Goals, Goals, Goals (In Depth 8,9, &10)

To see the full list of my 19 in 2019 goals click here.

8) Open an Investment Account

Along with Goal 1 this is some financial housekeeping to push me closer to my early retirement goals.

Action Steps to reach my Goal:

  1. Do research to choose where to invest.
  2. Do research to choose what to invest in.
  3. Decide what amount of money and how frequently to invest.
  4. Open the account and set up automatic deposits.

9) Work toward a 5am Wakeup

This is the first step in many to improve my fitness.   I know from past experience that the only way I’ll fit exercise into my day is to do it in the morning.  The problem is, I HATE mornings.  I really struggle to get up early.  My goal is to slowly push my wakeup time earlier and earlier until I’m waking no later than 5:15.  At first I will use this time to make myself better breakfasts and just not have to rush so much in the mornings.  But once it’s early enough, I will implement some sort of exercise.

10) Be active at least 3 times per week.

Are we seeing a theme with number 9?

Action steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Leave a pair of sneakers at the office so that I can walk during lunch or breaks when my workload allows.
  2. Plan family activities that are more active. (Hikes, walks, swimming, yoga with my daughter, etc)
  3. Schedule long dog walks into my week.
  4. Try to start off Saturdays with lifting weights, yoga, etc.
  5. Schedule these activities on my planner and make them a priority!


Anyone else trying to kick the couch potato habit?


Goals Goals Goals (In Depth 5, 6 &7)

Moving on to goals 5,6, &7 of my 19 goals of 2019.  (Find the full list here)

5) Increase my Veggie Intake

I think this is pretty self-explanatory.  I don’t eat enough fruits and veggies and need to change that.  I plan on making a conscious effort to include a serving or two at every meal and have ready to eat fruits or veggies on hand for snacks as well.

6) Send Birthday Cards to siblings, parents, nieces, and nephews.

I’m ashamed to say that I’m TERRIBLE at this.  I really want to be a thoughtful family member, but to be honest, it just doesn’t come naturally to me.   I don’t remember birthdays and even when I remember one is coming up, it’s always when I’m at work or driving and can’t actually act on it.   I need to put processes in place to let my loved ones know I’m thinking about them.

Actions Steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Buy or Make cards for the whole year before the end of January (we have a nephew’s bday at the end of the month.)
  2. Make sure all addresses are in my phone contacts, if not, add them.
  3. Pre-address the envelopes.
  4. Pre-Buy small gift cards for the nieces and nephews.
  5. Make sure we have plenty of postage stamps on hand.
  6. Add reminders to my planner and google calendar for one week before each birthday.

7)Paint Trim

We got new flooring LAST January.  That involved pulling up and replacing the quarter round in most of the house.   It’s not been touched since the installation.  I’ve spent a full year dreading this task but also hating that it’s not finished. It’s embarrassing that I’ve let it go this long.

Action Steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Scrape any old caulk from the baseboards.
  2. Spackle/Caulk all nail holes, gaps, seams, etc
  3. Sand and clean up from step 2.
  4. Find a piece of trim I can easily remove to take to the store to color match paint.
  5. Buy paint, tarps, and LOTS of painters tape.
  6. Paint, clean up and breathe a sigh of relief.


Any big projects that you’ve been putting off for way too long?


Goals Goals Goals (In Depth 3&4)

Continuing on with explaining further my 19 goals of 2019.

3) Create a Money Binder.

As I mentioned in my last post, I handle pretty much all of the financials for our household.  My husband isn’t interested and as a result, doesn’t’ really know much about our financials.

I have been meaning to create a binder that has all of the basic information he will need to know if something were to happen to me.

Action Steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Purchase supplies.
    1. Binder
    2. Dividers with Tabs
  2. Gather contact info, account numbers, etc.
  3. Create Binder
  4. Review Binder and it’s location with Hubby.


4) Go To NYC

I definitely wanted some of the goals to just be FUN.  This is definitely one of those.  I went to New York City for a visit when I was in college.  My husband went for business last year.  My daughter has been dying to go most of her life.   We’re going this spring break!

Actions Steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Book lodging (done)
  2. Book travel (done)
  3. Loosely plan activities and buy tickets for activities.  (we have done a little of this, but need to sit down as a family and really prioritize what we want to do so that everyone’s number one “thing” definitely happens.   I’ve bought tickets for two of us to see Dear Evan Hansen, but we’ll definitely want to see more shows.
  4. Start taking frequent and longer walks to prepare ourselves for the amount of walking we’ll do.
  5. Do a little research familiarizing ourselves with the basic geography of Brooklyn and Manhatten as well as the public transportation.


