Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Hoarding or Stockpiling

Anna Marie's Donation

Many years ago I donated some jewelry from a home party I had to Anna Marie's.  They've kept me on their emails and so when I saw they needed some personal items donated, I knew I could help.  I rounded up a bunch of stuff from my shelves and filled 4 plastic t-shirt bags.  My friend and I will deliver them tonight.  We're both couponers and these types of things are easy to stockpile.  I have plenty left for myself still.  it's hard to believe that there is such bounty on my shelves - that I can quickly round up 4 bags to give away.

Is it hoarding or stockpiling?

Hoarding is defined as excessive collection of items with the inability to discard them.

The first part of that statement is partially true for me, but the second part is not.  I enjoy giving away what I stockpile and knowing that I have a ready supply for our household when we need it.  I don't stockpile beyond what we need - for very long.  For example - the Alamay make-up remover is one that I don't use.  But I can easily get them and save them up for donation.

Stockpiling is not a recent thing.  There are countless examples of stockpiling if you look for them.  Joseph in Genesis with grain, Abigail (King David's future wife) who quickly grabbed enough food for lots of hungry men including prepared sheep.  i grew up reading about Laura Ingalls Wilder who in Little House in the Big Woods, described all the delicious food her parents had stockpiled in their attic.

Just 150-200 years ago, prairie women and men spent their summers stockpiling food for the winter to come.  Though they often grew and preserved their food, couponers can get theirs ready made to store on their shelves.  Grocery stores are a recent invention.  People would need to buy from the butcher, the baker, the produce sellers if they didn't have those items to hand.  Refrigeration was either a cool cellar, near cold water or done in the winter.

I recently watched The Hobbit and exclaimed aloud, "look, a stockpile!"  when the dwarves raided Bilbo's shelves of food.  Without that stockpile, Bilbo may not ever have gone on that journey and would never have picked up the one ring.

Only recently do we have such abundance of ready food to buy from many places close to home.  There is no need to stockpile everything you need for winter, unless you want to save money.  It's a choice.  If you don't want to, then don't.  There's no need to say negative things to those that do stockpile.  Just smile and tell the stockpiler that they are doing a good job providing for their family.  If you do stockpile, keep rotating your supplies and donate where and when you can.

The beauty of our society today is that we can choose - to not stockpile and pay full or near full price, or stockpile and get things nearly for free.  Each has their benefits and drawbacks.  And neither is more right or wrong than the other.

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