Sunday, January 15, 2017

No Spend New Year




Jade plant my mom no longer wanted.  Rusty stool - yard sale $5


It has been a long time since I last blogged.  Over the last year I have found myself losing interest in blogs.  There are a few I always find myself going back to.  These blogs are usually a combination of decorating, recipes, DIYs, crafts, frugal living, a Christian perspective, and also some personal stuff so you get to know the person behind the blog.  



What I find I have been avoiding are blogs with lots of advertising and especially pop-ups, blogs that are difficult to navigate, bloggers that spend a ton of money constantly updating and changing their home for blog content, and young bloggers with adorable children and great fashion sense that I really don't relate to at this stage of life (these young women have creativity, knowledge and drive I wish I had at their age).   While many of these blogs are creative, inspiring, and beautiful to look at, they can also make you feel a discontentment in your own life.  

I have been debating whether I want to continue to blog.  What is my goal in blogging?  I don't have the time for regular blogging, nor do I have the funds to constantly update my home, and I don't have the desire to aggressively promote my blog.  I will never make money blogging as I find that part of it distasteful and I don't have the kind of talent needed for that anyway.  Don't get me wrong, I understand bloggers need to make a living and for many it is their full-time job spending hour upon hour each week coming up with content and marketing themselves.  While this works great for others, it is just not for me.

So what do I want?  I guess I want to have a creative outlet to share and document my home and ideas with other like-minded women as well as for myself.  I want to be part of a community of creative and interesting women.  I hope to make some online friendships  too.  I want to continue to find and read blogs that are relatable and interesting to me.  Blogging can keep me accountable as well.



This week, I suggested to my husband that we have a  "No-Spend" year.  I read an article about a couple who had a "no-spend" year and saved $23,000.  Wow!  
At that point, he wasn't convinced but was intrigued.



Then this happened:
Pizzagate

It was Saturday afternoon and the Patriots playoff game was on at 8:15pm.  We decided we would get a pizza.  It would be my husband and myself, our daughter and her boyfriend, and our son.  Now one pizza for 5 adults would not be enough in most cases, but we had a bunch of other food as well.  I was making chicken wings, and my daughter was making buffalo chicken dip with crackers and veggies, jalepeno poppers, and we also had cheese and crackers available.  You should also know that last time we got 2 pizzas we had one full pizza left over.  There was a disagreement about purchasing one pizza or two (me insisting one was enough, my hubby arguing for two).  He came home with two, explaining that one pizza was $14 but they had a special, 2 for $20 so it only made sense to get two.  Of course we had one FULL pizza left over when all was said and done.  I may or may not have controlled myself from saying "I told you so" while informing him that one pizza basically cost us $20 since we didn't eat the second one. 

That led to a heart-to-heart talk this morning about getting on the same page financially and he agreed to try a no spend year.  This should be interesting.


We probably could never save $23,000, but we have spent a lot more money than we should have this last year, and now it is time to get serious about our finances.  Of course we will purchase items we need including groceries and items needed for our home and pets, but we are going to try very hard not to purchase things that are not necessities. 



 Since we don't drink, smoke, gamble (including lottery tickets), or even purchase an occasional coffee at Dunkin Donuts, there is not a lot of excess to cut in those areas.  

My husband purchased this gorgeous buffet from Homegoods in December.  It was marked down from $1300 to $500 and replaced an old dresser we bought years ago at a thrift shop for $40.  Still, we should not have made this purchase.

The main area we over-spend is on items for our home and groceries.  So one of the things I hope to blog about is how we are saving money by not spending.  I know we will fail occasionally, but hopefully not too often.  

Today was a success.  We didn't spend anything!  We had blueberry pancakes and coffee for breakfast, then sat and chatted with our 23 and 25 year old kids while the dogs entertained us.  
We ate leftover pizza for lunch.
After lunch we brought the dogs to the Robert Frost farm for a walk in the woods. 


 Then we came home and hung out in the yard. We took down the remaining outdoor Christmas decorations, scoured the yard for dog poop, and stacked wood for the wood stove.  (Our life is about to get really exciting).  Now the hubby is watching football while I work on this post.  Since I forgot to plan dinner, we are making do.  We have plenty of food here and will not be ordering out.
Here's to the New Year!

Linking up:






21 comments:

  1. Wow, I am just drooling over your home. It is gorgeous. As to your blogging dilemma, I think there is this idea of what a "blog" is and what type of person a "blogger" should be. While it's helpful to know how to build traffic and the like, sometimes you just have to throw that all out the window and ask what YOU want your blog to be and why you like to blog. At the end of the day, your blog, just like your home, is your own space.

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    1. Talk about drooling - YOUR home is gorgeous! It reminds me of the homes in Newport, RI! Thanks for visiting!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  2. I agree; it is your blog and need only be what you want it to be.

    Your home is beautiful and your "No Spend Year" truly challenging. My hubby and I tend to be very frugal, but I'm not sure we could tackle a no-spend year. We enjoy the occasional getaway and that is pretty much a necessity for us. We also need to buy plane tickets every year or two, as we have young grandchildren in a faraway state and really do need to see them once a year if it works out. We have not yet met the youngest one (a year old) except through Skype, so a trip is on our agenda in 2017.

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    1. A "no-spend year" for us will probably not look the same as a no-spend year for others. Today, my 25 year old son mentioned he wants to see the movie Silence and he knows I like that kind of movie. I usually don't go to the movies but wait until it is on cable or Netflix, but I will go to a movie in order to spend time with my grown kids. Those are the type of things I don't want to miss out on so there will be adjustments and it won't really be a true no-spend year. My husband and I are homebodies and happy to stay home with our dogs so getting away is something we can do without for a bit. I'm so glad you stopped by!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  3. I think you should listen to your heart and do whatever it is you need to do for yourself and your family. Me, I love your blog and I think you live how most of us live! I love it when your blog pops up on my email. Do whatever it is that makes your heart sing!
    ~Bobbie

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    1. Bobbie, Thank you so much! This comment is what it takes to make me want to continue blogging! Do you have a blog? I clicked on your name but didn't see one. Let me know.
      Fondly, Gloria

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  4. It was such a nice surprise to see a post from you! I have followed you for years and love your blog. I would enjoy reading about the topics that you listed. I, too, have recently finished decorating my home and now it's time to save money! I could definitely use some encouragement and ideas on that topic. I have been trying to make new recipes, always love a Christian perspective, and would like to get to know you through your blog. Your new direction with the blog sounds perfect to me!!

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    1. Dyanna, your comment made my night! Thank you so much for your input. Do you have a blog? I would love to follow you!
      Fondly, Gloria

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    2. I don't have a blog. Maybe someday! I will try to comment often, instead of being a silent follower.

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  5. I just found you today but I can relate to your struggle. Some of the blogs I used to follow, and who inspired me to start my own blog, have become excessively commercial and frustrating. Thanks for your honesty.

    And I'm very impressed by your commitment to a no-spend year! My husband and I have done a no-spend month and no-spend weekend, but never a whole year, so I'll go find your "Follow" button so I can keep up with your posts. I'm glad to have found you!

    Blessings, Leigh

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    1. It is a tough balance Leigh. I started reading a blog that I was really interested in, and every time I tried to read something on it a big ad popped up and covered it. After x-ing out of it 3 times I finally gave up and will not return to that blog. I want to relax and enjoy my reading, not become increasingly annoyed.
      Now about that no-spend year - yeah that, it's not going to be easy!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  6. Your home is beautiful. What a great idea to have a no spend year! I saw really early on that I wasn't going to update my house for the blog. I am really a, "the couch has been there for years, why move it now" sorta person. It was so nice of you to join Home Sweet Home!

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    1. Sherry, I used to read your decorating blog when I first started blogging! What a transformation you have made after reading the Bible. I LOVE the new direction of your blog!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  7. Just found you and everything sounds and looks delightful. My family did a "no things year" instead of "no spend" for the reasons you mentioned above. So we only bought things that had to be replaced (socks, a lampshade, my husband's work shoes; if they could no longer be repaired) or gifts.

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    1. Oh, I really like that. A no-things year is really a much better name for what we are doing. I'm glad you commented!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  8. I agree with you completely about blogging. I love your blog, been following you since almost the beginning and always look forward to see whats going on in your world! As for my finances and my life I can relate to saving and growing what you make. My car broke down over the holidays and instead of going into debt with a new one, I am renting one every weekend and saving to purchase...I'm just too old to go into debt, don't want the stress. :) Keep up the great work my friend, I love your beautiful home, love your style!

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    1. Diane, I am so glad to hear from you!
      Fondly, Gloria

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  9. I don't read a lot of blogs any more, but yours has stayed on my list...and I'm thrilled to see you're back! Your home is still one of my all-time favorites! Stay true to yourself, blog about what matters to you. We'll still read!

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    1. Denise, I am delighted to know I am still on your list! Keep coming by!
      Warmly, Gloria

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  10. I have been blogging for 10 years and I can tell you, blogging used to be the way your describe it. We used to have giveaways of aprons, teacups, just little gifts and bits and bobs while we blogged about our homes, kids, and lives. It was glorious! It has become so very commercial, and I too feel a stab of discontent when I think about competing with the women who seem to have so much money to pour into their homes and blogging. I wouldn't say I am jealous, but it does make you wonder why anyone would want to read the kind of blog I write with the occasional DIY project and day to day sharing of an ordinary life. I almost threw in the towel, I may still at some point, but the truth is, I blog for myself as much as anyone, my grown daughters read and love seeing what I am up to and it keeps my creativity flowing. I'm glad I found your blog, your home is beautiful, we share a common faith and I am enjoying your post immensely. I think there is still room out there for non commercial, REAL bloggers. Keep up the good work!

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    1. Kathy, I am enjoying blogging again thanks to finding so many blogs I can really relate to. I am quickly filling my reader with these blogs, mostly written by a more "mature" group of women, many of faith, who are frugal, creative, and wise. Kathys Cottage is one of them!
      Warmly, Gloria

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Thank you for your lovely comments - they make my day!

Gloria