Sunday, August 12, 2018

Aug. 12 - Small Craft Haul

My urge to make cards and paper crafts has been slowly growing the past month or so.  I've not done anything about it because I figured it would pass but as things continue to not go as planned out in the wood shop I that the urge is not going away.  For whatever reason, I want to try my hand at shaker cards this time.  I never had much interest in them before?!  So I went ahead and ordered a few things from the Lawn Fawn and Hallmark Scrapbook sited to hopefully get me started on this adventure.

This is the Ready, Set, Snow Shaker Add-On die set.  It might like strange and boring if you don't know what the heck it's supposed to do, but this goes along with the Ready, Set, Snow stamps and dies sets that I already had to be able to create snow globe shaker cards.  The set is designed for winter and Christmas scenes but after thinking about it, I think I'm going to try some spooky Halloween scenes in the globe too.

There are the pieces of the How You Been set that can make mason jar shaker cards.  It was originally released at Easter a year or two ago, so it does feature jelly beans to put in the jar, but they've since come out with other coordinating sets such as hearts for Valentines Day and stars for, well, whatever.  But it's this next coordinating set that I really wanted it for . . . 
Candy corn!  Yes, that large jumble of candy corn is meant to go in the mason jar just like the jelly beans would for an Easter card.  I've even seen people use coffee beans and do a coffee themed card.  But anyway, I'm going to try starting with the candy corn since I'm all about fall.  The only problem with all of this is that I don't really have any good 'shaker mixes' to go in the shaker cards.  It's usually a mix of sequins, tiny beads, and glitter, just small sparkly stuff to make the shaker part shiny and fun.  The mixes I looked at that I really wanted were, of course, sold out.  I'll have to keep looking.

Of course I had to order some acetate sheets to make the clear window part of the shakers.

While I was snooping around the sites I came across this small stamp and die set from Sunny Studio.  This is the Beautiful Autumn set.  I mainly wanted it for the sentiment since I have a bunch of leaf and acorn stamps already but am very limited on autumn sentiments.  I'm already thinking about note cards with these.

And of course when you order directly from the Lawn Fawn site you get some samples.  This is three 6x6 sheets of their paper, and length of one of their colored twines, and a small stamps that says 'I Like You.'  Thank you, Lawn Fawn!

That is my craft haul, the first one in a long time.  I'm trying to ease back into this casually after going all gungho last fall and being nothing but disappointed and frustrated.  Going to try and take a different approach this time.  Wish my luck!

Have you been doing anything crafty lately?

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

My Fall Leftovers Stash

I've mentioned here and there that I already have a lot of fall scents in my Leftovers From Last Year Stash, and that might affect how much new stuff I buy this year.  Well, I dug that leftovers box out and took some pics so I could show you all what I'm talking about.

This is the box that holds (barely!) my fall leftovers.  This does not include the few new ones I've bought recently.

Ah yes, my go-to brands, Better Homes & Gardens and Scentsationals.  I think all of these were bought on clearance at my Walmart, when they were only something like $0.50 each.  Actually that one clam of A Thankful Harvest might be what I actually had leftover and not a clearance purchase.  The others are Pumpkin Spice, and Spiced Pumpkin Pie, (2) Cinnamon Apples, and (3) Pumpkin Apple Muffins.  I was leaning away from the heavier pumpkin scents last year, leaning more towards apple scents.  I'm curious what I'll like this year.  

More clearance purchases and a gift.  There is one Yankee Apple Cinnamon Cider only because I think that's all that was left at the time, and two Yankee Pumpkin Apple Harvest packs.  The Glade one is Pumpkin Pie Diner.  Some years I've liked the Glade pumpkin scent, and some years I haven't.  I think this particular one is the version I liked.

This was gifted to me because I don't have a Bed Bath & Beyond store near me.  You guys always have all the fun options!  This is Haunted Hayride, and while I usually wouldn't go for this sort of dusty hay smell who knows what I'll be into this year?  So yeah, I will be giving this one a try.

I was baffled why I have any Sweet Fixations leftovers but I think these might have been scents she added late in the season and I received them after my normal fall scent melting time.  So there is Apple Cider Donuts, Pumpkin Chai, Pumpkin Chai Eggnog, and Hot Apple Cider to look forward to this year.

