Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Revolution Money Exchange. What is it?

This is a site that you join, (for free) that works much the same as Paypal does. The difference is that you don't pay fees when you use like Paypal. Another good thing is that you automatically start with $25 in your account just for signing up. And one more thing, you get a referral bonus when others sign up.

The drawback? Your customer needs to have RME to purchase, so I'm in the process of allowing that option on my etsy site. Or they can use Paypal, or whatever other method that is approved.

The good thing is that I will give the buyer using RME a 5% discount on every item they purchase with RME.

An icon that is clickable has been added to my blog site here. Check it out and see if this is something that works for you.

I've listed below what the RME site says about itself below.

"Why Pay to Get Paid?
Collect online payments for free when your customers use MoneyExchange.

It's free to collect online payments from buyers with MoneyExchange.
Sending and receiving payments online between accountholders is free.
Online transfers to and from your bank account are free.
Get $10 for accounts you refer — up to $500.*
Plus, your customers, can sign up for free, and they will get a $25 bonus** if they open an account before May 15, 2008."

Sunday, April 27, 2008

A design experiment

Wanting to do something a little different than just the usual swirl a couple of colors around when making cold process soap, I decided to make a small batch of soap the other day. Rather than swirl the colors throughout the soap, I chose to dab some colors on top and make a design. Never having done this before, I wasn't sure how it would all turn out. I figured since it was a small batch, I can afford to be just a little bold and chose black as one of my, marigold and hot pink on a peachy/pink background of pomegranite scented soap.

The above picture was my end result.

Kind of pretty...even better, the whole concept spurred my think tank to other fun little ideas I could do with the same concept.

This is the kind of experimentation that doesn't blow up in your face. Safe, fun when it turns out would've been fun even if it turned out ugly.

Either way, it is a learning experience and that is what I love about it the best.

These soaps are still in the curing phase which takes several weeks. They won't be ready to use until late May.

Now, on to my next experiment.................

Friday, April 25, 2008

My 2008 Spring Soap Collection

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Joys of the Cameo Look

I love the look of cameo. It reminds me of days gone by...long before I was born gone by days. The Victorian look.

My grandmother was born in the 1880s and I recall that she had a lot of cameo pieces in her jewelry box. She wore her jewelry with great relish too, as most older women seem to do.

I chose to give my latest soap creations a little cameo look as you see in the picture. Mother's Day is coming up and they might be a great addition for a gift for Mother's Day. They are selling online in my etsy shop as of today.

The process I used was a simple melt and pour method. The quality of the soap in this process depends on the base melt and pour product you purchase and I always choose to purchase the higher end product. It is nicer on your skin, lathers better, doesn't change color and I know what I'm getting for the most part. Once, and only once I chose to purchase a different melt and pour product on sale from a different vendor and was sadly disappointed. Most of the soaps I made from that batch did not perform well and I gave away most of the batch. It certainly did not save me any money in the long run.

With the melt and pour process, I have much less say in what goes into my soaps and need to trust the processer of the melt and pour product. So, from now on, I make sure I know my vendor well.

The above soaps are made from a trusted source and is a well-performing soap. It is very daintily scented with rose, chamomile, bergamot and lemongrass.

Makes me want to take out my lace outfits (oops, don't have any-but if I did...) and my cameo necklaces and brooches.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Snow in Vancouver, April???

Vancouver Washington is not known for it's overabundance of snow. We are a wet, rainy climate here and it rarely gets cold enough to actually snow and stick for any length of time. About the only time is snows here is for a few days in December, and then perhaps again for a few days in January.

I'm not a native of Vancouver, but have lived in this area for over ten years. Today was the first time I have ever seen snow on the valley floor in the month of April. Highly unusual!!!

The snow was only a tiny amount in the eastern Vancouver city limits, similar to the picture above. No, the picture is not one taken today. It is only a likeness of the amount of snow that occurred here.

People freak out a bit here when it snows. They forget how to drive, or forget that they need to take the tiniest of precautions of slowing down just a bit, just like any wet weather condition. It just doesn't snow often enough here for folks to get used the concept I think.

Anyway, just a tad bit of snow in Vancouver in April, which is odd weather for us, that's for sure.

