Saturday, December 28, 2013

December Bugsy's Box Review

Henry (our yorkie-poo) is crazy spoiled. So, imagine his excitement (and ours) when he got another box filled with treats and toys this month. To say he was going crazy during the unboxing is an understatement. He can smell the awesomeness and he wants it! Anyway, I've always wanted to try Bugsy's Box so when they offered me a trial- I, of course, said yes. I'm such a sucker for treating Henry and this box helped me do just that!

 
My pup is adorable!!
 
... even when in need of a groom!
 

Type: Pet Box
Cost: $19/month for 6-months, $29/one-month includes shipping
International: Ships in Canada (free shipping)
What is it?: "Each Bugsy's Box includes 5 to 7 items which are a variety of high quality, hand picked, well reviewed dog treats, toys, care items, healthy supplements, accessories and more surprises such as coupons which are often included as a bonus." Treats are made in the USA. Small, medium, and large dog size boxes are all options.

 
The box- I was surprised it was so large. We got the small box btw- Henry is 9 lbs.

 
Woah- surprised again! The info card was soo long!

 
First look


 
Henry was freaking out! so we let him take a sniff on the table! We're terrible parents.

 
He wanted those treats!!

 
The schtuff!
 

 
 
Healthy Dogma Treats: FYI we take our "altogether" shots first with pet boxes so that we can one-by-one give Henry a sample of the treats and toys. Well, this one was done FIRST! He wanted it so bad- that's what he was sniffing in the box. These cute mini-bones are great for reward treats and are low-fat. Henry likes the chewy treats and is meh with crunchy ones but this one he is crazy for! Something about this Apple Cinnamon treat makes him go nuts! Price: $8.99



 
Puppy Puck Toy: This toy seemed a bit weird to me (at first) but Henry got a kick out of it. I love that it's neon for people lucky enough to be able to have a yard to play in with their pups (sad face here) and the idea overall is quite smart. It's a rubber puck so you can roll it, bounce it, slide it, whatever. We have carpet so rolling seemed the best and Henry loved to chase it and try it bite it mid-roll. And then he'd come back and throw it down to us. Adorable. Price: $10.69

 
 
Merrick Cowboy Cookout: I've seen pet boxes send out food before but we've never gotten such a product. I'm apprehensive. Henry has his own food/diet and I'm afraid this wouldn't sit with him OR he'd get addicted! Not sure if we'll give this to Henry or donate it to our vet who has an orphanage on site. Price: $1.17
 
 
 
Puptato Chips: We've gotten this before and I think it is such an adorable treat! The problem is Henry isn't a fan... or so we think. The time we'd gotten it before, they were opened and then not closed well and we think they got stale... we can't decide whether to give this away/donate or attempt to give 'em to Henry again and watch the adorableness of a pup eating chips. Price: $4.99

 
 
VetraCare Ear Wipes: How cool are these? Pups get sore ears all the time! They can get itchy so easily and these are supposed to help odor and itch. Definitely giving these a try! Price: $1

 
 
VetraCare Liquid Bandage: We've actually gotten this before- the only problem of being a sub box addict- but we don't mind having extra. We haven't had to use any yet (thank goodness) but it's nice to have on hand. Woah- thought- CJ's fam has a golden retriever (who we just saw last week) with a nose sore- they've been to the vet and it's just a problem of not healing by getting into stuff- maybe we'll send them this one! Brilliant! Price: $9.99
 
 
 
 
Dynamo Dog Treats: These functional treats are chicken based, grain-free and support hip & joint health. Our little terrier leaps and bounds off of everything and we're always so worried about his little joints. The best part of these? Henry thinks they are delicious! Score! Price: $5.99
 
 
 
Barkworthies 6" BullyStick: We've learned through sub boxes that Barkworthies is the bomb and Henry loves them! We unboxed yesterday and he had already had a chew that day (stocking stuffer present) so we had to hide this from him- seriously, he loves them so much. Price: $3.15
 
 

 


Verdict: I am still shocked by how much stuff was in this box. 3 types of treats, food, a chew, 2 med products, and a toy. Phew- so much stuff! The winners for us are the Healthy Dogma treats and Hip & Joint treats. Henry loves 'em and so do we... and of course the BullyStick will be a major hit. It's all good really and it came to a value total of $45.97! That's waaaayyy more that the sticker-price especially if you go with a 6-month plan (recommended) which would make this box cost $19. This box was pretty darn awesome (replace the darn with something stronger), Henry loved it and we love it too!

