Sunday, July 5, 2020

June Musings - 2020

As we close out June, I want to check in with you. Have you forgotten about self-care in all the hubub? Things feel so busy and rushed that it's easy to stop taking care of you. To stop asking for what you want - because there just  isn't time. But there is time. And it's up to you to go after what you want plus, when you are 100%, you can give back so much more to the people you love! (Put on your own oxygen mask first!)

For me, that starts with food I want to eat, fresh flowers (this gorgeous farmer's market bouquet cost $5. I am WORTH $5 and so much more! - heck, I'm worth the tiny $8 bouquet at the local florist - so I got that too for my work desk!) And setting boundaries. So this month, I did that - I hope you had a good month too!

Now, let's get to it, shall we? Here's the rundown of the month, by topic.


Reading (Books):
I read. I didn't read. I didn't finish the same book for 2 months. I  listened to books. I Kindle Unlimited binged. It's a mixed bag and I probably need throw in a few more business books!
- Book 3 (Shadows and Surrender)  of The Jezebel Files by Deborah Wilde, which remains one of the best thing I've read in some time.  (Kindle Unlimited)
- Heart of the Thief, Soul of the Storm, and Crown of the Queen by Katrina Martinez (Kindle Unlimited) the first of which really needed a better editor; the second was just less than enthralling; the third of which felt like it was written by a different author.
- Dark Secrets by Linsey Hall (book 3 in her Shadow Guild series) - again the Kindle unlimited is the BOMB.
- The Flying Flamingo Sisters by Carrie Seim (Audible). Lemony Snickett spawned a genre, apparently. Well done for all of that.
- Beyond Strange Lands by Simon Taylor (Audible). And if not for the Australian accents, I would not have bailed. (I had a long drive.)

(And we are at 66 books for the year.)

Cooking: Went to a family thing and made the Frozen Fruit Cobbler and tortellini skewer appetizers. It wasn't a big cooking month overall.

Then I went to the farmer's market on Sunday.  Kung pow chicken with yellow peppers, snow pea pods and lily buds (sauce was jarred). Frittata with asparagus, red pepper, lily buds and a touch of bacon. Tortellini with sauted king mushrooms, garlic, tiny tomatoes, a touch of bacon and fresh oregano from my garden. Chicken with lime and tomato served with fresh peas and mint from my garden. (I also bought bagels and muffins and gorgeous soap. Everyone should go to a farmer's market!)

Another weekend brought fresh zucchini, and the return of Ben's Zucchini Bread.

Gardening: And we have tiny strawberries! And tomatoes! (The broccoli all went to seed.) And I've begun harvesting the Thai basil in small quantities. (Watermelon, blue berries, Thai basil, a touch of good balsamic vinegar and a dusting of feta cheese. Scrumptious!)

Gratitude: Pool time. Chirpy cats. Gardens. Dawn beachside Pilates.  Good vets. Evening painting. Badminton family tournaments. Farmer's market. Perfume. Catalpa trees. Garage sales.

Listening: Lots of meditation. Seriously. Night meditations to sleep. Morning meditations to have a stress-free day. I'm not good at doing them on my own, but guided meditations are good. Audible currently (covid) has a number of them for free and I downloaded all of them.

Watching: Finished out Ozark. My favorite part is that Marty was from South Bend. (And, man! He was one super manipulative dude. It's like he spent the better part of season 3 getting back at Wendy for the affair.) And (spoiler) I did not see Darlene and Wyatt coming. Whoa. Next, City of Troy (Netflix). My first disconnect was in how Cassandra was portrayed. She was NOT some vision-beset girl. She was the beloved of Apollo, gifted with sight of the future - and then struck down with the curse of unbelief when she rejected his love. That is a whole different level of Cassandra than what City of Troy was rocking. I'm a little shocked I watched the whole thing. It was so.... not like it lives in my head.

Also, so much Gordon Ramsay. It's the new family show. We are watching his original British show on YouTube.

