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Notes to myself and anyone else

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2018 Weenies

A breakdown, for my own benefit (to narrow down choices).

Blue Ghost Blues....A ward against evil: bay rum, whiskey, cigar smoke, black pepper, and salt
I want to try this for sure. Maybe a decant or partial bottle.

Dia De Los Muertos......dry, crackling leaves, the incense smoke of altars honoring Death and the Dead, funeral bouquets, the candies, chocolates, foods and tobacco of the ofrenda, amaranth, sweet cactus blossom and desert cereus
I've never tried this and always wanted to. Or maybe I smelled it briefly at Moonarcana's house. Still, I would like a decant if I can find one.

Midnight Bonfire......night-blooming jasmine, smoldering maple leaves, a cluster of patchouli and blackened ti leaf, black sage, and pinewood smoke
If I'm doing decants, I should throw in this. It has a good chance of being very nice and cozy for fall. The jasmine sounds a little out of place but maybe I'm just not imagining it the way it really is.

Pumpkin Crème Brulee.....With vanilla bean scrapings
Possible decant but there are other Pumpkin scents I'm more interested in.......Like.......

Pumpkin Musk and Black Oudh......A strangely romantic, disturbingly erotic perfume
Disturbingly erotic? Sign me up for a decant. I thought seriously about a bottle but oudh doesn't always smell good to me. It's best when it just fades into the background, IMO.

Pumpkin Tobacco......Sweet black tobacco infused with dried pumpkin and soaked in bourbon
I really want to wear tobacco notes but I'm not sure they always work for me. Everything about this sounds fabulous. Why am I hesitating? Probably a decant.

Scarecrow Turned Philosopher.....Corn husks waving on an autumn breeze, beams of amber sunlight, hay bales, and late summer wildflowers
I am all over this concept, but I'm not sure about wildflowers. I don't love all floral notes, so this would be a risk. That's what decants are for, right? : )

Masque of the Red Death.......

A Multitude of Dreams......A blackened lavender mist, thick with opoponax, licorice root, and benzoin
Sounds somewhat promising, although I'm a little more picky with my incense scents these days (which is what this sounds like to me....incense). I like them if they are soft and elegant, not too strong. I don't like to smell like a big actual incense stick (but there was a time that was what I wanted). Possible decant, but not high priority.

Pickman Gallery 2018.......

A Young Boy and His Brother Seated on a Goat.......Polished mahogany, copal resin, Java sandalwood, teakwood, and Sumantran patchouli
This could be really good or not so good on me, just based on my experience with these notes. Copal tends to smell like cheap aftershave on me and not in a good way. My partner liked the sound of this one but I know certain scents make him wheeze and this sounded like one of those to me. I might get a decant just to satisfy my curiosity and his.

Cabras......Black pine, white sage, creeping ivy, and wild juniper
Sounds like a lot of green, pine and juniper.....I stopped buying these kinds of scents quite a while ago, maybe it's time to try again? The more I look at the notes, and the painting, the more curious I am getting.

Lithograph of a Mountain Goat.......White sandalwood, black pepper, muguet, agarwood, labdanum, and 3-year aged patchouli
I love patchouli and labdanum, and so I am curious about this. I don't think I particularly care for the other notes, especially muguet. But - somehow I think this might be good for my partner, or me. Possible decant.

Studie Einer Ziege.....Sweet labdanum with clove, tobacco absolute, and guiac wood
I actually had this in my cart and removed it before checkout. Again, I love labdanum. But the other notes sound very familiar to me, like I have a dozen other scents with these notes and don't even wear them that much (clove, tobacco..). I might have to get a decant and I may end up loving it. I'm in a mood today, so my judgment may not be the best.

Two Sheep and Two Goats Resting Together in a Field......Sweet vetiver, bourbon vanilla, and wool
I had this in mind for my partner but changed that to Jupiter Nourished at the last minute. I might still need to try a decant of this, either for him or me.

Venus Pandemos.....Hay, rose otto, red benzoin, torch smoke, and pink carnation
This could be really good, but it sounds very powdery and might be soapy as well. Possible decant.

Zoe and the Goat......Caramelized patchouli, cream, and thick golden honey
I picked Jupiter Nourished over this, hope I didn't make the wrong choice. Possible decant.

Pile of Leaves.......

Dead Leaves and Maple Sap.......possible decant, I love Burning Leaves by CBIHP, which is basically the same thing except with smoke added.

Dead Leaves and Scotch.....possible decant, sounds unbelievably cozy for a chilly fall day.

Dead Leaves and Vanilla Incense......I had this in the cart and took it back out. It sounds a little close to Hope and Fear Set Free, which I love. But - would I need both? Decant or partial bottle, probably.

Dead Leaves, Black Tea, and Tobacco Leaf......I had this in the cart too. But, I already have a few scents with tobacco. I am not sure. It might be really great. Possible decant or partial bottle.

Dead Leaves, Blackberry, and Red Patchouli.......how thorough do I want to be with the dead leaves? I don't want to miss a good one, like I know I have in the past. Maybe decant.

Dead Leaves, Bourbon Vetiver, Nagarmotha, and Vanilla Absolute.......see above, possible decant.

Dead Leaves, Sweet Oakmoss, White Sage, and Chaparral........see above again, possible decant.   DECANTS:
Blue Ghost Blues
Pumpkin Musk and Black Oudh
Pumpkin Tobacco
Scarecrow Turned Philosopher
A Young Boy and His Brother Seated on a Goat
Lithograph of a Mountain Goat
Studie Einer Ziege
Two Sheep and Two Goats Resting Together in a Field
Venus Pandemos
Dead Leaves and Scotch
Dead Leaves and Vanilla Incense
Dead Leaves, Black Tea, and Tobacco Leaf
Dead Leaves, Bourbon Vetiver, Nagarmotha, and Vanilla Absolute

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Yule 2015 breakdown

THE BEAR PRINCE
Shaggy fur, snow-flecked and rose-touched.
I am interested, but I will have to read some reviews first. Bit of a wild card.
CHANUKKIYAH
Olive oil, beeswax, glowing amber, sweet sufganiyot, pomegranate, and fig.
Nah, never had an interest in this one.

THE CROSS OF SNOW
Cypress, Spanish moss, and clove bud with labdanum, Italian bergamot, and white tobacco flower.
This sounds nice until I get to white tobacco flower - I have a feeling that will be soapy on me. I'll read reviews.

DED MOROZ
Light, darkness, kindness, and malice: golden amber, white amber, redwood, teak, bois du rose, sage, tree moss, and snow.
1 bottle is enough. I do like this one.

DIABLE EN BOÎTE
A strangely sinister, unnerving holiday scent: redwood, bitter clove, tonka, hemp accord, and tobacco with peach blossom, black currant, and red musk.
I haven't been interested in the past, I will read some reviews but for some reason the peach blossom turns me off. It doesn't sound like it goes with those other notes. Perhaps I am wrong.

EL DIA DE LOS REYES
Hot cocoa with cinnamon, coffee, and brown sugar.
I had a decant once upon a time, wasn't crazy about it. Too gritty or something.

FAUNALIA
The scent of a thick, starlit, unspoiled forest, with a burst of wild musk, opobalsamum, black bryony, mandragora, and hemlock.
Sounds good, but I already have a decant somewhere, tried it and it didn't work all that well for me at the time. Maybe I'll dig it up and try again (if I still have it, which I'm not sure of).

FRAU HOLLE
Snow-covered pines, witches herbs, bestial musk, flax, and ethereal flowers that represent both birth and death.
Pretty much same as what I wrote for Faunalia above.
GELT
A bounty of chocolate coins! Dry cocoa and golden amber!
Nah - not interested in this one. It smells good on my friend Moonarcana, though.
IN WINTER IN MY ROOM
Pink, lank, and warm: grapefruit, yuzu, tuberose, peony, violet leaf, pikaki, Indian frankincense, and tonka.
Hmm, I'd try this if it was in front of me but I'm not going to pursue it. Just not grabbing me.

KRAMPUS
Sinister red musk, black leather, dusty rags, and wooden switches.
Yes! I want a bottle. I have a decant from a few years ago and I've always liked it.

LA BEFANA
Candy charcoal, winter lilies, parma violet, a sprig of cypress, a poof of chimney dust, and holiday sweets.
Again - I have a decant somewhere, wasn't crazy about it. Maybe will try it again but not really on my radar.

La Cloche fêlée
- - -
Bitter and sweet it is on these long winter nights
To sit before the fire and watch the smoking log
Beat like a heart; and hear our lost, our mute delights
Call with the carillons that ring out in the fog.
What certitude, what health, sounds from that brazen throat,
In spite of age and rust, alert! O happy bell,
Sending into the dark your clear religious note,
Like an old soldier crying through the night, "All's well!"
I am not thus; my soul is cracked across by care;
Its voice, that once could clang upon this icy air,
Has lost the power, it seems, - comes faintly forth, instead,
As from the rattling throat of a hurt man who lies
Beside a lake of blood, under a heap of dead,
And cannot stir, and in prodigious struggling dies.
- Charles Baudelaire, translation by Edna St. Vincent Millay
A new interpretation, inspired by Millay's translation-
A soul, cracked across by care: blood and ruin, smoke and sorrow, incense and ice.
This sounds promising and interesting. Maybe worth tracking down a decant or partial, and I'll certainly be watching for reviews.

Père Noël
Bright Sicilian oranges and sweet tangerines with a clink of lavender candy and a drop of anise.
Hmm, this sounds bright and pretty. Maybe too candy-sweet? I will watch for reviews.

MIDNIGHT MASS
This perfume is a traditional Roman Catholic sacramental incense, most often used during a Solemn Mass.
I have a bottle and some decants, I have always liked Midnight Mass, but I don't think I need any more right now, unless it's different this time. Some of my decants are different, so I'll be watching reviews.

NOW WINTER NIGHTS ENLARGE
Shorten those tedious nights with a surge of body heat: vanilla-infused red musk, champaca, petitgrain, ylang ylang, patchouli, nutmeg, honey, galbanum, and traces of caramel.
This sounds not quite for me. I don't like very many scents with honey or caramel. Both together = probably not for me.

NUCLEAR WINTER
Annihilation. The ice, desolation and barrenness of nuclear devastation shot through by a beam of radioactive mints.
Never really had an interest in this one.

PAYSAGE
The pale moon pouring magic: Tunisian opium and mugwort with blackened bourbon vanilla, tuberose, glittering white musk, datura accord, wild plum, and tobacco absolute.
Hmmm.....this has potential but I usually don't like opium in scents. I'll watch reviews but will probably pass on this one.

THE PEACOCK QUEEN
In dramatic contrast to the soft innocence of Snow White and the dew-kissed freshness of her sister, Rose Red, this is a blood red, voluptuous rose, velvet-petaled, at the height of bloom.
My one decant of this is enough, although I will try it again to be sure.

