Thursday, May 27, 2010

Lemony Sweetness

My aunt is a gourmet confectioner. Her hand-dipped almond-rocha-style toffee is stuff of legend! But one of our favorite treats that she makes are called Cake-Mix Cookies, and they are no fail. (if you're following our blog, you know that I can't make a decent cookie to save my life, so when I say they're no fail, they're no fail.) The recipe is a piece of cake, literally:

1 cake mix of your choice
1/3 cups water
1/3 cups oil
2 eggs
candy chips of you choice

Combine all ingredients. Spoon onto ungreased cookie sheet and bake on 350 for 8-10 minutes. Add time as needed. (It gets a little goopy, trying to spoon it out, so I treat it more like a brownie and pour it into an ungreased 13x9 pan and bake it for 18-20 minutes instead.)

You can use any combination of cake mix and chips. I really like Spice Cake mix with chocolate chips, but the all time favorite is Lemon Cake with lemon chips. It makes the most perfect lemon bars, delicious, delectable, divine! The ScentSationals fragrance Lemon Chiffon, only available online, perfectly captures the scent of lemon bars cooking in the oven and when I melt it in my warmer, my mouth starts watering in anticipation of lemony sweetness!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

On The Go

On our facebook page yesterday, one fan asked, "Does ScentSationals have car fresheners, too?" This reminded me of a story my coworker was telling me. While he was out delivering to a particular Walmart, he met a man at our endcap, who had taken an entire sleeve of the scent Vanilla Bean (there are 14 scents in every sleeve). When my coworker asked if there was a birthday or if the man was merely stocking up for Christmas, the man laughed.

"No, no," he explained. "I'm a truck driver, and I just love Vanilla Bean. As a matter of fact, I've velcroed a ScentSationals warming tray to the dashboard of my truck, and I let the sun melt the wax and keep my truck's cabin smelling great!" We thought that was awesome! Here's a man who loves our scented wax so much that he's willing to go out of his way and make an improvised warmer so he can smell it all the time!

And for those of you who are wondering, "Does Scentsationals have car fresheners?" the answer is not yet, but we have considered car fresheners and may come out with a line in the future!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Sun and Rain and an Apple Seed

First grade was a long time ago in some respects, but in other ways, it seems like yesterday. When I put ScentSationals Crispy Apples scented wax into my warmer this morning, I was instantly drawn back to one particular first grade field trip, when we went to an apple orchard in honor of Johnny Appleseed.

I distinctly remember the sweet smell of apple blossoms that filtered down between the branches along with beams of sunlight. In my young girls mind, it didn't seem fitting that I was in such a scene in just my jeans, t-shirt and ponytail. It was the kind of place for princesses in flowing gowns, the blossoms catching in their silky hair, the sunlight dancing off their tiaras.

As a class, we were led into the General Store, where all the different apples sat in labeled bins. As our tour guide led us around, she cut up enough apples for everyone to have a slice: Granny Smith, tart and sour; Pink Lady, smooth and sweet; Red Delicious, crisp and juicy. The tour guide then cut an apple in half, and displayed the core in its dissected view: a perfect star lay in the center of the apple. She gave us each a dissected apple and led us to a table where we dipped the apples in paint and made stamps out of them.

With patterns covering the paper rolled out on the table, the song from Disney Melody Times' Johnny Appleseed Short came to mind, "There's apple pie and apple pastry, tangy apply cider in a glass! Stew 'em. Boil 'em. Fry 'em. Bake 'em. Apple pie and apple cake 'em. You can eat them any way!" And you can smell them, too, with the ScentSationals fragrance Crispy Apples!

Friday, May 21, 2010

My Cookie Catastrophe

Throughout my life, I've come to the conclusion that mothers make the best cookies. It's true.When I was little, I always loved it when my mother would pull out our cookie pans. Battered from years of loving use, just the sight of the cookie pans meant one thing: oatmeal cookies!

The oven would beep when it was hot enough. We'd mix the dough, me keeping tabs of the ingredients on my sticky fingers: right thumb-sugars, forefinger-butters, middle finger-eggs (I'd get to crack one, and that was always exciting), ringfinger-vanilla (lessoned learned there, smells so good, but don't tase it!), pinky-dry ingredients including oatmeal. Cook. Eat. Yum. In that order.

Now that I'm old enough to bake my own cookies, I'm always disappointed one way or another. My dough's too dry, so you bite into a cookie and it turns into dust; or my dough's too moist and, no matter how long you leave them in the oven, they don't cook. I got to the point where I gave up cookies and became a Professional Cookie Taste Tester.

