Saturday, August 31, 2013

Haul - Sea Breeze Scents & Things (Order #2)

This is my second order from Sea Breeze Scents & Things and I still don't know what it is about this vendor but it seems to have become my new favorite.  I was a little disappointed when one of the first scents I melted from my first order seemed to be really light, but since having a string of bad luck with another vendor's tarts, I've decided to try an electric warmer, or at the very least just have two of my tea light warmers going in different rooms.  And since Sea Breeze sells cute little 2-packs anyway, I decided to go ahead and place another order.

Shipping was extremely fast!  I ordered on Tuesday morning and had my package on Saturday of the same week.  Now that is the kind of turn-around-time I like.  Shipping costs are fair too.  I do believe she charges actual shipping, refunding any overages the website might calculate.  And she includes freebies.  I got two in this order.  (Thank you, Elaine!!)

I ordered all fall scents this time.  The scent list at Sea Breeze is not nearly as long as some vendors, but there is enough of a selection to find plenty of things you'll like without it being overwhelming, and it's always growing.  Just days after I placed this order, she added two new fall scents . . . including one I'd been asking about.  Well, darn, guess I'll have to place another order, huh?  LOL

So let's look at what I got this time . . .
  • Pumpkin Creme Brulee - 'Pumpkin, maple, cinnamon, sugar, vanilla, whipped cream, and more.'  Smells sooooo good!  Deep, rich, creamy and sweet.  More creme brulee than pumpkin right now, but we'll see how it is once it's melted.
  • Candy Corn - (There is no description available for this one.  If I remember right, it might have been discontinued.)  I've seen Candy Corn scents from different vendors with different scent descriptions.  Some are basically vanilla, some have hints of maple, some even have hints of orange.  Usually Candy Corn scent is quite light too.  This one smells pretty darn strong on cold sniff.  It's very vanilla-y and this might be one of those that claims a hint of orange. 
  • Apple Cinnamon - 'A Sea Breeze custom blend of apple & cinnamon sticks.'  This is nice.  The cinnamon is a bit stronger than the apple, but the apple is definitely there.  The cinnamon is a sweet candy-like version, not a sharp spicy one.
  • Cranberry Peach Cider - 'Warm bubbling cider, fresh cranberries, and peach.'  I'm not a big cider scent fan, not a big peach scent fan either, but this was the only cranberry scent she had at the time I ordered and I *need* a cranberry scent for fall.  (She's since added a plain cranberry scent.)  As feared, the cider and peach notes come through strongest on this.  Maybe the cranberry will show up once it's warmed.
  • Country Bumpkin - 'Cinnamon, pumpkin, raisin, and undertones of nutmeg and ginger.'  Country Bumpkin is one of my absolute favorite fall scents from years ago, but this scent description isn't the same as what I'm used to.  Maybe it's not a complete list of notes.  I'd have to go back and check.  Sniffing this, it smells more foodie than the version I used to love, but this is still darn yummy.
  • Apple Butter - 'Apple, buttercream, and a bit of cinnamon & spice.'  Gotta have apple scents in the fall, so I thought this would be an interesting choice.  It's apple-y, but warm, like an apple pie.  Yummy!
  • Tis The Season - 'Eggnog & pumpkin pie.'  I had ordered Pumpkin Pie Spice but Elaine quickly emailed me and told me she was currently out of that one, and asked what I would like to replace it.  I told her to surprise me with a Christmas scent and this is what she picked.  And this is why I'm liking this vendor more and more, because not only is it Christmas-y, but it has pumpkin!  Which keeps with the fall theme of my order.  That is awesome.  As for the scent, it's a bit heavier on the eggnog, but the spiced pumpkin is there too.  This will be a fun one.
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake - 'Creamy pumpkin, vanilla, and a hint of spice with just a tiny bit of graham cracker.'  When I first sniffed this I thought it had that sort of sour note that comes with cheesecake, but repeated sniffs don't seem to pick that up any more.  It's more like a good, pumpkin spice scent.
  • Fall Festival - 'A Sea Breeze customer blend! Mixture of pumpkin, maple, and some secrets!'  This is a good one!  It's a deep, rich scent, strong on the maple but not sickly sweet like pancake syrup.  I really wonder what the 'secrets' are because it's almost like caramel or butterscotch.  This one is right up my alley! 
Pumpkin Patch - 'Pumpkin pie, clove, vanilla, & ginger.' I just had to get some her pumpkin shaped tarts. (The daisy shapes are cheaper.) It has a bit of a weird note to it right now but I'll let it sit and air out away from the others, and see if its true scent comes through. What I can tell right now is that it's like a typical pumpkin pie scent.

