Outre Nadi

I have always been a fan of short hairstyles. I love a nice pixie cut or bob. However, I have never had the desire to cut my hair. Fortunately for me, there are ways around that. I have worn a variety of wigs over the years that enabled me to get the short look I wanted without actually cutting my hair.

Well Summer is quickly approaching and I am thinking about short cuts instead of braids this year.  I decided I wanted a short wavy look.  I glanced at a few styles online and decided to start with Outre Nadi.  It took two days for Nadi to arrive.  I was so excited to try her on.  That excitement left quickly.  Actually as soon as I pulled her out.  This is what I was expecting.

This is what I received.

What

Is

This?

It looks like two doll scalps sewn together; two doll scalps with two different textures.  I immediately stuffed it back in the box after sending a picture to the seller.  It gets crazier.  The seller didn’t see the problem.  I was sure I received a wig with a manufacturer defect but the seller said they all look that way.  So in short, if you were considering purchasing Nadi; don’t.  I sent her back.

1 to 1 Gluten Free Flour

I did some baking today and I have to say I am not a huge fan of this 1 to 1 baking flour.  I did like the texture and density but it gave my blueberry muffins an odd almost nutty flavor.

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I also made peanut butter cookies.  Of course the nutty flavor of the flour didn’t have an adverse effect on the cookies.  I have also used this baking flour for frying batter. It served that purpose just fine.

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I don’t think I will be buying this particular flour again though. Based on this experience I could probably use it solely for my peanut butter cookies or banana nut bread.  It may work for brownies.  I don’t know if I will bother trying though.  I will probably use what’s remaining for banana pancakes.  I think the nutty flavor will be fine in banana pancakes.  I may need to stick to rice flour for my gluten free baking needs. The rice flour has not failed me yet.

Update: As expected the nutty flavor worked well in my banana pancakes.  Bananas are both in the batter and on top.

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Live G Free Gluten Free Wraps

These things have become one of my kitchen staples.  If you have seen my Instagram lately you already know.  These wraps have replaced sandwich bread in my kitchen.  I find myself using them everyday.  The best part is they could pass for regular flour tortillas.

At one point I started substituting regular flour tortillas with soft corn tortillas.  I didn’t love the texture.  I prefer my corn tortillas hard.  Now my problems have been solved.  Just this week I have used these Live G Free wraps for pb&j, deli wraps, and cheesesteak wraps.  I may try pizza next.  I already have a gluten free pizza crust I love though.  Maybe I’ll go with breakfast burritos instead.  We’ll see.

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Sophie’s Kitchen Breaded Vegan Scallops

This product boasts gluten, soy, cholesterol, meat, and seafood free; as well as certified kosher and non gmo. But how does it taste? The vegan scallops as pictured on the box look delicious. Don’t they always. They were reasonably priced at my local store so I decided to give them a try.

The box suggests oven, toaster oven, or pan fry preparation.  I went with pan prep as this is how I usually prepare scallops.  (Spoiler alert: I have purchased these scallops multiple times.  So yes I give them a positive review.)

The thing to keep in mind when trying meat substitutes is they are not going to taste exactly like meat.  If you’re looking for an exact repilica, don’t. Instead look for something comparable.  These scallops do just that.  They have managed to be comparable in appearance, taste, and texture.  They are a great option when you need to prepare a meal quickly.  Here are quick meals I threw together with these vegan scallops.

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Ninja QB1004 Food Processor, Master Prep Professional

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How many kitchen appliances have you purchased in your lifetime only to be sent to the garbage much sooner than expected? My Magic Bullet recently met that fate. That thing was terrible. I should’ve posted a review on that piece of junk before I tossed it. I will briefly say I had to call the manufacturer because it stopped working. I had to pay them shipping costs to replace it only for it to happen all over again. I went through two Bullets in less than a year.
Fortunately for me I found a great deal on a Ninja. I heard wonderful things about it. However, the models I saw just seemed too bulky.  I generally don’t like to keep appliances on the counter top.  I like a clear counter.  I am running out of storage spaces in the kitchen so more huge appliances just seemed out of the question.  So when I saw what looked like a reasonable sized Ninja on sale, I jumped on it.

I ordered the QB1004 online.  I have used it everyday since receiving it.  I used it to make my banana peel smoothie ( http://wp.me/p4g9Hi-de ). So far it seems to be perfect for me.  It had everything I love and it avoids the things I hate.  One of those things being appliances that are difficult to clean.  This Ninja breaks down into easy to clean sections.

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Here is the break down.  This particular model comes with a 16 ounce bowl, a 40 ounce pitcher, and a 48 ounce pitcher.  The breakdown makes storage a breeze.  Each part has it’s own storage lid and blade.  There is one motor that works with all three.  This motor chops, blends, and grinds effortlessly.  There are no settings.  I control the texture by either pulsing the motor or letting it run continuously.  I have been pleased with the results every time.

So in conclusion, if you are searching for a powerful blender/food processor that doesn’t take up too much space and is easy to clean; look no further.  I couldn’t be happier with my Ninja.

Gluten Zero Bakery

I came across Gluten Zero Bakery quite accidentally. The Las Vegas bakery had only been open a few weeks when I stumbled across it. I was pleasantly suprised by what I found. The owner/baker offered more than delicious treats. She offered an education on gluten intolerance as well as a listening ear to her customers experiences. Some might say she offers more empathy towards symptoms of gluten intolerance than some doctors.

When I arrived, the first thing I noticed was the selection. Some of the flavors on display were german chocolate, milk chocolate, carrot, lemon, and rasberry. There were vegan options as well. I bought a vegan carrot cake that was so good it was gone before I could take a picture.

