Tag Archives: luxury

Roses Are Red

Happy Valentine’s Day!!

If you’re lucky, you may receive roses from your Sweetie for Valentine’s Day.  They’re such a traditional and classic gift and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like receiving roses.  At least no one I know has complained to me about it.  While lovely, like all cut flowers, they eventually wilt and die.  If we’re quick, we can pull them out of the water before they’re past the point of no return, hang them upside-down, and dry them in bouquet-form quite successfully.  Alas, I’m seldom that on top of things.  I’m sure I’m not alone in having dead little roses bent all kitty-wampus  at the neck.  Such sad little guys.  At that point I usually pull the petals off them and tuck them away.  There’s all kinds of things you can use them for:

– put them in potpourri

– simmer them in a pot of water on the stove or float in a warming-pot

– crush them up and make rose beads

– use as confetti

– use in bath salts, bath teas, in soaps

– add to homemade paper:  see below

http://handmadecardsboutique.com/heart-rose-petal-natural-paper-fans-wedding-favors-set-of-6.html

I found this adorable fan online:  you can find it HERE

Of course, if you’re on top of things, you can get those beautiful petals before they start to dry out.  Use them like this:

– as packing material for a gift

– tuck inside a card or envelope

– tuck a few into your sweetie’s packed lunch or coat pocket

– write a message on a bed, scatter on pillows, or tuck into pillowcases

– float in a bowl with some candles and glitter

– hide inside the book your honey is reading

– float in a bath

– garnish a salad or dessert (use only pesticide free petals)

But my all-time favorite use for rose petals is to make Rosewater out of them.  Not only does Rosewater smell divine, it’s an amazing light astringent and can be used as a flavouring in edible delicacies.  To make Rosewater, it is important to use either roses you’ve grown yourself that are pesticide and chemical-free or to work with your florist to ensure that the petals will be contaminant free.

Rosewater Recipe

You will need a small canner with a jar rack and a curved-top lid.

Place the jar rack on the bottom of the canner and add fresh rose petals up to the level of the top of the rack.  Add distilled water just until the petals are covered with water.  Place a shallow bowl on top of the rack, making sure it is steady and stable.  Bring the water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.  Invert the lid and place it on top of the canner.  If it doesn’t seal well because it’s bent or warped, you can use a wide aluminum bowl, double-boiler style, but it must curve down over top of the shallow bowl beneath.  Fill the lid or bowl with ice.  As the rose-steam rises it will hit the cold lid, condense, and drip into the bowl inside the pot.  Every 10 minutes or so, quickly lift the lid and pull the bowl out to remove the Rosewater.  Replenish the ice when it melts.  Do this until the distillate no longer smells of heavenly roses.  Often, after an hour or so all you’re getting is faintly-scented distilled water, and you don’t want that.  Keep your Rosewater in the fridge and it will last a very long time.  I add a capsule of vitamin e to mine to keep any rose oil from going rancid.  This Rosewater is lovely in facials, skin creams, and yes, even in Indian, Jamican, Persian and Middle Eastern food.  I love it in icing on pretty pink cupcakes with a sugared rose petal on top.

So, if some total sweetheart gifted you with roses this Valentine’s Day, don’t just let them fade slowly away….DO something with them.  Come on….you can do it.  Just Make That Mess!

Sisterhood

I have 2 brothers.  If any of you have brothers, you know that means that you know how to shoot a BB gun, were chased at least once with a snake, and played more baseball than Barbies when you were a kid.  It also likely means you always longed for a sister.

I had great cousins that were like sisters that helped filled the void a girl feels when she has nothing but brothers.  But there’s something special about that word “sister”.  It has a depth of meaning all its own.  When I married my husband, I acquired 2 more brothers.  Brothers-in-law, but brothers nonetheless.  But I also gained a Sister-in law.  The key word there is SISTER.

From the first moment I met her, I felt welcome.  I felt a camaraderie with her I’d only ever heard about, never experienced.  I felt accepted and loved.  I love visiting with her, talking with her, shopping with her.  Definitely love shopping with her.   For the men out there, finding someone who shops the same way you do is a huge thing.  It’s like….well….finding someone who golfs or fishes the way you do.  While I’m joking a little, there is a like-mindedness I share with my sister.  I say sister, because that’s what she’s become and it’s another of the things I’m grateful for.

Before Christmas, she messaged me saying she wanted this pendant.  She loved it, she wanted it.  I know I was meant to conspire with her husband to see to it that she got it for Christmas, but I just couldn’t do it.

