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Customer Reviews: 91
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Helpful Votes: 871




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Melissa M RSS Feed (Wisconsin)

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PattyBoutik Cotton Blend Textured Scoop Neck Sleeveless Ruched Sides Tank Top
PattyBoutik Cotton Blend Textured Scoop Neck Sleeveless Ruched Sides Tank Top
Offered by PattyBoutik
Price: $28.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Large was great fit on a taller woman, September 11, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This is one of my favorite PattyBoutik tops - I got it in light brown and plan on buying another color or two. I'm 6 feet tall with a long torso, 185 pounds, 36D, and the large was a perfect fit for me. The fabric of this one is interesting. It's soft, and a little thicker than you might expect. Thin sweatshirt type material, almost. It makes it comfy yet still light enough for the hot-ish Wisconsin summer we've had (it might be a little too thick if you're in non-stop 90 degree-plus heat. The ruched sides are slimming. Although the shirt almost looks like it has capped sleeves in the photo, it's definitely a tank top, albeit one that rests at the edge of the top of your shoulders. I've worn & washed it many times and have seen no shrinking, fading, pilling, etc. It's in the same pretty shape as when I bought it.


Life of Fred Beginning Algebra Expanded Edition (Life of Fred)
Life of Fred Beginning Algebra Expanded Edition (Life of Fred)
by PhD Stanley Schmidt
Edition: Hardcover
4 used & new from $39.85

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My son loves Algebra (for the first time ever) because of this book., January 29, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The short review:

Because of this book, my 14-year old son finally enjoys math. He's working through it independently, with practically no help from me, and is happy to be doing so. It turns out a lot of this book (but not all of it) is a review for him. Originally he planned on skipping sections he knew, but decided to go through them again anyway. He realized doing sections that were reviews for him meant easier math work on those days. Plus, doing ALL sections in the book makes the end-of-the-chapter reviews, called Cities, much simpler to go through. This Expanded Edition replaces both Life of Fred: Beginning Algebra and Fred's Home Companion: Beginning Algebra.
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The long review:

My 14-year old son switched to Life of Fred in February 2014. Before this, we'd been using an algebra textbook similar to what kids use in brick and mortar schools. I like math of all sorts, so teaching him from a book like that was easy for me. My son is great at math, including algebra. But, he HAAAAATES it. (Math is a good analogy for how he felt about public school in general -- he asked early into the 2013-14 school year if he could be homeschooled, and here we are.)

The only bad (which was unfortunately often the longest) part of our homeschool day used to be the two of us sitting around a math textbook, with him complaining his way through lessons and problems. And yawning. And cracking every single knuckle on each hand. And complaining some more, while yawning. I'd work all the problems out the night before I'd assign them, and help him with any issues he had, but he was still miserable. If it was easy, he hated it. If it was difficult, he hated it. See a pattern? We'd do it early to "get it out of the way", but it often made him -- and then me -- crabby for a good part of the morning. In January 2014 we were talking with some other homeschoolers about math. One suggested the Life of Fred series. I'd researched the LoF books before pulling my son out of school, but then again I researched a million books before pulling him. At some point I decided the traditional type textbook was the way to go, and discarded the idea of Life of Fred.

But after being reminded of the books, I re-looked at the LoF website and downloaded a sample of the beginning algebra book. I asked my son what he thought. He commented it looked a lot different than other textbooks, and said it was worth a try. Because of his current career interests (computer programming), he knows he needs to take a lot of advanced math, and, he needs to understand what he's learned. I'd be willing to try anything that would help him like math, even just a little.

I bought him the Life of Fred Beginning Algebra book because, although we've been working on algebra for awhile, I was sure there were be some topics we hadn't yet covered. If I started him in Advanced Algebra and it was TOO advanced, we'd be in a similar boat to the one we were in now. I got the Beginning Algebra Expanded Edition instead of the "non-Expanded" one because Expanded was a combination of the Beginning Algebra and the Fred's Home Companion book. It sounded like that Companion book was helpful to those that have reviewed it.

