Happy Friday, Lifers!  It is time to Prepare for a New Year and New Decade!  Are you ready to begin painting that masterpiece and writing that next chapter in your Small Scale Life? 

Our theme this week on News from Around the Bend is How to Prepare for a New Year and New Decade.  There is a lot we can do mentally as we charge through the rest of January and get ourselves set up for a successful year and decade. 

The other thing you can do is to continue to develop a support network.  Do you have two or three good friends that you trust and talk to regularly?  You need to have that in place.  Life is tough, and it is better to have some friends to lean on and vent to.  Building community is incredibly important, especially in this insane Modern Western Civilization.  We are “more connected” but have less actual interaction, and studies are showing that Americans haven’t made new friends in the last 5 years. That is truly frightening. 

This is a topic that we need to and will address in 2020. More on that….later.


Let’s get on with my content this week and our Picks of the Week!

Small Scale Life

Mindset, Unique New Years Resolutions

Unique New Years Resolutions from a Caldera


This week’s post on Small Scale Life, I wrote a post and recorded a podcast episode titled “Unique New Year’s Resolutions from a Caldera.”  In this post, I briefly talk about Julie and my trip to Hawaii and then jump into the definition of a caldera, describe the 12 Unique New Year’s Resolutions from a Caldera and then walk through how I am actually applying this to my own life.  You can actually see how it all works together and shows that I am practicing what I preach!

Based on my post and podcast episode, I am adopting #calderastrong in 2020.  This is a direct reference to the 12 Unique New Year’s Resolutions. This will be a reminder to actually follow through on these 12 points.  Even if I fail (and I am human, so I will), I will have these general principles in place and keep on pushing this year.

Check it out.  Hopefully you will be inspired to adopt these out as you Prepare for a New Year and New Decade. Let me know if you have any comments and thoughts.


Small Scale Gardening

Square Foot Gardening, Garden, Urban Gardening, Seeds, Seedlings, Wicking Beds, Raised Beds, Trellis, Vertical Gardening, Rain Gutter Grow Systems, Soils, Compost, Grow What You Eat, Homestead, Urban Homestead, Common Garden Pests, Gutter Garden, Mid-July Garden Update, patio herb garden, vertical garden; soup gardening


Over on our gardening channel, I am getting ready to get some small scale hydroponics going indoors.  We want to grow some greens this winter, and with all the Kratky Hydroponic discussions going on (Living Free in Tennessee and The Survival Podcast), I have gotten inspired.  I will be trying some things out next week once I do some shopping!

I am also working on a couple articles for the blog/podcast, and I will let you know when content is ready for you.

Picks of the Week

Prepare for a New Year, Sunset, Sunset in Kona HI

Sunset in Paradise: Kona, HI – January 2020

The following content creators have posts and podcast episodes that fit with our theme of the week: Preparing for a New Year and New Decade.

Time Management for Smart Homesteaders

A Farmish Kind of Life

Amy Dingmann


Time management is one of those issues all of us wrestle with in this modern era.  Everyone and everything demands our most precious resources: time. How many times have you complained that you needed more time and needed a clone of yourself to get everything done?  The struggle is real friends.  The struggle IS real.

My good friend Amy Dingmann has a great podcast episode about Time Management for Smart Homesteaders. Amy has a time assessment on her website, and she also provides VERY useful tips for maximizing efficiency and improving your work flows on your own homestead or your own house.  Check this list and assessment out!  You can get an idea of some time saving and efficiency tips as you start to Prepare for a New Year and New Decade.  Start today!


Get Ready for 2020: Episode 0366

Tom Merlino

Follow Me Out of Debt


Tom Merlino gives some good advice for folks who might have stalled out or failed in 2020.  His advice includes setting realistic, time-based goals.  These are typically called SMART Goals.  SMART stands for the following:

S = Smart

M = Measurable

A = Achievable

R – Relevant

T = Time-Bound

Having lived in the corporate world most of my life, we would go through the SMART goal-setting process and evaluation process each year.  If you need some help developing SMART goals, here is a great site to help you along.


Embracing Real Self-Improvement

Terrance Layhew



Terrance Layhew has a mind-blowing article on Medium about embracing real self-improvement.  Many content creators out in space talk endlessly about self-improvement with hacks and quick-fix tips.  While these tips might inspire you top action in the short term, these effect of these hacks and tips do not last in the long term.

Change and real self-improvement occurs when we struggle.  We struggle with life, jobs, relationships and most importantly, our own emotions (ourselves).  Change is triggered by emotions and events.  We are essentially called to move from the Illusion of Comfort and ordinary to extraordinary.  That is where the growth and self-improvement happens.

You cannot have growth and improvement without struggle.  We are like the phoenix: we are reborn as we struggle and overcome obstacles. Terrance does a masterful job identifying the ironic axiom that as you improve and get stronger, life (or God) throw bigger and bigger struggles at your to shake up your status quo and force change.

There is so much to process and meditate on in this one post.  I told Terrance a couple times that this is a mind-blowing post, and I see so much in my journey and my life in this one post.

I highly recommend you read this post a couple times.  Read it, process it, and read it again.  Terrance brilliantly hits the mark on this subject!


Prepare for a New Year and New Decade

Dombucha Kombucha, 2019 Year in Review 

Not to be a Debbie Downer to end this post, but you will have struggles this year and the new decade. I know, right?  Thanks for the head’s up, Captain Obvious.

The best thing you can do is to Prepare for a New Year and New Decade is to prepare mentally and build your support network (build your community).  You will need friends to lean on and vent to (one of our Caldera New Year’s Resolutions).  You might need to call in an expert and help you through those obstacles and barriers.

It’s ok!  Do it! Use your Easy Buttons.

The Small Scale Life Community is here to help as well. We have a lot of good folks who are pushing along with you. Feel free to join our Small Scale Life Facebook Group by clicking the text.

Happy Weekend!  Let’s get after it, Lifers.