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Human, Woman, Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend & Aspiring Unicorn Breeder


Deconstructing Eden: Once Upon a Time...

A couple of months ago I got the sicklies and was laid up in bed for week. As I was browsing Netflix, in my stupor, I stumbled upon a series I had never watched before: Once Upon a Time. As fantasy is right up my alley, I began to watch... and I watched... and I watched some more. And about a week later I finished 3 seasons (or everything available in netflix). It has become one of my new favorite TV programs!

About the same time I was perusing Deconstructing Eden, one of my favorite perfume shops, and discovered that they carry a plethora of fairy tale inspired fragrances. Can you imagin how thrilled I was?! So I bought three of them: Snow White (well duh), Glass Slipper (but of course), and Alice in Wonderland (yes,yes,yes). 

Needless to say they were all unique. They all surprised me in their complexity and the feelings they evoked. So without further ado...

Once Upon a Time there was a beautiful Queen who loved perfume. And so she sought out the most exquisite perfumery in all of the land. Once she found this magical place she bought herself three very different bottles, from three very different realms: a fairy tale forest, a princesses castle, and a topsy-turvy land. And this is what she thought of them...

Since I adore "Once Upon a Time" (the tv show), trying a perfume bearing the heroines name was a must for me. 

Snow White starts out fairly straight forward. The first thing to hit you is a wave of poisoned apple. At least in my opinion this perfume is exactly what I imagine a poisoned apple to smell like: sharply tart and bitterly sweet. Think Granny Smith apple serve chilled and rolled in sugar & arsenic.

It's intoxicating enough to send any princess into a swoon, but, much like Prince Charmings kiss in an enchanted forest, mellows into a breath of sweet, fresh air with hint of woodsy florals. 

Upon wearing it for a while it took on a scent of a crisp red delicious apple nestled in a bed of freshly snapped twigs. Snow White made it through... Gone was the deliciously sinful poison and in it's place was the scent of a soft and soothing happily ever after. 

Where Cinderella's story is the stuff little girls dream of, this is a decidedly grown-up fragrance that oozes sex appeal. Every single time I wear it my husband nuzzles my neck and murmurs, "Mmm you smell so good..." 

Glass Slipper starts off delirously bold. Much like glass clinking down marble steps at the stroke of midnight, this fragrance is sharp, smooth, and brittle all at once. Bright jasmine mingles with the crisp sweetness of moonflower to create a sharp and intoxicating floral bouquet. 

After a couple of hours wear the extravagant florals melt into the delicate white musk, leaving a lingering scent of passion and the promise of new romance. This isn't a fragrance for a naive young princess, but rather something fit for a woman who's been through the wringer and come out kicking ass.... something I imagine Cinderella herself would wear on her wedding day to her prince. 

If Snow White and Glass Slipper are sharp & clear perfumes for serious women, Alice in Wonderland is their polar opposite! This perfume was warm and fuzzy... and it took me straight back to my childhood, recalling smells I can no longer give name too but remember very well in my heart. 

Pure whimsy is captured in your very first sniff! Lemon drop candies. Candied violets. Roses finger-painted red. These scents collide in a dazzling array of olfactory phantosmia... was that really lemon I smelled, or maybe it was lime... was it actually violet or perhaps sweet-pea? Am I imagining this, or do I smell whipped cream? Suddenly I feel very woozy... In a good way, of course! 

The scent mellows into something akin to a frothy lemon pie topped with warm cream. It recalls afternoon naps in the sun... a swoon brought on by a belly filled with too many sweets. A fitting finale to such a topsy-turvy scent, and a decidedly grownup way to let our inner little girls out to dream. Oh mirror mirror, this truly was my favorite of them all! 

These three storybook gems are but a small sampling of what Deconstructing Eden has to offer in their House perfumes. They have an entire lineup of fairy tale inspired fragrances. From Wicked Step-Mother and Big Bad Wolf to Prince Charming and Through the Looking Glass, there is something for lovers of fairy tales everywhere! And if you're undecided, why not try a sample pack of the lineup to get a taste of them all.... that way you'll live happily ever after with whatever perfume you choose. 

The end! 

All photographs courtesy of Deconstructing Eden. 


My Beauty Secrets... Since Ya' Asked.

I rarely go out in public, around other humans, unless I absolutely have to. I'm one of those weird introverted extroverts... But each time I do venture out into the world the same thing inevitably happens: People think I'm my middle sons girlfriend (he's 17) , or that I'm my oldest sons sister (he's 19) ... Once my husbands coworker mistook me for his daughter (my husband is a young looking 40). 

People completely spaz when they learn I have almost grown children. They spaz yet again when I tell then my age (40).

Last night I went out and had so much sunshine blown up my ass that I'm still beaming this morning. I met a cool couple and got to chatting with them. The husband thought I was in my mid 20's and the wife swore there's no way I could be older than 30. The husband told me I need to take a picture of my face, put it on the cover of a book, and sell my "beauty secrets." He swore I would be a millionaire.

I'm always asked that, "What's your secret."

My "secrets" wouldn't fill up a book, plus they're not really secrets, so today I'm going to share what I think has helped me to remain so youthful looking. It may or may not work, it's just the things I believe I've done correctly over the years.

That's the caveat... Years. This has been a years long process. But I'll share it anyway. 

Step One:
When I was a teenager one of my aunts told me that if I wanted to remain wrinkle-free when I was older I should avoid the sun. 

