Saturday, December 31, 2022

2023 Goals

 2023 promises to be an interesting year. I'm planning to leave my job at the end of May (slightly extended due to some comp changes at our company). I'll likely use vacation days to get through the end of June. I'll enjoy the summer, and then think about what the future holds. We also have quite a bit of travel planned in 2023: Dubai with M's family, my sister's 50th birthday trip, and potentially some college tours. 2023 will also be the year that Sam starts applying to colleges, and Nick kicks off the end of high school/college searches. I can already tell that we will be busy!

I'm planning to have some yearly goals, but keep things flexible for monthly goals, particularly as I expect to try things out, and do some experimenting, after I leave work. I want to encourage myself to experiment, and not be overly rigid. We'll see how I do, as, after all, I really do love a plan. :-) 

Here are my draft goals for 2023:


  • Stick to our yearly budget (track monthly)
  • Monthly freezer/pantry challenges
  • Plan & execute "leave work" budget
  • Figure out college funding plans
  • Earn $1500 side hustle
  • Use travel credits/status wisely


  • Plan one fun activity/month with the kids
  • Help the boys with "life" stuff (license, college, SATs, etc)
  • Have two dates with M per month
  • Schedule quarterly calls with M's family, and/or send videos/pics
  • Lose 10 lbs
  • Track calories, eat a balanced diet
  • Close rings 330 days
  • Make the most of my fitness options (work, gym)
  • Stay on top of my health (doctor's appointments, regular check ups, etc)


  • Do something social with friends at least once/month
  • Invest time in my volunteer roles
  • Experiment with fun activities
  • Continue to make kind deeds/"for others" a regular part of my life
  • Enjoy the first few months of not working

What about you? What are you hoping to accomplish in 2023?

Friday, December 30, 2022

Frugal Friday

 We did a very small grocery stop between trips, so there was a lot of eating out of the freezer. I'm always grateful for an opportunity to use what we have. Here's what we've been up to this week.

Saving on things we buy

  • I pre-booked airport parking, way back in November. Pre-booking saves 20-30%, and the lot was sold out for the holidays as it got closer. Parking at the airport is now around $30-40 cheaper than two round trip Uber rides, so parking there pays off. We drive the electric car, so no additional gas costs. 
  • Used a $1 off a bagged salad coupon, to offset the cost a bit. Costco was out of pretty much all veggies when we did a fill in shop, so we picked up a few bagged salads instead. Not our preferred way, but I'm trying to eat more veggies, post holiday!

Earning money

  • I sold a fire table for $30 

Avoiding spending

  • We packed snacks & water, and managed to avoid buying any food/drinks on our return flight home from my parents house. 
  • Nick & I were upgraded to first class on the outbound flight, & got free food & drinks, and premium economy (free drinks) on the way home. Our reservation had been split in two, to take advantage of a companion fare. Nick was the lucky winner who was attached to my reservation, as I had status. We would have traded off between the kids, but M & Sam were in the exit row, and Nick is not quite old enough to sit there yet. 

Eating what we have

  • My mom & I made several leftover meals, out of the holiday food. We had prime rib sliders for a second night (it was so delicious), & I wish I could have brought home my favorite soup that my dad made on Christmas night. Yum! I've tried to replicate his recipe, and can never quite get it. 
  • We were tempted to stop for lunch on the way home from the airport, as three of us hadn't eaten breakfast, and had trail mix and a few Christmas cookies (meal of champions) for the day. We waited until we got home, & I rustled up some chicken sandwiches & M made gyozos, for linner. 
  • Made pumpkin soup out of the pumpkins I got for free after Halloween, and roasted/pureed, & we had that for part of a dinner.
  • Ate chicken alfredo (freezer leftovers) for another meal, as well as chicken fajitas (yet another freezer leftover) for dinner.
  • I ate leftovers for all of my breakfast & lunches, to avoid any waste before we left for our ski trip.  

For others

  • Helped out a coworker, who was on vacation
What about you? Any wins to share for the week?

Thursday, December 29, 2022

Thursday Things

I got up really early & started working this morning, to connect with my manager in Europe. I then went to an early workout class (woohoo for getting it done, right away) & now I'm back, working on my to do list for today.

