It’s May and it has been a while since I checked in on my 2022 New Year’s goals/resolutions. My first update was in March 2022. I made some decent progress on many of them. Setting goals is useless if you don’t review them. Reviewing them now gives me time to refocus and adjust.
So let’s check-in where I am now. As I write this, it is May 8th. About 34.8% of the year is over. That’s close enough to 1/3rd, right? So I should be about 1/3rd of the way through my goals.
Here’s my updated spreadsheet:
Make $70K of income
My income goals are going quite well. I didn’t expect dog boarding to continue to do as well as it has. It seems the only thing that slows down the business is when we actually go on vacation. We took a couple of weeks off in March to go to Puerto Rico and we’ll do it again in June to do some local traveling.
The $26,116.78 comes from blogging, dog boarding and a freelance customer service job that I do. This includes the slow months of January and February. The summer months are usually my best earning months, so maybe $85,000 is possible.
Save Money for Wife’s Retirement
Since my income is doing well, we’ve been able to put $5,000 away for my wife’s retirement. I had hoped to put in more, but during the first quarter of the year we were paying off the bill for our finished basement. In February, be booked travel. In March, we had a bunch of summer camp bills hit. In April, we wrote some checks to save in our Roth IRAs instead of in this account.
This goal might end up being moot. My wife may not be retiring soon as she started a new position at the beginning of the year. Secondly, we’re selling a rental property condo, which would close out this goal quickly.
I’m only about 3.5% of the way to my goal to 50,000 page views this year. That’s not great, but I am seeing growth every week. The 50,000 number depends on getting a decent media mention that will bring a couple of thousand of people at once and hope that a few hundred stick around on a regular basis.
Recently, I put a real home page together (instead of just the latest blog posts) and I’m organizing the information to hopefully make it easier for readers to navigate to just the right information to help their kids become financially literate.
My goal was to have 75 articles published by the end of the year. That’s roughly 1.5 a week. I’ve gotten 27 articles published. That’s 36% of the way to my goal, which is just about exactly where I need to be. I could be hard to hit this goal as I’ve “cheated” a bit and used some articles that I already had written for Lazy Man and Money.
Content Audit/Article Refresh
I’ve made no progress in refreshing articles for Lazy Man and Money. Creating content for two blogs is a lot of work. I don’t see having the time to go back and rewrite old articles too.
Look into Dog Training
I looked very briefly into dog training. It seems there are a hodge-podge group of certifications. It’s hard to find out which ones are useful. I suppose I could do the very easiest ones that seem a little like window dressing and add them to my dog boarding profile. I’m not too excited by that idea and right now the dog boarding is going well enough without it. If I were to train some of the dogs that I’m boarding, I wouldn’t have any time left to blog.
I’ve lost about 13 pounds this year. I’ve never consistently tried to lose weight, but for some reason it’s sticking now. We’ve been going out to eat a lot less than in the past. When we do, I try to eat only half my meal. Even then it sets me back about a day’s worth of progress.
Since the last update, I’ve only lost 3 pounds. I plateaued for over a month. It’s only in the last week that my weight has dropped around a half pound each day.
I’ve got about 4 pounds left to get to my goal. It seems reasonable.
My body fat percentage started the year at around 27.5 and it is now around 23.8%. That’s great progress. I’ve gotten it as low as 23.5%.
I met with my doctor about a week ago and she said that I’m doing great. She said that I could try to go off the blood pressure medication as I’m fine. She also said that cholesterol levels were looking great. The odd thing is that I’m not doing too much differently – just a little more vegetables and a low-carb omelet a few days a week for breakfast.
I drank about 10 alcoholic drinks since the last update. When we got to Puerto Rico there was a “welcome wine” as we checked in. They also had a welcome reception for Marriott Elite members. Another time, my wife said, “Four drinks: beer, diet coke, and two apple juices” and they ended up giving us four beers and the other drinks. I chalk it up to the language barrier though my wife’s Spanish is very good. Nonetheless, the beers were a dollar, so we ended up just bringing them back to the hotel room.
