Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Cosplaying with Vortacs 3D

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Vortacs 3D for the review  free of charge.**

A persons home is a great way to see their real personality and interests come to life, everyone loves decorating their house in things they like or things they find comfort in. For my husband and I that something is our collection of family photos and things from our favorite movies & video games. In the future we'd also like to start dressing up for cosplaying so we are always on the look out for great products that suit our interests and Vortacs 3D provided a product that fits both our home decor and cosplaying.

Monster Hunter has been a favorite game of my husband for quite some time, he has played each and every game. When Monster Hunter World came out we both started playing it and have invested a decent amount of time into our characters, one of the outfits we like best in the game is made from parts of a monster called an Odogaron. Vortacs 3D makes and sells a magnificent replica of the mask that goes with the Odogaron set.

How is the mask made? It is printed in PLA and painted using acrylic paint + an airbrush then finished with a clear coat. This mask had a long journey from the Netherlands all the way to Arizona, and even though the post office delivered a box that looked like it had been used in tackle foot ball there was only the smallest "boo-boo" on one of the ears which won't be hard to repair. Otherwise the owner packaged the mask perfectly so there was no other damage. As an added bonus he included a potion charm keychain!

Before the mask was sent I was asked to measure my husbands face from his chin to the middle of his eyes so that the mask would fit a bit better. He put the mask on as soon as it arrived and it fit like a glove, Sean the owner included some foam pieces to use as needed however the mask fit well enough that the foam isn't really needed. You can see perfectly out of the mask and small air holes are cut in around the teeth to help the wearer be able to breathe. The mask is kept on using a comfortable strap that can be adjusted.

 If a monster hunter mask isn't your cup of tea, Vortacs 3D also offers other fan art pieces, statues and accepts custom offers as well. Prices range from $6 for a keychain to $300 for large swords and pieces.

Two lucky winners will each receive a $25 Gift code to use at Vortacs 3D.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Get your Bookworm on with Candlewick Press!

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Candlewick Press for the review  free of charge.**

Being a big bookworm at heart I always enjoy giving books as gifts to family members and friends I know love books as well. This year Candlewick Press sent us some great books that would make wonderful gifts and I wanted to share them with you here!

Retail: $24.99

I have to admit I have never read The Jungle Book but I enjoy the movie so I was pretty excited to see this in the box of books I received. This book contains five different stories; Before mother wolf was a mother, she was a fighter - Bagheera's Cage - Baloo's Courage - Kaa's Dance & Mowglli. Through out the book you'll find dozens of beautifully drawn and color illustrations including small butterflies on the pages and more. Each story ranges in length but none are shorter than 30 pages so you will get quite a bit of reading time out of this book. As a bonus it has a bookmark attached to help you keep your place.

Retail: $19.99

Brain game books are always a lot of fun because they help keep you on your toes and keep your mind active. You can read them on your own or you can have someone sit next to you and see who can find the answers the fastest. This book is filled with find games which are similar to "Where's Waldo?" each page features a different theme such as Bikes, Ships, Light houses etc and it will ask you to locate two things. As an example the bike page I've shown you above asks you "Which bicycle is hanging by only one string?" & "Find a hidden pair of scissors to cut the bicycle free". Some of the pages are a bit harder than the others but it is a lot of fun trying to look for the answers. If you are having a hard time locating the correct spot you can find all the answers in the back of the book.

This is a fun book for all ages and would make a great gift anytime of the year.

Retail: $22.00

This book is HUGE and I don't mean that it is a thick book page wise, I mean the book itself measures 16" x 17 7/8". It is pretty neat seeing and reading a book that is so big but there are also two problems with it being this large, one it is a pain in the butt to store on most normal bookshelves and two the corners have been getting beat up since we don't have anywhere to properly store it.

