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Customer Reviews: 775
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Reviews Written by
Kelly Sottelbaum RSS Feed (PacNW, USA)

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Belkin Car Cup Holder Mount for Smartphones - Black
Belkin Car Cup Holder Mount for Smartphones - Black
Price: $39.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Great device for music listening, October 28, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Excellent idea - if used for the right reasons. I drive a VW sedan - the folks who don't like putting cupholders in their car, just as they don't recommend putting steering wheels on your kitchen table. It's about 10 years old, and the cupholders are kind of a "fold out" option that cover the radio/heater controls.

That said, I often use my Samsung Galaxy Player to play music. Usually, I let the Galaxy sit in the passenger seat or in the center console...and it either ends up difficult to find/change the song, or it flings itself off the seat when taking corners. That's where this Belkin cup holder mount comes in handy. In my VW, the cupholder is right in the middle, so that's where my music player is (be it the Galaxy or just the car radio.) When listening to music, there are two possible buttons I'd press: next (skip current song) or previous/beginning of current song.

Given this, the Belkin mount is excellent. It keeps the Galaxy in a single spot, easily accessible, and the cable for power goes straight down to the USB adapter. Granted, it does take a 50% of all the cupholders in my car, but the cupholders themselves aren't great, and we usually use travel cups instead anyway.

All in all, a great mount. While I may fear for my life when I see somebody using this cup holder mount as a platform for them to type out text messages, for my uses, it's great. Recommended - unless you plan on using it simply to elevate your phone so you can type/read it easier...in which case, you should consider not driving.


Proctor-Silex 59738 Hand Blender
Proctor-Silex 59738 Hand Blender
Price: $13.97
29 used & new from $11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Great for making soap!, October 26, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Great, cheap blender for mixing lye water and organic coconut oil to make soap! It's the only thing I've used this for, and likely the only thing I'll ever use it for, but it does an excellent job and, for the price, I have no complaints! Recommended as a cheap tool to be used with soap making!


Dept. of Speculation
Dept. of Speculation
by Jenny Offill
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $17.34
96 used & new from $8.39

3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting narrative approach, OK story, October 26, 2014
This review is from: Dept. of Speculation (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
While this book is listed in "Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense," rest assured it is not. Unless, perhaps, you're a married woman in a faltering relationship and trying to see the other side. To me, the book read mostly like an overview of "the wife's" life. Almost like the first few minutes of the movie "Up," where all the major times in life are presented and passed over.

And in that regard, it's not a bad book. It's topic may not exactly be interesting to everyone (woman, woman gets guy, woman gets married, kid, marriage troubles, etc.) it's at least entertaining enough to keep going. However, style of writing takes some getting used to; by the time I got used to it, I was already ¾ done with the book. Trouble is, pronouns are used all over the place, and you have to slowly figure out who they're referring to. And the POV changes as well, with the same issues.

Overall, it's a decent story...not something I'd rush out to get, but it is a fairly strong story (if you can get past the writing style) and may resonate with people. Overall...fair book, but read a few pages before buying it to make sure you're not getting into something you don't want.


Tom's of Maine Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion, Lightly Scented, 6 Ounce
Tom's of Maine Daily Moisturizing Body Lotion, Lightly Scented, 6 Ounce

5.0 out of 5 stars Great scent, great moisturizing, October 24, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This stuff is thick and smells great. Yeah, it's lightly scented, and if you're looking for a very light scent, you may want to sniff this at a store before using, but quite frankly, it's a very pleasant scent - not overpowering.

It has a base of coconut oil and shea butter (yeah, and water/glycerin), but that makes it much better than the majority of more mainstream products where there really isn't anything in it that is understandable as to what it actually is.

Alas, this lotion also works great. It goes on thick, and while it takes a bit to "dry," it doesn't leave a nasty greasy feeling or anything...you can certain tell something is there, but it's just a feeling of softness. I'm not sure if this would "heal" super dry skin (I wouldn't hesitate to try, though), but for my fair to lightly dry skin, it does a great job. Recommended!


Safety 1st Secure Support Infant Bath Cradle, White
Safety 1st Secure Support Infant Bath Cradle, White
Price: $17.94
3 used & new from $17.94

4.0 out of 5 stars Funny looking shape - prefer an alternative, October 23, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There's certainly nothing wrong with this bath cradle - it does everything as it intends to do, works well to keep the baby up with little chance of too much water in any one spot...overall, it's a very good product. However, we ended up preferring another infant bath, the Summer Infant Sparkle N' Splash Newborn To Toddler Bath Tub. While the latter may be more designed for "play time," we found it works well for bath time and, the biggest benefit we see, is that it's bigger so that it seems like it will grow with the baby longer than this Safety 1st bath.

With that said, for us they're mostly comparable products, but there are certain differences that may simply depend on parent preference - color, obviously (white vs. blue/pink...I like this white better), but also what your baby will come into contact with. On this one, it's a foam-ish pad that, while the baby doesn't seem to mind it, if I had it beneath me when taking a bath, I'd feel a little odd. Then again, on the other that we've been using, it's either plastic or a piece of some kind of nylon/polyester.

