who doesn't like to procrastinate?

I was all set to tackle the room formally known as our bedroom. I am not sure when it happened but obviously a tornado went through it leaving total destruction in its wake. Notice that I said that I was all set to tackle the room … that was before I heard the ‘ping’ on my cell phone announcing that a new post had come in from one of my favourite bloggers, TheBloggess. With a title like “Get ready to waste a good hour‘, how could I not check out what she had to say?

Here is what TheBloggess wrote:

“My friend, Christine, introduced me to Dreamscope where you can add filters to your photos.  Not normal filters though.  Stuff like, “What would I look like if I was made out of gummi bears?” or “What if the world turned into raspberries?”  An hour later and I have a million variations of me.

Get ready to waste a good hour of your life.  But it’s for creative reasons, so I’m pretty sure it counts as art therapy.”

See why TheBloggess is a favourite? We practically think alike!

If you, too, are trying not to clean a room formally known as a bedroom, check it out. Dreamscope is also available as a free app for your iPhone.

Here are some funky filters of the Cabbage Patch:

714f9acf-336a-42ce-80e1-f359336e4eec

8316726b-cf91-46fb-bda0-ac5add3b287f

 

cfa89883-2a3a-4025-ad92-e350a5f8e709

b19eade3-62bf-4b42-8ab0-e2b1f5f907cd (1)

roses

Greek.jpeg

Roman Tiles.jpeg

Green.jpeg

Yes, I did get carried away.

Yes, I have a million variations of the Cabbage Patch.

Yes, it does count as my ‘trying something new’.

Yes, the room formerly known as our bedroom still looks like a tornado went through it.

Hell, there’s always tomorrow. Right?

Art Therapy: 1

Bedroom: 0

 

 

 

 

 

 

no pain, no gain

 

bioreToday’s Cabbage Patch post is brought to you by Bioré Deep Cleaning Pore Strips; adhesive strips which apparently “locks onto and pulls out dirt for the deepest clean”. I had found a box of these strips while I was cleaning out a drawer in our bathroom vanity. Apparently, I must have thought that cleaning out my pores would be a good idea at the time I purchased them but after putting them in the drawer, clearly, I had forgotten about them. The fact that they were at the back of the drawer under some other junk tells me that they have been there for some time. I hope they don’t have a shelf life like milk.

I studied the box for some time and then decided that trying these strips would fulfil a promise to YC for my trying something new. Game on!

Firstly, I decided to read about just why Bioré claims I should give their pore strips a whirl and just what exactly they claim to do. Here is a copy of what appears on the back of the packaging:

  • Let’s Face It: squeezing blackheads doesn’t always work. You could damage your skin or even make it vulnerable to clogged pores. (Agreed.)
  • What it Does: Bioré Deep Cleansing Pore Strips, with selective bonding ingredients, work like a magnet by instantly locking onto and removing deep-down dirt that can cause blackheads so you get the deepest clean. When used weekly, you will have fewer clogged pores and the appearance of pores will actually diminish. It may be disgusting…but it’s also oddly satisfying. And in just 10 minutes it cleans weeks worth of dirt build up. (Ooooh, disgusting AND satisfying! I’m in.)

Next, I read the instructions on how to use the strips not just once but twice because I wanted to make sure that I knew just what the heck I was doing before I began the arduous task of cleaning my pores. Pore cleansing is serious business let me tell you. It is not for the faint of heart.

biore_smiling.png

Beautiful, huh?

As directed, I washed my face and thoroughly wet my nose so that the strips would stick. I decided that I would tackle my nose and the area above my chin because these are my problem skin areas. With dry hands, I peeled the strip off the plastic liner, applied it to the areas, smoothed the sides down, and pressed down to ensure good contact with the skin. I then let the strips dry for about 10 minutes until they were stiff to the touch – much like papier-mâché. For a minute, I thought I was back in kindergarten … ooooh, papier-mâché! How I loved doing papier-mâché as one of our crafts in kindergarten.

 

Biore_hurts

This is NOT an exaggeration

The final step involved peeling off the strips, slowly and carefully, starting at the edges and pulling toward the centre. This is supposedly to minimize skin discomfort as well as any pain which may result from the Krazy Glue-like adhesive being peeled back. Despite my attempt at following the rules to the tee, the swearing began as soon as I began peeling the strips back. By the ol’ lord thunderin’ jaysus, these suckers hurt!

