The Buy Nothing Project

Original photo Design by Zouny

A few months ago I learned about the Buy Nothing Project (BNP).

The Buy Nothing Project is all about connecting neighbors and building community through giving and receiving. 

Members post things that they have to give, share or lend and ask for things that they need. No buying, selling, bartering, trading or asking for cash are allowed.

After I first joined the group for our neighborhood on Facebook, I didn’t pay much attention to the group. Posts would show up in my newsfeed, but I just scrolled past them. 

Then, it happened.

managingtheeveryday A mom with a 4-day old baby needed a wipe warmer. Did anyone have one?

Wait, I thought. We have one! Perfectly good condition and sitting unused on a shelf in Javi’s closet. 

The next day, Javi and I dropped it off at her house while we were out running errands. (Most people pick things up, but if you just had a baby I’m definitely going to deliver it to you!)

It felt great! Helping someone, making a friendly connection and getting rid of something I didn’t need?

This is so my thing.

ManagingtheEveryday From then on, I’ve been hooked.

We’ve given away things to so many different people that I’ve lost count.  We’ve also asked for and received things too: Streamers for Javi’s upcoming birthday party and an awesome wooden xylophone we gave him for Christmas. 

To A Loving Home

ManagingtheEveryday BNP has also been a great Goodwill-alternative.

I believe in only donating quality stuff (no junk! this is not the dump!) to Goodwill and other charity shops, but sometimes there are special-to-me items that I want to go to a loving home.

For example, this vintage mail sorter I received when my Great-Grandma died.

I loved it, but wasn’t using it (other than to collect coupons that I never used.) I posted it to the group and ended up having to do a drawing to decide who to give it to.

I know it is being treated with respect and appreciation, not piled up with other random items on a Goodwill shelf, hoping someone will find it. 

Find A Group!

Ready to find and join a group? Go here for the list! 

No group in your area? Click here for the info on how to start one in your community!

Hello 2015!

Welcome 2015 and a fresh start!

We just got back from a fun holiday vacation visiting Juan’s family in Acapulco, Mexico. I miss the sunshine and warmth already, but I’m also super excited to finally start 2015. Let’s do this!

This year we intend to challenge our habits, simplify our everyday lives and focus on consuming less. (You know, just a few easy goals…nothing big. Ha.)

What this will look like for us:

Whole 30

ManagingtheEverydayJavi1The only member of our family allowed to eat cake for the next 30 days. 

To start off, Juan and I are going to do a Whole 30 (!) starting today, January 8th.

This means 30 days of eating whole foods and cutting out all sugar, processed foods, alcohol, grains, seed oils, soy, legumes and dairy. 

We’ve both been feeling tired and sluggish and are hopeful that changing the way we fuel our bodies will give us more energy and help us identify any foods that don’t agree with us.

I’ve been getting ready by reading It Starts With Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways by Dallas & Melissa Hartwig and collecting recipe ideas here on Pinterest. 

I’m excited to do it and also scared because I know giving up our normal isn’t going to be easy. 

KonMari-ing Our Home

ManagingtheEverydayJavi2Not to worry…Dinosaurio is safe. 

If you’ve been reading this blog for any amount of time, you’ve probably noticed that decluttering and living well with less are some of my favorite topics.

So it’s little wonder that I absolutely LOVED The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing by Marie Kondo. She is one of “my people”.

I’ve already started tidying up our home using the KonMari method and am loving the results so far. I’m excited to share more in future posts.

Buy Nothing New Year

ManagingtheEverydayJavi’s “Buy Nothing” xylophone. 

We are also embarking on a Buy Nothing New year. Yes. I said YEAR. This means:

NO to Buying New Stuff.
YES to Borrowing, Trading, or Buying Used.

Unlike our No Spend Month, where we limited how much we spent, the focus will be HOW we acquire things. There will be some exceptions (because I know you are wondering about underwear, right?).

Buy Nothing New doesn’t apply to:

  • food & beverages
  • basic personal care items (no second-hand toothbrushes)
  • medicine
  • basic cleaning products (although I do plan on making some)
  • underwear & socks
  • services (hair cuts, mechanics, tailoring, dry cleaning, plumbers, etc.)
  • gas
  • airfare
  • recreational services (zoo & museum admissions, etc.)

Why Buy Nothing New for a Year?

To appreciate & enjoy what we have.
To consume less.
To save money.
To save time.

So there you have it – some things I’ll be writing about in 2015.

It’s going to be a good year!

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