TeamProjectPan finale

So, I was able to commit to an entire year of a project, and I really enjoyed it. While I do intend to change things up again in the new year, I am so glad that I worked on this particular challenge this year. I do feel like I was able to accomplish so much.

Let’s get right into it.

Fragrances: This year I had hoped to work through the vast majority of my sample sized fragrances. I did work through so many, about an average of 2 per month, but the reality was that more kept arriving. Sometimes by accident but often on purpose. One thing I learned this year is that I really enjoy sampling various perfumes. I did receive more sample sizes in the space between Thanksgiving and now, but I decided to take a photo only in comparison to where I was last month. In the future, I am going to alternate between finishing sample sizes and using the one full size perfume I currently own in order to get use out of the thing I spent money on.


I ended up finishing one sample size of Rosie Jane’s Leila Lou which was not a scent I loved. It was too synthetic. It smelled like a scent for a dryer sheet when I’d first put it on. It would then settle down into a nice floral, but the synthetic scent really put me off. Not enough to toss it, but enough to be wary of the brand.

I also kept making progress on my YSL black opium which it turns out is really a fragrance I enjoy quite a lot, especially this time of year. I also began wearing the Nest Black Tulip perfume which I have found that I am really going to enjoy as I work through it in the future.

On to the next photo, body care, foundation, primer, spray. I rolled out the born this way foundation last month. As for the it cosmetics illuminating CC cream, it’s extremely close to being finished. I can now see through the bottom of the package. Quite frankly, I’ll need to cut this open soon in order to get the last bits out, and so I will have finished another foundation. I do like this but I probably won’t repurchase. It moves on my skin quite a lot, I think I do better with the matte formula.

I made a bit more progress on the Skin & Co finishing spray. I still struggle to remember to use this regularly. The progress isn’t much different from month to month.

I used quite a bit of the no poreblem primer under my cc cream this month. And on the days where I didn’t use the cc cream, I used the becca backlight primer. Far less progress on that primer than the no poreblem primer. I have a suspicion that the no poreblem might have been half the reason the cc cream was moving on my face, so I need to test it a bit more before I decide I want to keep it in my collection. Miss Butterfly would like a new primer, and perhaps this one can be it if it does not work for me.

As for face palettes, I’ve been working on the tarte face palette quite a bit. The most use is in the bronzers. These bronzers are warm enough toned that they would likely suit me better in the summer. It’s kind of odd actually because the highlighter and the blush are more of the shades I would associate with cooler weather. I am not a huge fan of this palette. I also made a little bit of progress on my sleek palette, the darkest cream contour shade. I do still like this product though I am using a brush to apply it most often these days.

A few other items, most notably, I finished the tarte blush. That’s kind of a big deal! I did like this blush quite a lot, so it wasn’t a struggle to stick with it. This means I finished a blush and a highlighter this year, that feels like an amazing accomplishment.

I also removed the stopper on the concealer and am working on finishing up the last of that. It’s going ok, but there’s always way more in there than I anticipated. I’ll keep after it.

I’ve been using the thrive causmetics stick but it still doesn’t look like I’ve made progress. I feel like this is a ridiculously pointless item in my collection and I may let it go soon.

I finished the bum bum cream and the brow product last month.

I did not quite finish the bite beauty lipstick. I may continue to try to finish it in the new year. We’ll see. I like the dark color but since I did the advent calendar this past month I really didn’t have an opportunity to work too hard on it.

I increased the pan on my eye primer setting powder and the mac paint pot keeps going strong. I use it daily and it forever looks like no use. Which is good, great value for money!

I am glad to bring this project to a close though it was ridiculously valuable this year. I will be working on a project or two next year, so stay tuned to hear more about those!


And Then Spinning

When I was too exhausted to knit in the past month, I spun on support spindles. Only the easiest and most basic batts I created myself.

I’d been working on a lighter and a darker color blue. I was able to get a skein of yarn that was one ply of dark and one ply of light combined. Then I had a bunch of the darker singles left over, so I plied those together as well.


I figure that if I alternate skeins, they’ll be close enough to look pretty good together. I did not count the yardage, that seemed like too much work at the time. I’ll have to get to that sometime in the future.

I’d like to get some wheel spinning done at some point soon, but am still finding that kicking back with my feet up at the end of the day is really all I’ve got left in the tank. So, I have already started on another support spindle project.


