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Seven Products For 2007

By Melissa Summers

I decided late in 2006 to step out of the incredibly cliched role of the harried housewife who puts herself last and take better care of me. I’ve never had trouble carving out time for myself but carving out money for myself has been a problem.
Last week I spent the equivalent my weekly food budget having my eyebrows done (plucked and not waxed! Far superior according to my eyebrow girl) and my hair cut (just 5 weeks after the last cut). How it hurt me to turn over that money, but I think I could live on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for a couple months if it means a well placed arch and a precision cut.
So following this theme I’d like to share the 7 products I predict I will be unable to live without (even though that money could go to dozens of other things….like pasta and toilet paper) in 2007.

1. iPhone.
iPhone.jpgLogan was between jobs last week and I played up the fact that I earned more than him for 7 whole days. The only time in my life this has been true. The other day while I worked at the library Logan emailed me to say, “Oh my God! Are you watching the Steve Jobs keynote?”
I wrote back, “Nerd. No, some of us are employed and can’t just watch Steve Jobs all day.”
But then later that night we climbed into bed, fired up the computer and watched it together while cuddling. That’s when it happened, I fell in love with the iPhone (also: reached new levels of nerd-ness). I’m not the only one either.

2. Superhero Necklace
superhero.jpgI bought myself a Superhero necklace as a belated birthday gift for myself. A gift for myself after I’d insisted my husband not bother with a gift for me. “I’m a martyr darling, I don’t need anything!” (Barf). On that birthday I came to a conclusion about myself and it changed the course of things for me. (I realized how much I needed to take care of myself.) Since that time I’ve made some small changes which have meant a lot to me. I am my very own superhero. Maybe I’ll buy another, you know, just to see what happens!

3. L’Occitane Eau des Vanilliers
solidperfume.jpgI stood at the cutest little shop, Clarkston General, in a small town north of us for about 35 minutes debating purchasing this perfume. It was just $8. But $8 for a small tin of perfume? Oh no. I can’t do it. Not when I could buy 28 cans of black beans for that same price. Smelling good vs. incredible amounts of low fat protein and fiber? When I smell my wrist it’s worth taking all that protein and fiber out of my kid’s diet. Believe me.


4. Elephant (or Anteater)(or Rhinoceros) Bottle Opener
elephantbottleopener.jpgThis is not something I’ll buy for myself but it’s the best gift idea so I’ll be spending many dollars on it. An elephant bottle opener, use the underside to twist off caps and the trunk to pop off your caps. Max pointed out it could be an anteater or, when you flip it over, it looks like a rhinoceros.

My friends bought it for us at Christmas after seeing it at Mighty Goods and I love it’s compact size, clever design and (SURPRISE!) the small price tag. New gift for everyone. “Happy Sixth Birthday TJ! Enjoy this elephant bottle opener!” Kids like soda.

5. Gap Curvy Bootcut Jeans
bootcut.jpgA few months ago I went to The Gap and found all the clothes I was wearing in the mid 90’s when I was 30 pounds lighter (also lighter by about 290 pounds in the form of two cats, a son, a daughter and a husband). I started to feel like the Gap had it out for me. I don’t want to make any assumptions but it certainly seemed like The Gap hated me and wanted me to forever be unhappy in unflattering skinny pants.

I never did anything to you The Gap! I don’t know what your problem is. I only wanted to love you and you repay me with skinny jeans? You know what? You are a jerk.

But then I had a gift card and I tried the Curvy bootcut jeans on a whim because NOTHING else in the store was going to be even marginally flattering. They fit and I loved them. The cut is low enough to avoid that ‘Mom Jeans’ look but cut curvy enough to prevent my underwear from showing when I bend over. I also love the wide waist band at the top, it prevents the dreaded ‘Muffin Top’.

I’ve been wearing those curvy bootcut jeans since October about 4 days a week, if you amortize the purchase so far I’ve spent $1.05 per wear on these jeans and for someone as cheap as myself this is nearly perfect. Even better I bought myself another pair in a smaller size. Hooray!