Sign up for your own Bugsy's Box now!





Disclaimer: Box was provided for review purposes. Opinions are my own and I am not compensated in order to write specific things. I'm my own person : )

December Tea Sparrow Review + Coupon Code

I am SOO excited to share this new box! Gah! I wish this was in person! Smell-o-vision would come in handy right now. These are some of the best smelling teas... ever! Oh, and 60% off discount link- yes, please!

 
 
Type: Drink Box
Cost: $20/month ($25/one-time) includes shipping
International: Canada- free shipping
What is it?: "It's a cute little brown box that comes right to your doorstep with 4 carefully selected, beautifully packaged loose leaf teas. All the teas of free of artificial ingredients and sent straight to Tea Sparrow from tea blenders around the world." Bi-monthly tea parties let members score samples and taste the top-rated teas. season in mind, and we'll also be featuring a series of tea cocktail recipes to get everybody in festive form. As well, we’ve slipped in a bonus tea! One-time buy, 3-month, 6-month, or ongoing subscriptions are available.
 
Now here's the epic part! Use this link and type in code: teas (where it asks for a password) and you will get 60% off your first tea box if you get the ongoing sub! Score!
 
 
 
The box
 
Ooo- note our new (just set-up) method of pic taking. It's soo pretty!
 
This reminds me of graze- it's a super sleek box which is sooo nice since we deal with clutter enough in our lives!

 

 
Unboxing!
 
I love how it opened like a present!

 

 
Hard to read but turns out they have an awesome referral program right now!
 
If anyone signs up from now until Jan 15th (their Jan box is all-about New Year's Resolutions so weight loss, antioxidant, flu-fighting, cleansing teas) I (or you) can get a free month!
 
Not sure if I apply since I haven't signed up for a sub... yet! But I totally want this sub so I'd love if I could do this. E-mail me (brokebeautyblogger@yahoo.com) and if I send Tea Sparrow an e-mail with my friend's (your) name I get a free month. Squee!

 
Info Card

 
Tea Tips!
 

 


Organic Naked Chai: Woah. But really, woah. Look at those WHOLE cardamom seeds! This is caffeine-free chai (which isn't always the case) and is made with all organic ingredients. And it smells so good. I wish I could express these smells, seriously, you haven't smelled teas like this before! Yes, btw these are all loose-leaf and no infuser/strainer is provided so you need to have your own. We have quite a few now and we have a new brewer too (thanks Shane & Kaitlin) so we're covered but infusers are cheap and there are super adorable ones out there now (there are manatees and sinking titanic ships etc).


 
 
Vanilla Honeybush: This Herbal tea is my favorite of the bunch (although it's all close)! It smells like butterbeer! Vanilla and caramel combine for pure joy! Seriously, it's awesome AND even though Tea Sparrow doesn't sell these teas, they do show you where to order more (myaromatica.com)- this may require some buying!


 


 
 
White Orchard Tea: This caffeinated green tea is blended with China white tea. And it smells delish- again! It's fruity and citrus-y with scents of melon and peach. Ugh, so good. Those are flower petals in the mix btw- how cool is that!
 



 
 
Earl Grey Supreme: Earl Grey is never a fav of mine. It never smells great and I usually tend towards non-caffeinated teas or green/white teas. Black Tea is fine but it's never as mouthwatering, know what I mean? Anyway, this tea has bergamot oil which I LOVE and so it smells like a spa in a bag. It's craziness. Seriously, y'all need to try this.
 
 
 
Verdict: Alright, teas lovers- get on over to Tea Sparrow and pick this up. This is my second tea subscription I've tried and it's already my fav. I really have never had such beautifully aromatic teas! I know these teas evoke warm, holiday, seasonal feelings and smells but I have a feeling that every month will be this good! Each month they send out 4 premium bags but fyi sometimes they do 5 for something special! This makes each bag worth $5 and I have to say, it's worth it, especially since you'll get around 35 cups of tea from each box (if you like strong tea- 65 cups for weak tea)!
 
