Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Let's start with Humectant. A simple, straight-forward answer: a substance used in cosmetics (and food) products to help retain moisture. These substances actually absorb the water from the air and hold the moisture in the skin. They are also very useful in skin care products for softening thickened or scaly skin. It goes to reason then, that for a humectant to be effective, it needs high humidity levels. Honey and glycerin are two examples of natural humectants.
Emollients are subtances that soothe and soften the skin. Sometimes the word "moisturizer" and "emollient" are used interchangably. However to be more correct, the term emollient should be used to identify individual ingredients and the term moisturizer should be used to describe the end (finished) product. For a substance to be considered an emoillient, it must do two things: 1)Prevent dryness and 2)protect the skin by acting as a barrier. Believe it or not, water is actually the best emollient. However, it evaporates too quickly to be effective. Natural emollients are metabloized by the skins own enzymes and are absorbed into it. They are also readily biodegradable and are of edible quality. Some natural emollients are avocado, shea and cocoa butters.
Check back tomorrow to lean how to choose a moisturizer that best suits your skin type.
Monday, March 30, 2009
I didn't intentionally prolong the suspense on purpose. I woke this morning to a massive migraine....so I got up, did what I absolutely HAD to do (more bread orders to fill) and back to bed I went! By the time I had gotten up, my whole day was completely thrown way off kilter and I will admit....I almost forgot! YIKES!! So I sat down and wrote all the names down and we now have a winner of the "Very Vegan Giveaway"! Drum roll please.......CONGRATULATIONS TO VANESSA AT THE OHIO GIRL! Be sure you stop over and congratulate her...she has a really cool blog too...so be sure to sign up and follow her as well.
The winner was chosen randomly using a random number generator at random.org.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Also, I have gotten in some new scents for massage candles that I am anxiously awaiting to try out: Black Tea & Roses, Spa Sea Salt (which I WILL be renaming) it is a very light, clean spa scent...very nice, and last but certainly not least, sandalwood vanilla. So be on the look out for these new scents coming soon.
Also, I hope to be listing my soy candles soon. You know, making candles is not as easy as it looks...it takes a lot to get things just right! I have been playing around with them and are finally happy enough to offer them for sale!
And I have been making soap like a mad woman....be on the look out for my gardners soap with pumice and doggie soap, too!
Saturday, March 28, 2009
So, here again, being relatively rural, Missoula does not offer a huge selection for us to choose from.....we have Best Buy and Staples...that's pretty much it (just on a side note...they don't even have Red Lobster or Olive Garden ?!?!?)! First stop: Best Buy. So I find the printer isle....find the models we are looking for. We were in the store for well over 30-40 minutes...NOT ONCE did a sales person come up to us and ask us if we needed any help?! Meanwhile there was a salesperson "busy" at the end of the isle flirting with two pretty little blonde college girls...who I'm sure weren't even the least bit interested in what he was selling...LOL! I was trying to make myself as conspicuous as possible....opening hatches, lifting the printer up....turning it upside down....you would think someone might take interest in what I was doing...NOPE! So out we went....no printer. I refuse to spend my money in a place that does not take interest in their customers! They get a -10 out of 5 stars...SERIOUSLY!
Next Stop: Staples. Total time spent there about 10-15 minutes. Same scenario (minus the blonde bimbos)..lifting, pushing buttons and pretty much doing everything but pick up the printer and throw it on the floor....no service....there were hardly any associates even present in the store. They did have better prices...so I would give them 1 out of 5 stars.
So being somewhat disappointed with our search for printers...especially since we didn't even speak to a single sales associate! We thought we would take a trip Costco. Can you believe that they had a printer we wanted? AND...this is where we came the closest to getting customer service?? COSTCO! The sales associate was busy in the electronics department...and he told us that he would be with us in a minute. Come on, Costco? Really?? Yes...customer service in Costco of all places. Even though we moved on before speaking to the sales associate(being pressed for time), I believe we will be spending our hard earned dollars here of all places for a piece of electronics! They had the best price....and sadly, the best customer service. I give them a 3 out of 5 stars.
With people being extra careful with how and where they spend their money, you would think that companies would kick up their customer service. They would want their associates to be overly friendly....to apporach any and all customers....at the very least, asking them if they have found what they are looking for! I know I will be approaching my Farmer's Market customers differently this year....talking to them more....making suggestions.
