Goodbye, Dear Goodwill Mug . . .

by Katy on January 25, 2016 · 40 comments

Travel mug

Sadly, I have broken my beloved plastic-free travel mug, which ironically had replaced my husband’s shattered Portland Timber’s mug. (I kept the lid and was able to find a same size lidless mug at Goodwill.) I pulled it out of my bag at work and was heartbroken to have it come out in pieces. (I was so bummed that I joked about going on a bereavement leave.) And horror-of-all-horrors, I drank my coffee from a styrofoam cup.

Shame and self loathing ensued, but you know . . .  I needed my coffee!

The above photo shows it flying to New York last month, helping me to avoid plastic airplane cups. Useful for both cold and hot beverages. Insulated in a way that perhaps made it more vulnerable to breakage.

Here it is at my son’s college orientation weekend, helping me to avoid the endless throwaway cups:

travel mug goes to college

Today I’ll head over to Goodwill in search of a replacement. Because the travel mug shelves in thrift stores are always stocked with almost endless options. And of course, the most eco-friendly option is always a product that’s already been manufactured and has hit the secondhand market.

Worry not, I’ll keep you posted. 😉

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Elise @ Simply Scaled Down January 25, 2016 at 11:24 am

My condolences. It’s always sad to lose a beloved friend.

I, too, am in mourning. I ripped my favorite cardigan. It has lasted me 7 years and now it is dead. I may or may not have cried a little. Who said you need a pet to learn how to cope with loss?

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Katy January 25, 2016 at 11:26 am

Sorry about your sweater. I’m still in mourning over my favorite sweater which disappeared probably ten years ago. 🙁

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AFS January 25, 2016 at 4:34 pm

I know its not the same as having your sweater back but you can upcycle it into a hat so that it can live on
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ha4c_MkRtAM

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Bobbi January 25, 2016 at 11:30 am

Sorry for your loss! This was a lovely tribute to your hardworking travel mug. And you’re right, there are always countless good options for thrifted ones. You shall prevail! 🙂

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Nancy January 25, 2016 at 11:31 am

I am convinced that taking my own lidded, insulated cup with me everywhere I went over the holidays, saved me from getting all the different strains of disease that the rest of my family ended up with later. Not only is it frugal, but you know who washed it (me) and who has touched it (me and only me) it’s a win-win in so many ways. Hot or cold, that cup did it all and I’m not sick after the holidays!

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A. Marie January 25, 2016 at 11:45 am

Along with the other commenters, I feel your pain. I grumble for a day or so every time I break/rip/wear out/otherwise terminate a secondhand item I know I’m not going to be able to find an exact duplicate of. (Most recently, I leaned up against something DH had recently repainted–unbeknownst to me–while I was wearing a Talbots sweater twin-set.) Fortunately, the supply of coffee go-cups out there seems to be unlimited.

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Katy January 25, 2016 at 12:00 pm

Goof-off gets paint from clothing. Try it!

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A. Marie January 25, 2016 at 12:32 pm

Believe me, the sweaters were not salvageable (and I do know a few spot removal tricks). DH has agreed to post conspicuous “Wet Paint” signs in the future.

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Anna-Catherine January 25, 2016 at 11:56 am

I have several I would send you as I am allergic to the silicon lid but I think it would be more Non-Consumer to pick up a new one second hand than to ship across the country.

This does not fall in the use second hand category but I use the dollar reusable cups from Starbucks. They are all plastic, can be recycled if they crack and are latex and silicon free for allergic me. Also, I no longer have to worry about breakage when I toss them in my bag empty. I use an old coozie on the outside to insulate the cups.

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Kristin January 25, 2016 at 11:56 am

My sincere condolences.

I left my lunch on the bus last week. This meant the loss of the insulated lunch bag, a Pyrex bowl, two small plastic containers, and a cloth napkin. Needless to say, I am still in serious mourning. I did call to see if someone turned it in to lost and found, but no such luck.

Fortunately, this loss did not require me to buy anything new. Or unfortunately, depending on your perspective, because we have a lot of *stuff*.

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Jennifer January 25, 2016 at 12:23 pm

My daughter took my Pyrex dish to school and never brought it home….it still hurts.

