Boo! Got a Giveaway for YOU!

NOBODY came to our house. Again.

NOBODY came to our house. Again.



I was going to try to Fake It but you know what?  Ain’t happenin’.  I am still jammed in the sinii and it’s Hallowe’en and I have to get The Girl out and walked before the kids show up (because she is Not That Girl) and omg!

So!  Lemme tell you a couple of things, do a giveaway because I love you and you are so kind when I flake and then I am OUT!

Okay – Thing One:  went to Des Moines on Saturday to pick up some lily bulbs.  Yes.  I drove 3.5 hours ONE WAY because I am insane.  But LILIES! It was one of those trips…have you ever had one of those dreams where you have a date with A Star but you can’t get your shoes on…or you actually get to the date and you’re sitting across from X (when I was a kid it was Superman) and you’re having dinner but you can’t swallow the food so you just keep chewing and shoving food in your mouth?  If so, you’ll sympathize when I tell you my trip was like that.  From me to Des Moines was a piece of cake but, once again, I missed the I-80 sign that would’ve taken me right to where I needed to go – found myself going towards the Capitol (so pretty, btw! shame it gets nuked in The Stand) thinking ‘crap.  I think I’m on the wrong highway’ – when I saw the sign for Council Bluffs I was all ‘oh, HELLZ naw!’  Turned around and almost got BACK on the Capitol freeway, figured it out just in time.  Got to the exit, made the correct turn, then 3 more wrong turns.  It was like The Superman Dream all over again!  But LILIES!

Grabbed mah LILIES and hied off to Newton IA to meet two fabulous perfumistas, Tami Holubar (one of the best cooks in the Universe) and Amanda Feeley of Esscentual Alchemy.  Both of these women are such hedonists when it comes to perfume & food – we sat outside so we could spritz and chat with abandon (80F in Iowa.  In nearly-November.  The Apocalypse is nigh, I’m tellin’ya)…. Amanda is a natural perfumer, charming and bubbly as anything and her love of EOs is intoxicating.  She shared a couple of works in progress – my favorite is S.F.2 (25%).  When she gets it into production I’ll let you know (and maybe we’ll do a giveaway).  There is a vial in here, ‘Amber Oud’.  I looked at it sideways because I don’t particularly like amber OR oud…but omg.  OMG!  This is SO pretty!  Her deft handling of both notes turns this into a bright, lemony bit of sunshine, with just enough woody darkness to keep it intriguing.

not hers. I already ate hers.

Tami made a chocolate ganache tart.  I ….omg.  Everything culinary she touches is Perfection!

I am now ripping out foxtail grass, behemoth nasturtiums, harvesting the last of the tomatoes (I’m going to make Pickled Green Tomatoes with the last harvest my favorite recipe comes from Liana Krissof’s book Canning for a New Generation.  Here’s a link to her blog – book info is halfway down the page)

not mine. March ate all mine.

not mine. March ate all mine.

So!  I’m back in from the garden, beat to flinders – and I wonder why dill isn’t used in perfumery.  Or onions.  Or garlic.  Those are three of my favorite scents!  Isn’t it funny what we love but wouldn’t wear?

I need to take a hot shower and down a Benadryl.  Even my hair itches!  Tell me what you’re doing:  Halloween?  Garden?  Books?  What!  I’ve got tons of fun samples and will pull a couple winners!  Thanks for being such sports about me perfume-flaking yet AGAIN!  I want to review the DSH perfumes and do a giveaway but I swear, my nose is coming and going so bear with me!



  • Mim says:

    There are these White lilies that smell kind of like vanilla and kind of like incense and kind of like salami that I think are my favorite flowers. Maybe Casablanca?
    Don’t know if I do an 8 Hour round trip for them but they are great.
    I’m quite old for it but I’ve been doing Pokemon for the Halloween bonus walking a lot in public parks but it’s been really cold and I’ve been freezing my knees off. Wearing more perfume because as the weather gets colder I get less self-conscious about a potential humid scent bomb and more happy to sCent my scarf and breathe a fragrance all day.
    Loving the new Atelier ones!

  • Lisa D says:

    I’m not a big fan of the day lily. I once had a patch of them – in DayGlo orange – when I lived in Pennsylvania. For some reason, I thought it would be an easy job to just dig them up and replace them with something else. Anybody ever try to dig up a patch of well-established lily bulbs? I coulda used nukes, and they’d still be growing back.

    With that said, one of my favorite flowers is the Casablanca Lily – it’s intoxicating. I wish the note appeared in more perfumes, or candles, or house sprays.

    I usually don’t do Halloween (no kids, and cats who hate the doorbell), but this year as I was driving home from work I felt a spontaneous urge to take the evening off, and enjoy the greedy glee. So I went to the store, bought bags of yummies, and had an absolute blast passing them out.

