3 January 2009

New Year, New Enthusiasm.

Regular readers may have noticed that this blog has been rather quiet through November/December. In part, this was due to the fact that these have been very busy months for our family. November was taken up with writing, December with frantic Christmas preparations. On top of that, the weather has been hot, hot and more hot, with lots of rain thrown into the mix. Very little chance for gardening, for even if we braved the heat to plant, what is going to grow in this weather? (Other than the watermelons, which are doing great!)

And now, here we are in 2009, wondering what we are going to do this year. Well, we are hoping for some lifestyle changes, mainly in the form of a new job for DH. Closer to home would be great, but is unlikely due to the lack of jobs in his field nearby. Mainly though, we are hoping for some more regular hours, less stress, and hopefully a bit more flexibility.

DH and I have been talking too, and are looking at ways to further reduce our expenses on the basis that saving $100 is worth more than making an extra $100. If you have no idea what I'm talking about, think on it. For starters, of the $100 extra you make, a large percentage is immediately gone in tax. Not to mention the GST you're not paying simply by not buying something.

With this in mind, it will be back to making, mending and growing this year. I'm itching for the weather to cool down enough to plant something, but think I'll realistically have to wait until mid February at least. In the meantime though, there are some fruit trees that still need to be planted out (from before November!), mowing to do, fruit trees to mulch etc etc, so plenty to keep me busy. On the sewing front, I'm finally getting around to finishing those t-shirts for DD, making more shopping bags (and I've just had the brainwave to recycle my old green bags, which are more than a little the worse for wear, into stiffening in various projects), some swimming togs for DD (from second hand swimming tops), and no doubt many other things. I need to get back into preserving, before all this wonderful summer fruit is done for the year, including cooking up all the tomatoes that are languishing in my freezer (cooked up one lot last night though, and they were delish!). I need to cook more from scratch, and start figuring out how to use all this garden produce. I also have lots and lots of wool that needs to be spun ready for the winter knitting frenzy.

On the financial front, hopefully we'll have more no-spend months, do some budgeting maybe, and hopefully, 2009 will be the year that we pay off the credit card for good. We've paid it off before, but it is only this time, through dint of paying it off bit by bit the slow hard way, that we have actually changed our spending habits enough to know we are not going to run it straight back up again. Then we can work on saving, and beginning paying extra on the home loan. Exciting stuff.

I also need to get working on organising the house, decluttering, making curtains for the windows, rugs for the floors, that sort of thing.

And last, but not least, I have to get a plan in place for DD's first official year of homeschooling. She is due to start prep this year, which is not compulsory in Queensland, so we will be running our own program (at this stage), including lots of getting out and joining groups, excursions, and other fun stuff.

So stay tuned for a hopefully action packed 2009!

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