Tuesday, August 30, 2022

Aug. 30 - Still Trying


I keep saying I'm going to get back into the habit of blogging daily, and I keep failing in the attempt.  And it's always the same reasons, the same little voices in my head holding me back.  So I guess I need to just shut up about doing it and just do it!  If the first however many posts are sloppy and all over the place, well, at least there are posts.  Right?!  So bear with me.

I went to my mom's yesterday, as I do each week.  She's 86 years old and doing fine, still living on her own, but just needs help with some things and appreciates the company.  I do her shopping each week, do any little chores she needs help with, and then we play Yahtzee for a while.  She used to go shopping with me, still picked her own things and paid, but since the pandemic started she prefers to stay home.  She'll have a list ready for me and pays me back.  Yesterday I stopped at Dollar Tree to see if they had any 2023 calendars with birds for her (they did), so of course I had to browse the fall and Halloween things they had out.  There were so many things I liked but I was good and only bought one thing.
This little bottle is so gorgeous!  It's about 6.5" tall.  The leaf stopper has a silicone seal but that doesn't matter to me because I won't be opening it or using this for anything but looks.  There was another one, same design but slightly different color.  It was more of a clear-ish, silver-yellow type.  They both have that sort of carnival glass look, where the color changes slightly like oil on water.  I just love it.  I'll put it on my corner shelf in the living room, tucked in among my apples, leaves, and acorns.  I will post pics of my early fall decor sometime in September, after I've tweaked things and settled on what I like for this year.
At the local grocery store where I shop for my mom I found this little guy and just had to have it.  This is a sponge!  Whaaat??  Maybe I should have taken a picture also showing the other side.  The middle layer is yellow-orange sponge, and the bottom is red scrubby.  I won't ever use it as a sponge though.  I just thought it would be cute as a decoration in the kitchen, sitting somewhere near the sink.  Well, actually, if it's set somewhere you won't really see the back, it could be decor for any room.  It's just so stinkin' cute!  It's about 5" wide and I think it cost $2.50.  He'll get tucked away until November, when my Thanksgiving decor comes out.
(Pic from June 2022)
Mom and I played a few games of Yahtzee after we had everything else taken care of.  We started playing a few months ago.  Hubby plays cribbage with his dad when he goes there each weekend, and I thought hey, why not play something with Mom?  Used to be I'd help her with things, chitchat briefly, and then be anxious to get back home.  So one week I suggested we play, and she was shocked.  Then she seemed quite pleased, and now I can tell she looks forward to it each week.  And don't they say that playing games keeps the mind fresh?
We used to play Yahtzee all the time when we were growing up.  Well, ya know, back then we didn't have video games and smartphones and social media.  We interacted with each other and played actual games.  lol  But in my adult life it had been many years since I'd played.  It took a few weeks to really get back into it, to remember all the little tips and strategies, but I'm hooked now.  We play longer each week, and this past weekend I even hauled out our own game here at home and played it with hubby.
It was so funny playing this weekend because Minion (our black cat, boss of the house) was laying on the table supervising.  There were a bunch of extra dice near him.  You know how cats will fling anything off a table?  Yep, he flung those extra dice to the floor.  And hey, he got a small straight out of it!  LOL
Not sure what I'll accomplish today.  I've been up since 5am and it's already 8:55am.  I'm hoping to post again this evening because I'd rather do evening recaps of my days instead of morning after recaps.  Then again, I'm often brain tired by the time I would do it in the evening and end up with short choppy posts.  Doing it in the quiet of the morning (hubby at work, Minion asleep) makes for better posts but keeps me from getting going with the rest of my day.  Hmmm.  See?!  This is the sort of over-thinking that is keeping me from blogging daily!
I guess we'll see what happens, and which routine I eventually fall into.
Do you play Yahtzee?
Do the voices in your head wreak havoc on even the most simple things?

