Citrus Lane Review #2 – October 2014

I got my second box from Citrus Lane around mid-October (technically third box, but I’m counting it as second because the last 2 were both September Boxes).  Remember last time I thought the boxes were mediocre at best, especially the first box they sent me, and it was only somewhat redeemed by their customer service.  This time I was pleasantly surprised by everything in the box, and was generally much happier.  Still not completely sold on the box, and not sure whether or not I am going to keep the box past when my promo boxes end…we shall see.

Anyways, if you are new to my blog or Citrus Lane, you can read my original post here.  Citrus Lane is a box for kids 0-5 years old.  You enter your child’s age and gender, and every month they send you age appropriate toys, clothing, etc for your child.  Citrus Lane usually costs $29.00/month, with lower prices (as low as $19.00/month with longer subscription plans).  I have found, however, that if I am willing to wait, I can find much better deals on them with coupon codes.  Again all of the citrus lane links are referral links…but why not?

So on to the review!  This box is for an 18 month old girl.

First look at the box:

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Citrus Lane always includes s small paper detailing the items in the box (the yellow and white striped card).  First impressions – I see several full-sized toys and no fillers, so I was pretty happy right off the bat.  V was waiting on the sidelines trying to grab things out of the box and start playing!

#1.  Ooh La Leggies Cupcake Heart Ruffles Leg Warmers – $10.00

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So I originally thought these were kind of weird.  I opened them up expecting tights, but they are definitely not.  They are long tubes that have elastic at the top to cling above the knee, and ruffled decoration around the ankle.  Worn under dresses or skirts they look like fancy leggings.  However, V thinks these things are the most fun things ever.  She already loves socks and shoes (trying on shoes is one of her favorite past times and “socks” was her first word) so these were right up her alley.  In fact, after receiving these, she did not want to take them off for 2 days.  I still frequently come home from work and find her running around in just a diaper and these leg warmers.  So although they are a little weird they are definitely a hit in our house.  And they are pretty cute…

#2.  Hohner’s Kids Maracitos – $9.25 (Amazon Price)

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We could hear these bad boys before we even opened the box.  We knew there was something noisy inside.  This was actually the only picture I have that did not have V’s hand in it, trying to take these away.  Out of the entire box, this has been the biggest hit.  They actually are not terribly annoying, as they have a fairly mellow sound, and V loves to give one to either Mark or myself and have us shake them together.  Overall win!  And the size is just perfect for her little hands.

#3.  Janod Story City Pink Car – $5.95

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#4.  Janod Story City Taxi – $5.95

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These toys are pretty cute, and V does like to play with cars.  I feel like moms might like them more than kids, because they are very simple and not that easy to push around.  V  has played with these a little bit but so far they do not hold her interest like the other toys do.  Maybe I will put them up for a month and see if they are more interesting next month.

Verdict:  I liked this box MUCH more than the last month.  It’s really like Citrus Lane could read my mind…or I guess maybe my blog?  Haha, you never know!  I was much happier with 4 similarly priced quality toys, rather than 1 really big item with a few fillers.  Keep it up, Citrus Lane!  Again, I’m still not convinced I’m going to renew this subscription, because it seems like a lot of money to risk when I so far have been neutral on the boxes.

Value:  $31.85 total.  Normal box cost: up to $29.99/month.  Not a super value, although with this box I did feel like I got my moneys worth (of course I only paid $15.00).  Not sure I would have been as happy with it if I had paid full price.

Any of you guys subscribe to Citrus Lane?  How did you like your boxes?  Let me know!

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September 2014 Citrus Lane Review x2

I told you guys I signed up for a couple of subscription boxes, right?  Well, Citrus Lane is another subscription box I decided to try out.  This is a box for kids 0-5 years old.  You enter your child’s age and gender, and every month they send you age appropriate toys, clothing, etc for your child.  They also usually include something for mom in there too (so I’ve seen in other reviews).  I love the idea of a box for kids, especially if it’s not too expensive.  V quickly loses interest in a lot her toys, and I never really know which toys are best for her stage of development, so the idea is perfect.  I have heard some kid boxes also have an area to tell which milestones your child has mastered to further identify the best toys/activities for them, but this one does not.  Citrus Lane usually costs $29.00/month, with lower prices (as low as $19.00/month with longer subscription plans).  I have found, however, that if I am willing to wait, I can find much better deals on them with coupon codes. For instance, I paid $14.50 for my first box with a coupon code, and then Living Social was having a deal for a 3 month subscription for $45.00, so I did that as well.  Unfortunately (for me), shortly after that order, they were also offering a box for $5.00!  I think it’s a fun idea, I’ll leave my conclusions for the end.  Since I did the coupon code and I did the Living Social deal, I inadvertently received 2 September boxes (I thought I did the Living Social deal late enough that it would start in October…I was wrong).  Here’s the review!  I lost the cards that come with them, so some of the prices are from searching online.  Again all of the citrus lane links are referral links…but why not?

Box #1

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Initial look, with V’s hand in it, she was very excited to see what was in the box…I liked that it was packaged nicely.  The outer box was also a little bit pretty.  I like when boxes wrap things nicely (as you heard in my Fabletics blog), so they passed this test.

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First look after unwrapping, still pretty and something colorful!  Lots of coupons on top.

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They included a list of everything included in the box and some additional details (this is the paperwork I can’t find, so I don’t remember if it included price.  I think it did…I’ll let you know when my October box gets here).  Ok, enough packaging, onto the goods!

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Tea Collection Body Suit, size 18mo – $26.50 on their site

 I like the pattern on this body suit, it’s very pretty.  Without trying to sound dramatic, that’s about all I really liked about this piece.  I feel like V is pretty old for onesies…aka “body suits” and she is very tall for her age, so she is in almost entirely 2T clothes at this time.  I did find out after the fact that you can customize your clothing size – I guess at the beginning of the month they send you an e-mail with a sizing chart and ask which size to include if their box is going to include clothes.  I signed up part-way through the month so I guess I missed the e-mail stage.  I feel like, as a new customer, it should have been important to make sure they sent me the right size in my first box to make a good impression.  However, there is more to this story in my next box, so I will not complain too much.

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Happy Tot Organic Baby Food Stage 4 – Green Bean, Pear and Pea flavor – approx $1.39 (could only find in a 16 count multi-pack, so probably more costly individually)

V loves these things.  In fact, she grabbed this one out of the box and asked (demanded) it eat it immediately, which I allowed.  I don’t mind them either, although sometimes I think she should eat only solid food…but then I think I’m crazy because look at all the good stuff in these pouches!  These particular ones even include Chia, which is supposed to be the “new” old superfood, but even the regular ones have veggies in them, and I’m all about getting veggies into that girl…I thought this was a nice bonus for the box, but I didn’t exactly think it should count as one of the guaranteed 4 items…

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Boon Links Bath Appliques – $9.99

Mrs. Meyers Clean Day Dish Soap Radish Scent – $1.00

 The “bath appliques” are sea creature shapes (vaguely) made from a foam type of material for play in the bath.  I feel like $10.00 is pretty pricey for these “toys”.  They feel pretty flimsy and the shapes (as mentioned before), are only vaguely sea-creature-y.  V has pretty much ignored them in her bath.  The one positive on them is that (so far), they have shown no tendency to grow mold after getting wet and drying out.  I think they are supposed so encourage your toddler to assemble the creatures themselves, but V is either not at that level or just not interested.  I think it’s also hard to be interested in assembling things when you cant tell what they are when you’re done…but maybe I’m being too harsh.  The dish soap was fine, again I felt like it was just a filler item, which was a little disappointing considering the site “guarantees” 4 items in the box, and this seemed like a sample sized item with a very low value (the label on the bottle said it was $1.00).

Overall impression: the issue I have with this box is the same thing that keeps me from trying a lot of these boxes.  Although the value is somewhat there ($38.88 worth of items for usually $29.00), if I were to see these items in the store (namely the “body suit” and the bath toys), there is no way I would pay that much for them.  Plus the inclusion of 2 “filler” items left me a little dissatisfied.  I was happy I only paid $14.95 for this one, although I actually cancelled my 1 time subscription after receiving this box.

Box #2

This box subscription was under a different e-mail from the previous box, so to them it is likely I’m a different person.  This is the box enrolled in a 3-month subscription.  This time, before receiving my box, I e-mailed them asking about their sizing policies and customization abilities.  It’s a good thing I did too, since I didn’t realize I would be receiving my second September box.  Their customer service responded immediately with a sizing chart and allowed me to request 2T sizing for V.  The e-mailed me back later stating they were out of 2T, and I told them 3T would be fine.  I was very happy with the quickness of their response, and wished I had known to do it for my last box.

The packaging was exactly the same as the last box, so I wont re-post that…

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Tea Collection Top – size 2T – $24.50

 I was surprised to see a 2T size, since they had told me they were out of them.  I was way more happy with this piece than the “body suit”.  I think cute tops are more appropriate for a walking toddler than onesies, as I mentioned before.  And this pattern is really cute.  V already wore this to church and looked adorable.

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Boon Links Bath Appliques – $9.99

Ahhh, these bath toys again….boo.  This was the one item I hoped would be replaced by something, anything else…I think i will save them and give them as part of a christmas present to some nieces…maybe they will like them better.

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Bumkins Disney Baby Reusable Snack Bag, Minnie Classic, Large – $4.95

This is cute, and it’s Minnie Mouse (V’s favorite!). I think V will use it more as a toy than I will use it as a snack bag, but it was better than the soap or squeeze pouch from last box…

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Ouchies Mr. Men and Little Miss 4 girlz Band Aids – $3.25

I was actually pretty happy with this, we need fun colored band aids as we only have boring ones at home.  Also I used to read books with these guys in them when I was a little kid, so it was a fun blast from the past.

Super Surprise:  About 1 week after receiving this box, a second package (plain packing envelope) came in the mail from Citrus Lane.  Inside was a copy of the Tea Collection Top only in size 3T!  I’m guessing they had already sent my box when they thought they were out of 2Ts, so they went ahead and sent me the extra 3T.  Score!  This really went a long way towards making up for the first box, although they did it with no knowledge of my first box experience…a happy coincidence.

Overall Impression:  Even without the “bonus top”, this box was much more promising for me.  The overall value was $41.99, and I paid $15.00 for it.  I also did not feel like there were filler items in this box, although I still do not like the bath toys.  I think I personally would prefer 4 small toys versus 1 large clothing item with 3 smaller items, but I was more satisfied with this box.  Either way, they have 2 months to make it up/keep it up!

What do you think?  I like the idea, I’m just really hoping it will be as good as I’m hoping it could be!  Anyone else have kid subscription boxes they love?