PostHeaderIcon Kammok Hammock Giveaway

Every once in a while a product comes along that I cannot believe I have been living without.  I was recently given the opportunity to try out the Kammok ROO and, after much use, I can honestly say it is the most comfortable hammock I’ve ever been in.   This is most certainly my favorite product that I’ve featured to date.

Most importantly, Kammok is an incredible company with praiseworthy goals and a mindful approach to the world.  Kammok has been built upon a strong sense of social purpose and a desire to aid in the lives of others.  Each time they sell one of their hammocks, the company donates a treated mosquito net or health education to a family in Africa to fight malaria through their partnership with Malaria No More.  They are also partnered with 1% For the Planet and they provide 1% of their revenue to Comfort the Children International in Kenya, in support of education, environment, economy, health, and community (the initiatives of CTC).  They are also currently partnered with Leave No Trace.  Needless to say, this is the kind of company that I want to support.

Kammok’s central product is the ROO, a camping hammock or “kammok” for short.  Its name is in line with the company’s ideology:

So why the Kangaroo? Because they help to illustrate what we want to be: People that come together. People that look out for one another, especially the defenseless. And finally people who at the same time take care of the world we live in.

The ROO is made of ripstop nylon and is both tear-resistant and lightweight (just 24 ounces).  The seams are all double stitched and stress points are additionally reinforced.  Amazingly, it’s weight capacity is 500 pounds.  Attached to the hammok is a compressible water-resistant pouch that the hammock easily stuffs into.  For an easier set-up, Kammok offers optional Python Straps which attach to any tree or loadbearing point of contact.

Right out of the pouch I was smitten with this product.  Their outstanding quality is reinforced by the fact that Kammok gear comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee and a lifetime warranty.  The hammok and straps are both noticeably high in quality without being bulky, which I love.  The fabric is thin and breathable enough that I don’t anticipate having any heat issues using it throughout the NC summer.

After setting the ROO up with the aid of the python straps (a process which takes 1 minute tops), I was instantly reminiscing about the four months that I spent hiking the Appalachian Trail after I graduated from college.  This hammok + long-distance backpacking = a dream come true.  Had I owned this hammok during that adventure my quality of sleep would have been dramatically improved!  I especially love that the sides of the ROO can be folded over each other in such a way that would keep most bugs out.  Also, I should add that I have used other popular camping hammocks in the past and none of them have provided the comfort that the ROO does.

In addition to backpacking and camping, the Roo is perfect for everyday relaxation. Book reading, nap taking, and contemplation will all be more enjoyable if done in a Kammok.  It’s small and lightweight enough to travel on vacations too (which I highly recommend!).

Spring has officially arrived and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate it than by joining the Mob.  The Mob is the name of the Kammok community.  It refers to both a herd of kangaroos and the acronym for “Moving Others Beyond,” which  CEO Greg McEvilly describes as a desire to “[Move] Others Beyond…beyond the brand, beyond themselves, beyond apathy, beyond malaria…”

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Disclosure: I received complimentary products to facilitate this review. I did not receive monetary compensation. All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Swiss Colony Ladybug Truffles Giveaway

It topped 80 degrees in North Carolina one day this week.  It’s official, spring is right around the corner!  Not that I need an excuse to eat chocolate, but spring does make me think of chocolate and the Easter bunny.   The Swiss Colony recently bolstered my spring excitement by sending a lovely package my way.

I was lucky enough to receive their Ladybug Truffles Gift Box.  These 12 truffles were beautifully decorated – they honestly could not have been any cuter.  The colors were vibrant and distinct, and the fact that these truffles were hand-decorated was very apparent.  Each ladybug morsel appeared to be made with pride.  They were also quite tasty.  The center was creamy and the chocolate was rich enough that I was able to stop at just one (which I appreciate).  I especially liked that they could be stored in the freezer as well as the fridge.

The Swiss Colony is a family run business that has been in operation since 1926.  In addition to these delightful ladybug truffles, The Swiss Colony also offers cakes, desserts, candy, chocolates, gift baskets, cheese, meats, nuts, snacks, sugar free items, clothing, and home gifts.  Under almost every category listed they offer postage paid items.  These items already include postage which is calculated at a reduced rate.  I like the “what you see is what you pay” approach to online ordering, so those options are definitely my favorite.

