Mid-Year Check In

How time flies! I can’t believe the year is already half over. Seems like just yes­ter­day the weath­er start­ed to warm up. Now it’s almost too hot and humid to func­tion nor­mal­ly out­side!

At the begin­ning of the year, I declared 2017 to be the “Year of Car­ing”.

Based on the goals I list­ed in that post.….. yeah it could be going bet­ter but I could also be doing a lot worse!

Caring for others

  • I think I’ve done a pret­ty good job at help­ing oth­ers out this year. Review­ing arti­cles, being a sound­ing board for var­i­ous life deci­sions, and vol­un­teer­ing to help a friend swap out their toi­let comes to mind!

Caring for me

  • Feb­ru­ary will be a Whole30 month: This did not hap­pen. Liv­ing with some­one not doing the same eat­ing plan would’ve been too dif­fi­cult, and I was work­ing on house stuff. Maybe some time in the next 6 months (I high­ly doubt it though.) One thing I can say is I have been work­ing on eat­ing health­i­er. Cut­ting out a lot of soda and alco­hol, drink­ing more water, and eat­ing more meals rather than snack­ing all day.
  • Run a 5k this sum­mer: Nope. I was gone or didn’t like the routes for the 5k’s in my area. There is one com­ing up this fall that sounds fun though! It’s the day after I get back from Ecuador, so we’ll see if I can make it hap­pen. Train­ing for a 5k in the high­lands of Ecuador would cer­tain­ly prep me for run­ning in the low­lands of the Mid­west!
  • Go to the chi­ro­prac­tor once a quar­ter, and mas­sage ther­a­pist once a month: Nope. I real­ly should do this though con­sid­er­ing the amount of stress in my life with the house and ten­ant dra­ma. I most­ly haven’t done this because I don’t know where to go for some­one good in town. There are no short­ages of either in my area though, so I real­ly should just bite the bul­let and exper­i­ment until I find some­one I like.
  • Take the stairs when pos­si­ble: Pass­able. I cer­tain­ly take the stairs more now than I did at my last job, but I could still be bet­ter. 

Care more about the big picture

I’m hap­py to say that even if I’m still not the best stew­ard of my time, at least I’m being cog­nizant of the fact now. I still go home and take too many naps after work, but I’m get­ting bet­ter at not nap­ping and just going to bed ear­li­er. I’ve also delet­ed a num­ber of apps off my phone that were prov­ing dis­tract­ing. Although now I can def­i­nite­ly say I’m not going to be wast­ing time thumb­ing through dat­ing apps! Yay!

I have been mak­ing an effort to spend more time read­ing non-fic­tion books. I’m in the mid­dle of read­ing two books at the moment (both lent from the library!) and I can already tell they are going to change my entire world.

The first book I’m read­ing is The 4-Hour Body by Tim Fer­riss. I nev­er real­ly ‘got’ the hype around this guy but now that I’ve start­ed the book, HOLY CRAP is it good! Why didn’t I read this 6 years ago!?

The oth­er book I’m read­ing is The War of Art by Steven Press­field. It’s a lit­tle woo-woo so far, but the over­all mes­sage is great and it offers help­ful tips on over­com­ing pro­cras­ti­na­tion to actu­al­ly get stuff done. I’m look­ing for­ward to apply­ing the lessons in the book to the sec­ond half of the year!

Care less about money

I’m doing a great job about not obsess­ing over my spread­sheets and oth­er finan­cials this year! I update the spread­sheet on the first of the month and check in with Mint every once in awhile.  This allows me to adjust my spend­ing for the month and make sure no one cat­e­go­ry is get­ting too out of whack.

I did have some con­crete mon­ey goals though so let’s see how I’m doing there:

    • Spend under $30k: Errrrrrrr.….…. this is prob­a­bly not going to hap­pen. I naive­ly thought my bills would go down once I bought a house because I wasn’t spend­ing mon­ey on rent. HA! Let’s all have a moment of silence for that inno­cent thought. My bills have done noth­ing but go up since I bought the house. So far this year, Mint says I’ve spent $28,756.64.

      Yep. Bare­ly halfway through the year and I’ve almost spent more than my goal for the entire year.
      #feels­bad­manCheck it out:
      As you can see, hous­ing takes up over half of my spend­ing. I’m pret­ty con­tent with my oth­er spend­ing cat­e­gories bar one- fees. I’ve been nailed for almost $700 in fees alone this year. The vast major­i­ty of them are asso­ci­at­ed with mov­ing mon­ey between invest­ment accounts. Doesn’t make it feel any bet­ter. Those $25 late fees here and there real­ly start to add up after a while.

      So I’m going to add in a sub goal here: no more fees. The less mon­ey I pay in “stu­pid tax” for the rest of the year,
      the bet­ter!

