Tag Archives: family

May 2008 – Slowing my social life

Image courtesy of ankillen

This month I am giving up going out to places that require me to spend money. I consider myself a pretty social person and recently I’ve felt like my social outings, while fun, are eating up all my free time and money. So due to the fact that I’m continuing to prepare for craft fairs while also getting ready to move at the end of the month, I figured this would be a good time to give up going out. 

Honestly I really didn’t give much thought to how much my giving up would affect others, except maybe my boyfriend. Yet again, though, many of my friends have inquired as to why I have chosen to give up going out this month. Once I explain my reasoning, most everyone accepts why I’ve chosen to do this in May instead of a winter month. While I believe everyone supports me, its still kind of surprising to me when friends and relatives ask questions about my choice for the month. At this point I’ve become so used to sacrificing something new every month that I guess I assume that they will have grown used to it too. Maybe I’m not alone in experiencing an odd mix of joy and anxiety when the 1st of the month rolls around…

So far this month’s choice hasn’t really impacted me too terribly much. My boyfriend and I were still able to have dinner and play the Wii over at our friends’ place on Saturday. I knew I would absolutely go crazy if I didn’t have any social contact outside work for an entire month and that doing so wouldn’t really help me in any way. The majority of my social activities involve me spending money, usually on food and drink and usually without much thought as to what I’m spending. This is why I decided to allow myself to do things that are free. Hopefully this month my choice will actually prove to be beneficial to others as well, since I also tend to be the one who organizes a lot of the eating/drinking/shopping outings amongst my friends. 

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Going barefoot

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image courtesy of Daveybot

While I was home for Easter last weekend visiting my family, I completely forgot to pack my tennis shoes. And since my one pair is a little worn, I figured I could use another pair. So I did some preliminary research online to see if there were any companies that manufacture tennis shoes in the USA. The only one that I found was New Balance. Not my first choice, but hey considering what I’d read from others who have attempted the buy American concept I felt lucky to find even one company that still does business here.

So we went off in search of some New Balance shoes that I actually liked. Much to my surprise virtually every pair we encountered in the dozen or so stores we went to were all “Made in China”. By the end of yet another incredibly frustrating shopping excursion, I had only managed to find three pairs of New Balance sneakers that were actually Made in the USA. And they were all too athletic looking for my tastes. Needless to say I was really deflated and angered when I wasn’t able to buy any new tennis shoes. My mom shopped very patiently with me, at one point asking me if I received the shoes as a gift could they come from another country? A very generous gesture that I refused but which made me smile anyway. Without her presence I doubt I would have persisted looking as long as I did.

This trend wasn’t exclusive to tennis shoes either. I couldn’t help but pick up a fair share of other cute pairs of shoes, knowing full well that they wouldn’t bare the “Made in USA” tag. I guess if you were to only buy American you would end up either wearing really ugly neon green and navy blue athletic tennis shoes or you’d learn to like walking around barefoot.

Oh and as it turns out, I simply didn’t browse New Balance’s web site closely enough. They have a very small selection of shoes that are Made in the USA as a menu option. And they are all pretty plain and ugly, in my opinion.

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