Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Dollar Shave Club - Update and how to save money on your subscription!

I've got a quick update for you on my Dollar Shave Club subscription.  I have been a happy customer since August 2014 using their 4X razor.  My sturdy razor handle has been working like a champ for the last 21 months and only this month did I have to finally replace it.  



Although the handle itself was doing just fine the small bit that you push forward to remove the blades disintegrated into a gummy/sticky goo.  So although I theoretically could have plodded on and used it longer I decided to call it and order a new one, at the low price of only $5 (plus s/h).  

Still an amazing deal and great quality, considering I used it multiple times a week for nearly 2 years!

While I'm updating I want to share another way to save with the Dollar Shave Club.  If you select every other month delivery with 2 refill packages instead of 1 refill package every month you'll get 1 month free!  To break it down:

A. 1 refill package $6 x 12 = $72 a year (normal subscription)
B. 2 refill packages $11 x 6 = $66 a year

So you save $6 a year and a few cardboard trees by going with option B.

The Dollar Shave Club has added quite a few new products since I first joined in 2014.  They have an entire line of men's beauty products ranging from shampoo to sunscreen.  They are very squarely aimed at men, both in design, types and scents.  

However, I did try the Big Cloud Wind Master Mint Lip Balm ($4 for one or $6 for two) and I love it.  My husband also likes it so I've been adding tubes to my regular orders.

On my last order I added the Wanderer Amber & Lavender body bar (2 come in a box).  I like this soap because it has a pleasant smell that is just right for my husband and me too.  

I'll update if we try any other Dollar Shave Club products!

For my prior reviews check out: 

Dollar Shave Club a Woman's Review
Dollar Shave Club not Just for Men

And to sign up pretty please use this link and I'll get a credit.  Thank you!

Monday, May 23, 2016

Lunchbox Love Notes


When I was growing up my parents often left little love notes in my lunchbox the size of business cards.  I remember feeling special and loved by receiving them and even saved a few all these years. :)

I've tried here and there to put notes in my daughter's lunchbox but it always seems that I don't have enough time in the mornings and I don't think to plan ahead.

So...I came up with this clever and easy hack the other morning that did the job and was a fun surprise for my daughter.



I simply used a sharpie pen and wrote little notes on the consumable packages in her box.  How great is that?  She was tickled and came home with a big smile on her face.

Now I want to keep putting paper notes in her lunch too, but this will do here and there too.  This is our last week of school for the year (she says= Yay, I say= Hmmm), so I've got the summer to prepare for notes next fall.

Let me know if you have any great ideas for lunchtime love notes!

Friday, May 20, 2016

Fisher Price Friday - Puppy and Playhouse

Our first stuffed vintage Fisher Price toy recently joined our little collection.  This is the Puppy and Playhouse #110 made between 1977-1980.  I purchased this little guy as a companion for my 4 year old to snuggle with while I recently recovered from surgery.  She is a huge dog fan and also loves carrying around purses/bags/any object that you put something in so it seemed like a perfect gift.

This dog was created the year I was born and my mother is convinced that we had one, although we haven't found proof yet (she's going to check our old slides).  I'll make sure to update if we find any photos!  


This particular toy was a unique addition for me since I avoid purchasing vintage toys that are new-in-box.  Since my kids will just play with them it seems a waste.  

However, I made an exception for this puppy because he was such a great price and I wanted a new condition stuffed animal for my daughter anyway.  Plastic and wood toys aren't such a big deal, but stuffed animals seem more hygienic when new if you KWIM. :)


Besides being new and clean another benefit of a brand new (yet almost 40 year old!!) toy is that it was a complete set.  The Puppy and Playhouse #110 set came with a stuffed dog, stuffed doghouse, plastic brush and a blue leash.

The little plush puppy has white hair with black spots, a black nose and black plastic eyes.  He/she is wearing a blue ribbon collar that doesn't come off. The inside of the puppy ears are made of pink felt.

Now onto the playhouse.  It is made of a foam backed fabric that is bright and oh-so-70's inside and out.  The inside of the house has a pocket (across the entire back) which holds the brush and leash.  

The front "door" fastens with velcro on the side of the house.  It has "puppy" printed on it.  Also lines that look like wood and a butterfly.

Each side has pictures of flowers, bees and butterflies.  There are lines in the roof and walls that resemble wood.  The top of the house has a orange loop for easy carrying.

The bottom of the house has a FP tag with the year (1977), toy number and the fact that it was made in Mexico.  The same tag is also found on the puppy dog.

The blue plastic brush and the leash are naturally the hardest pieces to find for this set, as they are easily misplaced.  My daughter didn't want her puppy to have a leash so I'm keeping it in a safe place for now. :)  The blue plastic brush says "Fisher Price Toys" on it.  The leash attaches to the puppy's blue ribbon collar with velcro.


My daughter LOVES her puppy dog who she named Fluffy.  She loves the dog house as much as the dog and I often find her carrying it around full of random "treasures".

It certainly has been a welcome addition to our little collection.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Rainbow Hedgehog Cactus


We have plants and trees that bloom here in Arizona despite the desert heat.  For example this lovely pink/purple bloom on our little Rainbow Hedgehog Cactus.  This small cactus creates these huge flowers that appear for only 3-5 days a year.  They open in the morning and close when the sun goes down.

 

This year our cactus started blooming on a week that we were home to enjoy it.  Only one flower popped out although two other "buds" were on the side.


