Petit Vour May 2015 review

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After canceling some subscriptions, there was a gap in deliveries for awhile and I was antsy for the next one. Happily, this one arrived over the weekend to satisfy my thirst.

Petit Vour is $15 per box (or as much as $30 for international subscribers) and comes with vegan beauty, skincare, and other personal care products. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program that earns you points towards free boxes (email contact@petitvour.com to say I referred you if you sign up!).

contents of petit vour may 2015 box with mun anarose toner, nyl organic shimmer scrub, lippygirl vegan lipstick, zabana essentials dry shampoo, and info card with pretty powerful theme petit vour may 2015 box info card with item details

MUN No. 11 Anarose rejuvenating rose toner – I’ve never seen a toner sample in one of these packets before, so I hope it isn’t too drippy. I should use more toner, so if I like this I might get the full size of it. Sometimes I can’t tell what all these different types of skincare items are for.

nyl. organic shimmer scrub – What a fun concept to make a sugar scrub glittery. I like that it will add a subtle enhancement to my skin and it smells amazing! This will make me very happy in my next bath. It’s just the right kind of thing for the summer. :)

LippyGirl Vegocentric vegan lipstick in Snog Me – I’d describe this shade as a sort of deep cranberry or raspberry. I like that it looks like any lipstick you’d get normally, but it doesn’t have that odd smell that non-vegan ones seem to have across the board. I’ve got a ton of lip products in rotation at the moment, so this pretty tube will have to wait.

Zabana Essentials shimmery dry glow shampoo – I love dry shampoo. This bottle is the perfect design to dispense it in little spurts and not giant globs. It’s going to be a shimmery summer since this also has a bit of glitter in it! I have two other dry shampoos I’m using so I’ll be adding this to the lot. This one will probably be the go-to fora day out in the sun.

Again, great curation to help us find cruelty-free products. I can’t believe they’ve only been around 2 years and I look forward to what else is to come. Which of these do you want too?

[This post mentions a referral program. Signing up and emailing contact@petitvour.com to say I referred you helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. :) All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

Kocostar Nail Therapy review

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I did a trade a long time ago where I got this Kocostar Nail Therapy treatment. They also do foot and hair therapy packs. When I finally got around to trying them, I was chillin’ on my computer at night. Check it out!

kocostar nail therapy treatment pack with info cardback of kocostar nail therapy treatment pack with info card

kocostar nail therapy treatment pack on fingers

At first I made a n00b move and tried to squeeze my fingers in at odd angles. Then I realized they were meant to be torn apart!

kocostar nail therapy treatment on fingers and being removed

Ah yes, that feels much better.

I let them sit on my fingers for well over half an hour. They smelled great and had a soothing blend inside. I loved that the exterior is plastic of sorts, so I could safely type and do things without rubbing gunk everything. It was a lot of fun just to rub my fingers against each other, since the covers are so smooth. When it came time to slip them off, my fingers were soft and felt great. I massaged the rest of the lotion into my fingers and it was like a mini spa for my hands. I don’t know if it strengthened my nails, but it certainly did soften my cuticles and leave my fingers feeling wonderful. If I saw these in a store I’d definitely get another set! I also want to try their foot treatment.

Reading speed test

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I just tried a reading speed test and scored 317 on the first try, then 357 on the second. I don’t think I’d read much faster than that without compromising comprehension. Not that I feel being particularly fast at reading is going to make a huge difference, but it’s a fun little test to try!

ereader test
Source: Staples eReader Department

Smokey’s adventures

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It’s been a busy night, so I’ll share a quick set of videos with you of life with our cat Smokey. She’s a finicky girl with some adorable quirks! First she enjoys climbing in one drawer and popping out another, second she tries to escape the scary sound of a dog after surgery on her tooth, and third she tries to walk off the anesthesia from the vet visit.

cat hiding in drawer from Mary Qin on Vimeo.

cat hiding from dog in kennel from Mary Qin on Vimeo.

cat walking off anesthesia from Mary Qin on Vimeo.

