Apr 8 2011

sharing your stuff [day 317]

I love actsofsharing.com, where you can share all your stuff with your friends.  I’ve been using this quite a bit and I think it’s great for many reasons, one of them being the organization of sharing.  How many times have you gone to lend a book or a movie to a friend, only to realize that you lent it out a while back, but you can’t remember who you lent it to?  I do that all the time.  My neighbor asked for her movie back about a week ago.  I had it, for about a year, and I had no recollection of borrowing it.

I decided if this sharing thing is going to be part of our lives, we need to have an organized system of borrowing and lending.  I decided to set up a bin for all of the small things like books and movies.  This way, I can keep up with the borrowed stuff and I have a place to make a pile of my “stuff to lend”.  This way I won’t lose anything by keeping it all in one place.

We have an Ikea plastic bin in the living room to keep everything in.  So far the system is working well.  More intentional sharing means saving money, owning less stuff and building more community.  Gotta love it.

Jan 2 2011

let's move in together [day 220]

I went to the movies on Christmas day and saw the movie How Do You Know.  I don’t do chick-flicks and the way I ended up at this movie was a text message gone wrong.  It wasn’t horrible, but it’s really just not my type of movie.

While waiting for the movie to start, after the 15 minutes of commercials, there must have been no less than 10 previews for upcoming movies.  I guess they figure if you’re at a chick-flick / relationship type movie, that you want to know all the similar movies coming out soon.  Not so much, but hey, I’m not their target audience.  And that “don’t make your own soundtrack” commercial?  My soundtrack might have been better.

I guess sex sells, as this movie, the previews and even some of the commercials were all about it.  I think the question asked in title of the movie is asking, “how do you know if you’re in love?”  I have no answer for this, and not sure I ever will, but the way they’re showing relationships is not going to answer any such question.  Maybe they were asking something else.

I talk a lot on this blog about the excess in our society, and relationships seem to be no exception.  People are entertained by all kinds of sexual situations.  I was highly disturbed to see in Toy Story 3 that Ken, who just met Barbie 10 minutes earlier, asks her to move into his dreamhouse.  She said, “yes,” after getting the okay from Mrs. Potatohead.  Does anyone else see a problem with this?  This is not what I’m teaching my kids, but it is what they’re learning in our society.   Way to go Pixar. Continue reading

Nov 10 2010

to buy or not to buy [day 167]

I promised my kids a movie and a trip to Game Stop yesterday.  They had their own money to spend on games and I paid for the movie.  Interesting lessons learned:

New release days.

Yesterday was the release date for the Call of Duty: Black Ops game.  I had no idea about this until we got there and the line was out the door.

My kids wanted Pokemon games and replacement styluses, but they still had to wait in the long line.  To Game Stop’s credit, the line moved very quickly, showing they were prepared for this mass of people.  That did make it a little less painful.

I also liked the fact that they ask if we want a bag.  Both of my kids said no, proving that they do listen to me sometimes.

Maybe they listen too well?

My oldest was stressing out over spending $50 of his money.  He paced a hole in the concrete in front of the store, debating on whether or not to spend his money on a game that he wants.  This child rarely spends money, and quite honestly, could care less about it.

Hyperventilating, he went in the store and held the game.  When the guy asked him if he needed help, he proceeded to explain his dilemma of spending that much money on a game, asked questions about the game and basically gave the guy a lecture about their prices.  I just stood there, trying not to smile.

After reassuring him that he made a logical purchase and went through the proper process to spend his money wisely, he finally made the purchase.  On the way to the movie, he was truly upset that he spent $50.  As we got out of the car, he said, “…I can’t even spend money, I’m stressed out.  This is horrible!  I’m going to grow up and be a cheapskate, then I’ll have kids and they’re going to hate me!”  Oh, he’s so my child.  I guess I should tone it down a bit with him.

Time to get a loan?

I paid for the movie tickets and thought it would be nice for us to share a drink and some popcorn.  For one small drink and a medium popcorn, it was over $8, or I could get the bigger size for $12 something.  Seriously?  And they wonder why people bring in their own food and drinks?  How do these people sleep at night?  If a fancy restaurant like Morton’s or III Forks carried popcorn and soda, I’m quite sure it would be cheaper there than at the movies.  Is this not a form of price gouging?  If a store or a restaurant did this, would that be okay?  Would you spend this type of money on food anywhere else?

Painfully, I bought only the small popcorn for $5.75.  Like my son, I’m still irritated about it.  Did these movie people ever consider the fact that if they charge reasonable prices, they might sell more, aggravate less people and make the movie experience affordable to do more often?  Sigh…