FTC Disclosure

Life is complicated enough without getting into hotwater with federal agencies so: TAKE NOTE Many things I review I got at no charge in exchange for an honest review. Consider this as informing you that ALL things I review may have been gotten at no charge. Realistically about 60% but in order to keep things above board just assume that I got the stuff free. Words like, “sponsored,” “promotion,” “paid ad” or even just “ad” are clear ways to disclose that you’re being paid to share information and links so BE AWARE that some of what I write can be described as an AD by the government. BTW I will NEVER say a product is great, super or even acceptable if it isn't whether I got it free or NOT!


Monday, October 16, 2017

Ventev Wirelesspro Dock

Phone snaps in on the right of the photo.
This works great!  I plugged it into my power port (the port formerly  known as the cigarette lighter port) and it worked immediately.  I then took the power port adapter off and plugged it into my car USB and Viola! It worked there as well.  So while I was tinkering I tried it on my desktop USB and my desktop did not like it but I tried it on my laptop USB extender and it worked just fine.  So not only does it give me a wireless charging option in the car it gives me a backup wireless charger for the desk.   My only  concern is that the vent clip was very difficult to get on the vent.  Once on the vent, it was very sturdy feeling but it was not easy to get on.  I may not use it on the vent and might just stick it in the glove box and charge there.  Regardless that small shortcoming does not detract from the versatility of this charger.  (I was going to photo it with my phone in it and duhh when my phone is in it I don’t have anyway of taking a photo.LOL)

·                        Plastic
·                        Charge your phone from 0% to 60% in 30 minutes
·                        Universal, fast, wireless car charger
·                        Spring-loaded Dual arms for effortless one-handed docking and a rotating vent clip
·                        Included is our dash port Rq1300 and our 3 ft. Charge Sync Micro USB cable
·                        One year limited warranty

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Jimu Robot

I got this today.  I can’t remember being more excited about a toy in ages.  This isn’t really a toy as much as a major learning experience.  The kit provides you with enough parts and directions to build three different robots.  Not having finished one yet I cant’s swear but it appears that you can then take off on your own and design your own robot.  STEM is getting a great deal of overwork for the 2017 holiday season.  This kit really does stretch the mind though.  The ability to create code to control your robot is mind blowing.  You can use your Apple or Android devices to program and control your robot.  I’m sure that Wall-E  had some impact on their design.  Since I loved that movie, this just rings my bell.

From the vendor:
·                 Build your own DIY robot with 5 smooth motion robotic servos, 1 infrared sensor, 2 LED and 397 snap-together parts
·                 An incredible addition to any STEM learning curriculum, boys and girls learn valuable skills with fun and engaging Robots, recommended for ages 8+
·                 Learn to code with Blocky and make your robot creation perform incredible movements with the pose-record-play function
·                 Share your designs and connect with other creators on the JIMU robot community available through the free JIMU robot app
·                 Download the free JIMU robot app on Apple iOS or Android Smart devices to program and control your robot

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

K'NEX - Imagine 25th Anniversary Ultimatebuilder's Case Building Kit

I’ve written a lot about K’NEX over the last 6 months.  Frankly when K’NEX first came out I was not a fan.  How could anyone think they could replace Legos? However I have been won over.  They are not a replacement, they are in addition  to Legos.  My grand kids have both and they enjoy both.  K”NEX has made a big push in the STEM education arena.  I laud that as they supply good manuals and plenty of imaginative suggestions for their kits.  This particular kit is not STEM centric but it supplies a whopping 750 pieces to further fuel the imagination. My grand kids love these.

K’NEX claims they are willing to replace broken or lost parts, just call them.  I called at 2:45 PM on a Friday afternoon and was on hold for 5 minutes before I hung up.  It’s possible they actually do respond to phone calls but I can’t verify that and I am unwilling to sit on hold to discover the answer.  In that aspect K’NEX is as disappointing as most other companies claiming to be customer friendly.  Claims and reality are often quite different.

Considering what is normal for customer service today, I can’t ding them for not being any better than anyone else.

From the vendor:

750-PIECE PACK – This Ultimate Builder’s Case contains 750 classic pieces in bright colors and with sturdy plastic construction. The package includes many different rods and connectors to let builders create extravagant designs!