Here's what I need to accomplish:

  • Complete a bunch of work tasks
  • Pick up Nick from soccer practice (likely Sam)
  • Figure out if the second half of Nick's tennis clinic is happening (first half got rained out)
  • Pack for myself for our ski trip
  • Pack for the teens (aka as supervising what they plan to pack, & ensuring they bring critical items, like underwear)
  • Laundry
  • Finish Costco list for ski trip
  • Pack all non-refrigerated items
  • Figure out a dinner plan. We didn't buy many groceries, so we've been eating out of the freezer this week. I defrosted what looks to be leftover fajitas, so I need to 1) ensure there's enough for at least 3 diners, and 2) make sure we have tortillas.
  • Run to the store
What about you? Are you working this week? Any fun plans through the end of the year? 

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

Workout Wednesday

Sending good thoughts to those of you who have recent losses in your family. I'm so very sorry, & you are in my thoughts. 

It was not the most productive week of workouts, mostly because the gym I'd planned to go to in Portland (my sister & I had planned to meet up for a couple of classes) was closed for two days due to an ice storm. 

Here's what I managed to get up to.


  • Monday - Orange Theory class
  • Tuesday - Orange Theory class
  • Wednesday - no workout
  • Thursday - Orange Theory class
  • Friday - 1 hour of the elliptical, at the hotel gym
  • Saturday - 1 hour of the elliptical, at the hotel gym
  • Sunday - 4 mile walk with the family
Eating was all over the place, with the holidays. What about you? Have you been able to stick with your workout or health & fitness plans?

Monday, December 26, 2022

Menu Plan Monday

 This is the holiday edition! I hope everyone is ready for a lovely holiday season, whatever that means to you.

  • Friday - out, for me & M, as the boys are with my parents
  • Saturday - Christmas Eve. Prime rib, appetizers & cookies. Plus, pomegranate martinis
  • Sunday - Christmas. Soup & salad, plus appetizers. There's no shortage of food!
  • Monday - leftovers from Christmas Eve & Christmas day
  • Tuesday - TBD, as we will be flying back from my parents house
  • Wednesday - chicken curry + rice
  • Thursday - tacos
  • Friday - we will be getting to Tahoe late, so likely pizza & salad
What about you? What's on your menu this week?

Friday, December 23, 2022

Frugal Friday

There was a lot of "using it up" this week, as we tried to get everything out of the fridge & make progress with our freezer, ahead of our trip. 

Saving on things we buy

  • Uploaded receipts to Fetch, shopped on double points weekend, and searched for matching iBotta offers for things we needed, but didn't find any. I'd say this is pretty typical for us, for iBotta. 
  • I'd planned to use a coupon off of some sparkling drinks (flavored carbonated water), as a festive holiday treat for the kids. Another brand was actually cheaper on regular sale, so went that direction instead of using the coupon. 

Earning money

  • I finally sold the last piece of my "rearranged furniture" that we didn't need. It took longer than I wanted, but it was a huge piece & awkward/hard for other people to transport & move. I made $150, and I'm glad to get it out of our entryway :-) 
  • Sam was selected for a youth rec soccer coach position, which he will start in January, to fill in the gap before club soccer starts back up. 
  • Got back $25 from a class action lawsuit I was a part of

Avoiding spending

  • Avoided any last minute "extra" purchases, despite being mightily tempted!
  • We are using hotel points for two nights at a hotel, total cost is $4, for various taxes. 

Eating what we have

  • Defrosted soup from the freezer for a couple of lunches, plus another soup to accompany a small piece of salmon for dinner. 
  • Ate kid lunch leftovers, for a few "brunch" meals. Depending on what time I come back from my workout class, I have brunch vs lunch, as I don't like to eat before I work out. In one case, it was a leftover taquito, some chicken, and rice. In another, it was part of a sandwich, & more chicken. Flexibility is important, when reducing food waste!
  • Finished off a package of buns, by planning to have burgers for dinner one night. The buns were originally purchased for a pulled pork recipe. 
  • Made cranberry muffins, using lots of fridge items: the last of Thanksgiving fresh cranberries + homemade sauce, the end of a container of yogurt, orange juice in place of orange zest, and some oat milk I needed to use up. It was nice to clear a few items out of the fridge, and get the muffins into the freezer. No waste!
  • Our meal plan consisted of two previously prepped freezer meals (enchiladas, and enchilada rice). The enchiladas were part of my "use it up in December" freezer challenge - a meal my parents left behind when they were visiting. 
  • I used zucchini & bananas from the freezer to make other muffins. 