If you would like to buy someone special something sweet, I encourage you to check out The Swiss Colony.  Shipments ordered by March 28th are guaranteed by Easter via standard delivery, and shipments ordered by April 4th will arrive in time via express delivery.

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Disclosure: I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Zoe Gourmet Foods Assortment Giveaway

In honor of Valentine’s Day, Zoe is offering a seafood for lovers giveaway.  I already introduced you to this wonderful company –  my favorite retailer of exquisite olive oils, ventresca tuna, and sherry vinegar.  You can read what I had to say about all of those products here.  My mouth is watering just thinking about them.

In addition to those gourmet items, I was also fortunate enough to sample their Bomba Rice, Yellowfin Tuna, and Baby Sardinillas.  The Diva Select Bomba Rice is an ancient grain of rice grown in Spain.  It almost ceased to exist but found favor with gourmet chefs who revived it from near-extinction.  Unlike other grains, it absorbs 3 times its volume in liquid (other rices absorb two times their volume) and it expands width-wise rather than length-wise.  The first time that I prepared this rice, I cooked it in water.  Based on its absorbency, I cannot wait to cook in in broth next time for a more flavorful experience.  The unique cloth bag that it is packaged in gives water preparation instructions for paella and it would be perfect for that.

Like their Ventresca Tuna, Zoe’s Diva Select Yellowfin Tuna is line caught off the coast of Spain, hand filleted and packed in Spanish olive oil.  The process is Dolphin safe and I appreciate that the jar indicates this.  The tuna itself is absolutely delicious.  It is extremely flavorful without being “fishy” and the oil that it is packed in is light and complimentary.  The fish flakes off beautifully within the jar.  My husband insisted that this was the absolute best tuna he had ever tasted.  For me, it tied with Zoe’s Ventresca  Tuna, but no other tuna’s even come close.

The last product that I experienced was the Zoe Diva Select Baby Sardinillas.  I have never tried sardines in the past, and truth be told, had they come from any other company I probably would have steered clear of them.  Since none of Zoe’s other products have fallen short of spectacular I decided to give in to my adventurous side.  I read in an article online that Sardinillas from Spain differ from sardines in that they are plumper and more flavorful.  When I opened the tin I realized that I had nothing to fear – the fish inside were headless, finless, filetted, and overall not creepy in any way.  They tasted a little like tuna to me.  So good!

I really can’t sing the praises of Zoe enough.  Their gourmet products each offer their own magnificent taste bud experience and they provide products that are authentic in origin and environmentally sustainable.  As far as I’m concerned, these products are in a league of their own.  I imagine the same is true of the recipes on their website –  I am especially eager to try the Spanakopita and the Fresh Chorizo and Piquillo Pepper Bites with Shaved Manchego Cheese.  Could anything sound more delightful?

Yours to Win… 1 bag of Zoe Diva Select Bomba Rice (1.1 lb), Yellowfin Tuna (5.8 oz), and Baby Sardinillas!

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Disclosure:  I received complimentary products to facilitate this review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation.  All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Review: Ozeri Nouveaux Electric Wine Opener

I am a Valentine’s Day scrooge.  When I think of Valentine’s Day I instantly think of all of the commercialized gifts…. chocolate candy, stuffed animals, and roses.  I believe that people should give gifts randomly because they care, not because they’re obligated to.  Pair this with the fact that I’ve had a lifetime of lonely friends on Valentine’s Day and you might see where I’m coming from.  With all of that said, I will jump on the chance to save money and that is where Ozeri comes in!

Ozeri is currently offering a Valentine’s Day special (while supplies last):  their Nouveaux Electric Wine Opener with Removable Free Foil Cutter in the red color is now 25% off.  Add the item to your Amazon cart and the deduction will be taken before you check out.  The final price comes to $14.96.

The reviews on Amazon of this item are fantastic.  One hundred customers have given it a total rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars.  I found a positive review from a flight attendant especially impressive – I think of their wine bottle opener expertise as second only to bartenders.  As for my own opinion, I found this wine bottle opener to be extremely easy to use.  The removable foil cutter sliced through the foil with ease, and it easily screws on and off the bottle opener.  In the past I’ve been notorious for chopping up corks and leaving a wake of cork pieces floating in my wine, but that is a non-issue with this opener.  There is a blue light that activates when the wine opener is in use which illuminates the clear plastic.  In addition, according to Ozeri, a single charge can open up to 60 bottles.

