Tuesday, May 5

eco ease

Limits are great things no matter who, how or what you are. Kids love boundaries, thrive on them, the 'experts' all recommend them for ethical and social and emotional development. The problem with modern society is that being a rich Capitalist democracy we have become somewhat used to having no boundaries when it comes to our adult selves. 'Want that? Yup. 'Now?' Yup. Its all ours to be had. The price we pay for having and getting now, all that we want, manifests in many ways. Loss of community and development of cultural narcissism, financial debt, weight gain, ill health, limited relationship, environmental destruction and the list could go on. It used to be just an elite few who could have it all but our insatiable appetite has been afforded to the middle classes the world over.

This post over at the Green Phone Booth today reminded me of my current thinking; that Im loving my self imposed limits of local, organic, sustainable and ethical. I am actually finding life easier as i get older and more conscious about what i purchase. My lifestyle imposes limits to my purchasing and no longer do i find myself caught up in the consumptive habit. By removing myself from it like i have, by having principles which define what i buy, I have removed choice and thereby have simplified life.

We purchase basic goods which we use regularly, those which satisfy our 'principles'; a few local dairy products, mostly organic, organic local fruit and veg, home grown and home made staples, wild or free range organic meats, occasional 'kids' bread (square and soft) which comes in cellophane, bulk organic dry goods, etc etc. and a few condiments which i just cant make (see this exciting news, soooo local amde just a few streets away!). We pretty much stick to these varying them every now and then with something exciting and really leaving the exotic and well travelled for special occasions (not every Friday night!) like birthdays etc. Instant food doesnt really make much of a showing in our place much to the kids chagrin but I have noticed they now eat when theyre hungry not because theyre bored. Eating means work, investment, time and they cant be bothered when theyre not 'STAAAAARVING' and want more than fruit!!!

Shopping at op-shops has really introduced a whole new freedom. (Shoes I do buy new and I wear them out!) Impulse shopping and i are definitely not friends and is generally facilitated by staying out of the shops. So being a tight wad and knowing my limits and loving my boundaries really helps when it comes to navigating the marketplace; makes it easy and stress free. Being 'pov' by choice is liberating, sometimes socially challenging but the bank balance loves it and it means we have money available for experiential pursuits!


Rest is not idleness said...

We were in Marion last Sunday, (picking up a layby) and I thought I would have a quick squiz at the books in Myer, then wandered over to the kitchen-ware, and found myself thinking "oh, I could get that and that" had to cut myself off and say to the mister, "let's get out of here now" You're right it's better to stay out of the shops, I used to spend a lot of time in the shops but now I much prefer to browse around an op-shop.

Katrine said...

I find this a real challenge.
I think i'm doing well so far with the food half of things, but that's because i really enjoy this style of eating/shopping so it comes relativley naturally.
It's also been relativley easy to give up shampoos, moisturisers etc in preferance for things i can make myself.
It becomes alot harder for me with clothes and homewares though. I'm still working on not having so much of my 'self' invested in my apperance and my 'stuff' so i end up feeling deprived when i don't buy myself that new thing that would so perfectly affirm my sense of 'self'.
Something to work on :)

Kel said...

Pip - lol- thats my general strategy coz i find myself doing the same thing! In shop...'thats nice..ohh need one of those'....stay away and i dont spend.

Katrine- yes food is something i find very easy too. Being almost 40we have accumulated over the years much stuff from various means so we really have no need for anything only needing to replace stuff that 'goes'. I have found taht spending big money on essentials is agreat way to go. Lasts longer and style remains so the feel good factor always stays! I do allow myself small luxuries however, like lipstick!!!