Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" Comparison

Every year since the original Kindle Fire came out in 2011, I've upgraded to the latest version. I've owned three generations of the Kindle Fire now. (Though I always sell the previous model). The latest is the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" 16GB. It's faster and lighter than last years Kindle Fire HD. There's also a rear camera now besides the front camera and Amazon has made better placement and size of the power & volume buttons on the HDX.

The volume and power buttons are now on the back of the Kindle Fire HDX and much easier to find. (They were on the edges of the Kindle Fire HD and almost invisible to the naked eye). The HDX has a square boxy shape that I don't like as much as the sleek curved shape of last years Kindle Fire HD. I wish the rubber grip finish went around all the edges like it did on the HD. On the HDX there is a plastic part where the speakers & rear camera are. The HDX is incredibly lighter, you can feel the difference when you hold each model in your hands.

Comparison: While the screen size is still the same, Kindle Fire HDX is slighter smaller than Kindle Fire HD.  (HDX dimensions: 9.1, 6.2, 0.31. versus HD dimensions: 9.4, 6.4, 0.35)

The Home Screen has also changed. On Kindle Fire HD there was a little star symbol you would press to access your favorites. On Kindle HDX you swipe up from the bottom to access favorites. The new feature isn't as convenient. On the HD If I was on Facebook and wanted to switch apps I would just hit the star to access my favorites. On HDX I have to swipe up- BUT that will only show recently accessed apps... so if you want to switch programs but you haven't recently accessed the app- you will have to go all the way back out to the home screen to your favorites list.

The good features are the power and volume buttons. They are huge on the HDX now. They are located on the back instead of the sides like HD. The rear camera also has a flash. The response time for apps is so much quicker now because of the faster processor and ram. There's literally no lag time switching apps. Typing on the keyboard is more realistic because there's no delay anymore. It's lightning fast. The screen is a little cooler in color than Kindle Fire HD which had a warmer display- that's taking some getting used to for me. But pictures and videos are gorgeous.

As always it takes some getting used to when you upgrade. I really do love the Kindle Fire HDX, there's just minor changes from Kindle Fire HD, some good, some different. But all in all I'm pleased with it.

App wise: You would think the Amazon App store would have added Instagram since Kindle Fire HDX now has a rear camera... but nope. That still takes some fanangling, but you CAN install Instagram and other Android apps that the Amazon App store might not have.

For Kindle Fire HDX models: 

Step 1: Download APK Installer free from the Amazon App store.

Step 2: Go to SETTINGS: APPLICATIONS: Then for 'Allow Apps From Unknown Sources' select: ON.

Step 3: Go to Silk Browser go to website: and download 1MobileMarket store app for free.

Step 4: Install 1MobileMarket with an APK installer App.

Step 5: Use the 1MobileMarket App to find and install Instagram & other Android apps to your Kindle Fire HDX.

Other Kindle Fire Blog Posts: 

(1st Generation) Jan 2012: I ♥ ♥ ♥ my Kindle Fire!

(2nd Generation) Nov 2012: My Kindle Fire HD 8.9 arrived a week early! Yay!

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I Love Nail Polish: Pre-order Polishes

A few weeks ago I pre-ordered from I Love Nail Polish. I got Sweet Seranade, Washing Ashore and Birefringence with Holo. Limited Edition Absolute Zero was included free with every order, if you pre-ordered 3 of the new colors.

The original Birefringence is one of my favorite nail polishes. And Birefringence with Holo is just as awesome. It almost glows with the addition of the holographic sparkles. There are so many colors in this polish depending on the angle of your hands. (2 coats, plus 1 coat Seche Vite topcoat).

 For comparison here's the original Birefringence and it's Holo version:

Washing Ashore is a gorgeous blue green duo chrome. It's pretty much everything I wished 'My Little Glacier' would have been. (I ended up selling that color on eBay). Washing Ashore reminds me of peacock feathers or the ocean. I love it! (2 coats, plus 1 coat Seche Vite topcoat).

Sweet Serenade was a little darker than I thought it would be. It reminds me a bit of an oil slick. You see dark blue, almost black, green and purple. It's more subtle than the others but still gorgeous. (3 coats, plus 1 coat Seche Vite topcoat).

And last but not least Absolute Zero. A deep navy blue with silver shimmer in it. (3 coats, plus 1 coat Seche Vite topcoat). This was a limited edition color, only available to customers who pre-ordered 3 or more of the new polishes.

