Thursday, April 10, 2014

REVIEW: Honest Company Sample Packs

I was scrolling through Facebook a few weeks ago and saw a Suggested page for The Honest Company.  I was like "Alright,  lets check it out!"and I started scrolling down the company's page when I came across and offer to try two sample packs for just $5!  Now, I loves me some deals like this!  I clicked on the offer and it took me to and I started browsing.   They have 3 options to choose from when it comes to the sample packs, The Diapers and Wipes Bundle, The Essentials Bundle and The Health and Wellness Bundle.  In the Diapers and Wipes bundle you'll receive 7 diapers and a small pack of 10 wipes.  In the Essentials Bundle you'll receive a trial size of the following: Body wash/shampoo, healing balm, face and body lotion, hand soap, and laundry detergent.  Finally, the Health and Wellness Bundle you'll receive a one day sample of Prenatal vitamins and DHA/Omega 3 or Baby and Toddler Multi-powder and kids chewable multi-vitamin.   I opted for the diaper and wipes bundle and the Essentials.

Now, when you sign up for the samples they automatically enroll you in a bundle service that will send these full sized/packaged products to your door once a month.  This is clearly stated on the page where you select which bundles you want.  They say you can cancel any time (more on that in a minute).

After choosing the bundles I wanted I was then asked to select 7 patterns that I liked.  Let me tell you they have the freaking cutest patterns ever and I'm told they're constantly adding new ones.  Then I punched in all our info and waited for my goodies to get here!

It took 4 days to arrive (which is impressive!) and the packaging was really cute.

 The Essentials Bundle

 Diapers, Essentials and Wipes

Let's start with the diaper and wipes!

I decided to try this bundle because my Pirate has really sensitive skin and most brands of diapers give him a rash.  I normally use the Up and Up brand for Target because their diapers and actually hypoallergenic.  I also use their sensitive skin wipes because they're plant based and made with cotton and are also hypoallergenic.  The Honest Company says their diapers are:

  • Natural & gentle – sustainably harvested pulp, natural odor-inhibitors, and plant-based materials – NO risky fragrances, lotions, or latex
  • Ultra absorbent – superior performance & moisture retention
  • Premium fit – cloth-like feel, contour elastics, and stretchy re-fastenable grip tabs
  • Fashionable designs – choose from a growing selection of stylish prints for your girl or boy
 The Honest Company's wipes also happen to be plant based and fabric.  

I put Nixon in the diapers twice a day for 2 days and did an overnight.  They did really well during the day. They were super soft and Nixon looked so stinking cute in them. 

Like I said, so stinking cute!

They're very absorbent and didn't leak any.  They're very soft too.  I will say that I ordered a size 4 for him because the weight range was for 22- 37 lbs and since Nixon is currently just over 22 lbs I figured they'd be a great fit.  He normally is a size 3 (16-28 lbs) but while on my quest for a reaction free diaper I learned the naturals tend to run small.  The Honest diapers fit snug and I was surprised because I had gone up a size just to avoid that.  He had one overnight diaper and that also did a great job and remained leak proof.  After the first 2 diapers and the overnight, I saw the dreaded red as we call it.  He started getting tiny patches of red on his bum and other places.  I was instantly sad because I wanted them to work out!  So, I let his rash heal up and tried again with the same results.  Frowny face yet again.  The wipes didn't cause any reaction and did Their job just fine.

All in all, I didn't see any difference performance wise for either the diapers or wipes.  Even if the diapers hadn't given Nixon a rash, I can't bring myself to spend $80 a month on them just because they have the most adorable prints on them when I spend less than $60 a month on a box of 8 packs of wipes and over 200 diapers and if I time it right, I get free $5 gift cards.  Plus, in the Diapers and Wipes Bundle you only get 4 packs of wipes while the Up and Up box of wipes cost around $12 for 8 packs.   If you kid doesn't have sensitive skin this would actually make for a good diaper bag stash!

