Monday, January 2, 2017

January Goals

These are the goals that I plan on working on in January. A lot of them will be recurring throughout the year, but I do want to list them so I don't forget about them.  I will hold myself accountable by posting the progress and/or results at the end of each month.

The goals are not listed in any particular order of importance. I need to work on all of them.  I know it's a lot. It's a lot less than I was planning on listing!

Personal Goals
  1. Read 2 fiction books: 
    1. "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" by JK Rowling (library book)
    2. "Mercer Girls" by  Libbie Hawker (ebook on loan from Amazon Prime Reading)
  2. Go on 2 walks with Greg
  3. Exercise every weekday for at least 30 minutes
  4. Practice strength exercises one day a week
  5. Do foot stretches 3 x a day
  6. Log all my food in MyFitnessPal
  7. Fill up XL RaceTrac cup in the morning with water and drink one of those every day. Start drinking before I drink coffee.
  8. Lose 5 lbs in January (check with Bonnie how she is doing)
  9. Most of our dinners at home should be at the dinner table
  10. If/when we go out to eat, drink only water and order salads and other low-calorie meals.
  11. Write to my aunt (letter or postcard)
  12. Send an email to my French BFF
  13. Post at least 2 pictures on Instagram to share with my siblings
  14. Call my mom
  15. Mail her the 8 x 10 picture of Oldest Son
  16. Start French blog and post pictures that I think my mom would enjoy (outings, cats, kids)
  17. Schedule a lunch with Middle Son this month
  18. Schedule an outing/activity with Youngest Son this month
  19. Schedule an outing/activity with Daughter this month
  20. Schedule lunch or coffee with each of my two IRL friends
  21. Reopen blog comments and start engaging with other bloggers again
  22. Go on field trips on my own: P.E.A.R. park, Leu Botanical Gardens, local museums and attractions, county and state parks...
  23. Limit my mindless TV watching
  24. Limit my mindless internet surfing or at least do it while I'm exercising. No screens after 10:30 p.m. (Oh this is going to be hard!)
  25. Make Dr appointment for son's annual check-up
  26. Make dermatologist appointment for my son? Check his back.
  27. Practice using my lightbox to take photos of objects: at least once this month
  28. Start watching Photography lectures online 
  29. Join the Friends of the Library

Financial Goals
  1. Continue to track all expenses in my spreadsheets
  2. Report all expenses on the blog, daily (for accountability and a kick in the pants to perhaps spend less!)
  3. Keep to a $50 a week grocery budget (avoid stocking up on items until I have actually ran out of them). Avoid impulse buys and buy fewer snacks.
  4. Continue reporting on Food Waste every Friday. No excuses.
  5. Read through last month's issue of Kiplinger's
  6. Reset my worksheets for 2017
  7. Have Greg transfer "money sitting around" into IRAs for 2016 and 2017
  8. Continue to try to purchase as many items from the thrift store as possible
  9. Calculate our bare bone budget and see if we do have 12 months' worth.
  10. Then separate it from our other savings, maybe put it in a CD that is FDIC insured.
  11. Calculate our Net Worth
  12. Create spreadsheet to calculate our Personal Savings Rate in 2017
  13. Set up an automatic transfer of Greg's raise equivalent to Savings each time he gets paid
  14. Make a budget for trip to France and stick to it
  15. Remove Greg's line from our AT&T plan
  16. Car insurance: see if should drop collision on SUV and truck and the consequences of this (i.e. can we keep road assistance coverage?)Put money aside corresponding to our son's chore earnings since the last time I calculated his total (in his savings account)
  17. Open the latest statements (put reminder on calendar to do this every quarter)
  18. Update the big picture matrix and share it with Greg
  19. Make note of when stock options are vesting in 2017 and put detailed alerts in the calendar
  20. Start gathering the 2016 tax paperwork in one folder (print them as they come in)
  21. Check my passport's expiration date and set a reminder to renew it if necessary (calendar and budget)
  22. Create one more year of budget in my Excel checkbook
  23. Take Driscoll's surveys for 8 days to reach Gold Level this month
  24. Keep on top of RaceTrac surveys
  25. Check into NonOwner Insurance Policy for Daughter once she's in college and taking her off our car policy
  26. Identify one charity I want to contribute to in 2017

  1. Inventory what I have/still need to make new self watering bins
  2. Harvest all the lettuce, tomatoes and peppers that are growing and use or preserve them
  3. Water the garden at least every Tuesday morning
  4. Scrub patio pavers with bleach on an overcast (but not rainy!) day - wear OLD clothes and gloves
  5. Turn the compost bin at least once
  6. Inventory my seeds and seed what I need for Spring/Summer if anything
  7. Prune back the roses
  8. Buy 2 hose reels with Home Depot gift card

