Monday, May 29, 2017

Practicing Mindfulness on Memorial Day


Memorial Day is a day set aside each year to remember those who have lost their lives while serving their country in the armed forces. The meaning of the day can easily become lost in the long weekend filled with barbecues and beer. Or become confused with Veteran's Day, with which we greet our living armed forces folks with a "Happy Veteran's Day". Political disagreements can threaten to erode the meaning of Memorial Day altogether. As a result of all of these things, and with utmost respect to those willing to sacrifice so much for my protection and freedom, I choose to spend Memorial Day in mindful remembrance.


Memorial Day - Remembering Individuals


As a grateful Army mom, whose sons both returned from deployments, I have decided this year to intentionally know about someone (or multiple people) who have given the ultimate sacrifice.  I wanted to put real names on this holiday in order to honor them and their families by keeping their memories alive.

I chose to read World Changer: A Mother's Story: The Unbreakable Spirit of US Navy SEAL Aaron Vaughn by Karen Vaughn.  

Overnight, I've read 75% of the book. Karen tells us of her son as a child, an adolescent, a young man, and finally a Navy SEAL. She tells of her perspective of parenthood as a Christian and of her faith in God. She describes her mother-son bond and how that bond is broken when the helicopter is shot down, killing all on board - including members of Navy SEAL VI - including her son. She writes with such honesty of the moment that my chest hurt as I sobbed. 

Despite the great loss she and her family have endured with the loss of her son, there is somehow peace in her writing. There is no asking for pity, only a quiet strength. I'd imagine she attributes that to God. She is a good witness to those of us who are not as convinced of such an active force in our lives. 

In this book, Karen Vaughn memorializes her son in a beautiful way. She describes his childhood antics, his school-aged years, and his move into being a husband/father a such a loving way - without being overly syrupy. I definitely feel as though I know who Aaron Vaughn was in life. 


Memorial Day - General Remembering


On this day there are many ways to remember those who have passed before us, in the service of their country.  A few ways to remember in general are:

  • attend or participate in a Memorial Day parade
  • fly a flag
  • watch movies (such as Act of Valor, Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers, Pearl Harbor, and so many more)
  • watch documentaries 
  • visit a military cemetery 
  • visit a war memorial or museum
  • choose a time period and educate yourself about that war

Even if you don't agree with the politics of a particular President or the reasons a specific war has occurred, the United States of America is what it is in large part because it has been participating in battles for over 200 years. I guarantee there has been someone, in some conflict, who has supported or protected your interests. 

On this Memorial Day, I am focused in my thanks to those individuals who were willing and able to do what I am not. Today, I am mindful of those families who have lost a loved one in the defense of our country. 






Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Two Creative Decorating Ideas for Book Lovers

Featured on Funkthishouse.com
Add these Unique Pieces to a Book Themed Space

You don't have to spend a fortune building book shelves or adding expensive wood to a room in order to create your book themed space. Instead, add these artistic reading inspirations.

A Staircase Bookshelf Wall Decal

If you've ever wanted to make a statement with your décor, a faux book shelf on your staircase is the way to do it. Hey, money permitting, take it to the next level and create real bookshelves on the backs of the steps. However, if that kind of investment isn't in the cards, be sure to check out how affordable stair art decals are.

If you love color, books and decorating in a non-traditional way, this stair decal is calling your name. It's easy to put up; simply peel and stick. However be sure the surface is clean, dry and smooth. Count your steps first as it comes with 13 pieces. If you have more than 13 stairs, you'll have to order two sets. Also, another nice feature is it's retro nostalgic paper style verses a more modern high definition effect. If you're looking for a more traditional book-shelf art, this works.

A Uniquely Designed Book Side Table


This handcrafted Design Toscano Lord Byron Wooden End Table is stunning in it's craftsmanship and artistic elegance.

If you're not familiar with Design Toscano pieces, you'll be pleasantly surprised with their exclusive home décor sculptures, statues, wall art and furniture. This unique book side table is merely one of over 6000 items available through Design Toscano.

