Did you know that people spend 47 percent of their day thinking about something other than what they are doing in the moment? The Muse Brain Sensing Headband trains your brain to trigger a relaxation response, which can help slow your thoughts and reduce stress. Muse’s headband measures brain signals with a “seven-sensor system” to help you deal with stress levels and alleviate anxiety. Muse collects your data in your own private account in its accompanying app named “Calm,” and it uses Calm to give you insight into your brain’s performance. The total experience offers an overall beneficial change of the brain’s structure and function. Hey, if you reduced my stress, I’d love you. $299.
Mom bought me these Agloves Touchscreen Gloves a few years ago, and they’re still in excellent shape. I’ve tested other texting gloves, and nothing even comes close to these. Agloves are made with real silver threads for greater conductivity. They are thin, and the silver fibers reflect heat, so not only are they better for texting, they keep your hands warm. They’re unisex and made with a stretchy fabric that conforms to your hand, and you can even wash them in the machine, but dry flat. They work with all of my touchscreen gadgets: iPhone, iPad, laptop. They’re compatible with almost any screen: Samsung Galaxy, Android, MacBook trackpads, touchscreen ATMs, ticket kiosks, bike computers, car GPS systems and pretty much everything else. I swear by these. $25-$29.
One of my all-time favorite gifts is soft sheets. There are so many brands that claim their sheets are the best, but in my experience, Legends Luxury Sateen Bedding really does stand out. They use 500-thread count Supima cotton, an extra-long staple cotton grown in the southwestern U.S. and made with a sateen weave. Sateen is cotton-cloth woven into a silky smooth and luxuriously soft feel. The Legends sheets fit mattresses up to 17 inches thick and are machine washable. You can also personalize them. The colors are accurate to what is shown on the website, and they look just as silky. If you want to be warmly invited to bed, these are a smart present. $50-$250.
“Star Wars” has been trending on Twitter for months. If your hairy Wookiee is a fan, you can’t go wrong with this Severed Wampa Arm Ice Scraper. The Wampa ice creatures were carnivorous, hairy beasts from the planet Hoth and were lethal predators with a fanged maw. Who wouldn’t want to feel powerful against the Force and annoying elements of yet another icy winter? An added bonus is that zombie lovers will also be charmed by the severed limb, so you can’t go wrong. $25.
LED pasties are a fun way to light up the festivities. Word to the wise, though, if it’s a first date, giving pasties as a gift might ruin your chances for a second date. But, these shiny pasties from Sasswear are perfect for a lover with a sense of humor and one who is confident that you’re not just using them for their headlights. If you know his or her areolas well, go ahead and give the gift of sparkle. $32.
These novelty items appeal to the heart, the mind and the palate. Eat The Fine Print sells 100 percent edible greeting cards. If you’re looking for something in good taste and tastes good, here you go. Each card is a little thicker than a piece of printer paper, and they’re vegan. The ingredients are all gluten-free, soy-free and dairy-free, and they’re only 42 calories. You can choose from blueberry, key lime, strawberry and orange sorbet. They’re wrapped in cellophane, so don’t eat the package. For the orally fixated, this is the perfect side dish to a box of edible underwear … $9.
These next two ideas are more conventional, but will win plenty of love from the right person. This ultra-compact Bose SoundLink Mini Bluetooth Speaker has big sound even though it fits in the palm of your hand. It connects wirelessly to your iPhone, iPad, iPod, Bluetooth device and Androids. The rechargeable lithium ion battery lasts for seven hours of play, and it only weighs 1.5 pounds, so you can just throw it in a bag and go. It’s designed with gravity in mind so that it is nearly impossible to tip over, and the speaker range is 30 feet, so go ahead and blast Adam Sandler’s “The Chanukah Song” or Larry the Cable Guy’s funny Christmas songs. $200.
Oh boy, I hope my hubby gets me the Logitech Harmony 650 Remote (screaming hint, Steve). With it, we can merge eight entertainment gadgets into one remote. Desktop software by MyHarmony will walk us through the setup, and the software supports 5,000 brands. This Logitech universal remote is set to work with upgrades and new devices seamlessly. There’s a color-coded display with buttons grouped by their functions. OMG, I have to have this! $80.
My Aunt Mimi always made great socks for me. They’ve lasted forever, and I still have some of them since grade school! I love to sleep and pad around in them during the winter months. Here’s the next best thing to Aunt Mimi: Kingston Alpaca Knits. These are 100-percent alpaca hand-knit socks. The website says they come from an old family pattern that includes a “turned heel” for a more comfortable fit. The alpaca fiber is described as luxurious, hypoallergenic, lightweight, super soft and breathes while being worn. Warm feet in winter equals bliss. (Steve, yoo hoo, I’d be happy with these, too!). The website also features hand-knit alpaca baby booties, blanket, toddler and baby socks. $40.
I already have a huge collection of mugs (my husband surprised me with a Scrabble mug last year that has become my latest favorite), but I’m always open to a new mug if it’s original. You can’t get much more creative than these mugs from Uncommon Goods: wide-mouthed faces with a place to store cookies, coffee cups standing on their own two feet and a cup for cocoa with a built-in hoop to slam-dunk mini marshmallows. On the website, there is a sweet story about a dyslexic 8-year-old boy named Max who came up with The Mug With a Hoop. With his team (mom, dad and brother), Max launched a successful crowdfunding campaign that made his hoop dream a reality. $24-$35. Dorri Olds is a contributing journalist for TheBlot Magazine.