Sunday, July 20, 2014

Lootcrate: July

Loot Crate: "Loot Crate is the monthly gear and swag club for those that live and embrace the geek and gaming lifestyle. Loot Crate is a product discovery box, connecting our subscribers, known as Looters, with the best new and emerging companies producing gear, snacks, toys, hardware, art, and other goodies for the geek and gaming market. Each month, Loot Crate handpicks 6-8 new items to include in the box, which are kept secret until the boxes are delivered!"  Every month has a theme and May's theme was VILLAINS.

I am definitely a geek (thousands of comics, walls covered in comic and video game art, love of comic conventions, lover of urban fantasy novels (HARRY DRESDEN FOREVER!), and such but there are huge swaths of geekery that I'm not into so I didn't know how this box would go for me.

This is what the box looks like:



LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE the actual crate this month.  It's hilarious!  Good job, Lootcrate!




Item 1:  A Loki/Joker mash-up shirt

Apparently there isn't always a shirt but, when there is, they warn you so you can select the correct size.  Not only is this beyond not my style, I'm not a big Joker or Loki fan....

Verdict: ...so this will be either given away or sold.

My take:  It's clever and cute but not my style 

Value: $20?  This is going to have to be a guess.


Item 2:   Bowser propaganda style magnet

My take: AWESOME.  Already on the fridge.  I have some awesome propoganda style posters I got at C2E2 from Justonescarf (WHO IS AWESOME AND I WILL OWN ALL HIS STUFF ONE DAY).

Verdict: Keep!

Value: $5?

Item 3:  I'm not going into detail on the pin.  You get a pin every month, believe it or not, there is a market for them, its's going on ebay.

Value: $1? Who knows.

Item 4:  Darth Vader Key Chain

My take: I'm not that into Star Wars (I know, I know) but it's actually pretty attractive and does fit well into the theme.

Verdict: Sell or give it away as a gift

Value: $10?  Hard to know, I rarely guess keychain prices more.  But I'm going to link to a keychain I like more:  





Item 5:   Lootcrate exclusive Rocket Raccoon Comic

My take: I think this is cool, I like Guardians of the Galaxy and it's just in time for the movie!  

Verdict: I'm thinking keep.

Value: $3.99




Item 4:  Necessary Evil DVD

"Christopher Lee narrates this awesome documentary that explores the villains of the DC Universe for over seven decades of incredible comic book chaos"

My take:I'm not a DC fan.

Verdict: Sell or give it away as a gift

Value: $10?  Almost impossible to know.  



Item 6:  Deadpool socks

My take:I love Deadpool!!  And these are easy socks to wear because they aren't over the top geeky.  Like when you have Wonder Woman underpants under your suit.   Yours little dorky secret.

Verdict: Keep or gift to a beloved friend.

Value: $10? I'm guessing everything at $10.



Item 7:  Harley Quinn and Joker posters

My take:I'm not a DC fan.  But these really are pretty cool, the style is awesome--they just don't fit with my decor.  Don't get me wrong, it's all geekery, but it's not this type.

Verdict: Give away to a friend, I'm thinking, right now.

Value: $10?  Almost impossible to know.


All in all, about $59.99 worth of stuff for about $20.  

Another month?  Yes, I'm sticking with Lootcrate for another month.

To join Loot Crate click here!  It's $19.37 a month.  I'm not going to go into shipping speed or delivery method--if you want that, there are plenty of other blogs that will give you that information.


CODE:  If you order now and use the code VILLAINS you get 10% off your first month!  (this is only going to work in July, I assume)

As always, I swap on my Pinterest page, so if you want to buy any of the stuff that didn't quite trip my trigger, email me!

Barkbox: July

Barkbox!  I love my Barkbox.   I managed to get my first month at a hellava deal and it's been worth every penny so far.  

Barkbox explains itself as "When you sign up for BarkBox, every month you will receive a box in the mail with four or more carefully selected products and presents for your dog – anything from toys, bones and all-natural treats to hygiene products and innovative new gadgets!"

