Friday, January 9, 2015

Making vs. Buying

So when I decided to question myself before every purchase this year, to see if it was something I could make myself or buy locally-crafted, I thought it would be pretty easy. After all, I love to make things for myself and my family. This would be the perfect excuse opportunity to do more of that, save money, and reduce my environmental impact.

Clearly, I was delusional.

I have four reasons why I can't make everything I need:

1. Child #1
2. Child #2
3. Child #3
4. My full-time job

Or, really, time. I don't have time to do everything I want to do, and I wasn't suddenly gifted with more time because I made a New Year's resolution. Once I started to evaluate the things I bought - especially food, I really love anything pre-made and microwavable - I began to realize how difficult it would be to make everything even if I have the ability to do it.

A prime example is our remote control situation. We have a bunch of remotes and they're always getting misplaced. I thought, I should get a basket to keep them in. Then I thought, No, I should make a little container! I made a plan to make a simple fabric bucket out of the leg of an old pair of blue jeans...after all, nothing reduces environmental impact like re-purposing and re-using.  So I went ahead and made it:

I got the idea on New Year's Day. It took me nine days to get around to doing it, and the only reason it happened that fast is because I had off of work yesterday and today because of the weather. Put that together with the days I was off for winter break, and six of those nine days were days off. And it STILL took over a week to do. Once I got started it only took about twenty minutes, but finding the time to do it and prioritize it over all the other stuff I have to do took some time.

I'm not expecting to be able to shift to making everything within a year. But hopefully this mental exercise will help me increase the number of things I make and see the opportunities for being more creative, even if I can't take those opportunities all the time.


  1. And that's just the way it is for mothers of young children, especially if they also work outside of the home. There isn't a meal I prepare when I'm not grateful for how much easier it is for me now than it was for my grandmothers a hundred years ago!

  2. I know how you feel, I do not have children, but finding time to do all the sewing I want is not always easy.