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Saturday, April 29, 2017

Camp NaNoWriMo -- A Look Back

Camp NaNoWriMo -- A Look Back

What is Camp NaNoWrimo?
Camp NaNoWriMo is a virtual writer’s retreat, designed for maximum flexibility and creativity. We have Camp sessions in both April and July, and we welcome word-count goals between 30 and 1,000,000. In addition, writers can tackle any project they’d like, including new novel drafts, revision, poetry, scripts, and short stories.
For years, I've been saying I wanted to do ACTUAL NaNoWrimo, which is short for National Novel Writing Month. But I never get to do so; either I'm behind on reviews or other things in real life come up and I can't.

This year, however, a friend of mine, T Rea Harris, mentioned she was doing Camp NaNoWriMo and I was curious about it. I was shocked and excited to see I didn't HAVE to do a novel; I could do any time of writing I wanted. Seeing I was VERY behind on reviews, I decided to make my 'project' be blog posts.

I originally decided on a 60 post goal. I figured that was 2 posts a day... something I could handle. But then real life got in the way (along with an issue on LiveJournal that I STILL need to take care of and Verizon starting their issues again) and I ended up having to cut my goal in half to 30 posts.

And here it is, Day 29 and I'm still plugging away at it. However, THIS IS MY FINAL POST.

I did it.

Sure, I have to go back and edit a few posts, but that can be done whenever this weekend. I don't need to rush and HOPE I get done before April 30th at 11:59 PM. The original posts will stick.

That being said, This post completes my first Camp NaNoWriMo.

And what have I learned from Camp NaNoWriMo?

~A month flies by quicker than one thinks.
~I was further behind than I thought.
~I wasn't as prepared as I thought.
~My Mommy was right; I CAN do anything I put my mind to.

There is another Camp session in July. Depending on where I am with reviews, I may try doing a short story for July's session. If I'm still behind, I'll just do another project of Blog Posts.

I am actually HIGHLY considering doing the actual NaNoWriMo in November. That means The CP Chick more than likely will go on HIATUS for that month. I haven't decided yet if I will do it... 50,000 words seems like a goal I KNOW I wouldn't be able to achieve.

I hope my parents are up in heaven, smiling down with pride that I put my mind to a goal and I did it.

2017
CAMP NANOWRIMO
WINNER!!!

Pumpkin Spice Twinkies

Pumpkin Spice Twinkies

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
The Twinkie™ and all its creamy, cakey, golden goodness needs no introduction. Because this creamy, cakey, golden goodness has been enchanting the masses for generations. One sweet bite at a time.
I’ve become smitten with anything Pumpkin Spice flavored, Minus Hood’s Pumpkin Eggnog, which is odd, because growing up, I hated pumpkin ANYTHING. My Holiday Pie choices were Apple and that's it. I didn't want any other pie, and while my older family members would scarf Pumpkin Pie down, I refused to even try it.

These Pumpkin Spice Twinkies actually came out in either 2014 or 2015, but they were a Kroger exclusive at the time. We do not have a Kroger grocery store in NY, the closest Kroger being 265 miles away. So I resigned myself to the fact that unless I bought a box from eBay or Amazon, I’d never get to try these.

However, while doing my errands in November 2016, I spotted a 10-count box in the local Dollar General, and decided to give them a go, even though I hardly ever even ate Twinkies as a child.


The outer box I purchased^^


^^A Twinkie split in half^^

Biting into them reminded me WHY I hardly ate them as a child. They taste fake. The sponge cake is dry, almost to the point of feeling rubbery. The cream filling, while heavy on the pumpkin flavor, wasn’t as creamy as some of the other cream-filled desserts Hostess offers. I personally thought their Pumpkin/Swiss Rolls have a creamier filling to them. The texture was more of Cool Whip than whipped cream.

The main problem disabled people are going to have with these is actually OPENING the packages. These are individually wrapped, and with the ingredients used, these liked to stick to the plastic wrapper when opening. I nearly broke quite a few in half trying to remove them from the plastic wrapper. Chewing shouldn’t be an issue, unless you cannot chew.

