I saw someone on YouTube do a round-up of their favorite Amazon purchases from this year and thought it was a great idea, so here we go! Obviously if you have the option to shop local that’s much cooler on many fronts, but if you live in the middle of nowhere like I do, sometimes Amazon is your only hope. (Pulling up my list of orders was kind of depressing. I might have single-handedly funded Bezos’s entire trip to space. Sorry, everyone.)
As usual, links are Amazon affiliate links because cat food is expensive and I really need that 4 cents I get when you buy something, thank you very much.
BOOTS WITH POCKETS, Y’ALL!
Where were these when I was in my late 20s and going to concerts in bars every weekend? That zipper on the side opens up to a pocket large enough to stash your credit card an ID in, your car key, or even a phone charger. They come in 14 different colors/styles, they’re actually comfortable, and although Amazon prices fluctuate pretty often, they’re usually under $50. (Mine were $40.79 when I ordered them, and they’re the Mission Brown color.)
A Coat with Built-In Heaters!
This one really deserves to be in all-caps, too, but I didn’t want to overdue it. I met someone who had one of these a couple of winters ago and I’ve been wanting one ever since. Again – Where have you been all my life?? This is basically like if you stuck heating pads or small electric blankets in the front and back of your coat. Even when it’s frigid out, you get nice and toasty within about 30 seconds! The battery is removable so you can recharge it via USB. Again, thanks to the ups and downs of Amazon prices, I got it on sale for $90 but it’s now about $130, which is still VERY worth it IMO, but if you can score it on sale, all the better!
The EZY-Dose Pill Crusher
If you can’t swallow pills, this guy is your new best friend. I’ve had a pill cutter for years that I usually use to cut my pills into tiny pieces, but this is SO much easier. You unscrew it, pop your pill in, and when you re-screw it together, your pill is smushed to dust. (Obviously check with your doctor/pharmacist to make sure your meds are safe to be taken this way!) Although it’s advertised as blue they send random colors so mine is lime green, which was a little disappointing but it’s also less than $5 so I’m not really complaining.
WANF Foldable Travel Duffel Bag
I usually wind up flying Allegiant because there aren’t a lot of choices at my closest airport and they’re cheap. However, they do charge 40 freaking dollars each way to check a bag, so I needed a decent-sized carry on that I knew would fit under the seat if necessary. This is a little thinner than I expected from the photo (think light canvas backpack material) but it’s $11 so… whatever. It has both a shoulder strap and handles, and it comes in a bunch of cute colors. (There are some options where you get TWO of ’em for $12!) It held up totally fine despite being packed to the seams with probably 20+ pounds of stuff for my Florida trip.
Black & Decker 20 V String Trimmer
I hate yard work, but I also hate paying someone else to do it for me. To avoid my city getting grumpy with me when my front yard starts looking like a lush jungle (which I honestly think is way cooler than everyone else’s identical lawns, but whatevs), I grabbed this battery powered trimmer for about $70. This eliminates the need to deal with fuel (apparently you have to mix oil and gas for traditional weed whackers? No thanks.) and the possibility of accidentally cutting the electric cord like my mom once did with a hedge trimmer. The battery only lasts about half an hour before it needs re-charged, but a) My front yard only takes a few minutes to do and b) When I tried it in the back yard, my arm was so numb from the vibrations that I could only use it about 15-20 minutes before I had to admit defeat. Plus it’s less than 6 pounds.
Covelin Canvas Tote Bag
I either carry the smallest purse possible or a big ol’ tote bag that I can fit notebooks and a spare cat in. This kind of bag also comes in super handy when the airline allows you a carry-on and one “personal item” because technically it’s a purse but I’m pretty sure you could fit all 7 Harry Potter books inside if you tried. This was $11 when I got it, but it’s currently down to $9. It does have an ugly white patch on it, but I covered mine up with a Strange Planet button and all was well. This comes in a whopping *76* different colors, some of which are as low as $7, and I’m delighted to report that the one I got is called “Ball Blue.” (I’m very tempted to get the bottle green one as a spare.)
L’Oreal Paris Elvive 8 Second Wonder Water
I forget where I heard about this (probably YouTube or TikTok) but this stuff is apparently crazy popular and I’ve been living under a rock. It’s about $9 and you use it after you shampoo for shinier, silkier hair. It’s basically the same consistency of water when it comes out of the bottle, but when it hits your hair, it HEATS UP and then you feel all fancy. (Just me?) I’m not explaining it well but it has 18,471 five-star ratings on Amazon (No, seriously) so it might be magical?
Columbia Women’s Crestwood Hiking Shoes
Well… hello, inflation. These were about $60 back when I bought them in the glorious era of stimulus checks, but they’re currently $100, so maybe check back in a couple months? Anyway, my beloved Ahnu hiking shoes were literally falling apart so it was time. These are a little chonkier (scientific term) than I usually go for but we’ve had some good times together this year.
You’re probably not going to want to like, hike the entire Appalachian Trail in these, but so far mine aren’t showing any wear at all. Definitely a decent choice if you want something in between the super cheap shoes that are going to fall apart and the fancy hiking boots that are going to cost hundreds of dollars.
I’m putting these last two together because I bought them together and use them together:
I had a closet door that I wanted to cover so I went to Amazon to see if I could find a wall hanging that was cute but not so expensive that I’d be heartbroken when my cats inevitably destroy it. I’m a sucker for a good mandala design, so I got this one (It has one of those insanely long, overly-descriptive product names on Amazon but the brand is Enjohos) and wound up ordering the 66 ft. Fairy Lights String to go with it. At first I wasn’t so sure about the lights, but they turned out to be great. They’re waterproof and the flexible copper cord and bulbs don’t get hot at all. 66 feet sounds like a lot but mine are doubled up above my bed (about 6 ft each way) and then above the closet I just kept looping them around until I ran out of length. The tapestry is thin like a sheet, silky, and way bigger than I expected since I ordered the small size. (It’s covering a double closet door that’s close to 5 feet wide and probably 7 ft tall.) At $11 for the tapestry and $12 for the lights, I was definitely pleased by how much they changed up the vibe of the space for so little money.
That’s it for 2021! Do you like this kind of round-up or do you now kinda hate me for causing you to add things to your wishlist? 😂 Let me know in the comments!