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My Favorite Non-Crafty Things + GIVEAWAY

During My Favorite Crafty Things series, several people asked if I would be doing a list of favorite non-crafty things. I have wanted to do this for awhile (I have an on-going list of what I wanted to share) and thought it was time. Most of my things are pretty practical and all about making life easier… so maybe you will find something helpful here, too! (Affiliate links used in some cases.)

COOKING & EATING

I will be honest – I am not a fan of having a billion gadgets in my kitchen. (Who has the room or money anyway?) But there a few key things that help me a lot.

  1. Set & Forget Programmable Slow Cooker (Crockpot) – This guy has changed our lives. In fact, we even have two of them. A couple times a week, we create TWO batches of healthy crockpot meals at once. One crockpot holds our dinner for that evening and the other holds a meal we will put in the freezer for another time. The price is great and I love that you can program it so you don’t have to worry about a thing. I can’t recommend enough.
  2. Aroma Digital Rice Cooker – This is another “program and forget” kitchen device we couldn’t live without. It is great to have along with the crockpots. (We normally use basmati rice.)
  3. Skinnytaste – Most of the healthy crockpot meals we make are from the Skinnytaste recipe site. Our favorites? Santa Fe Chicken and Sesame Honey Chicken (with added broccoli). Both are tasty and reheat well.
  4. Egg Cooker – This seems so very silly but is so very awesome. In minutes you have perfectly cooked, easy-to-peel eggs. We use this a lot.
  5. Fruit Infusion Pitcher – I know many people struggle to drink a lot of water. When I find myself getting tired of plain water, I break out this guy. Add any fruit or cucumbers and you will be amazed how good it is. I drink at least two pitchers a day.
  6. Shakeology – Almost every day I have a Shakeology shake. These are tasty (and I am picky when it comes to shakes) and nutritious and help keep my tummy settled and happy. I know a lot of people who have lost a lot of weight with these. (I instead use it as a healthy snack. It has completely eliminated my sweet tooth.) My favorite is the Chocolate Shakeology with a couple tablespoons of PB2 Powder (healthy peanut butter) and water or almond milk. (It tastes like a Reese Cup shake. For real.) I also love the Vanilla Shakeology with a handful of frozen fruit, half a banana and water. These shakes have been awesome for me. If you are interested in finding out more, you can contact my non-pushy and encouraging friend, Amy HERE.
  7. Soft Cookies – So we are pretty strict about cooking and eating healthy meals at home. However, I also like to treat my family to homemade treats now and then. My kiddos love soft cookies. Wanna know an easy trick I learned from my Grandma? Put a few pieces of bread in the cookie jar. The cookies will stay amazingly soft. You’re welcome. πŸ™‚
  8. PackIt Freezable Lunch Bag – Our family takes packed lunches to school. This lunch bag is great as you freeze the whole thing and it keeps the food cold for a long time. So very cool.
  9. Nalgene Water Bottles – Finally! I finally found a water bottle that doesn’t leak. Perfect for the kid’s lunches.
  10. Sistema Containers – You may have seen that I use these in my craft room for many things, but I also have more-than-I-care-to-count for kid’s lunches. They are the perfect size and easy to open.

ORGANIZING

Not every part of my home is organized, but I do have some parts figured out. πŸ™‚

  1. OXO Containers – I adore the OXO Containers for our dry goods in our cabinet. It is nice to get away from lots of half-empty boxes and be able to load several boxes into one container. (Note: I only use plastic containers for dry foods and never put them in the microwave.)
  2. Brother Label Maker – Ah… my partner in organizing. I can’t recommend this guy enough. Be sure to check out THIS video where I show how to conserve the amount of tape you use. Also, be sure to get THIS adapter to save on battery use.
  3. Erin Condren Planner – I have shared my love for this planner many times, including in THIS post and video. I keep it practical and useful and it has completely improved my productivity, happiness and stress-level. It simply makes me happier. I like many things about this particular planner, but I know there are many great ones out there.
  4. Cordless Pivot Vac – I am very impressed by this little cordless vacuum. I use it in my craft room and kitchen and car and more. It holds power well, empties easily, and doesn’t break the bank. I am impressed.
  5. Zipper Pouches – So I will admit – I have more of these in my house than I care to tell you. πŸ™‚ I use them for craft kits, kid’s toys, errand-running-stuff, my planner, school paperwork, kid’s art stuff – – everything. They are handy and durable. (The price on Amazon varies a lot. Sometimes they are only $2.00 and sometimes they are higher. May want to keep an eye on them and buy a bunch when the price is low.)

