Weekly Wrap Up (Week of May 14th-May 20th)

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

I got married!

Well, a LOT has happened since last week. This past Wednesday I got married! It was a super simple affair that took place in around 60 seconds in my living room, but it all also happened rather quickly. Rick, my new husband, was at one point my ex-fiance. But life sometimes pulls you in crazy directions for a reason and within a week we’d made the decision to get married. We mostly told everyone after the event, but we are planning a wedding reception a month or two down the road so friends and family can come celebrate. I’m super stoked though and crazy happy.

Outdoor patio dining furniture from Target! I love this new outdoor dining space!

My marriage came with stepkids who are pretty frickin’ awesome. Thursday Hannah (who’s 11) and Isaac (who’s 13) helped me pull together this awesome outdoor dining space for us to enjoy as a new family. (I bought the entire set at Target.)

Hannah painting a paper mache unicorn with materials from Target!

And today Hannah painted a kick ass paper mache unicorn from Target’s Kid Made Modern line. (There’s also a third, Abbie, who’s currently planning for college, but we only have every other weekend.)

Rose Gold Bar Cart

I also got my hands on a bar cart – finally! – that I’d been lusting after forever. It finally went on sale and once I bought it it promptly sold out. I splurged a little on a set of matching copper martini glasses and rose flowers also from Target and a really nice Prince of Scots Professional Serie Boston Style Cocktail Shaker Set from Amazon. I still have to dig through Pinterest for some ideas on styling a bar cart though. Currently the bottom shelf is completely empty.

Large Flower Temporary Tattoo from Siideways

Currently I’m crushing on this gorgeous large flower temporary tattoo from Siideways.

Pineapple Mango Unicorn Horn Bath Fizzie from Golden Sapphire Boutique

And these Pineapple Mango Unicorn Horn Bath Fizzies from Golden Sapphire Boutique. (You can also follow Golden Sapphire Boutique on Instagram so you don’t miss out on any of her awesome creations.)

DIY Unicorn Bath Bombs via A Pumpkin & A Princess Blog

If you have time to squeeze in yet another new DIY project on an upcoming weekend, A Pumpkin & A Princess blog has a new tutorial on how to make your own unicorn horn bath bombs. You just need to grab these ice pop molds from Amazon then check out the list of materials and the recipe here.

I’m looking forward to sharing lots of new bath and body recipes with you all this coming week! Also, if you’d like a chance to see your bath & body creations featured on my next weekly wrap up post, simply add the hashtag #soapdelishowoff to your instagram and twitter posts when you share them!

Also don’t forget you can find & follow me on Pinterest,  G+,  Tumblr,  Facebook,  Twitter,  Blog Lovin’, and Instagram. Or sign up to receive new posts from Soap Deli News blog to your email via FeedBurner so you never miss a post.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Party Pleasers: Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch & Black Bean Dip

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Party Pleasers: A light Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe favorite and a crowd pleasing Black Bean Dip Recipe!

Over the weekend I hosted an amazing, super fun cocktail & cookout party filled with (now) proven party pleasers. I went all out for this party and included a selfie spot with props – this was not a thing twenty years ago – and in addition to make your own cocktail stations, I also included two pre-made spiked punches.

You must try this delicious Black Bean Dip Recipe for your next party! It's so simple to make. Just mix it all together the night before, refrigerate overnight and serve the next day!

There was also smoked pork butt, brisket and lamb along with grilled veggies and homemade dessert selections. I also made my fantastic black bean dip for pre-dinner snacking.

Cocktail & Cookout Party Pleasers! Drink stations, BBQ sauce bars and party pleasing black bean dip appetizer and Rooibos peach tea rum punch! Click through for the recipes to make your own!

For the smoked meats we offered a BBQ sauce bar with four sauce and a crazy hot pepper vinegar. I also set out pink Himalayan salt in a dish and black peppercorns for extra seasoning.

Cocktail & Cookout Party Pleasers! Drink stations, BBQ sauce bars and party pleasing black bean dip appetizer and Rooibos peach tea rum punch! Click through for the recipes to make your own!

I purchased my alcohol for this party from Mouth.com as they offered cocktail kits with recipes. This made the entire process of planning the cocktail menu a lot easier.

Their Au Pear Cocktail Kit was a huge hit. Made with Square One Botanical Vodka and George Spiced Pear Liqueur, this was also the most complex cocktail recipe. Fortunately we had someone dive right in with this one from the start so no one was intimidated by the process. You can find the recipe for the Au Pear Cocktail at Mouth here.

Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe! This spiked punch cocktail recipe is a real party pleaser and is made with a combination of light and dark rum as well as Adagio's Rooibos Peach Tea! It tastes exactly like peach tea!

My own Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe was also a party pleaser. Made with a combination of light and dark rum as well as Adagio’s Rooibos Peach Tea, this drink offered lighter alcohol content and tasted exactly like summer peach tea!

(Keep reading for the recipe to make my Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch further down as well as my black bean dip recipe!)

Party Pleasers: Fun face coasters and a self spot plus a light Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe and a crowd pleasing Black Bean Dip Recipe!

The Paladone Face Coasters I’d purchased some time back were another of many party pleasers.

Party Pleasers: Fun face coasters and a self spot plus a light Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe and a crowd pleasing Black Bean Dip Recipe!

We had the most fun with these coasters and everyone loved them.

These crazy fun Realistic Fun Mouth Photo Stick Props are a sure party pleaser for selfie spots at your event!

We also had a blast playing with the mouth photo sticks I found and bought from Oriental Trading.

Party selfie prop ideas! This battle ax was the most fun for memorable party photographs!

It didn’t end there though. In addition to a blow up selfie frame, we also had a battle ax which turned out to be brilliant for creating memorable photos.

And of course everyone went home with fun party favor bags filled with handmade donut soaps, handmade solid donut salt scrubs, illustrated temporary tattoos and artisan lollipops.

Recipes for Party Pleasers

So, are you ready to make your own party pleasers? You’ll find my recipes for my black bean dip and Rooibos peach tea rum punch below.

Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe! This spiked punch cocktail recipe is a real party pleaser and is made with a combination of light and dark rum as well as Adagio's Rooibos Peach Tea! It tastes exactly like peach tea!

Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe

© Rebecca D. Dillon

Ingredients:

64 oz. water
4 Tablespoons Adagio Rooibos Peach Tea
1 1/2 Cups light (clear) rum
1/2 Cup dark or special rum
1/2 Cup simple syrup
2-3 ripe peaches

Directions:

To make this Rooibos Peach Tea Rum Punch Recipe you’ll first need to wash and dry the peaches. Once clean, cut the peaches in half and remove the seed. Then cut the peaches into wedges. Place the peaches in a large heat safe pot or container. (I used a large 8 cup glass Pyrex measuring cup as it has a spout.)

Then fill 1-2 paper tea filters with 4 Tablespoons of tea. (You can put all 4 Tbs into one tea bag or split it into two tea bags as desired.) Place the tea bags into the container with the peaches.

In a large container or an electric kettle, bring half the amount of water needed to a boil.

Once the water boils, remove from heat and pour over the tea bags and peaches.

Steep the tea for 5 minutes, then remove the tea bags from the container, squeezing them to remove the excess tea from the bags.

Measure out the simple syrup and stir into the hot tea.

Now measure out and the rums and the remaining water and combine in a separate gallon sized container.

Pour the hot tea into the rum/water mixture and mix well.

Cover and refrigerate until use.

You can remove the softened peaches if desired for another dish or leave them in the tea for visual interest.

To drink, simply pour the Rooibos peach tea rum punch over ice and enjoy.

You must try this delicious Black Bean Dip Recipe for your next party! It's so simple to make. Just mix it all together the night before, refrigerate overnight and serve the next day!

Party Pleasing Black Bean Dip Recipe

© Rebecca D. Dillon

Ingredients:

2 cans Bush’s black beans, drained
1 can shoe peg corn
1 cup Pace Chunky Mild Salsa
1 red pepper, chopped
1/4 cup green onions, chopped
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
2 bags of Tostitos Scoops or tortilla chips

Directions:

Drain the cans of black beans and corn. Combine the beans and corn in a large container with washed/dried/chopped peppers and onions, salsa, lemon juice, olive oil and spices. Mix well, then cover and refrigerate overnight.

Remix the black bean dip before serving, then serve with tortilla chips.

I hope these recipes and ideas help to inspire your next party or event – even if it’s not soap! Also, be sure to let me know what some of your proven party pleasers are in the comments. And, for more party ideas, be sure to follow my Party Ideas Pinterest board.

