J’adore – A Slice of Delight

I first introduced you to A Slice of Delight back in when I interviewed the owner, Hilary, for a French Friday feature and giveaway. Hilary is a francophile who has spent time in France, lives in Berkeley where her kids attend the French school, and is the creative mind behind her own soap business.

She disappeared for a year, all for a good reason. She spent that time volunteering with her entire family in Senegal! Now she's back and sharing a bit of her experience as well as back making her all-natural local soaps which have been a big hit around here!

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(1) You took a little break since we last saw you, what have you been up to, and what motivated you to re-launch A Slice of Delight?

Yes, quite a break. A year ago my family and I created the opportunity to leave Berkeley and live abroad in a French-speaking country for a year. Just so happened while at first, I thought it would be France the compass re-directed us to Senegal, Africa. We took the opportunity to really integrate with the Senegalese culture, the food, the music, the people, and everyday living in Dakar – the capital. And to work on our own French fluency.

Our children continued with their French schooling and my husband and I also had 2 volunteer projects we focused on – me – teaching English to a young Senegalese woman and my husband – managing the refurbishment of 200 small laptops and the network in a small town 4 hours outside of Dakar. We had an incredible life and mind-opening experience. Now we are back on US soil in transition.

While in Senegal I did not continue the business – used my time to write a blog about our year. I'm really not a blogger but gave it my best shot. [Here are a few posts: Je m'appelle FatouCounting SheepMoussa and Rhissa]

The time now to ‘retire' from blogging and get excited about those soapy creative juices that went dormant for a year. It has helped to know customers and fans have been asking when I was starting up again. That's always a great motivator!

(2) During your year in Senegal you must have spoken French, did it improve your fluency level?

Yes, we spoke A LOT. At first, it was hard to understand the French accent as it is a bit different. But after a month I settled into the accent. My fluency did improve. Not so much with all the various tenses, the French language has as I still got stuck with the basic conjugation for past, present, and future -but enough to communicate. Yet my vocabulary skyrocketed and my confidence to carry a conversation improved immensely. One of the goals we had for going.

(3) Were there other French influences on the country?

The country has a long history and part of that is having been colonized by the French – so the education, when kids are able to get educated is in French. Patisseries and restaurants exist with French influence. Signs are in French, books in French, and movies in French – yet there is still a strong connection between their ethnic African roots and tribal languages and the Muslim religion practiced by 95% of the population.

(4) How did your experiences during your trip to Africa influence your soaps?

Unfortunately at the moment – I've been focusing on soaps that I have the known designs for to quickly build up my inventory and fill up my online Etsy shop as well as be ready for local craft fairs. BUT – I'm always listening to some incredible Senegalese and African music while I craft my soaps that I became exposed to while I was there. I hope soon enough I can let my brain rest and start thinking of some kind of design with the right fragrance that makes me think of Senegal and Africa.

Thanks Hilary, I can't wait to see how your adventures will impact your designs!


  1. I placed my first order earlier this week. Excited to try all 4 soaps I purchased. Lavender, Salt bars, and the Candy confetti.

  2. I love Hilary’s soap! Fav so far is Candy Corn πŸ™‚

  3. michele malone says:

    the spiced cranberry salt bar looks wonderful!

  4. Margot S. says:

    The Halloween Blackberry probably smells divine!

  5. I think my favorite would be the spiced pumpkin pie, just because it sounds so yummy and I love how it looks, but a VERY close second, being partial to citrus scents, would be the lemon verbena, and then closely followed by the orange coconut citrus.

  6. Angel Naman says:

    It’s Vanilla Lavender for me because I love the scent.

  7. Hilary Goldman says:

    @Andi – thank you again for the opportunity to share my story through your blog and fans. @Jen – it is true – we were very fortunate in that one – my husband and I were on the same page about this in general. And it certainly was affirming when his company said – you can take this sabbatical (no pay) but return with a job. That was probably the biggest risk – asking for the time !! But actually hearing them say ‘yeah – go’. Of course I”m happy to cheer you both on to consider this option down the road and am *always* available to help one understand all the logistics to manage before departing – but *it can be done!* Good Luck @Jen on the giveaway.