OTHER

Just have a few other random things you may like…

  1. Ad Block – If you like surfing the web, visiting blogs, peeking in on Facebook, etc. and are tired of ads, try installing Ad Block. I love it. I never have to see an ad… watch ads on YouTube (YES!) or anything. Can’t recommend it enough. It is like magic.
  2. Bouqs – If you ever send flowers to loved ones that are far away, I recommend checking out The Bouqs. Their flowers are so “real” – not a cheesy, sad arrangement that sometimes you get with big online flower sites. Unique, lovely flowers. There are no hidden service charges and ordering is simple. (Use THIS link and get a free bouquet – worth $40 – with purchase.)
  3. Happy Instagram – If you are like me and find Facebook a bit discouraging (somewhat full of complaining, depressing, political stuff) and instead want to find a happy place that uplifts, I would recommend Instagram. There is one account on Instagram in particular that is so very happy – the photos of Harlow and Sage. Just trust me – it is worth a visit to see these happy dogs who love each other so very much. (You can find me on Instagram, too.)
  4. Kapok Pillow – My physical therapist recommended this pillow as a great one – good for your neck. The price is good and there aren’t the nasty chemicals you find in other pillows. You can also take out part of the stuffing to make it lighter if you want. I have been thrilled with it.
  5. Oils – First, let me start by saying that I was a HUGE skeptic of oils. HUGE. But after the suggestion of many and out of complete desperation, I decided to try them. Thanks to the oils, I no longer have allergy problems. I quit allergy shots… which I had been getting 3 every week or so for 29 years. All I do is diffuse the oils into the air once a day and I am good. Not sure if they will work for you, but they worked for me. OH – and my family doesn’t get nearly as sick as we used to since diffusing Thieves. That stuff is amazing. If you want to know more about all this stuff, my friend Kristina is the one to ask. She can help you with anything.

So there are a few products I love outside of the crafty world. I would love to hear what you are finding helpful in your life these days.

GIVEAWAY

One lucky winner will get a $50 gift certificate to Amazon! For your chance, just leave a comment here by 11:59pmEST on 12/21/14 telling me about something you have found that is non-crafty that you love. Good luck! (Winners will be posted on my β€œWinners page” after the giveaway closes.)

Note: I have many winners to pick from the giveaways in My Favorite Crafty Things series. This takes me a lot of time to do this, so I will be slowly picking and contacting winners over the next several days. I will be posting all winner info on the Winners page. Thanks for your patience.

Affiliate and product disclosure can be found HERE.


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868 thoughts on “My Favorite Non-Crafty Things + GIVEAWAY”

  1. Fels Naptha soap! I wish I’d know this stain fighter when I was a young woman! Just dampen the garment where the stain is, rub the bar of soap over the stain and wash the garment as usual. Works great and a bar only costs $1 and will last forever!

  2. I have become a pen snob ever since I started using the Uniball Jet stream .7mm pens. They write so smooth, no “glopping” of ink and dry fast. It is the only pen I use for writing unless I am desperate.

  3. I love my iPad mini. I like the size much better than the full size iPad I had before because it fits in my purse but is still large enough to surf the internet easily.

  4. I love my Roku box….no more cable, I watch what I want to watch, when I want to watch it….and I don’t buy DVDs anymore too. No more clutter or wasting so much money on something as silly as TV. And, I get to watch my fav stamping youtube vidoes on my TV.

  5. I love ice cream!! Hehehehe I also love my new Brother P-Touch label maker (got it after I watched your MFCT organization video), and thank you for the great tips on using it/conserving the tape!!! ^_^

  6. Such grand ideas, and the best idea of all is for each of us to create our own “wish list”. Something that is fun for us to aspire to and also to share with others to they can give a gift that they know you will love!

  7. I absolutely love Thieves oil and the Thieves hand cleaner, plus the household cleaner for chemical and chlorine free anti–microbial cleaning around the house. I make a blend of oils that works wonders for me in stopping a cold before it starts when my throat and ears start feeling funny. Purification can take away mold and nasty smells I agree, the oils are great!

  8. Jergen’s Ultra Healing lotion. It’s the only lotion that seems to help my terribly dry hands in the winter – well, other then a pricy lotion I used to order online. Thanks for the chance to win!

  9. I can’t live without my new iPhone 6+!! The size is so convenient, I know that sounds crazy since it’s so large but I’ve had an iPad for several years now and I’m finding my 6+ to be big enough to replace my iPad for a lot of functions, so much nicer than the 5c!!