SOOO, am I the only one experiencing lousy customer service? Tell me your horror stories! Let me know that I am not alone...you know, misery loves company!! LOL! So share with me!
Friday, March 27, 2009
I was nominated for a "Lemonade Award"!!!!! Awarded for great attitude, I guess it goes along with that whole "given lemons, make lemonade" saying. And Gypsy Moon Designs, my friend and fellow Montanan, graciously bestowed this wonderful award upon me!
The rules are quite simple...
1. Put the logo on your blog or post.
2. Nominate at least 5 - 10 blogs that show great Gratitude and/or Attitude.
3. Be sure to list and link your nominees within your post.
4. Tell them they have received this award by leaving a comment on their blog.
5. Nominate your favorites and link to your post.
Here are my nominees...this is always the hard part:
1. My friend Marlene at Lucky Dog Treat Company
2. My friend Pam at Playfully Smitten
3. My new friend, who lives just a state to the east of me, at Gramatically Delicious
4. A talented young Etsian, The Milkshake
5. And last but certainally not least, my friend at The Sweet Jellybean, she makes amazing goodies!
Thursday, March 26, 2009
Don't you just love reading the comments left for you by your readers? For me, I'm almost like a kid on Christmas morning, anxiously waiting to see what's under the comment Christmas tree! So what does it take to get those coveted comments?
One great way to increase comments on your blog is to show some love. What do I mean? Link other blogs to your posts. Better yet, consider doing a post every so often about the best posts you have read in the past week. Let the authors know and chances are good that they will be curious and come to your blog to see what you have said.....I know I do. They will more than likely leave a comment to let you know that they were there and they appreciate what you have to said about them.
Another great way to get comments on YOUR blog is to comment on OTHER blogs! This is pretty self-explainatory. I try to do this as often as I possibly can. The key here is make your comments relevant. Don't just run around making senseless comments; if you don't have something to contribute, move on to the next blog. Another way to look at this point: why would someone want to comment on your blog, if you don't take the time to read what they have to say and comment on their posts?
Ok...so let's be honest here, this next one is a little like bribing...but take 'em any way you can get 'em! LOL. Seriously, have a giveaway! Not only will you gain followers and hopefully loyal readers...but you will get comments and maybe some constructive feedback. By the way....make sure you enter my current giveaway going on!
Out of all the pointer, this next one is almost a no brainer! Write posts with compelling content. I know...sometimes easier said than done! But don't limit yourself. Don't just write tutorials or how-to's. Stand up and make yourself heard. Write about something controversial....take a stance! You might be surprised with the all the comments you will get!
Out of all the research that I have done; I find this last piece of advice the most surprising. I must admit I am terrible at this, but am working on improving. Answer every comment! This allows your readers to feel as though they are carrying on a conversation with you.
So what secrets do you have for getting comments? Or better yet, tell me what moves you to leave a comment for someone?
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Here is an example of what some of the eggs look like. !!!IMPORTANT!!! PLEASE NOTE THE EGGS IN THIS POST ARE NOT PART OF THE CONTEST...THEY DO NOT COUNT...SO DON'T LIST THEM AS ONE OF YOUR "FINDS"!!
So what are you waiting for....GET HOPPIN!! GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!!!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
Now here's the next exciting giveaway! In honor of launching the new vegan line...it's going to be a "Very Vegan Giveaway"! There will be one winner. The prize for this great contest will be as follows: 1 vegan lemongrass soap, both vegan solid lotion bars, and all three vegan lip butters! AWESOME PRIZES (if I don't say so myself)!!
Once Again, this will be relatively simple to enter and you will get multiple chances to win, ok here are the rules:
1. The contest is open to EVERYONE EVERYWHERE! You don't even have to have an etsy store to enter.
2. The contest will run until midnight Sunday March 29, 2009 (mountain time), with the winner being announced Monday, March 30, 2009. Winners will be picked randomly.
3. THIS IS AN IMPORTANT RULE: YOU MUST DO A COMMENT FOR EACH DIFFERENT ENTRY TO QUALIFY!
4. You must include in your post a way to contact you....email, etsy shop address...something! If you do not include a way to contact you, your entry will not be counted.
