May’s monthly highlights and NYC itinerary

Hello friends, I hope nobody minds an early recap this month. I’ll be too busy with last minute travel plans to push it back any farther, as this Memorial Day holiday provides a perfect opportunity to whip up a quick post.

Screenshot_2017-05-29-09-36-28-1May was full of many lovely melting and blog-related moments. I received generous gift packages, including gorgeous Rosegirls pie slices I plan to show off from Sandra, at Finger Candy, and an amazing mixed bag of melts from Jessica, at The Meltdown blog, who continually feeds my Super Tarts addiction. Thanks to my blogger buddies, my upcoming summer-long wax ban won’t mean I’m starved for great melts.

Last month, I forgot to include the slightly startling experience of meeting a few blog readers I didn’t know previously, in the flesh. My sister held a party I attended with lots of her friends and co-workers. After introductions, a few ladies kindly told me that they enjoyed reading my blog! I was flabbergasted (thanks for sharing sis) and humbled that these women would take the time to read. They even shared that they loved my scent descriptions, so here’s a shout out to them, thank you so much for your readership!

Onto the month’s melts:

Rosegirl’s wax: Rockstar/Olive Branch, gifted.

Somehow, between wishing the Lush dupe scent trend would end while trying more and more of them, I fell in love with the Olive Branch scent. Never having experienced the inspiration body product, or any Lush product, I can’t say whether it’s spot on. But, this Rosegirls version is a gentle kiss of the bergamot, mandarin and leafy vine infusion of the serene musk, enhanced with comforting vanilla absolute of the Rockstar dupe. If this combo shows up in pre-order, I’m dead.

The Bathing Garden Caterpillar Mischief: Apricot and lemon jam, caramel cake bites, and coconut vanilla buttercream, a spring sample.

Very enjoyable, the sweetness is light and non-pervasive as the swirled fruit mingles with the bakery confections. The very last hint of scent is the lemon jam, a note I might stay away from singly, but added here is the perfect refreshing finish. 

Candles from the Keeping Room Pink Sugar and Strawberry, gifted. Okay, I may have found a strawberry I can handle. I wouldn’t order it on it’s own and still can’t help smelling an artificial tone, but I WOULD get more of this lucious PS/strawberry blend, it just conjures spring beautifully.

The Purple Fox Wax, 29 Palms: baja cactus blossom, green kelp, sea spray, blue sugar. I snagged my first geo bar on a whim when I saw they were still available hours after a PFW opening, one shouldn’t look a gift horse in the mouth and all that. The geo has to be my favorite wax design, but the scent was a little too light on first melt, especially for blue sugar, so I’m curing for a few months to see if it develops.

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Along with generous waxmail and the excitement of my super sized first Sniff My Tarts custom order, another blogging highlight arrived in the above melts from Bonjour Wax Co. I was surprised and humbled to receive this little package one day about a month after I posted a vendor review on Bonjour. Unbeknownst to me, Mandi read it and wanted to rectify the unsatisfying throw I experienced from one of her melts. She sent me the new stronger version of that one to try along with some samples. I was wowed by the lengths taken to ensure customer service. I’m letting the melt cure a bit, however, I feel this unsolicited generosity made a lifetime customer of me. Mandi is creating some inventive new wax samplers and has become a favorite vendor of both my friend and sister, she’s quite an impressive girlboss.

Calypso by The Bathing Garden: sea salt, vetiver, driftwood, jasmine, and coconut.

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I can’t believe it has only been one year, this week, since I received my first vendor wax order, and if you saw the size of the stash I’ve amassed in that time, you wouldn’t believe it either. The Bathing Garden scent is proof of how far my tastes have grown and changed since my first order. I received Calypso last July, but didn’t like it, so I set it in a box and forgot about it. While hopping on to my sister’s summer TBG order, I pulled it out again for a sniff and realized it’s a winner.

The salty mix of fragrance merges with the aged driftwood capturing a true marine quality my fresh scent-loving heart adores. Milky coconut softens the saltwater tang perfectly. Maybe it needed nearly a year’s cure time to develop? All I know is I have ordered more.

Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens in Akron, Ohio

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When I think of Akron, Ohio, I think of an aging industrial city of concrete walls lining the highways. Not much reason for me to visit until this Mother’s Day when I was fortunate to spend time with my mom and sisters on a tour of the Tudor castle style estate and gardens. Akron is the rubber city and this is the former home of rubber baron, F.A. Seiberling and his clan. It’s the 6th largest historic home in America and the 65 rooms were incredibly appointed with 95% of the original furnishings.

But the gardens were some of the best I’ve ever seen, and I’ve been to quite a few. I had to share photos of our lovely day.

