Thursday, April 28, 2016

RiverTree Life Essential oil gear review and giveaway

RiverTree Life sent me the following products to review. Rivertree Life is a family-owned business in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.  They have a love for essential oils and wanted to enjoy with attractive bottles, accessories, tubes and storage. In my quest for healthier living, I find that the neat bottles help me use the concoctions that I make.

Here is an overview of my first thoughts after opening the package.

The masculine poly lables are weatherproof and a great way to label your products! I wish I had some other styles now. All 110 (2 sheets) are peel and stick. You can use them on any container to label your blends. I used a permanent marker (sharpie). They are not meant for laser or ink jet printers. The labels measure about 1” tall and 1.5” wide. To insure a good adhesion, wash and dry hands prior and give the bottles/containers a quick wipedown.

Set of 3 Blank 10 ML Brown Amber Roll on bottles - I learned something new about the amber bottles. The amber color protects against UV rays and helps your product last longer. Awesome!! The 10 ml bottles are the perfect size for your purse or diaper bag. My daughter keeps one of these filled with a focus blend. She applies it in the morning before school. We have it in a pouch in a seat cover on the back of the seat in my car. She loves having her own bottle. This is great to empower and teach kids about healthy living and promote conversation. The lid screws on and is plastic.

Set of 3 Yasmine 10 ML Brown Amber Roll on bottles. These are the same as their blank brown amber bottles with gorgeous gold metallic printed on the bottle in 3 designs. It has a stainless steel roller ball. After using other brands, I find the stainless steel the best choice in most brands. These allow for even application of your oil product.

Aluminum and Glass refillable essential oil Personal Nasal inhaler. Here is a previous review as well.
I have actually done a review of this before and I find it very helpful. It is great in warm areas like a docking station at your desk if you can’t plug a diffuser in, or in a car. I find this additional use very helpful to help reduce anxiety in situation where you cannot use traditional means. This also makes it to where you don’t have to make it obvious that you are using it. These are the Mink Brown and light purple.

Here is an infographic from RiverTree Lifes website.

I wanted to make sure to remind you, when making blends that you apply (such as with these rollers) make sure you always use a carrier oil.

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Monday, April 25, 2016

True citrus review

I'm terrible at drinking water. Not the mineral water or naturally flavored water, but the plain fluid that courses through our veins comprising 80% of our body.  I try to squeeze lemon and lime into a water bottle and keep it portable. However mid-day I get the visions of infomercials showing how hard it is to squeeze a lemon on the go. Yes, you can just cut a lemon and squeeze, but who wants to keep a knife and lemon in their purse?

Queue True Citrus products. I initially tried true lemon, true lime, and true grapefruit a few years ago and it was simply crystalized lemon, lime and grapefruit. I do remember my water consumption increasing exponentially.

In this sample pack I received their true lemonade, raspberry lemonade, orange mango, summer berry, watermelon fresca and black cherry limeade.

These are made with  all natural stevia and sugar. My verdict is still out on Stevia and I do limit my sugar intake, but these are great for those REALLY hot days that are coming up! I added one packet to a batch of black tea and that was fantastic! Nice and refreshing in water as well.  The packets have between up to 30 calories and 6g of sugar, however I only use a half packet per glass.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Vermitek Worm Farm Review

Vermitek sent me an ITower to review. VermiTek designs, manufactures, and distributes multiple items from Worm Compost Bins and Bokashi Compost Kits to barrels and gardening accessories.  
The Itower Accessories includes: 1 thermometer, 1 coconut brick, 1 coconut fiber mat, 1 fertilizer cup, 1 worm bed handling claw, 1 scraper, 1 tong, 1 pc of working tray support board, and 1 user's manual

Little Crazy Life decided she wanted to start a worm farm for her summer project. I figured this is an awesome project for her and dad. LOL. I am learning A LOT about worms, and this will be fantastic for her as well as my feeble attempt at gardening.

