Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Soap Queen Makes Melt and Pour Soap

I LOVE Anne-Marie's blog and her company. I get a lot of my supplies from Brambleberry and have yet to be disappointed. I also love reading her blog and watching her videos. I like this video because she discusses the difference between fragrance and essential oils. I don't do melt and pour anymore because I have SO much fun with cold process, but you can be very creative with it. I hope you like her video. Visit Soap Queen TV on you tube for more videos. Be sure to check out her blog too.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Gentle Face Scrub/Wash

This is perfect for anyone with sensitive skin. My skin felt clean, but not dry. Plus, my skin was glowing from the nice exfoliation.

1/4 tsp blue cornmeal (use the blue it is much finer)
1/4 tsp milk powder (I used goat's milk powder, but you could substitute whole milk or goat's milk if you don't have the powder. Use a bit more and don't add water if you do this.)
1/4 tsp kaolin clay
1/4 aritha powder (also known as soapnut, but this is optional)

Add just enough warm water to make a thick paste. Gently massage face, remember GENTLY is key, your face is very delicate. Avoid the eye area. Rinse well and pat dry. Follow with your favorite toner and moisturizer.

Friday, November 27, 2009

I Do Not Question My Worth

This used to be a huge problem for me. I wasn't good enough to do this or that, so I just didn't try. After all, it was better to not try, than to try and fail. I can't tell you the number of things I never did or never tried because I new I wasn't good enough or I wasn't worthy. I had a friend in junior high that tried out of cheerleading. She wasn't super skinny or super popular and when during her tryout she messed out and landed on her face in front of the entire school. The entire school started laughing and she had hurt herself when she fell. BUT, she got up and she finished her routine. She didn't question her own worth, she believed in herself and she did what she wanted to do. She didn't make it, but she TRIED.

I see young girls and boys (and plenty of adults) that don't know their own worth. They don't believe in themselves enough to even try. They already believe they will fail, so they give up before starting. Well guess what folks, FAILURE TEACHES SUCCESS. We learn more from what we do wrong than what we do right. It is time we stopped doubting ourselves.

I know what I am worth now. I decided to do a triathlon and I did two of them. I ran a marathon. I know runners that don't think they could do that, but I did it. If you don't think you can, then you probably can't. Life is about perspective. When you stop looking at everything as an obstacle or just one more thing you can't do, you will be amazed at what you accomplish! The world is full of opportunities and learning experiences, you just have to keep your eyes open and flip your thinking.

If you are interested in more ideas visit

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

I won't get on here tomorrow, so I wanted to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving early. I am truly thankful for everything in my life. I have great family and friends. I have a job and my business. Things are not perfect, but they rarely are. What is important is that we take time to see the good things around us; instead of focusing on the bad.

I'll be busy tomorrow making cornbread stuffing, ham, pecan pie, cranberry sauce, and black eyed peas. I don't really like turkey, green bean casserole, or sweet potatoes, so that is off the menu! What are your favorite holiday treats?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Acne Soap

I went to Whole Foods yesterday to get some herbs for the acne soap I'm making. I'm going to use calendula, comfrey, nettle, and rosemary to infuse in some of my oils. I will use coconut, soybean, olive, perilla, and witch hazel as part of my water. Then, I think I will add tea tree, rosemary, and maybe peppermint essential oils. We'll see how it turns out I guess, but if nothing else, it will smell really good.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Orange Ginger Soap

I love this soap, it contains fresh grated ginger. I added a little orange essential oil and the soap is just amazing. I use a base of 25% coconut and 25% palm (probably more than I needed, but I was low on other oils, so time for a trip to the store), 45% soybean, canola, olive blend (you know whatever I have on hand), and 5% shea. I did not discount my water because I wanted to do a hot process, I wanted to use less orange eo. I used 1/2 oz grated ginger/lb oils (I made sure to get the fresh juice too).

I used my crockpot on low setting to slowly melt my oils and then added my lye solution. I used a stick blender and added the ginger at light trace (because I hate trying to mix in additions after it cooks) and continued blending until thick trace. I covered and left sitting on low heat.

Ok, that went as planned, but when I checked it after 30 min to stir, it looked perfect and apparently, I thought I should turn the heat off. To be honest, I don't remember doing it, but as the heat was off, I must have. So, I stirred and let it sit another 30 min. It looked just like it should, like a thick gel, so I tongue tested it and there was no zap. By the way, soap tastes horrible, even with ginger in it. I went to turn the heat off and found it was already off! This really wouldn't have been a problem for the soap, it could be salvaged, but if it hadn't already been hot enough and retained that heat, I could have been zapped big time. I guess luck was with me though.

Since the soap was well cooked, I added my orange essential oil and poured into mold. So you know, the soap was actually cool enough for me to smooth out by hand! Oh, it could have gone so wrong! I peeked at it this morning before rushing off to work and it looks great, I can't wait to cut it this afternoon. I have several people that LOVE the orange ginger, I've been told then fresh ginger makes it lightly tingly for your skin.