Wearing (Perfume and Skincare): 


Perfume

Imaginary Authors
Memoirs of a Trespasser  - Scent notes: Madagascar Vanilla, GiaiacwoodMyrrh, Benzoin Resin, Ambrette Seeds, Oak Barrels. I get a lot of Vanilla and Ambrette seed with a touch of oak barrels. It almost smells like vanilla root beer. It lasts lightly on my skin a few hours and then drift off. (Nice but I would not buy)
Every Storm a Serenade. Notes: Danish Spruce, Eucalyptus, Vetiver, Calone, Ambergris, Baltic Sea Mist. I think it's the vetiver but I loved this! (I had a rough weekend mid-month and decide this was my theme-perfume.)  It's airy and really is reminiscent of the sea. I had no specific open or base notes - it smelled complete, the entire time I wore it, whole. Again, the sillage is less than awesome. (I would buy this one.)

Sucreabeille
We Ride at Dawn. Scent notes: Hot black tea with honey and coffee absolute to rise early, cardamom vanilla for comfort, bitter almonds for the lost, a shot of whiskey for strength. I felt like I needed the sentiment for my dawn beach Pilates. (Yeah, that ended with me limping.) I got bitter almond with a whisper of whiskey on this right off the bat. About 5 hours in the cardamon settled in with the whiskey and almond for the ride. 5-6 hours sillage, easy. (And this one is finished. I would likely not buy it - it was nice to smell but not "wearable" - which is a different thing entirely.
Toxic Masculinity Ruins the Party Again - Scent notes: A delightfully feminine blend of lavender, vanilla, honey nectar, and a light floral aldehyde.  I've now decided this is a weird mix of powder/honey. It's sweet, but dry smelling and goes more powder the longer it is on. Nice sillage.
GlitterTrash - Scent Notes: Watermelon Blow-Pops, baby powder, fistfuls of sticky white cake, last night's champagne and coconut cream. Right off, I always get baby powder, coconut cream and the sticky white cake - also it is very possible there is glitter in this as my skin shimmers a bit. Sillage is light, about 3 hours. (I want more watermelon!)
Rictus - Scent notes: Funeral wreath of white lilies and black orchids sprinkled with a dusting of graveyard dirt.A somber wake feast of dark chocolate drenched raspberries and a shot of dark rum. I found this - with a tiny bit left - at the bottom of my work bag the week I was dealing with a particularly difficult person at work. I decided it was an omen. I get strong upfront rum and chocolate with a settle down to a lillied chocolate in about 6-8 hours. This scent basically lingers until I wash it off.






Skincare

With the covid-19 masks, I feel like there is a renewed need for good forehead and eye crinkle care - because those are not the things I want people to remember about me.

- Day time - Started the month out with my standard a shower wash of tea tree cleanser and swipe of Rosewater Witch Hazel (Dr. Theyer's, obviously), followed by a third finger (gentlest finger) tapping into the skin of 100% Pure's Super Fruit Oil Nourishing Eye Cream. After that - all bets are off. Since we've hit summer, I've been mixing Earthwise Farizad's Veil mix-in sun protector with the Sweet Briar Hydrating Nectar by Heart of Gold (August Boxwalla find). But the 2nd week of June I started using the Sweet Briar as a base on my face and then mixing in the Veil to Earthwise Magical Babassu Face Oil. This oil is amazing, it lays on the skin for about 90 seconds and then just melts in. I don't feel oily - just super moisturized and non-crinkly. 