Next, the Essential Bundle.

Honest Hand Soap in the Organic Lemongrass scent - I really like the scent.  It's crisp and almost smells like a hospital grade soap.   It is a bit runny for hand soap but that's no big deal in the long run. The sample bottle has lasted a week so far and that's impressive for bottle size given that I am a super stickler for hand washing.  Be warned, it doesn't get very sudsy. 

Honest Laundry Detergent in Free & Clear-  The bottle says its ideal for High Efficiency washers (I don't have one haha) but it pulled out all sorts of stains from food and juice.  The bottle says to use the entire bottle for one use, but I got two medium loads out of it (I try not to use too much detergent in general because all my kids have sensitive skin and eczema and I've learned that too much detergent leaves soap residue on clothing that later acts as an irritant).  I tested it on Nixon's clothes and then really put it to the test for my two school aged children clothes.  I was impressed with how well it did on my girls clothes because the are basically feral children when it comes to outdoor playing.  Although it has no scent, the clothes did smell clean with no lingering stinky ;)

Shampoo & Body wash in the scent Sweet Orange Vanilla-  Oh man-o-manowitz did I freaking love this stuff!  It smelled so great and wasn't overbearing,  it lathered like nobodies business, and it didn't dry out anyone's skin or flair up anyone's eczema!  We didn't use it as a shampoo, well, the baby did but he's just got peach fuzz.  I'm just a big fan and actually really thinking about buying this full size!  From the sample we got 3 baby baths, and 6 showers using loofahs and washcloths.  That's a lot from that bottle!

Honest Face + Body Lotion in unscented-  This one was just okay.  I'm not a fan of face and body lotion combos.  Both of those things require such different forms of moisturizing and I've always thought that the face and body combo lotions will always leave BOTH areas lacking in what they fully need.  Now that I'm off my soapbox, as just a lotion it was fine.  It was runny, but that was probably to compensate for the fact that it can go on your face (see what I mean?!?).  It absorbed quickly and didn't leave any sticky or greasy feel on the skin.  We will definitely be sticking to our current lotions and oils though.  I will say that it also was eczema friendly.  Still have plenty in the jar and we've all used it on arms and legs.  Because it's a bit runny, a little goes a long way.

Honest Healing Balm-  Really liked this!  I will say this one held up on all its claims EXCEPT the diaper rash.  Nixon tends to get rashes from most diapers and we do a mix of nipple cream (I KNOW!  Sounds completely bonkers but I swear it works like a damn charm!) and coconut oil.  So when the Honest diapers gave him a rash, I slapped it on there and got diddly squat results wise.  I was kinda stunned that it didnt work.  It's good and humid here in Florida and being sweaty tends to make Sonnie Bunny get eczema flair ups on the insides of her elbows and behind her knees.  So when I saw her racking at her elbows I slapped a light coat on and a few hours later the red was gone and she said she felt "comfortable".  My oldest fell at the playground giving herself a nasty scrap on her hip, elbow and shoulder.  I put some on before bedtime so that the scab wouldn't snag her pjs and also applied under bandages and it again took away the red and made her skin feel less tight.  Its gone through multiple uses and I still have loads in the jar so it stands to reason that the full size one will be worth the price!

Finally, I mentioned earlier that you can cancel the bundles anytime.  That is true but its damn near impossible to do online.  I had to call the company directly.   The customer service line has some weird hours, but once I called during the right times or days, it was easy and no pressure.   They did ask if I was satisfied or had any issues and also offered to extend my next delivery date incase I wanted more time to think about it.  I was sure I wanted to unsubscribe and told him so and that was that.  Easy peasy.  

I definitely think these were worth the $6!  We got a lot out of the bundles and also got to sample a brand I would have otherwise played no mind to.  They seem to have great, quality products and you've  got to love that mission statement!  Highly recommend you try them out and please be sure to share your experience with me!  Be sure to ask me any questions you might have!

