Its been another year and what a doozy huh? 2020 will hopefully not be topped for some time. Personally, 2020 has not been stellar for me & my family. Between crashing my bike and breaking my dominant arm, getting COVID 19, and the whole country being shut down for most of the year, I will not look back fondly at the year 2020.
However, I don’t want to dwell on the negative so let’s get into some of my favorite things I picked up this year.
Denali Travel Pants
I have been wanting to get some pants that are more comfortable than the jeans I typically wear and I finally found them this year. The Denali Travel Pants are great. First, they are super affordable with a Sam’s Club membership, about $12.99 a pair. They are also much lighter than jeans, have a great stretch to them, and dry out so much faster if they get wet. I now wear these pants about 70% of the time & I couldn’t be happier about them.
Another year, another sling bag. This year I picked up the Bellroy Sling in the light gray color. A few standouts about this sling: The way the straps are designed make this bag self compressing. The lighter you pack the more compact it sits on your back. This is a very clever feature. The other feature I like is the way the buckle on the straps is magnetic which makes it super convenient to get on and off and also doubles as a fidget toy in a pinch. I love this category of bags because you can carry a lot more that what your pockets can hold but they are way more compact than wearing a backpack everywhere.
iPad Pro 12.9 3rd Generation
Early in 2020, I picked up my dream iPad, the 12.9″ 3rd generation iPad Pro 256gb w/ Cellular. I have had iPad’s all the way back to the very first one 10 years ago. This is my favorite so far. I love the new flat edge design Apple went with as well as the much improved Apple Pencil. For me, the 12.9″ iPad Pro is a laptop replacement. I know it’s not for everyone but it suits me perfectly. I love the giant screen size, incredible performance, cellular connectivity, and the 120hz display. I love this iPad so much that I picked up a secondhand one later on in 2020 to upgrade my wife’s current iPad.
I had to work to get it and it still involved a lot of luck, but I was able to get a PlayStation 5 a couple of days after it launched. I couldn’t be happier with it. The new DualSense controller it comes with is the biggest leap in controllers in a very long time, the SSD storage is so fast that games load almost instantly, and as someone who doesn’t have a gaming PC, the PlayStation 5 has been my introduction to 4K, 60FPS w/ Ray Tracing gaming. It is glorious.
Apple Watch Series 5
I found an Apple Watch Series 5 secondhand this year and upgraded from my Series 4. The big upgrade here is the always-on screen. Ever since I got the very first Apple Watch on day one, I have wanted an always-on screen. It has been just as handy as I thought it would be. I also got the cellular version this time. I love being able to go on a run without my phone and still be able to track my workout, listen to music, & know that someone can still reach me in case of an emergency. These two things have made me appreciate and enjoy the convenience of the Apple Watch even more.
Arcade1Up Ms. Pac Man Cocktail Machine
This barely made the cut as I got it in late December of 2020. As a kid I spent countless quarters and time on a Ms. Pac Man cocktail table at a local restaurant my family frequented. So when Arcade1Up announced they were making a version of this, I knew I had to have it! Sitting down at this machine and chasing high scores on Ms. Pac-Man, Galaga, Dig Dug, and more has brought back some great memories from my childhood. This is a childhood dream come true and I still can’t believe I have this in my house. As an added bonus, I have been able to introduce my toddler to these classic games, and much to my surprise he really likes them! Some things are just timeless.