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Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Pack Review: Built For Travel

osprey farpoint 40 review

The following article is a review of the Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Pack. In this article, you’ll get a personal take on the pros and cons of this model along with some tips and advice if you’re looking at Osprey Farpoint 40 backpack or a similar backpack design. 

Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Pack Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Pack

Osprey Farpoint 40 Travel Pack Review

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Just recently our very own staff writer Julie Buckingham wrote an amazing article on Laptop Backpacks for Women, which made me think of one of my last trip to Germany. I bought the Osprey Farpoint 40 travel pack specifically for the trip, which was half business, half pleasure. We went for just over two weeks and because I had to fit in a Laptop and a small camera into the bag, I was concerned about the space. I was very close to getting the Osprey Farpoint 55 Travel Backpack, which is bigger, but I’m glad I didn’t.

One of the reason’s why I decided to stick with Osprey Farpoint 40 travel pack was that I was trying my hardest pack less. I was inspired by the documentary “Minimalism” which I had watched on Netflix leading up to the trip. Minimalism, in a nutshell, is the goal to just use your most essential items and not to carry around extra clutter in life. So for this trip, I figured I would force myself to do so by only carrying around a smaller backpack. To my surprise this the Osprey Farpoint 40 held a large amount of stuff, way more than I was expecting. My minimalism is goal remains on track in life, but looking back on that trip, I could have easily packed more items in the Osprey Farpoint 40 backpack.

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6 Best French Press Coffee Maker Models on the Market

Best French Press Coffee Maker

The following article is a complete breakdown of the best french press coffee maker models on the market that I have researched and tested. This article explains what makes a great french press and should help you narrow down your search in finding the best coffee maker that fits your needs. 

Best French Press Coffee Maker

I would classify myself as a heavy coffee drinker, but not a pretentious one. I don’t go to Starbucks very often, but when I do, my order is straightforward; a medium cup of black coffee to which I add a little cream and sugar and I’m good to go. I work from home mostly, so I make coffee at least twice throughout the day for myself. Over the years, the evolution of the coffee makers I have purchased got bigger and more complex. I liked coffee makers that would grind the beans for me, measure the right amount of water to add and even give me digital options to how refined the grind was. However, that all changed after having my first cup of coffee from a French Press.

Best French Press Coffee MakerI actually remember it well, my wife and I took the kids to visit friends who lived out of town for the weekend. The first morning I woke up I was greeted with a really nice cup of coffee, but I never saw it being brewed. I assumed it was some fancy new expensive coffee maker as the coffee was vibrant with flavor. At the time, I was currently looking for a new coffee maker after my $300 Breville maker had broke, so I was very curious to learn about what had made this great cup of joe. When I discovered the coffee was made from a French Press, I was amazed. I was in disbelief that something so simple could whip together such a great cup of coffee.

When we returned home a few days later, I went out to pick up my own French Press with the intention of it being a temporary replacement until I could find the next best thing as far as a pro-style coffee makers go. But, it’s been over six months now, and I’m still using a French Press. I love the taste and my wife and I love how much extra counter space we have in our kitchen now.

However, I should point out that I have tested out a few different French Press maker models. In fact, I met this guy working for a local department store that seemed to be a coffee fanatic. He was Barista that worked at this local hipster coffee shop part-time and also worked at the department store where I was shopping to buy the best french press coffee maker I could get my hands on. He was the perfect person to bounce questions off.

I was interested in learning that despite the fact that a French Press coffee maker was such a simple tool for brewing coffee, it actually has a few different versions. Some are cheaper than others while some seem to charge more for a more professional but don’t, in fact, brew better coffee.

The following are the six Best French Press Coffee Maker Models on the Market.

