Thursday, January 14, 2016

2016 focus

Ok. I have always tried to run our household frugally. We squirrel away money in the bank and live below our means, always saving for something. More often than not I don't know what the something we are saving for is, maybe just a rainy day. This year however the focus of my frugal energies will be on our trip away later in the year. I want to have most everything paid for before we leave home. I'm working on it. It's fun trying to find places to stay that are nice and budget friendly ( I might change my mind about that).
By the creek

Everyone's frugal/ simple living style is different. For some it is living 'on the cheap' and all about the bottom dollar which is great but not my style. I don't measure everything by its monetary value so I won't always take the cheapest option. Having a big garden (which does cost a lot in time and energy) helps me keep the grocery bill down and is probably the healthiest way to eat which in turn has cost benefits. Our entertainment needs are fairly simple. On occasion we'll eat out or have a cuppa in a caf√© but usually we are happy to make a pot of tea at home, borrow books from the library and read, do some craft or even just sit by the creek for an hour or so and let the world pass by. A walk is really nice too. My expensive habit is letter-writing which as far as habits go isn't so bad and it makes me very happy and that outweighs the small cost of a stamp any day.


The focus for our farm this year is to just continue as we have been going this past year. We don't eat meat and we no longer sell any animals for meat. Actually I think we are at the point now where we won't be selling anymore animals at all. So I would say we are not really farming at all anymore. We just have our 'pets'. They all have names, they have the run of the paddocks and are the most ungrateful, pampered cattle, sheep, ducks and chickens around. Our vegetable and fruit growing though is ramped up though because that is what we do eat. The animals do have a purpose, they provide me with fertiliser for the garden and they are just a joy. We do still sell honey but as always that is just our excess, we aren't big time producers. I am happy with three hives and don't think more is better (Tim would always have more hives). If perchance we ever revert to eating meat, I think we will only eat homegrown but I can't see it happening. I like vegetarianism.

Craft-wise I want to focus on finishing projects that have been on my to-do list for a while. I don't want to buy more fabrics and supplies unless I really need to. I don't need to, I have enough. I am going to participate in a swap or two this year and already have one swap to package up and send. Swaps are fun as long as you don't overcommit.

In the kitchen I want to make sure waste is kept to a minimum and prepare most meals from scratch. I enjoy cooking but sometimes it does get boring being the one who always cooks and makes the decisions about what to eat. I'll make sure I delegate sometimes even though delegating is not something I am good at.

As I've said before I am de-cluttering too. So far it has been mostly little bits and pieces but it all adds up. And I hope that a clutter-free or at the least a less cluttered home looks better and is more peaceful in some way. It would be nice to make a dollar or two from some of our unwanted stuff but thus far I haven't found anything that I think anyone would pay for.

I like keeping fit so in 2016 I will continue with my exercise program. Workout dvds, yoga, jogging and bike riding. My flexibility needs improving so that is something to focus on this year.

My newest focus, is journaling. I have an art diary and another journal for writing and just being creative and I want to put some effort into those. It's fun and free.

Well, this post has rambled and I think I will stop for now or I could write all day.



River said...

Sounds like you've got 2016 all sorted and a trip to look forward to as well.

Amy at love made my home said...

It was a lovely ramble of a post to take with you! I think that letter writing sounds like a lovely habit to have! xx

Snoskred said...

I always enjoy these kinds of posts. :)

The post office sent me a leaflet explaining how postage would cost more, and things would take longer to arrive now. I was thinking, maybe do one at a time instead of a double smack in the face like that, but their business their way, I guess. :)

Lilbitbrit said...

Hi Tracy, We don't have a lovely little farm like you, but live in town. But on almost everything else I am ditto. Would love all the fresh veg and fruit, but use the little we do produce, if I didn't work full time I would do more there. The vacation sounds fun and have you heard of AirBNB, I've only tried it twice in NYC and up in NY State, but both experiences were good and the price range runs the gamut. Just a thought. Take care, Christy

P.S. I bet they are happy little animals.

Janice said...

You have certainly reached a good balance in your life. It is not costing much, but you are not sacrificing enjoyment. You will have to keep us posted on how you are going. I'd love to see an occasional page of your art journal, if it is not too personal.

shez said...

Hi Tracy i enjoyed reading your post and i think you are pretty switched on my friend,i love the way you live,hope you have a wonderful day my friend xx

africanaussie said...

Gosh Tracy this could mirror my year! Where are you going on vacation? I am going to Europe for my daughters wedding, so looking forward to that.