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as always, this past year i tried to make as many christmas gifts as possible. i made these knitted necklaces for a few people and gave them along with bags of homemade bath products. first of all, i made these “magic snowballs” for the bath.
i’d seen this recipe long ago and finally made them with a box of epsom salts i’d asked my mother to bring me from the united states years ago (i’m nuts, because that box was heavy!!). why do i call them “magic snowballs”? because when they were still wet they glittered like real snow. so when they were drying out in the oven, the kids kept coming over to look at them and wonder how it was possible that they didn’t melt in the oven. so i did the only thing a self-respecting parent could do: tell them they were magic! (yes, i told them the truth eventually….)
unfortunately i wasn’t able to keep them in their spherical shape after transferring them still damp onto the baking sheet, so in the end i made half-spheres that i placed together later when i packaged them up, tying up the plastic wrap with ribbons and flowers recuperated from favors and gifts.
there were a lot of snowball chips left in the baking sheet afterwards, so i scooped them up to use myself in the bath!
the second product was a minty sugar and almond oil body scrub with red and white candy cane stripes. i used this recipe, making the natural red color by adding the juice from a bag of frozen raspberries. the scrub is truly wonderful and leaves your skin smooth and hydrated. and it’s pretty, isn’t it? well… not really. let me explain: i’d deleted the above photo because i’d taken it before spray-painting the caps, which were pretty ugly like this. but then i had to retrieve it from the computer trash because after a few days the scrub looked like this:
yuck! the oil seeped down bit by bit, bringing the color along with it! (but the caps looked much better, at least that!)
it seemed awful to give them away like that, so i opened a few up and remixed everything, destroying the stripes, but at least that way they were halfway presentable… at the time. because the oil continued seeping down again before i could give them away at christmas. what a shame. but all you have to do is remix it up to redistribute the oil and it works wonders! next time i won’t use any color at all.
the first two products didn’t go quite as planned, but i ended up completely ditching the third one. all you need to do is look at it to understand why! these were supposed to be fizzy bath bombs made with citric acid. except i couldn’t find my spray bottle when i was making them and ended up adding too much water all at once. and they started growing before my eyes. wanting to stop them, i stuck them in the oven with the idea that the heat would dry them up and stop the growth. how wrong i was! the heat made them “boil” and they made a huge mess. here you can see them still in their aluminum molds, which are hidden under dried overflowed bubbles. you can tell this was my first experience with citric acid! i didn’t have time to try again before christmas, but i will try again… but this time with a different recipe!