Friday, November 27, 2015

Product Review: Copper Wire Light Set from Kohree

Copper Wire Light, Kohree Starry String Light, Party String Light, Starry Night Light, D├ęcor Rope Light For Seasonal Decorative Christmas Holiday, Wedding, Party With Power Adapter (33Ft 100 LEDs)

Notes: I received a complimentary product in exchange for this honest review.
Product Details: 
*High quality & Moldable shape-This flexible copper wire with insulated lacquer, lightweight, easy installation, energy saving, environmental friendly, and sturdy. It is thin and flexible and coiled with paper tub so it will never make a mess. It can be easily bent, and shaped around plants, signs, furniture and almost everything else.
UL Listed Power adapter-Included UL power adapter: output DC 3.0V, 600mA. Note: The lights themselves are waterproof IP45 so they can be exposed to the elements. The power adapter is not waterproof and should be used with weatherproof receptacle cover when used outdoors.
*Brightness-These Best 100 pcs SMD 0603 LEDs, tiny Micro mini miniature LED Battery Operated String Lights Lamp are perfect for use as a lighting addition to any decorative project. Very thin wire hosts 100 very small LED bulbs that are about size of the rise grain and are intensely bright. With steady 360 degree viewing angle they illuminate in every direction.
*Perfect for any occasion-This LED Starry String lights is of Ultra Bright White Warm Color Micro LEDs that creates a light fairy twinkle effect. It's the perfect decoration option for bedrooms, living rooms, gardens, deck, patios, pathways, restaurants, hotels, cafes as well as wedding, Christmas trees, birthday parties etc, all kinds of occasions. It will create enough romance for you, since it is so soft and warm. You will love the warm, calm and relax atmosphere that brings you.
*Satisfactory guarantee-Kohree stands behind all of its products 100%. These lights come with a 12 month warranty. If you received broken or defective lights, please contact us Kohree any time, we will compensate you with free replacement or full refund.

Gorgeous and versatile! (5 Stars)

When a couple I know got married two months ago several of us who are friends of the newlyweds got together to help decorate. It was a lot of fun and, in my humble opinion, wound up with one of the most beautiful set ups I've ever seen at a wedding. A big factor in that was an emphasis on tiny lights and jars. Ever since I've been wanting to find some great lights to work with in crafting/decorating projects and this set totally fit the bill.

You could do so many things with these! Their versatility amazed me. The wire makes them very moldable to whatever shape you need them. I was thinking about using them to wire a wreath for my front porch but since they are not no a battery pack and are intended for indoor use really, I decided I wanted to do something with a pretty pair of red jars I picked up at the dollar spot at Target. As you can see they made great bundles for inside the jars. I just wrapped them around my hand with some length between them and the cord running down from the shelf to the outlet. Then tucked them and made them a little messy to get the feel I wanted. My 6 year old loved them so much she asked me if we could keep them forever.

I am very happy with them and would recommend them to anyone who wants a versatile string light set for home decorating. Even tucking these into white tulle or foam along a mantle would make for a gorgeous snowy effect that could get swapped for autumnal oranges or patriotic colors around other holidays.

I think once the holiday season passes I will actually use clear florists' tape to attach them to twigs and place them in a tall hurricane glass to use as everyday decor but really there are so many possibilities I'm likely to have these out all year round to decorate in some way. Love this light set, highly recommend!

Book Review: Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat by Jen Mann

Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Yuletide Yahoos, Ho-Ho-Humblebraggers, and Other Seasonal Scourges by Jen Mann

