Musette’s Musings & a giveaway

Hello, Darlings!!!!

I’m out of town and awash in cat dander so I can’t really smell much – and even if I could I am focused on KITCHENS!  (kiiiitchens).  I just got a phenomenal gift – on the way home from visiting his mother, El O had an epiphany:  once we get the 2nd floor done he could move his den upstairs……that will give me an extra (gulp!) 9’x8’ft.   My dad had a saying about not knowing whether to defecate or lose his eyesight.  Well…!  Like that!  I’m so crazed with delight!  My kitchen will be …..o.m.g. … will be 25’x15’…..I…..o.m.g.  I can have a sitting area!  And a real island.  I…wow.  I have 5 Dutch ovens, 8 casseroles, 6 stockpots, I can salsa, tomato sauce, pickles, peppers, make sausage, bread, etc…I freeze 90% of our produce for the year and cook 3 meals a day at least 6 days a week.  I NEED THIS KITCHEN!



Okay – enough about the kitchen – for now


Let’s talk about Stuff.  Stuff we like.  Stuff that gets on our nerves.  Stuff that freaks me out.

1.  I like….I like Chanel 1932.  I don’t like it in extrait.  It’s has that Springtime Freshness that I love in Chanel Eau de Cologne.  Extrait sort of defeats the purpose, imo.  Ymmv.  The boutique SAs looked at me like I told them their baby was ugly.  Yikes!  But I realized that I really like the lightness of these two colognes.  They are just so pretty!!!

2. Public bathrooms.  Department store bathrooms in particular.  But pretty much all public bathrooms.  Personal peeve?  The stalls with the cute little hooks that are not hooks at all – just pokey-out little pokey out things.  The only thing you can hang on that pokey-out thing is a piece of duct tape.  You can’t even hang a HOOK on the freakin’ thing.  And if you are in a handicap stall…and the hook is at the TOP of the door.  WTH?  90% of the folks I know who have a need to use that stall are in a wheelchair…..?????  I always wonder if there is some passive-aggressive designer out there ( I should be designing AIRPORTS, & Cathedrals, dagnabbit!  Not bathroom stalls…(gnashingteeth) ……or maybe the purchasing dept got a big payoff…..I understand that bathrooms are secondary (or tertiary) in most average retail places but..common sense, people – and a general respect for your customer.  I don’t need (or want) a chaise-longue in the stall but…could a sistah at least get a hook to hang her handbag?!

My favorite department store bathrooms are in Neiman-Marcus.  Aware that women are shopping (imagine that!) they have designed their stalls with nice insets so you can put your handbag and a couple of shopping bags therein while you take a genteel leak.  What a cooncept~

3. My MIL’s fabric softener.  Let us just pause for a moment and ponder the notion of Yet Another Laundry Incident.  What is it with me and laundry?  I have no idea what the hell she uses but ….so, El O got home from his ma’s.   He put on a shirt…and for an hour I kept walking around, feeling a mild headache coming on…and there was this smell…like a cheap headshop….and I couldn’t imagine what the hell I’d spilled and whatever it was how the hell do I find it and extirpate it from my life!!!  It got worse and then I realized it was happening every time El O walked past me…and finally it got so bad that I couldn’t be in the same room with him!!!  Remember last year, when I was in thrall to the Sunnyfield Greenhouse guy’s laundry detergent?  This is NOT that detergent.  It took 3 washings to get that smell out.   What weirded me out is that I couldn’t imagine how a laundry detergent could trigger that type of olfactory response.  It’s laundry detergent!  What the hell are they doing to laundry detergent now, that it could be that hard on a gal!  And I thought your senses were supposed to decline as you aged.  Seems my nose is getting sharper.  Ow.


That’s all I got!  WhaddaYOUgot?  Tell me what you’re liking, freaking on….etc…I’ll pull a couple of winners and send y’all some fun stuff to repay you for reading this lame post!!!


  • Tiffanie says:

    Words make me feel better, as does reading them, so rant on, Musette. I’m laughing right now because this afternoon my son just said to me, “Isn’t it funny that the kitchen is the 2nd biggest room in this house?” I just smiled. It is a big kitchen, although our house is tiny, and that’s why I like it. We have plenty of common living space to enjoy, but I can dry mop and vacuum the floors in the whole house in about 20 minutes when I’m on a cleaning binge.

