ANNOUNCEMENT: So what’s the deal with no new Spotted and Fast Food News posts?

First off, I apologize for the disappearance of Spotted and Fast Food News posts on the site. I will explain here why they’ve stopped and what the future holds for them.

The main reason why is because I’ve been helping to take care of my son, who celebrated his first birthday recently. My wife works full-time during the day. So while she’s at her job and I have a position that allows for A LOT of flexibility (because I’m the boss), I’m watching over our son, which has been super awesome because I’ve been able to see him grow. Okay, poop ending up in the front of his diaper because he did his business while sitting is definitely the opposite of super awesome. But helping him learn how to stand, teaching him to say dada before mama, and adding verses to “Baby Shark” that involve non-relatives has been fun (also, including things on Old MacDonald’s farm that aren’t animals is fun, like a fax machine).

Over the past few months, I’ve been trying to figure out how to do everything for the site AND take care of our son. What I’ve learned is that it’s extremely difficult. I tried it, but I was burning out. So I decided I needed to be selective with what I do for the site.

The good news is that I’m going to continue doing Spotted posts. The bad news is that I’m 95 percent sure there won’t be Fast Food News posts anymore.

When I stopped doing Fast Food News, I felt less stressed and overwhelmed. So, instead of doing them, the plan is to put more effort into getting fast food reviews up as fast as possible, hence the reason why we’ve recently brought on more writers to help. That way, the reviews serve two purposes — it lets you know about the product and how it is. Besides, there are sites out there that do a better job at covering fast food news than we ever did, like Brand Eating, Chewboom, and Fast Food Post.

Now let’s talk about Spotted posts. Back in April, I decided not to post photos taken in stores to encourage folks to get quickly in and out when shopping. Instead, I asked readers if they happen to spot something new, and it’s something they plan on buying, to take a photo of it at home. I did it because I just want everyone to be safe during these times.

As you can guess, the number of photo contributions decreased, which was helpful as I tried to figure out how to balance work and life. But at some point, I thought, “I’m not getting too many photos to use. And most of the photos I do get are of products that we’re going to review anyway. So why not put a pause on Spotted and let those reviews we do serve two purposes like with the fast food reviews.” So that’s what I did for almost two months, and to be honest, it felt great to focus on reviews and my son. Reviews are my favorite thing to do on the site, and my son is my favorite child. Granted, he’s the only kid my wife and I have.

Now I know it may not seem like it recently, but my second favorite thing to do on the site is doing Spotted posts. I miss doing them. Also, all the emails, tweets, and comments I’ve been getting asking what’s up with Spotted posts have nudged me to start up again. So I’m going to continue with posting, but only using photos taken outside of the store, until further notice because, well, you know.

I apologize to those who have followed this rule whose photos I haven’t posted. I would also like to say I’m sorry to those readers who come here for the Spotted posts and haven’t seen diddly squat for almost two months. I promise I’ll be getting things back on track. So please continue to send in your photos that were safely taken at home, at work, in your car, or while walking to your car from the store.

Love,
Marvo

P.S. – Despite the changes, I’m still trying to get a handle on the whole work-life balance thing. But then again, aren’t we all?

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Impulsive Buy Writer Brandon

It seemed just like any other day as I sat on my couch after school. That was until a man came on the television, confidently walking down the street while greeting all he encountered. Adorned with black-rimmed glasses and flashing a pair of finger guns, I watched closely with furrowed brow as he stopped dead in his tracks.

“Little Hungry… Little Hungry.”

He uttered it only twice but it must have echoed through my head hundreds of times in a mere instant. I too was a little hungry. I felt heard. I felt seen. It would take me years to come to terms with it, but this man would have a profound influence on the course of my life. Eddie “The Echo” might have been a character in a McDonald’s ad to introduce its new McDouble. But it awoke a beast in me that has yet to be fully satiated.

“How Ya Doing… How Ya Doing?” fellow perusers of The Impulsive Buy, my name is Brandon. And while I was alone that afternoon in California, I know that all who read this were with me in spirit. We all venture to taste that new combination of flavors and share a passion for all that is limited edition.

From that couch I would journey on to get a college degree, graduate from culinary school, get married, and have children. But never did I lose that yearning to discover. And as a new item hits the store shelves or pops up on the drive-thru menu board, the timeless words of Eddie still echo in my mind.

“Sounds Good… Sounds Good.”

(EDITOR’S NOTE: So, um, this Brandon is not the Brandon who we’ve been posting reviews from recently. He’s a different Brandon who I brought on in 2016 and, unfortunately, had to stop reviewing later that year. But that Brandon is back! And this Brandon is a completely different person.)

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Reviewer Sonia

Hi! I’m Sonia! I’m a liiiiiittle bit of a food nerd… ok, ok. I’m a super-mega-hyper-gigantic food nerd.

Basically, I’m the kind of person you can ask what the difference is between shoyu and tamari (shoyu has wheat in it, tamari doesn’t), or what that weird-looking fruit you found at the local Asian market is (rambutan, probably), or maybe what on Earth to do with a surplus of tomatoes from your garden (pickle them!)?

Ahem.

I’ve been called “the perfect consumer,” but really, I just love to try new things. If the label says “New!” or “Limited Edition!” on it, I am *so* there! Few things make me as school-girl giddy as the seasonal displays at my local grocery store.

From red, white, and blue gummies to eggnog flavored jelly beans, pink and red snack cakes shaped like hearts to Christmas tree-shaped everything, the best part of every season is the magical selection of thematic treats that accompany it. (I’m especially fond of McDonald’s Holiday pie and have been known to cross state lines in search of them come the day after Thanksgiving).