For others

  • Gave away stuff on BN, so others could use them as holiday gifts (all new items). And, a bunch of other items we weren't using (not new). 
  • Bought a bunch off of an Amazon wishlist, for a holiday family adoption event a friend is running
  • Donated money & time to the school, for a fundraiser
What about you? Any wins to share?

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Workout Thursday

 Work has been nuts over the past week, so I'm way behind. I'll keep this short today, but here are my workouts for the last week:

  • Monday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Tuesday -  Orange Theory workout class
  • Wednesday - no workout. Super early meetings with India, and late meetings with APAC
  • Thursday - 30 minute spin class, plus 20 minutes on the elliptical
  • Friday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Saturday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Sunday - Orange Theory workout class

This time of year is typically pretty hard for my workout schedule, so overall, I'm pleased! I still need to reduce snacking, of course. ;-) 

What about you? Are you getting in any workouts?

Monday, December 19, 2022

Menu Plan Monday

I'm looking forward to wrapping up work this week, and enjoying some time off. I'll be on call a few of the days, as well as working a few days when we are back from my parents. But, it will be nice to get a bit of a break. 

Here's what's on our menu: 

  • Friday - We had an appetizer style dinner. I made coconut shrimp, and we had crackers & cheese. Sam, M & I enjoyed that. Nick got home late, and had a chicken sandwich. 
  • Saturday - orange chicken + fried rice
  • Sunday - barbecued burgers
  • Monday - chicken skillet rice (freezer)
  • Tuesday - enchiladas (freezer)
  • Wednesday - leftover burgers
  • Thursday - flying to my parents, & heading straight to the airport after Nick's soccer game. So, something at the airport
  • Friday - M & I are staying two night at a hotel (his Christmas gift), and my parents will have the boys. We will be dining out. 

What about you? What's being served at your house? Are you in full holiday prep?

Sunday, December 18, 2022

It's Sunday

The weekend has been rushing by, and somehow, I haven't been productive enough. That's how I feel at the end of most weekends, however. ;-) 

Nick's team ended up winning first place in the pre-season tournament they've been participating in. The game went to a PK shootout, as they were tied in regular play. It was very exciting! They were all so happy yesterday - it was super fun to see, and worth those early morning field arrival times. 

I went to my workout class, ran errands, helped Nick shop for a secret Santa gift, did laundry, made a shopping list, went to two grocery stores, & made dinner. 

Nick & I both went to bed super early last night, and I got a ton of sleep, so I'm grateful for that. M took Nick to a World Cup viewing party with his soccer team, and they were out of the house by 6:30 this morning. 

I got up early as well (that's what happens when you go to bed early), and have been enjoying a relaxing morning so far. Here's what else we're up to today:

  • Workout class
  • Boys - study for finals & call my parents
  • Laundry
  • Clean the house
  • Start packing list for next week & ski trip
  • Make muffins
  • Meet a friend for a walk
That will pretty much take the day! What about you? What are you up to today? Are you working on finishing up any holiday prep?

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Saturday Happenings

I got up bright & early this morning, to take Nick to a school soccer game. We are really unlucky this season, with three 8 am games. I'm mainlining coffee, until it's time to leave. 

Here's what's on the list today:

  • Move dresser out to the porch before we leave (a buyer is finally picking it up this am). I'm grateful to get it out of our entryway.
  • Start packing list for next week
  • Take Nick to the soccer game
  • Workout class
  • Make a shopping list & menu for next week
  • Stop by the store
  • Pay math tutor
  • Make orange chicken
  • Clean fridge
  • Make muffins (may be overly optimistic)
What about you? What are you up to today?

