Stoically

“Set aside a certain number of days, during which you shall be content with the scantiest and cheapest fare, with coarse and rough dress, saying to yourself the while: “Is this the condition that I feared?”. In days of peace the soldier performs maneuvers, throws up earthworks with no enemy in sight, and wearies himself by gratuitous toil, in order that he may be equal to unavoidable toil. If you would not have a man flinch when the crisis comes, train him before it comes”. Seneca

Wow those Stoics knew a thing or two about living…stoically. In these lockdown times many of us have been challenged to live with less. Less outings, less people, less money, alas not always less food (with cupboard proximity and all). It hasn’t always been comfortable as the initial sourdough starters and zoom drinks taper off into 2-minute noodles and meme sharing but we have had the chance to see ourselves handle discomfort which hopefully will fortify us for future sticky spots. Perhaps we can take a piece of parchment from Seneca’s book and continue these ways in the feast times so we fear not the famine.

I thought I already lived-with-less but life in a small space had previously meant much time spent in the gym, library or café which acted as a sort of extension living room. And living on one’s own means much of the human contact is incidental-a shared wince with a stranger over the ‘10 more’ in a Body Pump class, a giggle with a girl over “The Gruffalo’s warty nose” in the Picture Book section or a proffering of “The Sunday Paper Shiny bits” across the communal table. Sooner or later we’re all alone so this enforced time can only help me reckon with myself (and many thoughts have been spared for those who also reckon with mini humans). Never again will I lack gratitude for these simple pleasures and random exchanges with strangers.

People who lived through the Great Depression are famously frugal and resourceful and we have looked up to them as we plant Victory Gardens (with a boost from Bunnings), use Teabags twice and go from roast to leftover to broth (or have the intention to at least) in these trying times. If we can take on a Make Do and Mend mentality now, think of how crafty we’ll be if something potentially worse happens or the same again or even the thought of that.You may have heard gym bunnies spout that, “Summer bodies are made in the winter”, and you may have noticed that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself so let’s learn to live with a dive into discomfort sometimes.

A grocery-shopping free week at the end of each month sees me come up with creative combinations from the cupboard. Being the sole Swans supporter in a sea of Yellow-and-Black at school footy day builds a thick skin. My commitment to not buying clothes helps me realise that no one really notices (or cares to say) that I’m wearing the blue dress again. A cold burst at the end of each shower is super re-FRESH-ing. Me and most Melbournians have realised that while haircuts and beauty treatments have been missed, we can live without them and overlook the results. So, how can you train yourself to live the simple life so you don’t flinch when the crisis comes?

 “We shall be rich with all the more comfort, if we once learn how far poverty is from being a burden”.

Much Love Yvette (the Younger) xoxo

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Guess who’s back?

I’m baaackk! Have missed you guyZ and bloggY. Since I’ve been gone-bloggY turned 4 and Melbournians turned 164 due to Stage 4 restrictions. I’ve decided to post whenever/wherever I’m inspired to do so (sign up to email list below for a heads up). The survey results (link to take it below if you’re yet to) showed a pretty even split between the topics you enjoy reading on WFM; Money, Sobriety/ Health, Recommendations (books, movies etc), Self-help stuff (law of attraction, mindfulness). So, I thought I’d give you a little of each to kick off the comeback.

Money: The silver lining of lockdown has been enforced savings in a lot of categories due to closures. Hair and beauty appointments have been stret—ched out almost to bi-annual rather than every 6-12 weeks. While I could definitely use a fringe and brow trim (luckily one hides the other), I’ve realised I can go at least an extra month between appointments without too much fall-out once they reopen and hence continue to save the pennies. Also, while I miss browsing in Kmart fondling the stationery fondly, Click and Collect forces me to be more intentional and hence spending is less triggered by boredom or emotion.

