Let's make life fun and easy.
December 29, 2006 7:16 PM   Subscribe

What small indulgences or habits do you have that make your life so much easier?

I am trying to streamline my life and make things easier. For example, I HATE doing laundry (that is till I figure out how to make a dumbwaiter to get my laundry down to the basement). So I found out I had a profound love for wash and fold service. It's like 50 a month and it frees my space and my time!

What little secrets do you have, that cost relatively little (or not if they are fabulous) and make your life better? Anything from Roomba to online bill pay or things I have never considered.
posted by stormygrey to Home & Garden (61 answers total) 175 users marked this as a favorite
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:27 PM on December 29, 2006 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks pinksuperhero.

I should have been more clear, I am looking for less process oriented and more, "you can pay someone else relatively little to do this work for you" or "this automated robot king will free you" kind of stuff, indulgences.

I grew up in the country and had no idea that someone else would fold your laundry for 95 cents a pound. I am sure there are other things out there like this.
posted by stormygrey at 7:35 PM on December 29, 2006

A girl I know got a Roomba and loves it. She and her boyfriend have a relatively small apartment with not a lot of storage space. Both of them hate vacuuming. She says she can just turn it on and then go to the store or something and let it do its thing.
posted by Verdandi at 7:47 PM on December 29, 2006

Well of course, you could always hire a maid service.

The Baby Boa makes opening cans a lot easier.

Having two monitors is awesome.
posted by grouse at 7:48 PM on December 29, 2006

The Baby Boa makes opening cans bottles and jars a lot easier.
posted by grouse at 7:49 PM on December 29, 2006

One more idea (which I haven't done myself): using those services that will print out and send mail for you would certainly make it easier if you can't send e-mail. I guess moreso for those of us without our own printer.
posted by grouse at 7:59 PM on December 29, 2006

Keeping a couple of pre-rolled in the freezer.

Living close enough to work so that you don't need to own a car or a metro pass.

Never owning an inkjet printer and printing everything at the copy shop instead (no cartridges, no toner, no muss!)

Multiple monitors? Yes!

ING automatic savings accounts mean having little piles of cash for everything!

Having a Nintendo DS Lite means you're never bored waiting. ever.
posted by furtive at 8:01 PM on December 29, 2006

Online billpay and automated payments. You can pay almost every recurring bill automatically - if not through the company you owe money to, then through your bank - which saves so much time and energy (and postage!)

Downy Wrinkle-Release spray - you still need to iron major jobs, but a few spritzes on a business casual shirt before hanging it up will leave it looking decent and save you the energy of lugging that bastard ironing board out.

As for cooking - crockpots can make it easier on nights you want to come home to dinner that is already ready.

Pre-cut veggies or frozen veggies like Steamfresh also make eating healthier less of a pain in the butt.

Getting a dog makes it unnecessary to pick up accidentally dropped table scraps.
posted by tastybrains at 8:04 PM on December 29, 2006

Ooh, I love this question. I pay for a cleaning service to come in every two weeks (I have teenagers, and am a single foster parent). I pay about 20 percent extra to make up for my workers' rights guilt, which means that the cleaning service loves me. It's the best money I've ever spent. What else? I pay for parking when I can't find parking. I pay for cabs when I need a cab. Um, pre-washed salad. Chopped garlic in a jar.

Things I am less interested in at this stage of the game -- expensive clothing/shoes, restaurant meals.
posted by ClaudiaCenter at 8:06 PM on December 29, 2006

I wholeheartedly second chopped garlic in a jar.
posted by Ugh at 8:11 PM on December 29, 2006 [1 favorite]

I use my dishwasher for everything, even pots and pans. I'll run that thing twice a day if I have done a lot of cooking.

I never had one till this year, I've had to hand wash dishes all my life, and now I am DONE with that.
posted by konolia at 8:24 PM on December 29, 2006 [2 favorites]

Makeup wipes. In my family these were seen as absolutely decadent, but I love them.
Litter pan liners. I used to think that washing the pan out weekly was more economical. I am sold on them now.
Expensive cat food. The kitties are happer and the kitty poop is less offensive.
posted by oflinkey at 8:25 PM on December 29, 2006

I use rsync and crontab to automatically backup data from all the home notebooks to the file server, and then automatically do the same from the fileserver to strongspace, an online backup service. No need for CD burning, and you'll sleep better at night. Disk space is cheap these days. Real cheap.
posted by furtive at 8:32 PM on December 29, 2006 [2 favorites]

Buy every member in the household their own set of color towels. Each member gets 4 bath, 2 hand, and 4 wash. White towels are in the hall closet and are given to guest to use.

