Shaving Soap & A Wee Discourse on Ingredients

It turns out shaving is a thing! I didn’t know! My husband has a beard, and is generally unaware of “things.” His exposure to pop culture is mostly lurid headlines in the checkout at the grocery store. But people have been talking about shaving soaps, and not just for girly…


Lemon Eucalyptus

When I look out my office window, this is what I see almost every time: I know, it’s fuzzy. But do you see the deer? Wearing jewelry? These are a few of the 200 or so deer in my neighborhood. Unlike the deer where I used to live (out in the…


Bloom in Ithaca

Today, 5-8. Music, crafts, snacks, maybe wine… I’ll be there!


Wow, I’m exhausted!

I’m still recovering from surgery. And yes, it has been a month, but believe me, a total hip replacement takes time. Even when you’re a few decades younger than the average hip replacement recipient. But I can’t stand being idle, so now that my workshop is put together (mostly–there is…


Renovation Complete!

Back when I started Avital’s Apiaries, I felt very lucky to have the unused kitchen in our basement. It was part of a “mother-in-law” apartment that we don’t rent out. After all, dealing with hot oils, lye, expensive (and potentially irritating) essential oils in the same kitchen where you cook…


All About… Malka: Dead Sea Salt & Rose Clay Soap

The Dead Sea, also called the Salt Sea, may be one of the world’s first spas. For millennia, royalty from Egypt, Israel, Greece, and Rome enjoyed and extolled the healing virtues of this unique natural spa. A soak in the Dead Sea is said to help rheumatic conditions and osteoarthritis, common…


Recovery and Renovation

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I’m recovering from hip surgery–and thanks, it’s going pretty well! I had hoped to have it earlier in winter, after the holiday rush, but the surgeon’s schedule was not mine, so… But it all worked out, because there was one more schedule…


All About… After the Garden

One reason to have a business blog is to let you know the whys and hows of what I make. So in a series of posts, I’m going to talk about my soaps and balms, and let you get up close and personal with them. Seems appropriate, right? After all,…


“Natural” Soap

Let’s talk soap. And the word “natural.” A lot of handcrafted soap is called “natural,” or “all natural.” I hesitate to use that word to describe my soaps, because while they are made by hand, from scratch, not everything in them comes straight from nature, and that is true of…



Being the CEO of Avital’s Apiaries (that’s Chief Everything Officer) means that if I’m not working, nothing is happening (well, the bees are working, though probably not doing much in this weather). And for now, that is the case, though not by choice. A week and a half ago, I had my…