Wednesday, December 31, 2008

HEADING OUT FOR A MUCH NEEDED VACATION

The family and I are headed out of town for a 14 day vacation. We will be visiting the island of Oahu. We are very much looking forward to it. The last couple times we visited the island I had intended to visit the THE SOAP FACTORY. A family set up shop in an old historic sugar mill and have a very successful soapmaking business on the island. I've passed by but never stopped for a tour and this year I do not intend to miss it. I have lots of goodies in mind that I'd like to buy and hopefully they will let me take pictures.

Years ago, while vacationing, I asked a native Hawaiian woman why all the ladies on the island had such beautiful skin, she told me that it was customary for mothers to bathe their babies in kukui nut oil and that it was continually used throughout their lives and excellent to use after being out in the sun because it prevented aging. After asking 1000 questions about kukui I was eventually invited to visit the Oils of Aloha location. I had an address and a phone number but couldn't manage to find it. This year I'd also like to include them in some of my site seeing. I know they don't allow for the purchase of Kukui oil directly but their product is plentiful all over the island. I can honestly say this, I've tried kukui nut oil from several soap supply companies and the oil sold by Oils of Aloha is by far the BEST.

Hawaii is a dream for anyone who makes their own body products because there are natural soaps, lotions, perfumes, etc... EVERYWHERE. Last time I was there I needed a separate suitcase for all that I brought back. LOL! I'm sure I'll have lots of products to talk about when I get home and I'm also planning on doing my first BLOG GIVEAWAY :)

Aloha &
Hau`oli makahiki hou

Saturday, December 27, 2008

MY NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS

1. I promise not to wake up before 11 am.
2. I promise not to work out more than 1x a week.
3. I promise not to avoid chocolate.
4. I promise not to skip a snickers cooler each day from caribou.
5. I promise only to walk the dog if she barks uncontrollably and whines a little.
6. I promise to be extra late dropping my kids at school so I can sleep later.
7. I promise to spend extra money on soapmaking supplies and cardmaking supplies.
8. I promise not to give my husband too much alone time.
9. I promise to eat out and not cook at least 4x's a week.
10. I promise to give my kids unhealthy food daily.
11. I promise to do laundry only once a month
12. I promise to clean house every six months.
13. I promise not to read or write too much.
14. I promise not to help my kids with homework.
15. I promise not to have long talks with my children when they have inquisitive questions about life.

Now at least if I break one of these I won't feel guilty :)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

RECENT UPDATE ON PHTHALATES & MORE!!

The Environmental Working Group "Skin Deep" Cosmetic Safety has released a new report on the use of phthalates, plus a safe cosmetics party kit.

CLICK HERE TO READ ARTICLE This is a pdf so you will need ADOBE to read

CLICK HERE FOR HOUSE PARTY INFO
CLICK HERE FOR PARTY KIT

Monday, December 8, 2008



The soap swap has been postponed until after the holidays. If you would like to participate please check out the details here > CLICK HERE

Thursday, November 13, 2008

WHAT MAKES A PRODUCT SELL?

I've asked this question before but have been thinking more about it lately. What do you think makes a product sell? Fragrance, Texture, Packaging? I would guess most handmade soap or other body product business people would say all of it matters but what I've been hearing from people I've spoken to about this, most people are sold on ONE things. Sometimes it is packaging that first attracts them, some don't even pass up an opportunity to buy a product, even if it smells badly, if the packaging is great.

Myself, I use to be sold completely by fragrance. I would buy something I certainly did't need as long as it had the scent of coconuts. LOL! Anything tropical, I would buy it. I've heard others tell me the same thing.

So, out of curiousity, I've added a poll to my blog and would like visitors to answer, if you could only use one item to sell your product, which do you think would attract the most buyers? I know, I know, not all people are sold by fragrance or packaging alone, often times it is the combination of things, but I'm trying to see what you think makes a product the strongest.

The poll is on the top right of this blog. Please let me know what you think. If you want to add remarks, post away :)

Even if you don't make anything, please join in on the poll.

(Sorry about my incoherent blabber, I can't write or think today)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

CHECK OUT THE SOAP

We had another great soap swap in the fall. Yessssssss I'm behind on posting the picture. I kept my lovely little soaps together and they waited Oh So Patiently for me to take their picture for the blog.

Let me say this again, I suck at taking picture. Yes S.U.C.K.

I try and I try, I even made my own little light box, and it just doesn't work. So, I give up. I'll just take the darn pictures and post them... there is no hope for me.

The soaps are wonderful though, they are made by the best soapmakers around.