After Lizzie passed, the next day my cousin arrived in town. She’s taken a job at the same place I work, though different department, and so she was in town to look for housing. The timing wasn’t ideal. We’d had surprise guests from Mr. Ink’s family on our last weekend with Lizzie, which was even less ideal. But, honestly, my cousin’s visit was rather delightful. It was a good distraction from our sadness. It was fun and exciting to watch her navigate the things she needed to navigate to begin her first out of grad school professional position. As someone more at the midpoint of my career, it’s fun to see someone enjoying the excitement of starting out. She’s a quiet introvert just like us, so having her in the household was really comfortable for us. And, there’s something to be said for having no choice but to hold it together in those first moments after an experience that causes grief.

I began a new knitting project. I’d finished my 40 items in 2019, so I figured I could pull off another one. This one was a special one. I decided to knit Miss Marja’s christmas gift out of her own handspun yarn. I know she likes a LONG infinity scarf so I went on the hunt for a pattern that would be just that. It also had to be easy, but had to have enough interest in it to make me concentrate from time to time.

I ended up settling on the Carol Cowl. A little garter stitch, a little brioche stitch, a little lace and nupps. Really this was exactly the kind of pattern I needed.

I never did get an in-progress photo, but I knit away on it in the evenings when Mr. Ink wanted to watch TV. After a time, it was done.


I finished it with plenty of time to give it as the gift it was meant to be.

So, technically, this brought me to 102% of my goal, a goal I couldn’t complete last year even with the same numbers, and a goal I didn’t entirely expect to complete this year.

It’s been a tough month

At the beginning of the month, I made a post about our sweet dog Lizzie having cancer, and that I’d be going quiet for a bit to spend any remaining days with her. Unfortunately, the time with her was much shorter than we ever could have anticipated. In reality, we just got one last weekend with her, and then it was time to let her go. Her cancer was extremely aggressive and quick moving.

I ended up not even having the wherewithal to continue my advent lipstick posts. I just couldn’t. I was desperately trying to get through a busy month and hold it together and the blog was an easy thing to let go of during that time.

So now I am going to attempt to post about our last days with Lizzie, maybe talk about a few other things that happened this month, and then get back to blogging in the more normal manner.

First of all, right before we got the news about Lizzie, I’d taken both dogs in to get professional holiday portraits done as a fundraiser for our rescue. Lizzie looks a little distressed in hers (and she was!) But I am really glad to have the photos.

In all honesty, I’d begun to suspect there was something very wrong and that’s what pushed me out of the house to get these photos done that day, 2 days before we got the bad news.

Once we got the news, we were able to get Lizzie on steroids to improve her quality of life for the time she had left. This really did help, as she was much more comfortable and wanted to be out doing the things she loved. We got the news on Tuesday. On Thursday I came home from work and she was feeling clearly more spunky.

She was suddenly playing with toys and ready to rock and roll. We went to the dog park that evening, it was after dark. There was no one else there, so we let Rose run and let Lizzie sniff all the things.

I took Friday off. It was the only day I’d be able to do so in the near future, and I figured I wouldn’t regret it.

This turned out to be a good decision. She was finally ready to eat all the interesting foods (she was allowed to have anything she wanted.) She had visitors who wanted to give her scritches, and they even allowed her to obsessively lick them the way she prefers to do.

We went to dog parks, we went on hikes, we went for car rides, she played tug of war with me, we had one perfect final weekend.

And on Monday, her body gave up on us. We had to let her go that evening, less than a week from diagnosis.

We got two years and four months with a fun, confident little rescue dog who had previously been forced to be a neglected outdoor dog. You never would have known it. She walked into our lives, anticipated everything we ever wanted her to do and did it, never caused an ounce of trouble for us, and made absolutely sure we’d never forget to take care of her needs. In return, she made our lives so much fuller. She made us laugh regularly, she had us outdoors every day even in the coldest of winter, and she showed us and every other human ridiculous amounts of love. And in her final year, she made sure that Rose had all the skills she needed for a more confident life, she taught Rose how to be a dog in a home, skills Rose has not forgotten.

We miss her desperately. We wish we had more time. We are confident we gave her the best years of her life. She was my first dog, and what a first dog she was!