  • Maureen says:

    Wow, 3.5 hours driving for lilies! They are gorgeous I assume. So fun meeting up with perfumistas though. I love hearing of your gardening exploits. I just barely keep my plants and flowers alive, thank goodness my boyfriend is a gardening expert. That tart looks delish. I had lots of Halloweeners, and watched Rocky Horror Picture Show for the umpteenth Halloween. I’m not sure if I’d like Amber Oud, not sure about oud…but I’d like to sample it. Happy November!

  • AnnieA says:

    Still paddling away at work just to stay in the same spot on the pond. Could be a happier little ducky at the moment but the holidays approach at least.

  • Neva says:

    OmG, American highways…! It’s a horror for us, people from Europe. The signs are completely different and without navigation you’re lost! We didn’t have one…I was there last year with my daughter and was biting my nails off while she drove and reassured me that everything’s gonna be all right 😀
    Our clocks are back to winter time (I think that’s the natural one) so it’s getting dark sooner in the evenings. This means less energy for me and I spend more time at home reading, drinking tea, doing some yoga…
    Enjoy your lovely garden!

  • Kismet 429 says:

    With you on the gardening–so therapeutic and satisfying, even if a couple of hours in the yard kicks my behind for the remainder of the day. Hotlanta living up to it’s name, 85 degrees last Sunday, and so dry that I’m having to water just to keep everything alive.

    Good luck with the lillies!

  • March says:

    Wow, what a wonderful day! We got a lot of trick or treaters but Ava handed out candy and I took a break, for the first time. I think we were both pleased.

  • jackie b says:

    Your perfumista meetup sounds like fun…the road trip, not so much!
    I have bought a few frags from Amanda, Hokkabaz is my fave so far. But Amber Oud? Oh yes I think so!

  • Nemo says:

    The chocolate tart sounds so good! I love hearing about perfumista meet-ups, thanks for sharing 🙂 Weather-wise, it is rainy and cold in the Bay area (compared to last year, anyway), and I’m actually really glad because it gives me a chance to wear some of the winter perfumes I thought I’d never wear again. But definitely weird weather all around.

  • Tiara says:

    3.5 hours for lilies and you never even told us what kind deserved a road trip like that! Hit a record high of 82 here today and I must admit I’m loving this warm weather because I know it won’t last. Except I said that last fall and we had the windows open on Christmas day.

  • Tiffanie Dyer says:

    Loved your comment about dill. I love that smell. I have a recipe for dill bread that is perfectly fragrant, yeasty and herbaceous. It is funny how we can love a smell but not want to smell it on our skin. I love scents that smell delicious but not edible. It is a fine balance. Though I like fragrance that makes my brain say “yummy,” I am generally NOT a fan of ethyl maltol in fragrance. No candy-sweet scents for me, please.

    I had a grandfather who loved garlic and thought it cured everything. He ate so much of it sometimes he wafted garlic wherever he went for days. We laughed and loved him anyway.

    I also have the gardening itch at the moment. Today I am feeling sore as I spent my energy ripping out a lantana bush that had gone out of control. It was trying to strangle the jasminum polyanthum I planted last April.

  • Christine says:

    Oh lilies! We just bought a house in the burbs, so I’m excited to plant new things! Of course we’ll have to do some yard clean up first. Yesterday was spent working, then trick or treating around the block with the toddler and then moving more things. Some day we’ll be settled. I just have to keep my eye on the prize.

  • Pam says:

    We just bought a house–a fixer upper–and i am painting like crazy before the furniture arrives. There are a few daylilies in the yard, but I am wanting some iris. Had to leave mine behind. Also, every yard I’ve had needs a hellebore. Found a young plant last weekend!

  • maggiecat says:

    I’m buried under grading at work, and committees, and craziness, and it’s been in the mid to upper 80’s for a while., and that’s much too hot for Fall. My house needs cleaning, but then I’ll just sneeze more. Sigh. Hoping for some decent cool weather soon…

  • Olivia says:

    Sounds like a fun adventure! Doing some home improvement to get our house ready for sale. Every part of this house has been touched, I mean EVERY. PART. Taking a break for some perfume talk as my reward. I wouldn’t mind seeing pictures of your lovely garden. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • thegoddessrena says:

    Worked Halloween so didn’t see too many trick or treaters. My roommate said he was going to pay the gas bill yesterday but I still don’t have hot water. Grrr….It’s been almost a month since it got shut off Grrr…..Thursday I go into NY and will get in as much sniffing as possible at Twisted Lily, Aedes and maybe Osswald. I’ll save Bergdorf’s and Barney’s for December when I go into NY to admire the holiday windows

  • HeidiC says:

    Wow! Those must be some supernatural lilies! Hope they turn into heavenly blooms for you.

