Leesa mattress in a box review

leesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattress*Leesa provided a free product for me to review. However, all opinions stated here are my own.

Mattress technology has come a long way. Now you don’t need to go to a store; you can have a mattress delivered to your door in a small box. I thought the idea of a mattress in a box was a bit weird. Mainly because buying something you’ll sleep on for a long time without testing it seems risky. But the more I read about the Leesa mattress, the more I was intrigued.

Leesa Mattress Review

Leesa mattress was of the first things that popped up when searched Google for mattress info. I was fascinated by the technology involved, and wondered how a mattress that gets squished down to much for shipping could ever be comfortable. I reached out to Leesa to talk about the technology involved in their mattress. Leesa offered it to send me a mattress at no cost so I could try it out. They gave me the option of keeping the mattress afterwards. As such they consider this to be a sponsored post. However Leesa did not ask for, nor would I grant them if they did, approval over what I would say in this blog review or in my YouTube video review.

Order a bed onlineleesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattress

The online ordering process was simple. On the website you select the size of mattress you want and everything is displayed clearly and simply. Once you input your delivery information you’re good to go.

My mattress arrived about 10 days later, and was dropped off on my driveway near my front door. I should point out the mattress box is quite heavy. That’s probably why the delivery person didn’t carry it up the three front steps to place it near the door. It was quite the struggle for me to get it there myself, but it was manageable. If you aren’t confident about your ability to carry a queen size mattress, you might want to prepare for some help on delivery day.

Mattress in a box – set up & assemblyleesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattress

Setting up the bed couldn’t be simpler. You’ll drag the box into your bedroom, cut it open, and slide the rolled up mattress onto the base or box spring. (Leesa can be placed on virtually any bed frame or base.) Watch my YouTube video for a quick peek at the set up process (thanks to time lapse video!)

Mattress perfect for small spaces, narrow hallways

As a side note, this type of mattress concept is pure genius for people that live in small spaces. If you have a very narrow hallways, or unusually narrow staircases, or have otherwise had difficulty moving a mattress into your space previously, you’re in luck. I’m confident in saying you could probably get to this mattress into any space anywhere.

With the mattress now on the box spring, you cut off be several layers of plastic that keeps it rolled up. Then unroll the mattress and orient the three white stripes on the mattress to the foot of the bed. When everything is in place, carefully cut off that last layer of plastic, and stand back and watch. As soon as some air is let in, the mattress will pop up to a normal mattress thickness. Leesa recommends you leave it to sit for a little while so it can return to its normal shape. This also allows any potential chemical smell that some people might be sensitive to to dissipate. I did not notice any smell, and I felt like the mattress took shape quite quickly. Nonetheless I let it sit for a couple of hours.

How is Leesa mattress made?leesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattress

The Leesa mattress has one configuration only and can’t be flipped over. That’s because it has been specially formed from three layers of foam.

Top: 2-inch Avena™ foam top layer perforated to keep you cool and provide cushiony bounce.
Middle: 2-inch memory foam middle layer for body contouring.
Bottom: 6-inch dense core support foam for durability and edge support.

Leesa mattress sleep & comfort

leesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattressWith the bed was made up I laid down on it just to test out its initial comfort. I have to say I found it a lot firmer than I was expecting, knowing that its simply foam. It felt quite supportive and definitely comfortable right from the start.

It took about two nights for me to get used to sleeping on it. This is not unusual as any time I sleep in an unfamiliar bed while traveling, it usually takes a couple of nights before I’m accustomed to the sleep. After those two nights I thoroughly enjoyed sleeping on the Leesa mattress.

I found the mattress quite comfortable overall and definitely supportive enough for me. A friend asked if I found the foam hot and some foam mattresses can leave you sweaty since they don’t breathe so well but I definitely did not. Apparently the cooling properties of the Avena foam are working.

I asked my husband how he was enjoying the mattress and surprisingly he too was enjoying it. We have often have different preferences when it comes to mattresses so I was quite pleasantly surprised that we were both having a good experience with this one.

To sum it up, I  really like the sleep experience on the Leesa mattress and hubby and I’ve agreed to keep it.

