So I might be a little late and I kind of forgot December too, but here are my January favourites.
The aim was to share with you some of my favourite kit or useful items each month but I fell behind on it somewhere along the line. Like any good blogger though, I am bouncing back with some quality stuff this month. Mostly tech, but with some warming bits added in for
luck the cold weather.
To be honest, missing out on December worked out to my favour. I have been able to try out some of my Christmas presents and can share them with you. I’ll be reviewing some of them over the coming weeks too – but at least you know they’re good!
So here are my January Favourites
This month there is a bit of a theme around tech, maps and warmth. Which is perfectly suitable for the winter months and I hope that you will enjoy finding out more about.
Barts Bobble Hat
If you’ve been reading about my winter adventures the you’re sure to have spotted my new bobble hat. I have been meaning to get a new hat for some time as my others were either falling to bits or didn’t fit. Neither of which option is good for gale force winds on the Welsh Coastal path! So this Christmas, Jit treated me to one of the lovely Barts hats that I originally spotted in Ellis Brigham on Deansgate. It is knitted and has an extra layer of fleece in the ear area – perfect for my delicate earache prone ears when the wind is blowing strongly.
I love that it is a snug fit on my little (child size) head but is adult too. It even stood up to the gale force winds when we were exploring the Welsh Coastal path in Aberdaron at New Year. Something which my old hats would not have done. I have never had a Barts hat before and only found them by chance, but I am pretty much a die-hard fan after my experience with this cosy thing!
Amazon Kindle Voyage
I am a huge fan of books of all kinds but with travelling much more these days I was finding it was an extra weight to take a couple (if not more) books with me. After borrowing my Mum’s Kindle to go to San Francisco last year I decided that I would be better off with one. It also means that I always have something to read wherever I am and doesn’t add weight to my backpack. I was lucky that my Mum treated me to the Kindle Voyage as it has night-light for reading in the dark – perfect for overnight travel.
We are currently having a massive clear out of our stuff and minimising the possessions that we have, so being able to reduce my book collection into one digital piece of equipment has been a real benefit. That’s not to say that I am getting rid of paper books altogether. Far from it, I adore paper books and the smell of a book shop, but I will make a lot more space in my life with fewer on the shelves.
Custom Made OS Maps
I absolutely love maps and when I discovered that you can get custom-made OS maps, I just had to get one for us! I thought that it would be both a bit of fun as well as a great way to see spaces and places around us that we would like to visit. So I made Newton Heath the central point and we can use it to plan our adventures around the area. (oh yes, and get a silly picture of us both on the front to boot! I bet they had a giggle printing that one!)
It is so simple to make them as it is all online and step by step. You follow the five steps to choose your centre point, choose your map scale, print options and customised picture and text. Then simply pay and a few days later your map arrives on your door mat. Simple and really does bring a smile to the face of the person receiving it. Jit loved it and we all had a good laugh when he showed it around on Christmas day.
Zippo Flameless Hand Warmer
The Zippo Hand Warmer has to be my all time favourite Christmas present from this year (well, as well as the Kindle, the hat and the map) as it has been used lots of times and works so incredibly well.
We saw it in the shops during November and December and, to be honest, thought it looked a bit gimmicky. Saying that, we knew that one of us would be receiving one for Christmas anyway. I was the lucky recipient and I’m so pleased that we didn’t just pass it off as a gizmo as it works so well and kept our hands and fingers toasty even on the coldest of days.
I’m not going to go too much into how it works and all that as I will be doing a review shortly which will explain it much better than I can do in a short paragraph here. However, I will tell you that it stays warm for well over the promised 12 hours (you can also get a 6 hour version which is slightly smaller) as we felt that it was still warm gone 20 hours one day.
View Ranger App
I have been dabbling with View Ranger for some time but really started getting into using it over the Christmas holidays (having time to play and explore it really helped). I don’t use it on my iPad when out and about, but it does come in handy for planning trips and plotting routes. The reason that it is a favourite this month is because I have been able to start designing some beginners routes and start planning for more city centre based walks too.
It is also fantastic for recording and displaying routes taken as we are planning to walk the Wales Coastal Path so having it recorded is really useful. It is pretty good on battery too as I have been able to track routes, use the maps, take videos and photographs as well as syncing without too much trouble or needing a recharge.
I’ll be sharing more about View Ranger and what I am doing with the app and maps soon.
There you have it, my January favourites; a blend of tech and traditional kit. I’m looking forward to getting to use them a bit more this season and cant wait to share some reviews with you.
Keeping my hands and head warm, while going in the right direction!
What bits of kit have been on your January Favourites list?
Share them with me in the comments below 🙂