Thursday, April 30, 2015

Awesome Pack Review: April 2015

I really hate having to pause certain subscriptions, and I especially hate it with Awesome Pack, because they do such a good job customizing each pack to our interests. However, we are now two months behind on playing any of the games we've received and until we settle in the new house, it doesn't make sense to have more to move. I will definitely return to Awesome Pack immediately upon settling, though!

This month, we received our cat toys, but asked to hold off on the little bonus items simply because everything is in boxes right now and the less we have to move, the better. 

Eco Emi Review: April 2015

I always get so excited when Eco Emi arrives! Admittedly, this was my least favorite of the boxes I've received, but mostly because it's all about renewing products and I'm inundated with that kind of stuff. Sadly it's also the end of the road for Eco Emi, which they recently announced. :(

Goal Check In: April 2015

How did we do for April? In some ways, great. In others, not so much. Both of us are in the middle of a lot so there's been too much happening lately overall. However, we still did our best! And that's better than nothing, I suppose.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Companion Tees/Once upon a Tee Monthly Grab Bag: April 2015

I don't remember how I found Companion Tees originally, but man am I happy I did! Each month, I get two shipments from them: a Whovian shirt and a three-shirt grab bag that is a mix of Whovian shirts and plain old geeky stuff from Once Upon a Tee. This month's grab bag is AMAZING!!

The first shirt is "I Geek, Therefore I Am." A. I love this because making the already geeky Descartes even geekier is awesome and B. I love the franchises featured. You have Star Wars, Sherlock, Star Trek, Doctor Who, and Firefly. Um, yes, please? LOVE THIS.

The next shirt is a Whovian one and it's awesomely inspirational. I agree, too. So the Doctor can show up anytime, because I'm ready. I already have a bag packed. :D

Finally, I couldn't be more excited about the last one. I saw this design and actually sent it to my husband as an image because I loved it so much. It's hard to see in the picture, but it says "Still Waiting for" and then there are nine things: screwdrivers (sonic, of course), acceptance letter (with the Hogwarts seal), super powers, magic balls, minions, pet dragon, perfect neighbor, cake, and Season 2 (with the Serenity). This is perfect.

My Geeky Goodies Review: April 2015

Geek subscription boxes can be tough, because these days, everyone seems to want to be part of geek culture. It's ironic, since most of us who grew up geeky were tortured about it for years, only for it now to be the thing to do. So there are a variety of boxes and they all tend to be similar, but there's something really special about My Geeky Goodies. (I would say this goes for Geek Fuel, too). Take out things like Custom Fan Box, which is customized and therefore going to appeal to you since it's based on your interests and not random themes, and Collectible Geek, which is a more expensive collectible box, and you're left with several mystery geek boxes in the $15-$30 range each month. How do you stand out then? I think it's easy for My Geeky Goodies, because they advertise as a box FOR geeks BY geeks - and they mean it. 

A lot of people love Loot Crate and that's fine, and from a casual observer's standpoint, there may not be much of a difference between something like that and My Geeky Goodies. In April, both boxes included a shirt, a value item in the $10 range, and some filler. But for me, as a hardcore nerd and gamer, there is a dramatic difference - and it comes down to something very simple: curation. 

I've had a hard time explaining this, but I am going to do it this way. My parents and in-laws don't really know or care much about my interests. I don't mean that in a bad way, but we're all people living our own lives and I don't really know much about theirs, either. When the holidays come, unless someone asks for something specific, there's a lot of generic gift giving happening. Beyond gift cards (the savior for when you have no idea what to buy), we tend to shop on a superficial level. My dad likes to garden and my mom likes taking baths. That's kind of shallow, but I know I can pick up some gardening supplies and bath products and they'll probably like them. I can't, however, select specific seeds. My mom collects these weird wooden figure things and birdhouses or something, but I couldn't tell you which kind or which ones she has. And it's the same for us. They know I play video games. They know I love Harry Potter and Doctor Who and Game of Thrones. If you asked my parents to name a house in either Harry Potter or Game of Thrones, they wouldn't have a clue. (My dad could tell you about Tom Baker, since he got me into Doctor Who as a child, but he didn't even know it was back on.)

