Ummm....Happy time in between Christmas and New Year when everyone and their pet roosters go shopping. I kid you not about the rooster. I saw it sitting on some guys shoulder when we were out shopping.
Lets look at that net worth from December!
That is a difference from November of...
It is always fun to end the year on a positive note and we managed to do just that. We celebrated our anniversary in December and my wife's birthday by going to a Bulls game in Chicago. The whole experience was about $400.00 including tickets, gas, food, a hotel, and a very nice breakfast. We were going to spend some more time, but lost interest when the weather turned sour and my wife became slightly sick.
Oh well. Not the most frugal experience, but we did get to see a great game which went into FOUR overtimes! Too bad the bulls lost.
On to the yearly GOALS from last December that I set...how did I do?
PASS: 1. Get accepted into masters program and apply like crazy for scholarships, grants, and tuition assistance!
FAIL: 2. Begin to learn another language, probably mandarin. - No bueno. I failed pretty hard here, in fact I didn't even come close. Probably spent a total of twenty minutes out of the year working on the goal lol. Apparently you can't learn a language in twenty minutes, who knew?
FAIL: 3. Pay down the mortgage to $140,000. - I can say this was a definite FAIL. We are currently at $156,135.96. We started the year at $161,259.88...so we paid off $5123.92...bleh. That sucks, especially since we pay about 1200 a month for our payment. 1200 a month is 14400...so we paid about $9300 in taxes and insurance and pmi and interest. YUCK. We also stopped paying extra these past couple of months to try and increase our savings. We hope by March of 16' to start paying extra again. The mortgage is our single greatest enemy currently.
PASS: 4. Contribute at least $3600.00 to my 403b and $2600.00 to my wife's 401k.- I know that we met this goal, however I don't have a good tab on exactly how much we met it by...so it is safe to assume that I want to do a better job in 2016 of knowing exactly how much we are saving for retirement...goals will be coming in another post (if I continue to write that is).
FAIL: 5. Don't go overboard on house expenditures: I know where we spent money in house expenditures this year and it was crappy...literally. We had some sewage system stinkiness when a float went out which caused our circuit to trip and the alarm failed to go off. This caused our motor to fail. We also had a water tank bladder explode. What a year! I also went in with my day on a $3000 mower ($1500 a piece) which may seem like a waste to most of you. I have two acres of land however, so the time that bad boy saves me is well worth it. I can cut the lawn in 1.5 hours, where as with the old mower it was about 3...so the time saved was well worth the money IMO.
FAIL: 6. Use my 1k in my flex spending: I did not use 1k, but I did use about $800. Lesson learned, and I will not be contributing to my flex this year, since I still have $500 that rolls over.
PASS: 7. Love my wife and the Lord more: I know this goal is mostly subjective, but I am giving myself a pass. I could ask my wife, but who has time for that? (lol). I have definitely become a more compassionate person in 2015 and look to continue that trend into 2016. I really love the Lord and have gotten back into a relationship with him this past year, which has been great. Previously in 2014 I really felt as if my heart had been hardened but now I feel a peace that I haven't felt since my early twenties.
FAIL: 8. Read at least 10 non-fiction books. I only made it through about 4...and this was way tougher than I thought. I figured I would just read about thirty minutes every night before bed like I used to do in college, wrongo! Youtube, blog reading, schoolwork...you name it I probably put it ahead of reading.
FAIL: 9. Run a marathon: Nope. Not even close...in fact I probably ran less miles than the year before. I instead started a jump program which I am still doing and got back into lifting. Kind of weird how my fitness goals changed. I also still run a little with my dog and take her on daily walks.
PASS: 10. Continue this blog for the entire year with at least one post per month: I am proud that I completed this goal. This blog does not make any money, and I write only because I enjoy it and enjoy looking back on what I have accomplished. To continue writing and continue this project which I started a few years ago means a lot to me. I want to thank everyone for their support and for reading.
YEARLY RESULT: 4/10. For those who struggle with math that is a 40%. Even though I scored 40% for the year I feel really good about 2015. I look back at where I started and I know that the Old School family has come a long way.
In conclusion (sorry for the long post!) 2016 will see improvement...
or reduced expectations;)