Friday, December 16, 2022

Frugal Friday

It was a wild week, but we made it! We're deep into finals prep, as well as school soccer, and it's an incredibly busy time for me at work. Here are our frugal wins for the week. 

Saving on things we buy

  • Used a $20 grocery store reward to pick up a few things we need. 

Earning money

  • Sold a shirt on eBay

Avoiding spending

  • After a very cold, windy & rainy early morning soccer game on Saturday, I was mighty tempted to stop by the Starbucks we passed on the way home. But, I stayed strong & came home & had a cup of tea. 

Eating what we have

  • Used a package of spinach from the freezer to make spinach dip. Everyone loved it, and it got an item out of the freezer that had been there forever! 
  • Ate a single portion of chicken curry for lunch one day
  • I made two loaves of cardamom bread for Christmas, but one stuck to the pan & broke in half. We've been slowly eating it (without the glaze). It's delicious toasted, with a bit of butter. Waste not, & all that. 
  • I also got out a Taiwanese pancake type of dim sum from the freezer, and made a couple of those to go with another dinner. (It's on my "use it up" freezer list). There were a few in the package, but it made a really filling snack for the boys, and I'll finish it off soon.
  • Also defrosted lasagna my dad made when he was here, as yet another "get it out of the freezer" meal, which had the helpful bonus of feeding us on a late soccer game night. 
  • Made a nice crockpot pulled pork dish on Sunday, but thought it was a bit soggy, so on the second serving, broiled it off a bit (similar to how I make carnitas) & liked it much more. 

For others

  • Attended a call for the college advisory board I'm on
  • Carpooled a bunch of high schoolers to an away soccer game, saving other parents time
What about you? Any wins to share?

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Workout Wednesday

I had some hard workouts the last few weeks, and took it a bit easier on a few days. That was intentional on Thursday, and I ended up missing my workout class on Saturday, so I could take Nick to his soccer game. 

Workouts for the week:

  • Monday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Tuesday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Wednesday - spin class + 2 mile walk
  • Thursday - 30  minutes on the elliptical
  • Friday - Orange Theory workout class
  • Saturday - 45 minutes on the elliptical
  • Sunday - Orange Theory workout class

Lowlights/Highlights: There are too many fun treats in our house, and too much snacking continues. I'm really working hard to find a few easy ways to change this. 

Focus for the week ahead: reduce/eliminate after dinner snacking

How are you doing with your health & fitness? Are you struggling with snacking at this time of the year?

Monday, December 12, 2022

Menu Plan Monday

 It's a very busy work week, with three 8 am meeting days, and several later evenings. Organization & planning will be key this week.

Here's our menu:

  • Friday - it was a bit of a choose your own adventure. Nick had two sandwiches before a game with a friend. Sam had samosas, before he went to meet a friend at their work. Which, incidentally was a bakery, and he came home with a bag of treats they were planning to toss. I had leftover chicken enchilada skillet, and M had salmon & the last of cauliflower crust pizza. 
  • Saturday - M grilled chicken, and I made spinach dip to go with it. Sam found the spinach dip earlier in the day, however, so... there wasn't much left. ;-) 
  • Sunday - pulled pork sandwiches + coleslaw
  • Monday - leftover grilled chicken
  • Tuesday - lasagna (freezer)
  • Wednesday - pulled porch sandwiches
  • Thursday - I think I'm meeting friends, so the boys will likely eat pizza 
  • Friday - TBD. Maybe an appetizer like dinner, with coconut shrimp & gyozos. 
What about you? What's on your menu this week?

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Sunday Happenings

I've already been reasonably productive this morning. I put the ingredients for pulled pork in the crockpot, worked out my schedule for the week (meetings & workout classes), got Sam up for his shift at the food pantry, & went to a fitness class. 

Here's what's left on the to do list:
  • Glaze & freeze holiday bread
  • Review calendar with Sam & sign him up for last few tutoring slots. Pay tutor
  • Vacuum
  • Clean the kitchen
  • Book Nick's second driving lesson
  • Help my sister with the Christmas trip menu
  • Call my parents
  • Make coleslaw
  • Try on some shoes that arrived, and decide if I'm keeping anything
That's it for me. What are you up to today?

Saturday, December 10, 2022

Saturday Happenings

I was up & out of the house early this morning (6:30), to get Nick to a school soccer game. It was incredibly wet & windy. In fact, the wind broke my umbrella, which left me pretty drenched for the rest of the game. It was blowing sideways. I felt like I was on the Oregon coast - definite flashbacks! The boys won handily, with a 7-0 victory, which was the reward for such a miserable morning, I suppose.

Here's what else is on the agenda:

  • Menu plan
  • Shopping list
  • Made cardamom bread for Christmas
  • Make spinach dip
  • Clean the bathrooms
  • Vacuum
  • Laundry
  • Clean the kitchen 
  • Take Nick to pick up captain "armbands" for school soccer. He needs a specific color, that is hard to find. I'm a little surprised the school doesn't provide them with the uniforms, but oh well. 
  • Work out. I had to skip my morning workout, to get Nick up & to soccer. Normally I'd walk or run during warmups, but I couldn't be bothered to get out of the car, until the game started. 
What about you? What are you up to today?

Friday, December 9, 2022

Frugal Friday

Work has been very busy, so I haven't been up to too much in the frugal world. I am often really tempted to buy this time of the year, so my primary goal is to avoid mindless spending & splurges. 

Saving on things we buy

  • Picked up Home Depot gift cards at the grocery store, earning $20 in store credit. We will use the gift cards in the spring, for gardening & such.

Earning money

  • Listed a bunch of stuff on eBay
  • Helped Sam with a job application

Avoiding spending

  • Picked up free crackers, as part of a Friday Freebie at the store. They were then even better than free, as iBotta had a $.75 offer on them, making them a rare money maker. 
  • Used a Costco cash card (earned from our trip to Hawaii) to buy our groceries for the week, plus two new pillows we needed. 
  • Picked up a couple of shirts on Buy Nothing. It's always a bit hit or miss, but I think one will work well. I'll donate the second one. 

Eating what we have

  • I made an enchilada rice dish that used up enchilada sauce from the freezer, the last of a jar of salsa, the remnants of a bag of shredded cheese, and a few other things. It was turned into an enchilada chicken rice skillet, which was quite good & made several dinners.
  • On a night when I just really didn't feel like cooking, I made a very easy dinner, using up some frozen breaded chicken & pasta. It was easy & everyone got fed. I had mine over salad, in an attempt to use up a bagged salad I bought. It was a BOGO salad, and let's just say that I won't be buying it again. There was a reason it was so inexpensive compared to the other brands!

For others

  • Gave rides to soccer games, & coordinated carpools, to save parents time.
  • Signed up to help with admin work for the food bank
What about you? Any frugal wins to share? 

Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Workout Wednesday

 I had some really hard workouts last week, and I'm definitely feeling it!

Workouts for the week

  • Monday - Orange Theory class
  • Tuesday - Orange Theory class
  • Wednesday - spin class + 2 miles of walking
  • Thursday - 1 hour of elliptical
  • Friday - Orange Theory class
  • Saturday - Orange Theory class
  • Sunday - Orange Theory class

Lowlights/highlights - I've continued to snack more than I'd like. This time of year is always more of a struggle for me, as there are just more snacks, treats, cocktails, social events, etc. 

Focus for the week ahead - I start off tracking my calories during the day, but often forget by the end of the evening. Which happens to be when snacking tends to occur. My goal is to track all of my eating throughout the week. Not just the early parts of the day! ;-) 

What about you? How are you doing with your health & fitness? 

Monday, December 5, 2022

Menu Plan Monday

 It's another very busy week, with lots of activities. It's a little quieter on the work front, which I'm grateful for. 

Here's what we're planning for the week:

  • Friday - M & I went to dinner, & we left the boys money for takeout
  • Saturday - spaghetti & meatballs + garlic bread
  • Sunday - tacos
  • Monday - one pan chicken Mexican rice
  • Tuesday - leftover spaghetti & meatballs
  • Wednesday - leftover tacos
  • Thursday - leftover Mexican rice
  • Friday - TBD
What about you? What's on your menu for the week?

