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AHAVA Dead Sea Mud Dermud Intensive Foot Cream, 3.4 fl. oz.
AHAVA Dead Sea Mud Dermud Intensive Foot Cream, 3.4 fl. oz.
Price: $26.50
4 used & new from $26.50

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Heavy, pungent cream that works slowly, September 11, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've used this cream for over a week now and see some difference. This is a very thick cream with a pungent scent. When applied, you do have to work it in until it disappears. It manages to soften the skin and keep it moisturized as long as it is reapplied every night. You do need to get rid of any skin buildup before using it since it is not a penetrating sort of cream. If you forget to apply it the hardening starts again so it seems to be more of a temporary fix.

I was initially unhappy with the lack of an ingredient list but Ahava's wesbite has this :

Aqua (Mineral Spring Water), Glycerin, Butyrospermum Parkii (Shea Butter), Ceteareth-20 & Cetearyl Alcohol, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Ethylhexyl Palmitate, Sodium Lactate, Propanediol (Corn derived Glycol), Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Decyl Oleate, Glyceryl Stearate, Aloe Barbadensis Leaf Extract & Aqua (Water) & Propylene Glycol, Peg-40 Stearate, Stearyl Alcohol, Lactic Acid, Maris Aqua(Dead Sea Water), Xanthan Gum, Panthenol (Pro Vitamin B5), Zinc Oxide, Parfum (Fragrance), Silt (Dead Sea Mud), Allantoin, Tocopheryl (Vitamin E) Acetate, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate & PEG-4 Laurate & PEG-4 Dilaurate & PEG-4, Hippophae Rhamnoides (Oblipicha) Fruit Oil, Lavandula Angustifolia (Lavender) Oil, Methylisothiazolinone, Tocopherol (Vitamin E), Hexyl Cinnamal, Linalool, Alpha Isomethyl Ionone, Benzyl Salicylate, Hydroxyisohexyl 3-Cyclohexene Carboxaldehyde, Geraniol, Coumarin, Benzyl Benzoate, Cinnamyl Alcohol, Limonene.

A few ingredients here make me hesitant about buying this cream but that is a personal choice. Also, I have used organic creams that have worked a lot faster and smelled a lot worse but whose effects are slightly more permanent.
Himalaya Herbal Healthcare Intensive Moisturizing Footcare Cream, Net Wt. 3.53 Ounce Tube
It doesn't hurt that these were cheaper as well. I think the Ahava Dead sea products are sometimes over hyped. They do have a decent line but I think they are overpriced sometimes for what they can do.


Wrangler Men's Authentics Fleece Lined Cargo Pant, British Khaki Twill, 36W x 30L
Wrangler Men's Authentics Fleece Lined Cargo Pant, British Khaki Twill, 36W x 30L
Price: $29.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for a walk on a chilly day, September 1, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Sometimes a pair of jeans just isn't enough to keep you warm and I have a teenager who wouldn't be caught dead in snow pants. Fleece lined jeans and twills are the perfect solution for him so that he can still walk the dogs without hypothermia setting in. these are designed with cargo pockets on the legs and these are great for carrying gloves and extras while being out and about on a cold day. I had bought fleece lined denim in previous years from The Children's Place and Gap but the Wranglers seem to be much better stitched.

These fit very well and have a decent amount of room in the leg. The fleece is fairly soft without the polyester, hair pulling texture of cheap fleece. At the current price of $29.99 these are a great buy


Wrangler Men's Authentics Premium Relaxed Boot Cut Jean, Blue/Black Stretch, 36W x 30L
Wrangler Men's Authentics Premium Relaxed Boot Cut Jean, Blue/Black Stretch, 36W x 30L

4.0 out of 5 stars Very roomy fit, September 1, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Thick, heavy denim and a traditional roomy cut make these a pair that are best bought after trying out in a store. These are very roomy in the rear and through the thigh. The inseam and waist is perfect but the amount of leg room is a bit much. The fading is less than in the pictures but will probably fade quickly to the shade shown. The fabric is a bit stiff when brand new but softens after a couple of washes.