  1. Inventory freezer and pantry - save inventories in Google Drive
  2. Write new menu every Sunday - set reminder. Use up at least 1 item from the side-by-side freezer
  3. Unload the dishwasher every morning and reload it during the day
  4. Do the dishes every night
  5. Alternating mopping/fakemopping the kitchen every week
  6. Vacuum or sweep the rest of the house once a week
  7. Declutter the exercise room (including cabinets under windows and all shelves)
  8. Wash Cat Room windows
  9. Identify faulty electrical outlets need to be replaced
  10. Take batteries out of fans and store them until next hurricane season
  11. Vacuum fridge coils
  12. Move my music library to the new laptop and try to syncing my phone via iTunes
  13. Make sure all programs I need have been moved to my new laptop
  14. Wipe old laptop of all confidential information
  15. Mend at least one item from the mending basket
  16. Mix a bottle of glass cleaner to keep in the kitchen
  17. Set reminder to clean upstairs litter box every morning
  18. Put futon cover back on the futon
  19. Clear out a USB stick and give it to Teen Librarian for photos of Youngest Son


  1. hmmm...I've been waffling on my weekly goals since I posted just seems so long. I'm going to continue to tweak my format and I like that you are doing a monthly check in. Good luck with meeting your goals!

    1. It's always hard to find the right amount of goals... there are so many things that need to be done at the beginning of the year! It's your goals so you can change whatever you want, whenever you want to. I guess, and I'm talking for myself too, the point is to not get to the point that you give up on the whole thing because you get discouraged that you might not have met all your goals for the week or month. I'm going to do as much as I can. Life intrudes and then sometimes I get sidetracked with other things. Like just now I was looking at my used up candles that still have one inch of wax at the bottom of the jar and I was thinking "I should have put this on my list as goal for the month: remelt my candles and make new ones". But there are so many other things that I haven't put on my list (like really cleaning my house!) that are probably more important. So I'm not going to beat myself up. I really do need to get going with the taxes and all this other yucky stuff before I deal with the candles.

      Good luck to you too!

  2. That is a long list of goals! Sounds like you will have a busy month! Even if you accomplish only one babystep for each goal, that'll be a lot done! Wish you well in accomplishing all your goals. I'm off to write my own goals!

    1. Sigh. It IS long, isn't it? I keep telling myself that if I stopped being on the computer so much, there would be PLENTY of time to accomplish all of this and more. But darn it, blogs are interesting! Good luck with your goals, I look forward to reading them :)

  3. Start French blog... <-- This is something that interests me...I've been in this country since 1980, and while I still understand everything in German, sometimes I have trouble saying or writing everything correctly. I really had to work hard on my Christmas letter sent to everyone in Germany (and I suspect there were some mistakes in it!). So for me, doing a blog in German would be too much trouble. My siblings read enough English to get the gist of my blog. It seems to me you are much better communicating in French than I am in German. What's your secret?

    Alright - what's "fakemopping" ... time to fess up!

    1. You understand everything in German?! I sure don't in French anymore. They use way too many new colloquial expressions (and then even some old ones, I sometimes forget what they mean). When I watch a French show, I very often end up turning on the subtitles (in French, but still). But then again, I expect that you either talk to or correspond with your German relatives way more often than I do with my French relatives. Do you ever speak German here? I very rarely speak French here.

      I wish I were German or you were French so we could compare just how atrocious our vocabulary, grammar, spelling and style has become in our native languages! My French is pretty bad, and it's killing me because French used to be my strongest subject. I was a very strong writer and the best speller. Now... oy.

      But my mom doesn't speak English. Telling her to come visit my American blog would just frustrate her because she wouldn't understand what's going on, especially with all the acronyms, even if she translated the page using that function in Google. I used to keep a French blog for my family years ago when I homeschooled my youngest, it was an easy way to share photos. Mom and I aren't on Facebook. I'm on Instagram but it's mostly to share funny photos of the cats and other things with my daughter. My siblings and I follow each other and we'll "like" each other's pictures but we actually rarely ever post anything. They'd never visit the blog because they have absolutely no interest in being frugal, the way I do. I like Instagram in that it's just a photo and a short caption, though. I think my mom would really like to see the pictures I take of the garden, the walks we go on, etc. so I was thinking "blog" would be the best format for that. I don't see her getting a gmail address just so that she can comment, though.

      What I call "fakemopping" is when I just take a washing cloth (usually a square of an old bath towel that I've cut up), wet it, and scrub the most obvious spots with it (usually with my foot!) so I don't actually mop the whole room.

  4. Well, now that you said something about it and I thought some more about it, there are some things that I have to ask my sisters/brothers to really understand (when it comes to current, "in," colloquial lingo). So I'm definitely with you on that. But it's like that in English, too - I had to look up what "yolo" means, for example.

    I know a few people here in Lakeland that are German, and we get together occasionally. Since we all speak both German and English, our conversations often end up being "Denglish." should be German (or me, French) then we could compare. LOL.

    My Mom doesn't speak English, either. But she doesn't know the first thing about computers, so it wouldn't make sense to write a blog in German. I really admire you for putting the effort into that!

    1. Don't admire me just yet, I haven't done anything about it. But I think I shall.

      I knew YOLO because I have teens and I used to read a lot of the entertainment news. Now not at all so when the kids talk about a new meme (which I insist is pronounced ME-ME, not "meem" just to annoy them, and it does!), I'm always completely lost and feel really out of touch, hahaha. Just like our parents did back when we were teens, I suppose.


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