These adorable little cups were all gifted to me.  I don't think I've ever ordered from Nene's Kitchen Melts myself but I'm pretty sure I've tried samples that have been passed on to me.  This fall bunch includes Sweet Candied Pumpkin, Sweet Pumpkin Spice, Cranberry Chutney, Pumpkin Spice Latte, Pumpkin Delight, Pumpkin Butter, Pumpkin Cornbread, and Pumpkin Chai.  Phew!  That's a lot of pumpkins to try!

Gifted to me, I think these are all from Candles From The Keeping Room.  There is Apple Cobbler Delight, Pumpkins At The Fair (which is Pumpkin Pecan Waffles), and Tiffany's Sweet Pumpkin Cupcakes.

Rosegirls!  Even though this vendor is local to me, these two generous portions were shared with my by friends along the way.  The pie slice is Pumpkin Donut Nilla Wafers, and the cute ghost is Cinnamon Bun.

More accumulated goodies that have been shared with me, in this bunch we have Iced Cinnamon Pumpkin Pecan Waffles from Chloe & Me Candles, Coffee Cake & Cinnamon Rolls from Sniff My Tarts, All Hallows Eve from Golden Willow Waxes, Candy Corn from Yankee, and Gingerbread House from Wonderberry Wax Co.  Wait, how did that get in there?  That should be in the Christmas leftovers.  Doh!

As you can see, I probably have enough right here to get me through this rapidly approaching fall melting season.  Even so, I will probably place my traditional Must Haves order from Sweet Fixations, and will no doubt be keeping a close eye on what BHG and Scentsationals offer at Walmart.  I also have to remember to give the Tuscany brand a try.  I was surprisingly impressed with them last year, at least in the few fall scents I tried.

Do you have leftovers from last fall?  Are there scents you're anxious to get again this year?  Do you have a go-to vendor or brand for fall favorites?

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Aug. 7 - Am I Back?

Well hello again.  Am I back this time?  Or is this just another moody flyby?  I think I'm back.  I've been trying to write this post and it always turns into a long whiny explanation of things.  That's not what I wanted to do.  My life has not really changed since I quit blogging earlier this year.  I'm still struggling with things.  I still worry I'll feel this is all pointless again, but I'm also riled up about some things and feeling like 'Raaaaaaarrrrrrrrrr!  Let's do this!!'

So anyway, that picture above . . .   We're only in early August, sure, but when the guys who farm part of our land were out there harvesting recently it was a jolting reminder of just how close to fall we are.  Whee!  Usually they have corn or soybeans planted, which are harvested later, but this year it was 'winter wheat' (maybe??) and was cleared earlier.

One of the things we've struggled with this year is yard work.  This is the second time I've had a lone, random, wild sunflower growing among weeds.  And this is just a little guy, so cute!  So yeah, sometimes good things come from not being on top of things.  I've also been able to watch finches perching on the thistle weeds and pecking the seeds out of the blossoms.  I've joked to hubby that we should just let the bulk of the yard go to natural wild flowers and whatnot.  lol

While at Walmart for my mom's shopping this morning I noticed a few more fall scents are popping up on the shelves, but still not a full display or a full release.  (I even saw a couple Christmas scents!)  I don't stop and spend much time in the wax aisle when I'm with my mom because she just doesn't get it, the whole scented wax thing.  So in passing, when I saw that Fall Into Autumn is a returning sent I had to grab one pack.  You might remember that I don't use this during the fall.  No, this one is totally a Christmas type scent for me.  Have you ever sniffed this one?

I'm anxious to get back to Walmart on my own this weekend and really take some time to see what's there, hidden among the boring summer scents.  And now that Kevin has mentioned several new scents that he's already found at his store, I'm excited to see what will show up in mine!

So how have you all been?  Any changes in your life these past many months, or just a happy same old same old?

Friday, August 3, 2018

Haul - Walmart / Fall Scents

Fall scents in wax and various smelly things are starting to show up at my Walmart.  I wasn't sure how I'd be feeling about it all this year since I've been so detached from both blogging and wax, but seeing these early birds has sparked a bit of the old excitement in me.

