Today I walked to the local store and picked up some salad greens. It’s only about a block away and I usually drive, but the car is in the shop for the head gasket repair and I had to return some dollar movies. Then, I checked out the salad section and just as I grimaced at the $3.99 organic greens, I noticed a few that were a “manager’s special” at 99 cents. Score! Perfectly good greens but the container was a bit smushed. Since I planned on eating them that day, they went into my basket.
Is My Lifestyle Costlier Than It Needs To Be?
I’m beginning to wonder about how I live and how much I pay for things. I’ve always been frugal but lately this hasn’t really helped much to be sustainable because of the problem with cars, houses, and the like. I sometimes envy people who don’t own things like I do because they have fewer maintenance problems. Then, I can’t see myself going back to riding the bus or eating noodles either. My quality of life is important to me, but I noticed something interesting. The walk to the store was beautiful and I went with my daughter. We had a nice time chatting and she told me all about her time at school. It was like the walk made her more chatty and we had a good time going there and coming back on foot. And, I got in some exercise. So, why do I really use the car for shopping? I have three groceries stores all within walking distance of my house. It’s these small habits that we don’t notice that can really impact our lifestyle and our cost of living. Forget the lattes (which I don’t do anyways), I think I’ll walk more when I go food shopping.
When you think about it, 99 cents for organic greens isn’t that great a deal. These are basically weeds that anyone can grow. So, why don’t I have a greens garden? I eat enough of that to make it worth my while to learn to grow them. I’ve grown herbs before, in great quantities, but always stopped short of a vegetable garden. Now, I’m wondering if this isn’t the year I change that. Although, I have to admit, if I’m selling my house it’s not a good time to start a veggie garden.
I have daffodils coming up all over my lawn, despite the drought. It’s interesting that these bulbs don’t seem to have suffered as much distress as other things in my garden. I even took some into my friend at the hospital and they were basically free. I’m sure if I had bought them they would have been incredibly expensive. I have a large flower garden, but haven’t kept it up because the drought measures mean we can’t water our plants. It really makes you think how there is really so very little we need to be happy: water, good soil, sunshine, and a roof over our heads. Instead, we deal with cars and all kinds of modern debt traps.
Of course, if we want to water our plants during the drought, we can always buy a rain barrel from North Carolina State University for $150. When I saw that advertisement, I nearly choked. $150? For a rain barrel? But, apparently that’s about the average for a rain barrel and I’m not exactly sure why it’s so expensive. I would think you could make one yourself for about $30.
So, this year I am thinking of ways to re-do my garden to include some greens and change it around to save water too. Wouldn’t it be nice to step outside my door and pick my greens instead of getting them at the supermarket? Just a little bit more of getting off the grid that gets more and more expensive each day. It’s like learning to be country folk in the city.
*Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons license by jem