In My Home This Week: The Next Step

In my home this week, I...

... am ready for the next step.  What do I mean?  I'm ready to do the next thing that will lead me to the life I want to have.  My brain has been ticking along at 90 miles per hour here this weekend thinking along these lines and I'll be writing more about it in the days ahead.   I've been feeling restless and a little dissatisfied for a few months now.  I wrote earlier in the year about my frustration in finding new ideas to increase my thriftiness in my home and I noted that at this stage of my life, what I need to do is look long and hard at what I want to accomplish and learn new skill sets in order to bring about those changes which will increase savings.  Well,  ditto that for every area of my life.  I want to move on to the next level of learning in diet and wardrobe and decorating and yard/garden work and even here in writing the blog.

I'd planned to take time over the last week or so to start planning and then making goals that supported my plans.  Between my family's comings and goings and that nasty virus, I got sidelined hard.  However, yesterday afternoon, with the house quiet about me and no real work being attempted, as is usual for Shabat, I found my mind was suddenly full of not only inspiration but intention.   While I'd been sidelined, my subconscious had apparently been at work sorting things out and as ideas began to flow I knew instinctively what I needed and wanted to do in order to take my life to the next level.  I was so on fire I even managed to sort out a problem that John and I have been facing in our separate ways but when I related to him my insights he agreed that I'd hit on the very things that were needed.   

By the wee hours of last night I knew which projects are next on my list, where I wanted to head with the blog, what I needed to see occur in our lives and pretty much the steps needed to take to make that happen.  And yes, I did say wee hours.  I'm on one of my not sleeping so hot jags and instead of lying in the dark willing myself to sleep when I'm obviously not going to sleep, I let my mind loose to think about things I've not had time to think of during the day.  If I sound slightly manic then I confess there's an element of that in these cycles but it is fortunately a controlled thing.

I assure you that I had no idea all this was going on in my subconscious.  I was so overwhelmed last week with everything and I mean every.thing.  And let me just add here that I thoroughly and completely enjoyed my grandsons and deeply appreciate that they are GOOD boys and not terrors but I was so exhausted by the time they left to go home I have no clue how my brain managed to function on ANY level, must less in the background!  

As I said, I'll likely write more about all that came up this weekend. I have learned to keep pen and paper near and have jotted down ideas for blog posts, and short sentences that will remind me of the original ideas.   

I am not an 'all or nothing' sort of girl.    My home must function at a certain level, my family connections must be maintained and much as I might like to ignore it at times, my budget must be adhered to.   I am well aware that as excited as I may be about everything at the moment, reality is that balance must be kept to or everything will crash and burn and I'll end up with a big mess on my hands and a lot of frustration.   I do not like to be out of balance.

...plan my work week:
First things first.  It's Harvest week.  I actually worked on bills last Thursday because I had a block of time without the grandsons and knew that the likelihood I'd have another such block wasn't going to occur.  I still need to do one small task, not exactly a minor one but one that takes far less time than the whole process of writing out bills and getting them ready to send off...

Which reminds me, I was asked why I pay bills in this manner, writing checks and using stamps?   (A) we do not care to have our financial information on our personal computers.  (B) The few bills we have mostly charge $5 a month for the 'privilege' of paying online. Ditto for setting up a monthly auto draft.  A 49c stamp is a sight cheaper and our checks are bought for mere pennies.  There are others to whom we write a monthly check who do not have an online account.  (C)  It's one less set of security questions and passwords that must be remembered. 

So we'll just stick with our old ways for a while longer.  When it's financially prudent to change our ways we shall.   Just because it's the 'modern' way doesn't always mean it's the least expensive or wisest option.

Sort out the fridge.  I don't know what's in there after last week.
Make more yogurt.  Just opened my last jar.  I have a new recipe I want to try and see how I like it.  It's supposed to be a lot less fussy and it's meant for making a small batch.

Make Challah for Shabat  and angel rolls.

Grocery shopping.  

Do the next steps with that flower bed under the faith tree.  I'd really hoped I'd be done with it by this time but it didn't happen.  I shall lay weed mat and lay blocks this week.  If I can get to the store for mulch I'll get a couple of bags and finish off that project entirely for now.  At the least, I have weed mat and stones and I think I have enough stones to finish off the circle about the tree.