As I've been melting less wax this year, I've really come to appreciate these old school style air fresheners again.  Last year these disappeared from shelves by the time I'd decided I wanted some so I made sure to grab a couple right away this time.  I'm pretty sure these are the same as what was out last year.  Hello Pumpkin is a really nice pumpkin scent, not too spicy and not too heavy.  Blissful Apple & Cinnamon is heavy on the apple with just enough spice to make if perfect for fall.

As soon I saw the first of the 719 Walnut Avenue fall candles I had to grab my usual, the Pumpkin Waffles scent.  Described as 'Deliciously decadent, pumpkin waffles are topped with rich maple syrup and a touch of brown sugar.'  No mention of pecans in there but we all know this is the ever-popular Pumpkin Pecan Waffles scent.  This version is really warm, quite thick and heavy.  I found myself shying away from these heavier type scents last year.  We'll see how it goes this year!

The full line of Scentsationals and Better Homes & Gardens fall scents aren't out yet at my store but I have been spying a few randomly mixed among the summers scents on the shelves.  Most of what I've seen so far are just returning scents from last year but I did find this one.  I don't think this was out last year.  I checked a top wax blog for last year's line and did not see this one in it.  It's so good!!!  There is a sweet apple note, a blanketing note of gooey creamy caramel, and just a wee touch of whatever that 'spice' in the title is (probably cinnamon) that gives it a slight warmth.  So good!  I should pick up more before they're gone.

I see now that the Yankee wax at Walmart no longer has American Home or Home Inspiration in the title.  Hmm, just says Yankee Candle.  So are these now the same scents you'll find in regular Yankee stores?  Anyway, I always absolutely need a good spiced cranberry scent for around Thanksgiving and last year I was in love with Delicious Cranberry from the Yankee - Home Inspiration line.  Not sure if this Cranberry Chutney is the same scent but I really like it and it will fit the bill for my November cranberry scent needs.  Described as 'A delicious reminder of Thanksgiving dinner... tangy, fresh cranberries with orange zest and raisins,' it leans a little more to the sweet and 'pretty' type cranberry scent that I don't prefer, but there is just enough tartness and spice to save it for me.
Last year I was surprised to find I wasn't enjoying my usual heavier pumpkin scents, and was leaning way more towards lighter scents, cider type scents, slightly outdoorsy fall scents.  I might be leaning that way again this year because when I sniffed this after initially passing it up in my usual 'I don't like that type' mindset I was surprised to find I liked it enough to immediately toss it into the cart.  Described as 'There's a cheerful fall welcome in the spicy warmth of autumn leaves and cinnamon apples,' it does have a sort of outdoor feel about it, and does have some almost deep cider-y notes to it as well.

That's all that I've bought so far.  When the full fall lines are out I'll probably grab more.  Hopefully there will be some interesting new ones but if not, there was several I really enjoyed last year that I'd be happy to have again this year.

Here are some others I spotted but did not buy.  (Yet.)

I did not like Crisp Fall Night at all.  It's a very strong cologne type, and I just don't like that in home fragrance.  I didn't like Home Sweet Home either because it was a 'dry' spice type.

Sparkling Cinnamon was boring to me.

Apple Pumpkin was surprisingly heavy on the pumpkin.  Usually apple-pumpkin scents lean more to the apple side.  I did not even sniff Enchanted Moon because I assumed it would be another cologne type scent.

I didn't sniff Honeycrisp Apple Cider or Macintosh.  Kicking myself now!  Sugared Cinnamon Apple surprised me.  If I remember correctly it was a lot thicker and creamier than I'd expected from an apple scent.  I don't know if I liked it or not, will have to sniff it again next time I'm shopping.

I did not sniff Kitchen Spice.

These were way up on the top shelf so I didn't get to sniff them but I am curious about all three.  They are Spiced Pumpkin, Pumpkin Pie, and Balsam & Cedar.

Over in the Mainstays section I spotted this new scent, Praline Cheesecake.  I don't know if it's necessarily a fall scent but I had not seen it there before and it sort of reminded me of Pumpkin Pecan Waffles.  I think praline scents might be having a moment because over by the Glade and Febreze stuff in the cleaning supplies aisles, there is a praline-hazelnut one.  I think it was in Glade's Nutcracker line.

