Santa’s Sleigh List – Tech Gadget Gifts

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Welcome back for another installment of Santa’s Sleigh List where you won’t just impress your friends, family, and colleagues, you’ll ‘slay’ them! 😉

This week we’re going back to my techie roots which I realize I haven’t paid much attention to on my blog. To my fellow ‘techie nerds’, I sincerely apologize. {bows head in shame} I hope to make it up to you by sharing with you a list of some of my ‘must haves’ and favorites to serve as gift ideas and help you bring holiday cheer to someone you care for or maybe even for yourself. 😉

Techie Nerd ‘Must Haves’

As an IT Professional, blogger, mom of two tween/teenagers with demanding gadget needs (ok, not ‘needs’ but highly desirable ‘wants’, lol!), there are some things that are absolute ‘must haves’ for me. These are items I use, trust, and depend on to be productive and manage all areas of my life.

  • iPhone 6 64gig (VerizonWireless):  Yes, I’m very much aware that there’s a new model and an Apple watch currently available but this iPhone model is still one of the best ever released by Apple. I was skeptical that it might be too big upgrading from an iPhone 5 but it turns out, it wasn’t. It is perfect–about as big as you want to go without having an iPad mini-mini (that’s what my son calls the iPhone 6+, lol!). I do everything on it: calls, social media, blog, plan, watch movies, listen to music, take notes, manage finances, take pictures (it’s my camera on the go and the quality is excellent–many of the pictures on this blog are taken with my iPhone 6), etc. The technical specs are equally impressive, performance is outstanding, and on the VerizonWireless network, incredibly reliable. I’ve been a VerizonWireless customer since about 1999 and the only time I have ever lost the signal was once when I was two levels underground in a facility! I also recall several times being with a group of coworkers in various environments where they either had a very weak signal or no signal at all and I had full signal strength. Yes, they’re expensive but to me, worth every penny!

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  • Thules Atmos 3 iPhone 6 case: Days before receiving my iPhone 6, I did extensive research on cases (I told you I was a nerd!) to find the thinnest, toughest, protective case that came in a nice color or design (anyone else sick of black cases?). Given the size of the phone, I didn’t want a case that added a lot of bulk. This case has exceeded my expectations (I have dropped it several times and no dings, dents, or cracks–whew!) and the white and orchid (looks maroon) looks great on my white/silver iPhone–I love it!

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  • Sony MDRXB50AP Extra Bass Earbuds: These earphones are always in my pocket so I can quickly pull them whenever I see an alert go off for Periscope or Blab, join a chat or watch Youtube videos, listen to music, or make phone calls without disturbing anyone. This earbud style is my favorite because they’re comfortable and really muffle the noise so I don’t bother anyone near me or hubby when he falls asleep.

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  • RAVPower Portable Charger 3200mAh:  Tell me if this has happened to you: you pull out your phone to make a call, watch a [Peri]scope, listen to music, check your email, or do something on social media and, darn! Your battery is almost dead! My husband gifted me this amazing on-the-go charger which charges my devices on-the-go and serves as a 3-way flashlight for my safety. If your device connects to a USB port, this charger will work for you. I never leave home without it!

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  • 13″ Macbook Air: For on the go and when I’m feeling lazy and don’t feel like powering up my Macbook Pro, the Macbook Air is perfect. More powerful than an iPad but not as big as a traditional laptop, I can literally slip this laptop into an office manila envelope. Great for taking to the local coffee shop to get some work done or vacation so the kids can play online games or watch Youtube videos.

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  • 15″ MacBook Pro: This laptop is my ‘workhorse’. It has the memory, storage, and power to do anything I need to do. I manage my whole life–personal, family, work, and blog–on it. After my iPhone 6, this is my 2nd most important ‘must have’!

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  • Sandisk 64Gig Cruzer:  Sandisk is a brand that is well known for its reliability and robust encryption capabilities. Since I tend to use different devices or sometimes need to encrypt sensitive information, I use my Sandisk to easily and effectively do both. It’s small and portable and you can get a very large capacity thumbdrive for a very affordable price!

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  • Laptop Sleeve:  For those times when I have to take my Macbook Pro with me somewhere, I slip it into this laptop sleeve and then the whole sleeve into my favorite large handbag. These laptop sleeves are padded, some have extra slip pockets, and come in stylish designs and colors. I never leave home without it!

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  • Netgear Nighthawk router:  If you’re constantly online as many of us are, you know how important it is to have a great router for reliable internet connectivity. This router has three antennas (most have one) to produce a strong signal, several Ethernet ports, the ability to setup two wifi private networks and two wifi guest networks (so you don’t have to share your best, strong wifi password with your kid’s friends or family when they come for a visit), great customization capabilities, and of course, excellent encryption. And you can connect any type of device–on our network we have not just the laptops, phones, and tablets but also an XBox360, Wii, Nintendo 3DS and 3DSXL game devices, Android devices, Nook devices, and Ooma phone box with no degradation of service.

