Monday, April 21, 2008

Change It Up: Five Things to Rethink In Your Life

My weekend was full of rest, reading, and planning. With less than three weeks until we leave for London, there is a lot to plan.

So recently, I went to Macy’s to get a refill on my liquid foundation makeup. This is the same makeup that I wore on my wedding day, now almost five years ago. The Lancome lady who gave me my makeover swore she had never seen a makeup blend so beautifully on skin. The friend I hired to do my makeup for my wedding said the same thing.

When you hear things like that, you treasure them for years. And go back to get more of that golden liquid well before you really run out. Hey, I put makeup on when I go to the gym. Yes, I’m that vain.

I always repeat the name of my makeup to myself a few times as I approach the Lancome counter to make sure that I ask for the right shade, thus it came as quite a shock when the clerk said to me “We’ve stopped making that line.”

I immediately went pale (not hard to do when you haven't tanned for months) and choked as I exclaimed, “No, don’t tell me that.”

Within minutes, the makeup clerk had me perched on a chair with a sample shade in her hand ready to apply to my fair forehead. I held the mirror up, afraid to hear the words. “Oh, this just doesn’t match your skin as well as the other.” I was so afraid my life with an invisible makeup line was over.

But after a few tries, she finally found a shade that matched my fair look. Because this year, just a long minute in direct sunlight will make me sprout another two dozen freckles. (I'm trying to quit tanning in order to be more natural. My legs are already scaring people.)

So I love my new makeup. I love it more than the old makeup, which now looks all forlorn in its messy bottle in my medicine cabinet. And it got me to thinking about other things in my life that I’ve done day in and day out for the past five years and that I thought were a perfect fit.

1. Buying books. Yes, the arrival of my Kindle today will change that, but wow, discovering the King County Library system last year was a godsend. They have everything and I mean everything. Even obtuse titles like The Mother/Daughter Plot, written in 1989 by Marianne Hirsch, which outlines how literature throughout history has viewed mother/daughter relationships. On Abebooks, this would have cost me a mint. I no longer have to buy as many books as I did before. I can’t decide if I’m happier about saving trees, or saving money. Hm. Keeping this trend.

2. Procrastinating on my taxes. Now that my CPA and I have finally completely separated my business affairs from my personal affairs (it takes time, trust me), the corporation is getting easier to file taxes for. The pittance of money each year I pay my CPA (and the firm charges a good amount) in comparison to how much time they save me boggles my mind. Why didn’t I think of this ten years ago? I’m keeping this trend too.

3. Saving ziploc bags. Okay, so my family will kill me because this is an uber-frugal, "save the environment" thing that I just can't do anymore. I absolutely hate washing out ziploc freezer bags. Hate it! And then hubby pointed out that I use like a box a year. Forget it. I'm just buying a box a year.

4. Buying new fabric. I am now addicted to finding beautiful pieces of fabric on Ebay or at Goodwill or garage sales. Well, okay, so it's already a dress. Seriously! A friend just made an amazing apron out of an old 1950s dress. It is the most beautiful thing I've ever seen. No more ugly fabric. Time to get creative.

5. Using old collaboration tools. I have gigabytes of old email. This has got to stop. My goal for the next five years is to figure out how to downsize my archives and to use new tools to better utilize my time.

And that's all the wisdom I have for today. Unless you want to read a long expose on Gossip Girl. Yeah, you know you do. It's back tonight and I am getting sucked in.

Currently reading: Brazen Careerist
Currently listening to: audio interview for a client


mikawendy said...

I know what you mean about being frugal about ziploc bags! One way I get away with using fewer is that I save bags that "dry" food comes in (pasta, pretzels, chips), and lunch sandwiches go in those empty bags. I don't feel bad about throwing those empties away since they usually tear after one reuse anyhow.

Abby said...

I love this posting. And your very human admitting of vanity at the gym. I giggled because I can relate. Sometimes when I break the rule and go when less than put together, I sincerely feel like maybe no one can see I'm in stealth mode. Of course, everyone does. Perhaps the first step to self acceptance. :) or not caring. Anyway, not an easy feat. I HATE it when a loved product is taken off the market and I relate to the abject horror upon discovery. Also, thanks for the Kings County mention!! I immediately checked it out and am a new fan. Reading Anna Karenina on my blackberry...and loving it. Not the same as the Kindle in size (which you will love), but gets me to read anywhere.