The Mommy Gamers

Browsing Category:

Product Review

    Influenster Cherish Voxbox Unboxing ~ The Mommy Gamers

    Influenster sent me their Cherish VoxBox, a new box with full sized products and coupons for awesome stuff. I opened it up live because unboxings are fun and people seem to like watching them. I infrequently get these boxes of goodies in exchange for my honest review. This particular box had items in it for the whole family. The dog, the kids, myself, and my imaginary boyfriend.



    If you’re interested in Influenster you can check them out at: www.influenster.com

    Comments make us happy! If you’re still reading this, please leave us one. I’ll comment back!

    *I received all of these products from Influenster for free in exchange for my honest review. The Mommy Gamers are not employees of Influenster, we just love getting awesome things for free and sharing our thoughts about them with you!

    Cooking with Dice: Making Delicious Food, RPG-Style

    I love to cook. I get a chance to do it quite often because I’m a single mom and I can’t afford healthy, gourmet restaurant dinners every night. I can barely afford pizza once a week!

    I love gaming. That, I often have to skip because I also have to make money. My time is pretty much always taken up writing, trying to get more writing work, getting my school work done, and doing mom things.

    So – I don’t always have time to game. I have a new PS4 I’ve barely touched. I have Zelda: Breath of the Wild, sitting in my living room starting at me. I drop my kid off at D&D games and then go home to study. This doesn’t stop me from sneaking a few minutes of smartphone gaming at bedtime and Pokemon Go when I’m out and about. But it does mean my gaming time is cut pretty drastically. Every year my #1 New Year’s resolution is to Play More Games.

    So, what’s the compromise? This fall, I’m finding it in a little book called Cooking With Dice.

    Yes, it’s exactly what you think it is. A kitchen-based RPG. And it’s going to save my season!

    What is Cooking With Dice?

    This original game, the first in what will be a series, turns cooking into a game you can play alone or with the entire family.

    This past spring, Cooking with Dice was a Kickstarter project offered by the people behind Adventure Scents. Creator Jennifer Howlett says that the project, and her company, started as a way of gamifying cooking to make it more fun for her kids, and to help her family connect. “I think that gamifying something is a great way to drive learning and motivation,” she says. “I love watching TV cooking competition shows (it’s a guilty pleasure) and have always wished I could capture that adventure in my own kitchen. I feel like Cooking with Dice has helped me to experiment more with cooking and try out things I’d never done before.”

    She did plenty of research to create the recipes in the book, and utilized family members and volunteer play testers to complete the project.

    There’s a story. You’re an adventure-chef, journeying through a fantasy setting with different scenarios. Like Dungeons & Dragons, there are classes and races, and you roll your dice to introduce an element of chance into your endeavors. Actually, you start out at Level 1 as a Plongeur (dishwasher), and work your way up to Chef de Cuisine (head chef).

    And it’s fun. Using formulas and gaming tables rather than outright recipes, Cooking with Dice allows you to gamify different aspects of cooking. You can be more creative and flexible, and, as Howlett says in the book, add “your own personal magic.” This first installment of the series forgoes heat in favor of chemical changes caused by acid. Every food you create is a bit different, because the dice decide.

    The Good:

    Quickles (my version had rosemary)

    I’m not really an RPG gamer. I don’t have any patience to read the manuals, and no one has ever invited me into a D&D session that evolved past character creation. But Cooking with Dice is short and the instructions are clear and simple.

    But this concept has made my grocery shopping more interesting. I hate grocery stores. Now, though, I take my copy of this game, and a bag of dice, and I roll to see what ingredients I’m going to be buying. If you see a random person in the produce section trying to find a flat surface, then rolling a 20-sided die, that could be me. Or someone else playing the game.

    Also, this type of cooking is unfamiliar to me. I tend to be more hit or miss when it comes to dishes that require chemical reactions as the main form of food alteration. However, this is giving me a chance to try things I’ve never done. It’s fun, and getting kids on board is easy. The writing is engaging and witty, and the recipes and instruction are creative, well thought out and simple.

    I made pickles (see above)! In fact, I made quite a few items that are outside my comfort range, and my son helped. He hates pickles, but would eat the game’s Quickles all day. (Ours were cucumber seasoned with rosemary, based on our roll.)

    So, success! Howlett’s goal worked for me. I’m sold! And my son has never had so much fun cooking. I haven’t quite finished the book yet, but I’m getting there. This is a really good way to get your kids involved in the kitchen.

    The Bad:

    I can’t think of anything, except that failure can be discouraging, and I failed with the cheese the first time because I used pasteurized milk. I also failed with the Dragonfly Jam because I could not locate the right kind of pectin. But those things aren’t Cooking with Dice’s fault. The book clearly said I could not use pasteurized milk, and I could not locate the correct kind of pectin. Oops. Like I said, this is not an area of cuisine that I’m terribly familiar with.

