Have You Been to the Marietta Diner?

Marietta Diner

Marietta Diner

Hey Y’all, have you ever been to a place to eat that just blows your mind? I’m talking about blown in a good way. Well let me tell you about my experience at the Marietta Diner in Marietta, Georgia.

Plan some time when you decide to geaux…it’s a lot to take in. From the outside it looks like what a diner should look like…but when you walk in, you realize it’s more than just a diner. Oh yeah, this is going to be an experience….quite possibly like none other.

The menu is extensive…you want steak, they have it, you want Mexican, they have it, you want Mediterranean, they have it…so ya get the picture? I mean there is everything on the menu…except the kitchen sink. But I bet of there was a way to serve the kitchen sink that was tasty, they could do it.

Marietta Diner meal

Marietta Diner meal

Sooo, here’s what we had…my hubby got the Greek Gyro plate, that came with a salad and fries. I had the steamed veggies. And let me tell ya, both dishes were so good. I think you can see that from the pictures….can we say Yummo?

BUT….here’s the piece de resistance….it’s their desert counter….they have so many different cakes…no less than 25 different varieties…more I think, but I was so overwhelmed.  And cookies…I’m talking huge cookies!.  I love cakes…and cookies. There were so many to chose from…and sadly on this day…I didn’t get any…was way too full from my meal. So I think the next time I’m in town, I’ll surely be headed over to the diner, but I’m getting dessert first!

Where’s your favorite place to eat? What’s your favorite dish? Are you a cake and cookies for dessert? Or pie?

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Cutest Little Helper

Hey Yall, I had a cutest little helper in the studio this week.

My Grandson

My Grandson

While I was wrapping and packing up all of our smell goodies, aka soaps, this little helper was smelling everything.  And I mean everything.  He would pick up a soap, smell and say “pretty”.  Then he proceeds to unpack all that I had packed up.  Lol, nothing like having to do double the work.  But I gotta tell ya, I was loving it and enjoying every minute.  Ya know it warms my heart that my cutest little helper thinks his Memaw’s soap smell “pretty”.

Now keep in mind this little helper is only 2 years old…but smart…awe come on, what grandparent doesn’t think their grandchild is smart…tehehe, cause you know they are.  But anyway, while we were out shopping at Whole Foods, he picks up a block of cheese and says “soap”.  I had to laugh, it really was too cute.  Of course my soap looks much prettier than a block of cheese, but you get the picture, it was the size and shape.

Anytime I get in a new shipment of essential oils, he’s always asking to smell.  Especially if he sees me smelling them.  And ya know I have to smell them all before restocking the supply cabinet.  So you can rest assured, that the soap you buy has been approved by the cutest little helper.

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Never Too Old

Learning something new

Learning something new

Hey yall, I have always said that you are never too old to learn something new.  I know that most of you reading this have heard it too.  And well, these past 2 weeks I have just proved that, yes I can learn something new…and I did!

So, you may be scratching your head and asking yourself, what is that I learned.  I will tell you, but you have to promise not to laugh…I have a smarter than me phone.  It is an iPhone, and there are times that I know this darn phone is way smarter than me.  But I like it, so I use it.  So anyway, we all know these smart phones have an app for just about anything you can think or dream of…right?  And in this age of technology for my generation…well, sometimes it just doesn’t come naturally to us.  We try to fight it.  But I digress…

Let’s turn back the clock a few years…when you traveled you pulled out the old Rand McNally map and you read the map.  You used it to find out what roads to take to get where you wanted to go.  Can you relate?  Fast forward and nowadays you pull out your smarter than you phone, pull up an app called Maps, and you punch in your current location and the location of where you want to go and BAM!  It maps out your route, and then when you hit start…the darn thing literally TELLS YOU WHERE TO GO.  I mean seriously, this woman comes on and tells me to get on this road for however many miles, then she comes back on and tells me when to take the next turn onto the next road.  But please don’t take a turn she didn’t tell you to do…she will make you do a uee.  And God forbid you are looking for coffee and she was not clued into this fact…again she kept trying to make me do a uee to get back on the road that she wanted me to go on, in the direction that she wanted me to go in…she didn’t care that I needed that coffee.  Lol, that’s when I really got lost…when I decided to follow the old school way, and just get off the current road and find a coffee.  Why did I get lost…that darn app/crazy woman kept telling me where to go…and silly me I was following along…that is until I realized she was trying to control me, and well we know that ain’t gonna happen.  So I got smarter than her, and turned her off…at least until I found my coffee.