What a 180 Life of Fred has done on my son. I'm almost afraid to say it so as to not jinx this, but he completely loves the Beginning Algebra book. (I AM one of those people that will change my review if our feelings on a product changes -- this better not be one I have to update.) Every school morning for the last 2.5 months my son has gotten up early, showered and dressed, and has completed multiple Lessons without any assistance from me at all. He reads each lesson and does the full assignments (they're not long). He doesn't check the answers beforehand, although they're all in the book complete with the explanation of how to arrive at the answer (*I* would have looked at the answers as a kid, so I'm not sure this book would have worked for me.) He occasionally needs help with a problem, and in those cases he'll have me look at the answer so I can tell him if he's on the right track. If he's not, I'll steer him the right way. He's had me do this for him 3 or 4 times total so far in 10 weeks. That's how little I've helped him with Algebra since he's started using Life of Fred.

Soon after he started the book, he told me a lot of this book covers things he already knows. He decided he was just going to do the Lessons he didn't know, so he bookmarked the Lessons he wasn't comfortable with, and/or wanted to review. There are just over 100 Lessons in the book, and he marked about 30 he wanted to cover before moving on to Life of Fred: Advanced Algebra. However, he soon realized skipping Lessons wasn't the best idea. At the end of each group of Lessons there are three end-of-the-chapter reviews called Cities. Each of the three Cities is a review of the last group of Lessons, and each City is a little tougher than the last. He found he had to keep going back to re-read Lessons he'd skipped to get through each City. Therefore, he pulled all his little bookmarks out and decided to just plow through all the Lessons, review or not, to more easily cruise through the Cities.

Incidentally, his routine has been to do 2-3 Lessons a day. When he gets to the Cities, he only does one a day (the book even recommends just one City a day.) Everyone's different, but that's what's working for him. He's been working on this book for about 10 weeks, and he's on Lesson 79 of 104. If you'd had told me last year my son would get through over 400 pages of an Algebra textbook on his own (and an almost full notebook of problems to go with it) in 2.5 months, I would have laughed. Now he's not only doing it, he's flying through it. And kind of loving it.

On a personal note, *I* didn't love this book on my initial review. I think the layout is kind of messy and busy. There are too many font types. The text is too big in some places and too small in others, and there's not enough whitespace. It's riddled with weird clip art and weird line drawings, and much more text than actual problems. However, it seems to cover and explain topics well. Apparently I'm more of a regular-textbook, do-one-hundred-problems-before-going-to-the-next-chapter kind of girl. But this isn't about me. My son likes how the book reads. He thinks the drawings are funny. He says the stories about Fred are funny, even though most are out-of-this-world ridiculous. And he's not just getting through the problems, he's understanding what he's learning. So who cares what I think. My son is enjoying math for the first time ever. He's getting it, and he's liking it. THAT'S what's important.
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Final comment:

If your child is struggling with math and you're thinking about taking the plunge, check out the Life of Fred website for a downloadable sample of any of their books. Make sure to let your child look at the book samples, too.


The Walking Dead Michonne Walkers Men's T-Shirt, Black, Large
The Walking Dead Michonne Walkers Men's T-Shirt, Black, Large
Offered by MyTeeSpot
Price: $11.69
12 used & new from $7.50

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great image on shirt, but length shrinks after washing, July 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We have several Walking Dead fans in our horde so this shirt was practically a necessity after Michonne first hit the WD scene. I bought the shirt in a size Large for my long-torso, medium-build 13-year old son, anticipating it to shrink a little because it's 100% Cotton. After multiple washings the image still looks great. The shirt's width did shrink somewhat, but that was OK because I ordered a size larger than needed. The problem is the shirt has shrunk, length-wise, at least 2 or 3 inches.

It's now one of the shortest shirts in my son's closet. Sadly, it's too short for him to wear anymore. I doubt purchasing 2 sizes up would have helped, because even if an XL had stayed long enough, it would have been too voluminous for him to wear.

Not a big deal if you're short to medium height, but if you're taller, or at least, if you have lots of shirts that are a little too short on you, you may want to pass this one up.


