Friday 28 June 2019

No Need For a Campsite

So, one of the advantages to having solar power is that the main draw for me to go to a campground was to have unlimited electricity all weekend.

The views are nice and the peace and quiet is also a welcome sight, but the main draw was always the electricity.

In the dead of winter, I can and will go to a campground, but that is because I can use my electric heater to warm up Wanda. 

I will see how warm I can get Wanda with my furnace, but that will take propane. Yet, I know that burning propane is cheaper than a run to the campground.

So, we shall see how things shape up this winter, all hinging on how effective my solar charging system is in winter.

The point is that I will be staying in town this long weekend, and in so doing, saving cash.

I will enjoy the downtime and rest and relax, but I will do so without burning extra fuel, and paying to stay somewhere.

After all, this phase of my life is all about saving as much cash as I can. While at the same time trying to enjoy life along the way.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Thursday 27 June 2019

Make A Pattern To Success

We are creatures of habit, we humans, so why not use that desire to repeat patterns to your advantage.

I have a number of small habits that help me towards my goals.

A few of them are: 

I check my bank and credit card accounts daily (to ensure no fraud or false charges go through).
I budget and stick to that budget. (So as to control my finances and grow my savings.)
I spend cash on most things, rather than with my bank or credit card. (So as to feel the pain of the spend and to stay within my budget.)

The trick is to get yourself into these good habits by forcing yourself to do them every day for at least three weeks.

Habits are formed in about three weeks (so they say). So the trick is to get yourself into the good habits that will help you move towards your goals.

What you do, here, now, today, this week is what matters the most. For it is the small actions in your life that move you towards the larger direction in your life.

You are moving anyways, so why not move in a positive direction, a direction that you choose. Establishing positive habits are a way of helping you do that.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Wednesday 26 June 2019

Plan Many, Enact Once

So, as many of you know, I use spreadsheets to budget my paycheque pay periods. 

My budgetary cycle runs from when I deposit one paycheque in the bank to when I am about to deposit the next one. 

I use a spreadsheet to plan out how where my cash should go (before that payperiod arrives) and then record where my cash actually went (when I am in the middle of that payperiod). 

So, since these are cascading spreadsheets with the bank balances of my various bank accounts carrying over from one to the next, I can plan for a while into the future.

Again, when it comes to forecasting, the further you go into the future, the less accurate your fiscal projections are. 

So, you take these with a grain of salt, but it is nice to see what could happen. How things might play out if I do this plan or that.

I have worked up the paycheque budgets from now up until April 7 of 2023. (That is the projected end date of my Grand Savings Plan).

I have also reworked those budgets a number of times. Why? Well, each time I have an idea to do this or do that, I work up the budgets and see how it impacts my finances.

This lets me see what would happen if I save in different ways or invest in this or that. 

Again, the real power of spreadsheets is the ability to change things in them and see how they are impacted.

This lets me try out various patterns of savings/investing and see if I will still get my overarching goals of my Grand Savings Plan done.

It is through methods like this that I am not only keeping myself on track, but on the right track.

So remember kids: Plan Many, Enact Once. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Tuesday 25 June 2019

Biting Your Tongue

It has been said that biting your tongue is a sign of weakness and submission; I disagree. 

None of us are in charge all the time, and in all circumstances. If you think that you are then you are likely a jerk. 

For only a brash jerk must always have things their way at all times and in all circumstances.

I will warn such people that almost everyone loves to see jerks fall flat on their face and rendering assistance to a jerk is almost never done because you want to.

At any rate, wisdom, along with a healthy dose of self-preservation, can and will prevent us from saying what is really on our minds at a particular time.

This is well known and well practiced by those who are gainfully employed and wish to remain that way. If I may say so, I know this all too well.

I put forth that having the strength to keep your tongue when “others” around you lose their minds, and my personal favourite, blame you for their mistakes, is not weak.

You know what really happened, and even that “other” person knows what really happened. Yet it is their immaturity and pride which prevents them from admitting it.

So, to all those out there who bite their tongue on a regular basis, take heart, for it is not a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength and wisdom. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Monday 24 June 2019

Grand Savings Update

Okay, so it is that time again, when I update how my progress is going on my “Grand Savings Plan!” 