And don’t forget you can you can find & follow me on Pinterest,  G+,  Tumblr,  Facebook,  Twitter,  Blog Lovin’, and Instagram. Or sign up to receive new posts from Soap Deli News blog to your email via FeedBurner so you never miss a post.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Weekly Wrap Up (Week of April 23rd-April 29th)

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Rebatched Yogurt & Banana Soap with Loofah

Being human we all make mistakes. Sometimes we even have soap disasters. Now these soap disasters can be rather disheartening especially if you worked really hard on something or you’re still new and just can’t seem to get it right. I’ve had two soapmaking disasters recently. What I’ve learned is, unless you make soap that’s lye heavy – it’s never really a disaster. What it is is an opportunity. A creative addition. An embed or an ingredient. A learning experience.

The first time I made my yogurt & banana soap recipe with flax seed oil, it separated on me. I’d ended up with a false trace and tried to pour it sooner than I should have. I’d wanted to pour the soap into a mold with a loaf of loofah in it. And I was afraid that if it traced too heavily, then it wouldn’t go into the loofah at all. (This soap was inspired by this Dead Sea sponge soap.)

To save it, I dumped it all into a huge pot on the stove the next day. I added some half and half, some cocoa butter, some beeswax and a bit of stearic acid to harden it up. I tore the loofah up as I mixed everything together in the pot over heat. Then I remolded them.

These soaps actually turned out great in the end. (They’re pictured above.) The soap isn’t really pretty. It’s very rustic. But it is super conditioning and has some interesting texture because of the loofah.

DIY Star Wars inspired galaxy soaps!

The other soapmaking mishap took place when I was making my chia & charcoal soap recipe for the first time. I was wanting to use some of the soap batter in my Star Wars mold. Unfortunately, I had to mix this one to a heavy trace to be sure I didn’t get a false trace like the last time. And, I had to soap hot because I was using candelilla wax.

The soap batter made it into the mold, but even with pushing the soap into the mold with a spatula and some tapping, there were pieces of wings and other details missing from the ships. So I did what any soaper in my position might do. I drank a bottle of pinot grigio and embedded them into melt and pour soap galaxies!

I think they turned out pretty neat in the end. So I wanted to share how I made them.

To create these Star Wars inspired soaps, I first dusted the inside of my Star Wars mold with some super sparkles mica and jet black cosmetic glitter. (You could also use black flare mica.) I then filled the mold cavities with my chia & charcoal soap batter. (You can use your own favorite cold process soap recipe for this project! Just color the soap with coconut activated charcoalAustralian midnight black clay or black mica powder.

Once the soaps cured, I embedded them in a melt and pour soap base. I specifically used Stephenson’s natural crystal soap base. I chose this soap base because it has a high melt point and cools rather quickly which makes it great for swirling. (If you want to scent your base, be sure to weigh the amount of soap you’re using so you can figure out how much fragrance oil to add based on manufacturer’s guidelines.)

I cut this base into chunks, then divided it between two Pyrex measuring cups. I heated the soap at reduced power in the microwave until melted. Then, in one container I added electric blue mica powder. In the other I added cyber grape mica powder. (Both were added to suit.) I then mixed each batch of soap individually until the color was evenly distributed throughout the melted soap bases.

Next, I poured a small amount of the melted blue soap base into the cavities of my Crafter’s Choice basic round soap mold. I dusted some black glitter on top of that, then swirled the soap slightly with a fork. I waited for the soap to cool slightly then repeated the process with the melted purple soap.

DIY Star Wars Inspired Galaxy Soaps! Ships crashing into a blue and purple swirl of galaxy soap!

I allowed the soap to cool a bit more then I placed one of my ships into a cavity of soap and positioned as desired. Then I repeated layering the melted blue and purple soap with glitter until the cavity was full. I then repeated the process for all the remaining cavities of my mold.

DIY Star Wars inspired galaxy soaps!

Once the soaps hardened completely, I unmolded them and wrapped them tightly in foodservice film. And that was it! I hope this inspires some of you and that it helps newbies to realize that you never really fail. You are simply learning something new!

That’s all for this week! I can’t wait to dive into new some new soapmaking projects with you next week! Have a wonderful weekend, everyone! And don’t forget to find & follow me on Pinterest,  G+,  Tumblr,  Facebook,  Twitter,  Blog Lovin’, and Instagram. Or sign up to receive new posts from Soap Deli News blog to your email via FeedBurner so you never miss a post.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Weekly Wrap Up (Week of April 16th-April 22nd)

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

These Hand Poured 100% Soy Lemongrass Citronella Outdoor Candles from Pure Palette naturally deter mosquitoes and other biting insects!