If you want to see more of these lovely soaps and other great handmade items visit the blogs of the following soap swap participants. They created the lovely items above and create beautiful handmade products daily.

AMBER from Ambers Ambry

TRISHA at Suds to Love

HEIDI at Sopaholics Anonymous

ELIZABETH at Gassner Custom Soaps

NATALIE at Koinonia Community

SHERRIE at Birchbark Soap

MICHELE at Soapy Elephant

Friday, October 31, 2008

SOMEONE MADE ME SMILE TODAY

I love when I read blogs that make me smile. This morning I was going through my list of blogging buddies and came across Sheabutter Cottage. Akua was so wonderful as to award me with the "friendship" award. My heart melted and I smiled. Can't ask for more than that.

I love the blogging community more than anyone could possibly know. Not everyone knows how great this world of bloggers can be. I've met people from all over the world, not only are they blogging but they are also making soap! Males and females alike. We share little bits of our lives with one another, give encouragement and support, and quite possibly will never meet face to face. As unusual as that all seems, it is really very wonderful in so many ways. Great friends I call them all, if only over the internet :)

HERE IS MY FRIENDSHIP AWARD FROM AKUA WOOD


I swiped this from Akua's blog since she so articulated the rules of this award so well (I hope this is ok Akua).

The rules for acceptance of the award are as follows: Pick 8 blogs that you consider deserving of this award based on their creativity, design, interesting material and also for contributing to the blogging community, no matter what language. Congratulations and please pass the award to others who are deserving. Share the friendship........x

Here are my 8:

Soap With Balls

Oats with Honey

Under the Willow

Dreaming of Ink with Me

The Diane Dairies

Suds to Love

Moosekrazy Moosages

Koinonia Community

Ambers Ambry

Birch Bark Soap

Neasoapworks

Soapaholics Anonymous

Gassner Custom Soaps

The Soap Bar

Bubbly Nature (just starting out in the blogging world, but her blog is fun and enjoyable and she is my new blogging buddy)

I know I listed more than 8 but I couldn't help myself.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

WINTER SOAP SWAP

Some of the members over at the SOAPMAKERS CORNER are having a holiday soap swap. The deadline to sign up is November 29, soaps will be swapped out on December 10. If you are interested in learning more of the details just follow this link ---> HERE

Any and all soapers are welcome. CP, HP, M&P. We hope you join us.

Friday, October 10, 2008

OBAMA IS AMERICAN!!!

I wasn't going to post anything on politics on any of my blogs but since this last Republican rally was in my state I felt I had to speak out.

I want the world to know that the 2,000 or so people that showed up for the Republican rally in Lakeville, Minnesota are not a good representation of my state. Just the number of participants says all it needs to say. There are about 5,000,000.00 people living in MN and only 2,000 showed up to the rally. The 2,000 were most likely people who live in Lakeville or surrounding communities. Unfortunately I happen to live in one of those communities (very racist they are I've been learning through my own experiences here).

MSNBC is describing the people who showed up at the rally as "crazy" and "racists." Clearly, they are! But they are not a good representation of the rest of the people in my state.

Some of the chants that came from todays rally were things like "Obama is an Arab" , "Obama is a terrorist." None of which is true. Any educated person would know that (and BTW/even if he were an Arab, that doesn't mean he still isn't a good person). Apparently in another state at one of the Republican rally's a person yelled out "Bomb Obama." Unbelievable! I feel I've been forced back and time and I'm living through the chaos of the racist 50's and early 60's.

People at the rally talked of "fear" and "anger" when speaking of Obama. What I fear are the crazies like those that attended the rally. Those are the people we should all be afraid of, those are the people that assassinate presidential candidates.

McCain did his best to distance himself from the craziness at the rally. He defended Obama several times saying "he is a good family man." Some people even shouted "kill him" and McCain tried to settle them down only to be booed. NICE NICE NICE SUPPORTERS!

Shame on McCain and his group for contributing to this insanity by trying to link Obama to terrorism. This is the backlash for smear campaigns. I hope politicians learn a lesson from this.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

NEVER A DULL MOMENT

Sorry I have not blogged lately. I'm seriously losing touch with the blog community. I try really hard to get online and whip as fast as possible through blogs and the couple forums I frequent but lately there just isn't enough time in a day.

My sister is profoundly disabled and she lived with my mother 20+ years with 24/7 nursing and my mother as guardian. When mom passed away I took on the responsibility of guardian, ocassional caregiver, and staff manager. I've wanted to maintain this small business of mine, even signed up to do card classes and sell Stampin Up products, but I've seriously got in over my head.