Every year for Halloween, I make a Quest List (TM) of seasonally appropriate items, mostly of the edible variety, to hunt down between September and October. Those searches, some fruitful, some not, have resulted in some of my favorite memories.

As much as I love to buy (and of course, eat!) things, I love to make them, too. I’m an avid cook and baker, and I can’t remember a birthday or holiday where a new cookbook wasn’t at the top of my list.

Given those facts, it should come as no surprise at all that I have some *very strong opinions* about food in general. I know what I like and what I don’t, and I’m more than happy to share my reasons with anyone who will listen.

That’s precisely why I’m so excited to become a reviewer for The Impulsive Buy. Now you can join my dog in being subjected to my rantings and ravings about the newest flavor of Blizzard or the latest trendy pizza topping.

So grab a can of your favorite soft drink and get comfortable. We’re going to have some fun!

ANNOUNCEMENT: New Reviewer Holly

When I turned 30 a few years back, I felt a fundamental shift in my world view on food. For so long, I had categorized things I ate as “good” or “bad.”

Plain celery? Good.

Baconator from Wendy’s? Bad.

Yet, the night of my birthday, I was lying in my bed while propping myself up to discourage the stomach acid from creeping up my esophagus. It is then that I had a revelation: food is food. It cannot be inherently good or bad. Now, should I eat three Bloomin’ Onions a week? Absolutely not!…unless it gets me a free shirt, then there might be some thinking to do. I wasted so much time saying no to food because I categorized it as “bad,” but now? It’s game on.
?I feel like I should actually introduce myself now. Hello dear readers, my name is Holly, and I’m one of the new contributors here at The Impulsive Buy. I share this story of my epiphany as it was the thing that started me down the path of all food things weird, new, or Limited Edition.

I have always looked at stuff in stores or on menus at restaurants with a longing. OF COURSE, I want to try the Limited Edition Pillsbury Corn Elote Funfetti Cake, but it’s “bad.” Now when I shop, I ask myself, “Does it sound good? Does it sound unique? Will it be an experience?” If an item is a “yes” to at least one of those questions, into the basket it goes.

I live in Jacksonville, Florida, where we have the pleasure of 100% humidity at six in the morning, 343 days out of the year. I am currently working as a gig-grocery shopper/delivery gal, but I have a long history when it comes to grocery stores. I worked in big box stores, left to reset/remodel/open grocery stores across the state, and also spent time as a vendor for such brands as Hidden Valley, Soy Vay, and KC Masterpiece. Chances are if you walked through a grocery store in Northeast Florida and saw a display of Hidden Valley Ranch, it was my doing.

When it comes to food, there is very little that I will absolutely refuse to try. Even then, in most cases, I’d at least take a bite. I do tend to favor savory/salty items, but I will never say no to a doughnut, especially if it’s from Voodoo Doughnuts (Yes, Portland readers, I am aware that outside the OG Voodoo, they all pale in comparison. But let me tell you how that Memphis Mafia fritter slaps at 2 am).
?It’s going to be an interesting adventure, and I look forward to sharing it with you all!

PRIZE DRAWING: Another Mystery Box Giveaway

MysteryBox2020

My office is not a bodega, but it’s been looking like one recently with all the unopened products sitting in it.

So I did what any semi-popular snack blog editor would do: I stuffed what I could into a large USPS Priority Mail Flat Rate Box and posted this announcement for a Mystery Box Giveaway.

So how can you win this unopened products medley? I’m glad you asked.

RULES:

To enter this prize drawing for this Mystery Box, leave a comment with THIS post that answers the following question:

What’s one product that you think is in the Mystery Box?

Getting it right (or completely wrong) will not increase your chances of winning. Also, they’re all products that were released this year.

Don’t forget to fill out the email field because we’ll be emailing the randomly selected winner for his or her mailing address.

We will stop accepting entries on Sunday, October 4, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time. Only one comment allowed per person, and it’s only open to U.S. residents 18 years old or older.

Just a note: If you post a comment and it doesn’t show up, it ended up in our comment spam folder for some strange reason. There’s no need to attempt to post another comment. I’ll be pulling those out of the comment spam vortex regularly.

Good luck!

FINE PRINT: The Impulsive Buy promises your email address will not be used to send you emails about affiliate programs for snack box subscriptions. The Impulsive Buy also promises your mailing address will not be used to send you packets of McDonald’s ground pepper. Bribes will not be accepted. The Impulsive Buy will not be responsible for lost mail or damaged mail.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Looking for New Reviewers (2020 Edition)

We’re looking for reviewers!

If you’d like to apply, here’s what you’ll need to send:

  1. A review of a new product.
  2. Photos of the product you reviewed. (Full resolution versions, please!)
  3. A bio that includes why you want to write reviews for The Impulsive Buy.

A Few Notes:

  • While I’m looking for reviewers in general, I’d really like more reviewers to focus on fast food.
  • The new product can be something we’ve already covered on the site.
  • It’s a paid gig and it’s per review. The pay is not enough for you to quit your day job, but it’s more than enough to cover the coffee you buy to get you through your day job. Well, unless, you order some custom made drink that’s so ridiculous that it causes barista-rage.
  • Because sending rejection emails have slowly eaten away at my soul over the years, if you do not hear from me after two weeks from submitting your sample review, consider that as you not being selected. Okay, actually, make it three weeks because I’m probably going to procrastinate.
  • We’re only looking for writers located in the United States.

Please send your review, bio, and photos as separate attachments. So do not embed your photos into your review.

To apply, please email everything to theimpulsivebuy@gmail.com with “Grimace is so huggable!” in the subject line. We will stop accepting applicants on Sunday, September 20, 2020 at 20:20 Hawaii Standard Time.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

Thank you.

Marvo
Editor