I also need to put some mulch down in the flower bed where the old chairs are.  Maddie has pretty much ruined one section of that flower bed and weeds are rapidly spreading throughout the whole. In fact, Maddie has done more this year to UN-do things that have previously been done, sigh... I need to do some repair work and maintenance on that back porch bed and mean to get started on it.  It's not the area I meant to focus on for the month of August, but then again, I'm hoping it won't take all of August to fix this spot.  Then I can start on the next focus area of the front of the house which oddly enough also borders the back porch and is victim of Maddie's destroying ways.

Sewing:  MUST: Hem John's work pants, make necessary repairs on a slipcover and put it back on the chair it came off of.  Nice to get to if I can: making a pillow cover for a cushion on the chair in my bedroom.

Get my house whipped back into shape.  It's not a horror but there's a good two days steady work wanted to get this place back up to par.  I did what I could this past week and accomplished more than I thought I might but...Oh and I can't say enough about how obliged I feel to all this housework for waiting so patiently upon me to attend to it...ha!

Plan a menu for family day in September.  Pull some recipes for August menus while I'm looking and planning.

My Home Keeping notebook is no longer working for me as is and really there's little need of it.  I am going to move to some sort of planner and repurpose the notebook and divider pages for another project.  I'll take time this week to find the planner I want and set it up so it will be most useful to me.

Those lists I meant to make are still waiting to be made, too.  I should have plenty of time this week to attend to these things and whatever else I can manage to throw in.

...plan meals:
I have been thinking of meals I want or would like to make in these late night sessions of mine...Or I am drawing inspiration from cooking shows I watched this past week or a blog post.  A mix of routine and not so routine meals follows:

Pasta with fresh tomato sauce and fresh Mozzarella, Green Beans with Mushrooms and Garlic, Green Salad, Crusty Bread

Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Coleslaw, Butter Beans, Peach Cobbler
I'm going to try either a crockpot recipe or use the electric skillet to prevent heating up the house with the oven when I make the meatloaf.  I know there's a recipe online for cobbler in the crockpot, too...Gotta look that one up again.

Tuna Pasta Salad, Sliced Cucumbers, Saltines, Orange Segments or Peaches 
Fruit depends on what's in market and whether or not I make it to the peach shed at Zenith Mills.

on my own x2

a leftovers day

Roast Beef, Steamed Broccoli, Baked Potatoes, Rolls
A roast will net us sandwich meat as well as entrée.

...plan my leisure:
There are a few wants on my list this month: a certain book I've had in the past and gave away and deeply need at the moment,  bras, a couple of things for my refurbished desk area, etc.  I do not get the opportunity to shop on my own very often.  Too often I am at the whims of Mama or John.  I plan to take a day to go out and do a bit of shopping.  I'll have lunch out on my own, take my time, browse through a thrift shop (where I expect to find the book and with luck frames or artwork and just maybe a clock), and go into one or two other stores.  It mightn't sound like leisure but it IS when I'm not on someone else's schedule or party to their own agendas.  So SHOPPING with a purpose.

Lunch out with Mama.

Watch one of my DVDs while I'm on my own.  I am feeling Jane Austen-ish.

A spa day.  I haven't had one in ages.  I'm due a fresh pedicure this week and it would be nice to be smoothed and buffed and polished and freshened all at once. 


Lana said...

We don't pay bills on line but have them set up to automatically come out of our checking account which is free. If you are charged for that then maybe you should look for a new bank. Most bills have incentives in discounts or rewards for paying them that way. We saved $80 on a six months car insurance renewal by auto drafting the payment so it is certainly something worth looking into. I had doubts, too. The personal information is not in any way on my computer.

Anonymous said...

I purchased my last bras at tjmaxx. They had the same brands as Belk for significantly less money. Sometimes they have a large selection, sometimes not, but it might be worth looking. I also got opi nail polish for $3 and $4 per bottle for my do at home manicure. I also prefer shopping alone if I am on a quest for something in particular. Happy Shopping, Kip

Mimi said...

Dear Terri, I find there is a simple satisfaction in paying our bills by cheque. The act of writing the dollar amounts in longhand, gives you time to reflect upon how much you are spending, and that is invaluable. I like where you're going with your thoughts on life and the blog. I'll be keen to see your updates. Mimi xxx

Carolyn @ Our Gilded Abode said...

We pay all our bills online after experiencing vendors claiming paper checks weren't received and posted. Now there's never ghat worry.

I'm really excited for you and can't wait to hear your new plans and new direction for your life!!!!

susie @ persimmon moon cottage said...

