I admit, before I became a working mom I enjoyed shopping. I enjoyed spending time online shopping, tooling around the grocery store, Target, Loehmann’s (before it closed), the little independent shops scattered throughout DC. I think any working mom who has a demanding job can fully relate with how impossible it is to find time for oneself in this first year of parenthood. Despite our Subscribe and Save Service to Amazon which is responsible for supplying so many things for our child and household needs, there were many days in this past year where I went without shampoo, without face moisturizer, and recycled outfits before venturing out into the world because I simply ran out and didn’t have the time, energy or capacity to go shopping.
There were a few times I would try to go shopping. One time I perfectly timed my shopping excursion with my daughter’s feeding and nap schedule so I could make the quick 25 min drive to a shop. I transferred my napping daughter from the car seat into the stroller, perused the aisles and was entering the family sized dressing room with the stroller when the dressing room door made the loudest creak of all door creaks and up awoke my baby. Trying to try on clothes with a screaming infant who then insists on crawling around the floor and putting hangers and dust in her mouth – well, it’s just a FANTASTIC shopping experience, let me tell you.
So, this is why I love this new box subscription trend. Here is a summary of the boxes I’ve tried and swear by:
My husband had spent a few months trying Trunk Club a couple years ago and I always hoped and prayed there would be such a thing for ladies like me who didn’t have time to buy new clothes. After seeing the incredible outfits my sister was wearing and receiving a Klout Perk which waved my styling fee for the first month (normally, your monthly styling fee is $20), I decided to give it a whirl. I had some incredible first few months with the service and then some not so incredible months. They send you five items (in my experience, usually a mix of shirts, skirts and/or dress, a pair of jeans, and an accessory of some kind.) You simply send back what you want in the pre-addressed envelope. While it was great I could fill out a survey and customize my profile, it really depended on the stylist (which rotates monthly) on whether the clothing items I received were a hit or miss. I finally hit the jackpot with an incredible stylist and requested to keep her styling me, which has proven to be great. I routinely find myself ONLY wearing my StitchFix stuff. It’s my style, it’s perfectly long for a tall person like me. It’s a wonder what having a stylist – even an anonymous one who only knows you by your social media profiles – can do for a person. It’s a great feeling to have clothes that fit. If you don’t want a monthly subscription, you can choose to get it every other month, which is definitely better on the wallet.
My husband is responsible for signing us up for this one. They send you a razor and blades to begin with and then a new set of blades as frequently as you need them. I get a new set a month and it’s one less thing I have to worry about.
We are on our second week of trying Blue Apron (thanks to our friends Jake and Ilana for giving us the first free week!) and it is quickly becoming an obsession. We have chosen to have the ingredients for three meals sent to us each week. You can list your ingredient preferences and typically you have three of five or six recipes to choose from each week. We get a new shipment on the same day every week. Most recipes say they take 20 mins, but a lot of the cooking methods or ingredients are new to me, so I would say it can take much longer than that. If you don’t have time to find new recipes and go buy all the ingredients routinely, this is really the way to go. Having pre-measured, quality ingredients ready to go and printed written and visual directions on quality card stock makes it easy to cook healthy, creative new recipes for your family.
Here are a few of the recipes we cooked over the past two weeks:
Pistachio-Crusted Catfish with Clementine Salad, Israeli Couscous and Roasted Fennel:
Pulled Chicken Tacos with Jicama, Avocado and Cilantro Salad:
Thai Coconut Shrimp Soup with Lemongrass and Red Curry:
There are many more delivery services like Blue Apron (Hello Fresh and Plated, for example) out there that are running specials this month, so go out and try them if you can.
What boxed subscriptions have you tried and love? Please comment and let me know!