The highest number of flowers that we've had on this little beauty is six.  This year we only had three.   One week after the single bloom went away the hedgehog cactus opened the other two buds.


These flowers are even prettier than the first one. :)  I wonder how many we'll get next year?

For our six bloom hedgehog cactus check out: 2014 - Cactus Bloom



Sunday, May 8, 2016

Happy Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day!  I know that this day can be wonderful for many but oh-so-painful for others.  Whether it is hard because you've lost your mother, are distant and have a strained relationship with her, are struggling with infertility or miscarriage or perhaps the loss of a child, many circumstances can make this day very difficult.  Please remember to be kind to those around you as you do not know what battles and losses they are grieving.

Mother's Day has been a bittersweet day for me over the years, thankfully mostly sweet and today I am celebrating my 10th Mother's Day as a mom.  Oh what joy I felt that Sunday back in 2007 knowing that I was finally pregnant with our first miracle baby!  

My First Baby Girl - 2007
My Second Baby Girl - 2011

How adorable are these two babies that made me a mother?


Two of those Mother's Days 2008/2012 (top left, middle left) were especially wonderful as those were the days we dedicated our baby girls in church.  Such joy!

Now that we are done having babies I am enjoying each Mother's Day watching my girls grow and cherishing the little gifts and reminders of how blessed I am to have my two beautiful girls!


One fun gift this year (that I had to, ahem, help pick out) is this awesome Good hYOUman tank top.  Yes, it's a bold statement but man, after birthing these two beauties, the sleepless nights, 2 years (each!!!) breastfeeding, carpooling multiple days a week to school, cooking hundreds of meals and all the laundry (including CLOTH diapers!!) I think I've earned it.  That and it is a reminder to keep giving them my best, even when it's oh-so-hard.  You feeling me, moms? :) 

Today is another bittersweet Mother's Day.  Sweet because I am able to spend the day with my wonderful mom but bitter because I am recovering at home and not feeling so great just yet.  I am very thankful to have my mommy here with me, don't moms just make everything better?

 

If you haven't met my mom you've missed out, she's amazing!  She's kind, patient, brilliant, funny, helpful and has the most amazing memory.  She's a natural caregiver and a retired nurse.  She's also a fun, engaging, loving, interested and invested grandmother.  Man, we're lucky!


Love you mom, you're the best!

Friday, May 6, 2016

Fisher Price Friday - Sick Leave


I'm taking a week (or two) off of my Fisher Price Friday.  I'm busy recovering and fortunately being taken great care of by my husband, girls and even my mom came to town!  


I'm lucky to have my own private nurse (my mom's a retired RN).

So happy Friday, see you soon!



For a closer look at the Play Family Children's Hospital #931 go here.


Monday, May 2, 2016

Girl's Room Makeover!

Back in January we finally disassembled my youngest (ah-hem 4 year old's) toddler bed/crib to make way for a bedroom makeover.  We got rid of all of the furniture in their bedroom since they were all part of a nursery set.  My oldest had been sleeping in a twin bed that was converted from a crib, and the dresser was a changing table/dresser combo.

After a couple weeks sleeping on the floor we had everything assembled and ready to use!  Here's the rundown on what we purchased.


I ordered their beautiful Bedz King white wood twin bunk beds off of Amazon after first seeing them in person at a friend's home.  They are solid wood and so far they seem very sturdy as well as beautiful.  We ordered sliding drawers to put underneath which hid away their dolls and stuffed animals.  That alone is SO so amazing to me!

The girls love the (removable) ladder although they also enjoy climbing up the sides like monkeys. 

We bought comforters at IKEA for only $19 each.  They're the Grusbald, ("cooler" of course since this is Arizona!).



Now before it looked so put together we were missing one mattress since we only had one to start.  I'd read that the bunk bed had low clearance between the top and bottom bunks, so I needed a 6 inch or less mattress.



We considered purchasing one through Amazon, but I decided to order a Natural Latex twin mattress instead.  We settled on Natural Latex becasue it is a safer, long lasting, natural alternative.  It is also made locally so I could pick up the mattress myself!  We know all about Natural Latex since my husband and I have been sleeping oh-so-happily on our King size mattress (from the same company, AZ Premium Mattress Company) for 6 years and counting!  It is heavenly, I hate traveling because I miss it so.



My youngest was so proud the first day we put her mattress on, she made the bed herself (before we got the comforter on).  Look at her happy face!



Last but not least we replaced the dresser (and mirror) with new furniture from IKEA.  I purchased a white Hemnes dresser and coordinating mirror.  Note that I got the regular white (lacquered pressboard/wood), not the white stain (painted pine) as I wanted it to match the bunkbed.

I have reached the magical age where it just isn't worth it to put together furniture anymore.  I may still like "some assembly required" pieces (and their lower prices) but that doesn't mean that I want to spend multiple hours sweating and swearing while trying to make it look right.  Fortunately my husband is on the same page with me on this one!

So instead I looked around on Craigslist and found a local company that quoted me a fair price to come and put the furniture together for us.

We decided that we'd made the right decision after it took two "furniture assembly professionals" a total of 5 hrs to put the dresser and bunk bed/drawer pieces together.  If it had been us it would probably have taken 10!  So for the sake of our marriage and sanity I know we made the right decision to pay someone else. :)



Worth every penny.

To see the bedroom before go here.
To see where my baby slept (in a closet) before the bedroom go here.