My sister is my #1 priority and lately there have been issues upon issues, meetings upon meetings. It just gets more interesting by the moment. So it seems the whole crafting for the public is going to have to wait. As it is, my hubby left his job to help me juggle the responsibility of raising 3 girls, maintaining my house and my sisters house, plus give me the hours I need to work with staff and other issues.

At least I can still craft for myself. I love my soap and I love my cards. It is just a relief to say it out loud, that I'm only crafting for me and not someone else for a while. I don't have the pressure to have something done by a specific time that I know I'll never get around to.

I hope all my blogging pals are still out there :( That I cannot live without :)

Saturday, August 2, 2008

A BLOG AWARD!

I recieved this wonderful blog award from my friend Carrie~gigi over at MUD PUDDLE GIRL. Carrie and I have known each other through the blogging world for quite a while now. She is a sweet, lovely, and kind person and I'm really happy to have met her. It is joy, knowing each of my blogging friends and I feel honored that Carrie gave me this award.



Rules: link to the person who gave you this award and pass the award on to others you want to share it with.

I return this award to Carrie, and also include those that Carrie picked: Heidi, Trisha, Elizabeth, Heather & Joanna :)

Here are few more I'd like to add:

Tracey at NEA's SOAPWORKS

Cindy at DREAMING OF INK WITH ME

Karie at 1 CRAFTY GAL

Amber at AMBERSAMBRY

WHATS UP WITH THE SANDLEWOOD??

I made a batch of soap using sandlewood powder for color yesterday. Now, I picked up what was labelled as red sandlewood at a store here in Minneapolis. I didn't know what properties it would bring to my soap, if any, so I did some research and learned that it produces a nice purple color. Well, something isn't right. Looks like sandlewood powder, smells like sandlewood powder, but this is what color it is in my soap:



Does anyone have a clue as to why I didn't get purple?? :(

NO MORE SOAP SUPPLIES

Time to spend money on a new camera. I seriously can't take it anymore. Here is the latest: Strawberry scented soap with strawberry seeds. For the last 4 batches of soap I've used the Heat Transfer Method of soapmaking but........ something is different. I can't put my finger on what it is but something is not quite the same. I like this method because it cuts the soaping time in half but even though I'm using the same base recipe, something about the soap is not the same. I've decided for now to go back to my "old" way of making soap unless I'm ever in a hurry and need to cut soaping time. Anyone else notice the difference in their soaps with the two methods? (when I say two methods I mean the regular old method of matching temps).

Here is the strawberry. Sorry the picture isn't the best :(

Thursday, July 31, 2008

SOAPMAKING DAY

Today was soapmaking day again for Donna and I. We've committed ourselves to a couple craft shows this fall so it is time to experiment with what types of soap we want to create. This was my first experience with rose clay. What were the results? Well, I didn't really like the way it looked when it was poured into the mold, neither did Donna. Brick red isn't the prettiest of colors. So to top off the ugly brick red soap we poured in an essential oil blend that was just as ugly. LOL! Stinky scent for ugly soap. LOL! It will be interesting to oncover it tomorrow.

Here is Donna hard at work:

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

SOAP GOODIES FROM E. GASSNER

I received some goodies from Elizabeth over at GASSNER CUSTOM SOAPS and what a big surprise it was. I was only expecting a few fragrance oils but I found so much more in the box. She sent the cutest little soap with a rubber ducky embedded in it for my baby girl. The baby immediately knew it was for her, grabbed it and ran. She tried to eat the duck so I had to take it away until bath time. LOL!! She also sent my two older girls the cutest M&P kit. Of course, they ripped into those immediately and made their cute little soaps (I love the idea Elizabeth and so did the kids, thank you so much!!). I received some of her body frosting, and I'm looking forward to trying it out, along with two great lip balms that I'm using already.

Please check out Elizabeth's blog over at GASSNER CUSTOM SOAPS BLOGSPOT, she makes the cutest soaps, plus quite a few other items as well. She also has her own ETSY SHOP plus a WEBSITE and she's updating all the time with new products, so don't miss out on the goodies!

Here are a couple pictures from my gift box:

My Middy with her fish soap (she made it all on her own with one of Elizabeth's kits)



Some of my goodies. I'm luvin the lip balm (I'm a lipbalm-aholic. LOL!)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'VE BEEN TAGGED!

I was tagged by Amber over at AMBERS AMBRY BLOG

(copied from egassner - it made it so much easier than retyping, I hope that was ok Elizabeth??)

These are the rules:

1) Link to the person who tagged you
2) Post the rules on your blog (this is what you are now reading)
3) Write 6 random things about yourself (see below)
4) Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them (This is only a game)
5) Let each person know they have been tagged and leave a comment on their blog
6) Let the tagger know when your entry is up

1. I like catching frogs with my kids
2. Mosquitos don't like me, so I rarely get bitten, if ever.
3. I only like black nail polish
4. I want to be a beekeeper (and I will someday)
5. When I eat sunflower seeds I eat the shell too, I don't have the energy to crack them open and take the seed out. LOL!!
6. I'm terrified to walk out on frozen water. No one can make me do it.

I'll hold off on tagging others because I just noticed a tag that I missed by someone I was just about tag. *zooming off to finish that one.

Monday, July 28, 2008

WHAT HAPPENED TO THE SOAP SWAP??

Umm.... I got very behind in my blogging and although I had good intentions I kept getting further and further behind. Not to mention my goofy camera flaked on me. I recently borrowed a camera for the sole purpose of taking a picture of the soaps I received in a swap we had going on the original forum. Warning: I'm not the greatest photographer, but here are the fantasic soaps I received. I love each and everyone of them and I kept them all together in my room and they made it smell beautiful. Each one is unique and wonderful. I love seeing the creative side of soapers in their bars of soap. The BEST PART IS that I get to use them now. I've been as patient as I possibly could be and now it is bath time (I didn't wait 4 months to shower, I just waited that long to use the soaps. LOL!!)

HERE THEY ARE:



If you want to find more of these fabulous soaps and learn more about their makers you can find the artisans at the following locations:

CARRIE

ELIZABETH G.

SHERRIE

JOANNA

NATALIE

DENISE

HEIDI

Saturday, July 26, 2008

JOURNAL YOUR SOAPING ADVENTURES

A while back I started keeping track of my soaping ventures in my little handmade soapmaking journal. I thought I'd upload the journal here for anyone who would like to keep track of their recipes but hasn't gotten around to creating their own. Just click on the link below and it will take you to a the download. If you have any trouble, just let me know, I can always email it to you :)

CLICK HERE

Saturday, July 19, 2008

HANDMADE SOAP BETTER THAN DETERGENT BARS?

First let me say this: one reason I like making soap is because I can control what I put into it, therefore, control what goes on my body. Before I ever made soap I would buy soap from a local soapmaker (for the same reasons), I liked knowing what the ingredients were and that it was natural.

Today when I was at the farmer's market looking at some of the stands of local soap sellers a thought came to mind. When you are telling people about soap it often times is natural to tell them why handmade soap is better than commercial made soap (or I should say detergent). But in all honesty, can we tell people that handmade soap is better than detergent bars if our soaps contain frangrance oils?? We dont' know what goes into the creation of a fragrance oil because of the "trade secret" law. Often times what is in a fragrance oil isn't always safe for our bodies.

Fragrance oils are a mixture of aroma chemicals. The mix can either be part artificial and part synthetic, or all synthetic.

phthalates are often used in synthetic fragrances and phthalates are hormone mimic's. The FDA doesn't regulate the use of phthalates in cosmetics.

Here is a link with some information on synthetic fragrances: CLICK HERE

Now, I'll be the first to admit that I do use FO's in my products and I also use products on myself that contain FO's. I prefer EO's but I, like many people, love scents that I cannot get in an EO. I know the "warnings" and I choose to continue using FO's.

But.... my question is this: when I'm selling my soap can I still promote it as being better for a person than detergent bars if it contains and FO? Doesn't an FO possibly carry with it the same risks as a detergent bar's chemicals carry? I also sell EO soaps and always tell customers to do a patch test before using (since we can be allergic to anything, natural or not) but since FO's are "synthetic" what is your opinion on that?

(I hope no one takes offense to this post. This is something I struggle with personally and would just like advice/opinions on, nothing more than that).

Monday, July 14, 2008

NEW SWAP & NEW FORUM!



The Soap Forum has moved and it has changed names. It is no longer the "pixie lee soap forum" - it is now called "soapmakers corner." You can find the new forum at SOAPMAKERS CORNER.

