Girlie (?) things –small reviews

I’m not supposed to be doing much right now, so I’m lamenting not doing laundry while working on a commission that I feel bad for not finishing yet.

So, I want to talk about some stuff I’ve tried out::

Organix brand shampoos. I have four of them because there was a small sale going on where it was Buy One get One Free on all the Organix products available. I had gotten the Cherry Blossom Ginger conditioner on clearance from another place and enjoyed it, so I thought it would be fun to try these out. From left to right::

Brazilian Keratin Therapy: Smells great, makes my hair feel soft, lathers up fairly well. Goes well with regular conditioners, doesn’t dry out my hair (though it may dry out someone else’s). The only downside is that it takes forever for hair to dry after using it, but my hair normally takes forever to dry with regular shampoo so I can’t really go on that.

Acai Berry Avacado: Smells pretty good. It does not mix well with Cherry Blossom Ginger conditioner smell wise (imagine walking into a Bath and Bodyworks and candleshop crammed into the detergent section of the grocery store.), made my hair feel like straw while still in the shower, and afterwards it just felt and looked dirty. At least, that’s how it seemed to me.

Awapuhi Ginger: Smells decent, seemed like fun to try out. I felt this was the worst of the four: it does not lather, it dried my hair out like crazy. My hair takes a few hours to dry (I don’t blowdry it), but within 30 to 45 minutes my hair was completely dry and…stiff feeling. Kind of like I had put a bunch of hairspray in and went out to go do yardwork. It also made my scalp hurt.

Cherry Blossom Ginseng: Light smell, lathers up fairly well, I don’t have to use the conditioner with this one. I really like the cherry blossom one and it seems like this one would be really great for those who want a light smell but not overly perfumey.

I’ve learned, if you do not have hair that holds moisture like crazy, it’s a better idea to get the shampoo and conditioner. Do not do what I did and just grab a few different shampoos. The Brazillian one is really great, but as I’m writing this, it’s been 3 1/2 hours and my hair is still not dry. (but, strangely, I am used to this)

I don’t know if I would reccomend this brand to people. Sure, it’s cheaper than John Freida, but so is Pantene. If you want to try it out, I do reccomend waiting until it goes on sale where you see Buy One get One Free or 2-for $___. These things are usually about $8 a bottle and have a lower net-weight than most others. But, it’s also pretty good for colour-treated hair (though, if you used L’Oreal Feria, it’ll help rip the colour out after one or two shampoos but I think that was due to the hair dye and not the shampoo)

So

The other day, I had a woman come stomping up to my register demanding a refund. One of the items, she couldn’t open and wanted to exchange it for something else and that didn’t bother me, what got me was the other two items she demanded a refund for.

She had bought fairly cheap nail polish to try out: Sinful Colors (in a nice, light blue) and this crackle polish called 2012 (in Bright Fucking Orange). It was a hideous combination, but hey, it may look really neat together so who knows.

She informed me that she bought these earlier in the day to try out but they look so cheap after one layer on your nails that she was very unhappy, she wanted her money back, she did not appreciate that we sell “such cheap nail polish,” and omg it streaks so bad after one layer.

I use Sinful Colors. Yes, it is a cheap nail polish, but so is Wet & Wild (and I like Wet & Wild), but all nail polish streaks after one layer. At least, all nail polish that I’ve tried out streaks with one layer. This is why most people do two layers.

The woman shoved her fingers in my face while going off on a tangent about how she had to somewhere else to buy new nail polish to “fix” everything. It was one layer, full of streaks, and there was Bright Neon Orange polish all around her nails. Not just the one layer on her fingernails, but in little gobs on the flesh around the nails. This was a middle aged woman, and from my experiences, the only people who have a problem keeping most of the colour off the bits of finger around the nail are those who’ve never done it before, small children, or those who do not have steady hands.

Hell, I still get tiny bits of polish around my nails every now and then, but I get it off before I go out of the house.

But, I got curious. I wanted to try out this crackle polish to see how it looked. It took a bit to find the black (named “Eternity” in this little series of polish) because there’s a nice dark blue (named “Temptation”) and it was in front of the black.

This is the 2012 crackle polish (it’s…uhh…”cherimoya” brand) overtop of the Sinful Colors “Daredevil” (which is a lot brighter than what the photo shows). The crackle polish is $2.99, unlike the Sally Hansen brand (which is like $7 or $8). This actually looks pretty cool. The crackle is not all that bad, though I did find that it is a good idea to put a clear coat overtop this because if you don’t, the crackle just continues to break up and do things.