Thule EnRoute Triumph 2 Daypack, Bluegrass, 21 L
Thule EnRoute Triumph 2 Daypack, Bluegrass, 21 L
Offered by Express Health
Price: $73.60
15 used & new from $70.66

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars High quality materials but a poor design for anything besides the outdoors, September 1, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If your child works mostly with electronics then this backpack could be perfect. I don't think it is large enough to be deemed an adult daypack. It has a padded section for a small laptop, a second pocket for a tablet and a hard shell section for glasses and other delicate items. The flap in the front can be loosened to hold a jacket or extra shoes. I think this is a terrific feature for schools without lockers where you child is hauling his jacket around all day and, often, ends up losing it. I have seen other backpacks with mesh fronts but those seem to tear fairly quickly and items fall out from the sides. This flap pocket is stitched on the sides so there is less chance of losing things.

However, this pack is short on space. 21 liters is not a whole lot of room and I can't see this pack taking a textbook and a couple of 2 inch binders. I think it is designed for those who rely primarily on electronics. As long as you are not schlepping paper texts, this may be roomy enough for you. Also, while it comes with a chest strap there is no waist strap to distribute the weight. However, since it seems to be designed mainly for carrying electronics and not heavy books, this may not be a crucial issue for lightweight items.

Another issue is that all the storage space is inside one main zipper. The clip, large pocket and two small pockets are all only on the inside of the front zipper. I like a pack that has two compartments so that you don't have to disturb the main compartment for the small stuff.

The backpack does come with the ability to carry a hydration pack with a built in opening for the drinking tube. I don't see our family using that but, with a child who relied on assistive technology in school (i.e he used a laptop - no handwriting) this really could have been a perfect backpack for him. It has just enough room for a small laptop, cables, coat and a few thin binders. The fabric and zippers seem very sturdy and the water bottle pockets are stretchy and deep. I used to purchase my kids backpacks from L.L Bean and have found that their cheaper backpacks are nowhere near the quality they used to be. However, their more expensive backpacks are priced comparably to the Thule EnRoute and, I must admit, the L L Bean versions seemed to be designed much better to perform for a variety of needs.

So, this is a good purchase only if it exactly meets your needs.

Update : Having used it for a month, the design of the pack is obviously problematic for anything beyond a trail pack. The hard case for delicate items sags into the pack so that when you are trying to pull out books, etc. they always snag on the case. The space for books is really very limited and this seems to be because of the attempt to allow for a water pack. A very high quality pack but it is not very well designed for anything beyond being a water pack with some room for a light jacket and snacks and a front pocket for shoes.


Whippoorwill
Whippoorwill
by Joseph Monninger
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $11.38
72 used & new from $1.26

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Far from another dog story, August 30, 2015
This review is from: Whippoorwill (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you go into this book expecting another dog story, you may be a bit surprised. Yes, there is a dog at the center of all the action but to say that this is a 'dog book' would be missing a very important point that the author manages to make.

Clair, our main character, is unable to ignore the misery of the neglected and abused dog next door. When she tries to reach out to help him, she finds a surprising ally in the slightly older teen, Danny, who lives next door. Having never owned a dog before, Clair relies on a book about dog care and training written by a priest, Father Jasper, and Danny follows her lead as they try to train and tame the loving but wild dog that is Wally. However, Clair isn't sure about her friendship with Danny and doesn't want things to go too far with him. What she misses in her time with him is that Danny needs her help just as much as Wally does. When the abusive life Danny is living results in violence, Clair is caught off guard and Wally is trapped in the middle.