How does this relate to geek subscription boxes? Well, it relates a lot, actually. A set of Game of Thrones magnets or a Harry Potter luggage tag is something my parents would get me for Christmas. It's fine, but they don't have a clue what the different magnets mean or what 9 3/4 is. Last month, Geek Fuel sent a dragon glass arrowhead. My parents would NOT buy this, because it means nothing to them. It means a great deal to me, though, as a fan. THIS is the best way to explain the difference in curation. I feel like the people sourcing items for My Geeky Goodies and Geek Fuel get it; the people sourcing for Loot Crate are not appealing to fans, as much as they're appealing to generic concepts and franchises. And really, superficial enjoyment of popular franchises is, for me at least, the absolute antithesis of geekdom. Again, it's a slight variation, but little bothers me more than corporate greed. 

Klover Box Review: April 2015

Klover Box is a subscription box of lifestyle products that are organic, natural, and ethical. I enjoy that, because I love finding cruelty-free items. It's very similar to Eco Emi, except the products are bigger (it's also more expensive, so there's the trade-off). This is my last box for a bit. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Quarterly Box from Rosario Dawson: April 2015

I have actually had good experiences with Quarterly, since I have selected curators based on their interests that match mine. I was really looking forward to the Rosario Dawson box this month and I loved it. However, with that said, I won't be subscribing to any more Quarterly boxes. I will discuss why at the end of this post, but first let's look at how great this box is. 

Game Box Monthly Review: April 2015

For two months now, I have received awesome tabletop games - and played none. I admit it's not entirely because of the move, although I swear that's most of it. Most of my free time has been spent cleaning, packing, organizing, etc. The other reason is that I've been playing a lot more video games than normal, which is already something I do way too much of, so my free time has been depleted even more!

Anyway, Game Box Monthly has now sent two amazing games I need to play and probably won't play until July! This month's is really intriguing. Stones of Fate is a memory-based strategy game. 

BakeItFun Silicone Baking Mat Review

After Boxy reviewed the silicone cupcake wrappers, I bought a set for my daughter who loves to bake, and they are seriously awesome. So when BakeItFun asked me to review the BakeItFun Silicone Baking Mat, I happily agreed.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Game of Thrones 5.3 Recap

Wow, this was an awesome episode. I'm so stressed out about what's coming!!

I will admit that I'm less concerned about getting the books finished now, as the show seems to have taken quite the detour. I don't really mind that, since it means less is ruined in both versions for me, although I have to admit I'm a bit of a purist and it does drive me insane to some degree as well. I guess I'm less upset since I am behind in my reading, but I can imagine fans must be displeased.

Either way, things have really been intensified.

Can I just say how much I hate Margaery Tyrell? I have hated her since the beginning and I am glad she's being shown to be as manipulative and conniving as she really is. Maybe now people will have a bit more sympathy for Cersei, too, who is also manipulative, but if she's a villain, how can anyone like Margaery? Goodness, she should marry Baelish and they can be the most evil couple ever.

Speaking of Baelish, ugh. What is he doing? I know this is a variation from the books, but Ramsay?! This episode should have been called, "A Bunch of Liars." Ramsay's little sweet and kind act is ridiculous (I love the actor, but he is a pure sociopath.).

Pet Box Special Collection Review

My cats are super antisocial lately because they know something is up with the move. Fortunately it's not all that far, but they're not going to be thrilled about a car journey. So when I got an email from Pet Box promoting a special collection they had, I signed up. I figure maybe they'll be distracted by toys. I don't have pictures, though, because they wouldn't come down and play until much later. 

Sudsy Box Review: April 2015

As much as I have enjoyed several of my subscription boxes, there are things I don't like. In particular, I don't have very positive feelings about the way that people market their products. I especially am not a fan of sending out boxes early for review in order to get more customers. The greatest difference between just shopping and signing up for a subscription box is not convenience but surprise. I can buy brands I like that are ethical and natural for less, and I can also set up recurring orders on Amazon and elsewhere. It's much easier to manage than an account with a subscription box, especially since many of these companies make you email and hope they get it in time if you don't want to be charged. So essentially what I am paying for in these subscriptions is twofold - exposure to new brands that I may not have found on my own and the element of surprise. 