I love the smell and it does feel great, but I think my favorite is still my chocolate mint or pumpkin spice. What's your favorite soap? Do you have anything fun that you like to add?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Foster Kitten

Well, I got another foster kitten, but this time I only got ONE. I did not get talked into a litter or two. He's tiny, just over 1 pound when he came home Saturday. He's also very sweet, so I know that the people who had him were caring for him. Although, I'm thinking they carried him everywhere because he expects to be carried or to ride on your shoulder. Now, like I said, he's only a pound, so its not a problem and he's really quite cute. But, does anyone see this being a problem when he's a full grown cat and expects to perch on your shoulder? He is also being a picky eater, he doesn't want the dry food or the wet food. It also is not cute that while I was eating dinner he kept jumping on my lap and trying to get food off my plate. One, claws hurt when used to climb up your leg and two, that's just bad manners. So, he has a few bad habits that need to be broken, but he is very friendly and very playful. I'm just hoping he starts eating more soon. The faster he gains weight, the faster he gets to go out for adoption and find a permanent home.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

My First Milk and Honey Soap

I decided that I would like to make a milk and honey soap and I wanted to experiment with using less coconut and palm oils. So, I created my recipe and set to work. Everything was going perfectly until I poured my lye solution and little undissolved lye crystals went into the mix. AHHHHH! I didn't know what to do, but decided to continue. I stirred until trace and poured into the mold. It worked out beautifully, no overheating, no burning the milk, just so perfect, except...

Of course the next morning, there were spots of lye! So, I decided to rebatch it. Why not? If it doesn't work out I can trash it, but I'm not one to give up easily. So, I shredded up my otherwise perfect soap and put it in my crock pot on low. I added just a little more milk because I had discounted my liquid anyway and I wanted to make sure all the lye dissolved. After 2 hours of heating, my soap was completely melted and no signs of lye crystals. In fact, it looked downright beautiful. I scented it with rosemary and peppermint essential oils and poured it into a mold.

I didn't have time to check it this morning before work, so I don't know how it looks. Right now all I can do is cross my fingers and hope. I will say that my attempt at rebatching seemed to go smoothly, so I'm a little concerned :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Liberty High School Craft Show

This Saturday, I'll be at Liberty HS for another show. I'm excited! I'll be having a Soap Sale! All of my older batches will be on sale for $1.50/bar. They are still feel wonderful, but I don't like the way they are cut, so I'm clearing them out.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

National Pizza With The Works Except Anchovies Day

Apparently Nov 12th is a day meant to exclude anchovies from our diet. I really love pizza, I know we shouldn't because it is usually swimming in fat and grease, but YUM! I really don't like lots of veggies on my pizza, mainly because I don't like mushy veggies, so I wouldn't want the works to begin with. BUT, why must we exclude anchovies?! I once got a pizza with anchovies on it by mistake and it was absolutely the most disgusting thing I've ever tasted, but I still don't see why they need to be excluded. There are plenty of people out there that DO like anchovies, I don't know any personally, but they must exist because anchovies are an option. If nobody ever ordered them, they wouldn't be offered! So, I think we need to take a moment to recognize the fact that anchovies are being picked on and that could have a profound impact on the anchovy industry.

If you love pizza and would like to try making your own, here is my favorite recipe for BBQ chicken pizza:
Pizza crust mix (I like Jiffy cause its cheap and easy)
BBQ sauce
Shredded cheese
Chicken (cubed and cooked)
Artichokes (canned hearts)
Spinach (fresh)

Prepare crust as directed. Spread a thin layer of bbq sauce over crust. Sprinkle with cheese (save calories, go easy on the cheesy). Add toppings and bake as directed.

I've also done an alfredo pizza (not at all healthy) and pineapple and canadian bacon. Be creative and have fun with it.

If you have a really good one, let me know, I'm always looking for something new to try!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This past weekend I participated in a Toy Drive Fundraiser to benefit Christmas Unlimited and I had a great time. I met some awesome ladies and I had a good time promoting my product. I was also located across the aisle diagonally to the Lemongrass Spa lady. This did not bother me at all, we both have different products. The products are similar, but there are different scents and I could really go on, but I won't.

I had a lady stop at my table to smell my soaps (which are sooo good) and she asked what the difference between my products and the Lemongrass products is. My response was this: "My products are handcrafted by me, which gives me the freedom to make what I want, when I want. I also get to experiment and if I come up with a great idea, I can start selling it right away; where a larger company like Lemongrass would take more time getting it produced and out to the public. Other than that, our products are similar, we have a similar idea, and a similar committment to give our customers great products. We do offer different scents and different choices in products, so between the two of us, you are sure to find what you want."

The woman looked a little taken aback at my answer. I don't know if she was expecting me to bash Lemongrass or what, but I'm sure that my response was not what was expected. I think I handled the question well and honestly. I can truly say that Lemongrass produces some wonderful products and while I'll admit I'm biased and think my stuff is better; I did not mind being near the other woman at the show. I think it was great that we were both able to have a variety of products there and that variety helped to serve a greater number of people.