All Valentine’s scrooginess aside, the Ozeri Nouveax Electric Wine Opener is a product that I’ll be happy to use year-round.  Some of my most romantic memories involve pairing a home cooked meal with a glass of wine, and this wine opener will aid in the creation of future memories.  For those of you not in relationships, I suggest this product as a way to toast yourself for all that is lovable about you and your total independence.

Cheers to love everyone!

PostHeaderIcon Comet Paper Shredder Giveaway

My dad has always stressed security and keeping information private.  He spent 20 years in the Marine Corps and the importance of secrecy is ingrained in him.  With this background, I always felt guilty as I tore and threw out information that revealed my identity. Thanks to Comet, there is now a paper shredder in my life and I can breathe easier.

With our abundant experience for 15 years in the paper shredder industry, we pride ourselves in offering the best products at affordable prices, great customer service and quality assurance. Our specialty is a focus on paper shredders that differentiate us in quality, features and price.

When offered the opportunity to review a Comet paper shredder, the positive reviews on Amazon made it impossible to pick one.  I asked the sponsor to send one of their favorites and the C08CD arrived at my home.  The C08CD model is a crosscut paper shredder that can shred 8 pieces of paper at a time, as well as cd’s and charge cards.  The two shredder slots are constructed thinly enough that there is no way you could injure a finger, which makes it especially kid and clutz friendly.  The capacity of the paper shredder is 3.2 gallons and the drawer slides out easily for dumping.  There are three operating switches:  on, off, and reverse, as well as an automatic shut off feature.  My favorite aspect of the shredder is how quiet it is.  It is definitely the quietest paper shredder that I’ve ever heard.  My husband easily slept through the noise one evening and I would absolutely be able to as well.  Needless to say, I’ve been having fun shredding all kinds of paper since this stylish shredder arrived.

If you’re in need of a paper shredder to protect your financial information from falling into the wrong hands, I recommend that you check out Comet.      They offer crosscut, microcut, home, and office paper shredders.  Be sure to check out their “daily deal” for even better prices!

Yours to Win… a Comet CM-C12CD 12 Sheet Cross Cut Paper Shredder!  Note that the CM-C12C is  different than the product I reviewed – it is capable of shredding even more paper at once and has a window that displays how full the bin is.

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Disclosure: I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review. I did not receive any monetary compensation. All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Aurorae Classic Yoga Mat Giveaway

This year has been remarkably stressful for me.  Since May I’ve been juggling graduate school, a part-time job, a job search, and all of the things that come with home ownership.  I am lucky to have a wonderful husband who helps wherever he can, but I’ve still struggled with finding the time to exercise.  School has undoubtedly caused me to be incredibly sedentary.  Thanks to Aurorae Yoga, two of my problems have been solved:  my need for exercise and stress management.  Yoga reduces my stress like nothing else in the world and for that reason I am able to make time for it.

Aurorae Yoga was founded by Dennis Ingui, a yoga enthusiast who describes himself as a “dedicated student,” not a yogi or instructor.  His life lead him to yoga in the following way:

Being a cancer survivor since 2001, I needed an outlet in my life to help build my body as well as develop inner peace for my mind. Yoga has helped accomplish both of these goals for me while also making many new friends and energizing me with a positive and balanced attitude toward life.

Aurorae Yoga sent me their Classic Yoga Mat for review.  With 4.6 out of 5 stars according to 575 reviewers on Amazon, Aurorae offers the best reviewed yoga mats.  My expectations were remarkably high and I was not let down.  This eco-friendly yoga mat had very little smell out of the box – there was no cheap plastic smell since it is silicone, latex, and phthalates-free.  The scent that I did smell was very subtle and pleasant and has since faded.  The mat is considered ultra-thick at 1/4 inches in height, yet it is still light weight and not cumbersome to carry around.  There are two features of this product that I especially love.  The first is that the classic mat is 72 inches long, so it can easily accommodate my husband who is 6 feet 4 inches tall or myself (5 feet 3 inches).  The second feature is the support that the mat provides – Aurorae Yoga seems to have found the perfect balance between cushion and stiffness.  The mat is textured in a way that minimizes slippage as well, which I did not find to be a problem at all.  I also appreciate that there is an Aurorae Yoga logo on the top of the mat that serves as a focal point.  Rather than focusing on my current lack of balance I am able to attempt to channel into that symbol.  On top of all of that, this mat comes in 7 illuminating colors that aim to encourage different aspects of your inner self.  I received the color “Seamist” which is soothing and intended to inspire the following:  “renewal, intellect, nature, self-control, gentle, and harmonious.”  Overall, this is a truly fantastic mat that easily rivals other mats which are double the price.