So yep, I learned how to use my smarter than me phone to get me to where I needed to go.  And I learned that I MUST turn that crazy woman off when I decide that I am going in search of my coffee while out on the open road…or else she will make me have to do a few uee’s.

Ok, remember I asked you not to laugh…you can stop laughing now.

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

The Smallest Tribe

Hey Yall, Allow me to introduce you to Kathryn Green owner and creator of The Smallest Tribe kids clothing company, a small business out to make a difference.  Read how Kathryn is making a difference in the way kids clothes are made.

The-Smallest-Tribe-Kickstarter-Instagram-screen-shot

The Smallest Tribe

The Smallest Tribe is an itty bitty Australian brand making insanely comfy kids clothes.  It’s about contributing positive change to the way we dress our kids and the way in which those clothes are manufactured. Since 2012, The Smallest Tribe has released limited edition collections of GOTS certified organic cotton (see below), super soft and amazingly comfy kids clothes in sizes 1-5. The majority of the collections have been made right here in Cairns, by me, in the world’s tiniest tropical studio. Sometimes I invite our friends to play and they help us sew the shirts in an Ethical Clothing Australia certified workshop or print some of our fabric in their inner Sydney screen printing studio. The clothes have always focused on keeping kids comfy, free to move, able to explore and engage with their surroundings. The prints and surface art are bold, never serious, inspired by childhood and aim to fuel little imaginations everywhere.

 

Why is GOTS Important?  GOTS stands for Global Organic Textile Standards and includes both ecological and social criteria through the entire supply chain. In simple terms this means from the moment the cotton seed is planted, right through to when you receive your shirt, environmental protection and working conditions meet a very high standard. It means workers in the factories who mill the fabric and those who make the garments have rights that are protected. They have a right to work reasonable hours, to be paid a living wage (not a minimum wage) and the right to bargaining. And, they work in factories where harmful chemicals and dyes are prohibited, which protects both them, and the environment.

Kathryn is running a Kickstarter campaign…Raising $10,000 is about so much more than The Smallest Tribe going into production though. It will help support local jobs at an Ethical Clothing Australia certified factory. It’ll protect the rights of workers in Indian cotton farms through the stringent GOTS certification process. It will mean your kiddos will be the first to get their bods into The Smallest Tribe tees, ready to explore their world in comfort. You’ll be using the power of your money to support fashion that is produced in a sustainable and ethical way that protects both workers’ rights and the environment.  This campaign is also about raising awareness of the global environmental and social impact fast fashion has, especially on developing economies.

Support small businesses that are making a difference!

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

Until next time, blessings and bubbles,

Sandy

 

It’s Beginning to Smell a Lot Like Christmas

Hey Y’all, is it hot or what?  This has been an incredibly hot summer, and over 100 here today….but fear not my friends…cause it’s beginning to smell a lot like Christmas!

I can hear the moans and groans when I mention Christmas…but that’s ok, cause what I’m talking about are the smells of Christmas.  Yep, we’ve already got our Fall and Christmas holiday soaps made.  So you can imagine how good the studio smells about now…and I’ll tell ya, it almost…I said almost makes the heat more bearable.  Well that and having the air conditioner blowing full blast and the Eagles singing Please Come Home for Christmas.  I didn’t plan on the Christmas music, but while I was working in the studio, this popped up on my iPod, so I went along with the theme.

Fall and Christmas Soaps

Fall and Christmas Soaps

So take a peek at what we will have just waiting for you from left to right…for the fall we have Octoberfest.  This is made with Abita Springs Octoberfest beer…yall are gonna love the scent on this one!  Then we have our ever popular Christmas Memories and Frankincense & Myrrh.  This year we are adding Christmas Ale, made with Abita Springs Christmas Ale beer.  What a nice line up, huh?  These are limited addition soaps.

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

 

Soap Making Tools of the Trade

Soap Making Tools

Soap Making Tools

Hey Yall, have you ever wondered what are the tools of the trade for soap making?  Well, I would like to give you a quick rundown of what I use.

