I admit, I lay awake some nights planning my home renovation, even though there are no plans to actually do any renovating in the near future – we’ve only just finished updating the interior of the house after 4 years of living in it! But I blame Pinterest, Houzz and any other website/app that feeds my already overflowing mind with ideas and dreams. I have been known to wake up in the wee hours of the morning with what seems like such an architectural brainwave or two, and then am so excited with my mental achievement that I can’t get back to sleep!! There are so many wonderful home improvement and renovation ideas out there, but the main problem that seems to stop us from doing any of them, or even thinking about the massive overhaul we may or may not do on this current house down the track, is money!! Why does money have to be the deciding factor on so many things?! I really need to win the lottery, but seriously I’d have to buy a ticket to be in the running, and I just don’t seem to be disciplined enough to go that far! So, for now, it looks like I’ll continue along my merry, dreamy way, conjuring up all sorts of wonderful ideas for my imaginary renovation, at all ungodly hours of the morning!
This year I have been trying to be conscious of the buying choices that I make. For items other than necessary household purchases, I have asked myself the question ‘Do I need it or do I just want it?’ before actually making a purchase. I went shopping with friends a few months ago and found a pair of ankle boots that were just what I wanted…but instead of making the purchase and adding something else to our credit card, I asked myself the question and quickly put the desired ankle boots back down. I certainly didn’t need them, they were a want, and honestly I have that many shoes my cupboard is bursting with them. There are a few reasons for doing this – financial is definitely one of them, because we want to get better at living within our means without popping things onto credit at the drop of a hat (which we have been fairly good at doing this year but there’s always room for improvement!!). We have also discussed being consumed by material possessions that are meant to make our lives simpler but in the end make us feel cluttered and over flowing instead. We just don’t have the room to have more items that we honestly don’t really need.
I have been following a blog this year called Nothing New. It’s about one woman’s quest to live more simply and be less taken by consumerism. It has been really inspiring, and whilst I am definitely nowhere near as good as her at this, I am definitely better than I was. I have referred to Sash before in this post; she has made me think about what makes me happy – is it really buying new clothes, homewares and toys for my son when we are already tripping over the ones he has?! It isn’t always easy, and there have been times where I have made justifications that turned a purchase from a want to a need, but most of the time what follows is guilt. I am someone who needs less stress in my life, not more, so guilt is an emotion I can do without…it’s this that often stops me from making purchases that are wants. No one is perfect, and after having many years at uni and trying to make it in the big smoke – socialising and buying the latest fashion trends – I have had my fair share of living off credit cards, eating baked beans and tinned spaghetti at the end of a pay cycle, and I remember how stressful that was. I have progressed a bit since then and make wiser financial choices, but since hearing about Sash’s journey with the Nothing New project, I have thought a lot more about what makes me happy and what I spend my money on. Don’t get me wrong, I still splash out and spoil myself every now and again, but when I do it’s generally on something that I have admired for a while and saved up to get, or it might simply be buying a coffee and then joining my son and friends, or just my son, at the park. It’s often the simple things in life that bring us the most joy, and they don’t always have to cost money.
Does anyone else feel that they spend time justifying purchases that perhaps you really didn’t need and then felt guilty about it afterwards?! Does anyone else ask themselves the question of ‘is this a need or a want?’ before making a purchase? I’d be interested to hear your stories, and especially hear from those who also do this and how you have made it work for you.
We have had two weeks of a cold going around our house, and it seems to have taken over our lives. It’s the first cold that our little dude has caught, and it was just awful seeing him struggle through it. He slurped, gurgled, coughed and spluttered his way through his feeds and his nose has been like a dripping tap that can’t be turned off. To make matters worse, he won’t let his mother wipe his nose! Happy for everyone else to, but for some reason I’m not allowed to get near that dripping tap.
The common cold has always been a nightmare, and being a teacher seems to be a pre-requisite for getting one at least twice a year (more if you’re super lucky), so I was pretty familiar with the side effects. It was hard enough having one pre-child, but when you have a child and a cold, it is damn hard work! I achieved nothing last week because when I put my son to bed I went off to mine too. Thankfully child #1 was having a great week for sleeps, so I managed to “catch up” a bit and the common cold didn’t turn into anything worse or particularly unmanageable. I was popping the Vit C like there was no tomorrow, and I am grateful for a flourishing lemon tree and some yummy honey that helped take the edge off. The fire was roaring and 25 degrees inside was never quite warm enough!
We’re all over the dreaded cold now, but I am certainly determined to ensure none of us, especially our little man, get the cold again this year.
What are your tips for getting through winter and all the ailments – either with children or without?!