Incorporate yoga into your life and make it a better place!  It offers a wealth of physical and emotional benefits.  If your yoga items need an upgrade or you want to give yoga a try for the first time check out Aurorae Yoga.  In addition to the Classic Mat, they offer a Northern Lights yoga mat and many accessories such as yoga bags, a yoga strap, slip free rosin bag, yoga block, and sweat towel.  Their website also has helpful tips for maintaining your yoga mat and the yoga mats come with a booklet that provides instructions for the sun salutation and other yoga poses.

Yours to win… Aurorae’s Classic Yoga Mat!

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Disclosure:  I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review.  I did not receive monetary compensation.  All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Enstrom’s Almond Toffee Giveaway

Almonds, butter, sugar, milk, chocolate, and salt.  In the hands of Enstrom candies, these basic ingredients are turned into sheer bliss.  Their world famous Almond Toffee in Milk Chocolate is absolutely phenomenal.  I think my eyes might have rolled back into my head once or twice while enjoying this candy.  With such seemingly basic ingredients, it’s hard to believe that anything could be this exceptionally delicious.  It is easily one of the most savor-worthy flavors that I have ever indulged in.  The texture is somehow crumbly without being messy.  The chocolate, almond, and toffee blend together in the most flawless way – the  flavors are creamy and exquisite.  This candy tastes like pure luxury.  It is completely and utterly sinfully delicious.

Enstrom, the company behind the perfection, is a family run business that is located in Colorado.  Aside from their recipes that took years to master, Enstrom’s success may be rooted in their simple, time-honored philosophy:

Over fifty years of watching eyes light up and smiles appear when people taste the world’s finest almond toffee and most importantly; more then fifty years of honoring Granddad’s philosophy that “we’re just making a little almond toffee for a few of our friends.”

In addition to their toffee which the New York times labeled the “gold standard,” Enstrom also makes gourmet candy (creamcaramels, mini-turtles, mint meltaways, truffles, and nuts and chews to name a few) and sugar-free almond toffee, popcorn, and nut assortments.  They also offer gift ideas, such as peppermint cookie bark, gift tins, and gift baskets.  With Valentine’s Day around the corner, I recommend that you check out their Valentine’s Day gift ideas!  In terms of confections, I can’t imagine a better gift.

Yours to Win… a 1lb box of Enstrom’s World’s Finest Almond Toffee with Milk Chocolate!

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Disclosure:  I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation.  All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon $100 AmEx #HotFlash Giveaway! 8PM-12AM EST

With all of the flash giveaway excitement going around, I thought I would get in on one.  Thanks to Deals4Dummies for organizing and hosting this giveaway!  It will run from 8PM to 12AM EST and the winner we be announced within 48 hours.  Note that you need to complete all of the mandatory entries in order to be eligible to win.  Best of luck to everyone!

Yours to Win… $100 AmEx gift card, Amazon gift card, or Paypal deposit – winner’s choice!

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PostHeaderIcon Levaqua Digital Showerhead Giveaway

Showers (and baths) are a major pick-me-up for me.  I am guilty of enjoying showers that are entirely too long with what my husband refers to as scalding hot water.  Showers serve to wake me up in the morning, calm me down when I’m stressed, and just improve my quality of life overall (the plush bath robe that I received as a gift this winter helps with that too!).

Much to my surprise, I recently found out that the showers I’ve been enjoying for years were sub-par compared to what they could have been.  Levaqua sent thier Levaqua® 220 OneTouch™ Fixed Digital Showerhead my way and I’ve been feeling particularly spoiled ever since.