Monkey Burps - 'The other half of a popular scent. Hello tropics!'  I know this is a very popular scent but I don't know exactly what's in it.  I'm assuming banana, but beyond that, I don't know.  On cold sniff it's actually a very strong coconut scent, maybe some banana in the background.  This was one of my freebies.

Strawberry Cheesecake - 'Fresh strawberries and creamy cheesecake with vanilla.'  Remember in my first order I got that absolutely adorable turtle?  Well this time I got a freebie frog!  How cute is that?!  And it smells sooooo good.  It's like a candy-type strawberry, or like strawberry milk.  There is some creaminess, some vanilla, but it's a very sweet scent.

I can't wait to start melting these!  I'm really tempted to place another order because of the new scents she just added, and because she's having a Labor Day sale this weekend . . . either free shipping on orders over $25, or Buy 5 Get 2 Free.  Be sure to 'Like' her Facebook page (HERE) for info on coupon codes and upcoming sales.  I don't know if I should go ahead and order my winter/holiday scents with this sale, or wait a while and see what her Black Friday sale will be.  Decisions, decisions!!!

Have YOU tried Sea Breeze Scents & Things yet??

Haul - Glade Goodies

I got a couple of Glade goodies in the past week, and thought I'd share.  My sister gave me this candle in Fall Hayride scent last weekend at her baby shower.  And I finally caved and bought myself an electric warmer.  You're probably noticing that box is empty.  It is!  That's because the warmer is already in use and I didn't want to pack it back into the box for one picture.

 Fall Hayride - 'Orchard fruits, chrysanthemum, spice and maple sugar scents embrace you with warm, woody nuances, recreating the sensation of crisp autumn air.'

Of the four scents in Glade's 2013 fall lineup, this would probably be the one I'm least likely to pick.  Grassy, woody, outdoorsy scents usually aren't my thing.  However, since my sister got this for me, I am willing to give it a try.  My very first thought when I sniffed this was 'Eh, grass.'  But after having it sit here on my desk for a while, and sniffing it every now and then, I can smell other things.  There is a slight floral note, a slight juicy fruity note, and when you really stop and let it sink in, you really do get just a touch of spice.  Or course there is still the grassy, woody (think resin or sawdust) note overall, but it's much nicer than that.  I'm looking forward to burning this now.

This will probably be the only one of the Glade line that I get this fall.  I've liked other pumpkin and apple scents more than the Glade melts, and I remember now that we had problems with performance from the Glade candles last winter.  If I do get any fall scent candles, I'll probably go with the Febreze ones.

This silly Glade warmer has taken the wax community by storm.  I've used tea light warmers since I first started melting tarts many years ago.  The biggest reason I haven't switched to electric is space vs. outlets.  Where I usually melt tarts is here on my computer desk.  My tea light warmers are small and can easily sit in the corner on the top shelf, the corner that is closest to the center of the room, which then allows the most air flow and scent throw.  To put an electric warmer up there wouldn't work because the outlets are all too far away, down by the floor, underneath the desk.  Not to mention the outlets are all full with computer cords.  There just isn't any other convenient spot to put a corded warmer. 

Well, with my recent weirdness in a string of seemingly scentless tarts from a vendor that's always been reliable before, I started wondering if I should try an electric warmer.  Of course the Glade warmer came to mind.  Everyone is raving about this thing because apparently it's a 20watt warmer, and most other hot plate styles are either 18 or 24 watts.  People say the 24 is too hot and burns the scents away too strong and fast.  Some people say the 18 is too weak.  People also like to say the tea light warmers get too hot.  I tend to disregard 99% of what the so-called gurus preach because it's all based on personal opinion.  (Now that I have my own electric warmer, I've already started doing some experiments.  Stay tuned . . . )