- Night time - I'm just a box girl. I'm second cleansing with Boxwalla's June cleanser, Nini Organics' Detox Foam Cleanser - which is a little greener  + baking soda smelling but does the powder to foam thing my Green Ceremony Cleanser by Odacite does! (I've temporarily suspended using the Green Ceremony Cleaner to enjoy this new one.) BTW- the Nini cleanser does not have baking soda in it - it just smells a bit like that to me. (Reminder - 1st cleanse is always 100% Pure's Blood Orange Cleansing Balm - which is my second favorite and much more affordable than my actual favorite. It also melts off stubborn eye make-up.) After this combo - my skin is perfectly clean and so balanced it almost doesn't feel like I need a night cream. But I'm over 40 - so night cream happens. As the heat has been rising, I've lightened up. I've been switching off between Sweet Briar Hydrating Nectar + 100% Pure Multi-Vitamin + Antioxidants PM Eye Treatment OR (from the April 2020 Boxwalla beauty box) a quick sandwich of Monastery's XX Rose Glycolic Gel/100% Pure Multi-Vitamin + Antioxidants PM Eye Treatment/Aloe Hyaluronic Moisture Boost. 

And again - the Boxwalla Beauty box is absolutely the best way to sample high quality, "green" skin care. It has great options. It's affordable. And the products are amazing - I would have never found most of these brands without the box!

Also , the June box came with ridiculously expensive hand cream. Which I took to work to use as I sanitize many times a day there and deserve to have nice things at the office. When paired with my Afternoon Mist (SpaRituals) nail polish - I think this is a winning combo!

*And we win! I had random person at the grocery store tell me I have flawless skin.

Let's have a minute for straight talk on good skincare and time. I buy good products. (I also eat decent food and stay out of the sun.) And I spend 3-5 minutes morning and night caring for my face and neck. I'm worth 6-10 minutes a day. Aren't you?

Indulgence - Also I purchased a few soaps from my favorite local soap maker. (Picture left of the one I opened this month. ) Plus I found a new one who makes the cutest gift bags at the farmer's market! (Mine did not photograph well but here's a link to her Etsy.)

Things 13 Said: 
(Eating almonds) Don't these have cyanide in them?
Me: No. But you are correct that cyanide smells like bitter almonds.
Her: What food has cyanide?
Me: Apple seeds and cherry pits in minute quantities. That's why we don't eat them. 
(This has me reconsidering my perfumes with a bitter almond scent....)

In other news, her new BFF's name is Buck. (Horse camp.)

Random: Founder's Mas Agave is the perfect summertime beer. Hands down. (Note to self - buy as much as you can when it comes out in early May.)

And...the dog tore his ACL (technically CCL, because - canine.) Expensive surgery to fix! And hey - did you know they do post-surgery physical therapy on dogs? Yep, it's a thing - and I'm learning how to do it! (Next career???)

Take-away: If you don't value yourself, it will be hard to accept that others value you. Learn to value you - and you'll be surprised what else you find along the way.


Original musings posts you may enjoy:



All photos by moi! And you can tell...

*Juice Beauty is a staple in my beauty cabinet. I stray, I try other things - but it's my favorite "foundation" (I used the CC Cream) and great skin care. If you like Juice Beauty too, here is a link. I do get a small commission (at no cost to you) when you use these links which helps support this blog.

Skin Care by Juice Beauty



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Sunday, May 31, 2020

May Musings - 2020

Didn't the May mini re-open feel great? We are all a bit cautious but being able to be out again (even if just a bit) was good! I've been doing Saturday walks with tea and a friend. We had a take-out dinner on a blanket overlooking the lake. Small steps.

Reading (Books):  I gifted a local Little Free Library with a heaping handful of books which was a high point of my month! (See the red arrow for the donated set.)


