Monday, April 26, 2010

A season of living on what I already have

How can I be surrounded by clutter and yet grab my keys to go shopping?

After living almost a year in blissful happiness despite, and I argue, because of my husband losing his job, I fear I have lost my frugal touch now that I have gained some financial security.

My birthday is tomorrow, and while I’m not changing age brackets or decades, I’m close enough to one of those milestones that this birthday has gotten my attention. And I know that my current spending and…wow I hate this word…consuming habits are not where they should be.

Last year, when I was faced with the choice of panicking or thriving in the face of financial restrictions, I found an amazing freedom in choosing to see abundance where others might see depravity.

It’s time to do it again, and starting with my filthy, cluttered house is as good of a place as any.

As a birthday present to myself, my Earth, and my family, I am taking a public vow to use, share, and/or thoughtfully donate everything in my possession before acquiring and consuming anything new.

I hope to meet several goals in doing this:

1. Recapture my ability to recognize and appreciate the things I already have.

2. Pass this ability onto my children, who have been complete spoiled brats recently - probably all my fault.

3. Live out that fabulous cliché to “live simply so others can simply live” – I plan to do something special and meaningful with the money and waste saved from this experiment, and inspire others (including my ungrateful children) to do the same.

Hopefully, this journey into my own closets, pantry, garage, and conscience will reveal the abundance around me, and all of us, in its many forms. If we can all start with using what we already have, then sharing our gifts with others will be a natural, sustainable extension of what the universe put in our stewardship.

And we’ll save tons of money.