Friday, December 16, 2016

Goals and stuff

Linking up with Steph & Sara to share the results of my Autumn goals and share the next lot of goals.

  • Declutter and get rid of stuff. I did so well on this I accidentally got rid of a house. But seriously, moving is a great way to get rid of stuff because you don't want to pack it. 
  • Track eating and lose weight. No. I need to learn once and for all, tracking my eating is never good for me. I just need to eat well without tracking every calorie or meal.
  • Focus on running and speed. Not so much with the speed, but I ran semi consistently up until Richmond. After, not so much.
  • Pay shit off, don't spend, save money. I am still going strong with not buying stuff for myself (clothes, shoes etc) but we spent a lot on the house and a few things here and there, plus Christmas gifts. We made a large payment on the car (high five) and I paid off another card.
Life According to Steph

So, I'd say I did pretty okay.

I know lots of people don't like new years resolutions, and I totally get that, but I love them. Sure, you can be cynical and say it just gives you an excuse to be a lazy sod until January 1st, or you could just say yay for clean slates, lets do this shit! Like I do.

I love making yearly goals. It's fun.

Here were 2016's:

  • Exercise consistently (3-4 times a week) and eat well (lots of fruit and veg). Check! Less on the eating well side, but still.
  • Try new recipes. Check-ish (first of the year great, second half bad).
  • Shop less. Save more. Check-ish again, working on that shopping addiction, focusing on saving.
  • Pay off debt. I have paid off a lot of my debt but I am still working on it. I shopped too much in the beginning of the year.
  • Fix the house up a bit. Nothing crazy, but paint some rooms and work on the list. Yep, and we sold it.
  • Successfully set up some sort of meal plan routine. Nope.
  • Give up soda. Also nope, but I decided I don't care. One vice. 

And for 2017...... I don't know. Even though I love making yearly goals, there's just no telling where you will be or who you will be a few months down the line, and goals and ideas change.

I have some things I want to work on this year - pay off my debt, turn 30, go to Australia & NZ, meal plan and get the grocery budget down, don't go crazy when my shopping challenge ends, break 2 hours in a half marathon... I want to work towards all those things but making goals at the beginning of the year and only halfheartedly looking back on them or trying to adapt them as my life or opinions change just wasn't working.

So, instead, I thought I would do quarterly goals. I think that works better for me vs seasonal goals (but I still might link up with you ladies if you continue to do the link up).

But first, here's a picture of Penny being Penny.

Moving on, first quarter of 2017:

  • Continue exercising 4-5 times a week. Run, weights, yoga. Focus on speed with running.
  • Get grocery budget down. Seriously, the amount we spend for just the two of us is ridiculous.
  • Meal plan. I know this goes hand in hand with the above. I always kind of half-assed meal planned and I wanted to get better, but now with our current living situation we are eating a lot of frozen pizzas (KC) and raisin bran (me) and it needs to stop.
  • No eating out for lunch. SERIOUSLY KRISTEN. This is SUCH a waste of money, it never tastes as good as something I can bring from home, and it is just a ridiculous waste of money. STOP IT.
  • Organise photos and plan photo books. I had my photos organised a few months ago but I decided I don't like the way I did it, and I didn't keep it up and they are all over the place and need to be done again. Also I really want some sort of year book or photo book collection and I need to start getting them organised so I can order them (sporadically throughout the year because $$).
  • Book NZ & Australia. I wanted to book the flights by the end of the year but we haven't yet. Other than that, hotels, tours, tickets etc. 
  • Go to the doctors or at least make appointments. Dentist, lady doctor, skin doctor, normal doctor and eye doctor.
  • Pay off debt. I have 2 cards left. I really wanted them gone before my birthday. I have been making this goal for like 2 years (or if we are being honest/technical, 10 years) but this is the first time I have actually focused on it, made a plan, stuck to the plan and gotten close to the end, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and I have NO desire to get back into this mess - whereas when I was younger, the goal was to pay off so I could spend again. Not this time.
  • Find a house! Oh yeah, this is pretty important. We are currently living in my MILs basement and to be perfectly honest, I don't want to start looking until I've paid off my debt, booked Australia, finished paying the car off that we wanted to pay off, and have a little more in the bank... I know that all seems like a lot but it's not. Once we get the ball rolling on everything we should be good.
  • Turn 30. Yes I know this one is a silly goal especially since I don't really have any control as long as I keep.. you know.. living. But anyway. 30 is coming up and there you go. Let's do this shit.

