Let’s Talk About Stuff

It doesn’t matter if you are a crafter, cook, gamer, collector or what, chances are there is a lot of stuff that goes along with whatever your interest may be.

Lots of newcomers look around at all the paraphernalia and immediately start backing away because they don’t have the stuff and can’t reasonably afford a quick acquisition of it, so think they can’t “do” the whatever that they were interested in in the first place.

Sound familiar?

Here’s the thing. The stuff can come later. Or not. What you really Need (note the capitalization) is the basics to do what you want to do to see if you want to continue with it, or not.

  • Need is a necessity.
  • Want is something that won’t always alter the end product.

I love to cook and over the years managed to acquire a lot of stuff. When I moved, I found that I could get rid of a lot of it because <gasp> I didn’t use it, need it, or want to haul it to my new home.

My new home has a kitchen that I lovingly refer to as the size of a postage stamp. I literally don’t have room to stash things I don’t use. Anywhere.

What this means is I no longer own a microwave. Shocking, right? Well, maybe not.

When I owned one – that was gifted to me – I found that it was used to heat water and steam vegetables. I tried actually “cooking” in it and was totally turned off. It didn’t “cook” so much as just “heat”.

I have used a stove to heat water, steam vegetables and actually “cook”, not to mention “heat”, food for years. Decades, in fact. Why would I waste precious counter space on a tool I didn’t need?

I inherited a blender I rarely used. It went to Goodwill. I had a waffle iron I rarely used. It followed the blender and if I want waffles, I pull them out of the freezer. My original food processor also went to Goodwill and was replaced by a Much Less Expensive Model because it fit my needs and wouldn’t cost the bank to replace the blades.

I have a set of cookware that is almost as old as I am – and I vividly remember when my mother bought it – but use a set I purchased myself a few years ago that does more, is more efficient and versatile.

The old stuff worked great on my old stove, but when I bought my new stove I discovered that the newer technology didn’t lend itself to old pots and pans. Yes, I can use them. No, I choose not to.

As a crafter, I tried a lot of different tools for the various crafts I do. Some work better than others. Some I prefer because I work better using them than not.

I get fussy, er, particular, about certain tools because I know how I react. For example, I’m fussy about color matching when I work on cards. I don’t like it when colors that are supposed to be the same, aren’t. (I’m weird that way.) Some folks may not notice, but I do. So I purchase my papercrafting supplies from a manufacturer who makes certain that their colors work together across all their lines and the quality of the materials are high.

If I’m quilting, I like to pull fabrics from the same designer line. Why? Because the designer created the line with a specific set of colors to work together, even if they don’t appear to.

Things like this make my job as a crafter easier because I don’t spend time and money trying to put things together that won’t work the way I want them to.

I am fond of some computer games but have never had a system that can handle some of the more advanced games. But, I can (and do) play the ones I enjoy on the machine I have.

That being said, gaming itself has done some interesting evolution. I loved “Table Top” when it was on YouTube. It allowed me to see what could be considered semi-old fashioned gaming in that games were being played without technology. The games are interesting, interactive and fun.

And if the power goes out, and you have a light source, you can still play.

Don’t get me wrong, stuff can be great. It can add to an experience, it can make a process easier. It can also deplete the bank account, take up space and gather dust, not to mention keep you from doing what you wanted to do in the first place.

If you are thinking about getting something to learn a process, talk to people who already do that process. Ask them what they think and what they recommend. You might be surprised.

Whatever you do, please don’t let the lack of owning something keep you from attempting whatever it is you want to try.

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