So with all that said, I was subscribing to Sudsy Box because I like natural soaps. It's not really a big surprise what's in the box, beyond the fourth item and the scents, but I figured I liked the enjoyment of the unexpected box every few months. I already subscribe to Wholly Hemp, who don't operate the same way with deliveries. You get your box the same time every month based on when you sign up and they're usually based on their current stock, so surprise is inevitable. Wholly Hemp also doesn't do a ton of marketing. 

I received my last Sudsy Box about a week ago. Sadly it's my last because certain people, and those who don't feel like they need to pay $20 every two months, got theirs almost a month earlier. I'm done with this as a customer. If you want my business, and you want my money, then you simply need to prioritize customers over marketing. Sudsy Box doesn't want to do that, so I will stick to the companies who do, I suppose. (To be clear, it's not that they send boxes out to reviewers. Bloggers get things for free and that's part of the deal, but it's the fact that the marketing strategy of revealing items well before the people who bought them get them - or even have boxes in the mail - feels so greedy.)

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Hip Humanitarian Review: April 2015

This month's Hip Humanitarian box was the Beauty Box and it included several items. While I'm still not sold on the value of this box, I liked two of the items a great deal. I do like that each box is focused on a theme and that it's more of a lifestyle box than others. I also like the companies they source from (although I have had trouble getting much info on a few of them, including one from this month). Overall, I believe this is a subscription heading in the right direction and they're at least fair in not claiming they can offer the subscription for less than it costs them to operate it. 

MixCups Review: April 2015

Now that Crafty has introduced me to the wonderful world of the reusable K-cup, I have been drinking a lot more whole bean coffee. Still, there are times when even that is too much work and MixCups comes in great for those times! I skipped last month because I had my Bean Box delivery coming, but this arrived in good time as I am down to my last K-cups. 

Live Infinitely Infusion Water Bottle Review

Getting my family to drink water is getting easier. I recently reviewed an infusion water bottle that had them begging for water. This past week, I was sent the Live Infinitely Water Bottle to review as well. 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

PURGGO Car Eco-Purifier Review

I drive a minivan, am a mom of three, and it has been said to me in the past that my van smells like a bar. So I am thankful to Purggo for providing me its Car Eco-Purifier to review!

Angel Crafts Adhesive Vinyl Sheets Review

Not long ago I reviewed the Angel Craft Transfer tape, so reviewing their Adhesive Vinyl Sheets seemed logical. Angel Craft was kind enough to provide me this set of 20 6 x 12-inch sheets for review.

Why I Love the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Last week, I mentioned that I wanted to make this a regular thing - a sort of column about travel and my favorite places. The majority of those will be museums, and generally art museums at that, and I figured where better to start than one of my favorite museums in the world? And since this all came about with talk of New York City, it's only fitting to start with the Met (Metropolitan Museum of Art). In this post, I'm only talking about the main museum, not the Cloisters as well. I will cover them in a later post.

If you're easily overwhelmed, the Met is not a good place to go without a plan. It would take ages to see everything. It's the largest art museum in the US and in the top for size around the world, at around two million square feet. The facade actually doesn't do the intimidating size justice; it merely makes it look big. However, once you accept that one day is simply not enough time to see everything and select what you do want to see, it's a bit more manageable. This is easily a museum where you could arrive when it opened, leave when it closed, and still feel like you needed several more visits to explore in depth.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Dapper Box Review: March 2015

As we have previously discussed, my husband is far from interested in style. So when I was offered the chance to review Dapper Box, I asked Crafty first if her husband would be better to review the items. She said it was fine for me to do the review, although I knew that meant my husband would likely be difficult. ;) Because this was a review box, we were sent the March box. 

However, Dapper Box is a fairly straightforward subscription box for men and it's really something that all men, even those less fashionable ones like my husband, could use. 

Wantable Accessories Collection Review: April 2015

It's that time again - time for the Wantable Accessories Collection! This was a solid collection. Not my favorite, but not bad, either. There wasn't a great deal of variety, but I do tend to like necklaces more than anything so that makes sense. 

