6 Blue Pieces from AmiClubWear That Won’t Make You Blue (Including Plus Size!)

Date Tue, October 3 2017

Is navy blue the collar is the season? I’ll take it!

Browsing new items at AmiClubWear showed that navy and dark blues are back, and I couldn’t help but curate a collection of my favorites to pass on to my readers. I’ve included some royal blue because I couldn’t help myself.

If you’re not familiar with this store, they sell sexy and fashionable clubwear, shoes, accessories, costumes and fashion pieces. One of my favorite things about AmiClubWear is that they include plus sizes, too.

Many of these items are currently on sale (none of them are actually over $30), but you can save even more  (55%!) if you use coupon code TREAT55 when you check out.

Now, on to the I’ll let the dresses, trench coats and cardigans!

Monopoly Empire

Date Wed, September 27 2017

Monopoly is the game that we’ve all played – and many of us own – but few people seem to like. Sure, you could say that was the purpose. It was, after all, created to teach us a lesson about capitalism. But I always find myself wanting to like Monopoly. I’ve spent so much time playing it; I’ve got to like it.. right?

Perhaps we just need a little variation. Hasbro has tried to switch things up with Monopoly Empire, which does away completely with the idea of property-specific rents, houses, and hotels. But is that enough?

In Monopoly Empire, you don’t get a stack of cash. Instead, you get a few each of 50s, 100s and 500s. Each represents these as thousands (50 = 50,000) because wouldn’t that be nice? LOL

Neither do you get property cards as you move around the board, which works like it would regularly aside from some new Chance and Empire cards. Instead, you fork over money to the bank in exchange for “billboards” that represent the properties. Each billboard is placed into an ill-fitting that is pre-marked with amounts of money.

The tray is split up in slots in 50,000 increments and starting at 50. Place billboards onto the tray to see how much you’re owed now. The more billboards or the larger the billboards (higher-value billboards are larger, filling up your tray more quickly), the more money you make when you pass GO and when someone owes you rent for a maximum of $800,000. Ouch!

It might sound awesome that you make more money, but Monopoly Empire isn’t a game that feels balanced. Instead of the game ending when someone goes bankrupt and loses, a player now wins when his or her tray is filled. I was able to fill mine completely with two trips around the board and just a few of the larger billboards. Monopoly Empire makes for a short game, but it’s not one that’s particularly riveting.

Without property cards, the element of trading for monopolies is removed, and that’s one of the more interesting parts of gameplay in traditional Monopoly. Furthermore, while you can purchase all the billboards in each color group and earn extra money from passing GO or rent, there’s not much motivation to do so because you can pretty easily fill your slots with tiles from any color group in just a few rolls of the dice. Furthermore, the slotted tray means rent is based more on luck than what you buy, so you needn’t hold out for more expensive properties.

Speaking of properties, the theme of Monopoly Empire is brands. You’ll see recognizable powerhouses such as Samsung, Microsoft, and McDonalds. But Hasbro clearly had issues getting big name brands to sign on – I’d assume due to trademark issues and costs. So you’re left with lesser tech companies such as Yahoo instead of Apple or Google, and other brands that just don’t speak to the player (or leave them feeling confused). I understand why this happens, but it makes the game a little bit more lackluster.

Because you don’t lose by going bankrupt, you actually can’t go bankrupt. You simply do nothing if you can’t afford someone’s outrageous rent, which is just another way in which Monopoly Empire feels humdrum. Perhaps that’s why there are now Empire cards and new Chance cards, including one that allows you to move around the board to any property you desire (and collect if you pass GO), but they fail to liven up the game.

Unless Monopoly Empire intends to serve as a cautionary tale about the world of trading could be in the modern day, this version fails to make any sort of impact let alone improve upon the original.

Just 4 Beauty Scarves Giveaway

Date Fri, September 15 2017

This post contains affiliate links and I may receive a small commission if clicked on and a purchase is made.

4 winners – 2 for the dog pattern, 2 for the Nature Pattern Silk Scarf

This contest is hosted by the Social Media Gurus Network!

Below is a list of all the bloggers involved in the gift guide.

Now let’s get to the sponsor!

Just 4 Beauty

Women Wool Warm Scarf

Available on Amazon!

See the review HERE.

First 2 Winners

Women Fashion Brushed Silk Scarf

Women Fashion Brushed Silk Scarf

Available on Amazon!

See the review HERE.

Second 1 Winner


THE GIVEAWAY

This giveaway is in no way endorsed, affiliated, or associated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site.You are not eligible if you have won a prize from the sponsor in the last 12 month. This Giveaway is valid in the United States Only and Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway event will end at 11:59 PM (EST) 9/29/17. The winners will have 48 hours to email their information back to las93063 at gmail dot com or a new winner will be drawn, you may want to put this email address as safe as it could go to spam. The sponsors are each responsible for shipping of the above prizes. No blog associated with this contests are responsible for prize fulfillment. If you would like to be a sponsor in a giveaway like this please email Laura Smith at las930 (at)gmail (dot) com. If you take an entry you must stay following for the entire contest or you will be disqualified.

