random thoughts

Time flies. We are at mid-April. For many, it means Spring. Happy Spring everyone.

Loop Spring GIF by audreyobscura - Find & Share on GIPHY

We have a foggy day and I cannot help but admire the scenery. It is so mystical. I am sure many writers and novelists have been inspired by such scenery.

Anyways – life has been going well, thanks to my antidepressant and my foster cat Mona.

Mona is well and going through some medications. Hopefully these are the latest in the round and she will be just fine to be put for adoption. I say hopefully for her being well and healthy, and finding her forever home, but not for being separated from her. It has almost been 6 months and every day I get more bonded to her. It will be difficult, but we will do it. Then, another kitty in need will come… I will love that kitty, too.

Cat Hello GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

I have had otherwise quite a stressful time in the last one year, and honestly I think that without my antidepressants that I started taking 6 months ago, it would break me. I am so grateful for this medication. I can take events and people easier; I can enjoy and feel much better; and more importantly I fear and worry less. Unbelievable. Why did I torture myself all these years, denying myself the medication option?

One reason was that I thought I would lose control, get lethargic, or just do not care about anything anymore. How silly are these. These do not happen. At least, not in my experience (my medication fits me; no side effects and effective in managing my depression/anxiety).

My doctor was happy to hear how well I was feeling. He said that he will likely drop the dose in a couple of months and then stop all together. I knew that one day I would go off this medication, but honestly I was not expecting it to be soon. While there are many horror stories out there about weaning off anti-depressants and increased side effects, I want to be courageous, but honestly I am scared!! I am scared of getting brain zaps or other effects of stopping medications, or feeling like shit again….. Logically, the brain zaps may or may not happen, and are temporary. Second, nothing prevents me from taking the medication again. So I must keep brave πŸ™‚

Career Suicide Balloon GIF by Chris Gethard - Find & Share on GIPHY

For the second time during the pandemic, I went to thrift stores yesterday πŸ™‚ I was so craving for an excitement, something away from my routine life. I bought really lovely and useful things and I could not be happier. for a total of 28 bucks, I bought a kitchen knife, a sturdy belt, a pair of pants, a new pairs of sports pants, new socks, and a large pillow for Mona. All worth the bucks I spent πŸ™‚

Anyways, these are the main things in my life nowadays. Wherever you are I hope you and your family are keeping safe and you have access to vaccinations. I am not eligible for vaccination yet, but cannot wait to get it. If you are in Ontario, my sympathies. The situation got so bad there that I cannot help but get angry at administrators. They failed the people. Please stay safe. You are in my thoughts.

Hope Hoping GIF by The Bachelor - Find & Share on GIPHY

No plans for the long weekend, and this does not feel right

Boy, one more day and then we have a long weekend. But, where is my excitement?

I think I am not tired anymore, and as such, having an extra day caving in at home does not excite me. You know what they say; anticipation makes it all better. Yeah, I have no plans, and as such, nothing much to anticipate or get excited about. So, here I am, thinking how to take advantage of this long weekend.

I think I will make sure that I bake sourdough this weekend. It has been sometime. Since the lock-down, I think I baked once or twice. I love sourdough, but I did not want to have yet another item in my to-do list. This is just one indication of how difficult and busy the last one year was….

Another thing I want to do is to clean a little bit deeper this weekend. Maybe I can dust the blinds as well – damn things collect dust like a vacuum πŸ™‚ Will be great to get rid of the dust this weekend.

Yet another thing I want to do is to visit a thrift store. In the last one year, I think I visited it once. ONCE!! Imagine. I cannot wait to check the stores and see whether I can find something for my and Mona (my foster cat)’s use. One thing I would like is a wood shallow container/furniture that I can turn into a bed for Mona. She has two make-shift beds, but I think I would love something better, which I can also decorate. But, I really am not in the mood of getting in places and being in a crowd. So I think I will pass this idea for now.

I also would like to cook something new. I keep eating the same things over and over. It is, interestingly, not boring. But I would like to eat different things, for a change, and make it a some sort of celebration meal. So, when I go for grocery shopping, this should be in my mind. Perhaps a pastry, or an eggplant dish (which I love), or meatball. And, I cannot wait to put my teeth in watermelon (oh, summer – please come quick).

We shall see πŸ™‚

Holiday season is here :)

We have 3 more days to work and then will have 11 days off – how fantastic is this?

Cannot wait πŸ™‚

This year is different than previous years. I will likely not go to any functions or meet with friends. But I still will do a couple of things.

  1. Gift my neighbours. The only people I consistently and lovingly gift during Christmas is my next door neighbours. They are wonderful and I could not ask for a better neighbour. I picked something nice for them. I hope they will like it
  2. Summarize my financial expenses and savings within the last year and make plans for the next year. I keep records of my expenses, which helps me to see where my hard-earned dollars are going. Some years and better than the others, but I think it was a good year and I was able to increase my net worth. It is also a good opportunity to look at where I spend most and see whether I can do better. I am planning to do these in the next weeks, Exciting!
  3. Clean and declutter the house!! I am unmotivated to do this, as it takes a big chunk of my holidays. I clean every corner and the carpets – by hand – which takes so much time and energy. Decluttering, however, is fun! I decluttered 3 cabinets last weekend and I have a lot of items to donate. I like this. I also cut up old clothes and made myself a nice chunk of disposable cleaning clothes. I am particularly excited about these πŸ˜‰ My plan is to clean two empty rooms hopefully tomorrow so that I can spare one day from my holidays
  4. I do not wish to work or check/get crazy about work emails during the holidays. Folks – it is such a freedom and I deserve it. You, too
  5. Clean the email boxes and organize & store the bills to open space for the next year’s bills.
  6. Copy the pictures and important documents in an external drive – you never know when the computer will crash (lesson learnt many years ago in a hard way) – highly recommended
  7. Call relatives and friends that I have not spoken in a while.
  8. Visit thrift stores!! I cannot wait – I went to a thrift store only once since the lock down started. I am excited about the prospect of visiting one again. I will also bring in my donations at the same time – win-win πŸ™‚
  9. Spend time reading a book or two, or binge-watch some Netflix series. I deserve this πŸ™‚
  10. And make pastry to celebrate the new year. It is my tradition to have pastry with beef for the new year’s Eve. I cannot wait – yummy πŸ™‚

random thoughts

It is a beautiful morning.

I am sipping my coffee with no rush, however, I have plans for the rest of the day. So I am alert.

First, I will donate the extra house and personal items I found in my home during the cleaning + decluttering saga last week. I plan to take the bus, which will be a challenge. But I will try.

Then I will shop at the same donation/thrift store. I need nothing particular but would love to see whether I can get a great item or two that I will love to have.