    What’s bugging me today is that my favorite citrus of the moment, Orange Sanguine, usually does a fabulous job of smelling great for several hours when I wear it on my wrists, then it fades away nicely so I can reapply and enjoy it all over again. Today I wore it on my collar bones, and I swear this fragrance has been trying to strangle me. Every time I take a deep breath, there it is again, and now I’m ready for a shower.

  • Peppermoon says:

    Just tried Chanel 1932 for the first time yesterday actually, not quite sure what I think of it yet. I think it might need warmer weather to blossom fully.

  • Dina C. says:

    I love 1932, also in the edt. It’s great sunshiney jasminey wonderfulness in a bottle. It really bums me out that Chanel has raised its prices on the exclusives sooooooo much. I liked it better when the small bottles were affordable. I want to try Misia, and I predict that I’m gonna want that one, too.

    Love your kitchen project! I’ve been watching “Fixer Upper” on HGTV and “Rehab Addict” also a lot this winter. Those shows are really entertaining and inspiring to me. Keep us informed about what you decide to do. 🙂

  • I love it that you are going to have a new kitchen! Enjoy the process; we did ours a few years ago and it was fun (mostly)!! Kooky mix of greens and browns, copper-colored tiles, exotic granite from Brazil that looks like jungle greens and vines. Now all I need to do is to replace the awful electric glass-top range–the glass is cracked. 🙁

    Freaking: dry winter air. There is a spot on each of my thumbs next to the nail that splits when it is this dry. My work requires me to wash my hands a lot, so there isn’t much I can do about it during the work day…and it hurts.

    Loving: my upbringing in Western New York, near Buffalo. I am just not that fazed by all of the snow and ice we have. It will go…eventually.

    Also loving: your posts, dear Musette!

    Wearing: Serge Lutens Santal Majuscule

    Hugs to Jillie: sorry about your dear kitty. (I hope that some day, when I am on my death bed, someone thinks to hand me a kitten.)

    Prayers and hugs for Poodle, and all who are having health problems.

  • Spiker says:

    I’m so over winter, but I’ve been doing enough whinging, so I’ll focus on the positive. I’ve been getting lots of opportunities to wear Memoir, Tobacco Vanille, Five O’Clock au Gingembre and other cold weather favorites.

    I’m also in process of adopting a new cat. The sweetest 9yr old orange tabby. I’m finishing up the paperwork (the shelter does a great job of checking vet records of adopters and also requires verification the current cats are FHIV and FLeuk negative) and then he’ll be coming home with me! While I suspect that my current cats won’t be nearly as thrilled, I can’t wait to add a new family member.

    • Lisa D says:

      Wait’ll he takes over – they’ll be giving you dirty looks for months! That’s what happened when I adopted a stray Siamese who took up house on my roof a year ago. Now he’s indoors, fat and sassy, and he rules the roost.

  • greennote2 says:

    Peeves, not getting off my backside and getting more stuff done. I feel I should be doing something meaningful with my life.

    Liking, having lots of free time to be myself and do my things, now that school’s back and the weather is still good. Connecting more with people, so rewarding.

    Kitchen remodelling. Musette it will be stressful but you’ll love it when it’s done. I adore my kitchen. We took a long time to work out what we wanted, then we just did it. I still love it. And all the people above who said get what you want and don’t be dictated to are completely right, you go girl. I had an electrician tell me there was no way I’d use a powerpoint there and he has been proven completely wrong, use it all the time (well duh, that’s why I asked for it there). My only advice – get way more powerpoints than you think you’ll need, cheap to put in now, expensive to put in later.

  • Jackie b says:

    Not really any peeves here, except for the hot humid weather that makes me feel like I’m suffocating.
    Decant of Cuir d’Ange. I sprayed with abandon yesterday (you kind of have to) and I really like the freshness of this leather.

  • jenn says:

    Well, just seeing that nice kitchen and hearing of someone getting a bigger kitchen is nice. I also am with you re nice public bathrooms. Does N-M still have a fainting couch for when you are not feeling well? Loved the one in our old Saks in Phoenix.

  • Pixel says:

    Having remodeled our kitchen, the guest room & bathroom, etc etc etc, culminating in remodeling 2/3 of the freaking house at once while living in it (an experience akin to burning in hell), I can say: someday it will be done, and you will be very happy with the result 🙂

    Definitely ignore whatever ‘they’ say about what your kitchen ‘should’ be/have/look like. It’s your kitchen. Your money. Your call.

    Stuff I’m not liking these days: tooooooo much work.
    Stuff I’m liking these days: Nice weather (but wish it would rain). Having fun sampling lotsa perfumes 🙂

  • Eloquaint says:

    I don’t know what my best friend uses as a detergent, but she always climbs into my car smelling like honeysuckle. It’s lovely.

    I had my wisdom teeth out last week-20 years after they came in-so mostly stuff smells and tastes like blood right now. However, Amouage Gold Man and Bond #9 Chinatown are still getting through, thank God, because I haven’t eaten solid food in a week and I’m starving and-who knew this was possible-I’m sick to death of ice cream and I need something sweet in my life.

    Never even heard of Chanel 1932. I am so ashamed.

    One time I was in the bathroom at Macy’s, minding my own business in a stall, and I heard a very small girl say “Mama? Is this a bathroom?” and her mother said yes, it was, and the VSG said “But where is the bathtub?”

  • Ingeborg says:

    I hate the rainy weather (it is February, the middle of winter), but like not having to fear slippery pavements! Love having found some nice discounted books. among others a giant book on champagne by Swedish Richard Juhlin.

    What a joy it must be to get a new and bigger kitchen! The kitchen can really be the centre of the house if the design is right. For sure it is easier to make jam, preserves and other slow food if you have plenty of space.

    I find unscented detergent is often good to use, will use that around half the time. I never cared for any fabric softeners, I think it is the cheap musk or artificial flowery scent which irritates me. Some even cause allergies, so I just avoid those products completely.

    I tried Chanel 1932 once (not the extrait). A pretty scent, but a bit boring for that price tag? Well, I think I am not in the targeted customer group anyway. It is still cold enough for amber perfumes, so that is what I try to wear these days.

  • AnnieA says:

    Similar to thegoddessrena , a friend and I are meeting for lunch on Friday, for an afternoon off. We will drink wine and watch the working stiffs go back to work, then do some window shopping.

  • thegoddessrena says:

    A lot of my current thoughts seem to be focused on food, specifically NYC Restaurant Week. There is something so decadently luscious about having a leisurely 3 course lunch. I love Restaurant Week ( which runs 3 wks this year) and getting to try new restaurants that would normally be out of my budget

  • malsnano86 says:

    I’ve been buying unscented clothes detergent since the babies were little, and I hang my clothes out on the line in good weather, but we don’t have any of THAT around here (yeah, we finally got some snow! More coming tomorrow and Friday) at the moment, so I use half a dryer sheet per load. Even so… it’s gotten so I can hardly walk through the fabric-care aisle, with those super-pungent headachy smells. I have been thinking about using vinegar and dryer balls instead – guess I should jump on that.

    Cold weather (DON’T SHOOT ME PLEASE, we just haven’t had enough for it to feel like winter. By next week I imagine I’ll have had enough.)
    Gaze’s lambs
    Watching Taz shovel the driveway
    My warm/cozy/spicy winter fragrances, which were feeling too heavy until recently.
    My new towels. It had been TWENTY YEARS, no lie, since the last time I had new towels. Done with THAT. Got some new ones for my birthday, and I lerf them.
    Oh, and you are totally right on 1932. I bought a 5ml decant of the extrait, and it doesn’t sparkle like the edt. Of course, it does last better, so now I am layering them. Which is dumb, and I keep considering just dumping the two decants into the same bottle but I fear ruining both of them at that point.

    Dry air in my house. I’m boiling water on the back of the stove, dropping all the clementine peels into the pot so the scent will radiate.
    The dog getting bitey when he’s been playing too long. Gah. Oh, and all the dog hair on the floor. I need one of those little electric sweeper things so I don’t have to either ply the broom or lug the canister vacuum around every day.
    Missing my daughter at college.

