Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Blogmas - Day 6

Pretty good day today.  I actually did spend a chunk of time in the craft room.  I played around with embossing and found I have a lot to learn, and need a lot of practice before I start attempting it on actual cards.  I did a lot of die cutting today, mainly gift card envelopes and tags.  A lot of iTunes cards and gift cards get passed around for Christmas in this family so I figured some cute little envelopes would be fun.  I'll take some pics when they're finished.

I did a ton of online shopping today.  I hadn't really planned on it but then once I started it was like ah heck, just get it done.  A good chunk of my Christmas shopping is done now.  Well, and a few more things for me.  I couldn't help it!  One of the stamp sets I want finally came back in stock so I had to grab it!

I also spent some time just chilling with some true crime shows on TV while working on the Christmas puzzle.  I haven't watched my murder shows for quite a while now.  Last night we were watching recorded episodes of Lucifer to get caught up, and discovered we only had half of the most recent one.  AND it was apparently the season finale?!  Noooooo!  And then tonight was the season premiere of Vikings.  I wasn't too interested leading up to it because I don't like how Ragnar is anymore.  The storylines just don't interest me much anymore, at least they didn't by the end of last season.  This premiere episode wasn't too bad though.  Maybe it'll be like Game of Thrones and totally rehook me.

I've decided I'm going to redecorate the house and tree this weekend.  It's just bothering me having so few decorations out.  It feels half-assed or something.  When I drove into town today to go to the bank I was seeing all the houses with all their decorations outside and in the windows, and it helped me decide that yes, I do want to get more stuff out, make a grand season of it like I used to.  We'll see how it goes this weekend though, heh.

Oh, by the way, this is the puzzle that we'd been working on.  We finished it this evening.

I think that's about all my exciting news for today.
How are you doing on your decorating?

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Blogmas - Day 5

Today was Mom's day, as it always is one day a week.  Did her laundry and took her shopping, and she got her Christmas shopping done.  She doesn't have a lot of money so she doesn't buy for barely anyone anymore.  So, easy to get done in one day.

When I got done there I swung by the vet to get a refill of Fattycat's pills and make his blood work appointment for the end of December.  One of the office cats at the vet office is a big, long haired, cream colored cat.  He was sitting on the counter while I was there and I just had to chuckle because they have shaved to look like a lion.  It was so funny!  I was about to take a pic but the office lady started talking to me and the cat jumped down and wandered away.

I've just been kinda lazy since I got back home.  I took a bunch of blog pics of some crafty and wax orders that have been arriving.  I watched more card making videos.  Did a load of laundry.  Filled the bird feeders.  Carried the last few outside fall decorations down to the garage.  Did the dishes.  Worked on the jigsaw puzzle.  That might sound kind of busy but it was all done at a very leisurely pace with lots of breaks in between.  lol

These are my first three embossing powders!  I have another one, silver colored, arriving tomorrow, and I thought I'd ordered white too but not sure when that will be here.

And I finally have a heat tool to do all that embossing!  I have not tried it yet, haven't even taken it out of the package.  But yeah, I can finally start playing around with embossing.  I think part of why I haven't been diving into making Christmas cards is because I wanted to wait for this.

Also got these fancy tweezers for handling small or delicate pieces while making cards.  When I first started watching videos and saw people using these I was like, 'What a bunch of divas.'  But now I see why they use them!  My fingers get all full of glue or ink, and I'm dropping things, or can't pick up the little things.  So I take back all those earlier thoughts.  lol  There is also another tool thingie that has a clingy type end, kinda like a stylus, to help pick up tiny pieces or sequins or whatever, and yeah, I want that now too.

Tomorrow the only things on my agenda are to go to the bank and put gas in the car.  Other than that I'm hoping like crazy I can manage to get some fun things done in the craft room with my fun new toys!  I also need to get my Christmas shopping lists made and take a quick inventory of the things I've already bought.

Have you started Christmas shopping yet?
(Or are you done?!)

Haul - Satin Suzie Scents / Celebrate Christmas Sampler

Black Friday found Satin Suzie Scents offering four different Christmas samplers, so of course I had to grab one.  Some scents could be found in more than one sampler, and I picked the Celebrate Christmas one because it seemed to have the least amount of woody and smoky type scents.  Let's just jump in and see what I got!

Berry Bellini - 'An icy cold bubbly champagne with under currents of berries, peaches and hints of citrus.'
Champagne, fizzy, alcohol type scents are not something you'll find in my favorites column.  This one is okay, mellow on that bubbly aspect but you can still tell it's champagne.  It's very sweet, almost candy-sweet, but that champagne note sort of puts a veil over it.  All three of the fruit notes show up in soft tones.