Spoiler Alert : I thought the author did a great job using the analogy of a dog in need of rescue in addressing the issue of children in abusive homes. However, the story of Danny is left incomplete. Clair does manage to find a sanctuary for the dog, Wally, but Danny seems lost in the system with no help coming. His story, after taking center stage, simply fades away with many questions unanswered. I found this aspect of the novel frustrating and felt that the story was left incomplete. Wally may have been a constant presence in the text but it was Danny who seemed to be a more important character. Also, the characterization of Wally was the only one that lacked depth. This big, patient, untrained dog seems a paper thin presence at times and the ease with which the two children, armed with a book, manage to get him trained is a little misleading about the rescue and retraining process. There are no mentions of destructive behavior, crate training, barking, anxiety issues or issues of any sort at all. Except for not having basic training (sit, stay, heel, come) this dog is simply perfect. As someone who fosters rescue dogs, I can only wish all rescue dogs came with so little baggage and were so easy to retrain!

The book is well written and a pleasant read but I have to say that it could have definitely been better.


The Emperor of Any Place
The Emperor of Any Place
by Tim Wynne-Jones
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $11.99
71 used & new from $4.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating allegory about the consequences of war, August 26, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
What if we lived with an awareness of the generations to come? What if violence and war were living, breathing monsters? What if the ghosts that haunt us are not of the dead but of those who never had a chance to live?

Wynne-Jones takes this premise and creates a novel that is a mystery, a psychological drama and a tragedy all in one. Evan, age 16, has just lost his father and, in the midst of his grief, finds his home invaded by a despised and unfamiliar grandfather, Griff. But Griff may have shown up not to support Evan but to find a book that was sent to his father. Now Evan has found the book and in it he discovers a world that his grandfather would prefer to remain hidden. The menacing presence of Griff, the unfolding memoir of a Japanese soldier hiding on a heart shaped island, the recollections of the American airman wounded and stranded on the same island, all these combine to create a fast paced read.

If read only at the surface level, there is a horrific aspect to the novel where things come alive that have no business existing in the real world. People on the island are forced to face the consequences of their actions for future generations to come. Griff refuses to accept this truth and this fuels the events in Evan's story. Evan is an easy character to like and identify with. A bit of a smart mouth but a good kid at heart, his characterization is vivid and real. Griff's acerbic presence looms over Evan and makes the boy's home a threatening place even as Evan tries to piece together the past and see the shape of his future.

Wynne-Jones has written a fascinating, multi layered novel that leaves the reader thinking long after having turned the last page. In many ways, the symbolism and the misty nature of truth in the book reminded me of Life of Pi. While the book does not reach quite the magical surrealism of Pi, it is certainly a thought provoking and well written story.


Wrangler Big Boys Authentics Straight Fit Jean, Dark Tint, 12 Husky
Wrangler Big Boys Authentics Straight Fit Jean, Dark Tint, 12 Husky
Price: $18.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Well stitched and roomy through the leg, August 26, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Very well stitched and soft to the touch, these are the first pair of jeans that my son did not reject outright. We've tried Gymboree (which his brother loved), Levis (which is made for ridiculously skinny people) and Gap (which he found too stiff). Old Navy were pretty decent but they wore out very quickly for his older sibling so I was really hoping that Wrangler would be a better quality.

There is plenty of leg room to these so they may be a bit roomy but that is what my child likes. The waist band is adjustable with elastic button straps inside the band. Everything is serged, tabbed and stitched like it should be. The fading along the leg is not as white as in the current picture on Amazon so that they look fashionably worn but don't look worn out when brand new.

Personally, I think that the idea of 'Husky' seems to be a little odd in our culture. These are not made for an overweight child but are perfect for a squarely built, healthy young man who doesn't want a tight fit. It becomes so much simpler to shop for kids once they are in the waist x length sizes. I wish that was the sizing method used for preteens and teens as well.


Evolution: The Whole Story
Evolution: The Whole Story
by Steve Parker
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $34.44
37 used & new from $17.90

4 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tiny font ruins a marvelous and beautifully laid out resource., August 23, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I love the content and layout of this book and know that it could be a wonderful resource in our home where the kids are really interested in science. Each page is full of information and has beautiful full color illustrations to accompany the information. The book covers the fossilized evidence of earliest life on Earth and each two page spread is devoted to the history of a single species. Fossils are analyzed, links to other fossils are made and there is an an intelligent discussion of the changing opinion of science as new discoveries were made. Mass extinctions are discussed and the connections between existing species is really nicely done. The book is divided into 7 sections that cover Earliest Life, Plants, Invertebrates, Fish and Amphibians, Reptiles, Birds and Mammals.