Enter below and Good Luck!

Almondina Toastees

Date Wed, September 13 2017

A while back, I had a chance to work with Almondina to try their cookie (review here), a more healthy alternative to the sort of snacks that you find just about everywhere. I enjoyed them, so agreed to work with the company again to try another product – Almondina Toastees.

These are crunchy treats that are made without salt or fat added and have no cholesterol and no preservatives. Sounds pretty good, right? Almondina sent me a box with a few flavors to try and report.

Each flavor comes in a resealable bag, and you’ll want to make sure to seal it up. If you don’t, they can get stale. Oops.

I first tried Cranberry Almond as that’s right up my alley, and they’re good! They have a fun crunch and a touch of sweetness that’s not overwhelming. The Toastees look like tiny slices of baked bread more than cookies and chips, and the slices of almonds are impossible to ignore. The cranberry bits add a bit of chewiness that I like.

I would say that the texture is a little dry, so Toastees are probably best with a drink that you can dip them in. Coffee or hot cocoa would work perfectly. Almondina also suggests pairing these with cheese, which would make a good snack for a person of any ages. I think Toastees would be ideal to toss in your lunch box for work or school.

I next tried the Coconut Orange Almond flavor. It seemed like I would enjoy it. However, they’re not my favorite. I find the citrus to be a bit overwhelming, and the coconut is nowhere to be found. Perhaps there’s a balance to be found that I would like better.

The last flavor I was sent to sample was Sesame Almond. I don’t particularly love sesame seeds, and these were just okay. I don’t love them, but they’re not offensive. You can really taste the toasted seeds, and the almonds add a bit of sweetness.

There’s one more flavor that I didn’t get a chance to try — lemon poppyseed. I like the flavor in cakes and muffins, but I’m hesitant because the orange was a bit strong for me. If that’s the case with this last flavor, I’d definitely prefer sticking to the Cranberry Almond Toastees.

If you want to try Toastees, you can buy them directly from the Almondina site. They’re also available from Amazon and Jet.

This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I will earn a small commission.

Fun Doesn’t Stop After Dark with Cornhole Lights

Date Sun, September 10 2017

Cornhole Accessories Include Lights

Are you looking for an accessory for the popular cornhole game that will let you continue to play when daylight ends? Cornhole lights are the functional and stylish answer to being able to let the fun continue long after dark settles in.

Two LED light accessories for your cornhole boards come in each kit. There are five colors, and included is everything needed for power and installation so that you can easily lighten up your cornhole board and make them stand out as you continue to play into the evening and night darkness. The lights can be used creatively to form designs such as a glowing skull eye socket! The creative possibilities are endless and add to the fun.

The enjoyable Cornhole or Corntoss game originated many years ago in the Midwest and has become a “must have” at barbecues, family gatherings, and tailgating parties. They have been made for schools, marketing companies, gifts for weddings and other occasions, and personal and group use.

The custom game board surface is a 48? x 24? half inch plywood rectangle. The hole in the platform has a diameter of six inches and is centered 12 inches from each side of the edges and nine inches from the top. The boards are fitted with fold-down legs to make them very portable.

If you are looking to purchase the best cornhole game boards, heavy-duty bags in 24 different colors, custom logo bags, scoreboards, and other official cornhole products that are for sale on the web, you come to the right place when you come to Custom Corntoss’ shop in Downtown Clearwater or browse through the offerings at customcorntoss.com.

The business opened in 2004 in Clearwater, Florida, after the owners moved from Cincinnati, Ohio. Their goal continues to be to help spread the fun of the game and to supply all the necessary ingredients. They sell custom painted cornhole games and custom logo decal games. They supply official boards and accessories for people and tournaments all over the nation and help run leagues and tournaments all around the Tampa Bay area.

 

Derma E Purifying Gel Cleanser

Date Thu, September 7 2017
Derma E Purifying Gel Cleanser

Derma E Purifying Gel Cleanser

So here’s a weird thing. The folks from Derma E keep sending me goodies, even though i don’t recall working with them in the past, and I don’t know where they got my address. Oops? But one of those goodies has turned out to be pretty useful, so I’m here to tell you about it.

I haven’t yet posted about my frustrations with oily skin this summer (you’ll see a few posts on that in the near future, however!), but it’s been a challenge. When I used up the last of my facial cleanser, I thought I might try something else. Fortunately, I had a box of Derma E products to choose from, and one of those products is their Purifying Gel Cleanser.

Now, it looks like the company has updated their packaging since then. My tube still says it’s a new product and also highlights that it’s good for oily skin. Score! You might also be interested to know that it’s sulfate free and good for normal skin, too.

I was curious about this product because I haven’t used any product with activated charcoal. Can you believe that? It’s all the rage in cleansers and masks/peels, but I’ve yet to use it. Purifying Gel Cleanser was my first. And how did I like it?

