mercredi 16 mai 2012

Role Models

I received a VERY generous birthday gift from a friend last night... a friend who's very proud of her stinginess. (She's always saying, "you know me, cheap, cheap!") She hardly ever buys new things, always looks for sales on food items, and reuses everything from ziploc bags to boxes to the plastic wrap that comes on mushroom containers. But it's funny actually - she's very cheap when it comes to shopping for herself, but she's one of the most generous people I know when it comes to others!

She is a living, breathing example of the motto I've been trying to apply to my own life: "Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make It Do or Do Without."

She makes extravagant meals for me whenever I come over. She taught me to make my own preserves (and of course has insisted that I take home the entire batch of pickles or jam that we've made each time). She took me *and* MB out for the best dim sum in the city when I said I (we) had never tried it. I never come away from her house empty-handed... I always bring home leftovers for my lunch the next day, boxes of food, extra groceries, books, etc. She gave her me her entire set of Le Creuset cookware - heirloom pieces worth several hundred dollars, if not over a thousand. She told me she was just glad to see them being used. She makes very generous charitable contributions to several organizations every year -- I don't know exactly how much, but it was enough for Revenue Canada to audit her. A colleague of mine also told me that several years ago, when she had a windfall from her investments, she gave it all away. Can you imagine?!

And now this gift... she said to me, "if I had known this existed when I was younger and been able to use it from the time I started making preserves, I would have been a happy girl." It's one of the few new items she has bought for herself in the last few years, I'm sure. And now she's bought me the exact same one.

I want to be like her. Cheap with myself, generous with others. My mom is like that too. I'm so lucky to be surrounded by wonderful role models like them.

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