Goodbye 2014, Hello 2015!

2014 RECAP

The Good

  • I paid off my credit card and one of my student loans.
  • I made a $7,722 decrease in student loan debt for 2014.
  • I over made $1,100 in side income (selling stuff, baby/pet sitting, house cleaning, and survey sites).
  • I bought a domain for my blog.
  • I visited my family in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan twice.
  • Through 23andme DNA testing, I found out I am over 27% Finnish.
  • I took a staycation and experienced a number of firsts (mani/pedi, hibachi, sushi, cards against humanity).
  • Participated in a Relay For Life with my best friend.
  • I was running regularly (couch to 5k) normally for a month.
  • I animated.

The Bad

  • I neglected my blog.
  • USPS messed up 3 times.
  • My best friend moved to South Korea
  • I learned what OPP stands for (you don’t want to know).
  • I stopped running when it got cold.
  • My sleep debt took a bigger toll on me than my actual debt.
  • Stress was through the roof!
  • I had lots of health issues: stomach pains (IBS), hiatal hernia, food poisoning, colds, many sinus infections, 3 infections at one time, nasal polyp, sinus deviation, sinus surgery, at least two corneal abrasions and two instances of having to wear an eye patch, eyelash/skin removal procedure, D&C surgical procedure, and I developed allergies.

Remember my 2014 Goals…Overkill post?  Below is what I actually accomplished from that massive list (100% passed, no almosts).

  • Play with my cats prior to meal time – It has seriously helped them not run around like crazy on top of me very early in the morning.
  • Add about $25 to our savings account after each pay day to grow our emergency fund to $1000 by the end of 2014.
  • Decide on a domain.
  • Create a daily skin care regimen.
  • Get rid of/sell things we no longer use.
  • Acquire a kitchen table and microwave stand/cart.
MASSIVE 2015 GOALS LIST

Financial Goals

  • Make $200 a month from side hustles (pet/baby sitting, house cleaning, surveys, Fiverr, etc).
  • Pay off StudentLoan#1 before I turn 30 in June.
  • Apply for co-signer release on my private student loans.
  • Get hubby on board with budgeting.
  • Look into some kind of retirement savings (because relying on death or the future NFL success of my best friend’s two year old child aren’t smart options).
  • Weigh the pros/cons of pet insurance.

Career Goals

  • Relearn the programs that are relevant to my Media Arts & Animation degree.
  • Create a minimum of four pieces of art to add to my portfolio.
  • Have a portfolio website up and running by October 2014.

Blog Goals

  • Have several blog posts written in advance, schedule them, and stop neglecting my blog!
  • Have guest posts on my blog and write guest posts.
  • Look into affiliate programs and ways to make money through blogging.

Artistic Goals

  • Complete a 30 Day Drawing Challenge.
  • Practice face painting and caricatures (would make great side hustle income).
  • Get my air brush working!
  • Sew at least once a month – I have so many pairs of pants that need hemming and would love to be able to create and alter clothes that fit me.

Health Goals

  • Take all of my medications and supplements (Prilosec, fiber, probiotics, etc.)
  • Every night complete the Kiss Your Dentist Goodbye dental care regimen.
  • Keep a sleep diary and figure out how to get some quality Zzzz’s!
  • Exercise regularly!
    • Take a dance class.
    • Begin strength training with the end goal of kipping before my 30th.
    • Take a daily walk, eventually add running spurts and run a damn mile!
  • Eat healthier!!
    • Meal plan weekly.
    • Log my food/calorie intake on MyFitnessPal.
    • Cut back on processed food, eat less sugar.
    • Prepare meals/snacks ahead of time and don’t waste fresh produce!

Personal Goals

  • Be more positive.
  • Relax (meditate) daily.
  • Sit up straight.
  • Schedule and manage my time better (cleaning, cooking, exercising, reading, relaxing, wake up and bed time routines).
  • Spend less time on Facebook.
  • Spend less time watching tv shows (except the ones I really enjoy).
  • Visit my best friend in South Korea!

Knowledge Goals

  • Learn to knit.
  • Learn a little sign language.

Home Goals

  • Sort through Hubby’s boxes/piles of stuff and clean up the guest bedroom.
  • Acquire a coffee table.
  • Hang decorations that I have and create new ones.

Relationship Goals

  • Attend a marriage retreat to work on improving our relationship.
  • Do more things with Hubby (shooting range, out to eat, movies, etc.)
  • Make more friends and do things I enjoy (bowling, dancing, game nights, arts & crafts, etc.).

Yep, once again, I have a massive list.  There’s a lot of things I want to change and I know that I will likely fail at most of these in 2015, but I have to try!  Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year!

happynewyear

Happy 2014!  It’s that time of year where you have to get used to writing 2014 on everything you date!

I can’t believe it’s been a year since I came up with these resolutions.  I feel like it was just a few months ago. No excuses for the lack of crossing off more items!  Here’s how I did with my goals for 2013.

