Friday, January 6, 2012

2012 has arrived...and is now well underway!

Wow!!! 2012!!!!  When I was a kid, we talked about 2012 with a futuristic, sci-fi, kind of reverence.  Well, it's here now.  I guess we'll be flying our individual space pods around in 2022 instead.
Just like every other New Year's Eve that has come and gone, I felt the almost mystic air of anticipation and the appreciation that comes with a "wipe the slate clean" day.  David and I spent a little more time than usual planning for our goals for 2012.  I know that the fact that my thirtieth birthday looming around the corner had a lot to do with my need to plan a little extra for this year.  I've always considered 30 old.  I know it's wrong, but it's the truth.  Now I'm about to hit "old".  Now I know it really ISN'T old...but you know I'm weird about "even" things...and 30 is one of those "even" milestones.  It is a reminder that I've made it this I on track to accomplishing the goals I set for myself 5 or 10 years ago (other "even" milestones).  I already know I'm weird, I don't need anyone else to tell me that. :o) 
Well to share a few of our goals for this year...we have started a "Whole Foods Diet".  It's not really a "Diet", so much as a decision to change our lifestyle.  The main idea is to get back to eating food the way God created it.  It really is a simple concept, but in our's really kind of hard way to live.  Try watching TV for an hour...they don't typically advertise for collard greens, broccoli and's ads for cereal, sodas, and candy.  None of which are part of a whole foods diet.  Even when you walk into the grocery store...they set up a tables and displays in the very front of the store advertising all the "sale items" - few of which are things we are choosing to eat.  This diet also entails that we cook most of our meals, so we are having to prioritize cooking and planning meals.  You can't eat like this 'by the seat of your pants'.  You can't stop at McDonald's or Arby's and grab a '#3 Whole Foods Combo'.  We've eaten out a few times and of course it's impossible to eat perfectly every meal...but on the whole we've done really well so far!  It may be weird, but I feel like our second goals compliments our first.  We want to get healthy physically, but we also want to get healthy fiscally.  By that, I mean that we have renewed our goal to pay off all our debt.  A lot of people consider installment payments just part of normal life as an American, but we don't.  We recognize the freedom that we can enjoy by creating disposable income to spend on current purchases and giving, as opposed to living in a cycle of being stuck paying for what we bought years ago.  We've already paid off our credit card debt, but we still have student loans, tax loans and car loans.  We have purposed to have "budget meetings" weekly so we can stay in constant communication about our progress.  The hard part to this is that we have to stick to the decisions made each week.  As long as we've been together, we've always just kind of gone with the flow...spent money where we needed to and figured it out later.  Now we have to plan our meals out and our meals in, plan our dates and events with friends, and plan our home improvement projects and crafts and Stick To The Plan.  I know we will grow in maturity and wisdom as part of this endeavour.  Maturity and wisdom don't come without hard work and sacrifice though.  We are ready for the challenges because we have each other to lean on. 
We have spent the last month going through our stuff.  You know the stuff that gets stuck in every nook and cranny and you just have it because you have it.  You don't use it or really even look at it.  It stays tucked away in the closet or drawer...but you know you have it.  If by some chance you actually have the opportunity to use can't find it because it is hidden underneath all the other stuff you've accumulated and crammed into the same closets and drawers..yes that STUFF.  It is taking forever to get through all the stuff.  I'm not a sentimental pack rat or anything, but I struggle with the fact that if I get rid of something, and then need it in the future...I will have to re-buy it and I HATE spending money on purchasing something I already had, but got rid of.  I am making progress - but I can't say it's been easy or fast.  We've tried to organize as we go so when, by chance, we need some of this STUFF, we can find it easily and quickly.  I know this isn't a one time deal...we will need to constantly evaluate..."do we really need this item" to keep our house uncluttered, but it will be worth it in the end.  We made it through cleaning out the storage unit (there's one bill off the budget!-no use paying someone for a room to cram more stuff into), the garage and the kitchen.  I've never sold anything on Ebay or Craiglist before, so I'm a little nervous...but I'm going to give it a go.  Wish me luck!  Hopefully I'll have updates on our progress throughout the year and will enjoy lots of acheivements toward these goals!  Here's to Two Thousand and Twelve!!!

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