Melted - Cider House Donuts (Scentsationals)


Cider House Donuts - 'Freshly fried donuts topped with brown sugared apple and smooth pumpkin puree dusted with cinnamon-spiced crumbles.'
On cold sniff this doesn't smell like much, some spice and some odd blandness.  Warmed though, it really blooms into a nice fall bakery scent.  I didn't realize there was pumpkin in here until I read the scent description while prepping this post.  It kind of makes sense now because there is a sort of doughy note that I assumed was the donut, more like the batter instead of the finished donut, but now I think that pumpkin puree 'tang' may be enhancing that part of the scent.  There is a subtle apple note and some hints of warm spice.  This is for bakery lovers, for sure.
I melted 2 cubes (about 0.8 oz worth) in my tea light warmer and had strong scent and throw.
I've gone through one pack of this already in these pre-fall days, and have another pack on hand.  I will happily pick up more if I see it at my Walmart.
Have you tried this scent?
Are you a bakery scent fan?
Do you like apple cider donuts??

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Aug. 25 - King Ludwig II's Birthday


King Ludwig II of Bavaria was born on this day in 1845, 177 years ago.  I knew absolutely nothing about Ludwig when we spent some time in Germany back in late 1999.  We toured his castle, Neuschwanstein, and it was from the tour guide's information that I became interested.
You probably know this castle even if you don't know it's name or anything about Ludwig.  It's one of the biggest tourist attractions in Europe, and is what Disney modeled it's own very famous castle after.
This is a bad, pre-digital age photo of me on a foggy day in November 1999 in front of the castle.
King Ludwig II's story is intriguing, and sad.  I've developed a mild obsession over the years and have read several books.  Surprisingly, there aren't a whole lot of books about him.  And the ones I've read have quite different views on his story.  The common thing though, is that his death was under mysterious circumstances.  The most popular theory is that his own government murdered him to get him out of the way.  They felt he was spending too much money building fancy castles and not focusing on things that were important to his country.  They had him declared mentally unfit and committed to a hospital, where he soon died by drowning in a lake.  And the cover ups and conspiracy theories began immediately.  He was only 40 years old when he died.
(Photo from a wonderful 1970s German movie about Ludwig)
A new series called The Empress is coming to Netflix soon.  It is about Elisabeth 'Sisi' of Bavaria, who was a cousin of Ludwig and a very important part of his life.  (He was engaged to her younger sister at one point.)  I would love to see this new show but we don't have Netflix.  Hopefully it will be available on dvd someday.  But anyway, one theory about his death is that he drowned while swimming to a boat that Sisi had sent to rescue him from the hospital.  This is not a popular theory but it is quite interesting.
Actually, even Ludwig's birth has some mystery attached.  It's said that he was actually born on the 24th but his grandfather wanted to delay the announcement so they could say he was born on the 25th, which was Grandfather's birthday also.  Whether that's true or not, August 25 is the day noted as King Ludwig II's birthday.

Do you know of King Ludwig II?
Do you know of his famous castles?
Are you interested in other royal histories besides the English?

Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Aug. 24 - Another Fall Wax Haul?


I check the wax aisle at Walmart nearly every time I go shopping, especially as the fall season approaches.  Fall scents are my favorites!  Last weekend I was happy to see they had added a bunch of fall lovelies!  It was so hard for me to not grab one of each!  In my old wax blog days I would grab each new one I saw, whether I liked it or not, for review purposes and blog content.  Times are different now.  Money is tighter since I quit working, and the price of everything is crazy high these days.  So I struggled to limit which scents came home with me . . . and still ended up with a bunch.

Let's take a look!

Mulled Cider (Mainstays) - 'Crisp notes of golden delicious apple simmered with spicy accents of sparkling cinnamon, fresh clove bud and zesty orange.'
I was happy to see this one back again this year.  There was a time when I did not care for cider scents at all, but I've come around in more recent years.  This is a really nice, traditional fall scent.

Apple Pumpkin (Mainstays) - 'Macintosh Apple whipped with warm apple butter and sweet cinnamon sugar are wrapped with maple syrup and brown sugar vanilla for a rich autumn sensation.'
I'm pretty sure this is a returning scent.  I've found I really enjoy the apple-pumpkin scents the past couple years.
Apple Buttered Rum (Mainstays) - 'Apple rum, pear, cinnamon.'
I think this one is new.  Or maybe my Walmart just never got it last year with the way my store struggles for inventory in these troubled times.  Anyway, I didn't love this when I sniffed it in the store, and it does not scream fall to me, but I wanted to try it anyway because it's new.  On cold sniff it's like a slightly butterscotch scent with a hint of apple at the end.  I'm curious how it will be when warmed.
Farm Apple Pumpkin (Better Homes & Gardens) - 'Notes of crisp apple, sweet orange, and brandied pears with middle notes of cinnamon stick, nutmeg, and warm pumpkin.'
This scent is not new.  This one is much more apple and cinnamon than the Mainstays version.