Hugs til later,


Thursday, March 27, 2014

REVIEW: Sonia Kashuk Radiant+ Tinted Moisturizer

Another product review!!

I received this complimentary product In the Influenster Target VoxBox to it was amazing.  eview and share with you lovely people!

I agreed to receive another VoxBox from Influenster to review an item that would be unveiled and sold at Target stores come spring.  I was given the Sonia Kashuk Radiant+ tinted moisturizer.  I was super jazzed about getting this item because 1. I'm lreallyon my tinted moisturizer and was looking to try new brands and 2. I am a huge fan of Sonia Kashuk's brushes and lipsticks.  I got the tinted moisturizer in beige,  which was ALMOST the perfect shade.  I usually have to mix two shades together to get the right skin tone.  This was a bit too light.

I love me some tinted moisturizer, let me tell you.  I just really like the lightness it gives.  Usually foundation is just to heavy and thick and even when I set it with powder I feel like its just begging to stick to clothes and seatbelts,  and my hair...ugh.  I use them but man do I bitch about it.  Anyway, for this to be a tinted moisturizer it was heavy.  It also provided a lot of coverage.   My freckles were damn near gone.  For those of you who don't,  I LOVE my freckles and that's another reason why I'm such a fan of tinted moisturizers and BB creams.  They don't hide my oh so cute frecks.  

I can say I'm not a fan.  Maybe it it was sold as a foundation,  sure.  As a tinted  I'll explain.   

Before shot :/


I had made the HUGE mistake of using a face wash without reading the ingredients and used one that had pineapple extract in it.  I'm ridiculously allergic to pineapple.   Because I made the dumb mistake of not checking,  I had small blisters on my cheeks and nose.  I had already used my own blend of tinted moisturizer and they weren't noticeable.   When I used this one....yuck city.

I was really looking forward to this product because I had heard from a couple beauty bloggers that I

Thursday, March 20, 2014

AT LONG LAST! My Broccoli Cheddar Soup Recipe!


After several requests to post my recipe, here it is!  I apologize for how long it took me to post this.  I had made a batch and taken step by step photos, and then my phone crashed.  The crash claimed the lives of all my photos, contacts and all rough drafts.  Dumb smart phone.  So if you don't mind it being photo-free, read on my friends.  Make, enjoy and let me know how it turned out!

Hugs til later,

Shopping List:
  • 1 stick sweet unsalted butter *you'll have leftover butter
  • medium sweet onion
  • 16oz carton half & half
  • 16oz chicken STOCK *broth is higher in fat and sodium and I think it gives a weird flavor to the soup
  • 1/2 a pound diced, frozen broccoli  *the frozen is easier and I don't drain it either but do allow it to defrost
  • 1 cup matchstick carrots
  • nutmeg
  • 8oz sharp cheddar
  1. Sautee onions in 1 tablespoon of sweet unsalted butter in a separate pan.
  2. Melt 1/4 of a cup of butter on medium heat and then add 1/4 of a cup of flour.  Using a whisk, stir constantly until it becomes a golden brown.
  3. Slowly add 16oz of half & half, while continuing to stir.  Allow to warm (let it start to steam, but not boil).
  4. Add 16 oz of chicken stock.  Mix well, add sauteed onions and allow to simmer for 20 minutes on medium low heat.
  5. Add defrosted broccoli, nutmeg, carrots, salt and pepper, stir and cover for 10-15 minutes.
  6. Add cheese while stirring, cover and cook on low for 15 minutes.
Serve with a crusty bread and enjoy!

I should mention that first, if you were to let it set for a day, it will be EXCELLENT.  I promise.  The nutmeg has a chance to soak and leave its flavor all over the place.  Now, some recipes call for the nutmeg to be added earlier on in the recipe but I have found that the nutmeg will be WAY overbearing or will leave a slightly burnt taste.  I think when added towards the end with minimal exposure to heat, you get the spot on taste of nutmeg.  Second, this soup freezes so well Walt Disney would be impressed!  Hubster heated up a bag that was frozen almost 5 months ago and he said it was as good as the day I made it.  The only trick is having enough left over to actually save!