1. You get one for simply following me! (please do post a comment that you are following me)
2. You get one entry for commenting about my shop..your fave from my shop, ect!
3. You will get 5 entries for grabbing my button and posting it on your blog. Please post that you have my button and the link to where it is.
4. You will get 5 entries for blogging about my giveaway, with a link back to here. So simply blog about it (first) then return to my blog and post a comment with the link to your blog. Post YOUR blog entry first and then the comment....I won't go back again and again to check...I will only check once...if it's not there....no entry.
SO GO....NOW!! AND ENTER! TELL YOUR FRIENDS!!
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Our Vegan friendly lip butter (or balms) contain a blend of candellia and carnauba waxes, shea butter (a higher percentage than in our regualar lip butters), olive oil, 100% all natural flavoring and all natural sweetener (stevia). Please note that these lip butters contain no colorants of any type. We will also begin to phase out colorants in all of our lip butters. We have not decided whether we will add other flavors or keep this line strictly all natural.
Our lotion bars are currently available in only 2 scents right now, but look for more coming soon. There is 100% all natural grapefruit and then a scent we called Milton's Bees....it is a dupe of that well known Burt fellow. I can't attest for it's authenticity, as I have not smelled the real deal! As with our lip butters, the lotion bars also contain a mixture of candellia and carnauba waxes and a higher percentage of shea butter. Be on the look out for more scents coming soon!
And last, but certainly not least....vegan friendly soap. This particular bar is 100% all natural scented with lemongrass essential oil and the cool swirl is done using all natural colorants. For right now, we only have this one scent, but more are on the way, I promise!
So be on the look out for these products listing today or tomorrow in our shop!
Saturday, March 21, 2009
So for me a mutt by any other name is still a mutt....so I would really LOVE to hear your opinion on this subject! Are you with me...against me...let me know....just remember everyone is entitled to their opinion and no one should be put down or chastised for that!
Friday, March 20, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
I have been doing a lot of research on this subject. I waded through the vasts amount of articles on this subject and have seen several tips seem to surface again and again. So for today, I will only touch on one or two.
First and foremost...Write a good title! You need to pull your readers in. In ten words or less, you need to make them interested enough to want to read more. Make them want to click on your blog. But this is usually easier said than done. The best headline will convey general, need-to-know information, but still pull them in and want to know more. This is definately not an easy task to accomplish in under 10 words!
So what makes a good title? You would think that writing a title for your blog is the easiest part....but it really is not. There are many, many conflicting ideas as to what makes a good title...short, long...who knows! (I am personally with the shorter is better school of thought) But what does make a good title is using keywords. Using effective keywords is crucial. What are keywords? Those are the words that people (you hope) will use in a search engines and find your blog. It’s a well-known fact that search engines eat up blog titles with vigor. So, if you've got good keywords in your title, it just goes to reason that your search traffic will improve.
Just know that there are no hard and fast rules for blogging. What works for some, may not work for you. But it gives you a place to start. Take the ideas. Tweak them....make them your own. Long, short, funny, serious, but stand out and test them on your readers...you will soon learn what works with them! In today's high paced society, where there never seems to be enough time in the day...make your readers want to spend their precious time reading what you have to say.
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
So I had a completely different post planned for today...but it never seems to end up that I post what I plan. Hmmmm.....why is that? Anyway, I thought this was way more important! PLEASE BE AWARE OF ANTIVIRUS 360....not to be confused with Norton 360. This is a highly destructive virus or worm? hmmm...not sure which, not that it really matters, because the outcome is the same! VERY BAD!!! It acts like a virus removal software warning...but it is fake! Just by "Xing" out a pop up ad stating that your computer is infected with all kinds of spyware, ect, ect you become infected. The more you use your computer, the more damage that is done. Please be extremely careful. It could ultimately crash your computer and cause you to lose valuable documents and files. Even though I had Norton installed and running, I was still infected. PLEASE BE CAREFUL!
Side note: I was told that instead of xing out your pop ups, you are supposed to use ALT F4 to get rid of them.
Monday, March 16, 2009
So in honor of St Patrick's Day, I thought I would run a tiny little contest to see who knows the most about this fun "holiday". The person who has the most answers right, will win a $10 "Gift Certificate" from my shop. In the event that there are more than one winner, all the correct answers will be put into a hat and then the name drawn from that pool. To answer the questions, you will need to send me a convo in my etsy shop, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org just put the number and then your answer. The contest will run until midnight Sunday, March 22, with the winner being announced on Monday. There are only 5 questions, so you're getting paid like $2 per correct answer! Ok, here ya go......
