Put the newspaper over the dirt 3-4 pages thick and then covered it with mulch. The newspaper will prevent any grass and weed seeds from germinating, but unlike fabric, it will decompose after about 18 months. By that time, any grass and weed seeds that were present in the soil on planting will be dead. Its green, its cheaper than fabric, and when you decide to remove or redesign the bed later on, you will not have the headache you would with fabric.
This is a really good idea. Id have to change a couple things though. 1. 1000 emergency 2. Pay off debts 3. 3-6 months in savings. 4. Invest 15% into retirement 5. Buy a house/investment property and pay it off 6. Build wealth and give. -Chris