Favorite Things {2017 Edition}

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This is one of my favorite posts to write! I like looking back and seeing what my fun finds were that year. I also love to hop around and read other blogger’s favorite things. I had quite a few things but I narrowed it down to my top 10 items.

Up until this point, we have been using my shop vac to vacuum the stairs. It is large and I would love to store it in my garage instead of in my house. I finally broke down and bought a smaller Vacuum for the stairs. I love this one! It is actually made specifically for stairs and has an attachment to get in cracks and crevices so you can use it on other things as well. It’s handle is easy to hold, it’s not too heavy, and it is powerful. My 7 year old can use it no problem. He has volunteered to have the stairs be his job now 🙂

I adore these blue boxes! I first found them when I was doing the closet makeover for my sister. I then used some in my bathroom makeover. They are such a pretty shade of blue and are great for storing anything. The Container Store is now my new favorite place on earth.

The gray boxes and baskets are also from The Container Store.

I wrote about the Nucleus this year and I wondered in the back of my mind if the novelty of these would wear off. I can assure you that we still love them! I don’t have to yell for my kids when they are down and I am up (or vice versa). I can listen to music by asking Alexa to play whatever I want. If I am baking and my hand are messy, I can ask her questions like “How many teaspoons in a tablespoon” or “What is a good substitute for butter?”.

The biggest thing that I like it for is that since three of my kids don’t have cell phones yet, I can call them on this when I am out and about or they can call my cell using the Nucleus.

My youngest still asks Alexa for jokes everyday 🙂

When I first heard everyone rave about the wet brush I did not believe the hype. I thought is was some sort of fad. When my hair got super long I hated brushing it when I got out of the shower. I finally broke down and bought one from Amazon. OH MY WORD. It definitely lived up to the hype! I love this thing. I shoved my other brushes in the back of the drawer and probably should just throw them away. This is amazing.

We always get our kids something for Easter that they can share and we can use as a family. This year I ordered a badminton and volleyball set. We have bought cheap ones in the past and they broke almost immediately.  This set wasn’t that much more but was made of metal and had really good reviews. I was actually scared to buy it because it seemed too good to be true, but I knew Amazon was so good with returns so I went for it. It was such a nice set! My kids have never played with something so much before. My kids’ ages range from 16 to 7 so it is hard to find activities or games that all my kids want to do together. We used this for church activities several times and we had neighbor kids over almost daily. One day I looked out and there were 9 kids in my yard and none of them were mine. It was a big hit!

I also bought some LED birdies so we could play at night. It was SO MUCH FUN!!!

I find that I need to join boards several times during the year as I am building things. I have always used pocket holes to join boards in the past and while that is a decent way to do it, I found that dowels create a seamless, beautiful and strong, result. This dowel jig was so easy to use! It was definitely my new favorite tool of the year.

In my quest to eat healthier I found a cookbook I really liked and several recipes called for cooking in a grill pan. Please tell me that I am not the only person who did not own one. Are they pretty standard to have? Am I admitting my lack of culinary knowledge by stating this was my first grill pan? Well, either way, I am hooked! I love this thing!

While we are chatting about kitchen items and cooking, my new BFF is this guy. He is fast and never lets me down. Even though this is a new relationship, I have a feeling this will last. I recently posted about cooking with an Electric Pressure Cooker. So far I have cooked carrots, butternut squash, rice, hard boiled eggs, roast, and chicken. It still blows my mind that I can put frozen chicken breasts in it and have cooked chicken in 12 minutes. Life changing! It took me 25 minutes to defrost the chicken in the microwave and then I still had to cook it! Plus now, I don’t have any chicken “juice” in my microwave or counters. I can’t believe I waited so long to try this out!

I have used this tiered tray (from the Better Homes and Gardens line at Walmart) in so many different ways. It is so handy!  Last winter I had all my potted herbs in it for cooking. What would you use it for?

I would love it if you shared you favorite find of the year with me in the comments. I love discovering new things that make my life easier!

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