Monday, April 5, 2010

At Odds With Myself

Sometimes - we are our own worst enemies.

I'll site my life as an example...

I want to be a responsible environmental consumer. This means lots of recycling. It also means lots of piles of recycling goods that are either waiting to be washed, waiting to dry, waiting to be taken to recycle boxes, or waiting to be sorted. In short - loving the earth = cluttering my kitchen / garage. Paper to take to work (fundraiser / recycling project). Paper to shred. Paper that doesn't count as "paper" at work - but can be taken curbside - I don't even begin to understand this one.

This same problem applies when I have the desire to "just throw it away". It seems wasteful. Just because I'm not loving it / using it - does that automatically mean that it should go to a landfill? And I like to donate - but again, it's not something I drop off often - so it kind of piles up before I make the trip... which does not help with organization.

So as much as I would NOT like to ---when I watch Hoarders - Buried Alive (great show btw) I understand what they mean by "don't just throw it away". Now, sometimes they are pretty close to crazy...but other times, I'm like - can't you just HELP these people find a place where they CAN send their piles of crap that will be USEFUL?

And then there is budgeting. I'm embarrassed to say, that until recently - I didn't pay attention to what I spent on food. *gasp* I know, I know - I need a support group. I just went to the store and bought things - not even things that resembled a "plan"...just food that at some point I thought we would like to eat.

I have learned that this leads to peanut butter with no jelly. Kool-aid with no sugar. Missing ingredients for the most basic's a source of frustration.

Watching the weekly ads seemed like a lot of hassle. I generally went to one place and did all my shopping - regardless of the digits that would total up. I don't like going multiple places. I don't like totally not knowing where things are in the store. And let's face it - when I'm only going to 1 place, I still can't keep it straight due to their strategic plan of endless rotation to disorient the customers.

But I've started to be inspired by fellow bloggers and our family is practicing what I will refer to as Project Bracing For Impact (preparing for the worst case financial scenario). And I'm starting to keep track of the spending. And I'm trying the "shop the ad's" method of cooking. Oh yeah, I'm also trying to have a "plan" for the meals when I shop - novel idea, I know. Slow but steady, folks.

And you know what I've noticed? 80% of the ads are for food-like-products. Not real food. Not good food. Not food you should be eating more of. But crap-in-a-box. For anyone reading along with Does This Blog Make Me Look Fat? and for The Box Challenge....this is not going to fly. Does eating on a budget and eating healthy have to be working against each other? I mean, when was the last time you saw a sale on oatmeal or wheat germ or whole wheat flour?

It's a process - but why does it seem that when you try to make an improvement in one area - you end up fighting another one? I'm not giving up - I'm just looking for the peaceful answers.


Janet said...

I hear ya! And yes, I feel the same. I'm proud that I recycle as much as I do, and take my own bags to Wal-mart as much as I do. Then I feel horrible guilt when I'm away from home and throw away a can or bottle, or when I forget my bags.

Karen said...

I can definitely relate! I have so much stuff in my room, it seriously looks like an episode of hoarders. It's temporary while I'm going through a cleaning out process, but still. I just think it would be easier to load everything up in the car and drive it to the dump. But there really is some good stuff in there. Just because I don't need/want it doesn't mean someone else can't use it.

Michelle said...

Oh don't get me started on the sale flyers. I read the front page, inside back page and back page only (variety, meat and fruit/veggies - in that order). I'm always appalled at all the processed foods that are advertised, although this is a big reason I don't do much couponing! Fortunately meat, veggies and fruit go on sale frequently, although I do go to a few different places to pick up all my stuff. Carrots for $0.49 last week? Strawberries for $0.98/lb? I'm on it!