·                        CREATE 3D CONSTRUCTIONS – Encourage your child to bring his dream design to life by building three-dimensional models. Whether he’s creating a cool vehicle or a pirate ship, this set allows a multitude of 3D configurations.
·                        PORTABLE STORAGE CASE – Allow your child to play and learn wherever you are with this building set. It comes with a sturdy case inspired by the design of the original case from the early 1990s.
·                        FULL-COLOR INSTRUCTIONS – Encourage your child to build and create with the 25th Anniversary Ultimate Builder’s Case. This set comes with color-coded, easy-to-follow instructions that will teach your child to craft 50 models of varying size and difficulty.
·                        STEAMagination™ – It’s the connection of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts & math) with a child’s natural curiosity and creativity and it powers the fun of each and every K’NEX® building set.  Building with K’NEX puts children on a path towards a fundamental understanding of STEAM/STEM subjects.
·                        DEVELOPMENTAL BENEFITS – K’NEX supports key areas of a child’s developmental growth.  As they click the different parts together and discover how the building system works, they’re strengthening hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, problem-solving skills, spatial awareness and exercising their imagination!
·                        COMMITMENT TO QUALITY– K’NEX rods and connectors are responsibly made in America at a landfill-free, zero-waste green manufacturing facility in Hatfield, Pennsylvania.  We test to the strictest quality and safety standards, ensuring that your child has a successful, trouble-free building experience.
·                        PARTS GUARANTEE – Broken part?  Missing part?  If you find yourself in need of a replacement for any reason, just give us a call!  We’ll get you what you need so that your child can get back to building as soon as possible.

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

LEGO DC SUPER HERO GIRLS Eclipso Dark Palace 41239 Building Kit (1078 Piece)

I am fond of toys that diminish stereotypes. The character of Wonder Woman was the first female super hero that I can recall.  I loved the movie and like that my grand daughters have a super hero to admire.  This is a great set with a serious number of pieces.  My youngest (now a father) always said the more pieces the better!  Way to go Lego!

·                        Features a foldout palace, opening tubes to hold lego dc super hero girls characters, powering station, planning room, vanity cabinet, weapons cabinet, a kryptomite creation section.
·                        Includes 3 mini-doll figures: wonder woman, eclipso and the flash, plus 3 orange kryptomite figures.
·                        Accessory elements include a staff, sword, flail, sai, wonder woman's lasso of truth, wonder woman's shield, laboratory bottles, lipstick, brush, perfume bottles, pickaxe, hammer, anvil, and crystals.
·                        Eclipso dark palace measures over 14in (36cm) high, 10in (27cm) wide and 5in (14cm) deep.
·                        Kryptomite training station measures over 2in (6cm) high, 1in (3cm) wide and 1in (3cm) deep, invisible jet measures over 1in (5cm) high, 6in (17cm) long and 8in (21cm) wide.

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Tour Gear Custom Fit Golf Belt Brown with Matte black Buckle

This is pretty darn nifty. It comes in a one size fits almost anyone. You cut it to 2" over your waist size an clamp the cut end into the buckle. The tongue of the belt then inserts into a rachet on the buckle. You pull it to your comfort level and you're done. It release with a knob on the bottom if you are right handed. It feels and looks very good. Also a better concept that similar belts I have. $20.00 at Amazon.

Ratcheting belt buckle for a perfect fit
Available in black, White or brown
One size fits all

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017


K’NEX always grabs my attention as it is a local company.  I don’t know anyone who works there but I always feel good about supporting local businesses.  K’Nex has worked diligently to become part of the STEM trend.  Their manuals are clearly illustrated and the instructions are age appropriate.   They  have experiments that utilize the parts that are included in the kit.  Frankly unless supervised I don’t see many of the experiments being used but the intent is good.  In my opinion, the best use of this product is promoting creativity.  The creation of a project that is not defined in the manual is a measure of the versatility of the product.  In the case of my family, the use of levers and pulleys will translate into medieval weaponry.
 ·                        The set includes 130+ parts for a single child or team of 2 children to build 3 unique lever or pulley models: a balance, a wheelbarrow and a Sailboat.
·                        Students will learn about lever classes, pulley systems, resistance, effort, mechanical advantage and more!
·                        The experiment guide is aligned to National STEM standards and is appropriate for Grade levels 3-5.

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Graco Kendall 6 Drawer Double Dresser, Espresso

This dresser got mildly savaged by Amazon reviewers.  My experience was far more positive than most reviews.  Yes, the assembly is time consuming and not intuitive.  However you should realize that when you buy it that you are going to input a certain amount of labor.  The quality of the piece is good.  I have no clue what the wood is but it does not appear to be any kind of particle board or pressed wood.  The only non-wood is the back of the dresser and the drawer bottoms.   I did have one of the cams come out but re-insertion was not an issue.  The back was pre-drilled for the screws but one side was pre-drilled incorrectly and was far too close to the edge.  Finally the back bottom support bar would not seat on the dowel so I used an L bracket and some glue and that took care of that problem.  The drawers all work smoothly and the overall appearance is quite nice.

In summary, the dresser does take some labor and the build quality has some minor issues but it looks good and will do it’s designed job.

·                 Features 6 spacious drawers to store clothes, toys and other belongings
·                 Universal dresser coordinates with Graco or any other children’s furniture
·                 Made with high quality pine wood and composites, features durable steel hardware
·                 Euro-glide drawers with built-in safety stops
·                 Available in multiple safe, non-toxic finishes. Anti-tipping. Double boxed for extra shipping protection

If reviewing a product, it may have been received free of charge. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

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