We are also having another soap swap. This time around there isn't going to be a theme but a certain soaping technique will be used. If you are interested, pop on over to the soap forum and sign up, we'd love to have you join us. This swap is open to all soapers :)

You can find details on the swap here: FOR SOAP SWAP DETAILS CLICK HERE

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

CREATIVE MOMENTS TO COME

I'm happy to report, after my small trip to Florida, I'm feeling pretty darn good again and good = creative. My dear friend Donna and I will be selling at two Craft Shows this fall, I received the applications today. I'm really excited about it. I haven't felt like doing a craft show in ages so this gives me something to look forward to. In the past week I've ordered from about 4 different soap supply companies and I'm waiting patiently for all my goodies to arrive. All you soapmakers out there know what that feels like. I'll be experimenting with soaps and Donna will experiment with cards - figuring out what we like and what we'll want to sell. Fingers crossed for some "mind blowing" creations! :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

SHOPS OF MY FELLOW BLOGGERS


Hey blogging buddies, I've listed your etsy shop, website names, etc... on the right column of my blog. If I didn't list a fellow blogging buddy please let me know. I checked everyone who was listed on my favorite blogs to lurk on to see if I could find a link to your shop and may have overlooked it. If I did, please let me know.

And NEA, if you are out there, what can I do to make you open an etsy shop :)

Friday, June 27, 2008

OFF TO FLORIDA

Where? Anna Maria Island. I had never heard of it until one of my stamping friends, Sharon, told me about it. Actually, she shared a bunch of pictures on INKSTAINERS FORUM and it seemed like a perfect place to visit for the family. We'd been talking about a short trip to the beach and Sharon was so kind as to hook us up with her favorite vacation spot and now that is where we are headed. I cannot wait to walk on white sand and see the beautiful blue water. Our family is in desperate need of a vacation. Hopefully we all come back refreshed and ready for life :) and.... with a few pictures to share.

xxoo to all my blogging buddies.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

WHIPPED SHEA EXPERIMENT

Before I begin about the whipped shea first let me say this: DO NOT BUY A EXILM CASIO DIGITAL CAMERA - THEY ARE USELESS!

Ok, on with the Shea.

Joanna over at the THE SOAP BAR, owner of PRODUCT BODY sent me a sample of her whipped shea. This is the stuff I had to beat my kids off of, remember that?? Well, I've been a long time fan of shea ever since I first experienced it years ago in a Bath & Body lotion. It was the only thing that helped me get rid of the dry skin on my feet. I've been buying shea ever since and using it in various concoctions at home but had never heard of or seen a "whipped" shea product. I wanted to give it a try so I googled a few recipes online, watched a couple You Tube videos, figured I knew enough and finally decided to give it a go.

I had a pound of shea in the fridge so I dumped it into the double boiler and melted it down. I put that into a bowl and my daughter Maya added the jojoba oil (we over did it but who cares, it is just an experiment. LOL!) I blended it 2 minutes then stuck into freezer for 4 minutes and on and on and on we went. Blend + freeze + Blend + freeze, until we had a whipped cream consistency. I was excited until about 3 hours later it turned into a chunk of butter type consistency - ME NO LIKE IT!! ME ACTUALLY HATE IT!!

WHAT HAPPENED TO THE CREAMY PUDDING LIKE CONSISTENCY??? Besides that, it stinks! For all of you bloggers that I posted on your "favorite scent" polls that I loved Peppermint... forget that I said that. I hate peppermint. I don't know what happened to my sniffer (No Donna, I'm not pregnant) but I cannot stand the smell of peppermint EO anymore. Now I'm stuck with a chunky whipped shea that stinks like peppermint. LOL!! Well, no worries, my hard to please darling daughter Middy absolutely loves it. It made her want to shower (that is a miracle in itself) and rub it all over her body afterwards (see, everything happens for a reason). Now she's clean as a whistle and stinks like peppermint.

The moral of this story. I'm not sure, but I know one thing:

I am no JOANNA. If you want some seriously fantastic whipped shea then you gotta try her SHEA BUTTER (double whipped). And guess what, it isn't peppermint ;)



Saturday, May 24, 2008

TIME TO TRY A LEMON SCRUB

I hate hate hate this but I'm one of those poor unfortunate souls that suffers from malasma. For those who don't know what that is, it's the ugly brown spots that develop on certain areas of the face because of some crazy hormone dysfunction. Yup, I call it a "dysfunction." I noticed the brown spots appearing shortly after I had my first child. My sister-in-law had malasma while pregnant with her 3rd child and it faded after pregnancy with the help of a cream called "concha nacar." Sooooo, I used the darn cream and it didn't help. My skin kept getting worse, first on the upper lip, then on the cheek bones, then on the forehead. I started to notice that the dark spots even hurt when exposed to sunlight. I had some goofy dermatologist tell me it was sun damage. NOT POSSIBLE! Dorky guy, I'm not a sun worshipper. LOL! Anyway... Long story shorter - It isn't going away. I've done the research and this stuff is here to stay. I have options like Level 3 chemical peels, NOT HAPPENING TO THIS FACE, NOOO WAY! I've decided to try my own concoctions. Next step, LOTS OF LEMONS. If anyone has any tips on what can naturally lighten the skin please send them my way. I'm an experiment about to happen.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

GUESS WHAT ARRIVED ON MY DOORSTEP?

