The Toaster Oven That I Got For Christmas

I am pretty good and dropping hints to my family when the holidays come around and they usually come through for me. This time I really got my heart set on a new countertop toaster oven and so when Thanksgiving rolled around I had start to lay on the charm. Luckily for me, my daughter took notice and got me the exact model that I was hoping for. Now I know it seems petty, but with the amount of cooking that I do for everyone they will more than benefit from my present.

So What Did I Get?

Initially I had hoped for the Breville BOV800XL as it has for years been rated as one of the best toaster ovens. However, I noticed that they had come out with a newer model that has an interior light and one extra cooking function, so I set my mind to get the BOV845BSS. They both are basically the same oven except for those two features. Now this is perhaps the most expensive convection countertop oven on the market but I can tell you that is well worth it after just having it for almost a couple of weeks.

What Can This Oven Do?

I have literally used it every day and I already know that my full sized oven is just going to collect dust or store pots and pans. This Breville “Smart” oven can do everything I need and more.

The very next day I decided to really put it to the test as I wanted to cook some ribs for three of us. The interior is quite roomy and I was able to use a regular sized baking dish for the ribs. I set it to cook for just under 2 hours with the convection fan on. After that I took them out, loaded one side with BBQ sauce, and then I broiled it for 6 minutes. I flipped them and repeated the sauce and broiling on the other side. You want to talk about tender, these ribs came out perfect. Falling off the bone and tender and juicy, we were all amazed. We couldn’t stop talking about how good they came out.

The following week I ended up making bread, baking cookies, frozen dinners, baking salmon, roasting peppers, and reheating some pizza. Everything came out great. The one remarkable thing that I love about this oven is that I didn’t even have to read the instruction manual to learn how to use it. The controls are really simple to master after playing with it for a couple of minutes.

The oven operates at a pretty low noise level, even with the convection fan going. Clean up has been a breeze as well. The front crumb tray was something that I also love about this oven as my older toaster oven had one that you could only get to from the back. It is easy to keep looking brand new which is a great thing because it looks so modern in my older kitchen.

Any Issues With This Oven?

One thing to be aware of, and I think this goes for most toaster ovens, is how hot the top gets when in operation. You really cannot keep anything stored on top of this appliance while it is cooking. Here is the kicker, I also got a bonus gift from the hubby as he got me the Breville cutting board made to sit on the top of the ovens. I do not know how many people use them to cut anything on, but they make great shelves. This way you can reclaim some of the countertop space. The cutting board has heat resistant feet and lets you store items on top of it without worrying about them melting. This is the ideal accessory for the BOV845BSS.

Our Verdict

Clearly we have been enthralled with this toaster oven and if you spend a ton of time in the kitchen then chances are you will too. You can read more about it and see how it rates against other toaster ovens on This is probably the best convection countertop oven that you can buy and even though it is expensive, it is so worth it. I just hope it holds up over time as I plan to put it to good use. Cooking is more fun and eating is now more rewarding. This turned out not just to be a great Xmas present for me, but one that the whole family is sure to enjoy.

Juicer Efficiency And Why It Is So Important


While juicing is a terrific way to supplement your diet and get the natural vitamins that your body needs, it can also be quite expensive. Not only to you have the cost of buying a juicer machine, but you also have to be fresh fruits and vegetables. Over time this can really add up. You might be surprised just how much produce you have to run through a juicer to get a full glass. Your grocery bill is going to rise dramatically. This is why it is so important to get a machine that is going to squeeze every last ounce of juice from whatever you drop into it. Having something that is efficient will help you keep that grocery tab in check and let you enjoy the benefits of juicing without breaking the bank. For this, we always recommend masticating juice extractors.

Proper nutrition can go a long way to help you deal with stress. Having kids requires more patience that most of us think that we have, but having a healthy diet can help you better cope with the trials and tribulations of being a parent. This is why that we always suggest that Mom and Dad don’t neglect their own eating habits when looking after those of their children.

Why Get A Masticating Juicer?

Centrifugal and masticating juicing machines are vastly different when it comes to how they separate juice from the pulp. While centrifugal units are extremely fast, they are not that efficient when it comes to juicing certain foods, especially leafy vegetables. Masticating juicers do a great job of breaking down food and applying immense pressure to squeeze out juice. This is really useful when it comes to vegetables like spinach, watercress, and kale. You will get more juice from leafy greens and the extruded pulp with be significantly dryer when compared to centrifugal juicers.