    Ceviche Tomato Bombs (with shrimp)

    To be honest, it’s actually taking me a long time to get through the game because I’m always so busy, and finding other ways to use up ingredients I bought for the game is sometimes beyond my mental capability, even though they aren’t weird or anything. So my son and I have to make an extra effort to do the game justice, but Cooking with Dice gives our kitchen a much-needed culinary spark on nights we decide to play. It’s a good thing the game is so easy and flexible, because otherwise it’d just be another Crock-Pot dump meal for us.

    The Final Word:

    In a world that’s becoming more and more digitized, in which we have much less free time than we’d like, Cooking with Dice is a breath of fresh air. My son isn’t always a super-adventurous eater but he’ll try new foods, especially if we make them ourselves.

    Cooking with Dice lets us fit gaming into our busy lifestyle, and eat better food while we’re doing it. That’s a win-win in my book!

    Howlett and her 12-year-old daughter are working on a sequel for 2018, which would contain formulas that are easy for kids to make with minimal supervision. I’m on board with that!

    If you’d like more information on the book and Adventure Scents, visit www.cookingwithdice.com. Next month, Cooking with Dice: The Acid Test will be available via the website and through Amazon.com.

    Darling VoxBox Influenster Unboxing

    Darling VoxBox The Mommy Gamers Influenster

    I’ve been a part of Influenster for a few years now. Influenster is a site that rewards your social media prowess with products that you can enjoy in exchange for honest product reviews. I don’t have to pretend I like the things I get, and sometimes I do not like them at all. This isn’t the case with all of the products in the most recent Darling Voxbox I received. I’ve already used pretty much everything in the box. Curious what was inside? Check out this unboxing video to see what I got, and then stick around for my thoughts down below.

     

    Instead of talking about every product in the box I’d like to highlight the one that I was the most impressed by. First off is the Live Clean gentle moisture baby lotion and tearless shampoo & wash. Because my youngest “baby” is seven I was going to pass this along to my sister who happens to still have baby age people in her house. However, when my youngest daughter did a sniff test on these products she proclaimed them hers. The lavender, aloe and chamomile scents blend together so nicely that I will admit I have used the lotion myself…recently. The products have an eco-friendly tag on them boasting 97% plant ingredients, SLS free (whatever that is) and paraben free. If those things are important to you and you enjoy hugging an amazing smelling child after bath time you should keep an eye out for their products.

    Honestly, all of the products in the Darling VoxBox are being used right now and I’m not dissapointed. If you have a nice social media reach and like trying out new products you should totally check out Influenster. Or just keep coming back here from time to time to check out what we get.

     

    Unboxing My First Birchbox

    You can probably hear the lack of enthusiasm in my voice. I wasn’t very impressed with my first Birchbox. However, after opening my box I went back to redo the survey and noticed I had “Send me all the samples” checked off. I’ve since uncheck that option and I’m curious to see how that will impact my next box. We’ll see how my May/June shipments go.

    If after watching my video you’d still like to try Birchbox, you can sign up here for $10 a month. Be sure to come back and let me know what you got in your first box.

    [box type=”info”]This post contains an affiliate link. You can read more about our official disclosure policy here.[/box]

    The Mommy Gamers Review: WaterPura Baby Wipes

    The Mommy Gamers WaterPura

    If you listen to our podcast, watch our YouTube channel, or just in general follow any of our shenanigans, then you are aware that I (Carrie) just had a baby. This gave me the perfect opportunity to review the WaterPura chemical-free wipes I was sent for free for review purposes.

    At First Glance

    For those of you who may know me, you know that I’m pretty wary of chemicals. I clean my house mostly with vinegar and try to only eat grass-fed meats when I do eat meat. So when I heard that these wipes were completely chemical-free, I was pretty much already sold. Instead of chemicals, they are made of 99.9% water and a touch of citrus. I was, however, wary as to how well they were going to work. I received them a couple weeks before I gave birth, and decided to hold on to them until I could really give them a good test… the first poop.

    The Test

    Anyone who has had a baby knows that first poop is a sticky, tar-like mess. It isn’t very easy to get wiped off, which is awful considering how sensitive newborn skin is. However, I was extremely pleasantly surprised to see that the WaterPura wipes tackled that first poop like a champ. It wiped clean off without having to scrub or use more than two wipes. Let me tell you, this was no small feat considering just the massive size of my daughter’s first deuce. The WaterPura wipes did not at all let me down.

