Compacting Mommas Late Summer Thread - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 01:00 PM
 
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Well, I talked to dH last night. He wasn't nearly as excited as I am...but he was supportive. We'll see how it goes day to day, especially as I decide NOT to buy things
That's great! Even just having a supportive partner helps greatly. After he sees the great progress you're making, maybe he'll jump on board!
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#62 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 01:03 PM
 
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I've been lurking and reading as well and I have a question for all you mamas, especially given the last post. Any of you have a dp that is NOT on board? My dp is very materialistic, hates not having paper towels (and paper plates for that matter), loves shopping, and does not want to simplify.



Am I doomed, or do you think I could just make a compact for myself instead of my household? Some is better than none, right? And maybe he'll be convinced when he sees how positively it affects me?
You can definitely make a compact for yourself! Will he be supportive of you doing for yourself without pushing it on him? For example, can you use a cloth napkin without making a big deal about even while he's using a paper towel? For cleaning, definitely you could use cloth. Even if he buys unnecessary things for himself or the house, you could just be very deliberate in what you purchase for yourself. Perhaps if you just do all of the little things you can on your end, he will be inspired and get on board with you. And, even if not, you will personally be reducing the impact that you're making on the planet and I bet you other people will become inspired by what you're doing!!!! Please join us, we can give you support and encouragement as you go about it!!!
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#63 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 01:40 PM
 
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I've been lurking and reading as well and I have a question for all you mamas, especially given the last post. Any of you have a dp that is NOT on board? My dp is very materialistic, hates not having paper towels (and paper plates for that matter), loves shopping, and does not want to simplify.



Am I doomed, or do you think I could just make a compact for myself instead of my household? Some is better than none, right? And maybe he'll be convinced when he sees how positively it affects me?
My DH isn't materialistic, but he's not against buying anything if he thinks we "need" it. He's also a heavy paper towel user!

I think there's a good chance our reluctant partners will come on board, as long as they don't think we are simplifying just as one of our odd quirks. My DH has really gotten into a lot of the things I do, like the compost and the clothesline, even though he was very reluctant at first.

Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, and Toddler Boy 3/11

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#64 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 01:48 PM
 
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That is good to know, thank you for sharing your experiences with your reluctant dps. We already use cloth napkins, rags, etc., and I use cds but he won't if he's home with the baby. Also a no-go on cloth wet wipes, although I'm usually the one here and so we only use about 1 package of wet wipes/month or less. Paper towels I just stopped buying lol, and he's made do even though he complains.

I'm in the midst of a LOT of decluttering at the moment, it's very uplifting and inspiring.
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#65 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 01:52 PM
 
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That is good to know, thank you for sharing your experiences with your reluctant dps. We already use cloth napkins, rags, etc., and I use cds but he won't if he's home with the baby. Also a no-go on cloth wet wipes, although I'm usually the one here and so we only use about 1 package of wet wipes/month or less. Paper towels I just stopped buying lol, and he's made do even though he complains.

I'm in the midst of a LOT of decluttering at the moment, it's very uplifting and inspiring.
You're already doing great!!! How exciting!
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#66 of 97 Old 08-10-2007, 02:11 PM
 
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My DH complains at first, then gradually comes around. Sometimes, I've even heard him bragging to friends about "his" environmentally sound idea - cracks me up. Cloth diapers were like that - he hated the idea at first, and now he goes on and on about how much money it saves, how much less waste, etc.. I figure he'll come around to this, too, it just may take awhile. In the meantime, he'll treat it as another of my funny hippie quirks

Sandi - Work at home writer mama to Zoe the monkey girl 9/06 and Luna the zen baby 8/08
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#67 of 97 Old 08-11-2007, 03:03 AM
 
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Thanks for the inspiration, mamas! I think tomorrow will be my declutter day. I'll have to admit that I'm a MAJOR packrat. I have a lot of work ahead of me... and a lot to post on Freecycle.

placenta.gifeat.gif I'm a queer / trans-activist / poly / pagan / (dis)abled  / crazy / crunchy partner to fsonj; we're mamas to our unschooled/freeskooled 10yo, and co-breastfeed our sprightly toddler love.gif born Nov '10! (Ask me about how to supplement at the breast!)

