smell is weird oatmeal stinkiness, like a face mask made from oatmeal. I am going to melt it to see if it clears off while warming, but I doubt it. I should have gone with something fruity instead!
Along with my purchases, I got 2 free samples, which I did not expect! I know wax vendors give samples, but didn't know if soap vendors did. Cool! I got a Farmhouse Shampoo sample that I'm not quite sure what to do with? Do I just rub it in like I would a cream/gal shampoo and rinse out? Do I use my conditioner after? SO MANY QUESTIONS! I also received a free sample of her gourmet body mousse in Viva La Juicy, which is a very popular perfume. This is super smooth but a bit greasy for me. I am willing to give it another shot, though!

Have you ever purchased anything from A Life Deliberate? Let me know if you have an what kinds of experiences you have had with her products!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wickless Wednesday: Attempting to Cook and Bake with Lolo - Spiced Apple Cake with Orange Glaze!

Ahoy, mateys! Today on the blog, I decided to do something a bit different to see how it feels. While I was making one of our new favorite fall desserts the other day, I figured I'd just take some photos as I went along and try to make a post out of them! If you all like it, I could put other recipes together, too! Let me know if you like this, and please enjoy! :)

Spiced Apple Cake with Orange Glaze 
(recipe from White Lights on Wednesday)

Cake recipe:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup buttermilk *
  • 1 cup Musselman's Apple Butter
Glaze recipe
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

Most of the dry ingredients/the spice line up! Step 1: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. [my oven is a mess or else I'd take a picture of it].
Step 2: Combine flour, salt, baking powder, and spices to a medium-sized bowl, stir together, and set aside
Step 3: In a large bowl, combine sugar and butter and cream until smooth. [I used a hand mixer the first time I made this and my KitchenAid the second time. I think I prefer the hand mixer].
Step 4: Add eggs to butter/sugar mixture and mix until it is combined. [As Julie has mentioned, I read somewhere, too, that butter and eggs should be at room temperature before using for baking, and though the recipe doesn't say to do this, I always do it anyway].
Step 5: At this point, you want to add the flour mixture and buttermilk. Starting and ending on the flour mixture, add one then the other and alternate until it is all added, and BE SURE to JUST COMBINE after each addition! [I also forgot to do this once or twice, which might be why it had a different texture the second go-around]
Step 6: When you're done adding the above ingredients, stir in the apple butter. I don't recall the brand we used, but it is delicious stuff. Unfortunately, it's just shy of 1 full cup, but it doesn't seem to make a heck of a lot of different. It comes in a glass container and it pretty expensive, but worth it for this recipe.

Step 7: Bake for 55 minutes after pouring batter into a 9" x 5" loaf pan (bake for 30-35 minutes if you are using a smaller pan!). Poke a toothpick into the center of the cake to see if it is ready (it will come out clear if it is). [Be careful not to overfill your pan! The first time we made it is overflowed (!!!) and got onto the bottom of the oven and caused a nasty, smelly mess. You could always add a baking sheet on the rack under my loaf pan just in case (right???).] 
Step 8: While the cake is baking, make your glaze! Combine powdered sugar, orange zest and orange juice until smooth. Set aside, and right when your cake comes out of the oven, pour the glaze of the top of your cake and spread evenly! It will create a nice and sweet but not too crunch or cloying topping to your already delicious cake. Cool for 10 minutes and enjoy! It is good cold with some coffee for breakfast or warm by itself or with ice cream for dessert!

And there you have it, simple, right? Like I mentioned, we love this recipe! We hope you like it, too!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Swift & Supersonicly Snappy Short Review #38: A Whole Lotta Sniff My Tarts Reviews!

