Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Frugal Luxuries: Use What You Have, aka In-House Shopping

my pans aren't pretty, but they work
It’s a simple concept: Use what you have before buying something new – or even <gasp> don’t buy it even if you think you do need it. I love the Non-Consumer Advocate’s catch phrase, “Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without!” I don’t know about you, but I need to take that phrase to heart more often. Go check out her website for inspiration, you’ll be glad that you did.

So I’m walking around the house and looking at my stuff. Now that I’m making a point to look at what I have in the interest of finding out if I can use it for its intended purpose or in a new way, I’m finding all sorts of things that I either overlook or have outright forgotten about. It’s like I live in a department store…

I have some nice clothes. I could totally wear those shirts more often, and that one with the stain on the front could be fixed up with some fabric paint and a cute stencil. Hubby’s worn/faded shirts could be fixed up too… And for all of those socks that have cute patterns but aren’t frequently wearable because of said cute patterns not really being work appropriate, I have some black fabric dye hanging around.

I took my nail polishes out of the closet and lined them up on a shelf in the bathroom – they add an element of pretty and remind me to pamper myself with a mani/pedi. Since I did that I’ve had painted nails almost constantly, and I get a little ego boost every time I glance at my fingers.

I found rolls in the freezer that had been there too long so I made bread pudding as a Sunday brunch treat. That saved food that might have been wasted, fed my family for cents, and cleared a spot in the freezer where I can put some of my batch cooking efforts.

Going through the freezer further inspired me to see just how long I can go with cooking from what I have in the kitchen (excepting perishables). I’ve already gone two weeks, and another week will be easy as pie (mmm, pie). Maybe a full month? Longer? Regardless, my goal is to eat down the food stores.

What else can I find while shopping in my own home? We shall see. How about you?

1 comment:

WolfSong said...

If I am not careful, I fall into the trap of going to the corner store to buy something to cook for dinner, instead of cooking from the stores in the pantry. It happens so easily, and so quickly, that I just don't realize it, until I can't remember a day when I didn't go to the corner store, and I have no change int he change dish.

Then, I have to reacquaint myself with all the food I do have in the house, and cook 100% from scratch again.

Our society moves at a lightening pace, and it's hard to not get caught up in it. Every now and then, I have to force myself to slow down, and look around me, and realize I have all the things I need to make good, healthy comfort food. I don't need to go spend more $ to do it, I just need to take a little time.

We all need reminders, sometimes, to slow down and use what we have...this post was a good reminder for me. Thanks for that!