Friday, November 28, 2014

Passive frugality

 I think I first heard the term passive frugality from Amy Dacyczyn of The Tightwad Gazette.  The concept is an interesting one. Case in point: pictured above is the stainless steel colandar that was a bridal shower gift to me back in 1987. I have used it constantly. A month or so ago, I noticed that the metal "ring" that it sits in, was unattached/unsoddered on one side. I just kept using it. It eventually came off completely, and I recycled the ring.
 If you look carefully, tiy can see the small soddering areas. I am not running out to replace this item. It still works for me, although it no longer is able to sit up from the bottom of the sink. I gave it a good scrub with a Dollar tree brillo pad once the ring fell off (interesting accumulation of gunk underneath, kind of reminded me of baked on grease on a baking dish). and I think it's as good as new. Now, should one of the handles fall off, at that point, given the issues that I have with my hands, I may replace it. For now, we trudge on. I also have a thrift shop acquired, long handled, medium sized, plastic strainer from Tupperware that I use quite often as well, depending upon my task.
 Another passive move is to make do with what i already have. I really needed a side board for Thanksgiving. We only had the dining table and 6 chairs, the extra chair and a wooden secretaire that folds up (top drawer lifts up to reveal the desk inside with pidgeon holes and slide out desk top-made by my maternal grandfather), which I use for storing linens. A basket for bread and a basket for fresh fruit have been stored on top. While I have been keeping an eye out on the second hand market, nothing in my price range, in good conditon, has crossed my path. I keep waiting. Meanwhile, we have been discussing Christmas, where we'll put the tree (getting a free tree as DS will be working a side job at a Christmas tree farm). There was the source of my inspiration. As we would be placing the tree in the living room, I knew I had to move some furnishings around. I took the white, harvest table (was originally my Dad's, found in an old tenemant building that he had his first appartment in. I took it when I moved out of my parent's home, had it stipped and painted white. While it could use a new paint job, it's now "shabby chic" and still works for me) and having moved the aforementioned secretaire to the other side of the dining room, I placed the harvest table where the secretaire originally was.
 Here is a view of the wall where the table now is. It is providing me the flat surface, serving space I need, at no cost.

The seating area that faces the long couch was moved closer together (the harvest table was under the wall clock), and I moved the brass filigree based lamp that was on that table to the secretaire in the dining room. The dumb waiter table was moved from the corner, next to the love seat and now is the table between the recliner and Queen Anne chair.

Here's the corner where we will place the Christmas tree, and we'll move the loveseat over to the right, as needed. You can peer into the dining room and see the secretaire now to the right as you enter from the living room.

These changes will do nicely. : )


Frugal Queen said...

What a nice home with such good sized rooms.

Tracy Hathcock said...

I agree with Frugal have a lovely home!

CTMOM said...

Thank you, Froogs. While it's "mearly" a rental, it is our home for now. I am very careful with how I furnish my home, as I am a renter, and saving for my next home in the process. Whatever "investments" in furnishings that I make now, must be able to easily (hopefully) fit into my next home, whether it be another rental, or a purchase. I am using what I have, and making sure that what I do acquire is mix/match with what we already own.

CTMOM said...

Thank you, Tracy. I was left, post divorce, with 50% of the marital furnishings, and used all the tricks that I know to furnish our next home(s) on a tight budget, but keeping in mind that these would be investment pieces. Most of what we have is second hand, which I certainly do not mind. Any wants, such as area rugs, were saved up for, purchased on sale, with discounts. I am quite pleased with how well I have put things together. : )

DW said...

I have a similar colander, that I think came from my paternal grandmother. The handles finally came off, but I'm still using it! Interestingly enough, DH found a twin for it at the thrift store, so now I have 2.