Current book count: 59 for the year. 
And I read a ridiculous amount this month. Seriously. R-I-D-I-C-U-L-O-U-S.
- You Are a BadAss by Jen Sincero
- Double Down on Demons by Annabel Chase (Kindle Unlimited)
- The Messengers by Lindsay Joelle (Audible)
- Burying the Honeysuckle Girls by Emily Carpenter (Kindle Unlimited)
- The New Rules of Money by Rick Edelman (Little Free Library find). Seriously out of date.
- Once Bitten  and Wicked Deal, a new series by Linsey Hall (Kindle Unlimited)
- Books 1 and 2 of The Jezebel Files by Deborah Wilde, which was the best thing I've read in some time.  (Kindle Unlimited)
- Fangs & Fiction (part of the Library Witch Mysteries) by Elle Adams (Kindle Unlimited)
- High Stakes and Vampires (Pandora's Pride 2) by Annabel Chase (Kindle Unlimited) 
- Suddenly Psychic and Semi-Psychic Life from Elizabeth Hunter's Glimmer Lake series (Kindle Unlimited) 
- Knights Magica  by B.R. Kingsolver (finale? of the Rosie O'Grady's Paranormal Bar and Grill series) (Kindle Unlimited)
- All 4 of the Stolen Magic series by Jayne Hawke. (Which, after reading the first book of her Hidden Magic series is apparently a total repeat. And explains the name mix up in book 3 of Stolen Magic.) (Kindle Unlimited) 

Don't judge me. There was a holiday weekend and I was recuperating from putting in the garden, which required laying quietly and reading while the aspirin did its thing for the back and knee pain. Also, Kindle Unlimited is amazing!


Cooking: OMG, so I cooked so much at the beginning of the month that I killed the oven! (I'm still pandemic cooking.) I was making a double batch of breakfast casserole (tater tots, eggs, green peppers, jalapeƱo and cheese) and the oven just did not heat up! That became a take-and-bake for Israel instead of me bringing it to her. Now I'm Stove-top Sally - peirogies, tortellini, black bean tacos, various macaroni salads, stirfries.

Also I apparently now have batch cook days when I make like 2-4 meals so we don't have to think about it every day. (I still want a personal chef. #LifeGoals )

Garden: I put in everything. Ghost peppers. Okra. Cherry tomatoes. Carolina reapers. Strawberries. Early Girl tomatoes. Lettuce. More broccoli. Serrano peppers. Red peppers like crushed flakes. Yellow tomatoes. Thai basil. Purple basil. Thyme.

Some things came back as planned- the oregano, the tarragon, strawberries, mint. And that ginormous fennel. (I'm the only one who likes it and I never eat quite enough.

Gratitude: Saturday chai latte and a walk. 
Aquatic cats. Cute face masks. Fun perfume. Dried strawberries. Hummingbirds at the window sipping flowers while Kali kitten watches. Garden shopping with Israel.* The view of my newly weeded garden - very over-planted with marigolds due to BAD BUNNIES who at the cold garden (but are still cute). Summer return of the farmer's market.

Listening:  Center Yourself sleep meditation. (So much).  A little bit to podcasts (Hello 7, Redefining Wealth, Planet Money, Rich Coach Club).  A LOT of Cocktails and Crooners. 

Watching: Killed off Designated Survivor, Season 3. (Hannah Wells deserved better.) The Good Witch, Season 5. And Martha Tinsdale is underrated. Claws, Season 3. Those girls wear a lot of pattern on pattern. I started, belatedly, with Ozark.  Lots of popular shows about laundering drug money - Claws, Good Girls, Ozark. How popular is this as a line of work?? 


Also, so much Shark Tank. This is our new thing - Guy and I  watch old episodes and Google what happened to them.

Wearing (Perfume & Skin Care):



Perfume

Let's break it down between Sucreabeille and Imaginary Authors. Because I wore a lot of perfume this month.