I know that's a lot of goals in one post. So here's a picture of the fluff monster:

I wonder if I should be embarrassed that I call her the fluff monster. To be fair, she is a monster BUT SO FLUFFY.

Here's to 2017! Got any goals? Or better yet, meal planning tips?


  1. hahah I like your turn 30 goal the best :) I think you did pretty well with your goals and Im sure you'll tackle the new ones!

  2. You know, I like making goals for the new year too but this year I'm with you and it's the first one where I just might not make goals for the whole year. Monthly or something because I like the ability to change direction in life without feeling like I failed at something. Also, I'm with you on failing on the soda goal. I did well for a few months in the winter. Then it got to summer and I needed an ice cold diet coke. The end. Like you vice!

  3. I'm awesome with making goals and lists and lists of lists just so I can check things off ... actually accomplishing any of those goals is a totally different story. While I do like resolutions, I also don't think it works for me if I wait until January 1st to start doing the things that need doing. I guess I keep an ongoing goals list and just start working on them whenever I add them throughout the year. Good job on working on your debt pay-off though! That's a big one for us ... well, and doing something with the money pit/house so we can get rid of it. But the house contributes to the debt and the debt can't get paid off until we work on the house to sell it which contributes to the debt ... vicious circle. :)

  4. GIRL. I LOVE TO MEAL PLAN. IT IS MY HAPPY PLACE. Email me. What parts of it do you struggle with? The planning or the executing? Grocery shopping is my favorite shopping. Haha.

    Also, I LOL'd at how well you did getting rid of stuff. The house too? Haha.

  5. I love it! I love goals too, so no griping from me. Looks like you did really well on the 2016 ones. The idea of doing the 2017 quarterly is awesome! Excited to see how it works for you. I am definitely with you on meal planning and budgeting better. Food is a really tough one for us since we go through bouts of super busy-ness and then calm. It can be really hard to keep up with meal planning, groceries, etc. And eating out is hell on the body and budget... most of the time anyhow. Good luck with your cards, that's super awesome how much progress you've made! Sounds like a great start to 2017 goals! :) XO - Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  6. I made goals last year and surprisingly I accomplished some of them. I'll be making them again but will be more focused on them. Hopefully! LOL Good luck with your next round of goals! I need to take a page from your book and work on my debt. I'm almost done with 1 but I need to make it priority in 2017 like FOR SURE!

    Also...I have a bestie who lives in Louisville and it is in my plans to come and visit her in that means I would LOVE to get together too! Now I'm not 100% sure when this will happen but when I figure it would I will let you know and then hopefully you'll be available for dinner or something! :)

  7. meal planning - the hardest part is to establish the routine. what i do: i meal plan for the entire week friday night (get input from the family and if they have nothing, then i cook what i want and they will eat it or go hungry). as in I'll write down each day and break it down by meal (ie. breakfast, lunch, dinner) and then on saturday, i shop for the whole week for every meal that is written down. it's a life saver!

  8. I've gotten lazy with lunch over the past two months and it is a freaking enormous waste that I usually never fall into. With our trip then the holidays and the laziness...I need to stop and go back to making it.

    I am thinking of adopting some sort of No buy goals in 2017 like you did this year.

