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Compacting Mommas Winter Thread

post #1 of 237
Thread Starter 
The last one was getting so long I thought we should start one for the winter months. How is everyone doing? I originally signed on until Thanksgiving since I knew we would be spending the day after in downtown Seattle and Ikea, and I wasn't sure how strong I could be I didn't spend a cent downtown! Even through the lovely mall and shops, nada. We also made our lunch from leftovers to bring (tofurky of course!) We went to the Bodies exhibit which was really cool, my fil paid for all the tickets so that cost was nothing. I did purchase a few things from Ikea. A spice rack for the kitchen to clear the clutter, two glass jars for bulk grains to match the others I already have, and a tent for ds for Christmas, since my sil bought the matching tunnel for him. I bought nothing that I didn't need and was pretty proud of myself for leaving with only that even though I have to admit I searched high and low for extra things that I "could" need.

Anyway, I am going to sign a compact for the rest of the year, and am kind of nervous. How did everyone do over the holidays?
post #2 of 237
Well, Buy Nothing day is easy when you have no money.
post #3 of 237
Thread Starter 
:

I didn't follow my sil into PotteryBarn or any other spendy stores, and walked through Nordstrom with blinders on. It helped to have dh there to let me know that looking at jeans, no less $280 jeans was out of the question. I used to be an adict of the sales racks, but on inspection this time around I noticed all the items in them at almost every store were crap, pj pants, seqin tank tops, etc. Not even basic neccessities. It was nice to be able to look and not even think to buy. I will say that I used to go into Pottery Barn or other home stores to get inspired for decorating ideas, but I couldn't even go in because just looking inside from the door it looked like same furniture and vases you see everywhere else!
post #4 of 237
Well, I was in Michigan for Thanksgiving and I ended up buying a cute little Rilakkuma bear that I absolutely did not NEED. The only other stuff I bought was for a knitting project (yarn for Z's winter hat - I tried to get it secondhand but nothing came through; a pattern for a sweater for myself, to use up a lot of yarn I already have).

We did end up eating at restaurants quite a bit for breakfast and food on the road. I am feeling a little overwhelmed by life right now so I'm not doing as well as I could be, but just thinking about the Compact kept me from buying so much stuff I don't need.
post #5 of 237
I'm still reading this thread, the yahoo group and everyone's blogs... Not quite ready to commit yet, but you all inspire me greatly.
post #6 of 237
Malva, I'm doing the exact same thing. I'm so impressed by all of you. You're truly inspirational.
post #7 of 237
Subscribing...


We have been Compacting since mid October. Things are going good for us with the Compact, minus the purchase of organic bath towels that I mentioned before. I haven't bought a single Christmas gift, and even going out where people are Christmas shopping gives me a headache. I have repeatedly gone into stores and thought about purchasing something that I think I "need" and then changed my mind and walked away. I don't even really like shopping anymore, even consignment shopping. I can't believe I just typed that!

We decided before we started the Compact that we would either do simple homemade gifts for our parents/siblings and then only buy our children a few natural toys (most of our plastic stuff is gone-YAY!). We know that no one else will buy them the kinds of things we actually want them to have. I'm knitting items for my mom, her SO, my brother, my DH and then sewing each of my kids a fleece patchwork quilt. I'm making photo CDs using Microsoft PhotoStory with all the great photos we have of our kids in the last year. I'm going to make a charitable contribution instead of making gifts for DH's extended family, because I'm boycotting their excessive gift giving. I have tried making gifts for DH's extended family's yearly gathering the past 2 years but I'm too busy with my kids to attempt that now. They refuse to do a gift exchange and instead expect everyone to buy lavish gifts for the 15 or so adults that attend and then my 2 kids. Honestly, with my anti-shopping feelings right now, I just want to hide out somewhere with my family until New Years

P.S. I've been awful about updating my blog if anyone is still reading, I have been on the computer so rarely! I'm really enjoying being unplugged though.
post #8 of 237
Subbing and forgive me if this question has already been asked, I wanted to ask before I lost my motivation and I experience time-suckage when I read through long threads...

How do you get over the midset of "It's only 0.99" and "I deserve a little treat", etc. When I go grocery shopping I always end up buying myself a single serve of Pom tea, or a bagel or *something*. Those little things add up and while I feel like I deserve a treat, I can't keep doing this.

How do you all break yourselves of that? Please help, I feel desperate about this today.
post #9 of 237
When I feel like I need a treat, I brew a cup of tea, lock myself in the bathroom, and have a long soak in a rose-oil scented tub.

WAAAAAY better than a bagel , and spend-free.
post #10 of 237
Thread Starter 
Can you bring a snack from home before you go? I always have cookies or sme kind of baked goods I've made, and will take some with me. Also, don't think of the big picture. Just take it one shopping trip at a time. Don't think about the different things you might want throughout the week, just the store you are going in that day. Before you go in resolve to make it through the store that one time. Once you've done that the next stop you make have the same resolve. I know it seems a bit 12 steps, but it does work.
post #11 of 237
No, 12 step type instructions are what I do best with! I have to take it one day at a time with many things, including weight loss and decluttering. I get into major panic mode if I try to think ahead about much of anything. It makes me feel a bit like Piglet when I think about it like that...

