Welcome to another month, which means another round of goals on the upward spiral of growth.
Financially, April was a pretty rough month. A car repair and a busted water heater put the emergency fund back by a few grand but hey: that’s what it’s for! We went over our cell phone minutes – $150 worth – due to all the social gatherings and other activity that went on.
We got our taxes done on-time and found that we owed a lot less than we thought we were going to. Real estate has a lot of tax benefits so there’s no taxes due there but we knew we’d owe a few thousand because of all the extra money we made from freelancing. Between the real estate “losses” and Mrs Dollar’s realtor startup costs, we ended up owing about half of what we expected to which means we can plow the difference into our investments. And there was much rejoicing!
With the mix of good and bad news this month, you can expect the same for my goal progess:
Get our food budget under $250: Failed. Some of these transactions could be miscategorized but we ended up spending $358 this month. Some of that was from food for get-togethers that we attended. But still, that amounts to $179/person which isn’t all that bad.
Exercise 3x a week: Partial Success. I didn’t work out 3x every week but I think I averaged about 3x per week so I’m calling this a partial success. Some exercise is better than no exercise!
Get myself into shape to start bike commuting: Failed. I think I only put 15 miles on my bike the whole month. This goal itself was very vague to begin with and I didn’t follow my own rules when coming up with a goal. I’m going to try something more specific next time.
Secure one additional freelance software project: Failed. There was one in the works but it ended up falling through.
Work 20+ hours on our current software contract: Partial Success. We worked only 8 hours but that was all the work the client had the whole month.
You might look at that list and consider the month a big failure. I don’t. You can only fail if you stop trying. And you can’t succeed if you don’t try at all. A month where you wrote down your goals and worked towards them is a successful month, regardless of the outcome.
We’re going to Europe for two weeks this coming Friday so this month is going to be a little weird. Regardless, here’s what I want to accomplish:
- Stay within our vacation budget. This should be pretty easy as we’ve been saving for a while.
- Exercise 3x a week. This could be hard as we’re going to have some busy days ahead of us. Then again, we’ll probably do a lot of walking!
- Put 30 miles on my bike. That’s only 15 miles a week for the two weeks we will be in town.
- Ride my bike to work once. I’m going to start small but the end-game is to ride it every day I go in. That would be 42 miles a week which isn’t all that much, really.
That’s probably good. This month is going to be interesting, given that we’ll be away from home for a while. Naturally, all the bills should be lower so that $250 in groceries goal will be easy
Good luck on your goals!