Again, I'm so sorry I don't have photos to attach but those are the woes of relying on a phone.  Since the last batch of freezer soup is gone, I'll be making more very soon and I pinky promise to do an update and add pictures.  If you follow me on Facebook, Instagram or twitter I'll post alerts there.  Be sure to comment and let me know how it turned out and feel free to add pictures of your own!

Hugs til later!


Saturday, February 1, 2014


Hi, my name's Domesticated1022 and I beat myself up for my shortcomings as a mother.

I lay awake at night and meticulously go over every point of the day where I could have done better or done more.  It eats me up to see moments where I could have shown more patience, or snuggled longer.  I can't let go of this dirty, self destructive habit.  I have no shame in saying that I strive to be Super Mom.  Realistically, I know that will never happen.  I am an imperfect creature.  I know it but that doesn't stop me from trying to be otherwise.  So when I made the same mistake not once or twice but THREE times, I really let myself have it.

My youngest daughter Son Bun recently lost a top tooth.  There was a big hoopla about it because she pulled it our herself.  We found the special "Tooth Box" that I made using an old earring jewelry box that's shaped like a heart, dropped the tooth in and tucked it under her pillow.  Night Night Son Bun.

Well, fast forward to the next morning when she burst into my tears.  The tooth Fairy had forgotten her.  OH. MY. GOD.  How the hell did I forget!?  So while Bun cried in daddy's arm, I sent Jade to comfort her too and slid into the room and dropped a dollar behind her bed.  I went back into the room and told her after breakfast to go look again since maybe she was too excited and might have missed it.  She went back and found the dollar.  I left the tooth in the box and told her that the tooth fairy must have forgotten the tooth in all the rush.  She bought it.

Less, than two weeks later...same damned problem.  Forget, tears, dollar hidden somewhere not too obvious.  I couldn't wrap my head around how I could let it happen twice, and Ben had to talk me off the ledge.  He told me I had just spent the last few weeks helping the girls make dioramas and a Betsy Ross costume, and how Nixon had just gotten another round of shots.  That Nixon's restlessness meant I too was restless.  Bless my husband because I had two crying girls to calm down that day.  It goes without saying that I am sure I was a bigger mess.

Last night, another tooth.  Another night I forgot.  By the tie Nixon falls asleep, it's around 4 a.m. and I get up and stay up at 7:30 in the morning.  I'm told lack of sleep can cause forgetfulness (oh, and I googled it to be sure lol).  When Bun woke up this morning, she walked in with a fed up look on her face and I told her that it was still dark out.  It was around 5 a.m. and I convinced her to give the tooth fairy more time.  She climbed back into bed and I waited, fighting sleep with every ounce in me, for her to fall asleep.  I crept in performed the switch and crash-landed onto my own bed.  Ben covered my shift this morning so I could sleep in a bit and after a while came in to make sure I wasn't on the verge of another episode.  I lied and said no.

All day, I have been letting myself have it for slacking.  I can't even find comfort in using lack of sleep as an excuse.  I don't want to blame the baby.  I keep having this internal freak out that when she's older, and knows the boring truth about the good ol' tooth wrangler, that she will be hurt by my forgetfulness.  I can only hope that's not the case.

We, as mothers all have our short comings, our moments of failure or defeat.  It's another reason why I'm so adamant that we support each other and provide and ear or shoulder to our fellow warriors.  Luckily, I have an amazing husband who understands my sick need for perfection and a great group of friends, some with and without kids, who listen and help me laugh.

Have any of you had an Oops moment?  How have you lived it down or does it still haunt you?  Do you have and awesome support system?

