Friday, October 16, 2009

QC Supply catalogue

Now that Fall has arrived so, too, has one of my favorite mail order catalogues, QC Supply (Quality Products for Working Men and Women, Issue 628, Fall 2009).

As I noted in an earlier post, I am very happy with their Women's 14" Chore Boot (which I am wearing today) -- available with either a plain or a steel toe ($19.59 / $21.89). They are also made in the USA, which I feel is a definite plus. Exceptionally comfortable, I find, and not too heavy on my feet. They also have good I am less fearful when walking on ice. In the spirit of full disclosure I will state they also sent me a complimentary pair of their PVC String Dot Knit Gloves, which they say are "ideal for cold storage warehouse work." Many years since I last worked in a warehouse, and then it was the Saks Fifth Avenue warehouse on Tuckahoe Road in Yonkers, New York.....ask me about when I was locked in the cage doing jewellery returns.....too funny.....

I must admit that one of the reasons I enjoy this particular catalogue is that the models (both male and female) look like real people and not (especially in the case of the males) as if they spend more time primping than I do!! These men look as if they could actually do farm work (rather than elegantly lean against some ancient stone wall, arranged to fit some editrix's idea of a gentleman farmer clad in heather-toned country tweeds). I like that the men's sweatpants and sweatshirts (in grey) are "Generously Sized for Extra Comfort." What man doesn't like to be comfortable?? And....a comfortable man is often a happy man.

No jeans, to speak of, for women (not that I often wear them--I tend to stick to skirts and dresses--but they are good for sloppy weather or for around the house), but a very nice selection, in a variety of cuts and shades, for the men. The Ladies Thermal Comfortwear (sorry, Victoria's Secret) look like a great value -- tops and bottoms $8.39 each. A seven-pack of men's y-fronts is $10.55. (I still recall how I turned all of DH's blue after ill-advisedly throwing some new-ish socks into the wash--well, better blue than pink, as I told him at the time, but at least I never repeated that particular laundry mistake!) Socks from Carhartt, Fruit of the Loom, and Wigwam--good quality at fair prices. Cheap socks are the bane of my life--as I noted in a recent post.

Shampoo. They have an "Apple Fragrance" shampoo, 32 ounces for $5.04. I'm going to have to figure out what that breaks down to, per ounce, as compared to DH's pricier favorite (Prell). The catalogue has far too many sections to give them all justice here: safety, office, lighting, ventilation, livestock, pharmaceuticals (I wonder is there any real difference between bovine antibiotics and those used for humans??), pet supplies, heating, water handling, greenhouse, building, and last, but certainly not least, pest control (a subject near and dear to my heart).

I find it fascinating to look at all the different implements used on livestock. The "Band Elastrator" is a case in point. It can be used for the "easy castration" of calves and lambs, with no loss of blood or open wounds, and may also be used for docking, prolapse, and for dehorning. I doubt, somehow, that any of the male models I see in the New York Times Style magazine could wield such an implement (which might, after all, roughen their manicured hands) but the men in this catalogue look as if they are quite capable of tackling this or any number of agricultural chores.

In their pest control section they have a "Tin Cat" -- a trap that will hold up to thirty-- yes -- THIRTY-- mice. Of course, they also have industrial-sized tubs of rodent bait in block form.

Ah, for a man who would kill for me (spiders, mice, all manner of pests), clad in Carhartt jeans--now, there's a male ideal!!!

QC Supply

Telephone: 1-800-433-6340
Fax: 1-402-352-8825

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Watkins skin and body care products

Watkins carries several lines of natural products, including spices and extracts, body care products, home remedies, and plant-based cleaners.

I am most familiar with their line of personal care products: hand and body lotions, body creams, daily cleansing cream, gentle pore scrub, day cream, night cream, hand and cuticle salves, beeswax lip balms, lip tints, foot creams and scrubs, body oils, and bath soaks. Products are available in different fragrances: aloe and green tea, lavender, lemon cream, mango, and vanilla.

If you don't understand (or cannot pronounce) the chemicals present in your cosmetics and self-care products you would probably be better off using natural products such as the ones formulated by Watkins.

