Sepia Saturday 276: Babies, Newlyweds

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I had a bunch of different options for this post for Sepia Saturday, but I figured I’d give my husband’s Dutch family a turn again!  Here we have Ellechien Dijkema (1912-1974) and Luitje Huisman (1914-1986), date unknown.  They were married 29 May 1936 in Groningen, Holland, so I have to assume this photo was taken around that time since it fits in with the dates of the other photos in the album.  The second photo is of their first child, Nanne Huisman.  So, fitting right into the theme, we have a newlywed couple and their first child!


Of course, I couldn’t resist posting just one more since this photo is really lovely even if there’s no label or identification to tell me who or when.  I’d assume this was taken in Holland like the rest somewhere in the mid 1930s, but with no label on the back, I have no idea who these folks are!  It’s possible that this is the same child as above – the heights and faces seem to match, but without an identification on the back, it’s hard to be absolutey sure.  It’s possible this is another of the sisters or even a family friend or cousin.  The photo is still really great between the couple standing together in their coats and hats and the child hanging on to the side of the stroller, probably just learning to walk.  And that’s that for this week’s Sepia Saturday.


Petit Vour April 2015

April’s Petit Vour arrived today, and unfortunately, I’m disappointed in this month’s box.  I really wish they had a color preference section in their beauty profile because then I’d be able to tell them that I HATE HATE HATE pink.  One simple change and I would’ve been pretty pleased with this box!  As it stands, the nail polish is an absolutely hideous color to me and one I’d never wear, and it would’ve been nice to have the sponge in a not-pink color (I saw on instagram, folks were posting green nail polish, and green sponges, so, it’s possible).  I received the Suntegrity sample in the Goodebox this month, so the only thing left are the two towelettes which don’t amount to all that much.  This one was a complete miss for me, and it was mostly due to the color which is silly, but c’mon Petit Vour, how hard is that to add to the beauty profile?  Not every woman likes pink – I find the whole pinkifying everything for women really abhorrent (I do not want or need a pink power drill, the orange and black one is just fine) and as a result, absolutely loathe the color.  Anyway, on to the contents.

  • Lauren B Nail Polish – .5 oz / $18 – (Sample is full size, full value)  I received color, “#ImSoLA.”  Going back to the whole pink thing I mentioned above, this is a nope for me.  I’ll pass this off to a friend, but this is seriously the world’s worst color for me ever.  I understand other people might love it, but this is not at all my thing.  Give me green, blue, a bold red, a nice neutral.. ANYTHING but pink.  This is also on the high end in terms of price for a 5-free polish, so it’s probably not a polish I’d buy anyway.
  • Konjac Sponge – 1 Sponge / $12 – (Sample is full size, full value)  I received the Pink Clay version for “tired or devitalised skin.”  The Green or Red versions probably would’ve been a better fit for my skin type.  Plus, Pink.. again.  But hey, I tried it out because it was in the box, so why not?  It feels slimy when it’s fully hydrated and didn’t do anything to exfoliate.  I think my cotton washcloth (maybe even my bare hands too) is more abrasive than this!  My skin didn’t feel softer or any different than before use, I still had all the same blackheads, so I’m not impressed.  It also seems wasteful in comparison to a washcloth that you toss in the washer and use over and over again – the sponge is only good for up to three months.  The string included on the product just got in the way so I snipped that off and let it air dry on a clean soap dish.  For exfoliation, I still prefer rougher salt/sugar scrubs once a week instead of something like this, so while it was fun to try, it’s not something I’d add to my routine.
  • Suntegrity BB Cream – 1.7 oz / $45 – (Sample is .25 oz, value of $6.65 by volume, or sample tube on website is $4.95)  I received this in the April 2015 Goodebox in the same color, so I’ll point you over there.  I tried it out on a sunny afternoon and still got sunburnt (after 2pm), so I’m even less impressed than I was before.  I don’t have super fair skin and don’t burn all that easily in the first place, so it was basically like using nothing.  I’d definitely prefer this to not be tinted and just be a sunblock/moisturizer.
  • Box Naturals Luxe Towelettes – 12 Towelettes / $9 – (Sample is 2 towelettes, value of $1.50)  The product card says they can be used for, “freshening up down there,” but it is NEVER a good idea to use anything scented down there.  I’ll use them, probably on my face, but it’s not something I feel the need to keep around for “freshening up.”  I’ll wash my face or take a shower if I need freshening up!

