Sunday, June 01, 2008

Starting the Compact

Beginning July 1, 2008 I will officially begin the "Mamas on the Compact " for the next two months.

My focus for the next couple months, my focus will be on making our family a little more aware of how much we consume and how much we spend.

Starting in July, I will work on enjoying people and experiences that just can't be bought with money. I am hoping this helps me get creative on finding creative alternatives to the normal mindless shopping we do. Another focus I plan to add is to declutter what we already have--to edit and pare down so we are not spending so much time maintaining THINGS.

I think that this will be good for us. However here are exceptions to the rules on buying new:

1. Personal hygiene products. I have teenage boys who play sports. Need I say more?!

2. Supplies for my crafts business. I sell stitch markers and handmade crafts. I will focus on using what I have, but I will purchase supplies if I REALLY need. This also includes clay for my pottery class. I will use what I have and buy bags only as needed. Pottery gives me a tangible creative outlet and provides an outlet to relieve stress.

3. Supplies to maintain and build our garden and chicken house. Both of these will pay back in a reduction in food costs.

4. Biweekly dinner group dinners. Our group has been going out for a while. We will cook meals at home other than those dates.

5. Medicine. This goes without saying.

What is out:

1. New books - I will focus on reading what I already have or buy at used bookstores and secondary markets.

2. Yarn--this one is going to be hard. I volunteer time in 2 yarn stores and get a discount. I love yarn--badly...I will focus on knitting through my REALLY LARGE stash.

3. Random shopping -- Actually I will make it a habit to stay out of stores in general. I actually put this into practice today. I had suggested to a friend that we meet at a bookstore to hang out for a while. After thinking about it, I called her back and we met at her house instead.

This actually falls into line with what I have been doing anyway to offset the outrageous cost of gas. Another thing that is a thing of the past is getting in the car to run single errands. Errands are now bundled according to what side of town they are on. They are also examined to see if they are REALLY needed or if they can be eliminated.

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