Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category



Review & Giveaway: Robi Comb – Non-toxic head lice remover (11/15)


Robi Comb - Non-toxic head lice remover

For nearly three years, I would read each email from my daughter’s school alerting parents that there was yet another lice outbreak on campus, but thankfully, the outbreak was never in my daughter’s class.

I kept an eye out for the little buggers for a few days after each alert, but never saw any and breathed a sigh of relief each time.

And then…a few weeks before school ended last June… I discovered that my daughter and I both had head lice. I was horrified!

The school alerts always included a link to Jesse’s Story about a little boy who died after being exposed to toxic head lice treatments. Because of my daughter’s numerous autoimmune illnesses, Jesse’s story caught my attention and was the first thing I thought about when I discovered we had lice. I knew I needed to find a way to get rid of these pests without exposing my daughter to a toxic shampoo or other potentially harmful treatment.

After doing some research online, here’s what I decided to do:

1. Put all stuffed animals in trash bags and moved them to storage in the garage for two weeks.

2. Washed all sheets, towels and blankets in hot water. I also washed clothes in hot water that could tolerate it and bagged the other regularly worn clothing. We wore clothes that we didn’t regularly wear, hoping that they didn’t have any lice or nits on them.

3. Thoroughly vacuumed all carpets, couches and chairs. I bought diatomaceous earth at Home Depot, but never used it.

4. Purchased a Robi Comb at Walgreens and used it immediately on both our heads.

5. Purchased a nit comb.

6. Covered our heads in olive oil and shower caps. We kept the olive oil and shower caps on overnight and spent a long time washing out the olive oil the next day!

I wasn’t sure what would work, but I had read good reviews about the olive oil, Robi Comb and nit comb so I decided to start with these items.

How the Robi Comb Works

The Robi Comb runs on batteries and “zaps” the lice as the comb goes through the hair…killing them on contact. The high pitched noise stops when a louse is stuck in the comb, so you can pull the comb out, remove the dead louse and continue. The zap sound allowed me to know exactly when the Robi Comb had located lice. Over time, the sound stayed on consistently so I knew there were no lice remaining. It gave me great peace of mind to know that the Robi Comb was no longer locating lice!

Once I was sure I had zapped all the living lice, I followed up on both of our heads with the nit comb. The Robi Comb does not kill nits, and I didn’t want any more lice hatching on our heads.

We continued to use the Robi Comb at least once daily for two weeks to make sure no new lice were found, but we did not find any live lice after the first day.

Watch this video to see the Robi Comb in action.

What I love most about the Robi Comb:

– Safe, non-toxic solution to killing lice
– Compact
– Battery powered
– Re-usable (invest in the product once and you can use it again, if the need ever arises – which I hope it won’t!)
– Can be used by an adult on his/her own head without enlisting another adult’s help. I wouldn’t give this to my 6 year old to use on her own head, but I used it on my own head without assistance for all but two of the comb-throughs
– Works quickly (lice killed on contact)

What I dislike about the Robi Comb:

– The comb cannot be wet. If you sterilize the comb with rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab, you will have to wait for it to dry before you can use the product. It will not work when wet. I understand the reason why it won’t work, but I was so eager to the comb through my hair after using it on my daughter’s head and hated the wait.

Buy It

You can buy the Robi Comb at most Walgreens locations for $29.99, or if you’re not in a hurry, you can buy it online for a little less. My Walgreens only had one left in stock when I bought mine.

Win It

The Robi Comb is not a product that you would normally buy to have on hand “just in case” you need it. But if your child’s school regularly has lice outbreaks like my child’s school does, it would be worth entering to try to win one! You can use it to check for lice when you hear about outbreaks so you can treat your child’s head sooner.

Mandatory entry (must be completed in order to enter this giveaway):

Visit Robicomb.com and let me know something you learned or why you want to win this product.


Additional (optional) entries (1 extra entry each unless otherwise noted. If you already do these, please leave comments too!):

– Like Robi Comb on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Like Craving the Savings on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Follow Robi Comb on Twitter
– Follow me on Twitter (@CravingSavings and @CravingGiveaway) – 1 extra entry for each
– Follow me on Google Friend Connect (right column)
– Follow me on Networked Blogs (right column)
– Become an email subscriber or RSS subscriber (top right column) – 1 extra entry for each
– Post this giveaway on a giveaway linky (and leave the URL) – (2 entries – leave 2 comments)

Rules:
– Ends at 11:59 PM Central on Monday, November 15, 2010. I will use Random.org to select the winner.
– The winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will select a new winner.