Unfortunately, the dog has figured out that one of these boxes is for her and now stands excitedly over every box, every month.  It's a fight to take these picture

I think some of you thought I was exaggerating--I wasn't.  This is what happens when I try to take the pictures.


Item 1: P.L.A.Y. Clam Toy

"Hand crafted with a double layer exterior and inverse cross-stitched joins to ensure extra durability..."

My take: It's cute but sort of a generic toy.  It has a nice sqeaker but I wish I had gotten the giant squid and not the clam.  I don't even know what the giant squid looks like but I bet it's more interesting.

Verdict: Keep and add to the 10000000 toys the dog already has

Value:  $10


Item 2: Loopies Corduroy Whale Toy

"...This plush and cuddly whale will become fast friends with your pup..."

My take: How much can you say about a squeaky toy that looks like a whale?  The dog loves it though.  She's currently fighting me for both of them because she doesn't like them on my lap.

Verdict: Keep.  All these New England-y and PNW toys are going to make my dog feel high-end!

Value: $10


Item 3: Mr. Barksmith's Pina Colada Smoothie

"Each treat is made from human-grade food ingredients, is wheat, gluten, and dairy free, and can be enjoyed room temperature or frozen"

My take: Your dog treats and food don't need to be gluten-free and we can talk about that more if you want to but the dog does really like frozen treats.  I'll tell you from experience--this is not a "before bed" treat because it will make your animal have to pee.

Verdict: I've gotten this before and the dog loved it, so obviously keep.

Value: $2

Item 4: Think!  Dog Louisiana Crab Jerky

".USA made and sourced from sustainable family farms and fisheries in Louisiana, these crab and alligator jerky treats are wheat, corn and soy-free,.."

My take: You know my take on the ingredients.  Also, most farms in this country are family farms but whatever.  A good way to differentiate yourself in an over-saturated market

Verdict: They smell absolutely awful but the dog not only ate it right down but is sniffing the ground to see if she missed any.

Value: $7 

Item 5:  PetSSafe Indigo Triple Chews

"Grain-free but taste-FULL (their emphasis) These indigo tripe chews combine immune boosting antioxidants, a satisfying teeth-cleaning chew, AND a deliciously moist probiotic filling that promotes digestive heath.  No artificial colors preservatives on these chewy delights--the blue tint is provided by the scrumptious blueberries used in the recipe."

My take: No use beating a dead horse about ingredients but the dye thing does matter--especially if you've ever had to clean up dye-full vomit from a light color carpet.  These are SOLID treats.  They are more like Greenies than Milk-Bones, if you get my drift.  The dog doesn't seem sure about it, she's not going after it like she hasn't eaten in 6 months like she normally does.

Verdict: I don't see myself buying these again but she can enjoy them for now.

Value: $10

All in all, about $39 or so for about $18-$29 depending on how many months you sign up for.  Pretty good deal and the dog is getting much more variety in treats than she would get if I was randomly buying them at the grocery store.

Another month?  Absolutely.  I love never having to buy treats and trying all the new items.

To join Barkbox: Click here to get 10% off of your first Barkbox.

CODE:  Click the above link and get your first for 10% off

As always, swap on my Pinterest page, so if you want to buy any of the stuff that didn't quite trip my trigger, email me!



Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Popsugar: June

Popsugar Must Have boxes:  "Every day we are pitched hundreds of new products. We love testing them all out and sharing our favorites with our readers.

For over five years, our editors and I have been reporting about our monthly must haves. Now we'll curate the very best in home, fashion, and beauty and send them right to your door.

Imagine getting an awesome surprise present every month, full of fun products for you to enjoy!"

The unveiling--and remember, if you want beautiful pictures, you've came to the wrong blog.  These pictures are what's going to happen when you actually open your box, assuming you aren't the Martha Stewart type.  And if you are, I bow in your direction. (I know I say this every post but it bares repeating).