The coconut fiber mat reduces fruit flies from the feedings.  A plastic board on the bottom supports the working trays. Using this prevents the worms from dropping out of the working tray.

Step one is to place the legs into the base, step 2 is to put the spigot on the front of the unit. From there you put the support board for the working tray, and one tray.

We soaked the coconut fiber in water, and then lightly mixed in newspaper scraps.
 We then added the worms (we purchased from Uncle Jims) and covered with newspaper, sprayed with water, and then put the coconut mat on top.

After we topped with damp newspaper we layed down the the coconut mat and put the lid (pictured on the left).

We now have the Itower into the garage and checked on it every two days. After three to four weeks we are now feeding them food scraps every other day or so. In three months they will double in count. Looks like we might have to buy another one of these next summer!

I love not wasting all our food scraps! There are many of their products and accessories are made from recycled materials. 

The iTower is the third generation in the Worm Compost Bin series. It contains the basic features of the VermiHut and iHut with additional features. There is an elevated tray that allows more air flow. This is an increase of 25 times the air flow.
New features lowers the worm bed temperature several degrees lower than VermiHut and Worm Factory for those in warm,  humid conditions. 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Nick Sticks Snack Sticks review and giveaway

Nick sticks sent me some of their meat snacks to try.

I’m not a huge fan of meat snacks or processed food in general. Perhaps during the apocalypse only if I needed to eat. I'm a huge proponent of eating real food.  That being said, I do keep emergency snacks in the car.

With the weather warming up I need to switch items that are shelf stable and won’t be a mess. Each day If we are out for extended periods of time I pack a small cold bag with snacks and water.

Things I LOVE about Nick Sticks is they are 100% grass fed and free range beef and free range turkey!

·         No MSG
·         No Nitrates
·         No Antibiotics
·         No Hormones
·         No Sugar
·         No Red Dye
·         No Gluten
Did you know that the industry standard don’t require snack sticks to label red dye as an ingredient? I didn’t know that! With so many food sensitivities these days, it is important to know whats in our food.

If you want to know more about Nick, check out their page.

He’s from Iowa, has a year of culinary training, cancer survivor and look at that adorable family!Nick Sticks supports the fisher house. It’s a private-public partnership that supports the military in their time of need! How incredible to give back to the soldiers and their families in their time of need. As a military family, this is awesome to know that companies care

Enter to win!
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Saturday, April 16, 2016

Hard Candy Fierce Effects Lipstick Review

Hard Candy Fierce Effects Lipstick This is a line that is geared to be daring. It has highly pigmented lip color paired with a great smell and very soft texture.  To me it smells like berries. The product feels very light on your lips and has argan oil to help moisturize and adds a little shine.

Here is the unboxing video. I try to do some of the videos without reading up on the product to give you my first impression.
It comes in 18 colors. The colors pictures appear to be sly-lac and heart breaker. My oldest claimed these lipsticks FAST. She actually likes to put one color on each lip and then mix the two colors.  The colors are beautiful, but not for a middle aged woman. ;)

I think my favorite colors from the swatches on paper are galacticaprowler, glisten to me, and Nudist.

These are exclusively at Walmart and run right around $5. 

Friday, April 15, 2016

Nonda IHere 3.0 review

Nonda has sent me the iHere 3.0 Rechargeable Bluetooth Key Finder . You can find the manual here.

The IHere is a triangle about the width of most of my keys. It has a center button on one side, a small pinhole for a red/green light, a speaker and a charging port.  The top of the triangle is open to attach to your keys.  Nonda previously sent me the Zus which you can read about here.

Once you download the app and pair with your smartphone you can see the available options. There is a separation alarm which will set the IHere beeping if it’s out of range from the smart device. This could be useful with young kids or those with special needs. The alarm is connected to your smart device so if you walk a specific distance from your IHere, it will beep. If you are like me, you have a set space for your keys. You should be able to turn this separation alarm off.