I received three necklaces this month, along with a pair of earrings. When I first opened the earrings, I was concerned because I don't usually like hoops and I didn't include them on my survey. However, these aren't hoops, but dangling circles. I really like these because they're delicate while also being stylish and unique. 

Wholly Hemp Review: April 2015

I love so many things about Wholly Hemp. The products are natural, they give back to help build stronger communities, the packaging is basic so it's easily recyclable, and it's an affordable way to get awesome bath and body products that are cruelty-free. Also they utilize hemp, which is a sustainable resource we desperately need to be using more. 

My box this month also had a jar of orange moisturizing cream, but Crafty was using it when the box arrived! Also included was a stick of Secret Falls deodorant. I have been using the Honest Company spray and I love it, but with summer coming up, a stick will be nice because it's a bit more certain to keep me smelling fresh. (Also I just tried the lavender vanilla deodorant from Honest Company and it smells exactly the same as my bergamot sage, so that's a bummer.)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

On with the Show!

This week has been extremely busy and exciting. The kids' school play is quickly approaching. This past week was what is called "tech week." During tech week, the cast and crew spend many hours perfecting their performances, making sure their costumes are set for the show, and forming an even tighter bond with each other.

Tech week began with the costume parade. The cast came in full costume so that the director and costume committee (that's me) could approve or make changes to the costumes. This year the costumes required me to do very little, which was nice, since I am adjusting to not being at play practice every night due to my work schedule. Thankfully the biggest alterations I have made are adjusting the straps of a dress and adding feather plumes to the berets used for the actors who are part of the prologue. The costumes feature neon tee-shirts, bright colored plastic sunglasses, and berets with feather plumes. With an 80's feel to the costumes, there is no shortage of bright colors.

Collectible Geek Review: April 2015 (Assemble)

Since I just did my overview of current geek subscription box offerings, this review comes at a good time. Collectible Geek, for me, remains one of the best simply because the boxes come loaded and the items are high quality. I also have enjoyed their themes immensely (although we will be skipping May, since it's TMNT and we aren't fans). This month's theme is Assemble, which means Avengers for those of you less savvy in the comics world - or those who don't watch movies. 

The first item was a really great Hulk shirt in traditional green and purple. I like the shirts from Collectible Geek a lot. I believe the shirts are exclusive to their box as well, although I'm not 100% sure. Either way, I liked this, including the colors. 

Orange Glad Review: April 2015

Well, this is ridiculous. This box is too good to exist, I think. I have to warn you that if you try Orange Glad, you won't be able to stop ordering from them. Unless you simply hate joy.

The first item in the box was a pack of Dreams Come Chew from QUIN. This is the second item I've tried from QUIN, but this is the first item in all the snack boxes that inspired me to order more. I bought two full-size bags of this after sampling it, because it's that good. I'm actually a big fan of Starburst, but since they contain gelatin, I don't eat them. QUIN's Dreams Come Chew is handmade vegan Starburst basically and it's amazing.

Then there were chocolate chip butter biscuits. They came broken, sadly, but that's okay, because they didn't last long enough to need to be in one piece. Wow, these are awesome, and wow, Orange Glad just really knows how to pack a box of happy treats.

The Right to Privacy in a Digital World

Recently, Michael Buble caused a lot of uproar about a photo he posted on Instagram. People are angry about it being sexist, saying it is body shaming and slut shaming and so on. Honestly, I don't feel like getting into that debate, since we're making assumptions about how someone would feel or react based on our own feelings and reactions. There are people who would be uncomfortable with his comments and others who would be flattered. Disgusting comments like, "well, if she was dressed like that, she obviously wants you to think about her ass" belong in the 1950's, so it's not worth even trying to converse with someone who makes them.

On the other hand, something about the photo and situation really bothered me personally. We can't control the fact that photos and videos are everywhere now. We all probably get accidentally captured in them all the time. However, in this case, a girl had no idea she was being photographed, definitely didn't know she'd be all over the internet, and certainly wasn't expecting to be discussed. Maybe she would be flattered. That's not the point, though. If he had something negative about her not, to some people, complimentary, people would be angrier, but that's also not the point. What is the point is that we have taken our entitlement too far.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

EpicBelle Comfort Grip Crochet Hooks Review

Epic is right! I use my hands for a lot of crafting and I tend to get hand and wrist pain often with repetitive motions. In February, I made some very tiny crocheted hearts with a small hook, 2.0 mm, and I struggled to keep the hook in my hand. I recently used EpicBelle Comfort Grip Crochet Hooks for the same project with no trouble at all. I was very excited to receive these for review, as I clearly use crochet hooks a lot.