Sobriety/ Health: Oh, to return to the innocence I had during the first weeks of lockdown, when I believed I could stay committed to long daily work-outs and that I would never tire of doing all of Briigghton. Inevitably I didn’t maintain motivation and felt discouraged until I heard Dr Rangan Chatterjee talking about his book, “Feel Better in 5″ https://drchatterjee.com/feel-better-in-5/on the YouTubes. He says, “Trying to be healthy can be overwhelming – what if all it took to make a real difference was 5 minutes of your day?’ He suggests finding a 5 minute ‘health snack’ for Mind, Body and Heart to do daily. I’ve chosen a guided meditation on Insight Timer, a 5-minute HIIT session on the Downward Dog App and gratitude journaling before bed. These things do make a difference and are achievable so give me a sense of satisfaction and I can ‘stack’ more good habits on top or increase the amount of time I do them. 

Recommendations: Some rad friends have recommended some cool stuff. The Netflix show “Cobra Kai” with a prequel of “The Karate Kid” (the 80’s one is on Binge, no thank you to the Jaden Smith Remake). It’s nostalgic and funny but not cheesy-thanks Lloyd for suggesting. Eagerly anticipating Season 3. https://www.netflix.com/search?q=cob&jbv=81002370

The Podcast “Unravel True Crime: Snowball”. This is an excellent accompaniment to your daily constitutional. Suspenseful, intriguing but not grizzly with cute Kiwi accents and keen investigating. Tak Markus for the tip. https://www.abc.net.au/radio/programs/truecrime/snowball/

Self-help stuff: I am loving my Abraham Hicks perpetual flip calendar with a daily inspiration. It’s putting the woo-hoo! into the woo-woo.  Here is today’s: October 13: Scripting is one of those processes that we offer to assist you in telling the Universe the way you want it to be. Scripting will help you break your habit of talking about things as they are, and will help you begin talking about how you would like things to be. Scripting will help you offer your vibration deliberately.

Thanks for reading dear reader. I’d love to hear from you too.

Much love xoxo Yvette

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We were on a break!

Hi Love,
I have been wondering what’s next for Weave the Future Magical so I’ve decided to take a break from my (totally self-imposed) blogging schedule (weekly then fortnightly for 4 years) to see. This is my 173rd post! Wow-wee.. Please stay in touch-email list, social links and survey below-and let me know what topic you enjoy reading about most.

Light and Light xxx Yvette

Ps: Oh my God! If you say that one more time, I’m gonna break up with you!  

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Uber frugal month challenge

Back in July, I took the Uber frugal month challenge with the Frugalwoods. There is always more to learn about saving and I managed to cut my budget even further.

Start with why

To set yourself up for the challenge and to make it through those tough moments when you want THAT takeaway coffee, it is very important to start with why. On Day one, you outline your goals and later you write out these goals and put them in your wallet to serve as a reminder when you’re tempted to spend. Keeping the big picture in mind is important and resets your mindset to distinguish wants from needs. 

Compulsive Behaviour

Mrs Frugalwoods advocates for a 72-hour waitlist before buying anything. This serves as a cooling off period and helps you to work out if you really do you need something or if you’re just trying to make yourself feel better. If the rush of shopping is what you crave then the same rush can be had with a better return if you purchase shares for example. Tracking your expenses and income makes you hyper- aware of where your money is going. I use the Pocketbook App. If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it. – Peter Drucker 

Kill Bills

Most of our money is spent on the big 4; house, utilities, transport and food. As Frugalwoods is an American blog, I used the tips from the excellent book, “Kill Bills” by Joel Gibson to Australianise these categories. I was what Joel calls, “A Sleeping Beauty”, just staying with the companies I selected yonks ago and not realising they’d shifted me to the dud deals. I switched electricity companies (saving 10%) and internet providers (saving $20/ month) and will switch phone/ insurance companies or ask for a price match when my contract ends. I also became more mindful about knowing my mortgage rate, seeking out the best priced petrol within proximity, bundling together errands to drive less and only using the dishwasher and washing machine when they are full. I attempted to do a fortnightly rather than weekly Aldi shop (with a fresh stuff top up as needed) and use what I already have. I am becoming a Straw-headed Warrior of savings.

Creativity and Comfort Zone 

Committing to being Uber Frugal was actually fun and I was reminded to be grateful for what I have and to use it. Shopping my own pantry and wardrobe forced me to be more creative with it. 2020, I definitely have plenty. It was outside my comfort zone to research and switch companies as I’m very much a set-and-forget and don’t rock-the-boat. It was actually much easier than I thought, the new companies did most of the leg work and I could still be polite about it. It’s in their best interests financially to retain you as a customer too so remember you have the power!

