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Various updates

January 12th, 2015 at 11:24 am

So I've made my initial fitness goal to work out at least 4 times a week. I haven't set any time amounts or anything more specific; I just want to get back in the habit of working out.

I did 10 minutes on the elliptical 3 times last week and shoveled snow one day, which was quite the upper-body workout. Unfortunately I weighed in 2 lbs. up on Sunday, so back to my starting weight of 137.

I haven't been going crazy eating, but the cold weather does make me crave starchy filling comfort food, and being shut in all the time increases opportunities to snack. I'll try to take it easier, but I'm not going to resort to calorie counting unless I fail to make progress any other way.

This weekend we made a concerted effort to spend more time actually playing with the kids, helping them come up with ways to cure cabin fever and keep them from arguing all the time. A nice accidental side benefit was much less screen time; almost no TV and just a little bit of LeapPad playing!

I started to set up a chore chart. We adults have all fallen into certain tasks that we're comfortable with/good at, but I thought if we had it on a chart we'd feel more ownership and also feel confident that the work was evenly divided. I'm going to finish it up and print it out and hang it in the kitchen, where we can check off/date the tasks as we do them.

Checked in on the condo this weekend, and everything looked OK. We have a showing scheduled for today. I'm glad they've picked up again after the Xmas/New Year break. Hopefully we'll find the right buyer soon!

We've been good about eating every meal at home except when planned. Our downstairs neighbors offered to babysit the kids one night this week, so we planned a date night at a Mexican restaurant for this Friday. Excited for some grownup time!

One cool thing we've been doing is having dinner with our friends twice a week. One night they'll cook and we eat downstairs at their place, and the other night we cook and they come up. It's one less night we have to cook, and it gives us two nights of being social. It also helps our friends eat at home twice a week, whereas otherwise they eat out most nights. (I'd say I'm jealous, but I fear they're ignoring debt repayment and retirement contributions in favor of frittering money away, which I'm definitely NOT jealous of! If/when we start to eat out more, it'll be once we tackle other more pressing concerns.)

We heard from NT's UK rental managers that they're going to offer a 12-month renewal to the current tenants with a small rent hike. NT asked what that would mean for the plans to renovate this year; we're still waiting to hear back. Not sure they would renew since it sounds like the place is getting pretty run-down, but our tenants are typically single guys attending flight school who probably don't spend much time at home, and the location is convenient to the school, so maybe the guy will renew and not think too much about it. We'll see!

One crazy thing I realized a few days ago--I think we forgot to do our UK taxes! The deadline would have been in October. I'm not even sure we received the packet, which should have come while we were still living at the condo. We need to contact the HMRC (equivalent to IRS) and see what we should do. At least we know we won't owe anything, so hopefully it's like the IRS and there are no penalties unless you owe.

I decided we need professional tax help this year after a few years of winging it, but unfortunately my tax guy left the profession. So I'm sussing out potential replacements based on friend recommendations. With all the complicated stuff, I don't just want to walk into an H&R Block or anything. Having worked for one, I know how little training preparers receive beyond the basics!

I'm finally close to paying for the Roomba, using spending money and Xmas gift cards. (By the way, I'm SO happy with that purchase!) Next I'll need to start paying for my ordinarysavers.com web hosting ($109), and a bday present for my dad (about $25). But first, date night this Friday!

2 Responses to “Various updates”

  1. scottish girl Says:

    www.hmrc.gov.uk

    You will probably know this already though.

  2. frugaltexan75 Says:

    That's cool what you're doing with your friends - i.e. taking turns eating at each others places.

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