Then will come the book store. There is a book that I want to buy. I am hoping maybe it will be on sale this week. Who knows? Unless I check it..

Then I will go back to office for a short time. I did some work last week which I want to check and finalize. It is not supposed to take a long time, and knowing that that work will be done will feel awesome – cannot wait.

Then I am supposed to visit a sick colleague of mine. She is doing well now, recovering, which is great news. But I am invited and I will go. It feels good to be supporting someone in such a stage. I am looking for an elegant visit.

Then, I will find myself in front of the TV watching Netflix. Have I mentioned that I have got Netflix a week or two ago? Yes, I have! Man, what was I waiting for – it is amazing! It helps me empty my mind from the daily clutter of thoughts, spend more time in the living room, cook meals, and go to bed a little bit later than my usual 8-9pm ritual. These are all positive things so far, including going to bed late. I think it actually helps me with my insomnia – that I sleep well till later, say 8 am, rather than 5 am. A shift in the perception of insomnia. It helps πŸ™‚

Netflix means an extra cost in my monthly bills, but it is a great entertainment. So, for 11 bucks a month, nothing better comes to my mind. It was silly of me to think that I was saving money without it – but I know.

Some expenses are good expenses.

Have a great day friends – all and well.

Financial report 2019

It looks like it has been a great year.

I could save mostly in the second half of the year and boy, was it good πŸ™‚

  • My net worth increased around $62,000 in the last year. More than half of it is my investments and the return; as the markets have been doing good lately, this is reflected as a good increase in my overall net worth. Great πŸ™‚
  • I did not pay any mortgage pre-payments and it shows: I paid only $16,000 off my mortgage year. This feels very little, but nevertheless I am grateful for it πŸ™‚
  • My chequing account has increased to a healthy sum that I had aimed for; it feels amazing as I was hardly able to reach such a goal before. Amazing.. πŸ™‚
  • This being said; right after these calculations I put an order for my first pre-payment in the amount of $5,000 πŸ™‚ It will be in effect next week. This way, I will enter 2020 with less than 110K debt. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you πŸ™‚

I do not know you but we have less CPP contributions starting summers, so the winter means we get less of a salary and as a result, our savings are much less during the first half of the year. As also the power bill gets higher during winter, this translates into small accumulations. Kind of discouraging, but here is my plan which I hope will help me do well:

Continue the following practices:

  • taking the bus or walking, rather than taking the cab
  • continuing to take advantage of loyalty cards and occasional coupons
  • stocking up dry food and cleaning products when they are on sale
  • continuing to shop from thrift stores, especially clothes, trousers, house items, flower pots, and books
  • contributing the tax return, coupon and loyalty card savings, and anything else that comes extra or by luck to make a pre-mortgage payment. I am still not sure whether I will do these payments as I go, or at the end of the year.

My plan for the next year is to contribute $19,000 to RRSP/TFSA and save $5,000 as pre-payment, and have my chequing account increase by $5,000.

Wish me luck πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

random thoughts

I lack my regular excitement for the upcoming holidays.

Why?

Because I have not been anticipating.

It is true – anticipation of having or doing something makes it more exciting. I still have a week before my 2 weeks of time-off starts.

So I kind of hoping that I will develop that anticipation and, hence, the excitement of the holiday season!

What could be my plans and therefore anticipation items for the holidays?

Hmmmm….

 

1. As usual, I will analyze my spending in the last one year and calculate the savings and net-worth next week. This is exciting.

Planning for the next year will also be exciting. Are there any areas in my financial plan that can be expanded, changed, or improved? How can I save more money? Can I get a side gig and earn some extra money?

Good questions.

 

2. As usual – again, yes – I could look at my life style and implement healthy choices; better eating; more diverse food; losing weight; walking everyday; home-exercises, especially to strengthen my back, bones, and muscles

When can I make them permanent efforts?

 

3. New hobbies! I am getting interested in stained glass now – can I find a workshop on it?

Can be quite exciting πŸ™‚

 

4. Cleaning and decluttering the home – yay!!! My most consistent holiday season activity :((( Hah haa…. or Argh….

I love decluttering, but cleaning not so much. Often times it takes around a week to do this cleaning…… I also need to declutter my computer files and email…. Well. one thing at a time…

 

5. I sure would like to shop.

There are a couple of items I am eyeing now – a TV and stainless steel kettle being the two of them. I can also get some furniture for home, especially cabinets. I also would like some new pants and a purse. These last items may be easily found at the thrift store, which you know I am a regular customer of πŸ™‚ I have not been to the thrift stores for some time, so I am looking forward to this.

 

6. Reading books, visiting cafe houses, eating different foods, and reflecting on the year going by…..

Just stopping will be so good… So good…. There are so many things to be realized and appreciated once I manage to stop running from one task to other, from one plan to the next. Reflecting has always been one of my most cherished activities.

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Reflecting on 2019 and welcoming 2020 with hope, excitement, and love.

Hmmm.

.

.

Yes.

πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

 

1st day of a 4 day long-weekend

I slept and woke up thinking “I am free”.

I had no need to rush; no bus to catch; no meeting to get ready for; no stress to handle; no plan to follow.

I was free πŸ™‚

I enjoyed my coffee; responded to some emails; talked to family; and then took off to a thrift store.

I was lucky – I found a couple of adorable plant pots and a lovely blouse. All for 14 bucks – how come 14 bucks can make you so excited and happy πŸ™‚

Thrifting is exciting. I still am not completely comfortable with thrifting certain items or being seen while thrifting (I know, I know….), but the excitement of treasure hunting is real (where else can one find all very unique items at one place?) So is knowing that I am saving chokes of money (where else can one find great clothing, books, houseware, small furniture, fabric, purses and so on all so affordable?. Sometimes they are even unused..).

Later, I returned home, cleaned it, and cooked myself some meal. Tonite I will be joining some friends to celebrate the birthday of a friend. I am looking forward to it.

Tomorrow?

Well, tomorrow is another day. I have no plans, but will likely end up doing some house chores – like laundry. I really would like to, however, cuddle with a nice novel and drink some hot chocolate! πŸ™‚

Have a great weekend everyone πŸ™‚

 

 

all the good things – check

In a long time, I have not felt as good as today πŸ™‚ This deserves a celebration and a lots of gratitude.