Personally, this does not “look cheap” to me. This looks like crackle polish overtop of some other nail polish. I’m under the impression that if I had gotten the Sally Hansen brand, I would get the same results.

Also, the mess in the background is my Bag of Yarn. I am working on a commission that requires yarn. Lots and lots of yarn.

Don’t ask “what next”? More crap will happen

Things keep happening. But, that’s part of life: stuff just happens, stuff keeps happening, and stuff will continue to happen to, and in, that life until that life ceases to exist.

I have learned that my New Phone has a couple problems. No one can hear me when I’m speaking to them, so I have to put it on speaker (which is a huge problem if I’m anywhere outside of the house), and the little box that shows what I’m typing when I’m doing messages has freaked a few times and I have been unable to see what I’m writing. I agreed with Jamie to give it a few more days and then if things aren’t doing better (and if I find that this is a normal occurrance), that I will go and bother the Verizon guys and see what we can do.

We got home…Monday evening and found that at some point the power went out. This is usually not a problem unless the power has been out for quite a while and has the possibility to not come on for a while more. This is because we have Dante and Dante needs heat (which is why we keep “Hot Hands” on hand just in case. we love our grumpy old little gecko.)

But, this did cause a problem. Our desktop PC was not cutting back on.

This poor computer has not been the best thing in the world, we were screwed over when we purchased it because, my guess is, the guy who was selling it was under the impression that he could sell us anything and we wouldn’t know any better. The guy who helped us with the deal is still pretty pissed that this happened.

We’ve had this poor thing for almost four years (pretty damn good considering the usual life span of computers these days), and it’s been showing signs of wanting to die. So, when the power shut off the other day, it helped the fan die.

I attempted to start it back up, gave up, and Jamie got it to start. I spent my time stealing his flash drive so I could get things off the PC. I grabbed the things I felt were important: story ideas, photos and video, passwords, and bookmarks. I decided to leave the music files, audio books, and things I had saved from the internet because I can always go back and find them again some other time.

I really don’t mind if the PC dies completely (right now it’s in this strange state of zombification. I’m waiting on it to demand brains), but if it dies completely and cannot be rebooted, there goes the modem so Jamie can’t be on his laptop and pay bills. Awesome. So, I get to wait and see how much money I get on my paycheck and (besides saving some for bills/food) see if I can buy a cheap tower. I don’t need a monitor (I love this monitor, this thing is awesome, even if it likes to cut back on randomly), I just need the tower. I should be able to find something cheap to throw down there.

We mainly use the PC to hold photos and video, I use it to play on the internet and sometimes type.

And my keypad on my phone just died again. I am going to go research this a bit while Jamie’s eggs are boiling.

Getting Shit Done

(written in wordpad, I am not fixing this. it is late as hell, I need sleep as I have to work in the morning. deal with it or ignore it. I don’t give a shit. I ramble, like hell, and I don’t explain myself. so there.)

On Thursday, I spent some time hauling some of the brick from one area to another. The people who lived here before us decided they wanted to put brick down underneath the little porch/steps area that lead to the playhouse (which I used as a studio for a short time) and got bored and just piled brick in a corner. We decided to leave it alone until we could get to it and move shit (and had a better idea for what we were going to do with it all).

Me, being the brilliant soul that I am, had put my phone down so it wouldn’t get wet in my pocket. Of course, doing that (it was well away from where the water hose was intended to be), I dropped the hose and got water all over my phone. I freaked. A lot of stuff is on my phone: my mom’s cell number which I never wrote down anywhere else, fun pictures of things and our pets, notes I had written to myself, comic ideas. Stuff. This is my main form of communication to people, this is how my job gets in touch with me. What happens if the house catches on fire and our neighbor’s not home?

So, I wiped it off as best I could and did this trick I had heard about a few times: put your phone into a container with white rice and the rice will suck up all the moisture.

This is such a load of bullshit.

The only thing this “rice method/trick” does is make your phone dirty and ruin perfectly good rice. The only upside was that thankfully I had “regular” rice instead of having to break out the Bismati rice to see if that would help.

