Wednesday, January 30, 2013

One Month Update

Okay technically it will have been one month into my "buy nothing new" year tomorrow, but I felt like writing this post today, so I'm going to do it :)

What I bought this month:

Digital camera (used)
Diapers and small bath toys for baby shower gift (new)
Fabric for make-your-own couch project (new, made in USA)

The digital camera was to replace my old camera that brokein August; the present was for a family member's baby shower (and you really can't buy diapers used!); and the fabric is the only new component of our couch that we are assembling in order to avoid purchasing an entirely new couch. I do feel like each purchase was needed and that I did my best to avoid buying new, but I definitely still see a lot of room for improvement here! (It also doesn't look so good that, after months of searching, I finally found a good used camera only two weeks into my "buy nothing new" year!)

So, one month in, how is this all going? I've found that, overall, it's not the big purchases that have been hard to cut down on (I wasn't really in the habit of "going shopping" and buying new clothes, shoes, etc.), but it's the little things (that sure do add up!) where I've noticed a real change. Instead of running over to Target or CVS for a lampshade or a glue stick or a pillow (these all came up this month), I'm getting more creative. I'm thinking about other ways I can make things work -- maybe by buying used or modifying something I already own or just trying a new approach.

When the bigger things do come up (we need a new couch), I've gotten extra creative and have been able to get exactly what I need, almost entirely used (and for way cheaper!), just by planning ahead.

I think the main difference with the "buy nothing new" year is that I can't really do last-minute shopping ("Oh shoot, we need a new couch/camera/pair of shoes/extension cord/etc., let's run over to Target/Best Buy/Payless/CVS/etc."), but really that's a change I have been wanting to make anyway. By thinking more about what I actually need and being more deliberate with my purchases, I will
a.) save money, b.) reduce the clutter, and c.) end up with something that I actually need vs. something that will do for now.

So one month down, 11 more to go. I hope that next month I can come on here and tell you I bought nothing at all! And maybe give an update on that goodwill pile, as well, as I continue to de-clutter my life :)

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