This week we’re exploring all the best things and so far we’ve done THE BEST THING I READ and THE BEST THING I HEARD and today we’re doing THE BEST THING I BOUGHT, which is sort of hard because I don’t get out much but there are a few things I’ve been super happy to find so I’m sharing them here.

  1.  This sweater, which is made of baby polar bears, I think?  It’s so soft it’s insane and I’ve had it for two years and it’s still awesome.  In fact, I bought one for my mom and my granny last year for Xmas because it’s my favorite article of clothing.
  2. Eshakti, which is a clothing website where you can customize the clothes to fit you AND ALL OF THEIR DRESSES HAVE POCKETS.  If you’ve ever seen me in real life and complimented what I was wearing I guarantee you I said, “AND IT HAS POCKETS!” and I bought it from here.Here’ s a  secret tip:  Their crepe, georgette and duponi fabrics are cat fur resistant and fairly wrinkle-proof.  The other fabrics, not as much.
  3. The perfect Christmas tree topper which just arrived minutes ago:

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It’s awesome but I didn’t hook it onto the tree right the first time and when I was getting off the step-ladder it fell and hit me right in the ear.  It’s more firmly attached now but maybe be aware that it’s bloodthirsty.

Now, your turn!  What’s something awesome you are so glad to have bought?

PS. I don’t get paid for any of these but I did use my amazon links for two of them because The James Garfield Christmas Miracle is coming up in a week or two and I always use all my affiliate profits to help kids have a happy holiday.  More on that next month.

201 thoughts on “THE BEST THING I BOUGHT

Read comments below or add one.

  1. I am so happy that this year I bought a Precision Cooker so I can cook sous vide. It makes such a difference and my meat is so tender.

  2. My children would kill for that tree topper….. my uber Catholic parents might take umbrage with it…. hahaha!!!!

  3. This time of year is hard for me because my mom passed away on 10-29-12, so I head into the holidays with a thicker sadness. My mother loved lighthouses, so I just bought an adorable ceramic one to put in my garden. I can see the lighthouse through the shutters from the room where my Christmas Tree lives, and it’s been giving me lots of joy. I miss you, Mom.

  4. See what happens when you turn your back on that tree topper? Deadly!
    I think you’re the only person I know who uses eShakti, and now I’m intrigued (because I’m tall, and dresses often don’t fit correctly, and I was worried it wasn’t worth the expense).

  5. I am going to have to try eShakti out. Because I like 3/4 length sleeves and knee-length skirts, and I have an XS bust and hips but like a M waist, and finding stuff that fits all parts of my body is super difficult.

  6. I bought a long boucle cardigan sweater 5+ years ago. I love it so much, and yes it has pockets. Oh, and many many holes, but I cannot part with it, even though it makes my hubby cringe whilst wearing….sigh

  7. I bought the Rory the Raccoon mousepad for myself at work. I don’t usually buy things for myself, but that I can’t resist that little buggers face! It makes me happy everytime I see it, which in turn makes me less stabby. I guess I should write it off as a work expense, everybody wins!

  8. The best thing I bought is a cruise for me and my husband. I love cruising. Sleeping on a big ship where everything is taken care of so I can relax and have fun, without cellphones or social media or any other distraction is the best vacation, ever.

  9. That tree topper is so freaking adorable!

    My most recent purchase I’m super happy about is a bracelet I bought for my best friend whose mom is going through a battle with breast cancer. It’s super simple in design and I had them put Gaelic for “hope” on it with the ribbon. As far as for me? My husband just text me and said the laptop I wanted was ordered so I can stop stressing that mine is going to die in the middle of working now! WHOO—HOOO! 🙂

  10. The tree topper!!!
    I just started using Sips By, a monthly tea delivery service that actually sends good teas and not cinnamon mocha berry holiday cheer tea, or something like that. Though they probably would send that too depending on how you fill out your profile.

  11. Yay James Garfield. I’ve been watching for him to make an appearance this Christmas.

  12. My Apple Watch gives me fitness motivation (aka gets my lazy butt off the couch during the long Thanksgiving weekend) and also makes me feel super-high-tech when I take a call on my watch or pay at a store using my watch.

    Second place, Google Home Minis for Christmas last year. We spread them throughout the house (including the kids’ bedrooms) so we can say “Hey Google, broadcast ‘It’s time for dinner.'” And Google will tell my husband and kids that dinner is ready. It saves me from yelling.

  13. Ummm, yeah, so I didn’t read the post correctly yesterday and just commented another great book instead of something great I’d HEARD. So I’m gonna do yesterday’s and today’s to catch up: Best heard: The my son is coming to stay with ME this Christmas instead of me hauling up to see him at my ex’s house like I’ve done the past 4 years. HAPPY MOMMY.
    Best bought: Dinner at our favorite place with my parents when they came to visit us here in Virginia for the first time in October. Great food, great memories, totally worth the credit card debt.

