St. Lucia 2017

Well another winter vacation has come and gone and once again it was unbelievable! We were lucky to have a chance to travel with my brother and sister in law and we always seem to have a great time! 

The weather was between 85 to 90 degrees each day and our hotel was literally on the beach. But now it’s back to reality and trying to get into the responsible groove again.

I was hoping to get our trip posted on the blog by now, but for some reason laundry and soap making has been about the only thing on my agenda this weekend. So just an overview for tonight will have to do.

But I’ll try to get our vacation posted with the details soon and until then here is just a few of things that we did on our trip …

We took a speedboat with a small group of people out on t0 sea and visited a couple of villages to snorkel, check out some waterfalls, watch cliff divers,  and then ended up going to the owners house in the village for dinner. IMG_3856

We also went to a Cathedral and took the bus to do some shopping in a local villagefullsizeoutput_9ae

We ate… we ate A LOT
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In the evenings we spent some time on our balcony or the infinity pool/bar by our rooms to just enjoy the beautiful viewIMG_3896

And how can you go out on the Caribbean Sea and not go on a Pirate Ship? fullsizeoutput_9a9And then swing off it? Now this might not look like it’s that high from the water but trust me, it was! IMG_3993

And finally we spent some time looking like this :) Any guesses ? Version 2

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My Yoga adventure continues

I am so grateful that I’m in the Introductory class for my Yoga classes because holy smokes it’s not easy. Well maybe I should clarify this and say that it’s not easy for me. But for some crazy reason I sure like going to them. I mean it’s supposed to open up your back and hips while letting you breath in good oxygen. So far, I’ve been opening up a bottle of Advil more than I think I’m opening up any hip sockets. But I have faith that it will get easier and I’m planning on sticking to it! 

I had to laugh tonight when the instructor was telling us one of the next poses that we had to do. She demonstrated it to us and the instructions were something like this: fold your mat in half with the folded edge towards the wall, fold two blankets in half and then half again and put the folded edge of the blankets on the outside edge of the folded mat, put a bolster on the bottom part of your mat and then fold over the one section of your mat so it meets up to your blanket. OK, seriously I felt that I should bring maybe a paper and pen to the class. I was trying to concentrate on what I was supposed to do and this was even before we did the pose. 

OK, so after you had your space set up, put your butt just so you’re sitting on the bolster and your feet parallel to the mat but keep your bottom shins pushing together so your toes and ankles are touching. Now lean back to have your head over the blankets and 2 inches away from the edge of the mat. 

Now hook a strap over your right hand and make a v shape with both hands just right under your pelvic bone. 

So up to this point you were just getting ready. Now the work comes. 

Kick your feet up over your head with keeping your back straight and your shoulders in, your hips pushing towards the mat, your knees pulling up, and then walk your shoulders down and in. With your legs over your head, you now take the strap and put it up on your arm and hook your other arm to it. You take your hands and with them shoulder width apart you clasp your hands. and reach back.  

At this point  you take one of your legs off the wall and it goes straight up (don’t bend any legs at this point) move your hands to your bank to make sure that it is also nice and straight. 

Now you switch legs and then you pull both legs away from the wall with them straight up in the air while you are working on stretching your back backwards as far as you can. You know, opening up your back so it gets strong. 

Yeah…. 

That’s what we were supposed to do. 

And  had to laugh to myself because I felt like I was the only one that was pretty much freaking out when the pose was being explained to us. I mean everyone was nodding their head like .. oh yeah no problem….  but I found out later that some of the girls in the class said that they weren’t just too sure how that whole thing was going to go down and I think secretly they were kind of freaking out too. 

So when we finally all tried it guess what the instructor told us? She said that this is a pose that we all probably should be practicing at home before the next class :) 

I think that’s kind of funny. 

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Catching up

I’ve had a great Christmas in sales for my soap and bath bombs and now I’ve been working on catching up with my inventory.

So I’ve gotten to know the UPS delivery guy pretty good and I’m really trying hard not to take over the whole downstairs with this crazy hobby of mine. For some reason it might be getting a little bit out of control. 

But with that said, I’ve got a bunch of my soap almost ready for the stores, and I’ve been working on making some bath bombs and bath fizzys for the stores. I figured that I’ve made over 100 this week and have them all packaged and ready to go.

I’ve delivered some of my soap already to the stores and have more to deliver this week to them. But with wrapping the soap still on my to do list, there’s still some work to do before I can deliver them. 

I’ve added a couple of pictures from this week of what I use our kitchen table for now..

Getting everything ready to start

Getting everything ready to start

Working on some new scents for Spring

Working on some new scents for Spring

Making Valentines Bath Bombs

Making Valentines Bath Bombs

I snuck in a couple of batches of soap also during the week

I snuck in a couple of batches of soap also during the week

And after taking a night off early this week and going out for supper, I ordered a half of a taco salad. Check it out! Good thing it was my birthday and I can have whatever I wanted :-)  20170201_183919_resized_1

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Happy Birthday Ma!