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Hotwire Review: My Personal Experience (Includes 7 Booking Tips )

Hotwire review

Hotwire Review

For some people, booking a hotel can be a long and exhausting process. For others, it’s just paying for a room to sleep in while you’re out of town. Nobody wants to stay in a dump, nor do they want to pay too much. That’s why Hotwire has a really changed the game when booking a hotel room. The following is my personal Hotwire Review along with some hotel booking tips to ensure you get the best deal

How Does Hotwire Work?

Instead of researching and comparing rooms between dozens of websites, looking stock photos that never look like the room you stay in or reading fake reviews online, you can bypass all of the hassles with simply selecting a list of things most important to your stay. With Hotwire, you are presented with a list of priorities and some basic information to fill out. Things like the area, amenities, star rating, and price. From there you pay for your room but you are not told the hotel name until after purchase…and it’s non-refundable or changeable.

What Are The Benefits?

The benefits of booking with Hotwire are simple, you can stay in a beautiful room for a fraction of the price.

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5 Reliable Electric Cooling Blanket Options To Get A Perfect Night Sleep

Electric Cooling Blankets

Even in the winter when I have blankets on to stay warm there are times I wake up too hot and need to cool down. I hate sweating when I sleep so I’ve learned over the years to stick my feet out from the covers to get my body temperature just right. Obviously, this doesn’t allow for too many comfortable sleeping positions; that was until I got myself an electronic cooling blanket, and life has been so much better.

I used to travel a lot for business and hated hotel beds. I could never get adjusted to the heat of the room or the thickness of the blankets. My boyfriend would always tell me to just kick the blankets off, but that didn’t work either as I prefer the comfort of having covers on my body as I sleep. I’ll admit, I’m just a picking sleeper that needs the temperature to be just right.

Temperature is easily one of the biggest obstacles to getting quality sleep. Studies have found that the optimal temperature for the best quality sleep is cooler than you may think, around 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15-20°C). Temperatures that fall too far below or above this range can lead to restlessness. Temperatures in this ideal sleeping range help facilitate the decrease in core body temperature that in turn initiates sleepiness. Getting into that perfect sleeping temperature zone can be difficult due to warmer climates, the heating of your home or simply laying next to someone who naturally sleeps hot and warms the bed.

There is a wide range of sleeping products that market themselves as solutions for staying cool in bed. I started with a Cooling Pillow, which actually worked pretty good at first, but as I mentioned, do a lot of traveling. Packing a pillow is a waste of space in your luggage.

My goal was to find a quality electric cooling blanket that would keep my whole body at the right temperature. I quickly realized, though, you get what you paid for. I tried a few affordable cooler blankets before overpaying for a portable air conditioner. The air conditioner wasn’t worth the money and my wife didn’t like freezing every night. She got me to replace it and continue to search a blanket that would keep me cold, not the entire room.

The following are 5 different options for staying cool when sleeping. Some are electric cooling blankets, others are cooling pads.

cooling mattress pad

Human Creations: Gel’O Cool Mat Gel Topper

Size: 24 x 59 Inches for Standard Queen, King Beds

I used this cooling mattress pad for years. I got it as a gift from my parents who knew I would be traveling a lot for work and was not a morning person if I didn’t get a good night sleep. Unfortunately, I left it behind in a room in Portland. I ended up picking up something else, but would highly recommend this cooling mattress pad. This sleeping pad does not need to be plugged in.

How does it work

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5 Airplane Toys For Toddlers To Keep Both You And Them Happy

Airplane Toys For Toddlers

Just recently I wrote about how my entire family took its first trip to Disneyland and the success of that vacation hindered on getting my kids their own luggage. Having your children involved in something as simple as being responsible for their own toys, gives them a task and allows them a sense of purpose throughout the whole traveling experience. Each kid had their own luggage, but we put those bags into the overhead compartment throughout the flight. To avoid having to get up 15 times throughout the flight, we brought a carry on bag for the entire families needs. In that bag, we included games and toys for the kids to keep busy along with snacks for them to eat.

