Thursday, December 4, 2014

My Christmas Wishlist

Every year Engineer W and I make Christmas wishlists so that we have a starting point for what to get each other. We try to stick to a $200 per person budget, so we probably won't get everything on the wishlist. Usually there is one large-ish present and a few small ones, rather than one giant gift or a bunch of little gifts. If we have especially good surprise gift ideas, the list can be ignored entirely.

This year I'm late in making my list. Christmas is now only 3 weeks away (eek!), so it doesn't leave him a lot of time to buy the presents, get them in the mail if they're online purchases, and wrap them up to put under the tree. Still, better late than never, eh? Here are some gifts I would love to receive this year. If you're still looking for gift ideas for loved ones in your life, maybe you'll find these suggestions useful.

1. Pandora One: $30 / 6 months

I'm not a big music lover. I know very few contemporary artists, and I'm terrible with song lyrics/titles. But I do like to listen to light music while I work. I find that it helps me concentrate, especially because I share an office with other people. I can't focus at all if people around me are talking, so when that happens, I pop on my noise-canceling headphones and start up Pandora. Usually I listen to light classical music. Really any music without lyrics will do. As much as I like regular Pandora, I find it very jarring when a talking ad pulls me out of the zone suddenly in the middle of hard concentration. I think going ad-free would really improve my productivity. A 6-month subscription is relatively affordable and perfect for the student or music lover in your life.

2. A camera tripod: ~$25

I would like to thank you guys for sticking around and reading my blog despite my terrible pictures! Right now I mostly use the camera on my phone, which really isn't the best. I'd like to "upgrade" to using a point-and-shoot (which I already own) and a tripod. Maybe someday I'll even get a super fancy camera, but for now it's not really in my budget. Once I have a tripod and pick a default location, hopefully I can start taking outfit photos more regularly. This could also make a good gift for an amateur photographer.

3. A pair of high-top leather/suede sneakers: ~$75 - $100

Vans for J.Crew                        Nike for J.Crew

So you may have noticed by now that I never ever wear heels. It's because I hate them. That is, I love the way they look but hate the way they make my feet feel. If you're one of those women who can survive walking for hours in heels, I admire you! Personally I can't, so I mostly wear flats or low heeled shoes (less than 2 inches). However, thin-soled flats aren't exactly the best for your feet either. I can already feel the toll they've taken on mine. Since I need to walk all over campus every day, maybe it's time to switch to sneakers. And what's more stylish than a cool pair of high-tops? Great for students and commuters who walk to work.

4. Spiralizer or mandoline slicer (plus cut glove): ~$15 - $50

Confession time: before I came to grad school, I didn't know how to cook. Somehow I missed out on learning this basic life skill. I guess there wasn't an urgent need before. For most of undergrad, I lived in the dorms so I could just show up at the cafeteria and take whatever food I wanted. At home my mom was the master chef. On occasion when I was left to my own devices, I would just eat at restaurants. That habit became rather expensive, and it was also unhealthy. Now I'm working to rectify this issue, but it's been an uphill battle over the past few years. In particular, I want to start incorporating more vegetables into my diet, and I think this could be part of the solution! For inspiration, see Skinny Taste's zoodle recipes or Fran's post on her diet. Useful for new cooks, vegetarians/vegans, or just anyone who wants to eat more vegetables.

5. Warheads candy canes (good stocking stuffer!): ~$3

I love candies with unique taste combinations. Sweet and creamy? That's all well and good. But what about spicy and sweet? Salty and sweet? Sour and sweet? Now we're talking! My favorite candy cane last year was this super sour Warheads version from Target. This year I looked for them again in store, but they were nowhere to be found. I see that Amazon has some in stock, but they're kind of expensive. If anyone spots these at their local store, please let me know!

Happy holidays, everyone! What's on your wishlist this year?

No comments:

Post a Comment