He did the right thing.  He came to me and told me he wanted to buy it.  I told him he couldn’t.  I had deliberately put it in the store because I had other plans.  I knew now what style she liked but I felt it needed to be a bit bigger, a bit heavier, and a bit more…..sapphire.

I had this lovely sapphire in my stash of not-for-sale goodies.  I love how the dark blue shows up so nicely against the white of the argentium silver.  This picture just does not do it justice, just as my words cannot to justice to Sharron.  I love you Sis.

It’s Here, It’s Here!!

I don’t know whether I’m excited to see if anything sells or if I’m just looking forward to Sunday and it all being over.  It’s Craft Fair!!!

It took forever, but the bath salts are packaged.  There’s Spa Bath with Pure Essential Oils, Cocoa Butter, Meadowfoam & Sweet Almond Oils, Bath Fizzlers with the fresh scents of Green Apples or Peach Daquiris, Cocoa Butter & Honey Bath….and the list goes on.

The Craft Fair is Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm in the Creston Room at the Rec Center.   Stop by and have a visit.  The jewelry and soaps will be there too.  And the bath salts.  Did I mention the bath salts?  I’ve got a few……

 

Pure Decadence

There is an amazing bath & body company out there that is a 4-letter word in my house.  Yes, its name has 4 letters, it begins with an L and ends with an H and I have a love-hate relationship with them.  I loooooove their products.  All their products.  Haven’t found one yet that I didn’t fall head-over-heels for.  But……..

I HATE that in order to get their stuff I have to either drive to a major center to stand in the middle of their store inhaling so deeply that the dust-bunnies come creeping out from under their shelves or I have to do mail-order.  I don’t want do mail-order.  I want to sniff it before I buy it.  I want to touch it before I plunk down $8 for an itty-bitty bar of soap.

So to heck with it.  I just made my own.  You’ve seen the soaps already.  I’ve been using them in the shower.  My skin is soft, they lather like crazy, they’re creamy, foamy, and downright delectable.

Today was the bath salts.  “Bath Salts” is such an inadequate term for these though.  They’re all enriched with skin-loving oils or butters to leave you soft and silky even in the horror we call winter.  My favorite is the Pure Decadence Spa Bath line.  These are also enriched with my own blends of Pure Essential Oils and smell divine.  The Rainforest Pure Decadence Spa Bath is a blend of Patchouli and 2 other Essential Oils.  It reminds me of the West Coast Temperate Rainforest.  My favorite part of living in Vancouver was wandering through the forests of UBC and just BREATHING it all in.

The Island Blossom Pure Decadence Spa Bath takes me back to Hawaii.  With Neroli and 2 other Essential Oils it has a rich, heady fragrance that I find flat-out intoxicating.  Just ask my husband…he laughed, shook his head, and walked away from me when he saw me sitting there with my face buried in the bag opening for this stuff.  Sniffing.  No…..snuffling, really.  I may not take this to the Craft Fair on Saturday.  I may hide it.  For ME.

Hubby to the Rescue

I am married to the most patient man on earth.  Seriously.  Not only is he patient, but he’s all about problem-solving.  If I’m going to complain about something, he’s going to look for a solution.

And I was.  Complaining, that is.  I need packaging or labeling for my soap for this weekend’s craft fair.  I’m fussy though.  I don’t want the packaging to be fussy.  Or cute.  Or tacky.  Please, oh please, not tacky.  Something simple that doesn’t cover up how pretty the soap is.  Only one problem:  labeling regulations.

Here in Canada, there are very strict rules around labeling for cosmetics, which is how soap is classed here.  Certain names for ingredients, certain size of fonts, and, of course, the ever-present French-language requirements.  Excuse me for a moment while I cuss……#$%^&*()_)(*&^%$#$%^&*(*&^%&**!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There’s just so much that needs to be on there.  I wanted a simple little square tag in black and white on nice paper with my pretty logo.  Unfortunately, this was going to be nowhere near that simple.  I knew I needed to add the other info but simply drew a blank on how to go about it.

Hubby to the rescue.  After letting me yell at him that “I DON’T WANT A BOX!!!!” after he accidentally suggested a box a second time and dealt with my almost-hysterical “it can’t be tacky, country, froofy, frilly, or another stupid piece of paper wrapped around the bar like everyone else”, he struck gold.

“So make the tag a little fold-out pamphlet”….like the ones that used to come attached to my Murano Glass pendants.  Lots of room for everything inside but just what I want showing on the outside.  Pure genius.

He really is….you know, a genius.  My hubby, my hero.