Today was a good day. Monday and Tuesday I forgot to take my vitamin. I take St. John’s Wort and it really helps with my anxiety. Of course Bear had a terrible day on Thursday and it did not help that my vitamin hadn’t fully kicked in, so I just was on edge all day. I’m glad to say I’m back to my easy going self today and it feels good.
Back to my topic.
It’s a hard concept in our materialistic society. I could easily start listing the millions of things we don’t have that I certainly ogle at sometimes…
BMW X5, new technology, central air, 5 burner gas stove, tractor, etc.
The challenge in life is defining what we want versus what we need. I may want a BMW X5, but I most certainly know that I would never waste the money buying a BMW. It’s a vehicle, merely a tool to get from point A to point B and gas mileage and reliability are more important than pretty white pain, huge sunroofs and sleek leathery interior. We have a newer 4 door sedan that gets 35 miles to the gallon. It’s efficient and easy to maintain. Having a new vehicle is something we see as a need now that we have a child. I don’t want the constant fear of breaking down when I take Bear somewhere. DH has a 1 hour commute each way, it is hellacious on vehicles. His car is 9 years old and has almost 200,000 miles on it. He will drive it till it dies (and even then possibly breathe life back into it).
We do have a flat screen TV on our wall, and a Wii. Why? The TV was a gift and the Wii was a present to myself with Wii Fit about 3 years ago now. Hubs and I have spent a lot of time playing it during the cold, harsh Midwestern winters.
I have a flat surface stove. When we moved in we bought new appliances. Her refrigerator was too small for us, she had no washer and the stove was old. There was no dishwasher. I have a disability as a result of a major surgery 4.5 years ago and bending and reaching is very difficult for me. We chose to buy a side by side refrigerator for my comfort. We also bought a front loader energy-efficient washer and dryer. For my comfort we bought the pedestals for underneath (and they provide great storage!). We got a flat surface self-cleaning stove (it was on sale as a display model) and we received a hand-me-down dishwasher free. We shopped around quite a bit and ended up a store that sells leftover models from the previous year. Everything was brand new and came with a warranty but we saved a lot of money by not buying the newest ones. Also, because we bought more than 3 appliances they gave us an additional 10% off and threw in the new power cords. In this case we did pay a little more (for a side-by-side refrigerator and front loading appliances with pedestals) but we both deemed the value was in my comfort. I was going to be using them everyday and if I was uncomfortable I would me less inclined.
Our home was built in 1952. We have just over 5 acres. Space was more important to us than a new house. For the same money I’m sure we could have gotten a similar size house (1500sq ft) that is much newer, but on a much smaller lot.
Outside of groceries we don’t buy much. Baby clothes are bought a season before on clearance, as are our clothes when we need it.
Sure we all have wants, but they aren’t what bring happiness and fulfillment. In fact when I have too many wants, I get overwhelmed. Only having the needs (and a few wants-can we say KitchenAid ice cream maker?) is stream-lined. It keeps our home balanced and uncluttered.
How is your home balanced wants versus needs?