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.
Humor, Holidays
Ebook/Print/Audio (224 pages, BALLANTINE BOOKS)
For fans of Laurie Notaro and Jenny Lawson comes an uproarious and oddly endearing essay collection for anyone trying to survive the holidays in one piece.
When it comes to time-honored holiday traditions, Jen Mann pulls no punches
In this hilariously irreverent collection of essays, Jen Mann, nationally bestselling author of People I Want to Punch in the Throat, turns her mordant wit on the holidays. On Mann’s naughty list: mothers who go way overboard with their Elf on the Shelf, overzealous carolers who can’t take a hint, and people who write their Christmas cards in the third person (“Joyce is enjoying Bunko. Yeah, Joyce, we know you wrote this letter.”). And on her nice list . . . well, she’s working on that one. Here, no celebration is off-limits. The essays include:
• You Can Keep Your Cookies, I’m Just Here for the Booze
• Nice Halloween Costume. Was Skank Sold Out?
• Why You Won’t Be Invited to Our Chinese New Year Party
From hosting an ill-fated Chinese New Year party, to receiving horrible gifts from her husband on Mother’s Day, to reluctantly telling her son the truth about the Easter Bunny, Mann knows the challenge of navigating the holidays while keeping her sanity intact. And even if she can’t get out of attending another Christmas cookie exchange, at least she can try again next year.

Enh, didn't really tickle my funny bone. (3 stars)

If you've ever had someone ruin the holidays (is there anyone who hasn't?) then you might find something in this book relatable. While a couple of the stories made me chuckle a bit I was surprised at how very little about it I really enjoyed. I swear Mann repeats herself in every essay. Yes your mom is a hoarder, you told is already. Even still I think that the majority of readers might enjoy it.

So maybe the takeaway is that if you've read Mann's other books and her humor works for you grab this and if you're like me and this would be your first foray into her style maybe check out a sample chapter or audio clip and see if it works for you before dropping the cash.

More books to tickle your funny bone:

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Product Review: Santamedical Tens Unit

Santamedical PM-120 Tens Unit Electronic Pulse Massager with 6 Modes and Rechargeable battery
Notes: I received a complimentary product in exchange for an honest review. All opinions stated here are my own and are in no way influenced by the cost-free product.
Product Details: 
  • Six Auto Modes (stimulation programs) and Pause button
  • 10- to 60-minute timer with auto shut-off, 20-minute default setting
  • Adjustable massage strength levels with gradual increase / decrease setting option
  • Portable and Compact device is easy to bring along in a bag or a suitcase for on-the-go use
  • Attachment pads, Rechargeable Battery and Power Adapter included

Small, but mighty. (4 Stars)

While pregnant 6+ years ago I sustained a neck injury in a car accident. During the treatment I received for my injury my amazing chiropractor would end our sessions with 10 minutes of TENS treatment. It takes some getting used to but I was amazed at how much it eased the discomfort I was experiencing.

I occasionally still experience soft tissue discomfort, in particular in the neck and shoulder where I was hurt so I'd been in the market for an affordable TENS unit for occasional use at home. This one from Santamedical fits the bill very well. It's effective, very easy to use, and I was pleased with the battery life between charges. The timer is adjustable and automatically shuts off the unit which I like. The 6 modes aren't all comfortable for me but I like that I have options for various uses. Sometimes you just want a different kind of stimulation on a different region of the body. The only thing I dislike about it is the pads themselves could be better, they tend to peel up easily from my skin no matter what I do. But those aren't hard to replace with a better set.

Overall, I am very happy with it and feel that if you're looking for an effective and economical TENS unit that's portable and easy to use I would recommend it.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Review: Friendly's Single-Cup Coffee for Keurig K-Cup Brewers

Friendly's Single-Cup Coffee for Keurig K-Cup Brewers Variety Pack, 40 Count
Notes: I received a complimentary product in exchange for this honest review.
Product Details:
  • Keurig k-cup compatible-including new 2.0 brewers
  • 100 percent premium Arabica coffee beans
  • Small batch roasted coffee, perfectly blended with creamy friendly's ice cream flavors
  • Enjoy ice cream flavored coffee anytime
  • Contains butterscotch swirl, chocolate marshmallow, mint chocolate chip, and Vienna mocha chunk flavored coffees

An Unexpected Hit (4 Stars)

The hubs and I don't generally drink a lot of flavored coffee. Mostly because a lot of them tend to leave a funny aftertaste. I kind of expected the same with these but to my surprise and delight not a single one was overpowering in flavor or left a bad taste lingering for hours afterward.

