September Barkbox

With Molly’s December BarkBox sitting on the floor next to me, I looked at my September post “Molly tries Barkbox” and wondered why I haven’t written one since.

In my first post, I swore that I wasn’t going to buy another BarkBox. Then I found a deal on Groupon for up to 24% off and an extra toy each month. It’s been so many months that I forget what I paid for a 12-month subscription…Yes – it was probably too much to spend on a subscription box for dogs BUT these boxes are a great value and they’re full of toys and natural dog treats for your dogs to enjoy.

I also found the Destroyers Club on their website and when you email them a picture of your dog destroying BarkBox items, you get credits to spend on their website. I believe I have gotten $3, $5, $2, & $8 credits which last 30 days. I’m not sure how they determine the values but I was very excited when we received $8 to spend. I used all of those credits to stockpile presents for Christmas!

September 2016:

This was the second box we received in September. I had to sign up for a subscription using a new account to redeem the Groupon that I purchased. The theme for this month was Cooking. After the first box disappeared in a few days I decided that I would ration when the dogs get to have their toys and treats. Even with a discount – this service isn’t exactly cheap.
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Beef Tendersticks – $8.00

Like I said in my previous post – there is no point commenting on how my dogs liked the food portion of their boxes. They will ALWAYS be happy with treats. These all natural treats are made with 100% beef and they’re gluten free.

Orbee-Tuff Strawberry Dog Toy – $14.00

This toy had a weird smell to it and the outside was kind of sticky. Both dogs played with this toy – because there were treats inside. Winnie (the one who doesn’t play with toys) had a really hard time getting the treats out. She had such a hard time that she eventually gave up and Molly ate the rest for her. This toy is also still alive.

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Bacon Benebone  – $10.00

I was pleasantly surprised that the dogs actually shared this toy. One dog would play with it and when they got bored the other dog would pick it up. No growling or anything. Which is SO WEIRD because Molly refuses to share the plush toys. We just threw it away about a week ago (about 3 months of use) because the dogs were eating chunks of it.

No Grainers Turkey & Sweet Potato Chews – $8.00

These treats are gluten free and made in the USA. They taste like turkey and sweet potatoes.

Peace Sign Rope Toy (Extra Toy Club) – $13.00

This toy is still alive which is amazing in our house. I think overall the “Extra Toy Club” toys are pretty high quality.

Beef Jerky Stick – $4.00

These jerky sticks are made in the USA and come in a 2 pack.

 

**Please note – the pricing in my posts are for large dogs. BarkBox typically sells their toys in three different sizes: small, medium, and large. I opted for large after our first BarkBox because I think that they’re harder to destroy.

If you’re interested in trying BarkBox please follow our link!

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Still Grazing

So as you all may know – I ended up with two graze boxes because I found a great deal on Groupon when you sign up as a new subscriber.

BUT, after receiving this box I canceled my first subscription – not because there is anything wrong with graze. I canceled because I think that 8 snacks a week is too much and I know that 16 is.

The week we received 4 loves, 1 like, and 3 tries. While I would enjoy getting all “loves” every week it makes sense that they have to mix it up. Overall, I’m pleased with the variety of sweet and salty snacks as well.

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I really liked this and I didn’t expect to. I dipped the first cookie into the caramel and bit into it and I was pleasantly surprised by the banana flavor. These cookies are soft and kind of melt in your mouth. I’m excited for the next time we get these.

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This is yummy – it’s sweet and crunchy. BUT, you could easily find a comparable product at your grocery store and save yourself some money.

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EW, what did I eat? To be fair, the toasts are really good. Kind of like a Chex Mix piece. The tapenade is spicy, tangy, and just tastes terrible.

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These cookies were good and it paired nicely with the tea!

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I wasn’t a fan of the freeze dried apple it was soft and chewy (yes, like anything freeze dried). But, the rest of the nuts were good and I liked the soft gummy “carrot” pieces.

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The rice stick was crunchy and what you would expect a rice stick to be. The salsa peanuts were okay they tasted like peanuts covered in salsa. The BBQ pea is hard to eat and hurt my teeth. Overall, not a fan of this snack.

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So my boyfriend LOVES pepper. He puts so much pepper on everything that it is ridiculous. I really liked this popcorn. The serving size was awesome compared to other graze offerings. While there wasn’t “enough” pepper on this popcorn it had a great flavor and I bought more from their website.

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We got two of these this week (one in the other box). The hazelnut dip was good it tasted similar to Nutella. I wasn’t impressed with the toasts they were small and really crunchy.

Molly tries Barkbox

Lately, I have been trying every subscription box that I can get my hands on. My dog, Molly, hates when the mailman comes! We’ve thought of a bunch of different ways to convince her that the mailman doesn’t want to hurt her. We even let her get onto a UPS truck once and had the driver give her treats and that didn’t help! So I decided to get a subscription box full of stuff just for her!

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I didn’t like the prices for this box so I started to sign up and then just left the web page (when you do this companies will keep sending you deals in your email until you sign up).

They finally sent me an offer to try it once without a subscription at all — so it was time to go for it.

When you sign up you select the size of your dog – small, medium, or large and what subscription package you want.

  • $20/month for 12 months
  • $24/month for 6 months
  • $29/month for 1 month

Then they ask if you want to pay $9 extra dollars a month for premium toys.

The theme for this box was Poo York City (New York City) which I thought was really cute. However, I wish they gave you an option to personalize your box a little better when you sign up. My dog will destroy just about any toy in a few minutes & we do not allow either of our dogs to eat animal chews.

Lady Liberty Ball – Medium $9.00

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When I opened the box, Molly went right for this ball. She loves to destroy plush toys especially when they have a ball inside that she can play with. It took her about five minutes to tear off each of the points and then I took it away so she could finish destroying it another day. It’s been two days since then and she has been searching the house intently for this toy. The moment I gave it back to her she tore it to shreds.

Andi’s Famous Plush Dumplings $16.00

Surprise, I actually have two dogs but only Molly likes to play with toys. What was cool about this toy was that there were two dumplings inside of a plush box. Two dumplings mean that both dogs could have one. If only Winnie cared about destroying plush toys as much as Molly. I really enjoyed watching Molly stuff her head inside of the crinkly box as she tried to get to the dumplings. But once she had it out of the box it was less than a minute until it was in pieces.

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NYC Roasted Duck Jerky Bites $8.00

Obviously, Winnie went straight for this one. I tried to hand her one while taking a picture and her nose went right into the bag. Winnie and Molly rarely turn their noses up at something to eat and this was no exception.

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Best Treats Ever $0.00 ?

I don’t have anything special to say about these – the dogs ate them, enjoyed them, and they’re made in America. They are soft and I break them into a bunch of pieces before I feed them to the dogs.

Trachea $0.00?

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So all in all, I’m pretty disappointed that we received this because I do not let my dogs eat animal chews. Our previous dog loved to chew on the pig ears that you can buy from PetSmart but ended up getting broken up pieces stuck in her nose, throat, and tummy. We didn’t know it but over time these things really hurt her and that’s why we refuse to give them to our dogs now. I contacted Barkbox and they sent me a $5 code plus free shipping to buy something else for our dogs and also offered to send a replacement. We’ll see what happens with that but I was very impressed with how responsive they are.

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Overall, the dogs enjoyed the box but I won’t be subscribing. The box costs too much to receive things that my dogs will destroy instantly.

If you’re interested in giving Barkbox a try, please use Molly’s referral code WINNIEBARKBOX because she would love to get another box. I am sure we will sign her up again next time I receive a sign-up deal because she really did love it!

If you all would like any more information about this box – please let me know in the comments. I would love to answer any of your questions!

**I’ll update this post with the replace that we receive since Molly wasn’t allowed to have the trachea.***

Updated – We received a tough rubber toy as a replacement (I can’t remember the name of it at the moment) and it’s held up very well. It’s been three months and it is still in one piece.

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graze Subscription

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UPDATED 8/25 – Scroll to the bottom to see the awesome deal I found for Graze…

My mother and I will try anything once. I was flipping through my Rachel Ray magazine when I saw an insert for graze. I wasn’t interested in it. But, I always ask my mom if she is interested in something before I throw it away. Apparently, she had seen an ad for graze before and considered it.

So I went to the website and realized pretty quickly that this subscription is expensive and doesn’t seem to be very flexible. A graze box costs $11.99/week for 8 snacks. Knowing how many products I have laying around from Birchboxes, Sephora Play!, & Target Beauty Boxes I can’t imagine how many snacks we will have.

graze was created to help people find better alternatives when snacking. Some people have the subscription sent straight to their office to prevent them from hitting the vending machines when they get hungry. The best part is that their snacks are free of GMOs, artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives

I love that graze allows you to tailor the snacks you receive to your own dietary preferences. I was able to rate a ton of snacks as “trash” “try” “like” and “love”. When you “trash” something, graze promises to never send it to you. When you “love” something, you’re more likely to receive it in your boxes. This rating gives graze an idea of your tastes while still allowing your snack box to be a complete surprise!

The cutoff time for changing your weekly subscription is (I assume) based on where you live in comparison to where they are shipping from. My cutoff time is at 5am on Wednesdays and our first box will arrive next week! I found a feature on their website where you can “snooze” a box for 1, 2, 3, or 4 weeks which will be nice because I really think a weekly subscription will be too much.

If you’re interested in taking this journey with me head over to graze and check it out. By following that link your first 4 snack sampler box will be free and if you keep the subscription long enough your 5th box will be free as well!

If you are like me – I am planning to keep my subscription until at least the 5th week and then I’ll decide if I’m keeping it from there. That means you only have to pay for 3 of the 5 boxes that you will receive.

Next week I’ll post about the snacks I received and what I think about my first graze box!