Farmhouse Pumpkin Patch (Better Homes & Gardens) - 'Pumpkin, sweet apple, and autumn spices stirred with brown sugar and vanilla essence.
Another returning scent, this one has become a favorite of mine.  It's closer to a carved pumpkin scent than it is to the usual pumpkin pie scents.

Pumpkin Spice (Scentsationals) - 'A blend of creamy harvest pumpkin, gleaming with spicy hints of warm cinnamon and aromatic clove over delightfully rich vanilla, smooth buttercream, and a touch of brown sugar.'
This classic has been around for years, and I'm happy it's returned yet again.  I can never remember which I prefer between this and the BHG version, and I did not see the BHG one in my store yet.  This is quite spicy, sort of a 'dry' scent, but just such a classic.

Fallen Leaves (Scentsationals) - 'Crisp air, citrus, and wood.'
I think this is new.  I sniffed it in the store and again, was not wowed but grabbed it because it's new.  I have melted this one already and . . . WOW!  Love it!  I will do a more in depth review in my Melted post but for now, this is probably a good fall scent for those who prefer the fresh, outdoor type scents.
Vanilla Pine (Scentsationals) - 'Sweet frosted pine needles, shimmering sugar crystals, and soft winter ozone's makes for the perfect holiday blend.'
This one is not a fall scent to me but I love it for the Christmas season and stock up when I see it.  I grabbed two packs this time.  It is a very nice, toned down pine scent.  Another good one for those who prefer those outdoor type scents.
As always, I will do my more detailed Melted posts as I melt each of these.
Also, for people who prefer candles over melts, Mainstays and Better Homes & Gardens almost always have their scents in both candles and melts.  If they're not in your store, check the website.  They are very affordable in these crazy economic times.
So that's what I picked up this week.  Just one more week till I can officially dive into my fall scents.  Yay!  I've got a good variety built up already but I'll still pick up more of my favorites throughout the fall season.
Did you see anything you like in this haul?
Have you started melting (or burning) fall scents yet?
What is a favorite fall scent that you're looking forward to?

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

Melted - Hazelnut Cream (Mainstays)

Hazelnut Cream - 'The sweet aroma of toasted coconut and warm honey fuses with hazelnut, sweet almonds and cinnamon at the heart of this scrumptious aroma. Vanilla cream, brown sugar and maple entice us with their sweet and sticky tones.'
Well it must be the subliminal power of the photo on the label that makes me grab this scent when I'm craving a coffee scent.  I mean, look at the description.  There is no mention of coffee in it!  LOL
Anyway, I'm pretty sure this was the scent of the very first wax melt that I ever melted waaaaaaaaay back in the earliest days of 'tarts' (as they were called back then).  I had noticed these odd looking little wax discs at Walmart and decided to try one.  I'd always had such bad luck with candles but wanted scent, and that odd little wickless piece of wax very quickly had me hooked.
I swear there is coffee in this scent!!!  It is strong on the hazelnut, and softened with the notes of cream and brown sugar.  I do not get any distinct notes of the coconut, almonds, cinnamon, or maple that are mentioned.  If they are indeed there, they are minimal and blended so well together that they are are seamless under the stronger nutty note.  I will continue in my blissful ignorance, thinking this is a coffee scent.  lol
I melted half this little Mainstays pack (about 0.6 oz worth) in my tea light warmer and had strong scent and throw.
I've bought this scent for years and will continue to keep some on hand as long as I can find it at my Walmart.
Have you tried this Hazelnut Cream scent?
Are you a coffee scent fan?
Do you remember when got you hooked on wax melts (or candles)? 

Sunday, August 14, 2022

Melted - Sweet Sugared Lemon (Mainstays)

Sweet Sugared Lemon - 'Lemon, lime, sugarcane.'

