My husband travels about three weeks out of the month. I started a new job this year. I manage this blog. I’m illustrating a children’s book. We are doing partial home school with my two daughters and I run a small business (StickOrStone.com). So you can say, life is busy for us. I know, I know, we are all busy. But we also live in an amazing time where product after product is coming out that make our lives better and more efficient. Here are a few of those products that changed our family’s life for the better this past year.
This Summer we had a couple of unwelcome visitors go in our backyard. We suspect that they thought no one was home and were looking to break-in. They were scared away easily once they realized someone was home. With my husband traveling, this was very disconcerting. Ring adds a camera to our door bell and we have cameras surrounding our house. When there is movement or a doorbell ring we get a notification on our phones. We can see and talk directly to the visitors through our phones and avoid having to go to the door. My husband can also monitor the house when he is out-of-town. On the first day of school this year my hubby was able to say, “Have a nice first day at school!” He often says hi as we are leaving the house. So along with home security, it’s a way for us to feel connected.
The jury is still out on Alexa, for me. It’s a small round computer that we have in a couple of places in our house. We can talk to her like we do to Siri to add items to our Amazon Fresh order. She can also play music when requested. You can ask her about weather and, ideally, other questions. There seems to be a few kinks that need to be worked out, she doesn’t always have answers to questions. But, I’m sure she will get better over time. New applications are being continuously added to the Echo.
RX Bars are a “real food” protein bar. The ingredients are simple and clean eating. There are a variety of flavors. I use this as a meal supplement and they are really filling. They are delicious and are only $2.50 a bar. I buy a variety box on Amazon.
Are your meals lackluster or bland? These are a food seasonings that are chemical free, low sodium and made by a small company that focuses on personal health. The flavors are heavenly and not like what you will find sitting on a shelf at your local market. Spice up any meal with a variety of flavor combinations. They even sell a chocolate donut seasoning!
I don’t know about you, but several times a week (after a long day) I would head to the local market and grab the easiest meal I could think of. $80 later, a half-gallon of ice-cream, chips & dip and I was headed home. If you already have Amazon Prime for your other purchases ($99 per year), it’s only $15 a month additional for unlimited delivery orders. You can buy high quality meat and vegetables. Some items are a little more but those are mainly name brand processed foods. We have only had a few crushed items and Amazon immediately refunded us. I no longer dread having to try to fit in that trip to the grocery store. No more $80 trips to the local grocery for last-minute meals. I do have to plan ahead a little but most of the time I can order the day before with next day delivery. You can try it out free for a month to see if it works for your family.
I love the “Free and Clear” type soaps that are just basic without perfumes. I’m incredibly sensitive to perfumes (migraines) and my husband and daughter are sensitive to many detergents (dry skin). This product seems too easy. It doesn’t seem like it’s enough, you just throw the tab in the washer, there are no spills and I don’t have to rinse out the cap. It works. It comes in a nice light compact container. It is worth the couple of dollars more.
This was the year that I decided to give up on my dream of learning the guitar (I have been saying this for twenty years). In the past, I often looked longingly at the polished nails of other women and dreamed of such an indulgence. But I always insisted that I couldn’t learn the guitar if I had long nails, so I never took the plunge. With the increasing orders in my jewelry business this year, I notice that my nails were stained black often from the metals and paints. So to keep a professional front, I decided to start getting my nails done. I’m cheap so this was a big deal to treat myself. I soon learned that there are many choices at the nail salon and if you don’t really know what you want you will end up with everything in the confusion. The longest lasting choice was gel nails with some kind of french manicure. I could go almost three weeks without getting them fixed or filled.
I grew up watching Superbook on TBN and loved it. Besides the Sunday School felt board presentations, this was my main source of Biblical teaching. So I was overjoyed when I realized that the old Superbook was getting an overhaul. Hand-drawn characters have become computer graphics. Engaging storylines and life lessons lace every episode. When we limit screen time to one hour a day, this is a great alternative that we don’t mind bending the time limit rule for. It also includes an online gaming portal where kids can earn points and dig further into lessons. We pay $25 a month and it’s also supporting the furthering of the gospel. The company continuously works to translate the cartoons into other languages and distributes it’s program to reach many cultures around the world.
Time to join the “Clean Butt Club”! About to get real here. Don’t read on, if you are not interested in the intimate details…Pregnancy sucked for me. Along with gains of 70ish pounds (each time), was fire-burning heart burn and the gift of hemorrhoids. Staying clean has become a priority. I discovered toilet wipes that worked for a while but half way through the year they were making things worse. After a little research, I found out that there are no regulations on toilet wipes so they are full of irritating chemicals. Finding the Tushy Bidet saved my a$$, literally. I also appreciate knowing that my two children are clean, helping to prevent urinary tract infections. I know this is a culture change for people in the United States but in many countries a bidet is the norm. You will thank me on this one.
There are too many good products that bettered our family’s lives in 2016, so look for the rest of this article tomorrow.
Check out Part 2 here: https://herroar.com/2017/01/31/products-that-changed-my-familys-life-this-year-part-2/