Oh Christmas Tree - 'A strong, freshly cut pine Christmas tree.'
I like my pine scents in small, soft doses during the Christmas season.  Some can be really strong and headache inducing.  This one, on cold sniff at least, seems on the mellower side and that makes me happy.  Just a basic, must-have Christmas tree scent.

Christmas Love - 'It’s all about Christmas with pine, spices of clove, cinnamon & nutmeg, sugar cookies, brown sugar & white musk. Yankee Celebrate Christmas dupe.'
I received a large flower shaped tart in this scent back when Satin Suzie owner Bernadette first sent me that package of goodies to try.  Nice to have another because it is an interesting scent.  I'm not familiar with the Yankee version so I can't say how true it is.  This is along the lines of those 'craft store at Christmas' type scents.  I get the spicy scents first and foremost but they're softened by everything else.  I only get a faint hint of pine, and then the rest is sort of a subtle, warm, hints of bakery type blend.  I would say this is a bright scent that also leans towards warm and cozy.  A nice Christmas scent.

Snow Day - 'Spicy fresh pine combines with frosted fir, heady cinnamon and bay leaf to bring a winter woodsy fragrance.'
This one falls into the woody category and I'm not sure if I like it.  There is pine, and there is wood, like resin, along with hints of spice to put an extra edge on it.  Not my type of scent but it is very outdoorsy.

Cranberry Festival - 'A scrumptious blend of tart cranberries, oranges, apples and the perfect touch of spices.'
Oh my gosh, LOVE this one!  This is one of those warm spiced punch type scents I fell in love with this fall.  It's deep and warm, with lots of spiced cranberry.  Mmm!  This is familiar, so it might be a common scent by other names, but this is going on my must-have list for next fall.

Pumpkin Nog - 'Creamy, vanilla eggnog with pumpkin spices sure to warm up your evenings.'
 I have this one already, and even included one in a mini-giveaway I did recently.  It's a really nice eggnog scent with that familiar pumpkin puree note to make it interesting.  I'd say it's more eggnog than pumpkin so I will melt them for Christmas instead of as a fall scent next year.

Winter Woods - 'A crisp, complex, clean fragrance with notes of earthy outdoors, both warm and smokey.'
This one is very light on cold sniff but I can still tell it's not my type of scent.  I don't really get a smoky note but I get a lot of men's cologne, and I'm just not fond of that for home fragrance.

Frosty Pomegranate - 'Frosty cool, clean peppermints meets mouth-watering tart pomegranate.'
This is interesting.  It's not minty enough to make me think of it as a Christmas scent, but it's still nice.  There is tart juiciness, with a soft minty edge.

Nutmeg & Ginger - 'Freshly grounded spicy nutmeg and bold ginger meet in this wax to create a heartwarming, welcoming scent.'
I was worried when I saw this because there is one spice that I just don't like and I think it might be nutmeg.  But wow!  This is nothing like the dry, bleah scent I was expecting.  This is actually quite deep and creamy.  I do recognize a very slight note of something I think I might not like once this is warmed, but hopefully that stays quietly in the background like it is now on cold sniff.

Oh Sugar Cookie - 'Sugar cookies right out of the oven, notes of sugar, butter and buttercream.'
A basic, yummy sugar cookie scent.  Not quite as rich and buttery as some others I've had, but still very nice.

Christmas Cedar - 'Fresh, woodsy scent of cedar, sandalwood with citrusy orange undertones.'
This was a freebie I received with my order, and while I do thank Bernadette for her generosity, I knew I would not like this.  I don't like cedar.  I don't like sandalwood.  And I don't like woody notes.  I also don't like strong zesty notes and this one has all of those.  lol

White Out - 'Fresh spruce, pine & cedar trees mixes with warm vanilla, fruits and spices.'
I also received this little freebie.  (Thank you again!)  Sadly, I don't think I like this one either.  There is a lot of cedar in this.  Luckily I know people who love these types of scents!

The samplers appear to be sold out now but it looks like you can still order the scents individually.  It probably doesn't matter at this point but the samplers were priced at $15.00 for ten 1.5 oz. scent shots.  The individual scent shots on the site are $1.60 if you find them in stock in the Ready To Ship section, or $1.70 in the custom section.  Shipping is flat rate $7.00 although the site says overages of a dollar or more are refunded.  I placed my order on Friday morning, Nov. 25, had my shipping notice within hours, and received my package on Monday, Nov. 28.  That is one reason Satin Suzie Scents has become a current favorite vendor of mine!  A site that's always open and a TAT that is days instead of months!

