Category Archives: Reviews

Vaseline Intensive Care Advanced Repair Lotion

Vaseline Intensive Care Advanced Repair Lotion

If you’ve ever been to Arizona, especially during the summer, then you’re familiar with its dry climate. As a result, I end up with dry skin ALL the time so I’m constantly slathering lotion over my skin to keep it moisturized, which I wouldn’t mind if I didn’t have to do it so often. vaseline intensive care advanced repair lotion

Recently, Influenster gave me the opportunity to try out and review Vaseline’s intensive care advanced repair lotion. Admittedly, I used it a couple of times and then stopped but found that it was really useful after giving birth.

I have yet to relive my birth story on this blog, but to keep it short, it took 3 tries to get the epidural place correctly which meant that 2 of the 3 times, rather than the medication running directly into my bloodstream, it was running into my skin which caused A LOT of dryness. I’m talking sand monster dry here. In any event, my back felt disgusting and nothing I did seemed to work. Drinking lots of water and keeping hydrated? No. Trying to put on other products that boasted about keep your skin moisturized? Nope. Heck, even cocoa butter was no match.

Finally, after nearly giving up, I had R start rubbing Vaseline’s intensive care advanced repair lotion on my back and saw a marked improvement in just a few days. A week and a half later and the skin on my back is back to normal. I no longer feel crusty and gross and the nickname I gave myself no longer applies.

If you’re struggling with dry skin or skin that needs intensive healing after exposure to the elements or anything else that causes cracks and dryness, I highly recommend Vaseline’s intensive care advanced repair lotion. It did wonders for me and I have no doubt that it’d do the same for you too!

Etsy Review: Tony Bud’s Sewing

Etsy Review: Tony Bud's Sewing

Earlier this month, R and I purchased some Harry Potter robes from a shop on Etsy for our baby shower since our theme was Harry Potter. I wanted to give a detailed review based on our experience, however Etsy has a broken system and truncates your comments once you hit a certain post limit, so I figured I’d share the review here and link to it on the seller’s shop. It’s odd to me that places like Etsy and eBay prevent detailed reviews because as a consumer, I’d like to know as much as I can about a product, especially if it’s a handmade product without an option for refund. Hopefully, this review will prove useful for those who are thinking about ordering from TonyBudsSewing. HP Robes

Communication star_reviewsstar_reviews

Initial communication was great. Responses were timely and the shop owner was very communicative, however, towards the end of the quoted estimate for shipment, communication became non-existent. This was a rush shipment so continued communication was essential in determining whether or not the item would arrive on time. The explanation provided after the fact was due to the shop owner being in the hospital, however based on a prior review I was not the only customer who has encountered issues of dropped communication due to an emergency. Perhaps, it would be advisable to have someone on standby that can check messages and respond in situations where emergencies arise to assure customers.

Shipping star_reviews

This was an issue. There was an incorrect address as shipment, however this was NOT the fault of the shop owner.

I purchased rush processing and was assured that the item would be here before the 17th for a baby shower. The shop owner gave an estimated date of shipping, as the Wed prior to the 17th, however did not ship the item until Friday, citing, hospital admission as the reason and an assistant who did not send the items off as agreed. While, I can definitely understand emergencies happen, with rush items, dependent on a specific arrival time, there should be some contingency in place to account for such emergencies.

The shop owner did ship the item on Friday as overnight via USPS, which quoted an arrival of the following day, however, given the season, and the company used to ship the items, delays should have been expected. It’s likely the item would have arrived on time if another shipping provider were chosen, FEDEX or UPS, for example.

I will say the shop owner refunded the rush-processing fee at my request, though it was a little off-putting to have the entire incident blamed on USPS when the item was sent out 2 days later than promised.

This will not keep me from buying from the shop again, however, it will keep me from buying items that require rush processing based on my experience.

Fit star_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviews

Measurements were on point. The height was perfect for both myself and my husband and my robe fit quite well. The only issue we had was that the XL was a little tight in the shoulders but otherwise it was a perfect fit for us both.

Quality star_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviews

The item quality is excellent and definitely worth the price. The robes are heavy and feel as if they will last awhile. The detailing of the wand pocket inside the robe was very nice, though I do wish the shop owner had taken the time to ask what our dominant hands are as both robes had the wand pocket on the left side of the robe when both my husband and I are right-handed.