Since these are a limited edition variety, I'm not 100% sure they are available all year round. As I stated above, They were initially only available at the Kroger family of stores, but they may be available at other stores.

FINAL THOUGHTS
While I usually like sweet foods, these were too sweet and too fake for me.
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: No

Glasses Shop

Glasses Shop

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
GlassesShop is an American owned and operated online retailer of eyeglasses. Since the website launch in 2004, we have delivered over a million pairs of eyeglasses while maintaining our standard of providing the highest quality at affordable prices. We are a group of eye doctors that understands your struggle with the high cost of eyeglasses. We strive to make your experience with GlassesShop.com one that is not only user-friendly but also professional and reliable. Being able to deliver superior eyeglasses at an unbeatably-low price has allowed us to help people all over the world see clearly and, in turn, has provided our team with a more rewarding experience than we could have ever anticipated. We guarantee your satisfaction.

Our Vision

At GlassesShop.com, our client-oriented philosophy makes your visual needs our first priority. We have created a culture of integrity and honesty, so you can shop with confidence.
- Our company strives to ensure all clients will have the best possible customer experience.
- Our frame sourcing and quality control protocols give you the best online selection of unbeatable-priced eyeglasses anywhere. - Our Quality Assurance optical technicians will inspect your eyeglasses extensively before they are delivered. - Our prescription eyeglasses frames and sunglasses come with a 90-day quality guarantee. - Our international logistic centers allow us to provide the most stylish top quality eyeglasses at unbeatable prices to customers around the world. From our integrated, centralized international distribution center, we are able to ship orders worldwide and service customers across the globe. We have delivered our quality eyewear to customers in more than 45 countries!
I got my first pair of glasses in 7th grade. The optometrist Mommy took me to was a complete fool and prescribed bifocals for me. The next year, Mommy took me to Sears Optical, where they found I didn't need bifocals at 13. Instead, I had astigmatism in my left eye, and I just needed corrective lenses.

But even back in 1991, eyeglass frames were really expensive. I tried to keep it as cheap as possible, but the frames I chose, which were plastic ones, still ran about $40,

As I got older, the prices of frames only increased, Even with insurance, my co-pay for glasses was $15-$20, and that was just for the frames,

I started thinking, There HAS to be a way to get quality frames on the cheap!

and there is... GlassesShop.com.

When I was first contacted by GlassesShop.com and asked to write a review for them, I was curious. Could mail order glasses REALLY be a good alternative to paying through the nose at my local optometrist's office?


^^Jersey frames in blue^^

After much consideration, I decided to choose the Jersey frames in blue for this review. Since it's not time for my exam yet, I opted for plain glass lenses.


^^Me wearing the frames^^

I'm not entirely sure if I accidentally chose a child style, or if I just have a large head, but these felt a bit snug on me. The plus side to that is the frames will stay securely on my face\head. The negative part is that the frames cut or dig into the sides of my face.

I really don't see disabled people having a problem using these. They are slip on and go, so unless you have absolutely NO use of your arms, you will be able to use these frames.

These frames, along with hundreds of other styles, are available from GlassesShop.com. They also carry Prescription sunglasses.

And as an added bonus, you can get 50% off on eyeglasses and sunglasses with free lenses(sale frames excluded) with the code GSHOT50.

FINAL THOUGHTS
Great selection of frames at very affordable prices. When it's time for my next pair of glasses, I'm DEFINITELY using these frames!
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: Yes

**As per FTC guidelines, I received this product in exchange for an honest review. Only compensation I received is the product(s) mentioned above. All opinions are my own and your usage/results may vary.**

Mighty Mug

Mighty Mug

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
This mug will not get pushed over when placed on any solid, flat surface, although you can pick it right up like any other mug thanks to smart grip technology. It has a double wall construction which will keep your beverage hot or cold longer and has a flip top lid which prevents leaks. Also includes a flex straw for your convenience.

