Cakes & Pies

Summer is in full force and things are looking pretty amazing.  I am finally able to move things around and get organized before the Back to School storm.  Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been focusing on my baking skills and some snacks for the boys after they have their many sessions of basketball, football and playing catch.

Many years ago, when I had 4 kids all under the age of 10 and living in Alberta, Canada, my children’s favourite snack were chocolate chip cookies.  They were very particular about the kind of cookie the requested, though, they had to be “Hockey Cookies”.  My neighbour introduced the recipe to me and told me they were the perfect recipe for those cold after school days and we found very soon after that they were good for every day for my kids. My neighbour explained that she would make these cookies for her sons after hockey games and practice.

Now that I have some extra time on my hands, I’ve decided to resurrect my joy of cooking and what better way than cookies?  Naturally, I turned to Pinterest to see if I could find the recipe and I also wondered if it was the same?  The name is now “Hockey Puck” chocolate chip cookies and using a muffin tin is a fabulous “Eureka” moment!  I used the good old baking sheet method with this recipe and it didn’t hold at all which had NOTHING to do with the recipe!  I had to finagle the recipe, for example, I didn’t have Vanilla Extract, walnuts nor corn syrup.  I also forgot that 2 sticks of butter does not mean a full bar.  At my grocery store, I usually get a bar of butter that is equivalent to 2 cups of butter instead of 1 cup of butter. So yup, you guessed it I totally over buttered the whole recipe.  I problem solved my way into finding a deep dish casserole baking pan and scooped the rest of the batter into it.  I set the oven for the same baking temperature and time.

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After cooling the Hockey Puck cookies turned into a dense Hockey Rink Cookie Cake!  In less than 12 hours the rink was devoured.  With more requests from my pterodactyls, I corrected the recipe with using the proper amount of cookies, I still didn’t add the walnuts, corn syrup nor the vanilla extract however it still tasted delicious!  The third try remained fluffy with the denseness of a brownie or a Hello Dolly dessert. I was thinking of doing a spin on this Hockey Rink Cookie Cake with Hello Dollies hmmm… a Hockey Hello Dolly, a Rinkside Hello Dolly Cookie Cake?  I’ll work on the dessert and I’d love for you to give me ideas on a name!

If you try the original and my spin on the recipe let me know!

Thank you to Great Grub, Delicious Treats for your inspiration and your fantastic recipe!

Much Love,

SS

#chocolatechipcookies #baking #stilettosupermom #noms

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Dry Paint is a no-no for doll making!

I’ve been a reborn Doll Artist for 10 years and I want to share my experience for new artists who have asked me where the best quality of supplies are. I will demonstrate through videos and pictures below about what to look for and what is poor quality supplies.

When I started painting my first art dolls they were made of polymer clay and I purchased Genesis Heat Set Paint off of eBay. For making reborn dolls, I purchased my first set of GHSP from Bountiful Baby and I never had a problem and the paints and they baked beautifully. I actually still have them and they STILL work perfectly on my clay dolls.

Fast forward to 2-3 years ago and I started buying paints from MacPherson Arts and Crafts to paint my reborn dolls because I wanted to support a Canadian store. Little did I know that buying off brand paints through them would almost completely ruin my dolls. I purchased GHSP from MacPherson Arts & Crafts as they claimed the paint colours and mediums were mixed onsite and put into smaller jars. I never thought twice about buying from them because the staff was knowledgeable. The below video was filmed back in Feb-March 2019 showing how the paint was cracking and not sticking to the vinyl. I sent this to my best friend and fellow artist asking what I should do as I was creating dolls for the doll show. I didn’t understand why my doll was cracking and the paint wasn’t sticking to the vinyl. I’ve made MANY dolls over the years with a base paint of Flesh 08 and I never had this weird anomaly happen. After going through my painting steps backwards with my friend, like a couple of sleuths on FaceTime lol, she also had the same issue with one of her dolls. We both compared our dolls and couldn’t figure out what was going on. We deduced it down to our base colour of Flesh 08 off brand from MacPherson’s. See below:

I demonstrate here (with a much needed manicure so don’t come for me ✋🏼 lol ) that the paint is chunky and no matter how much I tried to mix it, it would not get to the consistency that I’m used to working with. FYI I used up all my on brand Genesis Heat Set Paint in Flesh 08 so I figured they would be the same ☹️ sadly not!

