2017 Challenge: Money, Home, Food, and Nature

2017 is just around the corner!
These past few days have been spent decluttering, cleaning, budgeting, and inventorying (food supplies).

For 2017, I invite you to join me in your focus. We now have a facebook page so that you can interact with your insights and journey: https://www.facebook.com/dailykindchallenge/

My Goals for 2017 are pretty straightforward:

  • MONEY. Live within my means. That means having an action plan (a.k.a. budget) and sticking with it. How do I plan to accomplish this?
    • Daily accountability.
    • Weekly review and adjusting as needed.
    • Reducing/eliminating debt.
    • Increasing savings to a three-month threshold (very aggressive goal there).
  • HOME. A tidy, decluttered home. Those of you who know me personally, or who have followed past postings via other blogs, know that my journey towards a simpler life has been ongoing for the past 2.5 years. And, as a family, we’ve made huge progress: we downsized half of our possessions, moved into a home nearly 1,000 square feet smaller with a yard 1/4 in size of our previous yard. This is all very, very good, yet there is still more to do. This week, I enjoyed reading Patrick Rhone‘s book enough. If you’ve watched the documentary Minimalism, then you know that he is one of the commentators in the film. So, for 2017 my “home” goals are:
    • Daily 3: Three 15-minute chores done personally either inside or outside to help keep upkeep and maintenance easy and effortless. Occasionally, a fourth “15,” but that will be “bonus” and not “better.”
    • Mindful use of possessions. Letting those things that no longer serve us, move on to bless someone else. Not bringing impulsive purchases into the home without intention.
    • Creative use of what’s on hand.
    • Gardening, both vegetable and flower.
    • Design on a dime: the backyard Tea Room.
  • FOOD. Taking the $1/person/meal/day from one month to 12. Last July, our family did the $1/1/1/1 challenge and it had a profound impact on all of us in ways we could not have fathomed at the end of June, when we were gearing up. Taking such a hardcore approach to our food and food budget is one of the “must do’s” for living within our means. I know this for a fact, because I’ve watched what has happened when I “relaxed” from August till now, and Friends, it ain’t pretty. I turned into a bit of a food hoarder over the past months: dry goods are literally spilling out of every empty cupboard. No real “plan of action.” Just “Look at all these great deals!” Now, granted, our family can eat everything on hand, but unless I put together some serious menus, it’s all just a bunch of excess building blocks laying around gathering dust while we eat soup and pizza. So, the FOOD section, will detail
    • recipes,
    • grocery purchases, and
    • the nitty gritty of what we are doing to eat healthily and on track.
  • NATURE. Days can pass and the only time I’ve spent outside is the walk to and from the car to work, church, or the store. That has got to change. For 2017, my goal is to get me (and my family) out in Nature on a daily, weekly, monthly basis. For me, it means:
    • taking, at minimum, two 20-minute walks each day, rain or shine.
    • weekly hike with the kids/family
    • quarterly camping trips in a tent
    • gardening and Tea Room … dare I hope for three hens?

So, here is where I sit this nippy December late morning. I invite you to jump in at any time. Let’s see what grand adventure awaits us!