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Green Tomatoes

10 Oct

I received an email the other day asking if I’d given up on my Day Zero project. The short answer to that is, “no!”

It’s true that I could be doing better at it and I may have lost some of the enthusiasm I had when I first started the project, but I have completed some more tasks and a few others are ticking along nicely. I have had to give up on a couple of tasks due to them being unachievable either financially or practically, and a couple have had to be modified, but overall I’m pretty pleased with how the challenge is progressing. I am now just over a week into the final year of this project so I’ll have to make time to have a look at what needs doing and make some plans.

But first, an update.

I’m very proud to say I’ve ticked off two huge tasks this last couple of weeks. The rocking horse (#26) is finished (more about that later though), and I have paid off one of my credit cards (#97)! I did not then use that card to buy a rather lovely Mia Tui bag. *cough*

I have also finished task number 45 – grow and eat three different vegetables or fruit.

The carrots were tiny (but deliciously sweet), and we only got a handful of strawberries and tomatoes. I blame the weather. We cut the remaining tomato plants down yesterday as it’s just too cold for them now. There were easily a hundred tiny tomatoes that just didn’t grow in time, and I picked a bowl full of green ones.

It would be a shame to waste them, but I have no idea at all what to do with them. Will they turn red if I leave them on the window sill? Can I cook them up as they are? I’d really appreciate any suggestions you have.

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Personal Challenge: March

5 Mar

Is it March already? How did that happen? I thought I would have a fairly impressive list of achievements by now, but my only real achievement is that I have not completely abandoned my Day Zero list. I know I still have ages to go, but it is a big list and if life keeps whizzing by as quickly as it has been then I will run out of time. I also know that when I start thinking like this (so much to do, so little time) then I am in danger of hitting the panic button and giving up completely. I had started out so positively aswell.

Just as I start thinking that maybe doing the Day Zero list wasn’t such a good idea, the lovely tiddlyompompom pointed me in the direction of this:  

tiddlyompompom

This is a great way of splitting my big scary list down into more manageable chunks. Over at her blog, she sets a personal challenge each month and invites you to do the same, then leave a link back to your own blog post. She also offers these words of advice, “make sure it is something you can actually achieve in a month. Be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-based)”.

Now, as I only have to think about one month, it doesn’t seem like such a daunting task. Here we go then. This is my personal challenge for March:

  1. Make and decorate cakes for the two family birthdays this month
  2. Finish reading one of the books I have started
  3. Get my fiddle and guitar out and make some music
  4. Get all the bits I need to start learning to crochet

I know I could do all of these in a day if I wanted to, well, if my toddler would let me. This is my first month though, so I’m making it easy. I don’t want to set myself up for a fail, I want to meet all my goals and feel confident to set harder ones next month. I’ll be back in a few weeks to let you know how well I’ve done!

If you have set yourself a goal or two this month, why not blog about it then click on the badge and join in?

Sending Books To Strangers

7 Feb

We have just had some very bad days. Very bad. Even though I knew they were coming, I wasn’t ready for how bad they would be and they have knocked me sideways a bit. I am trying really hard to not think about it but I don’t know if that will be doing more harm than good when I am forced to deal with it. Anyway, in an attempt to balance out all the bad, I chose something from the RAOK section of my Day Zero list to complete.

82. Send a random stranger an item off their Amazon wish list (completed 29.01.2011)

I thought this would be something I could do quite quickly one night but it took hours. Probably because I’m a bit nosey and ended up clicking through loads of lists, wondering about the kind of person who had written each one and what varying tastes some people have. Death metal and cheesy pop on the same list? Really?

After already looking through so many, just choosing the next person to send a gift to didn’t seem fair. I decided to hit random on my favourite songs playlist and use the first name of the person singing. A quick look down the list of people and one of them had mentioned a favourite author of mine. His list had an address, was up to date and affordable. I had found my man. If only finding a suitable man was always this easy…

A book was chosen and sent. I had no idea how good this would make me feel. I think I was probably more excited sending the surprise than the recipient would be when he received it. I know how nice it is to receive something in the post when you’ve sent for it yourself, how good would it be to have a book you’ve had your eye on just land on your doorstep unexpectedly? It still makes me smile just thinking about it.

If anyone knows of any shops other than Amazon that have a similar wish list setup, please let me know. I will definitely be sending another random gift or two so I hope all your wish lists are up to date, it might be yours that I click on next!

And We’re Off

21 Jan

The rocking horse is underway!

On Monday evening I held my breath and pushed a plank of wood around a bandsaw. Not bad for a first attempt, I was sure I was going to have an ear off but there’s plenty of time for that to happen. Even though it’s just a start, I can actually see it taking shape and I’m not quite as freaked out as I was last week. I have tools on order and can’t wait for them to arrive so I can start carving the head.

First Goal Completed

16 Jan

I’ve never really been any good with new year’s resolutions. I always start with the best of intentions but one by one they all get broken. A little bit of forgetfulness here, a little bit of cheating there, an excuse, a reason… Perhaps the reason I’m so bad at these resolutions is that they are rarely fun. They are not usually made up of things that I want to do, more like things I feel I should do. I should eat more healthily, I should eat less chocolate, I should do more exercise, I should give this up, I should do more of that, blah, blah, blah, I’m bored just thinking about it.

Still, as the new year approached, I found myself thinking about resolutions again. My priorities are a bit different this year though. None of that stuff really matters, I just want to be happy. I want to go out and make proper fun memories of good times instead of dwelling on all the bad stuff. I know there are going to be bad days that I can do nothing about, but what about all the days in between? They could all be good days, couldn’t they? They could even be brilliant days!

There could not have been a better time for me to stumble upon the Day Zero Project. I don’t remember where I first saw it mentioned, I just know that I was randomly clicking around the internet, looking at all kinds of things to distract from the fact that I was trying to write this blog post, and I knew immediately that it was for me. It was exactly what I didn’t know I was looking for at exactly the right time. Lucky, huh? After a quick search I found out that there are thousands of people creating these lists of goals. Not just boring old resolutions, but fun things, weird things, exciting things, things that always get put off because there is something more important to do.

It’s taken me two weeks but I’ve finally finished my list of 101 goals. That’s already longer than my resolutions usually last and (as of 14th January) my first goal is complete. You may think it’s cheating slightly to make creating the list one of the goals but, believe me, it’s harder than you think. How often do you sit down and have a good think about yourself? The things you enjoy doing but never seem to have the time for, things you would like to do but have never tried, things that you’ll do ‘one day’.

I was quite nervous about posting my list. It says a lot about who I really am, which is something I don’t like to talk about. It also makes this challenge very real and there can be no backing out now that you all know about it. While I am excited about the things I will be doing over the next couple of years, I can’t help think that I might just be a bit crazy and should probably be doing something a bit more sensible with my time. There’s that word again. Should. Ugh.

I would really appreciate any comments you have, and if you already have a list or decide to make one then please leave a link to it. I’d love to know how you’re getting on with yours.