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Compacting Mommas Winter Thread - Page 6

post #101 of 237
Subbing for inspiration, while working on my Compact "contract".
post #102 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by cdmaze View Post
Our policy is- wait two weeks on almost all purchases- then put them on "the list" and search for used. If used cant be found- then buy as responsibly as possible.
Carolyn, I think this is really great advice Also, can I add that I find your blog VERY inspiring and have it on my favorite links page, too as I think others will find you & your husband inspiring and thought provoking, too.

We're doing well ... I continue to struggle daily with the urge to shop. I honestly didn't realize it was as bad with me as it is. I mean, I always knew that I probably liked to shop a little too much, you know? But I didn't realize it was something I would have to talk myself out of daily : 21 days to make or break a habit, right?

Best Wishes, Compacters!
post #103 of 237
Thanks Kara!

I'm having a terrible urge to shop TODAY! Even used stuff is tempting! I guess I'm just bored- guess I dont have enough housework to occupy me? (not true- I actually tend to AVOID housework when I'm bored- pretty lame).
post #104 of 237
Question for the compacting mommas - I'm not technically compacting, but I am trying to mostly do it. So I'm getting my son's room set and decorated. I want to avoid buying anything new. Curious what folks consider part of the compact. For example, I'm looking at bedding sets on ebay. Well there are a ton that are really being sold by businesses, so those are clearly out.

But what about say one sold by someone who bought it for her son but never used it? Would that be within the compact? I'm sure everyone has their own versions, just curious to hear some opinions.

Just typing this up brings up the question in my mind about transporting used items - do you buy used things online? How far would you drive to be able to get something used?

When you do need something 'new' (to you) where do you usually get it?
post #105 of 237
Ds turned 2 years old today, so the urge to go out and buy him something for his birthday was too much. We did break the Compact and bought him new : wooden Thomas trains on Saturday. Since dh is out of town this week and I'm visiting my family, we (dh, ds, and I) celebrated ds's birthday on Saturday. That's when he got to pick out which trains he wanted and we also went to the children's museum. It was a fun day! And, honestly, I don't regret getting ds the trains.

Anyway, today I felt like I needed to go out and buy him something else so he would have more to open this evening, even though my parents and grandparents gave him gifts (haven't quite figured out how to tell the family not to buy *stuff* on birthdays and Christmas; not that they would listen anyway). I kept telling myself, he doesn't *need* anything. He'll have fun eating cake, and opening the few gifts he is getting and he'll like what he gets. He did, of course!

I really don't like how I felt today - that ds's birthday wouldn't be "good enough" or something if I didn't buy him more stuff. He had a wonderful time, loved what he *did* get, and never noticed he didn't have something from mommy and daddy to open today.

I've been doing the Compact since Jan. 1st and today was the hardest day for me.
post #106 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by KnittingKara View Post
Carolyn, I think this is really great advice Also, can I add that I find your blog VERY inspiring and have it on my favorite links page, too as I think others will find you & your husband inspiring and thought provoking, too.
I read some of your blog, too, and loved it! It's great!
post #107 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelmarie View Post
Ds turned 2 years old today, so the urge to go out and buy him something for his birthday was too much.
I totally know how you feel! DS's 2nd b-day was Tuesday and DH really, really, really wanted to get him a walking bike so we tried for a while to find a used one before giving up and buying new. But I did buy his two smaller gifts used, a toy vw bug and playmobil forklift set, so I was proud of myself. I'm thinking that buying one new gift a year for each child isn't too much of a compromise?

And I struggled with other random things like decorations for the party this Saturday and party favors for the kids. I ended up making a "Happy Birthday Banner" out of construction paper and surprisingly it turned out very cute (course it took me nearly two hours!). I lucked out and found three giant wheels of streamers at the thrift store for less than $3 total and a package of blue balloons in my closet that I didn't even know I had.

For party favors I'm decorating small magnetic photo frames. Although, I ended up buying the frames new, I figured decorating them was a nice personal touch using what I had at home and they can be used for years to come rather than played with once and thrown away.

Many tough decisions to make. I'm finding that I really have to plan ahead for occasions like this if I am going to be true to my pledge!
post #108 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by mightymoo View Post
Question for the compacting mommas - I'm not technically compacting, but I am trying to mostly do it. So I'm getting my son's room set and decorated. I want to avoid buying anything new. Curious what folks consider part of the compact.
I'm still trying to figure this out, too. I buy most big furniture pieces off of Craigslist or at thrift stores and have had good luck, but I'm not too keen on buying used linens. I did that once and found a quality pair of all cotton sheets but even after washing them they still smelled old. So until I figure out the trick to getting smells out, I am going to buy new linens and towels. I don't own a sewing machine (or know how to use one), so making them myself is not an option for me.

Let us know how your project turns out!
post #109 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by rachelmarie View Post
Anyway, today I felt like I needed to go out and buy him something else so he would have more to open this evening, even though my parents and grandparents gave him gifts (haven't quite figured out how to tell the family not to buy *stuff* on birthdays and Christmas; not that they would listen anyway). I kept telling myself, he doesn't *need* anything. He'll have fun eating cake, and opening the few gifts he is getting and he'll like what he gets. He did, of course!
I feel that pressure too. And what is funny is especially at 1 and 2 years old, they really are happy with less, they get overwhelmed by too mcuh and frustrated that you want them to stop playing with the gift they just opened and open another.
post #110 of 237
I think, from what my impressions of the Compact are anyway, that it is really about forming your own personal definition of what your Compact is for yourself and your family. I know some wouldn't buy new no matter what, but I myself would have no trouble buying an item new from an individual on eBay just as I have no trouble buying an item at the thrift store that is new with tags (like the play silk I picked up this week - still with the Dye Pots & Shuttle tag on it) or a new item at a tag or garage sale.

