Reviewing Zamzee: Will it Help Me Be More Active?

I’m going to be honest with you guys. My Get in Shape, Girl workout isn’t going so well. I can blame it on all the random traveling I’ve done lately (vacation = excuse to eat whatever the heck I want), but it really just comes down to the fact that I’m lazy and prefer food that is bad for me.

Meet my Zamzee dude — so dapper in orange!

I mean, that’s pretty much everyone’s issue, right?

So I was looking for ways to bribe myself into thinking exercise is fun. Which as you can imagine is pretty hard to do when you work full-time and have a 6 month old.* However, when I was at BlogHer 2012 I found this cute little guy.

He is the spokes-dude(?) for Zamzee. I hadn’t ever heard of Zamzee before that day but I was given the opportunity to try it out for free. So I figured, why not?

Zamzee is an activity meter that you clip to yourself, much like a pedometer. However, instead of just counting your steps, the meter measures the intensity of your activity. The Zamzee is designed for kids, with the goal of enticing them to get more physically active. There is even a website specially designed for kids and tweens that helps track their progress and has fun activity-based games.

Obviously, I’m not a kid anymore but I decided to give it a try. And honestly, I thought this little meter was pretty cool. Instead of getting obsessive over steps walked and calories burned, it was actually kind of fun to do activities and see how many Pointz I accumulated (yes, they’re called Pointz… which is what the cool kids are into these days. Or is it, kidz and dayz?). You can just plug the meter into your computer and the Pointz get uploaded into your account. Super easy! And I like earning Pointz – it’s kind of like earning a gold star!

This is what a zamzee looks like, mine is black. (Source: zamzee.com)

I wore the Zamzee to my Stroller Strides class last week and tried to push it** extra hard to earn some additional points. I’ve also been wearing the meter to work each day, which is awesome because it gives me a reason to get off my butt. After I’ve been sitting at the computer for a couple hours I click on the website and pick a challenge. Typically for a challenge, I’ll get out of my office for 5 minutes and just do a quick loop around my building. Sometimes, I close my door and bust a move to earn Pointz. And yes, I totally did this last week.

Zamzee is currently in beta, with about 5,000 users and is expected to launch in the Fall. However, the beta program is currently open to the public and you can purchase a meter for $29.95 plus shipping (there is no monthly cost).

Why buy one when I can give you one for free? That’s right I have a brand new meter to give away to my awesome readers!

I’ve never done a giveaway on my blog before, so this is pretty fun stuff. In fact, I’m almost drunk with power. MooHAHA***

So here’s what you have to do to enter the contest: Leave me a comment on this blog post or on the Pocketful of Joules Facebook page that includes the word “Zamzee” somewhere in the text. I will print out the names of everyone who enters and randomly pick a winner. Let’s do one entry per person, per platform – so you are welcome to enter both on my blog AND my Facebook page. The giveaway closes at noon on September 6, 2012. So get your comments in!

 * Excuses, excuses! Do you see what I’m dealing with here??!!

** Push it REAL GOOD… now that song is in my head!

*** That’s my drunk with power laugh. Duh. It’s like in that episode of Friends where I think Ross was doing an evil laugh – there was some sort of blackout and he did his laugh and the lights came back on and Rachel was kissing someone. I can’t find the clip on youtube, but I’m pretty sure it happened in reality and not in my head.

Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this post, but I was given a free Zamzee to review. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own and I would never write about or review something unless I actually liked it!

9/6 Update: This contest is now closed. The winner, according to the Random Numbers Generator at random.org is…. Just Keep Swimming! She can now be one of the cool kids with her very own Zamzee!

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!

Reviewing Citrus Lane: The August “Back to School” Box

Oooh, ahhh the August Citrus Lane box is here!

Yay, it’s here. It’s here! The August “Back to School” Box from Citrus Lane!

Of course, Jack is only 6 months old, so I’ve been very curious on how they’re going to prepare him to go to school. Maybe a ABC slobber rag or a learning to count chew toy?

Anyways, Citrus Lane talked a little about this in the brochure that came with this month’s package:

“Whether or not you have a child headed back to school, the fall is always a super-busy time for parents. That’s why this month’s box is all about helping you stay inspired and organized, from packing healthy lunches to nurturing your child’s learning curve.”

Okay, that sounds right up my alley! Fall is my absolute favorite time of year (I swoon over foliage and pumpkin spice lattes) and work will also be quite a bit busier, so anything that helps my day go smoothly is a winner for me.

And this box WAS a winner too. In fact, within a couple hours of opening it every single item was already in use in various areas of our house!

This month’s goodies:

The doggie’s ear passes inspection.

