…and back on again.
I planned out my no-spend November – well, as much as there is to plan beyond, “don’t shop, dummy!” – completely forgetting that this past weekend was the annual community bazaar of which I’m particularly fond. I go every year for a combination of reasons – it’s close enough to walk, I can sometimes get a Christmas gift for my mom (she has a particular set of dishes she collects), the goods are usually pretty good, the prices are great, and I like shopping at places that help to support local organizations.
When I woke up that morning, I debated for awhile. I really didn’t want to mess up my no-spend month, but I didn’t particularly want to pass on the bazaar either. It shouldn’t have been hard to give up, but it feels like a bit of a tradition now, I really enjoy it, and it was something I had been looking forward to (even if the fact that it coincided with my shopping ban didn’t actually cross my short-sighted little mind). In the end, I decided to go. However, I also decided to extend the spending ban until December 4th to compensate – off the wagon and back on again, I guess.
I exercised some restraint and didn’t come home with the two lamps, rug, picture frames, carafe, and cookie jar that I was considering, but I still came home twenty-one dollars lighter than when I left. Two dollars went to admission, the rest was spent on a few things that I’m very pleased with – someone had donated a few mid-century modern pieces that had been on my wishlist for awhile now.
When it comes to secondhand shopping, I always start with the housewares. From a distance, I saw the enameled Cathrineholm casserole dish, so I picked up the pace a little and grabbed it. I also found an enameled canning funnel in the basket next to it. One table over, I found a pottery canister with exactly the kind of glaze that I love and, further down, I found three candle holders – an amber glass Dansk one that can double as a vase and two hand turned from what I was told was birdseye maple. Moving on, I also found a wonderful Peugeot teak pepper mill. Everything was a dollar. In the book room, I walked away with a cookbook, a novel, and Annie Dillard’s wonderful The Writing Life for two dollars for the lot. Finally, I bought two refillable Parker pens and a matching refillable pencil for ten dollars, my splurge of the day.
Did I need any of these things? No, not really. I already own baking dishes, candle holders, pens, funnels, books, and a pepper mill Any justification I make is not going to be all that strong – the best I’ve got is that I liked them, they were far less expensive than they would have been even at a local thrift store, and they’re a marked improvement on things that I already own. But maybe that’s enough. I’ve been looking our for that particular glass candle holder, an enameled baking dish, a metal canning funnel, and a better pepper grinder for months. I’ve also wanted to replace my throwaway pens with refillable ones for awhile now. And, while I can’t say I truly needed anything that I bought, I’ll use it all and, perhaps more importantly, I’ll enjoy using it, and I’ll do so for a good long time.