It's taken me a little while to get around to penning this update, as usual life is incredibly full.
Each night I stay up far later than I should working in my make shift studio trying to materialise some of my ideas with clay. Ceramics is wonderful & meditative ( and a lot better for my soul than my computer).
One aspect of living with this budget that I find incredible difficult is not buying materials.
I have the beginnings of a humble business idea snowballing, but it's difficult to budget expensive materials into our incredibly tight weekly allowance.
Although this is frustrating, it's also great for my all or nothing attitude. I have a tendency to get obsessed with a hobby and splash out on all of the materials, do it once or twice and then lose interest.
Slowing down and only buying tools or resources when I absolutely need them makes me push the boundaries of each step a little further, developing my ideas into something much more whole.
In general, not buying isn't exactly a straight line. I am constantly at odds with it. Some days I want to throw it in and go and buy a new pair of shoes to replace my sad, dirty Vans, followed by a well earned massage. Other days I feel so liberated & literally joyous at not having to partake in consumerism. No longer do I kill time wandering into shops, picking up something small & insignificant that will blend into my home or wardrobe and quickly become forgotten, after giving me a moment of fleeting pleasure.
Now, instead of buying new sneakers, I actually wash my old ones.
Instead of buying expensive organic moisturiser, I make my own with natural ingredients that cost me almost nothing.
One experience this past month, that stood out to me the most, was an act of extreme generosity.
Earlier in the year, I basically begged my friends and family for any unwanted baby handmedowns for Willow. It was humbling.
We got the most incredible response from people I had never even met.
Bags of clothes were delivered to us, & my good friend Samara even started picking up books & clothes at her local op shop in Melbourne and bought them home for us on a recent trip.
It's these incredible acts of selfless generosity that make me feel so full to my brim.
But it was last week, when we visited our beautiful friend Lucy and her even more beautiful baby, Clementine that I seriously lost it.
Lucy works with her mother on their amazing childrens clothing label YmamaY. She mentioned she had a few things for us but I definitely wasn't expecting her to give us a pile of beautiful brand new clothes, and then bring out FIVE BOXES of almost new girls clothes & shoes, and a basket of toys & bottles. I honestly felt greedy accepting so many beautiful things.
That evening we were having dinner with friends, when I realised it wasn't until we decided to stop contributing to the consuming cycle, that we have been given things that are SO much nicer than we ever would have been able to afford to buy.
Not only that, but for the past two weeks I had been silently wishing I could buy a plastic washing basket to carry my washing from the washing machine to the line. What a petty little thing, I told myself. My hands were doing the job, a little awkwardly, but I would survive without one.
When Lucy gave us all of the clothes, she told us to keep the plastic basket that was holding them.
Seriously. What a minuscule thing, but it was then that I realised that what you put out does came back to you, even the trivial things.
How blessed we are to have such an incredible network of thoughtful, kind people in our lives.
I'm sorry for writing such a long, rambly, & most of all sentimental post, but I sometimes feel taken aback by how lucky we truly are.
Thank-you to everyone that follows along here and gives such heartening feedback.