At the Sun-Gazette, we often receive product samples and press releases from companies promoting their new and unusual items. We thought we'd tell you about some of these new products in the hopes that one of these "odds and ends" will be right for you or someone you know.
The Traveler's Journal from the "Write It Down!" series by Journals Unlimited Inc.
What it is: The Traveler's Journal is a 9-inch-by-7.5-inch hardcover, ring-bound book filled with acid-free, recycled paper and soy-based ink for the vacation traveler to fill while enjoying his or her adventures. The journal alternates blank pages with pages filled with thoughtful prompts for the traveler, like "What I enjoyed most" and "Places to remember for the next time." It also has a section for recording the day's purchases and lots of space for personal thoughts and reflections.
The full size Traveler's Journal retails for $18.95 but also comes in smaller sizes and a variety of specific themes and activities, i.e. bird watching, dining experiences.
What we thought: This journal was less intimidating than some that are filled with all blank pages because it helps the writer document a trip by posing questions and subjects.
It is a consistent way to record the activities and major events of a vacation for referral later. The journal can be used for multiple trips and it is easy to write in because the binding allows it to be opened flat.
Power Paws by Woodrow Wear.
What it is: Power Paws are socks for your canine friend.
They have a traction underside to help with grip and mobility, but also prevent damage to floors, protect healing wounds and are a fashionable accessory. They are available in a variety of sizes and colors.
A pack of four socks retails for $19.99 at www.woodrowwear.com. There is a three-month warranty on the socks if used exclusively indoors.
What we thought: After placing the socks on our test dog, Scarlett, (which was quite a struggle; make sure to order one size larger than you think you will need because the socks do run small), much coaxing was needed to get her to move around the space.
She jumped high into the air in an attempt to leap out of the socks to no avail.
After much stopping and shaking of each leg, she did move around on wood and linoleum floors successfully. The socks would be helpful for an older dog struggling with getting up and down from a prone position, but for a healthy dog unaccustomed to anything on their feet, it may not be an enjoyable experience.
It did provide a lot of laughs, however, as Scarlett tried to walk with the socks!
Dr. Hess Products and Udder Ointment.
What it is: Dr. Hess Udder Ointment is a 100- year-old, pharmacist recommended healing formula great for chronic dry skin, eczema, chafing, abrasions, burns, cracked heels and cuticles, diabetic ulcers and more.
Originally developed for cow's udders in the early 1900s, farmers soon were remarking on the incredible healing effects it was having on their own skin. Soon, it was a staple in every medicine cabinet across the country.
Dr. Hess Udder Ointment is less greasy, absorbs quicker and smells better than other comparable products on the market.
Also available are Udder Ointment for Baby Butts and the Dr. Hess Udder Stick Lip Balm.
The Udder Ointment retails for $9.99 and the Udder Sticks come in a four pack with four flavors (Original Vanilla, Vanilla Mint, Mango and Pomegranate) for $10.
A two-ounce purse-size Dr. Hess Udder Ointment (the same size as a Carmex tub) is $6.99. For more information, visit www.udderointment.com.
What we thought: The testers all enjoyed the creaminess and pleasing flavors of the Udder Sticks.
The Udder Ointment gives off a honey-like smell and was not too greasy but it did not work well on severe eczema. This product would be best for daily use, before skin gets really chafed, cracked and dry.
What it is: Gear Tie is a reusable rubber twist tie for cleaning up, packing up and organizing almost everything.
What we thought: Forget about those silly tiny twist ties that come wrapped around cords. Those always get lost the second they come off, and never seem quite big enough to tie back on. There is no need too large or too small that Gear Ties can't tackle. They come in five different sizes from 3-inch to 32-inch so you can find the right length for any project.
FYI: Readers will receive a 15 percent discount off of their order when they buy from www.geartie.com through Dec. 31 by using the code "HOLIDAY1" at checkout.