PRODUCT BODY thats what. I ordered some products from my blogging friend Joaanna over at THE SOAP BAR BLOG and I must say - if your reading this Joanna - I'm so pleased with the fact that your product arrived in world record time. That is some seriously fast shipping! I couldn't believe it when the package came to my door. I LOOOOOOOVE fast shipping!

I couldn't wait to smell it. LOL! Yes, I'm a fragrance junkie. It smells sooooo good. Joanna also sent me some samples of her other products and I'm now in love with the champagne fragrance. I plan on trying the samples this evening in shower and after shower. LOL! The cream is perfect, just what I wanted. I ordered the SHEA BUTTER INFUSED CREAM and I love how silky smooth it is. I have to keep beating my kids off so they don't use it all up (don't worry, I don't really beat them. LOL!!)

My 8 year old Middy wanted to have her picture taken with the goodies so here she is modeling for you all. Yup, there is one sample missing, that's because it is in my purse (yup, that champagne whipped shea). We all sampled it and I had to hide it from my kids.





Thank you Joanna for the lovely products!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

I MISS BLOGGING & BLOGGERS

Since the move into the new home I haven't really gotten back into the old routine. 90% of that is a really good thing but 10% is sorta sad. I miss blogging and I miss my blogging buddies. Now that we are finally settling in and actually beginning to make sense of the mess in our home I'll slowly be returning to blogging. I hope all my blogger friends are doing well and that their soaping or cardmaking ventures are going great! Hopefully I'll have some soap to share soon. Tonight I'm placing an order from Snowdrift Farm. They have a 10% sale going on until 11:59 p.m. YAHOOOOO!! Gotta get me some goodies :)

BTW/I have yet to blog about the soap swap and all the wonderful soaps I received. That will be my very next post. I have all the soaps together ready to be blogged about (except one because I used it - but I'll be mentioning how wonderful it is and I'll take a picture of the half used portion - Hee Hee!).

Sunday, March 23, 2008

ON THE MOVE!

Tonight my computer will go off and I will no longer have DSL until Thursday (if all goes well with the new company doing the install). Our closing on the new home is tomorrow and the closing for the new owners of our home is March 27. Busy week. Of course, it would have helped if I hadn't put off packing. Yup, it is the day before closing and I still haven't packed everything (plus I'm still suppose to paint parts of the basement). Why, you wonder... I wonder that too. Since my mom passed away April 2007 I've lost all my energy. I can't explain it. I received a letter from Hospice on Friday talking about the anniversary of a lost loved one and how it can take days/months/years to feel good again sometimes. Yikes, years???? I don't know what happened to me but I'm hoping to get my motivation back soon. I made soap last night and wanted to be anywhere but the soap kitchen. That was a scary feeling.

On a more positive note:



TO ALL MY BLOGGING FRIENDS - WISHING YOU A BRIGHT SPRING AND A HAPPY EASTER!!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

SO WHAT IS THIS FELT SOAP?



JERABEKS CAFE

I've been hearing a lot about felt soap and reading about it here and there. I didn't give it much thought until the other day when I was visiting a cafe in my old neighborhood. There is a bohemian family I grew up with that has a family owned cafe since 1908, that everyone in the neighborhood loves to visit. Well, recently, one of the owners decided to sell her handmade soaps. I was excited when I saw they are felt soaps so of course I had to get one. Well, I tried it out and now I'm hooked. I really like the way it felt on my skin. I was worried at first it would be scratchy or itchy but it was super soft and I love the way I don't need to use a washcloth because the felt does the job.

If anyone is interested in learning to felt I found this tutorial on YOU TUBE.
CLICK HERE!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

I DID IT!

As if being a soapmaker and selling the soap wasn't enough. I took the leap and have become a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator. I'm actually very excited about it. A friend and I have been going to other peoples stamping classes for a while now and like with soap, I love experiencing other peoples ideas and work but I really love the creative side of making cards and stamping as well. So, my friend Donna and I have decided to combine our cardmaking skills (she's a fantastic cardmaker) and all of our tools (we buy what one another doesn't have) and create some fun cardmaking classes of our own. I will still attend my host/friend Kelly's classes, because I enjoy her company and want to support her business also but I'm really going to enjoying tapping into my creative cardmaker side even more to share with other people. Please wish me luck, I'm going to need it! LOL!

