Tuesday, January 06, 2009

2009 Goals


1. Finish lower apartment so that we can rent it: should be done by end of January.
a. Rent said apartment. (Hopefully this is already accomplished but just in case.)
b. Use rental money to help pay mortgage, make extra mortgage payment, and build savings.

2. Figure out some kind of system for organizing finances, other than keeping it all in my brain. This may be a year-long project.

3. File taxes ASAP, using real professional person, not computer software. Hope to be done by mid-February. (Pray for a refund.)

4. Pay off credit cards... AGAIN. (Stupid credit cards. Stupid holidays.) Do not accumulate more debt.

5. Figure out a way of working together with Don, so that we can live off of one income should we want to come baby-time. Right now we each have our own checking accounts and spend our own paychecks, with little if any financial accountability to each other... Somehow we need to come together and create a plan, a system, or a budget that will let us use just the one paycheck for his-n-hers.

6. Which leads to, finding a way to do without my income, pitiful though it may be. Cutting "expenses" like: meals out, coffee-house lattes, new books, and all the other little extras that eat up our pay.

7. Which leads to, making those changes ahead of time, to increase savings before the baby actually comes. (Starting right away, since we're due in May or June.)


1. Get house clean enough for company by end of January, as opposed to the smelly pit that it is currently, so that we can have friends in without shame.

2. Figure out exactly how we're going to arrange spare room to make a combination nursery/guest room/ computer room in a 9x12 space. (This may require a magic wand.) Must be done by end of April.

3. Move futon into said room, buy new sofa for living room. (Ignore contradiction to financial goals above.)

4. Dig and plant garden in the spring.

5. New chickens.


1. Switch hutch with kitchen table.
a. Take laundry room door off hinges, replace with curtain.
b. Baby gate to keep dog out of laundry room.

2. Figure out a way to light fridge.

3. Cook dinners at home.
a. Plan menus a week at a time.
b. Go grocery shopping once a week or so, instead of all the time.
c. Do dinner dishes AFTER DINNER, so that kitchen isn't overwhelmingly messy the next day, leading to another dinner out. This is actually a financial goal.

4. Get freezer and pantry good and stocked up for late pregnancy/ early baby weeks; lots of meals ready-to-eat.

5. Look into getting a big, upright freezer.


1. Keep walking every day.

2. Maybe sign up for a prenatal yoga class or similar?

3. Drink special tea daily.

4. Try to freak out/ panic less often.

5. Let everything else, like work, just roll off my back and not stress me out.


1. Don't let work stuff (i.e. management, coworkers, and customers) get under my skin. Leave it all at work, so to speak.

2. Get everything in really good condition so that when I leave for maternity, nobody is cursing the mess I left behind.

(That's it. I don't have a lot of work goals right now. Pretty much just, "stay afloat".)

This is a really ambitious list, so I'm not expecting to nail everything on it; I just think it's better to aim high. If I can accomplish half of every category, that would be great.


Bella said...

Guess what? Over half of the things on your list will actually happen quite naturally...and on their own. The other tidbits (like the one income paycheck, the spare room that is about to become the nursery and so forth) are amazingly simple to adjust to. The trick is, to be stubborn about making a plan, printing it off so that you have a few reminders, and then sticking to it like super glue. We found that making Jordan the "task-master" at home not only helped him in his new role as stay-at-home Daddy, but let me focus on keeping the paychecks rolling in. Of course, that means that I had to turn over some of my more ridiculous control freak moments...

For once, I can actually say this with absolute confidence - "take it from me, we did it to!"

Oh ya... we've gotten REALLY good at making lattes at home. Stupid things shouldn't cost 5 bucks a pop; seriously!

Steph said...

Hey, you might want to check out Dave Ramsey's books on personal finance. Great EASY systems that will help you accomplish all of the goals you listed. Google him or check out Amazon if you're interested.

And as Bella said, the dinner/food/dishes stuff will probably come together after you have the baby and get into a routine. Although I think it took us two kids. At that point it wasn't practical anymore to declare "cereal for dinner" at 9 pm.

Mara said...

I've read Dave Ramsey, and actually do follow some of his ideas, like the emergency savings. But I think most of his writing is aimed at people with bigger problems (or more debt, at least) than us. Our financial essentials are pretty sound; we don't need to switch to an all-cash system or slice up all of our credit cards. We spend a little more than we should, save a little less than we should, but we aren't in a black hole, financially.

I've also read David Bach's books and Suze Orman-- I think Suze is the most to my taste.