Wednesday, September 30, 2020

September Goals Recap

 September, what a month! Wildfires, heat waves & plenty of other COVID fun. But, good progress was made in some areas, and I'm reminded that flexibility is key, now more than ever. 


  • Stick to the budget - yes, with the exception of groceries. We continue to go over our grocery budget substantially. I need to give some thought to this, particularly for our 2021 budget planning & how we want to adapt. 
  • Pay down our mortgage to the next milestone - absolutely squeaking in on this one, but yes. 
  • No shoes/clothing purchases for me - nothing purchased
  • Make $750 in side hustle - I "only" made $456 in September, thanks to a couple of cancellations at our vacation house due to the wildfires. We charge a very nominal fee to friends to cover expenses, and I apply all of it to our side hustle. 
  • Work through freezer/pantry clean out (10 random items out) - used up two boxes of lasagna noodles (pantry), two containers of chicken broth (freezer) & made a dent in items in our fridge. I'll give it a passing grade. 
  • Set up will/guardianship appointment - Just today I went ahead & got on the list for an appointment. I was so embarrassed to roll this over to October without progress, so the motivation of the goal & check in really helped! I should hear back about referrals in the next few days. 
  • Socially distanced & active family fun, regularly - this is mostly still happening, but I'd like to add in more tennis & walks. The weather & heat have been a bad combination, but we did make time to be in the pool and make dinner together, etc. 
  • Off the computer by 7:30 each evening - mostly a pass, minus a few later nights, thanks to work
  • Have a weekly half hour alone with M - We're still trying for this. COVID has made this such a challenge! :-) 
  • Schedule a call with M's family - No, and I think I'll schedule this for the weekend
  • Two hours a week language practice - I've been barely scraping up the Duolingo time, and need to get back into it. I was making good progress. 
  • Compliment M every day - Still working at this one, and mostly remembering. 
  • Complete one project/day - Yes! Lots of projects have been completed
  • Lose 2 lbs - Yes! I lost exactly two pounds. 
  • Work out every day - I got in 36 workouts this month
  • Track calories & aim for 1440/day - My calories are around 1650, so still a bit higher, but I'm seeing progress. 
  • Complete 1400 minutes of cardio, 10 strength & 5 stretching workouts - 1530, 4, & 4. 
  • Meditate 20 times - I meditated 8 times, this one sort of fell off of my daily to do list
  • Run 15 times - I ran 9 times, which I'm reasonably happy with. The main reason I couldn't run much in September was due to the wildfire smoke. 

  • Do something social at least 2x/month (virtual is okay) - I continue to do a virtual happy hour with friends weekly
  • Volunteer - I donated money this month, but no volunteering
  • Journal 25 times -28 times
  • Improve myself
    • Judge less - always a work in progress
    • Listen more often - always a work in progress
    • Reduce/eliminate swearing - always a work in progress
    • One kind deed/day - while they were a bit irregularly spaced out (some days had several activities, and others had none,) overall I achieved this one & it's made me so much happier to focus on this
  • Read one non-fiction book - No, but I have a book I need to read this month for work

All things told, I'm pretty happy with how I adapted to the month. It was a crazy work month, combined with lots of other factors, and I made the best of most of the challenges. I'm going to keep on keeping on! What about you? Did you set goals for the month? How did you do? 

Monday, September 28, 2020

Using things up

 It was a good weekend of getting things done & using things up. We had some frugal wins, & worked to use up what we had on hand. 

  • Used up 2 containers of chicken broth from the freezer. Woohoo! These were on my long term "use it up" list
  • Likewise, used two open containers of lasagna noodles (leftover from my parents visit way back when) to make lasagna for a friend
  • Turned leftover ricotta cheese into blueberry ricotta muffins
  • Used lots of garden tomatoes & jalapenos to make my favorite pico de gallo recipe
  • Made sure to use up the ripest avocados (plus garden tomatoes) + the leftover cilantro from the pico de gallo to make guacamole (also really like this recipe)
  • I had lunch on both Saturday & Sunday with leftover chicken from Friday night, on top of mixed greens from our produce box, plus thinly sliced garden tomatoes. Yum!
We picked more tomatoes today, so we have more to use up. 