6. Table Topics (Family Edition)
tabletopics.jpgWhen I talked about family dinner night someone pointed me to Table Topics. I didn’t include it in my post because I just couldn’t imagine Table Topics being that great. However, this year while shopping for Christmas gifts I saw it at a shop in town and after reading some of the questions I thought it would be a way to make our dinner conversations more interesting. So far we’ve had dozens of great conversations and I hope we’ll be able to keep it going as our kids get older. There is nothing I dread more than the grunting teenager at my dinner table.

7. Parking Meter Alarm
parkingmeteralarm.jpgIn August of 2006, I decided I’d had enough of ‘convenience fees’ when buying tickets online. So when I needed to purchase tickets to a baseball game I decided to drag the kids to the box office in Detroit. I saved myself a whopping $10 on this purchase by driving downtown to get the tickets. Then, still proud of myself for sticking it to the man and avoiding that ridiculous fee, I left the car on the street and forgot to feed the meter. Detroit may have problems with removing their trash but they are very good at giving parking tickets. A $30 ticket while trying to save myself $10.

I am brilliant.

It would be a better story if this was a one time occurence but it’s not. Just ask my husband how many times his head has exploded upon seeing yet another parking ticket on the dashboard of my car. (Approximately 89 times in the last 9.5 years we’ve been married.) The Parking Meter Alarm I originally saw at Mighty Goods (“Hooray For Stuff!”) is next up on my ‘Must Have List’ because I never have change, am incapable of keeping track of how long I have in the meter and my husband’s head just can’t keep exploding like this.

What products will you be using or purchasing this year….even if it means giving up toilet paper? (Though, hopefully you’re exaggerating.)

Melissa Summers
About the Author

Melissa Summers

Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.


Melissa Summers was a regular contributor writing Melissa’s Buzz Off.

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  • slouching mom

    January 17, 2007 at 4:15 pm

    I am still laughing about ‘muffin top’. Oh man, do I hate the muffin top!
    Anyway. Deep breath. On a more serious note (but not that serious), I am loving all of the Method products. The liquid soap they brought out for Xmas? The spiced pear? The smell knocked me out… And the bottles are so.cute.

  • angela

    January 17, 2007 at 4:18 pm

    I am dying for an iPhone! That is my #1 wish item this yeat.

  • chris

    January 17, 2007 at 9:30 pm

    I can barely work my plain old regular cell phone, I am not syre what an iphone would do for me.
    And the skinny jeans are just so so horrible. And the ultra low-waisted jeans.

  • Tiffany

    January 17, 2007 at 9:46 pm

    Don’t you just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE those Gap boot cut curvy jeans??

  • melissaS

    January 17, 2007 at 10:14 pm

    Chris…..HELLO TIVO!!!!!

  • Amy

    January 17, 2007 at 11:11 pm

    Must find a GAP nearby. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.

  • Kara

    January 18, 2007 at 8:53 am

    Ooooo… L’Occitane! My best friend (thanks for the new addiction!) introduced me to them when I visited her over the holidays. I recommend you try the Green Tea – solid perfume (also available in the $8 tin and which I am wearing now) and the Verbena eau de toilette.

  • karen

    January 18, 2007 at 9:24 am

    iPhone? iWant.
    Also a Macbook. I think I’m the only blogger on the block who still uses a PC. I’m so 2002.
    Love your list. Except I’m glad that bootcuts are out, as I’m tired of catching my toe in the hem and going down. Stitches in my chin to prove it.

  • Christy

    January 18, 2007 at 11:44 am

    I have a pair of Gap curvy bootcut jeans that I bought when I was on crack or something, because I am not curvy. I am pretty much straight (except for my sweet love handles) and so now I never wear them.
    They are a size 10, which is undoubtedly too big for you, but if you want them I will send them to you.

  • Anne

    January 18, 2007 at 12:14 pm

    I know you think the Gap is great, but you should try the curvy boot jeans at Ann Taylor Loft. I usually wear a 10 or (gasp!) 12 in jeans, but in ATL’s Curvy Boot jeans a SIZE EIGHT fits perfectly. They look great, too. So I bought about 5 pair because I haven’t bought anything in a size 8 in the past 10 years.

