Wednesday, 21 November 2012

My Journey To Never New

I get the feeling that some people are still wondering 'WHY?' I do what I do. I guess I have done a number of posts on 'WHAT' it is that that I do- but perhaps it is time to go through my journey a little bit.
I have said before, and it is definitely the truth, that this was NOT a decision that was made overnight. It was a choice that I made gradually over a number of years- the more I read up on it and the more I looked into where our stuff comes from.
I would have to say that the seed was planted the day that my then-husband told me that we should not shop at Walmart anymore. I was SHOCKED! What!! How could I possibly NOT shop at Walmart anymore??? I bought all of our toiletries, housewares, electronics, cleaning supplies, a lot of our clothing...etc., etc. there. How could I cut that out? (AND that was even before they had groceries there!!).
It seemed to be something that was important to him and so I said that I would go along with it. But- I must confess- I still did run in there once in a while and stock up on low-priced 'this-or-that'. I think that was because it was HIS choice and not mine. I really didn't see the value in it.
Then, I went to a screening of Garbage- a documentary by Andrew Niskar. He had a family of 4 collect all of their garbage, compost, recycling inside of their garage for (I think) about 3 months. The kids had to bring home any garbage they had from school, friend's houses and birthday parties. The parents had to bring home their garbage from work and when they were 'out'. The results were astounding. It's amazing how much it adds up for just an 'everyday family'. I started to think about where all the waste that I was making went to....
After that, I saw the documentary What Would Jesus Buy. This movie was about the 'over-consumption' at Christmas, and the need to support local vendors. Again, my eyes were opened.
I began to hunger to learn more, and the more I learned the sadder I became. I no longer wanted to buy the least expensive items that I could find- because I knew that someone who made that item was living in poverty because of it. So, I told myself that I could not buy anything from China (ya right) or Bangladesh (most manufacturing of clothing is moving there because they only have to pay there workers $1 American for a days [11 hours!!!] work).  You can read about this in Confessions of an Eco-Sinner. Well, that was nearly impossible.
So, for me, though the journey was far longer than this one page- and had many more twists and turns- ended at I would stop buying new. At least then, I was recycling, and saving something from a landfill.
I understand that most people will not understand or agree with the choices that I make in my life. And, that's ok. :)  Again, I just hope to maybe get some wheels turning and to plant some seeds of 'Consumption-doubt'.
Well friends, this will be my last post for a week- off to vacay with my sister. More and more posts to come upon my return. :)
Here is a little Smile (??) that seemed appropriate for today's post:


  1. AMEN!!!!
    Seriously... I first started thinking about how much I buy/throw and it's impact on the environment and other people when I watched the story of stuff (
    Now even seeing how we produce our food and at what costs we have our buy buy buy culture... and it is so hard to fight!
    I love your blog Melissa! One person at a time, and encouragement for other, we can shift the focus!

  2. Thanks for this. Marjory and I volunteer at the local Bibles for Missions thrift store which takes items that people discard and turns it into cash for the Bible League of Canada. This year our store will send a half million dollars to the Bible League of Canada to support literacy programs, children ministries, church planting with the help of the partners world wide. What we discard helps people in Africa, China, India and more. From one store in a small city we can send $500000 to support world wide ministries. When you shop at a Bibles for Missions thrift store you are not only keeping things from the local land fills but you are supporting world wide ministries. Can Wal-mart say that?
    This past April Curtis and I traveled to Uganda and now my Adult Bible class can help support street boys who now have a bed, meals, clothes, schooling, Bible education and all because we pass up one cup of coffee per week. We can all make a difference but we must take an effort. God bless. Joe Hall