  9. Fluff Monster <3
    I have essentially banned myself from keeping track of what I eat, I fixate on calories and it spirals into wildly unhealthy habits. I know what foods are healthy and what aren't it's as simple as eating more of the good foods and less of the bad foods. I just started thinking about my 2017 goals this week and like you said it's so hard to come up with concrete goals when you're not really sure where life is going to lead you!

  10. Love that you decided you don't care about the soda thing, as bad as it is we all deserve a vice like you said. And yay for not tracking every calorie, it can be exhausting! Happy Friday gurlie <3
    Green Fashionista

  11. You did such a good job with your 2016 goals-- by tackling some huge things! You've been so motivating in all of your working out/running and selling your house count as a major check for the fixing up the house category! I have zero meal planning tips- I did really good for the first 3 days of this week, and then got to yesterday and was like I don't want ANY of this stuff anymore! Photo books are always such an awesome thing to have, but they take so much work to actually get them together! That's going to be one of my 2017 goals too.

  12. I think I'm going to have to schedule some races to get back on my running program. Gimp toe really took the window out of my sails and I've not gotten back into my groove. I consider it and the CF of December slaps me in the face and laughs because I should know better than to try and fit adult things in December.

  13. I like that you have "turn 30" on your list of goals! Getting the grocery budget down is definitely on my list for 2017. I cannot believe how much money we spend every month!

  14. I keep my diet coke as my daily vice too. :D I figure there are way worse things I could do! Meal planning was really tough for me because I planned for the month. But when it came time to make a specific meal - I no longer was hungry for it. So I plan for the week, based on the sales flyers (this will definitely help you lower your grocery bill). And overall, it has worked well for me. Occasionally I still run into meals that no longer interest me (but if I'm being honest, it's because I wanted to eat bad) and my grocery budget is quite reasonable. Good for you on paying off debt! That's a major accomplishment! I have some ideas running around my brain for 2017. I need to write them down and figure out what I want to accomplish, really accomplish. I am notorious for setting and ignoring goals. Boo! I need to follow your lead!

  15. You killed those goals! And you have quite a year coming up lady! Yay for 30! Seriously they are my favorite years so far! I need to focus on paying down debt too. I should take notes from your year of no shopping! As for meal planning/getting the grocery budget down, I always take a look at the circular before making a list and/or meal plan, and try to buy what's on sale and then any necessities. Good luck!

  16. Never be embarassed to call your cat a fluffy monster. I often refer to Enzo as Muffin Butt. Mainly because he is a muffin and he has the cutest little behind :D Haha!

    These are good goals. I like quarterly/seasonal goals best because it's the right amount of time (vs. monthly) and it reminds me at LEAST four times a year that I'm working toward something. Do what works for you!

    I'm planning to meal plan more and hopefully get rid of three of our four cards!

  17. I think if you search meal plan on my blog it should bring up what I do, that might help. Mostly I say start small and master that. Like, breakfast. Just master planning breakfast every single day, that's an easy meal. Once that's good, add like one dinner meal per week. Say every Monday is Italian. Just meal plan for Monday nights, plus breakfasts. Add as you go. Then you won't get overwhelmed and burn out, and you get a better sense of not wasting money on ingredients you don't need or use up in time.
    And I call Hawkeye probably everything under the sun except Hawkeye. Fluff monster has definitely been thrown around in the past.

  18. Way to stay on track with your goals for the most part! I'm exactly like you in the fact that I think that soda drinking will always be a vice of mine. And I love your goal for creating photobooks this coming year! They can be really expensive, but if you find a company that you like just make all of your books and wait for a sale. Shutterfly is always running a 40% sale it seems like which really helps!

  19. I just love the turn 30 goal! I have also decided giving up soda is whatever. Like you said, it's one vice. Also, I just can't meal plan. I've tried so hard and pretty much fail all the time. I think it's because I never know what I want to eat ahead of time and Chris is no help because he will eat pretty much anything, but I also hate picking, so it's a problem. lol.