The strips are similar to a band-aid, only the grip is stronger and you don’t get a break in the centre where the quilt part covers your cut or scrape. As a child I remember being told to take a band-aid off quickly because it would hurt less. I called BS then and I’m calling BS now. Both hurt and both bring tears to your eyes because, no matter how you take them off, tiny hairs and sometimes skin comes off with the adhesive. Both bloody well do hurt.

There are different types of pain – mild, sharp, severe, dull – and then there is the eye watering pain that you get when you step on Lego blocks in the dark or when you hit your shin on the corner of the metal bed frame or when you pull off a Bioré strip. I have a high pain tolerance. Not much gets to me that way. I had all of my cabbages naturally and without any pain medication. I have had several surgeries throughout my years including the removal of all my wisdom teeth in the hospital. Most recently, I survived the debilitating pain that comes with the shingles virus. So, why, then, did these strips get to me?

I think the answer lies in the fact that I chose to do this. I chose to inflict this barbarous torture upon myself. It was not a matter of something being seriously wrong with my body which needed to be addressed such as my impacted wisdom teeth and, that if not remedied, would cause further complications. No, I decided that it was much better getting that nasty dirt out of my pores than leaving it in there. Vanity was definitely involved because, I mean, what if somebody saw these nasty old blackheads? There wasn’t a hobbit inspired outfit I could pull on to cover them and I certainly didn’t want to don a face covering similar to what Michael Jackson used to cover his young children’s faces with. Remember what the world said about that? C-R-A-Z-Y!

Do the strips work? Yes. Along with some tiny hairs and what feels like a layer of skin, blackheads do stick to it and come out of the pore. However, this is only a temporary fix because only the top layer of the blackhead is removed and not the entire blackhead itself. It is only a matter of time before the blackhead returns because the source of the problem has not been addressed. It is, really, a band-aid for the problem so to speak. My concern is that the way these strips adhere to the skin is that if you were to follow the weekly use guidelines, over time, the skin could be injured or torn especially if you have sensitive skin. I also read in some reviews of the strips that they could also cause spider veins to surface. Yes, those nasty spider veins — right.on.your.nose.

Biore memeIs there something satisfying about looking at the blackheads on the strip after they have been removed? You’re darn tootin’, there is. It was almost with a child-like wonder that I examined the strip from every possible angle. I mean, how disgusting is that? I studied it, questioned it (how the heck did all of that get there?), admired it, and had a sick sense of satisfaction about what was removed. I looked at it as if I had just accomplished the most amazing feat. Good grief, I need to get a life.

It wasn’t long though before the stinging irritation of my nose brought me back to reality. My nose was blotchy red and it stung for a good fifteen-twenty minutes. Depending on how you look at it, I suppose it was a small price to pay for removing at least some of the blackheads.

When Sauerkraut got home from work that day, he asked his usual question, “how was your day?” I don’t think he was expecting to come home to a detailed story of how I removed some nasty dirt from my nose pores. While he didn’t say much, I could tell that he thought I was perhaps exaggerating about the pain somewhat. I even told him that I didn’t understand how in the many on-line reviews I read about the nose strips, the majority of the reviewers said that they didn’t hurt. I regaled him with my tales of painful nose woes and about how those suckers remove more than blackheads. “I’m sure I lost not one but two layers of skin when I removed the strips,” I whined.

Next it was my turn to be surprised. Sauerkraut said, “Let me try it then”. Holy smokes! Sauerkraut is going to be a girly girl with me. I could not have been happier than if I had won the lottery. Yee haw, all I could think of was ‘ let me strap that strip on your nose before you change your mind!’

Biore TogetherWell, let me tell you, I have never before felt more vindicated in my life. After reaching the paper-mache phase, Sauerkraut began to slowly and carefully pull back the edges toward the centre of his nose. He had to close his eyes while doing it. “This is bringing tears to my eyes,” I could faintly hear him saying. Yessiree, Sauerkraut had tears in his eyes when it was finally removed. Not that I am gloating or anything like that. I mean, I did share in his pain and I did refrain myself from saying, ‘na na na, boo, boo’.