The back of the book recommends this for ages 3-7 , however I'd say it is better suited for ages 2-5. This is a great picture book but aside from naming all of the different objects and places you'd see in a city there is no story to this book. Each illustration is colorful and fun to look over, I also like the different ways they incorporated the word on each page into the images themselves.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Cat Scratching post shopping with Tuft + Paw

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Tuft + Paw for the review  free of charge.**

When looking for a scratching post for your cat, what should you look for? There are dozens of different brands out there that sell scratching posts so looking for one might seem a little daunting, but if you try to narrow down your cats likes before purchasing a post it can be a big help.

Aleister is a bit of an odd ball cat who acts more like a dog, however he does still like using a scratching pad to help his claws + teeth so I wanted to get him something a little more than just the cardboard scratcher he is currently using. He doesn't usually like laying on furniture in the house, he prefers to be under your feet or laying somewhere on the floor. Aleister use to have a big cat tower, but he literally never used it since he had other spots he preferred to lay so when looking for a post I avoided any that had sleeping ledges and opted for a stand still post with just a scratcher.

Through Tuft + Paw we were sent the Turrim scratching post in Black Bird which retails for $139. It stands at 28" tall which is just the right size for him when he stands up to stretch and scratch on it at the same time. The scratcher came in two pieces, the base and post were wrapped separately in the box along with the hardware to put it together. Putting the base and post together took two minutes, it shows you which side the seam of the post needs to go on, then once it is in place you just need to drill (or screw) in four screws then you are done!

The post is heavy duty and weights about three or four pounds so it is light enough to re-locate to a new spot in the house when ever you'd like to move it but heavy enough that your cat won't be able to knock it over. The post itself is infused with the scent of organic catnip & is wrapped in incredibly durable + natural sisal fibers.It feels kind of like thick carpeting, I was a bit worried his claws might get stuck in the fibers but he hasn't had any issues so far and seems to be enjoying the post. I don't think it is heavily scented with the organic catnip scent as it took him a while to want to use this post but once he did he has used it every day since. The base is made from real wood so it has that nice wood scent to it when you first open it, I also liked that they offered different colors so that you can pick which suits your house better.

If you want something a bit more than just a post Tuft + Paw has several other scratching posts, beds, tress and more all ranging in price and activity level.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

This year let Santa send the letter to your child!

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others. The products mentioned below have been provided by Package From Santa for the review free of charge.**

Christmas is coming up which means that it is time for holiday lights, gift shopping, decorating and writing letters to Santa. This year not only can you have your kids fill out a letter to Santa, you can have Santa send a letter to your child! Or make it even better by upgrading to a Package from Santa that includes a cookie and more. Ordering is a breeze that only takes a few minutes, and those few minutes will make it to where your child will have a memory for a life time. The cheapest option is Gold which is $14.95, followed by Silver which is $24.95 and then there is the big package which is Platinum and it is $74.95. For a review I received a Silver package which includes a letter from Santa, a nice list certificate, a photo of Santa plus a flight plan photo. All of that sounds great right? Well it also comes with a bonus call and personal video from Santa.

Since I have two kids and we were only getting one package for review I personalized the papers to include both of their names. When picking out your letter you can choose a pre-written letter and just fill in the blank spots or you can type out your own letter. Since all of the letters only have space for one child's name, I used the "write your own" option but still used most of one of their pre-written letters, the process only took about three minutes. Next you can fill out the name for the nice list + Santa's flight plan and you are able to add a photo.

The only paper that didn't print out right was the Nice List Certificate which you can see above, it only printed one name then has some gibberish. With the flight plan photo I went with a photo of us goofing around with snapchat filters because my kids love when we mess around with the filters together and I was right the kids loved the photo on the flight plan. Everything arrived in a cute envelope with a Christmas scenery and a North Pole stamp in the corner, the package arrived quickly and in good shape.

My kids had a lot of fun getting and opening their package together! Getting yearly letters from Santa is definitely something the kids look forward to every year. If you haven't started this tradition yet I highly suggest doing so before it's too late!

