For the last year the man and I have spent an awful lot of time plotting and scheming for our semi-retirement. Sometimes deciding the details has been easy-peasy, but at other times it has been a case of going round and round in circles, and getting nowhere fast.  Change is hard at the best of times and we have found that it is even harder when there are two or more attractive choices to choose from. Heads or tails, anyone?

Having said this, we are making progress and things are falling nicely into place. We have brought the date forward to saying adios to the 40 hour working week: February 2017 is D (departure) day for leaving full time employment. At the latest.

The rental is on the market next week. As we have decided to move out of Auckland, the house we are in at the moment is getting tarted up with the intention of selling it. We did consider renting it, but it is not a house that lends itself to easy renting and the fact is that being a landlord does not suit the man or my dispositions. It is important for happiness to recognise this.

Selling these two properties and buying out of Auckland allows us to get a property that has the land, the shed and a nice house, all within cooee of a smaller, quieter city with all the amenities. And at a price which leaves us  some capital to play with.

So will this capital be spent on matching Maseratis for the man or me, a Harley Davidson or two, overseas trips every two months or what? Well, sadly this does not sit well with the ever-practical Virgo in me, and the dreamy Pisces I am married to agrees.

We worked hard for this. And as some of it is inheritances from our parents who worked hard for it too, we feel even more obligated to be sensible. Retail therapy has no place here. We will therefore invest it wisely, and hopefully grow it.

And this is the problem: what do we do with it to keep it safe, and keep pace with inflation? Whatever we choose needs to provide us with a small income when we are fully retired, not to mention two damn awesome funerals (just joking!) and, ideally, something for the kids.

At this stage we admit to being pretty naive, maybe even totally clueless, so we are reading books, talking to people who seem to be financially astute, and thinking hard. We know we have to diversify investments to hedge bets. But what…? No doubt the man and I will work it out.

Meanwhile, some guy from Nigeria has just contacted me about a long lost Uncle John (never heard of him), but apparently he has left me squillions and  I just need to transfer some money to get it…. must go!