Sunday, December 4, 2022

Sunday Things

It was a very, very rainy day yesterday. We certainly need the rain, but I prefer not to be out in the downpour for hours, watching soccer. ;-) On the positive side, Nick's team shut out their opponents in an 8-0 win, with Nick scoring one. He's a defender, so this is unusual. He scored off a free kick, with a header, which has been his goal for the season. Who doesn't want a header goal, World Cup style? ;-) 

M treated me to a pomegranate martini when I got home, which was very appreciated. I fell asleep on the sofa, which is unusual for me, and slept for over ten hours last night! Apparently, I really needed the sleep.

As for today, I have a long list of to dos, but I think I'll push my holiday bread making to next weekend.

  • Schedule for the week
  • Workout schedule for the week
  • Make a list of all remaining Christmas items to pick up, order, cards to write, etc
  • Defrost dinner items for tomorrow
  • Make tacos
  • Laundry
  • Pick up a few Buy Nothing items
  • List more items for Buy Nothing
  • Finish my wreath
  • Workout class
  • Investigate savings/retirement accounts for boys, with their 2022 earned income
  • Call my parents
  • Make crostini
  • Calculus tutor at 4:00 (thankfully, not for me)
What about you? What are you up to today? I hope everyone has a lovely day!

Saturday, December 3, 2022

Saturday Happenings

 M & I had a lovely dinner out last night, but our shopping trip was largely a fail, as the shops closed at 7. We were very surprised by the early close, particularly this close to the holidays. We did find a couple of items, but I was primarily looking for a pair of shoes. I prefer always to shop online, but it's hard to find shoes, when you don't quite know what you're looking for. I suppose I'll need to order a variety & then just return what doesn't work.

Here's what we're up to today:

  • Take Nick to/from a reffing game
  • Workout class this morning
  • Take Nick & a friend to the school soccer game. That will be a big chunk of time, as they have to be there an hour early for warmups. 
  • Make a shopping list
  • Costco
  • Grocery store
  • Arrange calculus tutor for the boys
  • M is making spaghetti & meatballs for dinner
What are you planning today?

December Goals

 It's the last year of the month, and the last opportunity to close out the goals for the year! 


  • Stick to our budget, including for Christmas
  • Make $250, so I can complete our 2022 side hustle goal
  • Continue post work plan & budget
  • Go through ebay inventory
  • Give away 10 things on Buy Nothing
  • Use up 5 random freezer items
  • One activity with the kids
  • Help Nick learn to drive
  • Two dates with M
  • Connect with M's family
  • Continue with 2023 travel planning & finalize ski week plans
  • Post weekly fitness summaries
  • Match November's calories burned
  • Close rings 28 days
  • Take advantage of workout classes
  • Meditate 5x
  • Lose 2 lbs
  • Do something social with friends
  • Continue to volunteer
  • More thinking on "post career" plans

That's it for me! What are you hoping to accomplish this month?

Friday, December 2, 2022

Frugal Friday

The weeks are whizzing by, as we enter the home stretch to the end of the year. It felt like a solid frugal week, but maybe that's because I had to purchase a few things. Any time you're purchasing something, there's more of an opportunity to find it for less, or save a bit here & there. I also did so, so much better than previous years, on only buying things on the list! I avoided many impulse purchases, which I've struggled with in previous years. 

Saving on things we buy

  • Bought a Starbucks card I needed on Black Friday, and earned a $5 bonus gift card
  • I bought new running shoes a week or so ago, and noticed that Rakuten hadn't applied the cash back. I filled out a quick form, and earned $4.40 back. Sidenote: running shoes are expensive. I'm on a schedule of buying two pair/year, around the holidays & trying to make them last for at least 6 months. It's a bit hit or miss, whether they last that long.
  • Uploaded a receipt I found in the car (maybe Nick's, or a friend, when they went to the movies) to Fetch, & saved a couple of bucks. 
  • Bought two pair of Nick's tennis shoes, at a large BF discount. He is so hard on the shoes, and plays a lot of tennis, so I'm hoping these will last through the summer.
  • Saved $540 by calling & asking for a price adjustment to our Christmas flights. They were on sale for Cyber Monday, and I was able to get the money added as a credit to our travel account. 

