Just hear those sleigh bells jingling, ring-ting-tingling—it’s officially the holiday season, and you know I love nothing more than a) an excuse to do
a little bit OK, a lot of online shopping (for the sake of the blog, of course) and b) give away cool stuff to you guys.
And who doesn’t love free stuff? Charlee Doodle thinks free stuff is PAWSome!
For the Casual Traveler: Errant Night T-Shirts
So this is my big announcement: We—and by we, I mean SVV—have launched a new company! I’ll be sharing more about Errant Night in the weeks to come, but long story short: When we were still living in San Francisco, our dining room was taken up by SVV’s massive screen-printer that he used to hand-print cool graphic tees. He sold it when we moved across country to Tennessee and has been wallowing in his screen-printerless sadness ever since, then this summer after he left his office job, he decided to relaunch a new T-shirt company using American Apparel products, eco-friendly ink, and the images and signs we have photographed all over the world. He’s been working on this since August, and I’m so proud of him—the site went live this week just in time for holiday shopping madness, so expect many more designs in the months to come. But for now, we’re giving away a shirt of your choice to THREE lucky winners, so pop on down to the comments when you’re done perusing this post and throw your name in the hat.
For the Flashpacker: Lo & Sons bag
$275 $165 through Nov. 28
I’ve long been an admirer of Lo & Sons, then I got my first bag back in the spring, and I’m full-on obsessed. I’ve waffled back and forth on laptop bags in the past, having never found the perfect mix of a bag that can hold my laptop, my photography gear, all my personal items and double as a carry-on. Then, I got the O.M.G. bag, and it’s all those things and more. Bonus: It’s super cute, too! I cannot say enough good things about this bag, but just know that I will probably never own another laptop bag that isn’t Lo & Sons, like, ever. For those of you who desire a bit more space, the O.G. is very similar just slightly bigger (here’s how the two compare in sizing).
For the Hobbyist Photographer: A Pakpod
If, like me, you follow thousands of Instagrammers who get magazine-worthy shots of themselves from exotic places while traveling solo and are wandering how they did it, wander no longer—they probably used a compact tripod like the Pakpod. What makes this device so great is that unlike my heavy-duty tripod, it fits in my carry-on and doesn’t add much weight at all to my day bag. It’s ideal for the traveler who doesn’t use a DSLR, but instead relies on a GoPro, iPhone, compact camera or point-and-shoot. Bonus: It’s waterproof so I fully expect to take it diving with us after we get our new underwater photography equipment before our next Caribbean jaunt in January, as well as comes with stakes so you can orient it in any extreme situation needed (like, say, rock-climbing). Cool, huh?
For the Eco-Friendly Traveler: S’well Bottle
My cousins gave me a S’well bottle last year for Christmas, and it couldn’t be more aptly named. I love this product and I take it in my carry-on on every trip now; it saves having to buy bottled water every time I get through security. I pack it empty, fill it up on the other side and am never left high and, literally, dry!
For the Wannabe Vlogger: A Bi-Directional Mic
After Redbook magazine asked me to broadcast live from the red carpet of the 50th annual CMA Awards earlier this month, SVV immediately hopped on Amazon and bought us this bidirectional mic that plugs directly into our iPhone and iPad, picks up my interviews but cuts out a lot of unnecessary background noise. I anticipate using this a lot in the future as we toy with getting into podcasting and maybe even some video content.
For the Light Sleeper (and Runner): SleepPhones (*win one*)
$99.95 $74.97 for Black Friday week
My husband is a chronic snorer. It’s so bad that if I don’t hear him sawing logs in the middle of the night, I shake him violently out of fear he’s dead. I’m a LIGHT sleeper, so on paper, we’re a horrible fit. And I’ll fully admit, we sleep in separate rooms much of the time as a result because earplugs do nothing to drown him out. Enter: SleepPhones, this genius product is a headband you wear that hooks up wirelessly to your music or sound machine and blocks out your spouse’s not-so-pleasant snoozing. I just got this product a few weeks ago, but it was a godsend when we went to Alabama, SVV had a little bourbon, and the snoring was out of control. Since I’m back on a running kick, I opted for the RunPhones, which are the same product but made out of a different material, and pair with your iPhone so you can listen to tunes as you run. Basically, I’m in love, and if you scroll to the very bottom you can win one, too!
For the Home Entertainer: Gold-Plated Mugs
I’m a sucker for all of Target’s homes lines, and I dig these gilded mugs. So, you know, if anyone’s looking to buy me a gift… 😉
For the At Home Chef: RawSpiceBar (*win one*)
Price: $8 a month
You may not know this about us, but SVV is an expert chef and I’m a pretty damn good sous if I do say so myself. When we’re not traveling, we cook healthy meals every night of the week (and some mornings, too). Since we try to cook as clean (or Paleo) as possible, we use a lot of spices, and while I’ve never gotten a subscription box of any kind before, I finally found one that is perfect for us: RawSpiceBar. Better yet, it also comes with recipe ideas, too—I can’t wait to expand our repertoire of dinner meals.
For the New Homeowner: Nest System
We invested in a pair of these thermostats (one for upstairs, one for downstairs) as soon as we moved into our house four years ago, and they’ve done wonders to control the temperature of our 117-year-old home and save energy when we’re not around. Bonus: The second I land from the airport after a trip, I can hop on my iPhone and adjust the temperature so it’s nice and toasty (or in the summer, good and cool) by the time I arrive.
For the Fitness Buff: gFast Performance Pants
I get a lot of questions on Instagram and Snapchat about my workout apparel, as I own more fitness outfits than I do real clothes. My secret? Gap Fit. It’s comfortable, it’s durable, and Gap pretty much has a 30 to 40 percent sale going at all times (never order from them at full-price!). Now that it’s getting cold out, these are my newest running pants obsession.
For the Techie: Google Home
I love the idea of a smart home—the fact that we can control the temperature of our house and monitor our security cameras from our phones while on the other side of the world is mind-boggling—and Google Home may just be the device I need to tie all my other smart appliances together (or maybe it’s the Amazon Echo, depending on your needs).
For the Philanthropist: A Donation to Charity
Price: whatever you want to give
I donate monthly to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Big Fluffy Dog Rescue, and for my last birthday, in lieu of presents, SVV gave a sizable donation to the dog rescue. I love that my “gift” was being able to take care of a pup in need! If your loved one has a big heart, why not considering ditching the idea of a “thing” for a gift and contribute to his/her favorite charity instead?
For the Frequent Flier: Comfy Plane Clothes
I’m a fan of ponchos, boyfriend cardigans made out of sweatshirt material and slouchy clothes of all kinds when it comes to what I opt to wear on flights, no matter if they’re two hours or 12. So I’m always on high alert for new tops to add to my collection and am really digging this Isabel Oversized Poncho at Anthropologie right now.
Other stocking stuffers that I always find useful:
- Adapter/converter set for global travel
- Mophie back-up battery/charging case for your iPhone
- Portable external hard drive for backing up photos on the go
Want to win some of the items I listed above for a loved one (or for yourself—I won’t judge)? Enter via the Rafflecopter widget below, and don’t forget to leave a note in the comment section so you’re eligible.