Friday, February 22, 2008

WHAT A CUTIE!



I was just surfing the web tonight and I found the cutest little guy (um... or maybe girl).



These adorable pic's come from this site:

ZIAMUNSHI.COM

Another soapmakers blog. Lots of great looking soap over there :) and cute dogs too ;)

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

ALL THINGS CUPCAKE CONTEST!


Hey soapers, there is a contest going on over at ALL THINGS CUPCAKE. Annnnnd, I'm sure you all know what I'm thinking. Get your little soaping hats on and join the fun! Make sure you check out all the details on her site, it looks like it will be a fun one. The last day to submit your entry is March 2!

Here is the EXACT link because it's getting burried under all the newbie posts over there. LOL!!

CONTEST LINK

Monday, February 18, 2008

COLD PROCESSED SOAP/GLYCERIN MIX

I saw this technique in a book a while back and I thought I'd give it a try. Last week I had a small window of opportunity to make soap again so I jumped on it. LOL!!

Just a little tid bit of advice, don't JUMP ON SMALL WINDOWS OF OPPORTUNITY! LOL!!! Because I rushed to it I ended up not having everything I needed in place. Call it my "cocky soaping syndrom." I felt super confident, my head was swollen with delight. Afterall, I've been making soap for a while, why would I need to "think" about it. Well, I was wrong :(

I rushed through so quick that at the last possible minute I realized that I didn't have the fragrance that I thought I had for one batch (I was splitting one batch in two) and for the other half I had put it in the mold and realized I didn't add the fragrance at all.

OMG! I panicked. I quickly added any ol fragrance to the one batch and to the other half I grabbed the fragrance I had intended to use and just stirred it in (no measuring, not even stirring it in completely. What was I thinking?????

Of course, I ended up with a yellow soap that smells like organges and the other half, well, I'm embarrassed to report that it turned BLACK in the area where I shoved in the fragrance. *sobbing uncontrollably over here.

But, to my surprise, I've asked several people to look at my yellow colored orange smelling soap and tell me what they think is wrong with it. Not a single person could figure it out. I had to point out IT IS YELLOW AND SMELLS LIKE ORANGES! The proverbial response was "Well, why does that matter?" LOL!! Well, as we all know, it really does matter but as long as they don't care I guess I can relax a bit.

Here is a picture of the yellow organge smelling soap. LOL! If anyone has any has advice on how to turn this mini disaster into a success, please let me know :)


Saturday, February 16, 2008

THE HOUSE SOLD!!

Maybe it is premature of me to be dancing a jig but I'm very excited. We have signed a purchase agreement and if all goes well with the buyers having our home inspected, then our home will officially be sold. I probably shouldn't be dancing a full jig yet so maybe I'll just do a half jig but I am very excited. At least I can say we are half way there =)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

MY BLOG IS FINISHED!

TaDa! Here it is! The new blog design. It is so fresh and colorful, I love it! So cute, I've very happy with the design. I hope all of you who come by and visit like it too since I wanted to please all of you as well :)

pH STRIPS

The topic of pH levels in soap came up over on the forum and I thought, why not post about it here too.

I remember when I first started soaping I knew nothing abouth pH. I learned straight out of a Sandy Maine book (if you want to learn to make soap her books are perfect). I don't know where along the line I learned about pH but it wasn't very long after I started to make soap that I learned how important it was.

I always shoot for a pH of 6-7 when I make soap. I usually get my pH strips from SNOWDRIFT FARM and they have a really good explanation of the pH levels/color codes on the back of their container which makes it very helpful to know what range your soap should be in.

I also found this article that explains the bodies pH:

One of the most important roles of our skin is to protect our ‘insides’ from the external environment, acting both as a barrier and a filter between ‘outside’ and ‘inside’. In addition, the skin is involved in regulating our body’s temperature, like when we have a fever or we’re physically working hard, we tend to sweat, which is the body’s way to attempt to lower the temperature.

Another important role of our skin is to protect us from harmful substances entering our body, and in eliminating toxins. This takes workload off our Liver and Kidneys to filter out by-products from our body’s metabolism. The skin also breathes!


Hormones, Sweat glands and pH

The pores of our skin are made up of a combination of oil and sweat glands (sebaceous and sudoriferous glands) helping to keep our skin healthy and elastic. An excessive sebum secretion is often associated with oily skin and acne. This is particularly common in adolescents as the increased levels of sex hormones stimulate sebum production and secretion. When in balance, the combined excretion of oil and sweat from the skin’s pores has a pH of about 5.5.