Earning money

  • Listed a few new items on eBay
  • Finally earned enough points on Fetch to cash out a $5 reward. 
  • Made $150 selling furniture we weren't using. I'd kept it for a few months, to make sure we wouldn't change our minds, and then listed it for sale. It sold very quickly, and I had MANY interested folks, so lesson learned for next time - I didn't have it priced quite right. ;-) 

Avoiding spending

  • I picked up a large bag of apples from a neighbor. I'm pretty impressed they are growing apples in our area - we're more of a citrus fruit climate. 
  • Picked up a bag of cranberries from another neighbor. I put it in the freezer for future cranberry muffins. 
  • Used expiring Starbucks points to buy myself a latte, after a very early workout. 

Eating what we have

  • I made a large crockpot of soup on Wednesday, knowing we'd be home late due to Nick's game. We had it for dinner one night, and I had three lunches, & then I froze the rest. 
  • Made Philly cheesesteaks, out of things we had in the fridge/freezer, leftover from last time we made them. We're slowly but surely making freezer progress. 
  • Made a squash soup out of a few different squash varieties we grew, roasted & then froze a few months ago. I added fresh herbs from the garden, and also some celery I had that needed to be used up. It turned out delicious. Froze a small portion for a future lunch. 
  • I also used the last of some bread purchased on Wednesday to make a second batch of goat cheese crostini, which the boys adore. We had that as an appetizer, while decorating the tree. And, when I say "we", I mean, I had one piece, M had zero, & the boys ate the rest. ;-) 
  • Ate the rest of a taco bake over mashed potatoes, for a lunch & a single serving dinner. 
  • Made another loaf of foccacia bread, out of yeast that is not very active. Because the foccacia rises for so long, it still works reasonably well. The boys love it, so it's a win.
  • We used/froze all of the dinner leftovers by Wednesday, which is an accomplishment. We cook on weekends, and then after we're out of prepped meals, we dig into the freezer. 

For others

  • Gave stuff away on Buy Nothing
  • Began what I assume to be the last of a mentoring project at work
What about you? Any wins to share?

Thursday, December 1, 2022

November goals recap

 I enjoyed November a lot. It came on the heels of a fabulous anniversary vacation with M, but I also like our small Thanksgiving, the cooler weather & the feel of fall. 

Here's how we did with our goals!


  • Stick to our budget - we blew our budget out of the water by booking flights to Dubai, and planning a bunch of 2023 travel. But, we will adjust the rest of our travel accordingly to prioritize as much as possible. 
  • Progress towards side hustle goals - I did well with my side hustle goals, & earned $304, through a combination of efforts.  
  • Continue post work plan & budget - a little progress was made.
  • Go through eBay inventory - Nope
  • Give away 10 things on Buy Nothing - I think I gave away 20 items. 
  • One activity with the kids - we went mini golfing
  • Help Nick learn to drive - the practice driving continues
  • Two dates with M - I don't think we had any dates this month, but we are going to dinner on Friday, and shopping for the last couple of Christmas gifts
  • Connect with M's family - we sent pictures & videos
  • Continue 2023 travel planning - we've made good progress, but a few things are dependent upon the boys schedules (camps, jobs, etc) that aren't finalized yet.
  • Finalize holiday travel plans. - done!


  • Post weekly fitness summaries - done!
  • Match September's calories burned - I increased it by a lot, & ended with 21,658
  • Close rings 28 days - done!
  • Take advantage of workout classes - yes, still taking classes regularly
  • Meditate 5x - still no progress!
  • Lose 2 lbs - I didn't lose (or gain) anything this month. 
  • Do something social with friends -  met a friend for a hike
  • Continue to volunteer - volunteered at a food pantry
  • More thinking on "post career" plans - continued small steps here

What about you? How did you do with your November goals? Any wins to share?