This aunt is now 60 and doesn't look a day past 40. But even way back then as a teenager I noticed how different she looked from other women her age. So I took her advice. Being one of the weird gothy kids it was easy to do.

So while most everyone else my age was bathing in crisco & iodine and baking in the sun, I avoided it like the plague and slathered on the highest SPF I could buy. I still partied and drank and smoked and ate terribly, but I avoided the sun. And I believe that's the biggest reason why my skin is the way it is today. 

So even though it's not possible to go back in time and stop yourself from tanning, start today by covering yourself when you go outside. And always, always, always put an SPF on your face. Always. I'm serious.. SPfuckingF. Do it.

Step Two:
That same aunt also said that in addition to avoiding the sun, you must moisturize. Now I didn't really listen to her at 14. But once I hit my 20's and started noticing other chicks my age developing wrinkles, those words came back to me. 

And so I started moisturizing.

I truly believe that it doesn't matter if you use a $5 face cream or a $500 face cream. In fact I just use straight up oil on my face: coconut oil, argan oil, olive oil, marula oil... basically whatever oil I have on hand (cooking or otherwise) I will rub it all over my face, neck, and boobs.

Again, since time travel is impossible you're not going to be able to undo damage, but you can prevent it from continuing. So lube up!

Step Three:
Drink lots of water. I love water. It's my favorite drink. It keeps you hydrated and helps your cells to regenerate or something. So drink it. Lots of it!! 

Step Four: 
Don't get too thin. Fat in the face plumps up the skin, helping to conceal wrinkles. It's true!

Women pay tons of money to have fillers injected into their face to basically mimic the effects of fat under the skin. 

Look at a photo of 40 or 50 year old celebrity... and then go back and look at a younger photo of them. They may have still been thin but you'll notice that they probably had a "baby face."

When we're younger we hold onto fat in our faces, giving us a youthful appearance. Fat baby skin is one of the softest, smoothest things in the universe.

Well I've stayed fat and am predisposed to having a chubbier face (even when I'm thinner). So that has helped immensely in the aging process. I'm not suggesting anyone becoming overweight like myself, but I am saying it's part of the reason my face is so smooth. 

Step Five: 
Genetics. Hope you got good ones. That's all I can say about that. 

Step Six:
Get good sleep every night. Sometimes I suffer from bouts of insomnia, but for the most part I've always been a good, heavy sleeper. I require at least 9 hours of sleep every night - (I don't mean I like to get that, I mean if I don't have at least 9 hours I'm a stark raving loopy lunatic). So I've made sure to always get my beauty rest. 

Our bodies regenerate while we sleep, so if you're not getting sufficient rest, you're not healing from the stresses (physical & mental) of the day. 

Now, I have my naysayers... One of my cousins thinks I get Botox all the time because I had it done once... and that my aging well is not because of the reasons listed above. But I stand by what I said. 

So, for the record, I must admit that I had Botox injected into my face one time a couple of years ago. I've had a few professional facials in my life (and by a few I mean 4, tops). I've also had microdermabrasion and a light chemical peel, both done once and at the same time as the Botox. But I'm also a former pack a day smoker for over 15 years, I drank heavily and partied pretty much daily as a teenager (albeit it with natural substances). I don't work out regularly and I eat way too much, but not processed food. But I rarely drink nowadays. Oh, and as horrible as this is to admit I will still occasionally smoke a cigarette (in social situations... though I'm not very social). 

So one more time: Minimal sun. Moisturize. Drink lots of water. Add a little weight to your frame. Have good genes. Get enough sleep. 

Well, that's it. Those are my beauty secrets. And this is my 40 year old face with no makeup, no filters, and a shitty front facing cell phone camera.... (so if you blow it up I'm sure you'll see every single imperfection). But I think I'm still pretty ok for an old gal. 

If you have any beauty secrets, feel free to pass them along to me! I love learning new tricks.


Self Reflection and Stuff

I've certainly never had a proclivity toward niceness, but I feel like I've made great strides in being a nicer person over the past few years. I still have a problem with speaking my mind, though I try to temper it with (reasonable) kindness. 

But is that really a "problem" or is it just who I am? Is it both? Am I trying to reach an unattainable "nice" goal... and if I do reach some pinnacle of "niceness" is there a point where I'll stop being who I essentially am in order to spare the feelings of others? And would that be a good or bad thing?

At this point in my life's journey I feel like other peoples feelings are their issue and that if they're unable to control them that's their problem to work on, not mine. Of course it's never a good thing to be flat out cruel or mean, but where's that line... Where does my responsibility for my actions end and their responsibility for theirs begin? I guess I just have a difficult time ascertaining where that line is... 

Sometimes I wonder if maybe I'm a sociopath because of my complete and utter lack of empathy for stupid people. I also have a tendency towards narcissism, black & white thinking, and selfishness. None of those truths bother me. To me they are just that: Truths about who I am. They are what they are and I don't care to change those traits (except the selfish part... I actively work on that).

But then again I feel everything so intensely that I don't think sociopathy is remotely possible. I can physically feel mood shifts in a room, the feelings of others are tangible, and different energies in the air affect me on a physical level. 

It's almost like there are two souls inside of me fighting for control: one is a volcano trying to erupt and the other is a geyser trying to put the volcano out. They're equally as powerful and neither is giving up anytime soon.

Is it terribly odd that I both like and dislike these things about myself? 

Maybe I don't really want to change, per say. Maybe I'm just seeking balance. I believe it's a good thing to continually seek and grow... As long as I don't lose who I am in the process.