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Tell a friend Fresh Pink Jasmine

Fresh Pink Jasmine Eau de Parfum

I made a special trip to Pure Beauty in the Castro to purchase its last inventory of the Smoothies hair claws that I like so much. (The Rake, Chunky Square and Skate claws are my favorites for quick, no-fuss updos. And check out the Trap Claw, which features a patented hidden spring that makes your French and faux-French twists look more elegant.) While I was there, the employees were busy clearing out the old "beauty supply" items and replacing them with chichi "beauty boutique" stuff. I decided to scope out the higher-end merchandise.

Posted February 3, 2006 by Mariva in bath & spa, beauty, gifts

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Tell a friend Vermont Teddy Bear

"Heart Throb" Valentine Bear

I can’t imagine a sweeter Valentine’s Day gift than a personalized teddy bear — especially one from the Vermont Teddy Bear Company (sister company to the PajamaGram Company), which makes high-quality, hand-crafted, fully jointed huggable friends that are guaranteed to last a lifetime.* As the company name indicates, each teddy bear is made in America, specifically in the Green Mountain State of Vermont.

To make your gift even more special — now that the original "-gram" communications service has ended — consider sending a Bear-Gram, which includes a bear of your choice, delicious gourmet chocolate and a personal message printed on a colorful gift card — all encased in a fun gift box, complete with an "air hole" so that your bear can get fresh air on his or her journey. You can choose from over one hundred Valentine’s Day Bears, including the "Heart Throb" bear pictured here.

Posted February 1, 2006 by Mariva in decor, edibles, fun, gifts, holidays, home

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Tell a friend Minimus travel-size products

Minimus

When you’re away from home — whether spending a lot of time at the office or going on a picnic or a trip — you’ll appreciate Minimus. Here you can stock up on a plethora of individual- and travel-size products, including food and beverages, laundry supplies, personal care and over-the-counter medicines. You can also purchase preassembled kits and care packages of snacks, mini-meals, personal supplies and medical kits — some specifically for men, women, college students, air travelers, campers and even cold and flu sufferers. Many kits make ideal care packages for military personnel. And speaking of the military, the preassembled package called the "military field kit" — comprising an emergency blanket, a small flashlight and a rain poncho — is something you may want to keep in your car or home storage area.

Posted January 24, 2006 by Mariva in edibles, gifts, health, home, resources, travel

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Tell a friend Katamari

Katamari Damacy

Knowing that I have an addictive personality — at least with regard to the "soft addictions" — I do my best to stay away from treacherous time traps like Freecell Solitaire. And if I owned a game console that could play Super Mario, I’d probably never see the light of day.

Posted January 18, 2006 by Mariva in entertaining, entertainment, fun, gadgets, games, gifts, home, innovations, news

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Tell a friend the perfect water bottle

Nalgene water bottles

Even if you don’t believe that the average person is chronically dehydrated, it’s generally a good idea to drink fresh, clean water as often as you’d like. I seem to be thirsty all the time, so I never go anywhere without a water bottle. Because of its durable and unbreakable nature, my container of choice is the Nalgene bottle, which never compromises the taste of water. It’s the perfect companion to the Thermos food jar.

There’s no question that Nalgene makes bottles extremely well. The company’s founder was an innovative chemist who developed unbreakable laboratory instruments and containers. Today, Nalgene is known in the scientific world for its wide assortment of Nalgene Labware, in addition to its consumer products for outdoors enthusiasts and travelers.

Posted January 17, 2006 by Mariva in health, innovations, kitchen, resources, travel

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Tell a friend Thermos Food Jar with Folding Spoon

Thermos Food Jar with Folding Spoon

Archie Bunker once mused, “You got your Thermos here, see? You can put coffee in it and it stays hot, or you can put beer in it and it stays cold, right? So my question is, how does it know?" Clearly, Archie never grasped the concept of insulation; nonetheless, Thermos products — three decades ago — worked so well that they seemed like magic.

Thermos has been updating its line of products, including its signature beverage bottles. The container featured here ain’t your parents’ Thermos. This lightweight, double-wall vacuum-insulated Food Jar with Folding Spoon comes with a stainless steel folding spoon that fits neatly into a storage compartment, which, by the way, has enough room to hold condiments and other small items. The Food Jar keeps your meal hot or cold, just the way you (and Archie) like it — and it looks cool to boot.

Posted January 13, 2006 by Mariva in gadgets, gifts, health, home, innovations, kitchen, travel

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Tell a friend patchwork wood frame

patchwork wood frame

This patchwork wooden frame looks like the hand-built exterior of a tropical beach cabin. This might be because, according to the product description, the frame is handmade in Thailand, using recycled wood from old boats, houses, schools and buildings.

In the print catalog, the colors look even richer. That’s an actual turquoise you’re looking at. Keep in mind, though, that because each frame is one of a kind, designs and colors vary slightly from frame to frame. Fits 4" x 6" photos.

Posted January 12, 2006 by Mariva in arts, decor, gifts, home

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Tell a friend New Year’s Eve fashions

New Year's Eve party

What to wear to a New Year’s Eve party:

Posted December 30, 2005 by Mariva in entertaining, fashion, holidays, home, social

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Tell a friend smell and scents

smell and scents When I was conducting research for my post on scented paper, I came across some interesting smell-related sites:
  • Better Living with Essential Oils: information about and uses for essential oils for body and home care. #24 is instructions on infusing scents into paper, although I would suggest adding the drops of essential oils to a cotton pad rather than directly onto the paper.

Posted December 29, 2005 by Mariva in bath & spa, beauty, education, health, home, resources

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Tell a friend scented paper?

scented paper

Does scented paper exist? I’ve been intrigued by the concept since seeing Legally Blonde, in which Reese Witherspoon’s character Elle Woods submitted her resume on paper that was not only pink, but scented as well, to give it that "extra something." After conducting my own exhaustive research, however, I found out that you can’t just purchase a ream of scented paper at, say, Office Depot.

The only products I found that were even close to this mythical scented paper included:

Posted December 28, 2005 by Mariva in bath & spa, business, decor, entertaining, gifts, home, innovations

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