I’m going to continue in my quest to be Uber Frugal and this month-long challenge was a great reset. You can take it anytime, link below. 

Love and light and silly rabbit-Trix are for kids xxx Yvette

https://www.frugalwoods.com/category/uberfrugalmonth/

https://onebigswitch.com.au/campaigns

https://www.booktopia.com.au/kill-bills–joel-gibson/book/9781760853495.html

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The Script

“As you imagine and visualize and verbalize your new story, in time you will believe the new story, and when that happens, the evidence will flow swiftly into your experience”. Abraham Hicks

I’m a lover of the Law of Attraction and enjoy using a technique called scripting. Scripting is where you write a story of how you want your life to be, as if your desires have already manifested and feel the feelings of gratitude and joy they bring. When I was Kondo-ing, I found notebooks full of my scripts about having my license and a cute car, a beloved blog and a healthy lifestyle. I’m happy to say dear reader I have manifested all those things! I share you with some of my current scripts that I scribe most days and urge you to spend some time visualising, dreaming and writing down your own.

I am so happy and grateful for my beautiful minimal home close to nature with space for pets and people to be together and space to be alone and create.

I love my fun, creative, well-paid job and working with people I love and respect who love and respect me. It is close to home, combines my interests and skills and there are opportunities to grow, learn and create.

I am abundant and financially free. I make mindful choices with my money and have the security of investments, savings and owning property and the freedom to work, travel, invest, buy, give and donate as I choose.

My relationships are fun, joyful, affectionate and honest. I am loved and accepted for who I am and I love and accept others.

I feel joyful and light. And so it is…

I also enjoy scripting a day in the life and write about waking up to the sound of the ocean and going downstairs to my yoga room/ plunge pool/ coffee machine. So, try it friend and become more magnetic to your desires.

“Write your own story and trust the universe to deliver”. Abraham Hicks

Love and light and so it is xxx Yvette

How to manifest anything with scripting by Ella Ringrose https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8cRCV-D95E

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Freedom = Security

“Happiness has many roots, but none more important than security”. E.R. Stettinius, Jr.

 Back in the day I used to think that my idea of hell would be a stable job, secure home in the suburbs and sensible rubber boots. I wanted to be free damn it. Now…it seems almost the opposite for I’ve realised that freedom for me must be underpinned by security.

I chopped and changed casual jobs, rental houses and converse sneakers. Often chucking it in and trying something new when I felt restless and uncomfortable. I’ve now realised that instability=anxiety and a nice quiet life ain’t half bad. The years of turbulence (and the money) I could’ve saved if I’d known this earlier.

I’ve been trying casual work, thinking it meant more flexibility and freedom but getting the Job Seeker Allowance and regular work hours has been so much better for my state of mind in these uncertain times.

I really should’ve realised this earlier seeing as I get joy from routine, peace of mind from consistency and my idea of a good night is an episode of “Midsomer Murders” (perfectly predictable) from the couch in my safe cosy flat.

When I got sober, I rediscovered that much of the anxiety I was drinking to avoid was caused by the drinking and the situations it found me in (i.e.: unpredictable ones). I was rebelling against true nature by drinking and therefore punishing myself.

I then discovered the instability was always unhealthy for me so getting my own place and one of those career things was helpful too. Now I’m interested in the freedom that being financially independent would bring. For some, it may look like a whirlwind of travel, for me it may be more like a walk through the woods in my sensible rubber boots! 

Love and light and routines rule! xxx Yvette

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Use it or lose it

My low-buy year has helped me rediscover how much I already have. I’ve been making a conscious effort to reach for the lesser worn scrunchie or t.shirt and to cook with that cous-cous in the cupboard or those frozen veg in the freezer.

The full KondoI

If you have things that you no longer need/use and the joy sparked is nil or minimal, please thank them for their service and send them off to a loving new home. But even after going the full Kondo on my belongings, I realised there were still many things I was ‘saving for good’ or simply not reaching for at the back of the cupboard or drawer.

