27 July 2013

When Worlds Collide

It's a happy day when two of the things you love are somehow combined.  Long before I started this blog, I started a knitting/reading/whatever blog, which you can see here.

Then, last Christmas, I became aware of a single product that combined two of my very favorite things:  knitting and beauty.  They are called Soakboxes, and they combine a skein of yarn and pattern for a pair of fingerless mitts; a small bottle of Soak, which is made to clean your knitting projects when they are finished, or need a wash, a bottle of hand cream, and a bottle of custom-dyed Essie nail polish.  The have great names, such as Elvis Paisley and Grape Gatsby.

I'd only ever seen them online, until I visited one of the local yarn stores, Hidden River Yarns, owned by a friend of mine.  At the time, I'd been really in love with one of them, but couldn't afford it, even though they were marked 20% off.  But she was kind enough to put one aside for me, and last week I finally got to pick it up.  Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Lace Kelly:

And here is a photo (from the Internet, I'm not there yet) of what the finished knitting project looks like, while wearing the nail polish (which is a shade called Incognito):

I just think this is so cool!  There are colors enough for everyone, and I think it would be a lovely gift if you know someone who loves to knit, and is also likely to (or does already) paint their nails.

Fun, right?  And proof for those still following outdated stereotypes, that knitters are not just little old ladies knitting baby booties.  (Though I admit to both being old and having knit baby booties for a friend's baby.)

These can be found both online and in yarn stores, as well as through Amazon.  So you really have no excuse if you want to buy one for yourself or someone else.  :-)

22 July 2013

One of My New Likes

A lot of times when I have been in Sephora, I've been walking around and would overhear people who worked there and customers singing the praises of this product:

And I've always been tempted to try it, but could not justify the price ($54.00) to myself for something that seems like a real "extra."  However, last week two things converged that made me decide I could just try it and stop thinking about it - I got a [tiny] raise, and the temperatures were ridiculous, and my skin was suffering big-time.  So I decided to give it a try.

According to the product, you should use it by 1) massaging a generous layer onto damp skin, 2) waiting five minutes until a froth forms, 3) rinsing well, and 4) following up with a toner and/or moisturizer.  It also says that it should not be used more than three times a week.  So I took it home, and gave it a try, and ahhhhhh - what a great feeling!  It feels a little bit weird when the froth is forming, but even though my skin is sensitive, I did not have any stinging sensation, and it didn't take long to froth up.  When I rinsed my face, it felt so good and there was no resulting redness once dry.  My face felt so refreshed, it actually made me feel like I wasn't suffering from the heat so much!

But I figured the real test would be using it more times, and seeing if it was just beginner's luck or enthusiasm, so I have tried it twice more, and in my opinion, it's a real winner.

Do you need Bliss Triple Oxygen Instant Energizing Mask?  No.  Is it something that - as stated on the bottle - you should "treat yourself" to if you have a chance?  Yes!  I am hoping that the bottle will last a while, so that I can justify treating myself again in the future.  Because now I am convinced that my face will thank me.

11 July 2013

Sharing Some Love

When Google Reader faded into the sunset, I had decided to give both Feedly and Bloglovin a try.  Both have their good points, but I found it easier to organize things on Bloglovin, so that's where I usually check for updates on my favorite blogs.

The other day, I was poking around to see what was listed under their "Top Blogs" and came across We Heart This.  After reading a few of their posts, I added it to the blogs I wanted to follow.  It covers a lot of different things - food, fashion, beauty to name a few - and seems to be aimed at an average person, not only those who can eat at fancy restaurants or wear haute couture.  I thought I'd share it here, in case anyone wanted to give it a try.

The other day I read this post, and decided to play along.  So here goes.

My version of 3 Things - The Best of Summer So Far:
Best food you ate this summer:  Fried pickles!  I never had them before, and a place opened around the corner from our house where they are on the menu.  WOW.
Best cocktail you drank:  Frozen margarita.  Because a) it's a margarita, and b) it's frozen.
Best Makeup Purchase:  L'Oreal Paris Infallible Le Rouge lipstick, in color #138.  I was on my way to work one morning and realized I'd forgotten to put on lipstick.  Not the worst thing, but I like lipstick and without it, I look pretty washed out.  So I stopped at a CVS that I usually pass, and for whatever reason, chose this color.  I don't usually feel like I can wear red lipstick, though I do love it, but that morning I decided that was the shade for me.  Not only is it a pretty color, but it stays on for a really long time.  At first, I thought it was awfully expensive for a drugstore lipstick, but now I think it's a really great deal!
So there's my list - what about you?

05 July 2013

I'm Just Not Sure About Yoga ...

Hello there!  I hope those of you in the U.S. had a good July 4th.  The Tim had to work until 3:00, so we stayed put and had our picnic inside (which we would have done anyway, as it was way too hot to eat outside!), then watched fireworks on TV.   This is primarily because fireworks in Philadelphia often don't even start until 11:00 p.m.  Since both of us had to work today, we knew it wouldn't be a good idea to stay up later than usual.

Anyway, about that subject line.  Many years ago, I had a VHS tape of a yoga program.  I would try it a couple of times a week, and I'm pretty sure that I wasn't really doing it correctly, but I enjoyed it, and it made me feel like I was trying to do something good for my health.   Then, about seven years ago, when I was recovering from multiple surgeries in a five-month period, my physical therapist suggested that I try it again.  So I signed up for a 6-week workshop.  I enjoyed it, but never quite got it right.  Oh well.

In between that first time and the second time, I had a couple of opportunities to take Pilates classes.  I really loved Pilates, even though if possible, I was worse at that than I was at yoga!  I have some Pilates DVDs that kept me going for a while on my own, but eventually stopped altogether.

So in the past couple of weeks, I've managed to get myself back to the gym on a regular basis.  Which is making me feel so much better!  I looked at the classes offered, and saw that there is a Vinyasa Yoga class on Saturday mornings.  So last Saturday, I grabbed my mat and took that class.  It was long (1 1/2 hours), hard, and I was worse than ever!  I think it was because I am not flexible enough to keep my moves "flowing."  Plus, I have bad knees, which give me problems when I do lunges, and arthritic wrists, making anything like downward dog difficult.  But I got through the class, and felt like I'd done a good thing.

Until Sunday.  And actually, the rest of the week.  My knees survived, but my wrists are really sore. Wearing the braces I have overnight and taking naproxen only help a little bit.  I managed to get in two workouts this week, though I didn't work as hard as usual.  My wrists are finally starting to feel back to normal.

Needless to say, I don't think I'll go again tomorrow.  One of the people in last week's class said that on Monday evenings, there is a Hatha Yoga class that might work better for me.  I've done some reading, and I think it might be worth a try.  Though I don't know if I should wait another week before trying it or not.

Sigh.  I sure wish they offered Pilates ...