The blog has been pretty quiet for the past month while our family trudged through the month of May. It’s arguably our busiest time of the year. There were fun days of chaperoning field trips and crazy days putting together last minute projects.
Mostly I’m just glad we got through it!
I am happy to say that we were able to work on some of our goals this month. That meant other goals had to slide. But I’m learning to be ok with that.
I tend to try to cram more things into a day than 24 hours can hold, so setting more realistic expectations is a good thing.
But I’m so happy we set these goals. Because without this monthly check in, we probably wouldn’t get things done.
Putting things off until “some day” is a strength of mine. 😉
Money and Life Goals for 2018
Though the month was busy, I was finally able to start making progress on our home! This has been a fun and exciting project.
We live in a 1950s home, and we haven’t changed much since we moved in 10 years ago. (Yikes!) I’m a weirdo who has no desire to knock down the walls and create an open floor plan. But some new paint can make a huge difference.
- Our son’s room
- The staircase
- Dining room
- Computer area
- Our bedroom
More and more I’m wondering if we’ll get to this goal this year. Our kitchen needs new cabinets (they’re literally falling apart, so a paint job won’t cut it), a new counter top (also falling apart), and a floor.
It might be outside our budget for 2018, especially since we have so many other catch up projects to deal with. But we’ll see!
Living Room Makeover
This has begun in earnest! I’m just a couple of touches away from finishing this room, and I can’t wait for the big reveal!
This won’t be a fantastic DIY blogger type of makeover. But if you want tips to change a room on a budget, I’m your gal. 😉
Our 1950s home doesn’t have much closet space at all, so we plan to add a utility closet to the corner of our dining room. I’m anxious for this to happen! Some vertical storage will be wonderful!
We have a mini farm here, so we always have goals for improving our barn and critters set up.
We had 4 adorable babies born in February! We’d like to sell 2 and keep 2 to grow our herd.
In April we managed to sell the boy to an eager 4-Her. I probably could have sold another in May, but I wasn’t able to make time to meet buyers. Trying again in June!
We have 6 fruit trees now, but they’ve never done much. Our peach tree continues to disappoint. Every year it starts with some fruit, but in the end gives us nearly nothing. This year we have one peach growing.
The pear tree, on the other hand, is finally good to go! There are many pears growing (last year we had ONE, and that was the first fruit it had ever given). Hopefully the bugs won’t get to them first!
Obviously I need fruit tree advice…
We’d like to line our barn driveway with more trees, but we’ll see if we get that far this year. I understand that you should plant fruit trees in months that have an “R” in their name, so this will be a fall goal if we get that far.
The chicks are growing every day, and we get a kick out of watching them in the coop. The goal for June is to get our Great Pyrenees to understand that he has to guard the chickens (not chase them) so they can free range.
Spending time together as a family is a top priority for us this year! Our family is crazy about baseball, so it’s tough for us to do anything besides run from one game to the next from April to early July. But our love of the sport is another way we draw close!
Monthly Family Outing
We were able to use a gift card we got for Christmas to take the kids to a trampoline park in February.
In March, we took a fun family trip to celebrate the end of our #yearofno! It was the getaway we all needed.
April found us on baseball fields and working outside together. It’s not an outing, but it was good.
The circus came to town in May, so we enjoyed that.
We had a simple but nice date night in February. We didn’t manage to get in a date for March, but the family trip getaway was so good for us!
Hard to believe it, but we managed to get in a movie date in April! (We saw Super Troopers 2 in case you’re curious. If you liked the first one, you’ll like the second one!)
No dates in May. Everything was too crazy!
We finally made some moves to get our Washington DC trip planned! A house was booked and we reserved our White House tickets. This month we need to prioritize what we want to see while we’re there.
What’s a must see for D.C.?
I’d like to read 52 books this year. According to Goodreads, I’m now 10 books behind schedule. But I’ve still read more this year than the past several years combined.
I only read bits and pieces in May and never did finish any books. But I’m ok with letting this one slide for a month. I think I’ll get some extra reading done now that lazy summer has finally arrived!
If you love the idea of accountability and chatting with people who also love the frugal life, be sure to join the Living That #YearofNo Life Facebook group!
Finish Credit Card Debt
DONE!!!!!!! There has never been a more satisfying strike through than that one.
Our BHAG (big, hairy, audacious goal) for 2018 is to get better access to water from our home.
You can read about our water situation here. The only May progress we had was asking someone to draw up better plans for a water main back our dead end road. Baby steps!
Double Retirement Contributions
Paperwork filed in April! This is one of those goals I probably would have forgotten to do if it weren’t for this check in process!
Not much progress in May. Here’s what I’m calling a waterfall fund:
- We’ll be keeping our mini emergency fund, but it will become our savings account. We’ll pump it up to $1,500 and use it for unexpected expenses. (Things like car repairs or suddenly dead appliances.)
- Next, we plan to rebuild our sinking fund. This will be for irregular bills that we do expect, like insurance, car tags, and home maintenance.
- Once these are filled, we will begin a true emergency fund. We’ll sock away money into a separate savings or money market account until we’ve stored up 3-6 months worth of expenses.
Reach for those goals!
When we set our goals in January, I often wonder how we’ll ever accomplish something so big. But if I make sure to take a few smaller steps every month, it’s always incredible to see how it turns out.
Do you need some inspiration? With over 500 small ideas for saving money, this book adds up to huge savings. Get your copy of 500 Ways to Save Money: Build a Cash Jackpot for the Best Things In Life.
What’s your biggest goal for 2018?