General Question

Pandora's avatar

What have you recently purchased (small items) that you feel was worth the money?

Asked by Pandora (29652points) November 19th, 2010

I asked recently what purchase was a waste of money.
With christmas coming about I always like to look for gifts that are sensible and helpful in some way.
I recently purchased drawer organizers for my bathroom drawers and it was well worth the purchase. I was tired of never being ever to find stuff in my drawers because of things falling all over each other.
“Of course my daughter could be right and I may be a little OCD.” LOL
It seems in my last question about a waste of money that snuggies turned out to be a favorite purchase by some.
So what do you think is a valuable gift idea other than snuggies?
I would appreciate input from all ages being that I have a wide range of ages to purchase for. From teens to 90 years of age.

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34 Answers

Cruiser's avatar

I’ll be sending out webcams to my family members who have yet to tap into the world of Skype. Good ones can be had for under $25.00 and even decent ones at half that.

LuckyGuy's avatar

I used those free 9 LED flashlight coupons from Harbor Freight that come in the newspapers and magazines and got a bunch of them. Every car, and bedroom has one now. The rest are going to be stocking stuffers.

Pandora's avatar

@Cruiser. Oh, thats a good one. Although most of our relatives are already plugged in.
@worriedguy I can see that being a useful idea for the teens who drive. It does give me some ideas for drivers. Maybe some free carwash coupons for those I know, who hate to clean their vehicles, or emergency car kit.
Hmm! Although they do sound great I’m not sure the teens will really appreciate it. They may rate it up there with a package a underwear and socks. LOL

JilltheTooth's avatar

I often do books They’re great if you know the interests of all the people, even if you’re iffy on what they like, humorous books can be very appealing. My mom is almost blind, so books on CD work well for her. DVDs can also be a good choice for some of the people if you know what they might like.

BarnacleBill's avatar

I bought an iHome alarm clock with iPod docking station for my desk at work that has good audio sound. It was $50 at Staples. It’s very compact.

I bought LED head lamps last year as gifts. The one we had was prized when the power went out a few years ago. I have one in the car, in case I break down, and several in the house. Great to use to take the trash out at night, walking around on Halloween, camping, when the lights go out and you need to find the fuse box. Any time it’s dark and you need to have both hands free to fix something.

Seelix's avatar

Recently I got an iPod car adapter as a gift; the kind that plugs into the lighter socket and uses radio broadcast. They’re not very expensive, and now I don’t have to burn CDs to listen to my downloaded music in the car. That’d be a good gift for the music lover who has an older car that isn’t equipped with an iPod port.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@Pandora Back in the day I used to give everyone Made in USA Maglites .
They are quality products that last forever. My sons still use theirs regularly.

If you’re mechanically inclined there are even projects based on Maglites. I recently saw a fire piston based on one..

john65pennington's avatar

This has been a terrible year for family member accidents. not auto accidents, the kind like you fall of a chair, while cleaning the top of your refrigerator and falling out of the bathtub.

So, i think this year will be the year my Christmas presents will consist only of the following:

A $50 gift card, useable at any hospital emergency room.

My family members will thank me.

Jude's avatar


And, they were worth it to me because I love them.

gailcalled's avatar

A little elastic ring with a button attached. It gives me the ability to fasten a pair of jeans that is a tad too tight.

poisonedantidote's avatar

A USB mouse from a company called VOLtech.

I have no idea who they are, I have never heard of them before, but they make a top quality mouse. The scroll wheel has little ridges on it so you don’t scroll too far by accident, but it’s also easy to scroll and not stiff, It’s very precise and smooth, it works more or less on any surface, it’s transparent, so you can see if anything has gone wrong inside without opening it up, and the cable is a little thicker than the last one and looks more durable. The best thing of all, it cost me less than a couple of bucks. I liked it so much that i went back and got 5 more to store.

Pandora's avatar

@gailcalled LOL, good one but I don’t think I want of offend anyone for christmas.

Kardamom's avatar

I got 3 really cute knit hats in the dollar bin at Target. A page full of camping stickers in the “notions” dept. at Walmart. 2 huge rolls (one green and one red) glittery wrapping paper and a tub of Smart Balance (heart healthy non-trans fat margarine that we use daily) and a box of Challenge butter (for Thanksgiving) the 99 Cent Only Store.