When I got my new warmer home yesterday, I still had no idea where I could put it.  Just for the sake of trying it, I decided to go ahead and put it in the same spot my tea light warmer sits.  The cord on this Glade warmer is quite short, which was another worry for me.  In the end, I ran the cord between the speaker and stereo that also sit on that end of the upper shelf, and had just enough cord to reach an extension cord that we had run as a temporary fix for something else.  The on/off switch ended up hanging in the space between the wall and the back of the desk, but there is just enough room to get my hand in there and be able to switch it.  This set up also keeps the cord out of Minion's reach.  (He likes to pull things from the shelves of this desk, but has never bothered my tea light warmers.)

I'm not ready to admit this warmer is a miracle worker, but after a string of seemingly dud tarts from one particular vendor, the two I've melted in this have been wonderful.  It *could* be the warmer, but explain to me then why my tea light warmers never had a problem with this vendor's products before?  As mentioned, I'm going to be doing some experimenting to see if I can find out what's going on.

But anyway, I *am* enjoying this warmer.  I had one tart going all day yesterday, which was interesting.  With a tea light warmer it takes about four hours for the candle to burn itself out, and then I usually don't remelt the tarts . . . just move on to a new one.  So to have one tart, one scent going all day without interruption was kinda nice.  On the other hand, it's going to take me forever to get through my tarts this way.  LOL!  I'll have to keep my stash even smaller now!

So, just wanted to share my couple of goodies.  What type of warmer do you prefer?  Have you always used that type?  What made you switch?  Some of the light bulb style warmers are freakin' cute, but I hear those can be the weakest of all.  Guess I won't know until I try one, huh?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Lemon Drop Cookies

Lemon Drop Cookies - (SF Blend)- Buttery lemon cookies sprinkled with sugar.
 
This is a nice scent but I get way more cookie than I do lemon.  It's sort of a 'safe' scent, almost generic, like if you just want something mellow or if you have company coming and don't want to assault them with something iffy.
It's also a light scent.  Melting this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer got me a lighter-side-of-medium scent at best.  Again, perfect if you just want something light and, well, safe.

Not sure I would order this one again.

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Lemon Pound Cake

Lemon Pound Cake- Lemon baked into a fluffy cake and topped with drizzling sugar glaze.
 
I thought I'd gotten through my lemon scents but when I was digging around in my box of Sweet Fixation tarts, I found a couple more.  Yay for lemon!  This one is really nice, a bakery lemon, slightly more 'cleaner' type lemon than candy type, with a yummy cake note.  There is a sugary note, but there is a sort of warmth to this one that has to come from the pound cake.  Very nice.
I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had medium-strong scent and throw.  It was a very nice scent in the air, easily noticeable, but not overpowering.  It was interesting to note that while I could smell this even upstairs in our big old house, it seemed to be a much warmer, cake-ier version of the scent, while closer to the warmer you could pick up more of the lemon notes.

This was a good one that I would order again.

Read - Mystic

Mystic
by Alyson Noel
2013
305 pages

Daire Santos barely surrived her last encounter with Cade Richter.  Now she's forced to do the unthinkable . . . save his life.

When a mad prophet and his beautiful daughter arrive in Enchantment determined to destroy all the Richters by the end of the week, Daire knows she has to stop them.  Cade and her beloved Dace are so deeply connected that if one dies, the other will follow.

But Dace has been missing for days, and is soul is in danger.

Relying on the help of her friends, a Mystic with dubious motives, and powers she can't always trust, Daire sets out to find Dace, restore his sould and end this deadly new threat before the final countdown begins -- all while keeping the Richters from claiming total world domination.  But will it prove enough to win the most important fight of her life?

*** MIGHT CONTAIN SPOILERS ***

This is the third book in Alyson Noel's Soul Seekers series.  The first is still my favorite so far but this one was better than the second.  I'm very curious to see how everything unfolds and then wraps up in the fourth and final book, because some curious little tidbits were tossed out there for us in this one.

This book has Daire returning from the Upperworld, and shocking everyone who thought she was dead.  While she is confused about why she's not dead, she's more concerned with finding her boyfriend Dace.  They were torn apart from each other at the end of the second book, neither knowing the other is still alive.  Some interesting points to ponder are presented when we learn about why new character Axel did what he did, and what it might mean down the road.  I love a good discussion about fate and destiny.