  • einsof says:

    Not happy for headaches, but so relieved i am not the only one who recoils in horror at the “advancement” of laundry detergents, etc. i’m not one to watch a lot of tv… and known for walking away during commercials… my brother asked me to watch a laundry softener commercial. they were BRAGGING about how the scent will last up to THREE MONTHS. whaaaaa?? what exactly are you infusing into my clothing that will last for THREE MONTHS?! trust me, if it smells in three months, it’s a layer of chemicals that are NOT going to wash out. and if you DO wash it out, isn’t that jut going to put more of the chemicals IN? maybe if you have enough clothes to last three months without wearing them- YOU HAVE TOO MANY CLOTHES! and you’re poisoning everything around you with your corporate driven fear of smelling like a human being. (of course, this is all said by someone who literally cannot walk down the cleaning aisle of a grocery store. i’d drop like i was maced and probably die with one hand stretched out toward the Seventh Generation scent free laundry detergent.)

    kitchen. drool worthy.

    liking: Marianne Williamson, Keith Haring coloring books, #livingforlove, Canadian comedy, kyphi, pizza and the belief in spring.

    freaking: laundry products, the belief we are separate, film on bar soap, snow, the relocation of my hairline and werewolves.

    • odonata9 says:

      I have the same response to those commercials – who knows what is in that to make it last SO long? Gah! I don’t use any fabric softener and scent free laundry detergent. A friend borrowed a sweater and washed it before returning it – I had to re-wash because I could not handle the overpowering fabric softener scent, which lingered for days and days.

  • Nemo says:

    Good luck on your kitchen!! That is very exciting 🙂 I am a student so I don’t have a house, let alone the means to tackle that sort of project. However, I have always maintained that the kitchen is the MOST important part of the house, closely followed by the bathroom. This has resulted in some pretty funny looking apartments, but who cares about the rest of the house anyway?

  • Connie says:

    Ooo, kitchen remodels. I love home improvement projects and my dad and I did a renovation of the kitchen a few years ago. Right now I’m reading The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins and loving it!

  • rosarita says:

    I’m so envious of your kitchen remodel, Ms A! I’ve been watching home improvement shows and want to take a sledgehammer to my kitchen walls.
    In the middle of my typical February depression here, having to force myself to leave the house. Like everyone else, I’m so tired of just dealing with snow and cold. Good news is that my mother is regaining some strength and bathed without assistance last week. If only I could get my dad to do the same; at 90, he’s given up showering for weeks at a time, it’s bad, what is it with the elderly not wanting to bathe? A friend of mine has the same problem with her mother.
    I did buy a bottle of Barbara Bui for super cheap on Amazon and it smells so good, very comforting. Every day brings us closer to spring, right?

    • Eloquaint says:

      Before my grandfather died, he stopped wanting to shower, too, and my mother has already told me very firmly that when she gets that old, I am not to make her bathe any more than is genuinely necessary for purposes of health. I don’t know what she saw that I didn’t, but she was very sad about it.

  • Vanie says:

    I’m definitely freaking out over the incessant cold up here, in Montreal. Can wait to start seeing some greenery peeking outside (not before at least a month, probably more!)
    I finished grad school last August, and I’m liking the fact that I’m slowly regaining my joy to read for pleasure. I had to do so much “mandatory” reading (or to prepare my thesis) in the last few years, that, when I had some free time, I would much rather have watched TV than opened yet another book!

  • “The boutique SAs looked at me like I told them their baby was ugly.” So funny! 😀

  • poodle says:

    We will be starting our kitchen remodel soon. The cabinets are on order. My kitchen is smaller than yours but it’s going to be a big headache, I just know it. I’m actually dreading this whole process. Take your time on the design. Once it’s done you’ll be stuck with it for a while. Also, remember this is YOUR kitchen. You aren’t designing it for the next person to live in the house. That was a problem I had with kitchen designers, they wanted to keep harping on resale and people with families and what everyone wanted in their kitchen but forgot that I was the one who’d be cooking in it and writing the checks. Find a designer who listens to you.
    I’m still freaking out over snow and cold weather. I’m at my breaking point. I’m also having some health issues which I’m hoping will pass. It’s been a rough month or so.
    I use vinegar for fabric softener like Portia does. I have never been able to find a fabric softener that really lingers on my clothes even though I’ve tried. Some don’t smell that bad but they’re so darn expensive so I just use vinegar now.
    I’m mostly freaking out about things here and not really liking anything at the moment.