Have you tried Satin Suzie Scents yet?

Monday, November 28, 2016

Blogmas - Days 3 & 4

Look at me, already missing days.  *sigh*  Some things had me preoccupied and moody yesterday, so I just couldn't focus when I sat down to post in the evening.  I almost skipped tonight too but scolded myself and here I am.

Yesterday, Day 3, I did get the tree decorated but ended up going very minimal on all the other decorating.  Seriously, I barely have any other decorations out.  Today I'm kinda feeling bad about that, so maybe tomorrow I'll get more out.  I worked on the Christmas puzzle that hubby's been working on, and I watched some football, but other than that it was just a bleah, unfocused day.

Today, Day 4, was back to work.  The day went by quickly and fairly mellow.  Some things had me cranky,  mainly certain people who continue to get away with whatever they want and the lack of proper management.  I also got crabby when I went to ask some questions about vacation days and our Christmas work schedule.  Once again, it's so easy for the office people to blow off our concerns and act like it's all not a big deal.  Yeah, YOU get your holidays and extra days off regardless.  We on the floor don't have that luxury.  So to be treated like I'm inconveniencing them only made the mood worse.

When I got home from work this evening I decided the Christmas tree looks hideous and tomorrow I'll probably be trying to fix it up.  I'm almost tempted to just put up or mini tree instead and be done with it.  I hope this feeling passes.  I mean, geez, I was SO excited for Christmas and decorating only a couple days ago!

I'm feeling rather crappy this evening so I'm just going to make this a short one and go try to read in bed.

Hope your days have been happier than mine!

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Blogmas - Day 2

 Casey did not go shopping with me this morning, and I was not at all surprised.  That boychild has always been like that, big plans to do something and then can't be dragged out of bed to actually do them.  It was fine though.  I was able to stay focused while shopping and even got a few Christmas presents bought.

I stopped at Target after Walmart because I'd heard the Dollar Spot has three different Christmas themed paper packs.  I found two of them, and neither one impressed me enough to buy.  I then wandered over to the Christmas stuff to have a look, then through games, movies, and books.  The store was absolute chaos!  You'd think Black Friday was still happening!  There were so many people trying to shop, and so many employees trying to restock shelves.  There were so many carts and trolleys of boxes needing to be unpacked that you could barely get through many of the aisles.  Makes me wonder what it was like yesterday?!

I found so many things at Target that I want, and so many things that I'll probably be buying for people on my shopping list.  Oh my gosh, it was so fun!  I didn't dive into Christmas shopping yet though because I need to get organized and make a decent list of what to get who.  I did get hubby's iTunes cards today though.  They have a deal, buy one get one 30% off.  Not bad!

Then in the mail this morning was my tiny Bath & Body Works order.  That has me thinking I'll also be using BBW for a huge chunk of my shopping too.  I can't wait to actually get started now!

The get together at my brother's was today.  My anti-social feelings had gone away in my super festive mood I had after shopping, so that was good.  Casey only stayed about an hour because he went off to meet up with friends and hang out.  Hubby and I only stayed about two hours.  (He's been crabby for days and was looking miserable.)  Ty stayed a good long time though, which was surprising but cool.  My mom had her cane today instead of her walker.  A bunch of us sat in the living room and watched tractor pulls that one brother had recorded and another had pulled in.  (Pulling is a family thing for us.)  It was a nice little visit.
Ty (right) and his cousin Dan

 SIL Vickie, Mom, SIL Yvonne, SIL Peg (hostess)

Brother Tom and brother Paul (host)

Ty, my brother Paul, my nephew Dan, and his son Alec

My nephew Dan's boys, Ayden and Alec

When we got home from my brother's I went ahead about put our tree up.  It's standing bare for tonight, to see if the cats get into mischief around it.  Tomorrow I will haul out all the Christmas decorations and get busy while I'm still (hopefully) in this uber festive mood.

And now I will head up to bed and try to read, although I'm really just plain ol' tired.

How was your Day 2?
Do any Christmas shopping today?

Haul - Bath & Body Works

I had no Christmas-y scented shower gel as we came into this holiday season so I had to place a quickie order from Bath & Body Works earlier this week.  The main purpose was to get Twisted Peppermint shower gel, but then three mini candles hopped into my cart.  I'm clueless how that happened!

Ahem, yes, so let's look at those three little babies.