  14. I just bought the cutest little succulent plant holder for my desk at work. I’m a middle school teacher trapped indoors all day, so I needed some easy greenery to cheer me up – and this little holder is perfect! Here’s the link to it, if you’re interested – no affiliations or anything, just a cute holder 🙂

  15. Today I will be buying more meds to treat my endometriosis. Being in less pain is good. Though I do wish it was as fun as buying a tree topper or something!

  16. Seconding the eShakti love! I got a long-sleeved maxi dress from them and it is the perfect length (I am 5’2″ so I usually have to either buy petites or wear tall heels) and the dress was so well-made.

    My best purchase: a bidet attachment for my toilet. I’ve told everyone it’s a “game changer!” with varying levels of creepiness.

  17. Don’t know if this is the ‘best’, but it’s my current favorite. Recently bought a necklace with a Old Norse message in Runes (which I have just recently started studying) that says: “Remember me; I remember you. Love me;I love you.” Of course I’m sorta of taking the jeweler’s word for the translation … could mean something else entirely, like, “Buy slightly used in good condition at Oleg’s Dealership.” I’m going with the first translation, as it so suits the relationship between my husband and me. Early Christmas present! Along with a set of rune staves from Russia. And books about Scandinavian mythology.

  18. I bought all the discworld novels this year. Some in print and most in audio. These have made me so so happy and may well have saved me. My favorite character is DEATH which doesn’t sound like it would be helpful, but it’s just lovely and sweet.

  19. A super-poofy butt cushion for my desk chair. Most days “the best” and “my butt” don’t go together, but when that cushion meets the butt things are happy around here.

  20. My car, because it’s tiny and purple. Bright orchid purple! I’ve had it maybe two years now, and I still adore that it’s purple. It makes me smile every time I go out to drive it, and nothing else about driving makes me smile, so that’s saying something. I’ve caught people taking their picture with my car, and I’ve even had a post-it note left on my car with a compliment on how awesome it is.

    (Also my rice cooker. Throw in rice, water, salt, push a button, and I can ignore it until it’s done and get perfect rice every single time. Woo!)

  21. My Gf and I decided to adopt the Icelandic tradition of giving books on Christmas Eve and I ordered her a signed copy of Furiously Happy from BookPeople. I love that I can purchase your signed books from a favorite store even though I once again live in FL. Thank you for making a special present even more special by taking the time to sign books there! I can’t wait for her to read it and finally understand why I am such a fan. Your tree topper is awesome. Nice score!

  22. Ooo I need to try eshakti. I love pockets! Have you ever read Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman? One of my best purchases is upcoming. I’m getting one of my great-grandmothers pieces of silverware made into a ring for my mom for Christmas by a local artist! I’m so excited to give it to her b/c she’s going to love it!

  23. I am going to try Ekshati – that sounds anazing and they have more than just dresses!
    Best thing I bought this year was a new patio. I had to refinance the house to do it, but at least the backyard ian’t quite so ghetto anymore!

  24. I’m in Orange County ca and in SoCal one of the major crafting/art supply chain stores we have is Michaels. I found some amazing stuff on Black Friday. My favourite picks from what I scored were taco Christmas wrapping paper and a Christmas unicorn seen here that is now sitting happily on a record player eeeeeeeeeee! I have named her Unico the Christmas unicorn…

  25. OMG!!! I so want one of the Creepy Weeping Angle Christmas tree topper!!! Those are probably my favorite Dr. Who evil characters! I’m sooo jelly!!!!

  26. Okay, this seems silly, but these: Yankz SureLaces. I think they’re mostly meant for running, but I threw them on my Keen boots and now they’re slip-ons! Getting my boots on and off is a cinch now in the winter. I’ve got greyhounds that need their own coats and sometimes even booties on the coldest winter days when we go for walks. Having this little simplicity is amazing.

    I would have said my pups, but those were technically adoption fees. But man, worth EVERY penny and then some.

  27. Over the Thanksgiving weekend, I went shopping with my daughter, and purchased some cute chopsticks from the local Asian market. I was so excited, and happy I didn’t cash out on Amazon because they were literally a third of the price at the Asian market. The other thing I’m happy I bought/found (at the same market) were my favorite ramen noodles – extremely spicy fire noodles by Samyang, which are difficult to find. Those were also super cheap, and I got myself a package of 5 for half the price Amazon has them listed for.

  28. Ugh! Post #30 was SUPPPOSED to say ” Buy slightly used reindeer in good condition at Oleg’s Dealership.” The ‘reindeer’ disappeared from the original post (sneaky fellows).

  29. All the dresses I’ve bought from They are comfortable, fit me well, have pockets and are STEAM themed. Highly recommend them, and they have kids clothes, so if you have a youngster in your life who loves space or coding or whatever there are shirts and dresses for them.

    I also love these boots that I bought nearly 2 years ago and still wear almost daily from fall into spring. They are super comfortable and go with nearly everything, including dresses over leggings.

  30. I have like a zillion Star Wars toys and posters and books and they’re all over my apartment and basically what I’m telling you is that you should buy yourself silly things that make you happy when you look at them. The stuff I buy is almost always cheap, but looking at it makes me smile. And with severe treatment-resistant depression, that’s impressive!