Daire's grandmother, Paloma, realizes they're running out of time and takes drastic measures to try and teach Daire everything else she can.  Daire also enlists the help of her friends, who come away from a trip to the Lowerworld with some interesting abilities.  And not only do they need to find Dace, but they then discover they also need to find his soul.  Add in the threat of Phyre, the beautiful girl who used to be Dace's girlfriend and has just recently returned to town, bringing nothing but trouble with her . . . and it's almost more than Daire can handle.

Once again, this book keeps a quick pace, which I love.  There is not a lot of filler and fluff, not a lot of extra drama and sappy YA romance.  While there is romance, it's nicely fit in along the way, usually some stolen moments as they're racing to the deal with the next big obstacle in this adventure.  This one jumps around from different peoples perspectives again, which might be the biggest weakness.  Part of my problem with the second book was that the alternating perspectives sort of kept you at a bit of a distance, like you didn't have time to really get absorbed, and then you had to switch mindset to the other character.  It didn't seem to bother me quite as much in this one because I think we got to spend longer amounts of time with Daire, but it's still not my preferred storytelling tactic.

Overall a good book in a good series, and I'm looking forward to the finale's release in November.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Orange Cuppy Cake

Orange Cuppy Cake - (SF Blend)- Creamy orange cake with a hint of vanilla and frosting.

This one is delish!!  It's very much a cake scent, more like a birthday cake or cupcake and not a pound cake.  The orange adds a nice bit of fruitiness to the scent.  This is a bright and happy bakery scent.

Melting this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer, I had a nice strong scent.  This was very obvious throughout the downstairs of my house, and was still pretty strong even after drifting upstairs too.  But it's a sort of comforting scent, sweet but not overwhelming, so it does fine as a strong scent.

I would absolutely order this one again.

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Serendipity Cake

Serendipity Cake - (SF Blend)-Sugary serendipity and birthday cake.
(Note - Serendipity is Sweet vanilla, powdered sugars, sweet cherry, orange citrus and yummy coconut. )
Yummy!  Serendipity is a scent than can be cherry-heavy or coconut-heavy, depending on the vendor.  Sweet Fixations' version leans toward the coconut side, in my opinion.  Serendipity can also be an overwhelmingly sweet scent, but this one is not to that extreme.  It is just a bright, fun, pick-me-up scent that is like sugared fruit.  Adding the cake note to this brings a bit of warmth and bakery to the mix, making it a delicious and welcoming scent for any home.
I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had a nice lighter-side-of-strong throw.  It was stronger than a medium, but not as strong as an inyerface scent.  I could smell it very easily throughout the downstairs of the house, and light traces of it even upstairs.

I would definitely order this one again!

Melted - Sweet Fixations - Sweet Tooth

Sweet Tooth- Sugary butter cookie with sweet frosting, cherries, powdered sugar and candy sprinkles.

This was a nice scent, but kind of on the light side.  I'm not even sure how to describe it beyond a sweet sugar cookie.  There was a yummy cookie note in there, and then it was sweetened up a notch.  It mentions cherries in the description, and while I didn't notice any specific cherry note this was probably what added just the slightest trace of something fruity.  This reminded me of a candy type scent but not extreme on the sugary sweetness.

I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had a medium scent with a fairly strong throw.  Sometimes the sweeter scents are better if they're not too strong.  I noticed it easily in the room the warmer is in, and on a lighter, more background type level in adjacent rooms.  It was the type of scent that just makes the house smell nice without the heaviness of 'Oh, just sprayed some air freshener, huh?'

This was a gentle but yummy scent.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Cherry Lemonade

Cherry Lemonade (SF Blend)- Sweet cherries and lemonade. Great blend!
This was a fun, bright, summery scent.  It smells like lemonade, and then the light cherry note makes it almost candy-like.  It's very sweet, yet still a bit juicy.
I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had a medium strength scent, which was fine because this could be too sweet to tolerate if it were a good strong scent.  The scent did carry into adjacent rooms on a lighter level.

A very nice, peppy tart.