  20. I think you did pretty good! I switched to quarterly goals too, which honestly right now just come from my 101 in 1001 list. I am so bad at tracking calories. I've tried a couple of times & it doesn't last long at all. Good luck with your new set of goals!

  21. I turn 30 next year too! eeeek! I need to set my goals, but many of them are similar to yours - workout, spend less....

  22. I've been thinking of my 2017 goals. I need a fire lit under my butt....
    That gif with the thumb - totally how I feel I make all my goals in life.
    But the savings is my #1 thing for 2017.... thank you health insurance for that fire I just mentioned under my butt.

  23. This is the time of year where mysterious spending just happens. A card for someone, random hostess gift, winter weather stuff... it totally happens. But the fact that you were able to still pay off another card means you are TOTALLY doing something right, so congrats again! And you did great at Richmond and selling the house was huge, so I'd call this season a big pass for you!

    I love clean slates. I think "I'm going to lose 30 pounds, quit smoking, earn an extra $20k, and get engaged" resolutions are utter BS, but if you have any concept of how to properly set goals, new year's resolutions can be great. I love a clean slate -- the first day of a new month when my budget turns over is one of my favorite things, haha! That said, I'm on a "one day at a time" kick right now while I wait for the dust to settle on a few things, so I can't quite make any resolutions yet for 2017.

    I think shorter-term check-ins, like monthly or quarterly, make staying accountable way more realistic. I'm sure you will do great with your list for Q1 2017. Good luck!

  24. You are doing awesome!! I love your goal of turning 30 ;) It's great that you are in a position to pay off some debt etc right now!! I don't have any meal planning tips besides the obvious ones but it sounds like you are quite motivated to get that under control in the new year!!

  25. Oh my goodness. You are so good with goals and resolutions or what have you. You go girl!

  26. Great job on your goals! I hate making New Years goals, this is the first yeah I'm not making a goal that is infertility/baby making related, in fact I don't think I'm going to make any goals but to just survive my first year as a new mom! And maybe pay off my credit card!

  27. I like that your goals for this year are pretty specific. (or the first quarter of this coming year or whatever)

    Did you ever try to set a SMART goal? It might help, because know you're goal oriented but it can be hard to stick to a plan without realllly laying it all out. (that being said, I adore your shopping posts :)

  28. I haven't started thinking about 2017 goals, but I like the idea of doing quarterly goals :)

  29. I do think quarterly goals is a good idea instead of a year-long goal or resolution. I'm glad you did pretty well on your Autumn goals though. That's awesome. I really like the idea of having a word for the year - like creative or strong or something like that.


  30. Dude, meal planning. Why is it so hard??? The most I seem to be able to manage is to purchase ingredients for breakfasts for the week, and one or two meals that we cook. The rest is inevitably going to be canned or frozen things (if we even eat together and don't just scrounge - hello cereal!).

    I'm also a fan of the turn 30 goal. Lol! I feel like making it a goal makes it feel like something you're choosing to do. I fully intend to copy that for myself for summer goals in 2017.

  31. I like the idea of quarterly goals. I have no idea what I'll be doing a year from now. The grocery budget thing is so hard to figure out - like how do we spend so much on food?? I use Ibotta and Cartwheel now, which helps some. I like how you have doctors appointment goals haha. I will go to the dentist sometime this year, probably. My lady doctor appointment is pre-scheduled, yay :/. Yay NZ & Australia! Planning trips is so fun.

  32. I'm with you on your idea for quarterly goals. Life and shit happens, so you just never know what could happen a month from now let alone a whole season from now. I think you crushed your 2016 goals, and I think everything you want to accomplish during the first part of 2017 is attainable. You're making such strides with your debt, I have my fingers crossed for you that you're able to cross that off before your birthday!

  33. Your goals for 2017 look awesome - and I like that you're doing quarterly goals as that's SO much more realistic!

    Here's hoping you can crush those debts before your birthday! What an awesome feeling that will be!

