By Jackie Saulmon Ramirez | August 25, 2012
Parents have a cleverly keen ability to see into the future when it comes to our kids. When our kids have a pretty serious fight among siblings we automatically project to the future and see them as serial killers or mob bosses. With those same skills they could just as easily become negotiators or managers. It’s all in how you look at it.
Another area to project is the “greening” of our country. (I think often of the earth we are giving to next generations.) Last week, August 25th, was National Secondhand Wardrobe Day. The focus with the holiday is to end the stigma of using clothing that is pre-owned or used. The secondary focus is saving money by shopping thrift stores rather than retail. (“A penny saved is a penny earned.” ~Benjamin Franklin) Tertiary is the saving or recycling of resources, thus helping reduce our ecological footprint.
While discussing the benefits of the holiday my daughter said there will be kids and parents who would not give even a nod to recycling and continue to shop retail no matter what it costs Mother Earth. I reminded her, “Where do you think you get those great deals?” Her Dad came into the room and joined the conversation. Chelsey retreated then returned with the latest bargain, a beautiful jacket originally retailing from Lord & Taylor for $150— she paid a whopping $6! I rest my case for economizing.
Now as for projecting, just imagine for a moment we consider the cotton grown annually for cloth in the U.S. (most is shipped overseas and sold below market value). What if we switched a percentage of farms to growing food instead of cotton? That would perhaps bring down the prices of foods we buy weekly. What if we switched to shopping in thrift and secondhand stores first? Prices for secondhand clothing would rise a bit but more shops would open.
You could be here calculating the trickle-down and trickle-up effects all day but no matter how you cut the cloth— we would expend less energy and resources by buying from thrift and secondhand shops, thus reducing our footprint. Remember, we are only caretakers of earth for our children. So, let us encourage some to shop retail and donate so next year you can reap the savings!
There are a few items I would not recommend buying secondhand for sanitary reasons if they are not in their original packaging: makeup, swimsuits, undergarments, toothbrushes, pet or baby toys. It is not recommended you buy these items secondhand: shoes, hats, wigs, bicycle helmets, wet suits, mattresses and bedding, cribs, car seats, baby and children’s furniture.
Copyright © 2014 Jackie Saulmon Ramirez. All Rights Reserved.
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