The book side table has a two door opening and a pull out drawer on the bottom. The two-book look on top finishes the overall appearance and gives the piece it's elegance.

It's surprisingly affordable when you consider that each piece is individually handcrafted by Artisans.

Take your love of books to the next level, the easy way.





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Review of Byrd's Famous Cookies

The Byrd Cookie Company has been an established company in Savannah, Georgia since 1924.  At that time, Ben T. Byrd, Sr. began baking small batches of cookies from his bakery, packing them in wooden crates, and personally delivering them to neighborhood markets in his Model T Ford.

Later, Ben's son, BT Byrd, Jr. had the idea of packing these bite sized confections in tins, so that they would travel better.  It wasn't long before Byrd became a gourmet food company, shipping cookies to other markets outside Savannah. By then, Byrd, Jr. had become known as "Cookie" Byrd!

Cookie Byrd's daughter Kay, and her husband, were the third generation of the Byrd family to run the company and today their daughter Stephanie continues with the 91 years of baking the famous Byrd cookies.

Each generation has developed new recipes and innovative ideas and the company has expanded its marketplace worldwide.  Their “recipe for success” includes its continued tradition of hard work, superior product quality, and outstanding customer service. They continue to bake in small batches to deliver the superior cookies their customers expect. 


Scotch Oatmeal Cookie

The classic Byrd Cookie is it's Scotch Oatmeal cookie available in the classic tin shown above in the introduction image.



A Few of Byrd's Famous Cookie Flavors



Key Lime Cooler

 

Byrd's Key Lime Cooler


To this day, the Key Lime Cooler cookie remains the company's best selling cookie. It is the first cookie to ever win the Dessert of the Year award at the NASFT Fancy Food Show.

The Key Lime Cooler is a thin bite-size cookie bursting with the same deliciously tart-but-sweet flavor as key lime pie. This classic cookie has a powdered sugar coating.


Georgia Peach Cookies

 

Byrd's Georgia Peach Cookie



This award winning 'Flavor of Georgia' cookie has a sweet Georgia peach taste. Byrd takes the tangy goodness of a tree ripened peach and coats it with powdered sugar with a flavorful sweet cream taste. 



 

 

Favorite Bite Sized Cookies of the Low Country Assortment


Low Country Assortment of Byrd Cookies

This famous Savannah company is located virtually across the Savannah River from the South Carolina Low Country, which includes the coastal area from Myrtle Beach to Charleston and Hilton Head. Thus, having a Byrd cookie named for the Low Country fits right in with this area.

Byrd's Famous Cookies Of Savannah include these favorite bite-sized cookies of the Low Country. They come in a gift ready Post Card style 6 Oz.Tin and include the Key Lime Coolers, Georgia Peach, Benne Wafers, Almond Shortbread, Chocolate Chip, and Scotch Oatmeal.


For a list of all the current flavors of Byrd's Famous Cookies, Click here on their Website.



Byrd's Famous Cookies Stores


The flagship store is located at the bakery at 6700 Waters Avenue in Savannah and other stores are located in City Market in the Savannah Historic District and on the famous River Street located along the Savannah River.  You can shop for a selection of gifts, gourmet items, and curated selection of boutique wines. In addition, of course, to all the cookie flavors Byrd is famous for.  



Bakery Tours


Take a tour of Byrd's Bakery when you visit Savannah, Georgia.  You will be able to smell the cookies before you even enter the door.  Whether you are a tourist visiting the city or locals who want to arrange field trips for school children and Scout troops, it's a fun tour. You'll get to know the history and legacy of this multi-generational cookie company on your guided tour and delight in lots of cookie tasting!  Tours are available  Monday-Friday 10AM-4PM and a tour can be booked in advance by emailing stacy@byrdcookiecompany.com or call 912.721.1551.




May your cookie jar never be empty!