Please note: I received no product or monetary compensation for this review. Robi Comb is offering one of my blog readers the opportunity to win the product through a giveaway on this blog. While I’m embarrassed to admit we had lice, when I read that Robi Comb was looking bloggers to host giveaways of their product I jumped on the opportunity to share how wonderful this product is! If it saves one child from toxic lice treatments, it is worth it to me to share our story.

Review & Giveaway: Cahootie (11/15)


Cahootie Review - Craving the Savings.com

A few weeks ago, my daughter came home with a paper “Cootie Catcher” that she had made at school, except she called it a “Fortune Teller.” I hadn’t seen them in years so it was fun to see her playing with something I played with in the 80s.

Recently I learned about Cahootie – a colorful, modern take on the old paper version – and asked my daughter if she thought it looked like something she would enjoy. She said yes, so I signed up to do a review and giveaway.

We received the Cahootie yesterday. My daughter asked if she could do a video review instead of telling me what she thought about the Cahootie, so here it is:

My thoughts

The Cahootie Website states the product is tween girls for six years and older, but the products we received state they’re for 7+.

My six year old daughter is learning to read and is able to play with it, but occasionally needs me to help her with some of the words. And… while she was able to remove and replace the reusable stickers, she had a difficult time getting them to stick back on the sheets so I had to help her. The reading and changing of stickers may be why the Cahootie is recommended for 7+ year olds.

I love the Cahootie for my daughter because it is a fun way to get her to read without her thinking about it. She has to read at least 10 minutes a day as homework for school and it feels like a chore to her. She would rather we continue to read to her instead! With the Cahootie, she is playing a game and WANTS to read the words, so it makes reading fun.

I also like it for hand/eye coordination and for spelling words. She must open and close the toy as she spells the words and cannot see the word the entire time. It forces her to remember the letters as she is playing (e.g. spelling Climber – she will see C-I-B-R and will have to remember L-M-E as she’s opening/closing the Cahootie).

The Cahootie is made out of durable, pre-folded laminated paper. My daughter has only played with it for a day so I cannot comment on how long it will last, but I did notice she got a little rough with it at one point (opening and closing quickly) and it held up.

To store the toy, I think it would be best to keep it in the box or open it so it is flat. I worry it will eventually get crushed in our house. I’m thinking something like the second or third photo:

Cahootie Review - Craving the Savings.com

About the Company & Product

Cahootie’s mission is to build a leading tween brand that promotes esteem-building conversation and positive self expression through social interaction.

There are 17 different themes, including four that are licensed under Animal Planet, like “Cats Rule” that my daughter reviewed in the video, as well as six party pack themes that come with six Cahooties per pack.

I love this…. the company donates their products to several nonprofit organizations that help girls, including Texas Scottish Rite – a place my daughter has been going for more than four years for treatment for juvenile arthritis.

Buy Cahooties

I think these would make a great stocking stuffer for tween girls! Certain themes are sold at Justice stores, select Hallmark stores, Learning Express stores, independent gift and toy retailers and Amazon.com.

Find a store near you. You may need to try a few zip codes or enter your city to get all the locations. I entered my zip code first and it did not give me a store than is less than five miles away.

If you want to buy a Cahootie at Justice, be sure to print this 40% off coupon and use it before 11/2/10! Thanks, Lea Ann.

Win a Girl Wonders Cahootie!

Girl Wonders Cahootie Giveaway - Craving the Savings.com

I am giving away the Girl Wonders Cahootie to one lucky reader!

Mandatory Entry

These two items must be in one comment in order to be entered to win the Cahootie:

Visit Cahootie.com and let me know something you learned or something you like about the product.

– Become (or already be) a public Google Friends Connect follower (right column).
If you’re not sure how to do this, please email me and I will help you.

Optional Entries

Increase your odds of winning! Complete one or more of the following additional entries and leave a comment for each:

– Like Cahootie on Facebook
– Like Craving the Savings on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Follow Club Cahootie on Twitter.
– Follow me on Twitter (@CravingSavings and @CravingGiveaway) – 1 extra entry for each
– Follow me on Networked Blogs (right column)
– Become an email subscriber or RSS subscriber (top right column) – 1 extra entry for each
– Post this giveaway on a giveaway linky (and leave the URL) – (2 entries per giveaway linky so leave 2 comments for each linky)

Rules:
– Ends at 11:59 PM Central on Monday, November 15, 2010. I will use Random.org to select the winner.
– The winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will select a new winner.
– The winner must live in the continental US since I am paying the shipping costs for this prize.

