Subscription Boxes: Like Your Birthday, Every Single Month

By: Mary Pat Baldauf

Like to try new products, but don’t have time to walk the aisles of your favorite stores? Do you sigh in disappointment when each trip to the mailbox brings only bills and solicitations? Do you like to treat yourself every once in a while? If you answered, “yes, please” to at least one of these questions, you’ll want to check out subscription boxes, the greatest thing since sliced bread.


Subscription boxes contain an assortment of products usually related to a common theme or interest. They are typically sent out once a month, and prices generally range from $10 to $40 per box. Most boxes provide full-sized sample products, instead of the small freebies you get at the counter. The number of products in each box varies with each subscription box service, but most feature four to seven products per box.

I recently joined the subscription box scene with Parcel, a box from the people at Greatist, a leading source for all things fitness, health, and happiness. Parcel is like Greatist all wrapped into a neat little package and delivered to my doorstep for only $20 a month. Instead of spending hours and tons of money searching through products at health and fitness stores, I open my Parcel box and BAM – it’s like my birthday. Every. Single. Month.

Resolve to treat yourself with a subscription box service in the New Year! These days, there’s a subscription box for just about everyone, from dog lovers and health nuts to make-up mavens and fitness fanatics. Your perfect subscription box is just a Google search away.

If subscription boxes are a new concept to you, what questions do you have? Currently subscribe to a box? Share which one(s) you get and why you love receiving it. If you could design a box just for you, what types of products would it include?

A Tropical Taste of Fall

By: Mary Pat Baldauf

I had dental surgery earlier this month, and to prepare, I got some new smoothie recipes from my fave nutrition counselor, Traci. Unfortunately, I was so sedated afterwards that I didn’t feel like making smoothies (or anything else), but I’m starting to try them now. An Banana Spice Smoothieearly favorite is the Banana Spice Smoothie. It’s great, and the spices hint that fall is around the corner. This is great on its own. Another option is to freeze it overnight in an insulated cup, thaw for about an hour the next day and eat with a spoon. Sinful!

Something neat about this smoothie is the inclusion of kefir, which is full of probiotics. I’d never tried it before, but got a good 101 lesson on it here. It seems pretty common in grocery stores now; it’s usually stocked near the soy milk.