 

Byrd's Famous Bite-Size Cookies

 

  A yummy Article written by Wednesday Elf

 





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Hidden Valley Pasta Salad Mix Reviewed

Hidden Valley Pasta Salad Reviewed
I rarely get very excited over boxed food, but this Hidden Valley Pasta Salad mix caught my eye when I was in the grocery store a few weeks ago.  

With the hot weather of summer fast approaching, the idea of a cold pasta salad was very appealing.  I thought, why not?  I'll give it a try.  Worst case, I wasted a few dollars and end up tossing it in the trash. 

However, I was pleasantly surprised!


Hidden Valley Pasta Salad - Original Ranch


HIDDEN VALLEY PASTA SALAD ORIGINAL RANCH 7.9 OZHIDDEN VALLEY PASTA SALAD ORIGINAL RANCH 7.9 OZCheck PriceAs it turns out, this is by far the best pasta salad I have ever tasted, bar none.  It took less than 15 minutes to cook the pasta, stir in the sauce and add the required mayonnaise and milk.  With the first bite, I was absolutely shocked at how delicious it tasted. 

I couldn't eat all of the pasta salad I made that day all at one time and I wasn't about to throw it away.  I put the leftovers in the refrigerator.  For the next two days I ate the leftover pasta salad for lunch.  In fact, it was even better the second and third day after the ingredients had "married" overnight.  Plus, after being refrigerated, it was cold and made for a very nice lunch on the warm days that followed. 

I'm pretty excited about the discovery of the Hidden Valley Pasta mixes.   For this first adventure, I made the Original Ranch pasta salad. But, I will definitely be trying the Southwest Ranch next. 

Not only is it great for my own lunch, but I would willingly serve the pasta salad for the holidays, at a ladies luncheon, or as a side for dinner.  It is always nice to have something fast and easy to prepare whether I am cooking just for myself, feeding my family, or entertaining guests. 


Add Vegetables or Meat to Your Pasta Salad


For lunch, I prefer pasta salad without meat, but you can add ham, bacon, chicken or other chopped meat in with the pasta to make a fabulous dinner.  Or, you might want to add fresh vegetables instead.  How do I know it would be fabulous?  Because the base pasta salad is fabulous, so adding a tasty meat or fresh vegetables would simply give it a new twist.
 




Check Out More Recipe & Food Reviews at
ReviewThisRecipes.com



Other Recommended Pasta Recipes

How to Make Pasta SaladHow to Make Pasta Salad from Recipes for Real People
Not sure how to make pasta salad? Really it's easy, especially when you know a couple of simple tips.


Easy Pasta RecipeEasy Pasta Recipe from Cooking for the Holidays
This is likely to be the easiest pasta recipe ever! My grandmother originally introduced all of us to this fast and easy recipe decades ago.


Buttery Pasta and Shrimp Recipe ReviewButtery Pasta and Shrimp Recipe Review - On Review This!
This shrimp/pasta buttery combination has become a standard for company dinners and has also become a family favorite for Christmas Eve dinner every year.


TexMex Lasagna Recipe ReviewedTexMex Lasagna Recipe Reviewed on Review This!
Typically one thinks of lasagna as a classic Italian dish. Today I want to share a recipe that I created for TexMex Lasagna. It is a little twist to an old favorite




Hidden Valley Pasta Salad Mix Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Review of Lighthouse by Eugenia Price

Marblehead Lighthouse
I thoroughly enjoy traveling and visiting lighthouses and when it comes to reading, historical fiction is my favorite genre.   So, when my daughter found this book about a lighthouse that takes place in the eighteen century it was the perfect gift for me.  


Lighthouse by Eugenia Price

This  book is the first of the Saint Simons Trilogy and after reading it I am anxious to start on the next in the series.




The Setting

This book is set in the early days of the United States. It follows the life of a young man from his home in Massachusetts, to his travels to what is now Maine, Florida and finally Georgia. It starts out talking about Shays rebellion and follows history through the early 1800's.  Although it is a fictional story, the author did a lot of historical research and the main character along with several of the other people in the story were real people.


