Friday, June 22, 2012

10 Things I've Learned in the Last Six Months

I can't believe we are already halfway through 2012 and I have been blogging for six months! I am really surprised when people say they enjoy reading my blog because I feel like I am writing for myself most of the time, and have no clue if anything I post is interesting or not. I do want to thank everyone that does read them regularly and for those who have encouraged me. Since we are nearing the end of June, I thought it would be fun to recap the last six months. I put together a list of things I have discovered about myself and this life change so far:

1. I like collecting things.
Luckily, I also like to purge as much as possible so I haven't become a hoarder. I feel like I need to write a post about my place so readers can see that I don't have piles upon piles of junk from my recent purchases.

2. I like to spend money.
Even when I have nothing to buy I still want to purchase something: clothes, household items, food, anything. It can't be a good thing and without getting political, it really bothers me. I am currently working to curb that desire because I know it's unnecessary.

3. Taking my younger brother's clothes is almost as good and going to a thrift store.
He has such a great style and hits up swap meets regularly. Everything is already worn in, fits fairly well and is normally exactly what I have been looking for at thrift stores. Best of all, its all free! But sometimes I give him cash for things like a leather jacket.

4. I've met some really cool people.
While shopping at garage sales, vintage stores and estate sales I've started up conversations with people. I normally keep to myself but it is so fun to get to know the people I am buying things from. Most of the time they have great stories, items have history and it makes a purchase more meaningful.

5. An eclectic useroo wardrobe is much more fun than following current trends.
Duh! Who wants to buy a dress from Nordstrom when I can wear one from the 60's? I recently sifted through my old clothes tried to pull out as many items as I could to get rid of them. I have come to the realization that my body was made for everything high-waisted. Clothes today don't work as well for me.

6. Some purchases take more research and time but it's worth it.
Such as my mixer. I was so excited to find the one I did and it was a great purchase. I knew this challenge would make things more difficult but I find what I need fairly easily without heading to Target or Walmart (barf bag).

7. Donations are welcome.
Before 2012, I never would have accepted the number of hand me downs that I have recently but it has been a humbling experience. Since people know what I am doing, they offer me something before donating it elsewhere which is very thoughtful. Of course if I can't use it, I don't take it so someone else can.

8. I love Etsy.
They have two categories: handmade or vintage. I can't purchase the handmade items but I have gotten some great ideas from sellers. It is much better than eBay or Craigslist.

9. Others get more frustrated by my limitations than I do.
On several occasions, my mother has told me just to buy something anyway even if it is new. She was irritated that I didn't make it up to our cabin during the winter because I couldn't find chains in time. I don't feel limited with my options because I normally find something that works. If I can't, I know I will learn something from it and find an alternative.

10. I think this is a long term life change!
It is a fun challenge that has really caused me to take time to think about what I want, what I need and what I can live without. I'm not in need of anything and the alternatives that I have found and purchased normally benefit a family, small company or non-profit organization. I feel really good about that.

I just bought this milk glass mug recently and thought it was appropriate for today's post!

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