  • waking up early and hitting the office early – check

there is an incredible peace coming out of early mornings. It is quiet and gives me the much needed distraction-free time to do work. I enjoy these times enormously and am kind of grateful that my sleep pattern is not the greatest, but works like a charm for me by making me wake up early πŸ™‚

  • ending a time of project writing period till August- check

I have been designing, developing, and writing new projects very intensely in the last few years. This week I submitted another one, which for now let me be free of this enjoyable but stressful activity. I feel free to move on to new activities and I appreciate the sense of accomplishment as well as the reduced self-inflicted stress πŸ™‚

  • working nice and easy and moving a number of things today – check

this is always a great feeling! being happy with my own performance is so important – it limits my self-beating episodes that inevitably reduces my self-confidence. I am very grateful

  • eating healthy, home-cooked meal and a banana today – check

I make an attempt to eat better and it shows πŸ™‚ I feel more energetic and happier when I take care of myself

  • resolving a conflict with a colleague of mine – check

this has been going for a few weeks and I think we finally are okay. I affirmed prior to meeting that I would keep calm and be supportive. I also made an effort to speak less and listen more. It did not hurt, and also supported the work-relationship. Thus, what a great feeling – win-win-win!

  • helping a team member of mine by using large papers and drawing the concepts and our work details – check

this was much needed as my team member is working on a rather quite complicated work. Many times we felt lost among the details and eventually got demotivated. The drawing was a great idea, where each detail was shown and I also advised to keep it so that we both could refer to it to gather our thoughts. I like the idea and my team member was also pleased. We will also document more so that we can refer to when we need the details. This went well and I am grateful that we have had the materials (large colourful papers and markers) to do so

  • supporting a team member by attending to their fund rising event – check

this always feels great. They often do not let me know, but when I know I make an effort to support their causes. Today they raised money to help patients affected by a disorder – I am so proud of them

  • taking the bus in the afternoon – check

I have done well by taking the bus. I did not wait too long and it was an easy ride. I also saved around 8 bucks by not taking the cab. 8 bucks is 8 bucks. It may be small, but it is mighty πŸ™‚

  • enjoying the night with all the positive feelings the day has brought – check

I am simmering this feeling of all the good things that today has brought to me. I am not in rush, nor stressed, which are additionally great. I have time to think about the weekend and what I can do for myself. For example, I think it is time that I visit the thrift stores and may be get a pot or two. Or books. I will enjoy my time there – that is for sure.

  • tending to my plants at the office and sharing one of them with a team member of mine – check

I have had a small plant that I had grown from a small cutting. It really hit of in my office and has flowered! That little thing (7-8 cm tops) gave incredibly coloured flowers. In so many ways it is such a miracle plant. You may ask why I gave it away. My team member deserves the best as they have been doing incredible in the last few years and I thought that miraculous plant would just fit their character – resilient and mighty. I am very happy that they found each other.

IMG_5045
this is a different plant (a coleus) – the colours are amazing and this plant has been very sturdy and quick growing. I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in a mesmerizing plant πŸ™‚ look at the structure of this leaf – what a wonderful creature. I am so lucky to have it (so can you – please adopt a plant and experience this joy)

 

 

 

 

money can buy happiness

Yesterday I treated myself with a thrift store visit.

Those who follows this blog know well that it is one of my most favorite past time activities. It is always exciting to go through the shelves finding treasures. I purchased a number of useful and lovely things over the last few years, and it helps me support not only others, but my own purse as well. It is wonderful in so many ways.

Yesterday I was not looking anything particularly, with the exception of a book or two. Well, I bought a book that inspires me to think positively – which is a real treasure. The positive and encouraging words are just what I needed in a state of “having fried nerves”. I feel hopeful, positive, and more welcoming whatever life throws in front of me after reading the pages of that book. It is amazing that 6 bucks can create such positive experiences. It was well worth the money.

I also purchased a new backpack that I have been looking for for some time. It has never been used (my guess based on a critical assessment), has a good size, and multiple pockets that will make its usage effective. I feel lucky to have found this back pack. No more the old, battered backpack that I have been feeling very conscious about. What a relief πŸ™‚

I also purchased a what appears to be a laptop case that I use to carry my documents and paperwork. It is brand new (again based on my critical assessment), has a great colour and shape, and takes up all my hundreds of pages of paperwork that I often carry with me between home and office. Just thinking about it making me excited – what a find – pretty and enriching/easing my life. I am lucky indeed.

I also got a sugar dispenser. For the past 3-5 years I have been using an old dispenser at the office. It was not in good shape and often spilled sugar whenever I handled it. Cleaning sugar granules after it was something that I dreaded, but despite for looking for a better dispenser for many months, it was not until yesterday that I was able to find one. Hello easy life – I like you! πŸ™‚ It is amazing how small things like the old dispenser was taking my energy away. Now, I fixed that problem and feel relieved, however small it can be.

Better yet, guess what?

It turned out that there was a sale on the items I purchased so I got all of these for a total of 20 bucks with 50% off. I did not even know that there was a sale yesterday and everything I purchased made a positive difference in my life. Wow…

I have been thinking; 20 bucks often may sound a lot. What is the worth of:

  • being able to get rid of the old problematic dispenser that needed me to clean after it every single time I used it;
  • feeling positive and hopeful after reading the book,
  • having the excitement and comfort the laptop case gives me, and
  • the relief coming with the backpack, which will help me get rid of the sub-conscious judgment I hold against myself (for having such an ugly and kind of cheap-looking backpack)

You got that right.

On top of that; think about this – my cab fare from the office to home is 10 bucks. There are times that these rides provide me with comfort, but when I think about all the other items that I can get with that money that will free my time, provide comfort to me, or make me feel better, I ask myself how to better use of my money.

That is why I also purchased a soap with a lovely scent yesterday (from another store). It is slightly expensive than my regular soap, but day after day, it will enrich my life experiences.

Verdict is clear and loud. Money can make one happy.

 

 

holidays diary – Day 8

Today I allowed myself to fully focus on my own enjoyment and it has been great πŸ™‚

First of all, I slept till 9 am – wow! Insomniacs like myself would know that this is huge – I am grateful.

I decided that I would spend the day at thrift stores and left home before noon. While saturdays are my weekly house chores day, you can predict that I let go of it today. Today I only focused on my enjoyment. What a change? I believe I am getting really relax and free of self-imposed necessities – how lovely πŸ™‚

Before thrift stores, I visited a store and bought two gifts while they were on sale. I am pleased with them. I think one of them will go to a friend of mine who has been very generous with me. I hope she will like it. The other one will be a gift for the next year – I am usually not into gifts, but at work we do have one or two socials with gift exchange each year, so buying one right now feels great and will save me time and money later. So, I was very excited about this as well.

Then I visited the first thrift store. I bought a great set of mugs still in their boxes and apparently never been used. I cannot wait to use them. I also purchased a pitcher that I have been meaning to get for some time – it will be great in the office. What else did I buy? A small pot (of course) for hanging plants – it is cute and I plan to have it in my office, if not in my bathroom. A little spider plant would fit in it just well. It is very cute.