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English gardens resplendent along the grounds with gorgeous sculptures dotting the landscape in unexpected nooks and pathways.

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Perfect Japanese gardens woven along the back of the estate. There were also spectacular birch tree allee`s, budding tree and rose gardens, grape arbors, rolling lawns, meadows and greenhouses. It was such a gem to behold.

I’ll be leaving soon for the trip mentioned above. The next time I have a (pre-scheduled) post I will be enjoying New York City on my first visit!

A portion of our New York City itinerary:

Icons/landmarks

  • The Empire State Building
  • The Met Cloisters
  • The Guggenheim
  • Broadway 
  • Rockefeller Center
  • Times Square
  • 9/11 memorial

Shopping/sites

  • SoHo shopping
  • 230-fifth rooftop garden
  • Chelsea Market

Outdoor features

  • Central Park
  • The Highline
  • Washington Square Park arch

Bookish

  • BookCon 2017
  • The Strand bookstore
  • J.P. Morgan library/museum
  • New York Public Library

Can it be done in 3.5 days/4 nights? Probably not, but I’m hoping to try for most of it. I am aiming to be present in the moment and enjoy myself no matter what we are able to fit in during our stay. Also, we only have a few restaurants locked in, so I’m still taking suggestions if anyone has a can’t miss venue.

I’ll be excited to share our adventures when I return, until then, I wish you a beautiful start to summer.

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13 thoughts on “May’s monthly highlights and NYC itinerary

  1. Sounds like May was a great wax month! Congrats on your year long vendor wax addiction! 🙂
    I didn’t think TBG Calypso would be for me either but I love it. It’s a great warm weather scent; I was sad when I melted the last of it.
    Your NYC trip sounds sooo exciting; I hope you get to visit most of the places on your list! I love travel; planning, reading, experiencing, everything! I look forward to reading about your trip. I’ve never been to NYC except to experience the traffic on the GW Bridge years ago in a big rig. And that definitely doesn’t count.

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    1. It was incredible! I took tons of photos inside, because I love me some period details, too. The rooms were almost all splendidly tudor, so many gorgeous windows. But the furnishings were early 1910s. Since you are a Tudor girl, if you’re ever around the Ohio way, I highly recommend it.

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  2. Your photos are so dreamy and ethereal looking. You did a great job of capturing the beautiful gardens. And birch trees?? Swoon!

    I loved looking at your NYC agenda. We will be staying the same amount of time too and have some similar places on the agenda. I really want to hit The Strand too and pick up a book. I picked Gallow Green for my restaurant, Darby picked Serendipity3, Lindsey chose The Mercer Kitchen and Heather wants a Nathan’s hotdog from a street vendor so that is our food itinerary. 🙂 I would love to hit the High Line but I don’t think we’ll make it.

    Safe travels! Lots of fun! And bring us back pictures!! xoxo

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    1. NYC-it was beautiful chaos. I’m already excited to see what you get into on your trip:)
      Thanks, those Stan Hywet gardens were easy to capture, the beauty was everywhere I turned. My battery died before I could get the birch trees, I have to get my sis to share, but they were magical.

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  3. Lovely trip, lovely photos! But Stan Heywet Hall is totally the front entrance to the Salvatore mansion in The Vampire Diaries, yes? It has to be the exterior they use, they’re so similar.

    Glad you are enjoying your Rosegirls goodies! There really isn’t a single Lush dupe I like, so all my Lush is yours if you want it. Hmm, maybe The Comforter, but still…

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    1. Um gee…I’ve honestly never seen the Vampire Diaries, pop culture fail:/
      Thank you, thank you! Of course I’m enjoying my RG-those pies are getting me through my wax haul desert this summer. As far as the Lush scent trend, I like American Cream, HIWTK, LOM, and looooove Olive Branch, I just want variety and don’t need a Lush scent from every vendor. I’d far prefer innovation, though I guess I can blend them + experiment. It makes me chuckle when vendors ask for scent requests and ppl rush to list Lush dupes, (on IG) I mean come on, you can get those anywhere, or just buy Lush if you’re so hard up. Give me some newness, or at least make custom blends available. End of rant!

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      1. Eh, not much of a fail. It’s one of those ones that dragged on for far too long. But the first two seasons? Television MAGIC. I adored it! I also read The Vampire Diaries books as a pre-teen, but they were pretty bad. So trashy!

        Hey, I hear your rant – I’m not a fan of Lush dupes in general, as I find they tend to stink up the packages that come from any vendor that sells them, even if you haven’t ordered any. What kind of horrid alchemy is that?! And for real, just go get the Lush stuff – unless, of course, you’re looking for something in a candle, in which case you’re SOL with Lush – still no candles there. End of *my* rant!

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