I actually joked on Instagram about how I went to grab a pod and discovered that my husband obviously wasn't a fan of the Butterscotch since he had a pile of them shoved aside. He destroyed the Mint Chocolate Chip and Chocolate Marshmallow though. My favorite was actually the Vienna Mocha Chunk.

If you like flavored coffee but still want the taste of coffee I think these are a really great option. The flavors are subtle and add a really nice something different that still lets folks like myself, who usually like their coffee black, mix things up a little.


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Saturday, October 17, 2015

Book Review: Spectacular Nail Art by Larit Levy

Spectacular Nail Art: A Step-by-Step Guide to 35 Gorgeous Designs
Notes: ARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Crafts, Beauty
Print (80 pages, IMAGINE)
No woman is fully dressed without the perfect manicure: it’s the final touch, the must-have accessory to any outfit. And today, spectacular nails mean more than a coat of pink polish. It’s fashion art, with a world of fabulous colors, unique patterns, and gorgeous embellishments to choose from. These 35 designs are eye-catching and ultra-stylish, whether you’re looking to liven up an everyday look or get glam for a special occasion. Novices needn’t worry, either, because every project—from sparkling Champagne Chic to the wintry, Christmasy Snappy Snowflakes—includes easy-to-follow instructions and handy step-by-step photos, and most are really simple to create.
Have a spooky Halloween with black-and-white cobwebbed nails; hail the red-white-and blue and stars-and-stripes forever with Positively Patriotic; and celebrate the coming of spring with vintage fancy flowers. Go wild with animal prints, like leaping leopard spots or zebra zigzags on your "claws." And even if you can’t make it to Hawaii, your nails can, with designs featuring the island’s famed hibiscus. Whether you’re choosing elegant, wedding-ready pearly bubbles or playful retro dots and fun characters, every pattern here makes an unforgettable statement.
Tips on nail care, products, and basic manicures (including a French one) help you keep your hands in tip-top shape. One thing’s for sure: with this art on your nails, you’ll never want to wear gloves again!

A Basic Nail Art 101 for Offline Artists (3 stars)

I've been in the market for some simple nail art instruction books for my husband of all things. He recently decided he wanted to learn some because our young daughter loves having her nails done and he's a good artist so why shouldn't he be able to do it?

SPECTACULAR NAIL ART turned out to be just the sort of book that's great for a beginner. The ideas and styles are all pretty simple and well instructed. But they're just that, the basics. If you're looking for some really different or fresh ideas this really doesn't have them. I've seen most of these already done in other books and on Pinterest multiple times. With that in mind this might be a great choice for a child or tween who is learning or for someone who doesn't regularly access the internet. Otherwise it's just too basic and the concepts so common that it doesn't offer anything special.

Other nail art books you might want to check out:

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Book Review: Jem and the Holograms: Showtime

Jem and the Holograms: Showtime

by Kelly Thompson and Sophie Campbell
Notes: ARC received in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.
Release Date: October 29, 2015
Graphic Novel, Young Adult
Print (152 pages, IDW)
Meet Jerrica Benton - a girl with a secret. She and her sister Kimber team with two friends to become... JEM AND THE HOLOGRAMS! But what does it mean to be JEM today? Fashion, art, action, and style collide in Jem and the Holograms: Showtime!

Outrageously good! (5 stars)

Since the live action movie had to go and drop a number two on one of my favorite IPs from my childhood I've been hoping someone else would do something good with it. And this, my dears, is it! A lot of the time I find that with comics I either dig the art or the story, and not often both on equal with one another. This is absolutely phenomenal on both. I love love love it! Even though I got to read it as a digital galley I'm going to pick it up in trade and add it to my preorder list.

If you're an adult who grew up with Jem and the Holograms and you love Rat Queens or Batgirl for their great balance of art and story you will love it. Not of the generation that grew up with Jem? If you love feminist themes, body and racial inclusivity, and gorgeous pages I definitely recommend picking it up!

