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March is moving right in, and spring is…springing.  That means that it’s time for a check up of our yearly S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timed) goals.  You can find the list of our yearly goals here if you missed it.

On Mondays, I like to list out the baby steps I will work on that week to move us towards these bigger yearly goals.  I like having that visual to keep me on track, and I love the accountability my readers provide!

As always, feel free to leave a link or comment about how you are doing with your own goals.  We are here to encourage one another, and I’m definitely cheering you on!


March Check In Time

I’ve already complained enough about having a tough February, so I will just say that we were very busy and not home for much of the month.  Between the time crunch and the extra bills, let’s just say things didn’t exactly go as planned!

March check in for our BHAG and SMART goals for 2016

Home and Barn

  • Get a water plan in place.  Need to make a phone call to start this process.
  • Barn driveway.  We need to make some calls to get this ball rolling in the spring.
  • Improve goat pens and fencing.  Another spring and summer project.  I’ve cleaned up the barn and we are considering how to configure the pens.
  • Finish the bathroom project.  The ceiling is in and we bought a vanity/sink.  Still have some work to do here, though.
  • Paint baseboards and staircase.  Didn’t have time for this, but it’s on the list for March!


  • Swimming.  This will be a summer goal.
  • Vacation.  Need to discuss a destination and date.
  • One on One Time with Each Child Once+ per Month.  Check!


  • Date.  Done in February!  Woohoo.


  • Faith.  I’ve been keeping up with daily Bible readings!
  • Read.  Finished a book and a half in February.
  • Exercise.  Nope.

Blogging Goals

  • Improve social media.  Would like to have 5,000 Twitter followers, 600 Facebook likes, and want to have 3,500 pins to my Pinterest page by year end.
    • Now have 2,500 Twitter followers, 288 Facebook likes, 1513 pins.
  • Learn.  Take 12 classes on ways to improve my blogging.
    • Have taken 2 so far.
  • Views.  Right now I have about 6,000 pageviews per month.  I’d like to increase that to 18,000 pageviews per month by the end of the year.  I’ll do this by adding the best content I can write, encouraging my readers to share when they like what they’ve read, and getting out into the blogging community as much as possible.
    • 9974 for the past month
  • Guest post.  I’d like to start writing at least 1 guest post per month.
  • Monetize.  I need this blog to earn some money to help with our BHAG, so I will be exploring ways to monetize when I can.  The main goal of this blog is to help people as much as possible, so I will only explore ways to earn money that are truly beneficial to my readers.  (Otherwise, I’m sure I won’t have those readers for long!)


[Tweet “March update on our yearly goals and BHAG.”]

You might remember that our family has a BHAG this year.  A big, hairy, audacious goal.  That goal, for us, is to pay off some debt that amounts to 19% of our bring home pay.  Our plan for this goal is…

  • #yearofno  This has become our mantra, and the whole family is behind it now.  They know that if they are asking for an extra (Can we have fast food? Can I have this toy?  etc) that the answer is going to be #yearofno.  It’s kind of turned into a running joke, and it needs no explanation.
  • Be prepared.  Not eating fast food is a running theme on this blog, because it’s always been a problem for us!  Pizza, stopping for drinks, these things are our family’s worst habits.
    • In January we were able to go totally without fast food.
    • In February, we bought fast food and had pizza.  Both of those things happened due to an extended visit to the ER with a sick child.  Therefore, I’ve amended this to say “No fast food or pizza runs unless you’ve been in the ER in the past 24 hours.”
  • Bigger pie.  I wasn’t able to get much done on this in February, unfortunately.
  • Get creative.  We found free ways to spend time together as a family.

So how did we do on our BHAG?

To bring down 100% of our goal this year, we need to be paying 8.3% on this debt every month.  Here’s how it’s going.

In January we were able to bring down our debt by 8.2%.  (Read about that here.)

In February we took it down another 4.7%.

It is progress, but not what I was hoping for!  The good news is that I have learned a lot from this (read When Paying Off Debt is Discouraging).

The plan for March

  • Continue the good work we’ve been doing with the #yearofno by avoiding “want” spending.
  • Continue lowering our grocery bill by careful and creative shopping.
  • Bring in extra income using odd jobs and possibly setting up a yard sale

If you’d like to help us meet our goal, remember that any click through referral or affiliate links on this blog gives us a small payment without changing your out of pocket costs.  (However, I would never ask you to buy anything that would put a speed bump in your own frugal journey!)

Sign up for my weekly newsletter for additional encouragement on your goals.  (Plus bonus money saving tips!)  And leave a comment here to let us know how your debt free goals are going.