semi-retiring, work life balance, lifestyle block living


December 2015

Paddling onwards

With a New Year upon us, the man and I are thinking about our goals and aims for the next few months.

The three day working week or less remains the primary aim and is absolutely non-negotiable. The only thing that may change is the date for it to kick in. Not to mince words, the sooner it happens, the better. To achieve it in a tighter time frame requires a bit of juggling of expenses and taking on an opportunity. So here goes:

  1. I am re-evaluating the need for the second car. I use it so rarely it seems an unnecessary expense.  The man and I are discussing selling both vehicles and using the money to buy a newer one. The question is what to buy which meets both our needs?
  2. The man and I are in negotiations with the newly married son and his wife to buy our interest in the rental property off us. We are intending to leave our equity in and own a proportion of it. By doing this we rid ourselves of the outgoings on it and help our son onto the property ladder.  The capital gain on our proportion will be our reward for leaving our equity in, plus it reduces the amount of income we need, so semi-retirement will be more doable.
  3. The budget is being reviewed. The mobile phones fixed term contract expires soon and we will change to another company with rates that are near on half the cost we are paying now (we gave up the landline a year ago as the only phone calls we received were from annoying call centre people at dinner time!) All insurances are being looked at- do we need this or that?  I always feel insurance is based on fear and  being over insured is not a good use of money.
  4. The man and I have decided to take up the opportunity offered to us by a reputable NZ kayak manufacturer to make the man’s sea kayak design in thermoformed  plastic and market it here and overseas. We have invested in the mould and plug. Besides the income that should be generated, it is an amazing feeling to see the Albatross sea kayak * design being taken to the next stage.

Each of the steps above will contribute to our dream of living a slower lifestyle: a lifestyle which will allow us to explore passions we hold dear.

Yes, 2016 is going to be the year where we say ‘we have done’ rather than ‘we will’. I will continue to blog about it; please join us for the ride!

Happy New Year to you all.



Chasing dreams

You may have noticed I am blogging less: this is not because I have lost interest in ear bashing all and sundry in a figurative way via the medium of a post, rather it is because I am putting my energies into turning my dream occupation into a reality. Sorry, exactly what this is remains embargoed information – this girl doesn’t want to end up with egg all over her face.

It is my hope that this new direction may eventually give me a modest income. I also harbour much grander dreams: I dream that my new occupation is so successful that not only does it provide me with a very respectable income, it provides me with an express ticket out of the 9-5, 5 day per week grind that I seem to spend more than my fair share of time railing against.* Move over, Adele!

I am, however, a realist. I know that being a success in anything is far from a given. It is also not something that is likely to happen overnight, rather it will take years of dedicated commitment and hard graft. To make dreams come true requires more than wishing; it requires one to take the first tentative step. In the last week or two I have done just that. I couldn’t be more pleased!

*The goal of reducing the man and my working week to three days by July 2017 still stands!

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