The box:


Item 1:  Emily Giffin's "The One and Only"

"Thirty-three-year-old Shea Rigsby has spent her entire life in Walker, Texas—a small college town that lives and dies by football, a passion she unabashedly shares. Raised alongside her best friend, Lucy, the daughter of Walker’s legendary head coach, Clive Carr, Shea was too devoted to her hometown team to leave. Instead she stayed in Walker for college, even taking a job in the university athletic department after graduation, where she has remained for more than a decade.
 
But when an unexpected tragedy strikes the tight-knit Walker community, Shea’s comfortable world is upended, and she begins to wonder if the life she’s chosen is really enough for her. As she finally gives up her safety net to set out on an unexpected path, Shea discovers unsettling truths about the people and things she has always trusted most—and is forced to confront her deepest desires, fears, and secrets.
 
Thoughtful, funny, and brilliantly observed, The One & Only is a luminous novel about finding your passion, following your heart, and, most of all, believing in something bigger than yourself . . . the one and only thing that truly makes life worth living."

My take: It looks like a book I'll like but I certainly wouldn't have bought it in hardback form.  It's certainly popular--I saw it on a main display in Barnes and Noble this weekend.

Verdict: Read and then trade or give away (I'm a big fan of trading books, I love PaperbackSwap, if you are interested in joining, let me know and I'll send you a link!).

Value:  $28 (I'm using the Popsugar booklet for all my prices in this one)



""The key to the future is anticipation. I’s getting there before everyone else. It’s not just solving the problem in front of you but also what’s after it. In this day and age, it is not enough to understand where we are. We have to know where we are heading.
Native Union was founded on this principle. Formed in 2009 to provide solutions to the challenges of the digital age, we had one goal: to make life simpler in a rapidly changing world.  Our biggest investment has always been in our people. Native Union consists of a pool of creative designers and engineering talent from all over the world who are passionate to deliver only the best products to our customers.
At every stage, from concept to execution, we ensure the level of quality is consistent. Improving lives through technology is not an easy task and we take pride in providing the best product experience. Through great design, we strive to bring communication back to how it should be: simple and enjoyable.
Who we are is a result of our core values: innovation and design. Part of our job is to figure out what you need before you do. We believe that the future is not something you wait for.  It is something you create." (I've resized this but it's all from the website).
My take: I'm starting to fall in love with this cable/charging station.  Considering my iPhone and iPod are constantly running out of charge, this is an exciting product, and once you take off 10% for being a new customer and the $15 off, it's pretty cheap.

Verdict: KEEP and use before I forget about it.

Value:  $15

Item 3: Turkish-T beach towel

 (This is for the tie-dye version of this beach towel but they seem similar).  "An alternative to the standard striped Turkish towel, the Basic Breeze Tie-Dye towel serves as a sophisticated, stylish bath sheet and beach wrap. Lightweight and quick-drying, this semi-sheer, 100% Turkish cotton towel makes the ideal beach sarong, dress, and shawl.  As the summer temperature rises, the brightly-colored, hand dyed Tie-Dye Breeze is certain to keep you cool and comfortably covered.

My take:  I can always use new headphones, especially for working out, and I like that these have 3 sets of earphones and a microphone.  They come in like 5 colors if you hate the green but I think it's okay.

Verdict: Not sure yet.  I want to be a beach person but I'm almost never at a beach.  I hate coverups.  This might go to my cover-up loving friend.

Value:  $32

(This isn't the same one but gives you an idea of a Turkish towel):



Item 4: Sachajuan Shiny Citrus Body Lotion

"After a long day under the sun, your skin needs hydration.  Using Swedish oats, this lotion reduces the appearance of wrinkles and calms irritation--keeping your skin replenished all summer long"

My take: Undecided.  I, obviously, don't tan.  But I do want to start using night cream.  So we will see.  It certainly smells great.