I emailed Jamie and let him know what was going on. I posted on facebook about how I needed to find a ride to a Verizon store because I needed a new phone. My friend Ashley offered to help out and I was very grateful.

My original intention was to make that one small bitchy comment, pour a glass of wine, and make some cookie dough. Just sigh and deal with it all later. But Ashley is awesome and she just happened to have the day off so that worked really well.

The guy who helped me out offered to switch Jamie’s and my upgrades so I could get a new phone because mine was practically dead (who knew that getting water in the Blackberry keyboard would also destroy the mini SD card). He offered his opinions on different phones (there wasn’t much to choose from, I’m not overly picky–though I do love that camera option now–but I am a cheap bastard. While there are great deals online for Verizon phones, they don’t apply in-store and I’m ok with that). He showed me a couple of things and pointed out the ones that he felt were the best.

I understand that these guys have to sell you things, but I’m also a Retail Zombie too, so I also understand the notion that usually when someone says they like this or that and point out the pros and cons, they’re not fucking with you. They have to be able to sell a product to you and be really good at what they do. Not to metion, I’m getting much better customer service at this store than I did when we were still with US Cellular and this is a million times better than the customer service that I experienced when Jamie was with Ntelos.

One of the guy working, while I was playing with some phones, asked if I liked Blackberry. I had to stop and explain, as nicely as I could, that my original plan was to upgrade to a completely different phone, transfer my stuff over, and then take a sledgehammer to my Blackberry. I do not like Blackberry. Sure, it was fun in the beginning and getting used to it was pretty easy, but all the crap we’ve gone through with this particular brand of phone was annoying.

So, the guy who’s helping me out is giving me all these great pointers, Ashley is trying to make sure Olivia (her daughter) isn’t going too crazy and she’s being so patient while I go through this. A while later, and I have a new phone. The guy who’s helping me out sets it up to where I get Jamie’s upgrade (his upgrade comes up before mine does because I’m the second line), I ask a few questions, I play around with my new phone, and we’re all good. The guy helping says my cell payment this month is now $3 and some change. Ha. No it’s not, man. My half of the bill is still $85 (we double checked later that day and I just paid the bill like half an hour ago). Maybe he means that this coming bill will be a lot less.

I offered to take Ashley to lunch because she offered to drive me up to Verizon. We go to McAlister’s, a nice little sandwich shop and she enjoyed herself. We spent some time talking about random things, got Olivia to eat her lunch by swearing we’d eat it if she didn’t and reminding her that her food is sad because there’s a party in her tummy and the food wants to be there where the party is (yes, Ashley made a Yo Gabba Gabba reference and I went along with it. I even told Olivia that the party in my tummy was all full up which was why no more food could go in, but the party in her tummy needed more food to party. She ate more mac-n-cheese).

Ashley brought me back to the house, we agreed to meet up again soon to do more stuff and I set my new phone in the kitchen and went out to haul more brick. This time I didn’t spend time cleaning it. It’s a good thing I didn’t clean it because we (Jamie and I) ended up moving all the brick into one nice pile. I counted over 300 bricks that were moved (two giant *twitch* …things…and many centipedes, some of which we killed).

Today!

Today we did More Stuff. Fred came down to help with the new fencing. Jamie and Fred spent a few hours getting our new privacy fence up, so now all our privacy fencing panels are up and here soon we’ll be moving our chain-link so everything will be all honkey-dorey. The dogs will have more room to run, our back yard looks even bigger than it did. We’re also trying to figure out how we’re going to do this one spot (where the studio was, there’s a brick foundation and it’s up a few inches so there’s a gap between fencing), I’m thinking trellis, Fred and Jamie are thinking about cutting a bit of privacy fencing down and setting it up. Either way, it’ll look really neat.

We still have to pour more gravel to even things where the fire pit is going to go, then pour concrete and go from there. The brick is going to be used for my outdoor grill (Jamie wants to build it for me, it gives me warm fuzzies), so we’ve got a good hunk of brick already and hopefully we won’t have to get more when the time comes for it.

I spent a good hunk of time trying to get these damned shrubs out of the front yard. Apparently, these two little shrubs have been in their little area for a while (they’ve been there the entire time we’ve lived here, they could’ve been planted by the former residents) so they have thick roots. Surprising for such small shrubbery and such a pain in my ass.  Fred let me borrow his…mattick (I have no idea how it’s spelled) and that thing was awesome. I got to chop into a couple of roots, but the little buggers are still there.