The birthday week continues for Mom

As the week was going on, it seemed like Mom was celebrating in one way or another all week long. And in my opinion, well that’s pretty cool. There were card buddies that she spent some time with and of course they don’t just play cards, when it’s your birthday you also bring treats for everyone. I took a long lunch on Tuesday which was her actual birthday and met up with my brothers and the others. We met where Ma and her friends were playing cards and had to laugh when I walked in and saw what she meant when she was bringing some ‘snacks’ to share with the group. There was a couple of containers of some fresh cinnamon rolls on the counter along with a huge container of cookies. I did notice though that the container of cookies was almost gone and there was an empty pan of what I guessed started out to be rolls also beside it. So after they got done playing cards for the morning they finished off with some birthday cake that my brothers brought to the party. I’m thinking that there was some serious sugar high going on in that card game this morning. And whoever said you can’t have cake in the morning, well just wasn’t hanging with this group today  :)fullsizeoutput_922

So our family decided to get together on Sunday to celebrate with Mom. It was one of those birthday parties where you put out the invitation to your family and who ever can make it can make it. But if you can make it, you were asked to bring a hot dish and a cold dish to share. 

We weren’t sure how many could make it, but the date was set. And as you were pulling up to her house there were balloons on the mailbox and I’m guessing everyone in the neighborhood knew that we were coming. 

My ‘hot’ dish was a ham that was in the oven just minutes before we got to the party and I was trying my best to cut it up and not massacre it. I’m thinking it didn’t look the best after I was done – but it sure tasted good! If anyone leaves one of our get-togethers hungry well it’s seriously their own fault. Why? Well our family likes to cook. IMG_3723While I was in the kitchen helping with getting the food organized, the kids just coming and coming. And it seems when our family gets together you can hardly hear yourself think sometimes much less hear any conversation in particular that’s going on. It’s a lot of fun! There is never a dull moment in Ma’s house and especially when there’s a party going on. 

There were some of the little kids playing tag or hide and seek (I’m not just quite sure) and with just shy of around 40 people that were able to make it- we all had a great time. Even though it was her birthday, I’m pretty sure that we might just have enjoyed it just as much as she did. IMG_3729

So, should you eat cake instead of breakfast in the morning? I say you bet! If it’s your birthday week you can do whatever you want. 

Happy Birthday Ma! IMG_3736

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Winter in Iowa

The weather has not been the best lately but I guess it’s winter in  Iowa. It’s been snowing and a cold north wind has been blowing through 20170125_163444_resized_1and when the sun shines you just kind of look out the window a lot and smile because it’s such a nice change. Even those the sun doesn’t shine that much – we can always hope. 

I know there’s the old saying that if you wait long enough the weather will change and that couldn’t be more true.

So what have we’ve been doing with the snowy weather lately? Well Daryl’s been scraping the yard and giving the cattle more hay to keep them quite. For some reason they need a lot of attention during the winter. So you know, he’s doing guy stuff. 

And what have I been doing? Well making soap of course. Some of my first soaps are going to the businesses this week and it’ll be interesting to see how my sales go this Spring. I sure hope my luck continues this year with my little business. 

We’ve also been discussing the kid’s wedding quite a bit lately  and it’s getting pretty exciting. We’re not only talking about the shower and the wedding details but also when our other kids will be flying home. 

Oh it’s going to be such a great year! I can just feel it. 

 

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Bucket List – 2017, Yoga Classes

I’ve been looking for quite awhile to go to a Yoga class and well since it was on my bucket list for 2017 I needed to see what I could do about that.

And guess what? I actually signed up for an Introductory Class at one of our neighboring towns. Yup, I not only signed up but Tuesday night was my first class. 

Now I have no idea what I would expect, but I figured there was no way to know until I actually went. 

So with my yoga pants on and the perfect exercise shirt picked out,   I took a deep breath and walked into the studio. There was about 9 others in the room and the age ranged from young to old. And I wasn’t even the oldest – Score! 

With our matts rolled out the classes started. We learned how to stand, sit, and do a couple of other basic poses. And guess what I learned? I learned that I had no idea on how to do any of them before the class. But that’s why you go to classes right? 

The instructor was super nice and so was everyone else. The class was really hard and there is a lot to learn. I had to smile to myself because about half way through the class the room was getting warm and the ceiling fans were turned on. We weren’t moving very fast but we were throwing off some body heat. 

After the class when everything was all said and done, I was so very glad that I took the Introductory  Class. This class just get you ready for the Beginners Class. That’s kinda funny isn’t it? 

Anyway, I loved the class and am excited to go back next week. 

But I sure do hope the weather will be a little bit better than the drive home tonight. It was snowing so hard and the roads were very slippery, I was even grateful for the dumb rumble strips in the middle of the road. They let me know where I actually was when I was driving. And what else helped me for the verrryyy long drive home? Well I kind of picked up a box of Milk Duds. But for some reason I don’t think I’ll let my yoga instructor know that. 20170126_210847_resized_1

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Farm Animals

I’ve been so busy making soap lately, that I decided that I better check on my chickens. Daryl has been taking care of them these past few weeks, but I wanted to see how everyone was doing. 