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Bonnie January 26, 2016 at 6:10 am

Ha. I left a pyrex bowl at a friend’s when she was living with the inlaws for a time. It never made it’s way back to me and I’m still sad. Even though I have another one. Too funny.

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marie January 26, 2016 at 10:03 am

I just got back one of my glass pyrex bowls w\lid. Totally forgot daughter had taken it home with leftovers.funny how happy it makes me that it came home.

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Katy January 26, 2016 at 11:40 am

I brought a lidded Pyrex 9 X 13 casserole dish to a friend who’d just had a baby, and she swore she didn’t have it. Still burns almost 18 years later. Lesson learned.

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Polaria January 25, 2016 at 12:51 pm

Your post reminded me of this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_VXdKPEF16Q

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JD January 25, 2016 at 1:09 pm

The brave little cup, pictured in its many travels! There’s a children’s book in there, somewhere! “Katy’s Cup Saves the Day.”
I hate it when I break or lose something I use all the time. I feel so lost without it.
My husband was on a job with a client and they cleaned their hands with GoJo while standing behind the truck they were using. He was some miles away when he realized he was no longer wearing his wedding ring. He had only started wearing it again because his previous line of work had made it dangerous to wear a ring for almost 20 years. The client had all his workers search the ground for that ring, and it never turned back up. Of course, we replaced it and this time, he’s kept it on.

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Elizabeth January 25, 2016 at 1:54 pm

I totally can relate to losing a much loved mug, ink pen…etc. Taking the best care you can of an item and no matter how careful you are..poof… 🙁 Look forward to soon hearing you have a new, much loved mug!

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Bee January 25, 2016 at 1:58 pm

It’s hard to lose something you use every day. I hope you find a suitable and loyal replacement soon.

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janine January 25, 2016 at 2:00 pm

It Is the small stuff that seems to hurt the most. In my case my microwave just waved it’s last and I was forced to shop for a new one today. I was not attached to it, but I was attached to the $$ spent to replace. Luckily a conference that I was obligated to attend this weekend cancelled this morning – hence no fees – and I applied those dollars to the purchase of a new microwave which made it all a bit easier.

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Diane C January 26, 2016 at 1:16 pm

Happily, the prices of microwaves have come way down. I wonder if you considered buying used? I always see them on Craigslist, often being sold by serial upgraders and folks who bought them for their kid’s dorm room. Just a thought.

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K D January 25, 2016 at 2:14 pm

My husband recently brought home a bunch of beverage containers, some stainless steel, some plastic. They were going to be thrown away because they were unclaimed at the end of a semester. I did not want any of them but I washed them up and will offer them on Freecycle once the Jonas craziness passes.

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Tara January 25, 2016 at 2:17 pm

Oh don’t you just hate it when something breaks that you like!
I’m seriously accident prone so amused to breaking most things that I like and don’t like.
I wish you good luck with your search for a new one xx

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Michelle Hart January 25, 2016 at 3:06 pm

I have a Contigo water bottle that goes everywhere with me. I have left it at a few places, the worst being a pottery painting place that is really out of my way. I had to wait a week to get it back. The hardest week in my life! The hanging clip is broken on the top and she is faded from repeated washings, but I refuse to let her go. I have a replacement in the cabinet, but, much to my husbands chagrine, I refuse to get rid of it until it is fully unusable.

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tonya parham January 25, 2016 at 3:43 pm

I get it. I have a contigo coffee mug that I bought pre-frugal days that I love so much. I’ve dropped it hundreds of times, it’s got dents, it has the bottom (which was a second cosmetic bottom) missing. The lid got cracked about 6 months ago but it still functioned. Finally, I found another at GW and while the interior was gross– and looked like a science experiment, the top was pristine,.

So, after the lid that was cracked finally was beyond repair– I was still using it but a chunk came out and left a REALLY sharp point– my spouse said, “Look, here’s the new lid we got. I know that one still functions but, it’s sharp! You’re gonna hurt yourself!” And she threw the old one away. LOL — she’s wise, that one!

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Amanda January 26, 2016 at 6:32 am

Way to get every bit of use out of it first though!

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AFS January 25, 2016 at 4:48 pm

I’ve seen lots of that kind of mug while thrifting. I hope it doesn’t take you long to find a replacement.

