Protecting your Idenity with real leather, Testing your water, Aging Gracefully, and Hiking/Snowshoeing

It's about that time...winter is just weeks away. Traditionally, we'd already have snow on the ground. This year has boasted of 70 degree weather in November. Unheard of!

With winter, comes a lot of fun recreational opportunities, preparation needs, and of course the Christmas holiday.

This year, consider giving gifts that are a little "old school" but also super functional. A leather wallet is one of those things that never really goes out of style.

And now they are built thinner, stronger, and with RFID protection. Great holiday gift idea!

Also a great way to teach your children about safety, managing their money, and how to start earning it. My son will definitely be getting one of these for Christmas this year!

I won't be getting any gifts, since I got the best thing I could ask for a few weeks ago - 40 acres of my own to plant and explore. Pretty awesome. But it has kept us busy.

We are busy working out the details for which plants can be planted in the soil, what our soil quality is, and what type of water we are working with. That's where a tool like this Digital pH Meter really helps out!! I have all the paper litmus strips and they are useful - but this is so much easier and I can use it to double check  my previous results.

This set comes with batteries and buffer solutions (more useful than you'd think!!)

One of the odd things about buying land in a rural area is the dirt roads. And lack of roads in general. I grew up on a dirt road so I couldn't wait to learn how to rollerblade or go for long bike rides. But my kids have grown up in the city and are now going to learn what it's like to live where biking isn't all that useful.

But snowshoes are! And your own two feet! Depending on your elevation and strength, Walking poles might really make or break your hike! I have a friend who even uses them while shopping - like a cane - but less hassle (and she says less embarrassing.)

These poles contract down into a nice storable size. Then they easily twist out to the length you need. I've given them a stroll through our steep forests and they worked great. I'm going to let my children use them this winter as they get used to snow shoeing for the first time.

By now, you've gotten the gist that I like to be outdoors. And because of that....I have aged pretty poorly. That and the fact that I'm old now. But in the past, I have had luck with retinol creams. I never liked the price tags, but I did like the results. So I decided to give retinol another shot by trying the Vinalta Retinol serum.

It contains jojoba oil and aloe - so it is very skin soothing. I did not notice the usual "sting" that I would get when I used retinol in the past. I did feel a little more glow-y the next morning after I used it for the first time. But then I started to break out. Quite a bit actually. It's been a few years since I have really used a retinol product but my fuzzy memory does recall having to go through a period where all that was waiting underneath had to be brought to the surface before I saw a big benefit in my skin quality.

I'm hoping it doesn't last very long and I can graduate to the "nice skin" zone soon. The serum is pleasant to use and has a very unique bottle design. The top is a dropper but it's sort of like a pump dropper. Very interesting indeed.

We are busy preparing for winter by planting trees and will have planted over 70 trees by the end of the weekend. We will plant another 50 plus in the spring. Then I'll start planting shrubs and perennial garden friends. It's going to be a busy time and I will do my best to update.

*This blog does contain affiliate links that help support the writer at no cost to the reader. I did receive products for review purposes. No compensation was received and all opinions expressed are my own.


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