    Over the next few days I was seriously stunned at how well they worked against not only diaper messes, but also on sticky spit up. The wipes being chemical-free eased my mind a bit since I was wiping her face with them. I’ve always felt wary about wiping infant faces with normal wipes. Also, since they are mostly water, they are extremely gentle on the skin. All three of my other daughters ended up at some point with a diaper rash so bad I would have to forgo wipes for a while. WaterPura wipes shouldn’t give me this issue, since they are 99.9% water.

    Conclusion:

    WaterPura wipes are seriously hands down the best wipes I have ever tried. They work better than normal wipes, and I don’t have to worry about wiping down my newborn with chemicals. I can’t recommend them enough.

    Author
    Share on

    Unboxing the Influenster Fierce VoxBox

    Influenster Unboxing TheMommyGamers Fierce VoxBox

     

    Both Marcia and Desira recieved the Fierce Vox Box from Influenster and  collaborated on a joint unboxing video! Check out our YouTube video linked below to find out what was in their boxes. Influenster is a fun site that sends products out for free for testing purposes to people they believe are influential. It’s free to sign up, and fun to get suprises like these in the mail from time to time.

    Don’t forget to follow The Mommy Gamers on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook too!
    * Please note that both Marcia and Desirai received their products complimentary for testing purposes…even though we didn’t test them in this video actually..we just kind of showed them to you.

    Author
    Share on

    Pokémon GO Plus: The Good and The Bad

    Pokémon GO Plus

    As soon as I heard about the Pokémon GO Plus, I grabbed every game I could part with and went to GameStop to preorder. Niantic hadn’t released a whole lot of details on how the peripheral device would work, but I knew it was supposed to make playing easier, so I was on board. Like many who was excited to get their hands on the accessory, I was disappointed when I heard they were pushing back their original release date from late July until September. However, I waited patiently, have been using it for a few days now, and have come to my opinions on the currently in low supply device.

    The Good

    • Wearing it: Pokémon GO Plus comes with two options for a person to wear it. You can either clip it on your person, or wear it on a bracelet. I love the options, but I have chosen to wear it as a bracelet. It’s lightweight and more comfortable than most watches I’ve worn in my time. I also think it looks pretty cool, as it looks like a cross between a Pokéball, and a map marker on Google Maps.

     

    • Ease of use: Once paired with the Pokémon GO app, the Pokémon GO Plus makes playing so much easier. The device will vibrate and flash with a green light when a Pokémon is near. Then, all you have to do is push the button on the device for a chance to catch the Pokémon. If the device flashes with different colors, it means you caught the Pokémon. If it flashes red, it means the Pokémon ran away.

     

    • Pokémon GO Plus will vibrate and flash blue if you pass within range of a Pokéstop. Again, pressing the button on the device will count as “spinning” the Pokéstop in game, rewarding you with items. However, if the device flashes red after trying to “spin” the Pokéstop, then it means you have already traveled too far away from the Pokéstop in order for the spin to count.

     

    • Niantic’s peripheral also makes hatching eggs easier. While the device is connected via Bluetooth to the app, it acts as a pedometer. No longer do you have to worry about whether or not the app is “counting” how far you’re traveling due to it’s not always so reliable GPS. The Pokémon GO Plus counts your steps that are then read in the app as distance traveled. If someone were so inclined, they could lie on their couch, shake the device, and hatch all the eggs their heart desires.

     

    • Using other apps: While Pokémon GO is connected to the Pokémon GO Plus via Bluetooth, you can back out of the app and it will run in the background. This means you can use other apps on your phone and still catch all the Pokémon that come into range.

    The Bad

    • Battery Life: Since the app has to be connected via Bluetooth in order for the Pokémon GO Plus to work, it does cause a little more strain on the battery. It’s very easy to keep the app going all day to maximize on the Pokémon extravaganza, however, be prepared to charge your phone more than once a day if you do this.

     

    • Disconnects after a time: I’m sure they put this in as a way to help save on phone battery life, but it can become annoying to keep going back into the app to reconnect the Pokémon GO Plus.

     

    • Running out of Pokeballs: Since it’s so much easier to catch Pokemon with Pokémon GO Plus, be prepared to run out of balls more quickly. I accidentally went through 100 balls in just a little over a day. However, if you’re someone who lives close to a ton of Pokéstops, then Pokémon GO Plus will make it much easier for you to keep up your supply of Pokéballs without having to throw money at microtransactions.

    The Verdict

    8/10 Would buy again.

    Pokémon GO Plus is a freaking godsend and I can’t sing its praises enough. Get your hands on one as soon as you can. It has made Pokémon GO fun for me again. If you’re someone who stopped playing because it became a grind, or because you just didn’t have time for it, Pokémon GO Plus might just be what you need to get back into the game.

    Pokémon GO Plus is available at most retailers that sell games for $34.99.

Live now! Click to join the party!
CURRENTLY OFFLINE