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#68 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 01:11 AM
 
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So, we committed to doing this just about a month ago. I'm a little frustrated already, because I'm not totally clear on all the rules.

I did make an exemption for school clothes and supplies, just because dd will be going to school for the first time this year (we've been homeschooling until now) and she has to wear uniforms, and she's just really excited about the idea of everything being new, which I can totally relate to so we are happy to provide that experience for her. Next year, on the other hand, she will be reusing as much as possible!

What is really throwing me for a loop though is gifts! We have 5 (yes, 5!) family birthdays from July 23 - Aug. 14. What do you all do for gifts if you are not buying anything new? For people close to us, like both our moms we have gotten creative. Dh made an awesome dinner for his mom's b-day, and I am planning on spending a whole day with my mom, just the two of us, for her gift. I also had a bridal shower yesterday, and I ended up getting a gift card to the store the bride was registered at. Is that okay?

And for two other gifts we just got a coupon in the mail for a new local shopping center, to get a free $15 gift card when you spend $15. So we were going to buy one gift for $15 then give the gift card as a gift. But whatever I spend that $15 on will obviously be new. I feel like I'm breaking rules.

Okay, sorry this is so long. Last question: I have been selling things (mostly clothes) online, both on the TP here and a little on Ebay. All of the clothes are starting to take up a lot of space and I'm feeling crowded. Should I just donate them all, have a garage sale, or take the time necessary to get them all listed for sale online? Or I could keep the items I think will sell best, and donate the rest. Forget that garage sale idea...I don't think I have the time or energy right now. :

Thanks, mamas!!!

~Beth, mama to two amazing girls, ages 12 and 6~

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#69 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 01:27 AM
 
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We just deliberated a gift issue, too. This one's probably a bit easier, though. It's DD's swim instructor, who (whom?) we adore. She's going off to college in a few days and at first I thought I'd just get a gift card, but then it occurred to me that cash would work. In this case it's probably considered a tip. But as I think it over I'm not sure it's such a bad idea for others. For very personal relations I can certainly make something that would be appreciated. But for others I'm going to consider cash and a thoughtfully made card from now on.
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#70 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 01:28 AM
 
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What is really throwing me for a loop though is gifts! We have 5 (yes, 5!) family birthdays from July 23 - Aug. 14. What do you all do for gifts if you are not buying anything new? For people close to us, like both our moms we have gotten creative. Dh made an awesome dinner for his mom's b-day, and I am planning on spending a whole day with my mom, just the two of us, for her gift. I also had a bridal shower yesterday, and I ended up getting a gift card to the store the bride was registered at. Is that okay?

And for two other gifts we just got a coupon in the mail for a new local shopping center, to get a free $15 gift card when you spend $15. So we were going to buy one gift for $15 then give the gift card as a gift. But whatever I spend that $15 on will obviously be new. I feel like I'm breaking rules.
I am as far from an expert on this as anybody, but I totally understand your gift-giving situation. We also have a lot of birthdays and other gift-giving occasions this time of year.

For one person, I'm thinking of giving cash, because it's someone I know could really use basic help with stuff like her electric bill. For others, I'd like to find something locally made, a gift certificate for a local service, or even something nice I could make myself and give.

I'm shying away from chain-store gift cards, because that seems to encourage more consumerism--but I also recognize that it's MY decision to avoid consuming so much, not the recipient's decision! So I guess that means if I can't find something suitable, I'll go for a chain-store gift card.

My personal compact allows for that, so that's why I'm handling it this way.

Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, and Toddler Boy 3/11

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#71 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 12:10 PM
 
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Decluttered more magazines, some of the kids toys & put away some on my older daughters clothes for my younger one.

Bought shoes with $ from grandma for school expenses. Still have money left over.

I am having a hard time with wanting more shoes though.

Getting there!!
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#72 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 01:00 PM
 
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ah, the gift issue. I have a million birthdays to shop for ( a whole years worth!) at the beginning of the summer, because my fam has a big camping trip and we do everyone's birthdays then. I decided I didn't have the time or energy to make stuff, or do all thrifting, so I chose the next best thing. i chose to shop locally and but renewable or reuseable things, like gardening supplies, camping gear, books.

