January 06, 2007

Rules of Engagement

Ok - I'm borrowing from my friends post about her Compact. We're hoping to support each other, so I'm going to use her format to help me outline my rules.

My goals in doing my Compact will be to:

  • Eliminate unnecessary purchases with the goals of saving money, reducing clutter, and being satisfied with what I already have. (Thanks RW for the perfect wording)
  • Reduce (or eliminate) the amount of new goods I consume, thus reducing the amount of negative impact on the world in terms of the environment as well as not contributing to companies that use sweatshop labor to make millions (or billions). (Thanks again RW!)
  • Learn patience by waiting to see if I truly need an item by taking the time to look for a used item first.
  • To enrich my life with something other than buying things. I tend to shop out of emotional strife, boredom or frustration, so I hope to learn to deal with these things in a healthier fashion.
  • Begin to utilize "homemade" cleaning products, and substitute all cleaning/household products with earth-friendly products.

My guidelines for my Compact will be:

  • Don't buy stuff - Borrow, barter, trade, beg, etc. for things :o)
  • If there is something that needs to be purchased, I will first buy a used, local, sustainable, "green," or fair-trade item.
  • Eating out will be limited, and not a regular occurrence (which ought to help with the weight loss goals too!).


  • Food and health-related items.
  • Books and other necessary items for the DH's school
  • Items for a friends wedding that I'm going to be in (will minimize the damage as much as possible!)
  • Pictures - I'm going to *finally* put together our wedding album, and our Tahoe scrapbook and will need to order prints for those.
  • Items that are necessary for the house. **Now, I realize that this could be a VERY slippery slope to be on, but the point of this exception is that in the midst of this Compact we may find ourselves in a position to try and sell our house (again), which means repairs, etc. will need to be made. I will attempt to do this within the "confines" of the Compact, but there will most likely be purchases that need to be made. Additionally, organization, etc. has been a great point of stress for myself and my DH, so if something needs to be purchased to allow us to get more organized, the guidelines above will be followed, but if something has to be purchased it will be.

The guidelines and goals section of this are flexible - if there are more constraints or more reasons to do this, I will add them as appropriate. I do not want to add to any of the exceptions though. There is not a thing in this world that I am truly in want or in need of, and there is no reason to keep spending, spending, spending just for the fun of it.

I have been contemplating this for quite some time and feel fully capable of doing this. My every hope is that within this year, I will learn more about myself, more about this world, and more about the impact I have on it. I truly want to do this, not as a statement, but as a study. I want to use the "extra time" to do the things I've been saying I'm going to do and don't, to be with the people I need to spend time with, and to alter my ecological foot print.

I'm 6 days in, and so far so good.

January 04, 2007

The Compact

I'll be posting more about my Compact "rules" later - but this was on yahoo today!


January 02, 2007

January 2nd

Well it's January 2nd. And while my goal had been to get my "resolutions" in writing this weekend, trying to fix my parents computer got in the way. So the 2nd of January will have to do. Of course the generic ideals of my resolutions have been in place for a while. Things like loose weight, save money, etc. etc. But I want to put the nitty gritty down so I can involve myself in them more fully.

1 - Eat More Vegetables - This is more than just the commitment to eating my 5-9 recommended servings a day. This is about substituting vegetables for meat in my meals. I'm not going to commit to becoming a vegetarian. I am, however, going to modify my eating and cooking habits to allow for a greater variety of vegetation in our diets, and to (hopefully) limit the amount of meats we eat to 1-2 meals per week. Along with this goes my intense passion for purchasing organic, locally grown, in season produce, and watching (carefully) all other products we purchse.

2 - Compact- I've been thinking about it and talking about it, and I'm going to have a stab at it. I am committing to not purchasing anything new, within reason, for a year. Things like socks and underwear don't count - but the binge bra-buying sprees are over! :o) I am going to do everything within my power to borrow, barter or buy used whenever we need something. So those of you who are close enough to me to get birthday presents, etc. – get ready for gift cards, or homemade things! There truly is not one single thing I can think of that I need. So for a year, I’m going to live with what I have, be thankful for it’s abundance, oh, and get rid of everything that is just laying around collecting dust!

3 – Loose Weight (finally!) - The plan is in place, the motivation is lined up, and now all that’s left to do is apply all the things that I’ve known for so long and actually get this body in shape! I realized the other day that I’m past the weight I swore I’d never get to, a good friend is getting married in Oct. and wants us to wear strapless dresses (maybe), and I want to have a healthy and happy pregnancy some day - all of these motivators are the driving force. Drinking more water, exercising and eating appropriately are wrapped up in this one. So long apathy!

4 – Off With Debts Head - We have one credit card left right now with a balance. I commit to having that card paid off by July of this year. It’s going to be a stretch to get that done, and it’s a lot of money a month to do it, but between not eating out as much and not buying anything unnecessary (see #2), it should be doable. Or at least we’ll be able to get very close to paying it off. The next step will be doubling up payments for one of the cars and starting to pay back the DH’s parents.

5 - 26 out of 24 hours – I have stepped down the amount of time that I’m going to be working my part time job. With my “extra” time – I want to reconnect with my DH, work on reading my Bible daily (as well as reading the whole thing this year), finish reading the Lindsey Davis Falco series (I’ve only been working on this since high school), and clean something in our house daily (a room, a load of laundry, you get the idea…).

Ok – so this isn’t quite as in depth as I’d hoped, but it’s the best I can do on my lunch hour at work! :o)