Has anyone else ever been put in a situation like that? I mean, was the woman honestly looking for an answer or was trying to see if I would behave unprofessionally? Maybe I just haven't been doing enough shows and that question is quite common, I just don't know.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Water Discount in Soap

I read about how you can discount the amount of water you use in a batch of soap so it will get harder, faster. I tried this for the first time a couple of days ago when I was making my chocolate mint soap (which turned about beautifully, my swirls are much nicer). I didn't really think it could make that big of a difference, but the difference was amazing.

I made a batch of my lavender chamomile soap and my chocolate mint soap on Sunday. I discounted the water for the chocolate mint, but not the lavender. Monday I unmolded and started cutting, the chocolate mint soap was already pretty hard, but the lavender soap was quite a bit softer. It was much easier to cut, but it also mushed easier so I had to be very careful about moving the bars.

I checked on the today and the chocolate mint bars are very nice, you would honestly think they have already been curing for 1-2 weeks not 2 days. They will of course sit and cure the full month, but I'm very excited by this. I worried that something horrible would happen when I mixed the lye or it would do something funny when I was mixing, but I had no problems. I love the results and think that I will start doing this with more of my batches.

By the way, my soaps look and smell AMAZING! I get so excited every time I make a new batch, even if its a recipe I've been doing for awhile.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Don't Forget One Stop Shop TODAY!

The Multi-Purpose Bldg
1025 Ford St, 80915
10am - 4pm

Bring a new toy or a cash donation to benefit Christmas Unlimited.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

No More Criticizing

This is something we all do and we are harder on ourselves than we are on others. I don't think there is anything wrong with having higher expectations for ourselves, but there is something wrong with putting ourselves down. You know what I mean, we do something we swore we wouldn't do and then we beat ourselves up over it. I wasn't going to eat that next piece of pumpkin bread, I meant to work out and I can't believe I didn't. Really, the list just goes on. I know I'm not perfect. I need to lose weight, I need to learn to balance everything better, and I need to spend more time with friends and family.

I do work at all of this and sometimes I slip up, I eat things I shouldn't, I don't get things done, and I just don't keep in touch. What do I do when this happens? I beat myself up. I can spend days thinking to myself "YOU ARE SUCH AN IDIOT, WHY CAN'T YOU JUST DO WHAT YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO. ITS NOT LIKE ITS THAT HARD!!!!" Wow, that solved...nothing.

This is what I need to do. I need to accept that I am not perfect and move on. Sure, I still need to work on my problems, but that doesn't mean bringing myself down. Especially since I'm an emotional eater. I need to accept myself for what I am, excess weight and all, and set goals to change what I want to change. I need to accept that mistakes will happen and I will have set backs, but that doesn't make me an idiot or a failure. I need to accept that I can reach my goals and continue to work towards them. I know in my heart I can be successful and now I am accepting that I will be successful and there will be roadblocks for me to overcome.

I will overcome them because I expect good things.

I hope everyone else will do the same for themselves. Accept what is and move on with your life. Don't beat yourself down because of what you didn't do; lift yourself up because of all the great things you have done. Can you go forward and accept more and criticize less? I'm going to try.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Ah sleep, how we all need sleep and so many of us don't get enough. When we rest we allow our bodies to recover and rejuvenate, but when we deny ourselves the sleep we need it will show up on the surface. Lack of sleep can lead to puffy eyes, sagging, lackluster skin, dull hair, and other emotional problems.

I know with kids, jobs, and everything else we do, it is very hard to fit in enough sleep. I don't have kids, but I do have a full-time job and a business to run. I know exactly what its like to have too much to do. It is so tempting to just stay up a little late to get a few more things done. But, I have learned how it effects me to do that. I am grumpy, irritable, and I just don't look or perform my best. So, take care of yourself and get the sleep you need.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

One Stop Shop Toy Drive

I am in a toy drive fundraiser this weekend to benefit Christmas Unlimited here in Colorado Springs. Christmas Unlimited provides toys and other Christmas goodies to needy families in the area and they are expecting to need more toys than last year! Please come out and support this awesome event. 30 vendors will be available for you to do your Christmas shopping and everyone has donated gift certificates. That's over $600 in certificates and all we ask is that you bring a new, unwrapped toy.

When: Sat, Nov 7th from 10-4

Where: The Multipurpose Bldg @ 1025 Ford St 80915 (east of Powers of Galley & Ford)

Why: Help provide Christmas to underprivileged families

Monday, November 2, 2009

Website is UP!!!

I know I've been saying its coming, but my website is finally up. We had a few minor glitches and photos to get done, but it is up and running. I'm so excited and I think it looks AWESOME! We are still working out some of the kinks and links, but go check it out and let me know what you think. and if you happen to notice any issues, please let me know.