February 25, 2009

Want or Need?

It's Ash Wednesday today, the beginning of Lent, a period that lasts 40 days leading up to Easter. The date for Easter changes every year according to the moon phase. It is the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Vernal Equinox.
It's the tradition in my family to give up something for Lent. When we were children, we always gave up candy and my parents gave up their cocktails. Now that I am older (!), I am thinking more carefully about what to give up. Of course, sweets.
But then I was thinking about trying something that will be a lot harder. I am giving up "recreational" shopping. I don't really need anything. I have everything I want... and more. I shop sometimes because I am bored, because I want to check out what's available, or because I feel like I need a fix.
I am setting up some little rules: I have a party on the 7th that needs an outfit that I don't have readily available in my closet! The party is a Moroccan theme and guests are asked to dress in something from the middle east. My date, Mr. Big, is wearing a suit and a fez.
Soooo... there will be somethings that I will need to buy. Food, gas, coffee... Other than basics and essentials, no shopping.

Are you giving anything up for Lent?

17 comments:

  1. I think I will continue on my nonessential spending hiatus, which has proven to be more of a spiritual journey than I had imagined. Boredom was my #1 reason for purchases. What is nonessential? Anything but food, coffee and gas. My checkbook is also thanking me for the rest. I also plan on being much more intentional in the use of my time and energy. While this is harder to quantify, I know when I'm wasting it. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  2. You'll definitely have to show us the outfit you put together.

    I think you always have the option to "take on" something as well as "give up" something. This year I planned to "take on" lifting weights every day. Ugh. I think Lent can start tomorrow, right?

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  3. I have yet to follow one of my New Year's resolutions... So I'll have to start over with a new list. For lent, I vow to get away from my computer more and not make excuses for skipping the gym. And I also will try not to buy anything new like I just did on bluefly two nights ago... Recycle, retailor and repaint the old.

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  4. Wait... You're dating "Mr. Big?"

    LOL ;-)

    I think giving up rec shopping is a good idea. Not sure I could give up sweets AND rec shopping, though.

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  5. What is the menu for the party? Sounds intriguing.

    As for giving something up, I'll continue to ratchet up my frugal ways.

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  6. You're dating Big? Ha!!

    I'm glad you didn't give up cocktails. :-)

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  7. I agree. How much "stuff" does one really need? Find happiness in the people surrounding you!

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  8. I'm giving up fast food and ice cream. Hopefully, I can learn to leave without either vice and focus on being healthier.
    I used to give up candy as a kid as well. Of course I think I made up for all the lost candy just on Easter Sunday.

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  9. That's a tough one. I really want for nothing (save a really big lottery payout.) I'm always tempted to say something flip like "olives in the martini" or "sloth and indifference." I will try and curb all frivolous spending and my all-too-frequent impatience. (Difficult to really convince yourself that perfection is unattainable with any undertaking and the near-perfect must take time.)

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  10. this one's struggle for me . . . lol. Maybe because, as a designer, my very income is based directly on my client's willingness to spent their money on things which aren't essential. and I wonder who's livelyhood is based upon 'my' spending habits? Do I need a new copper tea kettle? clearly, no. Might I buy one? maybe.


    Still thinking.

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  11. Tartan... it's only for six weeks, so it should't hurt too much.

    As for the copper teakettle, i've got the most incredible 20's style one!

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  12. if lent is another term for recession, then yes, i've given all kinds of things up!

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  13. excuse me, but WHO is Mr. Big?????????????

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  14. When people say I'm giving up ..... for lent, my next question is "What are you doing with the money"? Giving something up for lent is not just about your Piety. It is meant to be a hardship. The money you would normally spend on your vice is to be given to the poor not to line your pockets. I have commented occasionally as anonymous..... but..how'bout One Snarky Bitch?

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  15. Anon@11:34... please don't presume to know what I do with my money!

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  16. Sorry about stealing your post, I try to just pipe in news articles about Pigtown but sometimes it pulls in your blog entries. My site is still a work in progress so thanks for letting me know,

    Carson

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