Disclosure: I received the Cats Rule Cahootie to review and Girl Wonders to give away. All opinions about this product belong to my daughter and me!

More Secrets to Bow Making Success DVD Review & Giveaway (11/1)


Bow Making Secrets

***CLOSED…. Winner to be announced soon!***

My daughter hasn’t been into wearing bows until recently. But she doesn’t clip them to her hair…. she clips them to her headbands! It’s a good look for her so I thought I should get her some more bows to clip on to her headbands – especially ones that match her headbands better.

I have found that nice hair bows can cost $5 or more, so I thought I’d look into making some. I wasn’t sure where to start, so it was excellent timing when Jenn contacted me from LearntoMakeBows.com to ask if I wanted to host a review and giveaway on my blog.

Jenn sent me More Secrets to Bow Making Success, which provides two hours of detailed instruction on how to make 18 different styles of bows.

I watched the DVD a few times with my daughter to get an idea for what I would need to buy to get started and to decide which style of bow to try making first. I would never have thought that I would need a lighter to make bows. I also needed to get a glue gun, which can be purchased for around $2.00 at a craft store like Michaels or JoAnn (be sure to use a 40% off coupon!).

By scouting the clearance bins at Hobby Lobby, JoAnn and Michaels, I was able to buy everything in the photo below for under $8.

Bow Making Purchases

I thought I would invest in some ribbon first, and if my bow making attempts work out, I will look into embellishments next.

In addition to the DVD, I received a 100 page manual with step-by-step instructions, a materials list, and ribbon tips. The DVD and manual also come with a few downloadable bonuses:

– Secrets to Hair Clippies Success
– Secrets to Bottle Cap Decorating Success
– How to Make Ribbon Flip Flops
– A Craft Fair Goldmine: How to Sell Your Handcrafted Items at Craft Shows

I have attempted to make one bow so far and it came out okay, but not great. I should have reviewed the manual first, so I am going to do that and try again. I will post photos of my bows on this post before the giveaway ends so you can see what a novice can do!

I see so many possibilities for making bows – not only for my daughter’s headbands, but also to clip on birthday presents, to decorate holiday wreathes, and to decorate shirts and bags.

Try before you buy….view one lesson for free!


Bows
Bows

Buy It

You can buy the More Secrets to Bow Making Success DVD and downloadable manual for $27. You will also receive the free, downloadable bonuses. Or, save 25% by sharing the LearnHowToMakeBows.com site on Twitter, Facebook or another Web site. Scroll to the bottom of the site for details.

Win It

Win a copy of the More Secrets to Bow Making Success DVD!

Mandatory entry (must be completed in order to enter this giveaway):

Visit LearnToMakeBows.com and tell me why you’d like to win this DVD.

Additional (optional) entries (1 extra entry each unless otherwise noted. If you already do these, please leave comments too!):

Request the free bow making lesson (3 entries – leave 3 comments)
– Like LearnToMakeBows.com on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Like Craving the Savings on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Follow me on Twitter (@CravingSavings and @CravingGiveaway) – 1 extra entry for each
– Follow me on Google Friend Connect (right column)
– Follow me on Networked Blogs (right column)
– Become an email subscriber or RSS subscriber (top right column) – 1 extra entry for each

Rules:
– Ends at 11:59 PM Central on Monday, November 1, 2010. I will use Random.org to select the winner.
– The winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will select a new winner.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of More Secrets to Bow Making Success for this review. All opinions are my own.


Review: KT Tunstall’s latest album Tiger Suit


KT Tunstall Tiger Suit album review

I loved two songs (“Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” and “Suddenly I See”) on KT Tunstall’s album Eye to the Telescope, so I was looking forward to receiving her latest album Tiger Suit from One2One Network to review. The album was released on October 5.

For those who are not familiar with KT Tunstall, she’s a Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum, Scottish-born singer-songwriter. You can learn more about her and her music on her Website or watch her videos on YouTube.

“Fade Like a Shadow”, her first single from Tiger Suit, is a Top 20 hit on the radio, but my favorite song on the album is “Uummannaq Song”.