Advent Calendar Days 6-9

Well, aren’t I ever behind?! I took Friday off work to spend with the dogs and get some cleaning done for unexpected house guests over the weekend. I have a cousin coming in to town on Tuesday as well, so the cleaning needed to get done even if I didn’t have unexpected house guests. Plus, I wanted to be at home with the dogs.

Day 6:


It’s a bright magenta metallic liquid lipstick. Ridiculously difficult to apply. Ridiculously bright. Mr. Ink came home at lunch and said “Is that lip color the real reason you stayed home today?!”

I will never wear this again. I am not afraid of a bold lip, but a bold metallic lip is not my thing.

Day 7:


I spent the day outside with the dogs, or visiting with Miss Marja, none of which required makeup. But, we did have Mr. Ink’s mother’s 92 birthday to attend, so I managed to get my makeup done, grab the lovely buttergloss in color madeleine, pop it on my lips and run outside for a quick photo before the sun went down. This lip item now lives in my coat pocket, I love it SO MUCH.

Day 8:


This was a matte liquid lipstick, a liquid suede. I do like the color very much, it’s a great nude color. I am not a fan of the formula, however, so I wouldn’t purchase this. I popped the gloss from the previous day over the top of this to make it feel more comfortable, and it lasted nicely all day long.

Day 9:


I am back at work today with a matte bullet lipstick, color natural. Which seems appropriate! It leans toward pink but is very much a nude even so.

I’ve gotten fortunate with the past 3 days of colors. Since each of them were nudes, I was able to enjoy working with some new eyeshadow palettes that I picked up recently. They are all of the mauve/purple themes, colors that were definitely lacking in my collection. Miss Butterfly and I are enjoying them immensely and exploring all sorts of looks with them!

I’ll have company in my house from tomorrow through Saturday. That means I’ll have to significantly tone down my makeup application process since I won’t have access to my vanity. I am kind of looking forward to figuring out how to streamline that!

Advent Calendar day 5

Today’s advent calendar lip product is a clear lip oil. Sure does make things easy on me! I have been wearing the bite beauty lip color in Nori pretty regularly for over 2 months now, and it’s an intense, vampy, deep color. So, I can’t say I was sad to get a clear oil. I did pair it with a nude lip liner to give it some intensity and pigment.

Since I got such an easy wearing color, I went a little more intense on my eyes, using my Viseart Soliel palette for a hot pink and purple eye look. I tapped some of my new urban decay moondust shadow over the top to make it a little more glittery as well.

While I like these lip oils well enough, I’d just as soon wear a laneige lip sleeping mask instead. So, this’ll get tossed into Miss Butterfly’s christmas stocking (unwrapped, just an extra treat) at the end of today.


In a previous post, I was worried about our dogs and suspecting that I was catastrophizing as well.

This week, we got good news and bad news. Rose’s ACL is not torn so she’s on a course of pain meds to manage her limp and get her back to tip top shape.

Unfortunately, the news about our dear Lizzie was not so good. She has liver cancer and there’s nothing to be done except to make her as comfortable as possible in these last days. She’s gone downhill very fast, so our home is mostly closing ranks and going introverted to spend as much time as we can with her. We will be putting her on steroids to help her comfort levels, but our time with her is likely to be cut very short.

We love this gal with all our hearts. She’s my first dog. I couldn’t have asked for a better one. We only got 2.5 years with her, but we made sure those were the best 2.5 years of her life. My heart for rescue stands strong, as I draw on the resources of our rescue organization to talk me through the tough decisions of these last days. They’ve been a great help and comfort. The most beautiful advice I have heard in the last 24 hours from the owner of our rescue is “make her last days her best days, and let her go a day early rather than a day late.” If it happens she goes on her own terms, we would be relieved. Otherwise, we will carefully listen to her and support her when the time comes.

I’ll be honest, my greatest regret with old Coco was that we didn’t let him go sooner. But he was Mr. Ink’s dog, and it wasn’t my decision to make. (And we did make his last days his best days, we feel comfortable with that decision.) I hope to be able to make a better decision for our Lizzie, one I can look back on with confidence rather than worry.

It’s tough to have been in our home for only 4.5 years but to have to suffer the loss of a treasured dog twice in this short time. But we wouldn’t give up our time with her for anything. As all treasured dogs are, she is The Best Dog.