I’ll be back tomorrow going over the next few goals in depth and will maybe give a week one update on progress as well!





Goals Goals Goals (In Depth 1&2)

As promised, here’s a bit more in-depth information about some of the goals I have for this year.


Open an IRA for ME.

I’m moderately obsessed recently with retiring early.  I mean, I’m still at least 10 years out, but that would still have me retiring about a decade earlier than most.   In order to do that, I have some financial housekeeping that I need to take care of.  (Maybe I’ll get more detailed about this journey in the future.) One of those housekeeping items is to open an IRA.

Action steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Research low fee options for where to open the IRA. (I’ve already done this, and am going with Vanguard.)
  2. Open the account
  3. Research how I want to invest my money.
  4. Choose my investments based on my research.
  5. Decide how much and often I will deposit funds.
  6. Set up automatic deposits.

Transfer my husband’s IRA

My husband just isn’t into financial stuff as much as I am but is happy to have me handle most of the financials for our household.   He was a stay at home dad for about 10 years and has only been working outside of the home for the last three years.  He works part-time at a non-profit and also makes a bit of money off of his YouTube channel.

Obviously, neither of these income streams come with a 401(k), pension, or any other sort of retirement account.   We opened an IRA when he started working three years ago and he has automatic deposits set up.   However, when we set it up, we really had no idea what we were doing and just went through the bank we have our checking accounts at.   Now that I’m a bit better educated, I realize that was a crappy decision.  The fees he is paying are well higher than average and we need to remedy that.

Action Steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Basically 1-4 above.  I’ll only have to do that work once.
  2. Research how to transfer the funds from his current IRA to the new IRA.
  3. Make the transfer and update his automatic deposits.


I think I’ll have these steps completed within a week.  It will feel good to knock a couple of items off the list before we get too far into the new year.

Does anyone else have big financial goals for 2019?

19 in 2019 (goal setting)

Resolutions, goals, whatever you want to call them, I’ve got 19 of them.

I’ll be posting more in-depth about each goal over the next few weeks.

  1. Open an IRA for me.
  2. Switch hubby’s IRA to a lower fee account.
  3. Create a money binder.
  4. Go to NYC!
  5. Increase my veggie intake.
  6. Send birthday cards to parents, siblings, nieces, and nephews.
  7. Paint trim.
  8. Open a taxable investment account.
  9. Work toward a 5am weekday wake up
  10. Do something active at least 3 days a week.
  11. Schedule family time.
  12. Create a money binder with my mom.
  13. Reduce our monthly food spending by $100.
  14. Memory keeping system for Skylar’s high school years.
  15. Reduce soda consumption to 1 per week.
  16. Invite friends over quarterly.
  17. Learn a good everyday makeup look.
  18. Have someone that actually knows what they’re doing figure out a good foundation match for me.
  19. Take after dinner walks as often as possible.

There ya have it. Look for my in-depth explanations of the individual goals in the next few posts. I also plan on updating my progress regularly.

Challenge Update – 2 months in

I’ve been really quiet, but that doesn’t mean I’ve totally fallen off the wagon.  I’m proud to say that July was a pretty kick ass month for me.  I’ve rocked my Super Summer Challenge sheets!  (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, go to Back to Her Roots blog and check it out!

In July I lost almost 8 pounds as well as several inches.  I drastically reduced my soda intake.  Like majorly, I was drinking several coke’s a day and now I’m probably averaging one a week.  That is many calories saved people!  I’ve been so happy with this challenge and how great it’s been at motivating me, that I’ve decided I’ll start a new very similar challenge at the beginning of September to get me through the end of the year.

So what changes have I made and what things do I really think the challenge has helped me with? There are lots of areas I think I’ve improved on, but these three are what have made the biggest impact in my opinion.

  1. As i mentioned I cut way down on the soda consumption.  I get 10 points for any day I limit myself to only one soda.  I get 50 points for each day I don’t have any soda.  And I get 75 points for no soda for a week. (that’s only happened once.)  Also, I get points for drinking at least 8 cups of water a day, that helps keep the soda at bay too.
  2. Planks.  I need to work on my core strength in a major way.  The challenge has really helped me with that.  I’ve set a reminder on my phone to do a plank every other day.  I’ve been pretty consistent with that and have even planked on the off days at time.  At the beginning I could BARELY hold a 30 second plank.  Now I can routinely hold a one minute plank and have worked up to 80 seconds so far.  Once I get up to a 90 second plank the point value goes up to 75 points!
  3. Tracking my food.  I get points for each day that I track EVERYTHING I eat.  I get more points if I stay within my calorie goal range.