Last time I was on an airplane I asked the steward to refill my Goodwill water bottle, I was told they could only dispense the water into the airline provided paper cups.
I had filled it from a water fountain after going through security but I needed more than 12 oz. of water on my 5 hour flight. Next time maybe I’ll just bring two water bottles.

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Mariana January 25, 2016 at 6:53 pm

I am about to lose a mug myself. Its handle cracked and I am expecting its death any day now. It is my absolutely most favorite mug with Mumins on it.
Mumins were my favorite when I was growing up so the mug has a special meaning.. Snif snif

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Katy January 25, 2016 at 7:46 pm

I love Moomins!

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Marcia January 25, 2016 at 7:16 pm

My favorite coffee mug (actually two identical ones so I bought them both) were brand new from GW as well. Some commemorative item from a conference–leftovers,no doubt. I am happy to have one and a spare! My husband’s was so disgusting HE actually put it in the dishwasher last week–is also with us on this trip. (Our annual anniversary gift to ourselves is a vacation–this year St. Augustine, Fla.) It may not be much warmer there than it was at home, though.

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morgan January 26, 2016 at 6:24 am

That sux! I have a ceramic Starbucks mug that I received a few Christmases ago that has a nice crack in the side of it but I love it so much that I can’t let it go….it’s in the back of my cabinet. I plan on fixing it, if I can, one day 😉

Also, my son (3yo) lost one of those pricey thermos mugs recently, I wanted to cry bc they are hard to find used locally, but I did find some great previously loved mugs on ebay! Bought 3 from one guy (a couple were girl prints, but who cares) and they will work perfectly! Ebay for the win!

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Amanda January 26, 2016 at 6:30 am

I think it is something about being frugal (in money and possessions) that make us really value the few things we have. I have things like that too for which I paid 50 cents, which could probably be replaced for 50 cents (although some significant shoe leather might also be employed), that I would be super bummed out if they were broken.

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NMPatricia January 26, 2016 at 7:26 am

Thanks for the idea of taking a travel “mug” with one when traveling. I would much rather drink out of my “mug” than plastic or styrofoam. Thanks, Katy.

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Vickie January 26, 2016 at 8:00 am

Condolences on your favorite cup!
The handle broke on my favorite coffee cup several years back. It is now holds the spoon I use for my morning tea. I found a new coffee cup at the Goodwill too. I’m thankful for the small things! 😉

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Penny S January 26, 2016 at 11:10 am

My absolutely worst “loss” was MY sleeping pillow. By accident it got left at the motel where we stayed while on an out-of-state trip. My pillow was old, way past needing to be replaced but I could not seem to sleep well without it. Called back to the motel to see if it has been found (hated to even ask as it was so used looking) to no avail. I now have a brand new sleeping pillow but still remember the old one that got away.

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Ann Y. January 26, 2016 at 11:20 am

My sympathies…I know how you feel. I had the best travel mug that was free…I won it for answering a question at work – a library – and it said Electric Library! I left it somewhere and still miss it. It was BLACK, so it never really looked grungy. In a very NON saving way I purchased Contigo travel mugs for my husband and myself, on sale, with a coupon, but still….but I LOVE THEM. They keep your drink really hot – for hours, and really cold for even longer time. And they do not leak…at all…ever. Spillproof…so I can put them in my tote and take to work, meetings, movies (?), anywhere. And if I am driving and have to stop suddenly and the mug goes flying….no worries. So, even though they are on the pricey side, I figure we are saving the world and will have them forever ! Good luck finding another one that you can love !

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Katy January 26, 2016 at 11:37 am

My husband has one, which he uses for a full 12 hour work shift. He says his coffee stays hot, and it’s saving us the $40 per month he was spending at Starbucks.

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Dale Emanuel January 29, 2016 at 8:19 am

In the flow of the donations we get at your Goodwill, sweet Katy — housewares is #2 in popularity. Mountains of cups and dishes, spoons and plates are kindly dropped off 7 days a week. I bet you found a swell one. Right now, I am sipping coffee from my Goodwill-found mug. Thanks again for helping us!!!

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Katy January 29, 2016 at 9:16 am

I would never ever buy a mug anywhere else!

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Dale Emanuel January 29, 2016 at 9:18 am

I hope it makes morning coffee even more gratifying.

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