  8. I love your interviews, Andi. And these soaps look delicious. What a privilege to leave it all behind for a year and have an adventure. Just wonderful. I wish could do this with my kids. I really do…chuck it all and just have a different kind of life. Some days, I think I’m getting close to this…

    Also, want to say, your new design is really growing on me. It has been a pleasant transition – not jolting or shocking like some of them can be. Congrats, again! It’s so well done. I esp. like the red banner “Continue reading…” Easy to see. That’s all for now! jen

    1. @Jen, leaving it all behind for a year (or more) shows such a sense of aventure, you have to be a big risk taker, and I don’t think I am there yet! I am not completely there yet on the blog, want to tweak some things, but I am sure I will get there. Do you think the font is too big?

  9. sandyandcosmo says:

    I would love to try the Apple Orchard Salt Bar Soap with all the different fragrances!

  10. Soap – Vanilla Lavender – Handmade Natural Glycerin Soap

  11. I like the holiday present sugar cookie soap!

  12. The holiday soaps are adorable!

  13. The candy corn soap is so cute.

  14. I love all the Christmas designs! I especially like the Christmas present in the candy apple scent. Sounds wonderful! I wish I could smell it through the internet. πŸ™‚

  15. Sie Cajilig says:

    I would like the Winter Holiday Soap – All Natural Glycerin – Handmade Soap please! =D

  16. rachel bedrock says:

    candy cane holiday christmas soap

  17. Maureen Butcher says:

    I have to say I have a passion for lavender. I really like the look of the vanilla lavender and then too the lovely lavender glycerin too!

  18. teresa koedyker says:

    confetti soap

  19. I like Spiced Pumpkin Pie.


  20. the lime coconut citrus soap looks sooooo good, that’s probably my favorite!

  21. phioniray says:

    This is such a wonderful interview! <3
    I really like Coffee Soap.

  22. Jessica P. says:

    I like the Spiced Pumpkin Pie, but they all look so fun!

  23. ruth ramos says:

    i like the winter holiday, thank you

  24. I like the China rain salt bar!

  25. shahneela says:

    i like The Gingerbread Man Soap – All Natural – Fall Holiday Soap Favors

  26. Love anything pumpklin, so Soap – Spiced Pumpkin Pie – Halloween Fall and Thanksgiving

  27. You have some really neat soap designs, I will favorite your page for future gift references!

  28. I love handmade soap! I love the Lemon Verbena!

  29. april yedinak says:

    I love all the soaps! They are so pretty, but I think my favorite would be the Coffee Soap.

  30. Szappanbubi says:

    My faves are the delicious Salt Bar Soap – Spiced Cranberry & Land of Sweets Confetti Soap for Kids!

  31. amandasue says:

    I love coconut, so the orange coconut sounds rather interesting and different!

  32. I like the Coffee Soap

  33. All your soaps are soooo enticing. I love the holiday soaps the most. So cute!

  34. Coffee soap

  35. The Lemon coconut citrus sounds devine!

  36. The candy corn soap is so cute!

  37. the spiced pumpkin looks like a winner

  38. Vanilla lavender

  39. Would love to try the “Pink Grapefruit Coconut Citrus Soap with Olive Oil and Shea Butter” – super cute looking and scent sounds EPIC!

  40. Sugar cookie soap for sure! Yum!

  41. Eloquence says:

    The vanilla lavender soap sounds wonderful!

  42. The lemon sugar candy sounds amazing.. and they are adorable. I bet they would make great gifts or holiday hostess presents!

  43. The gingerbread man soap is adorable!

  44. karlagibbs says:

    yes, lemon coconut citrus sounds wonderful.

  45. I LOVE your soaps. I have the Lime Coconut one now and really love it’s subtle flavors

  46. Kathy Davis says:

    My favorite soap: Holiday Present Sugar Cookie Soap

  47. Lemon Coconut Citrus Soap with Olive Oil and Shea Butter

  48. jorie rogers says:

    Land of Sweets Confetti Soap! How does it get any funner then that?