I'm SOLD!! Now sign up yourself: Use this link and type in code: teas (where it asks for a password) and you will get 60% off your first tea box if you get the ongoing sub! Score! 

And let me know if you signed up so I can pass on my referral! I'd love to get this sub forever! What are you waiting for? Get on this deal!








Disclaimer: Box was provided for review purposes. Opinions are 100% my own- no compensation was provided for this tea addict!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Movie List!

'Tis the season!! So, I've been absent for about a week and it's Christmas Day which should mean no posts but my mind was focused on this topic! I was in CO for a week rehearsing and performing Handel's Messiah while driving all around the state visiting fam and friends. Tiring! It also meant not doing any usual Christmas-y season stuff aka watching awesome seasonal movies! When it comes to Halloween there is Hocus Pocus or Thanksgiving brings movies like Planes, Trains, and Automobiles but Christmas takes the cake with a plethora of offerings.


 
I did 5 masses in the past 24 hrs including cantoring at 3 and I am wiped so my day consists of eating my candy from my stocking. Mmm. AND movies!
 
 
Ok, my definitive Christmas movie list!
 
(I love using "definitive _____ list" it's such nonsense)
 
The list is in no real order btw!
 
1. A Christmas Story
 
 
It really doesn't seem like Christmas without watching this classic. They transport you to the 40s (even though it's made in the 80s) and it makes me laugh from start to finish. And talk about memorable lines! If you can't quote at least one line right this very instant, I'm judging you!
 
Just watched this!
 
2. Love Actually
 
 

 
I know there was "controversy" over this movie this year but whatever, people are weird! This movie rocks my holiday season and I am super bummed I didn't watch it at the beginning of December to kick off the season. I'm hoping to get to it tonight (while eating fondue in my warm jammies) so I can watch some Prime Minister dancing. You know what I talking about.
 
3. Home Alone
 

 
I always want to watch this and since we don't own it (or didn't) I never got around to it! Well, CJ brought his parent's own VHS player to TX and I brought our old VHS of it and last night around midnight after working 3 Christmas Eve services we watched it. And it was as amazing as I remember! 90's hijinks are the best.
 
 
4. Home Alone 2
 
 
This one actually seems more Christmas-y than the first with the toy store and all but it's not as good as the original and I will not be watching it this year.
 
 
5. White Christmas
 
 
Why did I wait until last year to watch this!?? It's sooo good. The dancing, the singing, the comedy, it's all gold. Ugh, it's so good! I made CJ watch it with me right before our trip home and he's a convert. SOOO good!
 
6. The Nightmare before Christmas
 
 

 
 
This probably won't be on a lot of people's lists but it's a must-see on mine. I actually first saw it after my sister got it in a Christmas present swap. I have since stolen that original DVD for my own collection. This movie is a tough-y since it's a "is it Halloween, is it Christmas?" movie but it's classic Burton and oh-so-good. Hope to get to this today.
 
7. Scrooged
 
 
If you haven't seen this, you are missing out, yes there are a million takes on this classic tale but Scrooged is the best! Bill Murray is fantastic and it makes you laugh from the beginning. We just paused it to do some cooking/I could write this. It's really great- I made CJ watch it the other year and it's one of his favs now too.
 
8. National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
 
 
Ok, all of the Vacation movies are etched in my head from childhood but the Christmas-light fiasco is definitely a big memory for me. This is one of those movies that was better the first you saw it or better when you were a kid but it's worth a watch every so often! Not this year for me, not enough time!
 
9. Elf
 
 
Honestly, I've been a bit Elf-ed out to care too much for this one but people just go crazy for it. It's still pretty hilar but for some reason the marathon Elf showings burn me out as opposed to the 24-hr A Christmas Story marathons on TBS which don't seem to bother me (I don't actually watch it all or anything though). Anyway, this isn't something I was dying to watch this year!
 
 
10. Miracle on 34th Street (remake)
 
 
Ok, I just wanted to round out the list to 10 but I have been dying to watch this remake of this movie recently! I grew up with it (I mean, it starred Matilda) and having not seen it for some odd 10 years is bumming me out! Maybe next year!!!
 
 
Honorable Mentions:
 
I don't have time to make a real "definitive" list with the 100s of movies but here's some other goodies!
 