Haul - Daphne's Divine Scents

Daphne's Divine Scents & Aromas (Etsy shop) is a new to me vendor that I've been seeing pop up more and more in the wax community.  It's also one of those shops that runs on an open for a day/closed for weeks type schedule that I find annoying.  The shop was restocked on Saturday, August 3, and that happened to be my day off so I couldn't help but have a look.  I was torn between wanting to buy all the fall scents, and leave without looking at any more than an initial glance had shown me.  Luckily, hubby was anxious to get going on some running around we needed to do so I shut down the computer and we left.  Silly me, as soon as we got back home I found myself rushing to check this shop again because I'd been told it usually sells out within hours.  Well it wasn't quite sold out yet but about 95% of it was gone.  And even sillier of me, considering I hadn't even really intended to order, I grabbed the last pack of 'fall' scented anything I saw.  Doh!

I ordered on Saturday afternoon and received my package on Wednesday, so turn around time is great.  I like that!  I also received a generous freebie packaged of three tarts, so that was great too.  Shipping was very reasonable, not some overpriced flat rate that a lot of vendors use these days.  On initial cold sniff, these smell pretty strong.

So what did I get?!

Sweet Potato & Brown Sugar - There is no scent description available but I guess it's pretty self explanatory.  I guess this isn't necessarily a 'fall' scent either, but in a way it is.  It's orange and in pumpkin shapes, so it is!  (lol)  A 6-pack of these cute little glittery pumpkins cost $3.75 in the Etsy shop.  Each pumpkin weighs .7 oz., which is enough to just melt one at a time.  On cold sniff, hubby loves this one.  I thought I loved it at first but there is that sort of harsh or bitter note that I find sometimes in tarts.  Aside from that, this scent is deep and rich, warm, with a touch of sweetness.  It is very much a cold day, something's cooking in the kitchen type foodie scent.  Hopefully that odd note goes away when melted.

Cherry ZB Crumble - I had to laugh when I saw this.  First, I was thrilled to receive such a generous freebie . . . there are three of these .7 oz. tarts in the package.  When I saw this was Cherry Crumble scent I was even more thrilled because I have been wondering why you just don't see cherry pie or cherry crisp type scents more, and now here is Cherry Crumble.  Then I noticed the 'ZB' and my first thought was 'Zombie?'  LOL!  Then it hit me.  Zucchini Bread.  Bleeeeahhhhh!  You probably know by now that I hate zucchini bread scents.  Still, I opened the package and sniffed.  A delicious cherry scent hit my nose first and I was thinking 'ah, good, the zucchini bread is light.'  Hubby sniffed and didn't like it at all.

"There's a weird scent in there," said hubby, with an 'eeuw' type face.
"That would be the zucchini bread," I sighed.

And as I had these out just now to take the pictures, yeah, that zucchini bread scent has overpowered the cherry in a very strong and unpleasant way.  I think it was Lauren (Lololovesscents blog) who describes zucchini bread scents as smelling like corn chips.  In this case, I totally agree.  I will probably give these away.  Keep in mind, it's no fault of the vendor, it's just a scent I can't stand.

While I'm not totally thrilled with either scent, it was a pleasant enough first experience with Daphne's Divine Scents & Aromas.  The shop will not be restocked until August 31.  I might pop in and have a look around that day, see if anything else grabs my attention.  I'll have to melt one of my little Sweet Potato pumpkins before then to be sure they're strong enough.

Have YOU tried Daphne's Divine Scents & Aromas?  Any favorites you've discovered?

Monday, August 5, 2013

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Dreamsicle

Dreamsicle- Vanilla ice cream and orange.

This is a yummy nummy fun scent, perfect for summer.  It's just like you'd expect that frozen treat on a stick to smell.  There is quick burst of bright, juicy orange but then the warm vanilla settles it down and it becomes mainly a creamy scent.  Delicious!

I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had about medium scent strength, with light throw.  I could smell it fairly easy in the room the warmer is in, but really not too much beyond that.  It seemed noticeably weaker by the end of one tea light burn (four hours).

A great scent, but I wish it had been stronger.  This might be great in smaller rooms though!

