Ripped Jeans

Hello again.

So I have this pair of pants.  They are maybe 4 or 5 years old.  I don’t know how long people typically keep any one pair of jeans – I’ve never been the same size long enough to have them wear out.  But this pair I have that are 4 or 5 years old, they’re pretty worn.  And they’re my favorite pair.  They fit me like a…pair of pants that fits really well?  I just can’t bring myself to part with them, especially since they have been with me through two weight gains and losses.  But you can see here that there is a problem:

Yeesh...

Yes, those are massive holes.  Yes, they have been patched in other places numerous other times.  Yes, they are right in the crotch.  You can tell these pants have seen better days.

BUT

As per this no clothes-purchasing challenge, and my desire to save them, I have decided to keep them and see if I can patch them better than just closing up the hole.  I have seen it done, and don’t think it’ll be hard.  I’m just a big ole’ procrastinator.

I’ll let you guys know when I get off my butt and fix these.  I’m actually excited to do so – these pants and I have been through a lot and could use a little TLC.

I should probably stop wearing them in the meantime…

Poor pants...

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Whew!

Ok ok I know…I am a terrible blogger!  I really don’t have any excuses for not updating in such a long while.  My meager attempt at an excuse might be that I have been out of town this last week very, very busy.  But I realize that’s not even half of an excuse…

Anyway, I have been really stressed about my spendings lately.  I went to Wisconsin last weekend to visit the boy’s family.  It was a bundle of fun, but also quite a blow to my wallet.  I ended up renting the car for 4 days since *someone* has terrible saving sense and spent all of his money on bills the month prior (cough, cough).  But that’s ok.  I feel good about contributing to some of the expenses for the both of us.  It’s just that I wasn’t expecting to spend so much when my total budget for this month was less than $200 and I had already spent a bunch on more gifts for friends and stupid retail therapy…

Yes, that’s right.  I caved.  I had a stressful day yesterday and ended up taking a drive that ended me up at Michael’s.  I have been needing some art supplies to get started on my painting for a while, so I guess it wasn’t entirely frivolous.  But I should have gone into it much more savvy-like.  As a mere human with infinite rationalizing and excuse-making abilities, I keep saying this was an investment for my future art business.  And it is.  But I still feel icky about spending so spur of the moment.  It’s not about my getting a new pretty easel 50% off when I needed one desperately anyway.  It’s not about my justifying it by saying now I can paint.  I could have painted without an easel and artist’s board.  So I am stuck between excuses and necessity.  *sigh*

I do hate spending without thinking.  The worst thing is that I was fully aware that I was stress-shopping when I was doing it; my boyfriend even vocalized my thoughts when he saw me digging through the clearance bin.  It’s true.  But now I have what I need to really paint without making any more excuses.  I need to get started.

That’s what this is really about.  Now I really don’t have an excuse not to do the things I have been meaning to do for so long.  That scares me.  The potential for failure and disappointment is ever closer.  I’m sure many people can relate.  It’s why most people never achieve the things they were destined for. I have to stop pretending that more things are what’s going to make me happy and let me achieve.

Amazing how this blog has turned into so much more than just clothing purchases.  I kinda had a feeling it would, but it’s interesting to actually see it manifest this way.

Thanks for listening to my rant. Here’s a little eye candy from my trip:

moo!

From my boyfriend’s dairy farm!

yay beach!

 

 

Day four

I’m four days into my official commitment to forgo clothes/necessity shopping for six months.  That’s quite a bit of time to have to think about what I’ve gotten myself into.  It’s also plenty of time to think about what the “rules” – so to speak – are. 

I bought a book yesterday.  It was not a text book, nor one I need for work.  It was a gift for my dad for Father’s Day.  I did not plan on buying it, but knew right away it would mean a lot to my dad when he opened it.  So there’s the dilemma.  I didn’t even think about it at the time, but now that I recall the purchase in the context of my commitment, I am second guessing its validity.  Is it really a necessity, as I stated in my first entry?  It’s not for me, though, so does that make it ok? 

I’m still trying to figure out how I feel about this.  It would be just as meaningful to make my dad something rather than buy him a stack of paper glued together with a bit of ink on it.  But it was not my initial intent to cut out gifts and extraneous purchases from my budget.  It is worth some evaluation.  I think I will send the book, but think twice before purchasing a gift for someone in the future.  It will be tough, since I pride myself on my ability to pick gifts I think people will really dig, but I normally buy the gift.  Maybe I will make an amendment to this whole thing – no extraneous purchases if I can make them myself. 

Ugh, this is hard. 

Recently, I fou…

Recently, I found a blog written by a girl who has given up buying clothes (and books) for six months.  At first, I thought she was crazy.  But upon reading her story – how she did it to save money and pay off her debt, how she ended up actually getting rid of more clothes she found she didn’t need, and got over her compulsion to purchase cheap items just because they were cheap and on sale – it ended up seeming like a really good idea. 

I am plagued by many of the same things that Lyz mentions as her reasons to forgo shopping for new clothes.  Most of the time, I don’t plan on dropping $85 or more at Old Navy in one week, or $30 on a pair of second-hand shoes at Buffalo Exchange (they were super cute).  It happens when I have nothing better to do, am bored, depressed, or anxious.  My excuse has been that at least it’s better than heroin…but an addiction is an addiction.  Being the perfectionist that I am, I don’t like having vices.  I believe by not relying on retail therapy to assuage my anxieties, I might even be better able to face my issues without hiding from them among the racks at Goodwill or TJMaxx. 

Among other things, it should most importantly afford me the ability to pay my bills without worrying about saving and next month’s rent.  Just in the last year, I have come to enjoy a standard of living that has me spending money on luxuries I know a lot of people would never dream of letting themselves purchase.  Dining out, toys and treats for my dog, gifts for friends and family.  I like spending money.  I like spending it on others, and making people happy with gifts, even if it’s a silk flower from the dollar store or a pack of gum.  But I know there are other ways of showing people I am thinking of them. It’s time to start.

So here it is.  My public commitment to forgo shopping for clothes and other luxury items (that is, things I don’t immediately need out of physical necessity) for six months, starting today, June 5, 2012.  Come December 6th, I hope to have a new perspective on commercialism and what it really means to need something as opposed to wanting it.  This might even be the first step to my ultimate desire for minimalism. 

Here goes nothing! 🙂