Casio Ladies' White Baby-G Watch BG6900-7
Casio Ladies' White Baby-G Watch BG6900-7
Offered by Market Cross Jewelers
Price: $117.00
3 used & new from $117.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 10 Months Later, Still Bright White and Shiny New!, July 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I love the Baby-G watches for their style, cool colors and durability. I was a little worried about purchasing this white one because, well, it's white! I've read a few people saying they've had issues with the color over time. The only way I've been careful with mine is I take it off when I dye my hair. Other than that it has rarely left my wrist in 10 months. It's still freshly white with its beautiful shiny silver face. One comment about the photo displayed for this watch -- I think it makes it look like the numbers are VERY easy to see, but this isn't really so. The ENTIRE face has a shiny mirror finish, so if you have vision problems, or if you get annoyed with watches where you can't instantly see the time (very understandable) you may want to pass on this watch. For me, I find it very stylish and fun, and don't mind the mirror face, even if it means I have to focus for a second to see the time.


Silver Shield Deodorant - Original Formula
Silver Shield Deodorant - Original Formula
Offered by Silver Botanicals
Price: $9.99
2 used & new from $8.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best-working aluminum free deodorant I've used (and it smells nice!), July 8, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Since developing an allergic reaction to most deodorant/antiperspirants, I have tried several of the more natural types:

- Tom's (1 star - did not work for me at all, really didn't smell/seem/feel like I'd applied anything),
- Arm & Hammer Essentials Deodorant, Fresh (3 stars - usually but not always worked well, had to re-apply 1-2x/day)
- Adidas (4 stars - worked well, usually reapplied 1-2 times/day, but even so the one stick lasted almost 1 year!)

I finally used the Adidas one up, and have looked tirelessly in stores for more. It appears they might not make it anymore, and the prices for it on Amazon seem to reflect this - Yikes! So it was time to sadly move on. I bought Silver Shield (Original) a week ago and it's working great! It's weird being back to a 'roll-on' type; I can't remember the last time I used anything but a stick, but it smells nice, and has lasted all day every day so far, even though we've had some very hot and humid days. If I use it right after shaving it stings a little, but the pain goes away quickly. So far this is my favorite aluminum-free deodorant.


Squishy Face Studio Flirt Pole with Orange Zanies Bungee Gecko Lure - 36 inch Pole, 52 inch Cord - Chase Dog Toy for Fun Obedience Training & Exercise
Squishy Face Studio Flirt Pole with Orange Zanies Bungee Gecko Lure - 36 inch Pole, 52 inch Cord - Chase Dog Toy for Fun Obedience Training & Exercise

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally, something that tires our little pittie out!, July 4, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
We fostered, then adopted a 40-lb pit bull mix - Ollie - at the start of 2013. He LOVES to run, jump, tug, play, and as he's stronger than heck, he goes through toys extremely quickly. I heard about flirt poles from two previously satisfied customers in the pittie foster group I help with. I was prepared this would be yet another $30 going straight down the drain, and I'm so glad I was mistaken. This pole-bungee-toy is extremely well made. Ollie and I use it almost every day in the yard: I'll run around using the pole to drag orange toy in the grass. Ollie chases it like it's a squirrel. I'll make the toy jump and jerk around. Ollie watches it and pounces on it. In about 5 minutes, he's panting, happy and SO content. No amount of walking, tug-of-war in the house, horsing around with our lab tires him like the flirt pole does. He hasn't even put a rip in the toy yet, but if he does it will be NO problem to replace it. Just remember, like with most toys you use with pitties or other strong chewers, do NOT leave them alone with the pole toy. This is definitely one that goes in the closet when it's not in use. I WHOLLY recommend the flirt pole for pitties and other highly energetic pups.


Poetic 360 degree Rotary leather case for Amazon Kindle Fire Landscape / Portrait View Hot RED Not compatible with Kindle Fire HD tablet
Poetic 360 degree Rotary leather case for Amazon Kindle Fire Landscape / Portrait View Hot RED Not compatible with Kindle Fire HD tablet
Offered by Smart Shop Online
Price: $24.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Still in great shape after 1 year of continued use., November 28, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
You know how you'll get a case or skin for your electronic devices, but as the months go on it starts to stretch out, starts to fray, starts to look dingy? Or every time you look at it you think, "This cover NEEDS TO GO." Not so with the Poetic.

I bought this Kindle case in red shortly after getting my Kindle Fire a year ago. Although I use my Kindle often and throw it in and out of my bag frequently, the case has stood the test of time. The red is the same bright barn red it was when I bought it. The case doesn't have a scratch on it, nor a thread out of place. It's holding its shape and not getting loose unlike so many covers our family has gone through on iPhones/iPads. The elastic band is still as snappy as when it was new. The stand isn't the best I've seen -- it seems to have one position in horizontal view that holds it up, and a different position in vertical view, but it's really fine. For the price and longevity, this case is a keeper.


