A Few of My Favorite Things {September 2016}

posted by Andrea | 09/1/2016
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favorite things september

How is it possible that September is here already! Wow!

I’m back with a few more of my favorite things today — and as always, be sure to check out some of my favorite things from past months and share your favorite things in the comments!

DISCLOSURE: None of these products are sponsored; however, some of the links below are affiliate links — which means that at no cost to you, I may get a small commission. Please know that I use these products daily in my own home and life. Read my full disclosure policy for more information.

Kitchen Funnels

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The other day, I realized that we had 3 different kitchen funnels in the dishwasher — and that I use our kitchen funnels ALL the time.

I save myself so much time, hassle, and spilled food thanks to a few super inexpensive kitchen funnels, so I thought it was about time I officially added them to my growing list of favorite things!

As I mentioned above, I have a few different kitchen funnels in various sizes and for various purposes.

I have a stainless steel wide-mouth funnel for canning, I have a set of small plastic funnels that are perfect for filling spice jars or anything else with a very small opening, and I have a collapsible funnel for everything else.

The funnels hardly take up any space in my kitchen drawers and they were all very inexpensive!

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Apple’s Magic Trackpad

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As many of you know, Dave and I made the switch to all Apple products almost 5 years ago…. and I doubt we’ll ever go back.

There are times when I think it’s ridiculous how much more expensive Apple products are than other products; but as a VERY frugal person, I can easily justify the extra expenses based on how few issues we’ve ever had with any of our Apple products — as well as the top-notch, completely amazing customer service we get any time we have so much as a question about anything.

Plus, the fact that our iMac, Macbook, iPad, and iPhones all sync together to allow access to all our photos, calendars, events, notes, etc. is worth the extra cost for me (especially considering what I do for a living).

All of that to say “we totally love our Apple products”

Also, I totally LOVE the magic trackpad we got with our iMac a few years ago. I was initially hesitant to do something different than a traditional mouse, but after 2 days of using the trackpad, I was so thankful I made the switch.

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It functions the same as a laptop trackpad and offers so many more features than a traditional mouse and there are numerous ways to customize the exact movements to what works best and feels most natural to me.

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If you’re in the market for an Apple product, I would highly recommend getting the trackpad over the mouse — I don’t think you’ll regret it!

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Covered Goods 4-in-1 Nursing Cover

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After having 3 babies and living through months (and years) of nursing and/or pumping, I can count on one hand the number of times I’ve been in a public place and needed to cover myself up.

I’m personally the most comfortable nursing in a quiet room, away from everyone else — so I rarely needed to wear a nursing cover. HOWEVER, I have a really cute one — and I’ve put it to good use in so many other ways than just a nursing cover.

The Covered Goods multi-function nursing covers are made of super stretchy, relatively light-weight fabric, and can be easily used as a carseat cover, a shopping cart cover, AND a super cute infinity scarf when you’re not feeding your baby (I’m using stock photos because my photos don’t look nearly as cute!)

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I have the grey and ivory striped cover and I LOVE it!

 

This would be such a fabulous baby shower or new baby gift for any new (or seasoned) mother!

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American Girl Books

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Over the Summer months, Nora and I had so much fun reading many of the American Girl books. We quickly plowed through Felicity and Kirsten. Then we took a little break before reading the entire Samatha series last week!

Samantha books

The books are SO well written, cover fabulous topics, are quite historically accurate, and have such great images throughout.

Our local library has full sets of all the traditional books and the newer “American Girl Today” books, so we’ll easily be able to keep reading for several more months! Plus, there are craft books, recipe books, CD’s, and other “extra stories” for each girl — making it even more fun for Nora (and for me!)

At first, I thought the books would be too difficult for her to understand (and some parts probably are). But there are so many times during the day when she’ll say things like, “Mom, wouldn’t it be crazy if we had to get water from the stream and spend all day doing laundry and washing James’ diapers like Kirsten and her mom did?” Or something like, “Isn’t is so sad that Felicity’s Grandfather died? I feel sad for her, just like I felt sad when Great-Grandpa died.”