First, a good scale, this is a must.  I also need measuring cups, and lots of them.  The measuring cups hold the fragrance or essential oils that will scent the soap.  They are also handy for mixing the herbs that go into some of our soaps.  There are different sizes for different needs.  Some of the larger ones are used when I do multiple colors.  Next would be the plastic buckets that I use to make the soap batter.  I do use smaller ones for the smaller batches when needed.  Lol, a little less mess to clean up, and I’m all about less mess.  You should see how many tools/dishes I wash for each batch…crazy, I tell ya.  I also use plastic drink pitchers to mix up the lye and water.  Of course these are labeled so that there is no mistaking what is in there, in an effort to avoid an accident.  There are also various spoons, slotted, ladles, measuring spoons, and just spoons for stirring.

For me the piece de resistance would have to be my purple stick blender.  Soap can be made without a stick blender…but that takes way too long.  Using a good stick blender helps the oils, butters and lye mix up rather nicely.  And it makes quick work of that part too.

Then I have a good mold to pour the soap batter into to rest and saponify.  Molds come in many different shapes and sizes.  I prefer to use log molds.  I do have several others that I use on a whimsy, or for overflow when my soap batter is more than my molds will hold for a certain batch.  A good soap cutter is also a must.   I make a lot of soap, so I need something to hold the soap while it cures.  I use cardboard boxes.  These are just the necessities to measure and make the soap.

There are a few what I call luxuries, and for me that was my bakers rack.  I use this to hold the soap molds while the soap is saponifying.  Then I use it to hold my soap as it’s curing for the first few days.  Other luxuries would be heavy duty metal oil warmers and lye tanks.  I see those in my future…

I hope this gave you a quick look at all the tools that I use.  Most of the same ones used in my kitchen.  Soap making is like cooking.  But as my son will tell ya, I make better soap than I cook.  Be sure to check out our soaps.

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Patchouli Essential Oil

Patchouli

Patchouli

Hey Yall, another of my favorite essential oils is Patchouli…specifically East Indian Patchouli.  Now, don’t turn your nose up when I mention Patchouli…at least not just yet…let me finish before you do…I might just change your mind, lol.

Patchouli is one of those scents you either love it or hate it…there seems to be no in between that I have seen.  I have to be honest, when I first started making products and had to use Patchouli essential oil, I would hold my nose…I was one of those that just didn’t like it…but it was needed to anchor some of my most popular scents…so I used it.  Well as luck would have it, I had misplaced a bottle of Patchouli essential oil in the back of my oil supply cabinet.  I say luck, cause if you know me, I’m so OCD that all my oils are in alphabetical order, so there is no way for things to get lost…it just doesn’t happen…but I digress.  So I’m looking for an essential oil and I come across this “old” bottle of Patchouli…and I know it’s old…cause I date everything…OCD I tell ya.  Anyway, it was about 4 years old, so I opened it to check and see if it was still good to use for personal use.  Can you say OMGawd!!!!  This stuff was the most amazing smelling Patchouli I had EVER smelled…and from then on I have been a lover of Patchouli.

After doing some research, I have found that Patchouli essential oil is like a fine wine…the more it ages the better it gets.  This will also enhance any blend that the aged Patchouli has been added to…gives it more depth.  Sorta hard to explain, but yall know how good my soaps and other products with Patchouli smell…nuff said!

Patchouli has typically been associated with the 60’s and the hippie movement.  Maybe I’m just an old hippie born in the wrong decade…but I have to tell you about this sweet little girl that buys soaps from me, well her Mama buys the soaps.  This sweet child is all of 11 and as you might have guessed she loves my Patchouli soap…her Mama has tried to steer her to some of the Lavenders or other girlie scents…and she stands her ground and tells her Mama she wants the Patchouli…oh my a girl after my own heart.  Gotta love it!

Patchouli also has some health benefits such as antidepressant, anit-inflammatory, antiseptic, astringent, diuretic, deodorant, insecticide and sedative.  As with any essential oil, always use caution.  Always add to a carrier oil such as olive or coconut oil.  This information is based on historic use of Patchouli, for general reference, and our own personal experiences with Patchouli.  In no way do we claim to cure, treat or prevent any disease.

Check out our Patchouli soap.  Geaux ahead…I dare ya!

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

What Doesn’t Kill Ya

Toes in the Water, toes in the sand...Life if good today!

Toes in the Water, toes in the sand…Life is good today!