Friday, November 16, 2018

Chewy.com - The wave curved cat scratcher

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Chewy.com for the review free of charge.**

The big old fur ball Aleister and I recently received the OurPets "The Wave" curved cat scratcher to test out for a review. He is oddly picky about what he will decide to play with or scratch even but he absolutely loves cardboard scratchers. We were buying small pads from the dollar tree because of how easily he seemed to tear through them.The others last about two weeks so I wanted to see how long this one would last.

The scratcher is light weight, doesn't take up a ton of room and is easy to store when we don't want it out on the floor. We've had the scratcher for about a month now and as you can see from the photo located below this paragraph, he hasn't done a ton of damage to the scratcher even though he uses this multiple times a day. Along with scratching at this he also enjoys biting it and laying on it so I'd say he very much enjoys the wave scratcher and price wise it wasn't too bad at $11.99 since it has doubled the amount of time we've had it from the dollar scratchers we were buying and it seems like it will last for some time to come as well.

Don't think this specific scratcher would suit your cat? Don't when you type in cat scratcher they show 115 results! Chewy.com offers dozens of pet products for small animals and even large animals such as a pet horse and they are all at great prices.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Celebrate Hotel Transylvania 3 with TownleyGirl!

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by TownleyGirl for the review free of charge.**

My kids and I are all fans of the Hotel Transylvania movies so we were pretty excited when we heard they were coming out with a third installment, then our excitement was boosted when we found out Townleygirl was coming out with a line of Hotel Transylvania themed goodies. For a special review we were sent a few of the Hotel Transylvania products and we wanted to share them with you here on my blog. In our box we received the following three sets: Hotel Transylvania 3 Puffy Lip Gloss Set with Bonus Tin $7.99 + Hotel Transylvania 3 Nail Polish Set with Bonus Tin and Stickers $7.99 & Hotel Transylvania 3 Spooky 4 Pack Nail Polish Set with Nail File $7.99.

Before we get into the review of these products I wanted to say if you haven't seen Hotel Transylvania 3 yet you should go rent it for a night! It was a lot of fun and we loved seeing all of our favorite characters again plus now we have a new favorite character (the dog).

One of the things I like the most when it comes to their products is that a lot of them come with tins or storage containers to keep the nail polish or lip balms in. If you don't want to keep your polish or lip balm in the containers you can use them for jewelry, change, small trinkets, etc which is nice.& They also often include extra goodies such as nail stickers, key chain bobbles and puffy stickers that can be removed and re-used. All of their nail polish is easy to apply and to remove because the formula they use is similar to the peel nail polish so you don't need any harsh chemicals to remove the color from your nails. Lip balm wise the formula isn't too thick or goopy which is a big plus for kids who don't like things on or near their mouth.The nail polish bottles in the set are shaped like little coffins which make the bottles easier to grip in your hand.


There is nothing wrong with the nail polish when it comes to how it is applied or how it looks but my daughter was slightly bummed out because she said the colors in this set and the Vampirina set were very similar. I couldn't remember what the Vampirina set looked like so I had her go grab them for me so I could see and she was right, two of the colors are almost identical and the other two are very close as well. We think it would have been fun if they added some other fun colors like lime green for Blobby, a shade of orange for Dennis (his hair), a Grey-ish blue for Frank, and so forth. Since some of the colors were very similar we didn't use one or two of these polishes so keep an eye out in the future for them to be included in a giveaway goodie bag!

The holidays are coming up and many of their sets would make wonderful Christmas gifts & stockings stuffers, everything is affordable at $15 or less.

Friday, November 9, 2018

Experience a bit of the old west desert life with MacDonald's Ranch!

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others. I received tickets to their pumpkin patch for my family which was provided by MacDonald's Ranch free of charge.**

It is always a lot of fun visiting different attractions that are specifically decorated and designed to look like different periods in time, towns or themes and one of our favorite is MacDonald's Ranch located in Scottsdale, Arizona on Scottsdale Road just south of Jomax Road. As soon as you arrive you are will feel like you stepped into a western town complete with buildings, horses and more. The caution watch for snakes sign is also helpful towards making it really feel like you are on a cowboy adventure, but don't worry! Out of the several times we've been out to the ranch we've never actually spotted a snake at the ranch though when we went horse back riding we did hear one out on the trail.