Melted - Sea Breeze Scents & Things / Joyeux Noel

Joyeux Noel - Vanilla, Cinnamon, and Coconut
 
This is such an interesting scent!  I would never think to combine cinnamon and coconut.  It works though!  It comes off almost minty, which is perfect for a Christmas scent as the name implies.  The coconut is not distinct.  I doubt you'd recognize it if you didn't know it was in there.  The cinnamon is soft, just enough to put some zip in this scent.  Again, I don't know if you'd even recognize it as cinnamon.  Add the vanilla and you have a slightly warm, sweet, almost minty holiday type scent.  Loved it!!!

Unfortunately, the scent was light.  My initial uber excitement about this vendor was threatened with this one.  I melted one of the .7 oz. daisy tarts in my tea light warmer and had only a light-to-medium scent in the room the warmer was in.  If someone walked by and the air was stirred up, I would get a strong whiff of the full glory of this scent but most of the time it was just a light almost-minty note in the background.  I didn't notice much at all in adjacent rooms.  I considered popping the second tart in too to see if it would boost the strength but then decided against it, wanting to see how just the one would perform.

So while I absolutely love this scent, I found one daisy tart to be just too weak.

Melted - Sweet Fixations / Raspberry Lemon Cupcake

Raspberry Lemon Cupcake - (SF Blend) Sweet and juicy raspberry and lemon glaze on a sugary vanilla cupcake.

You might remember my post the other day about Raspberry Lemon Squares where I said it totally smelled like blueberry muffins to me . . . ?  Well this time I melted Raspberry Lemon Cupcake and had to laugh when I got the blueberry muffin thing again.  Who knew that mixing raspberry and lemon would get you blueberry???  This one was slightly sweeter because of the cupcake note.  I think the fruity part might have been a smidge less blueberry-ish than the previous one but still, it very strongly reminded me of blueberry muffins.  

I asked hubby what he thought of the scent and while he didn't like it, he said he did not get blueberry muffins from it at all.  There you have it.  I must just be scent challenged.  LOL

I melted this entire 1 oz. tart in my tea light warmer and had immediate deep, strong scent throughout the room.  It did carry over into adjacent rooms but on a much lighter level.  There was plenty of scent left after one tea light burn (four hours) but since I wasn't wild about the scent to begin with, I didn't bother melting it again to see how long it would last.

While this isn't a *bad* scent, I know now that I won't be ordering any Raspberry Lemon combinations anymore.  I am curious to know what other people think if anyone has this scent.  Do YOU smell blueberry muffins???

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Read - Echo

Echo
by Alyson Noel
2012
340 pages

She inherited a magical destiny—and a mission to stop a powerful family of dark sorcerers. She never expected to fall in love with one of them.

There’s still so much Daire Santos has to learn about being the last Soul Seeker….and about herself. As her magical training becomes more intense, so does her relationship with Dace. But when she learns that his connection to the evil Richter family goes far deeper than she ever imagined, she begins to question if love really can conquer all.

Dace is painfully aware that he wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for the Richters’ dark magic—and now his brother Cade is determined to use his love for Daire against him. Dace is willing to sacrifice anything to protect the girl he loves —including his own life. But will Daire allow it? And what if defeating Cade costs not only his life, but his soul too?


*** MIGHT CONTAIN SPOILERS ***

Let me just say, this book is BEAUTIFUL.  Oh my gosh, I loved just looking at the cover whenever it was sitting near me.  The picture doesn't show it but some parts of the cover have a sort of shiny look to them.  Inside, the first page of each chapter had snowflakes, and the the pages that marked the sort of 'sections' of the book were gray and white with snowflakes.  Just a very cool looking, pretty book.

Having said that, I did not like this book nearly as much as the first one in this series.  I still liked it, but it paled by comparison.  Now that Daire and Dace are a couple, the cheesiness of typical YA romance started to show.  Of course their love is a sort of forbidden love, but the reasons why (a prophecy, a connection between twins) was something I just did not want to read about yet again.  And falling back on that good ol' theory of 'I can't be with you because it's the only way to save you!' is one of my least favorite tactics ever.

The pace of this second book was still pretty quick, but when I think back about what all happened it seems like not much of anything happened.  Several things DID happen but they just seemed sort of uneventful.  Maybe it was because, while the first book was only from Daire's perspective, this book alternates between Daire and Dace.  Maybe this caused things to move along without allowing us the deeper attachment we felt before?

