30 November, 2015

Two Stage Knife Sharpener by System-Sharpener #Review #SystemSharpener

     I tend to collect things without realizing it.  I think a lot of it is that I almost never say no to things that are given to me.  Part of that is not wanting to insult the person, like their things aren't good enough for me.  Part of it is that I just can't say no, period.  It's very, very difficult for me to say no.  Most of though, it is that it has saved me so much money in the long run to not have to buy things.  I'm okay with second hand, I'm okay with things that work okay, but not perfect, and I'm okay with having to do some work to fix things.
     As a result, I have a TON of knives.  I really need to just dwindle down.  But I do have a ton.  Not all of them are super sharp and I definitely could use some sharpening.  That's where the System Knife Sharpener comes in handy.

     It's a pretty cute little thing that has a nice vivid color.  It uses a suction cup on the bottom to hold it in place while you sharpen.  That's a nice little safety feature.  To use it, you press firmly onto a flat surface, then push the black lever down to lock the suction cup. 

     To sharpen the knives, first you slide the knife at a downward angle from heel to tip firmly about five times using the coarse sharpener.  The coarse sharpener is Stage 1.  When you feel the knife has been fairly well sharpened, you switch over to Stage 2, fine sharpening.

     To use that stage, do the same thing as the first, slide from heel to tip in a downward motion until the blade is nice and smooth and sharp.  When I tried it, I got my knife pretty darn sharp.  Granted, it wasn't as smooth as I'd hoped, but practice makes perfect.  It did a good job overall.

     Do you have knives that need sharpening?
     To learn more, check out System-Sharpener at Facebook, Amazon, and on their website at System-Sharpener.com.
Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Fruit Infuser Water Bottle and Neoprene Sleeve with Shoulder Straps #Review #InfuserBottleMEK

     One thing that makes me really happy as a mom is when my kids get excited about something that's good for them.  It's even better when it's something I've introduced to them.  It makes me feel like maybe I'm not failing as bad as I think I am.  Like when Streaker got super excited about that pedometer I showed her and walked almost constantly until she lost it just so she could keep track of her steps.  I'm totally getting another one for her.  Or like when Punky and pretty much everyone else got super amped about fruit infused waters.  The idea of fruit flavoring their waters was just too much awesome for them to handle.

     And guess what's on every kid's wish list this year?  Yup!  Fruit infusion water bottles.  And I am okay with that.  So far I have two of the five I need.  I might have to settle last minute and grab a few from Walmart last minute.  They aren't as common as they should be.  But I do have a few.  One that I have for myself is this Fruit Infuser Water Bottle Bundle by MEK.
     The bottle is made of Titan Plastic, so it doesn't shatter, only cracks if broken.  It's a really nice feature.  I have many bottles made of this plastic and only one has ever broken after being dropped many times.  It's a 24 ounce bottle with a leak-proof cover.  It's leak-proof because of the cool rubber button disc in the cover, it creates a suction seal inside the cover.

     The inside has a fruit basket that sets inside the top of the bottle.  The basket has a cover to it that screws on after filling the basket with whatever yummy fruit you feel like.  It holds quite a bit of fruit and will definitely flavor your water.
      The kit comes with a Neoprene sleeve for carrying the bottle.  The sleeve has an adjustable shoulder strap.  It also comes with a carabiner to clip the bottle to your belt if you wish.  One other thing it comes with is a list of recipes and ingredients that you can try.  It's laminated in a thick lamination sheet, I'm guessing 5mm.
     This would make a great gift for someone who likes to live a healthy lifestyle.  I definitely recommend it!  To learn more, check out MEK (Made Easy Kit) on Amazon.

Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Non-Slip Yoga Towel from Veda Yoga #Review #YogaTowelMatReview

     I am so excited for February to get here.  It's that time of year when I can splurge a little on things I wouldn't normally get.  The last few years I have been saying "I am gonna get a treadmill no matter what".  Last year I even told myself that I was so out of shape that if I didn't get a treadmill last year, I'd never get myself back on track.  Well, I'm about the same size as last year, so that's good news.  And this year I AM getting that treadmill.  I will be working on myself all year long, it's time to turn over a new leaf.