Classics:
 
It's a Wonderful Life
Miracle on 34th St.
Holiday Inn
Babes in Toyland
Christmas in Connecticut
 
Confession: I haven't seen 4 of these!
 
"Christmas" movies:
 
Die Hard & Die Hard 2
Lethal Weapon
Gremlins
The Ref
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Iron Man 3
Trading Places
Mixed Nuts
Batman Returns
Brazil
 
I have never seen Die Hard. Craziness. This makes me want to watch Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and Gremlins again! And Brazil is soo good!
 
Comedies/Cheesy Movies:
 
Bad Santa
Jingle All the Way
The Santa Clause (and sequels)
Jack Frost
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (live action)
While You Were Sleeping
About a Boy
Bridget Jones' Diary
 
There are soo many more. Remember when Arnold and Sinbad were in a Christmas movie together? Eek.
 
Dickens:
 
A Christmas Carol
The Muppets Christmas Carol
Mickey's Christmas Carol
 
People will fight me but Scrooged beats the Muppets- sorry
 
Cartoon (and the like):
 
The Polar Express
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
A Charlie Brown Christmas
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Frosty the Snowman
 
 
 
Ok, that's it. I'm tired. Time for more Scrooged!
 
Tell me, what's your fav movie this season!?!
 
 
MERRY CHRISTMAS!!
 
 



Saturday, December 14, 2013

Dear Santa...

I know I'm very sub box review (and beauty stuff too) focused but I like to switch it up with my own stuff! I've been busy making some moolah during the Holiday season and practicing/learning music for an upcoming mood and I haven't put in much time to do my posts (on my awesome subscriptions)! I HAVE been thinking about the upcoming Holidays and today I put up a letter to Santa on my Facebook page (my personal page) and I thought it'd be fun to share here!



Dear Santa,

I know I'm a bit older than your usual clientele but here's my list anyways. I'd say I've been good this year, more good than bad at least.

1. Rent money. Like half a year of rent paid, cause wouldn't that be f@*$in amazing?
2. A sectional couch. We know it's not super reasonable for own living room size but we want it!! I'm a Netflix junkie and I just wanna watch the sword in th
e stone sprawled out on a couch that we haven't reinforced with 2X4s a hundred times.
3. A king size bed. Why in the world do we have a queen? Why have I had a queen since I was 8 (I think). I'm 5'11" for goodness sake.. Give me some leg room. For free, pretty please.
4. Safe, non-icy roads to drive on. Not material- just lookin to stay safe for CJ's (and my) upcoming drives to and from CO.
5. Gift certificates to ModCloth & Target. I've spent my yearly clothes allotment at ModCloth and we all know I'm gonna do it next year so let's get ahead of this. And grocery money would Sa-weet!
6. Negative 15 pounds please. Good Lord, I just wanna eat cake again!

Alrighty, can I at least have #4. Much appreciated!

-Laura

P. S. Can you get CJ a PS4?
 
 
Some things to add for this blog?!?!
 
1. Added time AND organizational skills to get posts up fast and easily!
 
2. Awesome new boxes to try!
 
3. I already have awesome readers so I'll ask for awesome giveaways to reward y'all!!
 
 
 
What are you guys asking for?? Make a fun Dear Santa list and share it! Cause, why not?!?
 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

October + November Juniper Review

 
 
It's with a heavy heart that I picked what reviews to do today. Juniper, one of my fav T.O.M. boxes AND food boxes has closed its doors. Lynn (the CEO) announced the closing on Dec. 4th and I will definitely miss my treat-filled boxes! Since you can no longer order this box I didn't know if I should post my 2 reviews but the completionist in me had to post both- PLUS these yummy boxes are fun to look at. No pricings since it didn't seem necessary at this point. Enjoy.
 
 
October 2013
 
 
 
Type: T.O.M. Box
Cost: $28/month
What is it?: This company which started up in 2013 delivers a deluxe box complete with your choice of tampons (20+), pads, pantyliners plus treats! Juniper begins each subscription registration by choosing from the 6 brands of tampons they offer (which you get a variety of absorbency) OR pads, then you choose whether you would like backup protection (pads/pantyliners), and if you would like some Midol thrown in!  You choose the date you would like to receive the box and then the box has a phone number on it to text so they can track your monthly guest so your box will always be on time and continue customizing your box. Each box comes with a bevy of treats including honey sticks, chocolate, tea, snacks, etc! You get a starter box to begin and after that you work with Juniper to customize based on your needs. 
This box is no longer available!