  • Molly

    January 18, 2007 at 12:17 pm

    I, too, felt betrayed by The Gap over those awful skinny jeans (have you EVER seen those look good on anybody who wasn’t in a Gap ad?), but then I found their straight leg boyfriend jeans, which are gloriously loose and fit like a dream. I’ve been waiting for years for loose-fitting jeans to come back into style, and when I tried those on I nearly wept with joy.

  • melissaS

    January 18, 2007 at 12:26 pm

    You know I had high hopes for those ATL curvy jeans. I bought a pair of slacks there I love, but the curvy jeans just didn’t work right on me. Jeans are such a pain aren’t they?
    I have a friend who needs jeans that give her a butt. Isn’t that cute? I’m trying to downplay mine and she’s trying to get one.

  • MarissaM

    January 18, 2007 at 12:52 pm

    I am thinking about getting the eye cream by Clinique. I’m turning 30 this year, and the bags are becoming an issue (only to me, of course). This, and yoga lessons once a week. Call me Zsa Zsa!!! 😛

  • Michelle

    January 18, 2007 at 12:56 pm

    Once again, a great post with lots of great information. I too posted about iphones today:
    but hadn’t seen #2,3 or 4 before, love those ideas!

  • lim

    January 18, 2007 at 2:11 pm

    Do you know when the Superhero store will be open for orders? My birthday is in March, and I would love one.

  • mo

    January 18, 2007 at 2:57 pm

    although i have a million oher things to buy this year as well, jeans are also at the top of my list. magical jeans! that make my legs look longer and my thighs look not so huge and suck my butt in and also avoid the muffin top look without comimng up to my armpits!
    also i think i might need some shoes to go with those jeans.

  • Susan Wagner

    January 18, 2007 at 5:25 pm

    I want a new camera this year, a Cannon Rebel digital SLR. Which may actually mean giving up toilet paper.

  • Erin

    January 18, 2007 at 6:58 pm

    Those Gap curvy bootcut jeans were a post-partum miracle. I too just bought a pair in a smaller size – and I too wear them probably 4 or 5 times a week.

  • amy

    January 19, 2007 at 12:01 am

    I was in the Gap last fall, and spotted the skinny jeans with ZIPPERS ON THE ANKLES. And all I could think was, “WTF, Gap?”

  • thebmrust

    January 19, 2007 at 10:10 am

    I love the idea of the Table Topics. While our family doens’t usually have a problem with conversations, it would still be fun to talk about something that isn’t necessarily on our minds.
    I had to post al ink on my own blog about them. Hope you don’t mind.

  • kate

    January 19, 2007 at 10:47 am

    I was so excited to see the Gap curvy jeans . . . and then so woefully disappointed because they didn’t work for me! I’m too curvy for their curvy–still get the gap (ironic?) in the back. But glad they’ve helped so many!
    And Karen – you’re so not alone in PC land. Drooling over the fence.
    My fave product of 2007 is CoverGirl’s Aqua Smooth foundation. In the year I turn 29, I’ve finally found a way to make my skin look 20. Not 40. Not 12. Just 20. 🙂

  • Nicole

    January 20, 2007 at 4:48 am

    I just want to find a pair of relatively flat black boots that do not make me look like I am a garden gnome and can be worn with both trousers and jeans. Oh- and preferably cost less than an entire monthly paycheck. Those two groups seem to be mutually exclusive unfortunately.
    Otherwise, 2007 will be the year of
    -Dr Hauska as I love every single product I have tried so far and am committed to exploring the Hauska universe even further.
    -I am also going to list Leonor Greyl hair products which are universally amazing.
    -For my birthday, I have got Julie Sandlau jewelery at the top of my list (see a part of her collection on net-a-porter)
    -I will also find a pair of gray skinny(ish) jeans. I am feeling a little bit “mommy” in my straight legs. Have been trying to get away with a pair of black jeans so washed out that they are practically black, but I think the gig is up
    -a pair of Repetto bolshoi ballet slippers. I literally wore holes in my last pair. Things like this that I love, I should just buy in bulk and save myself the constant trips back to the store.