Savings Report #32 – I’m now a Farmer

Click here to see all of my past Savings Reports and view my interactive net worth chart

Go to How To Track Your Savings to check out the Saving Ninja Super Spreadsheet.


The stock market has been a bit flat lately. In other news, I’ve started saving into a pre-pension account again, I’ve opted for 12,000 Kr per month at the moment which equates to around £1000; I hope to increase this as my personal financial situation settles even more.

Packing up Again

It’s now under a month until we move into our new Swedish property. We’ve begun packing up all of our belongings again, by this point it feels like a regimented process. The boxes that we’re using are the same ones that we used when moving from England, and then we used them again moving to this apartment after our 1 month short-term lease when we arrived in Sweden. This will be the third time! Some of them look a bit battered, but it’s nothing a lot of brown tape can’t fix, I’ll actually be a bit sad throwing them away.

This will be our first property with a garden, and a modestly big one at that. So, as it’s our dream to own a farm/ranch style property in the future, we thought we would use this one as a v0.1 to see if we like farming! We have absolutely no idea what we’re doing, and we’re unsure if anything will actually grow, but you’ve got to start somewhere.

To start things off, we bought a few seed starter pots and sowed beetroots, leeks, dill, sprouts, sprint onions, and San Marzano tomatoes. I love these tomatoes and they’re very expensive to buy in the supermarket, especially here in Sweden, so I planted a whole tray and a couple of other smaller ones with just these tomatoes. Remember, we don’t know what we’re doing here, I just like tomatoes…

It was only afterwards that I realised how much space even 1 tomato plant needs, especially San Marzano plants which can grow up to 5 feet tall! Bugger, I’ve planted 27 of them. My garden is going to turn into a tomato farm.

I figured out that we’ll need to build a raised bed which is 44cm high, 100cm wide, and 200cm in length to plant 8 of the tomato plants, we’ll also need to build some sort of trellis for them to cling on to. We’ll have a lot of building projects to do as soon as we move in as the plants will need to be transplanted not long after our move in date.

Speaking of construction projects, we also plan to build one of these:

And this sexy Swedish fence:

Good job I’m now working from home indefinitely now!

Random Thoughts

  • I passed my probation at work! There hasn’t really been an official ‘Well Done,’ as I was expecting, more of a, “Yeah, 6 months have passed, so your probation is over.” It’s silly how nervous people get over these things, but that’s a small weight off my shoulder at least, I’m now an official permanent Senior Engineer at a big tech company. Woohoo!
  • I’ve applied to become an author for a popular technical tutorial website, if I get the gig I’ll be writing an article every couple of months at $600 a pop. This can also lead to being an author of books released on the same website where the pay is a percentage of the profits. Hopefully all of this blogging will have prepared me enough for the writing side. I’m having a ‘Tryout’ in mid-April, wish me luck!
  • I’m going to be applying to a management position at work soon, this is the next progression step that I want to take. I’m also going to a leadership conference in April to prepare for the job. I’m hoping that by the end of the year, I’ll land, or be very close to landing, a engineering management position. But, I’m not going to doggedly pursue it like I normally do, I’m happy with the level I’m currently at, and I’m going to enjoy the ride, I need to stop focusing so much on progression and achievements.
  • I’ve been looking into Digital Gardening thanks to Mr RIP, check out this awesome explanation by Maggie Appleton. This led me down the path to setting up my own ‘Personal Knowledge Management’ (PKM) system in an awesome piece of software called Obsidian, I’m actually writing this post in Obsidian right now! The purpose of a PKM is to have your notes and documents linked in a knowledge graph so you can easily see and explore your thoughts, like a second brain. Watch this video if you want to learn more. It’s made me think that I want to turn these entries into more of a journal post rather than a financial report with a stipend of personal thoughts, more to be explored here.
  • I also found this cool shared bookmark tool when searching through productivity software, I’ve been meaning to sort out my messy bookmarks! Raindrop IO

Thanks for reading! How was your month?