Hope you all had a fabulous weekend!

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Kitchen happenings & other miscellany

 I did get in a run yesterday, and spent time in the kitchen + helping M take apart our old fence (so we could get rid of it), so that took up the majority of the day. I'll need to get busy today to get the house cleaned. I did end up making a few things, and thought I'd share recipes.

  • Used up jalapenos in this feta/jalapeno dip. I did a  mix of roasted & raw jalapenos, as roasting & then scraping out seeds/skins left me with pretty much nothing. The dip is amazing & not too spicy, if you like a moderate amount of heat. I also increased the amount of lemon juice, to offset some of the spice, and give it a creamier texture.
  • I also used up the remainder of my ricotta cheese in these blueberry ricotta muffins. I didn't try any, but M says they are amazing. I made a double batch, to add some to the freezer stash.
  • For dinner, I made one of our favorite Keto friendly recipes, egg roll in a bowl. I increased the amount of vegetables by almost 2x, and added extra hoisin sauce. I play around with the seasoning a bit, to get the right flavor due to the added veggies.
I also made a "happy hour" while we played cards, although we were a bit more rushed than I'd prefer, given the fence project. I made a caprese salad, with tomatoes & basil from the garden, put out the feta/jalapeno dip, toasted leftover bread from Friday night's dinner, set out a variety of cheese & vegetables. Sam asked for taquitos, so I baked a few of those. It was a huge spread! We all ate a light sized dinner after that.

Nick made another batch of his delicious chocolate chip cookies, so we dropped some off & surprised a friend & her family. 

Here's what's on the list for today:

  • Run
  • Make crockpot carnitas
  • Make pico de gallo & gaucamole
  • Clean the kitchen
  • Vacuum
  • Clean the bathrooms
  • With the boys, clean the ash off of the solar panels
  • Call my parents
  • List a new item on eBay
What about you? What are you up to today? 

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Saturday Happenings

 It's a lovely morning here, and I'm drinking coffee & gearing myself up to go for a run today. Here's hoping I get out before it gets too warm. 

The boys will be biking to soccer "pod" practice this morning, as it's at a nearby park. I'm grateful their soccer club is able to find safe/COVID compliant ways for them to get together. It's nothing like standard soccer (smaller groups, masks, no contact of any kind), but it's physical activity that gets them out of the house, they get exercise, and they also get to see friends. It's as close to normal as we will get right now.

Our county is very close to moving to the next phase of re-opening (likely next week), but both kids schools have announced that we are doing full distance learning until at least January. It was expected, and I believe to be the safest option, but still hard to hear & imagine. I'm hopeful that Sam's high school will be able to explore more small group activity, while the weather is good enough to allow for outdoor social distancing. Fingers crossed. Starting high school remotely has been pretty challenging. Nick's situation is a bit different, as he's in 8th grade, so it's an extension of a school experience he's already familiar with. Regardless, I have a huge amount of appreciation for the challenges all of the teachers and administrators are facing as they try to balance such a difficult situation with many compounding factors. 

A friend's father passed away yesterday, so I made dinner & dropped off lasagna, salad, bread, a card & cookies (handmade by Nick) last night. Nick's cookies were so bakery like & fabulous that I offered to pay him $5 to make another batch. He's saving up for something he wants (a bike part?) & it's much cheaper than the bakery option I was considering as a gift for another friend.

Here's what I'm up to today:

  • Run
  • Clean the house (vacuum, bathrooms, kitchen)
  • Decide what to do with planter boxes
  • Make feta/jalapeno dip
  • Make eggroll in a bowl
  • Decide on menu plan for the week
  • Shopping list
  • Costco
  • Finish putting away items leftover from "junk drawer" clean out
  • Journal
  • Do my posture exercises
  • List an item on eBay
  • Package/walk to drop off box to mail eBay sale (a book I've had listed for months)
  • Make pico de gallo
  • Make guacamole
And with that, here's my menu plan for the week:

  • Friday - we had spicy chicken, coleslaw & bread. The chicken came from the store, and was an easy option after I'd made a lasagna for a friend. 
  • Saturday - we're going to have a happy hour first, as I've promised the boys. That will be bread, sliced fruit, nuts & cheese, & play cards together. We'll have egg roll in a bowl (smaller portions, given happy hour) afterward.
  • Sunday - carnitas in the crockpot, with pico de gallo & guacamole
  • Monday - spicy chicken on salads
  • Tuesday - leftover egg roll in a bowl
  • Wednesday - leftover carnitas
  • Thursday - burgers (freezer) + salad
  • Friday - TBD
What about you? What are you up to today? What's on the menu for the week?