Here are some pictures of the beautiful Tobiah by Laura Lee Eagles that I couldn’t save for the show.

Since there is a warning that heating the vinyl is not recommended I figured I was simply out about $200CDN for my kit. I posted a picture on my personal Facebook page of the old paint and tagged my friend thanking her for spending hours with me trying different mediums and mixes to save it. I spent more time fixing the dolls that were fixable. I will make a video and post on how to save your reborn doll and do a comparison on what the consistency of Genesis Heat Set Paint should be.

To keep it real, I was offered a new Tobiah kit however I was to return the ruined kit first. I also received a private message saying it looked bad for the “MacP” store. I wasn’t sure if anyone else experienced a problem and had to return their ruined kits first before they got a replacement. I bit the bullet and chose to keep my kit and try to save it or use it as a booboo kit to try some techniques.

To explain, every artist has their own style of painting but the first base coat is the most important. It’s the “glue” that keeps all your details and layers in tact. GHSP is an oil paint so they should not dry out or be chunky at all. I have left my on brand GHSP paints out and with a quick stir with a brush they are the perfect consistency and I have never had a problem.

People can be nasty when they are faced with the truth about their products but as an artist of over 10 years it’s important that I give a factual no nonsense truth to new artists that I have introduced to reborn doll making to. Your tools and supplies should always be top quality because these dolls take many hours and days to make. When you are halfway through your painting and then notice paint cracking away from the vinyl, it is such a devastating and defeating moment because no matter how many layers you try to use it may not ever stick. I would never want any artist to go through this. It is also such a victorious feeling when your experience and techniques are applied and you can save your doll’s paint.

I also talked with a couple of very professional and seasoned artists and they suggested how I should store my kits. I now store them in air tight plastic bins to keep the oils in the vinyl. It makes sense that vinyl could change its composition over time in an overly dry place like a former morgue, yikes! 😳 I will do more research on this and see if this could’ve been a factor in my Tobiah kit.

To my new artist friends, that asked for tips. I recommend that you only use on brand Genesis Heat Set Paint to prevent this from happening. I also recommend that you support your favourite sculptors and purchase kits directly from them. They do such an amazing job and you will be put on newsletters and such letting you know when their next new kits will be coming out. I have started doing this and it is so great because you get to deal with the sculptor on a more direct level.

I will be tossing these out 😩 and be replacing them all with on brand GHSP paints ONLY possibly from the great Bountiful Baby as they haven’t let me down. I’ve come full circle with my supplies too! Lol it’s always great to start fresh armed with knowledge and experience and I will NEVER go off the path for cheaper low quality supplies ever again!

As requested, I will do some demos and supply comparisons. Keep creating, stay strong and put that passion into those beautiful baby dolls!

Much love ❤️

SS

Review: Danielle Facial Cleansing Spin Brush

I know I’m late in the game of the wonderful world of skin cleansing spin brushes, but after watching many videos and advertising about how clean one’s face would feel I had to try it out.  img_8949-1.jpg

I didn’t want to invest in a gadget that costs over $100, I figured this Danielle Ultrasonic Deep Facial Cleansing System would be close to the other big brands.  I found it in Winner’s for $25 you can find it on Amazon for a little over $40, that being said I’ll get into my experience,

I started the brush up according to the instructions and it felt so weird!  I was very careful in not adding too much pressure to my face with it and I prayed that it would  make some kind of difference, which it did.  My face felt smooth and yes, deeply cleansed.  However, I found a concerning flaw though.  I struggled a bit to wash it out properly  to avoid any bacteria that could grow on it.

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As you can see from the above picture that it’s not completely clean with my waterproof makeup.  I left my face alone for a week.  I did a round 2 with the brush and I doused the brush with rubbing alcohol.. this was a BIG MISTAKE!  I didn’t rinse the rubbing alcohol completely and I started the brush up and my face started to burn… and you guessed it, I almost chemically burned my face!  Don’t do that.  Round 2 didn’t give me as much of a cleansing feeling, possibly because my face was burning.

The travel case was of great quality and it is my favourite colour lol.  I tried the other attachments but there wasn’t much difference between all of them, they all scrubbed my face off.  Overall, it was ok, I don’t think I’ll be reaching for it a whole lot but I’m also happy I didn’t spend over $100 on a product I just “meh” about.