And finally, Shades of Autumn, which is one of the outdoorsy 'leaves' types that I seem to enjoy more now in my old age.  lol  I did like this scent but am hesitant to buy the Mainstays wax melts now because they changed their formula or something last year and they were an absolute mess to work with.  I probably should buy one just to see if they've improved since then.  Maybe next time.

And that's it for now.  Are fall scents showing up at your stores?  Or is it too early for you to even be looking at such things?  Do you have a favorite from last fall that you're hoping to find again this year?

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Haul - Sweet Fixations

A wax haul??  And it's not from Walmart???  Yes, friends, I have ordered some vendor wax.  As you know, I haven't been into wax for some time now.  Oh, I've still been melting on a very casual level, and buy a pack from Walmart every now and then, but that's about it.  Even then, I found I wasn't satisfied with Walmart's scent selection for spring and summer.  There is only so much fruity and floral that I can take!  So when I noticed the Sweet Fixations had added a few new scents I figured I'd go ahead and order like old times.

Sweet Fixations has long been my favorite wax vendor.  It's not a crazy popular site, and I like that.  The site is always open, you can order any of the scents at any time, and you get it within days instead of months.  There is a decent variety on the scent list but not so many that it's overwhelming or repetitive.  And the wax is affordable.

I ordered the scent shots, which is my favorite option at Sweet Fixations.  They are usually right around 1.6 oz. in weight, and that's enough for me to cut it in half and get two melts from one cup.  The scent shots are $1.75 each.

Let's see what I got!

Pixie Stick - (SF Blend) 'Sweet, powdery candy just like when you were little!'
As mentioned, Tia added a few new scents so I went ahead and ordered one of each.  I always like to get the new scents just to at least say I've tried them, even if I don't think I'll love them from the descriptions.  Ya never know!  This one is very sweet, just like you'd imagine, but it's not that super powdery candy type sweet that can be too much for me.  There is a note deep in the middle that I can't place, almost like a strawberry bubble gum.  I actually do like this one.
Pink Pixie Stick - (SF Blend) 'Sweet pixie stick candy and pink sugar crystals.'
I'm not sure if the 'Pink' in this is supposed to be Pink Sugar?  The description doesn't seem to imply that but it kinda seems like I detect soft notes of that ever popular scent in this.  This one is not as sweet as the previous Pixie Stick.

Apricot Sorbet - 'A blend of fruits including juicy melons, peaches and a splash of milkshake.'
I'm often not a fan of peach scents, and melon can be iffy for me but hey, trying all the new scents, remember?  As I feared, I do not like this scent at all.  Whatever it is about peach and certain melons that I don't like is strong in here, and the creamy vanilla from the milkshake just makes it worse.  At least for me.  I know there are people who will love this type of scent.  I'm just not one of them.
Enchanted Forest - 'The mystical smells of walking through a forest with notes of greenery and pine, pink roses, and violets.'
Another one I doubted I'd like because I'm not a floral fan.  My scent tastes have changed in the past year so while I usually would not go for this type I thought maybe these days I might like it.  Nope.  I don't even know how to describe it because this just isn't my type of scent, but I'd say the floral is strongest, with greenery behind it.  Pine is in the description but it is in no way a Christmas tree type pine scent.  I already know who I will pass this one on to.

My Life's A Beach - (SF Blend) 'The fun scent of a salty beach with freshly scented beach towels.'
Again, not the type of scent I often go for but I'm happy to report I actually like this one.  It is of the cologne-y sort but it does strike me as outdoors instead of just the usual 'sexy man scent' that I usually get from this type.  I think the addition of the beach towels (laundry) notes helps save this for me.
Caramel Pear Tart - 'Pears drenched in maple and buttery caramel sauce with honey.'
The last of the new scents and this is one of two absolute favorites from this whole order.  Ohhh my gosh, this is so freakin' good!  It's warm and gooey, and you might even be fooled into thinking it's a caramel apple scent.  The pear is juicy and sweet but it's a minor note in the overall scent.  It's deep in the middle, wrapped in the deliciousness of that caramel.  The maple and honey make this the type of caramel I love, sweet and creamy, not salty at all.  Love this one!!!
I went ahead and ordered several other scents to fill up my order.  I picked ones I've had before, ones I knew I liked.  Comfort scents, if you will.  There is one in this next bunch that I don't think I've had before and I'm baffled as to why.  But, let's just look at the rest!
Lemon Curd- 'Sweet fresh vanilla lemon, creamy and tart.'
 This is the one I don't know if I've had before and this is the other of my favorites from this order.  You know I love my lemon scents, right?  I more than love this particular one.  It's a bright, sweet lemon, more like Lemonhead candies than Pledge, and there is just a little bit of creaminess to keep the zesty edge in check.  It's not really bakery, but you can tell it's more than lemon without dulling that freshness.  LOVE!!!