I will try that, taking my own stuff to nosh on.

And I agree, a bath or just some time alone is way better than a bagel.
post #12 of 237
subbing....

I am so excited. I am thinking about this everyday. I am coming up with solutions to the roadblocks I set up for myself. It seems many people have set up certain exceptions and personalized the compact. I just want to make sure I do not water it down too much. I also like the example it would set for my children.

What we are doing is taking gradual steps. So far I have decided to cut out restaurant meals, single serve packaged food and drink, and cut way back on Christmas, giving experiences and hand made gifts. My dh isn't really wanting to take the compact but he does so little of the shopping it almost doesn't matter. I can make my dent and maybe the changes will become the way our family does things.

Thank you for sharing your experiences, it does help those of us out here considering changes.
post #13 of 237
mommajb, I feel as if I am in the same situation as you are. Hope you don't mind me taking an idea or two from you here and there.

I was just coming back to say that I can't wait until the New Year, I have to start compacting now. I feel desperate to make a change and I need to start immediately. The past few days spending has gotten out of control and I know that once it starts it only gets worse. Causing strife and discord between my dh and I, which trickles down to the kids, and I want to set a good example for them. They are so impressionable right now I need to take advantage of that.

We are still going to buy a few toys brand new for Christmas, but we don't have "big" Christmases in our house in general anyway.

I feel better already.
post #14 of 237
Just wanted to say that I think it is ok to buy yourself a treat once in a while. I hardly ever do any more and It feels good when I do instead of feeling bad/guilty. I aim to simplify and am starting to do a pretty good job seeing as I was WAY WAY over the top so I feel good when I don't buy. On the other hand the other day I was in town Half an hour to home and had free time and I took my knitting to a cafe and sat and had a cup of bought tea and relaxed and knit and I know I deserved it. I was alone - RARE and I had time and a half hour of free time and I felt very spoiled and refreshed!
post #15 of 237
subbin'. Thanks Bex.
post #16 of 237
What is compacting?
post #17 of 237
I didn't buy anything in December!!
post #18 of 237
Here's the original thread, the first post explains it pretty well. I was buying supplements at Whole Foods the other day and ds was playing with this cute little wind up toy, so I bought it. On the drive home I was thinking about the shopping trip and was like "WAIT! I wasn't supposed to have bought that!" I'm around a month and a half in, and I still forget every once in awhile. As for treating myself, I do think it's worth it once in awhile. I'm a single mama and so since I don't get alone time (well, once every few months, and at night time) I buy that cup of coffee, and space out for a few minutes. It helps me keep my sanity. I just avoid Starbucks/Caribou and get from our local coffee shop. Compacting has been soo good for me! I'm so good at saying no to stuff now (except when I space it ) and reevaluating my "needs".
post #19 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bex80 View Post
Subbing and forgive me if this question has already been asked, I wanted to ask before I lost my motivation and I experience time-suckage when I read through long threads...

How do you get over the midset of "It's only 0.99" and "I deserve a little treat", etc. When I go grocery shopping I always end up buying myself a single serve of Pom tea, or a bagel or *something*. Those little things add up and while I feel like I deserve a treat, I can't keep doing this.

How do you all break yourselves of that? Please help, I feel desperate about this today.
I never counted food/drink as a Compact no-no. New shoes, a new tablecloth, a new PC, a new video game...yes, yes, yes absolutely. But food stuff? It's fair game in my Compact world. I'm trying to understand why you would think treating yourself to a drink or a bagel is breaking the Compact?
post #20 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by OliveGirl View Post
I never counted food/drink as a Compact no-no. New shoes, a new tablecloth, a new PC, a new video game...yes, yes, yes absolutely. But food stuff? It's fair game in my Compact world. I'm trying to understand why you would think treating yourself to a drink or a bagel is breaking the Compact?
I'm with ya on this one...for me, Compacting is more than just saving money. It's about ENRICHING my life by not bringing more useless stuff into my home...and being more mindful of my purchases as a whole. With that said, I feel no shame when I say that I bought the latest Dwell magazine yesterday. It is FULL of amazing ideas about sustainability, organic living, living in community, etc. My life has been enriched already. Could I have borrowed it from the library? Yes. However, I will be gifting it to someone else for Christmas...and will encourage them to gift/donate it when they are done.

I splurge once in awhile on a coffee or tea when I am having my "mom's night out". Sometimes I even go to Starbucks *gasp*!! That cup of coffee was a tool to help me relax and enjoy my evening of writing letters, etc.

It's all up to you. There are no Compact police. Mindful living is where it's at For the most part, I am seriously hard core. But a little packaged treat here and there will not throw my Compact world into a frenzy.

I am so RELIEVED that I don't have to do Christmas "shopping" this year. I despise the mall. I hate all the holiday sale advertising. : I've been slowly collecting goodies from thrift stores and consignment stores to give to my family and it's so much more fun that way!

This is such a great group of mamas...I'm so glad we're all here doing this together.
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