Sunday, December 30, 2012

Let's Get On With It!

Just like for anyone/everyone else, this year has had it's highs and lows.  I've been debating whether to list the highs first or the lows first, so here they are in no particular order. 

  • retirement in October from full-time employment
  • almost immediately and unexpectedly returning to a p/t job I worked at 3 years ago
  • great winter, spring, summer and autumn weather
  • gaining more time to spend with my family and friends
  • gaining more time to read books and being able to use the library more
  • starting a blog
  • discovering some really great blogs in areas that I am interested in, and in turn "meeting" some very interesting people from around the world
  • becoming a senior with all the benefits that accompany this age
  • joining a senior citizens centre and finding new acquaintances
  • improved health due to tweaking a medication after much searching for the answer
  • my darling Allie, 15.5 yrs old is still with me and shows no signs of slowing down, still acts like a kitten now and then
  • losing my sister, she passed away suddenly in late June
  • my oldest sister's ongoing health problems
  • my daughter's FIL's fall and surgery just a couple days ago
  • passing of two friends husbands due to cancer
  • my friend's accident at work where she lost part of a finger
There may be more lows but I don't want to dwell on the negative.  Life is about living and I am so glad to be here, to be able to enjoy my life today, tomorrow and hopefully for many, many days to come. 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Goals January Low Spend/Decluttering Challenge & mini crisis

As I approached the beginning of  Carla's challenge, I had some lofty goals in my sight and I was pretty sure I would achieve them but life has placed a mini crisis into our family.  So again this morning, they were reworked.

Goals : Photograph of several sticky notes labeled wtih the word SMART which means the goals Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, time Bound.

First the goals: 

  • Decluttering -  donate or dispose of 62 items.  I'm sure 2 per day are achievable. 
  • No Spend - I'm aiming to spend zero dollars for groceries with a plan to consume from the freezer and pantry.  The perishables, ie milk, fresh fruit and vegetables will be paid for with the gift cards received at Christmas.
  • Low Spend - I am planning to be very mindful of spending in all areas, however I will consume more gas, pay for hospital parking, and unanticipated expenses that may go along with this.
  • I will continue the challenge created by Mrs. SFT.
There it is, in writing now and in 3 days will be fully implemented.  I am going to record every penny out.  Looking forward to getting started on this one. 

The mini crisis.... my daughter's FIL, who is 82 yrs old fell yesterday at his home, fractured his hip, and is in hospital awaiting surgery to repair which is scheduled for tomorrow.  He is a kind, caring, very generous man and I consider him part of my family too.  I am concerned for his future as is everyone else.  Dementia was beginning to set in before this accident and this may end his time living alone in his home, and he is dead set against this.  Please pray for healing for this good man.  Thank you. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Day After The Day After

This is what my world outside looks like the second day after Christmas. 

Taken from my perch a few floors up in our vertical village.  The pic is a bit dark as it is gloomy out there, however the snow has stopped and residents are into driveway cleanup.  A major advantage of living in a VV (not the store.... LOL!!), I don't have to do any clearing of snow.  This is the first major snowfall of the '12-'13 winter.  Not sure how much snow fell, looks like about 5 cm. 

Christmas Day was a wonderful, happy day.  Lots of gifts were enjoyed by the family.  The food was very tasty, as always.  A fresh turkey which was roasted to moist perfection.   There was much negotiating by the young ones as to who would enjoy the drumsticks this time.  But one participant was quick on the draw and indulged before anyone else had a chance.  I think this is my favourite picture of the day.  Sorry but lighting was somewhat subdued in part of the room.

Granddaughter Michelle enjoying Christmas dinner

Also in pic are GS Chris,  two DD's and at the end in blue MIL of daughter in middle of table. 

I passed on the Boxing Days sales, opting to relax all day at home.  I was very, very lazy, eating what I wanted when I wanted and doing virtually nothing.  Many hours were spent catching up on the many blogs I am following.  So many brilliant people out there with so many brilliant things to say and many, many displaying talent and skills which are so inspiring to me, a frugal grannie living simply on a budget.

Today's plans are simple..... 1)  move my @ss, tidy up my home, then..... 2) walk to library, pick up holds, then..... 3) review goals for Carla's January challenges..... 4)  review January's budget.  Busy day, time to get going! 

