1. Improve/expand my garden and orchard.
My eventual long-term goal is to be able to generate 80% of my familiy's fruits/ vegetables/ herbs/ eggs / honey from our doublewide city lot. I am still at least 10 years away from that goal. This year, I'd like to add two pear trees, landscape the between-driveway area in front with some "micro-beds", and add a lasagna garden to improve the rotation of tomato family vegetables.
Also, I plan to improve my canning and drying abilities to preserve more of my harvest.
2. Home improvements.
We have no backup heating except for a fireplace, which from all I've read actually makes a home colder (except right around the hearth), is only 10% efficient, and oh yes - polluting. We would like to install a fireplace insert (hopefully 75%+ efficient, EPA Phase II rated) that would provide backup cooking and heating.
Luckily, that kind of fireplace upgrade qualifies for a 30% federal tax credit, up to $1500, until the end of 2010. We have also considered a wood stove, but spacing is problematic and we would not be able to use it in the spring/summer/fall anyway. If anyone has suggestions, I'm all ears!
Secondly, we still want to replace our worn, ugly, dust-filled carpet with wood or bamboo floors. To save money, we will probably install the flooring ourselves.
For many people, finances may actually be the most important prep area (barring a fast crash disaster scenario), considering that an ongoing economic depression is a likely symptom of resource constraints. I am still boggled by the inflation vs. deflation debate, and so this year we will play it "safe" by continuing to pay down our mortgage on the house and by continuing to improve our house. Of course, if we are forced to move to follow a job somewhere, this strategy won't feel so safe with all our equity locked up in an immobile, illiquid structure.
I will continue to work on Transition Town OKC and try to get a local neighborhood initiative going. I hope that we can start doing more hands-on seminars and workshops (gardening, energy efficiency, preserving, biking) in addition to social events and public outreach.
5. Enjoy myself.
All this peak oil preparation and community building can be overwhelming. I am constantly immersed in the day to day updates on the reality of depletion, the continuing failure of our leadership, and the erosion of our options in this catch-22 system we've designed. I am nagged by the feeling that hope is evaporating. All this, and as a Transition Town participant, I'm supposed to be positive about the future!
SO. I plan to enjoy myself as much as possible while accomplishing my objectives (see above) by continuing to write, hanging out with my Transition Town buds, and saving time for myself to relax, read and exercise.
How 'bout you?