POOR MONKEY
cold first winter rain
poor monkey, you too could use
a woven straw cape
Compassion: pink lotus root and fig milk with ylang ylang, bourbon vanilla, soft myrrh, fir, khus, and sandalwood incense.
Ok I love the concept and list of notes, although it's a little sweet and cuddly for me, this time I'm looking at the name, concept and description as a whole, and really have my eye on this one. Possible bottle and I'll be watching reviews for sure. Kind of reminds me of the notes in Chintamanhi Dhupa (which I don't wear that much).

ROSE RED
The perfected winter rose, dew covered and freshly cut.
Same as Peacock Queen but I do like this one a little better and actually wear it from time to time. Not enough to want a bottle.

THE SEASON OF GHOSTS
A scent created to burn away sorrow: bergamot, frankincense, rose geranium, ginger, lemongrass, and blood orange.
Well, I do like citrus but bpal's citrus has a way of smelling like candy on me, for some reason. I'll watch reviews.

THE SNOW-SHOWER
Flake after flake - All lost in the dark and silent lake: a snowflake dissolving into an indigo pool of blue jasmine incense and violet leaf.
This sounds really nice. It would be hard to pass up something with blue jasmine incense. I enjoy jasmine and that sounds especially good. I'll watch some reviews first, I have a feeling some people will get jasmine single note from this.

SNOW WHITE
A chilly, bright perfume: flurries of virgin snow, crisp winter wind and the faintest breath of night-blooming flowers.
Once again, my decant is enough. I like how it smells but I rarely ever wear it.

++ THE YULE LADS
Askasleikir
Favorite pastime: skulking under dining tables, waiting to abscond with unsupervised food bowls. Don't blame the dog!
Dregs of cinnamon and cocoa.
I love cinnamon, but not cocoa. Probably pass on this.
Bjúgnakrækir
Favorite pastime: hiding in the rafters, ogling your smoked sausage. Eyes up here, mister!
Sweaty pear and honey with leather, coconut meat, tonka bean, and castoreum accord.
I will pass for now because of honey, but I'll be watching reviews because Quincey Morris has: "tobacco, vanilla, white pear, cedar, rugged musk and saddle leather". Sounds at least a little close to me and I love Quincey Morris.

Gáttaþefur
Favorite pastime: sniffing doorways. Everyone needs a hobby!
Baked bread, apricot, mandarin amber, and CO2 of butter.
Sounds interesting, warm and sweet, but maybe not really my thing.

Giljagaur
Favorite pastime: creeping around gullies until the opportunity to steal milk appears. You do you, buddy.
Coconut cream, sheep's milk accord, and a drop of Ceylon cinnamon.
I don't really go for bpal's cream or milk notes. This isn't calling my name.

Gluggagægir
Favorite pastime: peeping in yer windows. What a creeper!
Spiced rum leather, frankincense, black cedar, sweet tobacco, and honey-gold sandalwood.
On my first pass-through this one stuck out to me, but I'm not completely sure. I'll have to read some reviews.

Hurðaskellir
Favorite pastime: slamming doors. What a drama queen!
Booming carnation, iced mint, white fir, and itchy patchouli loudly disrupting a dreamy bed of lavender.
Not calling my name. This combination of notes sounds a little strange to me.

Kertasníkir
Favorite pastime: stealing candles from children. Such a scamp!
Beeswax, strawberries, and bits of hard candy.
Never been interested in bpal's strawberry note. I shall pass.

Ketkrókur
Favorite pastime: collecting meat hooks, sharpening meat hooks, polishing meat hooks. Sleep with one eye open?
Labdanum, patchouli, dragon's blood resin, and clove.
Not into dragon's blood these days. Once upon a time I would have been really into this.

Skyrgámur
Favorite pastime: indulging his yogurt fetish. Whatever floats your boat!
Berries, skyr, and oats.
Really don't want to smell like oats and I have a feeling skyr might be a yogurt note? Or cream? I will pass.

Stekkjarstaur
Favorite pastime: harassing sheep. Nobody's perfect.
Wooly sugared marshmallow root.
Don't really care about marshmallow.

Stúfur
Favorite pastime: stealing crusty bits from used frying pans. It takes all kinds.
Chunks of sweet carrots and dates mushed with nuts, topped with crumbles from a pie-like spelt and barley crust.
This is a big 'No' for me, definitely pass.

Þvörusleikir
Favorite pastime: licking spoons and ladles. There's no accounting for taste.
The scent of well-worn wooden utensils, lightly fondled, and a wisp of kitchen herbs.
So wood and herbs? Sounds ok but not really calling me, I will read reviews though.

Pottaskefill
Favorite pastime: eating the scrapings from unwashed pots. Waste not, want not?
Salt licorice, birch tar, black pepper, and leather.
Sounds good, but I'll read reviews first. Licorice sounds good but often doesn't work for me, but I do like the combination of these notes. I'll have an eye on this one.

++ YULE SINGLE NOTES
Ah, the scents of the season! Mix and match to create the perfect perfume to accompany any awkward family gatherings!
FAKE BAYBERRY CANDLE
Not really
IRRESPONSIBLY UNWATERED CHRISTMAS TREE
Not into fir like I used to be
UNSUCCESSFUL CRANBERRY GARLAND
Don't really like cranberry or berry scents
DAY-OLD HAM
Doesn't sound appealing in the slightest
FIREPLACE CINDERS
Probably not but there was a time I would've been all over this. I'll watch reviews
DUSTY ACCUMULATED MENORAH WAX
Nah, I'll pass
RAPIDLY DISINTIGRATING POMANDER
I like the pomander smell but disintigrating sounds dry and powdery, I'll watch reviews
DRUNK UNCLE
??? Not really? but I'll watch reviews
UNMANAGEABLE SNOWDRIFT
Nah, not really into snow notes any more.....

++ SNOW FALLING FAINTLY
THE SNOW AT DAWN
Snow afire with the morning's first rays of orange blossom, neroli, and rose gardenia.
Nah

THE SNOW AT NOON
Blinding white in the noonday sun: white mint, eucalyptus, glittering elemi, white tea, silver fir, and camphor.
No

THE SNOW AT DUSK
Swirled grey and purple in the gloaming: snowdrifts shadowed with opium tar, wild plum, Siamese benzoin, champaca resinoid, muguet, and carnation.
Nah

THE SNOW AT MIDNIGHT
Silence: frozen blackcurrant bud, myrrh, ciste absolute, frankincense, and oudh.
No.

SO........Krampus and Poor Monkey? And a lot of review-watching!