Airplane Toys For ToddlersIn this article, I wanted to share with you some of the awesome airplane toys for toddlers that I picked up for the flight. Now I know what you’re thinking, who buys brand new toys for their kids just to behave on a flight…. well, I do. I didn’t break the bank at all, but I did find some awesome affordable toys online that made the 6-hour flight easily worth it. My kids were so well behaved, the wife and I got to enjoy a beverage and even got to play a game of scrabble (an app on her phone) while they played quietly.

Tip: To read about our trip and to get advice for Kids Carry on Luggage, I would suggest checking out my Best Luggage For Kids article. There you should be able to get some tips for your upcoming trip.

The following are 7 awesome airplane toys for toddlers. I didn’t buy all of these, but my step brother has 5 kids and made some suggestions to this article to give you more options. He was the one who suggested getting them toys when I mentioned our family vacation.

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Laptop Backpack For Women: 9 Practical and Stylish Options

Laptop Backpacks for Women

Laptop Backpack For Women With Style

As technology gets smaller and more lightweight so do the cases, bags, and backpacks we use to carry around our trusted devices. In just the last few years, laptops have made a significant change towards being sleeker with less wasted space, and have indeed become as convenient as carrying around a thin book. Of course, all that being said, you still need to keep your laptop safe from theft and getting damaged. While there are a lot of options on the market, a Laptop backpack for women with some style to it isn’t as easy to find as you would think. It seems that most companies are still pushing the briefcase concept.

Laptop Backpack For WomenWhen I think of a briefcase, I think of a hard shell case like the one you would see in a spy movie where someone is transporting millions of dollars. The hero later uses the briefcase as a shield in a gunfight, or at some point throws the briefcase across the room knocking someone unconscious. I’m joking; of course, there are a lot of successful women who still use and carry around a briefcase, I just know that’s not the look I’m after.

Actually, now that I think of it, it wasn’t a look that my mother was after either. When I was a kid, my mom had this well-respected position where she managed and oversaw the success of twenty-plus stores at the airport. You know all those stores you pass on the way to your flight, or shop in while waiting for your trip? They’re usually all owned by one or two companies.

One Christmas, my brother and I went in on a leather briefcase. Laptops weren’t around back then, but I remember thinking I wanted to get something for my mom, who was a strong businesswoman. About a week after the holidays she confessed that she returned it as it just wasn’t her thing. She preferred carrying all her news and notes on her blackberry, or simply remembered info by memory.

What I’m Looking For

I live in the North West, which is typically raining most of the year. I need a backpack that is waterproof and can hold a 15-inch laptop. I’m also tired of lugging around both my purse and a bag to hold my laptop, so I’m looking to merge the two. Ideally, I want something stylish enough that I can take this bag out to lunch and it doesn’t look like it has a laptop in it, yet professional enough for the office.

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Best Luggage For Kids: 5 Suitcase Options Your Kids Will Love

Best Luggage For Kids

Best Luggage For Kids

I think there are two types of parents in the world. There are the parents who envision the perfect family vacation with countless pictures and priceless memories, and then there are the parents who absolutely dread the concept of traveling with toddlers.

I happen to fall into the category of overthinking all the things that could go wrong. Sure, I want all the happy memories and good times with my wife and kids on vacation, but the idea of my kids throwing a meltdown on a plane or whining about the travel time makes me want to abort the whole mission.

Just recently, my wife twisted my arm and the whole family made it’s the first trip to Disneyland.

My wife, who is extremely organized took care of most of everything. I tried to help by offering “end of the world toddler scenarios” as she put it, but honestly, the trip wasn’t bad at all.

I do think the key to the success of our vacation was buying our two toddlers there own luggage. It gave them a sense of responsibility and encouraged them to stay organized. Kids love to feel involved in what everyone else is doing, so finding the best luggage for kids was tops on my list of things to do after remembering all the local day-trips we’ve done where Dad has had to carry everything. 

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