Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Random Recommends 4

Rose Salve

I waltzed into Sephora a couple of weeks ago with the intention of buying the Benetint lip balm, I am still in love with the pocket pal and hoped that the lip balm version would give me the same pleasantly pink pout but with more moisture to combat the chapped state that the brutal winter weather has left my lips in. Benetint balm in hand I walked towards the register and saw this salve sitting in a bin on the counter – bigger container, 1/3 the cost… byebye benetint. Perhaps I’m just a sucker for flowery lip gloss and anything with a drop of rose extract would charm my fickle heart but I am in love with this product.

I hate the word salve as it reminds me of icky things like 3rd degree burns and open wounds so I’ll be referring to this product as lip gloss from here on out. The little tin of gloss has been my closest companion since time of purchase. It not only leaves my lips pretty and soft after each application but I’m convinced that my pucker is now softer as a whole – the gloss seems to have soothed the winter blues. The manufacturer claims that the gloss is also good for minor irritations like burns, stings and diaper rash but I’ve yet to have an irritated body part to apply it to – perhaps one of my mommy or daddy readers could experiment with the diaper rash claim and report back. I have, in an emergency stuck on a plane with not liquids situation, attempted to use the gloss as a lotion on dry hands and it did temporarily sooth my aching hands – though it’s hardly a replacement for actual hand cream.

The gloss also comes in mint and strawberry for those of you creeped out by the sensation of eating flowers. I do wish there was a version with a pink tint -- I may experiment with adding a bit of pigment to a tub of gloss to create my own more girly version.

Muffuletta Olive Salad

While in New Orleans this past weekend I was not able to order an actual muffuletta sandwich but I did pick up a jar of olive salad from the grocery store (I can’t find the brand carried at the New Orleans Whole Foods for sale online but this version sounds about the same). This “salad” is really pieces of olives (green and kalamata), carrots, cauliflower and herbs mixed with a LOT of olive oil – yummy it is, low cal it is not. I scooped (it isn’t really spreadable) a few tablespoons of this mixture onto a crunchy baguette and then layered on a few slices of slightly stinky semi soft cheese and was soon in lunch heaven. The salty olives and crunchy veggies made for a great compliment to the creamy cheese and French bread (which is essential). I tried to recreate the sandwich for my flight home using standard sliced wheat bread and while it was still a yummy midair snack the olive oil had seeped through the bread creating a slick mess -- I quickly lost any hope of flirting with the hot boy sitting next to me.

The Time Traveler's Wife

I read this book a few months ago and have been forcing it on friends ever since. I was a bit hesitant to buy the book as it looks like a bit of chick lit fluff but based on Amy’s recommendation (and on the fact that I was seriously hard up for a new book) I popped into Barnes and Noble. This is most definitely the best novel I’ve read in a long time -- if it were not for my “books are for the subway!” rule (enacted in an effort to give me something to look forward to on my hour long commute) I would have zipped through it in a couple of days. A friend recently commented that the book was a good read but not great literature but I enjoyed the story so much that I can't objectively judge it's literary merit. I wish more books would combine modern stories with slight amounts of fantasy and sci fi (another good example of such blended genres are Atwood’s A Handmaid’s Tale and Oryx and Crake) as I really enjoy having a little scientific mystery mixed in with my love story.

The book does take a bit of getting into due to the very fluid time line; while reading the first 50 or so pages I was constantly flipping back and forth thinking “Wait, how old is he now? Did this happen before the last thing I read? In his life? In her life?” But I soon got used to the story structure and quashed my urge to create a huge diagram of the time line (An urge which probably had more to do with my slightly OCD obsession with organizing things than with the book itself). This is a great book -- you should read it before the movie comes out and ruins everything.

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