5 great: things I've tried out lately

5 great: things I've tried lately {ecotools, NYC Color, Gold Elements, Belli, Cate McNabb}

5 great: things I've tried lately {ecotools, NYC Color, Gold Elements, Belli, Cate McNabb}

I have a huge pile of sample products that have been sent for review over the past month or so. I'm way behind at the moment (thanks to an annoyingly tedious injury that is keeping me from doing way too much), so I'm trying to pull out a few at a time to at least give them a mention until I can write them all up. Last week I did a group of items from the "child" pile, though really I use & love all of them myself. This set all have been pulled from the "big girl" pile, but my very favorite of them all, the first one below, is really one of the best things I've come across for my 5 year old daughter as well as myself.

 

ecotools styler + smoother hair brush

ecotools styler + smoother hair brush

ecotools styler + smoother hairbrush

This brush is amazing. I received it in an Influenster Vox box and I love it. It is the best brush I've tried out on my crazy, thick hair. It just glides right through and I have no doubt that if I hadn't brushed my hair in a week or two it would do just as well. Even better, it shoots right through my daughter's hair. She loves it so much I gave it to her. She's 5, hates to have her hair brushed and has the most willful tangles & knots. We've tried several detangling brushes that go nowhere on her, but this brush in unstoppable. And it's not even the detangler model. I really, really need to get one for myself. 

NYC New York Color Expert Last Lip Color

NYC New York Color Expert Last Lip Color is another Influsenter Vox Box find. NYC offers a full line of high quality cosmetics at a superbly low price. This super creamy, long lasting lipstick rings up at an amazing $1.99. The full line ranges from $.99 to $4.99, which is pretty amazing considering how great this lipstick is. 

gold elelemts d'or facial cream

gold elelemts d'or facial cream

Gold Elelemts D'Or Facial Cream

Gold Elements is a gold-based skin care line. They've sent me a sample of their D'Or Facial Cream to test out. I've already had a friend give it a try out and I hope to be do so as well soon. The cream preformed well in my quickie hand test, so stay tuned for a full review. This line is on the pricier side, but offers the benefits of gold to help nourish the skin and reduce signs of aging. See more about the full line on their website.

Belli Anti-Blemish Basic kit

Belli Anti-Blemish Basic kit

Belli Anti-Blemish Basic kit

When you're pregnant, your skin can do crazy things, and well, even when you're not it can still breakout well into adulthood. Belli has formulated a super safe product duo that fights breakouts even when you really can't use anything harsh or yucky, but you still want to fight those troublesome skin issues. It contains the Anti-Blemish Facial Wash (use as a cleanser or a mask) & the Acne Control Spot Treatment, which are formulated to be safe during pregnancy, breastfeeding and beyond. I received these samples just after I reviewed several other Bellis products that I LOVED and use daily. I haven't tried these out yet, but I have no doubt that they are great too. 

cate mcnabb cosmetics lipstick in "all pinned up"

cate mcnabb cosmetics lipstick in "all pinned up"

cate mcNabb cosmetics, everyday express collection

cate mcNabb cosmetics, everyday express collection

Cate McNabb Cosmetics

Fairly new, Cate McNabb Cosmetics debuted just last year and gives us certified cruelty-free, paraben-free, and socially conscious luxury cosmetics. I was thrilled to receive a few samples because those are all qualities that I look for in any skin care or cosmetics line. I'm wearing the Blood Orange lipstick right now and, not only does it match my scarf very nicely, it looks great. This long lasting lipstick contains shea butter, olive oil, jojoba oil, and sunflower oil and comes in a slew of lovely colors. 20 in fact. The full line includes all of the usual items for face, eyes & lips, as well as tools, but all are natural, mineral based, cruelty-free and fabulous. Price are kept low and the collections also offer a great value. 

**Samples of all of these products were provided for review purposes

The Doctor, Part 33

I feel good,
I get scared shitless,
I feel really good,
bouncing on my toes,
eyes forward,
faking with hints,
feints,

I feel good,
really good,
ready to get torn up
just like last time,
probably
a little worse,

I get scared shitless
when I start to feel good again
because
it means
I have to go
back again,
that
it’s Tuesday again,
the nurse, Jane,

Jane is going to stab me in the chest
gently
where the wristwatch is
with all that
poison
on top of the
poison
from the last time,

I feel good,
really good
today,
bouncing on my toes
under the flashing lights
getting ready
to go in again,
to take another
two weeks
of steady hits
before I feel good again.

 

The entire The Doctor series can be found here.

what's new at IKEA: Spring 2015

what's new at IKEA Spring 2015, SPRUTT collection

what's new at IKEA Spring 2015, SPRUTT collection

I've been trying to wait until I'd had a chance to visit IKEA to see some of the new items in person, but each and every week , my trip gets pushed back. Between my messed up leg and our even more messed up weather, I'm giving up on waiting just in case I suddenly find us in the middle of June before I get this done. There's lots of new stuff that's been arriving in February with the Summer items continuing to pour in through March. I've already mentioned the new kitchen line, SEKTION, so I'll move right on into a selection of my current favorites that are already in the store and then write up the rest, including some great new items for outdoors (like the HINDÖ greenhouse cabinet), when I finally get to make to huge 15 minute drive to IKEA myself and check it all out in person. New collections include SPRUTT & NORNAS, as well as the new bedroom collections, OPPLAND & ASKVOLL. I touched on a few new items in the SEKTION post, including RISATORP, RIMFORSA (love them both, especially the RISATORP utility cart), but there's lots more that new both in & out of kitchen, including linens, dinnerware, a stylish tape dispenser & pair of scissors, beds, dressers, lighting, bathroom items, storage items, including a lovely yellow backed BILLY bookcase, card games, some awesome new knobs & pulls, and a slew of fabulously awesome tables. Oh, And there's lots more than what you see here. 

