Those killer Kundalini yoga moves? Perhaps it's time to try restorative yoga, described by experts as "active relaxation." The Living Yoga Restorative Set will get you going with a collection of props (two bolsters, two wool blankets, one eye pillow, one neck pillow, and dual display timer) and a video showing how you can reduce stress and fatigue, lower blood pressure, release muscle tension, improve sleep, enhance immune response, manage chronic pain, and live more fully in each moment. An hour and a half of "corpse pose"? Sounds good to me. Where: Living Yoga, 1-800-525-9515.
There are multitudes of problems that arise when remote controls outnumber people 4-to-1. The two most noticeable: You can never find the correct remote for the machine you want to use; and once you do find the remote, it's dark outside and (yet again) you have to get up and turn on the light to decipher which button you need to push. The Universal Remote Control is the answer to many of your home-entertainment travails. This magic wand (with some simple programming) can give you one-stop control over your home satellite, television, VCR, and DSS. Where: Universal Remote Control, Inc. Home Theater, 1-800-901-0800.
So you keep your butt parked on your bed 24-7, preferring the boob tube over the working world. Who can blame you? Other than your parents, who bang on the ceiling every time you blast Oprah's theme song. They should be more supportive of you, their unique child who's protesting the Puritan work ethic, and buy you The Comfort Lounger: six pounds of bliss that's as cozy as your favorite easy chair (remember, the one your mother removed from the house in an effort to get you to that job fair?). There's an adjustable neck pillow and a padded back pillow, and it's easy to carry around the house, so you can remain in comfort even at the dinner table when your dad lectures you on "when I was younger." At least have some pity on the poor guy: When he was younger, they didn't have the Comfort Lounger. Where: Solutions, 1-800-342-9988.
Hands get tired when they have to peel, core, and slice enough apples for apple pie. In fact, they can cramp up and cause tendonitis. We at Seattle Weekly feel your pain. Our advice? Toss that antiquated vegetable peeler into the trash can and strap the all-metal Apple Peeler/Corer/Slicer to your countertop. Your apples will be cored, sliced, and peeled in no time! After all, what's more all-American than baking and feeling like a champ succeeding at it? Where: The Baker's Catalogue, 1-800-827-6836.
What's a gift that requires no imagination, no wrapping paper, and not too many dollars? Nuts! They might seem about as exciting as watching sap emerge from the trunk of your Christmas tree, but these little members of the meat family are packed full of protein and make a healthier snack than See's Candies or that menacing-looking fruitcake congealing on your kitchen counter. Besides, Auntie Emma loves nuts, and you love her, so why not show your Y2K-savviness with a bin of 7-Way Assorted Treats? This one-pound, 15-ounce tin offers chocolate-covered peanuts, "super giant" cashews, chocolate-covered almonds, pistachios, "holiday confetti mix," "honey gourmet snackers mix," and "giant mix." Auntie Emma will be chewing away through the new millennium, you'll be her hero, and you hardly had to lift a finger or jog the brain to do so. Where: Trophy Nut, 1-800-219-9004.
Cost: up to you!
When you come right down to it, the only truly surefire gift is an envelope full of cash. But that, dear readers, can be construed as seriously T-A-C-K-Y. (You've known Uncle Bill for your whole life and all you could come up with was an envelope full of money?) Far more sophisticated, but requiring almost as little effort, is a wad of cash in the form of a gift certificate. And you don't even have to drive through traffic, line up to park, and then wait for the salesperson to get off the phone: Once again, it's the Internet to the rescue with the advent of www.giftcertificates.com. Don't know what stores Uncle Bill frequents? No problem: All you need to know is the zip code of your intended gift recipient, and GiftCertificates.com will do the rest—supply you with a list of the merchants you can buy certificates from, and walk you through the credit-card buying process. Aaahh, a gift you hardly have to move to buy. Where: www.giftcertificates.com.