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2015 Weenies

All Souls An incense blend that invokes the higher qualities of mercy and compassion, mingled with the soft, sugared currant scent of offertory soul cakes. I like All Souls, a lot. But I think I need to make a rule: no Weenies that I've already tried or already own. This update is overwhelming and I need to narrow down a lot (this breakdown will help). Anyway, I have a bottle + a decant of All Souls, so I don't need more.   Dia de los Muertos This is a Mexican paean to La Huesuda: dry, crackling leaves, the incense smoke of altars honoring Death and the Dead, funeral bouquets, the candies, chocolates, foods and tobacco of the ofrenda, amaranth, sweet cactus blossom and desert cereus. I don't think I've ever tried this, but now is not the time. Need to focus on the new stuff and I think this will be easy to find some if I ever feel the need.   Feeding the Dead A barrel of beer, a pyramid of cakes, and three sticks of incense. I tried this before, and I have a decant, but.....see All Souls. Pass for now.   Frosted Pumpkin Spice Cookie With cinnamon, nutmeg, browned butter, and cream cheese icing. No foodie or cookie scents this time, not in the mood.   Le Revenant A shroud of gardenia, narcissus, and sandalwood with ambrette seed, white cognac, muguet, davana, and white musk. Now we're getting closer....but not quite. I will pass on this one. The list of notes just doesn't call out to me for some reason.   Magnificent Autumn A scent that wanders through the Ages of Autumn, from the last green leaf to the first breath of winter. Already have a bottle from last year, I like it, but don't need more now.   October Dry, cold autumn wind. A rustle of red leaves, a touch of smoke and sap in the air. Not this time - I still have my bottle from '07, and I do love it, but it's enough for me.   Pumpkin Cheesecake Cupcake No, I don't need this one at all, I have Pumpkin Cheesecake from the inquisition a few years back. That's all the pumpkin cheesecake I need!   Pumpkin Lager A peculiar point of contention: you either love it or hate it, and however you feel, it’s passionate. Lol - No! I am tired of reading about everyone's pumpkin beer! I don't drink these days and I don't feel any desire for this one.   Samhain Truly the scent of autumn itself — damp woods, fir needle, and black patchouli with the gentlest touches of warm pumpkin, clove, nutmeg, allspice, sweet red apple and mullein. I love Samhain, but see All Souls.....have to narrow these down.   Second Spring An accolade: drifting leaves tinted in the bold reds of pomegranate and current, the golds of amber and honey, russet myrrh, a touch of cypress-green, and crisp patchouli-brown. This sounds nice, I would probably like it. But it sounds very similar to Magnificent Autumn, which I already have. I'll watch reviews but will probably skip this one.   Sonnet d’Automne 2015 Tenebrous Love: a shivering white musk with vanilla-infused white cocoa, amber incense, and dead, dry leaves. No - still have my bottle from a couple years ago, and don't wear it very much. Not a favorite.   Sugar Skull 2015 Vibrant with the joy and sweetness of life in death! A blend of five sugars, lightly dusted with candied fruits. *sigh* I love Sugar Skull, even though I just said no foodie scents. But - I already have 1 bottle plus 3 or 4 decants, and I can't justify buying a bottle this year, although I would like to. I'll watch reviews, though. It's possible this might sneak into my cart anyway! (if people rave about this year's being special or different)   Sweet William’s Ghost A scent of unendurable grief and longing: pale orris root and honeyed white lily chilled by wild carrot and cognac, pulled into a winding sheet of white jasmine, tobacco flower, tuberose, and patchouli. Ok - this one sort of called out to me instantly. Which is crazy since it's so unlike what I thought I liked up until now. I mean, white lily? Honeyed white lily? I would have steered clear of this before this year. But I had an experience with doezens of lilies that sort of opened my eyes and my nostrils, and ever since then, I've had a complete turnaround about lily in perfumes. I said elsewhere that I wanted an elegant fall floral this year. Maybe this is it! So far, this is the first bottle I'm thinking of buying.   The Unquiet Grave One kiss of clay-cold lips: frozen white roses, frankincense, white gardenia, white sandalwood, and vanilla orchid. I don't really like white rose, and the rest of the description isn't calling to me. Sometimes that's all it comes down to, just a gut feeling.   The Vampire Bride Icy skin touched by a perfume of violet leaf, white tea, olibanum, elemi, myrrh, wormwood, crypt dust, and saffron with a dribble of blood red musk. Is this a repeat? I think I have a decant. Anyway - I usually don't like violet, and this isn't really calling to me. I may try my decant again. The artwork is beautiful.   The White Witch 2015 Love pain-ecstatic, cruel-sweet: gold-flecked honey amber pulsating with red musk, patchouli coeur, bourbon vanilla, inky vetiver, pomegranate rind, myrrh, blackened violet leaf, and blood red rose petals. Just not feeling it, which is good since I need to narrow these down.   Dead Leaves and Tobacco Ok, I want to try all the Dead Leaves, but I just can't. I can't believe this but I'm going to agree with the people who say, these might turn into men's cologne. At this point I am pretty much satisfied with more masculine scents, and I'm more interested in light, elegant, chic, willowy scents. Leaf scents can be a little prickly and I think that I actually have enough at this point. I even have the Pile of Fallen Leaves single note from last year. So - I'm going to pass on these for now. [Dead Leaves, Black Pepper, and Sandalwood Dead Leaves, Bourbon Vanilla, and Myrrh Dead Leaves, Frankincense, and Copal Dead Leaves, Honey, and Oudh Dead Leaves, Red Musk, and Neroli]     Apple I Apple with hay absolute, oats, honey, cream vanilla, and goat’s milk accord. Thank goodness, I don't need ANY of the apple scents. Just not my thing. If I was going to try one, it would be Apple III, but I will pass on all these. [Apple II Green apple with pink pepper, Himalayan cedar, juniper berries, and lemon rind. Apple III Appalachian black apple with sweet tobacco and patchouli, orange blossom, vanilla champaca, lavender, and white honey. Apple IV Red apple with blackcurrant bud, black clove, and vanilla bourbon. Apple V Apple with white coconut, fig, and tiare.]   Apple Cider Pretty sure I can skip the single notes. I got dead leaves last year, pretty hard to top that. Oh and the Pile of Leaves from last year? After 3 hours it smells exactly like Rive Gauche on me. I will skip these for now, because there are 2 sections of Salon scents I need to narrow down still (the Pickman Galleries)...... [bonfire Candied Apple Clown White Disappointing Pencil Graveyard Dirt Redux Polyester Spiderweb Pumpkin Spice Everything Stage Blood]   A Phantasmagoria: Scene – Conjuring Up an Armed Skeleton Wig powder, amber-perfumed leather gloves, and rose petals with a sliver of oak bark and cauldron smoke. Ok, here we go. I will have to be ruthless with these. I have always loved the Lab's Salon scents, even the ones I don't end up wearing, I love smelling them. I think I can skip this one, sounds a little too powdery and the rose petals may turn soapy on me.   A Witch Riding on a Dragon Blackened tonka, patchouli, dragon’s blood resin, and scorched oak. Pass....too incense-y and scorched, which is not what I'm interested in these days.   A Young Woman Appealing to a Witch Honey, cream and white rose petals buffeted by toadstools, creeping moss, bog cypress, and myrrh. Hmmm....no to honey, cream, and white rose.   Départ Pour Le Sabbat (Aufbruch Zum Hexensabbat) Bourbon vanilla, sweet red patchouli, oudh, goat’s milk accord, and white honey. I love the art. I could see myself looking for a decant at some point.   Liebeszauber Honey, rose petals, and carnations – a drop of blood – red clover, cubeb berries, and vanilla cream. Well.....again, I love the art, but I'll say no to honey, rose, and carnation. I bet this smells pretty, though.   The Magic Circle Vanilla-infused frankincense and clary sage with 7-year aged patchouli, jasmine sambac, honey myrtle, and oudh. Ok - on my first quick read-through, I thought I'd pass on this. But, I just took a closer look at the art. Wow, that is beautiful. This just became a bottle candidate. Hope and Fear de-luxe? Sounds good to me.   The Sorceress An evocation incense of frankincense, styrax, lavender buds, mastic, and white sandalwood mingled with moonflower, violet absolute, tuberose, and dark musk. I'm about 50/50 on this one. It's a possibility, but probably won't make the cut in the end.   The Witch and the Mandrake Mandrake root, apple blossom, dusty brown sandalwood, coconut milk, woodmusk, and soft leather. I like leather sometimes, but this combination sounds a little odd to me, and I'm worried about that apple blossom. I don't know - I'd like to give it a sniff but probably pass for now.   The Witches Pumpkin cream, honey, vanilla sugar, and smoked vanilla bean. Again, the art is lovely, but I generally steer away from honey.   The Witches’ Rout (the Carcass) White sandalwood, opoponax, shriveled black plum, and vetiver. Interesting, but sounds a little bitter to me. The list of notes reminds me of something I've smelled before - maybe Lunar Eclipse? I don't know, pass for now.   The Witches’ Sabbath Burgundy and champaca resin with immortelle, leather accord, wine-soaked red fruits, rose geranium petals, red patchouli, guttering candles, and smoke. This sounds a lot like one of the older Salons, I'm blanking on which one. The one thing that worries me is burgundy, I haven't had much luck with wine notes in the past. Pass for now.   Witchcraft Scene Black lily and black pepper with narcissus, white musk, and white sandalwood. This sounds interesting. I know I don't like black pepper in perfume a whole lot. But the combination does spark my interest a little bit. I'll have to think about it.   Witches’ Kitchen Belladonna accord, sprigs of rue, crushed hyssop, white sage, beeswax, mandrake leaf, bay rum, black honey, hemp, and myrrh. I think I'll pass on this one. The list of notes sounds a little strange. It might work, but it's not high on my list.   A Holy Man Advises a Woman to Invoke Mary Against a Devil White musk, tobacco flower, white tea, Tunisian neroli, and blonde leather. This could be good. But - again, not high on my list. And the art isn't standing out to me that much either.   La Femme de Satan Red musk and cacao with clove, caramelized tobacco, aged patchouli, red currant, black leather, and vanilla-infused amber. Hmmm.....sounds very sensual and sexy. I may have to keep an eye on reviews. I could be seeking a partial bottle of this.   La Ronde du Sabbat Oman frankincense, black clove, and tobacco tar. Clove can be tricky for me, but I do like frankincense. I'll watch reviews. This might work if it's smooth and light. It could lean to the gritty or earthy side, though. Might have to find a decant.   Pan Twardowski and the Devil Brown leather, bay leaf, tobacco leaf, lavender, and oudh. Wow....that's one sexy list of notes. I'll watch reviews, but I am not hopeful about this working for me. Now that I think about it, leather scents are about 50/50 on me, and the last few that I tried haven't worked for me at all. Possible decant.   Portrain of an Unidentified Man as Mephistopheles A debonair lavender fougere cloaked in smoky red musk, red mandarin, and oakmoss. Now this sounds sexy. And I love the art. This is a bottle possibility. Very much.   Satan Starting from the Touch of Ithuriel’s Spear Golden amber, carnation, blackcurrant, aged black patchouli, red musk, and vetiver. I will pass on this. I am not crazy about carnation and otherwise, this sounds just very much like other scents I've already tried.   Satan Summoning His Legions White leather and cypress-tinged white musk with cardamom, smouldering incense, Ceylon cinnamon and white sandalwood. This sounds promising. I will watch reviews, possible decant. Despite the leather and incense, it could work, because I tend to love the lab's cinnamon notes. That could bring it all together into something great.

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Yule breakdown (initial)

