Thursday, January 09, 2014

Thursday Favorite Things: Eye Shadow Palettes

OK...anyone who knows me knows that I am a make-up junkie!

I'm not going to go into the pros and cons of wearing make-up, how much is too much, etc.  I only know that as a "woman of a certain age," looking my best inevitably involves applying a little paint to the old barn, if you know what I mean.

As he sometimes does on my December birthday, my husband gifted me this year with Estee Lauder's Blockbuster gift with purchase.

It was a make-up lover's dream.  Among the stand-outs: the eye shadow palette.  The colors are absolutely lovely, go on beautifully, and fulfill just about any eye-shadow needs a make-up lover could have.

Here's a closer look:

I am absolutely loving this palette.  Here's me wearing a few of the colors (click to make the picture larger):

On my lid: Estee Lauder Ivy Envy, Satin
In my crease: Estee Lauder Lavish Mink, Matte
Under my eyebrows: Nude Fresco, Satin

While this palette is no longer available,  you can buy the individual colors at your Estee Lauder counter.  Which is what I plan to do with the Lavish Mink color.  It's exactly the deep, dark shade I love in a brown eye shadow.

Are you a cosmetics junkie too?  I'd love to hear about your favorite palettes and products!

I'm taking part today in Katherine's Corner's Thursday Favorite Things blog hop!

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Today is English Toffee Day!...A yummy-looking recipe for English Toffee cookies


Who doesn't love the delicious flavor of English toffee? One of my favorite forms is English Toffee creamer in my coffee or in convenience-store cappucino.

 Today, January 8, 2014, is English Toffee Day.

Here are some interesting facts about toffee, including this one:

Some think that English toffee is a variant of a 19th century candy.  Because slave labor drastically lowered the prices of sugar and treacle at the start of the 19th century, the key ingredients needed to create toffee became available to average people. Seeking a frugal solution,  two English ladies decided to combine these two ingredients and created a wonderful treat.

In the spirit of the day, I thought I'd share a recipe for English Toffee Cookies.  In all honesty, I haven't tried this recipe, but it looks easy and delicious.  Here we go, from

1 c. brown sugar
1 c. granulated sugar
1 c. soft shortening
2 eggs
2 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. salt
6-8 Heath candy bars, broken

Cream together sugars and shortening. Add eggs and beat. Combine flour, soda and salt and add to creamed mixture. Mix well. Blend in candy bar bits. Drop by teaspoon of dough onto cookie sheets. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes.

Sounds like the perfect comfort food for a cold January day!

Monday, January 06, 2014

My great-aunt Cynthia...a woman of class and grace

My great-aunt, Cynthia Pearl  Carroll Todt

Going through my recently-passed mother's household effects has been both sad and rewarding.  Among the plusses: finding vintage pictures of family loved ones.  Like my great-aunt Cynthia.

Cynthia Pearl Carroll Todt was my mom's sister.  She and her husband, Bill Todt, an executive in the Gulf Oil Corporation in West Texas, were childless, and they adored my mother.

Auntie, age 16...circa 1926

Together, they had an enormous influence on my mother, and by extension, me.

"Auntie," as she was called (with the West Texas drawl that made it sound more like Ain't-ee), was a woman of class and grace.

My earliest memories of her include her red lipstick and beautifully manicured red fingernail polish.  Her clothes were timeless and elegant.

This so reminds me of clothes I've seen on Downton Abbey

She loved make-up, a love she passed on to my sisters and me.  Her home was lovely and gracious, and  had a wonderful smell all its own, an aroma I wish I could bottle and spray in my own home.

Auntie and Uncle Bill, circa 1940's

My mom was named after her, and then I was named after my mom.  Cynthia Pearl...Cynthia Anne...and I'm Cynthia Susan.


I hope you enjoy these pictures.  I love their vintage quality and charm, and they connect me with a lovely woman from my family's past.
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