It was weird to have the product come out so dark. It’s not quite a black, but it’s a dark grey gel. When I used it, I almost feel like I’m playing Mario Kart and have been inked on by another player, haha.

 

When you lather, it lightens, however. The texture is a gel and not a cream, so the lather is a little thicker. But I like how it feels on my face.

There’s no darkness that remains when you rinse it off. There’s also no fragrance; although, this cleanser does have a slight cosmetic scent. It’s quite light. I like that my skin feels clean but not tight and dry when I’m done with this. A lot of products to help with acne or oil dry your skin out so much.

Activated Charcoal Gives It a Grey Tint

Activated Charcoal Gives It a Grey Tint

So how did my skin fair?

Pretty well. I didn’t have a breakout when I switched to it, and break outs have been few and far between. Although, no cleanser can completely prevent my hormone-induced acne. It helped clear up oil on my skin, but there are still days when I feel a little slick at the end of the day. This isn’t a deal-breaker. It’s just how my skin is these days.

Now if only I could find a good oil-free foundation or BB cream to pair with it, we’d be in business.

Derma E products are a little pricier than I typically go for, and the Purifying Gel Cleanser is over $15. I am not sure if I’ll replace this tube once I run out, but I would be interested in trying other Derm E products after this.

You can also find Derma E products at Target, Ulta and CVS, which gives you a leg up if you have a Red Card or use coupons. Ulta even has a buy one, get one 50% off sale right now. Check it out. The only con is that Derma E Purifying Gel Cleanser doesn’t seem to be available in stores, so you’ll need to buy online and have it shipped to your home or store. If you’re an Internet shopper like me, you can also add this product to your cart on Amazon or Jet for $12.39, a bit of a savings over buying directly from Derma E.

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex

Date Mon, August 21 2017

If I was enlightened and educated by Mary Roach’s  book on cadavers (see my review here), then I am absolutely enthralled with her book on the science of sex.

Now, I’m not only familiar with Mary Roach because of the other book of hers that I’ve read. I first discovered her through an essay she submitted to the Best Sex Writing series in 2009-ish. I’ve also seen at least one her her TED talks on sex, so I am actually more familiar with her as someone who is knowledgeable on the subject of the science of sex than other sciences. Those are just a bonus!

Neither am I a stranger to the general science of sex. I’ve read books and watched TED talks. I subscribe to podcasts and tweet. Hell, I’ve even written content that explains the biology, the physiological, the psychology and sometimes even the sociology of sex. So to say that I was surprised by how much I learned from Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex is one of the highest compliments I can pay.

That isn’t to say that there are not some things that are repeated from other sources. But Roach dives in past the results of the surveys by Masters and Johnson or Kinsey, for example. She contacts researchers or their surviving family members. She discovers who participated and why — and how they may have skewed answers. Roach travels the world to talk to Asian urologists who still perform specific surgeries to help with erectile dysfunction. She talks to experts who might be little known outside of their specific niche or even geographical location. In short, Mary Roach puts in the few work that few people are interested in and, for those who are, even fewer can accomplish themselves. It’s quite the feat!

Mary (and her witting husband) become the subjects in experiments where they have sex in MRIs because there are no other people willing to pick up this mantle. And Roach struggles to measure the distance between her vagina and clitoris, which turns out to be more complicated than you more expect. She’s not shy (neither are most of the characters she comes across in her quest), and it makes for an interesting and educational read.

She knocks on every door, even those in the past. It’s how she’s discovered an oft-forgot fact that shorter women also have a shorter distance between their clitoris and vaginal openings (this is important to a woman’s pleasure and orgasm as you’ll learn if you’re not already aware). She also delves into the history of clitorectomies.

I am continually impressed not only by how intelligent Mary is as an author but how witty. I am sure that I would enjoy discussing Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex with her over a cup of coffee, even though I don’t drink coffee. Her footnotes are clever, and that’s my one complaint with this book: I prefer when footnotes are at the end of each chapter in eBooks. You can easily forget to read footnotes when they’re at the very end of the eBook as they are with Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, and the links to the footnotes don’t seem to work quite right in the copy I was provided through my library. However, you don’t want to miss these notes. They’re hilarious!

In fact, most of my Kindle notes come from the footnotes, including this one.

[the] Atlas of Human Sex Anatomy includes a two-page spread of fourteen thumbnail Coital Diagrams with terse, pronoun-sparse titles: “Pillow Lifts Hips,” “He Diagonally Across.” Chaste as these drawings are—the bed beneath the couple is drawn in more detail than are their faceless, featureless bodies—they were edited out of the first edition. Dickinson tried to appease his publisher by replacing the human forms with a pair of entwining robots; however, he reports, “these evasions proved to be not a little absurd” and the publisher eventually relented.

Despite tackling so many subjects in Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, I feel like Mary Roach is able to give just about each subject its due attention. You learn more than you expect and get a little information if you’d like to delve further into the subject. However, unless you’re as qualified and adventurous as Mary, it’s going to be quite the task to do that!