Sucreabeille - I wore each just a few days rather than finish things off. 
We Ride at Dawn. Scent notes: Hot black tea with honey and coffee absolute to rise early, cardamom vanilla for comfort, bitter almonds for the lost, a shot of whiskey for strength. I got bitter almond with a whisper of whiskey off this right off the bat. About 5 hours in the cardamon settled in with the whiskey and almond for the ride. 8 hours sillage, easy.
The Mountain. Scent notes: amber, a pint of oatmeal stout, pure golden honey. The biggest feeling I got off this was warmth - like a morning hearth. And then oatmeal. So much oatmeal. I ended up mixing this for a more rounded profile.
Toxic Masculinity Ruins the Party Again - Scent notes: A delightfully feminine blend of lavender, vanilla, honey nectar, and a light floral aldehyde. This is a very powdery, floral that dries down even more powdery. Nice sillage.
Out West - This had been my sleep perfume but with the start of summer, I feel like it's a little heavy and have started mixing it with other scents. Scent notes: Gourmand swirl of honeyed chocolate with a smokey undertone of palo santo. Sandalwood, black musk, coumarin and a drop of camphor create a mysterious, dark undercurrent. It used to be the camphor hits first and I'd have a "WHAT" moment because it's got a medicinal scent. But it fades to warmth of the honeyed chocolate and sandalwood as the lingering dusky scent. (January description). Now, either the scent has shifted or my perception has. I get the honeyed chocolate and black musk right off with a later bloom of sandalwood and light touch of the musk.
I Come From a Long Line of Terrifying Women - Scent notes: rosewood, whiskey, and amber, gunpowder, guiacwood, and tobacco absolute. Which just smells tobacco on me with some amber. I like it. Okay sillage. 3-5 hours. 
- GlitterTrashScent Notes: Watermelon Blow-Pops, baby powder, fistfulls of sticky white cake, last night's champagne and coconut cream. I decided THIS was my last week of May perfume after the long holiday weekend. Something in it - the baby powder? - reminds me of Toxic Masculinity. Right off, I got baby powder, coconut cream and the sticky white cake - also it is very possible there is glitter in this as my skin shimmered a bit. Sillage is light, about 3 hours. 


Imaginary Authors
- Whispered Myths - Scent notes: Natural Cambodian Oud, Cantaloupe, Cedarwood, Muskdana, Honey, Salvaged Shipwreck. I loved this scent! And oddly, everyone said it smelled floral on me. (Salvaged Shipwreck perhaps is a wreath of flowers?) And it easily lasted more than 7 hours.
- Memoirs of a Trespasser  - Scent notes: Madagascar Vanilla, GiaiacwoodMyrrh, Benzoin Resin, Ambrette Seeds, Oak Barrels. I get a lot of Vanilla and Ambrette seed with a touch of oak barrels. It almost smells like vanilla root beer. 
- Yesterday Haze - Scent notes: Fig, Iris, Cream, Tonka, Tree Bark, Walnut Bitters, Orchard Dust. Iris is not a strong scent. And this drifted off inside of a half hour to a vaguely creamy scent dusted with fig and iris. This became my second sleep perfume (basically for hot nights I felt this was a better option.) 
- Sundrunk - Scent notes: Neroli, Rhubarb, Honeysuckle, Rose Water, Orange Zest, First Kiss. With summer officially kicked off by Memorial Day, this seemed like the best way to celebrate - citrus and summer in a bottle.  This became my third sleep perfume - great for a night of summer dreams.
(If you are keeping score - I'd buy Every Storm a Serenade and Whispered Myths. Those deserve a longer wearing.) 

All Mixed Up
I did a weird thing. I mixed two brands. A City on Fire. Notes: Cade oil, Spikenard, Cardamon, Clearwood, Dark Berries, Labdanum, Burnt Match. Plus Out West - . Scent notes: Gourmand swirl of honeyed chocolate with a smokey undertone of palo santo. Sandalwood, black musk, coumarin and a drop of camphor create a mysterious, dark undercurrent. I made "Los Angeles" - because this feels like, name-wise, what Los Angeles would be.

I also mixed Sucreabeille scents as well - The Mountain with Out West (code name: Sierra Nevada) because I felt like The Mountain needed a non-breakfest breaker scent.




Skincare

I read this scandalous article about less skin care. HAHAHAHAH. No. More is MORE, and choices are great. This month just proves that because I may have tried everything in my skincare kit.