Total value comes to around $36.50 which is about mid range for this box.  For me, the value is MUCH lower since I won’t be keeping the nail polish and already had (and don’t like) the Suntegrity sample, so I’ll pass this unused one off to someone else.  That leaves me $13.50 worth of things I’ll actually use (once the sponge has hit the end of its lifecycle, I won’t be getting another) which doesn’t even cover the cost.  It’s inevitable that there are going to be some fails now and again, and for me, this is definitely one of them.

Retrotastic Camera Bag

DSC_5523I’ve been on a sewing kick!  Between starting the Spoonflower Instagram Cheater Quilt challenge and finishing this project, the sewing projects are really keeping me busy.  This project was inspired in part by the Rhianna Indiegogo campaign that was delivered recently.  I love the camera, and the idea that there’s a bag to match is pretty nifty.  The fabric is printed by Spoonflower and is basically a pattern printed on fabric of the bag complete with markings, directions, and a cute bonus key fob.  In addition to the fabric, there’s a really great tutorial by HappySewLucky here.

Overall, I found the sewing really easy.  Line everything up carefully, follow the directions and it’s a breeze.  One small change I made was to use fusible fleece instead of quilt batting since the instructions didn’t specify the quilt batting thickness (there are a variety of lofts available).  I was able to iron the fleece to the fabric which made it MUCH easier since I wasn’t dealing with extra pins or basting and the fleece then didn’t shift around since it was fused to the fabric.  The fabric info on the Spoonflower site says to order “Upholstery Weight Twill” which Spoonflower doesn’t make anymore – instead, they have Heavy Cotton Twill ($32/yd) and for the fat quarter needed for the project, the cost is $17, plus $2 for shipping brings us to a total of $19 for the fabric.  The fleece I had lying around, so I have no idea what the cost would’ve been.  The puff of stuffing for the lens I snagged from a stuffed toy the boydog had mostly eviscerated (he won’t miss pulling out one teensy bit of stuffing, right?).  The velcro I did have to buy, and that was $1.99 for four sets of .75″ rounds, so only $.50 for the one set I used.  Total project cost was under $20 which isn’t too bad!  Between cutting out the fabric and sewing I think it took about an hour, and I’m no sewing expert.  The pattern is VERY well marked and the instructions thorough, so that helped make it go fairly fast.  The hardest part, by far, was turing the strap inside out which, in hindsight, I probably could’ve sewed right-side-out instead.

Overall?  I’m pleased!  The Rhianna fits very well inside the case, the stuffed lens bit does a great job of protecting the camera lens, and the bag is super fun to carry around.  Plus, there’s a satisfaction and pride in knowing that this is something I made with my own two hands instead of bought in a store.

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Sepia Saturday 275: Cables, Wires, Ladders, Workers

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Today’s Sepia Saturday brings us a prompt image of men working on electrical lines.  It’s a really unique image, I think, and not something I had a perfect match for, but it does open the door to men working which lets me post a really neat series of photos my grandpa Leon Kitko took in 1959.  A train had derailed and he, being much like a nosy neighbor, went down to check it out and possibly get a glimpse of some neat new machinery he might not have seen before.  From the number of photos with the same date stamp, he took (and kept) 8 photos of the event out of a roll of film and filled the rest with random shots of the countryside, his home, etc.  If I assume that he wasted no time getting the film developed and photos printed, the most likely news story I could find was one about a coal car derailment on June 25, 1959 at 10:29am in Lumber City, Pennsylvania.  The event even made the front page of the newspaper!  In their haste, the newspaper didn’t quite complete the caption under the photo either (linked below).  As the story reads, six coal cars were involved in the incident, caused by a coupler being pulled out of one of the cars, dropping to the rails, forcing the cars off the track and tearing up 150-200 feet of the track as well.  Luckily, there were no injuries and it was only coal (not some sort of chemical) so cleanup was somewhat easier, being completed by 9:30 that night.