  31. Yay for James Garfield! Y’all saved Christmas last year, and the books the little ones were given are re-read constantly. My oldest daughter actually had to do a book project for school this month and chose a book she was given. I don’t have an obvious best-thing-I-bought, since things are really tight right now (I’m probably going to end up requesting again), but the best thing I’ve been given in a really long time was the smiles on everyone’s faces. I swear, we still read that unicorn book at least a few times each week.

  32. Spa day with my sister-in-law at a super fancy spa! It was a treat we both needed!

  33. I bought all of my presents from two local Chico company’s selling tee shirts that will have 100% of the proceeds go to the #campfire victims in Butte County California this year. Now I NEED to find a weeping angel for my tree.

  34. I think the most awesome thing I’ve ever bought for myself (well, my husband helped :D) was Hikaru, my 2010 royal blue Nissan Versa hatchback.

  35. The best thing(s) I bought were a small jade circle necklace, and a paperwhite kindle. I love reading in the dark with my cat, and when I am in public people will not ask me what I’m reading since there is no cover for them to look at. I still love reading physical books and will buy books if I know I will want to possibly reread them and lend them to friends

  36. Officially, I didn’t buy it, it was bought for me, but I love it to pieces: a Cuisinart. My mom had one when we were growing up that barely got used, except for the time when she sliced her hand with one of the blades and we had to go to the ER. In any case, my best friend bought me the fancy-schmancy red one for my birthday, and let me tell you, this sucker is a godsend if you chop lots of veggies (for stir fry, fried rice, or salads.) It also means my husband, muscled as he is, no longer has to bust up oreo cookies for dirt cake by hand.

  37. Best thing I ever bought was tickets to see Rush, for my Hubby, for our anniversary in 2006. It was going to be the greatest surprise ever til Ticketmaster contacted us, but they got Hubby and not me. He was still surprised, but I was pissed.

  38. I am going to be extremely boring and say that one of my favorite purchasable luxuries is “more than enough comfy underwear” – as in, even if laundry day is delayed, there will still be more comfy underwear in the drawer.

    Also boring, but this is the time of year that my (obnoxiously sensitive, perfume-detesting, doesn’t like dry winter air) skin dearly loves Cetaphil moisturizing lotion (not anything fancy; not even the fancy kinds of Cetaphil, just… moisturizing lotion). After washing face, leave a bit of water on the face, mix a canned-green-pea sized dollop of lotion with the water and rub/pat over the face (with especial attention to dry areas and slightly avoiding oily-tending areas), rub the rest of it into the back of hands/knuckles: skin happy.

    And craft supplies for crafts one actually enjoys.

    And books. So many good books…

  39. The best thing I bought is a pink steam mop. Daughter has stopped threatening to call the health department.

  40. Silicone roasting racks. If you cook, these will change your life!

    The metal wire racks are tediously difficult to clean, and after a while, they all start to rust. We bought these silicone roasting racks (they’re stackable, so we bought 4 – amazing!) and they work BEAUTIFULLY! Ours are the rectangular-ish ones, but there’s apparently a round one which fits the InstaPot (for those of you who love the InstaPot), but I’m told it will also fit some round crock pots/slow cookers.

    The cleanup is so much easier. Nothing is burnt on and they’re dishwasher safe!

    OXO Good Grips Silicone Roasting Racks, 2-Pack

  41. Something I’m so glad I bought is an essential oil diffuser. It is helping the house smell good and keeping germs away too during this cold/flu season. No colds so far!

  42. A bright red pig shaped butter dish for Hogswatch. It’s so good! Looking at it makes me happy.

  43. Two All-Clad pans. I’m getting rid of all the random crap I’ve been cooking with and becoming an adult! At 61.

  44. I shop too much sometimes. Best things recently though were for other people. A “RBG is my Mews” pin from Squirrel DenStudio for one of my cat loving government teachers. She was so happy and it went on her lanyard immediately. Bought meals for my fave cat shelters on Giving Tuesday. I’ve accepted the fact that I have huge boobs and a linebackers shoulders and actually bought a jean jacket that fits from Lane Bryant.

  45. I finally bought myself boxy charm two months ago and I love it. I love getting a surprise every month. The other thing I’m
    Super super happy about is I bought gifts for a secret santa thing I’m doing with a group I’m in on fb. Because of this SS I’ve made some amazing friends that I truly adore. I usually don’t make friends on purpose because people suck but these girls are some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. After my mom died I haven’t enjoyed Christmas and this is the first Christmas I’ve enjoyed.

  46. Best recent purchases in the “makes me happy” department are 4 candles that smell uhmayzing. They are totally helping the cheer in my house – the smell of apple cider or sugar cookies without all the work or the calories. More practically, the massive strands of tree lights I picked up on cyber Monday are a life saver…

    I’m drooling over that sweater. But since I own at least 3 similar to it, I’m going to resist. Dammit. Mine aren’t so soft.

