Thursday, October 9, 2008

Buying bulk aka hoarding

Walnuts from Websters, Forth (TAS)

I've been mad into research lately - trying to find out what kind of goodies we can get within our home state to supplement that which we produce on our farm.

I'm quickly discovering that:
  1. You have to be willing to pay a premium price for local food
  2. You have to be willing to really push for answers about what's in that food (I'm getting a lot of blank stares from sales assistants who seem confronted if I ask where ingredients in products are sourced from), and
  3. Buying in bulk is the most affordable way for us to purchase Tasmanian food for our challenge.
All this means that my bank balance is reducing rapidly this month - which I'm well aware is quite contrary to our stated aims of reducing costs and living more simply during the challenge.

So far I've purchased, or am in the process of purchasing:
  • 15 litres of Olive Oil (Olive Grove Tasmania)
  • 1 kilo Black Olives (Olive Grove Tasmania)
  • 10 kilos Walnuts (Webster Walnuts)
  • 10 kilos Hazelnuts (from Kettering)
  • 2.5 kilo wheels of King Island Cheddar Cheese
The Olive Oil, Walnuts and hazelnuts should (I hope) last the duration of the Challenge - and beyond... the cheese I hope will last a month - and while it's included in our grocery budget now, when the Challenge starts on Dec 1st, our buying it will be dependent on us having sufficient funds from our surplus to purchase it.

I'm also getting slightly obsessed about how much toilet paper we're using - my plan is to buy that in bulk also (100% recycled) - it's one of my strategies for making sure we don't have any reason to step inside a supermarket for the four months. But just how many rolls will be enough?

All this focus on buying 'stuff' makes me wonder just how ready I'll be to do this - to be honest I'm really enjoying all this shopping I'm doing - I like weighing up the options, trying to find the best deal, trying to find the best product for us.... methinks I'm going to have to read John Naish's book 'Enough - Breaking free from the world of more' again (for the third time - I'm a slow learner!).

I think there's some part of me that feels like I have to hoard away 'stuff' to ensure we don't get caught without 'enough' - learning to relax a bit and trust we can provide for ourselves is proving really difficult for me!

One of my favourite quotes from Naish's book is this:

The moment we are content, we have enough.
The problem is that we habitually think the other way round:
we assume we will be content only when we have enough.

Shen Sh'ian, editor of The Daily Enlightenment newsletter

The journey continues....

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