    My poor little guy (almost 5) got so sick yesterday afternoon that he didn’t hardly protest when I told him no trick-or-treating. There was lots of leftover candy, and some of our neighbors said they’d be happy to do a little Halloween do-over for him when he’s up to it, which is incredibly generous. But he of course went to sleep early, so I binge-watched the rest of Stranger Things — and then was too scared to sleep!

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  • furriner says:

    I have a weakness for tiger lilies which no one seems to share, but day lilies will do just fine. sometimes I regret not having a yard.

    I recently blind bought Chinchilla so I am interested in your thoughts on DSH.

    Miss you!

    • Maya says:

      Wrong on the tiger lilies. When I was a kid they were everywhere, but now I rarely see them. They are so pretty!

    • salcrow says:

      I totally get the lily thing. When I lived out in the boonies and commuted over an hour through forest, moraine & farms, my summer’s passing would be Queen Anne’s lace, then comes the tiger lilys *everywhere*, and finally the end was near when mountain ash trees sprung their bright red berries…for some weirdness, I really identify seasoal changes with plants & food & spices ?, along with scents in the air. I would love to plant iris but not physically able ( getting down on the ground is easy…and entertaining…but getting up, not so much.) I drool over the catalogues ( man, iris are pricey!), and remember my mom’s endless iris, daffodil, and tulip gardens. Sigh. Thanks for the memories, Furriner!

      Time to get out my precious Frances Denney Interlude…only about .5 inches left in the bottle. Time to sample ambers & sandalwoods

  • Ann says:

    Howdy, darling! You always have the most fun adventures! Sorry the nose/sinuses are wonky, but you got those lilies and had a ball with two cool perfumistas — that makes up for a lot. And I hear you on the temps — it was 88 yesterday down here — good grief! Big hugs to you and hang in there …

  • pats133 says:

    I get really anxious when driving somewhere unfamiliar (i dont have a sat nav) and many times i just dont go if i can’t get a passenger for moral support! Roads are bad enough in the UN but i would feel really confused if i had to drive in the US. Am looking forward to your DSH reviews – she does great scents really well. 🙂

  • Connie says:

    Ooo, nasturtiums, love nasturtiums. I had my last Halloween celebrations at university over the weekend but didn’t have much fun. Easing back into the week with work and a good book (Carmilla by Sheridan le Fanu- a pre-Dracula vampire story). Sounds like you had quite the week!

  • jenbat says:

    Ha ha, this is me whenever I drive anywhere unfamiliar. For Halloween my friend and I walked around looking at all the decorations and costumes – there are some serious pumpkin artists in our neighbourhood! Then came home, ate candy and watched a horror movie, lamenting how being an adult has taking all the guiltless joy out of eating a pile of candy. But we ate it anyway.

  • Jeanne says:

    I’m done with tomatoes. Finally realized, after 2 unsuccessful attempts, I cannot grow tomatoes in pots! I’ll be visiting the farmers market next year.

  • Laurels says:

    We got no trick-or-treaters until almost 7:30, so I was giving out big handfuls of candy, and of course by 8:00 we ran out and had to turn off the lights. Favorite costumes: a tiny Yoda, and a 12ish kid wearing a white t-shirt with black print that said, “Error 404. Costume not found.”

    • Ann says:

      Love that “error” costume, Laurels! Might have to steal that idea for upcoming Halloweens, ha!

  • Elena Malkov says:

    Enjoying autumn, my favorite time between madness summer and Christmas consumerism … My garden (there is no way to plant dill hehe), my cats, baked apples and warm beet salads and beans ….

  • Claudia S says:

    I had to go to my school’s training today but I I asked DH to plant a gardenia. He had to rip out the old one and it was a piece of work. Poor baby. The new one is a variety called Aimee. Looking forward to spring!

  • DDJ says:

    Three and a half hours for lillies??? Is the place Lily Nirvana?

    I need bulbs… do they sell by mail? …It’s a considerably longer drive that three and a half hours for me : (

    …Amanda is a sweetie. I have a couple of her scents. They’re excellent.

    Everyone should go buy some : )

  • Mocha says:

    I’ve been ripping out my tomato plants too and must have made at least five liters of salsa! We had at least 90 trick-or-treaters come around tonight and actually ran out of candy – not good! Wearing Montale Sweet Vanilla since the weather has cooled down in the PNW. Thanks for the giveaway as always.

  • Nelle says:

    I just spent the day relaxing and binge watching tv shows! Nothing specatular!

    Sorry for commenting twice, the first comment was under the wrong email address.

  • Nelle says:

    I just spent the day relaxing and binge watching tv shows! Nothing specatular!

  • Kathy says:

    Planting daffodils,crocus,tulips,hyacinths,frittilaries in the crazy mild Iowa weather!And watering,since we are dry.Wearing a new favorite-Caron “Sacre”.

  • GrandmaGaga says:

    Just sitting here after a day of garage-organizing aka finally throwing a whole bunch of junk out….but you can be sure I smelled fabulous the entire day in my decant of Chanel Allure!