  10. A really useful non-crafty thing that I have found recently is empty tissue boxes. (To store rubbish then throw away) I know that sounds very weird but trust me, it’s not. πŸ™‚

  11. Thank you for taking the time to share products that you love and improve your life. In the kitchen, I love my LamsonSharp turner. It has a sharp edge that makes it so easy to turn over things cooked on any fry pan, except non- stick, and is made in the USA.

  12. My Pampered Chef spoonula…a spatula that is shaped more like a spoon on the end. It is great for mixing and you are able to scrape every little bit out of the bowl πŸ™‚

  13. I also like Shakeology for the same reason as you, I am bad at not eating breakfast, the shakes make it work. I also firm believer in oils, Thieves is a favorite, but peppermint works great for my headaches.

  14. My favorite thing is the internet. I can find inspiration and instructions for things both crafty and non-crafty, keep in touch with far away family members, shop both local and global, plan trips, and so much more.

  15. My favorite thing is my iPad. Goes everywhere with me. I store crafty ideas and projects that I’ve made in Evernote; show my mom, who is in assisted care, photos and emails; play music while crafting; read magazines; watch shows; and surf the Internet for more craft ideas!

  16. I am on a lifestyle change (AKA a diet) and since I have a full time job outside the home, I am often too tired to cook when I get home. I have tried frozen diet dinners before and didn’t care for them, but I tried Healthy Choice steamers and found that most of them are well balanced and palatable and just the right amount of calories. I get mine at Walmart and they are often priced around $2-2.50.

  17. I can’t really come up with anything that I have found.
    I was reading about your allergies and the oils and am now interested.
    I also have chronic respiratory allergies (my allergy to dust mites is pretty severe), get sinus headaches and infections. My doctor wants me to get tested again. I was thinking about trying the shots again, but am not very enthusiastic about it.
    I have Pinned Kristina’s page and hope to investigate it more after the holidays.

  18. Great list, Jennifer. I found a couple things on your list that would be on mine as well. I think my favorite non-crafty thing right now is my cast iron cookware. I was getting so aggravated with having to repurchase non-stick pans yet again and decided to go back to my old stand by – cast iron. I love it. Have a wonderful Christmas!

  19. I love my iPhone – seriously, how did I ever live without it? I can look up what I’ve seen that actor in, find a recipe, take a picture, make a shopping list, listen to music – *love* it!

  20. I love using cocktail mixer sticks to stir my coffee πŸ™‚ I have fun pink flamingos that hang out in my cup & make me smile. Also we don’t run out of clean spoons so fast πŸ™‚

  21. Thank you so much for your fave picks outside the crafty world. You helped me with some last minute Christmas shopping. I value your opinion and I look forward to a New Year of You Tube video’s and email.

  22. I loved reading this post and several of the comments….great ideas and this to pin on my Pinterest board for gifts and items for the home. My favorite find recently is Trader Joe’s. I realize my hubby and I are a bit late to the Trader Joe’s party but we just recently started shopping there and LOVE it. One item we buy is their Quick Cook Steel Cut Oats. They cook in just 8 minutes…..perfect for busy mornings.

  23. I love Amazon for just about everything! We order everything from there! It is a one stop shop! Sometimes you can just get better shipping rates when you need one item.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  24. I Love my hot chocolate maker. When I first heard about these things I thought it sounded so lazy to use this machine instead of just stirring yourself. We had a tasting in a cooking store and it was great. The machine makes it all frothy and light and you can throw all kinds of things into it and the heater nicely incorporates.

  25. What great ideas – I too give FB a wide berth for similar reasons. I love IG and Twitter.
    My favorite non-crafty “thing” is my Apple TV – gives great links to lots of other places other than iTunes (Hulu, Netflix, PBS, and lots of others) – I don’t use cable TV any longer!

    Thank you, Jennifer πŸ˜€

  26. I DO love my essential oils – I’m finding out the very many therapeutic benefits of oils and how to use them instead of chemicals! Thank you for the chance to win – and Happy Holidays to you and your family!

  27. I adore my oils! My kids never go to the doc for ear infections, colds etc we treat at home and they are better within 48 hrs! Love! I use DoTerra. Also love and adore my label maker, how does one live without it? I don’t know! Happy Holidays!!

  28. Jergen’s Ultra healing lotion – it’s the only thing that helps my super dry hands in the Utah winters. Thanks for the chance to win!

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