Okay, so let’s see how I did . . . 

For review, here is how things looked from last payday . . .

That is 25.5% (of my Savings Target).

And this is how things look like, after the dust settled on this payday’s budget . . . 

That’s right things jumped up to 26.5% of my savings target. 

That means I put away 1% of my total Savings Target this payday.

So, I am on track and putting my target 1% in my savings per payday. That is always a good thing to see.

The other interesting thing is that my “Target End Date” moved up one payday to July 7, 2022.

This end date moves around and is an estimation. It is just a fun thing I do but what it really is, is just another way to keep me motivated.

As long as I am putting more away, each payday, that is progress. Any progress is good progress. So even a dollar put into savings is a good thing. 

The more I put into savings, the quicker I will be done this Grand Savings Project.

Friday 21 June 2019

Stay Motivated

Dreaming is often seen as a waste of time. It is often seen as being silly. I can’t count the number of times that I’ve been told to “Get my head out of the clouds.”

Yet, I am here to tell you that Dreaming is an important part of your path to success. 


Because Dreaming is vital to keep you motivated as you go through the hard part of the path towards your Dream.

You need to see and envision where you want to be in order to be able to keep moving towards that Dream.

Don’t get me wrong, you will never get anything by just wishing hard enough, you need to work and do things in order to make that Dream a reality.

Trust me when I say that in order to keep going during adversity, you need to hold on to your Dream as motivation to keep you going, to keep you moving forward, through adversity. 

There have been many a cold evening where I have questioned my life’s choices and thought about renting a room or otherwise straying from my chosen path to success.

One look at my Dream Board (a place where I keep reminders of my Dreams and Goals) and I remember why I am doing this. 

For me, I am doing what I am doing for that land, for that town, to help others break the cycle of Debt -> Work -> Working Poverty -> Death.

The thing to remember is to hold on to your Dreams as you work towards them.7

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Thursday 20 June 2019

Dare To Be Different

Another key to success is the willingness to do what others are not willing to do. Go against the crowd and do what you are not supposed to do.

I’m not saying to and break the law, but just bend some social norms. 

Take me for example, societal convention dictates that every person either buys or rents a fixed address. 

Entire industries have been built up around this concept. Most people spend well over half of their hard earned income on this principle.

Why? Do you really need this to survive? I don’t think so.

I live in an RV trailer, and constantly tow it behind my truck. I park on industrial streets near work during the work week but in a big box store on weekends.

It is not a glamorous lifestyle, but it is a way to get ahead. I have a place to live and a place to call my own, but I do not have the costs associated with having a fixed address residence.

You don’t have to do what I am doing, but it is an example of getting ahead by doing what the crowd is not doing.

Again, I am not advocating to cheat or deceive anyone. Such as: renting a place and then never paying rent until you are evicted, drawing out that legal process till then end only to start the process over again with another landlord.

Just find a way to do things differently that will help you get ahead. As I said before, a path to success is found in doing what most people are not willing to do.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Wednesday 19 June 2019

Adaptability is Vital

Being able to change and adjust what you’re doing in order to achieve your goals is a vital part of the path to success.

Having a Dream is great. Having a Goal is better. Having a Plan is fantastic. Working that Plan is actually moving down the road to Success.

Yet, as wonderful as all that is, if your Plan is not working, or worse, is taking you in the wrong direction, you need to change your Plan.

To do that, you need to Measure your Progress and evaluate if this that Progress is in the direction that you had intended it to be.

If your Progress is taking you towards your Goal, great! Keep it up. 

f your Progress is not taking you towards your Goal, or you think that another Plan may speed up your Progress, then change your Plan.

Pride and Arrogance can keep you working a losing Plan simply because you are inflexible and don’t want to change or admit that you enacted a bad Plan.

I have to tell you that I have made many bad Plans in my life and I have learned to just learn from them and move on.

As long as you learn from your mistakes, they are not bad, just Learning Experiences. 

They key is being willing and able to adapt what you’re doing in order to get to your Goal. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Tuesday 18 June 2019

Self-Reliance Is Important

While it is necessary to ask and receive help from others, in times of need, it is more important to be able to rely on yourself for what you need.

