You sniff it you buy it: A very expensive lesson in essential oils and other recent goings-on.

Last Saturday afternoon, C and I wrapped up work on time [glory be] and went to Ruby Tuesdays for a couple chicken BLTs. Which we’re now hopelessly addicted to; we had back-to-backers over the weekend and I may have talked my parents into meeting me for dinner for another one tonight. It’s a problem. A delicious, panko-encrusted, bacon-topped problem.

When we got home, I was running through my regular paranoid Shop Closing Routine Checklist — Did I lock the front door? Close up the back? Did I leave the walk-in cooler open? Is a lamp on, threatening to burn down the building? — and realized that I left a hot glue pan burning on the design counter from a homecoming corsage I made that morning. I paused the episode of Project Runway I was watching on demand (in my bed, mid-sandwich coma) and headed back downtown.

It took all of 60 seconds to unplug the glue pan, so rather than waste the trip, I decided to stop at a health food store for a couple beauty supplies. I should’ve gone to the one downtown near the shop, but I stopped at the one closer to home instead.

I grabbed a big bottle of sweet almond oil and some rosewater spray (which just smells so good). While I was there, I thought I’d check out their chamomile essential oil; my girlfriend uses it for lots of things and I love making scrubs and body moisturizers with different aromatherapy oils. More on that later.

This particular shop keeps all of their essential oils behind the counter, which bugs me because I want to get at them to sniffem, you know? I asked the two ladies at the counter if they had any roman chamomile; which I pronounce, “camo-meal,” for what it’s worth. One lady confirmed they had it in stock, while the other searched the shelves. She said, “I don’t see ‘roman’ chamomile,”  — she pronounced it, “camo-mile,” which made me weirdly self-conscious; I decided to google the pronunciation later — “but we have this kind.”

As she passed the bottle to me over the counter, I totally assumed she’d handed it my way so I could take a whiff. So I twisted the cap, and just as I felt the inner seal snap, the other lady exclaimed, “DON’T OPEN IT!”

When the camo-meal/mile oil didn’t explode or spontaneously combust in my hand, I realized that I’d just committed some kind of you-break-it-you-buy-it infraction. “I guess I’ll just… buy it?” I offered. I thought about the last essential oil I purchased there: lavender, for about $15. I turned the tiny bottle over in my hand to peek at the price tag and…

$59.99.

Wait. WUT? $59.99?!

“Do you… know… how much this is? I thought… you were giving it to me… to smell it…” I stammered. One lady looked as surprised as I was, while the other, who I recognized from years of shopping there, explained that it’s one of the priciest essential oils on the market (of course it is) and they don’t even have a tester bottle because it’s so expensive and made of unicorn tears and pixie dust or something; I stopped listening because I was trying to reconcile in my brain that I was about to drop 60 bucks on this tiny bottle of smelly oil I wasn’t even sure I knew how to pronounce.

“Um, do you still want it?” my sister in shock asked. “Um, do I have a choice?” I replied. Nope, it didn’t seem I did. You guys. I can’t even.

I went home and googled “chamomile oil uses,” followed by “how to pronounce chamomile,” (turns out we’re both right) and broke the news to my husband that I spent 3-bottles-of-Tito’s worth of cash on an essential oil that would hopefully change our lives and fix every ailment we ever have. At least, the Internet says it will.

He’s pretty skeptical.

(Currently accepting any and all recommendations for chamomile essential oil, please and thanks.)

In other news, things are picking up at the flower shop as we ease back into our season. We had two big banquet events last week, and the calendar is filling up with weddings, parties, and holiday stuff. In about three blinks, it will be Christmas. Tomorrow is OCTOBER, y’all.

We’re a little bummed to see summer go, but C is coping by keeping busy with his other full-time job, fantasy football, and I’m comforting myself with thoughts of hearty crockpot recipes, pumpkin-centric baked goods, and the return of scarf weather.

And I have a feeling this fall is going to smell like chamomile… ;-)

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Oh hey, it’s fall!

Hi 23rd day of September!

I’ve peeped you on my calendar at least a dozen times over the last several months in an effort to keep a mental note of the inaugural day of Autumn. And then you just kind of came and went, and I durn near missed you!

Thank goodness for style blogs, or it might have blown right by me. Bee-tee-dubs, Kendi’s outfit today is basically how I plan to dress all fall; in fact I happened to wear something super similar today with this LOFT utility blouse, which I bought in every color during their last pre-season sale. Note to self: Add “stockpiling the same article of clothing in every available shade” to the list of Ways I’m Becoming My Mother.

There were no pumpkin lattes to commemorate the first day of fall — seriously, you guys, they’re just chemical cocktails; make them at home instead — and I’m not even thinking about boots and scarves yet. We’re making the transition at the flower shop with lots of sunflowers and burlap and such (and loving it) but I haven’t even done my windows yet, so I already feel behind… I’m excited for the season, I just can’t believe it’s, like, here.

You have pretty big shoes to fill, fall. Summer was all kinds of wonderful, and she’ll be tough to beat.

Now Florida, can we get under 90 degrees?

Calling all Gram Parsons fans!

Gram Parsons Derry Down Downtown Winter Haven Florida

A note: I don’t usually post this kind of thing, but the Gram Parsons’ Cosmic Revival @ Derry Down Kickstarter project is really special to me. I hope you’ll indulge me in a little fundraising promotion, and help spread the word to Gram Parsons fans and music lovers worldwide!

In the heart of my hometown, there’s a tiny building with a big history. In 1964, Bob Parsons bought a place for his step-son, a young growing musician, to hone his talent for performing on stage. His step-son was Gram Parsons, who would become one of the most influential musicians of our time. Today is the 41st anniversary of his passing; he was only 26 years old, but in his short lifetime he created a new genre of music, “Cosmic American Music,” and influenced countless musicians.

Over the years, the Derry Down housed a number of musicians — The Allman Brothers and Tom Petty both performed on its stage — and later became a teen destination. Today, like so many great pieces of history, it’s become a victim of time; it’s been empty for years and fallen into disrepair. But there’s a big community movement, spearheaded by Main Street Winter Haven to restore the Derry Down to it’s former glory, while preserving its history and honoring Gram’s legacy.

Music was a huge part of my life growing up. I spent the better part of a decade with a violin glued to my chin, and I learned so much from my experiences performing on stage. By the time I was in high school, many of my friends were talented musicians and some had their own bands. I remember hanging out in downtown venues every weekend, listening to them play for hours in a safe place with all my closest friends. I can’t imagine an adolescence that didn’t include those memories…

That’s what the Derry Down is all about. I’m so excited to be part of this project as an executive board member of Main Street Winter Haven. Along with a community committee of volunteers, we’re dedicated to seeing this place restored to its former glory so young musicians have a safe place to play and learn.

Last night, The Anderson Brothers christened the Derry Down stage with the first live performance in more than 50 years. We also celebrated the launch of the Gram Parsons’ Cosmic Revival @ Derry Down Kickstarter campaign.  We have 44 days to meet our goal of $150,000 for the renovation!

Please take a moment to visit the Kickstarter, watch the amazing video by local agency, C/N/P, and professional photographer, Mike Potthast, give whatever you’re able, and most importantly, pass it along.

Thanks, guys!!

life & style. fresh-picked {almost} daily.

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