Twisted Peppermint - 'Cool peppermint,sugared snow, vanilla buttercream, fresh balsam, hint of musk.'
I think everyone knows what Twisted Peppermint smells like, right?  It's the type of sweet, creamy vanilla mint that I like with just the barest hint of pine and musk to put a slight edge back into it.

Vanilla Snowflake - 'Creamy vanilla, icy fir, wintry mint, coconut flakes.'
The coconut flakes sounded like an interesting addition to the blend.  This is a lot 'thicker' than Twisted Peppermint, a lot more vanilla, a lot less mint.  It's okay but probably not one I'd get again.

Spiced Apple Toddy - 'Warm apple brandy, spiced plum, cranberry, cinnamon stick.'
I was absolutely loving the spiced fruit scents this fall, the warm spiced punch types, so I thought this would be nice to carry over into winter.  And yes, I love this.  Fruity and juicy, but warm from the spice.

That's it!
There was some deal going on for the mini candles at the time I ordered.  Not sure if it's still going on but at the time they came out to $3.20 each.  Still a crazy price for a 1.3 oz. candle but at least it's cheaper than the regular price of $4.50.  And they're so stinkin' cute!

I think I need to just give up the fight and start being a regular Bath & Body Works customer.  I buy for fewer and fewer people each Christmas, so I think I might go ahead and start doing holiday shopping there.  That's kind of exciting for me!  Plus, there is a BBW outlet store near me that I need to start frequenting.

Are you a BBW fan?
What are some of your favorite scents and items?

Friday, November 25, 2016

Blogmas - Day 1

 Blogmas time!  Yay!  Blogmas will be pretty much the same as Blogtober in October and Thankful Natters in November.  I'm hoping to post every day, now through Christmas, with some festive mention in each post.  I debated whether to start now or wait till Dec. 1, which is when most people seem to start, but decided to dive right in before I lose my blogging groove.

So, on this day after Thanksgiving, we were pretty lazy around here.  Hubby watched TV and worked on the Christmas puzzle, and even took a long nap.  Casey pretty much lounged in his room and played video games.  I spent a lot of time in the morning browsing crafty websites and taking advantage of Black Friday deals.  I had to quit looking when I started spending too much money.  Doh!  I did get some good deals though!

And I did order one of the Satin Suzie Christmas samplers.  Did you?  I just checked and there are still some in stock.

I packed up the Thanksgiving decorations today.  Didn't get the Christmas stuff out yet though.  I hauled the tree down from the attic later this afternoon but have not put it up yet.  We have an old fake tree, not even pre-lit.  I always put it up and let it stand bare for a day or so, until the cats get over their initial curiosity and leave it alone.  Maybe I'll put it up tomorrow morning.  I'm not too sure how much decorating I want to do otherwise.  I go back and forth so much on it.  I think last year was pretty minimal.  I always get crabby in the hauling out of all the boxes on decorating day, and then especially crabby when it comes time to pack it all up again.  For some reason, trying to fit everything back into the carefully stuffed totes overwhelms me.  I guess we'll see how I feel tomorrow or Sunday.

I finally did some card work in the craft room again!  One of them I can't show you yet, but here is the other one . . .
The lighting in the pic doesn't do it justice.  You can't see the slight shimmer on the embossed snowflakes.  I really like this one though, and so simple to make!

This is the one hubby made last week.

Well, I'm off to bed now.  Casey says he wants to go shopping with my tomorrow morning.  I'm kinda hoping he changes his mind in the morning.  Hubby's gone with me the last couple times and while it's nice to have company once in a while, sometimes I just really want to get in and get it done quickly on my own.  We also have to go to the family get together at my brother's tomorrow afternoon.  I was looking forward to it before but now, as it draws closer, as always, I'm not wanting to go.  I'm just so anti-social in my old age!

Alrighty, then, off to read and then sleep.

Did you dare the crowds for some Black Friday shopping?
Did you put your tree up today?
Tell me something Christmas-y!

Melted - Satin Suzie Scents / Peppermint Noel

Peppermint Noel - 'The cool, icy scent of peppermint is warmed with Vanilla Bean Noel.'

My first Christmas scent of the season was this lovely blend from a new-to-me vendor I'm currently loving.  This is just the kind of mint scent I like for the holiday season, a sweet, creamy mint.  Peppermint was the strongest note but it was softened by the slight bakery notes of the Vanilla Bean Noel.  It reminded me of a sugar cookie with crushed peppermint candies mixed in.

I melted these two tarts (1.2 oz. worth) in my Glade hot plate warmer and had medium-strong scent.  It worked nicely at this strength because it was pleasantly noticeable without being an overpowering mint.  And it was long lasting!!  These two little guys went all day, I'm talking 12 hours, and still had plenty of strength when I turned the warmer off.

