One habit down!

Posted March 1st, 2006 by Penny Wise

What a blast it was turning my Habit Changer calendar over to March yesterday! You see, I've cracked it - I'm a tee-totaller! Woohoo! I can't tell you how good it feels to have finally blitzed the booze from my budget, not to mention my body of course. I'll not pretend it was easy, I actually found it harder than giving up smoking, but I've blooming well done it. I've got a nice bottle of grape juice to take to Book Club tonight!

So, it's time to find a new habit to change and write on my calendar. Unfortunately due to my dodgy leg and lack of exercise (OK, and an abnormal consumption of cheese), I've put on a few kilos in the last few months. Everyone thinks I'm back running again because I'm always in my sports gear, little do they know that I am only wearing my bike shorts because they have an elasticised waist. I almost died a few weeks ago when I went to do up my denim shorts and I caught my stomach in the zip! Apart from being rather painful, it doesn't do one's self esteem any good. The scales say I've put on four kilos since November and all four of them appear to have gathered in the same place. I read in Woman's Day a couple of weeks ago that if you manage to give up alcohol for long periods of time, you will definitely lose weight, so I'm clinging to that hope. It's not easy to diet when you don't eat meat either. I must be the only overweight vegetarian I know!

At least my beloved worm farm likes the huge amount of vege scraps I send their way. I was really chuffed the other day when I peered into the barrel and found baby worms. I'm a worm granny! Mind you, pretty soon I'm going to look like one too - I found my first grey hair last week. I was appalled! I mean, Noel's been grey since he was 21, which he says is due to the stress of living with me, but I was quite proud of the fact I was the last of my friends to get any. Imagine my shock to see this long shiny grey hair defiantly sticking out of my head - zing! Look at me! It's all downhill from here matey! So what do I do now? Am I going to do an Andie MacDowell and spend the rest of my life spending money on dyeing those pesky grays 'because I'm worth it?' or am I going to attempt to carry them gracefully? I think I'll wait until I get a few more before I decide.

My new household budget is going well. I had $33 left to put into savings after the first week. This week looks as though it's set to be even better. Rochelle was watching me use my Spendtracker yesterday as I punched in my expenses and I have to admit it really makes me think before I spend anything. I mean, imagine how much a decent bottle of wine would take out of my weekly savings now? I wouldn't dream of it! My weekly Woman's Day soon got biffed off the shopping list now too. I can't wait to see how much of a difference these changes make to our finances long term! I love being at home these days. I really feel for the first time that I am actually managing our household competently. We're all eating well and I am more organised than I have ever been. The boys started back at school a month ago and the old snack box full of Flippa Dippa's, Le Snacks and Darth Vader muesli bars has not been touched - it just goes to show how much they really like or need them when offered alternatives. The biggest buzz was this morning though, when packing the boys' school lunches. Next week is their school's 125th Jubilee and Liam's class all had to go to school this morning dressed in character as a child from 1881. Strict instructions were sent home about what they were to wear and bring and one rule in particular was about school lunches. No chips or packaged foods of any kind was allowed; only fresh fruit and home made foods were allowed to make it into their school bags. 'Big deal, eh Mum?' said Liam. 'We don't have to change a thing!'

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