Saturday, March 28, 2015

Dulcets Gourmet Muffin Sampler Gift Basket (Review & Giveaway)

There is really nothing better than receiving a basket full of delicious, moist, comforting muffins, especially when it is delivered right to your door on a Saturday afternoon. Dulcets Gourmet Muffin Sampler exceeded all my expectations. I was a bit worried the muffins wouldn't be as fresh as the locally bought ones (I am always a bit skeptical when it comes to fresh food being shipped overnight), especially since Dulcets bakery goods are preservatives-free. Turns out, I needn't have worried about that at all! The overnight shipping didn't seem to affect the freshness of the muffins, they were incredibly moist and melt-in-your-mouth devourable. Plus, I really loved the variety of choices - there's something for everyone here, though I really doubt you will want to share!

There are 6 different kinds of muffins in this impressive gift basket sampler: chocolate chip (my personal favorite), banana, cranberry, corn, triple berry (my husband's favorite) and blueberry. Surprisingly, they're very healthy tasting. They're buttery, but not greasy, and they are not too sweet at all. These are probably the best tasting muffins that I have ever tried. Even my husband loved them, and he is very picky when it comes to pastries.

The packaging is outstanding. The muffins come on a plastic tray (it's a bit flimsy, but does the trick) and they're sealed in a plastic foil for freshness. They are then wrapped in a designer gift wrap and placed in a gorgeous designer gift box. And tied with a purple ribbon. It is obvious how much thought went into both the pastry and its packaging and I am really impressed with the seller's attention to detail. As a result, this gift basket is more than just a box filled with richly-tasting, mouth-watering muffins, it's an EXPERIENCE that is sure to make a lasting impression.

You can also add a personalized message to the gift basket and make someone's day very special with this amazing present. You can definitely expect quality and dedication from this company.

Disclaimer: A sample was provided for evaluation purposes, all opinions are my own. 


Win a Dulcet Gourmet Muffin Sampler Gift Basket and have it delivered straight to your door - or to your loved one! 
Ends: 4/12
Open to: US

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Friday, March 27, 2015

Old Factory Natural Soy Wax Candles (Review and Sweepstakes)

Disclaimer: A sample of the product was provided in exchange for an honest review.

Do you like candles? If you do, you will love these! Old Factory candles are top-quality soy candles - I absolutely LOVE them!

I really enjoy scented candles, but my husband can't stand strong, artificial fragrances, so when I discovered Old Factory candles I was very excited. Not only are they made out of natural soy wax, they smell simply divine. The Chai Tea candle has the most gentle, barely perceptible, yet very sensual and pleasing fragrance. It smells like a delicious cup of Chai Tea - all natural and authentic. 

The Coffee Bean and Hazelnut are stronger scents, but still very pleasant and natural. I absolutely love the Hazelnut one, it is definitely my favorite. When I light it up, the whole apartment fills up with a comforting, relaxing scent that brings to mind hazelnut coffee or home-baked hazelnut cookies (in fact, when my dad came in he said: "smells like you baked something delicious"). 

They burn very clean (no nasty smoke at all) and the vintage-labels make them look really beautiful on the shelf or the coffee table. Plus, they last very long. I kept the Chai Tea lit up the entire afternoon and evening and it barely burned down at all - when the wax solidified again, the candle was as good as new. 

Personally, I am a big fan of Old Factory candles and will definitely be trying some of the other sets. Finally, I have found candles that last long, look beautiful and actually smell wonderful.

Win one set of these gorgeous smelling, natural soy candles from Old Factory!
Open to: US/Canada
Ends 4/6

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Today's Look: Ready for Spring! (Victoria)

Colorful spring look with a Striped  Daisy Sweater ($16,14), Printed Soft-Knit Pants (whoopie pie print, $5.99) and Flash Sneakers ($19.79) - all from The Children's Place

Absolutely love this vibrant, colorful, happy look! The sweater is on the thinner side, so it's perfect for warm spring days. The pants are super soft and together with the sweater and the sneakers they create a very cute and comfortable look. Plus, the daisy on the sweater is just adorable!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Finger Painting with Gallery 9 Premium Acrylic Paint

I recently got the opportunity to play with Gallery 9 Premium Acrylic paint set. A complimentary sample of the product was sent to me in exchange for an honest review.

Because I'm not much of an artist (I make digital art, but not real-life art) and I couldn't draw a straight line if my life depended on it, we decided to just have some family time with this set and do some finger painting. The seller has assured me that the paint is completely non toxic and safe for my child to finger paint with, so we grabbed a couple of large, thick paper sheets from the art store and got the party started. 