1. St. Patrick's Day is celebrated to commemorate which of the following events?
A. The day of his death
B. The day he was born
C. The day he drove the snakes out of Ireland
2. In Ireland, what does the color green stand for?
3. What is a shillelagh?
A. A Wooden Pipe
B. A Short, Stout Oak Club
C. A Leprechaun's Outfit
4. What is cured by kissing The Blarney Stone?
C. Bad Luck
5. What does "Erin Go Braugh"mean?
A. Luck Of The Irish
B. Happy St. Patrick's Day
C. Ireland Forever.
Good Luck and Happy St. Patrick's Day
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Saturday, March 14, 2009
This wonderful little company is based out of our former home state, Pennsylvania. It is owned and operated by Marlene Doyle. I asked her what the best part of owning your own business was and her reply was " I love owning my own business and being able to interact with people who share my love for all things animal"! Marlene was laid off from her "real job" last June, so Lucky Dog Treat Company is now her full time job....lucky girl! Her full time job was very physically taxing and made it extremely difficult to do both....so finding herself without a job turned out to be a blessing in disguise! On St. Patrick's Day she will celebrate her one year anniversary in business.
Marlene started selling at the local Farmers Markets, when they closed for the season, she was left with no outlet in which to sell. This led her to Etsy.
Friday, March 13, 2009
If Friday the 13th is truly an unlucky day, then 2009 is an unusually unlucky year. 2009 is a triple threat. There was one in February....today and then another in November. This only happens once in 11 years. Next year, there will only be one Friday the 13th, which will happen in August.
*According to insurance companies, there are less accidents, fires and thefts reported on this day. Seems people are being overly cautious and tend to stay at home.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
So I guess my question for you, my friend, is what keeps your interest in a blog? (please be sure to take my poll...you can select more than one answer)
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Ok, starting at the top left corner:
1. GeekDetails sent a button. Mine said "more dots more dots". Sorry don't get it. I'm not a fan of buttons either. Maybe someone out there can help me with the meaning of it?
2. Custom Candy Bar Wrappers 4 U: cute little spring/Easter chocolate. She does the custom wrappers. Cute. Great graphics.
3. Handmade Creations By C & K: cute little candle melt. Smells great, although I'm not getting the allspice and nutmeg. (sorry I couldn't link your shop, I couldn't find a web addy) Plus a 10% off coupon for next order.
4. Tartaholic: good size samples of Mulberry Spice melts. Smell awesome.
5. Strawberry Fields Candles and Gifts: carpet sprinkles. Lemon Pound Cake...smell soo good...my hubby is a big fan of this one...he loves anything lemon. She sent enough to do a small room....AWESOME!
6. Everyday Eclectic: bath salts. Generous sample...enough for about 2 baths. Great labels...very professional. Scent says "Wild Lavender"...definately NOT the scent I am smelling....smells very powdery....the only reason I say this is because my grandmother had a dusting powder she used and it smelled EXACTLY like this....definatley not lavendery at all.
7. Lori's Place: Beautiful Flower Cookie....tasted great. AWESOME decoration...sorry we devoured this immediately and then accidentially threw away the packaging. If someone could help me out here....that would be great! (Thanks Michelle)
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Monday, March 9, 2009
YIKES..that one is pretty bad..yellow, grainy....YUCK!! I am soooo embarassed!
OK...here is the photo that I took this morning:
I TOLD HIM THAT WASN'T THE RIGHT TYPE OF BULB!!! Oh well, but I think once I get the right type of bulb, the pictures will be AWESOME....this still has the yellow cast, but the photo came out MUCH CRISPER AND CLEARER! I tried to re-create the photo as best I could...but we ate the chocolate wafers....hehehe! So once *I* get the right type of bulb....will try this experiment again!
Sunday, March 8, 2009
Saturday, March 7, 2009
STEP 3: Take your bristol board (I just used poster board) and mark it in (16) 2" strips and cut them out. Once you have 16, apply to the inside edges of the box. I used a glue stick and you must apply it LIBERALLY...I went through about 1 1/2 sticks just for that! Now that I have done this, I personally think that adhesive spray might work better. This is how is should look now.
