It’s been 5 months since I started my blog and I have been struck by an unfortunate realisation. Monthly updates of my challenges just don’t work! The challenges are pretty big, so big that actually some months there is precisely, zero, to report. Which makes for a pretty dull and uninspiring update! So, I’ve decided to make a change and go with an ad hoc Challenge Update every few months or when I feel like I have something valuable to share.
‘Progress’ is a strange thing (as a teacher I know!!) it can feel like nothing is moving forward for ages and then bam! You make loads of progress in a super short period of time, it’s like you just need the time to process, so you can move forward. Which is kind of how I feel about my challenges at the moment.
This winter has been long and hard. I work from home as Head of English and Humanities for an online school. For months it has felt like I barely leave the house and that has been no good for me. My drive and motivation recently has been precisely zero. But I’m starting to get my focus back which means I can start getting back to it!
So, how have I been getting on with the challenges?
This one has been ticking along. I’ve started an online nutritional therapy programme called Reinvent, to address my eating habits and it is going really well. I’m making little changes each week, and I’m really starting to feel the benefits. I haven’t lost masses of weight but I feel so much better, and my eating habits are starting to improve. You can read all about my progress with Reinvent here.
As the weather is improving I’m starting to find it easier getting out with the dog and getting some walking in, but I do need to start to think about upping my exercise levels.
This is a tricky one. This was the main idea behind my challenges and the blog, but as I’ve got into it I’ve realised that actually there is just so many different elements to this part of the challenge, that it’s a bit of a mish mash with no real end goal, so I’m rethinking. I think this one might change to become a blogging related goal. After all I started blogging, as a bit of an outlet now the kids are off my hands. I’m really enjoying it and would love to see the blog grow and maybe a focused ‘challenge’ would help me to really get going with it.
We have literally not been anywhere new by train this year. We were hoping to get the train to Greece this summer, but the flights are such good value, so because we are trying to save money to overpay the mortgage we just couldn’t justify it. We’re hoping to do a sleeper trip to Scotland, and we might get the train to Italy, this time via Switzerland. But nothing is planned yet. That needs to change!!
By saving little bits here and there we have managed to over pay our mortgage by a bit. Nothing significant though. However, we are due to remortgage in the next couple of months and following our initial enquiries, it looks like we should be able to reduce the term of our mortgage quite a bit. The value of house has risen enough that we have a much better LTV ratio which means that we can get a much better interest rate, so keeping the monthly payments the same means that we can knock an extra 5 years off the term of our mortgage.
The next step is to get serious about making savings in our outgoings and find ways of making some extra cash that can go into overpaying the mortgage.
We’ve started to make a start on repairing and replacing the kids bathroom. We’ve got a bit of a plan together and this week I’m going to start pricing up the suite and materials. We’re going basic simple white suite, shower walling and a bit of lino!
The boiler has finally given up the ghost so we’re having a new boiler fitted at the end of the month.
After that I think it’s going to be time to get the paintbrushes out and start painting…
So, as you can see a bit going on, but not masses. Life has just kind of been happening, which is lovely, but it doesn’t feel like I’ve made any real progress with anything… But I guess slow and steady wins the race!
So that’s it, my first ad hoc challenge update!!