Friday, January 25, 2008

My first Treasury was Cold As Ice

Tonight I was not only given the chance to create my own treasury but I was also featured in one as well. Clingingimages decided she would feature me along with her other favorite items and sellers on ETSY. I am very grateful of the support. Here's my green tea soap. I think it looks like a piece of stone or granite but you be the judge.

Here is my first treasury that I got to create as well. Raspberry Delights is my theme. I love the deep vibrant colors in this one. I just had to add in a soaper or two to this treasury because it's my favorite craft and business.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Vibrant colors lighten spirits.

So I joined flickr to display some of my precious soaps within a collage. I must admit I am very drawn to looking at all the different colors as they evoke peaceful and happy thoughts within my mind. Soaping is a form of mental therapy and rejuvenation for me. It is a time when I get to truly be by myself and get to draw upon all sorts of inspirations. Often when I decide to soap a new scent I write down ideas to gain a visual image on how I wish the soap to look. I take notes on how the scent of a fragrance oil makes me feel when I get that first whiff of the scent. I jot down ideas on what colors I wish to use and if I want to soap to portray a certain design. What feelings do you evoke viewing them?

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Preventing Falls In The Elderly

Are one of your elderly loved ones suffering from consistent falls at home? Falls in the elderly are a common occurrence because due to the natural progression of aging your balance and coordination can start to decline. Reflexes can become slower as well. Seniors not only suffer from physical ailments like arthritis and chronic pain symptoms but they also are prone to problems with their vision. Cognition problems may also be present in which they may or may not be attributed to the early onset of Alzheimer's Disease. With falls can lead to an increased risk of sustaining a fractured hip. Seniors who sustain a hip fracture have a 50% chance of survival during the first year of their injury.

By all means if your loved one is suffering from consistent falls at home please have them evaluated by a medical doctor as soon as possible. At their visit their doctor can assess their current medical condition and determine what the underlying issues may be, that are contributing to the falls. Often, many seniors take a series of medications daily in which all may have some sort of side effect. Depakote is a popular drug that many elderly persons take. This drug is known to have a side effect of causing unsteady gait therefore increasing their fall risk. Sometimes it's just a matter of a doctor completing a medication review. Other times a prescription to begin some physical therapy is needed to work on improving ones balance, coordination, and muscle strength.

Here are a few things you can do to help minimize falls

Appropriate footwear should always be worn that are the correct size. If the shoes are too big this will leave room for the heel to slip out. Flat shoes are best with a good grip under the sole to provide stability on uneven and even surfaces.

Ensure that adequate lighting is within the house.

Remove scatter rugs. These are quite easy to trip and get entangled on. If you must use any type of scatter or throw rugs firmly secure them to the floor.

Install non slip strips or rubber mat on the tub or shower floor.

Install grab bars in the shower. These will make it easy for one to stand or sit down and prevent a slip and fall.

Purchase a tub seat for showering to avoid having to stand.

Keep furniture arranged within the home at a safe and easy to navigate pathway. You want plenty of room to get around when walking.

Monday, January 7, 2008

Carribbean on my mind

I regret that I didn't get a chance to take my usual Caribbean cruise at the end of the year. I am a veteran cruiser and in December 06 I went on my 18th cruise. I have literally been to all the Caribbean islands in existence. I stick solely to Norwegian Cruise Lines or Royal Caribbean which are the best lines in my opinion. On my last vacation I cruised with Royal Caribbean on Freedom of the Seas which is the largest cruise ship in the world. I don't normally go on a ship twice but I would cruise on Freedom again. As always the amenities are excellent and the food is always appetizing. Today when the weather was pushing close to 70 in Charlotte I thought of sitting out on the deck and soaking up the sun with a banana daiquiri in hand and my mp3 player. I would have been sure to pack my guava berry soap within my toiletry bag to not only feel good but smell good on my Caribbean vacation. Now I am curious if you can make a guava berry daiquiri?

I am seriously thinking of booking a cruise now for winter08 only to where else but the carribean.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

My love affair with soap

Right now my bathroom looks like a soap graveyard. I have over five bars in my shower not to mention the numerous bars I have amassed from soap swaps with other soapers. Currently in rotation I have a ginger and lime bar, clean cotton, plain unscented, black raspberry, and buttermilk and honey. A lot of times I have different bars on my curing racks that I just can't seem to wait until they have fully cured to test out. You see that is the thing with cold process soaps. You can't make a batch today and use it tomorrow. Well I take that back. You can if you are making hot process soap. You can literally make hot process soap today and use it today if you wish. Although I would wait a week with it to let it harden up good.

Cold Process soap making is quite different.It takes a full six weeks to let it cure and the soap continues to saponify fully. Curing helps drop the PH level of soap down to a mild state where it won't irritate your skin if formulated properly. I have tried fresh cold process soap as early as the next day just because I could. I wouldn't sell them to a consumer without letting it have a full cure because if I did the bars would be very harsh on someones skin.

Hot process soap is nice because you are basically cooking the soap in your pot with a heating element via a stove or crock pot. It finishes up it's saponification with the cook. Saponification is the process that starts the chemical reaction with your mixture and turns it into real soap.
Man I have a hell of an addiction for this process. My monthly credit card bill proves it.

Canon Cameras

Okay I am sold on the new digital I just got. The clarity is far superior than my other digital that I have had for 6 years. I should have upgraded a lot sooner. The $152 I spent on it will turn into a nice little investment for me for taking product pictures.

The image on the left was taken with the canon 570IS with 7.0 MP versus the image on the right that was taken with a Fuji fine pix A200 model that has 2.0MP. So far I am very pleased with the results.

I already own a nice canon mp530 printer that is an inkjet but the results come very close to laser-like quality for my product labels.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Starting an exercise regime for the new year.

Are you one of the millions of Americans who have the resolution to get into shape for the new year? You are not alone in your in your desire. It's never to late to start an effective exercise program if you have been sedentary for quite some time. Not only will you be able to improve your cardiovascular health but you will be on your way towards keeping you muscles flexible and increasing muscular strength.

You don't need a membership to a fancy gym to increase your strength and assist with some weight loss if desired. All you really need is a pair of supportive walking sneakers or shoes with good arch support. Walking is the best exercise for keeping your back healthy and legs nice and strong. It also helps to increase your circulation and gives your heart a good aerobic workout because it increases your heart rate. What's even better is if your walking within your target heart rate and maintaining it as you exercise you can lose weight. If you have not exercised in a long time it is important to see your physician to get the green light on starting a simple exercise program. He or she can take a look at your medical history and determine if you have any issues that should be addressed before starting a program. Before you even think about walking after you get those shoes laced it's important to warm up your muscles and prepare them for the activity to come by stretching. Details will follow on how to stretch your muscles out properly to avoid injuring yourself.

Stay healthy in 2008 everyone!

I have some new things up my sleeve for January

Decermber was not only a time of rest and rejuvenation but I also had time to plan out what I want to offer for new products in January/February. My plan is to offer a few new scent choices in Guvaberry, Sugared Lime, Fresh Laundry, Cinnamon & Hazelnut Coffee and probably a biscotti. For some reason I am attracted to foody scents but want to branch out a little. I may end up doing a blend of jasmine and lavender of some sort.