When you look at the app you see a few options; Call phone, take selfies, car finder, and voice recorder. Below those options there are the words FIND and CLICK. The find option will actually find the last recorded location of the item it is attached to. We have had this for about a month now and switched it back and forth between our keychains.

It really holds up well and the battery life seems quite impressive. I suppose that is also due to the few key features it is able to do. The car finder is one of my favorite features as it can be difficult to remember things when you have kids. Like, you know, your name or what day of the week it is. ;)

Its not a huge issue for me, but I have read that people prefer a smaller button on the device as well as something other than a USB charger. To me neither are a huge drawback. I like the simplicity of this product.

In 2015, nonda won "The fastest growing startup" and "The best 10 smart hardwares" from SVACE and SVIEF, respectively; and in early 2016, two of nonda's products, ZUS smart car finder & USB car charger and Hub+ won iF design Awards.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

The company Store comforter review

The Company Store sent me their Full/Queen St. Tropez reversible TCS Down Free comforter in Ginger/Walnut. I honestly was expecting the same quality I get at the department stores. I was wrong, and will be updating our master. I absolutely love the patterns they have in their sets and after all we spend so much time in our beds, why wouldn’t I? I'm curious to see if this promotes better sleep now.

The color is gorgeous and matches our room perfectly. I love how the quilting pattern keeps the down in place. The cotton shell has a 232 thread count and has a complementary color on the other side. This is great to change up your room during different seasons.  This is the lightest weight comforter in their product line, so you can use it all year. It is available in both 500-550 fill power TCS® Down or TCS® Down-Free™ polyfill, a hypoallergenic alternative. I have allergies, so the down free version is perfect for me. However, for those that prefer down, there is a 6 step quality process to ensure the down used is hypoallergenic.

We do our best to not use chemicals in our house and I love that this comforter is Oeko-Tex® certified. This means the shell is free of all harmful substances and chemicals. The St Tropez also has corner loops that attach to the corner ties in our duvet covers to hold it in place. It is machine washable and has a lifetime guarantee.

We have a queen bed and this is the queen/full size. I think I would prefer the King size as it gives a bit more length on the sides. Other than that I have no issues with the product itself. It is a great product and looks great as a top comforter.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Redmond products Review

 Redmond Trading sent me a selection of products to review. I am always for looking for alternative products without chemicals.

Earthpaste is different  than your typical toothpaste. Its not overly sweet or filled with chemicals and additives. I love that. We are very picky about the products we use and try to buy as natural as possible. One thing I noticed when brushing my teeth is that is feels different. I can’t explain the feeling other than clean with no chemical aftertaste. After an entire day at work (complete with eating, drinking tea/water), my teeth still feel amazingly clean. Mr Crazy Life doesn’t care for it as much, but I love it.

The lemon Earthpaste is made with Purified Water, Food Grade Redmond Clay, Xylitol, Redmond Sea Salt, Essential Oil (lemon, lemon verbana, tangerine and lime). This line of product was originally made due to the lack of a natural toothpastes that they loved. Most brands of toothpaste contain foaming agents. Our family tries to eliminate products like SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate). In reading RedMond Trading website I found that chemicals like titanium dioxide to make the paste bright white. I don’t care if my products look appealing if they are made to work with natural ingredients.

There are a few salt products.  I was given was the Real salt shaker , Organic seasoningsgarlic and seasoning salt. These have great flavor , so I'm not sure if its any better than other product, but I do enjoy the flavor. Real Salt is real, authentic salt that is Unrefined. It contains naturally-occurring minerals,. Mineral analysis can be found on their site.

Bath salt plus contains naturally occurring minerals and is unrefined. It is sourced from an ancient dead sea and has a higher concentration of minerals than many other brands. One thing that I love is that it is mined in the USA.  There are no added ingredients, fillers, or scents, just 100% natural minerals. There are at least 60 naturally occurring minerals. Our bodies need all trace minerals to function without disease so this may be helpful for many people. Especially considering the fact that our food now is void of many minerals and nutrients due to multiple factors.