Verdict: Unsure

Value:  $24



Item 5:  You Smell Lemon Wet Wipes

"Finding time to freshen up just got easier.  These naturally antibacterial wipes are not only durable, but also gentle.  Throw these in your bag before your endless adventures ahead."

My take: These are going straight in the gym bag.  I will report back but I like the idea of adult wet-wipes.  And they are certainly cheap enough.

Verdict: KEEP

Value:  $6


Item 6:  Lollies Basic Hair Ties

"Spruce up your ponytail instantly with Lollies.  Made from swimwear fabric, they'll look cute on your wrist, and we love that these braided ties don't stretch over time like your average hair bands"

My take: If these actually work like they say, they would be like magic.  I hate the stretching of hair bands and I constantly do have one on my wrist (as does every woman with long hair).  I'm happy to give these a try.  And the $8/3 isn't a terrible price.

Verdict: KEEP

Value:  $8

Item 7:  One potato, Two potato chips

These are pretty much fancy kettle potato chips with a Hawaiian BBQ flavor.

My take: FINALLY a food item I will actually try.  I like potato chips and they sound tasty.

Verdict: KEEP

Value:  $2




All in all, about $115 worth of stuff for about $39.95 for the normal box. 

Another month?  I really love Popsugar.  If I had to give up all other boxes, this would be the one I would keep.

To join Popsugar: Click here You won't regret it!


CODE:  Use REFER5 for $5 off your first box!!

As always, swap on my Pinterest page, so if you want to buy any of the stuff that didn't quite trip my trigger, email me!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Barkbox: June

Barkbox!  I love my Barkbox.   I managed to get my first month at a hellava deal and it's been worth every penny so far.  

Barkbox explains itself as "When you sign up for BarkBox, every month you will receive a box in the mail with four or more carefully selected products and presents for your dog – anything from toys, bones and all-natural treats to hygiene products and innovative new gadgets!"

Unfortunately, the dog has figured out that one of these boxes is for her and now stands excitedly over every box, every month.  It's a fight to take these pictures.
See that first toy?  The one facing us that looks like it might be a monkey?


Here is the other side (ignore the mess, this has been a month of extreme housecleaning):



This toy actually has no head at all.  It's just a baboon ass.  It's extremely disturbing.  And the dog LOVES it.  It's currently her favorite toy.

So, 
Item 1:The original Silly Bums (Nuthin' butt fun for your dog) (yes, it really says that)

"
  • Unique plush dog toy made with soft fur and enticing crinkle material
  • Also includes a squeaker inside
  • Suitable for any breed of dog"


My take: So, it appears that it is difficult to find this baboon toy in the US so I included a link to what I feel is equally inappropriate, a beaver.  The prices are all over the board.  I wish the dog didn't like this toy but she does so...

Verdict: ::Sigh:: Keep.

Value:  $7.99?





Item 2: Pet Qwerks Toys plush frog

It's a plush frog that is surprisingly difficult to find an actual description of.  It squeaks, there isn't a whole lot to say about it.

My take: Cute, squeaky, the dog likes it.  But not as much as that ass-toy.

Verdict:  Keep

Value:  $11?  Another hard one to figure out.

Item 3:  Healthy Dogma Blissful Banana Crisps

"
  • Banana Crisp Treats are all natural and healthy for your dogs
  • These are great as a training treat and can easily be broken into smaller pieces
  • Banana Crisps make a great energy snack and are easy on tummies"

My take: The first time I gave a banana crisp to the dog, she looked at me like "Where is my real treat?"  She now will eat them but I wouldn't say she loves them.

Verdict: Keep but I'm not buying these again.  Quit thinking about what you want to eat when you buy your dog treats (dried banana) and buy what the dog would actually like (liver treats).

Value:  $11.87


Item 3:  Primal freeze-dried beef liver snacks.

My take: The dog really likes them so they seem to be a winner.

Verdict: Keep.