As for the previous blog...any other folk have any thoughts on it? Perfect Water? Still am scratching my head over that one.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Time Constraints

I have five minutes to finish this blog entry before I have to get ready for work. I will be working for the next twelve hours. That's a long time. My day is spent already just thinking about it. (Sigh)

Not only is it twelve hours but it isn't one just sitting at a desk either. It is a full of activity kind of job that leaves me both physically and mentally drained by the end of the shift. I have no brain left by the end of the day. It's a wonder I remember where I live by that time!

Oh, that I could stay here and write. What would I give? Since I don't have much to start with, including time, it is nothing more than a mental exercize in frustration.

I'd like to just sit here and muse over...anything but getting ready for work.

Uh-oh! I'm already a minute over my allotted time. Now what? I'm half-way through a thought process. Maybe THAT'S how people get dementia in their old age. It's the constant interruption of thought by outside time constraints!

I doubt that theory would hold up under scientific investigation, but I'd like to think it was true anyway.

Well, that's it for me. I'm doomed!!!

Won't be back until tomorrow when I might possibly be able to write an intelligent blog entry...or clean my house.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Family Ties...

These pics show me along with other (human) members of my family. I'm the blonde mother, by the way. Everyone else obviously looks like their dad. Some friends of my kids have even asked if they were adopted when they see me with my kids. Once they meet dad, it is obvious why they look the way they do.

We are a pretty close little group. We have to be. There are no extended family that live nearby, no living grandmothers or grandfathers either. We literally have begun our own little family legacy out of necessity.

Christmas and other holidays are spent for the most part. There are no family gatherings where cousins get to meet each other or catch up where they left off from last gathering.

We have a church that we attend and consider them our family instead. It is a fairly closeknit church that started off small but is now growing by leaps and bounds.

Families come in all different sizes, some big and some small. Ours happens to be small with some other extended family out in the great distance that we meet up with occasionally. There are positives and negatives to all sizes of families. My feeling is that this is what we have. We make the best of it and I don't mean that in a negative way. We have had the opportunity to grow close to one another through thick and thin of things. It's the glue that holds us together...relationship and caring. And our trust, faith and belief in God.

Monday, April 14, 2008



Sir Isaac Newton was the first person to give it serious consideration. He came up with a rule or law of universal gravitation which the following definition is noted as follows:

Each particle of matter attracts every other particle with a force which is directly proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them.

Excuse me, what did that say?

In a nutshell, it means that here on earth, when you drop something, it falls to the ground unless there is some other force preventing it from happening.

We have all experienced Newton's Law on a personal level. I would like to give a few examples of what has occurred to me and my family as a result of Newton's Law.

When I was five, I was a tree-climbing fool until one day when all the kids in the neighborhood, including myself, were being called to come home. After all, it was almost dark. Here I was, about eight feet up in a tree, trying to figure the easiest and fastest way to get down. Unbeknownst to me at the time, I chose to use "Newton's Law" to remove myself from the tree. As a result of it, I bit my tongue on impact, causing extreme pain and a whole lot of bleeding.

I didn't eat dinner that night.

Newton's Law has caused me some injury time and again on the playground at school when my hands mismaneuvered themselves on the monkey bars too.

Newton's Law helped me fall off a ladder one day when I was a teen while working in an apple orchard, thinning apples. A grasshopper had somehow found his way under my shirt and proceeded to spit repeatedly while trying to find a way out. It startled me so much that I practically ripped the shirt off in an attempt to be rid of him and fell off the ladder in the process.

I learned how to ski as a young adult and spent many hours experiencing Newton's Law in downhill skiing. In fact, if it wasn't for Newton's Law, downhill skiing really wouldn't be much fun at all.

Then there was karate. I can't tell you how many times I've ended up on the floor during karate because of Newton's Law. I don't take karate anymore.

There were times when I had the stomach flu that I had wished Newton's Law was a bit stronger as I made mad dashes for the toilet. I'm sure that there were some drunks who may have felt the same.

My kids have experienced Newton's Law in personal ways quite unique to them as well.

My oldest son decided to take his bike on a downhill run behind our house one day. The road ended, but he kept going. We had to pick dirt and rocks out of his back for days afterward.