Day time - I started the month alternating between 1) the Lepaar Luminous Beauty Balm/ Moisture Lock + Stress Recovery (December 2019 Boxwalla Box) until I felt like it was too hot to wear that and started on  2)  African Botanics Le Masque Hydralift Intense (October 2019 Boxwalla box) which I killed in the first 10 days.  Most of the rest of the month, I used the Sweet Briar Hydrating Nectar by Heart of Gold (August Boxwalla find) topped with the African Botanics's Fleur d'Afrique Oil with a little Earthwise Farizad's Veil mix-in sun protector.  Still trying to beat back those eye creases with the 100% Pure's Super Fruit Oil Nourishing Eye Cream. 


Night time -  I just basically threw the kitchen sink at my night-time skincare this month.  You name something in my "arsenal" and I used it!  After cleansing with my favorite 100% Pure Blood Orange Cleansing Balm and DHC Face Wash (or a couple of fancy nights of Odacite face wash), and then gently daubing on 100% Pure night eye cream - I went crazy with options.  At the beginning of the month, I alternated between 1) the African Botanics Le Masque Hydralift Intense (October 2019 Boxwalla box) all over plus African Botanics's Fleur d'Afrique Oil  until I ran the Masque out or 2) the Lepaar Balm. 3) I did stray  a few nights and try Votary Super Seed Nutrient Cream (February 2020 Boxwalla box). The Super Seed cream is very emollient and just sinks into the skin.) And that became my go-to for the second half of the month. Love how this Super Seed just sinks into the skin and feels so nourishing. 4) A couple of nights, I tried the April Boxwalla - Monastery. the XX Rose Glycolic Gel is a great light exfoliator when topped by the Aloe Hyaluronic Moisture Boost. 5) A couple of nights I also threw the Sweet Briar Hydrating Nectar from August Boxwalla Box on top. I love the Heart of Gold products! 6) A couple of nights - hot nights - I put on nothing but the eye cream because my skin felt smothered.  7) A few days I also put on a bit of Bloom Facial Oil from Generation Bee on my neck and forehead but left everything else blank. 


Random: I may like gummy vitamins too much.

Our basement flooded with the big May rain. Days of dehumidifying and clean up. And a stupid Queen of Heaven tree is killing off my lilacs!  (Guy is unconcerned as he wants to remove things and create a porch - for the last 4 years.)

Speaking of lilac, my new favorite candle has a scent like neon Lilac! WickedPop Candle Company's Do You Suppose She's A Wildflower. Gorgeous! 

Take-away: Sometimes you have to put yourself first. Self-care. Time alone. Rest. Remember, that's okay.

*Israel, age 22. Oldest. Has her own home and garden.


Original musings posts you may enjoy:



All photos by moi! And you can tell...

*Juice Beauty is a staple in my beauty cabinet. I stray, I try other things - but it's my favorite "foundation" (I used the CC Cream) and great skin care. If you like Juice Beauty too, here is a link. I do get a small commission (at no cost to you) when you use these links which helps support this blog.

Skin Care by Juice Beauty



Follow my blog with Bloglovin  - A new way to follow!

Friday, May 1, 2020

April Musings - 2020

The world is a different place for many of us now than it was in early March. And we are doing the best we can. Be kind to each other. Help if you can. Find the simple joys.

For me, this is also my birthday month! This was my favorite card.

Reading (Books): I did a bit of stress reading which meant I made out like a bloody bandit on Kindle Unlimited! (And I'm up to 39 books for the year)
- Blue Goldfish: Using Technology, Data and Analytics to Drive both Profits and Prophets by Stan Phelps and Evan Carroll (hard copy)
- Secrets and Alchemy by Linsey Hall
- Whisper of the Moon Moth by Lindsay Jayne Ashford
- Midlife Fairy Hunter by Shannon Mayer
- Talk Triggers by Jay Baer (hard copy)
- The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (hard copy)
- Reset Your Mindset by Nicole Eckdahl
- Number 4 in Rosie O'Grady's Paranormal Bar and Grill, Well of Magic by B.R. Kingsolver
- The last two of CN Crawford's Court of the Sea Fae Trilogy, Fallen King  and Rising Queen 
- The last two of an Amy Boyles Southern Belles and Spells Matchmaker Mysteries, Magical Dames and Dating Games + Some Pig and A Mummy Dig 
- All 3 of the Newborn Pixie Cozy Mystery Books by Willow Mason

Cooking: I've made all the things. I have made things I haven't even made in a million years - chicken salad, tuna fish casserole, chicken with roasted garlic and tomatoes, pasta with asparagus and mushrooms, cornbread-topped chicken pot pie, Greek chickpea and rice salad. Chocolate Chess pie. Something about this lock-down situation has made me crave comfort food. (Reminder - I was a hard-core vegetarian for nearly 30 years. I still only rarely eat meat.)