Boy, did that backfire. Now I'm getting married and I can't cook cookies? What is this world coming to? I'm gonna be a mom and I can't cook a decent cookie. That's against the Unwritten Mother's Code of Motherhood, I'm pretty sure. But I have a solution to my problem. ScentSationals has a scented wax conveniently named Oatmeal Cookie (can you see where this is going...).

So here's the plan: Oatmeal Cookie smells so yummy, that I'll put it in my warmer right before my hubby gets home from work. I'll let the fragrance, strong and sweet, fill the whole apartment while I run to the grocery store and buy a box of oatmeal cookies. When my hubby comes home, he'll walk through the door, smell the Oatmeal Cookie fragrance, I'll conveniently be pulling a tray of seemingly homemade oatmeal cookies (but really just the store-bought ones on a tray) out of the oven, and no one will know the difference! ... at least, not for a while... hopefully...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

And a One and a Two and a Cha Cha Cha!

This past semester at school, I took a social dance class. I learned how to follow (and the guys learned how to lead) as we danced to all sorts of songs: the Foxtrot, stately and pristine; the Walz, smooth and flowing; but if you asked the class which dance was the favorite, across the board, the answer would be Cha-Cha.

Something about Latin Dancing brings out the risque side of even the shyest person. With my hips twirling, my skirts making that swooshing noise as they spin around my legs, and the beat of the music pounding in my ears, it was very hard to hold back a loud, "Olay!"

The Salsa Warmer here at ScentSationals gives off that same Latin vibe, with it's bright red color and yellow tinting. Unique with it's pegged wax tray that makes cleaning a cinch, the Salsa spices things up and makes me want to go south of the border, as Frank Sinatra would say! When I look at the Salsa, I can almost feel the Cha-Cha beat again: and-a-one-and-a-two-and-a-Cha-Cha-Cha!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Facebook Frenzy

Yesterday, as part of my job, I posted on facebook the scent of the day. (One of our new seven fragrances, Sea Salt. It made me want to wade knee deep in the ocean, sand squelching between my toes, the water bright and calm.)

And yesterday, almost as soon as I had posted the new scent on facebook, I received this email:

I follow you on facebook. I was looking for your new scent Sea Salt online and cannot find it. Where is it? Thanks.

I was beaming after that and kindly explained that our seven new fragrances are in stores in Utah and Idaho, but haven't been added to our website yet. She was very appreciative and responded graciously by saying she'd keep checking our website ( until the new scents arrive.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Scent at Sam's

The other day, during my lunch break, a woman from Sam's Club was at the office in the Break Room, available for anyone who might be interested in a Sam's club membership. My fiance and I were very interested, so during lunch, I stopped by.

I found Mindy sitting at a round table, a box of cookies and brochures arranged just so on the tabletop. She was talking on the phone to someone. When she saw me, she promised to call back, and turned her attention to me as I took my seat.

Polite chit-chat began, as I filled out paper-work and munched on a cookie (or two).

"I didn't even know ScentSationals was back here," Mindy said. "I walked in and it smelled so good!" She went on to explain that she knew all about us and that she loves our scented waxes!

Friday, May 14, 2010

One Ol' Sweetie

I know it's no longer mother's day (shout out to all the great mothers out there!), but I was talking with my coworker the other day. While I sit in the office, pulling orders and advertising our online part of the company, he's the one who actually goes to Wal-Marts and delivers/stocks their shelves.

A few weeks ago, he was making one such delivery at the Wal-Mart in Cedar Hills, when the men who work in the Hardware Department found him and relayed this story:

It seems one gentleman had entered their Wal-Mart and found his way to our ScentSationals endcap.

"I need fragrances," he was heard saying to himself. "Lot's of 'em."

There must have been a lot of wonderful women in his life, because he grabbed an entire display tray, that's 98 packages of our scented waxes, 14 per sleeve and 7 sleeves in one tray, and purchased the whole thing!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Big Enough for Two

This past week, we found the sweetest little apartment. We'd been to a couple others, not really knowing the calliber of apartments that we could afford would include anything worth taking a second look at. But when we walked into this place, it was like coming home.

There was no furniture, or signs of habitation, but the walls were clean and white, the carpets well kept. The bathroom fixtures were so clean they fairly glistened, and the kitchen had new appliances. There was nothing dingy, crusty, stained. No cobwebs in the corners or skeletons in the closets (one apartment we had looked at previously still had food from the previous renter left in the fridge!).