It is not a pride thing, but more of being able to control the things in your life, as you seek to improve it. 

While assistance from others is nice, and a boost, you cannot and should not rely on such assistance, especially in areas of genuine need. 

For people can and will let you down, for a myriad of reasons. People will also surprise you with their generosity and kindness too.

The trick is not to need help from others, not to rely on help from others in order to succeed or even survive. 

That way, when people do help you, it is a bonus, and a help, but when they let you down, it will not be detrimental to you. 

This may seem like a harsh way to look at life, but I see it as a practical and pragmatic view. 

I still believe in the overall and overarching goodness in humanity. 

I also know, from personal experience, however, that people can and will let you down, even when you need them the most.

So, always look to rely on yourself for what you need, and find ways to get the things that you need to get done to survive on your own. 

Get help from others on the things that are not vital. That way, if someone lets you down, it is not a crisis, just an inconvenience. 

This realistic view of life has served me well, and continues to do so.

Hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Monday 17 June 2019

Keep Moving Forward!

It is one thing to have a Dream, another nice thing to have a Goal, what matters is what you DO in order to make Dream/Goal a reality.

We all have wonderful things that we would like to happen in our lives. “I want to own a house,” is one. That is a Dream.

People then can make Goals. “I want to own a house before I am 25.” Is a Goal. For a Goal is a Dream with a deadline. 

What matters is the Plan that you make in order to make that Goal a reality. Then, you have to actually Work towards that goal.

Let’s take our example of a starry-eyed Twenty year old who wants to buy a house before they are twenty-five.

Well, they need to figure out:

1. What they will need to make that Goal a reality (what cash needed, other regulations, etc.)
2. How they will meet or beat those Obstacles (cash needed, other regulations met etc)
3. How they will measure their progress to overcoming those Obstacles on their way to meeting their Goal.

So, while it may be unrealistic to want to own a house in five years, I would never discourage anyone from setting or pursuing any Goal.

For while this person will likely not make the goal of owning a home in five years (or they may), they will likely make it in less than ten.

After all, isn’t the Goal of owning a home the real Goal after all?

I for one have had to push back my Goal deadline dates many times. While it is frustrating and you feel like you have failed, I just tell myself that the Date was unrealistic.

The one thing you must always do, when pursuing Dreams and Goals is to KEEP MOVING FORWARD!

If you remember nothing else from this blog entry, that would be it. 

No matter what you are doing or what Goals and Dreams you are chasing, always find a way to make some progress towards your Goals and Dreams each and every day.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Friday 14 June 2019

Keep Your Head Up

So, with the weekend coming, it is time to enjoy the warm weather that is upon us. Yet, as I do, I must take the time to remind people to be kind to yourself as you do.

One of the things I still struggle with, is the “ghosts of past mistakes” coming back to haunt me. At various and inopportune times the things that I did wrong will come back to me.

I must pause to remind myself that since I am still here, still upright and mobile, that I have made more good decisions than bad ones.

I have also done my best and continue to steadily improve who I am and my lot in life. 

Yet, I will also be the first person to admit that I am not perfect and the world does not revolve around me. 

It is with that in mind that I say that we should keep our head up, as we go through life. This is two-fold and means two different things at the same time. 

The first is to take pride in yourself and your accomplishments. 

Let me be clear and say take pride, not arrogance in yourself and your accomplishments. For like me, the sun does not shine out of your ass.

The other is for you to be aware of yourself and your surroundings. 

You would be astounded to know the number of people I see walking around out and about who are oblivious to what is going on around them.

You need to see what is coming at you, both in real life, around you, but also when it comes to the events that are unfolding in your life.

A surprise party is good, a surprise eviction is bad. Particularly, when most times, you can see an eviction notice coming long before it gets handed to you. 

That’s it, so just remember to take pride in yourself as you remain aware of what is going on around you. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Thursday 13 June 2019

Great Attitude, Diminishes Problems

I like music and one of the bands that I like (among many) are the group Great Big Sea. One particular song comes to mind and that is “Ordinary Day,”

Other than being a catchy tune, it always serves to remind me the importance of that second phrase in my closing line “Keep your attitude positive.”

