What granny didn’t buy

imageOn Sunday when we visited Leigh on Sea we popped into the small museum in the old town. It was a fisherman’s cottage from the 1800s and was incredibly spartan. They lived a very hard life with minimal possessions – no mobile phones, PCs, TVs or tablets for them. I am not romanticising this life: I would hate to live such a harsh and basic existence and I like a few home comforts! But it made me think about the things we possess and what we actually need.

dresserWhat would my grandma not even have considered a possibility, let alone a necessity? Things that spring immediately to mind are:

Air fresheners
Kitchen roll
Mobile phones
Disposable nappies
Disposable dishcloths
Fabric softener
Baby wipes, face wipes, disinfectant wipes
Spray furniture polish
Different cleaning sprays for every job: bathroom, kitchen, windows, etc
Tumble driers
Ready meals
Takeout food in polystyrene boxes
Instant rice or noodles
Plastic carrier bags
Portable computer games
Liquid handwash
Satellite/cable tv
The Internet – yikes!
Fake tan
Fizzy drinks
Tablets (well, only the pharmaceutical kind)
Self serve checkouts
Social networking
Annual holidays
Cheap air travel

I could go on of course. I am no Luddite. There are many things in the list above I would hate to be without and make my life so much better. My dishwasher saves me so much time, the microwave is a boon to warm up leftovers and defrost soup from the freezer. As for the Internet and PCs – I think they are marvellous! However, none of them are essential – they are all luxuries. From the point of view of frugality it is useful to think about what I really could do without if necessary. Lots of the things on my list I already don’t buy – I will never give into botox, even if I win the lottery tomorrow!

So I will cut down and cut back when I need to, although I will still blog as I use my work laptop. Perks of the job 🙂

5 thoughts on “What granny didn’t buy

  1. What a list! When you think that they had no rubbish collection and yet we don’t find one hundred year old rubbish strew everywhere you realise how little they threw out because there was nothing to throw.

  2. Oh, so much I’m grateful for! More than 3 outfits… one for work, one for day, and one for church. Floor cleaning tools beyond a broom plus bucket, brush and/or rags. Manufactured bars of soap (who’d want to boil lard and lye?), bottles of shampoo (even the cheap kinds), an actual washing machine (my grandma had a ringer washer when I was little). I suppose I could live without my automatic coffee maker, but I wouldn’t want to! I could go on…

  3. I think it’s very interesting to think about our actual needs and wants in this day and age. I think we are very lucky to have all of the technology, for health purposes as well as personal comfort. But I know what you mean, I’m quite attached to my tumble drier!

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