Then, I walked to the second one (I am so lucky that both of these stores are at walking distance to each other). There I spent more time (it is bigger than the first one) and it was delightful πŸ™‚ I bought an oven tray in excellent condition for only 2.99 bucks (what a steal – it is hard to find that type of trays here). I will bake many sourdough loafs in it πŸ™‚ I also bought a wooden tray to put my spice jars in on my counter. It fit like a charm and no more bits of spice on my counter that prompts me to wipe it regularly πŸ™‚ Of course, I also found a very unusual type of pot with pink/lavender colour, which will be an excellent company for my coleus. I also bought two books, which I am enjoying reading.

My good luck continued on the way back and after waiting for only a minute my bus arrived! Today was kind of wet with snow and rain, so I could not appreciate it more. I then went to another small shop around my home and finally got a fresh batch of cumin and black pepper – I have been meaning to get them for a long time and I am glad that I have done this today.

I continued to care about only myself today and cooked myself yet another healthy meal πŸ™‚ One of the greatest part of the holidays was that I cooked 3-4 meals and they were all healthy and nutritious. I feel like I am taking care of myself and this makes me feel extra excited.

Tomorrow I am baking two sourdough loafs – one for myself and one for a good friend of mine. She invited me over and I will be happy to see her tomorrow. I had also bought gifts for her in early December – I cannot wait to bring them to her. So, tomorrow will be a great day, too πŸ™‚

Lets’ remember that the new year will be the year of Ease, Comfort, and Appreciation.

Happy Saturday everyone!

 

 

holidays diary – day 7

Today it felt more like a break and better – I am grateful! πŸ™‚

I am going to bed late and I am getting up after 7 am – this has been one of the blessing of this break – thank you!

I am cooking and eating relatively healthy – this feels very energizing and I am kind of proud of myself πŸ™‚

I worked nice and easy at the office (the last two days), which is amazing. It is quiet and beautiful. Not getting 50 emails a day, not having anyone calling or waltzing in my office regularly, and not rushing from one meeting to other have been feeling amazing. On top of that, the clean and organized office has been a blessing – it feels energetic, spacious, and just lovely. I am in love with my office nowadays πŸ™‚

My home is clean, decluttered, and well organized as well. Little re-arrangements here and there have made a positive impact. It feels really lovelyΒ  πŸ™‚

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Today was very cold, with possibly -10/15 C. Waiting for the bus was not fun, but it was well worth it. I have not taken the cab in the last while and my purse feels quite rich. On top of this, I limited, significantly limited, my junk food consumption, which makes me save lots of money πŸ™‚ I feel very abundant, now that I have tons of extra money (well, not tons of it, but you know what I mean). Shopping hence does not feel like a way to further spend money, but to treat (with healthy food) and nourish myself. Overall, these two (taking the bus and limiting the junk food) always make the most impact on my financial well-being. I hope to be able to keep going.

This being said, I always have a great frugal life in the first 6 months of the year, and then with summer I seem to open the purse. Can I make it an exception this year? We shall see πŸ™‚ Honestly I do not have much of an alternative; my chequing account is very low and my mortgage is due renewal this year, which means I am looking at a mortgage with a higher interest. I must be keeping my money as much as I can in order to keep up with these…. This is my plan. Wish me luck!

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This year I have not posted an yearly financial well-being/net-worth post. The main reason is that I have accidentally deleted around 6 months of my recordings. Oh, well. That is alright. My net-worth has increased around 25K, mostly thanks to home equity, but my investments (RRSP and TFSA) have lost around 10-15K…… Go figure…. I am taking it easy, however. Now I may have lost money, but I have faith that over time it will increase again. I have time.

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Tomorrow, I plan to visit the thrift stores again. A pot that I bought yesterday find its plant, a beautiful prayer plant I have at the office πŸ™‚ Together, they are the most elegantΒ  and elite decoration I have ever had in my possession. I feel so lucky and happy about them. Long live the thrift stores and all the people who donate there πŸ™‚

I will visit 2 stores tomorrow. I shop at both of them; one being more affordable than the other, but the other one is bigger. I have no ambitions whatsoever and will just take my time to explore every inch of both of them. Who knows, maybe I will find some unexpectedly interesting stuff. Tomorrow will be my first “for my enjoyment only” day of the holidays.

Let’s remember that the new year is the year of Ease, Comfort, and Appreciation πŸ™‚

 

 

 

all the good things – check

Friends – life has been up and down, but at least some things are going well. I must cherish and celebrate πŸ™‚

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  • sleeping longer than the usual 6 hours and feeling good in the morning – check

this has been the 3rd morning in the last week, which really amazes me. It has been sometime that I could feel relax and comfortable enough to sleep in (rather than rushing to work). If you can sleep well, please give your thanks – it is a beautiful feeling

  • working without stress – check
  • witnessing a wonderful work of a staff member of mine – check

this team member did beyond my imagination!! we have been working very intensely about their project in the last two months or so (it did not go well for a year or so…), and today we have had significant progress. All the hard-work and stress pays off! This progress means;

a) I have a great staff that I must elevate even higher;

b) our overall performance is much higher that we or others thought;

c) we are confident and ready to show-case this work and get recognition;

d) the confidence that we have now is amazing (the next time something this big does not work, we will put our 150% into it again and solve it);and

e) we know that we can deliver this project, and as such, a significant load is off my shoulder right now :))))

  • loving my plants dearly – check

what a beautiful and glorious feeling! Looking at them, seeing them grown and thrive makes me feel happy and genuinely excited πŸ™‚ I am so lucky!

  • getting a new succulent prop from a colleague and giving away props to three other colleagues – check

I am lucky in the sense that people gift me with plants and props (young plants) and I in turn lovingly gift them my own plants πŸ™‚ Today I was able to get one new species and give away three others. It feels great to be sharing my plants/props with others, knowing that I have more than I can handle and others will love and cherish them as much as I am

  • buying a nice spider plant, which was on sale – check

yesterday I had seen some green/purple spider-plant like plant in the grocery store. They were on sale (3.5 bucks each) but also not in great shape. I had decided not to buy them, now that I had been also in a shopping ban period.