     One of those things that I'm going to do to help myself get more fit and lean is Yoga.  I've started to try it before and I could definitely feel myself being more energized and I could feel the burn on some of those poses for sure.  I stopped because I just didn't have the equipment.  I know that part of the lure of yoga is that you can do it anywhere and anytime, but I just needed the fun stuff to keep me going.  Something kind of like my new yoga mat towel from Veda Yoga.

     Besides looking awesome, it fits perfectly on a mat.  It's 24x72".  It' meant to be used, bead side down. The beads are made of silicone and make the towel non-slip so it doesn't slide around on the mat.  The beads are the same beautiful, deep purple as the material.  The beads can be felt a little when you're using it, but it's not uncomfortable, per se... it's just felt.  It actually almost feels like a massage type feeling.  I can see how someone might find it a bit less than comfortable though, mostly if it;s being used alone on a hard floor.

     The towel isn't thick, it's more like a heavy material.  But the material it's made from is very absorbent and will quickly dry as well.  So it will keep your mat from getting sweaty, but not feel sweaty itself.  It's a pretty neat fabric.
     Veda Yoga also has a blue mat, as well as a bundle deal on Amazon.  With the bundle deal you get two towels, one for full price and the other for less than half that.  It's a pretty good deal.  For anyone who loves yoga or has a friend who does, I think they'd really enjoy this.  Do you do yoga?
     To learn more, check out Veda Yoga on Amazon.

Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

Sunsella Vegetable Steamer #Review #SunsellaVeggieSteamer

     It's been a little while since I've made home made meals as a go-to.  We're usually either too busy or I'm just not up for it.  So now that my kids are getting older and starting to act a bit better, I'm feeling a bit more like I'd like to start cooking again.  Problem is, I'm pretty much down to just frying pans and cookie sheets. I don't have a whole lot that says to me "Hey!  Cook something healthy with me!"  I really should be working on that.
     But I do no have a steamer, which I think is a great kitchen tool.  It really does WANT you to cook healthy and it's also really easy to use.  The styeamer that I have is the Sunsella Vegetable Steamer.  The part that most impressed me was how small it fold up.  This steamer is so compact that it's ridiculous.  Now, maybe I'm just completely naive when it comes to steamers because I've never really used one.  But it folds up to 5 1/3", isn't that small!?

     Granted, it is the smaller of the two sizes that they offer.  My family of seven is a pretty big family for today's standards and I'm not sure if this would steam enough veggies for my whole family.  But then, my husband would rather be thrown in the middle of the ocean than eat something green and my kids for the most part aren't huge on them, so maybe it would.  It expands to 9 1/3", their larger size expands to 10 2/5".

     The steamer sits on three feet that are about 7/8" and allow an inch to an inch and a half of water to sit in the bottom of the pan.  I'll be honest here and say that part of me wishes that it sat a bit higher because I am terrible at getting things off the stove or out of the oven when I need to, so higher legs equals more water and less chance of mishaps.  But the cool thing is that veggies should be done in under ten minutes, that might not even be enough time for ME to forget!

     To help get the steamer out of the pot when the vegetables are done, it comes with a pretty cool removable center stem with a loop that lets you pull it up.  And when you do pull it out, all the little holes in the sides and bottom strain the vegetables right into the pot.  It's a pretty neat design, really.  I think this is a great kitchen tool to have.  It fits just about anywhere and is really useful, especially in the fight to eat better.  Do you ever eat steamed veggies?

     To learn more, check out Sunsella on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Amazon, or on their website, Sunsella.com.

Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

28 November, 2015

Electric Milk Frother and Whisk with Coffee Spoon #Review #ElectricMilkFrother

     So my sister is a bit of a coffee addict.  Who isn't, right?  She's actually a big part of the reason that I am so addicted.  We'd get coffees a few times a week when we went into town and I soon realized that I could stay awake all day when I'd had coffee.  ALL day!  Who knew!?  So I drink it a lot now, mostly from Dunkin, I rarely make my own.  My sister on the other hand likes to make her own.  I don't blame her, coffees are expensive.  But when you make them at home, especially the cappuccinos, you just don;t get the froth that you do when you order them at the store.

     So this year for Christmas, she's getting an electric milk frother from me.   Not just a frother, but also a pretty cool scoop that also doubles as a clip to hold the coffee bag closed.  This set is from Classique and is sold on Amazon for a little under $23.

     Now, you might remember the frother I got for myself some time back.  It was decent, I liked it pretty well.  It wasn't as powerful as I'd hoped, but it frothed and it was pretty.  Well, not to compare or anything, but this one is one of those kitchen items that are a total beast.

     From the second that I took the frother out, I could tell that this was a superior product.  It was heavier, it seemed less "cheaply" made and the look was nicer too.  And when I finally got some batteries to put in it and I got to try it, I knew right away that I was right.  The power on this thing is amazing.  And it has two different settings too, which is nice.  Low does a good job, but if you want froth to fill your cup in seconds, high does the trick.

     The scoop is pretty awesome too.  It's an alligator type clip, but it's a really strong clamp.  I was pretty surprised by how nice it worked.  The scoop itself looks really nice and is a really great quality.  This set just really blew me away and I would highly recommend it to anyone who loves coffee or has a coffe-loving friend on their gift list.
     To learn more, check out Classique on Amazon.
Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

27 November, 2015

Plush Christmas and Holiday Items #Review #ZUBELS

     Last year for Christmas Eve, we went to my husband's father's house.  we don't find ourselves in that area very often when they are home, so to be able to visit was nice.  We talked and exchanged gifts.  The girls got to see their cousin Wy, that they don't see very often.  They played together and it was good.  One of the gifts that each of the kids got was a home made stuffy.  The girls all got pillows made of yarn that resembled different animals.  There was a lion, a pig, and two cows, all stuffed with stuffing.  They were so cute.  And Boog got a cute little blue monkey that was also homemade.  It was adorable.  We just love that homemade feel.
     That's why I love the new holiday plush toys that we got for this Christmas.  They are from Zubels.  Zubels is a company that sells hand-knit animals, dolls, hats, sweaters, and more using a super soft organic 100% cotton yarn.  It was actually the first thing that stood out to me as I admired them.  The yarn is fantastic!
     They are also hand stuffed, which explains why they are so cuddly.  They aren't overstuffed, they aren't understuffed, they are absolutely perfect!  And when you combine it with the soft yarn, these plush toys are just fantastic.  Perfect for kids of lots of ages.
     I ended up getting the toy soldier and the reindeer, both 12 inches, and a 'Lil Dimples Santa that is 4 inches.  I just love the soldier.  I love his buckles and his shoulders, his hat, and his mustache.  He's just adorable... in a manly, soldier type way.

     The details are pretty great.  They really go all out to add texture and small things that you can really appreciate.  Just look at those little buttons on his buckles.  Look at his white straps!  His belt even has a white buckle area.  These stuffies are amazing!

     The Santa that I got was much smaller than the bigger ones.  He was perfect for hanging off the outside of a stocking or putting into the stocking.  He's a cute little guy that has a lot of details of his own.  I mean, do you see that little golden buckle on his belt?  And his beard can be lifted up and played with.  His jacket has a little flap that can be lifted too.
     And look at that nose and his mustache.  Awww!  These are made so well and with so much love.  And they have gifts for kids with every interest.  From cars and sports to tea time and mermaids.  Boog likes foxes, so I looked and found foxes.  A cute hat and a stuffie to match!

     What would you look for?
     To learn more, check out Zubels on their website at Zubels.com.

Except for the product(s) given to me for the purpose of reviewing, I received no compensation for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.
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