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Sally Hansen Triple Shine Polishes

I picked up 8 of the new Sally Hansen Triple Shine polishes about 3 weeks ago from CVS. I've had the pictures in my camera, but I wasn't able to edit and upload them without my laptop. I spent most of Saturday installing all my programs and files into my new Sony Vaio. And last night I was finally able to start editing the photos. I'm so happy to be back to blogging!

I lost all of my downloaded fonts when my laptop crashed, so I had to create a new watermark with a new font. And I finally figured out how to do a curved watermark in Paintshop Pro XI! Whoo Hoo!

First up is, Make Waves. This is my favorite out of all the polishes I bought. It's a gorgeous blue green duo chrome. I needed 3 coats to make it opaque. I also used one coat of Seche Vite. (Sally Hansen also makes a Triple Shine topcoat). I've also seen this colored layered over white and it looks just as pretty, if you don't feel like doing all those coats.

Slick Black has silver and even green micro shimmer in it. It kind of has a gun metal look. I only used 2 coats of this and 1 coat of topcoat. I layered Spark's Fly on my ring finger. 

Vanity Flare is a gorgeous bright grape color with lot's of shine. It almost looks like vinyl. I used 2 or 3 coats, (I can't quite remember), plus topcoat.

 Sparkling Water I did 2 coats and 1 coat of topcoat. Gorgeous blue green turquoise color!

Wavy Blue is a deep bright blue. This is 2 coats plus 1 coat of topcoat. The formula was a bit thick on this one.

I think Drama Sheen would best be layered over something. This is four coats, plus topcoat and even then you can still see my nail line because it's so sheer. It's a very sheer purple/pink duo chrome.

I really want to like Great White... this is four coats, plus topcoat. It's rather hard to work with, very streaky. I think it would do best layered over a solid white. It's such a pretty white too, it has silver, pink & green micro shimmer in it. Spark's Fly is on my ring finger.

 Slick Black, Spark's Fly, Wavy Blue, Sparkling Water

Make Waves, Great White, Drama Sheen, Vanity Flare

I got a new light box! The Mercurial Magpie posted about hers a few weeks back and I asked where she had gotten it. It's a 12 x 12 portable light box with 4 different backgrounds. I bought it on It's pretty sturdy for being made out of fabric too. 

Related Blog Posts:

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Buyer Beware!

Before I start: I want to say is not at fault for what happened. They have amazing customer service and I still very much support buying directly from (Also, this is a very long winded blog!)


My 3 year old Dell Inspiron died November 1st... the hard drive decided to go. So that night I got on the internet (on my husband's computer), and researched laptops so I could get one fast but with the specs I wanted. I finally settled on a secondary seller on Amazon- called Eagle Direct Tech. They have 408, 4.8 out of 5 star reviews. So I placed an order for the below laptop:

A Dell Inspiron 14R, with 2.10ghz processor, 6GB of RAM, 640GB hard drive. With Windows 7. I paid $18 for expedited shipping, because I wanted my new laptop fast. The order was placed on a Friday night around 10pm. 

You would expect expedited shipping to only take 2-3 days right? The seller printed my label Monday morning, but they did not drop it off at Fed Ex until 4pm Tuesday evening. Which meant I didn't receive my order until Friday afternoon. I paid $18 for 4-5 day shipping. I don't know about you... but that just sounds like regular shipping to me. The printed slip even said Fed Ex Home Delivery... that's not expedited...

I had to email the store TWICE to get a tracking number. When I pay $668 for something I want a tracking number. Fed Ex around here likes to leave packages at the wrong apartments. (Even though our complex is set up like duplexes and we each have our own front door.) I like to be able to track when a package is shipping or delivered in case there's a problem. 

I was willing to forgive the "expedited" shipping fiasco even though they were only going to get a 2 or 3 star review from me. Friday evening I got home from work excited to start my 3 day weekend and excited because I was going to have a laptop after going a week without one... 

I opened the box... and at first I wasn't thrilled with how the computer was packaged. It was just vacuum wrapped with plastic in the box- no bubble wrap or anything to protect it. The other thing was there was a big scratch on the lid... when the item was supposed to be "new". Also when I turned on the computer it didn't tell me to set up Window's like a "new" computer would, it just logged right on. Then I checked the specs. I went right to SYSTEM in the Control Panel to make sure I had gotten the right computer. Then I freaked out... 