While I generally like KT’s music, none of the songs on this album grabbed me like “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” and “Suddenly I See”. “Uummannaq Song” is really the only song that I want to listen to repeatedly. Get a preview Tiger Suit and decide for yourself if this is an album you want to add to your collection.

KT Tunstall will be on tour from October 31 – December 1. She’s not coming to Dallas, but you can check here to see if she’s coming to a city near you.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of Tiger Suit to review. By participating in this review, I will be entered to win a gift card through One2One Network. All opinions are my own.



Review: Cuddlee Pet from ThrowPillows.org


ThrowPillows.org Review

My daughter loves stuffed animals and has been asking for one that converts to a pillow, so she was thrilled to receive the pink bunny Cuddlee Pet from ThrowPillows.org to review. It has become one of her top five stuffed animals since it arrived.

She likes the size because it fits on her bed with her other four stuffed animals and isn’t too big. She also likes how soft it is. When the Cuddlee Pet pillow is open, it is slightly smaller than my throw pillow as seen here:

ThrowPillows.org Review - Cuddlee Pets

and here’s what it looks like when closed:

ThrowPillows.org Review - Cuddlee Pets

The pillow is machine washable, which is a good thing because it’s already getting a bit grungy.

These pillows are appropriate for children 3 years and older and, in my opinion, would probably be most enjoyed by children 3-7 years old. The Cuddlee Pets include bear, panda, bunny, turtle, cat, cow, tiger, ladybug and dog pillows.

These pillows are not yet available at ThrowPillows.org, but will be soon. They offer a variety of throw pillows, so if you need a pillow, check out their site.

ThrowPillows.org also offers information on how to clean throw pillows, how to decorate with throw pillows, and how to make your own throw pillows.

Disclosure: This is a Mama Buzz review. The product was provided by ThrowPillows.org for this review.


SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks Review & Giveaway (11/1)



SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks Review & Giveaway

***CLOSED…. Winner to be announced soon!***

My six year old daughter and sock seams do not get along. She begs me to put her socks on for her because she can’t get the seams to line up just right on her toes. Putting on socks for school has been a daily source of frustration for both of us.

When I had the opportunity to review SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks, I jumped on it! I wanted to see if they would help.

SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks Review & Giveaway

I am happy to report that my daughter loves them!

Every day after school for the entire first week that my daughter wore the socks, she told me that she never wanted to wear any other sock again. She said the SmartKnitKIDS socks are “soooooo comfortable.” And for the past few weeks, she has been putting her socks on without my help — there has been no whining or complaining. We’re sold on these socks!

Key features of SmartKnitKIDS Socks

– 100% seamless
– Form-fitting (no wrinkles or bunches, and they won’t come off wiggly feet)
– Heal-less design – they are easy to slip on and children won’t outgrow their socks as quickly
– Made with high-tech fibers that wick moisture away helping control odor
– Non-binding Halo Top™ fits comfortably without slipping down the leg (no elastic bands)
– Five colors (pink, purple, blue, black, white) and three styles (ankle, crew, knee-high)
– Fits Toddlers (1-12) and Girls/Boys (2-8)

These socks are not only a great option for children with Sensory Processing Disorder or Autism, but they work well for kids like mine who are just plain annoyed by sock seams. Adults will be happy to know you can get these seamless socks in your size too!

My only disappointment with this product is the limited number of colors that are offered. I would love to see SmartKnitKIDS offer the socks in colors such as red, brown, beige and gray.

Occasionally the socks go on sale (they were recently 20% off), so be sure to sign up for Bugsley’s Sock Club to be notified of future promotions. These would make great stocking stuffers!

Buy Them

You may purchase the SmartKnitKIDS socks online from a few different retailers for around $6.95/pair.

Win three pairs of SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks!

Mandatory entry (must be completed in order to enter this giveaway):

Visit SmartKnitKIDS and tell me one thing you learned or what color(s) you would like to receive if you win.

Additional (optional) entries (1 extra entry each unless otherwise noted. If you already do these, please leave comments too!):

– Like SmartKnitKIDS on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Like Craving the Savings on Facebook (2 entries – leave 2 comments)
– Follow SmartKnitKIDS on Twitter – 1 extra entry
– Follow me on Twitter (@CravingSavings and @CravingGiveaway) – 1 extra entry for each
– Follow me on Google Friend Connect (right column)
– Follow me on Networked Blogs (right column)
– Become an email subscriber or RSS subscriber (top right column) – 1 extra entry for each

Rules:
– Ends at 11:59 PM Central on Monday, November 1, 2010. I will use Random.org to select the winner.
– The winner will have 48 hours to respond to my email or I will select a new winner.
– Limited to US and Canadian residents only.