I missed writing a weekly wrap up the past two weeks in a row. Part of it was getting behind on blog projects. Part of it was getting the house cleaned for a game night James was hosting. Part of it was just life. And being overwhelmed. I had a freak out week where I was just overly consumed about failing with my new direction. Quitting my day job. Meeting the weekly blogging goals I set for myself. Terrified I won’t be able to hack it blogging full time and make enough to both pay my debts and live off of.

So between coming up with new bath and body recipes, trying to get them executed, and stressing myself to the point there was too much in my head to focus I forgot for a moment that this is what I love. And it’s okay to not always get it right.

Week before last I had not one, but two projects fail. But that’s the process. I had to remember that I am only one person. I’m not Martha Stewart. I don’t have an insane budget to play with. I don’t have employees. I don’t have a photographer or a designer. And I definitely don’t have a savvy marketing guru in my corner. There’s just me.

Realistically, one person can only do so much. And unfortunately not all of my days are sunny. So I have shelved some of the higher expectations I’ve set for myself and I got some of my mojo back this week. I was able to post three original projects for you all to give a try. And I’m pretty excited about that. (I found this article from Wit & Delight especially inspiring in getting my head back to where it needs to be.)

James shopping for an electric smoker for a cookout & cocktail party!

I also remembered I need support and friends and breaks in my life. So this week I’ve also been working on planning a cocktail & cookout party for James and my friends in May. James bought a smoker so he can smoke a ridiculous amount of meat and I’ve been hunting for awesome cocktail recipes that I can serve punch style in mason jar drink containers. I’ve also been making some fun party favors for swag bags like my soap donuts, solid salt scrub donuts and bug away butter. And, I’ve been shopping too.

"Planted" Flash Temporary Tattoos by Steffi Lynn of Have a Nice Day Out of Brooklyn, NY

I bought some amazing lemongrass + citronella bug free zone candles from Pure Palette, who also resides in my home state Virginia, so we’re not spilling cocktails or dropping meats because we’re busy swatting at annoying biting insects.

I also bought some handmade goodies for my party swag bags including some super fun temporary tattoos from both PiCO Tatouage Temporaire out of Canada and Have a Nice Day out of Brooklyn, NY. (Pictured above are Steffi Lynn’s “Planted” Flash Temporary Tattoos.)

And I bought an assortment of both fan favorites and Fiesta Lollipops from Luxe Lollies that includes flavors like Salted Watermelon Jalapeno Limeade, Muy Loco Salted Jalapeno Margarita, Delicioso Salted Margarita, Nutty Horchata, and Pineapple Jalapeño Lime.

Reusable Party Animal Favor Bags from Love & Confetti

And of course one must have swag bags to put said party favors in! So I bought these fun reusable (I mean, it IS earth day everyday!) party animal favor bags from With Love & Confetti. (Discover more party inspiration on my Party Ideas Pinterest board.)

I also want to make some Star Wars inspired and mustache soaps as well as some mini perfumes so each bag has some variety with no two being quite exactly the same. And of course I’ll be posting those projects here on the blog at some point so you won’t miss out either!

Cardamom Rose Facial Grain Scrub Recipe via Catching Seeds Blog

While you’re waiting on me to post more of my new DIY projects, be sure to check out these bath and body recipe favorites I discovered this week from other bloggers:

(Discover more of my favorite skincare and soap recipes on my DIY Bath and Body Pinterest board.)

Confetti Bundt Cake Bath Bombs from The Bath Candy Shop! This handmade bath bomb is scented with a confetti cake fragrance and is topped with soap drizzle and sprinkles.

And here are some of my favorite products I’ve been crushing on this week:

(For even more of my favorites you can follow my collections on Etsy.)

That’s all for today! I hope to “see” you again right here at Soap Deli News next week! In the meantime, you can find & follow me on Pinterest,  G+,  Tumblr,  Facebook,  Twitter,  Blog Lovin’, and Instagram. Or sign up to receive new posts from Soap Deli News blog to your email via FeedBurner so you never miss a post.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

Weekend Wrap Up (Week of March 26th-April 1st)

Disclosure: Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.