During the fall they host a Pumpkin Patch from late September until the end of October and though the fall season is over they also offer horse back riding, Stagecoach rides, Birthday parties, Cookouts and more. I honestly think they could open during the cooler spring months as well as just an explore/adventure type location. If you visit during the Pumpkin Patch season or host a party at the ranch they have a ton to offer you and your guests.

Activities wise they offer several different western themed games such as bean bag toss, horse shoe toss, pan for gold, cow milking, hay mazes, rubber duck races and more. One of our personal favorite activities is their petting zoo! I love animals however I usually am not a big fan of most petting zoo's because let's be honest a lot of the animals are overly dirty and seem like they never get a bath or groomed. However when it comes to the petting zoo here all of their animals are extremely well cared for, none of them seem over feed, over worked or unhappy plus they get groomed often and are quite clean plus almost all of the goats, mini horses and donkey are quite soft.

Another plus about the ranch is that they offer actual bathrooms (located in the front), I've been to other farms and family attractions where they only offer port-a-potties and that can be a real drag during a fun day out with the family. We also like that you are free to explore the grounds to discover all of the different games and activities they have for both kids and adults. If you were to check out each activity, game and do the add-ons you need to pay extra for (horse back ride, pumpkin from the pumpkin patch, stop to get lunch) you could easily spend 3-4 hours here which is wonderful for tickets only being $10 a person (M-F, $12 on weekends).


I haven't personally stopped to get food at the ranch as we normally visit shortly after breakfast but I can tell you that the food smells delicious! They also offer shaved ice, Kettle corn and more which is conveniently located in the middle of all the fun. While they do have drinks for sale I do suggest bringing a bottle of water with you because it is Arizona and can suddenly get hot out of no where so you want to stay hydrated.I wouldn't forget your camera either, they have a lot of fun cut outs to take photos with, cute animals and more that you'll want to catch on film.

Head over to their site now to see all the options they have for visiting their ranch!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

The Grinch Movie Review!

**This is not a sponsored post, through another blogger I was able to attend an early showing of this movie and wanted to share my opinions on the movie.**

The Grinch is a holiday classic that many both young and old have grown to love since the book originally came out in 1957 (Holy cow! 61 years ago), this year the Grinch has been re-imagined by Illumination and Universal Picture. The main three voices in this film are voiced by Benedict Cumberbatch as the Grinch, Rashida Jones as Donna Lou Who and Cameron Seelyas Cindy Lou Who.

You might be thinking if it has been re-imagined how is it still the Grinch? The basic plot of the story was kept, it is still the story about how a grumpy old Grinch had a heart two sizes two small and how he came to love Christmas instead of hate it. The new changes are intertwined quite well with the classic, so what should you expect? Expect new characters you will surely love, new tweaks to the story such as Cindy Lou being raised by just her mother and the Grinch having a reindeer friend as shown in the previews.

What are our thoughts? Prior to the movie I had only seen one short preview so I wasn't sure what to expect, I thought it would just be the same story just with updated graphics but I was wrong. The kids and I really enjoyed the additional characters, story line and background on why the Grinch is how he is, that they provided during the film. They managed to give the movie a more present day feel while keeping the traditional story and film in tact, it is a bit difficult to fully describe but you'll understand once you see the movie. I always felt bad for Max because the Grinch seemed to make him do so much, and though I still feel bad for him this movie helps show how much the Grinch actually does care for his pup. I also really loved the flash backs to when the Grinch was a kid not because of the story but because he was so adorable!

We all enjoyed plenty of laughs, excitement and joy while watching this and we look forward to adding it to our yearly Christmas movie list. This movie is worth watching, I suggest heading to see it in theaters as a special holiday treat. The Grinch will be released on Friday November 9th,2018.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

New Candlewick Press Releases.

