On spending money, on stuff you don’t need

It is a truth universally acknowledged that the Internet is the greatest timesink going. It amazes me how important things can seem online late at night, and how trivial the following morning. And how I get sucked into staying up far too late, when I know I’ll regret it the next day.

Here’s what happened. I get a weekly delivery of healthy snacks from Graze. And very nice they are. They come in recycled cardboard boxes with lovely pictures on them. On their Twitter feed, people talk about how they use said cardboard boxes. I noticed one enterprising person made hers into postcards.

Now as it happens, I’ve recently signed up to Postcrossing, a lovely exchange site for postcards worldwide. I actually did this because I buy loads of the things and then rarely look at them or know what to do with them. So to start making my own postcards would completely undermine the original plan of using up the ones I’ve already got.

But anyway, I looked at this pretty picture and noticed something:


What really caught my eye was the pretty vintage hand-stamped reverse side. Ooh, I thought, I want to do that. I want to be artistic and quirky and recycling cool stuff.

So I would need at least one stamp that said Post Card. This turned out to be something of a rarity. I browsed Etsy and found exactly the set I wanted, and somehow managed to justify spending nearly $30.00 on this so-called economy, plus extra for the special sepia-tinted inkpad, only to find the retailer wouldn’t ship to the UK.

This should have put me off but in fact it had the opposite effect. It turned the whole thing into some kind of compulsive quest and I totally lost track of (a) the time and (b) the logic of this course of action as I browsed forums and craft sites trying to come up with the perfect stamping combo. I learned a lot about mounts, embossing, distressed ink pads, and almost talked myself into spending half a day mooching around local craft stores rather than pay £3.95 to have one little ink pad shipped out to me. It scares me to think how much clutter I could bring into this already overcrowded home on the pretext of being clever and re-using stuff.

Thankfully, sanity prevailed and I decided to sleep on the whole thing (better late than never). And in the cold light of day, I remembered that a lot of the people I send cards to on Postcrossing don’t particularly want pictures of food, they want pictures of my country and my culture, and failing that cats doing funny things. None of which Graze provide. Also, their lovely recycled boxes might well not survive lengthy trips by airmail.

A madness caught me. But it has passed. I shall go into the west, and remain Galadriel, settling for pre-printed postcards. And I might even have a bit of money left at the end of the month.


One thought on “On spending money, on stuff you don’t need

  1. I can completely relate to this: I ordered a garment steamer because I remembered my sister saying how very useful hers was, how she almost never ironed anymore. Now she says she couldn’t have said that, that she almost never uses hers, and that she would have been glad to give hers to me. And I’m wondering now why I never questioned the idea that a garment steamer – something I have done without for years – could be so very essential. I guess I assumed she wore a lot of cotton and linen.

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