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Jesus!

A Child To Us is Born

A Son Unto Us is Given

Blessings to everyone as you celebrate Christmas

Monday, December 24, 2012

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Another Christmas Shopping Day Over!

December 22 Calendar 2012 : calendar sheet

Today's eight hours went pretty well, actually so much better than I had anticipated.  I'm thinking a good night's rest took away the crankiness that many experienced last evening.  Yay for good sleep and rest.  It works so well to restore the body and the soul.  I'm not scheduled to work until next Fri and then Sunday. 

After dinner I joined friends for a meal of fish and chips and it was a very good meal.  I chose haddock and my friends enjoyed halibut along with their chippies.  We all decided that because it was Christmas that we weren't going to be good and choose the salad this time.  Hello Santa Claus, we've all been bad, but take no notice and bring us our pressies anyway.  :) 

On my drive home, stopped at FreshCo to pick up some fresh fruit and veggies.  No way was I planning to be in any shop tomorrow or Monday.  Everyone else will be there picking up the 'big' Christmas shop or the one or two forgotten items.  I spent just $30 and this will take me into 2013 without having to set foot in a supermarket. 
Wrapping Christmas Gifts : Vector Christmas Gifts
Tomorrow it'll be wrap, wrap, and a bit more wrapping. 

Friday, December 21, 2012

A January Challenge

Carla over at My 1/2 Dozen Daily has issued a January No/Low Spend and Decluttering Challenge. 


I am already excited to get started on it, even though December isn't finished, and even though we haven't quite made it to Christmas.  I'm going to be doing some thinking in the days to come about what  my no-spend criteria will be and what my decluttering goal is going to be.

I'm looking forward to linking up with others who have joined the challenges to see how everyone is doing. 

Onward and upward.  Good luck everyone!  May perseverance be with you!!!

Is Christmas Shopping Getting to You?

Grumpy Cat 1 - Christmas Shopping

This evening I worked cash for 3 hours in retail and every customer had this kind of look on theier face.  They looked angry, pissed off, just like they didn't have a choice in the whole matter.

Chill people!!!   The shopping will end in 2 and 3/4s days and if it's not finished, will it really matter.  Cheer up!!!  It's not the end of the world..... which by the way didn't happen today.... it's just Christmas.  Soon it'll all be over. 

Put on a big smile and wish everyone you meet "Merry Christmas"!!!

 mc_glow5.gif photo

Oh, oh, forgot for a moment or two that I will be greeting customers with my smile and cheery words for EIGHT hours tomorrow.  Oh help!!!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Getting on with Life

My own day-to-day existence seems so insignificant after the events of Friday and the week-end.  I have a granddaughter who is the same age as the little ones in Newtown.  I can't imagine what life would be like without her.  I just have felt so very sad.

But it is time to get on with the everyday.  Change happens whether we want it to or not.  Good stuff happens along with bad things.  Time to pick myself and go forward. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Oh Those Yummy Quality Street chocolates!

First of all, welcome to my blog Lena and Amber25.  So nice of you to stop by.  Love both of your blogs

Who doesn't love a Quality Street?  I have to admit I don't enjoy the entire selection.  The purple, green, blue, and toffees are my favourite.  I will, when offered, refuse the orange and strawberry flavours because  I've never enjoyed eating anything that has been infused with a fake fruit flavour.  (Say that five times fast.  LOL!)  Never mind, there are enough of the other chocolates to completely satisfy my craving for a QS.  Now if I buy a tin, I'm receiving all the choices so I'm taking a chance, right?  Well, today I discovered they can be purchased at The Bulk Barn and best of all, I can select just the ones that I want and won't have to give away any of the flavours I don't care for.   I bought a few for a treat and they tasted just wonderful.  It's only at this time of year that I eat them, but so worth the wait.   And today being Seniors Day at BB, received 10% off everything purchased.  Clicking on my "like" button. 

How 'bout you?  Do you enjoy Quality Street just at this time of year?

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

O Christmas Pot, O Christmas Pot....

