q1 2019 goal update

five candle holders sitting on a table with the text "2019: A Year of Simplicity"

In our 2019 goals post, we outlined our plans for the year in four broad categories: financial, employment and time, health, and fun. In my ever so humble opinion, goals are useless unless you make an accountability plan to complete them. Much like reporting our monthly spending, reporting our progress to you is our accountability plan.


In terms of our financial goals, we’re on track to hit all of them. Mind you, our goals were a bit modest this year because we’re buying a house and I’m quitting my job at the end of May. So far, we are making progress towards maxing out Justin’s 401k and our HSA. We figured out that we can’t directly max out my 403b due to restictions set forth by my employer, but we can come very close to the maximum deferral through contributions to my 457b. It all works out either way.

We had our pre-construction walk-through for the house during the second week of March. At this point, they have poured the foundation and they will begin framing soon. The project manager thinks that it will be done in late July or early August. In terms of the financial side of things, we’ve paid all of our earnest monies for our selections and we’ve saved up the rest of the down payment.

Our future basement.

employment and time goals

Justin keeps chugging along with his job. He had a positive annual review and continues to be a valued member of the team. Part of his role requires him to work with accountants on a regular basis. Since actuaries and accountants don’t often speak the same language, Justin has enrolled at our local community college to take a few accounting classes.

I have just four more weeks in the semester and then my teaching career will be effectively over. While I would be open to teaching the occasional class, I definitely think some time away will do me some good. Not to mention, the rest of this year is looking exceptionally full. I have continued adding new items to my etsy shop and shipping out orders as quickly as they come in. I’m still volunteering with the pet pantry. When the semester is over, I will start looking for additional volunteer opportunities. As of right now, my life is full and I’m content.

health and fitness goals

According to Justin, he’s certainly stumbled here a bit. He has always had a tough time getting motivated to move when it’s cold outside! That said, his new jeans still fit and he’s looking to realign with my long-term fitness goals ahead of the summer weather. He thinksit’s important to not beat ourselves up when a goal isn’t met!

For me, the good news is that I have managed to continue my 8k per day step streak and that I had my first Achievement payout of the year. The bad news is that I have slacked off on creating a home yoga practice and meditating. I think I need to create a habit stack for meditating. Courtney Carver, of Be More with Less, got me into the idea of habit stacking a while back. It’s essentially where you add a new behavior that you want to do on to existing, complimentary behaviors. I’ll keep at it and report back in q2.

We are still working on reducing our food costs. I won’t have the official q1 food spending percentage for a few days yet, but, considering we’ve spent about the same for the past three months, we still have some work to do. In April, we’re reducing the amount of meat that we’re consuming. Our plan is for all of our meat to come from Locovore. Otherwise, we’ll eat a mostly plant-based diet. I ordered a new cookbook in support of this endeavor. I’m looking forward to being inspired by Minimalist Baker!

fun goals

We haven’t had too much fun yet since I’m in the middle of the semester and all, but we’re making moves on our planned fun for later in the year. I booked my plane ticket for Michigan in June with points. We booked the hotel for the Bermuda trip and we got all of our necessary vaccines for both international trips. Justin is researching flights for both and plans on buying them soon.

Unfortunately, my trip to Oklahoma to visit my bother and his boys got cancelled due to him needing hip surgery. Once things are sorted out with that, I may go visit him to help during his recovery period. Either way, decidedly less fun.

We did see Disturbed in January. The concert was a blast. They did all of my favorite songs and a few from the new album.

word of the year: simplicity

We took a few minutes to reflect on how we’ve embraced simplicity in 2019.

The big change that we’ve made is making a monthly meal plan instead of making a weekly meal plan. This has greatly cut down on my time grocery shopping since we do a big trip at the beginning of the month for all of our bulk items. Next month, as I mentioned above, we’ll reduce our meat consumption to only what we get from our meat delivery service.

Justin says that he’s seen me embracing the serenity prayer in my every day life and attitude. I would describe my temperment as tea kettle-like where I’m pretty mellow until I get riled up over something. It’s something that I’m working on changing.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.

Reinhold Niebuhr (interesting article about the authorship of the serenity praycer here)

The serenity prayer speaks to me in a few different ways. For the most part, it encourages me to remember that I cannot control people. All I can control is my own actions and reactions. This is so true when dealing with students or my family.

Where are you at with your goals? Are you making progress? Do you need to reevaluate?


One thought on “q1 2019 goal update

  1. I love the format of this … I may steal it! I live by the serenity prayer and use it as a filter every single day. I love that you are writing more often … I don’t feel so far away.


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