Every year about this time, I like to share the discoveries I’ve made that have removed stress, brought joy, or delivered insights. These are the things that have made my life better.
Almost all of these ‘finds’ have been recommendations by others. And…that’s this blog’s reason for being — we all need each other. We all have something to give. And, we are all in this “thing-called-life” together.
It’s not quite Oprah’s caliber, but here are the discoveries I’ve made this year that I can’t wait to share with you. Also, check out the reader’s choice section with the same “how did I live without this” finds from Nobody Makes It Alone subscribers.
Subscriptions: A gift a month
Birchbox: A beautiful box of trial-size beauty treats brought to your door. Gift it to yourself or others (right now, the code FREEMONTH gets you $10 off of a 6-month subscription). I received this for my birthday last year from my dear friend, Angela, and then felt like I was having my birthday again and again each time one of these beautiful boxes arrived filled with new things to try. https://www.birchbox.com/discover
Vinebox: Want to explore new wines without the commitment to a full bottle? Three new wines (you select!) delivered to your door every month. https://www.getvinebox.com/
Krud Kutter: This household cleaner isn’t natural or organic. But…it’s effective. It brought my nasty grout back to pearly white. Save time and love your results. Krud Kutter is available online or in stores (Home Depot, Lowes)
Moso Natural Dehumidifier and Order Absorber: I spotted this in my friend Shannon’s bathroom a few years ago. Since moving to Florida, contending with humidity in bathrooms, closets and garages is a challenge. These de-humidifiers work wonderfully, are natural, fragrance-free, come in all shapes and sizes, have a hole to hang it, and re-charge in the sunlight. On Amazon
What Makes Me Happy
Wake up gently with a natural light alarm clock. Not only does this clock allow you to choose the light color, it also has several nature sounds rather than the abrasive ‘beep, beep’ options of most alarm clocks. It begins infusing your dreams with light 30 minutes before your wake up time, and I find I’ve awoken before the alarm actually sounds. Plus, it offers the ability to reset your wake-up time using + and – making it easy to adjust the time you need to arise.
Rae Dunn mugs: Find these at Marshalls, TJ Maxx and Home Goods for about $5.99 or online. With the perfect handle, irregular shape, and intentional words (mine are “Play”, “Dream”, “Be Kind” and “Be Bold”), you can have your coffee or tea and remind yourself of your focus.
Overnight Cure for Chapped Lips: Let’s face it, chapped lips stink. The Rodan + Fields Renewing Lip Serum is magic in a tiny capsule. In fact, I am convinced that even those in dryer climes will be able to pitch their chapstick. The instructions say to lather a full capsule on those dry lips, but I think that is too much. Half a capsule heals and moisturizes my lips when I need it, which means not only do my lips feel better…but this stuff lasts years if you use it only when you need it. If fuller, younger looking lips is what you’re looking for…bonus, it does that too! Right now, Rodan + Fields is running a holiday special and you can save $20 and get the extremely popular Eye Cream and the Lip Renewing Serum in a gift combo. (Full disclosure: I sell R+F because these products WORK…this link will send you to my portal. All net profits are used towards a scholarship for kind, brave and strong college bound women). https://kindbravestrong.myrandf.com/
A nice cup of (decaf) tea at night: I’ve recently dabbled in the world of tea and found that my taste buds need something with flavor in order to be satisfied. After trying to cut down on sugar, I’ve started to turn to Good Earth Sweet & Spicy. With a little coconut oil or grass-fed ghee, it has a rich, satisfying impact that is almost as good as ice-cream. (Not at all, actually, but I’m tryin’ here).
Grill Grates: The most amazing results from your grill. These grates come in all sizes for all types of grills. They simply rest on top of your existing grates, and add magic results to your food. Thanks to the fact that this subscriber (hi, Dad!) gifted these to us last year, I can personally vouch that these are awesome. https://www.grillgrate.com/
Grocery Delivery: One subscriber marveled about how many of her friends haven’t discovered the time-saving convenience of grocery delivery. She noted that it allows her to spend more time doing the things she loves, and added, “From Walmart, Whole Foods, Sprouts…we’ve tried them all and love them all! Saves hours every week freeing up time for the things that bring us joy! I’m surprised how few friends know about this major time saver.”
Essentialism: If you’ve been a subscriber in the recent months, you’ve heard me sing the praises of Essentialism by Greg McKeown. McKeown teaches us that by saying ‘yes’ to too many things…we’re actually saying ‘no’ to the things that matter. https://gregmckeown.com/book/
What to Do When It’s Your Turn (and it’s always your turn): This book was loaned to me by my pal, Angie. It was one of the catalysts for me starting this blog, and other projects. It’s whimisical and poignant. And, you can be sure it will help you start making your dreams more tangible. BTW – Seth Godin writes a pithy daily blog, and it’s one thing I read every day. I highly recommend it. https://www.yourturn.link/
Monthly massage: One of the best investments I ever made in myself. At first it felt decadent. And, you know what…it still does. Every month, I indulge in a 50-minute relaxation of tight shoulders, keyboard-fatigued forearms, and pampering of a neck that has to hold my big head. It’s glorious. https://handandstone.com/
Reliable headset: I purchased the Evolve 40 for my husband after experiencing what noise cancelling really can be – my colleague joined a web conference from a busy Starbucks coffee shop and i never would have known. There are more ‘evolved’ models at a higher price point, but this one does the trick. The Jabra site promises great Black Friday deals ahead… https://www.jabra.com/business/office-headsets/jabra-evolve/jabra-evolve-40
Bone broth protein from 100% grass-fed cows: If you haven’t caught on to the collagen rage, it’s time. Collagen is great for gut health, skin health, and many products now feature it. Dr. Kellyann has entire meal plans built around it. While I don’t love the shipping charges on her website, her bone broth protein makes rich, creamy shakes with little to no ‘protein powder after-taste. It also comes in Vanilla. https://www.drkellyannstore.com/collections/all/products/bone-broth-protein-chocolate
Most efficient and effective exercise that you can do at home at no cost: The push-up! Works core, back, shoulders, biceps and triceps. 10 can be done in 30 seconds or less. And, my very first subscriber (thanks, Dad!) recommends this: “Do exercises like push-ups SLOWLY. 5 seconds (or more) each direction. Fewer reps and fewer sets if go to fatigue. Actually less time to exercise and documented better results.”
Cauliflower Crust Pizza tops my list as best Costco find this year. I slice a red onion and add before putting this delightful dinner, appetizer, or snack option in the oven.
What discoveries have you made this year that you would love to share? What have you recommended to your friends? What book have you gifted? What gift are you excited to give this holiday season? Add to the comments below and help make life easier for our Nobody Makes It Alone community.
If you’re not satisfied with this list or you have a hankering for more, check Nobody Makes It Alone on Facebook to see last year’s recommendations.