We also have been letting our daughter use some of the money she got for Christmas from her grandparents to purchase some new things (games that she wanted). We *probably* could have made her wait and looked for those items used, but the money was given to her as a gift and she did put half in the bank. After all, her parents are compacting, but she isn't :

Best Wishes, Compacters! This thread is inspiring, as always!
post #111 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by mightymoo View Post
But what about say one sold by someone who bought it for her son but never used it? Would that be within the compact? ... Just typing this up brings up the question in my mind about transporting used items - do you buy used things online? How far would you drive to be able to get something used?
When you do need something 'new' (to you) where do you usually get it?
For me ... I think that second-hand new is just fine. (You know ... grandma buys a train bedding set for her grandbaby but he doesn't need it so the mom sells it on EBay.) The reason why I think it is compactable is that buying second-hand new doesn't feed the consumerism machine like buying new from a store does.

As for used items--we live in a fairly rural, end-of-the-road area so buying used that's not online can be difficult. We will drive as far as the next town over (about 30 miles one way), but that's about it since anything further than the next town is at least 150 miles one way.

When we need something new to us we 1) inquire with friends, 2) stop at the local thrift stores, 3) check the free paper and 4) check Ebay or online swaps.
post #112 of 237
Just curious:
What, so far, has been your best "Compact" Find?

Since I've told people about how we're compacting this year, there's been a lot of support and we've received some good stuff just by putting the word out: a new jacket, clothes and boots for DS.
post #113 of 237
IMO, it's okay to buy something second-hand that is new. Like a pp said, it is not the same as buying new-new from the store. It's the same as buying a used item, just that the item is in perfect condition. The person who bought the item didn't know they wouldn't use it, then realized it, and is now trying to sell it (or pass it on) to someone who *can* use it. Totally within the Compact!

Snowbunny - I haven't really had the need for anything just yet so I don't have a good Compacting fine to report. I do think its a good idea to let people know what you are doing. It seems people are always getting rid of things - usually sending them off to Goodwill - and would be happy to pass them along to friends or family that could use them.
post #114 of 237
Snowbunny - great blogs!
post #115 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowbunny View Post
Just curious:
What, so far, has been your best "Compact" Find?
I don't know if you'd call this a "compact" find...but there is a swap shop (free store) near here where I often take the fruits of my decluttering and a couple of weeks ago I scored a great massage table there. I also dutifully updated my little wish list yesterday morning before going there and got two things on my list - a floor lamp (ours broke the day before) and a table lamp we desperately needed for a dark room downstairs. I am so happy I won't feel pressed to purchase a floor lamp.

I'm interpreting the compact for myself not only as buy only used, but also buy less/spend less money. This is the key for me, the thing that challenges me not only to hunt for something used, but also stalls me long enough that I often realize I can make do with what I have (or even without the thing I thought I needed).

Also I already have a great network of friends for giving and receiving used things. I have a feeling that a number of my friends lately would be able to say they scored big from me - LOL. I've been clearing out a lot of unneeded stuff and passing it along to friends who can use it, or giving through Freecycle or the swap shop. I believe it's a necessary part of the great big circle...generously give what you have and don't need, receive what you need.
post #116 of 237
Subbing because we are there....thanks Kara!

Will read more later....onward.
post #117 of 237
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowbunny View Post
For me ... I think that second-hand new is just fine. (You know ... grandma buys a train bedding set for her grandbaby but he doesn't need it so the mom sells it on EBay.) The reason why I think it is compactable is that buying second-hand new doesn't feed the consumerism machine like buying new from a store does.
I just wanted to post to comment on this although I am not Compacting ... I sell on eBay, and many times I sell things that are new that I bought for the express purpose of reselling them on eBay. If you get things at a good clearance rate, you can actually make a profit from reselling online. However, that does feed the consumerism machine, so to speak.

I do have a couple of questions for those of you who are Compacting ...

What are your rules for buying things as part of a business venture? We buy and resell books on eBay, and my husband repairs computers and likes to keep spare parts on hand. Do you count that sort of thing as totally separate from personal purchases?

What do you do if you have a problem with buying too much from the thrift store? My clutter problem has little to do with new purchases and a lot to do with having a hard time passing up garage sale bargains. My local thrift store has a sale room that's FREE on Fridays ... one time I brought home three bags full of clothes. Do you have rules to stop that sort of thing too? (Because that's what I really need help with ... )
post #118 of 237
Great questions...I thinkif it's your business- you're in the clear.

And yes I TOTALLY have a problem with over buying and even just over taking stuff people offer me!

I thin aside from buying, the compact for us is about posseions in general. I struggle so badly with hoarding.
post #119 of 237
I am still reading, but it is so hard to feel like you have enough, and if you get *more* at a bargain, then well, you *must need it*! At least that is my problem. I don't need most of the stuff I end up taking, but having *more* is appealing. I don't know why. That is my big habit to break. That and the whole "present" aspect of shopping.
post #120 of 237
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