Sunnee from Fragrance Obsessed mentioned in a comment that she wanted to see tons of Sniff My Tarts reviews before their impending opening. Ask and ye shall receive, my friend! I tried to get scent descriptions where I could.
Birthday cake + twinkies + STRAWBERRY JAM – Sweet strawberries made into jam, just like grandma used to make. You'll love this one. 
Sniff My Tarts' Birthday Cake Strawberry Jam Twinkies
Cold Rating6/10
Lit Rating: 5.5/10
Throw Rating6/10
Overall Rating6/10; a nice strawberry scent but I don't like the other bakery notes.
The perfect blend of fresh picked flowers.
Sniff My Tarts Flower Shop
Cold Rating: 7/10
Lit Rating: 7/10
Throw Rating6.5/10
Overall Rating6.5/10
Sniff My Tarts' Keylime Pie, Iced Pineapple, Orange Sherbet
Cold Rating7.5/10
Lit Rating: 5/10
Throw Rating5/10
Overall Rating5/10; this was very crusty while melting and wasn't as strong as it was on cold sniff. Bummer.
Sniff My Tarts' Pink Coconut Orange Danish
Cold Rating6/10
Lit Rating: 4/10
Throw Rating: 5/10
Overall Rating5/10; too buttery and bready for my tastes.
STICKY MARSHMALLOW - The aroma of open a big bag of jets marshmallows + Fruity Peebles + STRAWBERRY PRESERVES – Just like the name it smells good enough to eat!Wonderful strawberry fragrance with soft sweet undertones.
Sniff My Tarts' Sticky Marshmallow Fruity Pebbles Type Strawberry Preserves
Cold Rating6.5/10
Lit Rating: 6/10
Throw Rating6.5/10
Overall Rating6.5/10; peebles, damn it! PEEBLES!!!!!!!
Sniff My Tarts' Cotton Candy Lemon Berry Grape
Cold Rating7.5/10
Lit Rating: 8/10
Throw Rating7.5/10
Overall Rating7.5/10; whoever made this blend is a genius because it is delicious.
Sniff My Tarts' Granny's Jam
Cold Rating6/10
Lit Rating: 6/10
Throw Rating6/10
Overall Rating6/10
Marshmallow vanilla bean noel
Sniff My Tarts' Marshmallow Noel
Cold Rating8.5/10
Lit Rating: 8/10
Throw Rating8/10
Overall Rating: 8/10; amaaaaaaaaazing scent from a wax friend. So simple and yet so rich and creamy. Love!
Sticky Marshmallow Pink Sugar Serendipity
Sniff My Tarts's Sticky Pink Serendipity
Cold Rating7/10
Lit Rating: 7/10
Throw Rating7.5/10
Overall Rating7/10; SMT has some of the best marshmallow scents, but they also have some of the best serendipity blends, too.
Sniff My Tarts' Vanilla Ice Cream
Cold Rating4/10
Lit Rating: 5/10
Throw Rating5/10
Overall Rating5/10; a little more come from this while melting, but not much. It sort of had a waxy undertone that I dumped shortly after putting in the warmer because it wouldn't go away.
Sniff My Tarts' Apricot Christmas Cabernet Pomegranate
Cold Rating6.5/10
Lit Rating: 6.5/10
Throw Rating6/10
Overall Rating6.5/10; a unique combination of scents that I'm not sure I loved, but didn't mind trying once!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Random Post: "My First Time" Tag!

Two posts in a row?! You should be so lucky, lol! Even though these types of post don't have anything to do with wax, I have been loving tag posts and videos, and one of my new favorite YouTubers aLoveTart did the first time tag and I was intrigued, so let's all do it, shall we? PS: Thanks to Deb for pointing her out to me!

~*My FIRST Time TAG:~*

1) Do you still talk to your first love?
It tough to answer this because I had so many online friendships when I was a kid that I formed lots of connections with others, some of which blossomed into more than friendship. This was maaaaany years ago. My "first love" actually passed away a couple of years ago in a car accident. As for the one after that, not really, maybe once every three months if I'm lucky. He's not good at being close to anyone other than the person he's with at the present moment. We were really good friends when I was in high school, the best of, actually, but we have grown far apart. It sucks because all I ever wanted was the best for him, and he probably doesn't even know or care.

2) What was your first job?
I worked at Mervyn's right out of high school as a retail clerk. If you have never heard of this, it is basically what Kohl's is now.

3) What was your first car?
The first car I drove was our family's 1991 Camry for the first couple of years I had my license, and then I bought Scully, my 1997 white Buick Regal in 2005.

4) Who was the first person who texted you today?
Twitter, LOL. But since Twitter isn't a person, it was Josh.

5) Who's the first person you thought of this morning?
I thought of the dog, but again, not a person, LOL. I thought of my mom this morning.

6) Who was your first grade teacher?
Mrs. Iler, I think.

7) Where did you go on your first airplane ride?
I'm sure I traveled when I was a baby, but I don't remember any of that, so the first trip I vividly remember was going to Oregon when my grandma passed away. It was awful; our flight got delayed and we were given vouchers for the food court. I picked McDonald's. Because they had bratwurst. Do you know what McDonald's shouldn't make? FREAKING BRATWURST. Do you know who puked upon landing? This gal. YUCK.