I did however take pictures of my carrot cake as well as lemon. (Yes I bought both gf carrot and vegan carrot. There was a third carrot option without nuts as well.)

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If you are in Vegas you have to stop by Gluten Free Zero for a tasty treat! The cakes are delicious.  Don’t take my word for it.  Go see for yourself.

Jimmy Choo Tisri

I rarely wear a pointed toe shoe.  I have them.  They just don’t get much wear.  Tisri just may be my game changer.  I like to  look good but more importantly I like to feel good.  Tisri allows me to do both.  First off, the upper is a very soft leather.  This makes for a comfortable wear.  Even though the shoe is pointy, it does not feel restricted.  It fits like a glove.

Another detail that adds to the comfort is the platform as well as the rubber sole.  Platforms bring comfort to high heels.  There is far less pressure on the ball of my feet when wearing heels with platforms versus not.  As far as the sole. I appreciate a leather sole;  however, in this case I am happy with the rubber.  Leather soles can be quite slick.  I cannot count how many times I have slid across the room in my first wear when wearing leather sole shoes.  Fortunately this has only happened in the house.  The benefit of the rubber sole is I don’t have to add wear before I trust the stability.

The last detail that had me sold on this shoe is the sculptured heel.  It’s subtle but once you see it you cannot look away.  This shoe has my recommendation.  It goes well with everything; jeans, suits, dresses, pants.  I have not paired it with shorts yet but I can see that going very well.  It’s available in off white as well as black.  I went with black.  If you are not near a Jimmy Choo Boutique you can always shop jimmychoo.com or check  Nordstroms or Saks.

Mitchell and Co Skincare

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I firmly believe word of mouth is still the best form of advertisement. There are many ways to entertain and entice. However when it comes to quickly gaining trust word of mouth reigns supreme. That’s precisely how I discovered Mitchell and Co.

Like most of you, skin exfoliation and moisturizing is a part of my daily routine.  I have used the same products for years without a second thought.  My products come from a national company that promotes free trade.  I often receive compliments on the fragrance and my skin feels great.  There’s only one problem.  Some of the ingredients in these products are unfamiliar to me.  For years I have been lathering my skin in things I can barely pronounce.  Not cool.

Enter Mitchell and Co.  I discovered the company by word of mouth, social media to be exact.  I was attracted to the lure of shopping small business and of course the natural ingredients.  Mitchell and Co carries a variety of skin care.  I decided to start with the body polish and the butter creme.  Below is a side by side comparison of Mitchell and Co to the national brand.

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The national brand is on the left.  They are both citrus scents.  There are obvious visual differences in the body polish.  The national company has tiny exfoliating beads composed of who knows what.  While Mitchell and Co has a natural salt base.  Moving down to the butter, the national company has a more dense texture.  Mitchell and Co is light and fluffy.

I’ve been using Mitchell and Co for just over two weeks now.  My skin is just as smooth and supple as it has been.  The difference is I actually know what is in the products I am using.  I intend on trying more of Mitchell and Co’s offerings.  Perhaps you should too.  Next on my list, oatmeal soap.

Random Rant – Victoria’s Secret

This past month I had a few less than desirable shopping experiences in one of my favorite stores, Victoria’s Secret. I have been faithful to Vickies, as I like to call them, since my teenage years. Victoria’s Secret even acknowledged my loyalty by inviting me to join an “exclusive” panel. I am still on the panel where basically I’m a focus group participant. They make the panel fun with quizzes, chats, product previews, etc. Though there’s no hiding the fact that members are providing a valuable service, free marketing research.

All this is to say, I think it’s time I start seeing other people (companies actually). My relationship with corporate via the panel is fine. However, as a customer I find myself dissatisfied with the service I have received lately in store and strangely once online. Customer service over the phone continues to be excellent but for me that’s not enough. I need you firing on all cylinders. So in 2015, I will no longer be going steady with Vickies. I’m inviting new brands into my drawers. Any suggestions?

Jessica Simpson Fail

Let me start by saying over the years I have purchased and been satisfied with several pairs of Jessica Simpson shoes.  That’s why I am so surprised by my most recent purchases, slippers.  It took going through two pairs in short period of time to give up.  I’m one of the few remaining people that find it unacceptable to wear slippers outside.  How can slippers used strictly indoors come to pieces?

I first purchased these cute fluffy slippers in solid black.  In addition to them being cute, they felt like a warm hug on my feet.  The padded platform made me feel as though I was walking on a cloud.  They had a sturdy rubber sole that remained in tact until the end.

As I wore the slippers I noticed my feet leaving the cloud and getting closer and closer to the floor.  That wasn’t too big of a deal.  I concluded that the foam in the platform wasn’t the best quality and was losing it’s shape.  Little did I know there was a bigger problem.  These slippers actually made me question my sanity.  I would feel as though my feet were touching the ground.  “There’s a hole in my sole,” I would think.  However, the sole was in tact.  What was going on?

Later I would find trails of what looked like dryer lint on my floor.  Could I have dropped that after cleaning out the dryer? Does the vacuum cleaner need to be emptied? I would begin to find this “lint” in places the vacuum cleaner or dryer lint had never been.  I eventually threw out my black fluffy slippers and replaced them with the leopard print.

Perhaps the first pair slipped past quality control in the factory.  That could happen.  I didn’t expect to have the same experience again since Jessica hadn’t let me down prior to this.  I was wrong.  The exact same thing happened again.  One day I found half of the platform cushion on the floor.  Apparently the side seam splits in these slippers allowing the foam to come out of the side without ever disturbing the sole.

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The slippers are cute and comfy but not for long.  I will not be buying a third pair.  I am currently giving Betsey Johnson a try.  Hopefully those will fare better.