Wheee! Keeping in mind, we still have an anniversary update coming.   OAK MOON – Eternally evolving, blooming in power and grace: acorns, oak leaves, oak bark, and oak sap rising through a mist of traditional lunar oils. Yes! I'm pretty sure I need this. One of my favorite perfumes is Chene by Serge Lutens, so Oak Moon is kind of a no-brainer for me, hope I really like it.   ++ YULE 2011 AUTUMN AND WINTER 2011 – Bitter currant and dry leaves. Winter wind at dusk. Hated this last year, smelled like piercing bathroom cleaner. Sorry.   CHANUKKIYAH 2011 – Olive oil, beeswax, glowing amber, sweet sufganiyot, pomegranate, and fig. One of those things that I've always wanted to try, but never got around to. Decant, maybe.   CLOTH OF GOLD – Vibrant yellow petals bursting exultantly through a patch of snow. I never really fall in love with the snow and flower scents, probably pass on this one.   DIABLE EN BOÎTE 2011 – A strangely sinister, unnerving holiday scent: redwood, bitter clove, tonka, hemp accord, and tobacco with peach blossom, black currant, and red musk. The notes look interesting, can't remember why I wasn't interested before. Will have to look up some reviews.   DUST OF SNOW – Snowflakes and hemlock leaves with snowdrop, iris, and Peruvian lily. Sounds soapy, especially the lily. Pass.   EGG NOG 2011 – Sweet brandy, dark rum, heavy cream, sugar, and a dash of nutmeg. I have an older decant, smells like slightly spicy air on me. Pass.   FROST AT MIDNIGHT – The liberating glory of nature, a celebration of wildness of spirit: fierce musk and immortelle, clary sage and oud, terebinth pine and ambrette seed, ivy and tobacco, honeysuckle and orange blossom. Sounds interesting, might be a bit harsh. Will watch for reviews.   GELT 2011 – A bounty of chocolate coins! Dry cocoa and golden amber! I can safely pass!   HALÔA 2011 – Wine grapes, pomegranate, myrrh, frankincense and olive leaf, and the warm scent of offertory cakes. I have enough of this, especially since I never wear it. I like it, though. Pass this time.   JACOB’S LADDER 2011 – The meeting of Heaven and Earth: golden amber, galbanum, benzoin, ambrette, rockrose, costus and tonka. Maybe it's time to try this again, since my tastes have changed so much since I first tried it in '06. I'll have to think about it.   JÓLASVEINAR 2011 – Their scent is a mishmash of snow, dirt, Icelandic moss, marsh felwort, and the smushed petals of buttercups and moorland spotted orchids, with the barest hint of the scent of pilfered Christmas pastries. Another one that I have, like, and never wear. What's up with that?? Pass this year unless the reviews are really different.   LICK IT DISCREETLY – This year's minty double ententre! A sticky, chilly peppermint candy cane with sweet vanilla and an extra jolt of sugar. What will we see next year, Lick It On The Down Low?? LOL! Pass, not my thing.   MAISON EN PAIN D'ÉPICES – This is the scent of a freshly assembled gingerbread house, with swirls of multicolored icing, spice drop lights, meringue snow, pinwheel mint accents, chocolate roof tiles, candy wafer pavers, and jelly candy stained glass. We used a French translation for ‘gingerbread house’ as the name to make it sound fancier. French adds +40% Fancy! Well, this is a possibility, but it's one of those things that sounds good, but I may end up not wearing. Will have to think about it.   MIDNIGHT MASS 2011 – This perfume is a traditional Roman Catholic sacramental incense, most often used during a Solemn Mass. Traditionally, five tears of this incense, each encased individually in wax that has been fashioned into the shape of a nail, are inserted into the paschal candle. This is, of course, represents the Five Wounds of Our Risen Savior. Symbolically, the burning of the incense signifies spiritual fervor, the fragrance itself inspires virtue, and the rising smoke carries our prayers to God. I do not need more Midnight Mass.   MIDWINTER’S EVE 2011 – A melancholy, deep scent, poignant and brimming with nostalgia. The perfume of sugared plums over a breeze of winter flowers. I do not need to try this again.   NOCHA BUENA 2011 – A celebration of the Nativity: the light, uplifting incense of the Misa de Noche Buena, purple sage, and a vibrant bouquet of plumeria, chrysanthemum, tuberose, Angel's Trumpet, Mexican tiger lily, dahlia, and azucenas. I have either a decant or bottle of this already, and don't really wear it. Pass. That seems to be a recurring theme here.   ÖNDURDIS – The Ski Lady, jötunn goddess of winter, bowhunting, mountains, and skiing. The scent of winter wind blowing over snow-capped mountains. Well, hmm....worth a try. Possible decant.   PEACOCK QUEEN 2011 – In dramatic contrast to the soft innocence of Snow White and the dew-kissed freshness of her sister, Rose Red, this is a blood red, voluptuous rose, velvet-petaled, at the height of bloom. Haughty and imperious, vain, yet incomparably lovely to the eye, but thick with thorns of jealousy, pride and hatred. I really don't need to try this again. Pass.   PINK SNOWBALLS 2011 –A lighthearted winter scent: chilly vanilla rose snowballs! Dainty, soft, and certainly unfit for flinging! Pass. Still have an old decant.   PUMPKIN MASALA ROOIBOS – Rooibos tea with red ginger, green cardamom, fennel, peppercorns, almond, and licorice, sweetened with coconut sugar and jaggery. This is a possibility but the sugar and spice scents don't always work for me (see Egg Moon and Spicebush Swallowtail). Worth a decant but I won't get my hopes up.   ROSE RED 2011 – The perfected winter rose, dew covered and freshly cut. I like Rose Red but never, ever wear my old decant. Pass.   SNOW WHITE 2011 – A chilly, bright perfume: flurries of virgin snow, crisp winter wind and the faintest breath of night-blooming flowers. Don't need more Snow White. Pass.   SUGAR COOKIE 2011 – The Devil's Bake Sale returns! Never been interested in this one. Pass.   WINTER HEAVENS – Black midnight winter skies glittering with points of light: chill air, champaca flower, white musk, fir needle, papyrus reeds, and grey amber. Could be interesting, could be soapy. Worth a possible decant. Maybe.   WOODS IN WINTER 2011 – Wild hemlock and juniper berries scattered in the snow beneath leafless trees bedecked with glittering icicles. I get this one confused with Snow Storm, which I actually like better. This scent is very earthy and cold without a drop of warmth or sweetness. I think my decant from last year is enough for me.   YELLOW SNOWBALLS – Because I am very, very crass this year. Slushy white mint, vanilla cream, lemon drops, grapefruit, and yuzu! I want a bottle of this to give to my mom! She would laugh.   YULE 2011 – It is Yule, and the Holly King has slain the Oak: blood red holly berry, mistletoe, wild thyme, verbena, cinquefoil, hemp, winter rose, evergreen, frankincense, juniper, and myrrh. Didn't like this when I tried it, pass.   ++ FRANKENSTEIN AMIABLE AND LOVELY CREATURES – honey and rosewater with fig, patchouli, night-blooming jasmine, and white almond. Kind of turned off fig after The Nutcracker, pass but I'll watch reviews.   BEAUTIFUL AND ADORED – rose musk, white gardenia, English pear, vanilla bean, red currant, and honey. Pass.   A BLOT UPON THE EARTH – black plum, Spanish moss, opoponax, davana, vetiver, and opium poppy. I'd like to try this, it sounds rather promising, but who knows.   BREATHLESS HORROR – icy white musk and thick olibanum with niaouli, carrot seed, white mint, and camphor. Pass, I think. Something else had niaouli but I can't remember what. I'll watch reviews of this.   A COMPANION OF THE SAME NATURE – skin musk, red rose petals, mums, carnations, white linen, and sunlit amber on a bed of soft dry leaves. Sigh.....probably pass, not 100% sure though.   THE COUNTRY OF ETERNAL LIGHT – icy wind, depth hoar, and frost-limned lichen. Might be kind of nice, might be kind of soapy. Not sure about this one, but sigh....yet another icy scent? Eh.   DAYS AND NIGHTS IN VAULTS AND CHARNEL HOUSES – grave soil, necrophagous insect chitins, moss, mold, dried blood, rot, dirt-smeared wool, and sweat-drenched citrus lilac aftershave. Sounds rather horrid, will watch reviews of this one.   THE DEEPEST MYSTERIES OF CREATION – wild frankincense, rose otto, hyssop, and oude. Pass. Thankfully I have not caught oude fever like so many.   A DENSE AND FRIGHTFUL DARKNESS – black musk, vetiver, myrrh, opoponax, hemp, crushed sage, oakmoss, and tobacco. Don't know, could be nice, will watch reviews, maybe a decant.   A DREARY NIGHT OF NOVEMBER – bone-white sandalwood, ink-black vetiver, Spanish moss, bitter clove, beeswax, and lotus root. Sounds like a strange one. I'll watch reviews.   THE HORRORS OF MY SECRET TOIL – vetiver and rose. Eh, no. Pass.   INEXTINGUISHABLE HATRED – red ginger and black opoponax with black pepper, stinging neroli, myrrh, and tobacco absolute. Sounds harsh. Will watch reviews.   INSUPPORTABLE MISERY – violet leaf, saffron, gunpowder tea, bruised lilac, and despairing lavender. Not calling to me. I will watch reviews with interest.   THE MOON GAZED ON MY MIDNIGHT LABOURS – Moroccan musk, black opium poppy, clove, and orris root. Now this, this could be interesting. I'll have to think about this one.   MOCKING THE INVISIBLE WORLD WITH ITS OWN SHADOWS – olibanum and murky ambergris accord with verbena, white sandalwood, and wisteria. Olibanum scares me, makes me think of one of the Gaiman scents that was horrible on me, either Ligur or Hastur or whatever they're called, I always get them confused. Will probably avoid this.   PALE STUDENT OF UNHALLOWED ARTS – fading Georgian cologne and split O3 molecules. I think there was some chatter surrounding this one, I'm kind of interested but the notes aren't calling me? We'll see.   PRIDE OF WISDOM – Roman chamomile, rosehips, ginseng, and fig. Ginseng stinks. Not crazy about chamomile, either. And fig....touch and go. I'll watch reviews.   THE REWARD OF MY BENEVOLENCE – boneflower, olive blossom, white sandalwood, clary sage, Himalayan cedar, and oakmoss Boneflower? I think not. Sounds soapy and/or papery, especially with white sandalwood. I'll read reviews.   SOLITARY AND ABHORRED – carrot seed, East Indian patchouli, white tea, and peru balsam. Could be interesting, sort of on my radar, but I'm not going to rush to get a decant. We'll see.   SORROWFUL AFFECTION – lily of the valley, tuberose, pink carnation, green tea absolute, orange zest, bourbon geranium, and blue musk. Nah, pass.   TILL DEATH – white rose, black locust blossom, French magnolia, globe amaranth, iris root, and honeysuckle. Hell to the naw.   A TORRENT OF LIGHT – eucalyptus petals, white mint, white amber, and ozone. Does not sound appealing.   WORKSHOP OF FILTHY CREATION – electricity-scarred cypress beams, ancient stone slabs, damp metal, the coppery tang of coagulating blood, and ozone. Pass.   ++THE LITTLE MATCH GIRL THE LAST EVENING OF THE YEAR – Snow settling on cold skin, tea rose petals, and dusty, threadbare linen. Pass.   COLDER AND COLDER – Peppermint, spearmint, white musk, and elemi settling into a deepening darkness. Pass.   A WONDEFUL LIGHT – Three radiant ambers with honey, linden blossom, bourbon vanilla, and orange zest. Pass, possible decant but pass for now.   THE MOST MAGNIFICENT CHRISTMAS TREE – Spruce pine with hints of silver birch and warm, dark woods. I want a decant.   THOUSANDS OF LIGHTS – Indian ambrette seed, beeswax, champaca flower, saffron, Italian bergamot, frankincense, oak bark, and vanilla orchid. I want to try this because the notes resemble Egoiste. Possible decant.   IN BRIGHTNESS AND IN JOY – Divine mercy: sweet winter berry, orange blossom, frankincense, golden sandalwood, angel's trumpet, and red rose. Sounds pretty, possible decant, even with the rose.   THE COLD HOUR OF DAWN – Esprit de eucalyptus, blue musk, davana, frosty iris, and tagetes. Pass again!

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Halloween breakdown, 2011...the sequel.