Shop your stuff

With shopping (except for essentials) being off the agenda, this rediscovery process brings a bit of the thrill of the shopper’s high back. I flipped my cupboards and drawer contents so am enjoying sipping tea from that other mug, wearing the other grey hoodie, spritzing the lesser worn perfume and consuming a veggie cous-cous combo (pro-tip: add chilli sauce).

Waste not want not

I was sad when I was Kondo-ing to discover many things I was ‘saving for good’ were out of date. Like the lovely Lush body lotions I was gifted and the exotic spices I was going to use in a Moroccan dish. Now I’m being more mindful of best-before dates, substituting what I have (salt and sugar are interchangeable right?) and reminding myself of the fact that every day is an occasion worthy of using the good stuff.

Challenger ready

It’s a fun and frugal challenge to try and skip the grocery run for a week and instead use what you already have. The last week of the month is a good time to try this to stretch out that budget. It’s good for the wallet and the environment to minimise waste and for the creativity to see what you can cobble together and cook up.

So, try using it or risk losing it. 2020 we have plenty.

Love and light and not-with-the-good-scissors xxx Yvette

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More words to live by

As I’ve been walking in a Winter wonderland recently, I’ve been listening to podcasts and some of the things I’ve had have heard on them have struck me and stuck with me for further contemplation and motivation.

 “You’re putting the needs of tomorrow ahead of the wants of today.” Captain Fi on Episode 4: Aussie Firebug of “Captain Fi” I’ve gone back down the FIRE (financially-independent-retire-early) rabbit-hole and am currently doing an uber frugal month so this quote from the Aussie podcast was very timely. Yes, a takeaway pizza pie would be delicious today but even more delicious will be the money I’ve saved from cooking my own when it comes out of tomorrow’s oven all investY and compoundY.

“Write down the 5 things that you enjoy doing the most on a weekly basis and these will reflect your values which will guide you”.Scott Rieckens on Episode 82 of “The Fi Show”. Scott was one of the producers and subjects of the documentary, “Playing with FIRE”. It documents his and his wife Taylor’s introduction into the world of financial independence.  They both do this exercise early on in the movie and realise that their favourite things are inexpensive and can be done anywhere. For example, Taylor lists playing with their daughter and having coffee with Scott. Mine include walking and writing which are also examples of cost-effective and fun things that value time over money. What are yours?

“An honest no is better than a dishonest maybe.”Clear is Kind, Communication with Brad Barrett on Episode 28 of “Everyday Courage”. The more honest and clear we can be with others about our expectations, boundaries and preferences, the better. Instead of RSVP-ing “Maybe” and worrying about whether to go to something or not, Brad and Jillian (fellow people-pleasers) suggest checking in with yourself to gauge how you actually feel about it and then share it with the other person. Certainty is better than uncertainty for everyone.

“There are two ways to wealth; acquire more or desire less”.Eddy Garcia on Episode 84 of “The Fi Show” As Eddy talked about his childhood growing up in Hawaii, fishing, surfing and plucking coconuts-I was reminded of how fulfilling and free living with less can be. Time for more decluttering and earthing!

I’d love to hear from you. What podcasts and words of wisdom have struck a chord with you dear reader?

Love and light and slushy stomping we go xxx Yvette

Podcast | The Aussie Firebug

Playing with FIRE | Scott Rieckens

https://www.jillianjohnsrud.com/clear-is-kind-communication-with-brad-barrett/

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Stone Cold Sober

Reposting this blog originally published March 2017 to celebrate my 4 year Soberversary in July. Ginger beer cheers to many more!

Weave the Future Magical

Hi I’m Yvette and it’s been 7 months since my last drink. There was a time when 7 days between drinks felt like an almost impossible feat. My brain was wired for the Groundhog Day, one-size-fits all solution of ‘wine’.

Good day? Wine. Bad day? Wine. Going out? Wine. Staying in? Wine. Happy? Wine. Sad? Wine. Hangover? Hair of the dog that bit me…Wine! Wine was the answer at least for most of the questions in my mind.

Wine was friend. Always there. I could buy it! The novelty of this fact has never worn off. I can buy it? Whenever I want? Wherever I want? With wine as always is Garth/ Yvette. Of course it started off as a relationship full of fun and parties. Hangovers were minimal (oh to be young) and drinking almost an expectation. Slowly it slid into a co-dependent…

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