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  • Canon MX922:  I’ve always preferred multi-printers (all-in-one printer, copier, scanner, and fax machine–yes, because some companies still use a fax machine) and this is one of the best on the market. I use it for work and personal tasks, the kids use it for school projects, and hubby uses it on occasion. It’s a wireless printer so we can print from any device–Windows and Mac desktops and laptops, iPhones, and iPad and Android tablets.  It has two paper trays, uses 5 ink cartridges for better color generation (the color printing quality is pretty good for an inkjet printer–both on printer paper and glossy picture paper) and printing documents double-sided is as easy as checking off a box. It also has the ability to write to CDs, DVDs, and Blu-rays, work with popular camera and camcorder models, and many more features. It’s a work horse!

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Favorites

Now that I’ve shared my can’t-live-without-must-haves, let me share some of my other techie favorites. These are items that have proven to be extremely useful to the point of essential that many techie nerds would also enjoy.

  • Jawbone Up Move:  For the ‘health conscious’ techie–something we could all work on since working in front of a computer all day means being stationary for long periods of time–the Jawbone Up Move is a great fitness tracker. I originally had the Jawbone Up24 which I absolutely loved until the battery started to malfunction so the company sent me a replacement Up Move tracker. At first I thought “ehhh” but over time I’ve come to like it more than the Up24. It tracks steps, sleep, and a timed activity and syncs with the UP iOS and Android software where you can track your food and activity details PLUS it has a replaceable battery and it’s a watch, something I missed having with the old Up24. You have a choice to either use the included clip-on casing or slide it into a watch ‘casing’ (sold separately)–I prefer the watch casing–so you can wear it however you like.

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  • iPad mini:  Ok, you knew this was coming. Again, I love things that are portable. Many of the devices my family uses are part of the Apple ecosystem so of course we had to have one of the tablets. I love the iPad mini because of its slim design and robust features, perfect for on-the-go or to take on vacation.

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  • Simple Touch Nook:  This might seem like an unnecessary device but it’s actually not. There are some places where you may not want to take an expensive tablet like to the beach, park, by the pool, etc. so for any ‘book worms’ out there, this is perfect! This particular e-reader is designed to be easy to read under harsh sunlight conditions as well as under extremely dark conditions due to the high contrast screen which generates a soft muted light that protects against eye strain. This is my go-to device at night and throughout the summer.

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  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook (Android): This was a gift for hubby who is not very ‘tech savvy’ but he ended up absolutely loving it and takes it everywhere. Think of it as an e-reader ‘on steroids’ thanks to the Samsung/Android technologies gives you all the power and functionality of a full fledged tablet. Not a bad deal!

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  • Altec Lansing OrbitM Ultra Portable Speaker:  Who else likes to crank up the volume and dance around to their favorite playlist? A mini speaker is a great idea because they’re portable and you can start a party anywhere. This particular model also has an impressive bass, carrying case, and connects to any device that accepts a 3.5mm jack to really help boost your groove!

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  • Canon EOS T5i:  Last but certainly not least, is a great DSLR camera. I have been lusting over this camera for almost a year. There are many bloggers I admire who use this is the camera. It’s also a low-end but extremely high quality option favored by professional photographers. I’ve always enjoyed photography as a hobby so after many years of digital point-and-shoot cameras, I decided I wanted to get a good DSLR camera. I did my research (of course!), added it to my Vision Board, wrote it down on my ‘someday’ list, downloaded the manual so I can study it, and added it to my Christmas wishlist. Well, as of this writing–on this very day–my family surprised me with an early Christmas gift, this very camera! OMG, what a surprise! As you can imagine I was totally speechless and completely touched. Now that I have it in my hands, it really is an amazing camera. Built-in flash, manual and automatic settings, adjustable view finder, etc. just sooo many features! I took a few test shots around the house and I can’t wait to use it for my blog and personal life. If you’re ready to invest in a great DSLR camera, definitely check this one out!

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I hope you found this holiday list helpful in finding the perfect tech gadget gift for that special techie nerd in your life or even just a gift for yourself. 😉 If you did and know someone else it could help, please like, subscribe, and share on social media. And if you think of any other tech gadgets that would make a perfect gift, please share in the comments below.

Come back next week for Part Four of Santa’s Sleigh List to get more gift ideas–only 18 shopping days left until Christmas!

Until next time,

♥ LilD ♥

Share your thoughts and tips below!