If you  are curious about the more expensive brands I would suggest you try out one that’s more affordable before investing a lot on a product you may not even like after awhile. Also, you have to sanitize it before and after you use it, it’s just a lot of extra work than buying a face cloth and exfoliating with it.

Let me know what you think of this skincare regiment I’m curious to know how long people stick to using this spin brush.

SS

Review: Organik Botanik Brown Sugar Face Scrub

In the midst of our unpredictable Canadian Spring, there comes a time when we Canadian gals have to, what I call, “descale”.  This means all the dry indoor air leaves my skin so dry, I literally feel like I need to shed layers of Winter skin… I know, gross right?

I guess my new “jam” has been Winner’s and I’ve been having good luck finding little steals here and there.. But this.. this right here…

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Organik Botanik Brown Sugar Face Scrub

This was the WORST product I’ve ever bought in my LIFE!!  At first, it felt like other facial scrubs when I rinsed it out I noticed my skin was a bit shiny like I had put oil on my face.   To this very day my face is a hot mess!  My forehead and cheeks feel like sandpaper and I have cystic acne on my chin!!  When I break out it’s usually one angry pimple, but this??!!  OMG it destroyed my skin!!  With this in mind, I’m going back to my favourite skincare treatment  (Biotherm Plankon Essence) to fix this face somehow.

I paid $7.99CDN for this, so basically I paid $8.00 for my break out!  It’ll be a while before try anything like this again! lol

Hope you guys had a great day.. I’m going back to living with a bag over my head until this angry breakout goes away.  If you see this anywhere.. keep walking, it’s horrible.

SS

Review: EOS Shave Cream

In my last review, Conair for Her Wet/Dry shaver, I mentioned the shaving cream I used to test the shaver.  I purchased it at Winners. I remember the craze over the EOS lip balms and I anticipated to love the shave cream. 

 

The claim is that it’s smooth, creamy and lasts for up to 24 hours. After my first use, I did fall in love!  The electric shaver glided through the cream and YES my skin was left moisturized.  I didn’t have any skin reactions and the scent is refreshing.

I’ve been finding a lot of great products from Winners these days.  I’ll be posting more great products I’ve found in this store so check them out soon.

SS

Review: Conair for Her Wet/Dry Shaver

 If you’ve been following me here or on social media, you’re aware of my experiences with wax hair removal.  I bought my first wax warmer about 6 years ago and at one time I even tried waxing my bikini line… I suggest that you NEVER do that, it freakin hurts.. go to a professional for that job, for real!  I still wax myself, but mostly underarms and occasionally on my legs.

Spring is here and many of us Canadian gals are shedding our winter leg hairs and getting ourselves ready for the time sensitive spring and summer.  Although waxing my legs is fabulous, it takes a lot longer than a quick shave in the shower.  In my thinking, disposable razors are expensive and when you have a whole house full of boys, two of which already shave, it was literally making me feel like I was actually throwing out money.  Off to Walmart I went…

After going through a few electric razors, Conair for her (link shows newer model) was the only one that didn’t have a warning saying “Some materials in this product are not approved in the state of California”  Like, what the heck does that mean?  Anyway, I purchased it to see if it could replace disposable razors in both price and ability to de-hair my legs.

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It comes with a base for recharging, a blade cover and two bikini comb guides (razor guards).  This shaver can be used in wet and dry conditions which is perfect for what I need.  First, I tried it on my dry legs, after getting used to the whole shaving experience my legs were smooth and hair free.  A week later, with hair regrowth, I decided to take my lil gal into the shower with some EOS shaving cream (review coming soon) and tried it out.  I was super impressed!  It glided over my legs and although I had shaving cream it didn’t skip nor shut off.

Overall, this is a great gadget to have and it’s small enough to be travel friendly.  I don’t think I’ll give up on waxing, but this is great for those days where I’m NOT so timing friendly.

Let me know if you try it out!