Nora has no idea there are actual American Girl Dolls… and hopefully she won’t find out for a while. However, the other day she said, “wouldn’t it be so cool if we could get a doll that looked just like these American Girls and then Nana could make me some dresses for them to wear?”

So while I have no intentions of buying an American Girl Doll for her any time in the near future, I also know that whenever she finally figures out that we COULD actually have a doll that looks exactly like Felicity, Kirsten, and Samantha, she will NOT stop begging for it 🙂

If you have a little girl between the ages of 4 and 10, I would encourage you to check some of the American Girl books out from your local library. They have been so much fun to read to Nora — and in a couple more years, she’ll be able to read them to herself!

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Venus Razors

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Although I am rarely brand-loyal when it comes to anything (especially not a health and beauty product) I have been faithfully using Venus razors since middle school — and I don’t plan to switch any time soon.

Back when Dave and I were first married and I was the “Rebate Queen” I tried every brand and type of razor because I got them all for free. However, I would always end up stocking back up on Venus razors when they went on sale because I liked them so much more.

I’m not sure exactly why, but time and time again, they have out-performed other brands by lasting longer, being easier to handle, and rarely ever causing razor burn.

The replacement blades can be expensive, but it seems like I’m always able to find a good deal… and if I stock, I’m usually set for a whole year! I don’t have a preference for the type of replacement blade — so I just buy whatever is the cheapest and the best sale.

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Also, it’s probably worth noting that I have tried the Venus disposable razors 3 or 4 different times and I absolutely hated them. They always felt super flimsy and junky, in my opinion — so now I always just take my regular razor along on vacations.

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That’s all for me this month.

Make sure you check out my previous month’s favorite things — and feel free to share some of YOUR favorite things in the comments below!

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26 comments

  1. Pat Harris

    09/09/2016

    When you get older, like me, you might get lucky like I did and be able to stop shaving altogether. I haven’t needed to shave since my early 50’s. And no periods either. Think of the time and money you’ll save when you can give up those products!
    Of course this is tongue in cheek, but you have to admit it is cheaper! Be warned though, not everyone gets off as easily as I did. I never had much body hair, even in my youth and I really only shaved in summer.

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  2. Michelle

    09/06/2016

    American Girls are worth every penny!!

    They are incredibly well made – and anything that keeps your daughter playing with dolls until 13 (!!) is worth it in my book. (Plus! after playing with her doll and accessories for years, she packed everything up to save for her kids!)

    Now, if you can find one at a deal, even better!!!!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Good to know — Thanks Michelle! I will definitely keep my eye out on Craigslist and at garage sales over the next couple of years!

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  3. Katie

    09/01/2016

    Yay for American Girl! I’m almost finished reading the Kirstin series to my girls (they are 6). I have a Kirstin doll and a Molly doll from when I was a kid. But like Nora, my girls don’t realize the dolls exist yet. 🙂 As I understand it, they actually don’t make those characters anymore, which is sad to me because they are the characters I grew up with (Felicity, Kirstin, Samantha and Molly). I’m sure they have new characters that are just as fun but we’re not into that yet!

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  4. Christine

    09/01/2016

    I bought my daughter an AG doll last year. It was a today show steals and deals special. I bought her a historical doll with two outfits for less than $70 shipped.

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    Andrea Reply:

    wow — that’s an amazing deal!

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  5. Karen

    09/01/2016

    My husband grew up in an “Apple” family, haha, so that’s what we have too. I love not having to worry about viruses and spyware. They’re so rare! Apple isn’t completely bug-free, but they’re still way better than Windows.

    My daughter has one American Girl doll, and that’s because I won it from a blogger. I would encourage you to keep an eye out for contests whenever American Girl introduces their new Doll of the Year. You may have some luck that way like I did! Not that I really view it as luck. We had the worst year of our lives last year, and it was such a huge blessing to be able to surprise my daughter on Christmas morning with her Mary Ellen doll!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Aww, I’m so glad your daughter got the doll for Christmas! How special after a rough year!