AdoreMe Daniele robe review

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After getting lingerie from AdoreMe, I discovered a ton of other things I wanted – namely swimsuits and evening wear. I’d played to win free money towards a purchase and ended up with a code that saved me $30! I decided to apply it towards the purchase of this nightgown, which was just the right combination of comfortable yet classy.

AdoreMe is just under $40 per store credit for intimates, sleepwear, or swimwear. Credits are charged monthly unless you choose to skip (which is very easy to do). Each month, bra and panty sets available in your size are selected for you in the showroom. You can always get other items at their VIP pricing of $40-50. They offer a referral program that earns you money towards purchases. Use my referral link to get your first outfit for $25!

adoreme daniele robe nightgown in black with white lace cuffs and soft belt

The Daniele robe.

Daniele

VIP: $39.95 (Regular: $49.95)
72 reviews, 5 stars
  • Mid-length robe
  • Belt tie closure
  • Rayon / Spandex

Wrap yourself up in our jet black Daniele, an exceptionally soft modal robe with ecru lace-trimmed cuffs! This drapey style puts a sophisticated spin on your everyday cover ups. Looks great over satin slips and colorful sleepwear.

This robe is sooo soft! It’s the perfect one to wear in spring and summer, as I begin to want more lightweight and cooling clothes. The lace accent at the wrists is a nice touch, making this an elegant look. I also like the length of the robe, which extends just above my knees, so I can easily lean over or lay down without worrying about it hiking up. The little belt that comes with it allows me to tie it into place and there are even strings on the inside to keep it even more secure.

I am a big fan of this robe as a casual nightgown. It keeps me warm without overheating and I feel like I can be seen with it on the porch, if I want to step out for a bit. It’s extremely comfortable and a really great fit. No wonder it has a ton of reviews and a solid five stars on the site!

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. :-D All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this product and wanted to share what I got!]

 

 

Bruising

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For some reason, I seem to bruise really easily. It’s been that way as long as I remember and every few weeks I’ll discover a bruise that just appeared without me knowing. I’m quite certain that with most, I did not just bump into something and forget about it. After all, these bruises come in the most random places (mostly on my legs). Sometimes it’s the back of my calf. Sometimes it’s the middle of my thigh. Occasionally I get them on my arms too.

bruised crook of arm from needle pokeAnd if I ever do bump into something, oh boy. It’s pretty much guaranteed that I’ll have a bruise emerge the next day. I didn’t realize this extended to small jabs too – I had my blood drawn recently and my arm was sore for days afterward, in addition to the bruising that came up! It was nearly two weeks before it completely faded and the flesh wasn’t tender anymore. Who knew a needle would create such problems for me? I guess I should have known, since the last time (maaaany years ago) I did get some bruising as well. I guess I have delicate veins?

Are you sensitive to bumps, scrapes, and bruises too?

Home Chef May 6 Delivery review

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I don’t browse Facebook much anymore, but when I was a few weeks back, I saw an ad offer for Home Chef. For $30 off, I was totally willing to give it a try! Their soba dish caught my eye since our recent one from Hello Fresh was soooo good.

Home Chef is just under $10 per serving and comes with your choice of up to 8-9 meals of 2-8 servings each. They also offer a breakfast option as well as fresh (seasonal) fruit. Shipping is $10 for orders under $40 and free for orders over that. Boxes are sent weekly unless you choose to skip (which is very easy to do). They offer a referral program that gives $30 off to both the person you referred and your next order.

home chef cardboard box of food

collage of home chef cinco de mayo special carne asada with pico de gallo, spanish rice, and seasoned black beans recipe card

Our very first meal from the box was Panda’s choice. He loves Mexican food!

collage of home chef cinco de mayo special carne asada with pico de gallo, spanish rice, and seasoned black beans ingredients and meal being made

Cooking the steak to our liking was the hardest. Panda also hurt his fingers cutting the jalapeno.

home chef cinco de mayo special carne asada with pico de gallo, spanish rice, and seasoned black beans finished product

The meat and salsa were yum! I liked how the salty beans and the more bland rice blended for a base. I wish the rice absorbed more flavor from the spice though.

