Monday, June 30, 2008

True to My Word

I said I'd keep a log of my purchases, so here goes:

I did surprisingly well early in the week. The only thing I bought was lunch out. 

On Thursday I ordered a birthday present for one of the boy's friends. A German-made toy off of the website. (Some sort of build your own toy car project.)

On Saturday I splurged. (Does it count as splurging when you couldn't go a week without?) Husband took the boy to the car show with Grandpa, and I went to the mall with Grandma. She bought matching dresses for the girls for upcoming birthday party. I got emergency outfit for baby after spit up accident (should have had extra clothes in bag) and 4 shirts for the boy for next spring--they were on sale. I also got two shirts for myself that were on sale that I had been watching for a while. One from Boden and one from 9 West. The kids clothes were from the Gap. 

I bought a copy of How Fiction Works by James Wood off Amazon for work. 

And today I ordered some hair bows from Etsy for the baby. 

Suddenly it sounds like a whole lot. This may be good for me.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Shopping Ethically

My desire is to shop ethically, spiritually, soulfully. My experience up to this point in my life has been to see something in a store, like it, and buy it. Or even just think it's okay and buy it. Sometimes I have even bought things I didn't like just because I "needed" it at that point. Case in point, the shorts I bought when the Boy wet his pants at the mall and I hadn't planned ahead to bring a backup pair with me. My goal was to buy the cheapest thing in the store. 

However, the problem lies in the fact that the cheapest thing is probably such because it was made with the cheapest materials by the cheapest labor, possibly at the cheapest quality. Instead of assuming that these items magically appear in the mall out of nowhere, I want to start thinking about where they come from. Who made this sippy cup? How were they treated in the process? What did they use to make it? Is it full of harmful chemicals? (I recently read that baby mattresses often contain too-high levels of rat poison.) Will my owning this item actually benefit me and my family?

If I stop and think about these things before I buy I'll spend a lot less money. I may be able to afford the portrait of the kids I want to commission. Or a nice handmade piece of jewelry I've been eyeing. 

With birthdays falling this month for the kids, it's hard not to waste lots of money. Overspending on toys, party favors, paper plates, cake decorating supplies, etc. And most of it gets thrown in the trash. 

I'm going to start keeping a diary of things I buy. I think if I do that, it will waken me up to what comes in and out of my house. If I'm brave enough, I may even post it here.

Friday, June 6, 2008


Well, we've kind of stalled out on the idea of buying land at the moment. Real life has taken over. And we were hoping I'd be selling a big project at this month, and that didn't materialize. So, the goal is to focus on this house. 

Did you know that the amount of petroleum it takes to make 14 plastic bags is enough to fuel one car for one mile. And we use like 380 billion plastic bags a year. That's crazy. I'm trying to remember to bring my reusable ones when I go shopping other places than just groceries. I got a cool one from Chronicle Books at BEA last weekend that folds up really small, so I'll keep that one in my purse from now on.

And I just ordered some low-flow shower heads from Let's Go Green. They've also got biodegradable plastic bags. This is good, because it's useless to have all the biodegradable diapers if I just put them in plastic trash bags. And the prices are pretty reasonable there, I thought. They even have one of those "rain" style shower heads. And if you enter FRIEND in the promo code box at checkout you get a 25 percent discount.

By the way, we are loving our CSA membership. Our son loves going to pick up our food each week from "the farmers," and he eats fresh strawberries the whole way home. The food has been great so far.