They have the added advantage of being much quieter machines to operate. Lower noise output makes them much more pleasant to use every day and if you enjoy using your juicer you are more inclined to use it routinely. Healthy habits are usually a lot of work at first, having the right equipment can make it less of a hassle. Having a better quality juice is also another advantage that will help you see immediate benefits.

Which Models Should I Consider?

Luckily, there are are number of high quality masticating juicers that are worth buying. Omega is perhaps the best known brand when it comes to this type of appliance. They routinely get some of the best reviews from owners and their warranties are unmatched. If you are going to put down a fair amount of money for a new machine you want to have some sort of assurance that if anything goes wrong that it will be taken care of, and this is a brand name that stands behind their juicers. They are solid, quiet, and dependable which has lead them to have one of the best reputations.

Omega NC800

This is one of their newest generation masticating machines and the NC800 is currently the top rated Omega juicer that you can buy. It has a number of features that make it a great choice for efficient juicing. A large opening on the feed chute will save you time on food prep and an adjustable nozzle will help you better control the flow and pressure to maximize your efficiency with different types of foods. It has a 15 year warranty and has food safe parts that are easy to clean. Owner ratings are exceptional and it gets high scores for how it well it handles green vegetables. It is efficient, easy to use, and easy to clean.

Omega VSJ843

This is one of their newer upright masticating juicers that will save you some room on your kitchen counter. It is almost whisper quiet and it has terrific performance with greens as well. The one thing about an upright model is that you have to be careful to not try and jam too much through the machine at once as this can cause clogging issues. Other than this one precaution, it shines when it comes to juice extraction.

Kuvings B6000

This is another vertical model that stands out for the size of its feed chute. It is quite large, comparable to those seen on centrifugal machines, which means that you can drop an entire apple into it. Barely any food prep is required which speeds up the entire juicing process. This does not get as high of marks from users as the Omega VSJ843, but it is still a very solid option in this area.

Other Masticating Juicers

Above are just three models that stand out, but there are others that are also worth considering. The Omega 8006 and 8004 are older generation juicers that can still deliver an excellent glass of juice. There is also the Champion juicer, Tribest Slowstar, and the Greenstar Elite which should all give you a super efficient juicing experience. Masticating juicers may cost a lot more up front, but their overall efficiency will end up saving you a ton in the long run. It is worth the extra price to get that little bit of extra juice out.

Key Features That Your New Jogging Stroller Should Have


For parents that are looking for a way to get back into shape and lose some of the weight gained from their pregnancy, getting a running stroller is a fun way to achieve this goal. They are an extremely effective way to get a healthy aerobic workout in while also being able to the take the kids with you and give them a little bit of outdoor fun as well. But what should you look for when shopping for a new running stroller? Below are some of the more important aspects of a stroller that you should key on for a quality choice.

Important Factors For Your New Stroller

When shopping for a new jogger it is easy to feel overwhelmed at first with all of the available options out there. It can be a lot easier, though, once you know what to look for. According to the folks at there are a few things to pay attention to while you check out various reviews looking for the best model to fit your needs and budget.


You will not only be pushing your little ones around, but you will also have to contend with the weight of the stroller itself. You do not want to be lumbering around trying to maneuver an overly heavy piece of equipment. The weight of the stroller will also come into play when are trying to get in and out of your vehicle and when you are trying to store it. A light weight design will be most preferable.


What kind of suspension does the running stroller have? A well cushioned ride not only makes the rider happier, but it will also be easier to steer and move. The higher quality models come with their own suspension that can absorb various bumps and off road terrain. This can be crucial for those who want to get out of the city and off of the pavement.


Bigger wheels that are filled with air will typically be able to handle rougher terrain a lot better and let you stay in control when the footing gets a little sketchy. It is similar to buying an off road vehicle. The bigger wheels with dedicated tread will give you a more stable experience. This ultimately makes running with the stroller a lot more safe.

An adjustable front wheel that you can lock in place is also another feature to look for. A locked front wheel makes it easier to keep the stroller in a straight line when running at faster speeds. This is an important factor for safety and stability as well.


Durable, easy to clean materials are also important things to look into. Jogging strollers will inevitably get dirty, so you want something that can handle some abuse while also being easy to clean. Some models come with materials that are also designed to keep the rider cool, something that your kids will really appreciate.


Having somewhere to put your diapers, bottles, water, sunscreen, phone, and mp3 player will prove to be a huge bonus. The top rated strollers have ample storage to make the outdoor adventure as hassle-free as possible for Mom or Dad.


Being able to stop the stroller when needed is an extremely important feature. Always consider getting a jogger with dedicated hand brakes that are located on the handlebar for quick and convenient braking.

Sun Shade

The sun is one thing that you should always be aware of and running outdoors will present a challenge for the little one’s sensitive skin. A lot of models come with an adjustable sun canopy that can protect the rider from the dangers of overexposure to the sun.

Top Rated Models

Luckily, there are numerous jogging strollers available that address all of the factors above. Makers such as Baby Trend, Baby Jogger, BOB, and Kolcraft all make supremely high end strollers that are made to provide the safety and comfort that you want in a jogging stroller. They can be on the expensive side, but the right stroller can make a world of difference to getting back into a healthier active lifestyle.

Saving Time Where You Can In The Kitchen


Being the parent of a deaf child can present some extra challenges that can require a little more patience. This is why it is nice to be able to save time where you can in the other aspects of your life. We decided to move into the kitchen and show you a way that you can do things a lot more efficiently while reducing your workload handling some of the more mundane and boring tasks while preparing your favorite meals. A food processor is a vital small appliance to have available to you that can really speed up your prep time. Below are just some of the top options available that can take some of the stress out of cooking.

Top Food Processor Options

No matter what your budget, you should have no problem finding something that will improve your skills and cut back the time you spend in your kitchen prepare meals. From high and mid-range options, to smaller and cheaper food processing machines, there is quality that can be found at just about any price range. If you already one, you should reconsider putting it back on your countertop and experiment with its full capabilities as food processors can do a lot more than just cutting and slicing vegetables.

High To Mid Range Models

Currently, the Cuisinart DLC-2009CHB is the best rated food processor that you can buy for your kitchen. It cost about $140 and it delivers a lot of bang for the buck. Not only is it a powerful slicer, dicer, mincer, and chopper, something that most people associate with these types of small appliances, but it can also mix, shred, and grind. This lets you do things like make pizza dough, speed up baking recipes, shred cheese, make fresh salsa, grind herbs and spices, and a lot more. This is perhaps Cuisinart’s most modern looking food processor which is probably why it is such a top seller. Its performance also gets excellent reviews from owners which is something you should always keep an eye on when shopping. This is a durable, reliable, and consistent food processor that offers a lot of value for the money.

For an ultra-modern food processor the Breville BFP800XL is a top choice. Recent ratings have this appliance ranked as one of the top rated food processors of 2016. Its sleek design and easy to use controls are complimented by a blue LCD display screen for those who want the most technologically advanced feel in their kitchen. This model is also a top performer when it comes to the chores tasked of today’s food processors. Stainless steel cutting discs deliver a consistent slice on whichever blade that you choose. It has a rather hefty motor that will not choke on anything that is dropped down its extra wide feed chute. This model is a workhorse and it is something that should be a tremendous benefit to avid chefs. With all that being said, the price tag is rather steep. At $400, this is not going to be something for everyone, but it does make for a great addition to any wishlist.

For another top notch alternative, the Cuisinart DLC- 10S delivers most of the quality features and performance of the 2009CHB but at a more affordable price. This model can usually be had for around $100 online. Where this food processor lags behind is in its looks. Its appearance is rather dated with square edges and a matte finish. It more than makes up for it in performance however, which makes this a great value buy. It just works without all of the flash of newer models.

Best Budget Options

If you need to save money, like most of us, then a Hamilton Beach food processor is going to be your best bet. They make some of the better quality, budget-friendly food processors that you can buy. These appliances are will probably be a terrific choice for cooks looking for the best food processor 2016. They might not be as powerful or can handle all of the larger more intensive tasks of some of the models above, you are still going to get a lot for your money. These will typically cost you between $40 and $60 online and are a great option for anyone looking to save. For basic slicing and dicing these will be more than capable to deliver a satisfying experience and help you save time preparing meals. They are very simple to use, a snap to clean, and easy to move in and out of storage. For the occasional fancy meal or complex recipe one of these models should do well. They also have a couple of models that are big enough to mix dough as well.

Mini-food processors are also another option if you are just looking for something to help you reduce the need for a kitchen knife. This inexpensive machines have smaller bowls that are perfect for dicing onions or cutting other vegetables. They are not ideal for mixing but are geared towards one specific task.