collage of home chef japanese chicken yakitori with baby bok choy slaw recipe card

Next up was something lighter.

collage of home chef japanese chicken yakitori with baby bok choy slaw ingredients and meal being made

I’m so proud that Panda pretty much made this all on his own. I just had to help with making sure the chicken didn’t stick to the pan.

home chef japanese chicken yakitori with baby bok choy slaw finished product

I was surprised at how soft and juicy the chicken was and that the bok choy slaw was to my liking. Nice!

collage of home chef bbq korean pork chop with sesame-cucumber soba noodles, radish sprouts, and green onion recipe card

The main reason I got this box was this dish!

collage of home chef bbq korean pork chop with sesame-cucumber soba noodles, radish sprouts, and green onion ingredients and meal being made

Oh yes, loving these ingredients. I’m totally shaving more cucumber like that in the future.

home chef bbq korean pork chop with sesame-cucumber soba noodles, radish sprouts, and green onion finished product

Delicious, just as I hoped. I’m a fan of this recipe.

collage of home chef pan-fried tilapia po' boy with remoulade and cajun potato chips recipe card

Finally, we felt this was a fitting lunch for the weekend.

collage of home chef pan-fried tilapia po' boy with remoulade and cajun potato chips ingredients and meal being made

Panda took charge again and did most of the work for this one. I helped with a few tasks here and there.

home chef pan-fried tilapia po' boy with remoulade and cajun potato chips finished product

This actually turned out to be way more filling than we expected. I totally want to make our own potato chips now.

As you might have noticed, we opted for four dishes this time. What I like about this subscription is the flexibility in adding as many as you want, and even having the option for a breakfast recipe as well as getting some fruit to supplement your meals. I’ll definitely keep an eye on their recipes and order again the next time I like the upcoming menu.

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. :) All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

Yogi Surprise May 2015 review

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I’m seeing some familiar brands! There are some nice reusable items too, that will last a long time to come. Let’s get ready for summer with this box…

Yogi Surprise is just under $36 per box (with code for 20% off your subscription – use my referral links from this post) and comes with yoga gear, skincare, food, and other lifestyle products. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program that earns you free boxes.

contents of yogi surprise may 2015 box with info card yogi surprise may 2015 info card with product details

Luv Superfoods almond beegan-bites – These look like fun little chocolate cups, though I’m hesitant to try them because they’re raw and vegan so I’m not sure about their flavor. I will definitely eat them though, since they should really pack a nice punch of energy.

Moon Valley Organics Peppermint Foot Rub – Much like the Rejuvenating Rub that came a few months ago, this is a minty tube of cream that smells great. It melts with your body temperature and just a little is enough to cover a lot of skin. I don’t quite feel the mint on my feet so I would have liked more of the cooling effect, but it sure does leave my feet nice and soft.

Star Essence Yoga Mind Mouth Mist – Haha! I had just mentioned the mouth mist I’d gotten when we got a different spray from this brand in my very first Yogi surprise box. So now I have another one, which works since my original is back at my parents’ home.

Tea Tibet Harmony Spiced Tea – Oh yay! Definitely excited about this tea since I don’t usually have spiced ones and I enjoy tea of all kinds. I’ll take this to work to drink since it’s always cold there and I end up drinking a ton of hot water or tea throughout the day.

Tibetan prayer flags – These will be a nice decoration to put up in one of the rooms. We don’t really buy things to put up or on display, so this will help spruce up the place.

Yogi necklace with Om pendant – I don’t typically wear large pendants like this, but I’ll try it out and see how I feel. I can always gift it to someone!

I’ll try to make good use of all the items here. We’ll see how it goes – I can always share if I’m not a fan.

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. :) All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

Sleeping positions

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How do you like to sleep?