Believe it or not, this has cut down the amount of laundry I do every week. Plus it eliminates the "I didn't do it!" towels on the floor, balled up in corner of tub. Even the 7 year old was able to keep track of his towels(dark blue).
posted by JujuB at 8:42 PM on December 29, 2006 [18 favorites]

I see your chopped garlic in a jar and raise you minced garlic and ginger in a jar.

Also, one small square of dark chocolate + small glass of ruby port once or twice a week = concentrated happiness.

Homemade kimchee, DIY. It's a cheap and very healthy indulgence. And really easy to make.
posted by geekhorde at 8:47 PM on December 29, 2006

Gas fireplace insert, flip a switch - it's on.

On the kitty front: silica crystal litter.

Artificial Christmas tree (ok I thought of it because I'm looking at it).

And if you really wanna save time and energy - live in a condo/apartment instead of a house.
posted by scheptech at 8:55 PM on December 29, 2006

I get my house cleaned every 4 weeks for about $65 I tidy up during the month she does the ugly stuff like the kitchen scrubbing and the bathroom.

The other is wash and fold laundry. A couple of bucks a pound (usually around $23 in San Francisco) worth every penny in my book. My current place doesn't match and roll my socks though dammit...
posted by bitdamaged at 9:08 PM on December 29, 2006

Dehydrated garlic in a jar. Lasts longer than regular garlic in a jar.

Maid service every two weeks.

Take-out food.

Condo living.

Working from home.

Living downtown within blocks of my husband's office and everything else we could need.
posted by acoutu at 9:18 PM on December 29, 2006

Once I discovered movers, I realized I will never again pack my own house/move my own crap. Expensive, but worth it. Ditto doing my own taxes.

My mom would say that getting heated seats in her car (in Minnesota) makes driving so much nicer it was worth the expense. I didn't think I liked them until we rented a car with them and now I covet them and may add them to mine.

Buying a cheap DVD player to watch movies on the bus and on airplane trips (with blessed noise-canceling headphones) is awesome.

And when we bought our last car, we used a broker and didn't have to haggle one bit. He did it all, and had contacts everywhere who knew they couldn't con him.
posted by GaelFC at 9:23 PM on December 29, 2006

I pay my bills at the same time on the same day every week. This ensures that (a) it gets done, (b) on time, and (c) doesn't pile up. (Apparently, this technique at dealing with procrastination is supported by scientific evidence. Go figure.)
posted by SPrintF at 9:41 PM on December 29, 2006 [3 favorites]

Clorox wipes are the greatest thing since sliced bread.

I thought the whole idea of a Swiffer was pretty useless until the Great Soot Explosion of '06 got soot on my ceiling fan and now I don't know how I lived without one.

I also thought George Foreman grills were ridiculous until I realized that they can also be used to make an amazing grilled sandwich.

Things I honestly can't live without:
- iPod with car adapter. I have my address book backed up on my iPod as well, in case I lose my phone.
- Cell phone with text messaging. For me, the extra $10/mo for unlimited txt msgs is well spent since I work odd hours and can't always answer a call, but I can always be contacted via txt msg.
- Paid Flickr account to organize my photos. I also order my prints this way, which is a lot cheaper than buying a professional quality printer. (I'm a photographer of sorts and sell prints on occasion.)

Things I think are worth a little extra:
- Gifts for friends. If I can get it in hardcover, I do.
- The extra thread count on sheets.

Where I save money:
- While I buy a lot of books for myself and my friends, there are an incredible number of books that I get from the library. Also, I borrow things from friends if I see they have something I want to read. I also push my books on my friends somewhat forcefully. Why buy something that's only going to get read once or twice? Spread the love!
- I never ever spend money on music. I get CDs from the library or friends or, as a last resort, the internets.
- Living in an apartment where heat is included in the rent.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 9:45 PM on December 29, 2006

Eagle Creek Pack-It folders for when I travel. So nice to have a suitcase that stays organized.

Travel steamer. A godsend when I bring my linen suit on tours.

Address labels.


Breadmaker. I hate grocery shopping and always forget to buy bread. Gets the most use during hurricane season, when none of the stores have bread, anyway.

Knife grinding service for various cutlery. Makes such a difference on old blades.

Sick food stockpile (also doubles as hurricane food). Very important when single and no one can stop by to grocery shop for you until after their work shift ends.

