Sunday, 12 December 2010

Preparing For The New Year - A Simple, Green & Frugal 2011

By Notes From The Frugal Trenches

Slowly but surely I find my confidence growing. I've blogged before about a little internal battle I faced, feeling like I wasn't ever going to succeed at the green or frugal life because I couldn't knit or sew and didn't have a homestead for my own chickens, bees and garden. In 2010 I finally understood the truth, there isn't one prescription for a simple, green and frugal life, in fact I imagine if there were it wouldn't be so simple!

Looking back 2010 was the year I accomplish many changes in my life that were simple, green & frugal. 2010 was the year I semi learned to knit, I canned fresh produce (under expert instruction), I volunteered overseas, I learned how to make my own shampoo & conditioner and I began using re-useable toilet paper. It is only through recognition of the little changes I made in 2010 that I'm able to think about realistic yet optimistic goals for 2011.

One of my main goals for 2011 is to drastically change how I eat. The plan is to have a whole foods year, nothing pre-packaged, everything ethically sourced and made from scratch. I hope 2011 is my vegan year, or at the very least 95% vegan with a bit of ethically sourced feta cheese from a local farmer. Yes, my name is Frugal Trenches and I have a slight addiction to feta cheese! ;-)

My simple, green and frugal goals for 2011 are:
1. Begin using a worm composter
2. Volunteer to clean up a community garden or park
3. Make my own soap
4. Follow a 100 mile diet
5. Veganism {or as near as possible!}
6. Foster dogs or cats for the local animal shelter
7. Take sewing classes
8. Give up caffeine

All are realistic and represent changes I feel I'm now ready for and looking forward to!

Some may think it is a bit early to discuss goals and plans for the new year, but one thing I've learned on this journey is that I need a "settling in period", a time to adjust to change and get my head to follow my heart. So for the month of December I'm eating vegan 5-6 days a week and reducing my caffeine. On top of that I just found a sewing class which starts in January and while I'm not taking the path of insisting from January 1 I've made all these changes in full, I'm slowly getting there one simple, green and frugal step at a time.

What are your plans for 2011? Do you set yourself & your family goals for the New Year that will help you in your simple, green and frugal journey?


Frogdancer said...

Yes! make your own soap!
I made my first batch 3 weeks ago. Yesterday my 3rd son said to me, "Mum, you'd better stop making soap. We've got enough to last us 2 years..."

But it's SO MUCH FUN!

Mrs. J said...

My husband and I have been discussing our green goals for 2011 too! Many of them are similar to yours.

I want to learn how to make soap like you do. We're already 100% vegan, but we're going to work hard at our garden this year to grow most of our own food. We'll also be more conscious of how far our food has traveled. We've also been talking about starting worm composting this coming year.

As a frugal challenge, we're committing to paying an even larger amount on our mortgage each month. This way we can pay it off even sooner, and end up paying less interest.

I'm sure we'll blog about our new year goals closer to January, too. Good luck in your challenges!

louisa @ TheReallyGoodLife said...

I haven't finalised my list yet but it'll include some of the same things as you, FT - make soap and improve my sewing skills.

I also want to improve my woodworking skills (and make a piece of furniture good enough for the house, not just the garden) and learn how to fish.

This year, a few of my goals were about growing/raising my own food and I'll definitely continue with that - just got to formulate it into a specific goal.

Whatever I end up with on my list though, I guess the overall goal is "live a simple, green and frugal life"!

Diane at Patchwork Economics said...

My goals for 2011 will be firmly centred on becoming more self-reliant and using the surplus $$$ to pay down my mortgage.

The specifics I'm still working on but making my own soap is very high on my list along with making the most of my latest investment - a pressure canner. I'm planning on spending A LOT LESS time in supermarkets in 2011!

I'm also planning on using my feet rather than the car a lot more, too.

And... I'm looking at expanding my kitchen garden in 2011.

It's going to be another busy year!

Jessica said...

've been at it for a month but my goal is to not buy anything like clothes, shoes, books, etc. new.

stella said...

I agree about not buying anything new!

Heather @ Significantly Simple said...

We do live fairly green, but I know we could do so much better Thanks for sharing your goals - you've given me plenty to think about!

Ray Ban Sunglasses Sale said...

I've been doing this for about a year and will never buy brown sugar again. :) It's always soft and flavorful! Laura Getting There, November 30, 2010. Oh my gosh, I can't believe I never thought of doing this. I purchase organic cane

Tiffany Jewelry said...

if most of people live a Simple, Green & Frugal life ,the world will be more better.