Hey Yall, have you heard the saying “What doesn’t kill ya, makes ya stronger”?    Yep, I thought so, cause I know I heard it all my life.  There’s even a song about this…by Kelly Clarkson.  I want to explain what this means to me today.

30 days ago I accepted the challenge.  That challenge was to blog every day for 30 days.  Well, I MADE it!  Today is the end of the 30 day challenge.  I am here to tell ya that it didn’t kill me.  Was it hard, heck yeah it was hard…that’s why it’s called a challenge.  And yes there were struggles.  Struggles with myself, struggles with making the time, and struggles with technology.  Ya see to commit to doing something for 30 days…it’s easy to say you can do it.  And then the reality sets in and you have to be disciplined and just do it.

What this showed me was that honestly, I CAN DO ANTHING that I set my mind to.  It takes a plan of action…even a flawed one.  It takes commitment…even on the days you just want to throw in the towel.  It takes discipline…sitting down and writing…even when you are on a mini vacation at the beach…getting the evil eye from family members.  You do it, cause you made the commitment.

Am I proud of myself…heck yeah!!!!  Will I keep it up, since it has become a habit…yes, I will.  But…it will not be every day.  That part of the challenge was the hardest.  So I will work to blog no less than 2 times a week.  Thanks to those that came along for the journey.  It was a blast and I look forward to continuing this journey.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

I Love Lavender

Lavender with bee

Lavender with bee

Hey Yall, I LOVE Lavender!  Lol, no surprise there, huh?  Since I use it in so many of our great products.

Lavender has a sweet, floral aroma that is soothing and refreshing.  Lavender is one of the oldest known herbs.  It is a flowering plant and is native to the Mediterranean region and is also grown in many countries throughout the world.  There are so many different varieties of Lavender, and such a broad range of colors from snow white, yellows, greens, light and dark pinks, reds, and mauves.  There are shades of blues and violets as well.  This was news to me, like most people I thought Lavender’s only color was…well…lavender or purple.  And yes, it does come in a variety of purples…my favorite!

Lavender is one of the most popular scents in the world.  One of which most people love as well.  When I was first introduced to Lavender Essential oil, I knew I had found a true Lavender…not the artificial kind that never seemed to smell like I thought it should.  Lavender has been touted as a cure all for anything that ales you.  While I agree it has some medicinal uses, one still has to be careful.  Lavender historically has been common ingredient in medicine bags as far back as the 16th Century.  Lavender is a practical herb with many uses.

Some common uses of Lavender:

Add a few drops to warm bath water along with some Epsom salts, great for detoxifying

Potpourri

Relieves tension and headaches

Calms nerves

Soothes insect bites

Eye pillows and sachets

Insomnia

Minor cuts, scrapes and athletes foot

Although lavender is an herb and natural, it can be dangerous if used incorrectly.  Please take precautions if you are allergic to any other herbs.  This information is based on historic use of lavender, for general reference, and our own personal experiences with lavender.  In no way do we claim to cure, treat or prevent any disease.   #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

Frozen Strawberry Coconut Margarita

Strawberry Margarita

Strawberry Margarita

Hey Yall, it’s Saturday, and a hot day at that.  So, in order to cool off, I am going to share a drink mix with you from sarabakesgfree.com.  It’s a Strawberry Coconut Margarita…now don’t get you panties in a wad until you try it.

Here’s what you will need:

Strawberry Coconut Margarita

Makes 2

1 ½ cups ice

1 cup frozen strawberries (I have some in the freezer from the spring)

1 cup ready to drink Golden Margarita Mix (tequila and triple sec added)

½ cup unsweetened coconut milk

2 tbls honey (I try to find local raw honey when possible)

Pink Himalayan salt (for garnish, you can find on the seasoning isle)

Rim 2 glasses with water and dip the edges into the Pink Himalayan salt.  Shake off any excess.  Set aside.  In a blender, combine the ice, frozen strawberries, margarita mix, coconut milk and honey.  Blend on high until smooth…no test tasting…just yet.  Pour into the prepared glasses and serve immediately.  Repeat as necessary.

I usually don’t drink frozen drinks, but on a hot afternoon, this is a dreamy, creamy margarita that is just a wee bit sweet but oh so refreshing.  Keep this in mind for that next girls’ night or if you have a pool, at your next pool party.  Please drink responsibly.  Don’t drink and drive.  #IBN30

Until next time, Blessings and Bubbles,

Sandy

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