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Righting the ship

April 28th, 2013 at 07:30 pm

After a very wobbly financial start to the year, I'm trying to right the ship, so to speak.

I think I'm finally over the general malaise and burn-out I've had for the past two weeks. I just haven't wanted to do anything! I guess it's three years of back to back constant deadlines and brimming full to-do lists, plus two toddlers finally catching up with me.

Anyway... I'm getting back on track.

-I have two extra assignments due this week, so I wrote drafts of those today, and will finish them in the a.m., before the interview for my 'regular' weekly work starts.

-I FINALLY did a menu plan for this week. Hopefully I can stick with it this time. I'm just not very creative in the kitchen and it's hard to make things everyone likes, but at least, with a plan, dinner is much less stressful. I'm trying to make a few things-- mac and cheese, and a cheddar herb biscuit-- from scratch this week. Where do you guys find recipes?

Long-term goal is to make more bread and other items from scratch, but baby steps. Having a plan regularly comes first.

-I'm trying to keep spending under wraps, so payday isn't so tight and we can make more progress on paying off the house, saving for retirement, etc. This is tough. We've had a lot of extra expenses lately, like taxes, and family reunion airfare, etc. Each check has been spent the day it comes in, no overage, and it's stressing me out.

-We're spending a lot of time and money getting the garden constructed, up and running. This week, we got a bulk compost delivery (we didn't have enough of our own for all the new beds), and I've been slowly moving it into the backyard garden beds. I was happy it rained today so we could have a break! In future years, I'm sure all this work will pay off, but boy, it is a lot of work, and money for supplies. (pics are below)

-We're also hand-digging a new 16 foot by 20 foot patio. We're about 35 percent finished with the excavation. Hard work, but not as hard as we thought. We figure money saved on the unglamorous stuff means nicer flagstones, which we will SEE for the rest of our lives here.

-We're up to $90 in extra cash in the mortgage pay-down piggy bank, thanks to two more craigslist sales this weekend. We might add $5 more tomorrow, if the person shows up. It's also made a dent in the garage clutter.

-I sorted through the kid's clothes and made my summer rummage/yard sale 'score' list-- all the sizes and items I need to find used for the kids this summer to save big bucks on clothes the rest of the year. Sales here are good. I rarely have to buy anything new for them. I have found great hoodies (Iron Man and Lego are hits), jeans, pajamas, like-new shoes, sweaters, snowboots, and winter coats all for cheap.

It works out well. I buy the next two sizes up for the oldest, he wears them, then his brother wears them, then they go to Goodwill. To save time, I search through all the craigslist yard sale adds searching for boy stuff, then plan my route.

-I was inspired today to make an index card folder with all of the projects, large and small, I have in mind for the house. Everything from cleaning out the broom cupboard and hanging hooks, to the living room makeover and game room renovation in the basement. I broke each project down into 1-2 day projects, and those that are longer, plus needed supplies, measurements, and each step needed in the bigger projects, and put it on an index card. I figure on those days I want to get something done but can't focus, I can flip through the cards and pick a one-day job, or a small part of a multi-day job. Maybe it will move things along more smoothly!

And, here is the garden dirt.. Still more to do, but it's moving along.

5 Responses to “Righting the ship”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Our ship is a little off course, too. Love how you are using those index card to organize your projects!

  2. PNW Mom Says:

    I find recipes on Pinterest and allrecipes.com mainly. Sometimes in a few of the magazines I get too.

  3. Looking Forward Says:

    Your garden is moving right along - How exciting! Big Grin Looks great.

  4. snafu Says:

    Good on you for making a plan and sticking to it. Hang on to your cards, checking off each project as it completes. It's a record of getting more done than you realize. I use a section in a 3 ring binder of Household Managementcheck off each small project or step of larger projects but the list gets longer as new things crop up.

  5. LuckyRobin Says:

    I check a lot of cookbooks out from the library and of course I google a lot. And I just ask people on the blogs if any of them have a good recipe for whatever I am looking for.

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