The update so nice, I have to break it down twice!   I had so many wild cards and maybes I have to go over this again. This time I'll leave out the definite passes.   Blood Moon 2011...."A Lunacy inspired by the magnificently morbid fantasies of Edgar Allan Poe: laudanum-stained linen scented by an ink-smeared tobacco musk and phantom bloodstains illuminated by monstrous moonlight". Since this is a totally different Blood Moon, doesn't seem much point to comparing it to the older ones. Actually, the description reminds me a lot of Male Nude, Arms Upstretched, which I already have. I am attracted to the laudanmu note because I really enjoy the sassafras of Laudanum, the GC scent. So........yeah, still undecided on this one. : /   A Nocturnal Reverie...."Violet musk and oudh with black amber, ambergris, agarwood, black currant, dark musk, fig, and lavender incense". Looks promising, but could tip the scale over into sweet and fruity. Probable decant.   Boo 2011....."Eerie billows of spun sugar, fluttering white cotton, and sheets of cream". I might try to track down a half decant or sniffie. I may have tried this at Moonarcana's house but I can't remember.   Devil's Night 2011...."This is the scent of autumn night, fires in the distance, with a touch of boozy swoon, playful sugar and thuggish musk". Might like a decant just to compare to other 'vintages'.   Elegy IX: The Autumnal....."Red maplewood, plum leaves, fir needle, wildflower honey, patchouli, hazelnut, and green cognac". This is the kind of scent that is promising but could go either way. I love picking out one or two scents to gamble on a full bottle, unsniffed, just to surprise myself. I'm really curious about this!   Nothing But Death....."A dark purple river swelling with tears of rain, damp violets, and specks of bone thick with green scents that speak of mortality: black dried fruits, opopponax, moss, violet leaf and petal, tobacco absolute, saltwater accord, niaouli, and brushed sage". The combination of aquatic and other stuff makes me think of Eanach Dhuin, for some reason, even though they don't really share any notes. Well, I have that one already and never wear it. Still undecided, may have to try a decant.   October 2011...."Dry, cold autumn wind. A rustle of red leaves, a touch of smoke and sap in the air". Maybe a decant? I love my old bottle, and I really just am curious if the new one is different or the same.   Pumpkin Princess....."Bright, sweet pumpkin with vanilla fluff, guava, chocolate-dusted white amber, tiare, red currant, raw honey, and meringue". Well, I do love Pumpkin Queen, so I think I want a decant of the Princess.   Samhain 2011...."Truly the scent of autumn itself -- damp woods, fir needle, and black patchouli with the gentlest touches of warm pumpkin, clove, nutmeg, allspice, sweet red apple and mullein". Possible bottle but I can wait on this one. The Halloweenies will be up for a while and this one isn't urgent, but I kind of want a bottle to go with my collection of Samhain bottles and decants.   Sonnet D'Automne...."Tenebrous Love: a shivering white musk with vanilla-infused white cocoa, amber incense, and dead, dry leaves". Pretty sure this is a bottle for me, without trying first. Sounds really lovely.   The Vampire Bride...."Icy skin touched by a perfume of violet leaf, white tea, olibanum, elemi, myrrh, wormwood, crypt dust, and saffron with a dribble of blood red musk". Kind of curious....maybe a decant....having trouble anticipating what this would smell like, but I like the description.   The Black Apple Of Saturn...."Dried Arkansas black apple, opoponax, cypress, myrrh, tobacco absolute, quince, black musk, and galbanum". This is the apple scent that stands out to me, possible decant but it might get edged out. Just too much in one update and I can't try everything!   The Changeling...."Blonde wood, linen swaddling, pumpkin rind, and bourbon vanilla". Too tantalizing to pass up. Probably a decant.   Expressive Head...."Teakwood, patchouli, green pepper, clove, white cognac, vetiver, and champaca absolute". Possible decant.....undecided.....could be good but might not work for me. Wild card.   Muse Of The Night...."A soft, resinous indigo musk with black currant, ylang ylang, Tunisian jasmine, opoponax, rose otto, benzoin, Tahitian vanilla bean, and opium tar". I'm in love with the painting, and so I want a decant.   The Night Hag Visiting The Lapland Witches...."Black sandalwood, woodsmoke, Terebinth pine, blue cypress, styrax, frankincense, chamomile maroc, and nutmeg". Very curious, but it could be too strong or sharp. Makes me think of Montauk Project which I have and don't wear. Probable decant because it has huge potential.   Nightmare...."Vanilla-soaked linen accord with lavender, opium poppy, Moroccan jasmine, golden amber, white honey, and blackened fruit gums". Very curious, very promising, probably a decant.   Post-Mortem Laureatus...."White sandalwood and twining ivy". The thing I like about this, is that the will-call reviews so far are all over the place. It's like everyone smelled a different scent. And I like the notes so this is another probable decant.   Sentimental Initiation...."Red and black musks with bamboo, myrrh, bitter clove, patchouli, vanilla orchid, and king mandarin". Another wild card but sounds promising. Undecided.   The Triumph Of Death...."East Indian black patchouli, red sandalwood, dark musk, peru balsam, ambrette seed, vetiver, and ambergris accord". Again...not sure....maybe a decant. Sounds kind of 'been there done that', and I'm interested in some different things this time around.   The Gorobble....."A scent redolent of the crusty exterior of burnt marshmallows". Interesting, possible decant but I'm more interested in the burnt part than the marshmallow part. Undecided but possible decant.   The Seekim...."Cacao absolute, hay, black pepper, patchouli, and incense ash". Very, very interested. The description makes me think L'Instant de Guerlain pour Homme, or Serge Lutens' Chergui, because of the cacao and hay. So, I'm excited that this could be an elegant unisex perfume. Probably a decant.   The Ta-Ta...."Boiled leather, carnation blossom, coffee absolute, and tobacco". Could be a hidden gem....not much into leather scents but there is potential for this to work for me. Watching reviews for now.

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HALLOWEENIES! (ahem. A breakdown)

So it's that time of year again, the thrills don't stop until Lupers, and sometimes not even then! There's just something wonderful about sitting down to a brand new bpal Halloween update, ready to break it down. This is just one of my favorite things! Onward.....   A Nocturnal Reverie...."Violet musk and oudh with black amber, ambergris, agarwood, black currant, dark musk, fig, and lavender incense". It's funny, I have been wishing for an elegant, chic, purple incense kind of scent, and what do you know....seems like this could be it! I'm pretty sure I need to try this. Probably a decant, first.   Araw Ng Mga Patay....."A cheerful, raucous celebration of life and death: bouquets overflowing with gerbera daisies, waling waling, sampaguita, ylang ylang, hibiscus, night-blooming dama de noche, santan, and everlasting flower with piles upon piles of bibingka, ube halaya, rice muffins, champorado, purple yam cake, and turon, and plates of gooey kalabasa leche flan". Okay, I don't know what most of those notes are. The description makes me think of Diwali, which I do like, but hardly ever wear. I think I can let this one pass, there are many more grabbing my attention.   Autumn Cider...."Fermented apple juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, clove, lemon zest, butterscotch liquor, and orange slices". Not sure about this, sounds very rich, and I don't think I'd like a butterscotch liquor note. I have full bottles of Egg Moon, Spicebush Swallowtail, and Plunder, Blood....and probably other spice scents I'm not remembering. I think I can let this one pass.   Boo 2011....."Eerie billows of spun sugar, fluttering white cotton, and sheets of cream". Not really of interest to me but I would sniff it if someone handed it to me!   Devil's Night 2011...."This is the scent of autumn night, fires in the distance, with a touch of boozy swoon, playful sugar and thuggish musk". I love Devil's Night but I never wear it! I still have a mostly full bottle from 2006, and 2 decants from other years, so I think I can pass. But I might like a decant just to compare to other 'vintages'.   Elegy IX: The Autumnal....."Red maplewood, plum leaves, fir needle, wildflower honey, patchouli, hazelnut, and green cognac". Something about this list of notes is quite seductive to me! There are a couple of 'iffy' notes but I love taking a risk and being sweetly rewarded. This is a possible blind buy for me, considering it.   Ghosts In Love....."White sandalwood, tobacco flower, lily of the valley, white carnation, and magnolia blossom with tea rose, labdanum, and oudh". Tea rose and lily of the valley, in the same scent? This would soap me to the moon.   John Barleycorn 2011....."Barley, beer, blood, and whiskey". I am going to pass on this one. No interest in a super-boozey scent. Sounds yucky to me.   La Calavera Catrina....."The Lady of the Graveyard! Autumn leaves, wild roses, bourbon vanilla, dry chamomile, and a bouquet of bright chrysanthemums and Mexican marigolds". Hmmm.....probably a pass for me, just because of the roses, but I wouldn't mind sniffing it if the opportunity presented.   Le Revenant....."A shroud of gardenia, narcissus, and sandalwood with ambrette seed, white cognac, muguet, davana, and white musk". Hmmm.....probably not for me, but I am attracted to the elegant vibe.   Mictecacihuatl 2011..."Copal, precious woods, South American spices, agave nectar, cigar tobacco, and roses". I tried this before and it's not bad, but just a little too much rose for me to truly enjoy. Pass for now.   Nothing But Death....."A dark purple river swelling with tears of rain, damp violets, and specks of bone thick with green scents that speak of mortality: black dried fruits, opopponax, moss, violet leaf and petal, tobacco absolute, saltwater accord, niaouli, and brushed sage". Hmm, more purple incense-y chic? With saltwater? Sounds very interesting, but I think a decant first would be prudent!   October 2011...."Dry, cold autumn wind. A rustle of red leaves, a touch of smoke and sap in the air". I love October, have a bottle from the first time it was released, and just never wear it, for some stupid reason. I'm tempted to get another bottle but I think it might be edged out by other new stuff.   Pumpkin Latte 2011...."Espresso, pumpkin syrup, smoky vanilla bean, milk, raw sugar, and a dash of cinnamon and nutmeg". I have a decant from last year and I think I tried it twice. Maybe I should try it again but it's not the kind of scent I'm after this year. It was too strong and sweet.   Pumpkin Princess....."Bright, sweet pumpkin with vanilla fluff, guava, chocolate-dusted white amber, tiare, red currant, raw honey, and meringue". So cute! I'd love a decant, but I know I don't need a whole bottle.   Samhain 2011...."Truly the scent of autumn itself -- damp woods, fir needle, and black patchouli with the gentlest touches of warm pumpkin, clove, nutmeg, allspice, sweet red apple and mullein". I have been thinking about another bottle for my collection, one of the few scents that I have multiple bottles (and decants, too). I don't wear it much but it truly is....the scent of autumn itself. Probably one of my top 5 bpal scents, ever.   Samhainophobia 2011....."Menacing Haitian vetiver, patchouli, and clove with a shock of bourbon geranium, grim oakmoss, and dread-inspiring balsams pierce the innocuous scent of autumn leaves". I have a bottle from 2006, and I have worn it quite a few times, and always end up getting tired of it. It's very strong and lasts and lasts. There's something not quite right to me, and maybe it's the geranium, because I usually don't like that note. Who knows, but I think I'll pass.   Sonnet D'Automne...."Tenebrous Love: a shivering white musk with vanilla-infused white cocoa, amber incense, and dead, dry leaves". Oh, this sounds beautiful. In my mind I'm convinced that it will be great! Seriously thinking of a whole bottle, unsniffed.   The Vampire Bride...."Icy skin touched by a perfume of violet leaf, white tea, olibanum, elemi, myrrh, wormwood, crypt dust, and saffron with a dribble of blood red musk". Hmmm, very interesting, but I'm having trouble imagining how those notes will all fit together. I'm intrigued. I may have to find a decant.   The Nymphae Avernales...."The nymphs of the Underworld: pomegranate, lilac musk, red rose, red sandalwood, honey, and frankincense". I am not a big fan of pomegranate, and with the red rose I guess I can skip this one.   Regina Erebi...."The Queen of Hell: pomegranate, spear mint, black mulberry, and myrrh". I'm weirdly attracted to this, even though I don't like the smell of spearmint, and myrrh is about the only note listed that I do like. Thinking about a decant, for some strange reason.   Askalaphos...."The daimon that tends the orchards of the Underworld: pomegranate, wonder-flowers, asphodel, and black soil". I am pretty sure I can pass on this one!   The Silver Apple Of The Moon...."White apple with orris, agave nectar, moonflower, white sandalwood, and lotus root". Not a big fan of apple scents, but I do like white sandalwood, and I think I like moonflower but I'm not sure. Sounds like it could be soapy or too floral. I'm undecided on this one.   The Golden Apple Of The Sun...."Golden apple with amber, hibiscus, carnation, frankincense, golden spiced tea, ginger, and champaca flower". Mixed feeling on this one....I like the list of notes but at the same time, I feel like it's a kind of scent I've smelled before and never end up liking much. Undecided.   The Black Apple Of Saturn...."Dried Arkansas black apple, opoponax, cypress, myrrh, tobacco absolute, quince, black musk, and galbanum". The most interesting of the apple scents to me, this is a possible decant. Not sure yet.   The Green Apple Of Venus...."Sweet green apple, apple blossom, sweet strawberry, pink pomegranate, violet leaf, tea rose, and red sandalwood". Never have wanted a scent with strawberry, and not a fan of tea rose either. I shall pass!   The Glittering Apple Of The Stars...."Heirloom Malus, ylang ylang, white and blue musks, crystallized vanilla, tiare, frangipani, and bergamot". Not much of interest to me here. I'll skip it.   The Changeling...."Blonde wood, linen swaddling, pumpkin rind, and bourbon vanilla". I'm kind of interested in how these play together, and I may seek out a decant.   Death Embraces A Young Maiden...."Three dry white sandalwoods with gurjum balsam, guiac wood, ambergris accord, and tea rose". Gurjum balsam sounds like something that has turned out bad before, and paired with tea rose I'm going to say........pass.   Expressive Head...."Teakwood, patchouli, green pepper, clove, white cognac, vetiver, and champaca absolute". Wow. That's quite an image! And quite a weird list of notes. Maybe a decant.   Garden Of Death...."A harvest of plants that symbolize death in myriad cultures: belladonna accord, iris petals, red poppy, acanthus, manioc, parsley, yam, urd bean, chrysanthemum, acacia, and cypress wood rooted in dark, rich loam". Hmmm....I dunno. Sounds very complex and I'm not really feelin' it, for some reason. But for all I know it might be awesome. Undecided.   An Incubus Leaving Two Sleeping Women...."Vanilla-infused white honey, magnolia, skin musk, ylang ylang, and beeswax with patchouli, olibanum, kurundu, and a feral brown musk". Ylang ylang and brown musk are a turn off, and together the whole list of notes sounds....odd to me. Undecided for sure but probably I will pass.   La Morte: Mon ironie depasse toutes les autres!....."Pomegranate accord, red rose accord, opopponax, benzoin, champaca flowers, and star anise". Not really interested in pomegranate and rose.   The Mandrake Charm...."Mandrake root, olibanum, myrrh, hyssop, basil linalool, and lemongrass". I think I'll probably pass, but I'm not completely sure. It could be great. Sounds kind of like a spring scent to me? Come to think of it, a lot of these Halloweenies sound kind of springy. Undecided.   Muse Of The Night...."A soft, resinous indigo musk with black currant, ylang ylang, Tunisian jasmine, opoponax, rose otto, benzoin, Tahitian vanilla bean, and opium tar". That painting is gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous. But I just can't get excited about the notes. I might have to get a decant just because I love the art.   The Night Hag Visiting The Lapland Witches...."Black sandalwood, woodsmoke, Terebinth pine, blue cypress, styrax, frankincense, chamomile maroc, and nutmeg". This is the kind of thing I was after last year, and before that....but now it makes me think of The Montauk Project which I never wear. Undecided but I may get a decant.   Nightmare...."Vanilla-soaked linen accord with lavender, opium poppy, Moroccan jasmine, golden amber, white honey, and blackened fruit gums". Ah yes, a very familiar painting, it reminds me of the movie Gothic. This is what I love about all the Salon scents....I want to smell this concept in a perfume. Might be a decant.   Post-Mortem Laureatus...."White sandalwood and twining ivy". I always love the idea of the dual-note scents! And I happen to like these two notes, so this is absolutely worth a try. Probably a decant.   Sentimental Initiation...."Red and black musks with bamboo, myrrh, bitter clove, patchouli, vanilla orchid, and king mandarin". Could be great but I don't know....I might like a decant just to try. The notes sound like they don't really go together for some reason. Maybe a decant.   The Triumph Of Death...."East Indian black patchouli, red sandalwood, dark musk, peru balsam, ambrette seed, vetiver, and ambergris accord". The list of notes does sound great, except I think balsam sometimes turns against me. Still, this is definitely worth a try and I might get a decant.   The Gorobble....."A scent redolent of the crusty exterior of burnt marshmallows". Strange....interesting.....kind of want a decant, but my decant list is getting long.....   The Seekim...."Cacao absolute, hay, black pepper, patchouli, and incense ash". Another very interesting list of notes. I may have to try it. Sounds clever and weird, maybe something really different.   The Ta-Ta...."Boiled leather, carnation blossom, coffee absolute, and tobacco". More weird notes.....this one is not calling to me. The notes don't sound good together but I will watch reviews.   The Two-Tailed Sogg...."Pink grapefruit, swamp moss, green musk, orris root, cypress, and honey". More weirdness. Maybe not for me.   The Wiley Grasser...."Pine needles, wildflowers, and cotton candy". Too, too weird. I kind of want to sniff this but I doubt I'd end up liking it? Maybe??   The Zoom...."Lime juice, bergamot, Himalayan cedarwood, helichrysum, and dragon’s blood resin". Okay, getting to the end of this breakdown and my mind is a little worn out from all the possibilities!! This one is just not calling to me. Not a huge fan of cedar and I don't really feel like a citrus scent right now. I'll watch reviews and perhaps change my mind.   Blood Moon 2011...."A Lunacy inspired by the magnificently morbid fantasies of Edgar Allan Poe: laudanum-stained linen scented by an ink-smeared tobacco musk and phantom bloodstains illuminated by monstrous moonlight". Blood Moon has been hit-and-miss for me, and this one looks to be totally unrelated to the previous ones? So, I'm just not sure. This is one of those wild cards that I may order at the last minute just because I don't want it to get past me. I am attracted by the description, I have to admit.

