Tuesday, February 15, 2011

thredUP Review

I have a fever... and the only prescription is more thredUP!

I have to say, I've become a little addicted to thredUP. (Don't know what thredUP is? Check out this post. Keep in mind the Totsy deal has ended.) It's a wonderful site with a great concept and a very lively and helpful online community on Facebook.

So far, I've listed two boxes, sold one, and bought two for myself. I've been very, very pleased with the quality - and quantity - of the items I've received.
It didn't take long to figure out that it's very important to "stuff" the boxes. Stuffed boxes sell. Boxes with only a few items do not. Of course, this makes sense. The boxes used through thredUP are all medium flat-rate shipping boxes, so everyone gets the same sized box. Would you want a few pairs of jeans and a couple of shirts? Or six complete outfits, two hats, two pairs of shorts, three pairs of socks, a bib, and ten onesies? (Yes, I packed ALL of that into a box!) Size does factor into this a bit, since bigger sized clothes are, well... bigger. But since everyone pays the same amount for shipping for the same sized box, who wouldn't want the most for their money? A lot of moms are willing to make custom boxes and post pictures of the contents through Facebook as well. (I recommend going through their Facebook page and looking at pictures. That way you'll know EXACTLY what you're getting!)

It's also possible to earn money simply by listing boxes. thredUP has a Low Supply List comprised of sizes that are in low supply on the site. The list fluctuates from day to day, with different sizes earning more money at different times. For instance, I earned a $4 credit toward my account by posting a box of 6/9-month clothing when 9-month clothes were in low supply. (The price has since dropped to $2.) Once the box is picked, the money goes into your account.

In contrast, there seems to be an overflow of newborn and 0/3 month clothes - the sizes babies grow out of the fastest. thredUP is a great way to finish out your layette without spending a fortune.

I think families with multiple babies/kids can really gain from this site: post boxes of your kids' outgrown, gently used clothes, potentially earn money for your boxes, and pick boxes of clothes that your kids can wear now or in the future. For cheap.

The only real downside I've noticed is that the site needs some work. They're new and they're working out the kinks, so the site can lag a bit from time to time. The search function also needs work, which is another reason why I recommend going through their Facebook page. Lots of moms link directly to the box from their picture, saving the hassle of using the sometimes-faulty search engine.

The Bottom Line:
A box costs a total of $15.95 (if you don't have any credits.) That's about what a really cute outfit would cost at any major department store. With thredUP, you'll get LOTS of cute outfits for the same price. Sounds like a winner to me.

 You've got that right.

If you'd like a personal invitation to thredUP from me, send me your e-mail address! You'll earn $5 immediately for signing up through me, and I'll earn $5 when you pick and pay for your first box. It's a win/win! Plus, you'll be able to invite other people to join and earn money through them. Just leave me a comment. (Don't worry, all comments have to be approved before posting, so no one else will see your address.)
- Mother Nature Mom

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Stylish Blogger Award

Another blogger has been sweet and kind enough to share her Stylish Blogger Award with me!

The lovely lady behind the blog Sweet Green Tangerine received this award and got to share it with 15 other bloggers... and I'm one of them! She also linked to my homemade laundry detergent post not too long ago, which I'm immensely grateful for. It's nice to know my posts are reaching other moms and helping them out!

Check out her blog. It's a mix of mommy/craft/DIY/green all rolled into one! And yes, her blog is seriously stylish.

- Mother Nature Mom

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Cool Bento Giveaway!

One of the bento blogs that I follow is hosting a giveaway of cool bento goodies! If you've thought about bento-ing but didn't know how to start, this is a great way to score some free stuff! Head on over to Bentobloggy to enter.

A lot of the bentos featured on this blog are geared towards kids. While Wyatt isn't old enough for bento lunches yet, it's still neat to see what other moms are doing for their kids' lunches!

- Mother Nature Mom

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The Year of the Rabbit Bento

Lunch time!

Jumbalaya with Andouille sausage and Cajun-spiced shrimp, mini corn muffin, edamame, broccoli, and corn
Strawberry flowers, grapes, mango, apple bunnies, and dark-chocolate covered cashews

Kenny and I had this jumbalaya the other night. We used a homemade mix that we bought at an arts and crafts fair awhile back, then added the sausage, shrimp, tomatoes, and a few more spices. Andouille is pretty spicy by itself. Paired with the shrimp, this has some serious kick! Pretty great for a rainy day. The corn muffin is from a batch made with good ol' Jiffy mix. Easy peasy.

As for the strawberry flowers... I'm just ready for spring! I'm definitely an autumn person, but spring is always so wonderful after a long, dreary winter. (My birthday doesn't fall on the spring equinox this year, but it often does.) Expect to see lots of flowery details in future bentos, because my package from JList finally came!
Along with these cutters, I also bought a trio of silicone cups (one is housing the cashews), imitation Pocky chopsticks, mini bottles for soy sauce/salad dressing/etc, and my new bunny-themed bento box!

(Ugh, glare.)

I adore this box. I wanted something cutesy, but more functional than my Kokeshi bento. This one came with a matching bag, a pair of chopsticks, and inner dividers to keep food separated. Plus, it has a rabbit! Who doesn't like rabbits?! I also love the sakura (cherry) blossoms, and the space theme that's on the box/bag. In Japan, it is said that a rabbit resides on the moon (similar to the "man in the moon" we have here in the United States). In Sailor Moon, the titular character's name is Usagi Tsukino, or tsuki no usagi - literally "rabbit of the moon". If you've ever watched the TV show or read the manga series, you might have noticed lots of bunny imagery.

Happy Chinese New Year!

- Mother Nature Mom