    • rosarita says:

      Dear poodle, that sounds miserable and you have my sympathy. I barely survived a full remodel while living in a house 15 yrs ago and still dream about it sometimes. So stressful, especially in this awful winter.

    • jillie says:

      Oh, Poodle, you’re not well? I do hope you get better soon. The weather can’t have helped and the trauma of a kitchen re-fit is not ideal. Spring is on its way, so things may look up …….. take care.

    • SallyM says:

      First off, sorry to hear you’re not up to snuff and I hope that improves tout suite! Next, I’m intrigued to hear about the vinegar that both you and Portia use in laundry. How do you use it? In the rinse cycle? Do you put it in directly on the clothes or in the dispenser? I have a round conditioner dispenser that sits on the top of the spinny thingy (see how technical I am) and a built in dispenser for bleachy stuff. Do you dilute it? Sorry for the question bombardment but I am obviously laundry challenged (and at the grand age of 58…) I’d love to find a good alternative 🙂

      • poodle says:

        I usually use white vinegar straight up but sometimes I put a few drops of an essential oil in it. I don’t really notice any difference with the oil I think I just like the idea of it. Anyway, I just do with the vinegar what I’d do with fabric softener. Mine goes into the dispenser cup in the washer. I also find that the washer doesn’t get that musty smell as much when I use vinegar. I’ve seen a recipe online where you combine vinegar and some hair conditioner and use that as fabric softener but haven’t tried it.

  • Donna S says:

    Hmm where to start!! I’m freakin on the fact that I have had what my dentist (I’ll get to him in a sec) calls “the ick” for like a month now. Oh the dentist… Had to have a dang tooth pulled yesterday. I’m loving that my daughter is getting married but I had to have my tooth pulled. If course the wedding is in a few days. Lol. Good thing I’m planning on eating a soft food. All is good though.

  • jillie says:

    Dear Musette, this is so not a lame post! In fact you have inspired me to comment after a long period away (my beloved kittie died, ’nuff said); you have made me smile and that’s so good.

    The detergent stink is the bane of my life and something I have often whinged about in blogs – it’s got that I back away from people like they are diseased as their clothes reek so much. My conclusion is that the offending ingredient must be a new type of laundry musk to which most of the population is anosmic (or, horror, actually likes). Some of us seem to be sensitive to it and it smells to me like rotting kidneys …… yum. I have had to give away many bottles/boxes etc of softeners and detergents that have ben “improved” and which I can smell even through several closed doors.

    Hope you get the kitchen of your dreams – you deserve it!

  • Portia says:

    We had our first cool day of the year today Musette. I love summer but today was cool and wet and I enjoyed doing my running around so much in it. Totally refreshing.
    We don’t use Fabric Softener here. 25% Disinfectant 75% White Vinegar pre-mixed in a 2ltr Tupperware Fridge Jug. The clothes are super soft and scent free.
    Portia x

  • Lillian H says:

    Hmmm, sounds like Snuggle fabric softner which sends me into a head spinning allergy attack.
    Right now, ordering seeds for our garden. So many pretty and cool veggies and never enough room to put everything I want to grow.
    I have a chef hubby who would die for that kitchen.

  • Sun Mi says:

    Well, I like visiting my parents in Washington (state), where I grew up… But I don’t love flying from Baltimore to San Diego to Seattle with a 9.5 month baby and arriving at approximately 3am east coast time. 🙂

    Also, my hubby is constantly getting headaches – I should really look into fabric softeners, detergent, etc as possible culprits….

    And congrats on your future kitchen! We were lucky enough to buy a 1911 farmhouse with a very very large and nicely remodeled kitchen, and it’s quite lovely!

  • AllGirlMafia says:


  • AllGirlMafia says:

    Work was cancel today because in this southeastern city we are totally ill prepared for bad weather. I felt so free I didn’t know what to do with myself which is why I am still wide eyed and awake reading this post when I should be asleep getting ready for my 7am work day tomorrow.

    I like…
    Goddess salad dressing by Annies because it automatically and effortlessly upgrades any salad.
    The box of outstanding pefume gifts from Nebbe : )
    My current favorite bar from ChocoLove- Pretzels in chocolate. yum
    My Patti Griffin ‘Children Running Through’ album
    The vintage Miss Balmain I got in the mail yesterday and is now in the lining of my winter jacket
    my boyfriends sweet smile and kind nature.