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Fille en Aiguilles...Serge Lutens

Finally got a bottle of this, one of my favorites! Gave myself a pretty intensive application today to get the full experience, as before I only had a 2.5 ml sample.   Well, what to say, how to describe this. It's a very 'me' scent, woody, spicy, kind of sweet, also deep, dark and....almost smoldering. Not really an incense, but it has a quality of incense about it. The notes listed are "pine needles, vetiver, incense, fruit, spices, fir balsam, amber". So yeah.....there is a feeling of pine but in no way sharp or cleanser-like. Add to it sugary fruits, but not candy-like....more of a sweetened boozy fruitcake with pine and resins, maybe frankincense? I dunno it just smells damn good.   I applied pretty heavily and this seems to be a scent that stays close to the skin. There aren't any "high pitched" notes. According to the box it is eau de parfum strength and in my experience, the stronger concentration of scents seem to stay closer to the skin. That's what my Bois des Iles does, anyway. It's somewhat closer to the way perfume oil behaves on the skin and in the air around me. I love this so much and it just hums in a quiet way....I can't imagine ever feeling like I put on too much. I don't think I'd fill up a whole room with this one, sillage-wise.   Anyway, so glad to finally have a bottle! Just in time for late summer going into fall. Beautiful.

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Kouros by YSL

Ah yes.....the legendary Kouros. I bought a small bottle, totally untested, just based on the infamy of this fragrance. It's a love-it-or-hate-it scent, those who love it praise it to the high heavens, and those who hate it invariably mention bodily waste (human or animal, often cat) when describing it. It's pretty cheap and apparently being discontinued, so I went for it.   First try was.....alarming. At first, I smelled a sort of dated men's fragrance, something from the eighties, nothing too earth-shattering. Then, as it warmed up and dried on my skin, I smelled......the elephant house at the zoo. There's a large part of men's cologne, and up close, there is a large part of elephant dung. Interestingly, this didn't totally turn me off the scent, but I didn't think I'd be wearing it again. Very animalic if I understand the term correctly.   Well, fast forward to tonight, and I'm just sitting at home doing laundry. I wanted to try something unusual and it doesn't get much more unusual than Kouros, so I gave it a second try. Yep, the elephant house is still there. But, what's this? I am liking this? Wow, I can see how this fragrance can be addicting, and I think I actually like it! The scent hasn't changed, it's just so.....intimate? I don't know, just compelling and weird, and I am now glad I have a bottle. I think I'll have to try Body Kouros too.

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Fourreau Noir-Serge Lutens

Fourreau Noir by Serge Lutens......tonka bean, lavender, musk, almond, smoky accents   When I first put this on I could tell right away that it's an unusual, striking creation. I wasn't sure if I actually liked it but, like many other Lutens perfumes, that didn't seem to matter.....just the experience of trying it reminds me of why I got into this habit.   So, up close, Fourreau Noir is a little scary, almost harsh and chemical smelling. It reminds me of hot rubber or maybe leather. But the throw is quite beautiful and I think I mostly get the lavender, but the musk is very nice too. It's almost like what I wanted from Miel de Bois, but in the end couldn't love that one. But I do love this. It also reminds me a bit of the tonka in my beloved Chene but this is more.....what's the word....not really sinister, but more like this has a dark secret. This is more of a dressy occasion type of scent.   *sigh* Only problem is, there are already at least 3 other Lutens that I want full bottles of! Guess I have to add this to the list!