  49. the spiced pumpkin pie sounds wonderful! x

  50. Lemon Sugar Candy Holiday Soap – Stocking Stuffer Soap for Kids

  51. Becky VanGinkel says:

    I love the Candy Corn Soap and the Gingerbread Man Soap!! Very cute:)

    [email protected]

  52. I like the Holiday Present Sugar Cookie Soap

  53. THanks!

  54. annette solis says:

    Love the Lemon Coconut Citrus Soap !

  55. Stephanie says:

    I am glad to find this Etsy shop! I always have the hardest time thinking of stocking stuffers for my husband, but I think that the Spellbound Woods for men would be perfect!

  56. I would have to say my favorite would be Apple Orchard Salt Bar Soap…I can only imagine how glorious it must smell! You have some fantastic stuff! πŸ™‚

  57. Candy Corn Glycerin Soap

  58. I like the Christmas Spearmint Soap.

  59. i love the Orange Coconut Citrus Glycerin Soap with Olive Oil and Shea Butter

  60. Brenda Witherspoon-Bedard says:

    Ginger Orange All Natural Glycerin Soap with Olive Oil

  61. Diana Hatch says:

    I like the candy corn soap

  62. Jennifer Young says:

    I love the Land of Sweets Confetti Soap for Kids – Jelly Bean, Lemon Drop and Cotton Candy scented

  63. The Spiced Pumpkin Pie sounds lovely

  64. Jennifer Clay says:

    China Rain Salt Bar Soap with Olive Oil and Shea Butter

  65. Soap – China Rain Salt Bar Soap with Olive Oil and Shea Butter

  66. We had Senagalese friends, and boy do I love that dish where you have a huge shared platter of rice and there’s a sweet-ish sort of chicken with raisins maybe? And you eat with your hands. yum!

  67. vanilla lavendar or lemon verbena

  68. id love Soap – Vanilla Lavender – Handmade Natural Glycerin Soap

  69. I like Lovely Lavender Glycerin Soap with Essential Oil.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

  70. Lovely Lavender Glycerin Soap with Essential Oil

  71. I like the Vanilla Lavender – Handmade Natural Glycerin Soap

  72. I like the Spiced Cranberry.

  73. Mary Dailey says:

    I would love to try the Ancient Sedona soap. They all look wonderful!

  74. Callee S. says:

    Any of the Christmas soaps look AMAZING!!! The spiced cranberry also sounds divine!

  75. kemberley crosswhite says:

    what a great giveaway!!!! my favorite is….. the confetti!!!

  76. savannah miller says:

    The round orange citrus looks like it smells amazing1

  77. My favorite is Holiday Present Sugar Cookie Soap. There were several more I liked but this was the one I liked the most.

  78. Christina Anne says:

    Soap – Vanilla Lavender – Handmade Natural Glycerin Soap is my favorite

  79. I love them all, especially the Christmas Present – Handcrafted Glycerin Soap – Peppermint!
    Thanks for the giveaway

  80. I love the Winter Holiday Soap. There’s so many beautiful sopas to choose from. Thank you for the wonderful giveaway! πŸ™‚

  81. I like land of sweets confetti soap

  82. Noelle Cagle says:

    Orange coconut citrus sounds refreshing right about now…

  83. Elizabeth Bailey says:

    wow those soaps are beautiful

  84. The soaps are so pretty and they come in so many scents! I love the pumpkin spice πŸ™‚

  85. I am also a soapmaker. Nothing like creating a new scent or soap from an experience or movie or inspiration of a person

  86. Cassandra Garffie says:

    I thought that was delicious jello, not soap.

  87. Yen Fasano says:

    At first glance, it looked like Jello dessert! That’s so awesome that it’s soap! I know our family would have loads of fun washing our hands with it!

  88. Darlene Webb says:

    Ive never seen soap so colorful. I thought it was a dessert at first haha. I must have some!!

  89. Your etsy shop is lovely! The soap almost looks tasty.

  90. I like the modern art quality of the christmas tree soap.

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