This is not only because it sucks to be around someone who is in a bad mood, and even worse when that person is you.

Not only does this suck because your bad mood puts you in an even worse mood, but you can’t get away from you . . . you’re stuck with you.

The other thing is that when you are in a bad mood, or just in a negative frame of mind, everything seems to be insurmountable, every little thing stops you. 

Problems don’t stop coming when you are in a positive frame of mind, they just are smaller and easier to deal with, because you don’t see them as a big deal.

Trust me on this, as I have been in both mindsets for extended periods and it is much nicer, and life seems easier when you are in a positive frame of mind.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Wednesday 12 June 2019

Age Is A Number

Okay, so I’m now forty-nine and I can look at this two ways. One would be to get depressed as I begin my slow march towards fifty and death shortly beyond.

The other would be to take a page out of my British upbringing, and simply deny all that negativity claptrap, keep a stiff upper lip and just solder on.

I plan on continuing to do what I have always done, clomp on forwards and just refuse to stop or let anything get in my way.

I know that time marches onwards and that we all get older, but no one says that I have to find a patch of dirt, curl up and wait for death just because I have lived a certain length of time.

I will move forward, I will continue to work my plan, because I have a lot of living yet to do. Though, sure, it may look like I’m not doing much of it now.

That is all part of the plan, to lay low, for now. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Tuesday 11 June 2019

Happy Birthday To Me!

So, here it is, another birthday and I am officially forty-nine . . . yep, next year is the big one and I have no idea how I will be . . . marking that day.

This year I am looking back on a year of My Grand Savings Project and I will say that overall it has been a good thing, and a good year.

I am still building my savings and in reality I am under 4 years to go, as I still plan to be done and ready to move on the Homesteading Phase in early April of 2023.

I will say with my savings building up, my stress is ever lowered, and lowered stress is always a nice thing.

A year ago I was kinda drifting, not really sure what I was doing, what direction I was heading in. I was working to do some savings and enact some improvements in my life (such as trailer repairs and upgrades).

I am now focussed on building my savings and by doing so, breaking the cycle of work and debt for not just myself but many people, again, through the establishment of that town. (I really am not kidding about that).

I am now at a place where I am trying to maintain my attitude and mindset of being okay with what I have and where I am in life, yet not be stagnant and accept that this is as good as it is ever going to get. 

I do want more out of life and I do want a better lifestyle but I have to be okay with what I have and how I am living now, as I actually work to improve my life.

Thus the “be okay with how things are as I build my savings to a point where I can actually improve my life in a large and real way” attitude.

As far as love and romance is concerned, I have said it before, and I will say it again, I welcome them (and a lady of course) into my life, but I will not stop doing what I am doing, for it is too important to do deviate from my path.

Things will come in time, but for now, I am okay with my life and how things are in it, as I strive to improve it, or . . . as I say . . . 

I am Content, yet not Complacent.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Monday 10 June 2019

A Nice Return To Western Home

So, I had a busy weekend, yet it was nice to return to my Western Home for the weekend. 

It was especially nice to finally be able to do something as simple as putting my stabilizer jacks down and my slide-out out.

That really does make a difference to my quality of life, while living in Wanda. It opens up the space a great deal and it is nice to not be walking and living on a box on springs.

I was also able to do my grocery shopping and comparison shopping much easier in Western Home, due the convenient location of both of my usual grocery stores.

Sure it rained, but I don’t care. I had a nice visit with friends and got a few chores done.

Again, not an exciting life, but a nice one. All in all, this is the life that need to live for now. 

As I have said before, I am Content, yet not Complacent; all in all a good place to be, I would say. (It is a mindset I highly recommend, for a number of reasons.)

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Friday 7 June 2019

Grand Savings Update

Okay, so it is that time again, when I update how my progress is going on my “Grand Savings Plan!”

Okay, so let’s see how I did . . .

For review, here is how things looked from last payday . . .

That is 24.3% (of my Savings Target).

And this is how things look like, after the dust settled on this payday’s budget . . .

That’s right things jumped up to 25.5% of my savings target.

That means I put away 1.2% of my total Savings Target this payday. Not only that, but I made it over a milestone mark of 25%, I am one quarter of my way to my savings target!