He, too, was fascinated by what was on the strip. “They are like little spikes,” he proudly stated. He studied them but not for as long as I studied mine. Clearly, he is not the girly girl I thought he was.  After the stinging was over, he did mention that his nose felt very smooth and soft. Maybe he is a girly girl? I am so confused……

Will I do it again? Probably but only because I still have a few strips left in the box and I have already paid for them (they weren’t exactly inexpensive). Even though I read so many positive reviews about their effectiveness and how the reviewers could not live without them, I am not convinced that they would be good for my sensitive skin over time. I also read that the main ingredient on the strips is polyquaternium-37, a film-forming hairspray type ingredient, and I am not really comfortable with the thought of putting hairspray on my nose to remove dirt.

After all is said and done, I think that I will stick with the old fashioned soap and water skin regimen. Sauerkraut thinks that he will stick with the strips. I guess, for the sake of our marriage and for the sake that I may just want him to be a girly girl with me again on another product trial, we will just agree to disagree.

Now if I could just figure out how to get these suckers to do some deep cleaning around the cabbage patch…..

Disgustingly Satisfying: 1

Dignity: 0

 

 

does this outfit make me look like a hobbit?

Last week I wasn’t able to get out of the house to do anything. Sometimes my MS fatigue dictates just how much I am able to get out and about. Usually I try to get out at least once or twice a week to run errands, pick up a few groceries and whatnot. I prefer my trips to town to be short and more often so that I can manage my energy better. Leaving everything to one day can often leave me so exhausted that it takes three to four days to recover from such an outing. Unfortunately, if it is impossible to garner enough energy for at least one outing, I quickly become housebound. It’s a Catch-22 situation.

Thankfully, Sauerkraut recognizes this and will often suggest on a Sunday that we go for a drive and tag team the grocery aisle. This past Sunday morning was one of those occasions. I barely had the sleep out of my eyes when Sauerkraut suggested that we go to town and pick up a few groceries. We had been living like Old Mother Hubbard with all our bare cupboards … only, in our case, the dog and kitty cats were well fed because, heavens to Betsy, we let them go without.

Of course, I started to say “no, not today.” It wasn’t that I was any more tired than usual; instead, it was a far more serious issue. My hair. Yep, you know what I’m talking about. If the hair is not flowing and waving the way it should be, we can’t go anywhere. Not even to Wal-Mart. What if someone saw me looking like I had just rolled out of bed or, even worse, like an alpaca who had not combed its hair for days? If I were to leave the house looking like I was, well, let’s just say, it would not have been fair to the rest of the world. I imagined people screaming their heads off running from the crazed alpaca. “Run! Run! There’s a crazed alpaca with dirty hair on the loose!”

bad hair day

Sauerkraut suggested that I toss on a ball cap and that we hit the road. “No one will notice. We need groceries. You need to get out of the house. That’s what’s important here.”

I really don’t like it when he is right. I knew that I needed to get out of the house but I also knew that I did not have the energy to shower, blow dry and style my hair nor did I have the time. Sauerkraut wanted to hit the road right then and there.   Sooooo … a hat it was. A ball cap it wasn’t. I decided to step outside of the old comfort zone of going out with great hair by playing “hide the dirty alpaca hair under the pretty winter hat” trick.

This particular winter hat that I had chosen to wear is pretty. It is a brown corduroy brimmed hat with a colourful band around its middle that I had purchased the winter before at a local artisan co-op. Not only is it extremely well-made, it matches my beautiful golden brown Tara cape that I had purchased several years ago on a trip to Ireland. The winter hat/Tara cape outfit for hiding the dirty alpaca hair was beginning to shape up brilliantly. After giving myself the once over in the bathroom mirror, I decided that the magic trick just might work after all.

But then I had to open my big fat mouth. As soon as I saw Sauerkraut, I just couldn’t refrain from asking that one stupid almost fatal question….

Me (jokingly): Does this outfit make me look like a hobbit?

Sauerkraut (excitedly): Yes!!

Me: dead silence

Sauerkraut: Right answer?

Me (shaking my head):  No.

Things had just gotten dicey. Bail money might be needed shortly.

Sauerkraut attempted to right the wrong.

Sauerkraut:  Ummm, you don’t look like a hobbit. You look like a writer.

Me (sigh):  Better. But now I’m really sure that I look like a hobbit. I don’t know what else to wear. I can’t go out looking like a hobbit especially a hobbit with dirty alpaca hair.