Saving For Travel has issued a Sealed Pot Challenge for 2013 and lots of people from all over the globe are participating.  Click on the link above under the picture if you are interested in participating.  My savings goal is directed to December 2013 Christmas.  My pot has been "decorated" sort of in a Christmasy theme, well if you want to recognize red and white gingham with tin foil snowflakes as Christmasy, it is.    If you look closely at the top of it, there is a slit for depositing coins and folded bills if I choose to add them.  The darling Allie cat has surveyed it and given it her Good Cat Sniff of Approval. 

I started it off by adding $5.00 in 25 cent pieces as I missed the first week.

Let the savings begin!!!

Friday, December 7, 2012

This Book is Grabbing My Attention.....

I picked up this recipe book from the library today.  Remember a few blogs back how the UK/British has grabbed my interest.

Top picture is the front cover, bottom is the back cover.

Food Waste Friday

Silly me, how did I miss this one in my fridge, when I have been hyper-vigilant to keep from wasting.  It got pushed behind a couple pounds butter right to the back on the lowest shelf and I missed it.  It's about 2/3's cup of whole wheat pasta, just plain nothing on it.  It didn't smell very appetizing.

Some baby spinach leaves that once again didn't smell right to me.  So I follow "if in doubt, throw it out" and out it went.  The containers of lettuce are just too big for me to eat up before they go off.  I've not saved any money if I'm throwing it away half eaten.  I think I will return to paying more for a smaller bag and ensuring that it is all consumed. 

I win some and I lose some.  :)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Another Change..... Perhaps???

Could there be another work related change in the works?  I don't know for sure but there is a rumour. 

This is an exterior picture of the pharmacy where I work part-time. 

  It's not a great picture, just grabbed a screen shot off Google maps street view, but you get the idea.  There are several of these little franchised pharmacies around town and pretty much every small town in the province has at least one or more.  And there is the big guy in town.

The  small IDA has operated for approximately 20 years; the big SDM for 5 yrs, and business has slowly been drained from the little guy by the big fella.  The picture above is not of the store nearby, just an illustration of what the bigger one looks like.   Customer loyalty in the dispensary at IDA has kept the business running successfully but it's become apparent that the store front, which is the area I work in, is failing.  Sales through November are down year to date from what they were last year and aren't likely to increase due to Christmas being here as there aren't many items on offer that could be classed as gifts.   The owners have been throwing around some ideas apparently to change the store front to bring in more customers,  but I'm not privy to the details.  So it will be a wait and see situation.  For now, I will go to work on my scheduled time period.  The future will take care of itself. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Christmas meal with Co-Workers - Dec. 1

At first, I wasn't going to go.   I thought hard about it for a couple of days, going back and forth.  Yes I'm going, no I'm not going.  The stumbling block being the cost of the meal.  It was going to be $35.00 per person  which is an amount not included in my budget for the month of Dec.  The store front manager thought it was a good opportunity to enjoy some "bonding" time, as there are a couple of new employees and one of them is on the shy side, not sharing anything about herself or saying too much at all at any time.  My thought, really is it a worthwhile venture to get together, as in retail people don't stay employed long enough to become well acquainted anyway. 

I did go to the restaurant and enjoyed the meal along with a glass of wine and coffee.  I passed on the dessert as there was nothing on the menu that was under $6.99.  No dessert is worth that much to me.  It was a fun couple of hours with lots of laughs and the shy one opened up just a little bit more.   I enjoyed a beef stir fry which was overpriced  in my opinion.  The portion was enormous and I wasn't able to eat even half of it. The waitress boxed it up and I enjoyed another meal tonite and there is still some for another part meal.  I'll add the leftover chicken to it along with a bit more broccoli. 

It was a fun couple of hours with lots of laughs and the shy one opened up just a little bit more.  No regrets as I think the atmosphere compensated for the money spent.  I'll wiggle my budget a little and fit it into a category.  It will probably be into Entertainment. 

Friday, November 30, 2012

Food Waste Friday

Just one item that had seen better days.  Not bad, not bad.  Keeping an eye on the refridge daily keeps the potential for waste in check.  This one was overlooked because I had other lettuces to use up, some spring mix and a little of spinach.  

Looks pretty ugly.  After the picture I pulled it apart and the whole head looked nasty so out it went. 