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#73 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 07:42 PM
 
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One of our girls has a birthday this month and I have also been thinking ahead to Christmas. For my own kids I have no problem with gently used items. This is especially true for some of the pricer stuff we are looking for like wooden dollhouse furniture. So I have been looking on the TP, Freecycle, and Craigslist. If I am not going to buy/trade for something gently used then I will look next to something I can make and local places. For Makayla's birthday one of the things she is getting is some food handmade by another MDC mama. I am learning to knit so that is where some of our Christmas gifts will come from. While it is not part of the original compact I am allowing myself for gifts some more wiggle room on buying new. I'm going to look for used, bartered, and local items first though. In particular I know I will buy some things for my grandmother new. I want to put together practical items in a basket. That will include some handmade cards but also stamps, kleenex etc.

Hope that gives you some ideas. Etsy is also a great place to check out for homemade/handmade items.
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#74 of 97 Old 08-13-2007, 11:41 PM
 
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Oops, I bought a book. And I bought it from a huge box store.

Last night DH said he wanted to come with me to the library whenever I next went, because he wanted some new stuff to read. So when I was in said big box store buying cocoa powder, I saw HP and the Deathly Hallows and knew he would love to read it (we're a little behind the times--I'm not a big HP fan, and DH isn't a shopper). So I bought it.

I could have gotten it used, I could have gotten it at a local bookstore, I could have borrowed it from any of the millions of people who have it, but I didn't put in the time to do it.

Shame on me!

Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, and Toddler Boy 3/11

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#75 of 97 Old 08-14-2007, 12:30 AM
 
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I don't think we should 'shame' our selves or others for stepping out of the compact I think it's more about raising awareness than guilt levels.

Mamato Ruby Violet joy.gif(6 with autism) and someone 1sttri.gif who should make him/herself known sometime in the next month.

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#76 of 97 Old 08-17-2007, 05:18 PM
 
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Where we are in our journey.....

DH and I talked a long time last night about consumerism, stuff, clutter, simplifying, and the idea of compacting. This is the first time we have really talked about "the compact" directly and he had a very positive response. DH is a geek so I was surprised to hear him talking about keeping this computer till it completely wears out and then looking about buying used rather than directly from Apple. DH also brought up going TV free and even at some point getting rid of it. I'm not ready to do that yet but we have canceled our Blockbuster subscription and I have put all the kids movies in the closet. I need to find a place to put ours away. Out of site, out of mind. Its funny that I'm the one having more reservations about letting go of the TV. So far this month I have made something and traded for something DD's birthday present and bought a tea kettle used off the tp rather than buying new.

How is everyone else doing?
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#77 of 97 Old 08-18-2007, 11:17 AM
 
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Doing ok here so far. Went to the grocery store day before yesterday and carried around a "Working Mom" cookbook - quick easy meals, for quite awhile before talking myself into putting it back and writing down the title for my next library visit. Books are going to be an issue for me - looks like I'll get lots of use out of the interlibrary loan feature at our library over the next year

Talked to my dad about the compact, too, as we're going to visit him this weekend. He's very nonmaterialistic himself, and seemed to think it was a really good idea. He's always had issues with how cluttered our house gets, so his take was - if you're not buying new stuff, you can sort through the stuff you already have! Very true.

Sandi - Work at home writer mama to Zoe the monkey girl 9/06 and Luna the zen baby 8/08
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#78 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 11:45 AM
 
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DH also brought up going TV free and even at some point getting rid of it. I'm not ready to do that yet but we have canceled our Blockbuster subscription and I have put all the kids movies in the closet.
Is this part of compacting, or something extra?

placenta.gifeat.gif I'm a queer / trans-activist / poly / pagan / (dis)abled  / crazy / crunchy partner to fsonj; we're mamas to our unschooled/freeskooled 10yo, and co-breastfeed our sprightly toddler love.gif born Nov '10! (Ask me about how to supplement at the breast!)

