Tag Archives: Jamberry

Travel Plans Update

It’s been awhile since my last post on my travel plans, and wow – it’s less than three months before I leave! September 15th is SO impossibly close now.

Remember there was Plan A (Iceland, England, and Egypt) and Plan B (Iceland, England, and Someplace Else)? And the decision between the two was really difficult. I went with Plan A largely because of the Egyptian Revolution, and my hope that I’d be able to get into the country while the hoards of tourists were still too afraid to travel there, but before anything major blew up again. I’m good with some civil unrest.  But after it has become pretty clear that the Muslim terrorists attacking the current government are changing their tactics from attacking government buildings and officials, to striking the government where it hurts more – in the tourist trade – I’m almost 100% decided to go with Plan B. I’m not comfortable with the recent gunfire at the pyramids, and the suicide bombers at Karnak Temple.  It makes me very sad for the Egyptian people though – tourism was just beginning to recover, and they depend upon it so very much.

So, Plan B. Iceland, England, and Venice! I’ll take the ten days I was going to have in Egypt and visit York, Bath, Oxford, Salisbury, the Cotswolds and still have one night in Venice.

veniceAlso, I’ll have time for a few more experiences I’ve always wanted – like hot air ballooning over Bath.

slide2871I’m pretty terrified of heights, but I love to do things to challenge that fear. A few years ago, I did this, and it pretty much took all the courage I had, and it was awesome.

I’m also spending a couple of days in the Penzance/Mousehole/St. Ives area, via the sleeper train from London. Taking a sleeper train has long been something I’ve been dying to do.  And the beaches/coast? So pretty!

st-ives-harbourjpgI hope it’s nice while I’m there. Or stormy.  One of the two!

I’ve also been shopping for travel things. I found this wonderful skirt on Amazon. It really is fabulous; I love the fabric it’s made from. So comfy and cute, and I’ll be able to dress it up or dress it down.  I think I want one in every color for when I’m home. It’s very soft and squishy, so it will pack extremely well. That’s important, because I’m taking ONE carry on bag…and it’s even smaller than the airline’s limit! Seriously, if I weren’t doing active things like riding horses, I wouldn’t bring pants at all. Skirts are so much more comfortable, packable, and versatile.  Did I ever mention that I do all my outdoor work and gardening in a skirt?



I found a great day pack/purse for my “one additional personal carry on item”.  It’s just large enough for my kindle, journal, and of course my various important papers.

And my big splurge – I bought this gorgeous and wonderful new camera.

cameraI’ve had it for a few months now, and I love it to pieces. It’s everything I ever wanted in a camera.

And while I’m on the subject of reviewing products, I just remembered that I never said how I liked my experience wearing Jamberry nail wraps.  Boo.  Hiss. That was a HUGE disappointment.  First of all, they do last quite a long time (I wore mine nearly two weeks before removing them) and they do look gorgeous on. But.

But. If you use your fingernails as tools as much as I do, no matter how carefully you follow their directions and stick them down, they are going to constantly get slightly ragged and rough at the tips. Which means you are constantly going to be filing your nails to make them smooth again – at least if you are driven mad by nails that constantly catch on fabric like I am.

The worst thing, though, was the removal. Soak them in coconut oil, was the top recommended tip for gentle removal. I liked that – no harsh chemicals, like with nail polish.  I tried it.  The wraps came off, but they also removed a layer of my nails – which was not obvious, until my nails started splintering and breaking like crazy.  For months.

Months!  It took forever until my nails were back to their normal strength.  Then I did a little more research, and I find out that, contrary to what the sellers recommend, the company says you have to soak them in nail polish remover.  Uh, no thanks. Isn’t this one of the major reasons why I picked Jamberry? To avoid the chemicals?

So between the constant filing (if I wore them regularly, I wouldn’t have any nails left!) and the difficulty removing them, they aren’t worth the pricy price tag. What’s left of my Jamberry sheet went straight into the trash.


It’s My Birthday, and I’ll Cry if I Want To.

Only I don’t, because life just keeps getting better, and this coming year is shaping up to be the best yet!  I’m 42, and this means that I’m the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything…according to the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

Sounds about right.

The last couple of days I’ve been busy booking airfare to England, with a three-day stopover in Iceland, via Iceland Air.  I’ve also booked my accommodations in Iceland and England, and I’ll be posting about that soon.

Today, though, is all about my birthday.  In accordance with my new custom of doing/learning something new on my birthday, today I did TWO new things!

Last year, I learned to hand spin wool, using a drop spindle.  The yard turned out fairly well, though I still need lots and lots more practice.  I did find out that I really do enjoy it, though, so I bought some more wool roving, and plan to branch out to alpaca and angora rabbit fleece soon.  Here is a picture of my hand spun yarn:

Today, for one of my new things, I dyed it using the spice turmeric.  It makes an easy dye because you don’t need anything special like a mordant – just the spice and some water.  It makes a lovely yellow/gold shade.

This is the yarn, still wet.  I expect it will lighten to more of a yellow once it’s dry.

This is not enough yarn to actually make anything with, so my plans are to begin knitting a scarf.  As I spin and dye more yarn, I’ll keep adding to it, until it’s finished.  It might be an interesting yardstick of my spinning prowess, to see how much I improve from the beginning of the scarf to the end!  I do hope I don’t get so good I can’t spin chunky, nubby yarn, as some hand spinners say can happen.  I prefer really nubby yarn for knitting.  It’s so much more fun to work with.

The other new thing I did was try Jamberry nails.

They were fairly simply to apply, and by the last couple of fingers I’d started to figure out a good technique.  They are certainly less messy and smelly than polish!  It remains to be seen if they actually last two weeks or longer.  I’m one of those girls who uses her nails like tools, so with polish I’m lucky to get a single day without chips.  And if the weather is as nice tomorrow as they are promising, I’ll be outside gardening and building fences and quail coops.

Dexter is 6 months old, and still adorable.  He’s finally getting the point about housebreaking, and is learning other manners as well…although if he disagrees with the importance of a command, he likes to calmly argue his point, by using his words.  He doesn’t bark hardly at all, but he does like to vocalize!