Sumo Ice Cream Scoop Review

I love ice cream. I eat a ton of ice cream. But I always use a spoon to scoop it because I haven't had much luck with ice cream scoops. Usually they are either too weak to really do anything or, more often, the materials they're made with just aren't very long-lasting. So when I had a chance to review the SUMO Stainless Steel Ice Cream Scoop, I wanted to see if it made a difference. It is described as indestructible, so I figured why not?

Love with Food Deluxe Box Review: April 2015

I realized after receiving my Love with Food box that people felt this was a bit short on snacks. I suppose that's true, since usually there are more items, but these were bigger than a lot of what we normally receive, so maybe that's why? Either way, I actually think this is my favorite box since I like almost everything in it, as opposed to the sort of hit and miss history I have with Love with Food. While I definitely consider it a worthwhile subscription, I do find that there are snacks each month that don't appeal to me. This one was pretty solid overall, on the other hand. 

The first two items were popcorn chips, which is a really interesting new snack. We received kettle and white cheddar flavors, and I am happy with those two flavors. Two of our favorite snacks are kettle chips and Smartfood, so these are a great way to try something new that also isn't so new it feels odd. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Communication in Friendship

After a year-and-a-half long friendship with Boxy, I finally got to meet her in person this weekend, but that is a post for another time. While I was visiting Boxy and her husband this weekend, though, I got the chance to see their wedding video. They are coming up on 14 years of marriage this year and it was so much fun to watch the two of them on their wedding day. Of course, I couldn't help but share the photos I have on my laptop of my wedding with them as well. Then the three of us realized that we are quickly becoming old. Comments like, "They aren't together any more," "What happen to him," and "Sadly, he died,” started to come up in the conversation. While it is natural that life moves on and things happen, it got me thinking about how many people from my wedding I still talk to. How many people from college and even from high school are still in my life? My thoughts weren't just how many were still in my life, but also why aren't they in my life?

I had a long drive to think on my way home from Boxy’s house about the reasons. One is simply because we have all moved physically. Sure, there are some of my friends from high school that still live close to where I grew up, but even I finally moved away - after living in the same house for 21 years. In this day and age, it does seem like this is a ridiculous excuse to not be in contact with someone whom you once thought of as a friend, though. We have so many forms of technology that enhance our ability to reach one another, so why don’t we? Perhaps we could do some good with our social media accounts. I know Boxy hates social media, so for her, unless she finds another way to talk to people, she's not going to connect on Facebook. For me, however, I don't really know. Has too much time passed?

Ander Blake Company Liquid Chalk Marker Review

Back in February, I received a set of chalkboard labels to review. At the time, I was going label happy on nearly everything in the house, but I had one complaint: the chalk wiped right off and there was no chalk marker included with the labels. Of course, I jumped for joy when I was approached by Ander Blake Company to receive the company's liquid chalk markers to review .

Silicone Lego Style Mold Review by Crafty

Building blocks are essential to so many homes with boys. In our house, there is not a room that does not have a block in it. When I heard I was receiving this product for review, I was really excited to be able to use my imagination to think of fun ways to put these silicone Lego style molds to use.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Game of Thrones Season 5 Episode 2

I try to give people a full day to watch the episode before posting, and I minimize spoilers as much as I can, but I feel like it should be said, just in case: IF YOU HAVE NOT WATCHED THE SECOND EPISODE OF SEASON FIVE OF GAME OF THRONES, DO NOT CONTINUE READING.

Okay, now that I've said that, on to the show. I really loved this episode. One, it featured my favorite characters and gave us a lot of development for each of them, and two, it showed us some real emotional struggle for many of them.