This week I thought I’d share a few of my favorites things and products. What I’m watching, products currently I’m using, and other delights I’m crushing on this week. Of course, this video from SNOBLOVE Beauty topped my list. In this video, she shares how she made her stunningly beautiful cold process unicorn queen soap. You can also shop for this fab soap for a limited time while supplies last in The SNOBLOVE bar shop.

In addition to the occasional YouTube video, I’m also watching the series Legion, which is based on the Marvel Comics, Amazon’s Fortitude and Hulu’s Harlots with great anticipation. I’m also very much looking forward to seeing The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu.

essence How To Make Bright Eyes Make-up Box

Products I’m using right now include:

Lotion: Savannah Bee Honey Body Lotion in Unscented
Hand Soap: Raw Sugar Natural Hand Wash in Coconut Mango (bathroom) and Lemon Sugar (kitchen)
Primer: Hourglass Cosmetics Ambient Light Correcting Primer in Luminous Light (This was a freebie via my ipsy rewards!)
CC Cream: Supergoop Daily Correct CC Cream in Fair/Light
Blush: Tarte Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Long-Wearing Blush in Risqué
Lip Crayon: LOC Ultra Gloss Lip Pencil in Punch Line (via my Birchbox subscription.)
Eyeshadow primer: Clinique Touch Base for Eyes in Canvas Light
Powder: bareMinerals Original Mineral Veil Powder
Mascara: stila Huge Extreme Lash Mascara
Eyeshadow: essence How To Make Bright Eyes Make-up Box (They sell this at Target. I also use it to highlight my cheekbones.) Also Doucce Freematic Eyeshadow in Marisa (via my ipsy subscription.)
Hair Care: Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer (via my ipsy subscription.)
Conditioners: Renpure Solutions Bamboo Green Tea Cleansing Conditioner and Renpure Advanced Extra Strength Biotin & Collagen Thickening Conditioner (They sell these at Target.)
Face Moisturizer: Body Merry’s Retinol Surge Moisturizer
Under Eye Cream: My own Anti-Aging Under Eye Cream with Hyaluronic Acid (Recipe here.)
Deodorant: My own Palmarosa + Lime Natural Deodorant Recipe with Aloe Vera Oil (Recipe here.)

Products I’ve purchased this week to try:

Hempz Herbal Body Moisturizer in Pink Berry Chiffon
Too Faced Peanut Butter and Honey Eyeshadow Palette
OPI Nail Polish in Princesses Rule

Also this week…

Made James and I #dinner tonight with one of the meals from #HelloFresh!

A post shared by Soap Deli News Blog (@soapdeli) on

I cooked this New York Strip Steak with Truffled Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans Amandine for James & I from my Hello Fresh subscription. (James usually cooks.) If you sign up for HelloFresh here as a new subscriber you’ll get $40 off your first delivery.

I also discovered a great new easy non-toxic no scrub shower cleaner. Simply combine ½ cup Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner with ½ cup vinegar in a spray bottle & gently mix. Spray on your surface, wait several minutes then rinse! Voila! You can also use a couple tablespoons of Sal Suds for an average load of laundry, dilute with water to sponge down countertops or to mop your floor, or even mix with baking soda to make a powerful scouring agent for bathtubs and sinks. (You can buy Sal Suds here.)

DIY Donut Bath Bombs via A Pumpkin & A Princess

I also fell in love with these DIY Donut Bath Bombs via A Pumpkin & A Princess blog. They’re made with soap icing and real sprinkles. You can find the recipe to make your own here or repin this DIY here for later. For more DIY’s like this one be sure to follow my DIY Bath & Body Pinterest board. Or, for donut bath bombs you can buy, visit Velvet Moon Studio on Etsy.

Rebecca D. Dillon, Author of Soap Deli News blog!

Additionally I also learned about the AirBrush app (available for both the iPhone and Android phones.) This amazing and easy to use app lets you take years off your appearance or simply adds makeup! This photo was retouched using the AirBrush app. I was wearing ZERO makeup in this selfie photo. All of the makeup was added using the app. You can get the app here.

That’s all for this week! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend filled with many fun and creative discoveries!

Also, don’t forget you can find and follow me on across all my social media profiles. I’m on PinterestG+TumblrFacebookTwitterBlog Lovin’, and Instagram. You can also sign up to receive new posts from Soap Deli News blog to your email via FeedBurner.


Blog posts may contain affiliate links for which I receive a small commission when you make a purchase. Full disclosure can be found here.