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Old 11-01-2015, 09:50 AM   #18521
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Welcome back, Retire2013. So sorry for your loss. Sounds like you are doing very well with this next phase of your life after a lot of changes. Hope to see you around here more now that things have settled down a bit.

The dog didn't figure out the end of DST so we had our morning walk very early today. Took down the Halloween decorations and put up the "fall" wreaths. I only decorate from mid-October through Epiphany - a witch windsock and fake pumpkin for Halloween, wreaths with fake fall leaves, pumpkins, and pinecones through Thanksgiving, and a lighted tree plus a few wreaths for Christmas. The rest of the year our house is stark nekkid.

Off to church and then preparing for our choral evensong service tonight - always one of my favorites. This year it is almost all a capella as we are prepping music for our choir's performance tour to Vienna, Salzburg, and Prague next summer and we need to be prepared to perform without piano or organ. My favorite piece is a new one for us:

but we're also doing classics like Randall Thompson's Alleluia and John Rutter's A Gaelic Blessing.
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Old 11-01-2015, 10:52 AM   #18522
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CONGRATULATIONS! What a perfect location for your new home. As for moving, I would strongly suggest putting all pride aside and getting/hiring people to give you more help than you think you could possibly need. Can't do any harm, and it could make a huge difference. It's easy to overdo because our minds tell us we can do things that we really shouldn't even be trying.
+1
My move back to my home town cost $3500 but was well worth it. Unpacking has taken me 2 months; packing would have been even longer.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:08 AM   #18523
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+1
My move back to my home town cost $3500 but was well worth it. Unpacking has taken me 2 months; packing would have been even longer.
You were smart to get help with packing. If I had it to do over again, I'd do that. In fact, I'd check into an extended stay place with a couple of suitcases, and let the movers pack everything else and move it while I relaxed there.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:12 AM   #18524
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Changed the clocks back one hour, laundry, putting away groceries, out to the movies!
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:22 AM   #18525
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+1
My move back to my home town cost $3500 but was well worth it. Unpacking has taken me 2 months; packing would have been even longer.
IMHO paying for packing is worth it. Professional packers have no emotional attachment to your stuff. Packing your own stuff leads to finding things you had forgotten about, wondering whether to pack them, and reminiscing about the past. A job that could take weeks gets done in a few hours.
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Old 11-01-2015, 12:27 PM   #18526
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IMHO paying for packing is worth it. Professional packers have no emotional attachment to your stuff. Packing your own stuff leads to finding things you had forgotten about, wondering whether to pack them, and reminiscing about the past. A job that could take weeks gets done in a few hours.
It took them about 8 hours to pack and load everything. They delivered it two days later and had the truck unloaded in about 2 hours. Unpacking the kitchen stuff took the longest time because of all the crap I forgot I had and then deciding what to keep and what to take to the local church thrift shop.
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Old 11-01-2015, 01:07 PM   #18527
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I have been extremely busy lately despite being ESRd since I have overlap on two consulting contracts. This is a temporary state of affairs that will be done in a few weeks and I may end the year with zero contracts, but for now I am hopping. After Halloween with the kids we are taking it easy today.


I have been learning to make artisan/handmade soaps with an eye toward getting good enough to sell them at farmers' markets and the like next year. I have been perfecting my recipes and testing out soaps with friends and family who fit the demographic of the target customer. Today I went for round 2 on a batch of rosemary soap after not having had time to work on my recipes for a couple weeks. The batch went well and I think it will look very pretty when I cut the bars in a couple days. If I can get a little time in a few days I will take another whack at the peppermint soap. I intend to set up the business in January and have all the sales tax, liability insurance, DBA registration and other nonsense figured out in time to go into production mode and start appearing in markets by April or so.
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:22 PM   #18528
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I have been extremely busy lately despite being ESRd
Um, sounds more like just ECJ (Early Changed Jobs) to me.
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:47 PM   #18529
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Um, sounds more like just ECJ (Early Changed Jobs) to me.
The internet retirement police are always on the job, eh?

Call it what you like. All I know is that I only have to be in a cube on St. Never's Day and I get paid very well for doing part time work that I can walk away from any time I like. And I suppose there is an outside possibility that I will become the Rocky Mountain Soap King.
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:59 PM   #18530
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Off to church and then preparing for our choral evensong service tonight - always one of my favorites. This year it is almost all a capella as we are prepping music for our choir's performance tour to Vienna, Salzburg, and Prague next summer and we need to be prepared to perform without piano or organ. My favorite piece is a new one for us:

but we're also doing classics like Randall Thompson's Alleluia and John Rutter's A Gaelic Blessing.
As with all Lauridsen work, it is truly lovely. You are lucky to have a choir that can handle it.
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Old 11-01-2015, 03:02 PM   #18531
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I have been learning to make artisan/handmade soaps with an eye toward getting good enough to sell them at farmers' markets and the like next year.
Which soap making process are you using? Don't forget about packaging and hang tags for the soap. Around here, there are a lot of people making soap, isn't it a crowded craft in your area? One of my classmates makes soap and is always in competition for sales at the local farmers market. Candles and jewelry is another popular craft around here.
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Old 11-01-2015, 03:05 PM   #18532
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I have been learning to make artisan/handmade soaps with an eye toward getting good enough to sell them at farmers' markets and the like next year. I have been perfecting my recipes and testing out soaps with friends and family who fit the demographic of the target customer. Today I went for round 2 on a batch of rosemary soap after not having had time to work on my recipes for a couple weeks. The batch went well and I think it will look very pretty when I cut the bars in a couple days. If I can get a little time in a few days I will take another whack at the peppermint soap. I intend to set up the business in January and have all the sales tax, liability insurance, DBA registration and other nonsense figured out in time to go into production mode and start appearing in markets by April or so.
Wow. That sounds great Brewer. I recently tried my hand at soapmaking. In early September I made a batch and just started using it this week. 72% olive oil and 28% coconut oil. It cleans well and does not dry the skin, but it doesn't lather up all that much. I may use some added castor oil next time I try it. I think I'll also try a scent next time -- maybe mint.
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Old 11-01-2015, 03:18 PM   #18533
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Which soap making process are you using? Don't forget about packaging and hang tags for the soap. Around here, there are a lot of people making soap, isn't it a crowded craft in your area? One of my classmates makes soap and is always in competition for sales at the local farmers market. Candles and jewelry is another popular craft around here.
Cold process.

I expect some competition, but I think there are ways to differentiate one's products to some extent. Assuming our hives make it through the winter I also expect to be selling honey, and we are planning on making lip balm with our own honey and beeswax as well. We already have several people asking if we will sell them some soap and I have demurred since we are not set up yet with liability insurance, etc.

Hey, if this does not fly as a little business I am mostly out some time. No biggie. Plus I will have learned how to make soap that is as good or better than L'Occitaine and be able to do it for a tiny fraction of retail.
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Old 11-01-2015, 03:21 PM   #18534
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Wow. That sounds great Brewer. I recently tried my hand at soapmaking. In early September I made a batch and just started using it this week. 72% olive oil and 28% coconut oil. It cleans well and does not dry the skin, but it doesn't lather up all that much. I may use some added castor oil next time I try it. I think I'll also try a scent next time -- maybe mint.
Castor oil is a really nice addition. As far as adding scents, we find that essential oils are much more pleasant and complex than man made fragrance oils. A half ounce of essential oil per pound of base oil in your soap recipe is a good place to start.

Try a 100% coconut oil soap. If you do it with 20% superfatting you get a nice, hard bar that cleans/lather well and doesn't dry your skin. Just make sure that if you use a loaf mold you cut it within 18 hours of pouring your batter. Very inexpensive and a really nice soap.
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Old 11-01-2015, 04:04 PM   #18535
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Let us know if you get recruited by Shark Tank to make a pitch, Brewer.
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Old 11-01-2015, 04:13 PM   #18536
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The internet retirement police are always on the job, eh?
Not at all! I'm glad, and you sound much happier than you did in your former life.

In my amateur cheesemaking hobby, I used to buy milk from a local woman who raised goats. Unfortunately, she quit selling the milk to people like me because she kept needing more of it for her own side business of making soap with it. So there is obviously considerable demand. Best of luck with it!
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Old 11-01-2015, 06:21 PM   #18537
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Went to see Burnt, where Bradley Cooper plays a chef arising from the ashes of a meltdown to pursue three Michelin stars. Great actors, ridiculous story--maybe the good stuff got edited out. My favorite haute cuisine movie remains The Hundred-Foot Journey.
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Old 11-01-2015, 07:07 PM   #18538
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Wow. That sounds great Brewer. I recently tried my hand at soapmaking. In early September I made a batch and just started using it this week. 72% olive oil and 28% coconut oil. It cleans well and does not dry the skin, but it doesn't lather up all that much. I may use some added castor oil next time I try it. I think I'll also try a scent next time -- maybe mint.
I love handmade soap and buy it from my friend all the time. She makes unscented soap for me because a lot of the scents bother me. I get a lot of migraines.

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Cold process.

I expect some competition, but I think there are ways to differentiate one's products to some extent. Assuming our hives make it through the winter I also expect to be selling honey, and we are planning on making lip balm with our own honey and beeswax as well. We already have several people asking if we will sell them some soap and I have demurred since we are not set up yet with liability insurance, etc.

Hey, if this does not fly as a little business I am mostly out some time. No biggie. Plus I will have learned how to make soap that is as good or better than L'Occitaine and be able to do it for a tiny fraction of retail.
I like handmade soap and don't mind paying extra for it. I also love trying the different kinds of soap you can get. Right now I'm using a goat milk soap and this past summer I was using a lemon soap. I've never found a handmade lip balm that I've liked and use EOS lip balm all the time.
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Old 11-01-2015, 07:24 PM   #18539
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Went to see Burnt, where Bradley Cooper plays a chef arising from the ashes of a meltdown to pursue three Michelin stars. Great actors, ridiculous story--maybe the good stuff got edited out. My favorite haute cuisine movie remains The Hundred-Foot Journey.
The Hundred Foot Journey was a great movie. I also recommend Chef starring Jon Favreau.
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Old 11-01-2015, 09:09 PM   #18540
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I did some work on the plow truck, getting it ready for winter. A couple more days and she'll be ready for the snow... let's hope I can get it done before the first flakes.
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