~~~~~~~~~~

Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree~~~~~~~~~~~Martin Luther

Monday, January 26, 2015

Budgeting and Simplifying for the New Year~~January

Over the past 4 months or so, I'm getting our house in some kind of order with a mission of organizing, and for this 3 story home, it's a big job. I made it a goal to simplify last year and this year is the same. I remind myself that things didn't get out of place all at one time, and it will take little bits every day to reach my goals.

I probably will make this maybe a weekly post as it's such a good topic and I've learned so very much from following some You Tuber's and websites for organizing, ideas for practical usage of items in your home, and how to budget (well that part came from my mama).

I sit down at the beginning of each month with my planner and write out what I want to accomplish at home and what needs to be done versus what I would like to do. In the past couple of years, it's mostly what needs to be done and occasionally I can do what I like to do as well.

Without a budget, a home generally does not function well. There have times in my life where I didn't really write out a budget, but I could tell you at any given time, the numbers that usually go out of the household budget. For some people or most, it doesn't work as well. I've been through times in my life, I didn't know where groceries were coming from. I've been through times where I didn't have to worry about it. I've been through alot and learned alot from bumps in the road of life.


Here are the factors that I consider when I look at the year in general:


  1. if you own a home, no matter what they are, there will be basic home maintenance. If the home is not maintained, you will end up in the long run paying more for repairs. If you or your spouse can do the repairs yourselves, this saves a ton of money.
  2. when planning a monthly budget, focus on basics first. This is the bare-bones of what you have to pay to live in a survival mode. We all don't like to do that, but for planning this is crucial. Then you can categorize smaller items/bills that go out each month. It's really surprising when you look back and see what was spent and what was really unnecessary.
  3. understand that life may take a complete turn around and jobs may be lost, a spouse's job may be lost, extended illness can happen, and Murphy's law does exist for a reason. Don't worry excessively about this. I've been through each of these and it seemed very doomed at the time but realize God will take care of you, He promises in His word. Pray.
  4. January is the best time to look at the year forward. Set monthly goals that are generalized because nothing is worse than setting up too high of a goal and not achieving it. I personally write out in a journal to keep up, all the bills/needs for 3 months at the time and plan and regroup, every 2-3 months if things change.
  5. Buy and carry with you, a daily/monthly large planner. If your phone works best to do this with app programs, then that is another way, but I know for myself, when I physically write something out and go back to look at it from day to day, I get more done. I am a list maker!
  6. Use budget billing for utilities whenever it is possible. For example, electric bill and home gas bill and utilities can be averaged out by the company, and you pay the same regardless of the true bill throughout the year. This is a great way to budget.
  7. Every month, on the large monthly calender 2 pages, write in the side bar, a goal for each month for home maintenance. For example, when filters need changing, oil in the car needs changing, and what to focus on each month.
  8. Every day, on daily pages, write in your planner on Sundays what needs to be done for the week. This helps meet the overall monthly goal.
  9. Be aware that some household items are on sale at different times of the year. Stock up when they are at the lowest. 
  10. At the top of your monthly 2 page planning pages, write a positive affirmation, long or short in large writing so when you get discouraged, it helps you to stay focused on the positive.
These are just a few of the general things I do to plan for the year. Not all things can be predicted and life can change at a moment's notice, but I find that planning gives some sense of control in life and less surprise expenses come up because of not preventing them in the first place. I can thank my dad for making me this way. :)

January is practically coming to an end this week, so get those calenders and get a cup of tea and write out 12 positive affirmations at the top of each month. For me, I like to put scriptures or famous quotes I like at the top. 

Remember that what works for one person or family, may not work for you.  

Give yourself some creative space and time to design your life by taking the time to move forward and make some goals for the year!

I hope these suggestions are helpful. I'm working on some organizing projects and will post from time to time about repurposing items in the home.  Stay-tuned!

I will leave you with a positive affirmation for January!



How many sang that as they read it????  ;)


Sunday, January 25, 2015

A Freebie For Valentine's Day Sampler: Love Is


Love Is
designed by Feathers in the Nest
copyright 2015

I hope you enjoy stitching up this little sampler. You can use any colors you want. You can even work all of it in a pretty overdyed red color for redwork.

Print this only for personal use. Please do not sell or pin on Pinterest. Thank you.
This will be free for a short while on the blog.

Please feel free to share this webpage/ website blog with others by html.

Linen of choice

105 x 100

Enjoy!

If you stitch this up and would like to share a pic of the finished product, please email me at jenniferann_fox@yahoo.com. I enjoy those emails and will put them on the blog here.

I hope your weekend went well.

I love finishing off the weekend with Downton Abbey at 9pm. This year is certainly moving right along with mystery, romance, and just about everything in this season.

In between working, I am reorganizing one entire room, closets, clothes, and redesigning it for more practical use. This has been a long time project but I am about to see the light! You Tube has certainly helped me in doing this large project.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Progress on Mr. Darcy's Scarf


Good morning, friends!  It's Saturday, and OH what much laundry and cleaning that has to be done. 
Just thought I would followup on this scarf that I learned the lesson about when knitting a stockinette with only one knit stitch border.  I have also recently bought a handheld garment steamer, a Shark, and I think this will help with the uncurling as well. I plan to lightly steam and then pin to block when I finish.

I've actually seen good results when I store it  by rolling it up flat at night. I haven't worked on it in several days because on work days, I'm exhausted when I get home. But here is my progress.





We have a large leather sofa, so you can gauge the size by that.
I'm a little more than half way done.
This is for a tall man, Mr. Darcy so I'm using 3 whole thick skeins of the Bernat.


Although this is a blurry picture, you can see where I changed from stockinette to garter.




Th color is most truest in this pic. The yarn is not really soft, but not hard either. It's pretty thick so I'm using my wood straights.


colorway is Denim Jeans

using 3 balls/skeins


So, I'm at a standstill until I can get some things done today, I have planned out. I'm doing some really early, early early Spring cleaning. I'm donating alot of stuff because I just feel a cluttered environment is too stressful. I also have committed myself to the local domestic violence shelter in many ways and one is donation of things I don't use or have too many of, so it can be given to someone else who has less.

It'a REALLY windy day here in the North Georgia mountains. I can hear the wind whistling around the corners of the house. My chimes are very active right now. 
I enjoyed a good fire in the woodstove last night and makes me forget the raining and cold outside!

Miss Abbie is cuddled in her "day bed" and taking a morning nap. And I am writing this morning and sipping coffee with Bailey's Red Velvet Cake creamer and sugar.

Have a great Saturday. Tune in tomorrow for a Valentine design. I hope you like it. It's simple and would look great in a redwork design!

Jennifer