I am taking a lot of deep breaths right now. I’m gritting my teeth & getting ready to jump into something that is going to be incredibly hard. I’m a bit scared, actually… I don’t know if I can do it but I’m going to try.
I am challenging myself to buy nothing new for A YEAR. *faints*
God… it’s hard to even write it. I know it can be done, but can I do it? I failed miserably at “Buy nothing new month” – I could come up with all sorts of reasons why but the truth is I wanted something new so I bought it.
I know Dottie Angel & her “Challengers of the utmost kind” have done it (perusing her list of challengers long ago saw me stumble over Lola Nova; I’m incredibly happy about that), but even earlier than that people were rebelling against needless consumption, I found this post on The Compact from 2006. I like their rules & exceptions so I am going to use them:
- food, drink, and necessary medicine (no elective treatments like Viagra or Botox)
- necessary cleaning products, but not equipment (don't go out and buy the Dyson Animal, for example).
- socks and underwear (utilitarian--non-couture or ornamental)
- pyjamas for the children
My own personal exceptions that I must add for fear of not embarking on this thing at all are:
- Clothing items necessary for the kids that I cannot or will not find second-hand, like bathers or ballet clothes & bicycle helmets.
- Hygiene products like toothpaste & soap.
- Expendables like light bulbs.
- Punk’s birthday bicycle which was ordered before Christmas & a new chain for my bike.
- Perhaps 1 “from Santa” Christmas present for each of the kiddos. Am going for the four present rule I saw around the blogs next time; something they want, something they need, something they wear & something they read; if Punk’s “want” is like the last one, it will need to be bought new. Don’t fancy my chances at making a pink princess computer with a key…
Sooooooo, why am I thinking of doing this to myself & my dear family? Because we have got to stop spending. Because we need to think more before we buy. Because we have enough stuff. But mostly, because we need to stop spending. I do.
I have been looking sadly at our credit card balance & wondering how on earth we’re going to shrink it. This is one way.
Another way, hopefully, is with a little Etsy endeavour I hope to begin soon, but hey, one big announcement a day is enough for anyone. In fact, I have a couple of little challenges for myself that may or may not become apparent as we go along, but I’m slowly learning my lesson about grand declarations on my blog… they don’t really work & I feel bad when I don’t do what I have screamed from the hilltops. I think this particular challenge is different though because I am going to need HELP! A lot of my new spending is online; I see something on a blog or linked somewhere, I want it, I buy it… ick.
All sorts of things are running through my head. What if the toaster breaks? What if a fabulous new craft book comes out? What if I run out of fabric? What if I find myself near Ikea? What if I see super cute boots on sale? How am I going to get another vacuum cleaner? How am I going to read blog posts about new issues of Mollie Makes without wanting to buy it right then & there??
It’s just a challenge (I am telling myself). I can either do it, or I can’t. All I have to do is try. Nobody will die if I can’t do it, but it’s worth a shot. It’s not like I’m giving up chocolate. That WOULD be dire.
Am I nutso? Do you think I can do it? Who’s taking bets? Do you want to try too?