I love lemon scents.  Sometimes they're hard to come by though, so when I saw this at my Walmart, I grabbed it.  This is such a nice summery scent!  There is enough of that lime to make this an almost 7Up-type scent, and the hint of zest almost tricks your mind into thinking it's bubbly.  It's mainly a sweet lemon scent though, not too tart or zesty, but just right.

With these little Mainstays packs (1.25oz.) I melt three cubes (half the pack), and with this scent had very nice medium-strong scent and throw in my tea light warmer.

This one has been sold out at my Walmart the past few weeks but when I see it in stock again I will definitely be grabbing a couple more packs!

Have you tried this scent?
Do you like lemon scents?
Are you a fan of the Mainstays melts?

Thursday, August 11, 2022

Aug. 11 - A Chat With the Boychild

Boychild2 came over to do some laundry today.  I haven't seen him in a while so it was nice to have some company.  It gets pretty lonely around here during the week.  He showed me something he's been playing around with on his phone lately, some program thing where you enter prompts or details and A.I. creates an art image of it.  It was pretty cool!  Pretty funny at times too.  So like, we entered 'Halloween, black cats, pumpkins,' and it created four slightly different versions of a Halloween scene featuring black cats and pumpkins.  Now I wish he'd sent some of those pics to me so I could have shared them here.  Dangit!
We talked about his work for a while.  He still works where I used to work, so I'm familiar with people and things he talks about.  Even after being gone from there for three years now, hearing that things have not changed still riles me up.
And then conversation turned to me sort of whining and venting about my current struggles.  I think I mentioned recently that my urge to create is strong but I don't know what I want to do.  I was telling him about this, asking for his thoughts.  I really want to work with paper, whether it's making greeting cards, or treat boxes, or possibly starting an art journal.  Just, something with paper!  Paper crafts keep calling to me!  He knows I go through these phases.  He had no words of wisdom for me but did suggest that maybe it's time to destash my craft stuff and free myself from all that.  I have thought of that.  Actually, I had started to do it last fall but then ended up in the hospital.  After all that happened, my thoughts shifted about a lot of things and I decided I wasn't ready to give up all my stamps and dies and papers and crafty things.  But I also haven't used them in the nearly a year since either, and now I'm back to stressing myself out over it all again.  So yeah, yesterday it had popped into my mind that maybe I really should get rid of it all, and now today he suggested it too.
It probably is the wise choice at this point. 
But, ugh!  I just don't know if I can!

Wax Haul - Front Porch Candle Co. / Fall Scents


I've been dipping my toe back into the world of indie wax vendors this year and recently placed another order with Front Porch Candles.  In these days of high prices and penny pinching I'm more comfortable spending just a couple bucks for wax at Walmart, but adding supply issues into the mess often leaves my Walmart lacking in wax options.  (They STILL don't have tea light candles back in stock!)  I like being able to sniff new scents in the store so I know I'm not wasting money on something I might not like.  But again, if my Walmart isn't going to get the full array of fall scents in, well . . . I neeeeeed fall scents!  lol

So back to the indie vendors I went.  My old favorites are either out of business now or have a complicated ordering systems or crazy long turnaround times.  Front Porch is the only one of the vendors from my old wax days that I know is still quick and easy to order from.  And when a recent newsletter announced several fall scents were back in stock, I jumped on it.
Let's take a look!
Autumn Cafe - 'Pumpkin pie, apples, cinnamon, orange spice, and hot fresh coffee.'

Autumn Gathering - 'Cinnamon, spices, fresh baked pies, pumpkin, and juicy apples.'

Autumn Outdoors - 'Fresh fallen leaves, red ripe apple, and spicy cider.'

Amish Kitchen - 'Warm aroma of spices,cinnamon, fresh pumpkin, and buttercream cookies.'
Country Cabin - 'Cinnamon, spices, fresh bread, and robust woods such as mahogany and pine.'
Fall Fun - 'Caramel apple, hot cider, orange peels, pumpkin, and tons of spice!'

Harvest Home - 'Fresh cranberries, pumpkin pie, sweet buttercream, cinnamon, and spices.'