Dole Whip - (SF Blend) 'Fresh pineapple and vanilla ice cream.'
A very nice creamy pineapple scent that I've enjoyed before.  Perfect for summer.
Yellow Polka Dot Bikini - (SF Blend) 'Great summer blend of creamy coconut and lemon.'
 More coconut than lemon, but creamy summer yumminess just the same.

Blue Hawaii - 'Tropical fruity drink with juicy orange, pineapple, lemon,cherries, rum and coconut.'
This one is another great summer scent, juicy and sweet, with just a touch of warmth from the rum and coconut.  The cherry and pineapple are strong, blending together nicely.
Graham Crackers - 'Crispy graham crackers with honey, wheat, sugar, and cinnamon.' 
This is a cozy, homey scent that I was surprised to find I loved way back when I first ordered it years ago.  I thought it would be to simple and blah for home fragrance.  Nope, not at all.  It's just like the crackers.  It's just so . . . comforting.

Vanilla Frosted Grams - 'Vanilla gram crackers topped with raisins and cinnamon.'
The description of this and another fine scent called Hansel & Gretel's House are very similar.  I've had both and enjoy both but have never had them at the same time to compare.  Are they indeed the same??  Now I'm really wondering.  Anyway, this is slightly sweeter but darker and deeper scent than just plain Graham Crackers.  I like!
Chocolate Chip Cookies - 'The wonderful smell of freshly baked cookies with semi-sweet chocolate and vanilla.'
Another cozy home staple scent that I've enjoyed often from Sweet Fixations.  On cold sniff the chocolate note seems really strong, but once it's warmed the other notes come through more and it really does smell like someone is baking cookies.

7-Up Pound Cake - 'Lemon-lime, warm cake, vanilla, and sugar.'
Yet another cozy home scent that I really enjoy.  It's a slightly sweet bakery scent, the pound cake distinct, and the subtle lemon-lime adding a fun twist.
Banana Caramel Cupcake - 'Vanilla cupcake mixed with bananas, caramel, cinnamon and topped with cream cheese frosting.'
One of the earliest scents I ever had from any indie wax vendor, this is still one of my favorites.  It is a sweet, slightly gooey bakery scent.  The banana note is soft but distinct.  The cupcake is mellow, without tons of sugary frosting.  The caramel is warm and creamy, with a hint of warmth from the cinnamon.  Sooo good!

Bedtime Bath - 'Soothing blend of lavender, chamomile, lily of the valley and musk.'
 This was a free sample and not a scent I'd probably ever pick for myself based on the description.  But ya know what?  That is why free samples are so awesome.  I can't tell you how many times a sample has opened my eyes to something I might never have even glanced twice at!  While I don't love this and probably wouldn't rush to get it again, I do still kinda like it.  I'm not good at picking these types of scents apart but I do think it's mainly lavender.  There is a bit of sweetness and I get the tiniest hint of musk.

Pumpkin Chai - 'Hot chai tea with a hint of spice and baked pumpkin dessert. Has all of the fall / winter notes you'll love.'
This was my other free sample and ohhhhh my, Tia knows me well.  This was one of her new scents late last year, too late to enjoy during the fall melting season.  I did order it but I don't know if I melted it since I received it in December.  Hmm, I'll have to see if I still have it in my fall stash leftovers.  Anyway, I love this scent!  It's a very warm and spicy pumpkin scent.  The tea notes are there, and that sort of pumpkin tang is there, like puree from a can.  I can't wait till fall now!
That is my order.  Did you see any you like?  Have you ever tried Sweet Fixations?