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9 Things to Prep for a Safer, Easier, and Happier New Year

Posted by Caroline Fong  December 31, 2013 07:30 AM

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There is one day of 2013 left. As we approach the end of the year, I'm sure everyone's been pondering how they spent 2013 and how they can have an even better year. There will be 365 whole new days to navigate, to create, to live.

I, for one, have been on a digital “spring” clean. I tended to all the emails collecting in my personal email inbox, put aside a few hours during a day off to make all the calls (to the doctor's office and whatnot) that I pushed back in the name of long work days, and sorted through my to-do list and goals.

And that's the other big thing for the new year...goals. Every year, many of us make a great many new year's resolutions that don't become much more than just writing on paper.

This year, if safety, saving money, and happiness are on your list (and why not?), take a look at this roundup of fresh finds I've put together. Mix and match according to what you need and want for the new year.


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Ila Security ($14.95) -- This small portable security device will ease your mind if you frequently feel uncomfortable walking to your car after late work hours or when traveling alone in an unfamiliar city. Designed to shock and disorient potential attackers, it emits a 130-decibel alarm when activated. Its small size makes it easy to carry with your keys or hang on your handbag.

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MPOWERED Luci Light ($14.99) -- This isn't a Grommet, but its mission and innovation are certainly two things I can get behind. The Luci Light was created as part of MPOWERD'S vision to eradicate energy poverty through making affordable and accessible energy solar products. It's a lightweight, maintenance-free, and waterproof solar-powered lantern. It's perfect for keeping on hand in the car in case of an emergency since one charge can hold for as long as three months.

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WakaWaka Power ($69.95) -- In the same vein, this personal solar charger is also on a mission; it aims to bring light to people who have no access to the electrical grid. For every one that is bought, one is provided to Syrian refugees. And if you like to travel off the grid or choose to live an unplugged lifestyle, a WakaWaka Power provides 2 hours of charge for a laptop, iPad, or smartphone. It's handy for keeping a phone fully charged when lost in an unfamiliar place or in case of an emergency.



Gleener ($19.95) -- What saddens me is when I have to throw away a favorite sweater or cardigan because I can't keep up with picking off the fuzz and pills. Enter this fabric shaver tool (that my little sister even requested as a Christmas present). It doesn't require batteries, and it safely eliminates fuzz, pills, and balls from almost any kind of fabric, including upholstery. Keep your dollars in your wallet while you prolong the life (and looks) of your cardigans and sweaters.


BluApple Kit, 12 Month Refill ($18) -- Every week, your house probably throws out quite a bit of spoiled, unused food. Invest in a BluApple starter kit to avoid wasting food. Organic, non-toxic, and recyclable, a BluApple extends the life of produce by absorbing and removing built-up ethylene gas in your food storage area to slow down the ripening process. It helps to naturally keep food fresher for longer so you can make the most of your grocery money.

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Odor Eliminating CFL Lightbulb ($9.99) -- This isn't a Grommet, but I think it's quite an innovative product that kills two birds with one stone. In addition to providing light at 630 lumens bright, this 14-watt bulb eliminates odors, making it great for restrooms, closets, basements, and other damp-smelling or low airflow environments. Instead of having to buy refills for expensive air freshener scented oil kits every couple of weeks, this handy light bulb will do the trick.


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The Cat's Trapeze (2-Pillow, $79.95) -- I hold the utmost belief that cats are some of the most adorable creatures ever. If you've been having a particularly rough 2013, welcome the new year with a furry companion. And be sure to reward his cuddles with a great piece of cat furnishing, like this two-pillow trapeze. It's like a cat tree, but better. With the two of you happy, he'll be rewarding you with more cuddles.

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Soggy Doggy Pet Bed (Starting at $79) -- If you're not a cat person and have been dreaming about getting a dog, do it. I've been told that a dog is one of the best companions you can have. He'll bring a smile to your face on your worst days with unconditional love. So be sure to keep your pooch sleeping sound with this round gusset bed covered in super soft chenille noodles. Its cover is odor and bacteria resistant, which will surely keep you happy.

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NoClean Aquarium ($69.95) -- Finally, if you can't handle the responsibility of a cat or dog right now (or your apartment doesn't allow it), don't fret. Get a Betta fish and welcome him with a NoClean Aquarium home. It's a self-cleaning aquarium that functions without filters, batteries, or a wire plug-in. And Betta fish are hardy, low-maintenance, and don't require a filter or bubbler to oxygenate the water. You'll be happy, sharing your apartment with a fish buddy.

Are you ready for the new year? What are some of your hopes and wishes? Tweet me or share in the comments.

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This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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Buy Differently is a sponsored blog powered by The Grommet, and part of Finds, a site you can count on to bring you the best discoveries around Boston and beyond. This blog is not written or edited by or Finds. The author is solely responsible for the content.
Caroline Fong
Caroline hails from a tiny tropical island originally, but calls Boston home. A curious bird, she spent a spring trekking all over Ireland, has been an Air Force Junior ROTC cadet, and worked at Disney World as a merchandising intern. With a love for all things interesting, she found herself at The Grommet, where she gets to eat, sleep, and breathe innovative undiscovered products. Say hello to her on Twitter.