Saturday, November 3, 2012

Blogger Favorites For The Holidays!

As a blogger, I have many opportunities to try new products. I wanted to take a few moments and let you know about some of the products and companies that stand out. Wind & Weather has the Firewinder (shown above) and it is the greatest "useless" product I've received. I say useless because it sits around and doesn't do a thing, until a little breeze hits it. Then, it spins and the lights along the edges light up! The stronger the wind, the faster it spends. It may be my favorite review product so far!
I don't drink coffee, but I do like tea and hot cocoa! Being surrounded by coffee drinkers, I needed a way to make coffee. I don't think I've ever made a pot of coffee before-I really don't know how much coffee to put into the filter to make it good. If I had a brief lesson, I know I could pull it off, but my husband was always the one to make it for guests. My Keurig is perfect because it allows me to make my favorite drinks and I can make coffee anytime. I just load it into the machine (no measuring required) and push a button. All I have to do is make sure it's plugged in and has enough water. It even tells me when to fill it! It's dummy proof-as long as you remember to buy K-Cups. If you don't, you can use a My K-Cup and just fill it with your favorite! I have three, and the Cuisinart is my favorite. The customer reviews only gave it 3 out of 5 stars, but it is my favorite. It's attractive and I'd replace it with another without a moment's hesitation if I had to!
Growing up, I was daddy's little girl. That meant going fishing with my dad every chance I had! When I was little, I didn't get excited over celebrities from the big screen. When I saw Bill Dance on TV, my heart would always beat a little faster. Not because he was gorgeous (he was always an average looking guy) but because he had the greatest job in the world and he was so fun to watch! My parents took me to see him one day and it's one of the highlights from my childhood. He signed my fishing hat and made me very happy that day! Fishing brings families closer together and Bass Pro Shops can help you get started! I love a company with great values. I get emails in my inbox from their company telling me about special events they are hosting that are open and free to the public. Those events are designed to bring families together and make memories that last a lifetime. Bass Pro Shops is one of my favorite stores in the world. I am lucky to have had the opportunity to work with them over the years by doing reviews and sharing their events with my readers. If they never gave me a product to review, I'd still write about them because I appreciate them for always giving back and bringing families together. I may get my dad a gift card for Christmas. I think he would rather go to their store (or shop online) than go on vacation! If I do, maybe he'll take me fishing...It's the gift that gives! 
Being a southern girl, I never had enough practice during the winter months to get really good at starting a fire. I used to get my husband to light a fire when he left for work and then I'd feed it until I went to bed. Thanks to Plow & Hearth and their handy little Cap Cod Lighter, I can build my own fire and light it-blindfolded. I reviewed one and loved it so much, I bought two more for holiday gifts. All you need is a little lamp oil. Soak your stone, light it, and let the stone cool (after the fire is lit and the fire on the stone goes out) before you put it back into the pot. You can't mess up, and you'll have a beautiful fire in minutes. Just be sure your wood isn't wet! I've used wood that wasn't well seasoned and it worked well! Speaking of fires, the grate that came with our fireplace only lasted a season. Plow & Hearth sent me a self feeding fireplace grate. Two years later, it works as well as the day I unpacked it and used it for the first time.
I've never reviewed an item from Pottery Barn Kids, but my children use Pottery Barn bedding on their beds. They have used the same quilts for the last 4 years and they still look new. Their sheets hold up to many, many washes, and I've used a Pottery Barn Kids shower curtain (the same one) for seven years. It gets washed at least once a month (and it has a white background with fish on it!) and every spot has always washed right out. I'd change and get a new Pottery Barn Kids shower curtain, but I love the one we have so much! 
I love books and I love to read. My favorite children's book is "Caraboose the Tooth Fairy Moose." It's written by Lynn Swanson and she has an amazing gift. If you like Dr. Suess or Shel Silverstein, you'll appreciate the memorable story she weaves. Children from 0-110 will delight in this story filled with rhymes and rhythm. It's soothing and entertaining. It's funny and enchanting. I read it to my kids, and I've been discovered reading it alone! It's a wonderful book and it makes the perfect gift for any young (or old!) book lover!
There are many others, like my All-Clad Electric Slow Cooker and Roasting Pan. After using a cheap, hard-to-clean roasting pan for years, I discovered All-Clad's stainless roasting pan. It can be cleaned with water and no scrubbing! Even baked on food! It will change your life, especially during the holidays. My Slow Cooker is awesome. I love crock pots and this one looks great on the counter and performs beautifully!
My Haier TV/DVD combo in my bedroom has been wonderful for late nights when I can't sleep. I may have gone insane without it. Before I had it, I didn't think I needed it. Now, I couldn't imagine not having it. It has great picture and sound quality. The TV in my kid's bedroom is on it's way out. When it dies, I'm getting a Haier! I'm getting a new stainless steel refrigerator Black Friday because mine is on it's last leg. I WISH Haier had products in the stores close to where we live. I would love to have some hands on time with them before I purchased one. I just can't bring myself to spend that much money on something I've never touched. Please let me know if you have one (or know anyone that has one) and let me know what you think. I never knew they offered so many products. I am impressed with the TV/DVD player I received. I think their other products would be great too!
This is my first post like this and I plan to write another "favorites" post soon. None of the companies featured in this post knew they would be included and they didn't pay or provide additional product for this mention.

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