The Renters were there with us, walking us through the place, showing us how things worked and where things went. We asked them questions, and they, in turn, asked us some, too. Among these was the question, "Where do you work?" When I said ScentSationals, the smile on the wife's already cheerful face broadened.

"My daughters and I love ScentSationals," she said. "I know, if you rent our apartment, it's going to smell good all the time!"

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Everything Comes Together

"Genevieve, will you marry me?" He was on his knee then, a little black box, which he had pulled out of the hole in Annabelle's back, cupped in his hands.

The moment had arrived. If ever I was to need my brain, it was then. But where was my brain? Even I can't answer that. The only way I know how to describe it is I was in shock. My hands, cold and shaking, flew to hide my burning crimson face. I knew my answer. It just wouldn't form in my mouth! It bubbled up from my lungs, but snagged in my throat. Another eternity came and went. "Answer him. Answer him. Yes. Yes. Yes," became the rhythym to which my heart was beating.

And then, before my mouth could get around the word, air was rushing out of my lungs, past the snag in my throat, between my fingers, and hanging in the air between us was my answer in the form of a strangled, "mm-hmmm." After that moment, it was like someone flipped a switch. Now we have a purpose, a common goal, and we're going to get there, no matter what it takes. Our mindset is changed for the better.

Since then, so many things have happened, and there are still so many things left to do! Thus far, I've checked the cake, the decor, the food, and (the most important accessory) the dress, off of my list, but almost as soon as I get one thing checked off, another thing is added on: We still haven't finished our announcements, or even started on delivering them, and house-hunting is very time-consuming and very limited, especially if you have a limited budget, but it's all so exciting! The most exciting part about house-hunting, I think, is the possibility that each house could be ours, each little dingy apartment could belong to us, and that gets my mind running: How will I make this house our home?

One thing I'm definitely including in our home is a ScentSationals warmer, more specifically, the Teardrop Warmer. It's a precious little thing, white and simple with an intricate lace-like pattern carved around the top, which reminds me of my wedding dress, although I haven't worn it yet, and each time I look at the Teardrop Warmer that I have here in my office, I'm reminded of the closeness and the realness of that day when my sweet man and I become forever. Why wouldn't I want to be reminded of that every day?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My Surprise

We were seated at our table. There was even a third chair for Annabelle (that was the name I decided on). The waiter was prompt, serving our sumptuous soups and delicious dilled salmon in a timely and precise manner, but my sweet man wasn’t hungry. (I know. I know. That should’ve been a dead giveaway, if I hadn’t figured it out before then, but again I just thought he was tired. Curse my naïveté!)

There was only one other couple in the room, and from the sounds of things, they were celebrating their anniversary. I was thinking about how sweet that was, and munching aimlessly on a mouthful of fish, when my sweet man decided he needed to use the facilities.

While he was gone, the dessert menu was brought to my attention, as well as the fact that the other man in the room, the one who was celebrating his anniversary with his wife, had also gone to the restroom. I made a mental note of that, thinking that I might be able to get my sweet man to relax and laugh if I told him. I mean, it’s usually women who go to the restroom in pairs!

It was at that point, that my eyes fell upon Annabelle. She truly was the prettiest little thing. I picked her up off her seat, and, laying her in my lap, began to stroke the soft fur of her feet with my thumbs.

“Do you like her?” a familiar voice said at my shoulder.

“Very much,” I replied, smiling as he went to sit down. I turned Annabelle around to place her back in her chair, when I noticed a gaping hole in her back, half-hidden by her yellow sun dress.

“Oh, no. What happened?” I asked, pointing at the hole, a questioning look on my face.

“Oh!” he said, “Gosh, the people at Build-a-Bear must’ve forgotten to sew her up before they gave her to me.” As he was talking, he took the bear from my hands and sat her on the table, close to him but facing me ….

Slightly saddened by the great big hole in my “surprise”, but not wanting him to see my disappointment, I pointed out the options on the dessert menu, asking which sounded best to him. He looked it over, or at least pretended to, and the conversation fell quiet again. I was just about to ask if he had decided, when he said, “Genevieve, I have a question for you…do you really love me?”

Then, and only then, did things start to dawn on me. It was almost as if my brain had been blank up until that point and then started going 100 miles per hour, and things started adding up: the fancy date, the “surprise”, and the sudden lack in conversation…He was proposing to me! What felt like an eternity later, but was really only a few moments, and after several gulps of air, I answered, blushing to the roots of my hair, “Why would you doubt that?” My voice sounded funny to myself, unfamiliar to my ears.