SS

Review: LUSH Children’s soap

 

Although LUSH products have been around for many years, I have never ventured into the stores because when they first came out the scent from their store was very strong and literally gave me a headache.  I watched an episode of Undercover Boss: LUSH and I was more intrigued about the company as a whole.  My next visit to the mall, I made a point of going into the LUSH store.  The store was packed with customers and I almost didn’t go in because of all the traffic, but braving my fear of someone breathing on me,  I braved myself to go in.  I was immediately welcomed and I stayed to watch and participate in the live demonstration of a bath bomb (I bought 3 of those).

I asked for kids products and was led to the section and the salesperson explained how to use the soap and if they were hypoallergenic, which they were.  I walked away with the Aliens and Monsters soap.

 

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Ultimately, my boys LOVE this product!  They had fun making shapes and animals with the soap.  When wet, the soap becomes moldable like play dough and each colour had its own scent.

The only gripe I have was with the packaging, it comes wrapped in cellophane that isn’t really easy to open and makes it difficult and messy to store.   Other than that, this is the best product I’ve tried with my kids and it was a success.

I recommend anyone who shops there to not be intimidated and go in, there is something for anyone.

Overall, LUSH didn’t not disappoint me, I’m still trying some other products I purchased.  I will do reviews on those as well.

Hope you have an awesome day!

SS

Live shows and fun things

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I found some footage from my Canada Day (July 1, 2016) pre-show, so I wanted to share how I get ready for a live podcast and filming day.

I chose to change up my look with a custom wig from XtraWaves.  It is 22 inches long and I absolutely love it.  I have over processed my natural hair with bleaching and colouring so I endure a lot of frizziness and dryness, but I still want the option to change up my look without having my hair fall out lol.  Wigs it is!!

I love being on podcasts and live-streaming, but a gal needs work to get camera ready.  Enjoy my quick video and check in for more of my fashion fun.

Cheers!

SS

Getting Show Ready With Me video

“Cheshire Cat” look with the Alice Through The Looking Glass palette by Urban Decay

The “Chesire Cat” has been a long time favourite character from the Alice in Wonderland story.  I loved both the original cartoon and the one from the updated Alice Through The Looking Glass movie.

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Makeup:

I used NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in “Milk” as a base over my entire lid and started my look with the colour “Reflection” from the palette, pressing the eyeshadow into my lid, I find that I get a better colour pay off when I do this with any eyeshadow.

Using the colour “Gone Mad” I apply it to my crease and loosely wing the eyeshadow out towards the outer corner of my eyes.  I applied “Cake” underneath my brow towards my crease.  Using NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in “Purple Velvet” create a cat nose around my nostrils to the tip of my nose, then press “Time” into the base.  I used “Blacktrack” by MAC to line my eyes making sure the inner corners of the “cat eye” angle carefully down the sides of my nose and wing it out.  I keep a pack of cosmetic cotton swabs close by to help clean up and fix any mistakes.  I place the colour “Royal Flush” to the in the inner and outer corner of the “cat eye” which makes them pop!I used Jumbo Eye Pencil by NYX in “Peacock” and “Time” eyeshadow in the centre of my cupids bow and dab whisker holes with the tip of a cosmetic cotton swab using MAC’s “Blacktrack” gel eyeliner.

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Alice Through The Looking Glass palette by Urban Decay

I applied the blush “Flaunt” by Lorac Cosmetics to my cheeks and in all my contour areas like the temples and along my forehead hairline.

With Jumbo Eye Pencil “Purple Velvet” I drew long hairs to the top of my eyebrows and throughout my forehead to simulate the cat’s stripes, then placed “Cake” eyeshadow just underneath the darker stripes then blended out any harsh lines.

I outlined the famous Cheshire Cat grin with “Rust” Jumbo Eye Pencil carving out sharp triangles for the teeth, I then set the lips and between the teeth with “Time” eyeshadow.  I coloured the teeth in with “Milk” then outlined each tooth with a thin eyeliner brush.

For the final touches, I applied “Iconic” lashes by House of Lashes then added my long curly custom wig by XtraWaves, I twisted the hair into two tall buns for the cat’s ears.

I just love playing with this palette, so stay tuned for more makeup fun.  I also created a special “The Cat Music” playlist while I worked on my face I’ll have the video an all the links below.

Much love,

SS

 

Periscope:  “Chesire Cat Look” Live (Unedited)

YouTube:  “Cheshire Cat Look” (edited)

“Alice” look

“Mad Hatter” look

 

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