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The photos my grandpa took are really interesting for many reasons.  He’s captured a newsworthy story from a bunch of angles as well as showing the working man at his job.  In one photo, you can see the piles of coal spilled out of the cars.  In another, shovels and buckets lined up along the rails while a man reaches to grab a plate that sets the rail in place.  In two photos, you can see a large piece of equipment rolling in to help remove the cars too damaged to continue on and set right those that could still roll along.  It’s really a rather complete picture of the accident, and I’m glad he was that nosy neighbor who wanted to check out what I’m sure was a big topic of local gossip that week.  As far as working cables from the theme into my post, that last photo of the crane should fit the bill!


Kickstarted – Espionage Cosmetics


I thought it might be time to start reviewing Kickstarter rewards/projects on ye olde blog since I’ve funded a bunch of them recently and have so far been pretty pleased with the experience!  I know it’s a risk, but it’s a wonderful way to support local or awesome businesses and get a little something in return.

The first one is Espionage Cosmetics’ Nailed It! But Wait… There’s MOAR! campaign.  Their first campaign helped them expand their line and hire new employees (job creators!), and this new campaign was an extension of the first campaign with new nail wraps, fun designs and rewards.  I missed the first one and had never tried a nail wrap, but loved the designs and couldn’t wait to jump in.

My Pledge: Zoe Washburne, $150 level (I initially pledged at a lower level and upped my pledge last minute as more rewards were unlocked)

The Goods: Goodie bag (bag, sticker, pin, humidor), t-shirt, 12 u-pick wraps, 1 random wrap, 5 Baker Street Wraps, 5 Lunar Phase wraps, digital wallpaper, add-on access, 1 month Nerd Makeup Box.  (Image at top shows all but the Nerd Makeup Box)

Review: SUPER happy with how they handled everything.  Communication was timely, the use of Backer Kit to manage selections made things REALLY easy and I never had a problem once during the process.  Everything arrived in a shiny silver padded envelope, packed with a sweet thank you card signed by the team members which was a nice personal touch.  There were regular updates on instagram and email about the shipping process so I knew when to expect everything.  The last part, the Nerd Makeup Box, arrived just this past week and now I’m wishing I had signed up for more months.

This is already an established business with a solid customer base, so I wasn’t worried about the project not getting funded or items not arriving as promised.  If anything, the value of the rewards far exceeded the cost, so I’m VERY happy with that (each nail wrap is $10-$12 on their website, so the nail wraps more than cover my pledge).  The nail wraps are thicker than I had expected and pretty easy to apply.  They peel off easy enough when you’re done with them (I can get a little over a week of wear on a wrap before they start to chip/wear off, but I’m a colossal klutz), and seem to do no damage to my nails.  Each wrap set has 14 individual wraps to fit all sorts of nail shapes and sizes.  The extra can be saved in the humidor (basically a waterproof, air proof bag) to be used later for accent nails or for an eclectic mix and match.


The last bit of the rewards, like I mentioned above, was the Nerd Makeup box, a new initiative launched with this Kickstarter campaign.  This is a special trial before they go live to the public, so it was really fun to be included in this Beta test.  They go into detail about the cost of the subscription for later months, but you always get four nail wraps which will ALWAYS cover the cost of the box regardless.  The first box included these lovelies, my favorite of which is the cherry blossom one since we’re finally starting to see spring around here.  Also included is a lip serum and mixing palate with instructions on how to mix your lip serum with mineral eye shadow to create fun colors.

Final Verdict: A+++++++++ would kickstart again.  The company is amazing, they’re organized, run by women, and support and encourage fandom and nerdery of all sorts.  While my kickstarter rewards will undoubtedly last me a long time, I can guarantee they’ve gained a new loyal customer as a result of the kickstarter campaign.