First thing that you notice when playing with the Galley 9 paint is the absence of any kind of odor. It's great for body painting and finger painting with your children, but it's also perfect for all sorts of crafts. This is a water-based paint, made in the USA, designed to be safe and long-lasting, but also very easy to clean up. After we were done finger painting, it took me 20 seconds of washing in lukewarm water to clean my daughter's hands. The paint just kind of flaked off nicely, leaving no trace of color or smell. 

The colors are incredibly pigmented and vibrant. They just pop! They're also very blendable and velvety in texture. You only need a tiny drop of the paint to be able to smooth it out nicely. The thickness of the paint is just right - concentrated enough for extra vivid color and definitely not watery. 

The kid and I had lots of fun with these paints, and there is still plenty left for my little artist to practice her skills. We played with the paint for about an hour and covered one large sheet with colorful splashes, but the bottles seem just as full as before, so I'm pretty sure this set will last us a long time. I'm very pleased with the quality of these paints.

You can buy the paint here: Amazon ($19.99)


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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

On horrible neighbors and sausage parties...

I hate having to deal with asshole neighbors. 

And that's the only kind of neighbors we seem to be getting lately. Are all neighbors assholes to each other? Seriously, are there no decent, reasonably kind, understanding and, well, normal people out there? Why do we always get horrible people as our upstairs or downstairs neighbors? 

You know, that movie with Seth Rogen and Zac Efron is only funny (though not really), if you're not  actually living it.

Moving is so not fun.

A month ago (well, a bit more than that, actually), we had to pack up and haul our asses to another unit, two buildings down, in the same apartment complex. 

Two-bedroom apartment worth of stuff (including three bookshelves double-stacked and few huge-ass boxes of advanced reader's copies) moved in one day, by my husband alone, on a day when the temperature was like -15F with windchill (we are freaking poor, we can't afford paying a moving company $200 per hour for a minimum of 5 hours). I had to take care of the baby, so I couldn't help much, other than packing and unpacking. It was f***ing ridiculous. Pure chaos and un-diluted exhaustion. And I so didn't want to do that. I did not need that disruption in my already busy and chaotic life... 

Sausage parties don't belong in family units.

So why did we feel like we had no other choice but to move? Cause we had a "sausage party" college-kids as upstairs neighbors, right above our heads, yelling, playing Wii (or some other life-sucking box of games), and partying till 3-4 am. And you know what that spells when you have a one year old baby? Yup, a fucking nightmare. A no-sleep-at-night and cry-your-head-off disaster. Well, we tried talking to them and asking politely, which only resulted in even more laughing and screaming at night (a very vindictive sausage party, indeed). So we then talked to the management, who pretty much gave us the equivalent of a middle finger and did absolutely nothing to help us. And so, with no other options left and growing increasingly agitated by the long, crying-filled nights, we moved... 

(But wait, there's more)

only to end up with downstairs neighbors equally annoying; if not more so. We are now in the upstairs unit, and apparently we are the ones bothering the asshats downstairs. Now, I don't call people asshats lightly, so hear me out. On the very first freaking day after we moved, someone comes knocking on the door. Husband opens. It's a middle aged Indian guy. He seems completely surprised at the fact that he is, in fact, upstairs knocking on our door, and so he starts by apologizing. Then he says "It is very loud upstairs, yes?". To which my husband replies "we just got up, the baby was walking around as we were sitting on the couch, I'm not sure what you mean..?" The guy seems even more confused, but he says. "It's ok, I understand" and skulks away. 

Later that day, the cable guy comes around to hook up our internet service. The Indian guy is back saying the very same thing. Baby was sleeping, the only thing making any noise was the cable guy walking around. Same story. We are, apparently, incredibly loud to the point it warrants a second visit on the same day.

The ridiculousness continues.

Day two: 7:30 am. Victoria wakes up, so I put her on my bed to change her diaper. I take maybe 3 steps across the room and then hear a series of very loud banging on the ceiling. It startles the kid and she starts crying. 

And then another neighborly visit in the afternoon, and the guy stating - again - what we already know: we are criminally loud. 

But the real fun begins when they - the guy and his wife - start banging kitchen cabinets on purpose and then slamming washroom door. They don't do it during day time, they wait till the kid goes to sleep and it gets real quiet in our apartment, THEN they unleash their childish fury. Like seriously, what are you, five? I would laugh in your face if it wasn't so freaking frustrating, because with every slam and every bang the kid wakes up. Is that really your goal here? Get back at the one year old kid for walking around. And what do you expect me to do, really? Chain her to her bed or teach her how to fly? It's just a little kid, for fuck's sake, she isn't purposefully stomping around or throwing things to disturb your inner zen or kamasutra, or whatever the fuck it is you're doing during day time instead of being at work. 

Be fucking civilized.

After the second day of banging on the ceiling my husband went downstairs and asked them - politely - to be civilized. He explained that the baby is just walking around, and she goes to sleep at 7pm and sleeps till at least 7am, and other than her walking around for a couple of hours per day, and maybe occasionally tripping on a toy and falling, there is no other noise. The guy got defensive, said he's sorry and that he understands. 