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Got Stress? Spend Ten Minutes with This

Ohuhu® Ocean Wave Night Light Projector and Music Player

Notes: I received a complimentary product in exchange for an honest review.
Product Details: Have no time for a seaside trip? Now you can see it at home or in your office simply by turning this Ohuhu® Ocean Wave Light Projector on. It is an ocean wave projector with a mini speaker and you enjoy the tranquility or relax after a day's work. It is also perfect for creating a watery ocean atmosphere, which can be used in bathrooms, living rooms, or any other area. It would make a nice backdrop for a trade show booth or office reception area to greet your visitors.
An excellent decoration for any special day to create a romantic atmosphere, A romantic surprise for that special person in your life. Creates a perfect ocean wave atmosphere almost anywhere.
Relaxing, comforting, soothing, creates a large, brilliant light show for your viewing entertainment and pleasure.
8 Brightness modes. Bring the seaside home to you, give yourself a piece of the (ocean) in multiple changes of color.
Automatically shuts down after one hour. Relax yourself before sleeping or help your children sleep.
Battery powered or USB powered. That offers greater mobility and flexibility with a built-in Mini speaker (mobile phone, mp3, or computer can also be used)

10 minutes was all it took... (5 Stars)

If you suffer from stress—don't we all?—you've probably tried all kinds of things to help you cope. I know plenty of people who resort to happy hour or binge eating as a way to manage their but that's just not mine. A good book and a cup of herbal tea are always a nice and yoga or a walk in the park can be good too. For me, however, I find that my stress and anxiety tend to peak as soon as I'm trying to go to sleep and I remember everything I didn't get done or need to get done. Not always the perfect time to fill up on liquids or attempt a warrior pose, I'm tired and I want to go to sleep.

So I accepted the Ohuhu Ocean Wave Night Light Projector and Music Player for review to see if it was an option that worked for me. It's really cool for other uses since it has so many light settings—kids love it—but my goal was something to help me distract myself from a racing mind so I could fall asleep. I am 100% sold! The first time I tried it I think I barely made it 10 minutes before I dozed off. There's just something soothing about the gentle motion of the light and the soft blue color (the light setting I would recommend for those seeking sleep) that works. I love that it shuts off automatically after an hour too so it doesn't run all night long. If you were to pair it with ocean/lake/rain sounds I imagine the effect would be two fold though I chose not to.

Overall, I think it's a great soothing or stress relieving item for the price point and since it isn't chemical it's great for small children and those with sensitivities. I do want to point out, however, that there is one light setting that flashes heavily and could be dangerous for those who have seizure disorders so use at your own risk. Other than that I absolutely love it and would recommend it.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Review: Edgar and the Tree House of Usher by Jennifer Adams

Edgar and the Tree House of Usher by Jennifer Adams, Illustrated by Ron Stucki

Notes: Review copy received via publisher.
Children's Literature, Classic Reimagining
Print (32 pages, GIBBS SMITH)
"It was a dull, dark, and soundless day in the autumn of the year ... " when the mischievous raven Edgar heads to his friend Roderick's house to work on their tree house. Edgar dashes his sister Lenore's hopes with the ever-popular phrase "sisters are not allowed," until a storm starts to brew and the two boys realize that sometimes the best things happen when you decide to stick together. The third picture book in the popular Edgar series is sure to warm the hearts of kids and parents alike.(Preschool)
Publisher Site: blank

A charming picture book for Poe fans and their children. (5 stars)

As I often do when a publisher sends me a review copy of a book for my daughter, I read this alone first. I was pretty sure my daughter would turn her nose up at it because it wasn't very colorful but to my surprise she absolutely adored it. To the point I'm kind of tired of her asking me to read it every night.

Being rather fond of the works of Poe and ravens, I found this to be a charming and fun play on The Fall of the House of Usher. It ended in such a way that even though I've had to read it numerous times since it arrived, I still grin at the end. It has lead to much discussion about gender-based exclusion and how we treat our siblings. We will definitely be purchasing the previous two installments in the Edgar series.

If you have a love of literature and want to introduce your preschooler (very loosely) to Poe this is a clever way to do so that it sure to delight. A short bedtime story that also teaches a simple lesson about inclusion, sibling relationships, and rising from a fall.

You might also enjoy these other Babylit books:
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