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Candlewick Press for the review  free of charge.**

Good Evening fellow bookworms, I have three great new books to share with you from Candlewick Press. If you haven't heard of Candlewick Press I highly suggest heading over to check out their website, they offer dozens of fun and interesting books to keep your mind and your children's minds engaged.

By Sam Usher
Retail Value $16.99 USD 

"Despite the stormy weather, a boy and his granddad decide it's the perfect day for kite flying. First they have to find the kite . . . then their adventure really takes off!". I personally love stormy days that are slightly cloudy with a little bit of wind and light showers, makes for the perfect time to relax on the porch reading a book or playing a game with the family while the weather is cooler. Kite flying is always a good option as well for windy days and this grandson/granddad duo made the best of their day and they show the reader where a little imagination could lead them.

The book is easy to follow along with even for beginners,and it offers dozens of fall colors illustrations that help make you feel like it could really be storming out. This book also have three others in the series called Rain, Snow and Sun so be sure to check them all out.

By Nicola Davies
Retail Value $16.99

This is a captivating story about a heartbreaking yet hopeful journey of a little girl who is forced to become a refugee after war takes her home away. The book starts off with her having a normal day sitting down to breakfast with her parents and little brother then she went to school. While she is at school war breaks out in her city and the book takes a turn from cheery and colorful to bleak and smokey.

Most people don't think about war on a day to day basis due to where they live and this book really makes you think about everything that has happened, is happening and might still happen at any time. Two of the pages that really struck me the most read as "I can't say the words that tell you about the blackened hole that had been my home. All I can say is this: War took everything. War took everyone. I was ragged,bloody all alone." Though her story and journey is long and sad I am glad she found kindness and love in the end. The book may seem a bit dark for some but it is worth the read, even if it is only once. In the back of the book is information on how you can help children like the one in this story by visiting www.helprefugees.org

By Marion Dane Bauer
Retail Value $17.99

"The miracle of every child is also the miracle of our planet: each made from stardust." This book made me excited to read not only because I find space and stars fascinating, but also because looking at the front cover I knew this book would be full of enchanting illustrations and I was right.

This book is about how the universe, planets, people and animals came to be and how everyone and everything is made up of stardust. We loved all of the bright and engaging colors, patterns and designs throughout the book. Instead of sketching everything out it looks like they used paint on a canvas to create various patterns then photograph the canvas to use in the book. The stuff of stars is easy to follow along with for all ages.

All of these books can be purchased on their website, amazon or Barnes & Nobles for $20 or less.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Chewy.com - Frisco Cat Litter

**This was not a paid post. My honest opinions were used, they are solely my own & they may vary from others.The products mentioned below have been provided by Chewy.com for the review free of charge.**

I know most of you have seen or heard commercials for Chewy.com but have you actually tried out their services? I personally love Chewy and no not just because I get the chance to work with them but because they have such a large selection of pet products, and offer more brands than my local pet stores. Their website makes it easy to spoil my family members pets and it will be easy for you to spoil your pets as well with their great prices.

This big fur ball has a bit of a stomach issue which can be a bit stinky so we've been looking for a good litter that helps mask the smell and doesn't leave a bunch of litter trailed all over. If you are on the search as well Chewy.com has 157 listing of different litters so you are bound to find the one that is right for you. I recently received the Frisco Lightweight Floral Fresh Scent Multi-Cat Clumping Cat Litter to try out with Aleister. A 10lb jug retails for $7.49.

I generally like lightweight litters because they seem easier to scoop and don't clump as hard as some of the large chunk litters. Frisco is lightweight and helped prevent a decent amount of litter box smell, however I didn't like how much dust it seemed to put off when being poured into the pan even from a short height. It also tracked quite a bit because it seemed to cling to his fur. I think this litter would be best for short haired cats. With the size of our litter box we managed to get two full uses plus a few topper pours when scooping out the box from this container size, for the price that is pretty good. Even though this litter didn't work completely work out for us it may suit your cat better.

Do you have any pets? Leave a comment below letting me know what kind of treats you like buying for your pets. If you don't have any pets what kind of pet would you want to get?