Okay, ya'all. I get the whole "what's mine is yours, what's yours is mine" thing when you make the choice to share your life with another person. Especially when you get married. It makes perfect sense to me both in a practical sense, as well as a spiritual one. HOWEVER, after nearly seven years of marriage...and nine years of living with MY man...I have compiled a short list of the top five things I believe every woman should have separate from her significant other. EVEN IF THAT SIGNIFICANT OTHER HAS ONE, TOO. This is just a simple list of of a few of the things I have found I cannot live without....but do not want to share.
**Disclaimer: I am not famous nor do I have a bajillion followers. Nobody is paying me to endorse any of the following products.**
When my grandparents downsized to a smaller home, my grandpa was cleaning out his garage and he offered me his small Shop-Vac. I accepted it reluctantly because Jake already had one. But I figured, "Meh. It's small. Might be nice to have a back up." LET ME TELL YOU...I am so so so glad I took that bad Larry. If you follow my family's antics on Facebook, you probably remember I accidentally ran a package of diapers through the wash...ending in a mess of epic proportions. That was just one of the many scenarios during which I was glad I had my own Shop-Vac and did not have to use Jake's. I love my husband with every fiber of my being but....homeboy does not stay on top of his Shop-Vac maintenance. THAT THING IS NASTY. In that moment, I was so grateful I did not have to drag his dusty monster into my nice, clean house to clean out that washer. I also use my Shop-Vac to clean my car, sweep up kinetic sand and other craft mishaps the kids have, and a whole other host of messes for which I don't want to use my nice indoor vacuum. SO...ladies. Get you a Shop-Vac. Something like this:
2) Tool Set
Living on a small cattle ranch, we are constantly running into projects and small disasters that require tools. Now, Jake has tools in every corner of these fifty acres but somehow I can never find a dang tape measure or hammer when I need to hang a picture or fix something around the house. SO....for my first Mother's Day Jake asked me what I wanted and I promptly replied "My own tool set." Schooner delivered. Ladies....I am not saying you need a big daddy deluxe Dewalt tool chest with all the bells and whistles. Although, that would be frickin' sweet. All you need is a simple tool set with all the basics: hammer, level, screw drivers, tape measure, etc. Bonus points if you treat yourself to a drill. My life did become significantly easier when I got my own. But....baby steps.
3) Jumper Cables
Okay....for an embarrassingly long amount of time I assumed that cars came with jumper cables because my mom and dad always stashed my car with them when I lived at home. Sometime during my mid twenties I left the light on in the car I had bought for myself and the battery died. Much to my chagrin, the magical jumper cables that were supposed to be in my trunk were not there because mommy and daddy had not put them there. Bet your sweet bippy I ran out and bought myself a set THE NEXT DAY. Grab a set, throw them in your trunk, and forget about them until you need them. Also, learn to use them.
Here's a super corny video to show you how. (I made sure the instructor was a female. I found one taught by a dude. His account was called "The Art of Manliness." I thought using that video might be counterproductive here.)
4. Multifunction Pocket Knife
Another gadget you can throw in your purse or your car and forget it until you need it! How many times have you been somewhere and you've needed to cut open some tough packaging or open a beer bottle or uncork some wine...and every dude in a mile radius jumps up and says "HERE USE MY KNIFE!" How liberating would it feel to reach into your Coach purse or your diaper bag and say "No thanks there, Cletus. My pocket knife has a bottle opener on it." or "I've got this, Buck. I have my own pocket knife." Okay so maybe not SUPER liberating but kinda! And it would certainly make your life easier in that moment. Man or no man! Here's a useful multifunction pocket knife at an affordable price:
5) Pepper Spray, Gun, or Other Means of Protection
If you are strutting your beautiful self around this creepy ass world without a way to fend off a weirdo, I strongly urge you to reconsider that choice. I completely understand and respect anyone who may not feel comfortable with a handgun. I, myself, do not currently hold a concealed carry permit at the moment. However, I do feel strongly that when it comes to self-defense, every woman on this planet needs to take advantage of the tools available to her. It is mind-boggling to think about the strides the self-defense industry has taken in recent years. A simple google search will yield dozens and dozens of pages of information, products, and other resources. Whether its pepper spray, a gun, a stun gun, taking a martial arts class, or a personal alarm...figure out a method of self-defense you feel comfortable with and be ready. You are important. You are loved. The people in your life NEED you here. Don't let some idiot take you out of this world without a hell of a fight.