Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Hiatus Over! Cherry blossoms, Rain, and Chamomile to soothe the soul..

I am so excited with everything that has been going on in my life. I know, I know, it's been nearly a year since I posted, but guys -- man, have I got some catching up to do!

Instead of the BMW hire I had been hoping to get, I started working at ZF Transmissions in Gray Court, SC. It was a plant job, and I was doing some German translation, which was super cool, but my shifts were 12-hours every single day of the week. No days off, nothing. I made one whole batch of soap for a coworker for a Christmas gift to his family the entire time I worked there. 

A blend of Lemongrass, Listea, and Lemon essential oils with poppy seeds for exfoliant!
After Christmas, I started speaking to a long time friend of mine -- I've known this boy for about 13 years now, we've known each other since we were kids. I really wanted a fresh start, to just move out of the state that seemed to harbor all my troubles. After lots of consulting with friends and coworkers, I decided it was the best move for me. My friend, Jay, lived in Washington state, so it was a daunting prospect. Slowly, between December and January 12, I began giving away/donating my stuff to friends or Goodwill, shipping out necessary items, or giving things to people for safekeeping. I flew out January 12, leaving my car to my uncle and signing it over to him. I landed January 13, with barely anything to my name aside from the stuff I was waiting to arrive and a lot less baggage.

Some people call it running away. I just saw it as a chance to start over.

I got a job in a call center not far from home (it was about a 35 minute walk) to make money while i slowly built up my soapmaking stash again. One of my friends from SC is actually moving up here with me this summer, and he plans on driving the trip, so he'll be bringing some of the stash I left in SC for safekeeping with a friend. On top of the job, I've also acquired a new car! (New to me, of course. I'm broke!)

The move wasn't easy, BUT -- I am here to show you how amazing my life has gotten! With some amazing soaps tied in.

I know I've said it before, I dont usually post personal stuff on here, but I feel like my old loyal readers (Jenny! <3) would like to know why I dropped off to nowhere. I'm here to tell you it was every bit as worth it as it was needed.

First of all, Jay and I have started dating. He was my childhood crush, which we touched on at the time when we were kids, but he was incredibly loyal and was already seeing someone. So I moved on, and we sort of inadvertently kept chasing each other for nearly 14 years. With me starting over and actually living where he is, I figured I would go with the advice my dad always gave me: your soulmate is usually your best friend, and you never even realize it. He married his best friend 23 years ago, and they are still every bit as in love as when they started. So here we are, taking a chance for us for once.

Jay and I out on the bluffs. I havent smiled like that in years! Also, ignore the white streaks in my hair.
I also picked up snowboarding, and ATVing. Which are both as dangerous and crazy as they sound. I can't tell you how many weekends I've spend barreling down the aide of a mountain while cartwheeling, the affectionate term Jay uses for my wipe-outs, considering I tend to fall hand over heels the whole way down.



So with Washington, the first few soaps I made sort of resembled the new change in direction. First, I made a cherry blossom scented soap, with my usual recipe, using the Brambleberry FO (shipping is so much better when you live pretty darn close to it!)

These are EVERYWHERE here.This one is in my friend's yard.
I used the normal recipe with the FO, and then I did a mica oil swirl on top. Inside, I used charcoal for black and a red mica from The Conservatorie to really make it pop, and did a simple swirl inside.



Next, I main a soap using BB's Rain type FO. Appropriate, for the mists that seem to plague WA weather.



This one I did TD on the bottom and a blue swirl on top, also with mica oil swirls. I got on a kick, what can I say?

I also made a Lavender Chamomile Huggies type, which I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE.


It was lightened using TD, mica oil swirl on top of purple, with little sugar pearls on top as well. I learned not to CPOP those like I usually do though -- sugar pearls turn into black blobs when baked. :(



I appreciate all of you for following my blog and being interested in where this crazy journey takes me. My next soaps are going to be an Amber soap, a new Lavender, and Warm Vanilla Sugar! Stay tuned~

12 comments:

  1. Welcome back! your soaps are beautiful and am happy that your new start worked out!

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    1. Thanks so much, Anna Rose! It feels wonderful to be back. :)

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  2. Good to see you back, Ashley! I wondered where you had gone. I'm glad that things are going well. Best wishes to you and Jay! Moving to Washington must have been exciting! I think that I would love WA state. I dig the Northwest vibe. I'm glad that you are able to get back into soaping again, too. Those are some very pretty soaps - I love those blue swirls! Looking forward to seeing more. :)

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    1. Glad you like them! I've missed your feedback on my soaps, it's refreshing to be back into the groove of it again. I would highly recommend WA, it's fantastic. Everyone is incredibly nice and supportive and they love soap! I have so many requests to do that I don't even know where to start!

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  3. Congratulations on taking the plunge and moving, that is way braver than I'd ever be. It's great to see you soaping again, and the hiatus has obviously not affected your soaping abilities one bit, your soaps are beautiful.

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    1. Thank you so much! It was definitely scary, but I certainly had the motivation for change. :)

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  4. Hi Ashley, I was one of the lucky recipients of your Energize Soap at Christmas from my husband that you worked with at ZF. I have been looking for you and/or some comparable soap since you moved without success till now. I'm not really sure what it is I should even look for. I'm glad to hear of your big move and following your heart. I hope that you may be able to make me some more soap or point me in the direction of someone else that makes that type of soap. Do you have an email address? Thanks and take care.

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    1. Yes, my email address is unique.useables@gmail.com, you can also find me on Facebook which has a store set up at Unique Useables Handmade Soap. Glad you liked the soap! If you'd like more, I could make you a batch. Shipping isn't a problem. :)

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  5. Welcome back Ashley! It sounds like you are in a really great place :)

    Love these new soaps and hope to see more of you soon!

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  6. Hurray!!! It's so good to see you back... I've been worrying about you! Not that we know each other but I used to love reading your blog,...and remember the awesome soaps you made. Such inspiration. Really glad things are working out & best wishes to you & Jay. It looks like you've hit the ground running with these new soaps....
    Jo

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  7. what is TD and SPOP stand for?
    - sugar pearls turn into black blobs when baked- you bake soap?what method is that?where do you get sugar perls?

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  8. Really love all your soaps ! its great your life goes just like you want it))

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