Now I couldn’t go without any treats can I? So I had some leftover cut up vegetables, old bread, and some blackberries that were in the fridge that needed to go. OK, maybe they all didn’t need to go tonight but as long as I was making the trip out there well it’s a good time to downsize the fridge right? 

I really couldn’t believe on how big the peacocks have gotten. I thought at first that the two new little ones were males but now I’m not so sure. If they are males they’ll get their long feathers in a year or so and up until then it’ll be just as much as a surprise to me as to the other chickens. 20170119_172024_resized

But I did notice that their Mom is still as protective as she was when they were little and she wasn’t happy at all that I was in there. She was making some pretty scary noises and kept her focus on me the whole time. I knew enough to stay back from her whole clan. 

The rest of the chickens were just hanging out in there and a lot more mellow until they saw their treats. 20170119_172143_resizedThen it when I emptied out the bread bag it was total chaos. So much for the calm before the storm. 

And who followed me around the yard thinking she was going to get some treats? Checkers. I don’t know, but the slice of bacon that she got when I got home from work must not have been enough for her tonight. 20170119_172358_resizedAnd finally I grabbed a bunch of apples for the cows. 

Yup, we  had a very happy farm tonight :)

 

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My Appointment Tonight

I knew that Daryl was going to go to the dentist soon and when I saw an appointment on the calendar for a dentist appointment – well it just made sense it was his. 

So as the month goes on I’m thinking to myself that I sure am glad that it wasn’t my appointment. I mean it’s not that I hate going to the dentist, but it’s not my most favorite place to hang out. 

Well, guess what? I found out two days ago that it WAS my appointment. What ?? 

I mean that I just really need more time to prepare myself mentally! And now that I know that I only have  a couple of days, holy smokes! 

OK, I can do this. And so tonight when I was sitting in the chair at my appointment and was asked if I’ve flossed, well heck yeah! I did that quick before I came to the appointment :)

And how did my appointment go? It went really well and I’m good for another 6 months.

SCORE! 

 

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Travel continues to be icy

It’s been one of the worst winters in a very long time with all the ice and rain that we’ve been having. I mean if someone doesn’t think that the weather has changed over the past 30 years, well I would argue with them. 

When I was a kid we had so much snow piled up we literally had a one way path on some of the roads. Now we have a one way path on our roads because it’s so slippery and if you get too close to the side of the road the ice will pull you into the ditch. Just not cool! 

I wasn’t sure how the roads were going to be this morning heading out to work when I was leaving our icy farm yard. I was literally driving around 8 mph at the end of driveway just trying not to slide too much 20170117_151901_resized but I made it to work on time and by the end of the day the highways were just wet. But I was glad to see the road grader drive by tonight to try to break up the ice and slush on the gravel roads so tomorrow’s drive to work won’t be quite so slippery. Well anyway I can hope.  20170117_152234_resized

One of the things that I’m worried about with all the ice that we have is just so the cows don’t slip in the cow yard and get hurt. I know that if someone does fall, it’s not going to be good news for anyone! But I guess I should be more worried that they stay put in the yard. I heard tonight that they got out and was walking around in the pasture. Just a crazy winter. Everyone is messed up. 

And what have I been doing with all this lovely weather outside going on? Making soap of course. Here’s a couple of photo’s of some of the new Spring Soap line. This one is an herbal fragrance with some small beads in it for a little exfoliating. I tried out a new process design and I like how it looks.20170116_205105_resized And the one below is called Grandma’s Lilacs because, well because it reminds me of my Grandma’s lilacs :)20170116_213847

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Making soap on the weekend

Well I still have my cold and with going on week #3, I realized that I don’t have time to feel better. I have to get some soap made. 

So when I woke up this morning I told myself that no matter what – I’m making soap. 

OK, that’s the plan. 

And guess what? I didn’t do too bad. I really was excited to spend the whole day in the kitchen working on soap and also on a couple of new designs. I made a new soap with a fragrance of Garden Herb’s and even though it sounds kinda weird, it’s probably one of my favorite scents right now. When I take them out of the molds tomorrow, I’ll shoot a couple of pictures. 

I’m running into a problem though. I’m running out of room. I’ve got to add a couple of more shelves to our laundry room and I’m wondering do we really need a laundry room? Maybe they are overrated? (just kidding

But seriously I’m scoping out the house to where I can put the soap and I think I’m going to have to be creative. I’ve even upgraded my cooking equipment to the Jethro size this weekend.20170110_184213_resizedAnd my orders that I’ve been placing seem to be getting more and more expensive. But it’s like Christmas when they come so you kind of forget how much you spent 20170110_172626_resized

So while I’m waiting for my new soap to cure, here is a couple of pictures of the soap that I made earlier that will need to be cut and added to the drying rack.  20170114_083409_resized

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