Sally Beauty’s DCNL Hair Accessories

December 2nd, 2013 Posted in accessories, beauty products, Fashion | No Comments »

I haven’t written on this topic for quite a while.  Hair accessories… love them!.. and something that you can never have too much of ;).  Every once in a while I’ll find myself wandering the beauty aisles and find something blog-worthy, like Sally Beauty Supply DCNL’s both pretty and handy-to-have hair accessories.  I’m normally a tee and jeans girl so when I feel like dolling up with just a little effort, I like to go for a beaded ponytailer, a rhinestone claw clip, or jeweled bobbies and barettes.  I’ve also included other favorite staples below…

*Photocredit: Sally’s Beauty DCNL Hair Accessories

 

It’s High Tea Time!

December 2nd, 2013 Posted in Culinary, curiosities, Trips | No Comments »

I had long dreamed of having High Tea at a special place like New York Hudson Valley’s The Equus, so when Valentine’s Day had rolled around (this was a few years back) and I learned that my husband was bringing us there for afternoon tea, I was none-other-than ecstatic!  The following is most likely what we had ordered…  mind you it has been some time…  a nice assortment of lovely teas and delicious little tea cakes, scones (served warm and frosted in powdered sugar with the choice of clotted cream & fruit preserves), and toasted curry chicken sandwiches.  Sounds good doesn’t it?  Every tea lover should try this once in their life…  even if it’s simply planning a quaint little tea party at home and extending an invitation to a few good friends- this would be a darling thing to do, by the way, so don’t just write it off.

Our recent Cape May excursion allowed for another similar treat of afternoon tea at the Carriage House Cafe & Tea Room located on the grounds of the 1879 Emlen Physick Estate.  I ordered egg salad with chives on swirled rye and shared the assorted scones & tea breads accompanied with clotted cream with my husband.  My tea of choice was Harney & Sons’ Vervaine Lemon Verbena (I highly recommend).  It was a perfect sunny, gently breezy day and I was so happy to be there; just the night before we took a trolley ride around the Emlen Physick Estate on the Ghosts of Cape May Trolley Tours, which I also highly recommend!..  Think darkened magical streets and flickering gas lamps… let your imagination run wild ;)!  As an aside, for our next Cape May visit, this sounds great too -> The Walking Ghost Tour.

P.S. Cucumber or watercress sandwiches with cream cheese are among my favorite tea-time helpings.  Searching for great menu ideas?   I recently found a wealth of info at Linda A. Thompson’s Blog.

*Photocredit: The Equus, New York and Carriage House Cafe & Tearoom, New Jersey

RETOUCHED BY BLAKE D. OGDEN

carriage house cafe & tearoom

FitwearUSA

November 29th, 2013 Posted in Yoga | No Comments »

I’m a big fan of discount vouchers e.g. Groupon, Deal Chicken, Amazon Local, Living Social, and the like.  Recently I discovered that one of my vouchers had long expired =(…  Naturally I was upset and had no one to blame but myself.  I was determined to at least get in contact with Deal Chicken or FitwearUSA (formerly known as Athletica and not to be confused with Athleta) to see if my $29 wasn’t a total loss.  Usually, while a promotion may expire, the value of the voucher is normally honored by many of these discount centers (understandably so, I was hoping this was the case for my predicament).  I must applaud FitwearUSA and their rep. Amanda, for not only honoring the value of my voucher but also for upholding the original promo (which they didn’t have to do).  The process also didn’t go without a hitch since the discount code had expired (again, I’m solely to blame) and there was some necessary computer re-programming on the company’s part to allow for the code to finally go through.  I must have called Amanda a few times but she was always very pleasant, patient, and willing to help.  So a big thanks to Amanda for being so kind to me =)!  My two pairs of organic cotton yoga leggings are currently on their way and I can’t wait! =).  For now, I can only speak of their customer service and in this respect they receive 5 gold stars.  I’ll let you know about how I like their leggings in an addendum to this post.

