Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year Goals and a Challenge

Well hello everyone in Blog-Land and Happy 2012! 

I for one am glad all the festivities are over, so I’m no longer tempted by the gorgeous food and wine that accompanies the season. Although – there is still lots of my lovely SIL’s wonderful Christmas cake to finish off before we head home!

It’s been mild, but still cold over here in the North of England over the Christmas season. No snow, no frost, but lots and lots of rain, so everywhere is drab and damp and grey. A bit different from last year when it was a White Christmas and very bright. Beautiful – but Oh so cold and treacherous underfoot as well. It had melted by the New Year. So, we saw in 2011 in England with DH’s parents and we saw in 2012 in the same way! We had a lovely, quiet time and I turned into the biggest kid ever over the fireworks – running up and down the stairs to see the differing views from all of the windows!

Anyway, its January 1 now, so one’s mind turns to plans for 2012. Not resolutions as such, more a wish list and set of goals of what I’d like to achieve this year in my food forest, and more sustainable lifestyle. I've just read Gavin's and Hazel's blogs and my goals are in line with what they're saying.

First, with the help of the Sustainable Gardener and his wonderful team, the front garden has gone from a dream to being just about ready to plant up. Yippeee! I think by the end of January, or perhaps February, I’ll be raiding catalogues, visiting garden centres and market stalls (darling daughter gave me shopping vouchers for TWO garden centres this Christmas, and I have $100 saved from my birthday stash as well!) to buy the canopy for the forest. And probably a few other bits and pieces that I just won’t be able to resist – LOL!

In terms of the canopy, I have to find room for a black mulberry, my lovely fig from one of the Urban Homesteaders, and one of those beautiful magnolias with the huge dinner-plate size white flowers. Not a food tree I know, but it will attract birds and bees and other good insects, so it’s a helper.

I’ve also learnt as a result of some of my research, and some of my lovely blog-friends, how important it is to have lots of natives, especially native shrubs so the little birds can hide from the big ones – the flowers act as a decoy from the fruits of the forest, and there’s lots of good insects that are attracted by native shrubbery as well. Excellent! Add that to shrubby food producing trees, and I have the second layer of the forest sorted too! So native shrubs are on the list as well. As is a bit more research to find out what is truly local so that I help to rebuild and sustain the truly native flora. We have quite a few native trees, so they are contributing to the food forest’s canopy as well.

Stay tuned for pictures of progress once I get home.

So as not to make this post waaaaaay too long, here’s the short list of my goals for the year: 
  • Loads of quality time with the family  
  • Establish front garden  
  • Find a moveable chook house that works for me and the chooks and is secure enough to keep next door’s cat out! 
  • Make more staples from scratch – bread, biscuits, pasta, preserves, yoghurt etc 
  • Get rid of the weed trees 
  • Maintain and improve the back garden’s food forest production 
  • Exercise, get fit, and lose weight – ie improve and maintain my health 
  • Continue to Learn, Grow, Share and Enjoy!

Well, that should keep me pretty busy! Let’s see how we go.

What are your goals for 2012? Leave me a comment or link back to your blog in the comments section below. 

I’m thinking I may start a monthly review section – research suggests people who review their goals regularly are more likely to achieve them. Do you want to join me?

Have a great start to the year everyone!
Greenie x