Unspillable travel mug, powered with smart grip technology
-Mighty Mug grips to any smooth, flat, solid surface when you accidentally bump into it, but magically lifts up naturally, helping to avoid spilling
Can be used for hot or cold drinks
-Double wall construction keeps your beverage hot or cold longer
Car cup holder friendly and can be used with or without the included flex straw
Tritan double wall construction, made of crystal clear tritan wall plastic
Hold 20 oz. / 0.6 l. hand wash only
I spend a LOT of time at my computer, which is a laptop. I bounce back and forth between an Acer Chromebook and an ASUS laptop with Linux Mint 18 on it. Being I use laptops, I don't have the luxury or convenience on just switching out a keyboard if my drink gets spilled into it.

So when I saw Lew from Unbox Therapy feature this cup on his channel, it seemed to be the answer to my prayers and I knew I had to get one for myself.


^^Mighty Mug in blue^^

The way this cup works is there is a suction device in the bottom of the mug/cup. This suction device creates a seal between the mug/cup and the smooth surface, 'locking' the cup to the surface,

I really like this cup, because I personally am shaky, and if my arms have a spasm, I could easily knock a normal cup onto my laptop, and even with a keyboard skin on the laptop, it can be ruined. This prevents that from happening, by sealing itself to the table I have my laptop on. The cup does absorb minor bumps, but it would take a strong push or shove to actally knock it over.

I have used this with mainly cold or room temperature drinks, but I have used it for coffee before and it DID keep my coffee hot longer than normal mugs.

The only problem I see disabled people having with the mug/cup is picking it up once the suction is activated. It needs to be lifted STRAIGHT UP, not on an angle. if you try to lift the mug/cup up at an angle, the mug/cup will treat this as a bump and not release the suction hold.

This is available from TheMightyMug.com starting at $19.99. I, however, bought mine from eBay because I used Paypal to pay for it.

FINAL THOUGHTS
The perfect cup for those who want to feel safe with their drinks around electronics.
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: Yes

Veggie Fries

Veggie Fries

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
Our story is probably your story; a family searching for healthy and delicious food for our three daughters. We achieved the best of both worlds in some of America’s most iconic foods. Our whole family loves French fries and tater tots, so we made them healthier; blending in our favorite vegetables to make a tasty nutritious treat. We experimented with over 300 recipes to create perfect fries and tots –extra crispy on the outside, fluffy and tender on the inside using a delicious blend of vegetables, legumes, and potatoes. We hope your family loves them as much as we do.
Believe it or not, I do like vegetables. Like I said, if I was allowed to make my own meals, I probably could go pesco-pollo-ovo-lacto vegetarian. (I'm NOT really a beef eater)

But the way veggies are made here, they are nothing short of disgusting. They are either undercooked or just bland.

One of my favorite 'veggies' is french fries. When Veggie Fries sent me two coupons for a free bag of their products, I was intrigued. Could this be the way I get veggies that taste good into my body? Let's find out.


^^Bag of Broccoli & Potatoes fries^^

BROCCOLI & POTATOES FRIES
I really couldn't taste the broccoli in these fries, but they did have a green tinge to them. They tasted just like regular french fries to me.
TASTE: 8/10


^^Bag of Carrots & Potatoes fries^^

CARROTS & POTATOES FRIES
These were so yummy. The carrots and the potatoes mixed together gave these fries a 'sweet potato' taste. These were the bigger 'hit' of the two, and they taste great with ketchup.
TASTE: 9.5/10

I don't really see disabled people having any issue with these, minus any allergy or chewing issues. Just put them on a baking sheet and bake as directed.

These fries are available from most major retailers. Please visit their Store Locator to find a location near you.

FINAL THOUGHTS
One of the yummier ways to get your RDA of veggies
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: Yes

**As per FTC guidelines, I received coupons for this product free in exchange for an honest review. Only compensation I received is the product(s) mentioned above. All opinions are my own and your usage/results may vary.**

Pasta Chips

Pasta Chips

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
Inspired by an authentic Italian snack from the hills of Tuscany, Pasta Chips are a healthy take on a classic recipe. Made with Durum Wheat Semolina Flour -- the main ingredient found in premium pastas -- and Italian herbs, each chip is carefully cut to create the perfect edge and then baked until golden.