Skip*Hop Hug & Hide Stroller Toy ($10.00 value) – I love this toy. It is totally adorable – it’s a little dog that opens his arms and there is a little teether puppy inside his pouch. Super cute! The teether is the perfect size to fit in Jack’s hand… and mouth. I’m not sure how we’re going to attach this to our stroller though. So far Jack likes to hug it or roll around on the ground and lick it.

Keepin’ Fresh Baby Food Storage ($7.99 value) – These little bowls are the perfect size for some homemade baby food or for mommy to take a single serving of hummus to work. With their super secure tops, I feel confident that I can throw them in a diaper bag or purse without being surprised with a stinky mess later. The best part – they’re microwave, dishwasher and freezer safe, as well as free of BPA, phthlates, PVC and lead. Makes me want to mash the crap out of some bananas.

Some babies recline on a bearskin rug… Jack has a monkey skin rug. So comfy for catching up on his reading.

Andy Warhol’s Colors Board Book ($6.99 value) – We’ve already talked about my obsession with books. The fact that they included a book in our monthly box AND that it’s a super cool one makes me a happy girl.

Plum Organics Stage One Just Fruits ($1.49 value) – We Love Plum Organics + We Love Pears = Another Winner!

Mommy’s Bliss Gripe Water ($11.99 value) – My introduction to gripe water came from our very first Citrus Lane box in March. It has been a total lifesaver for my gassy boy, so having an extra bottle on hand is great for us.

Yum, pears are delicious. Even through the plastic.

So, was this month’s box worth it?
Yes.

Every single item in the box will be used in our house. My only disappointment is that there was no “mommy present” this month. Part of the reason I was attracted to the Citrus Lane boxes over some of the other ones out there is that there was a little treat for me too. So, a little bit of a sad face sigh there, but all in all we are happy about the August box.

Here’s my typical disclosure: I was not rewarded by Citrus Lane for reviewing their box on my blog. I review the boxes, because I feel like other mom’s would be interested in seeing what they’ll get if they sign up for the monthly service.

HOWEVER, if you decide that you would like to sign up for your own
subscription and use my link, I will receive credits on my account. Click here to access the Citrus Lane website with my special link. As an added bonus to my fabulous readers, you can get 10% off the cost of any subscription (normal cost $25 each month). You’ll save $7.50 on three months, $12.50 on six months, or $25 on twelve months. To redeem the deal, click on my link and enter the word SPRINGFUN when checking out.

Check out my other Citrus Lane box reviews:
March 2012: Dining Out
May 2012: Fun in the Sun
June 2012: Little Artists
July 2012: Bon Voyage

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!

Let’s Talk about Swag* Baby

One of the things that you hear over and over when you’re researching whether to attend a BlogHer conference is that the amount of swag is absolutely insane.

Before the conference, half the people are saying that they’re bringing an extra suitcase for all the awesome free stuff they’re going to be hauling home and the other half are talking about how much they just detest swag and won’t be taking any of the crap with them.

My swag

I’m obviously in the “I love free stuff” camp!

However, I’ve also been working hard to stick to a goal of not having a bunch of useless junk around my house. I’m trying to keep Jack’s clothes and toys under control so that we only have what we need, instead of being buried alive.

At BlogHer, I approached each swag gift and really thought about whether it would be useful to me and/or something that my awesome Pocketful of Joules readers would want to hear about. I feel like I did pretty darn well and came home with just one stuffed bag.

I’m a fairly new blogger compared to a lot of the superstars at the event, so I wasn’t invited to any of the sponsored parties with special swag. Everything I received was in the main exhibit halls, accessible by all BlogHer attendees. I’m not going to list every single piece of swag I received, because that would just be a really long list of items you don’t care about. However, I am going to talk about my Top 5 items from the conference.

My Top 6 Swag Items from BlogHer 12:

Trojan Tri-Phoria
Okay, let’s just let the elephant in the room honk his trunk for a moment. If you’ve heard anything about this year’s swag bag you’ve heard about Trojan’s giveaway. Let me say that they were absolutely BRILLIANT to bring their new product, the Tri-Phoria (it’s a fancy vibe… um, I mean “intimate massager”) to the conference. With an audience of 5,000 women at the event (and a few guys), EVERYONE knew what Trojan was giving away within minutes. It hit Twitter immediately. In fact, as attendees were walking away from their booth (some embarrassed with a slightly dazed look on their face) there was a murmur of “oh my gosh, Trojan just handed me a toy” heard throughout the exhibit hall. Closely followed by the pounding feet sound of woman rushing over to the booth. Bravo Trojan – you couldn’t have done better advertising if you had paid for a Super Bowl commercial!

