Financially Independent, Retired Early(ish) at 57.

Wednesday W’s #62.

What’s top of my mind: I’m torn between fear and hope…

As I was doing Parent/Teacher interviews, I had a message from another secondary school, asking if I’d be interested in a term’s work as an English teacher.

Of course I said, “NOOOOO.” I’ve just finished a term of full-time work – and I’m retired.

As I talked to her I began to think. I still want to pay for Clown College in France for Evan26 – a month’s work would pay for the course and spending money for him.

So I told her that if they haven’t found anyone by the end of the holidays, I’d give them a month. The teaching shortage is absolutely a real thing.

Now, of course, I’m really hoping they find someone!

Where I’ve been: the garlic patch.

As I’m typing this, I’m pretty sure that my hands still smell of garlic, even though I’ve washed them over and over.

Last Christmas, Ryan27’s friend Viv gave us some canna lilies and some elephant garlic plants. I harvested the garlic 6 months later and today I went out to the veggie garden with some of the heads of garlic, ready to replant.

I’ve never grown elephant garlic before. Some of the garlic were separated into proper cloves, so I pulled them apart and planted all of them. (I found a row of plants from last year that I missed – they’d merrily re-sprouted!)

Other heads looked more like white onions – they were pretty much just one big clove of garlic the size of my fist.

I was going to plant these again, but in the end I cut them up into large ‘cloves’ and froze them. I’ve got enough garlic to last me until the cloves I planted today are ready to come out of the ground.

This makes me happy. Now that my household is so small, it’s perfectly possible for me to have crops like garlic that will last me all year round. *Touch wood* I’ll never need to buy garlic again!

Where I’m going: The other school, probably…

Yeah, I haven’t heard anything yet, so I’d better get my ironing done before Monday, just in case.

What I’m reading: The Colony by Audrey Magee

My friends The Festival Mavens on Facebook were once bloggers back in the day, when I began my personal blog in 2007. That’s how we met.

Nowadays, they travel to writers’ festivals and bookshops and post what they’ve been reading. I’ve discovered quite a few thumping good reads from them.

This is an interesting novel. I’m halfway through it. The prose is almost poetry at times.

What I’m watching: The ‘live’ reunion of ‘Love is Blind’ on Netflix.

On Monday morning I was startled by my alarm going off just before 10. For a second or two I was puzzled… then I remembered. Netflix was having their first worldwide live stream and it was one of my junk tv shows! Seeing as it was school holidays I thought it’d be fun to watch. I grabbed a lemon verbena tea (from the garden) and settled in.

Turns out that whoever had the idea for live streaming one of Netflix’s most popular shows didn’t account for the fact that MANY people would be tuning in. It broke the internet.

Ah well. It came on eventually – nearly an hour and a half late. I got so many things done while I was waiting! For a morning spent watching a junk tv show, it was surprisingly productive.

What I’m listening to: Scout grumbling and squeaking at me to stop typing and just throw the ball, dammit!

The dogs are loving having me home with them. I have to say, I’m loving it too.

What I’m eating: home-made pizza made in our pizza oven.

Ryan27 is cooking. This is his speciality. Seeing as he’s done bugger-all today, I told him he was on duty for dinner.

What I’m planning: my next Little Adventure.

Who knows what I’ll do and where I’ll go?

Who needs a good slap: Whoever has got something beeping from next door.

Ryan27 tells me that it’s been going for 2 days. It doesn’t really bother me, but it’s driving him crazy.

What has made me smile: A few things.

Memories of the wedding, of course.

Finding a row of garlic happily springing up from the ground – the sight made me race in and plant the rest of the cloves. productivity for the win!

Jeffrey and his stealth companionship – it doesn’t matter where I go in this house, he always ends up right beside me. Even if I simply move to the other couch in the same room, it’s not close enough for him. Sometimes he’s so sneaky, I don’t even realise he’s there.

Jenna volunteering to travel with Mum and Dad between the church and the reception. Dad was a bit leery about where to go and there’s NO WAY he’ll use the GPS installed in his car. Jenna is a gem.

Feeling lucky to be born at this time and stage of history.

Dad joke of the day:


  1. RuthW in md

    If you want to get rid of the garlic smell on your fingers….find something made of stainless steel and put it in the sink, run cold water over it while rubbing your fingers on it. Takes the smell away so quick, it’s magic! The wedding pictures were lovely, especially the pic of you looking back at the photographer with your boys standing behind you.

    • FrogdancerJones

      My friend Blogless Helen took that one!

  2. Maureen

    I love growing garlic! I’m the source of pesto for my friends. Garlic scape pesto is to be treasured. Does elephant garlic put out scapes and are they edible like regular garlic? I added an onion crop to my garden this year as another staple to cross off the grocery list.
    Fabulous wedding pics – you must have been so thrilled.

    • FrogdancerJones

      I grew one onion once in the front yard of the old house. Best onion I ever tasted.

  3. Onevikinggirl

    Finally garlic cloves large enough for me to follow a recipe (as in “add 1-2 cloves”)!

    • FrogdancerJones

      Haha! The ones that developed into one big clove were as big as my fist! I ended up chopping them into 6 or 8 pieces before I froze them.

    • Ced

      You and me both!

  4. Kathy

    The beeping could be a smoke detector, the batteries start to beep when there’s a problem [not smoke, but maybe battery is going flat]. Also I binge watched “How to Get Rich” on Netflix yesterday and loved it. I’d never heard of Ramit Sethi before but loved the way he went about helping people take control of their finances and learn to manage money. Lots of different people participating in a 6 week money make over type of thing. He wants them to be able to Design their Rich Life. He said Rich is not necessarily about money, if you want to be there to take your kids to school and pick them up, that could mean rich to you. It was a fabulous series and they are 30 minute episodes. Also I loved his wording instead of “budgeting” [I love this word] however people who are scared to manage their money think of going without and can’t have a life. He used the words “conscious spending habits” or words to that effect. He also didn’t dictate what decisions for them to make, he lead them to make their own decisions that would ultimately benefit them towards designing their Rich Life. Loved it…..oh and the MLM and the Cadillac [false gift] – that bit was an eye opener. You’ll enjoy it.

    • FrogdancerJones

      That Cadillac was absolutely criminal. You can see how people’s egos would lead them to take it, though. Just awful.

  5. Katie Q

    Frogdancer – If you ever want a little adventure to the Sunshine Coast you’re welcome to stay with us. Bonza flys direct to Maroochydore now. You’d even gave a car as I can wfh. Of course you’ll have to do some gardening and teach me to quilt 🙂

    • FrogdancerJones

      Sounds like a definite plan!
      (I’m not joking…)

      • Katie Q

        Email me anytime. Bonza don’t fly everyday but they do fly from Tullamarine and Avalon, you just need to download the Fly Bonza app.

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