Crafted with fine seasonings based on regional Italian favorites, you can add a little taste of Italy to any of your favorite dips and cheeses, or enjoy simply from the bag. For a truly authentic experience, serve topped with basil and mozzarella or with marinara for dipping. We hope you enjoy Pasta Chips and the journey that brought it to life.

Buon Appetito!
Jerry Bello, Founder
Two of my favorite foods in the world are pasta and chip-style snacks. Anytime Mama Melissa's parents go out for supper, I'm making myself some type of pasta dish for my meal, and evidenced by my numerous Pringles reviews, those are my favorite chips.

So, when Pasta Chips agreed to send me some bags of their product for review, I was excited... Two of my favorite foods in one product! Total win-win situation!

I was sent 6 different flavors. Let's take a look at the flavors I was sent!


^^Collage of the flavors I received^^

ALFREDO
I have RARELY ate Alfredo. Mommy never made it, so only time I've ever ate it is if I've ordered it at a restaurant. Although, looking up what Alfredo sauce is, I feel like a real fool now, considering I've been making my own homemade Alfredo sauce for years.
The creamy Alfredo taste really shined through on these chips. I really liked the Parmesan flavor on these, and I think I even think I detected a hint of cream cheese flavor on these.
TASTE: 8.5/10

GARLIC OLIVE OIL
Very nice garlic taste on these chips. Not too heavy on the olive oil taste... almost seemed like a buttery taste with the garlic taste. One of my favorites of what I received.
TASTE: 9/10

MARINARA
This tasted just like the company used spaghetti sauce on crispy ravioli or lasagna noodles. These were okay, but that weren't really one of the standout flavors.
TASTE: 6.5/10

MEDITERRANEAN SEA SALT
All I tasted was an oily flavor with an abundance of salt. Seriously, I thought I was just eating straight up salt. I really didn't like these; they were WAY too salty for me.
TASTE: 5/10

SPICY TOMATO HERB
Another one that tasted like the company used spaghetti sauce on the chips, but this time, it seemed like they put either Tabasco or hot taco sauce in the spaghetti sauce. These were really good, but I couldn't eat too many of them at once, because the spiciness burned my mouth.
TASTE: 8/10

VEGGIE PASTA CHIPS in SPINACH BROCCOLI KALE & SEA SALT
Now, these were a treat... if I was allowed to make my own meals, I probably could go pesco-pollo-ovo-lacto vegetarian. The three veggie blended together SO nicely, I really couldn't tell the flavors apart. It was like eating a greens salad. My 2nd favorite bag of the shipment.
TASTE: 9/10

These bags have the ‘Ziploc’ style seals, and if not lined up properly, may not seal tightly. This is the MAIN issue I see disabled people having with these bags. I don't see any issues eating these as long as you can eat crispy chips.

Pasta Chips are available at most major retailers. Please visit Their Store Locator to find a store near you or buy online through their Online Store.

FINAL THOUGHTS
Great snack for those who love pasta and crunchy snacks.
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: Yes

**As per FTC guidelines, I received this product in exchange for an honest review. Only compensation I received is the product(s) mentioned above. All opinions are my own and your usage/results may vary.**

Clear American Orange Cream Flavored Water

Clear American Orange Cream Flavored Water

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
Clear American Water is the brand of flavored sparkling water sold by Wal-mart stores.
As hard as it is to believe, I was a pretty good water drinker when I was a teenager. Mommy would buy the 2.5 gallon jug of Poland Springs Natural Spring water and keep it in our refrigerator. Sometimes, she'd save gallon milk jugs and we'd go to the running water 'spring' on Bank Street in Montrose for water. Even though we had well water in the trailer park, something about spring water tasted SO much better.

As I aged, I turned to 'colored' drinks more... soda, juice, milk, coffee, tea... and away from the water. I know, bad for me, but I like to have some sort of taste in my mouth.

