Hello Dear Reader,
I spend most of December thinking ahead. I think of everything I want to achieve in the forthcoming year. I want to pay another £18,000 off my mortgage capital. To continue to pay off my mortgage whilst prices and the cost of living continues to rise means there will be further cuts to our household budget. There will be less money to spend on energy, less money to spend on ourselves, no money to spend on our home and no money to spend on any day trips or holidays.
I want, weather permitting, to get some of my garden producing food again. I want to get a room renovated by using nothing more than I already have and that includes ingenuity. I want to start making some quilts to sell. I want to start holding more workshops and spreading the frugal word by teaching scrappy quilting. I want to do more online tutorials to help people save money. I want to answer more emails and help more people. I have the feeling it's going to be a busy year.
There have been times in my life, and I'm sure in yours too, where you just feel you can't do something. You just feel you can't change something. Maybe you're scared of how you will react, how others will perceive you or how they will treat you. Sometimes we're just scared of being scared. We worry that people might not like us, or might not respect us or even want us there. I worked out a long time ago that life really is too short to worry what other think of me. I now take what ever kindness I find on my travels and believe it to be genuine and believe people to be kind. I also believe people do most of the things they do with good intentions and they genuinely mean well. Armed with that thought, I really know there is nothing I can't do.
Food prices will continue to rise, as will fuel prices, as will mortgage rates, as will all living costs. None of us can ignore this and we'll all have to live through times of austerity. You will have to own Starbucks to not notice that times are hard! In the depths of all this toughness there are so many ways we can decrease debts, increase earning and saving, even in these challenging times. This is going to be the year we make it when all the odds are stacked against us and we have to try harder, go without more and keep at it for far longer than we ever have before! This is not the year to give up but the year we try harder and when we try, we don't give up because: you only live once, we all deserve a holiday, a night out won't hurt or the children really must have it.
This is going to be the year we say yes to every opportunity, whether it's overtime, selling craft items, working through our holidays, taking in a lodger, selling the clothes we don't need, delivering leaflets for the takeaway or leaving one job at five to start another at half past! This is also the year that we will resolutely say no, to wasting, to spending what we don't have, to buying what we don't need, to children's pleads of every kid on the street has one but me!
I was in debt once, I was trapped once, I was unhappy once and I changed all that. I'm not stopping there and I'm going to keep going until I have made a difference to my future. Really, if I can do it, anyone can.