Thursday, December 30, 2010

Happy New Year!!

I have been taking a much needed break, and I will be back to blogging and soap making next week. Yea!! I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, and I am wishing everyone love, joy, and contentment in the new year!

These are my little Christmas angels...

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Soap Swap/Elise's Recipe for PBJ & B (Peanut Butter, Jelly & Banana)

I was so excited to receive my soap from the Brambleberry Soap Swap.  It was definitely an early Christmas for me!  It was really nice to see what other soap makers are making and to smell some scents that I haven't had the opportunity to sample yet.  I am anxious to try some of these soaps too! Brambleberry also included some yummy fragrance samples in my package of goodies.

Summer Fling by Lotion Bar Cafe
Lavender by Palin's Pantry
Mango Sangria by Sweet Peas Soap
 Kentish Rain by Goddess Herbals
Pinapple Cilantro by Cindy's Soap
Samples from Brambleberry: Mangosteen and Sheer Freesia (Mmmm!)

Christmas Garden by My Angel's Call
Bay Rum Soap by Lucinda's Nice Things
 "Sun Soap" ????? (there was no name or soap name on this one)
Pumpkin Pie Cybilla by
Cranberry Fig by Anne-Marie Faiola of Brambleberry
Hot Chocolate Swirl by Emma

On a completely different note, I just had to include this recipe from my youngest daughter.  She came home from school the other day and insisted that we make a recipe by Zefronk (Disney Channel).  So, here it is a recipe for Peanut Butter, Jelly, and Banana.

Peanut Butter, Jelly, and Banana

Hot Dog Bun
Peanut Butter
Jelly (any flavor)
Smile (optional but recommended)

Put Banana in the bun like a hot dog, spread on the peanut butter and jelly!


Monday, December 13, 2010

A Whirlwind in Las Vegas!

My husband and I just had a blast in Las Vegas over the weekend.  We took a short trip in order to see Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds play at Planet Hollywood, but of course we had to have a little fun along the way.

We stayed at Paris Hotel, which was a spectacular site in itself.  This place was very unique, the prices were reasonable (a must with us), and the rooms were really lovely.  I couldn't resist stepping in one of the shops and checking out these cool Primal Elements soaps.  I do not do too much melt and pour soaping myself, but it doesn't mean that I am not impressed by those who do!

There were a couple places I must mention because they were spectacular in service, atmosphere, and food/drink.  First, was the bar Pour 24.  If you enjoy a good beer, this is definitely a must.  Situated inside New York, New York casino, this bar had a wide variety of beer and other drinks (you will have to excuse these terrible pictures.  The lighting was very dark in here).

The restaurant that stood out among the rest was Serendipity.  It was very cute with bright colors and decoration (which my husband pointed out was much like the inside of a teenage girl's bedroom.  Ha ha, that must be why I liked it so much!).  They had honestly the best Eggs Benedict I have ever tasted.  Not only that, but the coffee was excellent as well.  It seems that they are well known for their hot chocolate, which we did not try this time, but it looked really tasty.  I think almost everyone else in the place had ordered it.

Since our visit was extremely short, we did not spend a tremendous amount of time in the casinos.  We are not really big on gambling anyway, so we mostly just walked around and took in the sites during the day.  Of course, we finished off with our reason for this visit, a mind-blowing performance from Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds.  We had so much fun, and it was amazing, as expected. It was a whirlwind of a weekend, but I am so glad we were able to go!

New York, New York Casino

Monday, December 6, 2010

They Aren't Exactly Rodents, but They're Cute!

These cute little critters were another gift to my rodent/little animal fanatics.  They were really fun to make.  I got the instructions from this book, which had very detailed and easy to follow directions and illustrations.  I changed up the colors a little bit, and they were a big hit with the girls.

There are a ton of other cute animals to make. I also made the koala, parrot and frog and gave them as gifts.  I think the cat and the raccoon (or fox  - my girls corrected me on this already) turned out the best though.

I actually attached these as zipper pulls for the mouse picnic I posted last week.  They would also be great as gift toppers, stocking stuffers or just by themselves.  I am in the process of making my gifts for this year, so hopefully I will have something to post about them this week.  Everything is in different stages, but nothing is complete...yet.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Stuff Your Stocking!

Lychee Red Tea Lotion Bar

I listed a bunch of stuff on my Etsy site today.  Everything I listed could be used as a stocking stuffer too, which makes a great a pre-Thanksgiving post.  I have been going crazy lately with lotions and lip balms (both of which I need to use often), and I made some very adorable snow globe soaps.  They were very difficult to photograph well, but I did the best I could.  I am personally stuffing my stocking with these things this year.

I made three flavors of lip balm: Butter Creme, Passionfruit Rose, and Sweet Strawberries and Honey.  I absolutely love all three, but if I had to choose a favorite, it would be the Passionfruit Rose.  I personally do not like sweeteners in my lip balm, so these only have the flavor oil.  You can definitely taste those, but you don't have that extra sweet aftertaste.