I enjoy reading your blog very much and will be interested in seeing all of the new ideas that you have been incubating.

To me, it seems so much easier to deal with those insomnia nights by just using the time as constructively as possible without making enough noise to wake anyone else up. I have some of my best ideas at those odd hours of the night. If I try and fight it, or if I stay in bed, all I do is fidget and get fixated on not being able to sleep. If I just go ahead and get up and do some planning, or mending, or reading or writing, before I know it, I am ready to sleep.

Margie from Toronto said...

I write a cheque for the rent and drop it off, have a couple of automatic debits set up and then pay the rest at my Credit Union. All money is deposited on the last business day of the month so on the 1st I head downtown, pay the utilities, get change for the laundromat and then take care of any other deposits or transfers that may need to be done. My doctor's office is just around the corner so I try to coordinate appointments - this week I'll visit the Foot Nurse (it's almost like a full pedicure but with no polish - but it's also about a third of the cost of a spa pedicure). I plan on treating myself to a new nail polish this week and I'll paint my toes myself.
I also need to do an inventory of my fridge and then pick up a few items, mostly dairy and veg, to get through the week.
My apt. is in good shape but I have been rearranging furniture and doing a bit of re-decoraing (mostly with items I already own). I am going to head to IKEA tomorrow to pick up some new picture frames - I've picked up some new prints over the past year and it's time to get them framed and up on the walls!
Like you I'm feeling a bit restless at the moment - time to make a few lists myself and firm up some plans. Things always seem more real when I see them written down in black & white. I will follow your progress with interest.

Tammy said...

I understand your need for balance. I am anxiously awaiting the start of the school year and being able to get back into a routine.
As for shopping alone - YES! Just this morning I ran to town at 6:30 in order to grab the few things needed and get home in time for Silas to arrive. I could have waited for him, but then it would have been three times longer in the store. LOL.
Our weather has cooled a bit, and I'm able to get outside again and work. I'm looking forward to photos of the faith tree all finished when you get to do that.

Debby in KS said...

I'm sure I've mentioned that I'm needing some changes, as well. One is just a plain and simple purging of a lot of stuff. I've started keeping a couple of boxes in the guest room and adding stuff as I find it. When it's full, off it goes to Goodwill. I'm the only one in the house that drinks coffee or even hot beverages. Is it really necessary to have a combination of 50 mugs and coffee cups (part of the china set)? I really don't need mugs to remind me of fun trips we've taken. Or with silly sayings. So, I'm working up the courage to unload all the ones that aren't part of a set. I just packed up several candy dishes to donate. I don't use candy dishes. It's easier to just hand the bag of M & M's to my husband and save the middle man lol!!! And so it goes....

I'm leery of the online banking and automatic withdrawals. I've had errors done that caused about 15 bounced checks. Someone's computer messed up and the $25.00 withdrawal posted as $2500. They paid for it all & sent out letters, but it was a good 60 days of headaches.
And, though I don't have online banking, I once received a giant bill and several withdrawals on my account from it....That took about 3 mos. to straighten out. Another computer error. I'll bet the guy who was having his bills paid from my account enjoyed it for a bit lol. Again, they straightened it all out, but it took several months until I stopped living in fear! I still shudder when I think of how hard it would've been to fix if I had done online banking. They would've had to sort each item. AS it was, it was removed in full from my account. Of course, the computer decided to do it again for two more months lol.... Now, I only mail 2 checks a month. I pay all my utility fees in a drop off at the market. Much easier. For obvious reasons, I don't entirely trust machines.

Terri, I look forward to seeing all that you're doing and planning. Maybe you can give me some ideas.

Hilda said...

I have never heard of a vendor or a bank charging five dollars per item paid online. Since it is actually a smoother transaction for the vendor, I don't know why they would penalize you with this charge. And if it is the bank, I agree with the above poster, you ought to change banks.

Things can go wrong by using checks also. In fact the only financial mess I have ever had to deal with is when my outgoing mail was stolen without my knowledge and there were paid bills, with the checks, in the stolen mail. It was several weeks before I knew that some bills had not been paid and I was stuck with late charges.

But to each their own.

Lana said...

One additional thought for anyone with a debit card; at some point your number will be stolen and your checking account cleaned out. When it happened to us the bank and sheriff's office told is there in NO safe place to use a debit card. That is why we use a credit card for every purchase and do not have debit card at all.

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