Actually, I'm realizing I haven't shared the Greek chickpea and rice salad recipe. It's super easy and very delicious. 
- 1 can of chickpeas (15 oz) rinsed and drained
- 1 red or yellow pepper, diced
- 1 small red onion or an handful of spring onions
- Make a rice according to package (I like brown rice - 1 cup dried rice/2.25 cups of water)
- Good quality Greek (not Italian) dressing
- Red wine vinegar
- Oregano, salt and pepper

Cook rice. Dice onions and splash with red wine vinegar. Add diced pepper and the chickpeas. Add warm cooked rice and 1/2 bottle of Greek dressing to start. 1 - 2 tablespoons of oregano, a dash or salt and pepper. Mix. You may choose to add more of the dressing - just do it slowly so it doesn't get get sloppy wet. The rice will hold a good bit of dressing but there are limits.

This salad can be served warm or cold. On its own. Over a bed of lettuce or beside a bed of chicken. It will deepen in flavor over the first few hours. I like to make it in the morning for an afternoon event. It's a great summer salad because it is heat resistant and keeps for several days in the fridge.

Gratitude: Old red barns with giant yellow forsythia bushes in the corner as blue jays swoop across the sky - like all the primary crayons brought to life on a country road. To do lists to keep things simple. Good dogs. Cats who think they are dogs. Lawn bunnies - even when they eat my freaking broccoli plants! Garden centers. Flowering spring trees.

Listening: Classical channel on Apple music. Cocktails and Crooners channel on Apple Music. Nikki Rausch the Sales Maven podcast. NPR How I Built This.

Watching: Quantico seasons 2 & 3. Killed it and man, season 3 sucked. There is a reason it was short. I swear they hired all new writers who didn't know the backstory. The only good take-away is how Shelby can do damn near anything. Good role modeling. Designated Survivor Season 3.


Wearing (Perfume & Skin Care):



Perfume

Let's break it down between Sucreabeille and Imaginary Authors. (And people, I have so much perfume that I now have sleep perfume.)


Sucreabeille was a lot like last month but I killed off the first 3 on this list.
Here's the thing, F*ck Everyone! - Scent notes: Bourbon, Rich chocolate, Dark amber, touch of dirt - This one opens on the bourbon and the chocolate is lighter than some of the others in the line. Sillage is good. It will last all day.
Irish Cream - Scent notes: Irish cream, salted caramel, espresso. Decided last month that this is more of a beer perfume than red wine. The sillage is decent, 8-10 hours.
 Rictus - Scent notes: Funeral wreath of white lilies and black orchids sprinkled with a dusting of graveyard dirt. A somber wake feast of dark chocolate drenched raspberries and a shot of dark rum. - I get straight up rum and chocolate off this. After about 8 hours, I get a touch of lily. This lasts forever - like 16 hours or more on me.
- Out West - Scent notes: Gourmand swirl of honeyed chocolate with a smokey undertone of palo santo. Sandalwood, black musk, coumarin and a drop of camphor create a mysterious, dark undercurrent. It used to be the camphor hits first and I'd have a "WHAT" moment because it's got a medicinal scent. But it fades to warmth of the honeyed chocolate and sandalwood as the lingering dusky scent. (January description). Now, either the scent has shifted or my perception has. I get the honeyed chocolate and black musk right off with a later bloom of sandalwood and light touch of the musk.
We Ride at Dawn. Scent notes: Hot black tea with honey and coffee absolute to rise early, cardamom vanilla for comfort, bitter almonds for the lost, a shot of whiskey for strength. I got bitter almond with a whisper of whiskey off this right off the bat. About 5 hours in the cardamon settled in with the whiskey and almond for the ride. 8 hours sillage, easy.
- The Mountain. Scent notes: amber, a pint of oatmeal stout, pure golden honey. The biggest feeling I got off this was warmth - like a morning hearth. And then oatmeal. So much oatmeal. I ended up mixing this with a OutWest for a more rounded profile.
Toxic Masculinity Ruins the Party Again - Scent notes: A delightfully feminine blend of lavender, vanilla, honey nectar, and a light floral aldehyde. This is a very powdery, floral that dries down even more powdery. Nice sillage.
- I Come From a Long Line of Terrifying Women - Scent notes: rosewood, whiskey, and amber, gunpowder, guiacwood, and tobacco absolute. Which just smells tobacco on me with some amber. I like it. Okay sillage. 3-5 hours. 


