1. Ivory Flameless Pillar Candles These wax battery operated candles by Smart Candle are as close to a traditional candle as you can get. They are molded from real wax and outfitted with TruFlame™ technology for an authentic look . It is perfect for anyone looking for the ambiance of a traditional candle with the safety of a Smart Candle. TruFlame™ technology represents years of research and development to create the perfect balance of color, light and flicker using an LED. The secret lies in the fact that TruFlame™ incorporates three LEDs into one making it the most realistic flame possible. With a remote and three timer settings you can control the beauty of your environment with ease.
2. Cuisinart Food Processor I really don’t know how I lived without this. With its powerful motor, this baby quickly and easily slices, dices, chops, and purees, helping to reduce prep time in the kitchen. It comes with a large 9-cup work bowl that makes it easy to create an entire meal from scratch. The unit’s extra-large one-piece feed tube accommodates whole fruits and vegetables and allows for continuous processing. Accessories include a stainless-steel medium slicing disc (4 mm), a stainless-steel shredding disc, a chopping/mixing blade, a dough blade, and a detachable disc stem, plus a plastic spatula, a recipe/instruction book, and a how-to DVD.
3. Zyliss Garlic Press Not all garlic presses are created equal. Most are useless. This little baby costs about $12 and is the best I have ever used.
4. Jesper Pneumatic Computer Desk I use this mobile adjustable height computer stand to stay comfortable while I work in my home office. Even though the description says laptop—my 17″ iMac fits comfortably. It encourages proper ergonomics by offering an easy to use height adjustment that I use to switch between sitting in the morning and standing in the afternoon. The work surface moves up and down silently and quickly with an innovative counterbalance mechanism that allows you to move it up and down using only one hand. The laptop stand adjusts in height from 28” to 41” high, making it a comfortable fit for individuals between 4′ 11” and 6′ 11.”
5. Viewsonic Projector This baby is a high-performance SVGA 800×600 DLP projector with 2,700 ANSI lumens and 3000:1 contrast. This projector supports PC and HD video signals and projects clear, bright images in most lighting conditions. I cannot believe the quality for the price. I throw it on a blank wall, add a HDMI cable to a laptop, add a inexpensive set of Dell computer speakers with a woofer, stream Netflix and presto! I feel as if I’m in the finest movie theatre in the world. I even take it on vacation—since most hotels and rentals have crappy tv’s. Happy.
6. Tovolo Spherical Ice Molds A friend gave me a set of these and it is one of the least expensive ways to wow guests. Just add one of these to a drink and your mixology creds will take a huge jump.
7. Kindle Paperwhite The best Kindle for book lovers yet! The internal light, the resolution, the look…it is just perfect.
8. Tempur-Pedic Rhapsody Mattress It costs a fortune and yes, it’s worth it. I should have bought one years ago. Oh. My. Gosh.
9. Siemans Hearing Aid After 30 years on stage and many of them running music at 100db or more, my hearing faded—especially my left ear which faced the acoustic drums. I swapped my pride for whispers of love, crashing waves, the laughter of children on the beach—and the nuances of the magnificent Nashville Symphony. I could not believe how much I was missing.
10. Frigidaire Gas Oven The new home we bought recently was wired for an electric range. For about $150 more we were able to swap for this amazing buy. It’s a Consumer Reports best buy surpassing far more expensive name brands like Viking. It has a superb precise simmer for my bolognese and a wonderful quick boil for my pasta. Nothing like cooking on gas.
Question: What was your favorite thing in 2013?