We went to an April Fools’ Day party (everyone please steal this idea – it’s a lot of fun) where I had a few more drinks. At restaurants, I’ll usually get a Diet Coke, but I had a beer on a recent date night. And that’s about it for a couple of months.
Perhaps, just maybe, not drinking has helped with the health gains in the previous section?
Make a Bucket List
I made no progress on my bucket list. I didn’t even look at it.
Programming with Python
I made no progress in looking at Python. I had gotten a book from the library, but I barely cracked it. I will probably buy the book – programming Python for kids ages 10-14. I just need to knock off the programming rust, but this book would be perfect for my kids.
Once again my wife is the hero here. She lead a city-wide freecycle event as a community service event for the Boy Scouts. Dozens of people dropped off stuff they didn’t want and picked up other people’s trash and made it their own treasure.
We got rid of a bunch of stuff. However, we got a little bit of stuff back. One item was a flat-panel television from 2010 – the cheapest one that Samsung made. It’s 42 inches, but it works fine and is perfect in our basement. I hooked up a Roku and the kids can watch a lot of things. I need more of those 10-minute solutions in my life.
I also need to learn how to sell items on Facebook marketplace. If I can do that, I can declutter a lot of the garage. I’m sure we could move a lot of stuff cheap.
Travel Four Times
We completed our Puerto Rico trip. Everyone in the family loved it, while I thought it was just kind of okay. After we got back we learned that our kids’ school is switching languages from French to Spanish, so maybe we’ll go more often.
We’ve booked Block Island and New Hampshire in June. They are two separate trips, but around the same time for various schedule reasons. In late August we have been thinking of a Disney cruise with an England trip. It would be awesome, but I have FinCon in early September, so I’m worried about taking all that time off just while the kids are getting back to school. We have some friends interested in going to Hershey Park with us. We’ve been to Hershey Park a lot, so this is easier for us. We don’t have to plan as much and we can do a few things along the way. The kids have learned about the Statue of Liberty in school and that could be a stop on the way.
Finally, we may be doing Aruba in November. The school changed the vacation to make the entire week of Thanksgiving a vacation. Unfortunately that’s one of the few times we get to see our family. Also, flying around Thanksgiving is super expensive.
We had the kids in too many things. We started the year in skiing and snowboarding, but for the last few months we had karate, baseball, soccer, drums, and Boy Scouts. All the sports were a couple of days a week. We paused karate for baseball and soccer seasons because it was too much.
We’ve done nothing in this area. We haven’t even put up a bad video. I remind the kids and they get super excited about it, but then they are onto the next thing.
The weather is just getting good for flying drones. I know this is kind of a silly parenting goal, but it’s a substitute to just getting out and doing something. We could fly kites or something like that and I’d count that. We had some snow earlier this year and we went sledding. Next year, I’ll try to change this up to make it more generic.
For now the kids will just have to stay addicted to video games – LOL.
I got them started with Tynker.com a bit last year. They didn’t love it. I am trying to set it up with Minecraft which they like. Maybe with my Python plan above, I can get them involved in that.
They’ve each looked at a computer programming book, so I’ll take what I can get for now.
The best chance is a local Lego robotics group, but it doesn’t start back up until September. I’m trying to prioritize that over all the other stuff, but it’s going to be tough.
We finished up signing up for summer camps. Summer camps are expensive. We’ve got sailing, veterinarian camp, and cooking camps booked. (Sailing is such a Rhode Island thing.) My older kid is starting theater camp while my younger one has a series of art, Lego, and maker camps. They are very excited about having camps in things that they love to do.
I suppose it was a successful couple of months? There are a lot of things that went into the “no progress” category, but in all the major categories we’ve got some good progress. I need to work more on the personal goals, but I’m enjoying building Kid Wealth right now, so who needs a bucket list?