I like the efficiencies of a well-run household. That means that, with four boys, we have quite a hand-me-down operation going. The 3-year-old is wearing a few of the shirts and pajamas that the now-16-year-old wore back in the day! We measured everyone’s feet for snow boots and are able to pass down at least three pairs to the next kid in line. My little guy has just outgrown a snowsuit that not only did my older kids wear, his cousins wore it before that!
Everyday pants are another matter. I had high hopes. We’d boxed up several 4T pants, but looking at them now, I see how many have holes somewhere, or the waistband elastic has lost its stretchiness through the passage of time. So I gave up and bought my little guy six new pairs of sweatpants to get him through winter.
Sometimes things last, and some things don’t. I don’t think it’s even always about quality – I’ve had some cheap shirts last through several children, and some of the pants that fell apart were among the nicer of the children’s clothes that we own. With heavy use, eventually a lot of things just fall apart. And nothing lasts forever.
I’ve been trying to make my peace with this. I am a chronic under-buyer and I don’t like the idea that daily life items eventually reach the end of their life cycle. I recently bought a 4-pack of new wool socks from Amazon after I realized all of my existing wool socks had holes or had worn thin on the bottom or the heel. I guess in my mind socks should last more than 10 years! In general, they don’t. I also replaced all my underwear with this brand. (Based on the Wirecutter recommendation.) Let’s just say it was time.
I also realized I wrote this ode to well-fitted bras…seven years ago. That was the last time I replaced any of those. Perhaps it is time there too.
But in the meantime, next up on the list is our daily cookware. My frying pans are all scratched and harder to clean now. So I bought one fairly inexpensive pan that came well-recommended. (Wirecutter again!) The pans have to work hard. I often use the pans 2-3 times per day, since I work from home and cook my own breakfast and lunch. I guess they don’t last forever.
Then, perhaps, pillows. I’m not sure the average life expectancy of pillows but we have definitely surpassed it on some of them…
Of course, nothing lasts forever in a larger sense too. I feel sad sometimes as the brilliant October leaves fall and the drab gray-brown takes over for the next four months. That said, sometimes the fact that nothing lasting forever is a good thing. Some of the last year’s school problems have disappeared this year. Others may be taking their place. But I guess we don’t worry about the same thing in perpetuity…
What long-time items have you had to replace?