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Cartier.....my thoughts

I am more and more impressed the more I try from this house. I love Declaration, which I first heard about here on the bpal forum, when someone compared October to it. I see the similarity. Anyway, here's what I've tried. There are lots of flankers so it can be hard to keep track. Notes are from fragrantica.com.   Declaration....."Top notes are artemisia, caraway, coriander, birch, mandarin orange, bergamot, neroli and bitter orange; middle notes are orris, ginger, cinnamon, pepper, juniper, orris root, jasmine and guatemalan cardamom; base notes are leather, amber, tea, tahitian vetiver, oakmoss and cedar" Wow....just reading the notes, I didn't know all that was in this scent. I didn't love this at first. I thought it was okay, but kind of faint, and kind of unfocused. But as often happens, I was drawn to try it again, and again, and eventually I realized what a beautiful scent it really is. Woods and spices are what I smell, but very light and breezy, kind of like a wind before a storm at the end of summer. Gorgeous.   Declaration Essence....."orange blossom, sandalwood, amber, lavender, musk, tea, lime, vetiver, geranium and lemon" I have a mini of this too, and so far have only tried it once. It seems to be sort of like the concentree of Declaration, stronger spices, although the notes don't seem to match up with what I'm smelling. I'll be wearing it again but I do think I like the original Declaration better.   Eau de Cartier....."Top notes are coriander, yuzu and bergamot; middle notes are violet leaf, lavender and violet; base notes are cedar, patchouli, musk and white amber" Beautiful, but I've only tested it once. Very, very light and I think I would have to over-apply to get the right amount. Weird accord that, again, doesn't match up with what I read in the description, or rather, I can't pick out individual notes. Just crisp and smart, very nice.   Eau de Cartier Concentree......"Top notes are coriander and yuzu; middle notes are violet leaf and lavender; base notes are cedar, patchouli and white amber" Huh. Do they really have the same notes? They are similar but the concentree is definitely stronger and longer lasting. I think I'm more likely to buy a larger bottle of this one, very crisp and refreshing, but with the stronger scent comes a little bit of synthetic feeling. I think I favor this one.   Must Cartier Pour Homme Essence...."Yet another beautiful and very light fragrance, this one seems a little more traditional, more suited to the office. I like it but it's so light that I'm left feeling a little slighted. I'll wear the rest of my mini but probably not get a bigger bottle.   Yet to try but very interested in: Eau de Cartier Essence d'Orange...."op notes of Eau de Cartier Essence d`Orange bring us a sparkling, luminous cocktail of oranges and bergamot. A heart encompasses sophisticated violets, while a base is enriched with patchouli along with warm and sensual cedar" Sounds beautiful and I'm really thinking about going straight to a big bottle on this one. I love citrus and I've been really in the mood for it, with the hotter weather. Definitely need to try this one!

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Last minute Carnaval breakdown, selected possible purchases

Just like the title says. The Carnaval is leaving for a hiatus until maybe later this year. I'm getting a little panicky at the thought of these going bye-bye. These are my possible purchases, out of the whole Carnaval.....   Doc Constantine....."Sheer musk, cedar smoke, fir needle, black amber and leather" I have a partial bottle, and hardly ever wear it. I think I may have enough. I do love this blend, but maybe it will be reformulated when it's brought back, and that is more exciting to me than getting a new bottle right now.   The Parliament of Monsters....."Dust, incense, wet tobacco, and a curl of opium smoke" I had a decant once upon a time, but swapped it away because I didn't love it, and ever since then I've been just a little curious. Maybe I should give it another chance? Possibly, but I think I'll pass for now.   Faiza, the Black Mamba....."A sensual blend of twisting, exotic, serpentine oils: black amber, caraway, oakmoss, green sandalwood, bergamot, jasmine sambac, gardenia, orange pulp, vanilla, blackberry, black musk, white honey, ti leaf, and ginger" Another one that I used to have a decant of but swapped away. I remember it as being complex, lush, and fruity, almost like a deeper cousin of Men Ringing Bells? But there was some funky note that rubbed me wrong. Still, this is the kind of thing I've been in the mood for lately, so it's a possibility.   Stormclouds Over the Midway....."Thunder-charged ozone, plum-colored incense smoke, opium tar, and wormwood" I tried my decant the other day, and it's much better than I remembered, but still didn't last very long. I think I like Midnight On the Midway just a little better and I have plenty of that.   The Torture Queen...."White amber, vanilla musk, white tea, ambergris, gardenia, and chrome" I think I tried this briefly at Moonarcana's house. Still calling to me, although I haven't done anything about it as of yet! Really should just buy it and be done with it.   Sir Hugh Ockram's Winding Sheet....."Rotting linen, white sandalwood, hyssop, and dust" This has never really been on my radar and I've never even sniffed it. Looking now at the description, I think I stand a chance of really liking it. Hmmmm....   ......and that's it. I do want to get Egle as well, so it would be a 2 bottle order of Egle and something from the Carnaval. I think I have about 3 hours to decide..... : /

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Summer LE Breakdown

Rated on an "interest scale" of 1-5   Brood XIX...."Tree sap, hay, almond blossoms, moss, hemp, corn stalks, acorn, sweet amber, and rice milk" Well, I don't like nut notes, but other than that I'm fairly interested. I'd love a dry summery scent and this looks like a fancy, lighter relative of Scarecrow (which I already have a bottle of and hardly ever wear). Worth a decant, for sure. 4/5   Atlas...."Mallow, oak bark, coffee bean, hinoki wood, and khus" I haven't grown to love The Arabian Dance as of yet, and that's what this list of notes reminds me of, even though they only share the coffee. But this does look even more promising than that.....I'm all about woods, usually. Preliminary reviews are saying the mallow adds sweetness, and I'm not sure if that would be good or not for me. Bottom line.....worth a decant. 4/5   Brahmin...."Rose otto, red ginger, caraway seed, myrrh, orange peel, mandarin leaf, black peppercorn, and vanilla orchid" Without the rose this would be sort of intriguing, but the rose kind of turns me off. Could be worth a sniff but I'm not actively seeking it. 2/5   Io....."Red musk, pomegranate, cranberry, blackberry, mango, purple sage, thyme, and angelica root" Too much non-citrus fruit, not really my thing. 2/5   Pussy....."Orange blossom honey, brown sugar, saffron, tonka absolute, and tobacco leaf" I am over my aversion to honey, and I will try it in the right combination with other notes. That said, this could be sultry and sexy, or it could be too sweet and cloying. Worth a try, for sure. 3/5   Blue Morpho...."Wild orchid, pikake, honeysuckle, calla lily, agave nectar, pink geranium, violet leaf, and white amber" I like violet leaf and white amber, I think, but I don't like lily or geranium. Think I'll pass on this one. 2/5   Goliath Birdwing....."White sage, lemongrass, lemon balm, dusty beige musk, and drops of anise" Sounds beautiful, and I think I need to try this! I just hope it's not too one-dimensional with all that lemony goodness.   Mourning Cloak....."Opoponax, kumaru, cocoa butter, Mysore sandalwood, verbena, almond milk, guiac wood, beeswax, and myrrh" I do not like the smell of cocoa butter, but the other notes sound good. Not sure about this one but it's worth a try. 3/5   Purple Spotted Swallowtail....."Black plum, opium poppy, dusky amber, opoponax, castoreum accord, dried berries, tolu balsam, clove bud, and lime" This is kind of a wild card, because it could be really good, but I just can't imagine what it's like. I really have no clue but I'd like to try it. 4/5

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Non-bpal wish list

I need a place to keep track of this. These are bottles I want....   Baghari....tried this again, not sure if I need a whole bottle, but it would be good for special occasions. Bleu de Chanel....waiting for delivery! Bois de Iles EDP.....waiting for delivery! Borneo 1834....lovely patchouli Chanel Pour Monsieur (probably the Concentree).....been back and forth on this, wanted the older formula EDT, but the concentree is good too, can't decide which one I like more, or if Heritage would be just as good. Dior Homme Intense......got it! Dior Homme Sport.....I like this because it's more accessible than Dior Homme but I can smell the spirit of Dior Homme in there, underneath the "Sport" part. Would be good for work. Eau de Guerlain.......keep forgetting about this, would love a large bottle! Again, a good one for work! Egoiste.....old formulation.......got it! Encens et Lavende.....this is gorgeous, need to test it a couple more times. Fille en Aiguilles......have wanted a bottle for quite a long time. Just bite the bullet and get it. Heritage (not sure which formulation though).......okay, tried the older formula, and yes it's very good. Bottle would be nice. Jeux de Peau..........scrumptious! Want it! Either this or 5 O'clock Au Gingembre, not sure I would need both.   More to watch for on ebay: Caron's Third Man Guerlain Samsara Platinum Egoiste.....need to at least try it Serge Lutens, Santal Blanc or Santal de Mysore (either or, both maybe)   ......   7/29/11.....don't feel like editing above right now but I want to add these to my wishes/interests.....   Timbuktu Body Kouros Rochas Man Beyond Paradise Men Dior Homme backup Original Santal by Creed Joseph Statkus Eau de Parfum Querelle by Parfumerie Generale

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Planning a Lupercalia order (mini breakdown)