Disclosure: This Product Was a Free Giveaway. I received two pairs of SmartKnitKIDS Seamless Socks to facilitate this review. All opinions are mine. Sponsored by Tomoson.com



Review: EcoStore USA


EcoStore USA Review

I have been trying to remove not only foods that may be causing my daughter’s chronic inflammatory illnesses, but also household toxins in an attempt to see if her health improves.

When I heard about EcoStore USA, I wanted to give their products a try. EcoStore USA is an extension of a 20 year old New Zealand company. Their household cleaning, pet, baby and personal care products are plant based and non-toxic.

Their products do not contain any of the following chemicals:

– toxic petrochemicals
– enzymes
– optical whiteners
– synthetic perfumes or dyes
– Sodium Lauryl Sulphate
– Phosphates
– Chlorine
– Ammonia
– TEA, DEA or MEA
– Parabens
– Propylene Glycol

If you are not familiar with what these ingredient can do to your body, check out this explanation.

I purchased three of their products:

Baby Shampoo (2)
Cream Cleanser (2)
Dishwash Liquid – 32 fl. oz. (2)

and received two additional items to review:

All Purpose Cleaner (1)
Rose & Cardamon Body Wash (1)

They sent me a bar of soap with my paid order for free, but I have not tried it yet.

I purchased these the three products in late July and received the review products in early August. We’re almost out of them all, so they lasted a few months, which was nice. I waited to post my review because I wanted to fully use the products and make sure they continued to work for an extended period.

I have found when using certain personal care products over time, my skin will become dry, my hair will become oily or my daughter’s hair will start to thin, so I wanted to make sure the EcoStore USA products did not do any of that before I posted my review. We have had no issues with the EcoStore products, and have been very happy with them.


Bath & Body Products

My daughter loved the baby shampoo and body wash. And I felt good about letting her use them herself since she wants more independence while bathing.

I really liked the scent of the Rose and Cardamon body wash and felt clean after using it.



Household Cleaning Products

The Dishwash Liquid is not as thick as I’m used to, so it took some adjustment for me not to use a lot each time I needed to wash dishes. EcoStore USA states on the product packaging that a little goes a long way, but I used too much initially. It doesn’t stick to dishes like some do, so I did not need to scrub as much to get it off and thus was worried I wasn’t using enough. But once I got used to it, I was able to use less and get the same level of cleaning.

I liked the scent of the All Purpose Cleaner, but did not like the streaks it left on my bathroom counter tops. I have tried other plant-based spray cleaners and they all leave these streaks so it must be one of the ingredients. I can eliminate the streaks by running a clean, wet towel, followed by a dry towel, over the surface.

I bought the Cream Cleanser to use on my stovetop. I have only used it twice, but it has done the job.

Check out all of the EcoStore USA products here, as well as lots of Eco Information linked from the site’s left navigational bar.

I noticed on their website that:

– The price of many of their products has been reduced by 30%
– They are running a fall promotion: buy any two household products, receive a Pure Oxygen Whitener for free (they will add it to your order – don’t put it in your cart)
– All orders over $25 get free shipping.

You can also find EcoStore USA products at Meijer or Duane Reade stores if you live in an area with those stores (I don’t).

My order arrived very quickly and well-packaged so it didn’t leak in transit. I will definitely be buying more products from them soon!

Disclosure: I received two items from EcoStore USA for free to facilitate this review. I also purchased three additional items. You can follow EcoStore USA on Twitter and Facebook.



Movie Review: Life As We Know It


Last week, I had the opportunity to pre-screen the movie “Life As We Know It”. I don’t get to movies too much any more, so I was looking forward to going.

“Life As We Know It” stars Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel, along with other familiar faces like Will Sasso (plays Josh) from Mad TV and Melissa McCarthy (plays DeeDee) from the new TV series Mike & Molly.

The movie is about two single, working people (played by Katherine Heigl and Josh Duhamel) who are both good friends of a married couple played by Christina Hendricks and Hayes MacArthur. The movie starts with lots of laughs and good times, but eventually switches gears when the married couple is killed in a car accident, leaving behind a one year old daughter named Sophie. If you have kids and don’t have a will and plans for your child if both parents die, this scene will get you thinking about it.