Imaginary Authors
Memoirs of a Trespasser - Scent notes: Madagascar Vanilla, Guaiacwood, Myrrh, Benzoin Resin, Ambrette Seeds, Oak Barrels. The benzoin in this line is the first thing that always hits me. After that, it was the myrrh and the amberette seeds. It settled down to a vanilla with guaiacwood.  I got about 3 hours of sillage off it with a lingering hint at 5 hours. 



Skincare

Day time - Oh, time to finish things out! The Mad Hippie's Vitamin C Serum. (Definite re-purchase). I won't be buying the FlowerSpice Soothe and Repair Daily Moisturizer again. It was fine but I noticed my skin doesn't glow with it. My skin does glow with the Lepaar Luminous Beauty Balm/ Moisture Lock + Stress Recovery (December 2019 Boxwalla Box). All my favorite products make my skin glow! Still trying to keep the eye creases at bay with the 100% Pure's Super Fruit Oil Nourishing Eye Cream. 


Night time - Nearly the same as last month, after cleansing with my favorite 100% Pure Blood Orange Cleansing Balm and DHC Face Wash, and then gently daubing on 100% Pure night eye cream, The change is in what comes next. I've been alternating between 1) the African Botanics Le Masque Hydralift Intense (October 2019 Boxwalla box) all over plus African Botanics's Fleur d'Afrique Oil or 2) the Lepaar Balm. (I did stray 2 nights and try Votary Super Seed Nutrient Cream (February 2020 Boxwalla box). The Super Seed cream is very emollient and just sinks into the skin. Can't wait to use it more often!)

Things 13 Says: I was describing something difficult for most people, drawing hands. Her answer was "They weren't that hard for me. I just looked at my hands and was like 'I'mma draw this'." And that, my friends, is why she will end up a life coach. Because how often do we let the drama in our heads and all the self-imposed restrictions stop or limit us? We should just DO things!

Random: Dyeing my own hair is not one of my strong suits, and I really miss pedicures. I also had to bathe the dog myself and I'm out of practice. Also it was very weird for the kidlets to be gone for a whole month.

Who else has a list of things they have bought due to Shark Tank? Brazi balls. The Fit Board. Neuro gum.  It's a whole new level of "As Seen on TV"!

Take-away: It may be true that everyone you meet is fighting a war you can not see and you don't know what their struggles are. But no one says you have to be their target practice!


PS - Need a creative spark revived? Going crazy during Covid and wanting to journal?  This FREE ebook is for you. 2 journal prompts a day. 1 great quote per day + 1  gorgeous image. 




Original musings posts you may enjoy:



All photos by moi! And you can tell...

*Juice Beauty is a staple in my beauty cabinet. I stray, I try other things - but it's my favorite "foundation" (I used the CC Cream) and great skin care. If you like Juice Beauty too, here is a link. I do get a small commission (at no cost to you) when you use these links which helps support this blog.

Skin Care by Juice Beauty



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