However, this morning I made a pact with myself and decided that if I took the bus but not the cab in the afternoon, I could rather use the money to purchase the plant! So, I went there and found that there were new and healthy-looking ones, still on sale and grabbed one right away πŸ™‚ I came home admiring its leaves and giving it a good soak of water. I placed it on a window sil for now, but am planning to re-pot sometime soon and separate. Colors are amazing, green on top but purple at the back, which is great for the eye. I plan to combine a part of it with my coffee plant (which has been doing amazingly well) in a new pot, and place in my office. I cannot wait! πŸ™‚

  • planning to go to thrift stores tomorrow and purchase new pots – check

I know, I know.. how is it that I am on a shopping ban and then planning to spend money…?. I have no excuse other than the fact that I want this.. I want to see whether I can get 4-5 other pots and place my rapidly growing plants in them this week. They are my joy and pride, and I love to be able to shop (rather than working) tomorrow afternoon

  • eating two apples in the afternoon – check

it has been sometime that I munched on apples and the ones I have had today were particularly tasty and sweet. I am doing good πŸ™‚

  • having the night to myself – check
  • feeling good – check

going back to a previous point, knowing that I have turned things around with a team member of mine has been very elating and motivating. I know once again that stress that I had to take lately has been for something to come. Efforts pay off and things turn around. I will let this feeling sink in for a moment or two, so that next time I can remember it easily and find serenity…..

πŸ™‚

 

 

thrifting is addictive

I have decided that it was time that I take a break from the thrift stores – they are so addictive!!!! πŸ™‚

I have been to one yesterday and another two today. It is just a great feeling to be able to see all the interesting items and purchase them for affordable prices.

I have purchased from thrift stores so many things over the years, including blouses/shirts, purses, cardigans, pots/planters, porcelain plates for planters, sewing materials, small furniture, frames, decorative items, and many more. I am in love with the idea of having great items and saving money while also helping others. I also love the fact that I do not (usually) buy things that I would not love, use, or need. Yet, I figured that it became my favorite past-time activity, and since the prices are so good and items are so nice, I keep buying.

I do not want to buy anymore. I have a great wardrobe supplemented by thrift purchases. I have around 30 pots/planters already. It is like I am hoarding them now.

I have everything I need right now.

I was once proud of re-purposing and re-using items that I had. Not anymore. I now keep buying from thrift stores.

Time for a decluttering activity, donating what I have extra, and focusing on re-purposing items.

Wish me luck! πŸ™‚

 

 

 

shopping ban week

Gotta curb this spending habit I have been having lately (mostly cab and junk food expenses… yes, again… time to fix this).

What is the plan?

Well – I budget only $60 to consume till the next pay-day (12 days), including grocery and others. Should I walk in the morning and save the bus fare, this amount may as well increase a little bit. Then I can go buy some more pots from thrift store for my plants.

My choice now πŸ™‚

I have everything I need; my fridge and pantry is full of food; and I have no urgent needs (except the physiotherapy and dental fees that I expect this week).

Let’s do it!

have not written for a while….

I have not written much lately – what have been going on in my life?

Well. It was mostly quite positive experiences πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

Affirmations and mental health/outlook: I have had quite reduced stress levels since I came back from home-visit. I was into affirmations, which miraculously made my mental state and thoughts positive, and me happier and healthier. They do work, my friends πŸ™‚ I think we all need to “hear from ourselves” that things are exactly as they are supposed to be, there are many beautiful things and people happening in life, there are many opportunities out there (most may be shaded by the daily clutter, but if we stop and think about them, they do appear), and love, peace, health, success, recognition, and money all comes if we think like this. Happiness is a possibility and is available. We just need to open up to it. And maybe spend some time everyday reflecting on them πŸ™‚

Succulents and new friendships: I have come across another plant enthusiast and we hit it off right away. We have similar interests and are at similar stages of life. Exchanging succulent cuttings was a blessing that I cannot cherish enough. Certainly a great experience, not only for getting new succulents, but also getting to know a person like myself in many ways and developing a kind of friendship at the same time.

Budget and frugality: My budget has been going well, with a frugal life style re-implemented. I spend more than I project, but I continue to save every week consistently. I found that health related expenses (vision care, medications, physiotherapy etc.) take up a good chunk time to time, but other times it is fine. I find ways to save, however small they may be. Of course the exceptions would be new succulents acquired every once a while, pots and soils purchased for these beauties, and occasional social activities. I made it regular to go to thrift stores for pots and I also purchased a number of nice blouses at such reasonable prices that make my life abundant and easy. I am grateful.

Changing how I work: In terms of work, I continue to change how I approach it and how I let it to shape my personal life, mental health, and life priorities. I have got new responsibilities, an additional role that I was interested in and for which I am really excited about, and am dropping yet another role that does not serve me anymore (and was getting on my nerves. They may want me back, and in such a case, I may re-consider it, but until then). And, I realize once more that a lot of people that work with me get dependent on me to conduct, move and complete the work, which is so much more load for me than I should shoulder. I distanced myself from a couple of colleagues that saved me some time. But I must also do this with my trainees, which is a challenge. I will continue to work on finding a solution to this.

Changing myself: And just this weekend, I realized that my next personal challenge will be to “express things positively” rather than negatively. This weekend I met with a friend of mine and I at one point was hard on myself and was criticizing myself (I was criticizing myself for not rescuing more plants from a certain death; they were being discarded and I took 4-5 of them to care for and the rest I did not pay attention because I already had these types of plants). She said “I cannot believe you have turned such a positive experience to such a negative one“. She was right.

I decide right now not to use “I should” “no/not” as much as I normally do.

We will see how this goes πŸ™‚

Have a wonderful night everyone!

random thoughts

It has been a fine day πŸ™‚

The morning was peaceful and warm enough. I have had a pleasant bus ride to office, enjoyed my coffee, took care of urgent matters, socialized with a colleague during lunch time, bought two lovely pots for my succulents (they are amazing – originally tea cups with beautiful colours and shape) from a thrift store, by the way (double amazing!), came home kind of late from the office, did grocery shopping and bought myself nourishing food, all for a small amount of money.

After the careless spending that took place between the summer of 2017 and this year, I am back to my sensible, frugal self. I gotta! My chequing account was at the minus side at the beginning of this month and I knew I could not keep doing what I was doing. Right after the beautiful family visit, here I am at a kind of stricker but nevertheless abundant frugal life. I must say I have saved quite a chunk of my salary this month and I am moving the chequing account to the positive side. It feels great πŸ™‚

Originally I had an extensive shopping ban till new year, but after 3 weeks I realized such a regime was making me quite unhappy. So last week and today I made visits to thrift stores and bought myself some nice blouses and pots. I am very excited about all of the purchases, which costed me around 30 bucks. What did I buy? 4 blouses all in great condition and loveable; one new plastic pot, one ceramic pot just right for my beautiful succulent props, two other pots I mentioned above (the tea cups),and a large sturdy ceramic plate to be used as a tray for a large terra cotta pot of mine πŸ™‚ Just remembering these makes me joyful and excited πŸ™‚

Life is good, my friends.