  47. I bought myself a cast iron frying pan recently. Omg! How have I been adulting this long and never had one? Love love love it! And bonus, it works for bicep curls… woe is the burglar who enters my house once I build the muscles up to wield this thing like the deadly weapon it is!

  48. About 10 years ago, I bought a couple small pieces of pottery at an art fair. The glaze reminds me of the Northern Lights. They’re beautiful and still make me happy everytime I look at them.

  49. Not something we bought, but my husband and I adopted a dog a month ago, and the $200 fee to cover his vaccinations, neutering, etc was well worth the cost. He is a sweet 7 pound poodle/jack Russell mix and he is my sweet Baboo. We love to snuggle on the couch, and he also loves to run around and play with me. I am smitten

  50. A HOUSE! I finally got out of condo/apartment living (with people above, below, across the hall and on either side of me) after nearly 12 years! I am so thrilled. I know it’s not something that everyone can do so I don’t have any suggestions for you to go out buy but it was by far my best investment. Which is also unfortunately why I will be too poor to participate in this year’s James Garfield Christmas Miracle (which I have donated to for the past few years). As for a thing, perhaps the Leaf blower/vacuum from Toro so I didn’t have to rake my new yard. Just suck them all up and dispose of shredded leaves (or use as mulch like I did).

  51. Eshakti is awesome! The extra fee for custom measurements is worth it AND if it doesn’t fit/look right or you change your mind you can even return custom items!!

    I’ve been super happy with them. I wish they were still making custom jeans so I could try those out.

  52. Roomba, I thought I’d never spend that much on a vacuum but we found a great sale and I finally gave in. I’m glad I did. Even when we think it is clean it is finding stuff to pick up. It is awesome and annoying at times as it gets stuck on things or behind doors. I got the one that is a step down from the advanced mapping ones (too expensive) so it is random and does go over the same places more than once but more than helpful around the house.

  53. i just bought tickets to see Star Wars, a New Hope in concert with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra in January. I could not be more excited.

  54. I just bought a LOT of new socks on Their Cyber Monday sale was amazing. The best pair: Diet Coke socks. I am my own best Santa.

  55. A friend is a Lularoe consultant and I bought a gorgeous dress and leggings, which I wore for Thanksgiving with Doc Marten boots. So impossibly comfortable, and next year, the dresses will have pockets. I also bought some Minnie Mouse apparel: dress, leggings, top. I am ready for Disney. Honestly, though, these purchases were fun and silly and I loved every minute of picking them out.

  56. 22 years ago, up in northern NH, a 100+ farmhouse with barn and garage on 17 acres for under 50k. We don’t live there full time, but someday, when they get internet, and I’m retired, we’ll take the plunge. PS-love the tree topper

  57. I love eShakti! I have three dresses from there and my favourite thing about them is the awesome pockets 🙂 I just bought two side tables for the chairs in my living room and I’m super excited about those. I also just bought a 2nd hand chaise lounge off of FB and it is the most comfortable chair EVER! Soft and cozy, reminds me of a soft sweater 🙂 And bonus that I didn’t pay full price for it!

  58. Jenny, DON’T BLINK! If we weren’t Jewish, I would be getting one for our tree too. : ) I tried to find a menorah that uses sonic screwdrivers instead of candles; no joy there, but I did come across this:

    I think maybe the best thing I bought recently was a new fountain pen from Ryan Krusac. I like it because it writes beautifully, because the pen itself is a work of art, because the Krusacs are amazing people, and because the pen came with a story. Ryan’s grandfather lived in Poland when WW II broke out. He was an artist; he didn’t survive the war. Only one of his paintings made it through, and the Krusacs have it hanging in their home. The carving on the pen replicates the ship in that painting. I wish I could post a photo of the pen, but I don’t know how to do that.


  59. Grapes and Brie. It doesn’t sound all that interesting– but there is a story which involves having been with out a refrigerator for a while and I thought I’d have to replace it. But my son-in-law, who is apparently a refrigerator whisperer, figured it out, so I could buy food again that needed a refrigerator! (Also it’s about NOT BUYING a refrigerator…)

  60. The best things I bought recently were Christmas presents for my nieces and nephews. There’s nothing spectacular or terribly expensive in the mix (some gift cards, a video game, etc.) but I know how happy they will be to open them and use them, and that makes me smile..

  61. For my 50+ish birthday I bought a used electric guitar and am slowly learning to play and it is the best thing ever.
    I have depression and anxiety but I feel like a badass when I hold my black guitar and make a lot of loud noise. It really has given me a little swagger where before I had none.

  62. A soft mat for my ceramic-on-concrete kitchen floor was an excellent purchase that my body thanks me for daily. (I immediately bought 3 more: 2 cover the space between cooktop and sink, and one more for each typical counter prep area. Almost 2 years later and I still love them.)

  63. I’ve had that tree topper for a few years now. I have never felt like I’ve had it on securely, but I love it so much I keep using it anyway.

  64. New brakes and heater for my car, believe it or not. It suddenly got scary trying to stop. And it’s been too damn cold out to go without heat!

