Friday, December 27, 2013

Happiness in the mailbox.

I wrote a different post and it bored me so much, I decided to start over.

Have you guys found this yet? It's called Birchbox and it's a monthly subscription to happiness!

Okay, that may be overselling it a little. But it's a subscription to at least a smile or two!

Each month this box arrives, usually inside of a PINK box -- so you immediately know you're getting free stuff!

The suspense builds...

...until you finally see the goodies inside! This was November's box, and I'm telling you that the tube of blue face cream is miraculous!

Basically, they're trial sizes of (mostly) high-end products. [I say mostly because my first box had a new formulation of Chapstick in it!] The tiny tube here is CC cream, which I've been wanting to try, and now I make bargains with myself about when I can use it -- it's a tiny tube, after all, and I don't want to waste it! I took this hairspray on a recent trip, and it passes the airport check.

See that blue box? Let's open it.

CHOCOLATE! And what is to date the best eyeliner I've ever used.

The other selling point they make is that when you purchase the full-size of any of these items, you get a discount, like 10-20% or something. I haven't done that yet. I think I have trouble committing! These are relatively expensive, so the sample sizes work just fine for me. This eyeliner is $16 regularly, so it might get to stay in my cabinet. Or they might send me something I like better next month!

Anyway, it's great fun, and I split the contents (sometimes) with the girl, so it all gets used. $10 a month and you get to select the things you are most interested in trying. I swear I didn't pick chocolate from the list, so they take some liberties!

[Disclaimer: This is not a paid advertisement,sadly. But I think I get something if you tell them I told you! I found out at Christmas that my sister, who hooked me on this, heard about it from her youngest daughter, who heard about it from her older sister! I'll bet it's a pyramid scheme, now that I think about it. Not really. Just sign up if you want to!]

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas this and that.

We're not discussing how it's been two months since my last 

Instead, let's see what Christmas looks like this year!

First, there was this a couple of weeks ago:

That's solid ice, people, NOT snow. Even the dogs couldn't walk on it.

That was followed by this:

... in which I dress up like a man and proceed to hack at the ice like it's my job. I really wanted to get out the blow dryer, but sanity (aka, the husband) prevailed.

Moving the party indoors, I took a day and did this:

Holiday baking, otherwise known as "cheap gift giving for a million people." Snickerdoodle, chocolate chip, and molasses cookies, and chocolate covered pretzel sticks. There was banana bread at one point during the ice storm, but you can't prove it now. 

In the midst of all this, I changed jobs for the first time in nine years, and had about 3 days to finish all things Christmas before jetting off to Chicago for a couple of days, where I was greeted with this:
That's about 8 feet of snow scooped from the parking log and dumped on those poor trees. It will probably still be there in April.

Meanwhile, this stuff fell out of the attic and decorated the house:

And a few snowmen and Santas showed up, too:
This bookshelf transforms every year to hold my snowmen.
This guy was a gift from my sister -- and was purchased at the store my dear friend owns!
He just makes me smile. And his twin brother showed up this year for my daughter's tree.
He's a nightlight, too.
Santa nesting dolls -- the tiniest is a fingertip-sized snowman - brought to me from Europe.
Then there was this:

Coby apparently decided he'd had enough of the Christmas crazy and politely asked to be shipped to somewhere more kitty-friendly. We declined. 

At last, we had this:

...which led to this:

That's it, folks. Chrismassy this and that from our house to yours!