Redmond Mineral Clay has been used for thousands of years for home remedies prior to modern medicine. According to their site Geologically, Redmond Clay is volcanic ash that was deposited in sea water approximately 150 million years ago. Technically, Redmond Clay is a swelling-type sodium bentonite. Redmond Minerals brings this “clay of a thousand uses” to market in its natural state with no additives, chemicals or preservatives. Its very minimally processed with being crushed and screened. There are no studies that indicate if Redmond Clay is effective in curing any ailment, so please do your research. You can use the clay externally by mixing with water to create a gel that’s the consistent with mustard. You can use it directly on the skin for bee sting, mosquito bite, boil, and spider bites just like you would baking soda/water. If left on the skin uncovered it will dry out and you will feel it draw and pull. You can use this for facial for acne, pimples, or minor cuts, leave it on until it is almost dry and then remove. This would be the same as the facial mud which is the clay and purified water. You can also prepare a Pre-mixed ready to use gel by mixing water and clay in a 2:1 ratio and shake/stir. In 3-4 hours the clay will activate and you can keep in a non metallic container. If it becomes thick just add water and mix. Redmond Trading also suggest internal uses such as a spoonful in water/juice. I don’t know much about ingesting this product, so please do your research prior. I imagine it would be much like taking a charcoal pill or reducing your body ph to help with acidity, sour stomach or food poisoning. I will have to do more research on this before recommending for myself. Everyone is different in their needs so you will have to make that decision.


Earthcure soap is a natural glycerin soap. This particular product is made from distilled water, coconut oil, olive oil, vegetable glycerin, castor oil, jojoba oil, peppermint essential oil and spearmint essential oil.

Natural soap customers appear to have a common issue with soaps being too drying. My hands have been VERY dry with all the weather changing to spring. My hands have been suffering the most. Earthcure has a slight tingle after use and appears to keep my hands softer without harsh chemicals. I haven’t researched much in regards to the world of glycerin, but we all need to make our own choice based on what is best for us. For me, this product seems to really work. My hands don’t feel tight and dry.  

Facial Mud -   Pre-hydrated Redmond Clay in a convenient tube, ready to apply as a natural, cleansing facial mask.  
Overall I really like these products. However I am not in love with them. That comes my personal choice of not using items from the sea. For those who do not care about that, this will probably be  perfect products for you.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Kapoosh hex connex knife block review

The Cherry Red Hex-Connex Tall Knife Caddy is what is pictured here.

These add a splash of amazing color to your kitchen. Who would have known knife storage could be so pretty!? These caddies have Kapoosh flex rods which shape and conform to the shape of the utensil that is placed inside. Correct, It doesn’t have to be a knife!  The Hex rods are removable and top rack dishwasher safe and wont chip or dull knives. The hex connect has nonskid rubber feet.
These really help clean up your prep surface and organize your knives in a way that helps you. There are no predrilled holes that only fit certain knives. I love that all my small knives fit into the small block allowing my scissors and larger knives their own compartment.

They slide into eachothers grooves and lock in. Hex-Connex comes in Short or Tall. Hex-Connex short stores knives with blades up to 5 inches long. Dimensions: 3” L x 3” W x 5” H.
Hex-connect tall can hold blades up to 8 inches long. Dimensions: 3” L x 3” W x 8.5” H

this is the bottom view.

This is a fun addition to the kitchen. I would like to see a taller one that fit my longer knives though. Something that could go in the back of these three with a complimentary pop of color. I would love to see a tall one in teal behind the current three.

Monday, April 4, 2016

Loopy Cases review and giveaway

Loopy cases has sent me 2 loopy cases for review.

Meet Loopy, the first case that can stop the drop. This case is the brainchild of three brothers who have been working on the case for three years.  I was fairly skeptical that this case would be as comfortable or as useful as they say.  I was WRONG.

Phones are indeed getting larger and larger. When you add a case to it they seem monstrous. They are bulky and hard to hold, especially as a parent juggling purses, diaper bags, kid stuff and sport bags.