Kensun HID Xenon H7 Conversion Kit - "ALL COLORS" - 15000k - 2 Year Warranty
Kensun HID Xenon H7 Conversion Kit - "ALL COLORS" - 15000k - 2 Year Warranty
Offered by Kensun
Price: $259.99
2 used & new from $59.99

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The difference is night and day, but now the night LOOKS like day., November 28, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from my husband: It's hard to believe we used to get around with standard headlights. After using these a few nights, it's amazing how much brighter the nights are . The roads, the signs, especially anything reflective is as bright as day with these HIDs. It seems like the brightness would be a distraction for other drivers, but amazingly, they don't seem to bother anyone - after several months of use, we've yet to have one person flash their brights at us for blinding them.

We originally got two sets of these lights, one for our Chevy Astro and the other for our 98 Mercedes E320. Installation was 30 minutes total each, no specialty tools were needed. The instructions were moderately helpful, but I didn't really need them. I had to be a little creative with the mounting of the ballasts because in our Astro there was no convenient place to mount them (I ended up mounting them behind the front turn signals).

If you're not familiar with HIDs, don't be scared when it takes 10-15 seconds for the lights to get to full 100% brightness. This is an HID trait, not just a cheap HID trait (my mom's new Audi takes 10-15 to get to full brightness too.)

Our order was for 2 sets of 15000k, but one was 12000k instead. The 12000k ended up being the winner because of the cool blue color they gave off, so we were glad for the mistake. The 15000k were VERY. PINK. I can't emphasize how pink the light was. We're not sure if all 15000k are that pink, because Kensun tech support told me there was sometimes a variance to the colors, but the ones we got were crazy pink, and we returned that set.


Kensun HID Xenon Conversion Kit "All Bulb Sizes and Colors" with Premium Ballasts - 9006 (HB4) - 15000k
Kensun HID Xenon Conversion Kit "All Bulb Sizes and Colors" with Premium Ballasts - 9006 (HB4) - 15000k
Offered by Kensun
Price: $69.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The difference is night and day, but now the night LOOKS like day., November 28, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from my husband: It's hard to believe we used to get around with standard headlights. After using these a few nights, it's amazing how much brighter the nights are . The roads, the signs, especially anything reflective is as bright as day with these HIDs. It seems like the brightness would be a distraction for other drivers, but amazingly, they don't seem to bother anyone - after several months of use, we've yet to have one person flash their brights at us for blinding them.

We originally got two sets of these lights, one for our Chevy Astro and the other for our 98 Mercedes E320. Installation was 30 minutes total each, no specialty tools were needed. The instructions were moderately helpful, but I didn't really need them. I had to be a little creative with the mounting of the ballasts because in our Astro there was no convenient place to mount them (I ended up mounting them behind the front turn signals).

If you're not familiar with HIDs, don't be scared when it takes 10-15 seconds for the lights to get to full 100% brightness. This is an HID trait, not just a cheap HID trait (my mom's new Audi takes 10-15 to get to full brightness too.)

Our order was for 2 sets of 15000k, but one was 12000k instead. The 12000k ended up being the winner because of the cool blue color they gave off, so we were glad for the mistake. The 15000k were VERY. PINK. I can't emphasize how pink the light was. We're not sure if all 15000k are that pink, because Kensun tech support told me there was sometimes a variance to the colors, but the ones we got were crazy pink, and we returned that set.


Little Giant PES-80-PW 77 GPH Statuary Fountain Pump
Little Giant PES-80-PW 77 GPH Statuary Fountain Pump
Price: $26.64
18 used & new from $21.50

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Small, adjustable, and quiet., November 26, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
So far, so good. We're using the pump in our birdbath fountain. I was a little scared when I first set it up -- the small tube on the top was too small for the hose I had to attach it to in our birdbath. Then I realized there was an adapter hanging from the side of the cord -- perfect fit. The two size hose size options should give options to most set ups people have. The adjustable flow control is useful, and it's nice and quiet. Most importantly, the birds are happy to see their bubbling fountain in action.


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