There were some veggies that needed using up, so on with the pot with some homemade chicken stock and it became chicken veggie soup for my dinner.  Yum!  :)

Thursday, November 29, 2012

UseIess Gift For Pet

Advertised in the Bed, Bath & Beyond brochure

Electric Doggie Biscuit Kit..... 15 piece set, non stick cooking surface; includes recipes for all natural dog biscuits, recipes to ice biscuits.   Ad has it priced $29.99.   
Are You Kidding Me?????  The worst waste of cash I've seen so far this Christmas season.  $29.99 plus HSTax of 13% would bring it to $33.89.  

Please post, if you have seen some items that fall into "The Worst Waste of Cash" category 

Reminder that Winter is on it's Way

"It's a marshmellow world in the winter, when the snow comes a tumblin' down...."

Not so fast!   No snow here just yet, but it's trying. 

I spent some hours yesterday shopping for Christmas in nearby Ajax and Pickering.  As I drove toward Ajax I could see the dark, angry looking clouds in the distance with the snow showers descending.  I just had to pull over to snap a couple of pics.

Mr. Sun is struggling to overtake the snow clouds.

Small specs in the picture are snowflakes on my car window.  The snow came down really hard for about a minute and none of it stayed.  

So winter isn't here just yet.  Yay! 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

All Things United Kingdom

God Save Our Gracious Queen,
Long Live Our Noble Queen,
God Save Our Queen

I am a citizen of the Commonwealth, along with a whole lot of other people throughout the globe.  During the time I attended grammar school I recall singing the anthem (all of it) at the close of the school day.  Along with lovingly and loudly proclaiming my love for Canada at the start of classes, I did the same toward Her Majesty.  I don't ever remember singing God Save Our King even though I attended school for a bit prior to her coronation.  Maybe because I don't have a lot of memories from that time and only a couple of good ones from that time.  But that's another topic (or maybe not).

Passing through a lot of years, and we are in 2012 and the Queen's Jubilee celebrations and the Olympics have awakened a renewed interest in me for everything British, Scottish, Irish and Welch.  And to a certain degree Australia.  Time is limited so right now, the Kindom is number one in interest.  I've stumbled upon some really wonderful blogs over the past months.  The history, the pictures, the stories, more pictures, frugal tales, charity shop visits, the expressions that I have to figure out and I could go on and on.  I haven't figured out how to shorten a URL just yet to post the links for the blogs.... I will work on that.  lol to myself, of course.  In the meantime I am learning and enjoying my searches.  When I see the name of a city, town, village off I go to Google maps, Google Earth to check out it's location.   I've  discovered a shop in Port Perry, a town nearby called The Wee Tartan Shop which advertises "When Only The Best of the British Isles Will Do" (copied & pasted  :).  I plan to take my neighbour there in the next couple weeks to visit.  She is 86, married a Canadian and is a war bride and just so lovely.  She would enjoy this shop so much.

So sorry, Brits, Scots, Irish, Welch.... I didn't know what I was missing out on.  I am going to enjoy these visits very much.  Those to the land of Oz and Kiwi's too! 

Off for now.  Toodle pip to you too!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Way to Use Up Miscellaneous in the Fridge!!

Gives self great big pat on the back.  LOL!

Food Waste Friday??

Nope, not today.  A thorough search quick scan of the refridge revealed some small sprouting but still firm potatoes, some baby carrots that didn't have "eat 'em raw" appeal, a bit of corn, and maybe a half cup diced onions and some cooked chicken left from a bird roasted mid-week.  Hmmmmm, what to make?  I know.... brain wave....chicken pot pie.  Easy enough to do, just need to make up some gravy, crust and into oven.
All veggies cooked, gravy added.  Yum.

Portioned and topped with pastry.  Portioned to be frozen after baking.

Cooling for a while prior to packaging.

Dinner tonight along with steamed broccoli and a small garden side salad!
I'm hungry already and dinner isn't for another hour..... that's okay, I can wait.  A cup of Timmy's will hold off the hunger!  LOL!

I know posting what I've prepared with leftovers isn't an original idea to a blog, but bear with me, I am pretty new to blogging..... just finding my way here.  So right now, going with what I know.  :)

I picked up "Blogging For Dummies" from my library...... getting some wonderful lessons from this book.  The authors are Susannah Gardner and Shane Birley, and as with all the "Dummies"  clear and concise.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving

A Canadian Happy Thanksgiving to all of our American friends south of the border.  I hope you have eaten  and drank and now are relaxing as it is late in the day when I write this. 

So many, many blogs featuring pictures of your food choices for this day.  There are pies, cornbread for stuffing, green bean casseroles and more, much more.  They all looked so scrumptious and made me salivate more than once.  Thanksgiving truly is a wonderful holiday to enjoy  the bounty of the harvest, to be grateful for what we have now and not to be always looking forward to something more.  A time to just enjoy today.

I hope all is well in your world!  :)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Making a Big Change

My home for the past 13, almost 14 years has been in a "vertical village" and I can honestly say that I have enjoyed every day that I have lived in my mortgage-free residence.  Basically, I live in a condo  where I own everything inside the walls, a parking spot and a storage locker located on an easily accessible floor.  Prior to this home, I owned my home on a street nearby.  My daughters had finished university and moved on with their significant others and I was ready to downsize.  I did see an ad at work for a unit in this village and turned out the individual who put up the ad was the wife of the individual who owned it and wanted to sell.  Her name wasn't on the title.  They wanted to move due to lack of space for two people.  I looked at it, loved it and put in an offer the first business day after viewing and my offer was accepted immediately.

This couple turned around and bought my house; the price was right, they loved the location and the house.   We agreed to close the deal one month after presenting and accepting our offers.  Whoa!  Only one month to pack, dispose of and sell items.  With help the process was completed and I became a condo dweller.

There are a lot of advantages to living in a condo for a senior but some disadvantages also.  I'll share some of my thoughts another time.


Sunday, November 11, 2012


In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.


Remembering all who were lost in all wars.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Canadians Plans for Christmas Spending

I read a couple of times today that Canadians are expected to spend 15% MORE this Christmas than 2011.  The Canadian Press reports that  the Bank of Montreal holiday outlook is suggesting our spending spirits have improved this season and we are ready to open our wallets even more. 

Shoppers were surveyed and said they plan to shell an average of $674 for gifts this year, compared to an average of $583 last.  Top reasons for spending more are having more people to shop for and being better off financially.  And one in five of those surveyed said they didn't plan on creating a budget at all.  

Okay.  Time out everyone.  Wasn't it just a month ago  that our country's Minister of Finance was telling all of us that our debt load is too high.  The ration of credit market household debt to disposable income hit 163.4 percent in the second quarter of the year and that was up from the first quarter.

What the heck are people doing spending excessively at Christmas when they are so deeply in debt?  I know this is the time of year that some retailers make their profit, but I can't help but think that it's at a cost to those who can't afford it.  The emotional buying is an indication that Christmas is being treated as a feeling, not a season.  I read where a specific large retailer is "going to be speaking more to people's hearts than their wallets" through it's marketing .   So is the message going to be, buy, buy, buy, it'll make you feel so good to give, give, give. 

My fellow Canadians (and everyone facing the next 6 weeks), disregard the advertising, please turn the TV Christmas commercials to the Weather Network instead, plan, budget and think about this time of year and consider whether it is worthwhile going into more debt to create that "perfect" holiday.  We all know there is no such thing anyway.  Give thought to what the holiday means to you and who you share it with, and think of doing things in a scaled down manner. 

The B of M didn't survey me.  I won't be increasing my spending; in fact, I am scaling way back from previous years for my own reasons among them being that  I'm retired now and the income is less.  I've budgeted for the gifts and I plan to stay firmly within that budget.  I don't have any debt nor do I plan to indulge in spending to create debt.  I will have no regrets come January 1, 2013.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Lesson Learned A Hard Way

I had read about a little trick that bloggers sometimes do to ensure that they don't lose a post before it's published, that being to write out their post in OneNote or Word.  Well I thought I was going to be smart and ignore that advice; that I didn't need to take that step of writing, copying and pasting, that losing a post just wasn't going to happen to me.  Ha!  Who do I think I am that something like that could never possibly happen to me.  Huh??? ??? ???
Last evening, had a long message about my retirement plans written out and damn if it didn't vapourize into thin/thick/whatever air when I hit publish.  Poof!  Gone!  Completely gone!  Made me very, very cross 'cause it took a lot of time, thought, rethinking, rethoughts, more rethinking, editing, more editing to come up with the finished product.  It was the kind of post that was going to serve to remind me of my goals, one that I would be able to go back to from time to time or as frequently as I felt it necessary to review my retired life.   It was going to be a record, a starting point.  And it's gone with so little effort.  Hit the publish button and gone.  Can't locate it anywhere.  Feeling a little deflated right now.  Think I'll put this whole process to bed and work on it again tomorrow.  

Lesson Learned!  You bet! 
Night all..... on to a great day tomorrow. 

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Memorable Sandy

Dear Sandy!


The storm of the year has come and gone and good riddance to it.  Right now it's remains are heading out toward the Atlantic Provinces and then onward back to the North Atlantic.  The storm didn't have the same impact on S. Ontario that it left on the American states but it was a storm like I can't ever remember experiencing or seeing in my many years.  I felt anxious while anticipating its arrival, but my anxiety was pretty much for nothing.  I think the media attention to it's size and impact caused me to feel this anxiety.  

We were hit with really high winds for the most part which continued from the early evening right through the night time.  The trees were just a rockin' when I got out of my bed to see what was going on out there.  There are a lot fewer leaves on most of the trees and the leaves that were on the ground have scattered everywhere.  Who knows how far they travelled.  Our power went out about 10:30 pm and not knowing what to do with myself I went to bed, only to have the power return about 20 minutes later, so got up to watch more of the coverage of the storm in the U.S.  So much damage to New York and New Jersey and so much very costly cleanup  to be done before the area looks even remotely normal.  Praying for all who lost family and friends as a result of the storm.  Toronto experienced one death as a result of the wind loosening a sign and part of it falling on a woman walking, causing head injuries. 

Picture of tree down in friend's driveway

 The big storm has moved on but the residual showers linger.  Today was another gray day and I enjoyed my stay indoors for most of the day, working on a cross stitch project.... my favourite hobby. 

I am almost finished this project and I'll post pics when it is completed.  :)

Stoptober is almost finished, just one more day to go.  I've really kept on top of it and I'm pleased with the results. 

How did everyone fare during the storm?

Monday, October 22, 2012

Stoptober Summary to today

Well I don't really have a full summary.  I have been very conscious of every bit of spending, although there was one day where emotions took over and spending was just a bit unplanned.    I haven't calculated but I know I've had more no-spend days than spend.  Nine days left in the month of Stoptober and I don't anticipate any unplanned spending those days.  But you never know what might come up.  Life has a way of happening when you are making other plans.  :)

Slowing Down!

Last week I experienced some weird, mixed feelings.  Last week was the first full week of being retired and looking back I think I was experiencing depression, and felt what was a mild mourning for the end of the work.  By the week-end I was over this feeling.... LOL!... and realized I could give up the feeling of depression and the need that I was still feeling to go, go, go, and hurry, hurry, hurry.  I was in a fast paced business and that was what I did to stay on top of the work.  I hurried and I felt pressure to do, to do more, to do even more. 

The inviting path ahead
I don't have to do that anymore.  My life has slowed down and the expectations aren't there anymore.  Neither is the money but that's another story.  Today I realized that I was starting to live a calmer day; nothing was really pressing at all today.  This day was so beautiful, almost like summer but not quite.  Too nice to spend indoors.  It was a wonderful day to go for a leisurely stroll, and it was a conscious decision to stroll and not hurry along to get the walk over with.  That's what I've done in the past.  It was awesome to be out there just enjoying nature.

Still lots of colourful trees and shrubs

Some trees are completely bare

A group of friends enjoying a game of bocce

A lovely day overall! 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sounds of The Morning

I'm retired.  :)  I feel myself slowing down, being more deliberate, being mindful of the moment. 

What are the sounds around me this morning?

  • traffic on the nearby busy street
  • workers pounding nails as they re-roof a home
  • talk show on the radio
  • Allie asking for a treat
  • beeps of a van backing up in the parking lot
So now I know what the sounds are that I've missed when I have been at work.   Nothing out of the ordinary, just the noises and sounds of people going about their lives. 

The Week That Got Away..........

Last post on the 7th, eight days ago.  Honestly, the week just somehow wandered away from me.  How did that happen?  With the last day of work on Wed, then b.d. stuff, and catching a cold, the days just blended together.  More on the above in the days to come. 

Are days just 24 hours?  Sometimes they feel so much longer, sometimes just so short.  From here on in, the days are mine to enjoy as I choose. 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Stoptober 7th

Another no spend day.  I fought the urge all day today to go out and buy a coffee, buy a chocolate bar, buy a dinner from a take out place, and I resisted the urge totally and completely (well at least until this point which is 7:15 p.m. as I write this). 

The rain has started so I'm staying in for the night.  Dinner was leftovers from the fridge and freezer.  I wished I'd remembered to take a pic before I ate it all.  I sauteed some green pepper and mushrooms in a little butter, then mixed in a bit of turkey leg that I found at the back of the freezer.  Languishing at the back on a rack in the refridge was a container of chicken fried rice from last week end so mixed that in with the "red" sweet & sour sauce sitting beside it.  Combined all of it and together with a glass of red wine, it filled me quite nicely.  I DO. NOT. LIKE. TO. WASTE. FOOD. at all.  It hurts to have to toss food.  I am tossing hard earned dollars.  It's easy to toss food when too much has been purchased, but vigilance by doing a stock taking of the fridge, the freezer,  the pantry, the dry storage cupboard in kitchen should avoid any need to garbage anything by first not overbuying.  But being human and not always vigilant, some stuff sometimes does get the heave ho.  Ugh!  Hurts to see it go. 

I am 3 days from retirement; vigilance will be enforced.... by me, who else.  LOL!  Limited income will do that.  I blame lack of vigilance on fatigue, little motivation or ???....... any number of reasons.

I have cleaned out the refridge today and will compile a list to restock on Thursday.  Like everywhere, America, Britain, and so on, Canada is experiencing rising prices for food.  I have already cut down on the amount of meat I buy. 

No spend this Stoptober 7th.  Yay!!!!!

Stoptober 6th

Was a wonderful day today.  Read some of my favourite blogs taking up most of the morning, did a tidy up, then went for a nap.  I felt blissfully refreshed after I woke.  Did all the "me" things, shower, etc. to get ready to join family for dinner.  DSIL's mother came from a town a distance away so all went to a lovely restaurant. 

An unexpected spend today.  I cleared my debt at the library.... $1.25.  I don't remember keeping a movie a day longer.  $1.00 for that and $0.25 for one book which I don't recall hanging onto for an additional day.  Unexpected spending but not over the top.  Could be worse. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Stoptober 5th

Friday, the end of the work week for me.  I left work at 5:45 instead of the usual 7:15 pm.  It is our opportunity to celebrate the Thanksgiving week-end in Canada and many of the students departed either late on Thursday or early Friday for their homes to spend the long week-end with their families.  The dining hall was almost deserted at 5:30 pm and the supervisor asked if I would be interested in leaving early.  For two reasons:  1)  the Company would save on labour costs, and 2)  there wasn't anything to do. 

I jumped at the opportunity to leave before my time ended as I was really tired yesterday, just an accumulation of fatigue from the week.  Home I went, feet elevated when I arrived and into a book until I couldn't keep my eyes open at 10 p.m.

Happy to report that Stop 5th was a no-spend day.  Hurray!  Allowable spending was for car insurance and condo insurance. 

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Stoptober 4th

Today was an allowable spending day.  My gas tank was almost empty.  I actually had planned to fill it yesterday but on the way home I heard that the price of gas was dropping by 4 cents a litre, so that made me change my plan and I filled up on the way home tonight. 

The tank took 34.2 litres at $1.258/per litre for a total of $43.03 which includes HST of $4.95.  I bought the gas at Canadian Tire so with redeeming  a coupon got 60 cents back in CT bonus money.  I will be especially interested to see how long this tank will last.  There are 4 more must drive days to work, then will be only occasional driving around town. 

I have resisted spending money on my favourite Hershey's Twizzlers the past two nights on the drive home from work.  I wanted/needed/wanted to have that licorice soooooooo badly.  Nope, nope, nope!!!  No spend month!! 

I love them.  They are addicting.  Eat one and you want to eat the whole package.  I wanted them BUT I didn't need them.  Resisted!  Craving overcome.  Yay me!!!

Tired tonight, feel like doing nothing more than putting the tired aching feet up and relaxing.

Stoptober 2nd & 3rd

Missed blogging yesterday, so two days to report today

Stoptober 2nd - no spend day
Stoptober 3rd - no spend day

Today will be an allowable spend day as I need to top up the gas tank.

Will post later with amount spent.  :)

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Stoptober 2nd

Day 2 of the Stoptober challenge was a no spend day.  No money out of pocket nor any allowable expenses.  Patting myself on the back for resisting, on the drive home from work, stopping for a junk food snack. 

Yay me! 

Stoptober... Stop Spending in October

I have joined the Stoptober Challenge presented by this blogger in the UK

She has thrown out the challenge to stop spending in October and it has come at an appropriate time for me as I will go into full out, full blown frugality.  I love the challenge and I look forward to only necessary spending.  I'll check in daily to update; accountability goes a long way to keep on the frugality path. 

Stoptober 1st - condo fee for October, otherwise no spend day. 


I made the decision last week to leave my job which is doing in my feet.  At the end of every day the feet hurt so much.  No amount of soaking, putting them up, massaging them relieves the pain and discomfort.  I gave notice last week and my last day will be Wednesday, October 10th.  Looking forward to the end of employment and starting another chapter in life.  :)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sore feet, Tired legs

One week into being back to work and my feet are tender.  I can't remember ever before, my feet hurting as much as they do today and I have been off them for 24 hours, except when I was out briefly this p.m. to fetch some yarn to carry on with my cross stitch project.  I did little walking, just from my car to the shop and even that little bit was excruciatingly painful. 

I am thinking that the the pain from my arthritic knees and feet is going to put me into a position where I may have to leave work earlier than the end of the year.  One of my government pensions has started already and the other one will begin Nov. 1.  If I find I need to leave my job earlier, I will be okay financially.  I just wanted to stuff as much into savings as possible before the end of the year.  But right now, right today my feet are just screaming with pain, hinting loudly that maybe staying 'til 2012 is finished is not to be. 

This has been me a few times this week.  LOL!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Need to Learn

I need to learn how to add pictures, links, etc.  Don't have time tonight. 

Have my tired sore little feeties up on a stool.  First day back at work after being laid off for the summer.  My work is for the foodservice contractor at a university/college complex and it's a new position to learn, so today was a busy day of learning, and serving customers.  It was a little overwhelming 'cause stuff was supposed to be ready when I arrived to start at 10:45, but nothing was ready.  But still was a good day.  Any day that I am above the ground is a good day, or so I say.  LOL! 

My plan is to work until at least the end of 2012, see how I am managing, feeling and reassess whether I should go back to work until the end of the first semester 2013.  Tonight, relaxing in general and staying off my tired feet.

I have a cat, her name is Allie and she is wonderful to come home to after a busy tiring day.

Tomorrow's another day.  Have to serve at a bbq for the students and it's supposed to be very hot.  I heard +29 C and I did hear that there is a possibility of thunderstorms.  Hope they stay away until the bbq is finished.  Our manager warned us that it is going to be a hard day tomorrow. 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Blog, Blog, Blog ...... Blah, Blah, Blah!

I've been thinking about starting a blog, so here I am!  Finding my way around..... ack!  This isn't hard, is it?  Noooooo, not much.  Don't worry, I'll get the hang of it eventually..... I think! 

What am I doing starting a blog?  I spend way too much on the 'puter as it is without adding to it.  Too late, I'm here.  ha ha! 

I've read many blogs about being simple in living, being frugal and I continue to read them as I head toward retirement from my food job.  So many good tips, so many great ideas, so many, many people heading that way.  Baby boomers we are, baby boomers unite with all other simpletons, frugaltons, and retiretons (is that a word?) 

Time to carry on!