The movie focuses on how these two single people come together to take care of their god-child even though they initially appear not to care for one another.

The laughs return, along with some more sad moments, and I found myself drawn into the movie. While there are some predictable moments, they weren’t “roll your eyes” predictable. The movie rolls along nicely and I didn’t have any moments of wanting to know how much longer until the movie ended.

A few words of caution: Eat before you see this movie. There are many scenes with food and I hadn’t eaten before I went. I thought for a split second about getting something at the concession stand, but for $4.75 for water, I decided I would skip it. I was very hungry by the time the movie was over! And take Kleenex for the sad moments if you tend to tear up in movies.

This is my second movie this summer to see starring Josh Duhamel on the big screen (the other being Ramona and Beezus). I used to watch him on TV, but he didn’t make any sort of impression until I saw him in these two movies. I also haven’t been a big fan of Katherine Heigl, but I enjoyed her in this movie. I loved all the neighbors too, especially “DeeDee”!

“Life As We Know It” will hit all movie theaters on October 8. It is rated PG-13 for language, drug and sexual references. There is no violence in this movie. It is definitely a “chick flick,” but I think most guys will enjoy it too, or at least the sports references sprinkled in the movie since the lead character works in sports broadcasting.

There were a few moments where I was a little surprised – like when the character played by Josh Duhamel puts baby powder on little Sophie. That was one of the first things I was told NEVER to do when I brought my daughter home six years ago because of the powder getting into the baby’s lungs.

And then there were the scenes when Sophie sat on regular chairs to eat instead of in a high chair or booster. I kept worrying the baby was going to fall forward, especially when she reaches for the bowl of fruit.

As a mom, I couldn’t help but notice all sorts of possible accidents waiting to happen in this movie!

While this movie probably won’t be nominated for any Oscars, it’s a cute film that stirs up several emotions in less than two hours. I enjoyed it!

View the trailer or locate a theater near you.

Disclosure: I attended a complimentary screening of this movie to facilitate my review and received a gift card from Mom Central as a thank you for my time.


The I Hate to Cook Book – review & giveaway – 2 winners (8/25)

Since starting my daughter and me on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet three months ago, I have been doing something I really dislike… spending time in the kitchen!

I have a long list of things I would rather be doing with my limited free time, and cooking and clean-up are not on it. But since I want to see if my daughter’s health improve through diet, I have resolved myself to adjusting the best that I can. So when I heard about The I Hate to Cook Book, I was eager to review it.

Peg Bracken first released this book in 1960. Her daughter, Jo, re-released an updated version 50 years later with a tribute to her mother, who passed away a few years ago.

The book is a compilation of easy recipes and kitchen secrets of Peg Bracken and several of her friends who also hated to cook. They were tired of making the same meals over and over, and joined forces to come up with an easy-to-read and enjoyable book to help others who felt the same way about the kitchen as they did. It is not your typical cookbook.

If you are eager to get in and out of the kitchen as quickly as possible, or if there are days when you feel this way, this is a book for you. It includes 30 everyday entrees to get you started. They’re all easy-to-make and are supposed to taste good (I haven’t tried any yet, but will be), but best of all, the preparation time is quick. There are even sections for planning a potluck meal, menus for when company is coming to your house and suggestions for kids’ birthday parties. Check out the inside of the book.

Update: Since posting this, my mother read my blog and informed me that this book was “revolutionary” back in the day and she received it as a wedding present. And a friend emailed me that her favorite recipe is the one with chicken with avocado and mushrooms. Her father gave her a copy of the original book years ago. I had no idea just how popular this book has been over the years!

Does this sound like a book you’d like to add to your bookshelf? Two people will win a copy of this book!

Mandatory Entry

Leave a comment letting me know why you’d like to win.

Bonus Entries

– Follow my blog on Google Friend Connect (right column) – 1 entry
Follow me on Twitter – 1 entry
Like the I Hate to Cook Book on Facebook – 1 entry
Like Craving the Savings on Facebook – 1 entry
– Subscribe to my blog via email or RSS (right column) – 1 entry

Rules

– Be sure to complete the mandatory entry first! If you want to complete bonus entries, please leave a separate comment for each item. If you are already doing one or more of the bonus entries, be sure to leave a comment stating so!
– This giveaway will be open until August 25 at 11:59 PM Central. I will select two winners using Random.org.
– I will email the winners, who will have 48 hours to respond, otherwise I will select a new winner.
– Only residents of the U.S. or Canada are eligible to win
– No P.O. Boxes, please.

