Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Final Compacting Update

My two months of compacting are officially over. I think I did OK generally although I am sure that sticking with it strictly for longer than two months would be much tougher.

I did well in Taiwan and apart from gifts for others managed not to buy anything new. We ate at fast food places a couple of times in airports, but eating locally is easy in Taiwan where there are still many family owned eateries everywhere one goes. There are a few of the usual chain food outlets in Taipei, but it is easy to avoid them completely and eat the local cuisine which is great in many ways.

Compacting has really made me think about a lot of issues and how I view consumption generally which has been good for me. I have saved a lot of money simply by not browsing through stores. I was spending way more than I thought before. I am now truly back to basics for the things that we buy, and it makes me feel good I have to confess.

I definitely feel like I should continue with my pledge, and I will certainly continue my compacting mindset and buy second hand as often as I can. I will not however be quite as strict as I have been. It really is a lifestyle choice though. We need new slip covers for our sofas for example, and I have been unable to find anything remotely suitable second hand. It seems far better of course to buy new slip covers rather than new sofas because the sofas themselves are perfectly good. I think though that the time has come to buy some new slip covers, or at least to look. I have strange guilt feelings now when I look at new stuff.

All in all this has been a great exercise. I like being frugal, it makes me feel that I am doing something for my family, and for the world. I will still do updates on how we are spending our money because this blog is all about us trying to live more simply and frugally anyway.

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