 UPDATE AS OF 8/25: So I was pretty excited to receive my first graze box and I felt good about the deal I received. Little did I know – Groupon has a FANTASTIC deal for graze right now. Unfortunately, to redeem this deal you have to be a new subscriber –> which I am but I had already set up an account. So I had to set up a new account with a different credit card in order to use this offer.

On Groupon you can get a 4-week subscription of graze for only $24.00 that’s a value of $47.96 ($11.99 weekly x 4 weeks). Until 8/27 there is an extra $4 off so you can get four weeks of graze for only $20.00. I couldn’t believe that I missed this deal when I first signed up so I will absolutely check Groupon every time I sign up for a subscription box from now on!

**If you plan to use this deal – do not click through my graze link because it will default you to my offer for friends that is explained above.

Sephora Play! April 2016

I had a very short-lived Sephora Play! subscription. The BS of Sephora Play! starts with their waitlist. They sent me an email and told me I had been personally selected and only gave me a few days to decide if I wanted to sign up before my spot would be given away. Does anyone like to be coerced into something? I don’t!

When you receive a box, they send booklets with information about the products included but I never found them helpful in terms of figuring out how to use them. To be quite honest – I did not like that these boxes were not really customized or the fact that they included the Nars Satin Lip Pencil that they gave out as a birthday gift that same year! Which is why I decided to sign up for Birchbox instead!

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So here is what I received in my April box:

  • Milk Makeup – Sunshine Oil – Full Size $38
    • When I opened the little pouch this came it the product got everywhere. The product was so oily that it didn’t absorb into my skin. It left me feeling greasy and disgusting.
  • Sunday Riley – Good Genes Treatment – Full Size $105
    • Not sure what this was supposed to do but I didn’t like the way it felt on my skin. I’m in my early twenties and refused to start using anti-aging products.
  • Clinique – Pep-Start Eye Cream -Full Size $26.50
    • This product is supposed to hydrate under your eyes and make you look refreshed and awake. I’ve found the only way to get rid of puffiness under my eyes is to sleep!
  • Nars – Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien – Full Size $26
    • I didn’t like this the first time I got it and I was pissed that I got it a second time. It doesn’t have any staying power and goes on very messy. Luckily I have a family member who loves these – I’ve given her 3 from Sephora so far.
  • Sephora Collection – Colorful Cheek Ink Gel in Peony – Trio $21
    • No no no! My cheeks are ALWAYS red. The last thing I want is to slather a gel all over them and add more color. This is an example of the box not being customized to my beauty profile.
  • Derek Lam 10 Crosby – 2am Kiss – $95-175
    • I am not a fan of makeup samples in my beauty boxes and Sephora includes on with every box! This scent is way too strong and if you tried to kiss me wearing it at 2am you would probably get punched.

June 2016 Birchbox

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These are the products that I received in my June Birchbox. If you also have a Birchbox subscription I would love to hear about the products you got in the comments section below!

  • Benefit gimme brow-volumizing fiber gel$24.00
    • Wow, this stuff actually works way too well. I already have pretty thick eyebrows so when I tested this product I looked crazy. This would be great for anyone who needs more definition. This product definitely works and does as promised.
  • The Beauty Crop PBJ Smoothie Stick – Raisin the Roof -$14.95
    • I’ve never used a product like this before and I was really put off by the fact that it was called a PBJ Smoothie Stick. If this product smelled anything like peanut butter and jelly there was no way I was going to wear it. It goes on really smooth and makes my lips feel moisturized. This color isn’t really visible on me and it smells a little weird. BUT, I will definitely buy this again when I run out.
  • Paula’s Choice Skin Perfecting 2% BHA Liquid Exfoliant $28.00
    • So I don’t really understand this product. This product is supposed to get rid of acne while making skin smoother. It’s also intended to calm redness and even unclog pores. I wasn’t impressed by it. I have really soft skin that I’ve dried out by using too many skin cleaning products. I will try it a few more times before I get rid of it.
  • COOLA® Mineral Face SPF 30 Unscented Matte Tint$36.00
    • I have very pale skin and I should wear sunscreen every day. So the idea of a matte face lotion that also provides SPF protection is awesome. I was originally put off by the color of this product because I am so pale. However, after getting a sunburn I decided to try it and found that the color blended just fine into my skin. I ended up giving this product to a friend but if I received another sample  I would keep it for myself and use it.
  • Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray$44.00
    • When you read the description this product sounds amazing but I just couldn’t get into it.  The product is part dry shampoo and part texturizer. I’ve never had much luck with dry shampoo and I definitely do not use texturizer on my hair. I have very thick wavy hair and these types of products make a mess of it. I had my mom test it and she didn’t give me much feedback. I do remember that it smelled fantastic.
  • BONUS – Birchbox has a bunch of deals where when you spend a certain amount you can get samples of certain products free. Check out this retailmenot.com page with a bunch of items you can get right now. So for this month since it was my very first box I was able to redeem one of these codes.

 

**The prices are for full-size versions of the products I received.