Good luck!

Disclosure: I received a copy of The I Hate to Cook Book for review and two for a giveaway. All opinions are my own.


EasyLunchBoxes.com review & giveaway (8/25)


A few months ago, I entered a blog giveaway to try to win an EasyLunchbox system.

I was looking for an eco-friendly lunch box that would work for both my daughter and for me, and the EasyLunchbox system appeared to be a great solution. I was thrilled when I found out I won!

I contacted Kelly Lester, the creator and owner of EasyLunchBoxes.com, to see if I could buy a second system and ship both together. That started an email exchange that led to this review and giveaway!

We’ve been using the EasyLunchbox system since early June and love it! My daughter has the purple one, and I have the green one.

Prior to the EasyLunchbox system, we used individual plastic storage containers and threw them into a lunch bag. I have started discarding the plastic storage due to concerns about what is in the plastics and replacing them with non-toxic options.

When I saw that the EasyLunchbox system contains no BPA, phthalates, lead, vinyl, or PVC, and it is safe for the dishwasher, freezer, and microwave, I was sold. Gone are the days of trying to pull together multiple containers and lids….I now have just one bento lunch box-style system to contain a main meal and two sides.

Since we’re following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, I especially love that I can fit up to three of the containers inside the lunch bag. Since I have to cook everything we eat, the EasyLunchbox system made it very convenient to pack multiple items in one bag (no need to carry 2-3 lunch bags!) when we were traveling to conferences and camps in June and July.

If you only need one container, there’s still plenty of room for a thermos or water bottle! We fit two containers and a water bottle in the lunch bag while we were traveling last week.

What I love most:
– no BPA, phthalates, lead, vinyl, or PVC

– safe for the dishwasher, freezer, and microwave

– the lunch cooler bags are made of the highest quality 300D Polyester for premium durability and toughness. They are vinyl free (PVC-free) & lead free, with an FDA compliant PEVA lining

– the plastic hasn’t warped yet. No scratches either. The containers have held up very well!

– different colored container tops to make it easy to recognize lunches

– I have reduced the number of storage containers we have to clean after school by using only one EasyLunchbox three compartment container to pack my daughter’s lunch

– easy-to-clean lunch bags

– I looked at bento boxes and other lunchbox solutions, but EasyLunchbox was the most affordable for what you get in the system.

– They were created by a mom who understands what it’s like to pack lunches and provides lots of tips on her site and blog!

One thing that can be a little frustrating is that the containers are not leak-proof. I knew this when I bought mine because I saw a solution on Kelly’s site. I have tried it, and it works.

Want to win a back to school lunchbox (or maybe keep it for yourself!)?

Mandatory Entry:

Visit EasyLunchboxes.com and let me know which color lunch bag you like most.

Bonus Entries:

– Follow my blog on Google Friend Connect (right column) – 1 entry
– Follow EasyLunchboxes on Twitter – 1 entry
– Follow me on Twitter – 1 entry
– Like EasyLunchboxes on Facebook – 1 entry
– Like Craving the Savings on Facebook – 1 entry
– Subscribe to my blog via email or RSS reader (right column) – 1 entry

Rules:
– Be sure to complete the mandatory entry first! If you want to complete bonus entries, please leave a separate comment for each item. If you are already doing one or more of the bonus entries, be sure to leave a comment stating so!
– This giveaway will be open until August 25 at 11:59 PM Central. I will select the winner using Random.org.
– I will email the winner who will have 48 hours to respond, otherwise I will select a new winner.
– Giveaway is open to residents of the U.S. and Canada only.
– You must not have won anything from EasyLunchboxes.com in the past three months.

Good luck!

Disclosure: I received no compensation for this review. I won an EasyLunchbox system a few months ago through another blog and I also purchased a second EasyLunchbox system. I was given one system to use as a giveaway. I recently became an EasyLunchboxes.com Affiliate, so any purchases made through this post will earn me a commission. All earnings from July 2010 through July 2011 will be donated to Children and Arthritis at next summer’s Jambalaya Jubilee conference. All opinions in this blog post are my own.




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