Since Panda sleeps much earlier and I sit in bed on my computer, I’ve noticed some strange sleeping habits and positions that he’ll get into. He loves to be tightly tucked in under the blanket, complete with a tight tuck under his chin. It shuts in the hot air so much that he’ll sweat at night and I recently observed a drop of sweat making its way down his face and neck (ick). I prefer more air flow and will sometimes lay on top of the thick blanket with a light blanket or have various body parts sticking out of the blanket (typically my feet or one leg). I also like to have one leg bent up and one straight out. Since I leave a low light on, Panda will sometimes find creative ways to block the light – usually he’ll crook his elbow over his eyes, but I’ve found him with my nightgown wrapped around his head like a turban before.

There are some commonalities we share though – for one, we both like to sleep with our arms laying next to our heads, elbows bent. Perhaps we like airing out our armpits? We also like to take up a lot of space. For me, this generally means spreading out and draping my leg over him if necessary (he hates that). For him, it’s usually some strange contortion he managed to get into while twisting in his sleep. I’ve had to provide photo evidence of his transgressions to prove how he overran the bed and left me no space!

cat sleeping on bed with body twisted in strange positionI also like to keep things fresh by changing where we sleep in the bed. At first we’d swap sides every now and then. A few times we oriented our heads and feet the opposite way. Most recently we are sleeping sideways, parallel to the wall that the bed is against. Each time we change, Panda complains and hates the idea, but I’ve found that if I keep pushing, he tries it out and ends up enjoying it. Then that new spot is the default and the next change is another little battle (it’s like he forgot he didn’t want his “spot” the last time we changed either).

Even the cats have their funny sleeping preferences, like Smokey’s “happy nap” where she lays on her back in the middle of the floor, belly up and all paws facing the ceiling. As soon as she notices someone trying to take a picture of that, she quickly rolls over and runs off. When she’s in boxes, she loves to prop her chin and one paw over the edge. Meanwhile Missy is a huge fan of crawling in under the covers to snuggle up next to you. Or, if she’s on top of the blanket she’ll often end up belly up, chest to the side, and head twisted back. That’s when you know she’s really sleeping well. :)

So do you also have your own sleeping quirks?

Homegrown Collective April 2015 review

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Hmm, I guess they reverted back to printing out inserts. This box is similar to a combination of two previous boxes (my very first one with sprouts and one with almond milk). I like that sprouts are completely different ones and the focus was a unique theme of raw foods.

The Homegrown Collective GREENBOX is $39 per box + $9 shipping (or as discounted as $429 for an entire year, with options in between) and comes with fun and easy projects to live a more sustainable lifestyle. Boxes are sent monthly with no option to skip. They offer a referral program you can apply to join.

inside of let's get sprouted homegrown collective 2015 box with the info sheets on the inner lid contents of the homegrown collective march 2015 box with let's get sprouted theme

Project #1, growing sprouts/sprouting: Wow, there are so many different sprouts to try! I’ve really only had bean sprouts and alfalfa sprouts before (pretty sure brussel sprouts aren’t actually sprouted). I’ll have to test each of these to see which is tastiest. Maybe they all are, and that would be great. These would be super easy to throw in a salad or atop my regular meals. Seeds are powerful things and I have no doubt that sprouts offer great health benefits.

the homegrown collective march 2015 project growing sprouts info card the homegrown collective march 2015 project sprouting specifics info card the homegrown collective march 2015 products for sprouting

Project #2, chocolate almond milk: While I am not a fan of almonds, especially anything made from them, I’m curious how a chocolate milk would be. I started to try to make the original one I had from the other box, but I left the almonds sitting too long and it grew mold so I had to throw them away. I haven’t quite gotten around to retrying just yet, but I will!

the homegrown collective march 2015 project chocolate almond milk info card the homegrown collective march 2015 products for chocolate almond milk

These are simple projects yielding all sorts of edible results. I would have liked to see one project using some of those seeds and making a face mask or something from them. Otherwise, this box was good, with a variety of easy plants to deal with.

the homegrown collective march 2015 project living and raw foods info card

Interested? Subscribe to the Homegrown Collective get your own projects!

[This post contains affiliate links. Signing up through them helps support my subscription and I’d be ever so grateful. :) All opinions are my own and I received no compensation for this review. I just purchased this box and wanted to share what I got!]

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