Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tool Addiction

I has it.

Usually it's the husband with the tool addiction. Oh, Chris definitely has an addiction. Garage tools, woodworking tools, diagnostic equipment, musician's tools. If it has a purpose within his hobbies he either has it or wants it. I continually bust his balls about his addiction but in reality I have one of my own.

Don't give me jewelry, flowers, chocolats, knicknacks, or other pretties. All I ever want is more tools.

Cooking tools, cleaning tools, household tools, garage tools. If it has a motor, a heating element, an LCD, or a specific niche I either want it or have it.

I own more electric kitchen gadgets than pairs of shoes. Which is pretty impressive, considering that one of Chris's enjoyments in life is buying me designer heels (at very low prices of course. He's not stupid enough to pay retail shoe prices) because he "likes the way they make women's legs look". My closet is full of heels. The tops of my kitchen cabinets are full of gadgets (and the lower cabinets, and the guest closet... well you get the idea).

My dirty little secret? I never pay full price for something over $30, and I use ALL of them. If it cost over $50 it was most likely a present, a present I gleefully ripped open and used at the first opportunity.

I have (in no particular order, other than maybe sight):
  • A Cuisinart 7 quart stand mixer. Housewarming present from Chris. Can actually handle my bread recipes, which is impressive because I make 4lbs of bread dough at a time.
  • A Waring standalone electric burner, which became very necessary as our range SUCKS.
  • A cheap popcorn popper for popcorn and coffee beans. Well, we have two actually, one of them a gift.
  • A shaved ice machine for the kids for summer. Got the one that uses normal ice cubes of course.
  • An ice tea maker, $25, for the convenience factor back in AZ. Sun tea works really well here, since now we have GOOD water.
  • A Kenmore Elite blender, for Chris's smoothies, and my Margaritas and Daiquiris.
  • A Cuisinart food processor, 14 cup with 3 bowls and all the bells and whistles, my birthday present from Chris this year, on sale at Amazon. A really fun piece of machinery that can chop bacon like nobody's business (50/50 beef and bacon burgers yum).
  • A cheap waffle iron.
  • A Breville panini press, bought at a massive discount off of Somehow a ham and cheese sandwich is so much better hot and crispy.
  • A Cuisinart electric pressure cooker, my newest baby and Christmas present (I was there when Chris bought it, I think the whimpering clued him in). Bought at Costco for considerably off list. So much easier to use, and makes REALLY good roast beef. And carnitas. And stew. And...
  • A 10 quart Fagor pressure cooker... which we got for less than half price. Chris loves it, but I can't make anything in it without burning the bottom, thus the electric.
  • 5 crockpots, 5qt, 4qt, 2qt, 1qt, and 1/2qt. We decided it was cheaper, and more useful, to buy more crockpots than chafing dishes for entertaining.
  • A Cuisinart ice cream maker, 2 qt. Costco. I do actually use it a fair bit.
  • A Keurig coffee machine. Has made my life so much easier, being married to someone who wants coffee in the morning, in the afternoon. after dinner, after midnight... coffee pots do not work for us.
  • A Butterball indoor turkey fryer. Chris bought this for "me" last year, and I must admit I make it earn its keep. It's the only non-commercial deep fryer we've ever found that had enough power, and enough oil capacity, to deep fry properly without excessive temperature drop. It makes spectacular... everything really. Bought considerably off list at Amazon.
  • A Cuisinart countertop convection oven
  • 2 rice cookers, one 10 cup (for entertaining) and one 1 1/2 cup (for just us).
  • A T-Fal 4 slot, extra wide jumbo slot, toaster (which we actually got for free as a credit card reward).
  • A burr coffee grinder.
  • A Breville espresso machine. 15 bar pump machine with changeable portafilter. Bought considerably off list at $250
  • A Breville Juicer. Bought considerably off list, at $49 
  • A Wilton chocolate fountain. Yes seriously. A big party hit and I snagged it for $50.
  • A whip cream maker.
  • A seltzer maker.
  • An electric tea kettle, because it's so much faster than the stove.
  • The there's the knives. Oh the knives. Including, of course, an electric knife.
This is 5 years of accumulation, and doesn't even count the specialty bakeware collection (Chris's favorite is the "all edges" brownie pan).

It should be noted that a fair number of these items are for entertaining. We throw a party once a month because 1. we have kids and leaving the house for parties doesn't really work, and 2. we really like entertaining. The army of crockpots comes in handy when serving and the chocolate fountain tests the creativity of our guests, who are asked to bring something to dip (horseradish cheddar dipped in chocolate is actually REALLY GOOD).

The really scary thought is that out of 30 gadgets, I've used 28 in the past 3 months, 25 in the past 2 months, 21 in the past month, 14 in the past week, and 8 YESTERDAY. Everything gets used.

Do I really need all of these? No, not really. However, as a mother, wife, and hostess who often finds herself making 3 meals a day for (usually) 4 people and up to 26 people at times all of these gadgets make life much easier. I could make (and have made) dinner for 20 by myself with only my wits and what's in the kitchen.

Plus, everything I own is just nifty. That's reason enough for me.


  1. Hello, there, fellow Minarchists!
    I'll use that one, from now on, thanks to your husband.

    Here's a good one for Mr Bryne:

    And a Site chuck-full of'em:

    And keep on the good fight, and a Merry Christmas!

  2. I'm trying to tell myself I don't need one coffee grinder for the coffee beans and one for the spices. really. Maybe. I don't have space anyway. And that's why I have a mortar and pstle. But...