Audible.com account. Audiobooks are a huge motivator for me to clean and such around the house.
posted by Sangre Azul at 9:51 PM on December 29, 2006 [1 favorite]

I stash Kashi granola bars everywhere - at home, in the car, at work - so I never go hungry, or snack on crap if I'm tired.

nthing fluff & fold, maid service, online banking.

I rarely go shopping (non-grocery), but instead take myself out to that big-ass outlet mall by Palm Springs and let loose every now and then.

And I see a shrink from time to time - not because I'm crazy, because what could possibly be more indulgent than paying someone to listen to me talk about me for 50 minutes? Oh, that's right - shopping in Whole Foods... :-)
posted by forallmankind at 9:54 PM on December 29, 2006 [1 favorite]

Pre-washed, bagged hearts of romaine.
Drip-less candles.
A really powerful vaccuum.
ITrip for my 'Pod.
Minifridge in nursery.
posted by Dizzy at 10:45 PM on December 29, 2006

Coffee, and the occasional froofy blended sugary drink.
posted by casarkos at 11:06 PM on December 29, 2006

iPod device for my car, since it only has an onboard radio. A cell phone - I am maybe the last adult in America to have one and it only works when I'm in town - no cell reception at my home or work. Since I do go to town only once a week, I make a list and add to it all week. (And check it twice, and thrice!) I also have a paid flickr account, thanks to my sister's gift of same, and I plan to keep it up. It's made a world of difference in my photo organization.
posted by Lynsey at 11:09 PM on December 29, 2006

A garlic press because it must be fresh and chopping takes way too much time. Works for peeled ginger, too.
posted by Listener at 11:11 PM on December 29, 2006 [1 favorite]

Oven-safe plates.
Cars with warranties and loaners.
posted by trevyn at 11:42 PM on December 29, 2006

PLEASE! Jars of chopped garlic are the absolute worst! There is no substitute for fresh garlic...PERIOD. (sorry for yelling, but I feel strongly about this) Chop a fresh clove of garlic and then dip a spoonful of jar garlic. Compare the aromas. You will find there is no comparison. The smell of pre-chopped garlic in a jar has been known to make me wretch. It is fetid.

"What small indulgences or habits do you have that make your life so much easier?"

posted by wsg at 12:42 AM on December 30, 2006 [1 favorite]


I was waiting for that one. Surprised it took so long to appear.
posted by megatherium at 2:52 AM on December 30, 2006

Keeping a couple of pre-rolled in the freezer.

It already appeared. Unless they are, y'know, pre-rolled puff pastries or something.
posted by fixedgear at 3:59 AM on December 30, 2006

I keep saying Tassimo is cheaper, faster, and better tasting in the long run than a daily Starbucks fix but we'll see....

Also, people have hinted at it, but COME ON, I can't be the only one who uses Cottonelle in lieu of well, regular old toilet paper....right?

Our local mall also has pretty cheap back massages where you stay fully clothed and get a good back rub....I get that once in a while......
posted by skepticallypleased at 4:51 AM on December 30, 2006

My robot floor washer is a comfort and joy.

Car-sharing is incredibly low-hassle.

Good food is worth it. Find the best food stores in your area; the take-away often beats restaurants, the excellent produce, bread, etc, makes eating well simple.

A preferred brand of bum wipe is indeed a plus.

How to Be Idle and How to Be Free are worth reading.

FreeCycle can be a bit of a time-waster, but, used correctly, it means you own less junk, and don't have to buy so much junk.
posted by kmennie at 6:31 AM on December 30, 2006

A remote car starter, so I don't have to spend 15 minutes scraping the car windows before I can leave for work. Turn it on, eat breakfast, get in car & go.

A littermaid litter box (and liners for the regular box). You still have to clean them, but I think it's a little easier.
posted by belladonna at 7:10 AM on December 30, 2006

I love the Tivo. I can watch TV according to my schedule rather than the other way around.

Harry and David pears are ridiculously expensive and ridiculously good eats.

An expensive teapot without the obnoxious whistle, but one that begins softly and builds volume with time.

I also like keeping a good bottle of vodka and a few beer mugs in the freezer. It's always better cold!

I can't go there on the jarred garlic.
posted by B-squared at 7:56 AM on December 30, 2006

Pre-washed salad; I hate washing lettuce more than life itself, I always pay more for the ready-to-eat bags/clamshells.
posted by SoftRain at 8:29 AM on December 30, 2006

Cable TV & High Speed Internet
My Cable/Internet bill is the highest one every darn month (except for rent, of course). The idea that I pay more for TV and Cable than I do for water, gas or electricity is quite ridiculous when you think about it. But for some reason, I absolutely love TV - and both my wife and I would be lost without a high-speed internet connection. And yes, I also pay extra for a DVR too which no one will every pry from my hands! ever!