Buying a mattress off the internet!? What if you don’t like it?

leesa mattress review mattress in a box how to pick mattressOne of the big questions when it comes to buying a mattress off the internet – that you’ve never tested out before – is what happens if you don’t like it? It’s a valid point and a serious concern, so Leesa has made it easy for customers. They ask you to try it out for a full 30 days before you judge. If after that time you still aren’t enjoying your sleep, you have 100 days to get your money back. Leesa will then arrange for the mattress to be donated to a local charity in your area.  So there’s no downside to trying out a Leesa mattress, as far as I can see.

Prices + US & Canadian availability – Leesa mattress

Prices for the Leesa mattresses start at $700CAD for a twin and go up to $1300 CAD for a king. In the United States all prices are available for under $1000. I also really like the fact that delivery is free whether you live in Canada or the US. Another plus for Canadian buyers? Duties, taxes, and anything else, is already factored in.

Yes, you can get cheaper beds. But you can also pay more for beds; anywhere up to $1500 dollars up to $3000. Department stores and specialty mattress shops have prices that run the gamut from cheap to luxury. But in many of those cases, you’re stuck with the bed afterwards. Or if you need to buy a special mattress cover in order to be able to return it.

Overall -Leesa Mattress review

I thought this experience was great. Many readers and viewers have seen my social media posts about this mattress test and have been extremely curious about how it works. After reporting back how well things have gone, I think I may have created a few new customers. I’m glad; the mattress is comfortable, and appears durable, though only time will be able to tell for that.

The overall experience was top-notch, and despite the fact you’re getting a product sight unseen, you got an insurance policy if you’re not happy in the end.

For more info on a Leesa mattress in Canada, click here. For US orders & info click here.

Thermomix kitchen robot can replace all your small appliances

If I said one device could replace nearly every kitchen appliance you own, you’d probably think I was starting a late-night infomercial. But an appliance I’ve discovered may actually be able to deliver on that promise. It’s called a Thermomix, and though it’s very popular in Australia and Europe, it’s virtually unknown in Canada and the US.

The Thermomix is a kitchen device that looks like an oversized food processor that’s been bred with a huge blender.  And while it can blend, puree and liquefy, it can also chop, grate, beat, whip, knead and shred.  But Thermomix also has some other properties that will blow your mind; it can steam vegetables and fish, cook rice, make risotto, sauté onions and garlic, weigh your ingredients, and even go as far as cooking not just a dish, but an entire meal. I received a newer model Thermomix TM5 for several weeks to test and review.

What is a Thermomix?

Thermomix is a kitchen robot that combines the functions of 12 kitchen appliances onto one unit. The device comes with a cookbook and computerized recipe chip which is installed into the side of the Thermomix, and that means the Thermomix can automatically execute a variety of recipes — with your help. Of course you can also make food from scratch and use it as an appliance without computerized direction too. Included with the device are a small steamer basket for use inside the mixing bowl, a spatula, a two-level steamer basket for use on top of the device and a whisk.

What can Thermomix do?

cooks
-mills grain
-grinds spices or coffee
-scale
-blender
-whisk
-warmer
-food processor/chopper
-mixer
-steamer
-dough kneader

Thermomix Cookbooks & Recipesthermomix tomato soup recipe erin

If you like the freedom of having pre-programed recipes, know that there are several cookbooks produced by Thermomix. The Basic Cookbook is the quintessential Thermomix bible and comes with the device.  You can purchase other books that come with recipe chips, such as a British Cookbook, gluten free recipes, vegetarian foods, a ‘taste of Asia’ book and even one for lunches and after school snacks. Prices range from about $15USD to $38 USD.

I tested several recipes from the Thermomix Basic cookbook.

One of my favourites was a Creamy Tomato Soup. The recipe sautées onions and garlic, then used canned tomatoes and fresh cream to create a fast and easy hot soup that’s absolutely delicious.

Mashed potatoes in the Thermomix are so easy; they’re steamed in milk in the basin, then whipped to perfection; and all with just one ‘pot’ that needs washing.thermomix broccoli salad erin robot kitchen

I also repeatedly made a broccoli salad that took just minutes; broccoli florets, apples, peppers and all the ingredients for a dressing get tossed in the Thermomix bowl and in 4 seconds (not even exaggerating) you have a perfectly chopped and dressed salad that tastes fantastic.

