For Practical Mums: What I Would Give myself for Christmas (A Review)

My husband once told me about how a friend of his gave his wife an iron for a Christmas present.  I asked if it was meant to be like a private joke between the couple, he said no.  I asked if they were still married, by some miracle, yes, they still are together.  I said to the Historian “You wouldn’t ever think of buying me an iron as a present would you?”  “Of course, I wouldn’t!” He answered back – too quickly, I think.

When my husband first told me this story, I felt so bad for the wife.  Imagine, how awful to receive an iron for Christmas!  I know there’s nothing wrong with it and I’m sure the husband wasn’t hinting that he wanted her to iron his shirts more, or was he?  I wouldn’t know.  Anyway, several years down the line, I’m singing a different tune.  There’s nothing wrong with giving a practical present for Christmas.  I certainly prefer them now.

My husband, bless him, is a very generous gift-giver.  He’s given me expensive presents before from jewellery to gadgets, to beautifully illustrated books which he knows I love (to be fair he loves them too).  But I guess when you’ve been married more than a couple of years, while those presents still of course bring a smile to my face, it’s the practical gifts that make me really excited.  Yes, I know that sounds really sad.

Kidding aside, practical presents are all I want for Christmas!  Not in my wildest dreams did I ever think I’d be ecstatic and giddy happy over a Totem 60L waste recycling separation and recycling unit.  Yes, it’s a bin and I’m not kidding when I say I’m so in love with it.

What I love about this recycling bin:

  • I absolutely love that it has separate compartments for for all those annoying house waste a household has like plastic milk containers, empty bottles and cans, cardboard and paper.  With this recycling bin, you can segregate all your waste apart from each other.  Before we had the Totem, we used to put all our recyclable items in a separate bin and it used to overflow … a lot.  It used to drive me mad seeing piled stuff on top of the bin. I don’t have that problem anymore.
  • I also love that it has a removable drawer bucket which you can easily slide and carry when you take the recycling out with you.
  • It has a food waste container you can easily take out with you. Admittedly, Doc does eat most of our left-overs, but we have a compost heap on the bottom of our garden.  We used to put tea-bags, vegetable cuttings, coffee grinds on a tupperware on top of our microwave and that to me was such an eye-sore.  Now our food waste is tucked away, far from eye-sight.
  • I love the design.  I never thought recycling bins could actually look aesthetically good.  I love the sleek design and its fingerprint proof stainless steel counter.  I never though I’d ever call a bin beautiful, but it really is!
  • I also love that it came with additional bin liners and also has a built-in-odour filter and breathable holes.  You won’t have to worry about yucky bin smells when you slide the doors open.


What I don’t like about the Totem recycling bin:

  • Some of course may find it too big.  But that’s one of the reasons why I love it.  It’s big enough to hold all our household waste besides customers can always choose a smaller size.  We have the 60L, but you can choose a smaller one if you have a small kitchen and go for the 58L or the 48L.  My husband has this evil plan of moving my beloved bin to the utility room.  He says “It’s either him or me!” 
  • I won’t lie. I did find it pricey.  The 60L costs £199 but then again, if you do have the budget to spend, I would say it’s a small price to pay to be able to segregate your waste properly and most importantly, your kitchen will be clutter free of any waste!

A lot may not agree with me, but I think this is the perfect present for any mum or even dad who likes getting things sorted.  The kind who wants every little thing in their kitchen tucked away properly in their own place.  That’s the way I like it.  This is definitely a #chirstmassolved present for me.

If you’re curious about the Totem 60L – do check out the short video below:

What about you?

Do you like practical presents too?

*We were kindly sent the Totem60 for the purpose of this review.  However, opinions, photos and video were all done by yours truly.


  1. You are so right, there does come a time where practicality takes precedence over anything else. I remember my then new partner buying me four wine glasses (and not pretty ones, at that) for our first Christmas together and being horrified. He, on the other hand, thought we needed some (we’d just moved in together). I also remember my mum being very vehement about not wanting “anything to do with the house” for her gifts when we were kids!

    Your recycling bin looks amazing especially given that my recycling currently sits in four different containers, so yes, it would be on my Christmas list, too!

    • Before we had this bin, I also had one separate bin for all our recycling stuff and it was such an eye sore! Really loving this bin 🙂 I never really thought I’d ever get excited over one 😉

  2. I’m a big fan of Joseph Joseph products and that odour filter is genius! I definitely do love a practical present but I like a bit of frivolity to go with it too

    • Six different bins in the kitchen? Oh wow, you must have such a large kitchen 🙂 But it’s good to be able to segregate our waste isn’t it?:)

  3. I totally agree, as an adult, things that make the everyday easier are so much more alluring than useless trinkets! I love this recycling bin- looks so handy!

    • I guess it also comes with “maturing”, whatever that means 😉 I definitely prefer practical presents now 🙂

  4. Practical gifts are the best! I love this bin, definitely handy when teaching a little one about recycling.

  5. This made me laugh because our recycling is such a pain. We have different boxes for everything and it would be nice having one, organised box to put everything in.

    • Before having this bin, ours was a pain too! Such an eye-sore but not anymore! 😉

  6. This looks great. I have never seen anything like this before. It looks practical and very useful 🙂

  7. Sapna Krishnan

    I love practical gifts too and I always ask people to ask me what I want if they are thinking of gifting me.. hehe. This recycling bin looks great.

    • Same here. It’s the practical things that count more now 😉 Must be age. x

  8. Katy Stevens

    I do love practical presents. I’m not against asking for a nice kitchen gadget or something that is going to help me be organised / live a better day to day life! This looks great!
    Katy Stevens recently posted…Money Talks with Even Angels FallMy Profile

    • A dishwasher sounds like a fab gift idea especially for those like you, who’ve just moved in 🙂


    I do love practical presents as at least you know they will be useful. The bin looks good although we’d probably need a much later one at mine.

  10. Amber Battishill

    Whoa, that is actually pretty cool! We would totally use something like that in our home.

  11. Visweswar Reddy

    Thanks so much for the interesting Christmas gift. This is quite a useful one and it will be quite interesting to use something like that this holiday season for gift giving.

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