Saturday, July 30, 2016

What Did July Bring? Resolutions 2016

July, the seventh month of the year has now passed and you may wonder, or not, if anyone has kept those resolutions? After all things don`t just happen over night, sometimes it takes seven months or maybe 12 months to get it done. Who has forgotten what they were? 

Sure there are days, or a month, that I forget about me and my goals but then it will keep coming back when I look around at my life, Plus I write down my yearly resolutions.

Lets begin and see what seven months has accomplished in my life.

One - Stop shopping so much and use up the stockpile. 

This one is easy its an accomplishment, I did not stockpile any store bought food except a case of tomatoes and I have been using all of the stockpile, to the point that I did run out of products. Ketchup being one.

I still do and I probably always will stock on toilet paper, try to, but hey! I need my toilet paper.

However, since I am crossing the line of buying and making I am home canning food I grow or that neighbors grow and share, so I am stocking on home grown foods.

Two - Start a new business.

Nope! Nature took its course and it went down. I did make my money back in June selling the produce but July I did not sell anything. I do still have many of the houseplants that should be nice and big to sell next year.

This one is a big fat fail!

Three- Replace the old worn out, things and thoughts. 

This one is a 50/50 because somethings have been fixed and replaced and something have not, yet.

I still have not bought a car and I need one but I keep putting it off, I reckon when I am broke down on the interstate I will try harder.

My thought pattern? Yes. I am changing slowly and its for the better.  I am not feeling so sorry for people like I used to and then they run over me.

Four - Be more selfish and do more for myself. 

No not really. This one is the hardest for me because I am a caretaker by heart and not just as a job. People get sick I doctor them, people want to learn to cook I teach them, or if they are hungry I feed them and so forth.

July I did not go swimming, I did not even make time to color my hair.

I need to learn to live more in the moment instead of always following the plan or schedule.

BUT I did update my wardrobe a little and I did buy myself a CD, no matter who like the music!

So there you are two of them are coming along and two are not.

How about you? gave any thought to what you wanted to change about you back on new year day?

By Andria Perry
Photo By Andria Perry

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Minimalism Monday - Life Happens

July 19,2016

Life happens, its not even Monday anymore but what the heck? Better late than never, right? Minimalism Monday has always been a day to reflect on how well I am doing the minimal thing anyways and to see if I found a new way to organize or release things that I am attached to and to ask " how was your past week?"

Last week I worked and I also worked, let me explain.

I have to go out into the world and work for a living because I have not figured out how to stay home and make enough money to pay all the bills, And I have to work at home dealing with the Summer vegetable garden that I use for food all year round, And I ..... well lets just say I do everything at home as far as upkeep. That is work and work.

To save money I had vowed to use the clothes line to dry the laundry, since it was installed back in May. So far I have only used the dryer three times and I think that is a good record, but we also are in a moderate drought, if it rains its been in the late evening for the most part, I get to use the morning sunshine and mid day heat to get the job done. With that being said I made a new schedule and I wash earlier than I used to when I used the electric dryer. One day when the temps were 102° the laundry was dried in one hour!

I worked last week at the old home place that is in the city, I own it and it is always the last house to ever get worked on due to having to keep up the rental houses that is my main source of income, but I am doing baby steps and getting this one in order as best I can with the limited help I have ( seems no one wants to work, people want you to give or they just go get it from the government). When I moved I pretty much left that hoarded life behind, I did not need nor want all of that anymore. Over the years I have been working to clear the house out and I have, I have sold everything that was worth anything and the rest is absolute trash as far as I am concerned. I loaded the trash can and sat it out to the curb. I also mowed the grass and paid someone to help me clean up after the tree limbs were cut up. I did make progress with this house.

I did not do any major cleaning in my home because it was for the most part already clean, I just did the upkeep of putting things back into there place and cleaning up behind myself in the kitchen. 

I did not buy any newspapers this week so no coupon mess.

I took the recyclables to the donation bin.

I did mow half of the lawn/ yard, why only half? That was all that had actually grew and it was around the house so I used the push mower.

Now what did I buy last week? 

I had a problem last week with trespassing, I am sure I was to be robbed because strangers do not show up with an empty truck and trailer " just to turn around" in a private drive clearly marked with no trespassing signs. Plus I am in the woods. I do have security cameras but I upgraded with a new plan and cameras and I bought a driveway gate, installed that halfway up the driveway ( the driveway is what I call a city block long) there is a spot for anyone that pulls up can turn around, by the road and just before the gate so no one has to back up. Since this is my private space I do not have visitors to " just show up" all visits are planned. But I did get that done for me and my home last week.

I did use coupons to buy more home canning jars for the harvest that is in full swing. 

Now what did I get rid of?

A few years back I was having serious back problems so I often got gifts to help. I gave my sister this huge back thing that heats and buzzes in certain areas of the back and legs. I did not like it so it was time to say goodbye. 

What is the plan for this week? I am going to get rid of some of the paperwork that is old and I will not need it anymore and I need to clean out my big closet, again, because its just..... to much of what is to big for me and its really outdated. Some shirts I will sell so eBay here I come, again.

How was your past week?

By Andria Perry
Photos by Andria Perry

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Minimal And A Homestead - Minimalism Monday

I heard that over two million people are choosing to get off the grid and live off the land, does that mean that they are minimalist? How can you be minimal and  homestead? How about an opinion of the "new" way to get what you want and not hoard? 

In some views this can be a contradiction, minimal and living off the grid? after all you do have to have some sort of food storage and some hoard "stuff" for later use, right?

When some people hear " off the grid" they automatic get the vision of the old hermit with no running water or power, campfire to cook and ragged clothing but that is no longer how off the grid should be viewed. I want to have luxury to a point (the computer and T.V.) but I am also not afraid of hard work, to gather food and preserve it, and if need be cut wood for heat.

Two words .....Twice.

Solar Power, well water.

When I say off the grid I mean that I don`t want to continue to pay a huge power bill monthly that is at times the same as rent or a house payment. The water here is so costly that we dare not to waste a drop and its , whatever they call it when it leaves behind a whitish dust, maybe lime water? 

I want to reduce my work load in the city and not have to worry about pounding the pavement to make ends meet each month. I want to keep the money I earn and not be a slave to monthly utility bills.

But I do understand there are things to learn and get done before I disconnect the power and use only solar power, for one I need to invest in the solar power system. Some people think of the cost and walk away but when you own your own company, as I do, I know the yearly numbers and they are getting higher each year but with the same low pay, so in a couple years I will be reaping the rewards of the investment. 


I am sure this will be the best thing for me to do, a smaller house. Less space means less stuff. I remember when I lived in a smaller house with a basement, I stored my home canned foods down there and it was rare I had anything spoil. The utility cost were lower but I did not have a huge space to grow food. 

I do not intend to raise animals for food. However, I would like a few chickens.

I am a hot mess!

I am one of those people who has an office filled with paperwork that is scattered everywhere and if you move something you mess up my system, but when its time to head out the door to that meeting I grab up that scattered paperwork and head out with everything in order for presentation, leaving not a single paper behind. 

Right now I am laying the foundation, what I am getting rid of that is  clogging life up and bring in what will make it freer, mind and body, bank account and daily job.


Minimalism Monday

July 11, 2016

Last week was another wild ride in my life. I was "given" food that I refused to let rot so I bought more canning jars (investment, they last as long as they are taken care of ) and put that food up for the winter and I am sure will last me a year.

But I did get the home in better order. I cleaned the house! Yes I dusted and vacuumed, swept and mopped. 

I took off the recyclables. 

I filed paperwork and I clipped coupons ( only 2 papers this week, I am cutting back so much!)

I offered free shipping for the Ebay stuff, get rid of it or give it away.

I keep the laundry washed, hung out to dry and it gets folded right off the clothes line. No need to waste power for drying laundry in July in the state of Alabama!

But more than anything I realize that I don`t need much to make my happy, good health is the one thing that is important and to achieve that I don`t need a cluttered, dusty home. 

How did you do last week? Buy more or get rid of more?

By Andria Perry
Photo By Andria Perry

Monday, July 4, 2016

Minimalism Monday - How to, When you need to.

July 4,2016

Happy Forth of July to all.

As we all know it gets hard to catch up when we fall behind because something major in life comes before cleaning and taking care of ourselves. Don`t get discouraged! You can and will catch up.

Last week was actually a very good week, I had made a plan, wrote it down and stuck to it.

Sometimes when we think that the home is full of clutter its not really as bad as we think it is, we just need to get organized. Having those shelves installed or a chest of drawers may be all that is needed to put things away that looks like clutter but are actually our things we use on a regular basis. Although I try not to buy "stuff," I will buy what I need to organize my things that are a part of my daily life.

For me the baskets are a no-no because they collect to much dust for me to keep up with, but they are pretty. However, I do have a couple in the media closet to hold CD`s that are listened to more often than not.

I do have a couple shelves for books, some books, I sold most of my book collection because I have read them and no I am sure I wont reread those but I do keep my how to books and my cookbooks, those I do still use.

Now, how did I do last week on the decluttering and cleaning of my own home?

A few weeks ago I had intentions of reclaiming my garage and getting rid of everything I could, I did but I see more that can be gone. 

In the corner of the garage and shed there is a huge space that had became a "catch all" when it was supposed to just be a place for the recyclables. I cleaned everything out and now its just a place for the riding mower.

I also got most of the grass mowed and the yard cleaned up from stray wind blown trash from somewhere, I have no idea where the trash comes from!

Finally! I got the living room and dining room vacuumed and dusted. I am so proud to have those rooms cleaned because I was becoming ashamed of the dust.

Like always I am keeping the laundry up but I have something to add about the laundry, I am not using the electric dryer. I have decided to hang the clothes out on a line for the sun to dry as much as possible, I have dried only two loads in two months. Most of the time I fold the clothes as I take them off the line and that saves me from doing it inside on my bed.

The kitchen is the kitchen, I seems to live there so its always being worked in and cleaned, its a never ending story.

I filed all the paperwork and I did not buy coupons this week but I clipped the ones that were given to me.

It was a good week for me! How about you? Did you get anything done you wanted done?

By Andria Perry
Photo by Andria Perry

Note : I must add that I also work. I am a 24/7 caretaker. I am a full time landlady. I have a vegetable garden, pick and put the food up either by freezing or canning and what I do not use I sell, I grow houseplants to sell. I am a writer of blogs.

Friday, July 1, 2016

Resolutions 2016 - One Half Gone

Wow! Another month gone, the sixth month of the year 2016. But I have to say I am not idle and watching the world pass, I am out there in the middle of the mad, mad world surviving with the best of them. Most people forgot their resolutions 2016 months ago, but not me I am a work in progress, one half gone already? Yes! So lets see how well I have done.

Now lets see how I am doing with the things I want to do for my life this year, my goals. I make four resolutions, two easy and two hard. You can see what is hard and what isn`t.

One - Stop shopping so much and use up the stockpile. 

 I have to say that I did cut back on shopping, the garden is in full production and has feed me many days with fresh foods. I am canning and making a new stockpile from the garden, The only thing that I have stocked is green beans because the deer ate mine. I still have those empty shelves but I am slowly filling them with homemade foods and not many store bought. And we did not eat out as often in the month of June and that is always a money saver! 100% Accomplishment this month.

Two - Start a new business. 

I have to say that I still have pretty houseplants, as far as selling produce from the vegetable plants I grew back in the beginning of the year, some made it some did not, I made my money back and them some with the squash and zucchini crop, they are almost spent. As far as selling anything else at the moment its a big nope because of the rain situation. I do not have a green house, yet.  75% Accomplishment this month.

Three- Replace the old worn out, things and thoughts. 

This one is one of the tricky resolutions. I have discarded clothing and bought a three outfits of a the newer style. I think that is all, I have thought about it and I don`t really need anything else. As far as thought being replaced with better more positive thoughts, well that is a 100% accomplishment because I am learning more and more to be like my dad and just not reply to most peoples stupidity, not get sucked into their lives of drama.

Four - Be more selfish and do more for myself. 

This is not an easy thing for me, to be selfish, but I am making sure that I provide for me a little more before others nowadays. While making the budget I wiped clean one section and said "Nope" I will not allow money for this part anymore, I will spend this one my needs. I am also planning a vacation for the fall of the year, I have not had one in years.

There was the month of June. Not one single fail. I am getting this done!

By Andria Perry
Photo by Andria Perry