RetailMeNot Gift Card
Have you heard of RetailMeNot? It’s a site that has a ton of coupon and promo codes for you to use. I use them every time I’m placing an online order as a quick way to check and see if I can get a little extra money off of my order. Well, RetailMeNot had one of those snazzy spinning wheels of prizes – which I LOVE, but never win anything good. Well, in exchange for a tweet using their hashtag you were able to earn a spin of their wheel. So, one quick tweet later (I tweeted, “Yay, I love spinning wheels of fun!”) and I spun the prize wheel…. and won a $250 VISA gift card! They were super smart and branded the gift card with their logo and website so that I think of them every time I use it. I’m a WINNER!

My Zamzee

Zamzee Activity Meter
Okay, this is one of the items that I’m pretty darn excited about. Zamzee’s Activity Meter is like a pedometer on crack. It not only measures your steps, but the intensity of the activity. You can then plug the meter into your computer and track your progress online. You earn “Pointz” for various activities and save up for prizes, like gift cards! Since I’m starting my diet/exercise program, I’m really looking forward to using this little guy to help me stay motivated. The Zamzee folks were nice enough to give me an Activity Meter for myself, as well as one for a reader giveaway – so I’ll be sharing more about my experience and also launching a contest so you can win one too.

Rita Hazan Foaming Color Gloss
You may not know this about me, but I LOVE playing with new beauty products, especially ones for my hair! I had not heard of the Rita Hazen brand before I was given a sample of their Foaming Color Gloss. However, the lady at the booth was super nice (with great hair), so I was excited to try it out. I have only used it a couple times, so I don’t feel like I can write a full review yet, but I’ll keep you posted. Mostly, I’m impressed that they came to a conference with a full-sized product for ladies to take home. So much better than using a product once and trying to justify the cost to purchase it on your own!

Arm & Hammer Whitening Booster
Kudos also go to Arm & Hammer who brought their “Whitening Booster” to BlogHer. Many people don’t like the whitening strips, so the company came up with a booster gel that you use on top of your toothpaste which is “easier to use, less expensive and whitens your teeth in just one week.” I had never heard of this product, but now that it’s in my medicine cabinet I’m using it twice a day. Hopefully in the next pictures I post of me I will have beautifully white teeth! Had the company not brought that product to the BlogHer conference, I wouldn’t have even known about it. So good job marketing guys & gals!

My blingy tumbnail

Kiss Nail Press Stickers
I suck at painting my fingernails. It’s really hard for me to paint by using that teensy little brush in my non-dominant hand. I also get all twitchy when my nail polish chips and usually end up cleaning it all off my fingers within a day or so.  I’ve seen the new stick-on nail polishes and have actually picked them up many times… only to put them back down because of their price. The Kiss company gave out gift bags to anyone who completed their survey at the event, which contained their Nail Press stickers. Now, I wouldn’t have chosen this particular design on my own but I did try out one sticker on my thumbnail and lived with it for a few days. Honestly, it impressed me enough that I would go out and buy a set in a more normal design. So, it looks like their product placement worked on me!

As careful as I was with my swag choosing, I did end up with some random crap. Before I left NYC, I packed it up and took it to the Swag Recycling Room so other people could have a crack at the stuff I didn’t want. Such a great idea!

I only ended up with a few things in my “Why did I bother to lug this stuff home pile”: a hot pocket toy (okay, I think this is pretty dumb but my baby and/or dog will probably enjoy playing with it), chocolate organic tea (I hate tea with a white hot passion and the chocolate flavor isn’t fooling anybody), a sheet of zebra-striped duck tape, a squishy sample of technogel (with no purpose at all) and….a picture of me with toilet paper. Because everyone needs a print of them using TP as a boa around their neck, right?

Do you like my toilet paper boa?

All in all, I’m super happy with my swag-o-licous-ness and can’t wait to start using the products. After using the stuff for a little while, I’m planning to put up a review about the Zamzee Activity Meter and the Rita Hazen Foaming Color Gloss. Please note though: if I give a positive review for something it’s because I’ve actually used it and really like it. I’m not going to sell out and stick up a blog post about something I don’t like!

Were you at the BlogHer conference? If so, what was your favorite swag ?

 

*Definition of Swag: free stuff and giveaways offered by vendors at trade shows to encourage attendees to visit their booth (defined by webopedia.com. I’m not talking about swag, as in swagger – the appearance of the way someone presents themselves (ex. Yo, you got some killer swag dude). I’m also not talking about the Urban Dictionary’s definition of swag: Secretly We Are Gay.  I like boys, my husband especially (when he’s not hogging the covers).

Disclaimer: Although I wrote about my top 6 items, none of the companies has given me any compensation or incentive for writing about them or including links to their websites (which I did for your convenience only).

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!