News from the phone bedazzling stall.

For those wondering, I have not been captured by militant consumers and chained to a phone bedazzling stall inside a cavernous shopping centre, nor has Mama Fearse hobbled me just enough for me to be able to change nappies and ignite the barbeque yet not type. I have been, in all honesty, lazy and unconcerned with writing as of late. Hopefully this post will change the tide of words to the more succinct and entertaining.

Our first buy nothing new year has had an enormous effect on me. I no longer desire sneakers, at all. I said starting 2014 I was going to purchase a new pair to replace the couple of tired pairs that I have been wearing since the late 90s. As the clock struck ’14 though, I realised these old pairs had served me so well thus far and besides being a little worn out on the insides they still serve their purpose. I really like the idea of having a pair of new kicks to strut about the court in, but I don’t need them.

Also late last year I broke the screen on my laptop. I looked into having it repaired and found it would be cheaper to replace the computer outright. I had the money to replace it, but never did. 2014 rolled around and as I type this from said broken laptop attached via HDMI to our TV, I have decided to purchase a used monitor** and connect the laptop to it essentially turning this laptop into a desktop. It showed me that really thinking through and examining all options and avenues will often lead to a more sensible emotional and financial decision. I have got used to using my laptop in this unorthodox manner and truthfully having it at school with me was more of a distraction than a convenience so I think this will work out best for me and having the computer stuck in one place will also mean I won’t be spending as much time in front of it and more time will be spent chasing Lil Fearse around the house.

So there are my newest revelations readers, I will be sure to check in with you all more often from now on.

BPF

** Post writing but prior posting I managed to acquire an old monitor from Freecycle that, with the addition of an HDMI adaptor, should do the trick.

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Links we’ve loved #7

Recently Mama started looking into buying a soft carrier for Little Fearse to reduce the need to take the cumbersome pram with us everywhere. Little Fearse has been enjoying the pram less lately, so we thought chucking her on our backs might be preferable all around. Buying one second hand seems easy enough, until Mama came across this link.  Worth reading if you ever intend to buy something like this online or second hand.

In a decluttering rut? This list will help you get going again.

A friend asked on FB this week for help with getting the kids involved in decluttering and (amongst others) Mama found this great link. I wonder how we’ll go with Little Fearse in the future. She already goes bananas about other kids’ bright, shiny, new toys – but maybe all 14 month old babies go crazy about their friend’s toys.

What is intelligence? Where does it come from? Can you teach it?

More Big Poppa shoe fanaticism.

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Mini sneakerhead. She was caught rocking and patting this shoe like a baby this morning.

We eat pretty well in our household, but lately, as the weather has cooled down, both BP and Mama have been craving junk. All. The. Time. It gets you thinking about what it is that appeals to us about that food? Why does it seem to fill a gap that healthy food doesn’t? This article also tackles the issue.

A commentary about white privilege in hip hop.

Little Fearse is working on a silly walk. It somewhat resembles the ‘lean back’. She’s had us in stitches.

Happy weekend. Those of you living with cats, stay safe.

BP, Mama and Lil’ Fearse xoxoxo

Links we’ve loved #1

Kerry from The Simple Year has abandoned us, but for our own good, really. This week the Bridges started The Simple Year 2, taking over Kerry’s blog. Read about their project here. We’re excited!

Caitlin is talking food over at Born Again Minimalist. This post is not only thought provoking but also beautifully written.

Thanks to a guest entry on A Denver Home Companion Mama has discovered and devoured The Maiden Metallurgist. It’s love! (Also, interesting as there are so few metallurgists in the world and even fewer females in the field. Little Fearse’s Papa is a metallurgist, too.)

This is funny.

This is funny and disturbing and also…funny.

Great non-judgemental tips on how to reduce your impact if you’re using disposable nappies. By the same people some surprising facts about what your new clothing is coated with – even more reason to go second hand.

A link from a FB friend for a fabulous child-friendly garden feature.

A shoe collection to make the likes of BP weep.

A long time favourite for Little Fearse. Especially now that she has established that cows go ‘MMM’ and sheep go ‘bbbbb’.

We hope these give you some good weekend entertainment.

Love,
Big Poppa, Mama and Little Fearse xxx

Why Sneaker Jesus Why?

