October Is For Planning Next Year

One of the reasons I love October is because it’s like a pregame strategy session. This is when I assess what I did this year and what I need to do for next year.

This October is no different. If WordPress will kindly behave itself, I’d like to move the full site for Book Cover Diva over to this site. This will also give me a chance to change the logo and update the web site to suit the ‘new me’. That means business cards will have to change too. A small amount of money lost, but not terrible.

My Facebook page for The Frugal Way is going away too. I’ve kept it far too long. Mostly, I was stuck never knowing when to post something, or if it was the right thing to post. I have much more interaction on my personal Facebook page anyway, so any frugal ideas or links will funnel through that from now on. It’ll be one less thing for me to manage. Follow or Friend Me here on Facebook.

I have it in mind to start writing again, but I haven’t quite solidified the details yet. It’s going to be a series that will reflect my practical, sustainable values in short story/novella form. I need to brainstorm it a little more and maybe get some feedback from friends to see if it’s a viable idea. If anyone is interested in hearing about it, email me and we can talk. I need a sounding board.

The biggest change is going to happen right now.

We finally got a diagnosis for Nana, (the border collie who wants to rule the world). She seems to have a torn CCL, which is akin to humans with torn ACLs. Basically, the ligaments in her left knee are shot.

We discussed it at length with our regular vet. There are a couple of different surgical options, the more effective one being significantly much more expensive. It’s a major OUCH kind of bill. I’ll know more when we talk to the specialist, but I know if we have to do surgery we’ll opt for the ‘ouch’ option only because I don’t want her to have to go through this again.

Her injury is pretty severe. She could get better on her own, but she will always re-injure that knee again and again because the ligaments are so loose and possibly shredded at this point.

I haven’t advertised my book cover business in a long time, content with word-of-mouth clientele, but considering the bills looming over us, I think it’s time I started advertising. If you know anyone looking for a cover, send ’em my way! 🙂

Greg lamented that if this had to happen, he wished it would’ve happened when he was working. Big, unexpected bills are a whole other story when you’re on a fixed income. We’ll manage though. Nana is too young to be sidelined so early in life.

We’ll know more after Monday. Maybe I can get a two for one deal and put Greg on the table for a new knee too. 😀

When do you start planning for next year? Do you think I plan too early? Have you had any unexpected ‘ouch’ bills recently?

**Missed my anniversary dinner out yesterday. I’m a bit under the weather.









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  1. It’s been the last few years or so when we started making October – our birthday month! – more of our “new year.” Or sometimes we call it a “soft opening” for the new year ahead. Whatever works, right? 🙂

    Sorry to hear you’re under the weather and that NaNa is in pain. Hope you both feel better soon!

  2. Always available as sounding board ref writing. Probably be sending you some cover business soon, and believe me, I do spread the word. I hope you’re better soon, in fact I hope you win the lottery give Nana four new legs and a spare one for Greg.

  3. Stacy McKitrick

    Plan? Are you talking garden here? Otherwise, we plan ahead for certain things, but that could happen anytime of the year.

    Sorry to hear about Nana. Hope however she’s treated works great and she’s pain-free.

    • Stacy: For some reason, outdoor stuff is usually a 2-5 year plan. I guess because the projects are so big.

      Other stuff, like blogging and business, I like to update on a yearly basis.

      re: Nana
      The specialist is at some hoity toity vet hospital in Dallas. Our vet gave us a less expensive recommendation, but she didn’t think the procedure would last for the life of the dog. That part is kind of important to me.

  4. Poor Nana; that’s a tough situation. I hope you both feel better soon.

    I’m available as a sounding board, so count me in, too.

    We’ve got ongoing major bills with our daughter’s university expenses, but we planned for it and I’m doing okay on our tighter budget. I’ll do better once my guy retires and I can keep him away from the food courts and drive-thrus.

    • Lynn: Holy, moley. University is so expensive. I don’t know how parents make it nowadays–especially if they have several college aged kids at one time.

      re: sounding board
      Thanks, Lynn. If I feel better I’ll write you tomorrow.

      re: Nana
      Right now I’m more concerned how she’ll handle being away from me. Despite being an independent dog, she gets frightened if she thinks I’m not nearby.

  5. Jenny Schwartz

    Good luck with Nana – by which I mean – glad it’s not me convincing her not to tear around while recovering from the op! Sounds like you’ll be BUSY even without that unenviable Herculean chore. Seriously, I hope she recovers well.

  6. Jenny: She’ll stay put as long as I’m in the room, but if I run from room to room as I’m apt to do when I’m cleaning or whatever, she’ll follow. I might have to keep her confined to Greg who’s more likely to stay in one place.

  7. Hoping you feel better soon so you can enjoy your anniversary dinner! We did the “ouch” with our corgi when he had lymphoma and opted to treat him with chemo (which was not cheap, just like I know Nana’s operation won’t be either). But he had just turned 6 years old and was otherwise healthy, it seemed like the best thing to do. However, at 10 years old when he had suffered from diabetes for 4 years and was blind and the cancer came back with a vengeance that would only buy us a month or two if we treated him, we decided not to. At the time hubby wasn’t working and we were living at his parents’ home while they were in assisted living. It was a drain on the finances, but so worth it.


  8. Betty: I went through the same thing with our rottie. She beat cancer twice, but in the end it was hip dysplasia that did her in. She was already 12, later than most rotties live. To this day it hurts me that we had to let her go, but it was the only kindness we could do. It was the most aggressive case of dysplasia I have ever seen even to this day.

  9. Praying for Nana. She’s a handful of a girl, but she’s such a darling that I hope things go as smoothly as possible if you have to go the “ouch” route for surgery to repair her injury. For some reason, I can see another “frugal way” kind of story coming from this, something detailing the journey and options that can be considered when having to deal with unexpected big bills on a fixed income.

    Sorry to hear you are felling under the weather. I pray you recover quickly and right as rain 🙂

    I tend to do my assessments and a skeletal version of planning during December, close to year’s end. Taking time to reflect and consider the best next steps to pursue is always a good idea, whenever it can get done.

    • Angela:
      re: options that can be considered when having to deal with unexpected big bills…

      That’s definitely on the list. For us, it means tightening our belts. We had hoped to invest in fencing material for our acreage (another ouch bill), but that might go on hold depending on Nana’s diagnosis.

      One ouch a year is about all we can handle comfortably.

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