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Welcome to January

January 3, 2014
by Erin B

I’m not certain that I ever knew how to write.  Or what to write.  I think I have forgot whatever it was I once thought I knew.  After a year and a half of writing for school, I’m having a hard time thinking of what to write for fun.

Resolutions?  Sure!   I have some of those.

This month:

I want to have a no spend month, like North West Edible Life.   I am completely shopped out.  This is the first year where I wasn’t all the way done Christmas shopping by December 1st.  In fact, December 1st, 2013 I hadn’t even started Christmas shopping. I had a list, but that was about it.  I’m not a big fan of crowds and hitting the malls in December was very stressful for me.  I have no desire to ever shop again at this point.

At one point I thought I should have just ordered everything online and skipped the mall.  Then, of the two things I did order online, one arrived broken (but a replacement made it here before Christmas) and the other went to Belleville Ontario for a week…. on December 19th.

But I digress.  I have a pantry full of food, some of it I likely haven’t since since last January’s eat out of the pantry challenge.    I know there isn’t anything older than that in there, because I do this every year.  It’s time to start using what I have.  Weird menus around here for the next little while.  I want to empty the purchased non perishables from my cupboards by the end of February.  Of course I will use the savings to restock in March, but such is life.

This year:

Once again, I am cleaning and sorting.  I will still do some in the kitchen, it always seems to build up junk.  This year’s focus is my sewing room.  Last year I had a great sewing room.   Then I gave it to the teenagers for the second TV room.  Now I have a dark and mostly unfinished windowless basement room.  I don’t inherently mind that.  What bothers me is that my sewing room has turned into a dumping ground for everything.  It was a huge sacrifice to give up the good space and now I just feel disrespected that my smaller, crappier space is being abused in a way that the nice room never was.

I’m sure that part of that is that I moved while in school and never really got it set up.  People can sneak in stuff and it just sort of blends in.  Like wrapping paper that actually has a home but for some reason it was put on my sewing table instead of the room next door where it not only belongs, but has it’s own shelf.

No more!  I am going to clean it out and throwing out all the detritus that has built up.  I am going to set it up to function and then if it still is turning into a dumping ground I may just take back the nice room.  I have mending that is backing up because I can’t get to my sewing machine.

I also want to expand my garden by six feet to the east.  That would add two beds and take it to the property line.  We’ll see if it works.  I wanted to do that last year too, but it just never happened.

Next year:

Since she was born, I have been saving Little Girl’s birthday and holiday money as well as any money I get when I sell the stuff she isn’t using anymore.  The out grown clothes, toys, crib, whatever, it gets sold the money goes into “her” bank account.  I take some out when she really needs something that we can’t cover out of the regular budget, but mostly it just stays there.  I have plans.  It is for DisneyLand.  This is the only way we could afford to save for something at is ultimately a want, not a need.

The big girls, C & V, both have been to Disneyland with their mom.  They have been to California a few times to visit their mom’s family.  T and I never travel.  It isn’t that we don’t want to, it’s just one of the things we gave up so I could be a SAHM.  We watch our money and it will get better when Little Girl is in school full time and I can work more EARN more.  In the mean time, things are sometimes tight.   None the less, I never take Little Girl’s money.  Five years of saving and I am almost there.  It’s time to talk to a travel agent.  I’m still not sure it will be Disney 2014.  Likely not until 2015, but since I hear you may need to make reservations 180 days in advance to get the seating you want at some of the restaurants, it is time to at least get more information.

Five years:

Speaking of savings, I have starting working for the local yarn store.  I write their newsletter.  I get paid the huge amount of $150 month and a shop discount.  It isn’t great, but it goes into the bathroom reno fund.  That plus a couple of income tax refunds and we will be able to reno that bathroom in …. a couple of years.  Assuming we don’t end up with major leaks or issues before we get to the saving goal.  This will be a very conservative

The bathroom will need a total gut job, but the end result isn’t going to be magazine grade.  It will still be a 6×9 bathroom.  It will just be updated, not amazing.  Bathrooms are like kitchens, there is no limit to how much you can spend to reno one.  I’m hoping to keep it at or around $12,000.

Well, there you have it.  I have some goals.  Let’s see how it goes.

What are your plans?

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