Honestly, had I seen this book on the book shelf of a store, I would have sadly put it right back due to the minuscule font sizes used throughout. I have added a picture of a two page spread with a penny on the pages so that you can get a sense of the font. I am estimating that the main pages use font size 8 and the evolutionary charts use a miserably indecipherable size 6 or thereabouts. This ruins an excellent book. I thought that perhaps I was aging rapidly and my eyes were going and so showed the book to my children without saying anything about the font. Their instant reaction was that the font size was ridiculous! I've learned to avoid these kind of books since some really lovely books with small font sizes are never pulled off the book shelf in our house.

I think Firefly had a good book on their hands but messed it up by choosing to go with a standard sized hardback format. This book should probably be a big coffee table size or even a textbook size to allow for a readable font. When I leaf through a book of this type, sentences usually jump out at me and catch my interest. This can't happen with this book due to the minute font! Reading the text is a chore even though the information is fascinating.

Sadly, a miss for me.
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Geek & Co. Science Rubber Band Racers Kit
Geek & Co. Science Rubber Band Racers Kit
Offered by super_star_seller
Price: $17.52
9 used & new from $17.52

2.0 out of 5 stars Confusing instruction book ruins what might be good kit., August 19, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This kit is meant for kids 8 and up so I figured 10 and 14 year old boys would handle it just fine. They chose to try to assemble the 'Fan Car'. It didn't take long for the howls of frustration to start. These kids have assembled Lego kits, Knex kits and robotics kits. This should not have been difficult for them.

Ten minutes into trying to help them, I had enough! Whoever wrote the manual for assembling these racers should have taken a gander at Lego and Knex instructions or even the miserable assembly books from Ikea. The pictures are minuscule and outlines blurred. It is really difficult to tell one part from another. The pieces are not numbered so sorting them is no help. How exactly things go together is not clear and how to string the rubber bands, and even how many to use, is left up to you. The pieces that slide onto the dowels are very tight and it is a chore and a half getting them into position. I am sure that with a lot of patience and time these can be assembled but things were unnecessarily difficult and took the fun right out of learning about energy.

The explanations about types of energy and the conversion of potential energy are very good but the frustration of figuring out how to go about assembling the racers made this kit a real failure with us.


Haier Chromebook 11 (11.6-Inch, 16 GB Storage)
Haier Chromebook 11 (11.6-Inch, 16 GB Storage)

4.0 out of 5 stars A good product for life online, August 17, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Comparing a Chromebook to a full laptop would be unfair but if you are looking for a chromebook and know its limitations, this one is a fairly decent buy. Being a Chromebook it comes with Chrome OS and no bloatware which allows for very fast internet browsing. Unlike previous models Chromebooks now allow for some work to be done while offline and the device syncs things once you are back online again. I think this is very much a niche device for people who are devoted to Google in email, calendars, etc. If you are expecting a full laptop experience, you will not find it here.

For internet browsing and note taking it is a terrific little device and is perfect for seniors. The sheer simplicity of the OS is wonderful.

As to this particular chromebook, there is one hurdle that I could not get used to. The mouse pad does not have buttons for right click and scroll. You click with two fingers to right click, three fingers for a middle click, slide with two fingers for a scroll, swipe with three fingers to see all open windows and swipe with two to go backward and forward on apps. Dragging and dropping required clicking with one finger and moving with a second finger. This is a little too much juggling for my middle aged brain and, while I can probably get used to it, the difference from other laptops and ipads made this a learning curve that was frustrating.

On the other hand, it is light and fast and gives a reasonably long run time on a charge. It does not hold a charge in sleep mode as long as other devices (ipads, iphones, etc) but charges up fairly quickly.

While I would not choose a chromebook over and ipad or full laptop, I can certainly see where this can fill the needs of some users perfectly.


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