I will still be posting my makeup advent calendar posts this month. But I am really not feeling it, nor am I feeling blogging in general. So if I go quiet, that’s why. We’ll be over here doing our very best with the hand we’ve delt and I’ll be back at it when I am feeling more up to it. Thanks for understanding!

NYX advent calendar

Hi all-

Last year I purchased the NYX advent calendar and posted a selfie a day as I worked my way through the calendar. It was quite a lot of fun for me, made me try unusual lipstick shades, and gave me something to look forward to during the darkest parts of the year.

I purchased this year’s calendar as well. But, since I purchase on thanksgiving day to get it half price, and because thanksgiving was late this year, I didn’t receive it until yesterday. As such, I am starting late and will make up the extra days after christmas eve.

This year’s calendar is called Love, Lust, Disco. I am likely to be subjected to some metallic lipsticks I fear. This year it is all lip products, where last year we received eyeshadows, a blush, and highlighter.

Day 4 lipstick is soft matte lip cream in color Sau Paulo. It’s bright, but not offensively so. I like it!


I got to pair this with a new eyeshadow, for a birthday gift I got an urban decay moondust eyeshadow single. It’s pretty and sparkly, probably more of a topper than anything else. But, I used Two Faced Sweet Peach palette for a transition, crease, and outer corner. Then I used a glitter glue on my lid with the moondust shadow over it and it’s just as pretty as can be, I really love it.

And Done!

I finished my 40th project on the first day in December rather than the last. Pretty darn pleased with myself at the moment!

This is the Nuvem by Martina Behm. This was such a fantastic and easy, comfortable knit! I would knit it again in a heartbeat if I had the appropriate yarn for it.

The ruffles are a different handspun from the main body of the shawl but I think I did a great job on the color match. The fiber match isn’t at all the same, but that won’t be an issue.

Since then, I’ve been working on spinning up the rest of the fiber I used for the edging. However, my wrist is beginning to hurt so I need to find something else to cast on soon. I need a spinning break!

Other things from the weekend/vacation. First of all, I REALLY needed the vacation. It’s amazing to me how exhausted I am during the week but if I’ve got a few days off with downtime, including extra sleep, I feel so fantastic and with it in the evenings!

Both the dogs have vet appointments this week. I’ve barely been blogging so I haven’t really been talking about it much, but Miss Lizzie’s got very little appetite over the past few months. We need to identify if it’s her meds causing the issue or something else, and then we need to come up with a plan to mitigate it. She’s lost too much weight now. And since when it rains, it pours, Rose came home from the dog park unable to put weight on a back leg. I’ve noticed a little bit of limping from time to time in the past, but for a dog who has run blisters into her paw pads before, I just figured she was overexerting herself. Now I suspect we’ve got an ACL tear and while I am desperately trying not to catastrophize, I suspect she’s going to need a pretty big surgery. That’ll be a bit of a blow for us, and tough recovery, and I am definitely stressing over it all. But we should know slightly more on Tuesday if I can get her in to see the vet at the same time as Lizzie. The other issue is very selfish on my part. I’ve never been good with hospitals or surgery or anything. I get nauseated when visiting people in the hospital. Sometimes I almost faint. I get an overwhelming feeling as if I am feeling the pain the person I am visiting is in. This seems now to have expanded to encompass my dog, as when looking up info on TPLO surgery, I get nauseated and lightheaded just thinking about it. So catastrophizing, that’s what I am over here doing. We love our sporty Rose, and we want her to stay healthy and sporty and not be in pain, so we’ll do what we have to, as she enriches our lives so much. But I am not looking forward to this on multiple levels.

I guess that’s it from here, a bit of a downer I suppose. Nevertheless, while the dogs have been a bit of a blow recently, we really did have a nice time off and holiday, and that I am so grateful for!

Second to last finished object

I began the Odyssey shawl in October using a lovely handspun gradient yarn of mine. Originally I’d intended to knit a project with the yarn which was a gradient, but then decided that I could knit the Odyssey shawl starting from one end of the yarn, switching to the other end for the middle section, and back to the original end for the final section. It worked out very well!

That’s 98% of my yearly goal of 40 projects. And my final project is close to being done as well! I will probably finish today if I have any luck.

And that brings me to next year’s goals! I have none. My goal is to not have goals. I’ll knit as I want to knit, spin as I want to spin, and I’ll push to keep knitting from stash instead of acquiring new yarn. That’s my goal.