The Story

James Gould is a young man with a dream that he carries throughout his life.  He is raised in Massachusetts, but longs for the warmer climate in the lands of the south.  His other dream is to someday build a lighthouse.  He has plans that he has drawn for a lighthouse that he carries with him through the years, hoping that one day he can make his dream come true.  In the book you follow James life as he feels responsible to care for his mother and siblings and you root for him as he searches for a way to follow his dream first to the north to Bangor on the Penobscot River where he makes  a living to support his family, then to the south and lawless Spanish East Florida.  Along the way he meets a strong woman with whom he can share his dream.  The characters are very compelling and I found myself thinking about the book and looking forward to picking it back up whenever I needed to stop reading.


My Favorite Parts 

I love the way the author takes real people in history and weaves them into the story. It is also interesting to read about places I have visited such as Savannah and St.  Simons Island and imagine what they were like in the late 1700's and early 1800's.  Of course, I am very partial to lighthouses and the building of the lighthouse and then the care of the structure was the highlight for me.  It is hard to imagine the hardships early Americans struggled with during the beginning of the country.

This book is a real page turner and has my recommendation for anyone who enjoys historical fiction!


My  Visit to St. Simons

I visited St. Simons lighthouse several years ago, but now that I've read the book I'd love to visit again.  I think it will be much more meaningful after I've learned about the builder and his dream of the lighthouse.
Below is a Zazzle card I made from my photo of St. Simons lighthouse.



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Review of Before, Afdre, and After: Memoir of a Stroke Survivor

Just Imagine if This Were You

You are 33 years old, healthy, and in the prime of life. You have a great job in an advertising agency as a copywriter. One day at work you have a massive stroke and nothing is ever the same again. That's what happened to Maureen Twomey. It's a miracle she survived her stroke and recovered enough to write Before, Afdre, and After (My Stroke...oh what fun). Maureen's story is one of courage, the support of friends and family, and dedicated doctors and therapists. It's a must-read for anyone who knows someone or is caring for someone who is recovering from a stroke. 

Review of Before, Afdre, and After: Memoir of a Stroke Survivor
Image Courtesy of Pixabay, edited on FotoJet.com

Maureen's Miracle Story -  Before

The book opens as Maureen shows us her life before the stroke. She was born and grew up in California, graduated from UCLA as I did (but much later) and got some great jobs in advertising. At the time of her stroke, she was working in the Bay Area. She had oodles of friends and an active social life. She was taking a class in improvision, which she loved. She was known for her sense of humor. The stroke could not kill that in her. 

Maureen was at work the day she had her stroke, June 6, 2000. The first symptoms manifested while she had taken time away for an appointment with a dermatologist who saw her after 2 PM. She started to feel funny. Her right eye was flashing, but a few seconds later she felt better and walked back to work. It was there her coworker Amy found her crying in the hallway outside her office because she is anxious about her symptoms. The flashing lights in her eye are back and there is some tingling in one side of her body. She has a slight headache. But when she talks to her doctor and tells him she's not in pain, he just said to call back if the symptoms get worse. She starts to work again. It is now 3 PM.

At 4:20 she is still at work and her symptoms get worse and more resemble classic stroke symptoms. She had decided to skip her improvisation class that night and was typing an email to explain her absence. Suddenly the words made no sense to her. Then she fell on the floor. Amy heard her fall and start crying. Symptoms are full-blown. Amy calls the doctor back to get an appointment for Maureen and the doctor told her to call 911. 


At the Hospital - Afdre


When the paramedics arrive to interview Maureen it is 4:50. Maureen can express herself with some difficulty. Although the paramedics take her to the emergency room at California Pacific Hospital, they don't think this is an emergency that merits lights and the siren. It takes 20 minutes to get to the emergency room. By this time three hours have elapsed since the onset of symptoms. At 6:20 they do a CAT scan. At 7:30 they do a spinal tap. They release her to spend the night with her father and his wife Judy. 

