Financially Independent, Retired Early(ish) at 57.

Wednesday W’s #69.

What’s top of my mind:
How lovely it is to have days to myself.

After weeks of whiney posts about having to go to work again, you’ll be relieved to hear that I only worked one day last week and (so far) only one day this week.

It’s been so good to get stuck into things that need doing here at home. The garden has been kicked along, while on Monday I got up and suddenly decided to use the sample paint pot I had to start cutting in around the doors and windows. No sense in wasting good paint!

It took from period 4 to the end of period 5 (including lunchtime) to use up the paint. Ok, I wasn’t earning money but I’ve got to tell you – I felt far more productive during those 3 hours than I’ve felt sitting in a classroom!

Where I’ve been: out in the garden.

After painting on Monday and then a heap of ‘chop-and-dropping’ in the late morning yesterday, my legs were feeling it. But a glance at the weather forecast told me that we’re in for a tonne of rain today. I knew that if I didn’t bed the orchard down with sugar cane mulch, I’d be looking out of a classroom window at the rain teeming down and I’d be kicking myself for not getting it done.

So I dragged myself out and put two bags of mulch out there. I underestimated what I’d need, but most of the ground is thickly covered and the rain will bed it all down beautifully. Pretty happy with that.

I got Ryan28 to make dinner though. I was pretty tired by the end.

Where I’m going: to work.

I’ve been booked for every Wednesday this term, so I’m back at the new campus today. The VERY good news is that today is the day that I’ve officially earned the money for Evan26’s Clown College in France.

I do love ticking off a goal.

What I’m reading: The Book Eaters – Dean

I finished this a couple of days ago and how I loved it!

What I’m watching: Ted Lasso season 3.

Ryan28 and I are watching it. It’s our latest mother/son bonding program, first started when we watched ‘Breaking Bad’ together.

What I’m listening to: My son’s podcast.

While I was eating breakfast I skimmed an article about the 50 best life hacks. One of them was to listen to audiobooks and podcasts at 1.2X speed, to get through more content faster.

I can’t do that! I love hearing Evan26’s voice as I drive. If it was sped up it wouldn’t sound like him.

What I’m eating: I have no idea.

Ryan28 is cooking dinner tonight, because I’ll be home late. Who knows what he’ll decide to make?

What I’m planning: What I’m packing for my trip in September.

Yesterday I ordered a merino dress from a company called Wool& from America. (I looked at the Aussie brands, but they were very exxy.) I’ve decided that I’m going to take only one outfit for my trip, which will be this dress, and I’ll have the merino long-sleeved tops that I bought for Antarctica to layer underneath for warmth.

Autumn in the UK is bound to feel like winter in Melbourne on some days. Given this, I’ll be taking the fleecy jacket that I also wore in Antarctica as my coat. I won’t be terribly fashionable, but the beauty of being Frogdancer Jones at this stage of life is that I don’t care.

I’m definitely taking 2 pairs of shoes – my beautiful boots and a pair of white runners. I learned the hard way about the importance of NOT having sore feet when I was last in London in 2015. Scott and I had to go shopping for runners on the third day when I was nearly crippled by the sandals I was wearing.

** The Wool& company has a 100 day challenge, where if you wear the same dress for 100 days, you get a $100 credit towards a new dress. I worked out that if I start the challenge on July 1, I’d be finished by the time I get back home after my trip. I’m thinking about doing it.

Who deserves a high five: Me.

I’m really pleased that I’ve earned the money for Evan26’s trip.

When I left work I definitely didn’t expect to come back. But after a year’s total break, this CRT gig has helped out nearly all my boys with big life goals, as well as paying for my upcoming holiday.

That’s not bad.

What has made me smile: OMG! There’s a ‘Walking Dead’ sequel coming to Stan in a couple of weeks!!!!

We all have our guilty pleasures and (one of) mine is The Walking Dead.

I love watching a zombie apocalypse.

Currently, I’m watching ‘Z Nation’ on Netflix and it scratches the itch a bit, but it’s just not the same as the original.

Dad joke of the day:


  1. Maureen

    The paint color is very nice; nothing like new paint to rejuvenate a room. Just one outfit for the whole trip? I try to pack light, but I need a few more than that. I also pack and release – especially undies. I don’t like carrying them around so I take my oldest ones and just wear and toss. Bravo on the money goals. Your tenacity is admirable.

    • FrogdancerJones

      Only taking one outfit will be a stretch, but any space I can find in my carry-on case will come in handy. 🙂

  2. Katie from Q

    The paint looks great. I’m generally pretty crap at painting and end up with it in places it’s not meant to go including my hair and the floor. I’ve just painted a big pot in flamingo pink chalk paint which wasn’t too bad. I know what you mean about home productivity v work productivity. I do work hard in my paid job but I do (usually) get so much done on my day off. My veggie garden is powering and I rack up the steps on non work days. Therefore retirement will be great for my physical and mental health ????
    Congratulations on the clown school fund raiser. I’m on a mission to fund a major solar upgrade and ensuite renovation. Finding tradies is a challenge here though.

    • FrogdancerJones

      Well, I’m not claiming that some paint didn’t land in spots on the floor…

  3. Living Without

    Froggie! Don’t do it! Surely you need more than just one dress for the time away…at least some jeans?!

    • FrogdancerJones

      I’ll be doing the 100 day challenge. So it’d be a waste of time to bring jeans I won’t wear.
      Merino is very breathable and forgiving.

  4. Mrs. ETT

    I second (third?) the paint colour, lovely.

    When the time comes, can you do a post on your luggage? I know that sounds ridiculous but I just can’t fathom it, being a serious ‘just-in-case’ over-packer.

  5. Tina Sankovic

    Would like to know where you bought your long sleeved merino tops from,and were you happy with them. Thanks Tina

    • FrogdancerJones

      I bought them from Aldi last year, for my Antarctica trip. They were great.

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