Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Some of My Favorite Things This Year

You may have noticed that I do a lot fewer Wendy’s Picks than I used to do. That’s for a few reasons, the biggest one being that I began feeling uncomfortable with my contribution to the hysterical consumerism of our society — both in my own personal habits as well as the way I encourage others to participate. So, I’ve been buying new things less, shopping less at mass retail stores (and choosing smaller, indie stores more frequently when I do buy new), and posting less frequently about shopping and materialism. But now it’s the end of the year and I’d like to share with you some of the things that I did buy and consume that delighted me the most.

I’ve been looking for the perfect winter coat for about ten years – one that would keep me warm and cozy but not be boring and might even make me feel a little bit excited about cold weather. I finally found it in this faux fur coat! Drew and I were out one night a few weeks ago and had some time to kill between the babysitter’s arrival and our dinner reservations. Our neighborhood bars were already packed so we wandered around a little, stopping in a boutique where I saw this coat and tried it on. I loved it immediately, I asked Drew if he wanted to give it to me as my early Christmas present, and he said yes. I’ve had a coat to wear these last few weeks that I’m excited to put on, and Drew has my Christmas gift taken care of – win-win!

I don’t watch much TV — that’s not a brag or anything as I mostly substitute the screen of the television for the screen of my phone or a movie, neither of which is better — but when I did, I was watching and loving Fleabag. Fleabag – especially the second and final season, which aired earlier this year – is some of the best television I’ve ever seen and I will happily re-watch it again and again.

Another TV show I watched was the ABC live staging of the classic shows, All in the Family and The Jeffersons. I didn’t particularly love these stagings, but what I was crazy about was Jennifer Hudson’s live performance of The Jefferson’s theme song, which was maybe the most entertaining 90 seconds of the year. I dare you not to play it more than once.

Lizzo. This needs no explanation (she was just named entertainer of the year by Time magazine). My favorite song from her album is Tempo, featuring Missy Elliot who is everything. Watching Lizzo in the video for Tempo makes me want to get a red cowboy hat to go with my big faux fur coat. And I guess a sequin-studded bikini, too, why not.

This was the year of the puzzle for me. Vowing to spend less time mindlessly scrolling through my phone, I re-acquainted myself with a favorite childhood hobby and fell back in love with its meditative powers. I told my mother, when she asked for gift ideas for me, that I’d be happy with any New Yorker cover-themed puzzle. Vintage sweets and champagne glasses are winners, too.

In March, Drew and I got a night away together in Hudson, NY, where alpaca products are a big industry. I snagged some pink alpaca socks just like these while we were there and I want to wear them all the time. They’re so cozy and soft and comfortable. And pink! I always get compliments on them.

Speaking of soft and comfortable, I made two new-to-me (but maybe not so new to you) discoveries in lounge pants this year: these Eberjey Lady Godiva pants (currently 25% off), and Sundry leggings, which are hands down the softest leggings I’ve ever worn (they’re pretty pricey, so I buy mine used on Poshmark when I can find them, but you do you).

In one of my Poshmark deliveries, the seller included a forest green velvet scrunchie, just like one I wore in 8th grade, back in 1990. Can I just say: I am so glad scrunchies are sort of back in style? (Granted, I’ve seen them advertised a lot but I haven’t actually seen anyone my age in real like wearing one besides me so maybe they aren’t such a thing?) I don’t know why they ever went out of style in the first place since they’re comfortable, you can match them to your clothes, and they don’t pull your hair out like traditional ponytail holders always do. Long live the scrunchie!

I didn’t try too many new make-up, grooming, or self-care products, but among what I did try, this Milk Makeup champagne highlighter was my fave. I sweep it across my cheekbones and brow for a night out and while it doesn’t make me look like Ronan Farrow, whose mega-watt illumination is otherworldly, it does lend a nice glow.

Adam Driver. I have not yet seen him in A Marriage Story, which I plan to watch asap, but I did see him on Broadway earlier this year in Burn This, and I am really glad he’s suddenly part of the cultural zeitgeist and I get to enjoy his handsome face popping up everywhere lately. But I mean, let’s be honest: He’ll be on my list every year, zeitgeist or not.

There were favorite books, too! For a list of my favorite reads this year, check out this post. And I should probably do a separate post just on all the new recipes – many of which were vegan or vegetable-heavy — I tried and loved.

What about you? What were you favorite consumptions this year?

4 comments… add one
  • Sara December 12, 2019, 4:26 pm

    I love my all birds loungers. Hands down the most comfortable and sustainable shoes I have.

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    • ktfran December 12, 2019, 5:30 pm

      My MIL bought me a pair of AllBirds (skippers) for my birthday last January. They saved my feet the Disney trip with my nieces last February. SAVED THEM. I brought a couple pairs of shoes and those were the only ones I could walk / stand in all effing day.

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    Copa December 13, 2019, 4:49 pm

    I want to watch A Marriage Story so bad! Had a work event last Friday night and went to my boyfriend’s after, and we turned it on but I was so exhausted I fell asleep about two minutes in. So. Waiting until work calms down for me to try again.

    I’m a big fan of oil cleansers to get my make-up off and had been using one that I liked but I didn’t like that it was a liquid oil for a few reasons. I switched to the Drunk Elephant Slaai cleansing balm and it’s my favorite so far of the oil-based cleansers I’ve tried. If nothing else, I’m officially converted to cleansing balms — way easier to pack a balm in a small container for vacation!

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  • anonymousse December 13, 2019, 6:34 pm

    I’ve been buying less, too. There was a #shopmystash challenge which I participated in last December or January and because of my habit of product hoarding, I literally didn’t but a skincare or beauty item for months. I did eventually buy some new things.

    This year I loved:
    Amika 3D volume shampoo and conditioner- it’s very fragrant but somehow doesn’t give me a migraine. Great volume.

    A silicone scalp scrubber for the shower

    Checking out e books from my library instead of buying new books

    Buying digital subscriptions to my favorite news sources

    Cerave lotion and cream

    Kiehl’s midnight recovery oil

    CBD seltzer

    Weleda Skinfood

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