This Lychee Red Tea Lotion Bar joins my other two varieties Lavender Herb & Honey and Girly Grapefruit to be one of my favorite products.  Anyone would be happy to find this in their stocking.  

I made these little cuties for a local craft show, and since I had some left over, I had to post them on the Etsy site.  I made some for all the little ones I am giving gifts to this year. I am using them for gift toppers, but they would make a great stocking stuffer as well.  The larger of the two features a large standing doe and the smaller dome has either a baby deer or a sitting doe.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Lavender Herb Complexion/Shaving Soap

Lavender is always a good scent in soap.  This Lavender Herb does not disappoint.  Combined with the kaolin clay, which creates a really thick lather, makes this soap great for your face or for shaving.  This is the last cold process soap I am making until after the holidays.  This is a super small batch.  I made it for a special request.

Find this soap here.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Spearmint Eucalyptus Shaving/Complexion Bar

So, I have been wanting to try some shaving soap for sometime.  I kind of wanted to make one in a mug, but then I thought, "what about me and all the other ladies that would like a good soap for shaving our legs?"  I decided to make it in a bar instead.  There are a lot of really nice clays that you can add to soap to make it nice for shaving and I finally settled on kaolin clay, not only because it makes for a nice shaving soap, but also because it is mild and beneficial for all kinds of skin.  I wanted a really luxurious bar, so I also made this one with coconut milk.

I love mint and I love eucalyptus, and this scent is a perfect pairing of the two.  When I smelled it, I automatically thought snow, so that was the inspiration behind this bar of soap.  I think the dusting of mica on the top really makes it.

Find this soap here.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mouse Tea Party

I promised more rodents, so here they are.  This is another Christmas gift to my girls from last year.  I found a tutorial for this pyramid purse (find the link here).  The matching picnic blanket gives them a place to sit (only one of which survived the year - the other is in the toy abyss), and the figures are fashioned from Fimo clay (love that stuff!).  You can just let your imagination go for that part!  The most useful tool that is readily found around the house was a bamboo skewer for detail (and I used a glass to flatten the plates). I suppose if you got really serious about your Fimo creations, you would get some more sophisticated tools, but I wanted to use what I had lying around. Follow the instructions on the Fimo packaging to harden the clay, and you're finished!

When the mice are finished with their picnic, just have them crawl back into the bag until next time!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Felted Rodents (Squeak!)

I love making gifts for my friends and family.  Last year I made a good portion of the Christmas gifts.  I plan to make most of my Christmas gifts this year as well, so I thought I would try to share most of them here (and I promise... not all of them are soap!).

I have shared in the past that my younger children have a rodent fixation.  They also love anything and everything in miniature.  Last year I decided to felt them little rodents (guinea pigs and mice specifically).  They were fairly easy to do if you have the right felting materials. Each guinea pig is about 1" long and the mice are about 2".  The mice are made entirely out of wool roving. The eyes are made with seed beads and I used embroidery thread for the whiskers and paws.  This one has his tail curled up on his back (although it makes him look a little bit like a hunchback in this picture).

The guinea pigs presented a problem.  How was I going to make their little feet?  I tried to use wool, but they looked really funny, so I made some little feet out of Fimo clay and glued them on with fabric glue.  I've seen other felted animals that are a lot smoother than mine, but the girls love them.  That's all that really matters.

This one is my favorite

This will not be the last rodent DIY.  Later in the week I will show you the rodent picnic I made for the girls out of Fimo clay.  You'll love it!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

New Soap for Winter

These two soaps have some of my favorite things, mint combined with chocolate and beer.  Luckily, these are two separate soaps! 

This Oatmeal Stout Beer soap is nice in smell and texture.  While I was making it, my house smelled so good. One of the best things about this soap is that it is made with actual beer!  It was all my husband and I could do not to eat this stuff.  Now that it has cured, it has a really nice, warm smell that is much more masculine than it was initially.  Find this soap here.

This next soap combines everything I love about winter, which is probably why the name is so fitting.  The smell and appearance remind me of hot cocoa and snow, warm and cold.  I also added cocoa and espresso powder to accentuate the already chocolaty smell of the scent.  Espresso powder wakes up your pores as the mint wakes up your senses.

This Winter soap is listed here.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Lotion Bars

I finally got these lotion bars perfected, packaged, and ready for public consumption (hopefully!). I am every bit as excited about these lotion bars as I am about soap, and that is saying a lot.  I have been using these bars for a few weeks now, and I can see a dramatic change in my skin.  I tend to have dry itchy skin, especially on my lower legs, and guess what??  Dry skin no more!!!  I also like the shape of them as they are the perfect shape to cup in your hand while you apply it to your skin.

Lavender Herb and Honey can be found here.

Girly Grapefruit Lotion Bars can be found here.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Little Last Minute Wickedness...

Am I a little obsessed with these treasuries?  Yep.  They are so much fun!  I find the coolest stuff by just picking a theme and hunting around.  I was feeling in the Halloween mood today (I finally got around to putting up my Halloween stuff), so I decided to do a Halloween themed treasury.  It's a little late for shoppers but fun nonetheless.  See something you like?  Visit the treasury here.