I have other good news. I have been wishing for an additional position within my organization in the last 1.5 years. It is something I would absolutely enjoy (it is related to training new project managers like myself), which would also strengthen my place in my work-place. Luckily, this year the colleague who has been undertaking this position had to have a leave and I was offered the position as a replacement! This is on top of what I am already doing, so it is extra work, but I am up for it. My boss wants to see how this one year will go and after that we will see whether my colleague or I would stay in the position. Even for one year I am grateful for this opportunity and yesterday, when I get the appointment formal, I was hyper the whole night with excitement and could hardly sleep at night πŸ™‚ I believe that life is supporting me well and my hard work to keep my job and become more successful is paying off πŸ™‚ I am grateful!

Super duper πŸ™‚

Have a great Friday night everyone πŸ™‚

 

 

 

how blogging changes your life

I have been contemplating, however late it seems this year, about the changes I want to make in my life in 2018.

Then I realized I have already done quite a bit of changes and improvements that made my life abundant, easy, more self-sufficient, and satisfactory. I think I am good where I am πŸ™‚

The majority of the changes I have made fall in the following categories: frugal life; simple life; reduced waste; and self-reliance.

Let me explain.

The need for frugal live was driven by the home-ownership that necessitated cutting costs and increasing age that require better investments so that I could handle the repair and other costs a house requires (a 100 years old house requires many) and the anxiety and uncertainty about my own future. While I was on the average pretty good in living below my means, thanks to many inspiring stories and bloggers going through the same journey I found some kind of strength and higher level of motivation. Score! πŸ™‚ Frugal life-standards made me appreciate what I have had and the excitement coming out of finding ways to cut cost, better deals, and better financial management. As a result comes the feeling of being less dependent on material and being abundant in so many different ways.

As part of frugal choices, I also switched from automatic take of cab in the morning and the afternoon during the work days. It was a struggle alright and it still is. Bus operates only every 30 min and in our harsh Canadian winters it is not a pleasant activity to wait in an open bus stop. I still take the cab time to time when I am crunched in time or tired. But when compared to previous years, I say the reduction in my transportation cost is an impressive success.

I also walk time to time to work and from work. I am usually good at routinely walking in the afternoon. In summer time walking in the morning is also very pleasant. I feel great after walking 25-30 min and it also makes me proud of myself for having a day relying on my own abilities rather than others. It is one example of self-sufficiency and easy-peasy life style I have developed lately.

Other examples of self-sufficiency efforts are baking my own bread, making my own jams/marmalade, ad pickling. They are not only exciting activities, but I also share them with neighbours and friends, which gives me an extra level of excitement.

The frugal life also brings in reducing waste, particularly food waste. I now am very conscious about what I purchase and I also freeze food. Frozen food is very practical for me as I do not like cooking everyday and a ready meal is always appreciated, especially if they are home-made. I implemented other changes in my aim to reduce the waste. Plastic shopping bags is a good example; I mostly use my tote now. I donate my clothes and other items if they are in good conditions to prevent them from ending up in the landfill (and support people in need). I use mostly re-usable cleaning cloths rather than paper towels. I cut up old clothes (not good enough to be donated) and use them as one-time cleaning cloths. I make use of coupons, while not in great quantity, to help with my expenses. Last, I also purchase items from thrift stores that helps not only me and environment but also the people in need and the organizations that support them.

I also declutter once a year or so to identify the extra, un-wanted, or battered items, and then remove them from my office or home by dumping, donating, or re-using. Excellent activity I must say. What a relief once they are gone out of my life. Additionally, it helps me to see what I already have and make use of them and feel grateful for their presence in my life. How many times I found a pair of shoes or a piece of clothe in good condition that I could use? Blogs about decluttering was instrumental in doing this activity at a more conscious level.

When I look at all of these I kind of realize that they are all inter-connected; frugal life style is powered by decluttering and making smarter choices about expenses and needs/wants; waste and unnecessary expenses are reduced by many small acts; abundance increase by being aware and grateful; and life becomes quite easier once we realize the alternative ways to do the daily activities.

How is blogging related to all of these?

First, we by sharing our own stories and plans somehow support the others with the same interest. Second by sharing our plans, we move one step closer to implementing these plans in our lives. Third we often find new ways to enrich our lives and reach our goals; whether it is through shopping bans, or developing a hearty sourdough starter by looking at the others’ experiences.

My take on my current life style is that I in fact have done very well in reaching these aims and changing my priorities. It took me around 3 years, but I am content at where I am right now and I think this blog and blog sphere have been instrumental in it.

 

1st day of the holidays

It turns out today was a paid holiday for me πŸ™‚ Can I be more uninterested in my employee rights? πŸ™‚

Anyways; I went to office and worked with a team member of mine till noon. I then cleaned the office and looked out of the window to register the fact that I was now starting an off time without much of an obligation….. What a great opportunity to feel free… I just cannot feel it yet, though…. I hope it will occur soon.

I then went to visit two thrift stores. If I remember correctly this is what I had done last year as well – start the holidays with something exciting like thrifting! I found two shirts, a lovely long and soft cardigan, and a new backpack. Altogether they costed me around 28 bucks. One of my most expensive thrift store haul, but then the items are in great condition and the backpack is so cool that I cannot believe how lucky I have been to find it πŸ™‚Β 

Excellent start for holidays πŸ™‚

in preparation for the long weekend

We have a long weekend coming up – The Remembrance Day in Canada. We remember once again all the armed forces that died while protecting us. May they all rest in peace. What a sacrifice..

Hence the next Monday is a holiday. This is the last one before the holidays. Needless to say I am excited about it. Here are my plans:

  1. Make orange jam! Yes, my first trial of this type and second trial of jam πŸ™‚ Exciting!
  2. Work. I will take this opportunity to do some more work, now that I have a great acceleration. Things are moving and I feel fantastic about how creative I am nowadays. Very much appreciated.
  3. Sew something? I have not been able to find time to sew anything lately. Even jam covers would be nice – let me try that πŸ™‚
  4. Thrift store visit. I want to do that so hard πŸ™‚ Time to renew my wardrobe a little bit and purchase clothes that are more active-style like. I figured with my new short hair (which seems to make me look young) and the gray hair growing fast (which reminds me constantly that I am not young anymore), I find that an active style makes me feel better about myself.Β 

 

sometimes the time just flies

Today was one of those days; time flied like nothing before. One moment I was eager to finish work and finally in the evening I realized I will not be able to do what I think I would do. That means this weekend will be a little bit busy with work.Β 

Fies GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

My plans for the weekend are similar to before; clean the house, do the laundry, pick up milk from a store, prepare sourdough, and keep the yard tidy and free of weeds. And of course, some work…..It has been sometime that I have been to anywhere other than home, office, and a nearby store or two. It would be nice if I could visit the thrift stores or others, but I guess this will have to wait till next week.

Deal With It GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Why do I like thrift stores that much?

I shop there time to time. As a matter of fact some of my favorite blouses and fabrics are from thrift stores. It is affordable. More than that, however, I am interested in seeing different things. Thrift stores in my area are large and they contain more stuff and variety than the majority of the stores I know here. It is interesting to go through these diverse items. I particularly like the old stuff; like old metal objects or frames, which I would like to collect over time. I cannot wait till the next visit πŸ™‚

Thrift Shop GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

By the way, I will be away for a couple of days in Europe. There is something great about the airports; they make me feel like I am leaving every issue behind and am ready for an adventure. This anticipation only should give me enough motivation to finish my work this weekend and the next week πŸ™‚

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I want to go back to my regular self

It is not good to work under stress and undertake too much.

It is not good to eat junk.

It is not good to drink so much soft drink per day.

It is not good to spend money on cab while I can take the bus or walk.

It is not good to feel like nothing I work on moving while they actually do.

I want to be fine again, like prior to 5 weeks ago when I was walking, eating healthy, visiting thrift stores, saving money, and feeling great about myself.

I really do.

I think it is time that I take a couple of days really off and slowly start doing what I used to enjoy; thrift stores will be a good start. Hopefully sometime soon.

thrifting becoming a second nature

That is right.

Today at noon I found myself wanting to take a break. So I walked to two thrift stores nearby. This was mostly because of the great treasures I hunted this past weekend – i can see how easily it can become addictive πŸ™‚

Today I bought a couple of empty frames, a coffee press, two art work, and a blouse.

Both of the artwork are giving me delight and making me very excited and happy! They were the most expensive things I have ever bought from thrift stores (both over 25 bucks together), but I think this money is well spent.

I have lots of photos to post in the empty frames; I cannot wait to hang them on the wall πŸ™‚ Together with the art works, these frames will help me turn my house into a home. With character. And beauty.

And the coffee press was a great deal; I bet it is new and never been used (i could not detect even a light coffee stain on it or on the filter) and it had the best deal: it was only 2 bucks.Β 

And last but not the least; the blouse I have bought is so cute, so lovable that I am in love once again! This is the 5th blouse I have purchased from thrift stores this year and I could not be happier with my choices.

Life is good my friends πŸ™‚

Dress GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

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taking some vacation time next week on

I jut learnt that I cannot carry my annual vacation time to next year. So I decided life was too short and I could make excellent use of my paid vacation time.

You may think I will be going away, but this is not the case. I plan to spend time, thankfully free time, at work and home.

Let me tell you my exciting plans:

Work:Β  One may say that I am taking time off to finish work and that would be the truth. My expectation is that I will be free to work on my own work without any meetings or commitments to my team members or the committees I work in. I may work at home or in the office – does not matter. I am so looking forward to this and finishing up important tasks that are good for my own success.

Home: I have exciting plans. Let’s see…. I have started decluttering my wardrobe and I would love this to be extended to the whole house. This is very exciting!

I would like to get decluttered items either donated or chopped down to be used as cleaning cloths.

I want to deep clean the house – the last time I could do it was the holiday season.

I also would love to re-arrange my furniture on the living room/dining room. This will take me some time to do but i am very excited about this. Finally it will look like a welcoming house.

I want to buy a new dining table and chairs set, but not sure whether I can find something that I can afford. We will see how that goes.

I want to visit the thrift stores during the weekdays (somebody suggested that there may be new items right after the weekend when people usually drop their donations) and build my new wardrobe. I grew so tired of my current wardrobe πŸ™‚

And I will binge-watch the X-files! πŸ™‚

The X-Files GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

 

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end of long weekend and thoughts on thrifting

The 3rd and the last day of the long weekend. It was so welcome and so refreshing – I am grateful for this long weekend.

Notable activities include the trips to the thrift stores and getting two blouses, a little and lovely decorative porcelain shoe, and some sewing thread πŸ™‚ needless to say, they are all loved and the prices are incredibly good.

This being said, at one of the trips I have noticed the fiancee of a colleague of mine at another cashier. I did not know what to do first. I thought “this is what I always wondered – how would I take it to be known that I shop at thrift stores? I tried to convince myself that shopping at thrift stores is not only good for me, but for the thrift stores/charities, people work there, people benefiting from the charities, and the environment. Yet, I could not manage to not feel “cheap” and thus I left the cashier after 2-3 minutes and went around the store again to give this individual time to pay and leave the store so that the chances of them seeing me and them spreading the word to my colleagues first and then to others would reduce. I hope I could achieve this…

Stop It GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

It turns out interestingly that I am ashamed with shopping or being seen at thrift stores. That is very strange. It is also strange that I found shopping at thrift stores synonymous with “being cheap”. I should stop doing that, but….I cannot help it 😦

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I read in a blog yesterday that the lady explained using thrift stores and purchasing second hand items actually quite similar to staying at hotels and using their bed sheets, coffee mugs, and anything else they do offer you. Goodness know what happened in those hotel rooms and around those items…… That was the best explanation of why the second hand clothing or items are not worse than many other things we do at life. I even told my best friend about this and she too agreed.Β 

My best friend and I agree on a number of things; she like myself would not buy pants/shorts/pajamas, undies/socks/foot wear/shoes and anything else that might have a risk of risking hygiene. But we both are okay with shirts/jackets/blouses, purses, kitchen items, books, sewing notions, fabric, stationary items, and decorative stuff that can be cleaned/sterilized pretty easily.Β 

For me visits to thrift stores is a nice and exciting activity during the weekends. I happen to love old stuff and I like saving money – so it is a win-win situation. I read some inspiring blogs that find really unique and valuable items, like metallic vases and items, which I would like too. I wish I had discovered thrifting long time ago, but there is always a start πŸ™‚ I know I need to work on this feeling of “being cheap” by being there and shopping there. Maybe I will never get over it, maybe I will over time – who knows? – but I am not giving up on this exciting activity yet.

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Sunday morning musings

Happy Sunday everyone πŸ™‚ Wherever you are, I hope you are having a great day, joy, hope, safety, and anything else your heart may desire.

Happy father`s day too! Those fathers who have been great to their kids and families – you should be proud of yourself. Hope you are having a great day too.

I am having a rather quiet Sunday.

When compared to yesterday this is an excellent change I must say. So how was my Saturday? First of all, I prepared my first sourdough with beet and we shall see how that will develop this afternoon when I bake it (proving now). I also did quite a bit of shopping yesterday: as usual I went to a store 10 min away to purchase milk. And then to another one 25 min away (on foot) to purchase yogurt that was on sale; I consume them quite frequently so I was happy to get them yesterday. Also, weather was so nice (around 20C, which is Summer! for us here) that walking and being outside felt like I was on vacation somewhere exotic or something πŸ™‚

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Then, as if all these walking was not enough, I decided to walk (~1 hour each way) to a shopping mall, having a hair cut along the way and checking two thrift stores for pitchers. Well, at the end I did not find anything I really needed, so I also checked a department store. I found a pitcher but honestly it did not give me any joy, so I decided to leave it there (even thought it was affordable and do the job). I am glad I have done this because I checked another nearby store and guess what? I found the loveliest pitcher just like I wanted: affordable (and on sale), large enough to take all the kefir I produce (around 3 liters – I plan to collect a couple of days’ produce and store in the fridge), with a large neck/lid (so that cleaning inside is easy – kefir usually leaves it fat marks on glass quite easily), and the lid is adjustable so that you can tighten it up or loose as you wish (which is critical while dealing with kefir, because grains produce gas which needs to escape the container otherwise it can explode)! How happy I was with that purchase? Very πŸ™‚ That is a great feeling.

Dance GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

When I reached back home it was already past 7 pm and my legs were just aching. I think I walked around 3 hours yesterday. I know I could stretch and relieve some of the muscle tension in my legs yesterday but I was too lazy to do this and rather I slept over it and now I am feeling much better.Β 

So, what are my plans for today? I am taking it light today. I have an interesting sourdough loaf to bake, family to talk to, some laundry to do, and some work to seriously think about. I can also work on the yard and clean the weed up.

And, I can always enjoy my coffee and reading πŸ™‚

Books GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Have a great Sunday friends πŸ™‚

 

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thrift store treasures

Β I have not written in a while, haveΒ I? I feel like I must write, write, write πŸ™‚

A couple of things;

1) I continue to get up at around 7 am… Never in my life have I done this consistently. and with no good reason, like a flight or something.

Is it the end of winter? Daylight? Or plain old age?

Huh… My friends, they say as we age we need less sleep. I guess I am experiencing this. It is a fact! πŸ™‚

2) I made an effort to take the bus this week, rather than the cab. It is working. I still do not feel like walking because of low morale, but I will re-start this sometime in the future.Β It is gonna feel great – I know it πŸ™‚

3) I have walked two hours again today to a shopping mall. This is, I believe, the 3rd Saturday straight that I have done this. I checked two thrift stores and found myself a nice blouse – just for 4 bucks πŸ™‚ this is the 3rd blouse I have got in the last three weeks from thrift stores that excites me like this πŸ™‚ It is a beautiful thing and I love it πŸ™‚ I tried around 15 other blouses – one of them was really awesome! I wish it was a little bit larger πŸ™‚ Oh, well. next time πŸ™‚

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I found it very interesting today that I am getting more and more comfortableΒ with the idea of buying clothes from thrift stores. I previously had bought books, sewing notions/fabric, purses, a jacket or two, and one or two shirts over many years. What can I say? Sometimes IΒ can find really amazing stuff and they are very affordable. I also help others by shopping at these stores, I would like to think. So I should feel okay. But, see there is something still bothering me about shopping there. I guess I am worried about people recognizing me and then talking behind me. After all I am not poor,Β and I can afford new clothes, and I would not like to be called “cheap”. But I must admit it is so much fun to go around the thrift stores, look at all the interesting stuff (they have more diverse items than regular store, don’t they?), and find a lovely piece that I can love and use πŸ™‚Β 

On a separate note, walking was very easy and fun today. I am really grateful for doing this. It is an healthy activity and it makes me realize how fineΒ my body and stamina is. Especially when I compare this ability to before when I had low energy for years and would not want to walk even 5 minutes… To be able to do this now feels awesome πŸ™‚

having energy and new projects feel fine

It has been a fine day today. I am kind of bored and anxious about something IΒ care a lot, but other than that, it has been going well.

Today I got up around 9 am, had a light breakfast at home, and then walked all the way to one of the shopping mall’s area. There are a number of dollar and thrift stores in that region, which I really love to visit. I did not buy anything today, but it was so much fun to go around the shelves, look at items that are usually unique, browse the books, and checking the sewing items/notions.

I then walked back home. I estimate that I walked around 2 hours today. I think this is awesome πŸ™‚ Β I feel strong, powerful, able, healthy, and lighter πŸ™‚ Thanks to all vitamin D and iron supplements that I was prescribed two years ago.. What a difference they have made in my energy levels.Β 

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My interest to consume the food hoarded in the freezer and pantry is going strong. I have consumed quite a bit of the “old” items and have replaced some of them back with fresh ones (like minced beef, chicken, pasta, and legumes). I still have a number of food that I have not touched in the last year or so, including some frozen veggies, wild rice, bulghur, and dried veggies. So I would like to prioritize their consumption in the coming weeks. That is my mental note for today.

My interest in designing new projects continues. Now that I have had all bunch of different projects implemented in my life (decluttering, budgeting, saving money, being frugal, using coupons and discounts, shopping bans, baking bread, taking the bus or walking to go to work, etc.), I am naturally looking for new ones. It excites me, learning about this kind of things, planning,Β putting an effort to implement them, monitoring my progress, and then improving it if I am still interested in (remember the #superduperleanspendingmonth that IΒ left in two weeks or so because it did not work out for me? πŸ™‚ it is okay every once a while).Β 

I now am interested in reducing my waste. I have checked a couple of sites and it sounds like I have a lot of extra waste at my hand: I still use paper towel when needed (for cleaning the bathroom for example), wet-disposable clothes for cleaning the sinks and the floor, facial tissue/napkin after meals. I do not compost, though I do recycle paper and other items accepted by our city. I donate what I do not need/use anymore and shop from thrift or second-hand stores as appropriate. I re-use the plastic/nylon shopping bags as garbage liners. I reduced my food waste quite a bit by shopping small amounts (store is 5 min away from me – so it is easy to stop by more than once a week).Β But I still have waste (1 large garbage bag/week – not too much but it can be less).

So what do I do about it?

I think I should keep reading and continue to be inspired by others’ experience. I will also have a careful look at what my waste and garbage includes. I really want to compost but I will have to see whether I can do this inside the house (no worms or anything) – if I want it to be a continuous activity I must find the most practical way to do so even during our harsh winter.

So these are my new plans πŸ™‚

Shoot a comment if you have ideas to help me reduce my waste/garbage!

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