*Addendum on February 15, 2014:  By the way, hope everyone had a delightful St. Valentine’s Day =)!  This is the update I promised regarding my FitwearUSA leggings/stretchy pants… love them!  Thick, warm, comfy… overall great quality and what a steal thanks to my Deal Chicken voucher!  They are well worth even regular price!

*Photocredit: FitwearUSA

 

 

First LUSH Spa in the USA

November 29th, 2013 Posted in Spa Retreat | No Comments »

Oh how sweet this is!  Finally the LUSH Spas are almost here!  I’ve been waiting for this wonderful news for quite some time.  Early 2014 in Manhattan/New York City, followed closely by a second location in Philadelphia they said =)!  Here are some highlights from their spa menu…

  • Synaesthesia- Signature spa treatment
  • The Comforter- Exfoliation treatment
  • The Spell- Foot soak, scrub, massage
  • The Sound Bath- Meditative treatment
  • The Good Hour- Deep tissue massage
  • Tailor Made- Customized version of The Good Hour

I want to try each one at least once!  Time to save those pennies ;)!

 

New York

783 Lexington Avenue

New York, NY 10065

 

Pennsylvania

1525 Walnut Street

Philadelphia, PA 19102

 

*Photocredit: LUSH Cosmetics

LUSH Spa

 

Mouth Watering Olive Oil…

November 21st, 2013 Posted in Foods & Desserts | No Comments »

Within The Merry Widow, you will find this gem… the Cape May Olive Oil Company.  I lost track of the many delicious olive oils we had sampled on toast; a few standouts… truffles, onion, garlic, citrus blends.  Finally I decided on an Italian Herb and a packet of dried herbs to be mixed together as part of a savory appetizer.  I don’t need house guests as an excuse to indulge you know ;).  We warmed slices of hero bread a couple of nights in a row to accompany this fantastic duo.  I really have to buy more once we are out!  Also some lucky couple in our family is also going to receive a Tuscan Herb version as part of a holiday gift.  I almost forgot to say…  their Tarragon Honey Mustard has been highly delightful condiment on shrimp and I can’t wait to pair it with other foods!  Feast your eyes below ;)!

*Photocredit: Cape May Olive Oil Company <— Online ordering is possible so check out this second link.

Lovely Leelah

November 3rd, 2013 Posted in Books, candles, curiosities, Filofax | No Comments »

While at Cape May, I also ventured into a cozy little spiritual store, named Good Scents, filled with many exciting new things I haven’t really seen anywhere else yet =).  You can also find further info about the shop’s variety of incense here.  In the back was a Leelah hoodie I instantly feel in love with!  It was their Honey Love design (“Life is the Flower for which Love is the Honey”).  Comfortable, soft, pretty, great for everyday (and for yoga!), and fits me very well.  Later that week, I decided to explore the company’s site.  All of a sudden, I remembered that one of my local boutiques also carries a few items from their clothing and accessories line (Leelah makes very distinctive-looking products).  What I really love besides their clothing is their full-size spiral notebooks and mini books.  It is perfect for the Filofax lover, like myself or someone who regularly gets lost in their imagination and enjoys doodling or journaling…  all you have to do is re-punch the paper to fit your chosen organizer or slide a mini book into its planner pocket.  As an aside, if you are a big fan of letter stationery, you can do the same.  My daily organizer is an A5 so this works out perfectly =).  Just wanted to share my thoughts especially with those who like customing/decorating their Filofax.  I know how much joy that brings to me.  I’ve featured a few of my favorites below and you can catch a “virtual” glimpse of Good Scents.

*Photocredit:  Leelah & Good Scents @ CapeMay.com

 

Leprechauns, Castles, Lucky Clovers, Laughter… and Irish Potatoes

November 1st, 2013 Posted in Foods & Desserts | No Comments »

I’m particularly sweet on The Original Fudge Kitchen’s Irish Potatoes and am planning to give these as stocking stuffers this Christmas to the lucky few.  They are made of fresh cream & cinnamon besides other delicious ingredients and should be enjoyed within 2-3 weeks, even longer if frozen [this is no problem with me... no need to freeze ;)].  I enjoyed my little bunch so much that I went back the next day to buy some for my mom.  My mother’s been sweet on sweets as long as I can remember and very open-minded to trying new things (even beyond our culture).  Though we haven’t always seen things eye-to-eye, this is something I love about her.  Besides the Irish Potatoes, I also bought her marzipans to try for the first time.  Another treat I loved from TOFK was their pistachio fudge.  For the sweet-toothed…  The Original Fudge Kitchen’s info.