“Okay then,” he continued, “I have another question for you…”

Monday, May 10, 2010

When a Boy and a Girl Meet

What’s the biggest decision you’ve ever had to make? When you were in high school, it was, “What college do I want to go to next year. When you were in college, it was, “What am I going to major/minor in?” If you’re in my shoes, it’s the decision of, “Will you marry me?” That’s right, a month ago, we took the step towards matrimony: we got engaged.

He has always been such a sweet man throughout our courtship and to this day, constantly and consistently surprising me with little gifts (a necklace from Belize, a trip to Build-a-Bear, flowers at least once a week, etc.). He also likes to take me on, what we call “fancy dates”, where we dress up in nice clothes, him a suit, and me a dress, and we go out to dinner. I am so spoiled!

Well, on April Fool’s Day, it all came together: He had invited me on a “fancy date”, so I got all dressed up. He told me he had a surprise for me. Now, any other woman would’ve put two and two together, but I didn’t! The thought never crossed my mind that the date was a set-up, and the “surprise” was a dainty diamond ring! Call me naïve, but I was clueless! …

He showed up at my door in his suit, striking and handsome. I wore a little T-length chocolate dress with a cream ribbon around my waist, pearls clasped at my throat and dangling from my ears. He helped me into my coat, and we meandered out my front door and into his car. Then he got really quiet. “So?” you might say. “What’s so weird about that?” The reason I was attracted to this man in the first place was because of his conversation skills: we could talk, and about practically anything. The conversation never lagged that I can remember until that moment. I asked him about his day at work. He explained how he had been working hard and that led me to conclude the reason he was not his usual talkative self: he was tired.

We pulled up to Chef’s Table, a very expensive “fancy date” restaurant on the border of Provo and Orem, and he reached behind my chair and pulled out a little Teddy Bear.

“I brought a friend with us,” he said. She was a beautiful little thing, with sandy fur, milky ears and muzzle, wearing a pretty yellow sun dress.

“What’s her name?” I asked (all Teddy Bears have names, you know)

“I didn’t give her one so that you could name her,” he said. I thought that was so precious! I also thought that the surprises would end there but I thought wrong on that head…

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

A Stinky Memory

It's funny to me how smells and memories are interconnected. The slightest scent can trigger such precious memories. For example, onions. I can no longer chop an onion without laughing. "Laughing? Genevieve, don't you mean crying?" No, what I wrote was right: I laugh when I chop an onion because of the fun memory it brings to mind.

You see, my Grandpa on my mother's side is the sweetest little old tease. One day, a couple of summers ago, he wanted to mow the front lawn of their little farmhouse in Missouri. Granny didn't want him to (I mean, my Grandpa is NOT a young man anymore). She was worried that he might get hurt. But Grandpa insisted and insisted until Granny said, in that voice all grandma's use when they've had it, "All right, Stephen! But you stay out of my onion patch!" Grandpa gave a dramatic "huff" and with a twinkle in his eye, he went about getting the mower ready to go.

Granny went about, too, cooking and cleaning and washing, in that neat and exact way grandma's do, the purring of the old push mower in the background. Occasionally, she'd peek out the little window over the kitchen sink that looks into the front lawn, to check on Grandpa. He was still mowing along, whistling whatever came to his mind.

A short time later, a horrible smell started to filter through the house. At first Granny thought something was burning, but she checked the meal she had heating on the stove and that wasn't it... Maybe something in the fridge needed to be thrown out. She investigated, opening every tubberware and saran-wrapped bowl she could find...That wasn't it either, The smell in all its pungency was only getting stronger. Granny held a tissue over her mouth and nose, trying to keep from inhaling the fumes. As a matter of fact, they were making her eyes fill with tears. Tears! But that had to mean...onions!

She hurried as fast as she could to the front door. Swinging the screen open with a CLANG, she saw Grandad with the ole lawnmower chugging away, eagerly mowing down her onion patch, a big boyish grin stretching out his wrinkles, great big tears streaming down his cheeks!

Fortunately for me onions aren't the only scent that digs up such fun memories. As a matter of fact, I've just started working for ScentSationals, the wickless scented waxes and wax warmers that you see in Walmart, at Hobby Lobby, and online at, and my office is right above the production line. Every day a new fragrance seeps through the floorboards and I'm bombarded with the nostalgic aromas of Spice Cake or Sizzlin' Cinnamon, or whatever else we produce that day. In fact, after work, my mom always asks what we were working on, usually right after she says something like, "You smell like a slice of pumpkin pie!" My coworkers and I joke about smelling like cinnamon bears and other various things, depending on what's cookin' downstairs that day!