{click for larger images}

 

All images via IKEA

Kids' Books: Kid Code

Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

Our kids have had a great love for video games for some time, beyond even just playing them. They have developed an interest in not just talking about them but also in thinking of them in terms of creating their own, and in learning how computers work, so when we had the chance to look at Coding for Kids by Camille McCue, they were very excited, especially our 7 year old. Coding For Kids is set up with escalating projects designed to engage children and help introduce them to the concept of coding as a language of action (as well as learning to create games and apps). As well, the book comes with a link to a free 30 day trial version of Microworlds EX, which the kids use to do their coding projects.

doing a coding lesson with Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

doing a coding lesson with Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

The first project is the art toy project in which children learn to use basic code and built these commands into procedures and then create buttons to program the procedures to have a turtle draw designs. After helping our 7 year old to get started, he was able to follow the book on his own and work in Microworlds EX to to do the first project to program his turtle to draw spiro circles and spiro octagons  and other geometric designs along with changing the background colors and turtle colors and creating buttons for each procedure.

screen shot while codeing using Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

screen shot while codeing using Coding for Kids by Camille McCue

All in all, Coding for Kids is a great book to stoke the interest and imagination of your kids and introduce them a world that is full of possibilities. 

 

Coding for Kids by Camille McCue is out now from John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

 

 

 

 

A copy of the book was provided for review.

things we love: BoConcept

BoConcept

BoConcept

On Friday, we ran a sponsored post from BoConcept on their first film, THE CALL, starring Mads Mikkelsen, and after looking at all of that lovely BoConcept furniture in the film and on the website, I felt like focusing a bit more on the furniture itself. I love Danish design and I really love BoConcept. Not only are the designs, classic, timeless and sleekly modern, but the options make sure that you can find exactly what you want. For example, not only can you choose sizes, configuration and fabrics for the sofas, legs and armrest styles van be customized as well. And the option are nearly endless. You can easily customized designs using the 3D customization tool and find exactly what suits your needs. Oh, and everything is gorgeous too. Here are a few of my favorite pieces. 

The Doctor, Part 32

My friend loves me:
when he finds out
I’m sick
he offers me everything,
he
baitsandswitches
saying let’s have dinner,
brother,
with the others
and
like a good, crazy host
instead
lays out
cocaine
and
throws
hookers who try to
poke me
like my doctors,

the last two things I want
(I said yes
and
I said no,
don’t touch that
but you can rub my neck),

when I am done
telling everyone
high
how high
I love my wife,
high love,
more than ever,
my friend
rolls around with the girls,
sex trafficking
and we go to dinner in Chinatown
where the restaurant
is black and red and
reminds me of the club in Scarface,
The Babylon,
the coke makes me cold,
superaware
all I can smell
is gasoline as strong as the smell of iron
in blood
from the cocaine
process
and a little bit of perfume
is a girl
who told me and I didn’t believe her before I was done asking
her name
is Valery Nicole,
my stomach
trying to make the dumplings
into something good.

Sponsored post: BoConcept presents Mads Mikkelsen in THE CALL

BoConcept presents Mads Mikkelsen in THE CALL

BoConcept presents Mads Mikkelsen in THE CALL

I'm rather exited to be doing this sponsored post today from the gorgeously stylish BoConcept because it features one of my favorite actors and watching him in anything is always a treat. An exquisitely understated, yet supremely stylish treat. Premiering today, THE CALL is the first of 2 films created through the collaboration of 2 of my favorite Danish icons, the super stylish BoConcept & the amazing Mads Mikkelsen. You could really place Mads Mikkelsen anywhere and he'd look stylish, but place him in an amazingly designed and decorated villa in Valencia, Spain and you can't miss. The film features Mads, a "rehearsal" with a young actress, a voice on the phone & a misunderstanding while highlighting the BoConcept line with a focus on the Mezzo sofa & the Imola chair (shown above), all surrounded by the tantalizing atmosphere of the superb villa (owned and designed by BoConcept designer Morten Georgsen) and the gorgeous lights of the Valencia night. No matter how you feel about beautiful design or superb modern furniture, it is absolutely worth watching for Mr. Mikkelsen. And if you love design, it's an added treat. 

Everything in the film works together to present a sophisticated atmosphere and an impeccably designed lifestyle. And even Mads Milkkelsen has assistance pulling it all together for THE CALL.  BoConcept offers its own Interior Decoration service to help you find your own super sleek look. If you wants to live the Mads-BoConcept lifestyle shown in THE CALL, BoConcept is giving you a chance to win your own personal interior design service and BoConcept furniture valued at $5,000. Watch the video below for a link to the contest at the end. And come back on Monday for more about why I love BoConcept.

BoConcept presents Mads Mikkelsen in THE CALL 

BoConcept presents Mads Mikkelsen in THE CALL 

*This post has been sponsored by BoConcept. The video can also be viewed here