2 Cats
I think my cats were one of the best investments I ever made. I got both of them before I got married, and it may sound sappy but they helped me to emerge from a shitty depression. They are both some of my best buddies, and I spend a stupid amount of money on them.

Grocery Shopping
Both my wife and I are crazy grocery shoppers. I love the grocery store. When we go shopping we usually always hit a regular grocery store and then either Whole Foods or Trader Joes. We both believe that Whole Foods is one of the greatest places on earth. However, Giant Eagle blows. Since moving to Pittsburgh (from Buffalo) we very much miss Wegmans.
posted by punkrockrat at 9:01 AM on December 30, 2006 [2 favorites]

Keeping a bunch of brand new socks in a drawer for when I want to feel extra good. Even smuggling a pair in my pocket and slipping them on when I'm somewhere I want to feel especially voluptuous.
posted by StickyCarpet at 11:17 AM on December 30, 2006 [4 favorites]

Champagne - Makes everything from dinner to cleaning the house fun!

Travel sized bottles of body spray and hair spray in the console of my car - In case I forgot while running out the door.

Alpine navigaion system - We call her Brenda. Shopping in a new area? On vacation in a rental car? Want to know where the nearest post office/hospital/chinese buffet/starbucks is? Ask Brenda! Phone numbers are included so you can call the business direct with any questions you may have.

Antibacterial household wipes in nice scents - Makes wiping down a sticky counter or dirty stove easier, and ditches a potentially nasty sponge.

Crock Pot!!! - Put roast in at 7am, have dinner at 7pm.

Pre-shredded cheese - I was always a fan of grating cheese myself, but for making dinner (a casserole or tacos for example) in a pinch, it's great to have on hand.

1G or 2G flash drive - Carry any files you want anywhere you go, with U3 technology from Sandisk you can run certain programs from the drive without installing them on your (work/friend's/liabrary) computer.

Online photo sharing sites - You come back from vacation and everyone in your office wants to see your photos. Do you print them and then let everyone get their grubby hands on them, mixing them up? Nope. Get their email addresses and let them browse online, fingerprint free.

Idahoan Instant Mashed Potatoes - Excellent flavors, cheap, easy (just boil two cups of water per package). No one can tell they're instant unless they see me make them.
posted by youngergirl44 at 11:58 AM on December 30, 2006

Bath sheets instead of towels. Giant and ridiculously luxurious, they wrap around you a couple of times and never get grossly damp.

Get a George Foreman grill, and dinner's fast and delicious. You can make almost anything; I do dinners on it -- chicken, beef, pork, and lots of fish -- as well as the sammiches mentioned by grapefruitmoon. Probably 80% of my dinners use my little blue George.

Shower at night, not in the morning. You're squeaky-clean as you crawl between clean sheets . . . and you never have to put on a bra while your hair's wet.
posted by booksandlibretti at 1:44 PM on December 30, 2006

A really, really nice bicycle.

Twenty dollar hand blender (get the Braun).

Some fine single malt scotch and really nice port.

Heated floor, under tile in the bathroom.
posted by fixedgear at 2:05 PM on December 30, 2006

I hate paying bills, filing etc. so I hire a bookeeper who comes in twice a month. In April she hands me my tax stuff to sign and I mail it.
I also hire my lawn mowing out and if someone comes to the door wanting to shovel my walk when it snows I let them do that too.
I used to do all these things myself. Eventually. Now things get done on time and I don't have them perpetually hanging over my head.
I have a cache of birthday and thank you cards and small, generic but nice presents and gift bags and lots of tissue paper.
Also, the next time I move I'll have an attached garage.
posted by BoscosMom at 2:07 PM on December 30, 2006

I forgot the biggest one. Not possible (or even desirable) for most people and hard to get started but:
I don't do Christmas.
posted by BoscosMom at 2:16 PM on December 30, 2006 [3 favorites]

The best thing to make your life easier in the morning (for men):

Shave while you take a shower, not before or after.

Invest in a fog free mirror, and start shaving your face (either with a razor or wet/dry electric) when you take a shower in the morning.