While Jamie and Fred were working on the fencing, I did some other outside things: weedeating, cleaning out the basement windows (they need some sort of covering so crap won’t get in there, they’ve got these little spots where if the need arises, you could get out if need be, spiders be damned), and doing shrubbery. After a while of doing this, Fred and Jamie had most of the fencing put up and I still didn’t have one damn shrub up. I gave up and started doing inside work.

After Fred had left, Jamie and I did more things and ended up going grocery shopping. And, to end the night, we hit Barnes and Noble for a magazine he wanted. We looked around the different bargain bin books and I looked for a copy of “Snuff” by Terry Pratchett. They didn’t have “Snuff” and they only had number 1, 3, and 6 of Dragonbreath (yes, I am behind on my Dragonbreath). I found a book on Lovecraft’s work in film, including the 2005 “Beyond the Wall of Sleep,” which made me squee. I love the film, we own it now, and I really enjoy it.

I was going to see how much a small-print copy of “American Gods” was, but there were these two guys in the way. One was asking the other his opinion on Gaiman’s work and the other one was going off about how “this one” was amazing, but not as great as “American Gods,” and telling the first guy to not get “Good Omens” because it was a collaboration by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett and he didn’t like Pratchett’s work.

Really? Really. We had to walk back to the bargain bin, around the kid section, and through the cookbooks before they moved. Jamie grabbed me a small-print “American Gods” after pointing out that a hardback “American Gods”/”Anansi Boys” was $20.

Afterwards, we came home to be glared at by Uggs and let the dogs out for one last romp around the yard.

Rambling about house stuff

So, we’re doing yardwork. The yard is thawed (shit, it’s been between 60 and 75 for the past four or five days) so we can get cracking on what we want to do. We’re expanding our fence so the dogs can have more room and kids will stop cutting through part of our yard. It’s always been a bit strange with that part of the property–wrap around driveway which is no longer there and a “studio” which has been ripped down that people used to go into to smoke until we put a lock on the door. We’re adding privacy fencing around the area, which will keep the dogs from being able to jump out of the yard just in case anyone attempts to bother them through the fence again.

We tore down the majority of the studio a while ago and had made plans to turn it into a firepit area. We’ve learned that we needed to get gravel before pouring the concrete after we pretty much lost three bags of quick-mix concrete in one little area. 9 bags of gravel later and we need a bit more gravel to give a basic layer so the concrete doesn’t just seep into the holes.

This weekend, we’ll be working more on the fence and firepit with the help of Fred because Fred is awesome (and he has a truck).

At some point, we’ll be ripping up the damn shrubs that are at the front porch and finishing cutting down the half-dead pine tree in the front yard so we can rip out the roots and plant a new tree.

Other house things:

We got a new couch (at no cost to us because it is always awesome when you just happen to know someone, or happen to know someone who knows someone, that works at a furniture factory). We were originally supposed to pay around $50 because it was a reject and someone spilled a quarter-sized splotch of coffee on one of the cushions. It was a reject because it’s a two-piece sectional and the two pieces are two different colours: the longer bit is a cream/light tan colour and the smaller section is a light tan/beige/taupe colour. It’s a really nice couch. It’s also our first New couch as the other ones we’ve had were a futon my mom bought to replace her old couch, one Jamie had had for years, and Rhonda’s old couch (which was taken away by the bulk-trash guys yesterday).

Now, the dogs are officially banned from the living room because we have a nice couch. Beside our New Couch (squee), we have a Ficus tree. We wanted a little foliage to add in the living room and I spent a while trying to find a plant that was not toxic because Snooch has a habit of chewing on any living plant in this house. Right now, he has not chewed on the Ficus (probably because the leaves have these tiny little serated edges) and he’s working on chewing on my roses that are in the kitchen.

Because we got the New Couch, we had to move our massive 6ft x 6ft bookshelf and because we had to do this, we decided to rearrange the bookshelves so we could show off books that we love in the living room and everything else in the side room. It took a while, but we’ve managed to get an awesome setup. Our living room bookshelves are an interesting collection of random books (Mammoth anthologies, UFO books, Terry Pratchett novels, most of our horror collection, Neverwhere, and many, many others).

 

(had more stuff written, but about different things, and decided to not add it to the post. )