This post was originally published on August 7, 2014.
Anyone who’s been in recovery has written out a gratitude list on a rough day, right? This list—call it a “gratitude guide” if you like—is created in the same spirit, only you can actually buy these things and be grateful for them yourself. Here are just a few of the products I’ve used to make sobriety happier and healthier in 2014.
I admit I didn’t buy this until my boyfriend accidentally bought me some gourmet coffee that happened to be whole bean. I love coffee, but grinding your own beans always seemed like a thing only Real Adults who have their shit together do, so investing in a grinder seemed like a good way to celebrate sobriety and the reclamation of mornings. Fresh grinding not only makes the coffee taste better, but it really amps up the ritual of coffee-making, and addicts love ritual. This one has three different grind settings, ample volume, and a great hands-free function, all for the price of a week’s worth of Starbucks. Price: $20.49
Water’s pretty boring, but this softball-sized contraption can be stuffed full of oranges, limes, cucumber, ginger, berries, etc. to make your H2O taste amazing. You can also buy a full-on infusion pitcher, but the advantage of the little ball is that you can plop it into any pitcher you already own so long as the mouth is wide enough to accommodate it. Other users have complained about its fragility, but I haven’t broken mine yet and I have all the light touch of a pachyderm. Price: $6.76
I tried this stuff for St. Paddy’s day because of the bright green cans. It’s no Bundaberg (which every sober warrior out there needs to get their hands on) but it has a few things going for it aside from the convenient and attractive cans. It’s got 25% fewer calories due to the swapping of some of the sugar for Splenda. If you’re not into artificial sweeteners, fair enough, but it takes some of the edge off that sugar high and keeps you from “filling up” too much on drinks. Also, if low-profile is your aim, Seagram’s looks a lot less obviously like a soft drink from a distance than Canada Dry. Price: $5.29
This psychologist turned Buddhist meditation teacher is a gold mine of insight, regardless of your faith or your battles. Everyone would benefit from her teachings, which are freely available in 45-minute talks on her website. I listen to them on walks around the neighborhood and always come away not only with a stronger awareness of a Higher Power, but also with tools I can use consciously to improve my life. Try her talks on stress and vulnerability/intimacy for starters. Price: $0.00
This past April I drove out to the Grand Canyon for five days of physical and spiritual rejuvenation. I fully expected to come back sporting blisters and achy knees, as I did on last summer’s Mammoth-to-Yosemite adventure. Yet 40 miles and 5,000 feet of elevation change later, my feet were as fresh as the day I left Los Angeles. For that I thank my new boots. I bought the Renegades because both my hiking partners wore them last year and emerged unblistered while my nine-year-old Merrells left my moleskin-plastered feet looking two little Michelin Men. Granted, all broken-in new boots are better than all broken-down old boots. But I was flat-out floored by how comfortable the Lowas were. Price: $225
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