I looked for more of this when I ordered my Christmas sampler this morning, but it was out of stock.  I'll have to keep an eye on the site for when I can order more.

Mini-Giveaway #3 Winner

The winner of Mini-Giveaway #3 is Julie!

Congratulations, Julie!!

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Thankful Natters - Day 24 / Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope your day was wonderful, however you spent it.  Mine turned out to be quite lovely, just as I'd hoped.  We just stayed home for it, and it was only the four of us.  No pressure, no worries.  We'd planned to eat a little later than usual because the Vikings-Lions game started at 11:30am.  The turkey ended up getting done sooner than expected, and we actually missed the end of the game while we scrambled to get all the other foods prepped.  The Vikings lost anyway, so maybe it's good we didn't see that.  It was an exciting game though, because the Vikings and Lions were tied for first place in their division.  The Lions are on top now.  We're still ahead of the Packers though, which makes it all okay.

We had a lovely meal, all the traditional foods.  Of course we all ate too much.  Ty and Casey hung out for a while, playing videos games in Casey's room.  That was cool because sometimes they don't get along enough to hang out like that.  Later, we played one of the new Munchkin games Casey had bought at that anime convention he went to last week.  It was Munchkin - Gloom, and it was quite different than the Munchkin we're familiar with.  It was quite fun though.  I'm looking forward to playing it again when we're not all so stuffed and tired.  lol

Ty headed home in the evening, and Casey went to bed, so now hubby is watching football and starting a Christmas jigsaw puzzle while I get some blogging done.

I did get those Thanksgiving decoration pics taken.  I was hoping for a brighter day but no, it was gray and dreary, so the pictures are less than stellar.
My mother-in-law dropped off this bouquet yesterday while we were at work.  It's so pretty!
We have it on the coffee table in the living room so we can guard it from the cats.  So far though, they've stayed away.

The usual items on the end table in the corner of the living room, by the window.  The pumpkin on the left is a year or two old.  The turkey on the right is ancient.  I think I brought that from home when I moved out, so we're talking 25+ years . . . if it's the one I think it is.  And that little turkey in the middle is something one of the boys made in school when they were small.  I think it was Casey, but there is no name or year on it.

This turkey is newer, but still probably 20 years old.  He's hanging out on the DVD shelves on the other side of the living room.

The corner stand with old family photos has some small Thanksgiving decorations.

The buffet, which is always decorated for whatever season or holiday it may be.  I love love love how those three little pumpkins on the left look together.  The candy dish on the right is actually the leftover cornucopia basket from the flower arrangement my mother-in-law gave us last year.  I thought it was a cute idea to have candy spilling out of it.

On the kitchen table, just a nice dish towel with this wood-looking plastic plate on it.  LOVE how these two pumpkins look here.  The picture does not do it justice at all.

Some fun little sun catchers that I painted years ago.  Some are cracked and chipped from getting knocked on the floor.  And you can see outside, our bare trees and bare fields and gloomy sky, all lovely fall things.

Little shelf in the kitchen.

On the kitchen counter below that shelf.

An old pumpkin and scarecrow on top of the fridge.

Mario wishing you all a Happy Thanksgiving.  This is on the fridge.  The Mario came in one of Casey's recent Loot Crates, and he stuck it here one day.  lol

And the two cards we received.  Both are very nice.  Too bad one is a mass mailing from our insurance agent.  LOL

There are a few more little scattered things around the house, like pumpkin themed salt and pepper shakers, and a banner across the living room doorway, but I didn't take pictures of everything.  There are a few small things outside too, but again, it was cold and wet out there so I didn't bother.

And now we wind down Thanksgiving and this Thankful Natters series comes to an end.  I'm happy to say I did not miss a day of posting!  No cheater catch-up posts like during Blogtober.  I've enjoyed doing this, even if it did get difficult to actually come up with something I'm thankful for each day.  I'm glad I did it but I'm also glad it's ending tonight.

Day 24 thankfulness . . . 
Today I'm thankful for, cliche as it may be, my family and the time we got to spend together today.  It was so soooo nice to just have the four of us here, no one else, no interruptions.

You still have time to enter Thankful Mini-Giveaway #3 if you go HERE.
I will choose a winner tomorrow afternoon (Friday, Nov. 25).

Don't forget about the Satin Suzie Scents Christmas samplers which go on sale at 12:01am tonight.  I'm hoping to grab one tomorrow morning if there are any left!