My daughter had a lovely personal experience with Newton's Law in an unusual format. At the adorable age of three, she was running in our yard one day while geese flew overhead. One of those geese decided he needed to rid himself of some goosemade by-product in mid-air. It landed smack on my daughter's head and proceeded to ooze down her face while she let out a blood-curdling scream. To this day, she is not fond of geese.

Last but not least, my youngest son had an early experience with Newton's Law, when he chose to perform a mountain-climbing act on the back or our recliner at the ripe age of fourteen months. He fell over the back of the chair before I could stop him, breaking his arm in the process. He had the most fun with his little, tiny arm cast afterward, banging it incessantly on everything he could possibly find. It was especially useful at mealtimes on his high-chair. He must've loved the resonance of that sound echoing through the house.

Now, you know what Newton's Law can do. It is a powerful energy, causing memorable occasions for all humankind.

Actually, I chose to speak of Newton's Law just to tell you all about those other silly little but memorable episodes in my family's life.

Thanks, Sir Isaac.

Treasure Hunt

Currently on my etsy site at I have a Treasure Hunt going on. Every week, I have a different item listed that has free shipping. I don't say what the item is on etsy, you have to "hunt" for it, but for this week, I am posted what that item is here on my blog site.

It is the above item, guest soaps, set of four scented in English Rose fragrance.
Start thinking about Mother's'll be here before you know it.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


And you thought I was talking about something else, didn't ya?
No, I'm talking about soaps that float. These little fellas pictured above have had air whipped into them via my mixer, then colored, fragranced into a sweet lilac scent, pumped out of a cake decorator thingy pumper thing, allowed to dry for about six weeks, then they turn out looking something like this.

Each one is a bit different, on purpose, because I was having a blast with the whole process.

They smell like my lilac bush in my back yard.

And they are for sale in my etsy store, just put them on this week. I am selling them in groups of six, but have more than that, just in case.

I love the smell of lilacs...reminds me of springtime.

They are a fun little them all piled up in a straw basket here at home with paper wrapping over the top of them, just waiting for someone to come along and use them in the bath.

These are the first floating, whipped soaps that I've decided to put for sale. I've had so much fun making them, I plan to make lots more whipped soaps, whipped soap toppings and other things all whipped up.

Yep, I'm now into "floaters"

Thursday, April 10, 2008

My Chemical Romance... VERY SPECIAL Backstage Passes! My Chemical Romance fans! Here's something to eat your heart out about. Take a look at the pictures above.

Yes, that is Gerard Way of My Chemical Romance in a picture with my daughter (the really short brunette in front with G's hand on her shoulder).

She had a backstage special pass to meet the band along with her friend and her family.

How, how, how can this happen, you say?

Well, ya jus' gotta know the right people, folks and that's all there is to it.

And the other picture...well, yes it is true. That is Ray Toro sitting on my daughter's lap. He's a nice fella. Loves his fiance...really.

And the next picture. That is Frank Iero alright with his brand new, custom made guitar made by the guy next to him, Steve. Steve is my daughter's best friend's dad.

My daughter had a great time talking with these guys before and after the concert in Portland, OR. at The Crystal Ballroom.

Even more fun, her picture will now be on My Chemical Romance's myspace site, hopefully soon.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

In Remembrance....

I have spoken a lot about our chihuahuas recently, but I have never mentioned this guy. There is a reason for that. It has been difficult for me to write about him.

His name was Zico, named by my husband after a Brazilian soccer player (futbol for the rest of the world not in the U.S.)

We lived in eastern Washington when we got Zico. He was a mix of lhasa apso and some sort of terrier that jumped the fence. He was desperately needing a good home. We gave him one. He was a tiny little ball of fur when we first got him..the runt of the litter. He melted our hearts immediately and became the love of all our lives.

Zico was a small dog, but with a big dog bark. He used his bark generously in all situations...even some that we would've preferred left silent. He was the barking doorbell in our home. He warned when the phone rang. He warned us when there was any strange goings on in the home or outside the home that shouldn't happen. He was small, but a wonderful guard dog.

He had a few other idiosyncracies that caused some problems. He was a very poor traveler and didn't tolerate car rides at all. Everytime he got in a car, he threw up. We concluded that he simply just became carsick and so we avoided car trips with him. That was tough because he really wanted so much to be with us when we went anywhere too.