8) Who was your first best friend & do you still talk to him/her?
Ashlee, Ross, Eryn, and Meghan, and Karen were my first group of BFFs and I still talk to some of them!

9) Where was your first sleepover?
The first sleepover I actually remember was at my friend Karen's house.

10) Who was the first person you talked to today?
Josh in person, Craig on the phone, Lynda on instant messenger.

11) Who's wedding were you in for the first time?
I haven't ever been in a wedding. In fact, I haven't been to that many weddings in general.

12) What was the first thing you did this morning?
Turned on the DSC and collected the trash from the trash cans since tomorrow is garbage day.

13) What was the first concert you ever went to?

14) First Broken Bone?
I broke my ankle in a car accident when I was in high school.

15) First Piercing?
Just my ears.

16) First Foreign Country?
Mexico? Or Canada.

17) First movie you remember seeing in the theaters?
I remember watching "The Flintstones" movie, but I'm sure that wasn't the first.

18) When was your first detention?
This is a story! I was madly in love with this kid in middle school who couldn't give a crap less that I existed. One day after school, while waiting for my brother to get out of the elementary school just down the hill slightly, he and I were screwing around and messing with each others hair and punching each other, as we often did, and he called me a bitch, so I called him an asshole. Mr. Chamberlin (UGH, if you're reading this right now, go to hell), WHO WASN'T EVEN MY TEACHER, gave me detention because he heard me call him a name. The guy didn't get reprimanded. I'm not bitter or anything...

19) Who was your first roommate?

20) What was the first lesson you ever took?
I remember taking some form of dancing lesson for like, 2 seconds.

21) Who was the first beauty wax related person you watched on YouTube?
I watched VintageChic1927, clsings7, JDazzler, and temptingtreats1 as well as a host of others who have come and gone in the YouTube wax community. Some of my favs are still on there, though!

Please do this tag, y'all! Specifically, Sunnee, Deb, and Julie, but everyone else, please have fun with this!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Random Post: "I Love Fall" Tag!

So, let me start off by saying I am sorry I have been neglecting this blog o' mine for the better part of the last 2 months. I need to get my posting schedule straightened out so I can stop doing huge posts with tons of reviews and focus on smaller, more in-depth reviews once again. I am also waaay behind on commenting on my favorite blogs, so please, don't think I am ignoring you! I just need to stop focusing so much on our movie blog. :)

Deb over at It's Always Something tagged me to do the I Love Fall tag, so here it is!


1. Favorite fall Starbucks drink?
The last few years or so, I have gotten over the pumpkin spice latte. I used to crave them, and now I only get 2 or 3 a year. I really love a good chai tea latte, but that's not seasonal. I also like the peppermint mocha which, again, isn't seasonal. Once a year, like candy corn, I am convinced (by myself) that the salted caramel mocha is a good idea and I order it only to be disappointed. Any additions or subtractions that would make that a good drink??

2. Favorite fall Bath & Body Works candle?
They don't carry it anymore (I don't think??), but a few years ago they made a candle called Autumn and it is freaking incredible. I love it! I also love Leaves and Spiced Apple Toddy, which comes out between Halloween and Christmas, but is still more fall than winter.

3. Favorite Yankee candle?
Home Sweet Home is always a sure bet. Cinnamon, spices, apples and perhaps some other fruits, you can't go wrong!

4. Favorite Thanksgiving food?
It's gotta be the turkey itself, but if I'm being honest, my favorite thing is post Thanksgiving dinner sandwiches. After you have your initial meal, which is usually in the early afternoon, provided you don't stuff yourself, you make a sandwich with turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, stuffing, and maybe some gravy on the side and go to town. Do this with a nice crusty bread, sourdough is my bread of choices for said sandwich. Hell yeah.

5. Hayride or corn maze?
Hayrides sound relaxing and fun, corn mazes sound like my (a fat kid's) worst nightmare.

6. Favorite fall Bath & Body Works soap?
Tough choice. Though it's not seasonal, I love the Black Cherry Merlot, which is all purpose, in my opinion. As far as fall soaps go, anything with a crisp leaves and apple scent will fit the bill.

7. Favorite horror/Halloween movie?
Horror movies, ehh? This is my specialty, movies! If we're kickin' it old school, it'd be a toss-up between "Poltergeist" and the original "Halloween," most likely. As far as new horror movies go, "The Mist" is pretty awesome. Kiddie movies are good, too, and we watch those on Halloween morning. My go-to is "The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown," it's just not Halloween without it. On November 1st, we watch "The Nightmare Before Christmas," since we often debate whether it's more Halloween (for October viewing) or Christmas (for December watchin'), so we just settled on November. :)

8. Favorite candy to eat at Halloween?
Another tough question. You gotta love Reese's peanut butter pumpkins! Besides those, I love York peppermint patties. And call me weird, but I also love Smarties.