Alas, this product does what it intends to do, does it well, and there's nothing that is really bad about it...and I certainly wouldn't hesitate to recommend it. Good product overall.


A Blessing On The Way: Counting Each Day While You're Expecting
A Blessing On The Way: Counting Each Day While You're Expecting
by Sue Christian
Edition: Paperback
Price: $10.14
61 used & new from $0.61

5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiration, deep, and fun - great book for the soon to be mom!, October 15, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Ranging from inspiration to deep, this fantastic book is quick, friendly, and appreciated. Each day, it's just a quote or thought with a biblical reference. Whether or not your religious (unless you're one of those anti-religion types because you want to have a strong opinion on *something*), this is a great book for the soon-to-be mom.

While we got this book already in the 3rd trimester, it was fun to go back and read the ones leading up to the day we're on...and numerous pages have bookmarks on them to reread later.

Highly recommended!


ALEX Toys - ALEX Junior, Porcupine Pounder Baby Activity Center with (8) Colorful Pegs and Mallet, 1955
ALEX Toys - ALEX Junior, Porcupine Pounder Baby Activity Center with (8) Colorful Pegs and Mallet, 1955
Price: $20.74
13 used & new from $15.02

4.0 out of 5 stars See Peg? Hammer Peg!, October 15, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Nicely built toy that gets back to basics: see peg, hammer peg. The eight pegs are brightly colored so the kiddos enjoy the colorful nature of it. All in all, it's a great toy to get the little ones moving a bit, and can get some colors and counting started.

I do wish the pegs themselves were flared on either end, though. After hamming the peg through, it can (and does) fall all the way out...and at that point, the peg instinctively goes into the mouth than back into the hole. Small gripe... The other issue I have with it is that for me, anything and everything that is made in China is of suspect quality and safety. So if there's lead in the paint (for example), we won't know about it until somebody has a problem...likely long past the time your own child has been playing with it and putting it into their own mouth.

Overall, if we can assume that it's lead free paint and such, I'd recommend this to others.


Fisher-Price Imaginext Supernova Battle Rover
Fisher-Price Imaginext Supernova Battle Rover
Price: $109.99
23 used & new from $81.71

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Big toy with tons of stuff to mess with - just like boys like it., October 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Boy is this thing elaborate. While the 8 year old upper age may be a bit generous (I'd probably go 4-6 for the optimal age), this thing is BIG and does pretty much what every little man would want: a lot of various stuff. If you get bored with some parts of it, there are plenty more to play with, explore and imagine.

The seven AA batteries is an odd requirement. I personally never like it when companies require an odd number of batteries - you'll buy an 8 pack, and have 1 left over to get lost. But, once you juice this thing up with those seven 1.5v of playing power, this Rover shows off all it can do.

I'd certainly recommend this to others, especially given the number of "things" it can do which can lead to the imaginative learning to go in various directions, which in turn keeps the fun going longer and longer!


American Baby Company Waterproof Fitted Quilted Crib and Toddler Protective Pad Cover, White
American Baby Company Waterproof Fitted Quilted Crib and Toddler Protective Pad Cover, White
Price: $12.99
6 used & new from $12.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good product, designed in USA (made in China), October 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Overall, this is a nice sheet that both feels good (or at least, doesn't feel bad), doesn't have the crinkly sound, and does, indeed, keep the bed dry. It fits snug (comes in various sizes, so make sure you get the right one!) All in all, this is a good product.

My biggest gripe stems from not the product at all, but how the company tries to position it (and perhaps itself.) "American Baby Company," sounds good. "Designed in the USA" sounds good, as we all are aware of all the various poisons and garbage coming from overseas, namely China. They even go so far as to say "Manufactured by American Baby Company / A California Corporation" Alas, finally and somewhat inevitably, all the "we're a hometown company making quality American products" flies out the window with the big "Made in China."

So, just like products that are named things like "Horizon Organics" aren't necessarily organic, a company named "American Baby Company" that "designs" their stuff in the USA still sources the manufacturing in China.

Again, it's a good product from few uses I've had with it, but the product packaging seemed odd to me...


Galaxy's Most Wanted
Galaxy's Most Wanted
by John Kloepfer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $8.82
62 used & new from $0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Great book with more advanced topics than some kid books, October 13, 2014
This review is from: Galaxy's Most Wanted (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Great book, especially with the plot twist that was a good surprise and had the kids guessing if "it" was true. Who to believe, someone you thought was your friend, or someone you thought was your friends' enemy that can bring new truth to the situation? Good level of thought and controversy given the reading level.

The story itself was also well done, though I thought some of the "mean guys" stuff was a bit over the top, especially rubbing bird poop on some guy's inhaler...At any rate, given the ending, it looks like this will probably have a sequel which I'll be looking for! Recommended!


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