Zico hated strangers. He loved his immediate family but anyone he did not consider family was not very welcome. We had the same babysitter for almost 10 years and he never really warmed up to her. She simply wasn't family. By the end of his life, she only had gained the status of "barely tolerated" in his mind.

It was last summer that we knew that Zico was not doing well. He had gained weight, poor energy,and simply "looked unwell". We were so strapped for money at the time until late this winter that we could not afford to take him to the vet. But I knew what was wrong with him and I also knew that the only thing a vet could offer was to put him to sleep. None of us could bear to part with him and he seemed to want to be with us so much.

We coddled him and cared for him until the last. He had lived with us thirteen years and his time was close. One night, he seemed to want to be very close to me all evening. On the way to bed, he walked with me to my bedroom. I sat down and looked at him and he watched me for a moment. Then, he plopped down right in front of me, laid on his side, turned his head to look at me....and died. I held him very close and cried for a few minutes before wrapping him up in a blanket and placing him in our cool garage until morning. My husband had already left for work, my son was sleeping and my daughter was staying the night with friends when this happened, and it was two days before Christmas.

Zico was a very special family dog. Losing him really was like losing a part of our family. We all loved him dearly.

We had made a myspace site about him before he died and it still exists.

We created a myspace in rememberance of him and I wrote one little blog...written as if it were Zico writing it, as follows:

I now reside in heaven

I'm Zico, and my family made this site about me. They didn't make it for me, they made it about me. They tried hard to understand everything I was thinking and tried to put those thoughts into this site. They didn't get it all right, but the gist of it is mostly true.

I love my family. They have always loved me and taken care of me. However, in the last few weeks of my life, it became too hard to take care of me. They considered ending my life artificially at the vets to ease my suffering, but they couldn't let go. I understand that. I didn't want to let them go either. As hard as it was for me, I wanted to stay with them every minute and be with them.

Today was the last day of my life here on earth. I knew it was coming. I felt the need to be so close to my family all day, but I knew it was time.

It was about 10:45pm and dad had just left for work like he usually does. Mom was getting ready to go to bed. I had to follow her into the bedroom because I didn't want to be alone. She went into the bathroom and sat down and watched me while I came in the bathroom door. She saw me, bent down to pet me behind my ears like she always does. I've always loved that and she knew it. I was tired, so very tired and I laid down. Suddenly, I felt something very odd, turned on my side to look at her...and saw her face one last time.

It was a really strange sensation, I could hear her voice and feel her hand on me, but then everything just sort of faded away and the next thing I know I am in the best place ever. I'm no longer sick. I can run around and be a young dog again. That's the best part. I miss my family but something tells me I'll see them again.

I love all of you and will never forget you!!!! Don't cry though, because I really am doing well and in a better place now. Be happy for me, please!



Tuesday, April 1, 2008


An old "ism" from the 60s that has had some recent rejuvenation, Flower Power was a representation of the desire for peace and harmony with one another. Not a bad idea by any means.

Without going into the history of the phenomena, let's get back to the flower part. These 60s era flowers have made it back to American daily life in the form of nostalgia, "what goes around comes around again" themes. I should've saved all those 60s memorabilia stuff I had scattered around my room when I was a teenager I guess.

I was playing around with my "whipped soap" formula one day, trying to come up with some fun ideas for it and the picture above is the end result. When I took the picture, these soaps were still very fresh, just made them only the day before, so as they continue to cure, the colors will be changing somewhat. Whipped soap takes a lot of pigment to get the bright colors. The colors tend to fade as the soap dries and turn more pastel. Pastel or bright, they were still fun to make.

I'm not a cake decorator and have very little experience pumping out frosting (or soap in this case) from a tube...cake decorator thingy, paper funnel with a cake decorating tip on the end, or whatever you call those things. So, the flowers are not "perfect", but I think that sort of adds to the 60s ambience.

The fragrance is all the same for these flowers since they all came out of the same batch. I chose a fun combo of fragrance oils for this and combined peach with cucumber melon. The end result was a fresh peach scent. I scratched my head as to what to call it and came up with "Peachy Summer" since the fragrance is obviously peach but combined with the fresh vegetable garden smell that cucumbers and melons bring out.

Overall, I had a fun time making them. Hope you had a fun time taking a look :)