Sharing My World 64

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Share Your World – January 16, 2016

Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?

My closet door is in the rafters in the garage.  It’s one of those folding in half ones with little wheely things that screech along an overhead runner.  The runner is also gone, along with the lower left hand side holder for the pin that kept it in place at the bottom.  I sincerely hated that thing.  In its place I now have a curtain rod and a curtain flat against the opening, almost flush with the wall.  It’s pretty much always closed because sometimes looking into my closet can be a strange mix of depressing and frightening.  Nothing would want to live in there, so I have no worries about anything popping out from behind the curtain to disturb my sleep.

Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotels?

Yes I do, because they’re just going to throw them out anyway.  They’re the perfect size for travelling to places where I’m not staying in a hotel. And if I don’t go anywhere I eventually throw them out myself, saving hotel staff the trouble. When we had a dog I used to use them on him  when he had a bath.  What a strange thing to remember.

What is your usual bedtime?

Anytime between 8:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m.  Sorry I can’t be more specific.  There’s just too many variables.  What I’m binge watching on Netflix, what I’m reading, how much coffee I drank too late in the day, whether or not I can keep my eyes open. I do aim for ten/ten-thirty but it’s hit and miss.

Do you like to use post-it notes?

OMG post-it notes are the absolute best notes on the planet.  If you ever want to give me something nice, forget the flowers and go for a big package of rainbow coloured post-its instead.  I am so serious about that it’s not even funny.

When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?

Years and years and years ago when there was really no other way to communicate over long distances other than by telephone.  I used to write to my parents sporadically because my mom was so good to write to me,  but my letters were done on the computer in large font and printed, with only the odd hasty p.s. and a scribbled signature added by pen.  I treasure what I saved of her cards and letters but I fear the handwritten note will soon be history.  Cursive writing and beautiful penmanship will be an oddity from the past.  None of us will remember how to spell anything without auto correct.  We will converse in short forms and emoticons with questionable grammar.  One day we will forget how to talk.  Ok now I’m thoroughly bummed.

Any phobias?

I don’t like large deep bodies of water.  Even as I typed that I had to take a big breath of air.  I’m sure in a former life I either drowned or suffocated.  Or fell off a cliff.  Into the ocean.  I also don’t like extreme heights.  I cope with these fears with funny little mind games and try not to dwell on how silly I’m being.

How tall are you?

I used to be 5’4″ but I’ve shrunk an inch apparently according to the people who last measured me at some medical facility or other.  Maybe my posture got worse.  Maybe my younger taller self was delusional.  Anything is possible.  I used to love wearing three-inch heels or wedges or platforms way back in the day and gazing down at the tops of short people’s heads.  My ankles were less than thrilled about that though.  Can’t remember the last time I wore anything with a substantial heel.  Would probably break both my legs at once if I tried it again.

Optional Bonus question: What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

The weather is completely bearable!  Hovering around zero Celsius.  There’s a bit of melting and freezing going on so the sidewalks are not exactly safe, but I’m not using them anyway.  They are my latest excuse for staying inside. One of my many varied and far-fetched excuses if you want the truth.  Some of which make very little sense but I stubbornly cling to them anyway.

I am looking forward to making Rice Krispie squares to use up the bag of marshmallows left over from Christmas baking.  But they will have to wait until we finish the brownies I baked yesterday in a serious chocolate craving fit.  They are sweetened with dates and orange juice, no added refined sugar.  So I feel maybe half the normal amount of guilt eating them.

It’s always a bonus when you can cut your guilt in two.  I should make a list of ways to do that…..

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Reading Lables

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When normal relief isn’t good enough.

Yesterday after I used my inhaler I held my breath and read almost every word on my tube of dermatologist tested INTENSE RELIEF hand cream, except for the French.  I find if I distract myself from the fact that I have stopped breathing it’s easier to keep the inhaled ventolin in my lungs longer so that it will have a better chance to do whatever it’s meant to be doing in there.

I am an obsessive reader of labels when it comes to food products.  I religiously read patient leaflets included with medical products to see if they agree with what the doctor and the pharmacist advise.  And also to check out all the possible side effects so I can imagine I am experiencing them.  I read the instructions on recipes too.  Sort of.  Unless I don’t feel like it.  But that’s getting off topic and away from my point.  I often do have a point, in case you hadn’t  noticed.