Overall star_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviewsstar_reviews

Aside from the shipping issues, I would recommend this shop to anyone looking for customized robes or Harry Potter robes. The details added to the robes truly made it one of a kind. My only advice is to avoid ordering from this shop for time sensitive items. Otherwise, it’s likely we will order again.

The Amber Project by J.N Chaney

I received this book for free from J.N Chaney in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Amber Project by J.N ChaneyThe Amber Project by J.N Chaney
Series: The Variant Saga #1
Published by Jeff Chaney on April 13th 2015
Genres: Fiction, Science Fiction, Action & Adventure, Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic, Military, Genetic Engineering, Young Adult, Dystopian
Pages: 343
Format: Kindle
Source: J.N Chaney
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Goodreads

In 2157, a mysterious gas known as Variant spreads across the globe, killing or mutating most organic life. The surviving humans take refuge in an underground city, determined to return home. But after generations of failures and botched attempts, hope is beginning to dwindle. That is, until a young scientist makes a unique discovery—and everything changes. Suddenly, there’s reason to hope again, and it rests within a group of genetically engineered children that are both human and Variant.

Terry is one of these children, modified and trained to endure the harsh conditions of a planet he cannot begin to understand. After years of preparation, Terry thinks he knows what to expect. But the reality is far stranger than anything he can imagine—and what he will become is far more dangerous. 

Initially, I had already formed a poor opinion of this book after reading the synopsis. It was too similar to books I’ve read before, however, I figured it wouldn’t hurt to give it a shot, considering, I am generally a big fan of Dystopian, Apocalyptic genres. The novel itself, I thought was mediocre but the premise was not what I expected. It’s true there were some elements that were similar to other Dystopian, Apocalyptic genres, but there were some variances in the plot that engaged me enough that I was able to at least finish the novel. As much as I wanted to like the book, there were some aspects that left me wanting more and the plot lost a lot of the potential due to lacking development of center pieces that draws a reader in, and as a result, the hook, line, and sinker fell short, leaving me with a sense of bewilderment and the inability to decide how I truly felt once I finished the novel.

Characters

The Amber Project focuses around the main character, Terry, from ages 7 to 15. During this time, the author fails to add enough depth and substance to his character, impacting the reader’s ability to truly relate to the protagonist. If anything, I found that he came off as weak-willed, which to some extent was the intent of the author, and whiny. It left an undesirable taste and rather then finding a connection, I was more interested in the parts of the novel that did not involve his story line.

There are of course supporting characters as well, which had, in my opinion the same problem. The author tried to add depth and substance but fell short and while I found myself wanting to relate to each of the varying characters and their individual stories, I found I could not. The backstories felt forced and incomplete, preventing any short of connection with these characters.

Plot

As, stated earlier the plot had several similarities to other Dystopian, Apocalyptic novels. The idea that each member of society had a specific role delegated to them at a specific age is reminiscent of Lois Lowery’s The Giver. The modifications to the human genome in an effort to save humanity is found again in Veronica Roth’s Divergent, even the need to live underground after a the earth is rendered unlivable is similar to several novels, leaving the book’s history, predictable at best. In short, there was nothing overtly original in regards to the history of the planet and the people still residing there, failing again to truly draw me in.

Final Thoughts

Overall, The Amber Project was okay. It didn’t have any characteristics that caused me to dislike the novel but it also did not have any outstanding moments that gave me a reason to want to continue the saga. Several parts of The Amber Project were too predictable and predicated on what seems, the standard plot devices for novels in the same genres. It’s not a book I would outright recommend but it’s also one I might tell a colleague to check out if they were looking for something to pass the time between novels. I can say, I am not sure I will be continuing the series as it seemed the ending was a bit forced and a second thought to the author based on the way the novel concluded.

About J.N Chaney

J. N. Chaney has a Master’s of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and fancies himself quite the Super Mario Bros. fan. When he isn’t writing or gaming, you can find him somewhere online, probably goofing off. He spends most of his downtime reading, catching up on Netflix, and building a weapon to combat the oncoming invasion of fifth dimensional beings (probably shaped like spaghetti or something).

He also really loves sushi.

After serving in the US Air Force, Chaney decided to pursue writing full time. Since then, he’s published his first novel, The Amber Project, part one in his ongoing Variant Saga.