You'll get a better shave (the hot water/steam will ready your pores/beard for shaving.) It will go faster (you're multi-tasking, after all). It's less messy (stubble washes down the drain as you go). Your skin will be less prone to irritation/cuts/etc. (the previously mentioned steam/heat/water flow). The only downside is you'll be using slightly more water (assuming you don't leave the faucet running as you shave at the sink).
posted by jca at 3:03 PM on December 30, 2006

move close enough to your workplace that you can just walk there
posted by matteo at 3:22 PM on December 30, 2006 [1 favorite]

Clorox Wipes and Fresh Brush toilet cleaners.

Expensive kitchen accessories, like Calphalon pots and pans, and Caldrea's all-purpose cleanser. A 1000 ml bottle is thirteen dollars, but I look forward to using it because it has such a nice smell.
posted by halonine at 3:23 PM on December 30, 2006

1. Mr. Clean Magic Erasers
2. Tide Pen
3. DVR/Tivo - To whomever said it before, you will only pry this from my cold, dead hands.
5. Ipod

and finally,

6. Blockbuster Online/Netflix. I just converted to Blockbuster from Netflix because the envelopes you get = free rentals in store. It seems to me that Blockbuster has a slightly more limited library, but the value of taking my envelopes to the store for a free rental every month more than makes up for it. Also, with the number of rentals I manage to pimp out of the store a month, the 18 and change I pay is totally worth it. (And, you can now use your free rental coupons that come with the online subscription to rent $7 games.)
posted by santojulieta at 4:46 PM on December 30, 2006

Sorry about the poor numbering there...
posted by santojulieta at 4:46 PM on December 30, 2006

Three complete toliet kits--one that stays home, one for th egym bag and one for traveling. This means I never find myself without a toothbrush . . . and it costs no more than it would if I was using all those toiletries in a serial fashion.
posted by donovan at 5:50 PM on December 30, 2006 [1 favorite]

Podcasts. They keep my mind occupied and stimulated. I subscribe to about 20, and listen to them while doing housework or when I can't pick up a good public radio station in the car. Also when I have trouble sleeping, and when flying. The iPod on which to play them goes without saying.

Laptop instead of a desktop, with wireless internet. Reading MetaFilter in bed or in front of the fire or in the backyard is awesome.

Fiskars paper trimmer, which is a smaller version of the nice trimmers they have at the copy shop. Got it at Costco for about $20. Beats the hell out of a ruler and an exacto.

Car washes where they hand wash and dry your car, and vacuum out the inside. I loathe washing my car, and for $12 and about 30 minutes it comes out looking great.

My Miele canister vacuum. It is the Porsche of vacuums, and it was worth the money.

Pastis on a hot afternoon. It's a liqueur from Provence made from herbs and anisette, and you mix it with water and ice. Expensive to buy in the US, but it's very, very refreshing.

My S.O. swears by his noise cancelling headphones when he flies.

Upgrading my seat on the plane. THAT makes me a happy girl.
posted by shifafa at 6:18 PM on December 30, 2006 [1 favorite]

Seconding noise-cancelling headphones, Tivo and duplicate toiletry kits.

You talk about wash and fold, but I bring my button-down shirts to the dry cleaners for the wash & press.

Japanese Hair Straightening - takes 5 hours every 6 months but its easy as pie to look good the rest of the time.
posted by AuntLisa at 7:10 PM on December 30, 2006

Satellite radio in the car. The commute is never a drag when you can choose from 140+ stations including decade-centered stations, old-time radio shows, talk, comedy, sports, weather/traffic, news. The choices are truly astonishing, and I can also listen online and in my house.
posted by GaelFC at 7:15 PM on December 30, 2006

You can order groceries online and have them ready for pickup or delivered to your door for a small fee.
posted by moira at 9:40 PM on December 30, 2006

regarding the bill paying--why do it once a week as suggested? I agree that The consistency of scheduling certainly helps get it done, but you can call most of your billers and ask that they change your bill cycle so most of your bills, if not all, are due around the same time (eg. end of month). all the credit card companies will work with you on that, probably not the landlord or telephone company, but worth a try. Then once a MONTH you can sit down and pay them all online. I do this on the 15th of every month, I'm never late on a bill any more, and I'm only having to deal with bill paying every 30 days. I also change the furnace filter on the 15th of the month, so easy to remember. Twice a year things (dental cleaning, rotating the mattress, botox injections, etc) I always do in May (my birthday month) and November (6 months later and my husband's birthday month). When it comes to laundry, I do it every Thursday (cleaning lady comes on friday and I let her fold it, that is my true luxury). This way, It's never a decision--do laundry today? tomorrow? never? and it always gets done!
posted by Lylo at 12:31 AM on December 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