The Levaqua® FH220’s built-in digital technology allows consumers to choose from four invigorating spray settings, two timer settings, and two pre-programmed spa settings – “relax” and “refresh” – at the touch of a button.  Each program uses a variety of spray patterns to create a luxurious spa experience. Consumers can also choose between “pause,” “timer” or “eco” settings, all of which are designed to encourage water conservation.  The unit also features self-cleaning nozzles for easier maintenance that help reduce mineral and hard water buildup; blue LED indicator lights and easy installation that takes mere minutes.

My husband and I both agree that the showering with the Levaqua showerhead feels a lot like showering in a fancy hotel.  The water pressure is excellent even when the eco-setting (which provides 20% water savings) is on.  My personal favorite of the spray patterns is “spray” but I would be happy to shower using any of the settings.  This showerhead has two features that I especially like:  a timer and a pause button.  The timer can be programmed for 5 or 10 minutes.  When it reaches that time limit, the water pauses for a few seconds to indicate how much time has passed.  As someone who quickly loses track of time, I am sure that this feature will help me decrease my water bill.  The pause button reduces the water flow to a trickle.  This is handy for shaving or sudsing up, especially if your bathtub water temperature is as finicky as mine is and the thought of having to find the perfect temperature all over again prevents you from turning the water off via the nozzle.

The Levaqua 220 OneTouch Showerhead is one of my new favorite gadgets, hands down.  The fact that it takes 4 batteries and has so many awesome features makes it a gadget in my mind.  If you’re skittish about batteries in the shower (I was) – note that this product comes with a 5 year warranty.  Check out Levaqua for products that are sure to improve your bathing experience.

Yours to Win… a Levaqua® 220 OneTouch™ Fixed Digital Showerhead!

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Disclosure:  I received a complimentary product to facilitate this review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation.  All thoughts are my own.

PostHeaderIcon Review:

Textbooks are EXPENSIVE.  Even buying as many used books as possible, I have spent over $600 per semester on more than one occasion.  I try to re-sell the ones that I don’t foresee myself using again in the future, but new editions appear frequently and I’m often left with books that are worth a mere fraction of what I paid for them.  This year a friend shared her money-saving approach to textbooks:  textbook rental.  Better late than never, but I wish I’d learned of this years ago! offered me my first textbook rental experience.  Their website boasts of the following 7 reasons that make them the best textbook rental service:

  1. Our customer service is second to none
  2. We have nearly every book available for rent
  3. We ship books on time
  4. We give you a prepaid return envelope to send your books back in
  5. You can actually get a hold of us and we actually respond to your emails
  6. Every rental comes with a 30 day worry free guarantee and a 15 day grace period
  7. Our customer service is second to none

My favorite of the above (alongside the promise of excellent customer service) is the 15 day grace period that is offered free-of-additional-charge.  Exam schedules always make things hectic, so I feel very comforted by the fact that if I forget or something comes up, I have an extra 15 days to get the book back in the mail.  I also love that the return shipping is free and the packaging is provided.  Shipping to your home is also free  if you’re better at not procrastinating than me and you manage to order your books when an 8-16 business days shipping time won’t put you too far behind schedule.

The textbook rental prices allow a savings of 40-90% off of bookstore prices.  The first book on my list had a rental price of $35, a list price of $150, and the cheapest used book price I could find was $80.  That is significant savings!  It arrived in brand new condition too – it wasn’t cheap due to it being a ratty, tattered old textbook.  As someone with a condensed schedule, I love that you can tailor the rental period to your needs (summer, quarter, semester, or name your own length).  Another plus is that you can also purchase theft and damage protection, which cost $4.91 for the book I ordered.  If your book is stolen or excessively damaged then you are subject to an additional deductible of 25 percent of the rental price rather than the entire purchase price.

In addition to these great benefits, you can feel good about renting from because every textbook rental is paired with a donation to Operation Smile.  If you’re not familiar with it, Operation Smile makes cleft lip surgeries possible for children whose families do not have the financial means for the surgery. has committed to funding 1,000 surgeries, after which they will select a new charity recipient of their donations (they typically support a different charity each year).

Check out for major textbook savings this semester from a company that you can feel great about supporting!

Disclosure:  I received a gift certificate to facilitate this review.  I did not receive any monetary compensation.  All thoughts are my own.

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