Sneaker Jesus is testing me. I have been an avid sneaker collector/connoisseur from the time my Mum decided my foot had stopped growing and I was allowed to have my first pair of sneakers. I coveted those things; routine cleans with a toothbrush, washing the laces in the sink to make sure they looked extra fresh always. To this very day I still have my second pair of sneakers purchased in ’98 my Air Pippen II’s (shown below) are still loved, worn and have seen me through countless basketball seasons. I’ve been hooked ever since.

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Coming into the BNN year Mama placated my “need” for new sneakers by getting me some new shoes for Christmas. I was satisfied with these suede beauties and thought that they would see me through. Then Sneaker Jesus appeared in all his glory to tempt me once again.

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While at the studio recording my album, a friend swung by with a pair of Chuck Taylors in my size asking if anyone wanted them. Free Shoes? You better believe I snapped them up.

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Before my most recent basketball Grand Final, my Mum, the shoe enabler from way-back, presented me with another unsolicited pair of sneakers to congratulate me on making the finals. Sneaker Jesus strikes again.

I decided that one of the first post BNN purchases for me will be a new pair of functional basketball sneakers, my ankles and knees aren’t what they were 10 years ago and I could really use some of that newfangled technology that hasn’t seemed to save any of the NBA’s elite from being injured this post-season. I get a year to put in research and make sure I get what I believe to be the perfect fit for me and my style of play. Then Sneaker Jesus lay it on really thick.

A friend of mine legitimately got his hands on an employee discount card for Nike. 70%-80% off the marked price.  WHY SNEAKER JESUS, WHY HAVE YOU FORESAKEN ME! I declined his invitation to shop as his guest much to his disgust and mine. I explained our BNN philosophy to a blank young man’s stare. I told him Sneaker Jesus was testing me and that in January next year, I will find the perfect shoe and it will be worth the wait.

I hope.

BPF

When the consumer in me just doesn’t know how to quit.

Seven years ago, in the flush of a new romance with a renowned sneakerhead I walked into Footlocker and on impulse laid down $200 of my very hard earned cash (I only earned about $100 a week outside of study support) and bought a pair of bright white Air Force 1s. Quite honestly, I had never stepped foot in Footlocker before meeting BP. We were in there looking for shoes for him – something that happened waaaaaay too often – and suddenly some weird, perfectly designed combination of the right tempo in the music, the right lighting in the shop, the right sales person paying just enough (but not too much) attention in the background and the aforementioned sneakerhead romance and I was parting with my rent money savings for a pair of sneakers. Wha? What just happened?

Air Force 1 high tops take a fair bit of breaking in. There is a period of ankle rubbing that you need to get through to make them comfortable. I just didn’t have it in me. I’ve worn them here or there to a gig with BP, or once, memorably, when I dressed up as a student for a school charity day. That was the day one of the students was overhead saying “Damn, Miss F looks freeeeeesh!” Yes, that day.

They’ve spent a lot of time in the wardrobe in the last couple of years, only to be pulled out recently by Little Fearse who is going through a shoe phase (which involves eating shoes, not wearing them – that phase is yet to come). BP made a rare ultimatium – “Wear them or sell them”. So, today, I wore them.

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They hurt my ankles AND my toes. And they’re just not the kind of get up you wear to Mums group at a play centre. Why can’t the rational me give up these shoes that I bought on impulse seven years ago but have never enjoyed wearing? Is it that I just don’t want to admit I was wrong when I bought them? Or do I like what they signify – a simpler time in my life? Or do I really like how they look but not how they feel? Or am I still holding on to their monetary value even though that $200 would have been well spent on something else by now, if not these shoes?

What do you do when the consumer in you just doesn’t know when to quit?

Mama xo

Big Poppa Fearse

Buy nothing new for year. I mean NOTHING new? Nothing? It’s a pretty daunting challenge but I feel like what it will offer to me and my family is a more analytical look at how and why we consume and more importantly, what do we exactly reaaaaallly need?

I don’t really need new sneakers or circa 1995 NBA jerseys, I don’t need to buy video games that I can just as easily borrow from my equally addicted friends, a lot of media can now be accessed digitally  for free on YouTube, Iview or ahem….other “legal” means.

My biggest fear is messing up and accidentally purchasing something new and then the guilt and or shame that will surely come with it, well that and the epic beatdown/ear bashing I will cop from Mama Fearse. I don’t want to mess this up cause lord knows if I do, what crazy “plan” Mama Fearse will have us play out the following year..

Peace

Big Poppa Fearse