40 Goals For 2017: Weeks 17 & 18

I’m keeping myself accountable this year by tracking my progress on my 40 Goals for 2017 every week. 

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It’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted anything at all, I know. When I took two weeks off from grad school, I decided to take two weeks off everything else I could, and it was wonderful.

Week Seventeen and Eighteen


  1. Max Roth IRAs for the mister and I: $11000. I am thrilled to say the Mister is already nearing 100% with his 2017 Roth and is at $4500. I have $1000.
  2. Cash flow 4 months of swim lessons at Aquatots for our son and older daughter: $1200. The classes won’t start until the last week of May, but we have opted to do four weeks of their summer fast track lessons.  The cost was $643 and half the amount we originally expected to spend. We cash-flowed this one. Boom!
  3. Save $3000 for HVAC replacement. This will be sitting in savings until next year, but we are also at 100% for this as well. Done!
  4. Save $4000 towards the mister’s car replacement fund. Not yet. We tend to build up and then dump every few months, so we’ll see how this looks at the end of summer.
  5. Save $1050 for Christmas. $264 in my Christmas savings so far.
  6. Save $1800 $3000? for outdoor play set.   We are thinking of talking with a landscaper to prep and get this done. We mulched, but we don’t want to cause drainage issues when we level out the curvy spots.
  7. Save $750 towards next year’s 2018 family vacation and $ 750 towards my 2018 40th birthday trip ($125/month). We have $113 from last year’s garage sale earnings that I put towards our vacation fund. I am not putting anything towards this until the play set is bought. The good news is that my friends and I will probably be staying rent-free at one of the ladies’ parents Florida condo for our big trip. Flight, car rental, and spending money will likely be all I need. I hope to use my credit card points to help with my flight.
  8. Spend $500/mo or less on groceries and $100/mo or less on entertainment.  What’s new? I signed up with Platejoy.com to help me plan low-carb healthy meals within the macros I am striving to meet. I’m on my 3rd week of this and we are very happy with the meal options. Our grocery budget is hovering around $150 per week, but I’m going to play with it a couple more weeks and see if it levels out.
  9. Finally roll over one of my 401Ks. Not this week!
  10. Give: 5 hours of volunteer time and $50/mo. We had two Girl Scout meetings in April plus an Earth Day service project cleaning up a park. I also held a meeting for local parents of twice exceptional children that lasted 2.5 hours. This month, we will have our last two Girl Scout meetings of the school year and I am trying to set a date for my next twice-exceptional parents meeting for early June. I donated $27 for the child in Gambia we sponsor from Plan and $42/ to St. Jude’s  in April and May.


  1. Complete my master’s degree! As of this coming Monday, I will have 5 weeks of homework to go! The last day of my program is July 3rd. Graduation is mid-August.
  2. Date night with the husband once per month.  Our 11th anniversary is Saturday, but we won’t have our official celebration until Grandma takes the kids for an overnight at the end of the month.
  3. Read 1 book per month I am  still  working on Organizing Solutions for People With ADHD, but I devoured Prince Charles: The Passions and Paradoxes of an Improbable Life after I read a review for it on the blog Go Fug Yourself.  Homework has started again and I am stressing out, but I have another week off next week and will find time to read. This makes 7-going-on-8 books read out of 12
  4. Monthly me-time with friends.  My bestie and I got pedicures and massages for our birthday adventure in April. This month, I am going out to dinner with my two work buddies.
  5. Complete one freelance submission. Nothing this week. I will schedule it in for July.
  6. Finish the afghan languishing in the closet. I have added on about 4 more inches during my break.
  7. Learn how to set up my sewing machine and complete one simple project. OK, didn’t happen yet. I have a million Girl Scout patches to sew on.
  8. Conquer iced cookies and icing a cake. No cakes planned until the summer.
  9. Drink 64 ounces water daily.  I have hit it 6 out of 7 days this week.
  10. Survive my practicum without eating fast food. We are calling this a 50% success.


  1. Visit family in Cleveland. Sometime this summer. No date set yet.
  2. Weekly 1:1 time with each child. The Little and I always have lots of quality time when the bigs are in school. I did pretty good with the bigs when I was on break, but this week we have had so many medical appointments, our quality time has been in the car.
  3. Sell my son’s old clothes. These are hiding in the closet. I am putting this off this until the summer
  4. Complete kitchen counter clear-off to prepare for a fish tank. Done!
  5. Clear out our study corner hot spot. Ack! This is piling up again!
  6. Get the toddler potty trained! The Toddler, or should I say the soon-to-be-Preschooler, has officially crossed over and is completely in underwear during the day. Even her night-time diapers have been dry 90% of the time. I have put off our monthly Subscribe and Save order of Huggies Pull-ups. This will save us $20-30/month. Success!
  7. Hang pictures in front hallway. Nope. They are now neatly stacked and ready to go though. I hope to have this done by end of summer.
  8. Plant front yard tree. We learned that if we let the old roots decompose for another year, it will be easier to plant the new tree in the same spot next year and require a smaller hole. Bonus: it will save us money this year. We filled in the area and planted a little grass instead. Deferred! New goal: weeding and mulching flower beds, improving the plantings in the beds, replacing all outdoor lights (several are broken), and fixing and painting the mailbox. Weeding and mulching has been done, and a few flowers bought. The mister replaced all outdoor lights and scrubbed off the algae growing on the mailbox and the north-facing side of our house. 
  9. Paint half bath. Not yet. Next on agenda is fixing a leak in the master bath so we are safe to finally drywall the ceiling. Once that is done we paint!
  10. Visit 6 different parks.  Spring is here! We tried three new parks so far, the last one being the state park where we hiked for Girl Scouts. Three of six completed. 


  1. Complete Etsy Essentials and Brilliant Pins courses. Not yet. Maybe next Monday?
  2. Start posting regularly on my Best Geeky Baby Names site. Let’s be real, until my degree is done, this is on the backburner. I have posted on the Facebook page a few times though.
  3. Purchase the virtual real estate for the other four sites I want to create. Not yet. Waiting for a sale.
  4. Incorporate as an LLC. I am putting this off until after my master’s is complete.
  5. Explore affiliates for my sites. I signed up for Share a Sale but need to look at which ones to work with.
  6. Double my daily traffic for Frugal Stepping Stones. I haven’t hit it once this week, but I also haven’t been very active on other blogs that bring traffic. I gave myself permission to relax during my break.
  7. Start a monthly newsletter. Not yet. Also on the agenda for the next two weeks.
  8. Expand my Emergency Menu Plans by one new plan each month this year. Yikes! I am still procrastinating on this.
  9. Do one guest post. Not yet, but I have a few ideas where to reach out. This will happen after my master’sis complete.
  10. Interview one person for the blog. I have someone who is interested in being interviewed. It will be later this year.

How are your goals going?

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