Cook an entire meal using Thermomix

thermomix 7 review recipes

A fun and easy feature of the Thermomix is its ability to cook a whole meal in the device. Thermomix will have you load the steamer basket with potatoes and some water, then the 2-tier steamer basket gets added on top; veggies in the bottom and fresh fish on top. The device lets you know precisely when to add each set of ingredients so that each gets cooked properly to perfection.

Powerful blending with Thermomix

The Thermomix has a very powerful motor and large sharp blades.  While devices like the Vitamix (read my review of that here) get all the press for making the best blended drinks and smoothies, the Thermomix is just as good at shredding and liquefying frozen fruit and seeds into drinkable meals. I have used the Vitamix and the Thermomix and as far as I’m concerned, when it comes to smoothing making and blending functions, I’d be hard pressed to pick a winner. They’re both fantastic.

Cleaning the Thermomix

All the parts and pieces of the Thermomix are dishwasher safe, but one of the easiest ways to clean the basin is to add soap and hot water, then to run the motor for 10 seconds. It cleans the inside instantly!

How Thermomix works

With the recipe chip installed in the device, you use the dial on the front to select the meal you’d like to make. With the recipe loaded, the device takes you through the steps necessary in order; from adding ingredients, to chopping or whipping sauces, then walking you through the rest of the process. A chime lets you know when you’ve completed each step, and the recipe.

You can also go fully manual with the device, so you can chop, sautée or blend on your own.  A word to the wise; the machine is very powerful; it’s easy to turn potatoes into glue, or whip cream into butter. Until you’re familiar with the device, start out slow and work your way up.

How can I get a Thermomix? Where do I buy Thermomix in Canada or US?

Sadly for some of you, you can’t just go online and order a Thermomix.
Thermomix is only available directly from Vorwerk’s subsidiaries or official distributors.  You must see the device privately demonstrated and order from the authorized rep to get one. Think the Amway, Avon or Tupperware sales model.  It’s not for everyone, but I will say having a personal demonstration allows you to ensure you’re going to make the most of this device.

Overall review of Thermomix

I really enjoyed my Thermomix experience.  I found it easy to learn and use, and the recipes I tried were delicious from the cookbook. Making guided recipes was simple and fun, and even using the machine manually was easy.  I found it quite handy, particularly for things like sautéing onions, whipping cream, grating cheese ad pureeing soups.

If I have my druthers, I’d definitely look at replacing some of my older small appliances with this one device, but it’s not an inexpensive prospect.  A Thermomix costs about $1700 CAD so it’s certainly an investment.  But considering a good food processor will cost you $100-200, a good blender like a Vitamix is upwards of $500, a hand mixer is about $75, a KitchenAid stand mixer is $200-300, not to mention of you want a hand blender or chopper kit ($150) you can see how it might make sense to just have one device.

If you’ve got the budget to invest in a machine like this, I have no doubt you’ll love it.

Get more info on Thermomix here in Canada, or here in USA.

Henge Gravitas stand for iPad & iPhone – dual purpose docking

henge grvitas dock best apple I love docks for my phone.  They keep the device within easy reach, allow you to see the screen, and get it all charged up at the same time. The worst problem with a docking station is that you need two hands to remove it so you don’t end up dropping something on the floor. Recently I had a chance to test out a brand-new dock that’s a bit different. Henge Docks Gravitas dock is ultra heavy weight for single-hand operation, and it can not only hold and charge my iPhone but my iPad too.

One dock for iPhone and iPad – the Gravitas

The Henge Docks Gravitas is about the size of a fist, and it really packs a punch.  It weighs 2.5 lbs so it’s not going to tip over of slide off anything. That’s because it’s made of a sturdy zinc alloy that’s is 265% denser than aluminum. That allows it to be very small, but hold a lot of weight, and even use it one-handed.I was skeptical that this would work, but after testing I found it’s quite easy to use one-handed, thanks to its solid weighty base.

The sleek brushed metal finish also makes it chic and minimalist for my home.

henge grvitas dock best appleThe Gravitas dock is built for Apple devices only (sorry Android friends!) and can accommodate a variety of iPhone sizes with a set of included liners.  For me, I loved the fact I could swap my iPhone 6+ and my iPad (both still in their respective cases) in and out of the device without fuss. This dock is super versatile.