Geek Subscription Boxes: List, Recommendations, and Thoughts

Everyone is very different, so what I consider a great subscription box could be way off for someone else. However, my husband's students asked him recently about Loot Crate, and he had plenty to say about why that would be a waste of the kids' money, but he couldn't remember which ones were the best. We get so many that it often becomes hard to track what comes from who and what's worth the expense. He asked me to make him a list for his students, but I was already thinking of doing that anyway. Recently, BuzzFeed had its own list and I was excited to see some of the great ones on there that don't get as much hype as the others. Instead of a best kind of list, I decided to do a pros and cons  overview - BASED ENTIRELY ON OUR EXPERIENCES AND PREFERENCES. I collect Funko POP figures and I love Harry Potter and Game of Thrones. My husband and I are gamers and he has read comics since he knew how to read. We don't really play Nintendo and we don't have kids. These are the kinds of things that do make a difference, because what we prefer may not be the same as someone who doesn't like the same things.

I'm going alphabetically and I'm also including a few that are geeky in their own right, although not technically fandom-based. I also included a link to a review for each so you can see the items included in the box.

GlobeIn Review: April 2015

This month's GlobeIn theme was "Picnic," so the items were useful items for such a picnic! Although they seem to be moving away from artisans (which was originally the name of the box) to fair trade companies, I don't really mind. Although when I think artisan, I do tend to think handmade items. 

Included in the box was the basket, which has become a staple for me. I love them, because they're sturdy and pretty good-sized for organizing things. There was also a pack of dried mango and a set of napkins in a drawstring pouch. I love the pouch, because it would fit in a messenger bag or bigger purse and you could add other items beyond the napkins, saving space rather than relying on a full picnic basket. 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

New York in Another Light

When Crafty wrote her post about New York, it was strange for me. I don't know how to experience the world the way other people do, because I only know my own experiences. However, she references being afraid of cities and that's just something I don't know. I have never been afraid of cities. I'm terrified of people and extremely shy, but cities? They're just centralized hubs of culture, so what's to be scared of?!

Now, to be fair, I've traveled extensively, but this has always been my attitude. In college, I was really active in the music industry, as well as in nonprofits and activist causes. So I ended up spending a lot of time in New York. It's only a few hours away and everything was based there - or Boston, but Boston isn't big. And I'd spent many weekends in Boston growing up. But it never bothered me being in New York, and this was well before the gentrification started and Disney took over Times Square. Perhaps it was the ignorance of youth, but I found nothing terrifying about roaming the city alone. Now I look back and think I was really stupid, and my parents would be less than thrilled to know about the strangers' lofts I found myself in or the fact that I was too fearless to consider that maybe it was a bad idea to stroll through the Bowery by myself at 2 AM, but I'm here.

Smart Weigh Bathroom Scale Review

This is how you know you're old. My husband asked for a bathroom scale for Christmas, but then there was some confusion and the one he wanted wasn't available, so he didn't end up getting it. When Smart Weigh contacted us about a review of their Smart Memory Scale, I was so excited, because he could get the scale that was on his wish list. 

Graze Box Review: April 19

I feel like this is turning into a food blog lately, since most of the reviews are of cooking products or snack subscription boxes. I think it's mostly because of timing - the geeky stuff comes at the end of the month and food at the beginning. In addition, since we've cut back on subscriptions, the food is one of the only consistent deliveries we still have, since it doesn't need to be packed!!

This was probably the Graze Box I liked the least overall in my subscription with them, but it's still a good box. When they can make a bad box that is still good, it's a sign of the quality of the subscription. 

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Little Crafty in a Big City

Just before Christmas, my daughter's Girl Scouts troop started planning a trip to New York City. The girls have been working on their anti-bullying and drama badges so they were going to a workshop, followed by seeing Matilda on Broadway. My daughter begged me to go with them on the bus, but didn't care if I went to see the show, so in an effort to save money, I decided to take the day to explore the city instead. 

CushionCare Memory Foam Seat Cushion Review

I'm one of those people who is NEVER comfortable. It doesn't help that my couch has seen far better days and we don't have a lot of great furniture, but it's a constant refrain in our house. So when I was given a chance to review a seat cushion from CushionCare, I was all over that!

Nature Box Review: April 2015

Oh, I love my Nature Box - and the cashews are back! We received a hefty haul this time around, because my husband wanted to double up on his beloved cashews. 

