19 September 2011

Random Musings

Last week was crazy here, dear readers, which is why I'm so far behind on the weekly blog post.  My weeks lately (in addition to the typical homeschooling) have included running some test batches of soap for Nature's Garden, potty training and putting together a large order for Duplin Winery.  It's almost Autumn.  I was thinking earlier today how it is that so many of my fellow Indies have time to keep it current on Facebook, Twitter and the Indie Beauty Social Network.  In fact, I'm feeling left behind, because I barely have time to read posts, let alone post a whole lot.  Then it dawned on me.  IT'S FALL!  That means... SILLY SEASON!!!  And, absolutely, the silly season is upon me.  My stockists want their Holiday merchandise and I have my own shows for which to prepare.

I have several random thoughts to toss out there for this week's blog post.  I apologize if they don't seem very cohesive.

First there was the bottle of Christmas red acrylic paint that my toddler spilled all over the living room.  My living room looked like a crime scene.  No kidding!  One of my friends said that the chalk outline was the only thing missing.
Really, Officer, it's NOT blood!
The soaps I've been making to test the Nature's Garden fragrances will be offered for a limited time.  If certain soaps go really well, then I'll introduce them to my regular inventory.  There will only be 2-3 bars of each soap available, so quantities will be limited and likely to go fast.  There are some delicious fragrances in the bunch, but I think the most fascinating one I'll be calling "Fizzy"; it smells exactly like Dr. Pepper.  I could even smell the carbonation bite.  I made this one with French green clay.  There are also two new beer soaps - one for men, one for women - on the rack, as well as several others.
Fierce Beer Soap - One of the best men's fragrances EVER
Orange Chiffon Cake Soap Cupcakes - Smell divine!

Two shops here in Burgaw will be carrying my soaps by the end of September.  The Nifty Place will be selling a selection of all-natural soaps, as well as Sub-Lime Sandalwood beer soap (just for something for the fellas).  Courthouse Coffee will be selling the following soaps:  Green Tea, Coffee Mocha, Goat's Milk & Coffee and Fresh-Brewed Coffee.  I'm honored and privileged to be working with these two awesome small businesses!
Fresh-Brewed Coffee Soap - What a wake-up call!
I don't like loud dogs early in the morning.  I mean, does anyone, really?  Yet we have these neighbors who let their dog out every morning at 7:00, and this dog barks at anything and everything.  Of course, he often wakes my baby, too - sometimes before she has the first interest in waking up.  I know that's random; just tossing it out there.

Last Wednesday, my firstborn was telling me about her handbells practice at church.  She said, "Two kids were playing incessantly, even when Mr. Clif was talking.  They got their handbells taken away."  Yes, I'm darn proud of her for knowing how to use "incessantly" correctly.  Or, that might come from all the times I tell her she's "talking incessantly."

In addition to last week's potty training, soap-wrapping, soapmaking and homeschooling mega-bonanza, I found out from one of my lovely Facebook fans that my site had been hacked.  I'm not talking the rather diminutive hack of two years ago where someone embedded a (bad) link for cheap ED drugs out of Mexico. Nooooo...  This was a full-out hack job that took over my entire site - in both English and Arabic and with music (in English).  It was ugly.  And just in case I didn't fully catch that my site had been hacked, under the red and black image of the grim reaper was the word "hacked," just to make sure I was fully aware.  So, here I am on Friday evening, texting my web guy who was in England working with an asphalt crew on the side of the road late that night (that's a five hour time difference), posting to the Zen Cart forums and initiating a chat with my host's tech support folks.  Donal texts back that he'd be done in two hours (gotta love that kind of dedication!), but in the meantime, the tech support guy at Hostmonster and I explore the hack.  One of the dates of the script changes was 9/11/11.  The significance of that wasn't lost on me, and it made me slightly sick.  In the end, though, the tech support guy got me debugged and unhacked in half an hour or so.  I could see where all the bad files were; I know my cpanel that well (that came up as my website on one of the hacked changes).

My web guy is going for the full deep-end dive, starting his own business thing.  His name's Donal, and he's fantastic. We've worked together for almost 2 1/2 years.  You've really got to appreciate a web guru who'll respond to a panicked text and be willing to work for however long it takes on top of working until the wee hours of the morning doing road work.  He's the best!  If you're interested in making your site work yourself (being able to add your products, add coupons, make script changes, etc.), then he'll also teach you that stuff, too.  He's completely trustworthy; I also have him man my site when I'm on vacation, hunkered down for hurricanes and so forth.  (Click his name; it'll take you to his FB page and you can message him.)

I'll stop blathering now.  Some of my friends and I are talking food!  Yum!

Feel free to post comments.  They don't have to apply to anything in particular since I was pretty all over the board on this week's post.
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