I usually like to give my first impression cold sniff thoughts when I do haul posts but these are freshly poured and, having sat together in the shipping box, I think their individual scents are a little muddled right now.  I will definitely do more detailed scent thoughts in my Melted posts as I melt these, so stay tuned for those starting a little closer to fall.

For now though, Amish Kitchen is my favorite of this bunch, with lots of warm and cozy bakery notes, but doesn't quite scream fall to me.  Autumn Outdoors seem the most fall-like at the moment, with that hint of cologne-type leaves note that often comes with 'outdoor' scents.  I'm super curious to see how these scents air out and settle, and then bloom when warmed!

These Front Porch grubby style tarts weigh right around 1 oz. and you can choose a 2, 4, or 6 pack.  I get the 2 pack size unless I've had a scent before and know I love it.  The 2 packs cost $2.60 each, which isn't that bad compared to Walmart.  (Scentsationals and BHG clamshells are 2.25 oz. and cost a little over $2.00 these days.)  Depending on what you order, there could be a bit of a shipping delay but it's still better than most of the other indie vendors I've looked at.  The one thing that frustrates me is that all scents are not always available.  Signing up for their newsletter is a handy way to see what has come into stock.  Overall though, I'm satisfied with Front Porch and will continue to order from them.

Have you tried Front Porch Candles?  Or any other indie wax vendors?
What are some of your favorite scents for fall?

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Aug. 10 - Mental Fog

Well, I did get the lawn mowed today.  Yay!  And it never did get as hot and humid as all the weather forecasts were predicting.  More yay!  But I've felt really off today, rather out of sorts.  There are too many things I want to do, or should do, but I can't get going on any of them.  I have an overwhelming urge to create, and I really want to get back to papercrafts, but an annoying little voice in my head keeps stopping me with all the annoying reminders of why I don't do papercrafting more.  Things like, 'No one sends cards anymore,' and 'Those little treat boxes don't sell,' and those types of logical thoughts.  People have told me to make things because I want enjoy making them, not always with a purpose attached.  I've tried, and I can't.  And it drives me crazy!!!!

I get so overwhelmed with things these past few years.  Even something as simple as coloring in books!  Hubby enjoys coloring and can easily just relax and go with the flow.  I get all twitchy about the intricate designs, or whether to use markers or pencils, or having too many colors to choose from.  I was telling hubby just the other day, "You know, when I was a kid I always wanted the big box of 96 crayons and don't think I ever got it.  Now I need to have the small box of 8 just to be able to cope!"  LOL  Silly, but true!

I don't know what the true root of my stress is today but it's very draining.  I would love to just go to bed right now but it's too early.  I'll get this posted and then try to watch some YouTube if our crappy rural internet allows.  It's been ungodly slow all day.

This post is rather bleah but at least I got one up for today.  I will get back into the routine of blogging!!

Do you have these mental funk days where your brain is going a million miles a minute?
How do you handle it?
And should I make paper crafts just for the fun of it??  Ideas and encouragement welcome!

Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Aug. 9 - Dilly Dally, and a Tiny Haul

 This handsome fellow was enjoying some grape jelly on a picnic table feeder hubby made.
I'm not sure why I keep dilly-dallying about blogging.  Well, I mean I know my head is full of reasons why I'm procrastinating but really, none of them make much sense.  I keep thinking I have too many things to post about but don't want to do multiple posts a day because then people might miss all but the most recent one.  Then I remind myself I have no following yet, so go ahead and post a million things!  So I'm going to try AGAIN to get into a routine of regular posting.

It was finally a very nice day weather-wise today.  Last week was hot and humid, and then the weekend was rainy and even more humid.  Yesterday was much cooler but that humidity just kept hanging around.  It's finally gone today.  Yay!  And only in the mid 70s!  YAY!  But tomorrow is supposed to be upper 80s and humid again.  Ugh.  I know, I know, 80's is a dream compared to what a lot of the US is dealing with.

I'd planned on mowing the lawn today.  When I went out to my beloved old green rider though, I found the gas tank was empty from last time and our gas cans were also empty.  I don't like going to fill the gas cans, so hubby said he'd do it after work.  In the meantime, I fired up the push mower and did all detail work, like around the trees and edges of the house, etc.  Quite a workout in our huge yard!  I never did go back out and finish with the rider after hubby got the gas.  I'll try to do that tomorrow, if it's not horribly hot and humid.