Improving time management.  While I still procrastinate a bit, being busy with work and volunteering has helped me be more productive.  I have somewhat of a morning routine to clean instead of hopping on the computer right away, which helps set the pace for the day.  I’m not exercising daily but there have been some improvements and attempts.  Sleeping schedule with a bed time routine is a joke and I need to fix this, badly!  I’ve attempted meal planning and cooking more but I really need to stick with it every week.

Finding passion in art.  I’ve successfully been able to separate the anxiety I once felt when creating art. I’m still not creating art every day, but I’m working on it.

Some other things I want to do in 2013:

  • Go to the shooting range with husband – Won’t happen in 2013 but it’s on my list of things to do with the hubby while he’s on leave.
  • Visit my family
  • Pay off credit card debtI paid off one card, still have one to go!
  • Run a mile easily – Hahaha.  Yeah.No.
  • Use my Waterpik habitually – Didn’t even try.  Finally cleaned off my bathroom counter, took it out of the box and WILL start using it!
  • Develop a skin care regimen – Didn’t try this either.  Now that everything is organized, I just need to make this a daily habit/routine.
  • Read more – I read a couple books but slowed down the past few months.  Recently joined a book club so hopefully that will help with the more aspect.
  • Update portfolio/demo reel and design new website – Nope.
  • Kip training (click the link to see what a kip is) – Not at all.
  • Sit up straight, improve posture – Not really.
  • Meet people/make friends and do fun things!  Have met a few new people and hope to meet more in 2014 to do fun things with!
  • Spend less time on the computer!  Work and volunteering has kept me away, but I want to spend less time on Facebook, specifically.
  • Improve time management – develop daily routines (exercise, cleaning, working/side hustling, bedtime routine)  Getting better!
DAILY GOALS – 15 THINGS I SHOULD BE DOING DAILY

Some of these things overlap my goals for the year.  Sadly, I have failed at most of these things.  Playing brain games and laughing have been successes and a few others are getting a lot better but still not daily.  I need to print/write out this list and post it around the apartment so I can see it every day and truly work harder at doing these all.

  1. Brush cats, this will help keep cat hair at bay.
  2. Play with all the cats, encourages them to get into trouble less.
  3. Scoop all litter boxes.
  4. Vacuum at least one room.
  5. Dust/wipe down counters and surfaces.
  6. Dishes, either wash them by hand or put dirty ones in the dishwasher before bed.
  7. Use my Waterpik.
  8. Go for a walk.
  9. Eat fruit!
  10. Read.
  11. Play brain games (sudoku, word search, etc).
  12. Laugh.
  13. Take ALL medication, including vitamins/supplements.
  14. Stretch and do balance exercises.
  15. Wear sunblock.

Some goals I have for getting debt free ASAP:

These are goals I made a year ago and after reexamining them, I don’t think they’re very realistic as I’m months behind.

  • Within 2 months:  Brainstorm/begin new and creative ways to make extra money. – Did that, just took a while to actually make extra money and it’s still not a significant amount.
  • Within 3 months:  Have a job, even if it’s part-time minimum wage. – Took 10 months.
  • Within 4-6 months:  Learn to love to create art again.  Update my portfolio.  Build a website and start freelancing! – Still no love but I’ve cleared the anxiety.  No real progress on portfolio/freelancing.
  • 6 months to a year:  Credit cards paid off! – Just one down, one to go (two if you include my husband’s new credit card).
  • 1 year:  Smallest private loan with co-signer paid off!  Not.Even.Close.  I’ve gotten this loan just below my original principal balance.
  • 3-5 years:  Have all private loans paid off!  With interest, this probably isn’t reasonable but I’m not nixing it yet, especially now that I have a job (or two).
  • 10-15 years:  Federal loans paid off.  Unlikely, but still hopeful.

I’m getting pretty detailed about my steps towards achieving goals for 2014 and since this post is already pretty long, that’ll be for another day!

Happy New Year, readers!  How did you do with your goals for 2013?  What new ones do you have for 2014?

Happy Fiscal New Year!

PFFT!  With the government shutdown, this isn’t something I’m thrilled about.

 

Yeah, that’s not a party hat…

I’ve been seeing a number of posts about resolutions and new years.  Erin, from Red Debted Stepchild, posted on My Diary Entry about Autumn being like January 1st.  Girl Meets Debt posted about there being 99 Days Left in 2013 to achieve your goals.  That was seven days ago so there’s now 92 days of 2013 left!

I haven’t been doing a very good job completing my monthly goals.  I don’t think I completed any of my September Goals.  Maybe one of them, for part of the month.  Oops!  It didn’t help that I was gone visiting a friend for about 10 days this month and most evenings they ended up ordering take out.

Let’s see how I’ve been doing with my resolutions

Resolutions Revisited

Basically, I suck at sticking to my goals.  But there’s still 92 days left in the year!  I have hope!