More hugs til later,

REVIEW: Raw Baltic Amber Teething Necklace


Yup!  Another review :)

I really rely on finding alternative ways to deal with pain or discomfort and healing.  I hate having to give the kids medicine.  Both girls have asthma and need inhalers and every once in a while, need steroids.  They both have eczema and after a doctor told us that cortisone cream progressively damages the skin and leaves it very thin, I sought out ways to treat it more naturally.  Any way, when the girls where babies, they started teething just at 4 months and I would give them acetaminophen or Hyland's Teething tablets.  Nixon started teething at around 3 months and when I mentioned this to my midwife, she told me to look into amber teething necklaces.  I did some research and thought "OH HELLS YEAH!".  Ben on the other hand was very skeptical, but he doesn't like pumping the kids full of medicines so he was cool with giving it a shot.  So we bought a necklace and I wanted to share with you our experience :)

Nixon is a genuinely happy baby.  I really feel so blessed because this kid rarely has a bad day, even while teething.  The only notable difference in his behavior was that he wasn't sleeping well.  He normally sleeps too well!  Every nap is between an hour and a half to 3 hours, but when teething was in full swing he was napping for about 20 to 40 minutes.  He also drools so much more!  Our girls were pains while teething, lots of crying , chewing and crying!  Nixon is a breath of fresh air in this category.

I found the necklace we bought on  I originally was going to buy from a page that I'm a fan of on Facebook, but she was sold out of the amber color we were looking for.  We wanted the cherry colored amber (which looks almost black), but while I was hunting on Etsy we came across a store that offered a multi-colored necklace that had all shades on it.  We both really liked it and decided to go with it.  The site has a good selection and prices are reasonable.
Ain't it cute!?!

We were nervous that it wasn't going to be long enough.  It was 12.5 inches in length and we thought "Damn, that seems long" until we had it in our hands.  It ended up looking surprisingly tiny!  
Then, we got another shock when it turned out to be long enough to rest comfortably on his chest, just past his chin.

Several people asked us about concerns with him choking.  He hasn't ever noticed it.  He is 7 months old (GAH!) and he has never once even pulled on it.

We take it off at night for bed time and for his baths, put we make sure to put it back on asap.

After about a full day of having it on, we noticed a big change in his sleeping.  He went right back to sleeping for long stretches and waking up good and smiley!  So, if you're thinking that it was a fluke, a few weeks ago we lost it.  We lost it for 3 days.  It had fallen behind my nightstand overnight and let's face it, that's the abyss.  He was just terrible.  He wanted to cuddle but occasionally fight us off, he would sleep for no more than 20 minutes at a time and wake up so pouty.  Well, when we put it back on, he was right back to good naps and happiness.  IT WORKS!

This is the shop we bought our necklace from.  I'm proud to say that it's quality, REAL amber.  Plus, the store has a lot of other amber options, because the benefits of amber aren't just limited to kids.  There are a few ways to test the amber to make sure it is real.

  • Put a few drops of alcohol on the amber's surface.  After it has evaporated, check to see if there is a tacky surface.  If it is tacky, its fake.  Alcohol evaporates of real amber without leaving residue.
  • Take a needle and scratch the surface (try doing it on a part that won't be seen later).  If it leaves scratch marks, its genuine.  Amber is a soft stone.  If it doesn't, know :(
Caring for your amber teething necklace is easy too.  Be sure to take it off before showers or baths and definitely before any swims.  Use warm water and a soft cloth to clean it and you can even wipe it down with some olive oil to restore shine (again, take a soft cloth to it afterwards so that excess oil is removed).  Be sure never to use soaps on the necklace.  Keep amber away fro heat and direct sunlight.  Bam.  That simple.

All in all, we are really, really satisfied with Nixon's necklace and I can tell he's pretty happy too.

Have you purchased an amber teething necklace, or are you considering it?  I'd love to hear feedback from you!

Hope you find this helpful :)  If not, listed below are a few more sites to feed your need for info.  

Hugs til later,