Stupid Toys Roundup

Dumbest Toys of 2017

I’m just OK in the momming department so I always let my kids go down every toy isle at places like Target or Toys R Us. I already know I’m raising spoiled and entitled children…so theres really nothing to lose. Plus its fun to see what has changed in the world of toys and what has stayed the same. There are toys like Calico Critters, Barbie, And LOL Dolls where, if I’m being honest, I want to buy them all and play right alongside my children….

And then there are those toys that leave me super confused and scared for the future. These are the toys that have me making my ‘WTF’ face:

Mashems/Fashems:

Instantly deducted points for the super stupid name of these. Right out the gate and I already hate you. I have yet to figure out why there are two names for the same awful product. Its basically a rubbery little figure that should be about 25 cents at a vending machine inside a bowling alley. Someone had the genius idea that we haven’t been paying enough for absolute crap…. so they invented Fashems… or Mashems… whatever.

On the plus side they are super duper attractive:

Orbeez:

These are on the list of things I will never buy my children for many, many reasons. I watched a YouTuber play with these. Then I rolled my eyes when she said they were ‘fun’.

You soak these little gel capsules that look like they are from old lady bath sets… then you smash them into little particles to do crafts with. If theres anything moms really love, its products that create things your child will have to keep and cherish forever, and leave strange chemical messes all over your household surfaces. BRAVO Orbeez.

Side note: You can apparently also do this with Orbeez… cause why the hell not?

Easy Bake oven:

I’m sure  there are people out there that would rip me a new one for putting this on a worst toys list. they would probably say things like “Its an institution!” or “I love making food that doesn’t taste like its meant for human consumption!”. With all the advances in technology I cannot believe this is still manufactured. For some reason cooking things over a lightbulb makes me think of people making meth. I don’t actually know how meth is made… but easy bake oven sounds plausible.

“ruining cake was fun…ruining pizza will be even more fun!”-the people over at easy bake

I remember making a cake and after the first bite realizing how bad it was and that I had to choke it down so I wouldn’t have to admit to my mom she was right about my Easybake oven. Glad to see other kids will get to experience that memory.

Shopkins:

I’m confused. Do these have a goal? Besides the obvious one of separating parents from their money? Bottom line: they creep me out and remind me of something a Japanese businessman would get off on.

Save

Instant Pot – The Ultimate Lazy Mom Device

Instant Pot = GAME CHANGER.

Let me start out by saying, I am in no way affiliated with Instant Pot. But I say in all seriousness that Instant Pot has changed my life! I’ve never been much for kitchen gadgets, besides my Vitamix and stand mixer.  I purchased the Instant Pot during an Amazon Prime Day sale as an impulse buy.

My baby was still pretty new, and I didn’t have time to cook much.  We hadn’t got her sleep down yet and thought you had to hold her to get her to nap, and I was still nursing.  These 2 activities took up my entire day.  In the mornings my husband would make me what he referred to as a “mommy sandwich” (cheesy egg sandwich) before he went to work. Then at about 8 pm I would realize I was ravenously hungry and eat 2 or 3 Hagan Daaz ice cream bars.  I did this for weeks and wondered why I hadn’t lost any pregnancy weight.

When my Instant Pot and America’s Test Kitchen pressure cooker book arrived, my life dramatically improved.  You can make anything in minutes. A crockpot means you have to plan it out.  You also have to brown the meat or saute the onions in a separate pan, which means more dishes (no thank you!).  I’ve made tons of stuff like ribs, chicken thighs, pot roast, and pork shoulder, but the real saving grace when I had no time to cook was a whole chicken.

Instant Pot Chicken and Beans / Chicken and Brown Rice

All you do is throw a chicken, chicken stock, garlic, (onion, white wine/lemon/herbs etc. are all great but optional), and short grain brown rice in the pot and set it to 25 minutes. And that’s it. LIFE. CHANGING. Once it’s done, you can take the chicken out and set aside to rest and stir a couple cups of baby spinach or chopped kale into the brothy rice and now you even have a vegetable. If you wanted to get fancy, you could saute your onion and garlic first for a greater depth of flavor, but I find this step unnecessary here.  The point is to have something super quick and easy.

You can replace the brown rice with pre-soaked beans, which is just as delicious! (I just never remember to soak the beans ahead of time.)

I’ve done beans instead of rice, or roasted vegetables instead of greens stirred in, but I really can’t tell you how good it felt having a hot meal after weeks of eating crap. My one and only complaint is that I really like crispy chicken skin, and even if you brown the chicken really well first, it just ends up a little soggy and sad by the time you take it out.

My solution (and I know this is a total fatass thing to do) is to remove the skin. It should all come off pretty neatly in a little sheet with legs and cut it up into a few pieces, so that it bakes evenly. Place it on parchment or aluminum foil for about 20 minutes at 375 until it’s brown and crunchy. I like to put a liberal amount of salt and pepper on it first, and turn it over halfway through.  Then you have a delicious crunchy snack or you can set it back on your chicken pieces for a sort of deconstructed look.

Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 – 4 lb. chicken
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • medium onion, diced
  • 1 cup short or medium grain brown rice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • Optional (juice and zest from 1 lemon or a couple glugs of white wine, fresh herbs, spinach or chopped kale)
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Stir rice, stock, garlic and onion together in pot. Season with salt and pepper. Place seasoned chicken on top.
  2. Close lid and set to 25 minutes.
  3. When timer goes off, quick release pressure.
  4. Remove chicken. If desired stir in spinach or chopped kale into rice mixture while set to “keep warm.” Stir until it wilts.

Zara Kids Haul

My Zara kids haul is not huge, but I love their stuff so much right now, I still had to share.  Specifically, their  artisan capsule collection has me dead, but I didn’t get too much from it because sometime I think I push my own monochrome style too much on my daughter, and let’s face it – babies are cute in colors!

And when I say I got these, I actually mean I sent my MIL the links for everything and told her this is what Gigi wanted for her birthday.

Dress: Zara $29.90

Also got this knit sweater  ($22.90) for fall, that they refer to as a sweatshirt, but whatever.

 

Shirt ZARA $7.90: Shorts: ZARA $22.90

She hasn’t worn them yet, but also got this adorable little embroidered outfit. Shirt $22.90 and shorts $19.90

Gingham Dress ZARA  $29.90

Also, when I was back on the ZARA website to find the links, I noticed they added their summer collection which is too cute! Would it be weird if I bought this kids backpack for myself?

Oh and then just to mix it up… Victoria Beckham for Target $15.00  They kinda look like PJs, but I’m still in to them!

 

Save

Save