OddsMonkey

17 thoughts on “Savings Report #32 – I’m now a Farmer

  1. And here’s me thinking this a FIRE devotee has taken the plunge on bitcoin and this post is about crypto currency yield farming! An enjoyable read all the same as always.

    1. Hahaha, I did do a little research into bitcoin this month, but I decided against it again, just too much effort – one of the beauties of a passive portfolio is freeing up your mental capacity for other subjects. I do wish I had mined some when I first read about bitcoin in 2011 though.

  2. Looking forward to seeing those summer pictures of your 27 tomato-plant garden! 😛

    My wife is the gartner in our family – I just like to eat the crops 😛

    BTW, take a gander at that spreadsheet cutout again…looks an awful lot like the one from last month… 😉

    1. Whoops, updated it, thank you Nick!

      Yeah, I’m hoping we won’t be trapped in the house due to out of control tomato plants 😀 I plan to make a lot of sauces and use them for awesome pizza base pasata!

  3. Farming! That sounds cool, it’s hard to imagine a ninja turned into a farmer though 😉

    Congrats on purchasing your second property and best of luck with your achievements for this year! 🙂

    1. Ninja Farmer. I wonder what the net gain of farming is, or will it be a loss?

      Thank you for the luck Tony, I hope things work out well for you – we still have to go on that walk 😉

  4. Good luck with the move.

    We managed to grow 8 full size tomato plants in our 6mx4m garden so I’m sure you’ll work it out! Keep us updated on the veg growing exploits!

    1. 😮 I really hope it works out, I have a lot of plans with delicious pizza base sauce! I hope I’ll have some pictures soon 🙂

  5. Hmmm home grown food, awesome!
    It’s definitely worth trying now before you go all in on the homestead idea.

    I do like tinkering in the garden but it’s very time consuming considering what you get out, although we do have a very small garden so I’m guessing there are economies of scale the bigger your growing plot is.

    Good luck and looking forward to seeing the fruit of your labour!

    Congrats on passing the probation as well and cheers for those links for Obsidian (what a delightfully menacing name for it) etc… I Remember reading about it on RIP but never looking any further, must watch that video now!

    1. I’m looking forward to having some good quality tomatoes, they’re too expensive here. Although that’s if they actually grow, haha!

      I’m still in love with Obsidian, let me know if you end up using it.

  6. it seems like there is a “new” note taking app thats taking over every few months. (notion, roam, etc)#

    the one thing i never liked about them was the “lock in ” factor. even if they had an export feature it wouldnt really work properly in a different app. this obsidian looks pretty good in that respect. might have to move all my notes over to a new app again lol

  7. Looking good, Ninja Farmer! 🙂

    I’m a bit slow off the mark with my veggie planting but hoping to start later in the month – I’m trying tomatoes too and hopefully I will be successful unlike last year’s non-existent crop!

    Anyway, congrats on passing your probation – I know how you feel about it being weight off your shoulders; I remember stressing over mine and my boss was really surprised that I was even worried about it.

    All the best with the house move!

    1. They’ve grown even bigger now, I hope we can get some good raised beds built!

      Thank you for the gratz 🙂 Not long left now before the move.

  8. Fantastic work in getting into the garden scene! Just dive straight into it – there’s always a learning curve with it all!

    Looking forward to the San Marzano tomato pictures! I’ve never grown them myself personally but keep us posted on their growth.

    Fantastic work passing probation – I guess that’s a huge weight off your mind now!

  9. Yeah I like what weenie coined as Ninja Farmer…that’s awesome.

    Well done on getting past the 6 months probation period. I can defo imagine that’s a relief for sure. Even more so when you have moved to an entirely new country…I will toast a beer to you tonight for that! Good luck with the management position you have applied for also.

    I like that fence, that’s interesting…Good luck with the shed too – I expect pictures!

    TFJ

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