The next morning, June 7, as Maureen tried to eat breakfast, she started feeling strange. Then she couldn't remember anything. Her dad was so alarmed he carried her to the car and drove her straight back to the emergency room. By then Maureen could neither walk nor talk. She finally was diagnosed with a massive stroke, but it was too late to give her the clot-busting drug that can prevent permanent damage. It has to be given in the first hours after onset of symptoms. 

Stroke Survivor Memoirs 

I plan to soon read some of these stories by and about others who have survived strokes. Some contain helpful information on recognizing early symptoms months before the onset of a stroke, as well as advice for stroke prevention. It amazes me how many of these stories were written by people only 33 -- like Maureen. 

Maureen's Miracle Story: After

The rest of the book was written after Maureen recovered enough to use words again. She had to completely rebuild her life and learn again everything she'd ever learned -- how to talk, the alphabet, words, how to read, how to write. Before she recovered any of these abilities, her father sent our regular updates on her progress to her circle of friends and extended family. These emails are part of the book, as are illustrations of some of Maureen's first attempts to write during her recovery.

Although Maureen's recovery was much longer than she expected, she writes with a humorous and optimistic voice that won't accept defeat. As a result of that spirit and a lot of hard work, she accomplished much more than the doctors expected her to. She now is able to live alone again, drive, and write. You can follow Maureen Twomey on Twitter


My Review of Before, Afdre, and After

This book is different than most I read because the author is working under an extreme handicap compared to most. Although her stroke happened 15 years before she was able to write and publish her book, she has not completely recovered the all verbal and motor skills she once had. Her typing speed isn't what it used to be. She still can't always retrieve the words she wants to use from her memory bank. (If you are reading this, Maureen, please feel free to comment and correct anything that may have changed in the past two years.) 

I read the book to see what a stroke looks like to the one who has experienced it. Maureen is good at explaining what it was like for her, day by day. Although much of the book is in her voice, some of it consists of copies of emails sent by her father, coworkers, and friends. She also includes a copy of her resume and a list of resources. 

There are a number of photos and scans of some of the work Maureen did as part of her rehabilitation. She even has scans of some pages she completed from Explode the Code, a popular phonics workbook I used to sell at homeschool conventions. I was thinking how hard it must have been for her to start over learning to read and write with disadvantages healthy children learning the same things don't have. I can't even imagine how difficult that would be.

I'm glad I read the book and I recommend it to others who want a day-by-day look at what life is like for someone recovering from a  massive stroke. Maureen tells her story in a matter-a-fact way with a touch of humor. Since her stroke, she has moved back into an apartment, learned to drive again, participated in a walk for the Heart and Stroke group of the American Heart Association, and finished her book. She still can't run as she used to.

The only thing I didn't like was that I had chosen to buy the ebook so I could start reading right away. On my Kindle Paperwhite the illustrations, especially the scans of Maureen's written work, were too small to see clearly. I suggest you get the paper copy of the book if you don't want to miss anything. In this case, the illustrations are an important part of the book. I am finally able to see them on the Kindle App for my iMac. 

I hope you will show support for Maureen by buying her book and leaving her a review on Amazon so that her book may start showing on the first page of an Amazon search for stroke survivor memoirs. That way more people may be able to find it. Also, why not follow her on Twitter? 

Review of Before, Afdre, and After: Memoir of a Stroke Survivor
Image Courtesy of Pixabay, edited on FotoJet.com

Have you ever had a stroke, known someone who survived one, or cared for someone recovering from a stroke? Is your experience similar to Maureen's?

***




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Fathers Day Gift From Daughter

Dads With Daughters

A father and daughter courtesy of Pixabay.com
As Father's Day approaches, I have been looking for gifts for the fathers in our family. I typically look for things that a daughter can give because, well, I'm somebody's daughter. 

When I was little (actually even now) my Dad would tell me that I was (am) his little princess. There is such a wonderful bond between a father and his daughter. Not that Dads don't love their sons, but his girl or girls are so special to him. 

When my girls were little their Daddy doted on them and yes they were his little princesses. 

