4 January 2012

A sense of community

As we've "progressed" through to this present age, we seem to have lost our communities along the way. Gone are the times and places when we used to meet in communal areas - at the corner shop or market, to talk about this and that and to remain connected to those we share our towns and suburbs with. Like me, you might miss this type of community but you can find something similar online. It may not offer real skin and bone people but the support and encouragement is there, along with acceptance, different viewpoints on various matters (without any nastiness you sometimes find online) and a lot of information absolutely specific to living a simple and frugal life. If you haven't checked out the Down to Earth Forum yet, or haven't been there for a while, I encourage you to take a look. The forum has been revamped with a new look and the threads are running hot. Just to give you a taste of what's happening there, Lisa has just start up another year-long savings challenge. This is the third year she's been running it and it's helped many people save while getting encouragement from others who are doing the same. The thread started on Monday and is already three pages long. Here is her introductory post:

6 in 12 - THE CHALLENGE!

Welcome one, welcome all
For the third year I am trying my hardest to shrink my mortgage, I've looked at my finances and predicitions of money coming in, as well as money going out, and this year I am aiming to save $6,000.  Thats $500 a month, not bad for a stay at home mum, I think you will agree!

Come join us with ideas, questions etc

This is a personal challenge so if you want to join in then please do so, set your own target and time frame.
The thread is not in any way competitive merely companionship and positive encouragement so please read each other’s stories and offer ideas and thoughts wherever you can along the way. 

Together let’s make 2012 a great year for us all financially!

Krystal has started a grocery budget challenge. Becci has a decluttering challenge going, I'm posting about work life balance, Rose has made up the 2012 Down to Earth Journal and calendar which can be freely downloaded and should help you organise yourself effectively throughout the year. There are many recipes for home cooking and baking and tutorials on making and doing so many things. We even have a competition with a signed copy of my book as the prize.

If you'd like to join the forum, simply click on the link above and it will take you there. You'll have to register (in the right hand upper corner), we do this to keep the forum spam-free, and then you're in. It's all free. When you arrive, please introduce yourself and start reading. There is a wealth of information there, there is a real sense of community too. I hope to see you there soon.

I'll be back with my regular posts next Monday.


  1. Hi Rhonda, i tried to register for the forum but its not working and now tells me my email address is banned! Any help would be appreciated, I live very close to you btw, near eumundi!

  2. Hi Mrs A! Try now. I just changed one of the settings.

  3. success, thank you ! I am new to the forum thingy, but will check it out, would be nice to meet likeminded people.

  4. I don't know if one can join late or not but but carla of ½ dozen daily http://halfdozendaily.blog.com/ is hosting a no-spend or a low spend for the month of January http://halfdozendaily.blog.com/no-spend-2012/
    I took a few moment a posted my goals for 2012. http://peppylady.blogspot.com/2011/12/goals-for-2012.html. I tried to make a tab for it on my blog but for some reason...It just doesn't work for me.
    But I believe if a person gets out there plenty of organization one can find one to there wants or needs.
    I'm involved in writers group though our local library.
    Coffee is on.

  5. I liked reading your post. We worked on our taxes yesterday and We were surprised and happy to discover that we conserved over 4,800 miles last year. We use three vehicles for our small seasonal business and two of the vehicles are used the rest of the year for the off season jobs. With driving 4,800 miles less by combining errands, stacking boats, and staying out instead of making two trips, we saved about $1,343 in fuel consumption. Last year I challenged myself to not spend or spend little money in January and I made it under $24. This year I haven't spent any money...yet! Thanks for the community online! ~Kari

  6. Hi Rhonda,

    I think the forum topics that you mentioned are fantastic, especially the money-saving challenge. My dad and I are looking into saving money on our grocery bill. WE make all meals at home using organic food...and I know there's ways to save money there. So I'll have to check it out :) :)

    Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :)

  7. I've been a part of the wonderful blogging community for two years now, Rhonda. I can't believe I missed your blog! It's devourable! In fact, Ive just spent the past hour by my daughter's bed with her well asleep and me still sitting here because I couldn't stop reading. I'm very grateful that I got stuck into Mum's AWWs while we were down visiting these past two weeks.


  8. Having been stuck at home for two months with a broken ankle, I've not had to shell out for coffee, biscuits and office lunches.

    From seeing what was left in my account the day before my salary went in, I know how much that costs me!

    Though I must confess I have used some of that surplus to buy seeds and fruit trees. But I count those as investments.

    As I'm still wearing a cast, I need to take taxis some times still, but as soon as I'm fully mobile they will join takeaways as an inadmissable expense.

  9. I've been meaning to check out the forum for ages and now that I've read this I will definitely get to it in the next couple of days. We need to sort our finances a bit more over the coming year, sounds like the forum could be useful.

    I'm glad you're back on Monday. I have been missing your regular posts. Keep enjoying your holidays and I'll see you next week (so to speak)!

  10. Just wanted to wish you all the best for the new year Rhonda.
    Your blog was one of the most memorable highlights of 2011 for me.
    Thank you for this unique companionship.

    Trinidad & Tobago

  11. Hi Rhonda,

    I am soooo grateful to be a part of this blog of yours. It has played a huge role in my life since "finding" you about a year and a half ago. You are the "Aunt" I wish I had!!!


  12. Happy new year to you and Hanno!

    Thanks for nudge. It HAD been too long since I visited the forum!

  13. Dear Rhonda. I hope you had a good family Christmas, and a rest. I love the new look of your blog. Especially the banner. Bright and fresh with the yellow flowers. I am looking forward in 2012 to once again follow your blog. Happy New year.

  14. Happy new year, Rhonda!

    Off to check out the new forum...

    Love the changes to the background here! What a pretty picture of you. :)

  15. Hi Rhonda

    After lurking here for some time I have finally joined today. We are of the same vintage although you are three months older. I thought of you recently when we made our annual trip from Toowoomba to the Sunny Coast and I saw the Landsborough sign. It is interesting that you mentioned the corner store as lately I had been lamenting the fact that so many corner stores had closed down as they used to be places where we ran into others who lived in our street and it gave a sense of community not the isolation which has followed their closing. I look forward to finding my way around the forum and contributing as well if I can.

    All the best for the New Year

    Nanna Chel

  16. I really like your update to the site Rhonda, it looks fresh and lovely.
    I am going to take a look at the forum

  17. Great ideas for 2012! I like the new look Rhonda, it's wonderful.
    Thank you!

  18. Re: the challenge to save - you might like this story: http://youtu.be/6Y15dxUZN3s

  19. I should visit the forum more often! Just finding the easy and cheap biscuits( cookies) thread and the associated HM condensed milk post, saved me a big bunch of cash. I totally agree about finding online community, as someone who moved countries, it has kept me going whilst I find real life like minds to meet in my new area.

  20. Please come and join in the challenge, I'm sure most of you have at least one idea that will help one of us save a little bit extra...

  21. My financial goal this year is to pay cash for my dd's braces. Last summer we paid cash for my son's and it felt so good! We currently have about $1100 saved and are saving $300 each month towards the $5000 needed. Hoping to put some of the tax refund and the money from some extra work that my husband does towards it as well to make up the difference needed.


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