This challenge is for body AND mind, and I haven’t done as great at establishing as many good routines on the mind side, that is something I will want to concentrate a bit more on for the fall.

Anyone want to join me for a fall challenge?  I could post copies of my fall challenge point sheets at the end of this month.

14 by 40 (Update #3, 3.5 months to go!)

It’s been a long time since I last updated my 14 by 40 goal list.  I’ve got a little over 3 months left until my 40th bday which is when this list “expires”  Here’s the list and what I’ve accomplished (or NOT!) so far!

  1. Train well and finish the Rock n Roll Lex Half Marathon. (I’m already registered and have sort of started training.) I scrapped it.  I was going to do a half marathon, then I changed to a 7 mile option, then I scratched it completely.  I was afraid I would totally regret it, but honestly, I don’t.  Trying to fit the training in and not progressing as quickly as I wanted to was totally stressing me out.  Running is supposed to make me feel good, not like shit. 🙂
  2. Take a family trip to ________.  I’m thinking just a weekend or long weekend trip.  Not a full on vacation.  Chicago or DC come to mind, Chicago is much closer and would be easiest.  We’ll see. Still no definite progress on this, but I would still like to work in a long weekend to Chicago this fall.
  3. Run in at least three 5k races. I ran a 5 miler on New Year’s Day, ya, it’s not a 5k, but I’m counting it.  I am signed up for a 5k in September in my home town, and I also plan on running at least one or two in November.  There’s a small, local 5k right before Thanksgiving that I’ve run the last two years.  I’d really like to try to run it every year.
  4. Take a cooking class.  Hubby and I were signed up for one, but got a stomach bug.  We have a credit with the business, we need to get on that!
  5. Take a trip with Sam (my awesome hubby.)  I really don’t care where, but a few days of quality time with no chores or parenting duties would be like heaven. YAY! Mission accomplished!  We took a 4 day/3 night mini trip.  It was really fantastic, we walked around holding hands, visited a museum, gorgeous gardens, nice parks, and saw Kelly Clarkson and Maroon 5.  It was great to have alone time with my better half and I really don’t want to wait so long for the next time.  
    Fireworks outside our hotel room window.

    Fireworks outside our hotel room window.

  6. Get home to visit each of my parents at least 3 times. Not sure if this is going to happen.  I have seen them both, my mom I’ve seen several times, but I haven’t travelled back home much.  I’ll definitely see my mom in September.
  7. Take part in some sort of artistic class or event. I took an online phone photography class.  It was just meh, but, I’m glad I did it.
  8. Host a dinner party or two. No progress yet, need to get on this!
  9. Work on my pathetic push ups.  Train to be able to do 10 good push ups. I’m definitely working on this.  Still suck at them, but I’ve improved my planks tremendously!
  10. Spend a silly amount of money on a pair of shoes I love.  (I’ve NEVER done this, I’m usually way too practical.) Not yet.
  11. Go to at least one concert. Done!  
    Hubby and I waiting on the Kelly Clarkson/Maroon 5 concert to start.  So Much Fun!

    Hubby and I waiting on the Kelly Clarkson/Maroon 5 concert to start. So Much Fun!

  12. Attend at least one play or musical. I’ve attended quite a few with Skylar and have tickets for many more this season.
  13. REALLY for real work on getting a 5k time that doesn’t put me in danger of finishing last. I’m starting week five of c25k this week.  I’m still slow as molasses, but I’m still trudging along.
  14. Plan at least 6 fun mommy/daughter dates with my little SkyBaby. Skylar and I have had many mommy/daughter dates.  Most have been lunch and a play at the children’s theater, but we’ll be doing some back to school shopping together (her idea of heaven) in the next few days as well. 
    My little cutie at "Shrek, the musical"

    My little cutie at “Shrek, the musical”

It feels good to have completed a few items, but man, I have a long way to go, and not a ton of time to do it!

What I’d like to work on in the next month to make progress on this list:

  • Plan a dinner party for sometime in the next few months. (This has been a repeat goal all along for me.)
  • Get signed up for another cooking class ASAP.  (Revisiting the list today just reminded me we still had that) credit.  Hubby is checking out the website as I type to see what classes are coming up.
  • Keep plugging along with my c25k training.
  • Pin down dates for a small family trip.

Are you working toward your goals?