What I don’t pay much attention to is all the blather on the labels of self-care products like shampoo and body wash and creams and lotions.  After getting myself all informed about the benefits of my amazing hand cream, (and then gasping for breath before passing out) I went around the house reading other descriptions and instructions on random product lables.  Turns out they are simply loaded with adjectives which may or may not be accurate or even make sense.

Yes, my life is exactly this thrilling on a normal day.

But that is not my point either. My point is, advertising can be devious and deceptive but mostly just damned confusing.  I have compiled a list of examples for you.  (I am nothing if not predictable).

  • velvety smooth, silky smooth, smooth and soothing
  • long lasting, all day, 24 hour
  • humidity resistant
  • strong but flexible
  • advanced moisture therapy
  • deep moisturizing
  • total moisturizing
  • deeply hydrating
  • protective hydration
  • shielding emollients
  • fast absorbing
  • gently absorbs
  • pure
  • enriched with vitamins and skin essential lipids
  • non greasy
  • soft, luxurious
  • skin perfecting
  • exotic vitality (if you’re shopping for vitality, the exotic variety is no doubt the best)
  • glow renewal
  • hydra nutrition
  • sulphate/phthalate/paraben/alcohol/petroleum/etc. free
  • unique
  • eco friendly
  • certified organic
  • all natural
  • 99% plant based (the other 1% could be made from snakes….)
  • refreshes and revitalizes thirsty skin
  • locks in volume

How impressive is that last one?  Because no one wants their volume to break free and go gallivanting off into the stratosphere.

You might surmise from this long list that I have a thousand or more beauty products stashed away in my home.  I don’t.  These are all written on shampoo, conditioner, body wash, hand soap, lotion, and a couple of hair care products.  Maybe there was one from my dish soap, I can’t remember.

I have what I thought were pretty ordinary apple/green tea and coconut/cocoa butter shampoos (because who doesn’t want their hair to smell like lunch) but on closer examination it turns out they are made from Farm Harvested green apples, Chinese green tea extracts, South Pacific coconut oil and West African cocoa butter extracts.  Wow.  Who runs around the world collecting all this crap. I’m pretty sure no one.

Most confusing of all is what sometimes follows all this blather about how wonderful and pure and amazing the stuff is.

  • for external use only, do not swallow
  • discontinue use if rash or irritation occurs or worsens
  • avoid contact with eyes
  • keep out of reach of children

If there is truth in advertising I think it’s mostly of the stretched variety.  Now I realize there is no point in complaining if you aren’t willing to come up with positive changes. So here is an example of something  I would like to see on my bottle of conditioner.  “Regular use ensures that your hair will no longer stand on end, crackle with enough static electricity to light up a dark room, or have the potential to set your sheets on fire.”

Come on, admit it.  You would for sure buy that.

 

 

Just Another Great Canadian Sunday

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It’s not every day I take a picture of my shampoo, so you know there’s got to be some kind of weird story behind it, right?

There’s a really good reason for me staying at home while W does most of the shopping. He is able to pick up all the items on a list, no more and no less. I admire that about him. Well, about anyone, really. The lists I take with me become vague guidelines once I enter a store. My cart fills up, and when the cashier wants to know if I found everything I was looking for I just smile and nod. Because explaining that I made six substitutions and changed my mind ten times and probably forgot at least three essentials but now couldn’t be bothered looking for them because I’m exhausted and don’t want to retrace my steps and just would like to be done with shopping and go home…..I don’t think she really wants to hear all that.

Anyway, back to the shampoo. I find it very hard to resist a good deal, even though I also firmly believe you get what you pay for. So I am one of those annoying shoppers with way too much time on my hands who will block an aisle while I check out ingredients and best buys and packaging and brands and on and on so you can see why the process is exhausting. And yes, the shampoo, I’m getting to that, I swear.  Although you can’t see it clearly in my photo, right at the top it says Proudly Canadian and underneath that, Fiers d’être Canadiens which roughly translated means proud to be (a French-speaking) Canadian.