 

 

Fugoo Style Bluetooth speaker review: wireless audio never sounded so good

There’s hardly a home or office that doesn’t have at least one wireless Bluetooth speaker these days. (Or is that just me? Do non-tech bloggers have 4 portable wireless speakers?) Portable wireless audio has become the standard for listening to music in the home. There are larger more sophisticated versions like Sonos or Bose, but there are also many choices when it comes to smaller more portable speakers. Fugoo Style is one of those speakers. But how well does it perform and is it worth the price?

Features of Fugoo Style wireless speaker

Fugoo makes a variety of Bluetooth speakers in varying sizes, different levels of portability and several styles. The Style speaker is one of the chicest, but its good looks conceal a tough and durable interior. Fugoo says the speaker has a “fiber-reinforced resin shell and waterproof cloth covering that gives this speaker the protection it needs to last long past cocktail hour.”

The speaker is about the size of a small clutch purse or a portable coffee mug, and though it’s lightweight, it doesn’t feel cheap; it feels like it has some durability and heft behind it. it has a built in speakerphone and connects with Siri or Google Now.

It also has a changeable jacket, which is removed by pushing a release tab on the base. Without its skin, it looks very industrial, and still cool. Keeping the jacket on provides some measure of water or spill protection, so it’s probably best kept on.

Setting up Fugoo Style is easy

Setting up the Fugoo speaker couldn’t have been simpler; the first time you’ll turn it on, head to your device’s Bluetooth menu, and click on the speaker, which should have appeared in the Bluetooth devices list.  If not, you can touch the Bluetooth button next to the speaker’s power button and it should pop right up accompanied by a helpful and suave sounding male digital assistant’s voice.  I was connected and playing music in about 10 seconds. I love devices where set up is simple and flawless, so Fugoo gets high marks for this.

Fugoo Style Sound quality & volumeFugoo style poetable wireless bluetooth speaker

It can be hard to find good quality sound in a small Bluetooth speaker.  Fortunately the Fugoo Style sounded great from the get-go. The device, thought it looks like a single speaker, actually hides 4 speakers inside its housing; two in each face and two others in the ends.

Fugoo says, “the FUGOO Portable Bluetooth Speaker has six symmetrically-placed drivers. The two tweeters deliver clean highs, two mid/sub drivers give midrange punch, and two passive radiators help bring out a full, deep bass. Together, these six drivers deliver a clean sound pressure level, filling large rooms and outdoor areas with rich, immersive sound.”

I definitely found the speaker powerful and room filling, and I tested it with several styles and genres of music.

My test Playlist with the Fugoo Style

► The Roots (Don’t Say Nuthin’)
► Pharell (Beautiful)
► Dave Matthews Band (American Baby)
► City and Colour (Comin’ Home)
► Robbie Williams (I will talk and Hollywood will listen)
► Tragically Hip (Poets)
► Kiev (Be Gone Dull Cage)

The bass was solid, and the high end didn’t sound tinny or buzzy. I was able to crank it to 2/3 volume without any noticeable distortion. At about 3/4 volume I did notice a raspiness creeping in to the vocals, but overall the sound was pretty good. The sound quality overall has quite a bit of depth and the music sounded true.Fugoo style poetable wireless bluetooth speaker

The bass on Don’t say Nuthin and Poets was true and thumping, the vocals on Beautiful and Be Gone Dull Cage sounded soft and smooth, while the picking and the snare on American Baby were resonant and real. The acoustic guitar on Comin’ Home was hauntingly real. Subtle flute and clarinet, and the big symphonic drums on my Robbie Williams selection was delicately replicated, while Robbie’s voice cut through with vibrancy. I was quite impressed with the amazing sound quality I got out of this little speaker.

Fugoo adds, “the upward tilt of the speakers puts everyone in the sweet spot. So simply place your speaker in the center of a room and fill any space with sharp highs, bassy lows, and all-around premium audio.” I can’t disagree.

Does Fugoo Style have good battery life?

Many portable wireless Bluetooth speakers have a battery life in the 10-20 hour range. Fugoo Style boasts an astounding 40 hours of battery life. That’s well above many other similar speakers, so this gadget is a great choice if you’re heading to a campground or on a road trip for a weekend. I tested the speaker for about two weeks and never charged it once.