STEP 4: Cut the remaining piece of poster board so that it fits inside the box...set it inside, DO NOT CREASE IT and cut it so that it is flush to the top.
SET 5: Now cut your fabric and cover 3 sides (the directions I was following didn't really say to do all 3 sides...but I did anyway) and the top. Attach with masking tape.
Check back tomorrow for photo comparisions. Can't wait to try it out! If you are thinking about building one...you should do it....it was soooo easy and only took me about two hours (I was multi-tasking) so it will probably take you less time!
If anyone has any questions...I will be glad to help you in any way I can!!
Thursday, March 5, 2009
Looking forward to hearing what you think!
Have a GREAT day!!
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Ok, Here goes:
1) First and foremost, I love being married to my wonderful hubby! He is truly awesome and I don't tell him enough how wonderful he is!
2) I love living in "The Last Best Place"....Montana. We just moved here a little over a year ago, from Pennsylvania, and I still amazed every day by it's beauty!
3) I love my job...I am a Juvenile Detention Officer and I love interacting with the kids. Sometimes it is quite a challenge, but I love the feeling when you are able to finally reach them!
4) I love Etsy and the wonderful people I have met through there!
5) I love my "kids"...the furry, 4-legged kind! We have two here with us in Montana and two are with our parents back in PA....we miss them terribly! No kids of the human kind yet!
6) I love creating soaps and other sorts of bath products for people to enjoy. When I am creating I feel like a mad scientist!
7) I love to cook!
Hmmmm....ok, so now the hard part: I pass this award on to:
1. Playfully Smitten
2. Audreys Country Crafts
3. Nightmare Anthology
4. Gypsy Moon Design , a fellow Montanan
5. The Word According to Plaidfuzz
6. Lucky Dog Treat Company , a fellow Pennsylvanian
7. And last but certainly not least, Bailey the Golden Retriever
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
My Materials List:
1) Box....got plenty of those lying around, big ones small ones...just about any size imaginable. And the BEST part about it, it's FREE! If for some reason, you don't have one....go to Wal Mart, grocery stores. Just remember, the thicker the better; you are going to be cutting away a lot of the box, so just the corners will be supporting it.
2) Fabric....I have read different sights and said that you could use white tissue paper, which would cut down on your costs, but makes it extremely flimsy. If you have old white T-shirts or old white sheets lying around these will also work. But if not....which I don't have either, the tutorial I am following recommends white muslim fabric. So I am going on the hunt to thrift stores for a few white sheets.....DUH....I can't believe I forgot all about the fabric!!
3)Masking Tape...to secure the fabric to the sides of the box.....I was thinking why not use spray adhesive...well incase you want to tinker with different colors of fabric, that will make it easier to change out.
4) Glue Sticks or spray adhesive...need to get these as well.
5) White Bristol Board...similar to poster board only heavier. (must get this as well)
6) Lights...the gooseneck kind. We just recently moved from PA to MT....so unfortunately, those all went into the yard sale....again going to hunt the thrift stores. Also will need to purchase daylight lightbulbs...the regular lightbulbs tend to cast a yellow light and will affect your end results.
7) Tape Measure or Ruler, Pencil or Pen (something for marking your lines), Scissors or exacto knife...something for cutting.
Well that about sums up what I need to get....so check back tomorrow for my progess...
Oh..just curious how many of you out there use lightboxes?
Monday, March 2, 2009
1) Build my light box...I suspect that this is going to be a multi-day event
2) List/take pics of vegan items...look for my next giveaway when these items are "officially" released!
3) Get caught up with laundry
4) Walk the dogs...try to at least daily
5) Clean the house
6) Replenish my stock...I have been wiped out from the benefit!
Hmmm...that's a pretty long list of things to accomplish...and unfortunately I have a sinking suspicion that only half of those things will get done! Oh well...there's always tomorrow.
So what do you have planned for the week?
Sunday, March 1, 2009
Before I announce the winners (I'm kinda drawing out the suspense…sorta like a commercial LOL), I'd like to take a few minutes to address some of the points that were made.
THANK YOU ALL FOR ALL THE WONDERFUL FEEDBACK! 'SO NOW WITHOUT FURTHER ADO…..THE WINNERS ARE: