Category: 2015

2015 – Goals! Oh nooo!

Oh boy!

It’s ridiculous how long I’ve been working on this post… I started it weeks and weeks ago.. and then I completely forgot all about it lurking around in the drafts folder… until I suddenly went.. oh crap.. didn’t I..??? Yeah you guessed it, I suddenly remembered that I had not posted it after all. How the heck could I forget?

And here we are, almost done with February. And I still haven’t given you the update on how I did with my 2015 goals! 😳

How can I make it up to you? Well I guess I could just go ahead and give you that update!

Before I do, I have a teensy-weensy disclaimer!

2015 turned out quite differently than I had anticipated. As some of you know, I had to throw in the towel at work, June 2015 for health reasons. Following that particular decision, a few things happened during the fall, things that was completely outside of my control, which unfortunately, took a toll on my health.

I know, I know..  it’s a poor excuse…  But excuse or not, it is an explanation for why I completely flunked on some of my goals, as you will see below.

I did have quite few goals, and even though I flunked a lot,  I did accomplish one or two…

So here it is, my (ahem) “quick” update, starting with one of the ones I actually passed 🙂

FINANCIAL GOALS
My overall goal when it comes to my house mortgage, is to pay it down as quick as possible. Every January I pay a lump sum towards the mortgage (a quick explanation of my mortgage). My goal for 2015 was to to save up NOK 60 000,- for my lump sum in January 2016. And I did it. Actually I was a ahead of schedule and had saved my yearly down payment by October. With a little extra savings in November.

I did debate paying down more than my 60 000 this January, but I decided I’d rather invest that extra money in mutual funds, as the interest rate on my mortgage is really low.

With this last payment, I’m down to 1/4th left on my mortgage, only 9 years in 🙂 Do I get a woot, woot?

DECLUTTER
I had a bunch of declutter goals. Just as in 2014 I wanted to shed an item a day. In addition to that, I had a few other “projects” like reading myself out of my bookshelfwatching myself out of my movie collection, and (the big mother of projects) photos!

My declutter goals for 2015:

  • 😀 365 items 561 items out the door – the big purges are mentioned here, here and here
  • :-/ 100 Movies – 68 movies
  • 😦 Cut physical DVD series collection by 30% – I’ve only gotten rid of one series which probably amounts to all of 1%
  • :-/ 34 books – 27 (I ran into too many I wanted to keep)
  • 😦 Photo collection – I never had a proper goal on this as I have thousands of photos, and the idea was to – keep key photos as physical photos, scan the other ones I’d like to have access to, and get rid of the rest. – All I can say…. it IS on the list for 2016 (and 2017… and 2018… and…)


ONLY BUYING NECESSITIES

2014 was a year I focused a lot on only buying necessities ( I want, I want – I want it now!!!), and it served me so well that I continued in 2015. I had some non necessities allowances though;

  • 😀 Books – buy only 10 books/magazines – I bought 6 books (4 of them e-books), no magazines
  • 😀 Flowers and plants – same level of 2014 – I cut about 60% on 2014 results
  • 😦 Eating out – reduce 25% on 2014 results we have already established that this item is something we struggle with. So it shouldn’t come as a big surprise that we flunked this one completely. Here are the statistic:
    • we ate out 39% more times than 2014
    • average cost per meal was reduced 9,5% – resulting in
    • total cost for 2015 was increased with “only” 25,9% 

Even though the results are pretty bismol (with the exception of average cost per meal) there is one upside in it all.

You see, both B (my eating out partner in crime) and me stopped working early/mid 2015. B took out an early retirement + was hit by company downsizing, leaving the workforce early spring. And I, well I started the year working only 20% until I left completely in June, when I went out on 100% sick leave.

We have found out in the past, during holidays and such, that we eat out more when we are not working. In lieu of the fact that most of the year have been non working days, for us both, I’m actually surprised that we did not increase our cost by more than 25,9%. So yeah, we gotta look at the bright side of this 😉

  • ❓ I can buy up to 10 non essentials throughout the yearHmm lets see, I bought:

    • 2 lamps at an antique fair – the lamps are going over my dining table (been looking the last 5 years – finally found some I think might be cool.. as soon as I change the wiring 😉  )
    • 1 pair of shoes (needed a pair that can work as my one pair only for minimalist travel)
    • a few Lush products to test out deodorants and shampoos in solid form (travel)
    • a couple of eagle creek super light travel pouches (travel)
    • 6 pieces of clothing – 4 replacing worn out items, 1 item filling a hole in my wardrobe, and 1 just because I wanted it…
    • 1 frame for a poster (picture finally on the wall after years and years in a roll)
    • a set of omaggio vases

Depending on how you want to count these non essentials, it’s either a flunk or pass scenario. If you look at it from a “if every single item counts separately” then, yes I bought more that 10 items. But if “each purchase count as one” (eg lush, lamps, vases..) then I guess I kinda passed? You know what? I’m leaving it to you to decide 😉


ACTIVITY AND EXERCISE

The goal for 2015 was to build up to, by the end of the year: 7 days of activity a week, with 3 of these as real workouts.

Yeah, that didn’t happen (re my disclaimer) – I did pretty good during summer with an average of 6 times a week, but I took a crashing nosedive end of August, resulting in this goal going straight out the window for the rest of the year. So yeah.. a big, big fail 😦

OTHER ACTIVITIES/PROJECTS
As always, I enjoyed my garden as much as possible. In addition I had a few other projects.. mostly helping out family and friends with little things in the house.

I did however have a bit of a larger task, helping a friend who got a new house in 2015.  Picture this, a house built in 2000 with interiour like the 1970s! Yeah, non painted pine, red, orange and yucky cream/brown/puke coloured wall… and thats for starters. For her it became quite a renovation project.. so B and me tried to help out as much as my health would allow. You know things like; painting, drawing up the new kitchen, delivering doors to be spray painted, changing door handles, cutting moldings to fit new wardrobes, more painting, installing the wifi, hanging curtain rods, “create” (rather adjust) a couple of ikea kitchen units to fit the space… you know.. all the little things that comes up during move in and renovation 😉 It turned out to be a fun and very social summer as she had lot and lots of friends helping.. oh yeah.. and there was lots and lots of great food, do I need to say more 😉

All in all, it was a great summer season!

This concludes my “How did I do on my 2015 goals”!

About time, you might say! All I can say is.. Yeah, I know 😳

December in a nutshell!

It’s time to get the 2015 stuff out of the way, and first installment in that, is me letting you know how the month of December went!

December was a busy month, as it was filled with treatments, pre Christmas dinners, trip to UK and Christmas off course.

Oh yeah, and my blog turned two on December 16th 🙂 I can’t believe it’s been two years already. The cool thing is that a few of my fellow bloggers started their blogs just around the same time as me, and we are still in touch 😉

OK, now back to the monthly sum-up!

Activities and exercise
I didn’t do much better in December than in November 😦 The first half of December I was still smack in the middle of way too many treatments, until I decided (or rather my body did) that I had enough, and I stopped just about everything a few days before I went to UK. I desperately needed a “time out”! There is actually such a thing as too much!

With the exceptions of a few walks here and there, the normal hustle before Christmas, and dog walking in UK, I didn’t do much.   

Declutter
I’m happy to say that on the declutter front, something did happen 🙂 I never got rid of my Dark Angel series as planned, but a bunch of other stuff went out during my version of the Minsgame.

69 items clothing & stuff + 79 CD’s + 80 items in a post Christmas purge = 228 items out-the-door!

Only buying necessities
Eating out – As I told you last month, I have given up! We are way too good at the eating out game! Christmas hustle + a trip to UK, did not help.

I’m curious to see how we did overall, compared to last year…  but that’s next posts problem.

Buying non essentials – Well, it was Christmas time after all, and even through I tried really hard to only get the stuff I needed for gifts, I ended up with some of leftover pieces, like a couple of cups I ended up not using for gifts after all and a couple of Christmas cards I was going to bring with me to UK that I forgot :-/

Beside little things like that, the only thing other thing was a HDMI cable for my computer, which makes it possible to connect it to a TV. I needed it to show my mum a video I had come across, a video from when she was in her late teens. So I guess it really was a necessity after all 😉

I bought some plants for decorations, 3 amaryllis, not the normal ones, but double ones and a new type I had never seen before.. really cool… I’m hoping I can make the bulbs survive for next year, they were that cool 🙂

Oh yeah, and I got 3 books! I bought a e-book for my trip, and on my way back from UK, I found a good deal on two books from one of my favourite authors, that I just couldn’t pass up 😉

Garden
I mentioned last month, that I never really got to pack up my garden due to poor weather. It never cleared up enough for me to dry off my garden furniture, so the solution was to bring the furniture inside. Which is where they are still residing, waiting for me to get my act together. The weather forecast this week is cold and clear, so hopefully I can bring them back outside and get them all covered up nicely.

Sad thing! I never got my tulip bulbs into the ground before I left for UK, and now the ground is too cold 😦 Maybe I should find a big pot or something, so that at least I might have a chance for tulips come spring… we’ll see.

Well, that’s it for my December sum-up!

Next? Well, that would probably be how I did overall on my 2015 goals, so stay tuned 😉

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It’s a new year!

Happy new year!

It’s a new year, the partying is over and it’s time to start on the every day stuff again 😉

I’m so impressed with all the bloggers out there who has it all together, pumping out one post after another about their 2015 reviews, lessons learned, experiences they’ve had and goals they passed with flying colours. And not to forget, posts about their 2016 goals and plans. And they did it all in the days just around new years!

Me! Yes, I have plans for reviewing 2015 and setting goals for 2016… but I have not had my shit, ops, sorry, act together enough to actually get these things down and out on my blog. It will come, I promise, but it will take me a few days before I’m all sorted :-/

I have a few posts, rattling around in my head… Have I started on any of them? Well, no, and therein lies my problem… I need to get myself organized!

Since I’ve been such a slacker, unlike my blogging friends, these posts will be showing up, slowly but surely.

And while you are waiting for me 😉

Why not check out Elvis, as he does Slowly but surely much, much better than me 🙂

A post Christmas purge…

Christmas this year was a quiet affair, just mum, B and me. For some reason we ended up with a casual approach to it all, not the typical dress up versions we normally have. I have to admit, I like the casual approach much better. Had I known in advance, I could have packed half of what I brought, clothing wise that is 😉

I’ve been home for about a day from my UK trip, and I’m all unpacked, the washing is done, I’ve finished the book I got for Christmas, and it’s time to get back into the declutter game 😉

You might remember, my plan was to shed 210 items this month. I didn’t quite get there before I left on my trip. I did have a few things that was all ready to go, but since I never got around to writing about them….

So I figured, this is as good a time as any to catch up on those items, and while I’m at it, why don’t’ I just throw a couple of more items into the mix to see if I actually might make it to my 210?

Here we go – 80 items out-the-door:

  • 28 DVD’s (18 movies and 1 DVD series) – part of my  “Watch a movie program
  • 7 books – part of my “Read myself out of a book shelf” program
  • 1 worn out CD case
  • 4 flower pots
  • 3 flower pot trays
  • 1 T-shirt
  • 1 long sleeved top
  • 1 pair of socks
  • 21 items of miscellaneous stuff
  • 13 used notebooks and user guides

I believe this will be my last purge for 2015, considering new years is just around the corner 😉

Did I manage my 210 for the month of December? Well, why don’t you check this out;

69 items of clothing and stuff  + 79 CD’s + these 80 = 228 items out-the-door

I’d call that a PASS, wouldn’t you?

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I’m two!!!

“Woohoo! I’m two. I’m two. Today I’m two.. . Wake up, wake up. I’m two.. you gotta wake up!!!”

What on earth? I’m slowly trying to crawl out of sleep land. What is all this ruckus about? There is this blaring coming from my phone, computer and Ipad all at the same time. What’s going on?

“I’m two, I’m two.. common I’m two..  waaaaake uuuup… ” It’s like having a small kid tugging at my arms all antsy to get my attention.

I’m desperately trying to rub the sleep out of my eyes, getting dressed and fumbling my way downstairs to the living room. And there I see it, my computer positively vibrating, it’s that excited!

I open the lid and Minimalist Sometimes jumps right at me, shouting “It’s my birthday, I’m two, it’s my birthday, woohoo!!!”

“Oh gosh, it that what all this is about? I get it, you are all excited, but you gotta slow down. I’m not even awake yet”
“But it’s my birthday, you gotta waaaaaaaake up” I’m starting to see a small vibration in the lips…
“Hang on, just let me have a cup of coffee,and I’ll be good to go, OK?”  Ahh.. there we are, back to all smiles again.

“When is the partyyyyy?”
“Party?”
“My birthday party! We are having a party aren’t we?” Dang, there is that quivering lips again.
“Yes, off course” I’m sweating a little “Off course, we are having a party” Minimalist Sometimes is running around like a toonaloon, jumping up and down all excited. Crap! How on earth am I to hold a party? How do you host a party for a website? I’m at a loss for words here.

“Goodie, goodie. I want balloons, I want blue balloons, oh and some red balloons. Oh and cake, can I have a birthday cake? I want chocolate cake, big chocolate cake. They are so yummy 🙂 And pressies. I will get pressies don’t you think?” The kid is looking up at me with shiny eyes.

“Uhu, I’m sure we can find a way to get you balloons and cake” I’m silently hoping we can forget about the gifts, how on earth do you give gifts to a website?

“I want everybody”
“Everybody? What do you mean by everybody?”
“Everybody in the whole wide world”
“Hey, listen kid, we live in a 807 square feet house, we can’t fit everyone in the whole wide world into our house”
“Yes, we can”
“No we can’t”
“Yes, we can.. ”
“Now, hold on a minute…”
“We can.. we can, we can…” The two year old is jumping up and down tugging at my arm… “I’m on the interweb, we can invite as many as we want…”

Well, yes, that is a good point, kinda smart for a two year old I must say. Even so, I’m thinking we need to narrow it down somewhat.

“I think everybody is a bit much. What about picking just a few friends?

“Yeah, but that is not fair. All the people that have visited me, should be able to come!”
“Sweetheart, you’ve had 10,897 views, and 3,885 visitors these two years, which is wonderful. But you know it’s a lot of the same people that have visited you over and over again, and it’s impossible for me to separate them. What about just picking some of the people you hang out with the most? Just a few of your 289 followers? ”

“But I have so many friends, and their all my besties! Like Heather and Nancy and Melinda, oh and Wendy, she’s always soo funny, and SimpleLivingover50, and Jessica, and Therese, and Bun and AllRoundBetterMe and..and, and Jillian, and.. there is just too many..” I’m starting to see a very determined look in my two year old. “I don’t want to choose. It’s not fair.” There is some stomping of feet going on over here “I don’t care what you say, I’m inviting them ALL!”

Oh boy, I’m starting to see that my two year old is winning this discussion. I guess we’ll just have to find the space somehow. I have to admit, the thought of inviting everyone is kinda growing on me, what a party that will be 🙂

“OK, kid! Everyone is invited, are you happy now?”
“Ohhh, goodie, goodie…” Big smiles going on over here.

“Why don’t you go a make an invitation for them?”
“What should I say?”
“I think you should write – You are invited to my birthday party – I think they would like that”
“Okidok, I can do that.. ” My two year old runs off grabbing some paper and pens. Phew, finally quiet, now maybe I can grab that morning coffee 😉

“I’m done…”

“You’re done? Let me have a look” Hmm, ok, not the best paper.. but then again, it’s a two year old.. so.. I think we will let this one fly… “This is great, I love your balloons and cakes. Why don’t I take a picture of it and put it out there for you. Is that ok?”

“Goodie.. I can’t wait for the party to start” My two year old are all smiles, jumping up and down, all excited.

So there you have it folks! We are holding an open door birthday party. Everyone is invited! Friends and friends of friends.

It’s you that have made this possible. It’s you that have cheered us on, made us laugh, held us accountable and given us some great days here on the “interweb”. We can’t imagine celebrating our two year anniversary without you. 

So if you happen to be in the neighbourhood, feel free to stop by and say hello. I’m sure my two year old will get a kick out of that.

Happy Birthday, Minimalist Sometimes!

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CD galore!

While I was going through my living room during my “pseudo packing party” earlier this year, my music collection was one of those things that jumped out at me as being a separate tiny project for a later date.

Well the later date have come and gone, and its time to do something about the amount of music CD’s I have lurking around.

Once every blue moon, I go through all my music CD’s and clear out the ones I don’t want anymore. I tend to rip all my music to my computer first, so that I can keep the music I love, but I don’t necessarily need to keep the physical disks.

My rule is! Rip them all, but save only as many as will go into one CD case! Now that is not as restrictive as it might sound, as my CD case will take 80.

Why do I keep any CD’s at all? Well in the early days I used to play them at home as most of us did. Nowadays I stream my music through Wimp (similar to Spotify) at home, but I still have an old fashion CD player in my car. So if I want anything other than radio music, CD it is 😉

And since I’m one of the crazy people, who loves driving with the top down on the car, “singing” at the top of my lungs along with the music, you see why I just have to keep some of my favourites around 😉

For the time being I’m keeping around 50 albums, I’m sure some of these won’t make it through the next cut, but for now I’m good with that. Fortunately there are a few more going out the door… 79 CD’s to be exact…

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There is stuff…

…finally going out-the-door! Long overdue, I know 😉

About a week ago, I mentioned that Heather over at Simply Save was inspiring me, to get back into decluttering with her minsgame.  Now, my original plan wasn’t really playing the minsgame, I just wanted to get back into decluttering. To finish off my goal of 365 item out-the-door for 2015.

But I was thinking today, that maybe it could be fun to play part of the minsgame anyways, kind of a minsgame light 😉

As we all know Christmas is a big part of this month, and that holiday is a time to spend with family and friends (not decluttering), so come Christmas time I won’t be around the house much.

My plan is to play the minsgame until and including December 20th. After that, my holiday starts with me leaving for a few days to hang out with family.

That means (if my calculations are correct) that 210 items should be leaving the house this month. Now, I know a lot of people that play the minsgame, get rid of the number of items that follow the date. Something that Moving Forward is doing, right now. But me! I’ve never been good at following rules 😉 so I figure that as long as 210 items leave the house before the 20th, it doesn’t matter if it’s 1 or 77 at a time.

So here it is, my first installment of 69 items out-the-door!

Clothing – 44

  • 1 windproof fleece jacket
  • 6 t-shirts
  • 1 pair of sweatpants
  • 1 nike nylon sports pants
  • 2 thin fleece tops
  • 1 medium thick sweater
  • 1 thin cotton long sleeved top
  • 1 knitted jacket
  • 1 high neck sweater
  • 1 pair of jogging shoes
  • 5 pair of jeans
  • 1 pair of office pants
  • 6 bras
  • 15 undies
  • 1 bicycle shirts

Other stuff – 25

  • 2 drinking bottles
  • 4 egg holders
  • 2 “Pc covers”
  • 1 exercise ball
  • 1 exercise ball DVD
  • 1 pc backpack
  • 2 flower pots
  • 1 cup
  • 7 small plastic containe
  • 1 network cable
  • 2 CD disk cases
  • 1 pc cover

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November in a nutshell!

Oh my gosh, it’s almost like I can’t believe it, I’m actually managing to get my monthly sum-up out there on a proper date. Who knew it would take me this long to “catch up” 😉

Well, I wouldn’t quite believe that if I were you, I’m not really caught up, as you will see in future posts to come.

But let me get back to my November sum-up!

Activities and exercise
I’m still in the middle of my somewhat intensive treatment program (average 2,5 times a week), add a cold/flu to that and I have done zilch zippidy duda when it comes to being out and about 😦 

The one thing I have been doing, is the extremely strenuous sofa sitting, tv watching activity. And let me tell you, that stuff will wear you out 😉

Declutter
So you are wondering did anything make it out of the house this month, besides heaps and heaps of snotty tissues? Nope! I’m afraid not!

My decluttering efforts this month pretty much consisted of the aforementioned TV series watching. Unfortunately my Dark Angel marathon resulted in the series kinda growing on me (again), and I’m wondering if maybe I should rip the series to my computer, before I get rid of the DVD’s..?  Which means, yes, you’ve guessed it, that the series aren’t making it out of the house quite yet 😦

But hey, today is December 1’st and hopefully I will have the series riped in time to leave the house before Christmas 😉

Only buying necessities
Eating out – I think I have given up on this completely. I might as well just realize that if there is one thing we will always be good at, it’s eating out 😉

Buying non essentials – For some reason it seems like it’s fleece buying time these days. Last month I got one I can use for a more dressed up occasion. This time I got a bright blue regular one, to replace a sweater that is about to fall to pieces.

Financial goals
Let’s see… I got paid some stock dividends this month, I believe I will put those towards my yearly mortgage payment in January, which should bring my mortgage down even quicker than originally planned 😉

Garden
We have had our first frost which absolutely killed off all my hydrangea and other plants that was still blooming and I just hate how sad my garden is looking right now 😦 Unfortunately due to the weather being totally bismol, I have not been able to “pack away” my garden for the winter.

I’m hoping for a clear day or two so I at least can cover my furniture, remove dead plants and get some bulbs into the ground. Looking at the weather forecast doesn’t give me high hopes for that happening anytime soon though… but here is to hoping 🙂

That’s it! Not very exciting I know… guess it’s like that, this time a year!

 

Focus…

I can’t believe it’s almost December. One more month and 2015 is over. Where the heck did the time fly off to? Just a short month left (yes, it’s a short month, with Christmas and all, interfering with normal routines 😉 ) to finish up my goals for the year.

I know there are a couple of goals that I will fail at, but there is one goal in particular that it’s time to snap back into.

For some reason I’ve been finding it hard to keep the focus up on my decluttering goal! Last year I was all for it, but this year it’s almost like I’ve lost a step and I’m not sure why. Maybe it’s because I feel I have my home under control (no, not really), or maybe it’s because I’ve already been decluttering for years and I’m getting down to the “nitty gritties” and it’s much harder, or maybe my heart just haven’t been in it?

Whatever reason, the fact is that there aren’t much stuff going out-the-door! Now, fortunately there haven’t been much coming in either, as I don’t buy much, so I’m not cluttering it back up 🙂

But it’s time, it’s time to focus. It’s time to get at least some of my decluttering goals out of the way.

Heather over at Simply Save, has spent November playing the minsgame. So I figure I could take a cue from her, focusing on my decluttering goal for a minute 🙂 There is no way I’m going to be able to shed 465 items like Heather have been working on. But that’s not really the point. The point is just to get back with it, to get the stuff out of the door, to finish my goal for the year, of 365 items out-the-door.

So there you have it… over the next few weeks. The focus is… decluttering! And yes, please hold me accountable.. because it is sooooo easy to slip…

 

Sniffles and tv…

Lately I’ve been struggling with a bit of a cold/flu/chest infection.. or whatever the heck it is… all I know is that it entails a lot of sniffles, headaches, coughs, fever and no energy. Oh yeah.. and no voice! What’s up with that! 😉

The one redeeming factor? It’s a perfect excuse to do nothing but hang out in front of the telly 😉

In the beginning of the year I posted about how one of my goals for the year was to attack my movies/series collection. My goal was to get rid off 100 Movies (half of my collection) and cut my physical DVD series collection by 30% (which is quite a bit as I have a few series).

I figured that, as I’m sitting here like a zombie anyway, this is as perfect time as any, to attack that particular goal 😉

So guess what? The last few days I’ve been hanging out, in front of the telly, with my hot beverages and blankets, all tucked in, having a Dark Angel series marathon 🙂

I’m already through season 1, and depending on how things goes the next few days, I should be done with season 2 soon.. which means that, by the end of the week, there might be 12 DVD’s leaving the premises.

A bit sad to let them go.. but I’ve seen the series a bundle of times, and I need to cut down somewhere, so it’s decided, I’m no longer keeping the Dark Angel series as part of my collection.

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