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Friday, May 27, 2011

Downsizing to a Condo (May 27, 2011)

So I’m on a downsizing mission. In theory.

But I had a few minutes to kill the other day and popped into a thrift store in a funky neighborhood near where I lived in my single days. I asked at the front if they had buttons for my wearable art projects. ‘Though they had no buttons, I decided to browse. I’d forgotten how big this thrift store is and it was fun to wander through. I told myself to be very selective. After all, I’m on a downsizing mission. Immediately I saw an interesting wooden something. You could call it a shelf or a knickknack holder. But I saw its potential right away. It was clear to me that I was looking at a plant condo.

(Side note: Miriam Webster’s people will be calling soon to ask for my thumbs-up on including “plant condo” in the next edition. I haven’t heard the term before but it just seems to fit the structure I was looking at that day. It has little shelves to hold little potted plants, and would look completely cool outside. I’m not into collecting knickknacks/tchotchkes/brick-a-brack, but the little sections seemed perfect for plant display! As in condominium living, there are neighbors next door, above and below, and they all live together, but in their own area. Voila! It’s a plant condo!)

I could tell this piece had been made by a person rather than by a complicated and efficient machine somewhere overseas. That personal touch appealed to me. At $3 it was the perfect price and although I’m on a downsizing mission (really, I am!), certain things are just meant to go home with me. Shopping and accumulating just to amass more…mass—well, that does not appeal to me. But getting a great price on a handmade piece that will bring me happiness every day when I see it holding my plants—that’s different from simply adding to your stockpile.

I painted the piece brown, which contrasts with the cheery yellow of our house. I’ve installed the plant condo on the side of our garage, which is near our front door, and every time I leave the house I will see it. From my big collection of succulents, I chose a few pots to display in the condo. Two sit in tea cups (also from thrift stores), which is just plain fun.

And yes, if you want to be technical, I have added to what I own. But I just brought another two bags of stuff I don’t need any more to the thrift store yesterday, so my overall amount of stuff is diminishing. Because, in case you haven’t heard, I really am on a downsizing mission!

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