Friday, September 25, 2020

Frugal Friday

It was a really long week at work (7 am meeting starts to accommodate EMEA all week, plus lots of other meeting fun), but we survived & had a few frugal wins to report.  

Saving on things we buy

  • While I prefer borrowing books (that will save you money every time over buying), I am very much over doing all of my reading on my laptop. Particularly after a super long work day, I'm just not in a place where I want to head off to bed, with my laptop, and read a book. It's also harder for me to tell when the kids are actually reading, vs watching squirrel videos on YouTube. So, we hit up the Friends of the Library sale, and bought real paper books. We'll read them, and then donate or sell what's left. I'm putting this under the "saving on things we buy" category, as the library has exceptionally low prices during their sales. 
  • Walked to the grocery store to pick up a Friday Freebie.

Earning money

  • Ebay sales picked up this week, & I sold more in a day than I had the previous week or so. I sold:
    • Three books
    • Another Seahawks shirt (you can tell that the season has begun again)
    • Three pair of soccer shorts the boys outgrew before wearing  (no season due to COVID)
    • A workout jacket I don't care for & never wear
    • A pair of jogger style pants my son outgrew
    • A men's workout shirt I discovered at our vacation house. No one claimed it in the family, so off to a new home it went
  • I also sold a pogo stick & a bicycle bag (attaches the front handle bars) on Facebook marketplace. Junk out of the garage, money in.

Avoiding spending

  • Used a free referral for a meal service to try it out. It's not something we will order in the future (or,  rarely, perhaps), but we received six meals worth & the food has been tasty so far. As a bonus, Nick has loved the easiness of recipe prep, and turned out some great meals. He's been so excited to cook each night, and has been able to do all of the cooking without help. 
  • Used up quite a bit of garden produce:
    • Used tomatoes in plenty of dishes (pico de gallo, salad, topping almost everything)
    • Made salsa verde with jalapenos
    • Used mint in drinks
  • We've taken exceptionally good care of our leased electric car. Note that a lease is not typically a frugal win, but we were concerned about buying with battery life still a bit TBD when we were looking for a car. We've loved the car, and our lease is coming up in October. Because we've taken such great care of the car, we will only owe $85 for a wheel scratch that we both deny putting on the car. ;-) We are way under miles, so will drive the car as much as we need to until we turn it in. We also will not be getting a replacement, as neither of us has a commute for work right now. We ran over a caulking gun, which shot caulk all over our car. I can't describe how difficult it was to remove. It took six hours of collective effort, but the caulk is now removed from the car, and the car is (close to) ready to be returned. I was very unhappy with the extra effort, but it's done now. 

Doing things for others. It was a slow week, as I got caught up in work, but I love putting this on my "to do" list, because it jogs my memory & makes me give some thought to how I can help others. It's not that I wouldn't want to do this all the time, it's just that I sometimes get overrun with "life". The reminders have really helped, & inspired me!

  • Sent lots of herbs & jalapenos home with my sister
  • Helped a neighbor with a leaky sprinkler
  • Helped a colleague with a work task
  • Bought a gift for a friend
  • Donated money to a few causes. I'm enjoying my new priority of smaller, unexpected giving (we have a larger, monthly donation fund that is automatically deployed via our paychecks.)
  • Set out lots of herbs & jalapenos for neighbors. I love the sharing! One neighbor gave me lemons, which was lovely
  • Requested matches to my smaller charitable donations through work. I sometimes forget, as the ones I make through my paycheck are matched automatically. I caught up on the donation matching (doubling the impact for the charities) & also added some volunteer hours, as my employer makes a cash donation for our hours volunteered.
What about you? Any kind things for others? Inspire us! We could all use as much "feel goods" right now as possible. Any frugal wins?

And, I'm looking forward to the huge (baseball sized) tomatoes that are so close to ripening on one of my plants. Finally, and they are all close to being ready - I think there are 8 of them. So excited to think about how to use them up. 

Friday, September 18, 2020

Frugal Friday


I knew going into this week that it would be wild, given my work commitments. I have two major work streams colliding, and several 12 hour meeting days. I've been getting up at 4:30 to work, which is pretty unusual for me. Hopefully things will be back to normal soon. 

Saving on things we buy

  • Found a good deal on shampoo at Costco. I have a very dry scalp due to a medical condition, so need a dry scalp shampoo. It can get pricey. I bought two large containers, which should last for a while.

Earning money

  • Continued to list & selling things on eBay, including:
    • Two workout shirts
    • A work shirt. I love the color/pattern, but it makes me look very top heavy due to the draping
    • A Seahawks shirt

Avoiding spending

  • Found two lemons while on my walk. We had a big wind storm a week or so ago, and I'm guessing they came off of a neighbor's tree
  • Almost bought fresh green beans for a curry dish, but remembered that I'd chopped & froze some that came in a produce box a few weeks ago
  • Processed four coconuts to make coconut milk & coconut water for use in recipes

The basics. It's boring to describe these, but each week we line dry our clothes (minus socks, towels & underwear), we prep/cook on weekends & eat leftovers during the work week, we charge our electric car for free at work, moderate our heat/AC consumption, etc.

What about you? Any frugal wins to report? I'm hoping the air quality continues to improve! In addition to the macro issue of keeping others safe from fires, from my own smaller perspective, it's such a mood boost to be able to be outside, particularly during COVID. I love getting out between meetings for a run or walk. 

Saturday, September 12, 2020

I'm usually a very positive person

 But, I'll be honest...this week was really, really hard for me. We are on day 27 of the low air quality (or, 28?) Getting outside & being active is such an important of my well being, particularly during COVID. I've been getting creative and watching for drops in the AQI, and have gotten outside when I can. My throat bothers me, and my nose has been running almost constantly. I have two very high energy teen boys, trapped inside, with no physical outlets.

I'll get back to my regular schedule, but I also think it's important to call out when things are a struggle. And oh my, were they ever this week. 

Last night I ordered a pizza, we played rummy & I drank a glass of wine after work. It was just what I needed to get out of my own head, and enjoy a bit of a wind down after work. 

As for today, I need to double down on my own efforts to stay well right now, and remind myself of all the positives in my life. Staying busy always helps! 

Here's what's on my list:

  1. Menu plan
  2. Go to the store
  3. Maybe go to Trader Joes, depending on the line
  4. Make something with the coconut milk in the fridge
  5. Go through the one closet I haven't cleaned out yet
  6. Journal (I write three things I'm grateful for every day)
  7. Posture challenge
  8. List an item on Ebay
  9. Do an indoor HIIT workout
  10. Go for a walk? Weather dependent, should the AQI improve
  11. Think of something kind I can do for someone in my life
  12. Read some sort of fun/immersive book
And with that, I'll tackle the menu plan:

Friday - takeout pizza. Such an indulgence, and so yummy
Saturday - tacos & pico de gallo, maybe guacamole with homemade tortilla chips
Sunday - I'll try a new chicken curry recipe
Monday - taco salads
Tuesday - burgers (from the freezer)
Wednesday - leftover chicken curry & rice
Thursday -  pasta & meatballs
Friday - TBD

What are you making for dinner this week? 

Friday, September 11, 2020

Frugal Friday

It's been a hard week, with the continued wildfires, day 25 of smoke & low air quality, and the wildfires on the Oregon coast (amongst other west coast locations). I'm focused on the few positive things I can do each day to keep myself on track & as well as possible.

Frugal things this week.... 

Saving money on things we buy

  • I picked up four ears of corn for $.88 at the store, for a Labor Day weekend barbecue
  • Earned a $5 Walgreens rebate, and another $4/12 purchase, so used them both to pick up a few toiletries over the weekend

Earning money

  • Continued to list & sell things on eBay
    • A sweater that is very workish, and a little to warm to wear most of the time in our climate. 
    • A fancy dress that I haven't worn in a few years. As I've moved out of my 30s, I don't see myself wearing it again
    • A new with tags beanie that I purchased on the Oregon coast  for resale. I bought quite a few, and the rest sold during winter. This one has lingered for 9 months, so I accepted an offer for a couple of bucks what I paid for it, and now it's out of the house. 
    • A pair of pants that Nick outgrew before wearing
    • A pair of soccer cleats (they grew with almost no soccer season, due to COVID)
  • Sold our microwave/convection oven. I wanted to donate both the fridge & oven to people displaced from the wildfires (or, another good charitable option), but found it quite hard to do. Instead, sold via FB & donated the money instead

Avoiding spending

  • Bought a couple of pair of running shoes, and returned the pair that were my second choice (after trying them on). On an impulse, I also ordered a hoodie. When it arrived, it was fine, but nothing special. Sent it back with the shoes. I'm taking a very close eye at my entire closet, and don't want/need things that aren't a top choice. 
  • Used strawberries that were about to go bad in muffins, then froze the few extra. The kids make protein fruit smoothies every morning for breakfast, so I can always toss extra berries in the frozen fruit bag, if I catch them in time

Things for others this week:
  • Dropped off toiletries to a neighbor who was collecting items for a homeless shelter
  • Made a donation
  • Helped a friend with her resume
  • Referred another friend for a job
  • Emailed our neighborhood alias about our garden bounty & set out jalapenos for others to share
  • Bought lunch & drinks for contractors on a hot day, when we had to pick up food anyway (kitchen out of commission) 
  • Set out plastic cups, plastic silverware & paper plates on our driveway with a "free" sign, now that we're done with our construction. Neighbors happily picked them up, as they were picking up jalapenos. I hate waste & clutter & this freed up so much space in our pantry! Also, I don't like to use single use items, but a remodel is a special case & wanted to pay it forward in case others have a similar situation. One elderly neighbor told me that they've been using these types of items to have socially distanced get togethers with her daughter, which is awesome. I know she's lonely, & I'm happy to make it easier to spend a bit of time together during these challenging moments. 
Any frugal wins to report this week?

Monday, September 7, 2020

It's a coconut kind of day

 We dropped off Nick's homemade brownies at a friend's house yesterday, and she happened to be receiving a produce delivery at the time. She insisted on giving us four fresh coconuts. I had no idea what to do with them, or how to use them, so set about figuring that out today. Whew! 

It was no small amount of work, but we now have coconut water & coconut milk. I didn't have a good sieve/milk bag for the coconut milk, so didn't end up with any pulp. But, what a fun (and tiring adventure) & new skill to learn. I used both a mallet & a screwdriver for the first time in the kitchen. ;-)

The boys will happily drink coconut water after their runs, and I'll use the coconut milk in a curry recipe. I kept one (the size of a standard coconut milk can) in the fridge & froze two extras for another time. 

Other than the coconut project, I did manage a HIIT workout (inside, still super hot), made zucchini muffins using two zucchinis from the produce drawer + the zucchini I froze from our ONE lonely garden zucchini). I worked in the yard & swept a bit, but it's too hot to do much else. 

Otherwise, I plan to read my book & relax with M today. Should be nice. I'm in for a wild & crazy work week ahead, so best enjoy while I can.

I think M is grilling steak & corn tonight, which sounds delish. Nick keeps threatening to make homemade ice cream. I really need it to cool off, so I can get back to running. With all of this delicious eating, I'm going to have tight pants soon.

Hope you are all having a lovely day!

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Long weekend Sunday

 It's amazing how having Monday off changes the "feel" of Sunday. Yay for long weekends! The heat is continuing today, unfortunately, so I'll be mostly focused on inside tasks. 

Here's what's on the to do list today:

  • Make muffins
  • Work out (probably indoor, unless the kids want to go to the track tonight, after it cools a bit)
  • Laundry
  • Journal
  • Meditate
  • Posture stretches
  • Duolingo
  • Decide on plan & budget for planter boxes
  • Work with M on remaining house projects, priorities & budget
  • Organize hall closet, pantry & garage pantry
  • Deal with M's old suits (too big not relevant for current job)
  • List our digital camera on eBay
I think M is making chicken tonight, which will have with corn & rice. Yum!

What about you? What are you up to today? 

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Saturday & menu planning + kitchen photo

 It's so nice to have a bonus day! Yesterday felt like a Saturday & I managed to get a tremendous amount done. All kitchen boxes are unpacked (8 boxes), and the cupboard are all cleaned out. We still have things to do (one area had incorrectly sized covers, so the cabinet maker has to re-order & come back). But, things are close to done! 

A few people had asked for photos, so here's one view of the remodeled kitchen. :-) Our main goal was to rebuild the cabinets (they were falling apart, and you couldn't open them without the cabinet falling off the railing) & to update the counter tops. When we did that, we also upgraded the appliances, added the trim at the top, and modernized the hood/range. I drink a lot of water, & having a kitchen with a built in water dispenser & ice maker is such a treat!

It's Saturday, so I also need to come up with our menu plan for the week. Last week was a challenge, as there were various & unexpected times that the kitchen was "closed" due to contractors getting things done. That led to three takeout meals, which is more than we'd done during the entire previous remodel. Oh well, home stretch. 

Menu plan for the week:

Saturday - grilled burgers, corn & mozzarella/basil/nectarine salad
Sunday - grilled chicken & rice
Monday - steak with chimichurri sauce, corn
Tuesday - leftover burgers & mozz salad
Wednesday - leftover chicken & rice
Thursday - a random assortment of leftovers. Or, as a backup plan, kebabs from the freezer
Friday - pizza (cauliflower crust for adults), regular crust for kids

What else am I doing today:
  • Menu plan
  • Costco
  • Grocery store
  • Work out
  • Going for a walk
  • Posture exercise
  • Sell a microwave
  • Organize hall closet
  • Organize pantry (both got chaotic during the remodel)
  • Vacuum
  • Laundry
  • Sheets/beds
  • Bathrooms
  • Begin garage clean out
  • List an item on eBay
  • Inflate rafts, float in the pool, potentially with a mojito ;-) 
Some of those items may spill over to tomorrow. That's the beauty of a long weekend! What about you? What are you making this weekend? What are you up to today?


Friday, September 4, 2020

Frugal Friday


Happy Friday, everyone! There were a few good wins this week. I have today off work, so I'll be hiking with a friend & then hopefully unpacking the kitchen (assuming the cabinets get finished). There was no kitchen again unexpectedly yesterday, so we had takeout for both lunch & dinner. My stomach is displeased by this turn of events! I have some work to do today to get back to my normal eating patterns.  

Here's a list of a few frugal wins.

Saving on things we buy

  • I had expiring Walgreen rewards, so checked the ad & found a few things we could use for our toiletry stockpile. Redeemed a $4 rewards, and earned $5 in new rewards. 
  • Used 3 x $1 peelie coupons on various items I purchased this week
  • Discovered a $25 off a $25.01 purchase coupon in my eBay messages. Used it to pick up my favorite (but pricey) lip balm. I went with a seller that was slightly more expensive, as it put me right at the cost for the transaction. With tax, I paid $3.34. What a deal!
  • Received a free head of cabbage with my produce box

Earning money

  • Continued daily listing of eBay items. Still slow sales, but sold:
    • An old Japanese fishing float (previously my grandfather's, that no one else in the family wanted)
    • A sports bra that didn't fit properly (yes, this is a common theme with my eBay sales). I have tried many sports bras for running, and few actually work. It's hard to know until you try them out in person, which generally makes them ineligible for returns.
    • A summer dress I've had for 10+ years, and no longer fits properly
    • A pair of workout pants I don't like
    • A wine chiller
    • A kids book
    •  A necklace
  • Found $.01 on the ground ;-) 
  • Sold our old fridge for $40. We are close to having enough remodel stuff out of the garage so we can park the car in the garage. 

Avoiding spending 

  • Filed a credit card dispute for an item we purchased but never received, and heard back the dispute was resolved in our favor. $15 back. 
How did your week go? Any frugal wins to report?

Thursday, September 3, 2020

September Goals

 I'm a bit behind with my goal setting, but here we go September!


  • Stick to the budget
  • Pay down our mortgage to the next milestone
  • No shoes/clothing purchases for me
  • Make $750 in side hustle
  • Work through freezer/pantry clean out (10 random items out)
  • Set up will/guardianship appointment
  • Socially distanced & active family fun, regularly
  • Off the computer by 7:30 each evening 
  • Have a weekly half hour alone with M
  • Schedule a call with M's family
  • Two hours a day language practice
  • Compliment M every day
  • Complete one project/day
  • Lose 2 lbs
  • Work out every day
  • Track calories & aim for 1440/day
  • Complete 1400 minutes of cardio, 10 strength & 5 stretching workouts
  • Meditate 20 times
  • Run 15 times

  • Do something social at least 2x/month (virtual is okay)
  • Volunteer
  • Journal 25 times
  • Improve myself
    • Judge less
    • Listen more often
    • Reduce/eliminate swearing
    • One kind deed/day
  • Read one non-fiction book

That should keep me plenty busy. What about you? What goals do you have for September?

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

August Goals Recap

 Wow, what a month! Back to online school, a heat wave, wildfires, and... the pandemic. I'm not sad to see the end of August. Here's how I did on my monthly goals.


  • Stick to the budget - we were over in groceries & dining out, under elsewhere in our monthly spend. We've continued to spend in our yearly budget (our larger irregular expenses) for house projects. 
  • Pay down our mortgage to the next milestone - Yes!
  • No clothing/shoes purchases for me - I bought two pair of running shoes, as mine are very warn down. Running shoes are an exemption to this, as long as I need them. I also listed a bunch of things I don't wear on eBay & donated others, so still making progress on cleaning things out. 
  • Make $750 in side hustle - crushed this, with $1390
  • Work through freezer/pantry clean out (10 random items out) - freezer clean out is basically done, thanks to not having a kitchen
  • Call to set up will/guardianship appointment - no, and forgot about this! I should maybe look at my goals more often. ;-) I'll carryover to next month.
  • Take the boys to one socially distanced activity per day - yes, done
  • Off the computer by 7:30 each evening (not counting reading) - mostly, yes.
  • Have a weekly half hour alone with M - this fell apart during the remodel, and we need it back!
  • Schedule a call with M's family - no, and I need to make this happen
  • Two hours of practicing Spanish or Farsi - I've done daily Spanish practice
  • Make revised summer plans - done
  • Compliment M every day - doing okay on this
  • Build a plan for the new school year, successful start to online learning - considering as much as a success as I can hope for
  • Complete one project/day (taking advantage of WFH) - most days, yes


  • Lose 2 lbs - maintained my weight, no loss
  • Work out every day - missed one day, but had a few double days, ending with 34 workouts
  • Track calories & aim for 1440/day. - I brought my calories down ~70/day from last month, but still in the 1600 range
  • Complete 1400 minutes of cardio, 10 strength & 5 stretching workouts - 1345, 4 & 5, respectively
  • Meditate 20 times - 12 times
  • Run 15 times - 11 times


  • Do something social at least 2x/month (virtually is okay) - yes, I'm getting in more of this thanks to socially distanced hikes
  • Volunteer - yes, I volunteered at the school for book packaging & distribution
  • Journal 25 times - every day, so 31 times
  • Improve myself:
    • Judge less - trying
    • Listen more often - working on it
    • Reduce/eliminate swearing - a little improvement
    • One kind deed a day - reasonably consistent
    • Reduce use of phrase "guys" at work - improvement
  • Read one non-fiction book - nope 

Overall, I would deem it a fairly successful month. I set high goals in order to push myself, so my expectation is not that I'm achieving them. If I'm consistently achieving all of my goals, it's a good time to set the bar higher! 

How about you? Did you set goals for August? How did you do?