  34. Yeah I think both of our living situations next year are too fluid for annual goals! Quarterly sounds pretty good to me. Maybe I should make some...

    I meal plan! It's not great but I do it. I have a spreadsheet (yay spreadsheet nerd) that has a little calendar type thing in it with boxes for every meal. I plan our meals out about every 2-3 weeks. Then I make a shopping list with everything in the plan and send S out to brave the supermarkets ;) It's good at keeping costs down and means we can go 2-3 weeks between shops because I plan meals with the fresh ingredients first, then freeze leftovers plus do meals with frozen/canned/dried ingredients towards the end of the plan. We haven't caught scurvy yet...

    I keep recipes in the Pepperplate app which I recommend, I think that has an inbuilt meal planning thing that auto generates shopping lists as well so that might work for you. I can send you my spreadsheet if you like, it ain't a thing of beauty but it works for me!

  35. You are doing amazing on your goals! I so badly want to make some but 2016 got me hard and I feel like I am just setting up for failure. Hopefully I will get past it and find something I can accomplish l!

  36. WHY is eating out for lunch so hard to stop?! You're right, it's never as good. I'm with you. STRUGGLE.

  37. I like your idea of quarterly goals. 2017 is going to be such a great year for you (hooray traveling home!!!)! :)

  38. I had to laugh at doing so well you got rid of a house. I mean, that wins right there! I say you did good and I have decided that I am going to layoff the goal making for 2017. I am always too hard on myself when I end up not even doing half on what is on my list. I am going to try and focus on just getting back in to shape and eating healthy since my body was given to make a baby this past year and is completely destroyed. I am not going to put a number or time frame on my goal either...because nothing is worse than berating myself. I love your goals for 2017 though! I think you have a very exciting year ahead and I know you can rock it!

  39. I laughed at the getting rid of a house... I'm really good at getting rid of things (when I actually follow through and get RID of them)... but it's totally a struggle to actually get them out of the house. I love the idea of going to NZ and Australia in 2017 and I hope you'll let me travel vicariously through you!!!

  40. I don't do well tracking every bite of food I eat either. I lost 50lbs ten years ago on Weight Watchers. I was obsessive during that time, tracking every single thing I ate, even if it was something under 50 calories. I gained it all back. When I started losing weight again this year, I contemplated going back to WW. But, honestly, the thought of tracking everything I ate just made me want to throw up. I knew I couldn't go back to being that obsessive gal again. I understand what you mean, completely!

    I love how you put "turn 30" as a goal! That's great! Own it girl, embrace it, love it! Every time I reach a milestone birthday and my mind wants to freak out a little bit, I think to myself - be thankful to have lived long enough to see this day bc so many ppl out there did not.

  41. OMG i love your kitties ^_^
    ugh, I try to quit it every other day, but I compromised with myself to only pour an ounce out at a time. And you never know where you will be! But good luck with your goals!

  42. Meal planning is tough! I'm trying to eat healthy and cutting back on meats, dairy and sugar so it's hard coming up with different meal ideas. Plus I'm a picky eater so it's double the headache. I want to save more and spend less too. I don't have debt (besides my credit card but I pay that off each money) but I spent sooo much in 2016 I def need to chill out and focus more on saving! Good luck with your goals!

  43. My meal planning ability is completely for shit. I have no tips there except don't do what I do. Honestly meal planning is so hard for me because I'm such a mood eater and who's to know if I'll want chili days from now, ya know?
    Also, I love how you put "turn 30" on the list because yeah it's not really in your control, but also making it a goal is welcoming it, and that's awesome. I wish I had some of that grace as I approach 29 with fear in my heart and grasping on 28 for dear life *cries*

  44. Your going to kick ass at this years goals, I can feel it! I need to get onboard with budgeting, meal planning, and photo organization/books! I think as long as you have the ability to live in your MIL's basement and save money, do it!


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