PRODUCT REVIEWS: GIFTS FOR MOM AND THE KIDS THEY LOVE by Robin Gorman Newman
Any avid cell phone user (and who isn’t these days?!) who is away from their home or car knows the frustration of seeing a low percentage level on their cell phone’s battery. MyCharge, a Michigan-based manufacturer of portable charging solutions, has introduced the Razor Max, a portable device that charges phones with up to 27 hours of talk time. It is sleek and slim (though a tad more weighty than I’d like) — but it powers up your phone impressively fast. And, with two USB ports, you can charge two devices at a time. You can also charge the powerbank and connected device simultaneously. It’s made of anodized aluminum, and maintains battery power for up to 1 year. You’ll never be stranded with a dead cell phone again, if you have MyCharge. You just have to remember to bring the charger cable for you phone to connect to it. Visit http://shop.mycharge.com/products/razormax.
Kitchen Curry Master is a new and unique concept that puts Indian cooking right at your culinary fingertips. This compact kit, conceived by a passionate home cook of Indian roots, features a gift-worthy box of 12 key spices (many of which are hard to find in supermarkets and can be pricey) and a recipe book featuring vegetarian, meat and seafood options.
I love Indian food, and have long aspired to prepare it at home. As the kit suggests, my local supermarket doesn’t carry the seasonings, so I pretty much abandoned the dream of cooking dishes like chana masala (chick peas) and fish curry (tilapia)…..two of my favorites.
Now….everything you need is housed in a convenient, attractive tin, packaged along with an easy to follow (not overwhelming) cookbook. This is the perfect gift for the aspiring Indian chef in your life, even if it’s yourself. Visit KitchenCurryMaster.com.
The Jojoba Company Australia was founded in 2008 by Ian Turner, who planted his first crop of jojoba on the family estate in New South Wales, Australia over a decade ago. As a pioneer of jojoba farming in Australia, Ian believed that his crop could revolutionize the skin care industry due to its remarkable natural qualities for skin. Infused with hand selected natural and organic ingredients from around the globe, The Jojoba Company has created a natural range of skin and body care products with a strong focus on anti-aging and skin health.
I had the opportunity to sample the the 100% Pure Jojoba, The Intense Overnight Renewal Cream and the Botanical Hydrating Face Mask. The 100% Pure Jojoba wasn’t my cup of tea, I must admit. I think it’s great to rub on nails and cuticles, but for your face and other body parts, my personal preference is something less oily and more creamy. Some do like to use it on their hair and lips, and there are benefits. Jojoba is known to soothe problematic skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea, acne, cradle cap, nappy rash and sunburn. It can also be used as a makeup remover.
The Intense Overnight Renewal Cream came in a beautiful box (pictured), and the feel is smooth and silk. It has a lovely softening effect and light, pleasant scent. Antioxidants including Vitamin E, CoQ10 and green tea protect skin from drying effects of the environment, while beta glucan, argan oil and wild yam nourish and hydrate. Marine collagen, hyaluronic acid and Vitamin A reduce the appearance of wrinkles and plump skin. It is suitable for all skin types. It’s suggested that you warm a small amount between fingertips and gently press onto face, neck and décolletage to nourish the skin while you sleep.
The Botanical Hydrating Face Mask is designed to deeply hydrate to rebalance dryness and re-energise skin. It is a hydrating clay mask with active botanical extracts including antioxidant rich ginko biloba, plumping marine collagen, Vitamin B5 and green tea to boost the natural hydrating qualities of jojoba. It combines Australian clays with jojoba to renew and rejuvenate all skin types.
Directions are to apply a thick layer to cleansed skin. Leave on for 15-20 minutes or overnight for a more intense treatment. Rinse with water. Use 1-3 times per week. I love the feel of this mask. I used to use a mask on my face as a teenager, and I’ve been wanting to do it again for some time. Masks have come a long way since then, and this one feels like a luxuriant pampering experience for my face. As a busy mom, it feels challenging to make the time for self care, but this is an easy way to help keep your skin in good shape.
LEGO BOOKS — Do you have a LEGO lover, big or small, in your life? They will want to know of these books….
The Stories of Heracles, Athena, Pandora, Poseidon, and Other Ancient Heroes of Mount Olympus
See Athena spring from the head of Zeus, and witness Poseidon as he rules the seas with his mighty trident. Observe Pandora as her curiosity takes over, and beware the Nemean Lion as Hercules repents for his misdeeds. There is even an impressive Mount Olympus made completely from LEGO bricks. So much detail and thought clearly went into this book. It’s hard to believe that each scene is staged with LEGO bricks.
The tales are consistent with the mythology behind them Brick Greek Myths is a LEGO-inspiring introduction to the tales for young readers, and a trip down memory lane for mythology lovers. 259 pages; 1000 vivid, color photographs. Each tale is a short, easy read, so if you’re a busy mom who enjoys mythology, like me, you won’t find this demanding. And, if your child has a boatload of homework and not much leisure read time, this will engage them just long enough.
A Comprehensive Guide to Making Your Own Stop-Motion LEGO Movies by Sarah Herman
Note: Thanks to the featured companies for providing product samples. This is not a paid endorsement, and all opinions are my own.