9. Favorite fall activity?
One day every year in October or early November, Josh and I wake up super early and go to our favorite breakfast joint and get pumpkin pancakes. Then, we go to our local pumpkin patch and spend the say feeding animals, going into the markets, and taking in the scenery. It's as close as we get to changing seasons in San Diego. ;)

10a. Pumpkin pie or apple pie?
Why so many food related questions?! Now I am hungry! I can make apple pie any time of the year, so I am inclined to say pumpkin pie, but it suffers the same problem as all pumpkin flavored gets tiring real quick. So, I usually make both.

10b. Hot apple cider or hot cocoa?
I have to agree with Deb on this one, hot cocoa is much more winter-y, so I'll go with hot apple cider. Especially the stuff from Trader Joe's warmed on the stove with an extra cinnamon stick and some spiced rum.......not that I'm counting the days until that or anything....

And that's my tag! I tag Michelle from waxing about, Lynda (who doesn't have a blog, but can comment here!), and anyone and everyone who wants to share in the comments below!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Swift & Supersonicly Snappy Short Review #37: Sniff My Tarts' Cake Batter Fudge Wildberry Mousse Vanilla Waffle Cone

....well, that was a mouthful of a scent name.
Sniff My Tarts Cake Batter Fudge Wildberry Mousse Vanilla Waffle Cone
Cold Rating8.5/10
Lit Rating: 9/10
Throw Rating9/10
Overall Rating9/10; excellent balance of all three scents. Somehow, you get the cake batter and the waffle cone, though those two separate ingredients are often powerful individually. Wildberry mousse club, amazing wildberry scent. Extreme throw, excellent lasting power, 12+ hours. Cute berry embeds on top. Glitter bomb, still picking glitter out from the crevices of my warmer. Cool colors in my warmer while melting. Repeat blend, hell yes! If you've read my blog for any considerable length, you might know I am not the biggest bakery fan.
I can admit when I'm wrong.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Order of the Odor: Volume 2

What is your first or most cherished scent memory?

My most cherished scent memory is one that was repeated many a year in my childhood. My mom and dad and my brother and I would pile in the car and go to our local pumpkin patch/farm/general store, Bates Nut Farm. There, we would go from place to place, from the earthy rows thriving with pumpkins to the animal pens, rich with the scent of falling leaves, kicked up dirt, and corn kernels. Next, we'd venture into the General Store, which was filled with the scent of wood, and barrels of candy as far as the eye could see. As you parooze through the isles, what's that other scent in the air? Free sample bottles of sesame sticks, trail mix, jellies, salsas, and mixed nuts. But most of all, I remember walking outside through the fresh air and into the Farmer's Daughter store, where my mom and dad would always pick a candle or two from Yankee Candle to bring home with us. Could this have been where my love of all things scented began? We would smell them all, through the buttercreams and cookies to the pine scented ones and the mixed fruit favorites. I remember how we would usually return home with one that was apple-y, fall-y, pumpkin-y, and of course, cinnamon-y. Cinnamon seemed to be a common thread in all of these household candles. Noses full of scents from the farm, this is my most cherished and my first distinct scent memory. I still go to Bates Nut Farm today with my husband, Josh, and I have been able to pass this scent memory onto him so that we can enjoy it together.

Fragrance Obsessed: A Rosegirls pie is one of the most coveted wax items around, but find out why Sunnee will take a Rosegirls loaf over a pie any day. You really want to see these loaves.... 

It's Always Something: The Fall Slut has very high standards regarding all things fall related. She has officially proclaimed her favorite, # 1, all-time BEST Fall Scent.

Lolo Loves Scents: Thinking of plotting a Tiffany Candles order soon? You'd be remiss to do so without reading this post first! Lauren, the master of swift and supersonic reviews, busts out 15 Tiffany scent ratings in one breath! Resulting in many lemmings.

The Redolent Mermaid: Julie waxes poetic about a vendor who is taking risks blending with gardenia (with great payoff), has gorgeous scent shots, and fun restock themes. Who is this mystery vendor?

We would love to hear about your first or most cherished scent memory! Please tell us in the comments and hope your October is full of spooky, festive smells.