Kardamom's avatar

Here’s some ideas for gifts: gift certificate for the recipient’s local movie theater, a gift certificate for the gas station, any kind of camping gear (if you know they like to camp) such as those new LED bulb lanterns, cookbooks (I found some great ones for $5 to $10 at Big Lots) which can be specific for the recipients. I found a book that pairs beers with recipes that I’m getting for one of my male cousins, and there’s vegetarian/heart healthy/diabetic and low fat books for those folks on special diets, and chocolate recipe books for almost everyone, plus there’s lots of new kids/teens age cookbooks out there now. A membership to a local museum (Art, Natural History, Planetarium, Car or Airplane) a Netflix gift certificate (make sure ahead of time that they would use it) and for grandmas, neighbors and co-workers you can bake something and attach the recipe. For someone who cooks you could get a gadget that you know they don’t have such as a mandoline slicer, a spice grinder or mortar and pestle, a mini food processor, or a fancy piece of cookwear (a cast iron pan, a nonstick pan with a glass lid, a new stock pot or a set of stainless steel measuring cups with spouts) flashlights of all types seem to be enjoyed by little kids (they also like sticker books). I-tunes gift certificates, grocery store gift certificates. Restaurant gift certificates for a specific restaurant that you know they love. Zoo membership. For the grandparents you can get a book for them to record their family history (they have these at most book stores where they ask all sorts of questions) Trader Joe’s gift certificate. A recipe organizer book, a framed photograph of YOU.

YARNLADY's avatar

I got small, hand held fire extinguishers for my family one year. I hope they never get used, but at least they are available, just in case.

RareDenver's avatar

This bottle of wine I’m drinking was sure worth it :)

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Dental floss picks.
Metal fingernail file.
Altoid’s chewing gum.
Tweezerman brand tweezers that come in a tiny plastic tube that has a lid.
Copies of house and mailbox keys.
NYC brand lipglosses in small metal slide-top containers.
Covergirl brand powder/foundation.
Flipside plastic wallet/card case.
Keychain flashdrive.

YARNLADY's avatar

A rolling laptop cart and a laptop fan.

Kardamom's avatar

@YARNLADY I love the idea of fire extinguishers. It’s something that everybody needs, and most people would never remember to buy them for themselves!

Pandora's avatar

oh, the laptop fan is an awesome idea. People rarely get one and they are great for keeping your laptop from overheating. Especially if it is used a lot. i also found it great to use on my electronics that over heat. Like my dvr.

RareDenver's avatar

An 8GB Sony USB stick

Garebo's avatar

I got one, check out the kindling starters at LL Bean-Freeport, MaIne. I think they go for 22 bucks-I know that’s what I am do’in, they come in a big ole wood box and torch up nice. And I think it still is free shipping until tomorrow.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Flipside wallet.

snowberry's avatar

I have grown to love a good potato peeler. I hate the kind that peel more than the skin off. It’s unnecessary, and wasteful. Several times I have misplaced mine, and had to purchase another. Sometimes I’ve had to look a while to find a good one.

Oh, and really good expensive chocolate is always appreciated.

Pandora's avatar

@snowberry I know what you mean. The Titan potato peeler is awesome. Will peel just the right amount and really smooth. I use to hate peeling potatoes and always had my husband do it. Now I love doing it. It peels faster than any other and glides over the potatoes easily while leaving all the potatoe intact.

momnipotence's avatar

Okay…so this is a bit late, and honestly not sure it will be TOTALLY helpful…but I recently bought my daughter a sing-a-ma-jig and have since realized that they make GREAT stress relievers. You can’t help but laugh when you pick one up. $11 at Wal-Mart completely worth every penny!

Neizvestnaya's avatar

It’s not exactly a small purchase but I just switched to a Straight Talk phone plan I bought as a package deal through the Evil Empire. A samsung phone came with a $45.00 phone card which gives me unlimited calls, texts, pics and web browsing for an initial output of $61.00.

This isn’t spam, it’s the best purchase I’ve made this year! $30. or $45. a month and that’s it- no charges to pay my bills, nothing extra. Wee hee!

snowberry's avatar

I just bought $130 worth of herbs.

RareDenver's avatar

We recently bought a series of tupperware type tubs from clas ohlson that seem to keep our fresh food fresher for an amazingly longer time, they certainly weren’t the cheapest of tubs but they will no doubt pay for themselves in the amount of food that we won’t throw away because it’s gone bad.

I hate answers like this, they make me feel so fucking middle aged

Pandora's avatar

@RareDenver LOL, Yeah, I’ve done that or sometimes sound like an infomercial.

snowberry's avatar

@RareDenver Yesterday I was looking at something similar, but the family would not use it properly, and it would pretty soon end up in the trash :(

Concerned069's avatar

Bought a NookColor from B&N, worth every penny in my opinion. Practical, relatively cheap when compared to other e-book readers & the Apple Ipad. The NookColor sit nicely in the middle of all these competitors because it can function as both an e-reader or a small “Ipad”. Great buy!

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