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  6. Emily

    09/01/2016

    Agree with the chorus of Dollar Shave Club commenters! 🙂 We switched over a year ago and really like it. Although my brother-in-law swears Harry’s is the best. 😉 I’m sure you’re already aware of the Little House books but those would be a great next series to start with Nora, especially if she loves the historical American Girl books. My girls have also acquired the audio versions of Little House for birthdays and Christmas gifts and they listen to them at night and in the car. Always love your favorite things posts!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, we actually already read the Little House books — she loved those too!!

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  7. Christy

    09/01/2016

    I bet if you keep watching Craigslist like you do, you will see them come up and spend less on them! 🙂 And you are right to keep her in the dark, because it does not stop once those catalogs start coming!! I have a closet FULL of American Girl from two daughters. They are saving them for their possible daughters some day :).

    I hear great things about this dollar shave club, with three girls and two boys shaving at my house I think this is something I have to look into!!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, I already looked on Craigslist and there are TONS of dolls and accessories for very reasonable prices. So, whenever we do want to get her a doll, I definitely won’t need to pay full price!

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    Linda Reply:

    I just heard they will be carried in a lot of toys r us stores soon. Sure they will still be expensive. I actually found one at a Goodwill years ago for $1. Someone didn’t know what she was! Samantha.

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    Andrea Reply:

    wow, that’s amazing! And Samantha is probably the one Nora would want the most. I’ll have to keep a lookout for them at thrift stores!

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  8. Mara

    09/01/2016

    Your “Favorite Things” post are my favorite posts! Always lots of great recommendations, thank you!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks so much Mara!

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  9. Abby

    09/01/2016

    I love the American Girl stories as a kid! And I am definitely checking out the nursing cover. I have an Udder Cover and it just doesn’t work well for us.

    We use Dollar Shave Club for our razors and razor blades. It’s a great product and very reasonably priced compared to what you buy in the store. It’s a subscription service and they just show up in the mailbox.

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    Andrea Reply:

    Yes, I’ve looked into the Dollar Shave Club, but so far, I have been able to get the Venus razors for me and Gillette Fusion razors for Dave for cheaper when I find them on sale and/or with a coupon. Definitely something to keep in mind though as it sounds very convenient!

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  10. Anna

    09/01/2016

    I used to love the Venus razors, too. They are great razors.

    But since I know you enjoy getting things you use regularly shipped directly to you and at a great price, you might want to look into Dollar Shave club. My husband switched over a year ago and it’s great. Their prices easily beat the major razor brands and the quality is as good or better. The cool thing is, my husband and I both got a handle, which they send you for free, and then we just use the same kind of cartridges.

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    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks Anna — I actually used to get all our razors delivered from Grove (formerly ePantry) so it was the same type of deal as the dollar shave club. However, now they don’t offer the brands we like 🙁 I’ve thought about switching over to the dollar shave club, but we’re still using up the rest of our current supply first (I had us stocked up for quite a while!)

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  11. Jen

    09/01/2016

    These are always my favorite posts! You may know this, but just in case you don’t, Target has a fabulous line of knock-off American Girl dolls that are just as good and a great way to start a younger girl who may not be ready for the more expensive “real thing”. They have lots of fun accessories and outfits just like the AG dolls! Here’s a link:

    http://www.target.com/s?category=0%7CAll%7Cmatchallpartial%7Call+categories&searchTerm=our%20generation%20dolls

    Also, after MANY years of shaving, I have decided that men’s razors are the best! I like the Gillette Fusion.

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    Heidi Reply:

    Yes! Our girls have the Walmart version and any 18 inch doll accessory or doll clothes fit perfectly!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Good to know! Thanks Heidi!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks for this Jen — I actually didn’t realize Target had these dolls! So, do they just have the “My Generation Dolls” or do they have more of the old-fashioned dressed colonial, pioneer, and victorian girls as well. I think Nora would REALLY love to have a Kirsten or Samantha doll 🙂

    I’m not planning to get her one any time in the next year, but just wondering for future reference.

    Also, Dave uses the Gillette Fusion and loves them!

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  12. Paulette

    09/01/2016

    LOVE your “Favorite Things” posts! I know you give very honest reviews. Thanks, Andrea!

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    Andrea Reply:

    Thanks so much Paulette!

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