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Thread: NewGig in New England

  1. #1
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    NewGig in New England

    The new part isn't what I'm doing for work (I write, edit, and sell stuff).

    I declared that 2019 is the last year I'll sell stuff as a profession, I haven't bought anything for resale since. After 30+ years in retail that is mighty odd! That's one of the new things. Another is that at the end of 2018 I submitted a memoir to a publisher I'd been working on it for 10 years.

    The fallout from that is huge.

    I'm a childhood abuse survivor with PTSD, since 4. I became a hoarder. I'm going to change that; I am changing that. I can't move on to whatever else until I change that. THAT's part of the new gig. The stuff wasn't hard for me to get rid of, that was never my problem. My problem was that I needed a mess to feel safe. One hundred items or 3, I'd make them into a mess or clean them up and then quickly find a reason to mess them up again. I know the history behind why I did and do this, but I'm in my 60s, so learning new ways isn't as easy as it might be!

    The rest of it is changing our lifestyle so it is more towards the self-sufficient, low consumer, much more minimalist and frugal lifestyle I want.

    We weren't raised in this part of the country and both of us live and work at home. (Good thing we get along!)

  2. #2
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    and wishing you success as you move ahead. What in particular attracted you to these forums? There is lots of good advice and experience to share among us but where are you looking to explore?
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  3. #3
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Welcome, NewGig!

    And welcome to New England. I was raised there (Connecticut), and I am returning there (Vermont). It's a great part of the country--I hope you enjoy it.

    Thank you for sharing your story, and congratulations for having the courage to change.

    I'm trying to downsize also, and to prepare for when our income will be drastically reduced (in about 3 years when I stop doing my consulting work). So many people here are already walking the walk--I'm sure you'll pick up a few things, and I also look forward to learning from your journey.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

  4. #4
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    I am looking for simplifying strategies: like removing duplicate items. But I've found or already use a lot of the more obvious ones. I read through the list of 100 frugal things someone else posted (from Apartment Therapy) and most of those that apply, we're doing, many of them we've always done.

    But I'm looking for general ideas to help me get where I want to go: the lagom idea of enough but not too much.

    Thank you for the good wishes too!

  5. #5
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    Thanks! I love Vermont, not where we live, but we spend a fair amount of time there.

    We're planning on aging in place, so I guess a piece of what I'm looking for are long-term household changes I can make to facilitate staying here as long as possible.

  6. #6
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    Welcome! We lived in upstate New York when young and it’s a beautiful part of the country. It sounds like you have a lot of insight into your issues. We downsized 7 years ago and moved back into town from the suburbs. We love being able to walk places.

  7. #7
    Senior Member KayLR's Avatar
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    Welcome, Newgig. I applaud your determination! Being around your same age, I think it's easier to learn new things actually, because I'm not as distracted by kids, career, etc. I'm finding myself in a time of introspection and exploration again.

    I should re-visit more downsizing strategies, too. And the 100 frugal things? Not sure I'm familiar, so will revisit that, too.
    My therapist told me the way to achieve true inner peace is to finish what I start. So far today, I have finished two bags of M&Ms and a chocolate cake. I feel better already!

  8. #8
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NewGig View Post
    We're planning on aging in place, so I guess a piece of what I'm looking for are long-term household changes I can make to facilitate staying here as long as possible.
    My ex-wife was from the Boston area (near the NH border). Many visits, many beautiful places.

    Has the place you're in been designed at all with an eye toward aging in place (wider doorways, bathroom large enough for at least a shower chair, critical needs [like laundry] on one level)? Some of these are hard to retrofit and yet commonly needed. Our neighbors live in a house similar in layout and timeframe to ours and they've done things like move the washer and dryer upstairs to a spare bedroom so no one must use the stairs (though they still use the stairs for storage). You might also want to think about how you will address things like lawn care, snow clearing, and furnace filters (or boiler maintenance) if/when you cannot do that yourself.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

  9. #9
    Senior Member rosarugosa's Avatar
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    Welcome, Newgig. I am in Massachusetts and of the same vintage, although DH & I did grow up here. Aging in place is a subject of interest to many of us given our ages. I look forward to more discussions on this topic.

  10. #10
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    We have a 2 story log home with the bottom story larger than the upper one. Our plan is to move entirely downstairs, using upstairs for storage and hobby space. The downstairs is a bed room, bath room, laundry, sun room, and living room.

    The kitchen is the largest I've ever owned. It came with a 3 x 10' penninsula! Insanely big. We cut it down last year and I will say it's wonderfully open now by comparison! The house also came with an inefficient sunroom, the windows need replacing. We replaced the exterior door with a new slider two years ago.

    We've been here 2 decades already.

    What we have done: upgrade the woodstove, hearth, flue, and chimney piping to the most efficient we could afford. Replaced both roofs, but the lower one needs to be redone. (This was an expensive mistake and still needs to be resolved.) Added a porch (as part of the new roof). I've been moving the garden towards no maintenance for a long time now: no mow grass seed, a bulb bed (to remove part of the lawn) and other not hardscape ideas so less mowing is needed. We have over a few years replaced all the kitchen/laundry machines. Joined a CSA so that in theory anyway, we can get all our veggies for 12 months in 6, at a substantial savings, esp. considering they're organic.

    We have .9 acre and take down saplings yearly to help feed the woodstove in winter or the following winter if it's big enough to require that. This year we're scheduled to get the chimney cap replaced. (All of the other chimney pipe has been done.)

    I bought rugs this year, cotton area rugs.

    We sold our old, large dining room table a few years ago. We replaced the smaller kitchen table we've had for 30 years with one from Habitat. I am planning to have a "tea party" of some kind and then sell the china that was my mother's. No one here seems to know what it is or it's worth. I've found a lot of it, cheap, since we moved here. I don't need it. We use dinerware for everyday.

    I have no idea what to do, we live in the country, when we can't drive.

    We have one open doorway, but it's a dogleg. We've talked about moving that opening so it's a straight shot, more wheelchair friendly. I used to have (somewhere) the People Design tool that was the standard for designing buildings, etc. That would tell me how wide a wheelchair door should be. (The fellow who came up with it was a friend of my Dad's.) My husband has about 1/2 the house in a home-design program we are using to help figure all of this out.

    There's more, but it's more details than planning. We're doing things as we think of them and can, but the lack of planning makes me nervous!

    Things l'd like to do and don't know if we'll be able to: build a garage, an enclosed entry, pave the driveway. Landscape the yard completely. Get my veggie garden going again. Have 2 or 3 cords of wood set aside "green" so that it's cheaper. Join the local share chores/skills program. Start to hang out at the local senior center so I know people before I need to. Get a newer, easier to use snow blower I can use. Get the parts of the house which are things DH has to deal with redone so I can deal with them if need be. (Our on demand water heater, for example.) Get comfortable with our garden tractor.

    That's enough!

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