This is huge and it means that I am making progress and I am still moving things forward.

I am starting to think of ways to diversify my investments and look at something that mixes stability with growth.

We shall see how things go, as this is not a place that I have been in before (savings and investments of any note).

Again, I am still focussed on moving myself forward towards my Grand Savings Goal!

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Thursday 6 June 2019

The Sixth of June

It is the sixth of June, which means that it is the anniversary of D-Day, and while that is an important day, let me just say that it is something that should not be repeated as it was not cool.

Don’t get me wrong it, was something that had to happen and I’m glad of the results, but that that much death and slaughter is not something to be repeated, if at all possible.

That is a point that we seem to have lost our disgust for war. As these days, in “The West” war is something that happens elsewhere. (Though the Ukrainians would beg do differ.)

I didn’t want to do a blog entry on this subject, but I seem to need to. I’m okay in my little part of the world and I just cling to an increasingly outdated motto of “Live and let live.”

Yet others would beg to differ, in particular the empire builders, and there are a few of them in the world and yes they have power . . . this is not a good thing for all  of the little people.

For when the elephants fight, the mice get stepped on. 

Loretta Swit (who played Margaret Houlihan in MASH) once said that MASH was a protest against all war and that all war is stupid . . . I tend to agree with her.

Though, sometimes when war is brought to you, you must either capitulate or fight to defend what is yours. Whilst I do not welcome war, I will fight to defend what is mine. 

Yet I would prefer to live and let live, to find a way for all peoples to co-exist with dignity. 

My own saying is this: “If you come to me in peace, seeking assistance, you shall find that, if you come to me in aggression, seeking trouble, you shall find that too.” 

As always: Keep your head up (unless in combat), keep your attitude positive (especially in combat), and keep moving forward (unless the enemy is currently shelling your position)!

Wednesday 5 June 2019

Still Okay, Still Stubborn

So, I have: today, tomorrow, and the morning of the day after that to get through before I can move and get propane.

Why? because I don’t feel like moving, that’s why. 

In a firm upper-crust English accent, I say “You see, there is an established procedure and protocol, once I have parked for the week, I do not move unless it is an emergency or it is absolutely necessary . . . and while a lack of propane, in summer, is an inconvenience, it is not an emergency.” 

It is a bit of a pain getting on without being able to heat or cook anything, but I’ll live and get what I need to get done regardless. 

My fridge is still cool, as it is fairly well insulated. Besides, there isn’t much in there that would spoil anyway.

I have other resources that I can employ, and so things are far from dire . . . they’re just  . . . inconvenient.

I am nothing if not resourceful and adaptable. 

It’s only a couple of days, I can do this. 

If nothing simply to prove to myself that I can.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Tuesday 4 June 2019

Still Okay

It was windy yesterday and quite blustery; the trailer shook and rocked. Yet like all of the other troubling times in my life, this too, came and went.

It is quite fitting that I lean to keep my head around me and trust my instincts and my plan. It is quite easy to lose your head as you get swept up in the panic of the moment.

Yet, you need to remain vigilant and remain calm. Make rational decisions with respect to what is going on in your life. 

As for me, I keep saying: I have a plan, I’m working that plan, and the plan is working. 

So, all in all . . . I’m doing okay.

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!

Monday 3 June 2019

Out of Propane, But I’m Okay

So, it was expected, but I had hoped that it would not come to this, but it has . . . I am out of propane.

Due to the ‘limitations on my vehicular mobility’ I have did not go to fill the propane bottle as soon as I switched over to the second one.

So, this means that when I ran out of propane last night, I was completely out . . . as in totally out. 

Well, I do have my 10 pound bottle that I use for my BBQ, so I was able to finish cooking dinner. 

But I cannot (and will not) leave that hooked up long term. 

So, I will just do without propane until Friday afternoon, as I don’t feel like moving again before then.

I know how to handle being without propane, as I have been here before. I don’t want to buy a small 1 pound bottle of propane 

1. Because that would mean moving the truck
2. I don’t want to have a partially used 1 pound bottle of propane
3. I’m cheap

I can and will be fine, it is yet another adventure, a problem for me to solve. 

As always: Keep your head up, your attitude positive, and keep moving forward!