Cook More Work Less

If you are like me, then the more work a recipe requires the less tasty the final dish seems to taste. This is why a lot of folks end up having someone else cook for them, usually fast or frozen food. But that is not the most healthy way to maintain a proper diet. A food processor can really transform how you cook as well as how long that it takes. In the end, your food will end up tasting that much better.

Help Finding The Right Convertible Car Seat


One of the first challenges that new parents face is the realization of just how expensive having a new child can be. There are a number of items that a newborn needs and one of the most important is a car seat. Shopping for one of these safety seats can be an immense undertaking, so we thought we would try to help make this process a little easier by reviewing one of our favorite convertible car seats. There are plenty of models out there for all types of budgets and the Britax Marathon falls somewhere in the middle. We have used this seat for our own children so it is something that we can confidently recommend. Here are just some of the highlights that new or expecting parents may be interested in.

Why This Seat?

The Britax Marathon is perhaps one of the best options for both parents and children as far as comfort and safety are concerned. If you are in the market for the best convertible car seat under $250 then this may be just what you are looking for. With a wide range of safety and comfort features, this model is hit with both parents and kids.. The energy absorbing Versa-Tether this car seat is equipped with makes any impact less powerful and reduces any tendency to move forward during collisions. With the integrated steel bars, kids will be properly supported during rides, also preventing the chair from moving from one side to another. It is built to protect and to provide an enjoyable ride.

Car Seat Features

Simple Installation Process – With the premium lower latch connectors, it can be successfully installed to your back seat in minutes. If necessary, the car seat can be easily uninstalled through the push-button system, which will help you save a lot of time if you are in a hurry.

Safety Features – This seat is designed with several safety features, providing the best possible protection for the unexpected. The Harness Ultra Guard System aims to provide resistance to forward movement in case of a car accident, preventing your child from suffering an impact with the seats in front of him. The Versa-Tether foam can absorb energy that shows up as a result of a car accident. The EPP foam features in the side impact protection system can distribute crash forces evenly, preventing injuries and shielding your wee one from vehicle intrusions.

Adjustable Height – For most customers, easily adjusting the seat is an important feature that can allow the car seat to grow along with their child. It comes with several adjustable height positions, so that you can keep your child comfortable in their first few years. There are also two buckle positions, so it can accommodate children of any age or size, allowing them to feel more comfortable.

Enhanced Comfort – The high-density foam cushioning of this Britax Marathon car seat offers enhanced comfort that will definitely make your child enjoy car rides more than ever before. The infant body pillow is ideal for both infants and bigger children, and you might even find your little one sleeping comfortably during the car ride.


This model has been a big hit with a lot of parents. Some of the aspects of this child safety seat that owners really rave about include;

Comfortable Materials – Owners really love this about their Marathon G4.1. You not only want a car seat to protect your children but you also want something that they will enjoy riding in, and this unit really seems to deliver with comfortable cushion material. The seat is nicely padded, and the velcro can prevent the buckles from getting under your child’s torso successfully.

Excellent Security – This is probably the most important aspect of any child car seat and owners really like how this model performs. It comes along with enhanced security features that can keep this car seat into place without moving around the interior of your car. There are a few customer reviews that reference how well this unit performed in an actual crash and how thankful that they were to have been using this car seat.

Good Dimensions – Moreover, this car seat has good dimensions that can basically fit any car. Users tended to find that this model was great in small, medium or large vehicles and found this model very easy to install and adjust.

Easy Installation – Parents for the most part did not have too much trouble installing, removing or moving their seat in and out of their vehicles.


Confusing User Manual – Even though the installation process is basically simple, customers have had problems with the user manual, which was rather complicated and confusing.

Durability – For the most part owners are satisfied with this car seat’s performance, but there were some users that were not happy with the overall durability of this model.

For those wanting the top of the line car seat that both protects their children and provides them with a comfortable ride, then you really can’t go wrong with the Britax Marathon. Some serious engineering has gone into this product to ensure the maximum amount of safety for just about any situation. Parents who have purchased this model rave about it and it constantly receives some of the highest customer ratings and recommendation rates. This is definitely a top choice among owners.

Although there have been a few recalls of Britax convertible seats, we still trust this company and love to use there seats. We have no reservations about recommending their products but if it makes you uneasy there are other reputable makers out there to choose from. As always, reading the manual on any type of car seat you purchase is vital as an improperly used seat presents its own set of dangers to your child. Stay healthy, stay safe and keep your eyes on the road.