  65. Super soft faux fur blanket from Pottery Barn. My dog keeps trying to steal it from me 🙂

  66. Oh my gosh! That sweater cost a lot more than I was expecting, but I’m poor, so I shop cheaply. The best this I bought this week? Hmmm, I did just get a good deal on a body pillow my daughter wanted for Christmas, plus a two pack of pillowcases for it on clearance that are super soft! I also had our old, vintage PO Box door made into a wooden bank box for my mom for Christmas. It’s really cool and has a piece of our family in it!
    PS it wouldn’t let me post with my email because it wanted me to login. I had to use a different email 🙁

  67. My 82 year old father’s favorite band in rhe world is Fleetwood Mac, and I bought him a pair of tickets to go see them in February. I made sure to get the tickets in the handicapped seating, since he can’t do stairs. He cried when I gave them to him. Worth every penny.

  68. I collect FUNKO figures and will be receiving Legolas from LOTR this week. I am happier about this than I probably should be.

    Love the tree topper and the abominable snowman!

  69. I haven’t bought anything fun in a long time. I bought a Kawaii Til I Die keychain to put in my anime-obsessed kid’s stocking.

    I can second eShakti. I bought a dress from them about a year ago and it’s super cute, has pockets, and fits nicely.

  70. I just bought tickets to see the Rolling Stones in June 2019! Gotta see them before they die!!! LOL

  71. An amazingly soft blanket from Costco that was only $15- a bargain price for its super snuggliness. It makes me so happy when I get in bed!

  72. I bought a set of Star Wars socks yesterday! The set includes pairs with Yoda, R2D2, Chewie, Storm Troopers, and Luke’s dad. May “The Force” be with my feet! 😉

  73. I bought myself a subscription to which has given me a sense of sanity for the first time this school year. Best. Thing. Ever.

  74. Sounds weird, but I just bought a spoon rest for my stove that I’m very pleased with. Hopefully now the boyfriend will stop making a huge mess on the stove while cooking me wonderful dinners (he cooks, I clean)!

  75. I bought fleece fabric to make my kids quillows sorry Christmas, the fleece for my daughter’s has narwhals on it and I am in love with it.

  76. I bought an amazing Tablespoon measure at Walmart. It is one piece of silicone with 4 different size spoon ends in the same piece! Simple, cheap, easy to clean and carry, and it makes me happy! Great topic! Thank you!

  77. Yesterday my 7-yr old wore a new shirt for the first time, which lead to a morning AC/DC dance party. It wasn’t until the afternoon that I realized I’d sent my child to school in a t-shirt that said ‘Highway to Hell.’ Overall, worth it.

  78. When I survived surprise open heart surgery, I decided it was time to not hear about great stuff I didn’t go to anymore. I have tickets to see the Rolling Stones and Elton John next year. I also went to Hamilton, and have to say that the CD is just addictive.
    One of the best things I’ve bought would have to be my Ford F-150 extended cab pickup truck with a sunroof. It turned 205,000 miles just as the NASA Insight landed on Mars, and I’m buying it a new heater and extra backup lights for the winter, because I expect to get another 100,000 miles out of it. I don’t know how people live without pickup trucks. On a sunny day with the sunroof open, singing along with Hamilton at the top of my lungs…well, it’s a very good thing the dogs don’t mind.

  79. Two rude tea cups & saucers for my daughter. I started her collection last year with a cup that has “You have been poisoned” at the bottom that one sees when all the tea’s been drunk. The new ones say “Twatwaffle” and “Bitch, please.” We have a special relationship

  80. I’m a bit of an Amazon addict, but one of the things I’ve ordered from there that I love is a suction cupped cover for the overflow valve when you take a bath. It give you an extra inch or two of water to relax in and it’s the best $8 I’ve spent in a looooong time!

  81. I just bought a real tripod so when I’m relaxing by taking photos, my camera stays steady. Very, very happy photo geek here.

  82. The best thing I’ve ever bought…my Thirty One enrollment kit 😂
    Or my house. Probably my house. 😉

  83. The best thing I’ve ever bought…my Thirty One enrollment kit 😂
    Or my house. Probably my house. 😉

  84. Mine posted twice because for some reason it wouldn’t let me post my info the first time.

  85. They haven’t come yet but I ordered a cheap string of solar powered christmas lights for the little tree in my front yard. I’m so excited!

  86. Magical Harry Potter themed winter market & Yule Ball event in 2 weeks or any prior travel (they all count in my book)!

  87. I bought an American Office tee shirt. For no reason at all.
    Bears. Beets.
    Battlestar Galactica.

  88. I bought an Echo Dot last week and I’m obsessed. I will never touch another light switch again. I can’t stop talking to it.

  89. I bought one of those absurd “Instant Pot” cookers. The truth is that now I am no longer scared to cook meat and I don’t burn it up to be sure it isn’t raw. They say you can make desserts in it too..I still haven’t tried that – but I did make Sweetened Condensed Milk into caramel in it. My meal cooking has improved. I can do more than pizza, spaghetti, beans and cornbread.

