On Comfort and Comforters

by Kelly · 11 comments

in A Frugal Home

A couple of years ago, my father, stepmother and aunt gave my husband and I a luxurious (expensive), super nice, winter down comforter as a joint present for my birthday, our wedding anniversary and Christmas. It’s THAT nice.

What’s really nice about this comforter, however, is that whenever I get into bed during the winter months, and snuggle down underneath it, I imagine them choosing it for us, with all the love, care and attention involved. That’s nice.

As we were packing to move, I did a lot of sorting through our stuff. It’s amazing how much we were able to pack into our tiny house. Even though there were five of us in only a little more than 600² feet, there were still what I would consider to be an embarrasment of riches. For example, I found two bags full of blankets underneath our fold out couch, the one we were sleeping on. I also filled two large Ikea shopping bags with kids’ sheets and blankets, and that wasn’t including the sheets and blankets from their beds.

Once we got to our new apartment and I wasn’t trying so manically to pack and clean everything at once, I was able to sort through what we were unpacking. I put quite a few things aside to donate to the thrift store, including old baby blankets, sheets and towels. And we still have so much!

I don’t know if you saw an email/blog post that went viral last year, sometime around the holidays, with a guide for how much you could donate to charity, based on what you own. For example, if you own five blankets, you would donate $.50 per blanket, for a total of $2.50.  Then you would add up all the totals for each category (and the list went all the way through the house, from shoes to saucepans) and donate that amount to the charity of your choice for the holiday season.

I’m flinging numbers around here, because I can’t find a copy, neither in my email nor via Google.  We’ve always given to various charities, but it’s usually €25 here or €30 there. This year I’d like to be able to share a bit more of what I have, both materially and financially.


1 Hannah October 27, 2009

Hey Kelly. I notice you mention two of my current favourite things in your post – Blankets, and Thrift stores (coming from the UK I think of them as “charity shops”, but I’m capable of simultaneous translation from the American now:-).

This is a bit of a France specific comment – I’ve not managed to find any charity shops or secondhand places in Grenoble yet other than that strange secondhand sporting goods place out at Comboire. Where do you find them?

PS Sorry to miss yr talk the other week – I had a surprise visitor.
.-= Hannah´s last blog ..What’s in a name? =-.

2 Kelly October 28, 2009

Hey Hannah,

I’m actually in the process of writing a guest post for Grenoble Life on thrift stores and where to find good second-hand deals. There are a few, but if you’re without a car then they’re a bit less practical. I’d be happy to go with you someday!

For my non-local readers, ie 99.97% of the people who read Almost Frugal ;), Grenoble Life is a fun blog (in English) about, what else, life in Grenoble, France.

Here’s the direct link: http://www.grenoblelife.com/
And a guest post I wrote: http://www.grenoblelife.com/frugal-living-in-grenoble-part-i-food/

3 Hannah October 28, 2009

Cool! I have a guest post waiting to appear there too:-) I’ll look out for yours. Mine’s on finding spicy food. Possibly frugal, possibly not… Does spending 25 euros on spices count as frugal if it lets you eat tasty vegetable curry for 6 months? I guess it must do… now the cupboard is stocked, a saturday morning trip to the market means I can eat healthily for virtually nothing when I want to.
.-= Hannah´s last blog ..Le football =-.

4 Cassie October 27, 2009

That comfortor MUST be really nice, I’m so envious. If there’s one thing I don’t mind spending money on, it’s super luxurious bed linens. Too bad I don’t have the money for that right now, but when I do, the stores better watch out!

That is a great idea for donating. I wonder what my total would be once I added everything all up. I do have alot of stuff (but I use it all)!

5 Kelly October 28, 2009

That’s what I thought before I moved. But I found a few things (quite a few) that I hadn’t used in a loooong time. I’d even forgotten I had them!

My goal is to only have things in my house that I love and use. But I want those things to be high-quality and worth having!

6 Jackie@Lilolu October 27, 2009

We recently moved too and I could not believe how much stuff we had. It can be quite shocking.
.-= Jackie@Lilolu´s last blog ..Penne Alla "Not-Ka" =-.

7 Kelly October 28, 2009

That’s so true!

8 Kasey at Thrifty Little Blog October 27, 2009

I love being a part of the thrift store cycle: I give away things I don’t need or want– the store sells the items to people at affordable prices– the profits go to employing people in the community– I find great deals on thrifted items!
.-= Kasey at Thrifty Little Blog´s last blog ..Last Minute Costumes on the Cheap =-.

9 Kelly October 28, 2009

Such a great way of thinking about it! Sometimes when I go to thrift stores, I recognize things I’d donated myself…

10 Marie October 27, 2009

I’m not sure if this is the same valuation guide you were describing but I thought I’d pass it along anyway. http://www.salvationarmyusa.org/usn/www_usn_2.nsf/vw-dynamic-arrays/D477340FFA28755C8525743D0049D1EF?openDocument&charset=utf-8

.-= Marie´s last blog ..Not feeling well! =-.

11 Kelly October 28, 2009

Well, that’s not it, but it’s a good link! The one I’m thinking of gave a value in cents for everything, with the idea that once you added everything up, the value would be quite significant.

Previous post:

Next post: