Being resourceful

Often I find myself think­ing of ways to make things that I want to buy. It’s not so much about the mon­ey, I don’t think, because I can usu­al­ly buy books and yarn with­out much hes­i­ta­tion. But for cer­tain things I think it’s the grat­i­fi­ca­tion of com­ing up with a solu­tion and enjoy­ing the result of it that moti­vates me to think rather than just going out and buy. It’s not just about being fru­gal nei­ther, although fru­gal­i­ty has a lot to do with it. I think my par­ents taught me well. But I don’t think my par­ents are just being fru­gal. I like to call it being resource­ful. And I think cre­ativ­i­ty and resource­ful­ness can bring joy to life.

I vis­it­ed them last week­end, and saw inter­est­ing and delight­ful things around their house.

Yes, it is a roll of toi­let paper. In a CD can­is­ter. Hav­ing a box of Kleenex is of course much more pre­sentable than hav­ing a roll of toi­let paper on the cof­fee table, but for the every­day snif­fles toi­let paper would do just fine, and it’s much cheap­er than facial tis­sues in styl­ish box­es. This may seem strange to North Amer­i­cans but grow­ing up in Hong Kong that’s what most house­holds would have in place of box­es of Kleenex. They even make all kinds of dis­pensers for toi­let paper rolls. For exam­ple, here’s one that looks like cup noo­dles.

And you dis­pense the toi­let paper by tak­ing out the card­board tube in the cen­tre (squash­ing it on its sides a few times helps). Any­ways, I nev­er thought of using a CD can­is­ter and it actu­al­ly fits per­fect­ly :D Per­haps one could even make the CD can­is­ter look like a cup noo­dle. Now that’s an idea for a new project.

And then in anoth­er cor­ner of the house I dis­cov­ered this…

Dried man­darin peel! My mom uses it main­ly in soup. It’s sup­posed to be good for you in some ways, espe­cial­ly if you have a cough, and phlegm. One can def­i­nite­ly buy this at the gro­cery store (espe­cial­ly the Chi­nese ones), but it’s actu­al­ly not that hard to make. Peel man­darin orange. Eat man­darin orange. Save man­darin peel. Lay on plate/tray to dry. It takes patience though, because I think it needs to dry for months before it can be used. But def­i­nite­ly not dif­fi­cult. I actu­al­ly took the pic­ture main­ly because the orange peel looks rather strik­ing on the blue tray.

And final­ly, I found a pop­si­cle in the freezer.

It has noth­ing to do with resource­ful­ness, I just thought the colours were pret­ty. It’s cot­ton can­dy flavoured. Did­n’t taste as good as it looked (it basi­cal­ly tast­ed like frozen sug­ar water), but the pop­si­cle stick has a nice shape.

Two nights ago I was look­ing at this stick at my messy desk and was won­der­ing what I can make with it. I thought of mak­ing a cot­ton can­dy fairy so I took apart a fake fab­ric rose for it. But then I left my glue gun at work and PVA glue is just use­less for porous mate­ri­als, and I was­n’t too thrilled about the cot­ton can­dy fairy any­ways. So I set it aside and thought per­haps I will come across oth­er things that I can use the stick for… and I did! And you will see that project in the next post, tomor­row! :D

And just look­ing at the pic­ture of it now I think it would make a good bur­nish­ing tool, or bone fold­er. Will have to try that out.