Bluetooth connectivity is outstanding on Fugoo Style

Fugoo style poetable wireless bluetooth speakerThe speaker uses Bluetooth 4.0 for wireless connectivity which Fugoo says will give you solid connectivity up to 33 feet. In my tests I carried my iPhone 6 Plus all over the 1000 square foot main floor and didn’t experience any breakup of the Bluetooth signal. Heading downstairs (where I have seen digital signal breakup on other speakers) the Fugoo Style didn’t miss a beat. Again, I was impressed.

Overall review of Fugoo Style portable wi-fi speaker

This is an absolutely fantastic Bluetooth speaker. I have to say I wasn’t expecting very much from something this small and with such an eye to style, so I was happily blown away by the outstanding audio quality and durability. The dead-easy set up also gets top marks from me.

The 40 hour battery life is also a huge plus for me. I’ve been using it in my bathroom when I’m getting ready for work in the morning. I used to just use the small crappy speaker on my iPhone, but the easy connectivity, great sound, and compact size means it can sit in the bathroom for weeks on end and provide me with high-quality audio before it ever needs to be recharged.

I think the waterproof cover is also a great thing to have since you just never know what can happen at a party or gathering; a little insurance is nice.

In short, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend this speaker to anyone who’s looking for a portable Bluetooth audio solution.

 The Fugoo Style costs $139USD or about $185CAD. Get more info here.

 

 

Get these great food apps

Our food and our phones have become indelibly connected. It started with snapping photos of amazing meals, then devolved to Instagramming every meal no matter how mediocre. Now our phones can order food, search recipes and even show us video tutorials for the perfect risotto.

There are a number of great apps that can do all kinds of food-related tasks. Download these to make cooking, booking, or ordering food quicker and easier. Continue reading “Get these great food apps”

Have you Subscribed to my YouTube Channel yet?

If you like tech and gadgets in video form, please subscribe to my YouTube channel.  Click here to go right there!

Or use the Subscribe button on my main page (or just over to the right–> right here… above the search bar) to get all the best tech & gadget news right to your YouTube account with a single click. Continue reading “Have you Subscribed to my YouTube Channel yet?”

DEWALT phone built rugged & tough to take abuse on job sites

Smartphones are often delicate pieces of technology.  The glass screens and thin metal casings may look pretty, but they’re not suited to some industries or locations like a construction site. Now DEWALT, known for its power tool line has come out with an Android phone that’s built so tough it doesn’t even need a case. The DEWALT MD501 also has a host of other features that are designed for job sites. Continue reading “DEWALT phone built rugged & tough to take abuse on job sites”

Bang & Olufsen B&O Beoplay A2 review

Portable wireless speakers have become the standard for many homes. After all, if you’re not ready to invest in a premium home theatre system, chances are a wireless system or speaker will fill the void until you are. That’s why companies from basic to elite are offering portable options. But more than just a compact size, you want a small speaker that will sound good, be able to fill a room, and give you true-to-life audio. Bang & Olufsen (or B&O for short) have entered this market with some portable wireless speakers that not only aim to look cool but sound great too. I recently received a test sample of the B&O Beoplay A2 speaker for testing and review in my home. Continue reading “Bang & Olufsen B&O Beoplay A2 review”

Ring Stick Up Camera Review

If you’ve ever wanted to watch over your property, you know security systems can be complicated and expensive. But things are simplified with the arrival of the Ring Stick Up Camera. Continue reading “Ring Stick Up Camera Review”

Samsung Gear IconX wireless earbuds review

Until now truly wireless earbuds have been a bit of a myth. ‘Wireless’ has meant that the phones will connect with Bluetooth, so they don’t need a connector between the phone and your device, but they often come with a wire connecting the left to right earbud. While that’s been an ok option, some people find it distracting and annoying to have a cable flapping around your neck while doing certain activities. Enter Samsung’s new Gear IconX earbuds. With not a wire in sight, these earbuds are among the first to be totally and truly wireless. The small thumb-sized earbuds wedge right into your ears for a good slip-free fit, and connect seamlessly and wirelessly to your Samsung device whenever you pop them in. Continue reading “Samsung Gear IconX wireless earbuds review”