Things I have learnt to never live without:
1) Internet banking
2) Underfloor heating in the bathroom
3) Heated car seats
4) Garage (no more scraping the car in the morning)
5) iTrip
6) DVR for home and travel

For some reason I get a sense of pride in cleaning the bathroom, but hate hoovering so will look into the Roomba!
posted by arcticseal at 4:17 AM on December 31, 2006

I have a power cord for my laptop in each room of my apartment where I use my computer. At first I thought it was ridiculous (especially given Mac's price for replacement adapters), but it makes moving around the house sooo much easier. Cooking from a recipe online, episodes of The Office in the tub, doing work in bed...I'm no longer interupted by having to track down the cord when the battery hits the red zone.
posted by saffron at 7:52 AM on December 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

High quality sunglasses. There is no substitute for lightweight, perfectly comfortable frames with polarized lenses that cut out glare. Find the best pair you can afford, spare no expense for the shades in which you feel most comfortable. They are worth every penny, especially if you spend any significant time in a car during daylight hours. Once you've grown accustomed to high quality sunglasses, you'll feel naked leaving the house without them. You'll find yourself wearing them on cloudy days, you'll find yourself leaving them on after you have turned on the headlights. A good pair of shades can change your whole perspective on the world literally.

Also on the driving tip...a GPS navigator in the car is indispensable. It's definitely one of those things that you'll never want to go back to living without it.

I also pay a fair amount of money to buy access to online services on subjects of interest which are unavailable elsewhere. I subscribe to Stratfor. I subscribe to financial newsletters from Motley Fool. And because I'm a baseball nut, I subscribe to Baseball Prospectus which is GM level intel on the game, stuff like that.

Not unlike good shades, access to information and analysis can change your perspective as well.
posted by edverb at 11:34 AM on December 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

Glad Press-and-Seal. You'll never use regular cling-wrap again.
posted by matty at 3:43 PM on December 31, 2006

Electric tooth brush.

My teeth have never been so clean and I no longer have the nagging anxiety instilled by years of dentist lectures and toothpaste commercials.

I wish I had one 30 years ago.
posted by srboisvert at 10:09 AM on January 2, 2007

Re: having separate toiletry bags for travel and stuff-

I have a nice travel toiletry bag from L.L. Bean that I hang from the towel rack in my bathroom. I've gotten to the point now where I never unpack it after a trip and just use all my items straight out of the bag. It hangs nicely so everything's accessible, and keeps everything together and organized. And I don't have to worry about forgetting anything when I pack to travel. And I don't mind how it looks in the bathroom either.

There are a few things I take out of the bag because I use them so much- my brush, my birth control pills, and my contact lenses- so I have to remember to put those things back in the bag for travel. I have a travel toothbrush that's small and stays in there always, but I use my normal toothbrush at home. But my moisturizer, makeup, and some other small things always stay in my travel bag...

I find it easier to access these things out of the bag in the bathroom than from a cabinet, and since I travel often it takes a lot of stress out of packing. :)
posted by thejrae at 5:00 PM on March 22, 2007

I'm late to this, but I'll add (second) a few: TiVo (wow), handywipe stuff, getting someone to clean my house occasionally, cabs, organized linen closet with odd items tossed into large bowls by category, swiffer, a shopping list of regular purchases that I print out every week, google calendar reminders, ordering bc for as many months at a time as possible, keeping stuff at the gym, biking instead of driving, those disposable toilet cleaners (wow), automated bill paying, frequent flyer miles (american preferably), ING direct automated savings, yoga (indulgence), occasional pedicure (indulgence), candles (indulgence), cooking meals for the lunch week on Sundays, bringing everything I'm going to eat for the week to work on monday, an alarm clock that eases me awake through nature sounds and doesn't piss me off, subscribing to a FICO credit score service with alerts, great coffee periodically, lean cuisines, texting and cell phones in general....

But I do want to comment that some of those things that have made my life so much easier, have taken a toll on my connectedness with the world. TiVo, for example. I love it bc I don't watch commercials anymore (saving time and annoyance), but I think I watch more tv than before bc there's always something good TiVod. Cell phones - great in some many ways - but downside is being always accessible, and being tuned out of the rest of the world. I find it harder to disconnect and be quiet in my mind now that I have constant cell phone and computer access. Lean cuisines - cheap, low calorie, easy as pie - but not real food, and high in sodium.
posted by Amizu at 8:13 AM on March 28, 2007 [3 favorites]

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