Small Town Simple

The Simplicity Adventures of a Mother and Daughter

Supporting the Sustainable Lifestyle

Small Town Simple

It seems to be catching on, this idea of supporting and living a sustainable lifestyle.  The idea of living in less space or growing our own vegetables and supporting our local farmer’s markets, making our own cleaning products or buying second hand, it’s out there.  And Lauren and I can do every bit of that in our small town.  But here’s the catch. This town did not escape the clutch of the big box store.  And there are two.

I can’t begin to count how many times the big box store is the answer to my question of, “where can I find…?”  And yes, there are times when they come in handy.  School supplies comes to mind.  And they offer some side stores – eyewear, pharmacy, coffee, etc.   But beyond some basics there isn’t really a reason to use the big box store.

Lauren and I have been talking and planning about an even greater effort to achieve a sustainable lifestyle.  In our efforts to purchase less, we also want to make very careful choices about purchases we do make.  What are these items made of?  How much packaging does it contain?  Has the craft been made with a fair wage?  And is it something we will live with for a long time?

I was perusing websites the other day for a blanket or quilt that I can use as a bedspread for my spare bed.  I passed my former bed skirt/pillow sham/coverlet set (that I had used for several years) to a co-worker that had a true use for it.  In the meantime, I’ve been living with what remains on the bed, absolutely not rushing the purchase.  So when I found a blanket I liked, I asked Lauren to take a look and give me her opinion.  Not only did she like it, she said she would take it one day when I’m, well…no more!  We laughed, saying that would be our plan.  I would buy only what she wants to inherit so the item has a good, long life.

But we’ve decided that everything that comes through our doors has to have a real purpose, it is something we will really use and we purchase based on a true need, not a quick “I want that!”

This sustainable life – this simple life – it takes practice.  But oh, what a satisfying practice.

“Learn to do common things uncommonly well; we must always keep in mind that anything that helps full the dinner pail is valuable.”  George Washington Carver

xo, Carolyn

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