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#79 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 12:53 PM
 
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Is this part of compacting, or something extra?
Something extra. Although I think it will assist us in keeping the compact since we won't be paying for the Blockbuster subscription, buying new movies etc.
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#80 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 01:01 PM
 
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Dh is not really into the whole Compact thing. Doesn't make any sense to him....bless his heart. He is so innocent, he does not even see the evil half of the time.

But I think the idea is rubbing off on him.

Last night, he decided to surprise Abby and pick her up some new skirts/dresses. I had mentioned I was going to stop at Saver's (thrift store to look). He decided to go to Target. He did not like anything there. He was discouraged with the style of clothes for Abby's age (5yr). So.....


He headed to Savers! He picked her up three beautiful dresses!
She loves them! He said, "From now on I will just go to Saver's first!"

We are making progress

Mama to 9 so far:Mother of Joey (20), Dominick (13), Abigail (11), Angelo (8), Mylee (6), Delainey (3), Colton (2) and Baby 8 and Baby 9 coming sometime in July 2013.   If evolution were true, mothers would have three arms!

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#81 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 01:54 PM
 
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Is this part of compacting, or something extra?
I can see that going TV free would help in other ways too: by keeping you away from a huge amount of advertising and other programming that makes you want things you don't need.

I would love to go TV free, but DH enjoys it too much . . . .

Catherine, mama to Preschooler Girl 9/08, and Toddler Boy 3/11

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#82 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 03:50 PM
 
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I'm getting to a place where I want to go on the compact. Right now my biggest thing is that I want all of this "organizational" stuff because I'm decluttering and making my house easier to maintain. For example, I've NEVER been good about recycling because we don't have curbside service and I don't know how to organize my recyclables. The other day at Ikea in Dallas, I saw something that would be perfect for my recycling station and I would actually DO IT. So, do I buy it even though it's new plastic stuff, or do I try to find a way to make recycling work w/o it (even though I've not managed to find a system that works for the over 6 years since we had curb service?). In the last year or so, I've been focusing on just reducing trash leaving my home rather than recycling, but I know if I recycled, I could virtually eliminate my family's contribution to the local landfill.

Anyway....I might talk to DH about the compact tonight. We need to make some major financial changes in our lives, and this would probably be the best way to do it. So as you read my post, keep in mind that I'm NOT on the compact, just thinking about it a lot .

AngelBee: for water, could you buy a reusable 5 gallon jug (you can get these in glass for $30 or in plastic for less and you can probably find a used plastic one)? We have a water cooler and that's what we did before our well company paid for an under sink reverse osmosis water filtration system (because the other option was to redrill our well at no cost to us ). If you don't have a water cooler, I'm sure it would an easy item to find used, or I know there are some that are nonelectric made of crockery and wood. I think overall, that would involve the least waste (no filters or packaging to buy or throw away), but it would cost in the beginning and you would have to travel to the water refilling station (around here Wal Mart has them and there's a locally owned water store that refills them).

I know where you're coming from with homeschooling. Once you decide what you want to use and what works for you, it's hard to change that. We use four workbooks per child per year (two for grammar and two for math) and my IG. I bought all of my spine books used from amazon.com after looking at paperbackswap.com and seeing that they didn't have any of them. We're using a weekly trip to our excellent library for the rest of our books and learning. I did buy new supplies at Hobby Lobby for our weaving project this week, but now I'm thinking of taking all but the essentials back .

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
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#83 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 04:02 PM
 
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DH and I have both been really frustrated with Cat Litter lately. We buy scoopable cat litter because we have a LitterMaid cat box. Scoopable littler only comes in these big plastic buckets and while we have tried to reuse them as much as possible, we have gone through a LOT of cat litter in the 3 years we've had our cat and more than a few of those buckets have been thrown away (because of my issues with recycling, as mentioned in the above post .

We've thought of switching to a regular cat box with clay litter because you can buy it in paper 50 pound bags. We've thought of switching to wheat litter (ack, so pricey!!). We've thought of teaching them to go outside, but they aren't outside cats. The baby was ferrel and is scared to go outside and the older one will escape for a day at a time, then when she comes back inside, RUN to the litter box like she hasn't peed the whole time she's been outside . None of these really seem like good options, except switching to clay litter, but that scares me because I know how bad we are about cleaning the cat box when its clay litter...

