Or should I call this distractions from the craptacular?...basically it all boils down to--I had a super craptacular (that means spectacularly crappy in duck-speak) day yesterday and I need to think about something else for awhile. I found out my youngest daughter has fairly frequently gotten shoved in the snow by some bullies (to the extent that they ripped her winter coat) on her way home from school this winter but didn't want to tell me because she didn't want me to start talking to the little bastards' parents, school officials, etc. for fear that the teasing would become more covert and intensify. My older daughter came home and found her crying, asked what happened and then secretly called me at work to fill me in. Since it didn't happen on school property, they don't have jurisdiction. Both my husband and I work until approximately an hour after the girls get home from school, however they are a few weeks away from being 12 and 15...so they can handle an hour alone...however it also means we aren't around when they are walking home from the bus stop. Thus leaving me with the issue--how do I insure my daughter's safety?
Anyways...that was just the "quick overview" it was far more complicated hence the title: Craptacular! So, let's talk about something else to take my mind off of this for awhile...Wow! Your hair looks great! Have you lost weight? You look fabulous...no really, you do...Read any good books or fun blog posts lately?
OK, well I could go on with that for far longer than a sane person should...quickly changing topics...have you heard about the Little Brown Dress project? It is a few years old, so you very well might have--but I love the whole idea of it. It was created/carried out by a woman in Seattle who wanted to make a statement against consumerism and the whole idea that women need to dress to impress 24/7 or they are worthless. So, she made a little brown dress that she wore 365 days as part statement and part performance piece. She did use other clothes she already owned to layer over/under the dress in winter, but other than that--no new clothes for a whole year! She washed the dress overnight every couple of days...thus negating any odor issues. Following that year, she started a follow-up project where she only wore 100% recycled clothes for a whole year. That means she only wore stuff she previously owned or stuff bought second-hand and altered by her own two hands and a sewing machine. To read more about both projects, click here: http://www.littlebrowndress.com/
I gotta say it again...I love that she did this project. I think it is completely bogus to have a bazillion outfits--most of which are rarely worn. I don't think a person should have so many shoes that they've lost count. Along with this, I will confess that I do have a purse/bag fetish which I have been actively trying to control...I brought about 15 different purses to work a few months ago and gave them away to my co-workers who snapped them up within 10 minutes of my sending out an e-mail--literally. I still have a shameful amount left in my closet, but they are like my babies! Would you give your baby away?...I think not... Oh, fine! They are purses and not human beings...I'll go through them and weed some more out, OK? Can I continue with my blog post now, please?
Anyways, my main point was how I totally respect the idea of functionality and frugality when it comes to clothing. For work, I have two pairs of black pants that I rotate. I have 5 different colors of shirts. I wear the same black shoes everyday to work. I have 2 coats---one black trench for spring/fall and one black heavy winter coat. It's pretty darn easy for me to get dressed for work because I've removed all of the "thinking" from it... So, if we wanted to take this idea one step further and apply it to other areas of our lives...do you really need 52 plastic food storage containers in your cupboard? Or 20 reusable water bottles? Or 73 pens/pencils? Do you NEED to keep every book you've ever read?...Ouch, that one hurt, didn't it? But seriously, I have quite a few books myself, therefore I know how precious they can be to one's heart...however, it is time to let some of them go--not all--not even most--just a few...start with 3. Put 3 books on Freecycle. Then wait a couple of weeks and if you haven't hyperventilated to death, put 3 more books on Freecycle. I actually did that last summer, but I did it at a garage sale and in much greater quantity. I ended up parting with over 100 books (I'm not exaggerating.) Out of all of those books, there was only 1 that I eventually missed. So, only 1 out of 100 or so books was really that necessary to my happiness/existence. It was a huge leap for me. I had to seriously throw caution to the wind to let them go. Truth be told, my husband and mother-in-law ran the garage sale while I was at work because I couldn't hang out all day staring at my beloved books leaving me...but I let them go and I feel better about myself and my house.
I've still got a long ways to go. I still have way too much stuff packed into my tiny house. But, when I think about things like the Little Brown Dress project and about how well the book purge went last summer...I know I can do it. Now...let's tackle those purses again...