It seemed like magic was learned too easily this time around.  Both Daire and Dace were racing to get more training and master certain things because they know they must defeat Dace's evil twin Cade.  Daire has mastered all of the elements now, and Dace has been taught a top secret, very dangerous, ultimate last resort type of magic . . . seemingly in a matter of hours.  I guess this book sort of seems like it's just setting things up for bigger things to come.

The end caught me off guard.  I thought I'd known how it was going to turn out because of something I'd glimpsed about the next book, but nope!  Even though I thought most of the book was just sort of average and blah, something in those ending events absolutely has me wanting to dive into the next book now!  (Luckily I have that next book right here!  lol)

So, not as good as the first, but I'm still looking forward to seeing where this whole story goes.

Quickie In-Store Scent News

I've been keeping my eyes open for fall scents that are starting to pop up now in stores.  This weekend I noticed the following scents in Glade products.  These are available in all the usual Glade products like room sprays, candles, and even the new tarts.  If we burned candles more, I'd get one of each of these.


Pumpkin Spice - 'The mouth-watering scent combination of cardamom, nutmeg, ginger extract, crystallized caramel, pumpkin spice latte, and molasses leads the trail to fall fun.'
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Toasted Marshmallow - 'Cozy up to the scent of caramel, freshly roasted coffee, smooth coconut, creamy peach and a touch of honey. Available at limited retailers.'
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Orchard Apple Cinnamon - 'Together, a spicy blend of apple cider, berries, nutmeg, cinnamon, clove and vanilla scents create a sumptuous fragrance as rich as the fall memories it stirs.'
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Fall Hayride - 'Orchard fruits, chrysanthemum, spice and maple sugar scents embrace you with warm, woody nuances, recreating the sensation of crisp autumn air.'
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I also saw some Febreze and Air Wick candles in fall scents but I haven't been able to track them down yet online.  I keep coming up with last year's scents and pictures.  Oh well, what I've seen so far for Febreze has been Cranberry Cider, Apple & Spice, and Falling Leaves & Spice.  I did manage to find a pic of the Falling Leaves candle but no description or anything . . . 
------------------------------------------------

And for Air Wick, I've never tried their candles so I can't say anything about how they perform or their strength.  I saw one called Vanilla Bean & Autumn Leaves but can't find it online.  The others I saw were . . .
Apple Cinnamon Medley - 'Captures the freshness and warmth of sweet and spicy notes that welcome guests like a warm blanket on a crisp autumn day.'
--------------------------------------------
 
Vanilla Sugar Cookies - 'Full of home baked goodness, indulge in creamy vanilla and sparkling brown sugar, a festive treat good enough to leave for old Saint Nick.'
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I love fall!  I would buy all of these if I knew I'd get through them before it was time to switch to winter/holiday scents, but since we don't burn candles as often as I melt tarts, I'll probably only buy one or two . . . if any.  How about you?  See anything you think you'll be checking out?

Melted - Sea Breeze Scents & Things / Warm Welcome

Warm WelcomeGraham Cracker, Vanilla Frosting, & Caramel.
 
I was SO excited to finally be able to melt one of these.  As you might have seen in my haul post yesterday, this is a new-to-me vendor that I've become instantly impressed with.  The only test left was to see how well the tarts actually perform.  I'm pleased to report that the first one I have melted has worked like a charm.  I've already been plotting my next order!
This particular scent is sooooo yummy.  I already knew I liked graham cracker scents, and frosted graham cracker scents, so the addition of caramel in this one just took it up a notch, adding a bit more depth and richness.  This is a warm, cozy, bakery type scent.  It is sweet but not in a sugary candy-like way.  You do get the graham cracker note, but there is just this added warmth and creaminess.  So soooo good.

I melted one of these daisy tarts (.7 oz, about 2 clamshell cubes worth) in my tea light warmer and had deliciously strong scent and throw.  We could smell this easily throughout most of the downstairs of the house, and could smell it lightly even upstairs.  I first melted this last night, then decided to melt it again this morning just to see if there was any scent left.  There was, but on a much lighter level . . . light-to-medium strength in the room the warmer was in, and faintly in adjacent rooms.  Still, I'm pleased because I usually only melt my tarts once anyway.