*Photocredit: NYCupcake & The Original Fudge Kitchen @ CapeMay.com

A Place on Earth’s Delicious Scented Wax Melts

November 1st, 2013 Posted in candles, Home & Garden | No Comments »

A Place on Earth in Cape May, New Jersey can easily be considered heaven on Earth.  Nestled in the basement of what used to be the old Ocean Street bank is this wonderful little south Jersey secret.  I had way too many soaps to justify more bath purchases but my Scentsy burner certainly needed a scented wax melt replenish.  These are the drizzle and herbal bars by Swan Creek Candle Company I came away with that day… Snickerdoodle, Roasted Espresso, Crisp Cotton, and Walk in the Woods.  I also loved the glittery appeal of Birthday Cake but had to draw the line somewhere ;); maybe after I use these up eh?  Ohhh, there were so many good scents to choose from!  Where do I begin, I thought?  They also stock other popular brands like Pacifica, Tokyo Milk, etc.  Plus they had a large buffet bar against the back wall with a colorful array of freshly-made sugar scrubs mmmmm!  You don’t have to necessarily visit Cape May either to experience A Place on Earth (just click on the top link or to the left; each will take you to a different site)…  love online shopping! =)

*Photocredit: A Place on Earth @ CapeMay.com

 

My New September Favorite: Farmhouse Fresh

October 4th, 2013 Posted in beauty products, Toiletries | No Comments »

On the first evening in Cape May, New Jersey, my husband and I walked to the main shopping strip (just minutes from the White Dove Cottage, Bed & Breakfast).  BTW, thoroughly enjoyed our stay at the White Dove; Stella gives it two paws up as well!

After a quick preliminary scout around the area, I found the cutest bath boutique ever and quickly ditched the hubby…  Bathtime Cape May (also fully-equipped with a custom fragrance bar); most certainly a bath lover’s haven…  Every brand imaginable…  I was drawn almost magnetically to their Farmhouse Fresh collection; what a perfect find!  Since autumn’s crispness was approaching and that we were far away from home, I decided that a Splendid Dirt pumpkin puree mud mask was in order.  Awww was it pore-fection too =); a thin, gradually tightening film, quick dry, yummy scent, easy cleanse-off, and fairly reasonably priced at $20 for a 3.2 fl.oz. jar.  For you chocolate lovers out there, they have a chocolate version too called Sundae Best Chocolate Softening Mask…  so with a name like that, what are you waiting for?

*Photocredit: Farmhouse Fresh Goods & Bathtime Cape May @ CapeMay.com

 

 

Target & Bed Bath & Beyond Bedroom

October 4th, 2013 Posted in accessories, Decor, Home & Garden | No Comments »

Over the years I’ve learned that merely a change of curtains or an update to bedding (linens, comforter, duvet) can bring bigger welcome changes to one’s room than one would imagine.  If you are on a tight budget or find it inconvenient to have your bedroom painted, give these two simple things a try first.  My favorite sateen or Egyptian cotton bedding is from Bed Bath & Beyond.  Even my husband recognizes the importance of investing in good, comfortable sheets ;) ; afterall, a big chunk of one’s life is spent sleeping so might-as-well happily hunker down.  I’m also quite smitten with Target’s Simply Shabby Chic Cozy Blanket, Threshold Medallion Reversible Quilt (love those reversible quilts!), Simply Shabby Chic Bramble Duvet Set or the like, Xhilaration Comforter Sets, to name a few.  I recently purchased the SS Candy Floral linen set and can’t wait to dress the bed with it!

*Photocredit: Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, Other