On Getting What You Pay For

For decades I lived my life waiting for sales, buying what is on clearance racks and hoping against all odds that I could find a coupon.  I still have nightmares over the $3 shoes (BRIGHT yellow with 4 inch hard plastic soles) that I had to wear for an entire year and I got yelled at every time I had gym because they might have LOOKED like gym  shoes but they certainly weren’t gym shoes.  But they were $3 a pair.  I thank god that they had ONE pair left that were big enough for me.  I’ve made it a point to allow my kids to pick out their own clothes.  The two years that camo was out of style when Adam loved camo was difficult, but I would never force my kids to wear pants that were four sizes too big just because they might some day (or not) grow out of one size.  I’m forever grateful that veggies quit coming in the generic packages that were yellow labels or white labels and contained veggies that might be nutritionally similar to the brand names (or like the store brands that cost 4 cents a can more than the generics) but that tasted like they had been the very very very last of the season’s crop (well, those too old beans have to go somewhere).   And I never once have made my kids buy three cans of peaches at each register in a store just because they were on sale and the limit was 3.

I have my limits.

But old habits are hard to break.  I have been buying socks during back to school because they are cheap.  They don’t really seem to last as long as I would like.  They fall down.  They are warmer if worn over tights.  But it’s what I’ve always done.

But I’ve discovered the wonders of paying a little more for something and getting value for the money.

Recently I bought six pairs of men’s long work socks (okay, truth be told, I bought 6 in white and 6 in black) that were more than I ever wanted pay for socks that weren’t uniquely designed for my Vibrams.  They weren’t WAY expensive, but they were more than I usually pay. And they are not yet falling down and they are squishy under foot.  And they feel delightful even after several washings to put on.  They aren’t going to be incredibly warm for the winter but I wear them every day right now to work (or nearly every day).

Last week I got my winter boots.  They are hiking boots.  They are also delightful.  They are comfy.   I love them.  When I got them, I bought two pair of  amazing socks.  They are a combination of merino wool and silk.  They were more than even my awesome hobbit feet socks, but they are so wonderful.  They are soft, they stay up, and they are so warm.  Even on chilly mornings when my feet absolutely freeze they make them toasty.

I try to get my head around buying them.  But I can’t wait till pay day when I can buy two more pairs.  They are going to see me through the winter.

I still tend to not pay more than I have to for things.  And if I can get something for ten percent less half a mile down the street for the SAME thing, I certainly will do that.

And now, I will suck it up and save up for the amazingly wonderful toasty soft socks!

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