It was a Dell Inspiron 14R... but that 2.10ghz processor... that 6gb of ram... that 640gb hard drive? Not there. I was sent a laptop with a hard drive less than 452GB, 4GB of RAM, 1.80ghz processor. NOT WHAT I ORDERED!!!

 Scratch on the lid:

I was beyond pissed. My hands were shaking because I just spent over $600 on a new laptop and now I had nothing. And no way to call the seller, they only communicate through email! So I called Amazon customer service right away and they were able to help me file a complaint. They emailed the seller for me, told them I was sent the wrong item, that I wanted to be compensated for the original shipping plus the shipping to return the item. Then they calmed me down by telling me, even if the seller wouldn't cooperate, Amazon would get my money back guaranteed. They also said they would personally call me back on Tuesday evening to make sure the seller had contacted me by then.

But in the meantime- I was out $668 dollars... and I still had no laptop... and I was starting to go crazy without a laptop. My Kindle Fire HD only does so much and I was sick of typing on touchscreen! I wanted to blog, edit photos, play The Sims 3. If I wanted a laptop directly from, they weren't even shipping until Thanksgiving week... and I didn't want to wait that long!

So... my husband and I went to 2 Best Buys and a Staples Friday evening trying to find a laptop that would meet my specs. By that point, price wasn't too much of a factor anymore. Also wanting Windows 7 was out, because all the stores were only carrying Windows 8. Unfortunately none of the in store Dell's were worth the prices they were selling them for. Staples had one model I was interested in, but was sold out. And the Best Buy was sold out of the Sony Vaio I finally decided on. They checked with other stores in the area and only one down in South Philadelphia had 3 in stock, but by then it was 7:40pm and the stores closed at 9pm and it's a 45min drive to get down to South Philadelphia. So we went home and I ugly cried, had a glass of vodka and went to bed early. 


We got up Saturday morning early, so we could get to the Best Buy in Philadelphia when it opened. I don't think I've ever been to a store before it opened. lol. There were other people waiting around outside for it to open. I felt like it was Christmas or something. :-p Thank goodness. THEY DID have 3 of the Sony Vaio flip 15 in stock! Even though it ended up costing me $700 MORE (including $100 just in tax... thanks Philadelphia for your 8% tax). Sigh. But... I wanted a laptop fast.

I was finally emailed a prepaid shipping label to send the incorrect laptop back to Eagle Direct Tech. It will be getting dropped off at Fed Ex on Wednesday. And  when I'm refunded my $668... at least half of the Sony Vaio will be paid off... thank goodness for my Citibank credit card... (6% APR!)

The Sony Vaio Flip 15A is a powerhouse laptop. It has a 1.80 Core i7-4500u processor, 8GB of RAM, 1 Terabyte hard drive. It also has two video cards. An Intel HD 4400 intergrated graphics and a Nividia GeForce 2GB video card. The screen itself is also touch screen and It folds down to convert to a "tablet"... but I'm not messing with that anytime soon. I don't want to break it!

Only weird thing is... there's no CD/DVD drive. Yeah... I know newer laptops are starting to phase them out, because everything is becoming cloud based. It doesn't bother me too much though, none of my programs run from the disc. And the only time I ever used my disc drive on the old laptop was to watch a DVD rarely or burn a CD for the car. We have an external CD/DVD drive so I can use that when I need to.

Also it has Windows 8.1. (I updated the OS last night from 8.) After playing around with Windows 8 this weekend... it isn't too bad or too different. The "start menu" is definitely weird. But you can still view all your programs. You just customize what programs are pinned to the start menu. I will be back to posting nail blogs again soon! I spent yesterday getting all my programs installed.

Oh and the touch screen is so cool! I was playing The Sims 3 last night and my husband asked if the touch screen worked with games... and it does! I could select things in game by touching the screen! And do my games ever run fast now! No more lagging, whoo hoo!

My Shiny new Sony Vaio Flip 15A.

Here are my thoughts on Eagle Direct Tech, on
1. I had to email them far too many times, twice for a tracking number and two more times to get a prepaid return mailing slip. They get back to their customers very slowly.

2. I paid $18 for expedited shipping through Fed Ex. It took 4-5 days to arrive, when it should have only taken 2-3 days because the item was not shipped right away by the store.