Install of the Loopy is a breeze. Simply slide your phone down towards the bottom of your case and snap in to the corners. EASY! There is a slight bulge in the back from where the loop for your finger is. Not a real big deal in the long run. Your finger will be slightly bent while holding your phone.

The case itself has a crack and chip resistant dual layer of TPU protection. The front half is made from a shock absorbent wrap around bumper. This also is over the buttons of the phone which allows for easy access and doesn’t inhibit the use of the buttons. Another thing I find helpful is the small lip around the front of the phone. It creates a space between the screen of your phone and the counter you set it on, protecting the phone from scratches.
The loop will lay mostly flat but when I set my phone down on the backside it typically lays down like I’m propping it up to watch a video. This has actually made it convenient for me to watch a video in the kitchen while cooking. I didn’t know that until I went to the website to do the review. Its called a kickstand. NICE!
The loop actually allows you to use one hand (left or right handed loopy) to reach all areas of your screen. I have used mine successfully in both hands without issues. I like that the loop can be made bigger or smaller based on your hand size just by pulling on the loop before install. The smaller you make the loop, the more loop will be under your case against the phone. I suppose you could trim the loop if your hands are super small, but make sure to leave enough that loopy doesn’t pop out of your case. This could send your phone flying. Don’t blame me if this happens. Its just an observation and the company doesn’t say anything about that (total disclaimer on my part)!
I personally have used it to grab my phone and keys in one hand. I simply slip my finger into the loop like I’m going to use my phone. With a quick flip the phone is on the back of my hand allowing me to have both hands available. Over the past few days I have also noticed I don’t have to use my pinky finger to support the weight of the phone. This also reduces fatigue of my hand. Yes, I suppose I could use my phone less. However when I'm scrolling through articles during downtime that’s when I find fun reviews and giveaways for you! My phone has become my primary way to find items for the blog, and I dare not deprive you all!

I don’t forsee any issues with the case breaking or chipping. The case is pretty flexible and sturdy. If you have kids it is important that there is a lifetime warranty, just in case.

One thing I do love about having the loopy is it protects your phone while being active. I would love to see a slightly textured or rubbery case for better grip for the more active people.

Overall, I am pleasantly surprised at the functionality of the Loopy. I had very high hopes for it, but was a bit skeptical. Now I can tell you how amazing it is!


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Sunday, April 3, 2016 review  sent me this product to review.  I was intrigued with its suggested uses.

Here is what I received in the package.

You can use this as a hoodie pillow as seen in my first photo. This would be good for walking the dog in the cold and keeping your body heat in. For me this is more about function than fashion. I used stock photos due to having a hard time getting good pictures due to lighting.      

Check out their videos!  

Scarf Hoodie Cushion, shield noise, headset placement,observe vibration.

This shows you how it looks over your head. It just looks like a hoodie.  See the earbud drawstrings?

Scarf Hoodie pocket, your phone, your music,your audiobook.

In this picture the Napper is used as a scarf with earbuds. The earbuds are part of the drawstring.

Scarf Hoodie folded, easy to carry, use as a pillow.

You can also fold the Napper into a pouch while traveling. It can hold items while functioning as a pillow. 

Scarf Hoodie pocket, your phone, your music,your audiobook.
When wearing it you can also let the Napper Hoodie hang down as pockets and put your ipod or phone in the pocket.

Scarf Hoodie Cushion, shield noise, headset placement,observe vibration.

You can see here that the pockets are extremely roomy.

              Scarf Hoodie pocket, your phone, your music,your audiobook.

To wash, just tie up in a loose knot and wash! I wouldn't recommend drying due to the earbuds.

Overall this could be very beneficial in the extra cold states or during fall and spring when out walking a dog, or going on a walk. For me, my arms and legs get colder than my head and hands. My mother in law, however, LOVES this. She uses this to take her dog out for walks and it keeps her much warmer.