So, when I moved to where I live now, Mama Melissa's parents started riding me about not drinking enough water. They touted the tap water was so good... except every time I drank it, I'd get awful acid reflux. It never happened when I would drink the bottled water as a teenager, or the water we'd get from Bank Street. I never even got it from the well water in the park. Only conclusion I could draw is that the salt from the water softener we use here doesn't agree with me.

To appease them, I started buying flavored water for Mama Melissa and myself. Mama Melissa likes the Clear 'n' Natural Strawberry Kiwi sparkling water, whereas I prefer the Propel Zero Strawberry Kiwi waters.

But on one trip to Wal-mart, I spotted this flavor. Since I LOVED Orange Creamsicles and Stewart's Orange & Cream soda as a child, I figured this would be just as good. So I bought a bottle.


^^Half-drank bottle of Clear American Orange Cream water^^

This tastes nothing like the Stewart's soda. It tastes like a very salty and bubbly Creamsicle... and not in a good way. I usually have NO complaints with flavored water, sparkling/carbonated or 'flat,' but I do not like any of the orange flavored waters I have tried. (There is one flavor at Dollar General, Blood Orange, I have yet to try)

Since this was a 'Limited Edition' flavor, I do believe it is only available in stores, if you're lucky.

FINAL THOUGHTS
Not one of Wal-mart's hits... I think I'll stick with Propel Zero for my water intake.
STARS:
WOULD RECOMMEND: No

Friday, April 28, 2017

Scratch Nail Designs

Scratch Nail Designs

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION
You’re smarter than the beauty industry thinks you are.

You do not need anything to look beautiful (read: you are more than beautiful).
The products you want to purchase should help magnify and express your personality because your appearance is an opportunity to show the world who you are and what you care about. When it comes to your nails, a good manicure is a confidence-boosting, conversation-starting, public display of you.

We work with artists you love, explore concepts you’re interested in, and create designs that look good. Everything we do at Scratch is done with intention and a belief that quality does matter*.

Our purpose is a meaningful experience.

*OUR WRAPS ARE SCREEN-PRINTED ON A THIN ADHESIVE WITH 5-FREE POLISH INKS. THEY GO ON SMOOTHLY AND LAST LIKE REAL NAIL POLISH.
UNLIKE OTHER NAIL WRAPS, OURS LOOK LIKE GENUINE NAIL POLISH WHEN APPLIED. WIN WIN!
I love to do my nails. But with the shakyness of having CP, my actual fingers wear more than my nails. And while yes, I've worn Jamberry nails in the past, I don't always have access to a powerful heater to warm them up, especially in the summer months,

But, what if there were nail wraps out there that didn't need heat? What if there were nail wraps that were as easy as press and go? That's exactly what Scratch Nails are.

I chose 'Total Snowflake' for this review, since I am a HUGE snowflake nut.


^^Stock photo of 'Total Snowflake'^^

'Total Snowflake' is a nail wrap consisting of white snowflake designs on a dark blue background.


^^'Total Snowflake' before application^^

What totally threw me off when I opened this package was there was no 'nail polish' scent to it. However, when preparing the wraps for application, once you fully take them out of the packaging, it's no different than using actual nail polish. I was very thankful Mama Melissa didn't come out to the dining room when I was trying to apply these, since her asthma would more than likely have been triggered by the smell.

Another issue I had, and what I feel will be the problem for MOST disabled people, is the fact that these wraps will rip VERY easily, I couldn't even apply ANY of the wraps, since they would rip and tear when I was trying to position them on my nailbed. I ended up tossing the entire set out, because it was just too messy for me to apply.

This set is discontinued, but many more designs are available from Scratch Nails website.

FINAL THOUGHTS
Not even worth it for a disabled person. I'd stick to Jamberry wraps or getting my nails done professionally first.
STARS: ;
WOULD RECOMMEND: No

**As per FTC guidelines, I received this product in exchange for an honest review. Only compensation I received is the product(s) mentioned above. All opinions are my own and your usage/results may vary.**