Does anyone know if you can buy scoopable cat litter in bulk? I'm off to check my co-op catalog .

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
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#84 of 97 Old 08-20-2007, 11:12 PM
 
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Petco sells bulk scoopable litter. You buy the container the first time, then just bring it back to refill after that. It worked fine for us. (We haven't had a littler box in about 8 years --- buts that's what we were using before.)

http://www.petco.com/petco_Page_PC_s..._-hdr-_-locate
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#85 of 97 Old 08-21-2007, 07:53 PM
 
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Petco is not convenient to me so I use Arm and Hammer scoopable litter. It comes in cardboard boxes so they can be recycled. Our Target carries it.
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#86 of 97 Old 08-21-2007, 08:02 PM
 
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I need some help. I am really struggling with something, and I'm having a hard time resisting the urge to order up a whole bunch of clothes online.

I am down to two outfits to wear to work and that's it. I need to find professional clothing, but short of shopping online I'm out of luck. I haven't found much on Ebay, and nothing in local thrift stores. It's a struggle because my appearance has become progressively poorer and poorer at the office and that's not a good thing. I'm really hard on my clothes too.

Sewing is a great option, but since we're organizing the farmers market this year I have not had a free weekend or free evening at all this summer.

I just need a little encouragement right now. If I can make it to October, it'll be one year of compacting.

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#87 of 97 Old 08-21-2007, 09:17 PM
 
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I need some help. I am really struggling with something, and I'm having a hard time resisting the urge to order up a whole bunch of clothes online.

I am down to two outfits to wear to work and that's it. I need to find professional clothing, but short of shopping online I'm out of luck. I haven't found much on Ebay, and nothing in local thrift stores. It's a struggle because my appearance has become progressively poorer and poorer at the office and that's not a good thing. I'm really hard on my clothes too.

Sewing is a great option, but since we're organizing the farmers market this year I have not had a free weekend or free evening at all this summer.

I just need a little encouragement right now. If I can make it to October, it'll be one year of compacting.
I wish I had some creative solution for you, but I am in the same boat. I have a grand total of 2 skirts and about 4 blouses. I work 5 days a week and attend religious services every Saturday. Its getting to where I kinda feel sorry for my co-workers having to look at the same clothes all the time and I can imagine what they say/think about me. I don't even know how to sew nor own a sewing machine so that's not an option for me right now.

Have you checked the trading post here at MDC? Any family members or friends have clothes that they want to get rid of while decluttering? Didn't there used to be a yahoo group for the mamas who were compacting, where you could say what you need and others might have it?

But anyway, you are doing GREAT! You are a source of great motivation for me and I'm so proud of you. I remember we started compacting at the same time last year, and I didn't last long at all and here you are almost at a year!!!!! Way to go!!!!

I'll try to think of other ideas for you!
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#88 of 97 Old 08-21-2007, 09:54 PM
 
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Do you have a friend who has gained/lost weight or gotten pregnant recently? I know my friends and I pass clothes around when things like that come up. We're mostly SAHMs, but even so we've made some trades that have really helped out.

Have you tried looking at the yard sale ads on Fridays? Generally if there are women's clothes they'll say what size so you'll know beforehand if it'll worth your while.

Charlotte, midwife to some awesome women, wife to Jason, and no longer a mama to all boys S reading.gif('01), A nut.gif ('03) S lol.gif ('08) and L love.gif ('10).
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#89 of 97 Old 08-21-2007, 11:04 PM
 
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I was just taking a break from sorting clothes that I'm getting rid of! I am happy to go through and see if there's anything that would work for any of you if you tell me sizes, and I am also happy to let it go free for shipping. Just let me know. In pants I have sizes 14 and 16; tops are all L and XL. I also have a few nice size 2 pants and skirts that I had just bought to resell, and would let those go at my cost, plus shipping - they were $3 or $4 each. I have pictures of those ones on the TP. The stuff that came from my own closet I don't really want to take pics of; that's why I'm just donating it.

~Beth, mama to two amazing girls, ages 12 and 6~

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#90 of 97 Old 08-22-2007, 01:23 PM
 
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If there is no where else in your area to Check, the only other place I can think to check out is the trading post.
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