Adjusting to Small Town Life – The Shopping Dilemma

small town shopping in Centralia MO

I’m still adjusting to my new small town life in Missouri. One of the things that still has me spinning is the whole shopping thing. Just when I thought I had it figured out and was settling in, fall weather came. And, I heard winter is on it’s way too.

My intention is to stock up and have what I need from the local city before Thanksgiving to avoid going there during the holiday craziness. Columbia is 30 to 40 minutes away, depending on what part of town you are going to.  I’m trying to shop local as much as possible, but there are some things that are either not available or cost much higher here.

When I go into the city I get a little crazy, trying to get as many things as possible done in one trip. I often come home tired and grumpy with at least one thing that doesn’t work out and needs to be returned. Yuk.

The change in weather that comes with fall and anticipating winter has triggered a new shopping frenzy within me. In addition to things like a leaf blower (there are about 20 trees dumping leaves on my property) I stocked up a bit on sweaters. OK. Maybe it was a bit too much because yesterday I was back in the city returning some of them.

The part of me that loves living simply and capsule wardrobes is at war with my drive to make sure I have gathered what I need. Besides, if I have too much I won’t need to buy anything next year. Right? Maybe I have been hanging around with the squirrels too much and picking up on their habits of hoarding.

squirrel eating


My hunting and gathering expeditions have produced a fleece hoodie, flannel shirt, 3 new cardigans, a pullover sweater, fleece outdoor sweater, scarf & hat, and comfy shoe boots that look warm. Oh, and a snuggly pair of Muk Luk slippers to keep my feet happy at home. I have a feeling I have gone a bit overboard and this will be another one of those things I laugh at after I have been here a few years.

It looks like I will be wearing my granddaughter’s hand me down coat. There is something odd about wearing clothes that your grandchildren have grown out of, but she is much taller than me now and the coat is in great shape.

Food is another area that I am learning to handle. There aren’t a lot of vegetarians in my small town. Actually, I may be the only one. The 2 grocery stores are small and geared toward the average American diet, so once in awhile I need to pick up some of my veggie favorites at stores in Columbia. This has not been an issue, but may interfere with my intention of staying away from the city for a couple months.

Online shopping is a big deal here. The poor mail man looks really tired by the end of the day. My leaf blower, new printer, vitamins, cat supplies, and odds and ends were purchased online and delivered to my front door thanks to

Local Facebook swap groups are also a great resource. You can buy anything from clothing, furniture, vehicles, pigs, toys, chickens, broken toasters, houses, and hunting stuff there. People also share about jobs and events as well. Surprisingly (or maybe not) Facebook is playing a big part in my getting connected to my community.

We have flea markets and antique malls all around us and I love browsing through them, sometimes finding junk and other times pieces to treasure. An added bonus is that my granddaughter (the one whose old clothing I am wearing) loves them too.

small town shopping

It’s funny. Normally, I’m not much of a shopper, but this move across country seems to require a lot of new stuff. The next items on my shopping list are a car window de-icer and snow shovel. Maybe I will be done after that. At least, I hope so.

Related posts:

Scenes from a Small Town Morning Walk

Living the Small Town Life

Letting Go of Stuff

2 thoughts on “Adjusting to Small Town Life – The Shopping Dilemma

  1. Nadya says:

    It makes sense that your move to a different climate world spike shopping sprees! My grandparents came to Oregon from Missouri (late 19th century), the reverse journey! I wonder hour they re-equipped for their new home?! Enjoy settling in!

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