  90. Oh…and also I ordered but haven’t received a DNA testing kit. I really HOPE that turns out to be awesomeness.

  91. Apparently you turned your back on the tree topper, so what did you expect? But I will still totally buy one! (I never blink anyway.)

    Best thing I bought was Polaroid Original film (used to be ‘impossible project’ film for Polaroid cameras because Polaroid had to stop making the film because it was toxic and the ‘impossible project re-invented the film and then merged with Polaroid!) for myself so I can be arty during the holidays and not worry about whether I’m going to like what my relatives give me for Christmas (because I can’t ever seem to give away anything that was given to me as a gift, and that becomes a problem…).

    Best thing I bought (yes, a second best thing) was a membership to the photo sharing website called ipernity. It is full of community and kindness and great and fun photos and art. AND it is owned by the members. AND there are no outside interests telling us what our website should look like (so no advertising to interrupt our viewing of the photos). I love it there and am so proud that we pulled together to purchase the site for ourselves – a, literally, worldwide effort!! I know the internet can sometimes make us feel lonely, but places like this awesome blog and like actually make me feel connected and happy!! (if anyone wants to visit me, I’m ‘raingirl’ on ipernity)

  92. A soft sweater that is in a colour I normally never wear but I just loved it and couldn’t resist. It was on sale super cheap.

  93. I love frogs. I just bought a frog for my bathroom. He’s sitting on the toilet with a phone in his hands. Once the holidays are over,he’s going into my bathroom!

  94. I recently decided that my cat was going to sell Thirty One Bags…. because I could use the extra income, he’s a better salesman than me… and frankly it’s about time he started pulling his weight. Anyways there’s a gorgeous purse backpack Ive wanted for forever, but I’m not good at splurging on myself. Today however? I decided im worth it, and i bought myself the bag. best decision of the day

  95. I have that sweater and I flove it so much! I just ordered this Iron in a Bottle from Tom and Sheri, and I’m hoping it’s a best thing. Anything that keeps me from having to iron pretty much has to be a best thing, right?

  96. I LOVE your tree topper!! We are a big Doctor Who family here…named our pug RiverSong 🙂

  97. I bought a mini of The Monster from Young Frankenstein. His thumb is on fire (plastic fire not real fire)

  98. Best thing I bought this year was the new Superchunk cd. It’s also my fave thing I’ve heard this year so 2 for 1.

  99. An Olympus system camera. People terrify me and I’m afraid to leave the house, but when I have a camera with me I cope a lot better (reduce the world to what I see through the viewfinder. That, and I’m so busy taking pictures it pushes the panic attacks aside). But my back/scoliosis is horrible, and hauling around my heavy SLR’s was murder… The Olympus is much easier to carry for longer periods of time. Such a relief, and my back’s grateful. Best thing I bought all year!

  100. I bought a week’s worth of classes at the yoga/barre studio I’ve been wanting to try for months. I hadn’t done anything about it before because I’d convinced myself that I needed to be thinner and fitter before I deserved/could be allowed to attend a single class. (I also technically bought another session with my therapist, which I clearly need, but that’s ongoing and so much less novel. Also, it’s less of a personal victory since I’ve been in therapy for years and it’s kind of routine now.)

  101. I bought a Circulon brand super huge deep skillet. it’s hella awesome and makes a badass stir fry. at 47, it takes very little to excite this old heart of mine. I need more enrichment in my life

  102. I just remembered another really great thing I bought- an excellent rain jacket. Outback Trading Company Pak-A-Roo jacket. It’s breathable, cut perfectly, actually waterproof, and the coolest thing, it folds up into a backpack! It’s made for horseback riding, so it has nifty flaps at the hip, and a very large hood. It costs around $110, and I found it for half that. I have had one for 8 years or so, and only bought a new one because it was finally starting to look a bit tired. Field tested with many dogs and horses, a great piece of equipment that works.

  103. I always feel vaguely evangelical when talking about my Instant Pot, but it really did completely change my life. Or maybe rather than evangelical, I feel rather informercialish about it. Basically I’m not a fan of cooking, but now I regularly have real meals instead of eating cheese and crackers for dinner. IT’S SO EASY! Not only have I convinced (with demos!) almost a dozen friends to buy one, I’ve also instituted Instant Pot Fridays at work where I cook lunch for everyone. See? Not only is it a great appliance, but it will also make people like you.

  104. Technically my husband bought this but it has potential to make life easier for the entire family so it’s a win for me too: He found a huge sale on a dual-fuel generator. It can be set up & kept ready to go with a can of propane –because that doesn’t go bad in the can. AND if propane runs out, we can start it up with the gas we keep on hand for the lawn mower.
    We have an electric well-pump at the new house so this is a big reassurance.

  105. I bought a cleaning service to help me catch up on my house after being super bipolar. I host for Thanksgiving and Yule so I was overwhelmed. It’s not a ‘thing’ but it was the gift of breathing room and that is kind of a thing.

  106. Last year all the adults in the family got Squatty Potties. The most embarrassing thing to admit loving! But I do…

  107. I am a huge consumer of stuff and then I have buyer’s remorse and waste a ton of time returning said stuff. I do have a few favorites that I can highly recommend:

    Shark Rotator Bagless Vacuum (great for pet hair)
    Hunter Women Red Tall Rain Boots (the puppy loves to lay her head on these… not sure why)
    TubShroom – A Revolution in Drain Protection: Unlike regular plugs that go over the drain, TubShroom fits inside, neatly collecting hair around it. When it’s time to cleanup, simply wipe TubShroom off and GO! No harsh chemicals, no more tangled messes.(True story!)

  108. My Jambu shoes. Soooo comfortable
    Also I got (okay, forced my employer to create) an entirely new job this year which takes me to customer sites and I got an ENTIRE WORK WARDROBE in like a month. Messed up my budget but worth it!

    And of course my Kindle Paperwhite which I could not live without

  109. I work at Oberlin College. Obies look forward to spotting our elusive albino squirrels around campus, and they have become our semi-official mascot. So HOW COOL is it that I found this GIANT WHITE SQUIRREL HEAD at a resale shop?? OK, so maybe it started out as a bunny, but a quick tuck of the ears, add a custom tail (thanks Mom!) and I had a royal blast in the office on Halloween.

  110. Boom Chick a Pop Dark Chocolaty Drizzled Sea Salt Kettle Corn. Sweet, crunchy, chocolaty, salty, creamy – it is all the things.

  111. A pot from an Esty seller – MegCassidyClayworks. Her double wall pierced vases are WOW. Her pierced top trinket boxes are perfect for rings or earrings. And a small flower pot from Guy Wolff where I store my tatting shuttles. He has a web site.

  112. Best thing I found is Native Deodorant it’s all natural
    No aluminum and no parabans made in San Francisco USA

  113. I really hate shopping for clothes, so I gave Stitch Fix a try. And I really love it. I’ve added some really great pieces that work with my casual office daytime style. I feel a lot less like a woman who is taking out the trash or walking the dog. And I get compliments!

  114. I bought a pair of Star Wars Death Star slip-ons from a shoe company called Inkkas. They are the most comfortable shoes I’ve bought in a long time, and I even bought another pair from them on Black Friday! They have great concern for both the environment and the people who make their shoes, which is a plus for me.

  115. This is really hard! I buy lots of stuff all of the time, but nothing that popped right out. After reading the other responses, I think my new for me pick-up truck. Much too big and red and if someone else was driving it, I’d say they were compensating for something. My daughter bought me a bumper sticker for it that says “Listening to NPR and crying!” which she figures will piss off all the local rednecks that will drool over the truck.

    Catherine – I asked Santa to bring me a Squatty Potty for Christmas 🙂

  116. I bought Chanukah pajamas for my dog from Target. I get so overwhelmed with all of the Christmas saturation at this time of year, it makes me so happy to see Chanukah things available in mainstream stores. Representation, y’all. Plus, pit bulls in pajamas are the cutest things ever.

  117. I bought myself a pre-lit, easy to put up, realistic looking fake Christmas tree. It isn’t even here yet and I already love it because it will be so much less work than my normal real tree that falls to pieces in the dry Colorado air and attracts dogs to the water dish.

  118. Vintage sewing machines. My 1951 Singer 201-2 is a champ. She will see through heavier layers of fabric without a second thought. If you like to sew or piece quilts get an earlier vintage machine with metal gears. Very inexpensive compared to modern plastic machines & you can work on them and maintain them yourself for the most part. Also love my 1910 singer 66 treadle in a cabinet. Power is out? Ha! I can sew anyway. Plus I just find treadling soothing and relaxing.

  119. My friend’s guest room has a weeping angel on the headboard. Left me wondering how you’re supposed to sleep if you can’t blink? Perfect tree topper!

  120. The best thing I ever bought was a super comfy second hand armchair from the op-shop. I’ve positioned it in front of a window overlooking my backyard and it’s my favourite place to curl up and read or listen to podcasts. I love op-shopping; I’ve bought some of my most loved books, nick nacks and clothes second hand – they’ve got character, they’re bargains, I’ve saved them from landfill and the money I spent on them goes to charity. Everyone wins!

  121. Bichonese (Havanese Bichon mix) Puppies! Wish I knew how to post a photo. They are adorable. Total cuddlers.

  122. Yassss, James Garfield. He’s v fun to draw and animate. Can’t wait to celebrate his miracle visitation of us

  123. The best thing I ever bought was Scrivener, a long-form writing miracle. Being able to have the right tools to write my book has changed my life. – Back up your own art to an external drive, people!- back up your back ups!

  124. The best thing I have ever paid for are the adoption fees for my four rescue dogs: Boomer Charles, Spinnaker Lynn, Tiller Ann and Gracie Jayne. They all have middle names because it makes me sound authoritative when I am scolding them. Which doesn’t have any real affect because my dogs are shameless.