CLICK HERE TO CONTINUE READING

Saturday, February 9, 2008

A BLOG MAKEOVER

The soappixie blog is getting a makeover. I've hired CUPCAKE DESIGNS. I've given her the color scheme I'd like but the rest is pretty much up to her. We've picked a layout and gone over graphic idea's but more of just brainstorming so it will be super exciting to see what she comes up with. So, if you have a chance after the new blog is up and running (probably in the next day or two)please leave a comment, I'd love to know what you think of it.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

LIFE IS NOT COMPLETE WITHOUT A BILLOW

Every girl in my family now has their very own special billow. My friend Carrie over at UNDER THE WILLOW GIFTS BLOG sent my baby girl a billow for her birthday and included a surprise billow for me as well. It was such a treat to open the box and find not one but two beautiful handmade billows. They are really a great thing to have. I use mine to rest against when watching t.v., the kids take them everywhere including in the car for long rides. Baby has been fighting her older sister for her billow and now finally has her own. I wish I could say she was happy with just the one but she isn't, she goes around collecting them all for herself now. LOL!!!

Please visit carries online business UNDER THE WILLOW GIFTS where she sells her beautiful billows plus handmade soap and other handmade items. She puts a ton of thought into her handcrafted gifts and they are always a delight to receive.

Here is a special photo of my girls snuggled up together with their billows:

Thursday, January 24, 2008

ONE STEP CLOSER TO REAL LIFE AGAIN


Tomorrow is the official day.... that we put our home on the MLS and try to sell it. It has been an exhausting 3 months. These past 11 months have been nothing short of a mini nightmare but thankfully a huge part of the stress is coming to an end (which is getting this darn house ready for the market). Someone please remind me why I decided to buy a new house and sell our home in the middle of winter and in such a crappy market????

I miss making soap and I miss making cards :( I cannot wait to get back into my soap kitchen and start doing some serious online soap shopping :) That will certainly make me smile again.

Please, everyone, keep your fingers crossed for me that the home sells quickly!!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

I'VE BEEN TAGGED!

I've been tagged by my blogging friend Steph over at PLAYING WITH SOAP.

THE RULES ARE:

1. Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.

2. Share five random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog.

3. Share the five top places on your "want to see or want to see again" list.

4. Tag a minimum of five random people at the end of your post and include links to their blogs.

5. Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment in their blog.

So here it goes, the five random and/or weird facts about myself:

1. CHECK OUT PLAYING WITH SOAP!

2. One weird fact: I don't sleep. Seriously! I probably get about 2 hours sleep a night. Been that way since a child. Second weird fact: I eat peanut butter on french toast. Maybe not weird to everyone but to those around me it is super weird. Third weird fact: I over buy books. I have about 100 books I've never read. I buy and buy and buy and don't even read half of them. It is an addiction. Fourth weird fact: I like to do those silly search and finds on kids menus at restaurants. I like seeing who can finish them first, me or my kids. LOL!! Fifth weird fact: I hate having dirty hands. If I get one speck of something on them it will drive me crazy until I wash them off. Another childhood issue. LOL!!!

3. I want to see: Tibet, India, Italy, Alaska, Africa

4. I've tagged: Carrie Gigi at UNDER THE WILLOW GIFTS BLOG
Diane at DIANE DIARIES BLOG
Missy Balance at CRAFTY CARNIVAL BLOG
Soapaholics Anonymous BLOG
Royal ROYAL COQUETTE BLOG

5. Everyone has been notified :)

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

ATTENTION!

Glitter Words - http://www.sparklee.com

Over at THE PIXIE SOAP FORUM we will be having a spring soap swap. We had so much fun with our first swap this past November that we couldn't resist having another. If your interested in joining us, please pop on over to the Pixie Community and sign up. We'd love to share our creations with you!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

NOW THEY HAVE SOAP JEWELRY

I'm one of those people that has a tendency to wear jewelry that represents who I am or whatever phase I'm going through in my life. When I was in my late teens/early twenties I was heavily into rock climbing so I purchased a necklace charm of a carabiner and wore it religously. When I moved to Mexico in my college years I purchased a bunch of little charms to go on a charm bracelet that fit who I was at that time (a dog for the strays I use to hang out with every day, a palm tree because, well, I was living in Mexico, et...) on and on and so forth. Well, not too long ago I was surfing soap supply shops and found some soap jewelry. By George, what will jewelers think up next. LOL!!

These are super cute and they can be found at OREGON TRAIL SOAPS