Three awesome ways to spend your holiday cash

Feeling the urge to splurge? Today only, I say throw financial caution to the wind and treat yourself to one of these fun (and evens somewhat practical) items.

Roku's nifty little box delivers on-demand video from sources like Amazon and Netflix. Roku

Did Santa bring you cash this year? A big fat gift card? An unexpected work bonus? Whatever the case, you're probably primed and ready for a little splurging.

And on this one day out of the entire year, I'm going to recommend three decidedly splurge-y items. They're not necessarily deals (though I've found the best possible price for each of them); they're just items I've enjoyed myself in recent months.

1. A second monitor After years of hearing how great it is to run side-by-side monitors, I finally took the plunge. Guess what? It is great. Just having Outlook and Firefox visible at the same time is, alone, worth the price of a second LCD. You can usually pick up a 22-incher for around $140, like this Sceptre X226W available from Newegg for $139.99 shipped. But right now Staples has a 21.5-inch eMachines E211H LCD monitor for just $99.98 shipped (plus sales tax in most states). First time I've seen a screen that size for under $100.

2. Jabra Halo stereo Bluetooth headset I find it extremely liberating to walk around with my iPhone in my pocket, headphones on my ears, and no bothersome cord connecting the two. The Halo headset is slim, comfortable, foldable, and able to take calls. The controls aren't fabulous (show me a headset's that are), but overall this is my favorite headset ever. It lists for $129.99, but Amazon Best Buy has the Halo for $99.99 shipped.

3. Roku HD-XR Streaming media is the future. Roku's top-end box already delivers Amazon Video On Demand, Netflix Instant Watch, Pandora Internet radio, Major League Baseball, and various freebie channels like blip.tv and Revision3--all in high-def (when available). The HD-XR model ($129.99) offers Wireless-N connectivity, but get the cheaper HD ($99.99) if you're rocking Ethernet. Granted, some Blu-ray players deliver similar streaming capabilities, but usually without wireless, and definitely without the same fast, easy interface. For Netflix in particular, I really dig this little box.

So, there you have it: three splurge-worthy items. Let me know if you decide to pull the trigger on any of them, or if you have your own splurge-ables in mind.

 

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