But the banging, the slamming, the knocking on the ceiling and the knocking on the door continues, so I'm pretty sure he doesn't understand and he isn't sorry after all. I feel like I can't breathe. 

So yeah, I king of hate people. No, not you, you're lovely, obviously, you're visiting my blog and reading my post, we are good! (Unless you're my downstairs neighbor, in which case, fuck you. Asshat.)

So here's an idea.

Why don't we all try to be a bit more understanding and accommodating to people around us. Maybe think outside of our little boxes and see past whatever there is on the surface of things. Being considerate isn't a terminal disease, it's actually - gasp! - a pretty good, nice and decent thing to do. 

I don't want to be negative or whiny, and I certainly don't want to be an asshole to others, but it's pretty fucking tiring on the long run. All I want is to take care of my own business. Make sure the kid is well-fed, has clean clothes to wear every day, sleeps well, grows healthy and is happy - that's my business. Whatever else I get to do - taking care of the dog, cleaning, cooking, maybe - if I'm extremely lucky - reading and reviewing something - that's a secondary thing, because my kid will always come first. And you, sir, are adding to the every-day stress of my life and preventing my child from getting sleep and, therefore, being happy. And trust me, you don't want to do that. Because I don't want to be an asshole, but I certainly will if I have to. 

God, I can't wait to be a house owner...

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Cosplay Wigs from YOPO - Review and Giveaway (Wig + $25 Amazon Gift Card)

Recently I got the opportunity to try on and review some amazing cosplay wigs from YOPO. I absolutely loved the fun experience and am so glad I get to share my thoughts on the blog today, as well as the opportunity to win one YOPO wig (of your choice) + $25 Amazon Gift Card

Check out my review below and don't forget to enter for a chance to win something awesome!

My thoughts:

I'm very impressed with the quality of the YOPO Cosplay Wigs. I got two, 28" one in color wine red and the 32" curly hair one in color purple, and they are both the best cosplay wigs I've tried so far. Way better than most cosplay wigs sold on Amazon.

I especially love the one in wine red. This particular shade, despite it being such a rich red color, looks surprisingly natural, to the point that when I posted my photo on Instagram and Facebook, my friends and family members all got fooled and I received a ton of comments and congrats on changing my hair color to such a vibrant shade. Honest to God, they all thought this was my *new* real color (I'm a dark blonde). I had tons of fun wearing this wig.

The purple one is lovely, too, though the curly hair get a bit tangled up and it takes a bit of time and effort to get it to look good.

I love the thickness and the grip of the cap. The wig is pretty lightweight and it stays in place nicely. I wish it would come with a wig cap, though, because there's just no way I would've been able to keep my natural hair under the hair-net cap it comes with - it keeps the wig in place just fine, but doesn't do anything for holding my hair (note: my hair is long and fine). Thankfully I had an extra nylon wig cap that came with another wig, so I was saved!

The hair is shiny and beautiful looking. Falls in a very natural way and is easy to groom. I had to brush both wigs before the first use as they came a bit tangled up (not much, just a bit roughed up in the shipping process), but a quick brush through did the trick just fine. Overall, I am very glad I got to wear these wigs and will definitely be using the red one for themed-parties and Halloween events.

About YOPO:

YOPO Wigs are made with 100% High-quality High-temperature Synthetic fiber. They come with an adjustable net cap that fits most head sizes. They can be washed and groomed, and they are made to last. 


You can one wig of your choice plus a $25 Amazon Gift Card! Open to International entrants, ends 4/10

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Saturday, March 21, 2015

Gone Reading - Greatest First Lines of Literature Mug and Jane Austen Journal Review & $40 GC Giveaway

Hi guys! I recently went on a bit of a shopping spree at and thought I'd share my thoughts with you today! The folks at Gone Reading are an absolute joy to collaborate with and I just love shopping there! Their selection of bookish products is already pretty impressive and they constantly add new exciting stuff (like, OMG, they just added a fabulous line of "Paperback" bath and body products, including shower gel, massage oil and more!). 

When my Gone Reading order arrived at my doorstep, I was so in love with both the mug and journal, I had to rave about it on Instagram and Twitter :) My tweets didn't go unnoticed, and the awesome Brad from Gone Reading emailed me about sharing a $40 GC to their store with one of you, my fellow bookworms! WOOT!! 

Greatest First Lines of Literature Mug

I don't know about you, guys, but I simply cannot sit down to read a book without making sure I have a huge mug of steaming hot coffee or tea to slowly sip as I get lost between the pages. I am not going to lie, I am a coffee junkie. And I like my coffee mugs BIG and COOL.