While I've enjoyed using most of their skin and body care products, one of my favorites is their hand and cuticle salve in the lavender scent. It comes in a generously sized 2.1 ounce container and has a beeswax base. When your hands are in and out of water all day--and especially if you are doing heavier housework--your nails, cuticles, and hands may suffer. I use this product every night before going to bed. Shortly after I started using it I noticed a marked change in the health and appearance of my hands and nails. Just a few moments, at night, helped to undo the damage done throughout the course of the day. In these days, when one is so often disappointed in products that promise much more than they deliver, it is indeed refreshing to come across a line of self-care products such as those created by Watkins.

At $7.49 the cuticle cream is also good value for money. I'm sure there must be any number of pricier brands, with flashier and more expensive packaging, that don't do the job nearly as well.

I've been so happy, in fact, with their line of creams, cuticle salves, and other products that I have, on occasion, made "gift baskets" for birthday presents, grouping together several products of a particular scent. I was sorely disappointed when I realized my local Duane Reade was discontinuing this line of products--it's not often you find products free of sodium lauryl sulfate, parabens, chemical sunscreens, pthalates, dyes, and propylene glycol.

However, after Googling them, I was pleased to find that they have both an online presence and a printed catalogue (which introduced me to their other product lines).

Watkins Incorporated
P.O. Box 5570
Winona, MN 55987-0570


Sunday, August 09, 2009

Back to School

Well, it is already August, and time to start thinking about "back to school" purchases. I've been looking for a "Clone Wars" lunchbox/thermos and think I may have found just what I am looking for--for quite a reasonable price--at $7.99 (not including shipping and handling, of course).

I still have to tackle reviewing the boy's wardrobes and seeing what each of them will need. In any case (as always) I'll be on the lookout for bargains!!

One source of frustration for me has been the holes torn in the knees of (practically new) jeans. What to do with these?? Patch them? Let them disintigrate further?? Cut them down into shorts? What I suppose I really need to do is find jeans with reinforced knees.

My adventures in stain removal continue.....the last being black marker "drawn onto" a pair of khaki pants. No, I didn't get the stain out, but I gave it my best try.....plenty of hot water, OxyClean, Tide, and, as a last resort, bleach. No dice. You can still see the marks.....

It's been a busy summer so far. Visitors, doctor appointments, the fundraiser at the Hawthorne Country Day School, a christening......

I'm looking forward to the fall, though, and to cooler weather and my birthday in October, and (dare I say it) our two older boys returning to school (the structure is good for them) and to planning for our Thanksgiving and Christmas celebrations.

I'm hoping to find replacement cushions for the sofa, maybe a new slipcover as well, to brighten up the livingroom.

Well....I'll close for now.....

Tuesday, June 09, 2009


I don't know why it is, but I never seem to have a sufficient quantity of socks on hand. It matters little how many packages of socks I purchase....10 packs, 12 packs......they seem to magically disperse into some alternate universe populated by socks gone AWOL. Maybe they keep company with lost keys and single gloves.....I don't know.

However, I do know that I find it enormously irritating not to be able to find the socks I want to find when they are needed. Another irritation is socks that wear out too quickly. Socks, after all, are not finely spun stockings.....they should last a decent amount of time and service the foot well before being relegated to the rag bag for cleaning cloths.

This being said, I have to say that I have found that Hanes socks are better quality -- and thus better value -- than many of the "economy" socks one might find, let's say, in an establishment such as National Wholesale Liquidators. In this case, yes, you get what you pay for. Purchase cheap socks and you will, no doubt, be unhappy with their performance.

I have found that the Hanes socks weather the washing machine much more tolerably than cheaper bargain socks. You may pay a little more, initially, but, if I may reiterate....that, at least in this case, you get what you pay for.

So, the next time you find yourself in need of socks, check out "One Hanes Place" at:

They also -- aside from socks -- carry a wide variety of bras, panties, activewear, and "shapewear" (what were once called girdles!!!). Thankfully, the modern "girdle" is far more comfortable than their rubbery antecedents......but that is a subject for another post!!