Value:  $4.99? These don't appear to be sold anymore?  The turkey liver ones are everywhere though and I think they'd be similar.  Probably better but that's mostly because I don't like beef liver (the dog does, though, and that's what really matters).


All in all, about $35.85 or so for about $18-$29 depending on how many months you sign up for.  Pretty good deal and the dog is getting much more variety in treats than she would get if I was randomly buying them at the grocery store.

Another month?  Absolutely.  I love never having to buy treats and trying all the new items.

To join Barkbox: Click here to get 10% off of your first Barkbox.

CODE:  Click the above link and get your first for 10% off

As always, swap on my Pinterest page, so if you want to buy any of the stuff that didn't quite trip my trigger, email me!


Fancy box: June

Fancy box time!  I love my Fancy boxes!  

"Fancy in full effect. Get your Fancy fix at home with our monthly subscription service featuring a collection of some of the most fancy'd items, curated by the fancy community. Each box includes $80.00+ of products in the categories of your choice."  

This is not (to the best of my understanding) a themed crate, although you get to decide what three things interest you the most (women's, men's, home, media, gadgets, and kids).  They have about a dozen curated versions and you can google other reviews of those but they've never interested me.  No, Fancy dragged me in once I got 2 amazing mystery boxes.  Fancy is $39 a month and I just learned while writing this that you can return one item a month if you don't like it!  I did it last month with that shirt and it totally worked, no problem.  Fancy is a great company to work with (I'll go into that in detail later).




"A comfortable and secure fit, designed to meet the needs of extreme athletes, will satisfy all users and nations. The Active GelsTM ear-buds are a super soft, lightweight design offering a secure and comfy fit for all ears. The fit difference is as dramatic as the sound."

My take: I can always use new headphones, especially for working out, and I like that these have 3 sets of earphones and a microphone.  They come in like 5 colors if you hate the green but I think it's okay.

Verdict: KEEP

Value:  $41.20 (most prices are taken from Amazon, although if I can't get them off Amazon I will get them off of other sources.  I find the little booklets that come with them aren't actually the sales price).






"This stylish bag is water resistant, versatile and durable. Folds easily into luggage, with Nylon webbing straps."

My take: Hate.  This reminds me of the 80's gym bags that I rejected when I was 8.  This sucker is getting returned this month.  Is there anyone who actually liked this?  It just feels cheap.

Verdict: Send back

Value:  $18 on Fancy





"MIZU x FANCY Stainless Steel Water Bottle
800 mL / 27 oz. single wall bottle with Mizu Icon Loop Cap.
Sport cap compatible.
18/8 food grade stainless steel.
Angled top for smooth flow.
NOT for hot liquids.
100% BPA FREE/100% Reusable & Recyclable/100% Cool."

My take: Hate.  I hate stainless steel drink containers because I think they make the water taste metallic and I hate the metal on metal sound to the degree that most people hate nails on a chalkboard.

Verdict: Trade/sell

Value:  $20 on Fancy



"If you love taking selfies at the gym, this is the t-shirt for you."

My take: First off, this is an incredibly obnoxious shirt.  That being said, I love it.  I love obnoxious workout clothes, which I feel I deserve, because I workout a lot.  But they sent me an XL!  I'm a small!  It was going to fall off of me!  So I complained about it on Twitter and somehow Fancy tracked me down and told me they are sending me one in my size.  What spectacular customer service!  Fancy has made a long-term customer out of me.

Verdict: Would have worn but been angry about the size issue but, happily, will have the right size.  Going to send the big one to a friend.

Value:  $28 on Fancy

All in all, about $108 worth of stuff for about $39 (plus shipping, I think). 

Another month?  This was not a terrific month but I loved 2 of the items which made it well worth it, and, again, Fancy is really easy to work with.

To join Fancy: Click here!  You won't regret it!


CODE:  None that I can find for Fancy

As always, swap on my Pinterest page, so if you want to buy any of the stuff that didn't quite trip my trigger, email me!