I was reading a magazine article about saving money. As expected, it was filled with the usual line-up of suggestions: don't pay fees on your credit card and checking accounts, use coupons at the grocery store, eat at home more. However, one tip did jump off the page as a fresh take on too much consumption.
Ready for it?
Shop your home. The article went on to say that most of us have made purchases of clothes, movies, and other sundry items that we have never worn or used at all. This started me thinking. I definitely have books I haven't read, games I have never played, and movies that I haven't watched. I thought about how much I already have that I could be enjoying if I would just get it out and utilize it.
I also have a ton of books and movies that are ready for a rerun. I think there's two kinds of people, those who do reruns and those who don't. For those of you who don't, the library and Redbox are probably your best money saving friend. However, for me, if I love it, I can never get enough of it. Just ask Stephen, who retreated into his sound blocking headphones while I watched Sahara last night for the fourth time (What can I say? I love a good, cheesy, action comedy!). And I've read Anne of Green Gables so many times that I literally wore the books out and am now preparing to replace them.
Shopping my home works for my kids too. Case in point, today I took out a Fisher-Price barn that had been in storage for a couple of months. Nathan acted like he had been reunited with a long lost friend. "My barn!" And Daniel gabbled and cooed the whole time he opened and closed the little doors, picked up the little animals, and slid the rooster back and forth.
So anyways, although I don't know that I'll give up shopping entirely, I am going to try to make sure I am maximizing my use of the things I already own, because if I'm not using and enjoying them, then they're just another thing that needs to be cleaned. (And we all know that's not going to happen!)