I love looking back over the year to see where I’ve been and how I’ve grown. My word-of-the-year for 2018 was “enrich” and I think I enriched myself and added value to other’s lives this year, so I am pleased!
Here’s a look at my goals for 2018 including which ones I met (and which I didn’t):
Make Travel A Priority
I’ve learned that nothing enriches my life as much as travel. I had a goal to visit at least three new places this year and here’s how that went:
- January: My daughter and I went to South Florida for the first time and got to check out Miami, Key Largo, and the Everglades _ loved the area and can’t wait to get back. I summarized our SUPER affordable trip in this post and shared my suggestions for Five Affordable South Florida Activities for Families in this post.
- February: I went on a quick solo trip to Disney and I camped at Fort Wilderness, ate at The Polite Pig (check out my review here), and checked out the International Festival of the Arts at Epcot (post coming soon to The Budget Mouse)
- March: I went BACK to Florida in March with my daughter to meet up with my aunt and uncle on their first visit to Animal Kingdom Lodge, check out a few off-property resorts near Disney, and take my daughter to Weekie Wachie Springs to see the real live mermaids there.
- April: We went to Myrtle Beach for the first time and had a blast – here is my post about how to find a cheap place to stay at Myrtle Beach and avoid tourist traps.
- June: Me, my husband, and our daughter all flew to Boston for my brother’s high school graduation and to visit my family in Rockport.
- July: I went with my daughter and mother-in-law to Disney World for the opening of Toy Story Land (get all of my insider tips here). We rented DVC points for a stay at Saratoga Springs and got an amazing deal on two nights at Port Orleans Riverside on Hotwire.
- July: We finally made it to Great Smoky Mountain National Park and camped there as a family for three nights. We had a blast and I shared what I learned about camping in the Great Smoky Mountains here.
- August: We drove to West Virginia and Ohio to spend a week visiting family and friends.
- September: A family rendezvous at Disney World (with my sister, her kiddos, and my dad) for Epcot Food & Wine Festival (see the best things we ate at the festival here) turned into an extended stay thanks to the hurricane here in NC. We got to attend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party and it ended up being my favorite new thing I’ve done at Disney in years!
- November: We made a long overdue trip out west to visit friends in Blue Diamond, NV right outside of Las Vegas. I went on side trips to Disneyland and San Francisco with my daughter and had an absolute blast. I just shared my tips for visiting Muir Woods in this post and there is more from that trip coming soon!
That was a LOT of traveling for our little family in 2018! The new places I visited included Miami, Key Largo, Myrtle Beach, Great Smoky Mountain National Park, Disneyland, and San Francisco.
I am continuing my tradition of visiting three new places in 2019 and have some pretty exciting destinations on the short list.
Make $2500/Month From the Blog & Enrich My Readers’ Lives
I am happy to report that I reached and surpassed my income goal every month from March onward.
I could not be more thrilled about making a living doing this. It is not lost on me how lucky I am to have found something that I absolutely love and that allows me to spend time with my family and travel to boot. Thanks so much for reading and sharing and clicking the links on my site to keep this show running!
I truly hope I have enriched your life in some way with my two sites, Facebook group, and podcast. My goal is to help you live well, save money, ditch debt, and travel more, and I’m going to keep trying to do that in 2019.
Enrich my relationship with my husband
We have struggled to make time for each other in the past and we went on several dates this year. I know some people do monthly date nights with their husband, but it was an accomplishment to go out together more than just on our anniversary!
I also have made a daily practice of being grateful for my spouse and our life together (even when it is rough and I don’t feel grateful at all) since it is so easy to take him for granted. We have had rough patches, as every marriage has, and I’ve gotten really discouraged at points.
The book The Empowered Wife by Laura Doyle helped me gain a new perspective on marriage that I feel has enriched our lives together. While I didn’t agree with everything in the book, I think it helped me ask for what I want and overall have a better relationship with my spouse.
Give my daughter 60 minutes of undivided attention daily
I work from home and have found in the past that I am always multitasking in some way when I’m with my daughter. I wanted to make it a practice to give her an hour of undivided attention each day.
To some that might not sound like much at all, but to others, it might seem like a lot. I have found that if I can give her some time first thing when she wakes up I am off to a good start, so I have incorporated that into our daily routine.
Since I don’t measure the time I spend with my daughter each day I can’t give a totally accurate appraisal, but I feel like some days I do this and other days I fall way short. I’d love to establish more of a homeschooling routine in the coming year that would guarantee she gets her time each day, so I’m planning on making that a goal in 2019.
Save 10% for taxes
Since I am self-employed I have to put money aside for taxes myself. I am happy to report that I saved over 10% AND that we will owe less than due to changes in the tax code. So I will end up with a tax money surplus which I will put toward paying down debt.
Pay down $4,000 in debt
Well, this is the one goal that I decidedly did NOT meet. I have written before about the lingering debt I can’t seem to get rid of from my dental work and house emergency repairs. Well, it is still there.
I made some (mostly) conscious choices to put money back into my business to help it grow even more. I have been VERY miserly about spending money on my business in the past and I saw that I needed to change to see more growth in the future.
So instead of paying down that debt, I reinvested it into growing my business. I plan to launch a series of course in 2019 that I hope will help people tremendously and help grow my income.
This income will be put toward my new goal of paying off ALL of my consumer debt by 2020. I plan to document my journey to pay this debt off on Instagram with the hastag #debtfreeby2020 I hope you will join me in my journey! And thanks for not giving up on me as I struggle with this debt.
How did your goals go this year? Did you pick a word of the year? I already have mine picked for 2019 and can’t wait to share it with you soon. Please leave a comment below and tell me how it’s going!