And this bottle of shampoo cost One Canadian Dollar. OMG.

What in the world makes a shampoo uniquely Canadian? Being manufactured in Toronto? And why is it so CHEAP?? Is it complete Canadian/Canadien crap? Is this one of those instances where the store made a crazy deal and is passing the savings along to consumers? If I use this stuff will my hair turn to dandelion fluff and blow away in a high wind? Do I have any Advil at home for this headache? Better pick some up.

Anyway, long story short, although it’s too late for that, I have used this shampoo twice now and am happy to report no disasters so far. My hair is clean and shiny and still attached to my scalp.  If the Daily Basics people would like to pay me for endorsing their product I would be perfectly fine with that.  Although perhaps with that retail price they don’t have much of an advertising budget.

So that was a rather successful impulse purchase, which I believe offsets this next one.

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When W is away I drink Tassimo coffee, because I can’t figure out how to get the other coffee maker to brew half a pot that tastes right, and although the Tassimo coffee is more expensive, it likely all evens out because I’m not dumping half a pot of coffee down the sink every day. By now, if you are still reading this I’m sure you are wondering where all this information is coming from, but, more importantly WHY I’m telling you all this shit in the first place. I wish I knew. Or maybe neither of us cares but there appears to be nothing much else going on for us at the moment, so what the hell.

What I wanted to buy was a double sized Tassimo coffee in a breakfast blend. There was none to be found on the shelves, and this was the only double sized there, and the midnight eclipse thing was very appealing to me. Midnight eclipse for breakfast. Why not? BOLD is not an exaggeration I’m here to tell you. This stuff will knock your socks off. Thank God I never wear any.

Okay, I’m going to paint something now to forget the trauma of shopping. After that coffee I will probably be awake for three days. With great Canadian hair.

Have a scintillating Sunday. If it’s not too late for that.

The Story Behind Vanilla Grapefruit

The REAL title is G is for Grapefruit, but nobody would get sucked in and excited about that so I spiced it up a little.  Somewhere I read if there’s no “hook” right at the beginning of a story you might as well stop right there and type a letter to your grandmother instead.

Grapefruit is always sour and usually bitter, but has a lot going for it otherwise.  It’s an oblate spheroid for one thing.  I bet you were thinking it’s merely big and round.  The only way this fruit even vaguely resembles a grape is when seen from a great distance growing in grape-like clusters on trees.

Can you imagine buying a cluster of grapefruit?  That would be a lifetime supply for most of us.  I can’t remember the last time I bought a real live fresh one.  However, it’s managed to infiltrate my cosmetics and personal hygiene products in a big way.  Along with other fruits and spices and flavors.

Everything I know about marketing is from a consumer’s point of view, but I’d say they’re on to something when it comes to naming products which people like me find hard to resist.  I have vanilla/grapefruit, honey/apple and cocoa/shea butter lotions.  Nectarine/white ginger,  grapefruit/lemon grass and plum/sukura blossom deodorants.  Cherry blossom/ginseng, apricot/almond and tropical coconut/lime shampoos.  Pomegranate and guava and cranberry – I’ve worn them all.

I’m a great advertising target because obviously I’ll buy anything if it promises to smell weird.  Don’t even get me started on body washes, soaps, lip gloss and candles.  (I’d like to wrap this thing up before midnight.)  The thing about grapefruit is that it goes with just about anything.  It’s been described as zesty, energizing, uplifting, invigorating, crisp, kissed by sunshine, romantic, and refreshing,

Yeah, I know, romantic is a stretch – soft music, sparkling wine, grapefruit and candle light.  But who paired it up with vanilla and made that work?  Or gin, or jicama or mint?  Maybe the same people who mixed it up with orange juice to make it palatable.  Or with quinoa to make me gag.

My title was not just a hook, it was also misleading.  Because the truth is, I DON’T KNOW the story behind vanilla grapefruit.  I googled it and came up with some less than helpful information about Crown Royal Whisky – butterscotch, vanilla, grapefruit pith, simmering spices, and dusty rye.  Whoa.  They should make a body wash out of that.  I’d buy it.