I had my eyes on two awesome mugs from Gone Reading. This one (points to the picture above) and their Banned Books Mug. They're both incredibly awesome and I had a very hard time deciding, but don't think that just because I bought Greatest First Lines, I am not going to eventually get my hands on the Banned Books one too. I will. Because there's only one thing better than a huge cup of steaming, delicious coffee.. And that's two huge cups of steaming delicious coffee (am I starting to sound like I need an intervention yet?). 

I love everything about this mug. The opening lines featured are timeless and iconic and just.. perfect! I love that it's so HUGE and BLUE on the inside! And it just looks so cool, making ME look cool when I hold it (or so I choose to believe, don't shatter my delusions). 

It's a really good quality porcelain, and the print doesn't get washed away even when I toss it into the dishwasher to clean it. I love it. I really freaking love it. And honestly, the price is freaking awesome, too. Like, I wanted to order this "Ain't Nobody Got Time For That" mug from Ashley Brooke Designs, but it's not only smaller, it's extremely pricey. I'm not paying $24 plus $12 shipping for a mug, oh-hell-no! Besides - this mug? SO MUCH COOLER!! 

God, I love the Jane Austen line from Gone Reading! I already had the Jane Austen Library Glass Candle which, btw, smells incredibly beautiful (scented in Gardenia, Tuberose & Jasmine) and you don't even need to light it up for it to fill the entire room with an elegant, relaxing and utmost gorgeous smell ever. Not kidding! 
I am pretty determined to collect all the Jane Austen products. There is an address book, an air freshener, dolls, playing cards and, gosh, even a toothpaste! 

I got this journal mainly for writing down my favorite quotes from review books, but also for keeping track of my TBR Pile and other stuff. Its's so elegant and girly, with the pages inside a light creamy color. There are 160 lined pages and you'll also find some gorgeous illustrations inspired by Austen's work and paired with memorable quotes from her books

It's glorious and I am yet to break its spine and write in it. I am waiting for something truly meaningful to fill its first pages. 

Gone Reading is, essentially, a bookworm's heaven. It's a fantastic source of really cool bookish items - reasonably priced and delivered to you with real care. I am a fan of this store and I sincerely recommend you check it out. I'm sure you'll find something for yourself! 

In addition to being an awesome store filled with gorgeous bookish goodies, Gone Reading is also dedicated to supporting some truly great causes, like spreading the love of reading in developing worlds and donating to charities such as READ Global and Ethiopia Reads. These guys ROCK and I support them wholeheartedly!

Interested in learning more about Gone Reading? Check out their store HERE and then read about their Philanthropic Mission

Gone Reading has also been featured in the Huffington Post, and you can see the article here!


What you can win: $40 Gift Card to Gone Reading (US only)
When it ends: 3/28/2015

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Apothecary Extracts: 100% Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil (Review + Giveaway)

My thoughts:

I'm new to the Tea Tree Oil club, but after using this product for about a month, I am definitely getting a golden membership. This is a fantastic product with countless uses. I have been using it to treat my dry and itchy scalp (the lavender rinse recipe from the guide). I have tried many different top-shelf brands of shampoos, conditioners and various scalp treatments, but none of these products provided any relief. I was excited to try something new and 100% natural but I didn't expect any miracles here, either. I've been using the tea tree oil and lavender rinse for almost 4 weeks now, 2-3 times per week and the itchiness went away. Completely. My scalp feels.. well, normal. It feels good. I don't get this annoying burning sensation and it doesn't look inflamed anymore. Before it felt like my scalp was on fire. It was itchy almost to the point of being painful to the touch. Just brushing my hair was enough to irritate the skin on my head. I first noticed the difference after using the rinse for two weeks. It didn't immediately help, but it helped get the itchiness under control. Now, after a month of using the tea tree oil rinse, my scalp seems completely cured and I really couldn't be more happy with this product. My hair feels cleaner and more moisturized, too.

Tea Tree Oil has tons of applications, from cleaning solutions, to spot skin treatments, hair treatments (home made rinses, shampoos and more), first aid remedies and aromatherapy. I haven't used this tea tree oil for anything else other than treating my dry and itchy scalp yet, but I'm excited to try some home-made cleaning solutions and I will definitely use it for cold sore treatment and to fight off colds and congestion.

I love the guide that comes with this product. There are some great tips and recipes in it for both the beginners and old fans of tea tree oil. The packaging is really cool, kind of vintage-y, and the 4oz bottle really is huge and well worth the money. Considering you will only be using a few drops at a time (it's super concentrated and extremely strong smelling), this product will last you forever. Plus, in my opinion, this is an investment that will pay off tenfold.

About the product:

Read more about the ingredients, 50+ uses and the company behind the product HERE.

Where to buy:
I am giving away 3 bottles of 100% Pure Australian Tea Tree Oil to 3 lucky readers of my blog! US/Canada only, ends 4/10. Enter via Rafflecopter below!

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