  125. I indulged myself and bought Tom’s iridescent silver shoes and a Marimekko apron.

  126. One of my best purchases was a giant mug that looks like a cast iron cauldron, found on Etsy:

    More recently I bought a handful of the cutest, softest, and most bubblebutt-friendly undies I have ever owned:

    Also finally got a winter coat of my own after borrowing one of my husband’s tattered old coats for years. It has actually helped me enjoy snow again instead of cursing it!

  127. I think mine would have to be Cards Against Muggles because it’s brought my friends and I so many laughs that it never stops feeling worth it! Anytime we’re sad we just pair off random cards and see what silliness we’ve created.

  128. the best thing (WE) ever bought, was our trailer. It was perfect. not super big, lots of storage. as soon as i step into it, i breathe deeper & feel SO happy. now, we have to sell it b/c we are divorcing. it absolutely breaks my heart.

  129. Whoah. Your tree is beautiful, thanks for posting it! I was so surprised because my family has a similar abominable snowman that we put in almost exactly the same place. I’m glad people like us can find each other and compare our tree decorating habits

  130. I bought a 6.5 foot hot pink artificial Christmas tree. It’s beyond merry & bright and even my sister who is the literal Grinch loves it. Everyone in my family has been buying decorations for it which has never happened before. It’s a nice feeling to just watch my family stop and look at the tree and the decorations. It’s like I’m watching them grow some Christmas spirit.
    The tree is massive and really heavy. When I bought it my dad had to come pick me up because there was no way it was going to fit on the bus. While I was waiting for my dad a complete stranger offered me a lift! This tree changes people..brings out the good 😊

  131. The best thing I bought this year might just be Hamilton tickets for my boys for Christmas. They are going to be so excited!

  132. Some things I can think of off the top of my head are a soft brown banana republic sweatshirt that I got at a consignment shop that fits me perfectly, a fresh turkey that I bought when they were on sale & I’m going to roast tomorrow so I have turkey to stash in the freezer, and cherry chapstick, which is always great to have at this time of year when the weather is so cold. Also I’ve spent the last 2 weeks doing all my Christmas shopping, & I’m pretty grateful that I can buy gifts for my loved ones… it’s a lot of fun for me to find the perfect things for people and gives me something else to focus on when I’m stressed.

  133. Please consider turning these funny things into affiliate links, because James Garfield.
    Otherwise, you’re working for free, something my Grandfather told me never to do for someone who should be paying you. <3

  134. That episode was scary. I could never add one of those ‘angels’ to the top of my tree. I’d be trapped there, staring at it late at night. Did @neilhimself write that one?

    On the night of the midterms, I bought myself and my sister one of these beautiful silk blue wave scarves. They’re patterned after the Japanese tsunami print and came from China. I LOVE mine. It’s so soft. Plus, I feel like Ruth Bader Ginsberg whenever I wear it because it is my own quiet announcement that I participated in the Blue Wave and we would not back down. If I could afford it, I’d buy one for every woman I know who resisted.

  135. I bought my bff a tiny screaming goat (not like a real one, a figure, I wish a real one!) and my mum “another shitty stocking notebook”. Every year I ask what to put in her stocking, every year she says she needs more notebooks from the dollar store. I upped my game.

  136. I’m grateful that I bought my couch — it’s a place where I journal, and write my blog, play patty cake with my son and dive into social media for hours.

    Also, totally checking out this clothing line you mentioned — dresses with pockets!?

  137.         <pre><code>        Dear Jenny

    I am a DV victim who had everything taken from her. So maybe these kind of posts are impossibly painful and triggering for some. There are plenty of sites advertising for favorite great things. I come here to laugh or smile a bit.

    (I’m sending you so much love. I know these posts aren’t for everyone but some people appreciate them and I’ve raised about $1000 in affiliate links on this post that will all be used to help buy presents for children experiencing homelessness or children of parents who can’t afford to buy gifts this year. A great many of the kids helped are victims of DV as well. It’s for a good cause but I’m sorry if it causes you pain. Love to you and yours. ~ Jenny)

  138. Jenny

    I appreciate the response, I truly do. When you do random giveaways, even when the reason is marketing it puts a smile on everyone’s face. Difficult to explain but I’ll try. DV is a real life horror show that never ends. In many womens cases as in mine, I was the highly accomplished earner, who treated herself with crafts books clothes often inspired by you, because lets be honest stuff is great, especially around christmas and gives anyone something to look forward to.

    I know you didn’t mean to cause pain but the reality of what goes on in shelters is what many arent aware of. I think that its the way you linked the two in the post that triggered me. The initial response that I had wouldnt post.

  139. The Weeping Angel is better than my generic angel tree-topper. The best thing I’ve bought lately was an inexpensive charging cord for my pretty-old mp3 player. I have a lot of recordings I need to be listening to lately, and my phone doesn’t want to hold additional stuff, even on the spare memory card.

  140. I just got my first order from Eshakti! Amazing! Such great quality, so pretty and POCKETS!!!
    Thank you for sharing because I am in love with this site!

  141. That Christmas topper though I think would be a better idea for a figurine. Wasn’t it too heavy for the top of a Christmas tree and was the material ceramic?

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