Use Whatcha Got Week 2: Reusable Excess

I blew it. Well, technically I didn’t fully blow it. Just kinda sorta. Last Thursday, a mere two days into “Use Whatcha Got 2013” I strolled into “my Starbucks” (the one with the fireplace down the hill from our house) to work on edits for the book. I walked up to the counter to order my coffee, looked down and saw this:


The Boulder-granola-go-green girl in me was thrilled!

“I could probably save a tree–a very large tree, with the number of Starbucks paper cups I go through in the course of a year.”

The Chinese-loves-a-deal girl in me was equally thrilled!

“One dollar! Awesome. And 10 cents off whenever I use the cup! What’s not to love?!”

So I ordered my coffee, in my new reusable cup. I requested water with no ice in my reusable ginormous Venti “Aloha from Hawaii” Starbucks water cup. I scanned my iPhone Starbucks app to pay for my coffee and reusable cup and went merrily along with my day, grinning at the thought of helping our planet by “reducing cup waste.”

Two days later it hit me:

The point of “Use Whatcha Got” is to use whatcha got.

Wanna know what I got?

Oh, 50 billion or so reusable cups.

I have a Tervis indestructible cup, multiple insulated coffee cups, stainless steel travel mugs, Starbucks mugs, mugs, mugs, water bottles in every imaginable size. I have a problem thing about collecting reusable cups. The landfills will be filled someday with thousands of reusable cups and water bottles contributed solely by me.


UWG was a decision/goal to not purchase, for a year, any new clothes, shoes, purses, or accessories. So technically a reusable cup doesn’t totally fall in “accessories.” But what I came away with from the reusable cup purchase was this addendum:

  • in addition to a stop on clothing purchases, I would like to now include under “accessories:” cups, mugs, water bottles, lip gloss (another problem thing I tend to amass), make up (except eyeliner…i will need new eyeliner)
  • now that I have added a new cup to the vast collection of reusable cups, I will give away at least two to make room

In other UWG news: I was able to go through my closet. Rearranged, refolded, rediscovered, and rid myself of excess. It is a wonderful feeling to walk into some semblance of order in at least one corner of our home. Baby steps. Baby steps.

How about you? Do you have items that are a problem thing you collect in excess? How are you doing on week 2?