I picked up just a few more fun fall things this weekend.  Saturday I did my regular shopping at Walmart and grabbed another pack of the Fresh Orchard Apples wax.  I also dug through the wax bin for a bit and found two packs of the Cider House Donuts scent.  They smell divine!  A very fall-type bakery scent.  Reminds of the farmers market last year, where I'd get an apple cider donut each week after we had our own booth set up.  

And then Sunday hubby and I went to Menards for bird seed, a cedar wood board, and a few other things.  They didn't have their fall stuff out yet but I did see they had some candy corn out already.  I grabbed a bag of the Autumn Mix, the kind with the pumpkins and the brown end candy corn along with the regular candy corn.  I love candy corn and the pumpkins!  It breaks my heart that I can't eat them anymore like I used to, but I can still have a couple pieces every once in a while.  I also plan on making little goodie bags for a few people, so yeah, at least I don't have to completely miss out on all the fall treats.

That's about it for today.  Not the most exciting post, I know.  If it gets me back into the habit of posting though, well I won't complain.

How are you in these late days of summer?
Have you started decorating for fall yet?
Are you a candy corn fan?

Friday, August 5, 2022

Melted - Fresh Orchard Apples (Better Homes & Gardens)

 Fresh Orchard Apples - 'Apple, pear blossom, lemon, sugar & vanilla bean scent notes.'

This is another great apple scent for pre-fall, otherwise known as August.  (lol)  This one is not quite as pure apple as the Sweet Apple from Mainstays that I posted about the other day.  There is tiny bit more of a floral note and something almost 'green' in this one, but if you didn't know any better you'd probably still say it was just a nice bright and juicy apple scent.

I melted two cubes (about 0.8 oz worth) in my tea light warmer and had *medium scent and throw.

Because I don't see many plain apple scents, I'd probably buy more of this.  I think I prefer the Mainstays apple just a bit over this, even though their descriptions are very similar.  (Lemon in this, pear in the other.)

Have you tried Fresh Orchard Apples?
Do you have a favorite non-cinnamon apple scent for fall?

* It seems I don't get very good throw during summer.  We don't have central air in our house, so with nothing to stir up the air, and with the windows open, it seems the scent either just hovers around the warmer or drifts out the windows.  lol

Thursday, August 4, 2022

Aug. 4 - Achy Joints Creations

When we moved to our current home there were a couple of outbuildings on the property, including this old barn.  We never really did anything with it, never got animals or anything, and it fell into disrepair over the years.  Around 2016 we did get the roof redone, and then in 2017 hubby and his friend/coworker had the idea of rebuilding the whole darn building to make it into a workshop.  They had ideas of starting a woodworking and metalcraft business, doing furniture and things.  I rolled my eyes at their business idea (they had a history of grand money making ideas, lol) but if they were going to save that falling apart barn, I was all for that.
Every day after work they'd be out there working on rebuilding that barn.  They went section by section, jacking up the roof in the area they were working in, tearing out a portion of old wall, and building a new wall back in its place.  They went all the way around the building this way.
It took about four months for the bulk of the work, and then things slowed down as the weather got colder and the things that still needed to be done were less intense.  I never did get a decent full length pic of this side of the building after they'd rebuilt and sided it, but you can see from this pic how nice it all turned out.  And it was just the two of them!  The only outside help they had was an electrician to put a new fuse box in to accommodate the large air compressor they were going to have.  Well, and family members helped haul garbage or clean up or whatever little things they could do. 
When they started this rebuild project, the inside of the barn was dark, dirty, cluttered with years of junk.  Hubby, the boys, and I had done some cleaning a few years before when hubby had first tried to fix the barn himself.  So this pic above is still junk filled but nowhere near what it was.  Hubby and his friend hauled EVERYTHING out, gutted the inside, poured cement in the old cow gutters, and rebuilt new walls.
It looked amazing when they were done!  It was so roomy and bright and clean!  They built shelves, salvaged an old workbench and built a new top for it, built all new doors for around the building.  They moved in the tools and machines they'd already had, and started buying more.  It was an exciting time!
During all this, hubby and I had kicked around the idea of having our own little business separate from the one he and his friend were planning.  Ours would be smaller scale, more like craft projects that we could sell.  He said at one point that we should start thinking of a name, and I had joked, "Ha, by the time this ever happens we'll be too old and achy to even do it.  What, are we gonna call it Achy Joints Creations or something?"  And it stuck!  LOL 
In 2019 we did three craft markets in the little town near us.  In 2020 we signed up for a local farmers market, did the whole summer season and loved it so much that we did the winter markets too.  We did that farmers market again in 2021 but frustrations were already creeping in and then some big life changes happened.  (Story for another time.)  We came into the 2022 farmers market season unsure if we wanted to do it, and sure enough, we only did the first two weeks and then decided to stop for various reasons.  (Again, story for another time.)
When we started selling at markets in 2019, I was big into papercrafts and was so excited to finally have a place to sell them.  I mainly had handmade greeting cards at the time.
Hubby was mainly doing bird feeders and bird houses in the beginning.  We were so excited at that first sale!  We quickly saw though, that these were not things people wanted.  Hubby got lots of comments on his wood projects but people pretty much ignored my greeting cards.  I mean, it makes sense in this digital world.  Who sends cards anymore?  (I do!)
We did some rethinking and scrambling, and decided that I should start making soap again.  That seemed more like a product that would sell at these types of markets, and was something people would come back and buy more of in future markets.  I'd been a soap maker many years before but had stopped because I also had a full-time job back then.  So yep, I started making soap again.  And hubby started making a variety of other wood items like candle holders, tissue box covers, small seasonal decor pieces.

Fast forward to now, August 2022.  Achy Joints Creations is still alive but sort of on a break.  I found I don't have the same passion for soapmaking that I used to, and we've also found that outdoor markets in the heat and humidity of summer are not kind to handmade bars of goat milk soap.  We've found that hubby's wood items still aren't big sellers at the markets but sell much better online.  The soap is the opposite, selling quite well at the markets but hardly at all online.  I'm having very strong urges to go back to papercrafts.  They'd survive the markets much better but people just don't seem very interested in such things.  So we're still trying to decide how we want to move forward after our 2022 break.

The point of all this is that hubby and I each have handmade items that we create and sell.  We're more hobby level and not technically a business at this point but we do have dreams of opening our own little shop after he retires.  We still call ourselves Achy Joints Creations.  We have a Facebook page, an Etsy shop, and even a blog and Instagram that I haven't done anything with in ages.  So in future posts if I mention Achy Joints or our crafts, you'll know now what the heck I'm talking about.

Oh, and as for that furniture business hubby and his friend had originally planned?  It never happened.  His friend bought a house that had a finished, heated workshop attached to the garage, and bought his own fancy machine with ideas of making his own best selling projects.  That never went anywhere either and he's already moved onto other grand ideas.  We're super thankful and grateful for all his help in rebuilding the barn though!  Without him it never would have happened!!

Melted - Sweet Apple (Mainstays)

Sweet Apple - 'Juicy apple scent freshened with sweet pear and freshly sliced orange, while crystallized sugar and raw vanilla bean add a hint of sweetness.'
Well if you didn't know all that was in there you'd probably swear this was just a simple apple scent.  I sure thought so!  As you know, I'm a very seasonal melter and I like to start melting apple scents in August.  This is a perfect choice, still bright and fruity for summer, but apple . . . making one think of back to school, apple picking, and building excitement for full-on fall when spice and pumpkin take over.  Knowing what's all in this scent, I do detect some of that crystallized sugar but I still think that overall you'd just think this was apple.
I melted three cubes (half the pack, about 0.6 oz worth) in my tea light warmer and had *medium scent and throw.

I wish this was a little stronger, and maybe next time I'll try four cubes, but it's still a great pre-fall scent that I will buy more of.

Have you tried this scent?
How do you feel about the Mainstays melts in general?
Do melt apple scents year-round, or save them for fall?
* It seems I don't get very good throw during summer.  We don't have central air in our house, so with nothing to stir up the air, and with the windows open, it seems the scent either just hovers around the warmer or drifts out the windows.  lol