There were seven packs in this box and I am ashamed to admit that most of them are gone. The first three bags included a bag of Salted Caramel Pretzel Pops, which we still have and they're good, but not as good as other snacks.

We also received Blueberry Greek Yogurt Pretzels, which are my favorite, I think. This box, which comes monthly, was polished off nearly in a weekend and these were the first to go. We got the box in the morning and I finished this bag that night. They're really good, so don't judge me.

This time, we ordered two bags of Jalapeno Cashews and I had a bunch, but they were gone fast, too. My husband looks forward to these so much!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel and Handsome Collection Review

This is the latest review ever. In fact, it's so late that it is not only the latest review ever, but also a sort of late review of a new game, too. :/

I bought Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel as soon as it was available for pre-order, and we picked it up the day it came out. We started playing, but didn't make much progress and then forgot for a while. Both my husband and I tend to play games in stretches and this is one we play together so it just seemed like neither of us was in the mood to play at the same time. Hence the delay. It also starts slow, but having played through three games now, it's obvious that you can't really tell how a Borderlands game is until around level 20, when it begins to pick up and feel less repetitive.

I loved the first Borderlands game. We played three times all the way through, including all the DLC, and there would be random nights even after that we would start over with new characters just to play for a bit. Borderlands 2 was better in many ways, although not as fun in others. The story in the sequel was far superior (was there a story in the first one, really?) and the Tiny Tina DLC was the best ever. Plus there was more from Torgue, Handsome Jack, and Tiny Tina. The final few missions were better overall, but we got a little sick of the endless raid bosses. They lose their impact and fun when every mission has one. Crawmerax is still a bigger achievement than any of the ones from the second game.

But I digress. So I've had this forever, but really only started playing in earnest about a month ago. Then I just was slow at writing this and the Handsome Collection came out for Xbox One. My husband wasn't sure it was worth buying, since really, we have Borderlands 2 and TPS and hadn't even FINISHED TPS yet. But one of my favorite things about Borderlands is its multiplayer, so when our friends got an Xbox One, we jumped on board and got the HC (already had the One).

Something Snacks Review: April 2015

Oh, wow, this was a delight! Although there were two items I sadly couldn't eat, the rest more than made up for it! Something Snacks is a great subscription box, because they do a good job balancing your comfort foods with something unique each month. While I like to be adventurous, it can be tough when I have restrictions on what I will eat, and it really isn't fun to spend money only to receive things you can't try.

The first item was a GIANT Easter Egg shortbread cookie. And really, can shortbread cookies ever be bad? That was followed up by potato chips, which are like a drug to my husband. So cookies and chips - already an excellent box!

Nibblr Box Review: April 17

Doesn't it just figure? I decide to slow my subscriptions and cut back, making Nibblr a monthly box instead of biweekly, and they send me the best box ever! ;) Seriously all four snacks in this box were fabulous and if they were to offer bigger sizes, I would sign up just to get all four of these in bigger versions. 

We received Chocolate Cherry Jubilee, Cocoa Nuts, Apple of My Pie, and Salt and Pepper Cashews. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Blue Moby Coffee Review by Crafty (March 2015)

This review has taken me a while to get around to, because, to be completely honest with you all, it wasn't until Boxy brought it up this morning that I remembered I still had two of the four coffees to try so that I could review them!

Here's the scoop on Blue Moby Coffee. Blue Moby is a subscription box coffee service that will provide you with four different coffees from around the world for $17.99 plus $1 for shipping, which is awesome. The other thing that is unique to Blue Moby is that, each month, they choose a nonprofit and give back 10% of everything you purchase. The March nonprofit was Bring Love In, an organization located in Ethiopia that pairs widows with orphans to build new families, or as they call them, "forever families." Boxy mentioned before in her Causebox post that some people say they would rather donate to the organization directly but few do. Blue Moby offers you a way to do good, and get great coffee in return!

Friendly Bands Sunshine Loom Craft Kit Review and Video

When I am stressed out or need a break from everyday life, I like to step away into my own little world with my loom and rubber bands. I have several straight looms, finger looms, and monster tail looms from Rainbow loom, but the loom Friendly Bands sent me is quite different. I was obviously very excited when they contacted me about doing a review.