So for those who are waiting for my verdict on this vendor . . . WIN!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Haul - Sea Breeze Scents & Things

I saw a haul post about Sea Breeze Scents & Things over at the SugarLemonFizz blog recently and checked out the site.  When I first went to the Etsy shop I found that I'd already looked at that shop several times in the past, when it had a different name.  (Can't think of that previous name at the moment.)  So I was like 'Hey, I must have wanted to order from here at some point,' and continued looking around.  Then I found there is a Facebook page and a personal website, and it was the personal site that I did most of my browsing.  I decided to go ahead and place a tiny order.

And wow, am I ever excited about this shop now!!!

I haven't even melted the first tart but I'm already wanting to place another order.  I showed two coworkers what I'd gotten and they want to get in on a large combined order.  LOL!  Not quite sure what's got me so excited but it's probably a combination of things.  The tarts  and packaging are so clean and well presented.  The cold sniff scents are STRONG.  There is a decent sized scent list too choose from, and several fun shape and size options.  Shipping was fast . . . I ordered on Friday and received my package Thursday.  (She does not ship on weekends.)  She refunds any shipping overcharges.  And, so far at least, this is not one of the shops the The Clique is flocking to and hoarding from and creating chaos at.

One of the most exciting things to find in my package was this . . .
How freakin' cute is that?!  This was my freebie!  A wax turtle tart!  He is pristine, weighs 1.3 oz., and is in Erica's Pearberry scent, which is described as 'Named in honor of a great friend who was gone too soon, this scent has the sweet and crisp scent of pears and fresh berries.'   I think this is a Bath & Body Works dupe.  Hubby and Casey both thought it was a green apple scent, and while it does sort of seem that way at first, you do eventually figure out it's pear you're smelling.  It's nice and bright and fun for summer.

But yeah, this little guy had everyone I showed doing the "AWWWWW?!" and wanting to hold him.  LOL

What else did I get?  Just three scents because I don't like placing large orders with shops I'm just trying for the first time.  But ohemgee, all three of these scents are to die for!

Warm WelcomeGraham Cracker, Vanilla Frosting, & Caramel.
Good gawd, just kill me now . . . this scent is sooooo good.  I already knew I loved frosted grahams scents but the caramel in this just takes it up a notch.  It's deep and rich and just so delicious.

Joyeux Noel - Vanilla, Cinnamon, and Coconut
This is a surprise hit with everyone whose nose I've shoved it under so far.  The name seemed Christmas-y but the notes listed were kinda like 'Meh, huh?'  But wow, this is very interesting!  The vanilla and the coconut sweeten, and the cinnamon is just strong enough to put a tidbit of bite into it.  You'd probably think there is mint in here.  You also probably wouldn't ever guess it's coconut you're smelling.  Love this.  And it does kinda make remind me of Christmas.

Pumpkin & Vanilla - An amazing pumpkin scent without all of those spices. 
And of course I had to get a pumpkin scent since fall is just around the corner now.  I thought this sounded interesting, something different than the usual Pumpkin Spice.  There IS still a bit of spice in here but it's very soft.  The bulk of the scent is just a nice hearty pumpkin, with a slightly soft and creamy twist.  This is soooo good.  I need more.  A lot more.  (Sheri!  YOU need this!)
 
I have not had a chance to melt any of these yet.  I don't melt things on days that I work, and while this is my first day off since receiving these, we have a bunch of things to do today so I *still* have to wait.  Gah!  But if the strong cold throw is any indication, I'm sure these will be fine and then I'm racing back to the site to order more!

Oh, by the way, each of these flower tarts weighs .7 oz (which is about what two clamshell cubes would be), and each 2-pack costs $1.50.  The turtle sells for $1.10 and there is a cute frog shape too.  I see she also has pumpkin shaped tarts now, which is what I will be getting next time.

One small hang up about the website is that while it says to leave your scent choices in the box during checkout, there is no box.  Courtney (SugarLemonFizz) and I both had to email the owner with our scent choices.  Maybe that will be fixed, maybe it has already, but if not and you're trying to order, just go ahead and email her your choices.

Sooooo, have YOU tried this shop yet?