Our house has required a couple of serious repairs lately, one of which has required the clearing out of our basement, aka the Black Hole of Useless Crap. Because of the torn ligament in my husband's knee, I was in charge of moving everything. A few friends offered to help, but in a moment of craziness, I decided that I needed to suffer the consequences of accumulating so much junk.* I dragged every single last box (but don't get the idea that it was all organized in boxes, because it wasn't) upstairs into the garage and only called my bother-in-law when the big stuff had to be moved. So now we have become people who park their cars in the driveway because their garage is too full of junk. Behold:
Awesome. And there's even more in our poor dining room.
After doing all of this moving and being in the mindset brought on by these books, I decided that I was not going to buy anything for myself except for food for one billing cycle on my credit card, September 27 - October 27. Brilliant, eh? No Starbucks, no magazines or books (ouch), no clothes, no shoes, no lipstick, no trip to the salon for a cut and color even though I'd be due. I decided that most people in the world do without these things every day. SO COULD I. Oh, how naive I was.
During the first few days, I was feeling strong. I was resisting. Then after a week, I developed a little loophole; I shopped a bit more at Whole Foods and that satisfied me for a while. But then about 2 weeks in, I was jonesing. And just like Lindsay Lohan will soon find herself in front of a great big pile of coke, I found myself at Banana Republic, during a denim sale, in front of some perfect dark trouser jeans. The trouser jeans I had been looking for my whole life. I tried them on and of course they fit like a dream. I was totally white-knuckling it. I left in a sweat, went home and impulsively bought this lovely print from etsy**. I justified it by telling myself that it was not for me, it was for my house, who had really been going through a tough time lately. A few days later, I bought a lamp from ebay for $35 under the same "house exception." Denial was in full effect. Then I cheated again when I bought a shade for the lamp. I also had an episode of shopping bulimia when I ordered some red patent flats from Zappos, tried them on and then returned them even though they were stunning. And then there was the In Style Home that I bought when my husband had his knee surgery (because dude, I had earned it).
The end result of this challenge: I couldn't do it. I fell off the wagon 4 times. No--5. I just remembered that I bought Gold Digger on itunes. There were no expensive buying frenzies, but a slip is a slip, no matter how small. There were a few positive effects of this experiment; it had an excellent effect on my credit card statement and it led to a little bit of soul searching. The negative: I missed out on the perfect pair of jeans at a sale price. Will I stop buying anything shiny and pretty that comes my way? Will I want to? Should I want to? Who knows. All I can say is one day at a time, friends. One day at a time.
*What is this stuff? Books, lots and lots of books and then more books. Then there are my (ahem) design mistakes, lots of old toys, clothes, and holiday decor.
**I saw this on a design blog. BB8, was it you? I can't find it now. Maybe it was just a hallucination.