Sauerkraut: You look pretty. I like what you’re wearing. Let’s go. You’ll feel better once you are out of the house.

Me: Nice try, Sauerkraut. But it’s too late. The hobbit damage has been done.

I stood for a minute and thought about it. He’s right again, damn it. What matters is that I get out of the house. Does it matter what anyone else thinks of me? No. We often get so hung up on what other people will think that we end up not living our lives as we should. On the plus side, I would be leaving the house properly dressed for the rainy weather. I was neither naked nor wearing pyjamas. I wasn’t even close to looking like one of those ‘people of Wal-Mart’ memes that makes its way around Facebook every now and then.

Me: Ok. Let’s go. But if anyone laughs at me or calls me Frodo, you’re going to punch them.

Sauerkraut: You know it.

Hobbit

On our drive to town, I was thinking about the characteristics of a hobbit. Why? I’m not sure. It’s scares the heck out of me sometimes just how my mind works. Remember in one of my previous posts where I had mentioned that I had prayed to St. Anthony to help me find my lost mind? Well, he still hasn’t found it. Poor St. Anthony. Of all the tasks he’s been given, finding my mind must be his worst. Anyway, back to the hobbits’ characteristics.

I decided to Google it and see just how closely I resembled a hobbit. Here’s what I discovered:

  • A hobbit’s height is between two and four feet. While I am 5’3”, I am considered short in the human world. Therefore, we are both short.
  • A hobbit has feet with tough, leathery soles covered in hair (he seldom wears shoes). Thank goodness, I strike out here because I like to think I have nice, soft feet; a woman with hairy feet isn’t all that attractive, right? Although, if I didn’t have to wear shoes, I wouldn’t. We’ll split this characteristic.
  • Apparently, a hobbit has long skillful fingers. When I was younger, someone once told me that I had “Kermit the Frog” fingers. While she meant long skinny fingers, I’m not certain she meant skillful. Another split.
  • Hobbits have a tendency towards chubbiness. Sigh. Need I say more?
  • They have little or no facial hair. Does menopausal peach fuzz count as little or no facial hair?
  • They have an ability to disappear swiftly and silently. No and No.
  • Excellent hearing and sharp eyesight. Yes, and, with glasses, yes.
  • A hobbit has no understanding of machinery more complicated than the watermill, forge bellows, and the hand loom. In my realm, after running the household appliances, my beloved hair straightener, and my trusty electronics, I am lost. Same issues, different realms.
  • Like a hobbit, I too delight in wearing bright colours, particularly yellow and green. Happy, happy, happy!
  • Again, like a hobbit, I share a love of food and drink, eating a mere six times a day on average. Hence, the chubbiness. There are no winners here.
  • A love of laughter, jests, games, and celebrations. Hell, yes!!!
  • A love of peace and quiet and “good tilled” earth. I also love peace and quiet; just not so sure about the tilled earth. Split characteristic once again.
  • A particular love for smoking of tobacco in small clay pipe. Nope. Nada. No way, Jose. Although the small clay pipe would go along quite nicely with my Tara cape. It might even make me appear like I am of an intellectual mind. I just may consider getting one minus the tobacco.
  • Tolkien wrote about the hobbits’ tendency to live in burrows or what he called a hole. On most days, my home looks like a hole with its dust bunnies rolling along like tumbleweeds. Let’s call this a draw.
  • They are usually shy, but are nevertheless capable of great courage and amazing feats under the proper circumstances. Oh, yes, most definitely. I am woman, hear me roar.
  • They are adept with slings and throwing stones. Unless I can liken this to slinging a good one-liner every now and then, they’ve got me here.
  • Hobbits are deeply contented with their way of life. As am I. Win. Win.

What does all this mean, you ask? Damned if I know. All I know is that if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a duck. I will leave it up to you to decide if I have descended from hobbits or not. Let me know what you think and I will post the “looks like a hobbit or doesn’t look like a hobbit” results in a future post. 😉

Now, back to my trip to town with Sauerkraut. I am happy to report that not one person laughed at me nor did anyone call me Frodo. Some people may have been thinking ‘oh, there goes Bilbo Baggins’ but at least they kept it to themselves.

Linda the Hobbit

Forgoing great looking hair for important social outing: 1

Punches thrown: 0

Please note: the hobbits’ characteristics were taken from “Hobbits for Dummies”.  Appropriate? I think so.