3. They either "sent me the wrong model"  like they said in their reply email. Or, they sent me that laptop thinking I would never notice the specs were different from what I ordered.

4. The laptop looked like a display model to me, not brand new as described. It wasn't packed very well in the box, no bubble wrap etc. It had a scratch on the lid.

Conclusion: BUYER BEWARE! I do not reccomend shopping from Eagle Direct Tech on

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Not my weekend... and other ramblings

So this weekend has been a big bust. Friday morning I woke up sick with a head cold, throbbing headache with a stabbing pain in my eye. Sore throat, stuffed up nose. Then my laptop decides to die. It's a 3 year old Dell Inspiron 1545. It's been giving me a fatal hard drive error for about a year... and I just always thought, "Oh well, if that happens I'll do a PC restore to factory settings."... nope. Didn't work. The part of the hard drive PC restore is on... yeah that's the corrupted spot... blah. so pissed.

I wanted to get a new laptop next year when the car was paid off, ($3,000 left!). Not this year, when my Kindle Fire HDX 8.9" has already been pre-ordered... (I've upgraded every year since the original Kindle Fire came out in 2010, I always resell last years model on eBay). But anyhow... thank God I backed up all my files on my external hard drive last weekend. The only thing I am kicking myself about is that I forgot to back up the countless custom fonts I've downloaded over the years... one of which I was using for my watermark... and I forget the name now... arrgh.

I'm thankful I have my Kindle Fire HD, but a tablet still isn't the same as a full functioning PC. I can't upload any of the nail photos on my Sony Camera and I don't have Paintshop Pro to edit. I can't play Sims 3 and unwind on the weekend. Blah. I did order a new laptop on Saturday. I got another Dell (I am partial to Dell, this is the first one to die on me... my husband's that he inherited from me is 6 years old and still kicking). Dell's website didn't have any to ship until end of November that met my specs... and I can't wait that long!!! So I got one new on Amazon with Windows 7 (None of that Windows 8 mess for me), and that had enough space to store my large resolution photos and that would run the Sims 3. It was still less than what I paid for our previous two laptops... but I did not think I would have to put out $600... I had to take some money from our savings to pay for it. And with expedited shipping it sure better be here mid week! New one is a Dell Inspiron 14R. (No Macs for me... sorry I'm a bit anti Apple).

So... I am blogging from my Kindle Fire HD. I will have better photos of this polish when I'm up & running on a PC again. But for now here is a cell phone video & photo. (Compliments of my Galaxy S3). Black Cat Lacquer had a Halloween sale with 25% off. I grabbed Poison Apple. It's a gorgeous red scattered holo thermal polish. It's bright red when warm, and dark red when cold. My nails are long enough that the tips do stay dark red for a gradient effect. But for the video & photo I used hot/cold water to show it off more.

I also finally found the Sally Hansen triple shine polishes at one of our CVS'! I went a little nuts... swatches to come soon....

I also pre-ordered 3 of the new colors from I Love Nail Polish. I got Birefringence with Holo, Sweet Serenade, Washing Ashore. They were $1 off during pre-order and you get a limited edition full size polish, exclusive to the pre-order.

Last but not least... I about fell over the other night when I saw Emily De Molly Cosmic Forces IN STOCK on Llarowe! I have been wanting this elusive polish from the Aussie indie maker for long, I didn't think I'd ever get it. (And I sure wasn't going to pay $30 on eBay!). 

But... I am now going on a no buy. I have bought more polish in October than I did the the whole year! I have enough pretties to play with... so I am going on a no buy until Jan 31st... longer if I can hold out! I have plenty of polish to swatch and blog about and stamp with. So there will still be lot's of blogging. :-)

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Kiss Gradation Polish Kit.

✯ PR Sample ✯

This was provided for review in my Influentser Rose Vox Box.

I received this Kiss Nail Polish Gradation kit in my Influenster voxbox. You get three metallic colors with step by step directions to create a gradient look. There are four different kits available in different colors. The kit I received is called: Film Noir.

Step 2 says to paint up to a certain line on your nails, but I used a makeup sponge instead and dabbed the polish on. I needed two coats for step 1 and just one coat each for step 2 and 3. (Plus Seche Vite topcoat). I really like the colors I received. They make nice Holiday or New Year's Eve colors.

You can find Kiss Polish for sale at: CVS, Walgreens, Target, Rite Aid, Kmart, Walmart, etc.

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