Improving time management (lose procrastination) is one key resolution.  I need to develop some sort of routine, where I spend less time on the computer and more time working to pay off my debts, volunteering, creating art, exercising regularly, develop a cleaning schedule (once we move) and even have a sleeping schedule with a bedtime routine.  With a routine in place, I will be more productive, get regular exercise, meal plan, cook more and overall eat and be healthier.  Hopefully by volunteering, working, and taking zumba classes, I will meet some people in this area and make friends so I can get out and do some fun things in 2013.

I have volunteered, tried out zumba (volunteer interferes with zumba), meal planned a couple times, ate slightly healthier, cooked just a wee bit more, and have developed somewhat of a sleep schedule.  I still procrastinate quite a bit.  I don’t have a routine, I spend all day on the computer, I don’t exercise regularly or create art, no cleaning schedule (been moved for 6 months), and I still don’t have friends in the area, though I did recently join local area Facebook groups to hopefully remedy that situation before the real new year!

Finding passion in art is another key resolution.  I need to somehow separate the anxiety/indebtedness that I have come to associate it with.  I need to learn to lose the anxiety altogether.  I mentioned anxiety about dealing with my resolutions.  Change is difficult and difficult things cause me anxiety.  It shall be overcome!

Not there yet.  The desire to create things has returned, I just haven’t pushed myself to actually create anything.  It’d be nice to one day try selling the things I create to earn extra income…that gives me a bit of motivation but I’m still a procrastinator.  It’s nearing Christmastime and I want to make gifts for my nieces! I’ll find that passion again, I promise!

Some other things I want to do in 2013:

  • Go to the shooting range with husband
  • Visit my family
  • Pay off credit card debt
  • Run a mile easily
  • Use my Waterpik habitually
  • Develop a skin care regimen
  • Read more
  • Update portfolio/demo reel and design new website
  • Kip training (click the link to see what a kip is)
  • Sit up straight, improve posture

I’m getting there!  I think all of these, aside from updating my portfolio/demo reel and designing a new website, are doable within the years’ end!

Readers, have you been noticing any posts in all bold text?  Despite re-editing posts to ensure no posts are all bold, they keep showing up that way from my home page.  If I click on individual posts, the boldness goes away.  Anyone else notice this?  Thanks for your input!

How are you doing with your goals and resolutions?

New Year Resolutions

Happy New Year!  May 2013 bring you good things!  What are some of your resolutions?

I got into a lazy funk during 2012 and just thinking about my giant list of resolutions for 2013 is causing me a lot of anxiety about how to approach them.  I seriously have four pages in a spiral notebook filled with goals for the new year.  A lot of them overlap in categories and the task of organizing and explaining how I’m even going to start is filling me with anxiety.  Resolutions are all about forming new and better habits so I need to make like Nike and just do it!

Improving time management (lose procrastination) is one key resolution.  I need to develop some sort of routine, where I spend less time on the computer and more time working to pay off my debts, volunteering, creating art, exercising regularly, develop a cleaning schedule (once we move) and even have a sleeping schedule with a bedtime routine.  With a routine in place, I will be more productive, get regular exercise, meal plan, cook more and overall eat and be healthier.  Hopefully by volunteering, working, and taking zumba classes, I will meet some people in this area and make friends so I can get out and do some fun things in 2013.

Finding passion in art is another key resolution.  I need to somehow separate the anxiety/indebtedness that I have come to associate it with.  I need to learn to lose the anxiety altogether.  I mentioned anxiety about dealing with my resolutions.  Change is difficult and difficult things cause me anxiety.  It shall be overcome!

Some other things I want to do in 2013:

  • Go to the shooting range with husband
  • Visit my family
  • Pay off credit card debt
  • Run a mile easily
  • Use my Waterpik habitually
  • Develop a skin care regimen
  • Read more
  • Update portfolio/demo reel and design new website
  • Kip training (click the link to see what a kip is)
  • Sit up straight, improve posture

Those are the main things on my list.  I have a lot of little to-do list items that I’m not going to bother posting.

A friend of mine started a new blog,  The Progressive Planner, which is about achieving her goals for the new year.  She used the Wheel of Life to find areas that need improvement or balance.  If I made my own wheel of life if it would be somewhat balanced, however it would be a tiny wheel.  I’m not happy with a lot of those categories.  Spirituality would probably be the highest because I’m content with my current beliefs.  Lots of improvement needed in the other areas (home environment, career, finances, health, personal, relationships, and knowledge).

One thing I didn’t take into consideration about my debt payoff is that my student loans gain about $350 in interest each month.  Since I’ve been paying more than the minimum, my loans will only accrue $290 in interest this month.  I just paid $300 for the first half of the month, so a whopping $10 more went towards that overall payoff.  Feel like I’m getting nowhere, fast!