 
The box



 
First look!
 
 
Lynn's Letter's were always fun. This one mentions our fear of Miley Cyrus' tongue-wagging.

 
Trick-or-Treat Yo' Self. Woot- Parks and Rec shoutout!

 
 
No pic of my tampon box but here's the extras bag.

 
Midol and Kleenex!

 
Yummies!

 
 
Mighty Leaf Teas: I love Mighty Leaf Teas- and these were especially good. Ginger Twist- saucy!
 

 
 
Amella Gray Sea Salt Caramel: Umm yum. These were right up my alley. Devoured. De-vou-red!

 
 
New Tree Orange Pearls: These looked amazing and they were! I was a fan but CJ was a BIG fan! I'd never seen these before but imagine those chocolate oranges you eat at Christmas but in bite-size form!

 
 
Nature's Kick Honey Sticks: These got lost in my disaster area that is my desk. It's drowning in sub box products. Anyway, I just found them (they were in a baggie of food stuff that was supposed to go down to the kitchen- again, drowning) and can't wait to give the Sour Apply, Sour Cherry, & Blue Raspberry a try.


 
 
TCHO PureNotes Dark Chocolates: I've had these TCHO bites a few times and loved them before. I'm not a huge dark chocolate fan but these were definitely nummy.
 
 
 
 
Bridgebrands Book Lover's Chocolate: Gah! A Milk Chocolate Bar that is called Book Lover's Chocolate? Yes please!! I loved this bar. So good. I did NOT eat while reading but I'll pretend I did. Book Confession: I just re-read all 7 Harry Potter books last week, reading the last 3 within 48 hrs. I was in need of fun reading time, I guess a break from grown-up book, but it's still makes me feel a bit ashamed.

 
Verdict: I really liked the October box- it was full of chocolate amazingness and I definitely felt like I was being treated. This was a big ol' win for me.
 
November 2013
 
 
November Unboxing
 
 
All the Thanks! Love the festive photo! And I want that Turkey tealight holder!

 
Lynn's Letter = Her thankful list.
 
1. Scandal, Nashville, The Good Wife. I watch the 1st two and totally agree!
5. Customers. I shall miss you Lynn! I will be on the look-out for whatever venture you start next!
 
 
My supplies!

 

 
Always good on-the-go!

 
 
Clarine's Florentine's: I've gotten this before and it was really good for something with bittersweet chocolate, I gave this one to CJ since he didn't get to try the last one I had (oops).

 
 
McSteven's Spiced Apple Cider: This may be my favorite addition in this box. Spiced Cider is such a November thing! It's warm and cozy- and delicious!

 
 
Numi Teas: A stand-by solid tea brand, I really liked the Berry Black! Twas' fruity without being too fruity- make sense?

 
 
Nature's Kick Honey Sticks: This month featured Clover, Wildflower, and Orange Blossom. Instead of eating them straight up CJ is using them in his coffee. They're versatile little buggers.

 
 
Hagensborg Truffle Pigs: I've had these several times, especially because I buy them at Central Market sometimes when I want some delicious chocolate. I had the Milk one (CJ-dark) and it was scrumptious. Better than the PB ones even!
 
 
 
Chocolove- Toffe & Almonds in Milk Chocolate: I love Chocolove. They are always so good and you can't go wrong with toffee, ever! Toffee + Chocolate = Heaven. Chocolove Bar was devoured.

 
Verdict: This was another great month. I think Oct and Nov were some of my all-time favorites since they hit-the-spot so perfectly for the month they were in.
 
 
Dear Lynn & Juniper,
 
I shall miss you. Thanks for the giant supply for tampons under my bathroom sink, my purse's hidden pocket overflowing with Midol, and my tummy stuffed with delicious treats. You introduced me to so many waistline increasing products and have always had my back each month. If you ever happen to start another business whether it be a sub box or not, I'll be your first customer!
 
Lovingly,
 
Laura