    • Hit $200k net worth. As of July 1st, my net worth sits at $156,000. This means I have $44,000 to go. I’m not sure I’ll be able to hit $200k, but I’m going to do my best to get there! It’s aggres­sive for sure, so it’s ok if I don’t quite make it. My orig­i­nal pro­jec­tions had me hit­ting $165k by the end of the year which I will eas­i­ly beat.


  • Earn over $100,000. So far this year I have made $46,879. I will make an esti­mat­ed $40,000 for the rest of the year, which will equal $87,000 in earned income for the year. This is not includ­ing my bonus, which is vari­able, and total­ly not guar­an­teed so I can’t count on it and there­fore exclude it from the total.TOTALLY NOT SHABBY.

    But.…. also, unless I real­l­l­l­l­l­l­ly start to increase a side hus­tle, I will not make my goal of $100,000 income this year. I was antic­i­pat­ing bring­ing in a sec­ond rental house this fall and I don’t think I will be able to do that with all the repairs Rental #1 has and will require.  It just goes to show even the best laid plans don’t always work out like we’d like them to.

Mew’s 2017 goal is to be as floofy as pos­si­ble. #crushinit

In con­clu­sion, things are going mere­ly ok for me this year. I’m not fail­ing mis­er­ably at any goal. Heck in some oth­er areas in life I’m crush­ing it! I’m not sure I’ll be able to meet any goal I set in Jan­u­ary, but that’s ok.

Life changes.

We adapt our goals, and move for­ward!

Thanks for read­ing! How are your goals for 2017 going? Any mas­sive wins to cel­e­brate? 

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40 thoughts on “Mid-Year Check In

  1. I def­i­nite­ly wouldn’t say things are “mere­ly ok!” Many of your goals are what oth­ers would con­sid­er “stretch” goals. You set a high bar for your­self, which (I think) is good, and you are mak­ing great progress, both per­son­al­ly and finan­cial­ly.

    As far as spend­ing, at least it won’t be as high in the future. There are a lot of up front costs for the house. I wouldn’t go as far as to say every dol­lar you spend for the house is an invest­ment, but they are nec­es­sary to ensure that the house is as good of an invest­ment as you can make it.

    • I cer­tain­ly hope there won’t be any more high expens­es in the future! My plans are already messed up as it is!

  2. Hey!

    You’ve been doing great! You may have not made your goals 100% of the way you planned them, but as you said life does hap­pen! Your expens­es went up with the hous­ing, but it’s been a mas­sive learn­ing and grow­ing expe­ri­ence for you! I imag­ine those will go down, you’re just in the “fix all the things!” phase right now 😀

    Diet can be very tricky, I recent­ly just start­ed eat­ing bet­ter and to do so I found a local guy who does meal prep for you and deliv­ers the meals every Sun­day. “Fan­cy­pants” as the big MMM would say? Yes, but it makes my big pic­ture goal much clos­er and those goals and the free­dom to obtain them is one of the big rea­sons we strive for FI! I’d look and see if there’s any­one doing this in your area.

    Keep kick­ing butt and tak­ing names like you always do Gwen!

    P.S. Floof is crush­ing those goals! #Floofly­fe

  3. One of the things I real­ly enjoy about your blog is that you are unflinch­ing. If you don’t quite hit the mark you set for your­self, you mark it and move on. That skill alone will always move you for­ward. Be will­ing to admit when you didn’t quite do as well as you’d hoped, and keep on mov­ing. Well done, Gwen.

    I too am read­ing the Press­field book and am find­ing it inter­est­ing. My wife is an aspir­ing writer and I’m hop­ing to get her to read it too. I look for­ward to hear­ing your thoughts on it. On Tim Fer­riss, I lis­ten to some of his pod­casts, and they are very inter­est­ing. If you have not yet, lis­ten to his dis­cus­sion with Mr. Mon­ey Mus­tache. Good Stuff.


    • Thanks Old­ster! I said I’d always been keep­ing it real around here and so I’m glad that’s appar­ent!

      I haven’t lis­tened to the pod­cast yet but it’s on my list!

    • Thanks Mrs. BITA. He is SUPER GOOD at floof­ing it out and lay­ing around. Makes me feel bet­ter!

  4. It’s dif­fi­cult to put a num­ber on it but the learn­ing that you’ve had over the first half of this year will be so valu­able going for­ward. Espe­cial­ly since you plan on buy­ing more rental prop­er­ties!

  5. So far you have sur­vived 100% of your worst days. You’re doing great! 🙂

    Life can throw you a curve ball some­times. Just go with it. Squig­gles on a spread­sheet wig­gle all over the place week to week, month to month, and year to year. The abil­i­ty to enjoy good health, good food, good water, and good sleep in a safe bed are darn near price­less.

  6. Keep plug­ging away. You’ve made progress on some of your goals and where you stand on oth­ers.

    It’s great you are track­ing your progress as well. Do not get dis­cour­aged if you do not hit $100k income or $200k. The fact that you are work­ing towards those goals is great. If you fail to meet then, at least you failed upward and improved your sit­u­a­tion from where you were a year ago.

    Keep fight­ing. Keep grind­ing.

    • I like the term failed upward! It’s true that I will def­i­nite­ly end the year bet­ter than I start­ed… even if I don’t meet those ambi­tious goals. Thanks GoF!

  7. Good job on the goals!! Keep it up! The beau­ty of a stretch goal, is even if you don’t hit it, you’re way bet­ter off than you were.

    As for the 5k, I will glad­ly run one with you one morn­ing in Ibar­ra. Just let me know. It might be tougher at ele­va­tion, but you’re young. It’s good for you and there is no bet­ter way to see a new place than by foot! Maybe even the Mrs, will join us, she takes more con­vinc­ing! I’ve done the hike they have us going on, and a 10+ mile hike at about 12K ft is no joke!!!

    Give me a heads up so we can bring some run­ning shoes.

    Regard­less, Good job!

    • Prob­a­bly won’t be doing the run on the same day as that hike! yikes! But yes, please come run with me! Bring some shoes!

  8. $30k in 6 months with $15k+ in home is pret­ty awe­some – con­sid­er­ing that’s your res­i­dence + an invest­ment prop­er­ty (I think?). The 50% on home seems like a lot, but if you deduct earn­ings from rent, does that bring it down a notable amount?

    • It is both my res­i­dence and invest­ment prop­er­ty, for now. The res­i­dence part will hope­ful­ly change in a few months! I’ve only made ~$4400 from rent so far this year, so it’s not that notable yet. I haven’t been col­lect­ing rent for very long!

  9. Grit it out. Suck it up. Tough it out. Be the best you can.

    Mur­phy was an opti­mist. Expect the worst that can pos­si­bly hap­pen Will Hap­pen and then say, “suck it Mur­phy” when the worst is futile it hits your supe­ri­or prepa­ra­tion for it.

  10. It seems like the hous­ing thing isn’t going well at all. Can you do a series on the rental prop­er­ty sit­u­a­tion?

  11. I had a list of goals I put togeth­er in Jan­u­ary and I don’t think I have even come close to most of them. Oh well! But one goal was to go to Chau­tauqua and that is total­ly hap­pen­ing (and we are get­ting so close too). Looks like Mr.Wow has start­ed a run­ning group while down there. As long as there is promise of brown­ies after­wards I will do it!

    • And obvi­ous­ly that’s the most impor­tant goal since you get to hang out with me for a whole week!!!!!! I say bring your run­ning shoes but I can’t guar­an­tee brown­ies.…

  12. What about spir­i­tu­al­i­ty? I mean it’s great to have finan­cial goals and goals car­ing for oth­ers, but we all know none of us are guar­an­teed the next decade, the next year, or even tomor­row. How does spir­i­tu­al­i­ty play a role?

    • It.… doesn’t? All I try to do in life is to live each day to the fullest to have the best life pos­si­ble. If I dropped dead tomor­row, I would be con­tent with how my life went.

  13. Hey, FYI, a lot of bro­ker­ages (cough I worked for one cough) will refund fees you spent at anoth­er bro­ker­age to move your mon­ey. It was quite nor­mal to cred­it some­one $75 when they moved an IRA to us because that was $otherbroker’s fee.

    • .….…..this is excel­lent tim­ing since Baird just charged me anoth­er $150 for mov­ing it.

  14. I hope you are stay­ing cool — did you get A/C???!!! You are doing great, even if things aren’t going exact­ly how you had them mapped out (I can relate right now). I love how you are tak­ing things in stride and remem­ber­ing that even if you don’t reach those goals, you’re still doing amaz­ing!

  15. Can you explain what makes you like The 4-hour Body so much? From what I’ve looked at in the last 5 min­utes it total­ly seems like a “short­cut” type of book, which makes me extreme­ly skep­ti­cal.

    • It’s got tons of action­able tips in it. Any­thing he put in the book he did tons of research on. He’s cer­tain­ly not the only one claim­ing these things!

  16. Don’t give up on the chiropractor/massage goal. I’ve suf­fered from back pain (old high school foot­ball injury – no, I’m not Al Bundy…it real­ly hap­pened). My chi­ro was charg­ing me $45/visit for adjust­ments, but it start­ed to pay off as I felt more pro­duc­tive minus the back pain.

    Hang in there – you are doing great this year!
    Jason@Debt Reck­on­ing recent­ly post­ed…Why a 30 Year Mort­gage is Bet­terMy Profile

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