First of all, quoting myself:     .....looks like I got my wish with a few of these. I also noticed a fair bit of chypres or chypre-like scents. I'm excited but I think I can narrow these down to just one or two bottles, and maybe a handful of decants. There were quite a few scents that I was able to remove from the list without hesitation.   Color key: Bottle Decant Shimmery Chypre Black text means still up in the air about whether to hunt down a decant, put it on wish list for later, or let it pass by altogether   OLISBOS 2011 – polished wood, well-loved leather, and olive oil. This has possibilities, but I'm not very hopeful. It's a possible decant just to try it because I don't want to rule it out completely. Olive oil will probably make this smell strange and not for me. We'll see, maybe.   RED LANTERN 2011 – Golden amber, blonde tobacco, Sudanese black coconut, rich caramel, black currant, white opium and delphinium laced with a sensual blend of Asian spice. This sounds so sensual and appealing. I'm almost positive I've tried one of the older versions, but I don't own any and I may want a decant this time around.   TIME DOES NOT BRING RELIEF – Remembrance: Parma violet and leather accord with beeswax, Egyptian musk, orange blossom, white tea, lavender, myrrh, and copal. Kind of a half 'n half list of notes, some I like and some I don't like. It's worth a try. I think it could be too soapy or perfumey.     ++ LUPERCALIA: NOVEL IDEAS FOR SECRET AMUSEMENTS   BURNING VULVA – Vanilla-infused amber, leather, beeswax, cyclamen, oakmoss, peru balsam, orange blossom, red ginger, tonka, opoponax, myrrh, and black pepper. This is in the running for a bottle! I will watch the will-call posts for impressions.   COUPLE ENGAGED IN LOVEMAKING – Honey, lemongrass, black tea, white ginger, and grains. Well, this is a possible decant but it might get squeezed out by others with higher priority. There is something appealing in the combination of notes but honey might be a sticking point. I used to think I hated honey in perfume but now I'm not even sure any more. Sometimes it's okay.   COPULATING MICE – Bergamot, clove, hazelnut, pecan, lavender, tonka, and thyme. Perfectly cute scent, would be a good decant choice. I don't like nuts in my perfume but I want to try this. And who knows, it could surprise me.   DANCING KOI – Brown musk, leather accord, toasted sandalwood, clove, labdanum, and champaca. Brown musk worries me but I want a penis scent, and this looks like the one most likely to work for me. Toasted sandalwood in combination with brown musk might be too fuzzy and.....brown. I know I have to try this, for sure, and it might be a bottle purchase.   FESTIVAL MASK – Rubbed sage, ti leaf, osmanthus, immortelle, patchouli, amber, and mandarin. Could be nice, interesting notes, worth a try. Decant but not bottle (unless it surprises me, of course, but that goes for all of these).   HARIGATA II – Coconut, white amber, hazelnut, and anise. See above note about me wanting shimmery white scents. Hello, here is one! Could be odd, but it's worth a try.   LOOSENING OF THE OBI – Rice wine, white sandalwood, vanilla bean, and white musk. Again with the shimmery/white scents for spring. I want to try it!   SPRINGTIME PLAYFULNESS – Green and brown musks, coconut husk, wisteria, lemongrass, hydrangea, cranberry, woody sandalwood, and ripe squash. Hmmmm...another penis possibility (I love trying the penis scents). Can't imagine what this will smell like, so obviously I need to try it, right? That artwork is simply too much. I may have to get it for the label alone. That is high quality comedy.   TEA – Darjeeling tea, lemon verbena, star anise, and honeycomb. Hmmm....sounds like a nice, fresh spring scent. Not my usual thing (and there's that honeycomb.....), but looks to be worth a try.   YOUNG PINE SAPLINGS – Cream, clove, ginger, and honey. Have to really think about this one! I love spicey scents and this looks like a good one. I'm not afraid of the cream as much as the honey, but combined with spices that honey might be tamed. Definitely need to try this one.     ++ LUPERCALIA: ODE TO APHRODITE   APATOUROS – Deceptive One – Black fig, green tea, opoponax, ciste absolute, myrrh, carnation, nutmeg, and Brazilian vetiver. I'm guessing this will have a citrus vibe, grounded by spices and vetiver. It's worth a try but might be too much like some other scents I have. I might have to compare this to some of last year's Lupers that did not work, so I can compare notes and decide if I want to even try it.   APHROGENÊS – Foam Born – Orris root, iris, white honey, white sandalwood, coconut, and cherry blossom. Again with the white and shimmery. I have discovered that I like white sandalwood (I used to think I didn't like it). Yup, probably have to try this one. KYTHERIAN – She Who Conceals Love-Affaris – Black narcissus, purple orchid, neroli, white sandalwood, ambergris, plum musk, jonquil, thyme, oakmoss, and grapefruit. I'm curious bacause this sounds like a floral chypre. It looks interesting.   NIKÊPHOROS – Bringer of Victory – Black currant, patchouli, blood orange, oakmoss, galbanum, benzoin, and white mint. Another chypre? Want to try.     ++ LUPERCALIA: VENUSTAS   MALE NUDE, ARMS UPSTRETCHED – Dark musk, linen, and red chypre. Yes please! My number one choice for immediate bottle purchase, unsniffed. Wasn't there a white chypre in one of the Yule scents? I wish the lab would give us a whole series of chypres of different hues. I'd have to try all of them! MANILUS HURLED FROM THE ROCK – Frankincense, leather accord, sandalwood, Himalayan cedar, nutmeg, and violet leaf. I've been flip-flopping on wanting to try this, but I think I'm going to have to try a decant. I almost want to pass it up but it has just enough potential.   THE RING – Antiqued amber, frankincense, patchouli, hay, oakmoss, skin musk, and white mint. Hmm, another chypre-like scent?? Sounds pretty interesting, and I think I'll definitely have to try this.   WRESTLERS – Vetiver, guiac wood, peru of balsam, two musks, labdanum, saffron, and rum accord. Another must try, but it may not work. This is another scent that I'm having trouble imagining what it will smell like. I'd like to find out!

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New York, Parfums de Nicolai

Well, this was a happy discovery for me. Warm, sweet and woody citrus/ambery scent, light in throw, some kind of vanilla sweetness going on, kind of a simple scent, excellent for work. And reasonably priced! Hallelujah! I bought a bottle and this could be my new signature work scent.

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Knize Ten

Acceptable powdery leather scent. BPAL has better. I'll keep the sample unless I think of someone who would like it who I can give it to.

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Guerlain, Eau de Guerlain

I may have already reviewed this. Citrus, slightly minty, faint. It's nice but I like New York better, and I just got a bottle of that. So I'll use up my sample and be done with it.

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Ajmal, Torque

Smells like something from the 80's. A little spicy, woody. Smells good, I can use up my sample and probably forget about it, unless it really grows on me. Not likely....I have a dozen or so other scents that are like this and better.

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Baldessarini, Hugo Boss

Fruity wood, says the description, and that's what I smell. Interesting scent, reminds me of those fruity woody Serge Lutens scents. I like it but I don't think I'd wear it that often. I'll keep the sample unless I think of someone who would like it more.

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Non-bpal fragrances

Seriously, I have way too many samples of non-bpal perfumes and colognes, that I need to test and somehow keep track of what I've tried, what I liked, and what I haven't liked. I've been doing this to a certain extent here on my blog, and I'm going to continue to do it. So far not many of them have "wowed" me to wanting a whole big bottle. I might want to get more Chanel Pour Monsieur, or maybe Parfums de Nicolai's New York.

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Wolf Moon '11

Well, indecisive as usual....   Wolf Moon '11....."Winter air, Terebinth pine, black spruce, long-dead maple leaves, juniper berry, dusty orris, deep amber, white sandalwood, brown musk, blue cedar, ambrette seed, benzoin, and tonka". I like Wolf Moon '04, and I love Wolf Moon '07, so I pretty much have to get this! It's possible I won't like it as much, or that the brown musk or something else will ruin it for me, but I just have to find out.   Winter Solstice Lunar Eclipse...."A voluptuous and brittle blend of lunar oils and white chypre shimmering with darkly glowing red musk, golden amber, black currant, patchouli, rose peppercorn, blackberry, ylang ylang, and daemonorops astride Yuletide’s holly berry, white pine, winter rose, and myrrh". Well, this is quite a mixture of notes, which sound kind of hit and miss for me, and I'm especially concerned about ylang ylang and winter rose. Really have to think about this one. I like the idea of white chypre. I just don't know!   WILF....."Warm fur coupled with red and black musk, vanilla bean, patchouli, champaca flower, juniper berry, chocolate peppermint, frangipani, browned sandalwood, ferntop ash resin, and massoia bark". I typically don't like "fur" scents, or most things with chocolate, or "browned" anything, especially after the failure the was Howl In The Darkness when it touched my skin. But.....but.....it's forum-only! Inspired by Lycanthrope! Will I be able to resist? I don't know!   So that's one pretty definite 'Yes', and two 'I don't know's. Looks like I have some thinking to do!

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Serge Lutens, Five O'Clock Au Gingembre

List of notes: "Bergamot, candied ginger, honey, patchouli, pepper, and dark cocoa"   Well, this is quite a warm, cozy scent, very yummy, as could be expected just from reading the notes. But....it's not really a straight-up foody blend, and it's not quite as sweet as you might expect either. It's spicy but it's also very smooth and wearable, on the male side of unisex in my opinion, and just completely blended, with no notes standing out very much except maybe the ginger. I can't smell dark cocoa but I can tell it's there supporting. Overall I really like this and I'd love a larger bottle if it weren't so dang expensive. As it is, I'll keep wearing my little sample and maybe some day get a larger amount.   Edit: I got busy here at work, so I didn't really finish what I was writing. This scent has a small component of the whole that adds some kind of strange salty or doughy part of the scent. It's just an interesting little twist that kind of reaches out from the scent from time to time.

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Yule Bottle Wish-List

I just have to narrow these down a little. Of course this will probably change when I get my decants. But for now, here's what I'm speculating......   The Nutcracker Midnight Mass The Phoenix In Autumn The Arabian Dance The Russian Dance   BPTP Frankincense & Myrrh bath oil Victorian Virgin With Cherubs bath oil Vespers atmo spray   For gifts: Peacock Queen soap Snow White soap   So, all in all, not too bad or scary. 5 bottles, 2 bath oils, 1 atmo spray, and maybe 2 soaps. Of course, I may be adding more to that list after trying decants and reading reviews. We shall see.

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Speculation

My unofficial speculation for the anniversary update.....   I still think the periodic table scents might be the Phoenix scents. I know someone said those were for the upcoming local alchemist section, but I still have this nagging hunch. I counted and it seems there were 7 periodic prototypes at the will-calls, which is close to the number of Phoenix scents we are expecting. And it just seems to fit the themes from the past Phoenixes. Or, it seems like a natural progression.   As for resurrected scents, I'm going to make some guesses. Someone recently posted that they got frimps of Mantis and Neo-Tokyo in their order, which I thought was unusual since those were both discontinued a few years ago. So I'm guessing we might see one or both of those resurrected. As for LE, I'm just going to make some wild guesses: Underpants, Pinched, or Glowing Vulva. Those are because Beth seems to like to bring back popular and longed-for scents in the past (Midway, Snake Charmer, Hod).   It also crossed my mind that we could see Pumpkin King or Noir. Now I know that the recipe for Pumpkin King was lost, but I'm a firm believer that anything is possible and I would love to see Pumpkin King available some day. Same deal with Noir. That is another scent that lots of people would love to see come back.   I can hardly wait to find out!

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Vacation time coming up

I have over a week off work coming up soon. That makes me happy but I also want to make the most of it! I'd like to maybe make a list of things to do. Just fun things, hopefully cheap or free things, too.   I can go to the zoo, of course, but I can do that any time. I live right next to the zoo and I have a yearly pass so it's always free, and I just walk there. This is one thing I'll definitely be doing.   I can go to Newport On The Levee, which has lots of things to do. AMC Movie theater, for one thing, which isn't free or cheap, but is a nice splurge. Also the Newport Aquarium is there. I have a yearly pass for that too, so that is a free option. What would be best is if I could convince someone to go with me instead of going by myself for once!   I really should start walking every day, not just for exercise, but for my mental well-being also. There are more benefits to this, besides just burning calories, but I need that, too.   Thanksgiving falls at the end of the week so I want to find a good recipe, something to make and bring to my mom's. I have a couple ideas but I want to atually try it out first, earlier in the week, so I know for sure I'm making something good. I have so many cookbooks and don't use them enough! I really need to go grocery shopping. My refrigerator and cupboard are bare!   So.....that's all I got right now. I need more things to do!   Thrift shopping Thrift donating Sell some stuff on ebay? Get my camera working again Visit Kevin and Charlie in Columbus....not free but could be cheap Visit Sally Get together with Alan Get together with Luke Visit David Pack Cross-stitch Go to Ikea (but don't spend a whole lot of money?) Organize closets Go out with Jen   Okay.....that's enough for a start. I'll have homework and laundry to do but I was mainly trying to list fun stuff. I mean, it is a vacation, and I can't really go anywhere (mainly because of school and lack of spending money), but I want it to be worth it. And I've had this thing lately where I want to get rid of a lot of this material stuff I've accumulated. I feel like it's encumbering me, if that's the right use of that word. I feel a bit stifled, spiritually. I need room to breathe. I have a fantasy of getting rid of everything and roaming the country. Wouldn't that be awesome? I might do it if I had unlimited funds for travelling and accomodations. I guess I could get really creative and find ways to do it anyway. Something to think about.

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