So with the princess theme in mind, I found a great gift for the Dad with daughters! It is something he can wear, comes in a variety of sizes and colors and it is perfect for just about any father.


Princess Patrol T-Shirt

A shirt like this is great for a father of any age. He can be a young dad, middle aged dad or the dad of an older princess. No matter his age, he will always protect his special girl or girls. If a tee shirt isn't really something that your Dad will wear, there is an option to get a mug with the same sentiment.

I feel blessed that my Dad is still with us. We have always had a very close relationship and I treasure it more as we both get older. We get together every Wednesday morning and go out to breakfast, we even have our special table at a local cafe. When I was a little girl and he was a young father, he used to take me to a little restaurant in our home town. It was the hang-out for the teens and young adults in the area. Dad would put money in the jukebox and then lead me to an open space and we would dance. It was magical!

So, how about you? What do you plan to give to your Dad for Father's Day this year? 




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Reviewing Gift Tags by Nature Cuts


Recently, I have attended a few special occasions and have been invited to others. I am always amazed at how some people can throw a themed party with all of the trimmings. I am especially delighted with the thought that goes into those party favors and gift bags that follow the theme. Then I ran across these awesome gifts tags by Nature Cuts. Although I have not recently thrown a party or hosted any type of gathering, I had to review these themed gift cards.  


Gift Tags and Confetti by Nature Cuts


Nature Cuts offers handmade confetti and gift tags. While I've seen confetti used in very creative and beautiful ways recently, I am focused on the gift tags. 

Nature Cuts tags are handmade in Wisconsin, USA. Nearly all of the hundreds of gift tags offered have a nature theme; animals, trees, birds, fish, flowers, and more. 

They are made from 65lb cardstock. These gift tags come in two size/amount options:



25 tags (2.5" x 1.5")
12 tags (4" x 2.3")


Having lived in Maryland for the past decade, I am especially drawn to the crab design.  Gathering around a crab feast, with beer and friends is a way of life here. Special occasions here, such as graduations and goodbye parties, include crabs by default. I can imagine these crab gift tags put to good use at a good number of special occasions in this area.

I am sure that people who regularly host events can think of many ways in which these tags could be used. But these are the occasions I can think of:

showers
  • crab feasts
  • beach parties
  • destination weddings in rustic settings
  • beach weddings
  • bridal showers
  • baby showers
  • birthdays
  • graduation parties
  • camping family reunions
  • retirement parties
  • Halloween
  • and so many more holidays and special gatherings
spider/Halloween gift tags

Nature Cuts tags can be found in their Etsy store as well as on Amazon. The Etsy shop has been open since 2014 and there are hundreds of good reviews.  Or maybe Amazon is your favorite convenient mode of buying party supplies. Either way, there are many, many interesting and unique tags to choose from.

Woodland or Christmas Tree gift tags

Related Link:


Several of our Review This! contributors host parties, plan gatherings, and host for the holidays on a regular basis. They share their expertise with party tips, decorating, and recipes here (click link then scroll down). If you enjoy hosting events and parties, I am sure you will find something interesting and helpful there.



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

The Best Water Bottle to Carry Around

If you need to drink water consistently throughout the day, you'll love this water bottle.

Without exaggeration, this is the ONLY water bottle I use! There are multiple reasons I call it the best, but before I list them, let me stress the number one feature that makes the Contigo Autoseal Water Bottle my fave: It's easy to carry around without the worry of spilling.

Since I work from home, I drag this water bottle around the house all day long. Here are the reasons it's tops in my book:

1. The handy carry handle lets you grab it with a couple of fingers so you can easily haul it around when you're carrying other stuff. For example, I have multiple places I work from in my home; the family room, at my desk, the living room, and in my bedroom. I'm constantly hauling my laptop from place to place and like to have my water bottle with me all day. The convenient carry handle makes it easy to carry the water bottle and laptop at the same time.

2. The autoseal on the water bottle lets you tip it any which way without the worry of spilling. Simply press to sip from it. Once you let go of the button the autoseal kicks back in and you have a non-spill container.

3. Another convenient aspect is being able to keep a water bottle beside my laptop without the worry of water accidentally spilling onto it. I'm extra careful about cups of liquid near my computer and the Contigo Water bottle eliminates that concern; if I happen to knock it over, it doesn't spill.

4. When I go to bed at night, I'm able to have this water bottle on the end-table without the worry of accidentally bumping it and having it spill. Also, during the night when I need a sip, I can reach over, grab it, and drink from a lying down position! Actually, I prop my head up just enough and take a sip without the worry of spilling - if I happen to drop it, no problem - won't spill.

5. Travelling in the car with this water bottle is easy-peasy. I simply fill it up, put it in the cup holder and off I go. Since you can drink from it using one hand, it makes it very convenient to use while driving.

6. Other perks: It's made out of FDA-approved, BPA-free Triton, which provides high impact resistance and won't stain or retain odors, is dishwasher safe and comes with a lifetime warranty.

So yes, yes, yes, I recommend this water bottle.


Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Reviewing My Favorite Hand Held Labelling Machine

My Favorite Hand Held Labelling Machine - The Dymo Letratag
Get Your Own Dymo!
I own a pink (yes I said pink!) Dymo Letratag label printer and it really is my favorite hand held labelling machine and not just because the color brightens up my day! I brought my Dymo Letratag when my daughter started pre-school which means it's about a decade old and it's still doing it's job really well so this is an investment that will last.

Now I'll be honest when I went to the shops to purchase a label printer I wasn't planning on getting this one, I didn't think I needed a hand held one, I was looking at one that would sit on my desk.

The reason that I got the Letratag was because it was marked down and the couple of pink ones that were available were marked down further (apparently no one likes brighter colors, they want a subdued label printer!). I'm so glad of my decision because a hand held one is awesome and the only sort I now recommend.

Not only is it a wireless, hand held label printer (it runs off batteries) which means it's portable it also fits comfortably in my hand. The way Dymo have shaped their Letratag allows it to nestle nicely in one hand as you type the label with your other hand. It is also a nice weight, altogether the most comfortable label printer I've ever held.

Dymo certainly know their business as they've been producing label makers for years - can anyone else remember the vintage Dymo label maker that had a dial on it and you had to click on each letter (or number)? My mum had a red one from memory. As kids we thought it was great fun!

Features of the Dymo Letratag label printer

The Dymo Letratag printer is super easy to use with no messy ink to worry about or hard to thread tape for labels, let's have a look at the components....

Dymo hand held label maker
The batteries are located in the back, you simply push down on the bottom of the machine (where there's an indent) to release and the back comes off.

As you can see it takes 6 AA batteries which I thought seemed a lot at first, but I've only changed them twice in about 10 years so in my mind that is pretty good!

I do use my label maker quite a bit so I'm glad that it's economical to run.

If you can change the batteries in your television remote then you can change these!

Now what are the labels printed on?  Well unlike some other machines you don't need to add ink and tape as Dymo have combined the two in a little cartridge.

Dymo Letratag Labels
At the top of the machine there's a flap that you simply flip up to reveal the cartridge.  When one is finished you simply pull it out and put another one in.

There's no threading or anything it just pops in - not quite as easy as popping a pop tart into the toaster, but not much harder!

Now I've always used the plastic labels as I use them to label containers that are going into the freezer and I'm not sure that paper labels would work that well for this job.

There are a range of different types of labels available from plastic to paper and metallic to polyester.   There are also different colors that you can choose from.  I've only ever used the plastic black print on white labels.

I have read that people use different types of labels for different jobs - I'm too lazy for that I pop my cartridge in and leave it until it runs out!

If you're looking to get organized and need a tool like this the Dymo Letratag is hands down my favorite hand held labelling machine and I can't recommend it enough.

Now I can't find a pink Dymo Letratag available anywhere at the moment, but I have found a few in other colors which I'm sure will work equally well for you.   These other colors just may not cause you to smile as you pick them up!





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.