Sara from the blog The Practical Mystic, who also lives in my local community, ushered in the new decade by writing a fabulous short post on Facebook… “A lot can and does change in a decade, and it’s fascinating to look back and remind ourselves just how much has changed. I am the same person I was, but then again I’m not the same at all… I would love to see your decade list!”
So here it is:
The beginning saw me much the same as I had been for several years, living in a small apartment in the inner city of Sydney with the G.O. and working for a global big 4 law firm in a high-rise building in Sydney CBD as a paralegal on corporate transaction projects, and more gratifyingly a member of the community service committee involved in various programs such asylum seeker, inner-city school literacy, awareness and fund raising. Fabulous opportunities, memorable experiences and fine friendships.
Despite lingering effects of the GFC keeping us there for longer than planned, living and working in the city enabled the G.O. and me in August 2014 to pay off the house in the Nambucca Valley we’d jointly owned since 2005; a cornerstone of our future plans. At the same time, we decided we might as well elope and get married on a beach. As at the end of the decade we’re still together so that’s worked out well, so far so good.
Especially considering in late 2015 we quit our Sydney jobs, made the treechange to live fulltime in our house in the rural village of Taylors Arm, and spent a lot time together in 2016 travelling around Australia in our ute towing a caravan.
A few of our plans didn’t quite work out due to unforeseen circumstances… it’s ok, we’ve managed thanks to contingency preparations and developing our #LiveSimpleHomeMadeGrownLocalCreativeBetter philosophy.
In 2017 some of my other dreams came to fruition and I began studying Certificate IV Horticulture at Tafe NSW in nearby Coffs Harbour. It was so good I signed up in 2018 for another year studying Certificate IV Production Horticulture, and at the beginning of 2019 while I was waiting for other things to happen that didn’t… Certificate II Horticulture. In June 2019 it all fell in to place and got really interesting when I began studying Certificate IV Permaculture via Tafe NSW National Environment Centre’s flexible online learning.
There was the usual mix of births, deaths, holidays, events, occasions and day-to-day life. Among the highlights… 2013 my Dad turned 70 and despite health issues is still going. 2015 I became an aunty to my niece Skye. 2016 we adopted Diesel-Dog from the RSPCA. 2017 we made a caged vegetable garden which is still alive despite recent years of low rainfall, and the best-neighbour ever decided it was a good idea that we share a coop of chickens. Since our treechange we have more time and less money which has given me the opportunity to become a more confident #frugalandfabulous home cook, acquiring useful new skills in sourdough bread baking, pickles and other mystique-laden kitchen competencies which mostly require only willingness to give something new a try.
So MUCH more between the lines has happened… Across it all, family and friends have been along for the ride. As a bonus, I’ve gained new family and made new friends… Family, friends and community which carry me into a new decade of wonderful possibilities and plans.
Late in 2011, searching for a motive to write just to amuse myself… I discovered WordPress and blogging, and by good fortune found myself among an online community… many of who have gone on to become friends in real life… my likeminded tribe who inspire and inform much of the #lessismore way we choose to live. As it so often does one thing led to another and @daleleelife101 now crosses social media platforms into @daleleelife101.blog on Facebook and @daleleelife101 on Instagram -giving purpose to my penchant for taking photos of everything with my phone- and from time-to-time, Twitter. Much of the decade is chronicled on the blog, Facebook or Instagram.
2010–2019 in my photo archive evidences recurring themes in addition to the ubiquitous Diesel-dog, food, plants, birds and beaches…
Looking forward to the next decade, I close with my favourite Barbara Kingsolver quotation.
“The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. … Right now I’m living in that hope, running down its hallway and touching the walls on both sides.”
What is your 2010-2019 decade list?