2013 Goal Update Part Deux

It’s been a few months now since I’ve touched on this so I thought I’d put out an update on my 2013 goals. I meant to do this at the beginning of the summer but we’ve got some major change going on here so I got sidetracked. Now it’s early fall the year is (gulp) 3/4 of the way through and I am just getting to it.

In some ways big things have changed, and in others not much has changed at all. I’m just going to touch on the areas that I’ve specifically been working on over the last few months and leave the rest alone:

1. Double my income this year – well, seeing as I quit my full time job in March to focus on our family more and pursue less employment that was a lofty goal and it’s just clearly not going to happen. Since then I’ve been working through figuring out exactly where to go next. I’ve pursued a couple different things that I’ll outline below but nothing has stuck yet. I feel a little like I’m wandering unsure of my next step right now, and here’s why:

I completed my NASM Certified Personal Trainers course in March (my initial hope had been Feb 15, but that was just plain unrealistic). After many bumps in the road I got my insurance set up to work with clients on my own around May/June. I also knew from the beginning that I wanted to work for/under someone to continue to learn and gain experience.

In June that opportunity arose and I briefly worked for Ascend Fitness here in Chilliwack. That was my original goal. The owner there is an awesome trainer and was my inspiration for pursuing the certification in the first place. They run an AMAZING bootcamp program that I was a client for about two years prior to taking my trainers. I have had the privilege of seeing that business grow in leaps and bounds. Very cool.

HOWEVER (this is a good however) almost simultaneously we found out that we are expecting our second child – due to arrive in January of 2014. Unfortunately because of complications (nothing serious just bumps along the way) in this pregnancy after about 2 months with Ascend I had to make the difficult decision to leave. I really enjoyed the work and loved the clients and the team there. What it came down to was that it was an amazing opportunity at the wrong time in my life.

So, where do I go from here? Something else we had discussed when I was leaving my full time job was helping my Hubby out in his business. While I was pursuing my own opportunities I had very little (read NO) time to commit to his rapidly growing business. Once it became apparent that a physically demanding job wasn’t going to work out we decided that the best thing I can do right now is help him continue to grow his business.

Helping him out makes me really excited because one thing I have learned about myself over the last year is that I have a significant interest in small business and how it runs. I love figuring out how to promote, manage, grow, and stay on the bleeding edge of things. By helping him out with some behind the scenes day-to-day stuff I can free him up to do more of the stuff that brings in the money.

We work really well as a team and have worked together in various positions over the last 13 years so we knew it would be a good fit and it’s exciting to be helping him out working as a team on this level again. Really it’s the most natural shift we could make and maybe where we should have started, but hindsight is always 20/20.

He also set some income goals in January and is on track to hit those goals which ultimately increases our household income despite me leaving my full time job and not pursuing my Personal Training goal. The money all goes into the same pot so his success in a lot of ways is also mine.

2. Pay off the car by March 1/13 – as I mentioned in this post, we hit that one a month early! Score.

4. Run a 1/2 Marathon – This seems to be an elusive goal for me, last summer I trained all summer for a race and then for various reasons was unable to participate. I trained again all spring and was on track for a sub 2hour 1/2 marathon but after learning I was pregnant then having my exercise significantly restricted (as in none whatsoever for a number of weeks) I had to let this one slide, along with ALL of my other fitness related goals. That’s ok, they can all go on the list again for next year. The end result of a new baby come January is ultimately WAY better than finishing the race would have been anyway.

I’ve managed to hit a couple other goals on my list that I didn’t share publicly in my initial post but I can share them now so here you are:

Leave work by June 15 – (I didn’t think that was a very smart one to put out there in January since I was still employed…) As I announced in this post I accomplished this goal WAY early, leaving my job March 1. (By the way, I LOVED what I did but I just wasn’t able to prioritize my family the way that I wanted to so my desire to leave work had NOTHING to do with the job I had.)

Finish my NASM Personal Trainers Course – as I mentioned above I finished that in the spring.

As far as my reading list goes, I’m on my fourth book, so I have a ways to go. You can check my progress here. Will I make it, who knows, but even if I don’t the reading I’ve done has benefited me greatly and really that’s the whole point. Some books will move forward to next year, some may be dropped off the list, and there’s still time to get in a few more in the next few months. We have a no TV on weeknights rule, so that leaves a good chunk of time for reading right?!

Am I going to make it through all my goals in 2013? Truthfully, no. That said I have made progress towards some pretty awesome things so far this year and there are still 3 1/2 months left for me to accomplish a few more. I’m going to keep moving forward and see where we end up. I hope you are making progress in your goals too, and if you didn’t set any for this year then it’s never too early to start thinking about what you want to accomplish next year!


2013 Goal Update – The Total Money Makeover

Hadn't even made a payment on it when this picture was taken

Hadn’t even made a payment on it when this picture was taken

Well, I thought you’d like to know that how my goals are progressing for the year so far. We hit a MAJOR milestone in our our Total Money Makeover last week, we PAID OFF OUR CAR! Yup, that’s right, three weeks a head of when we wanted to. I made the last payment on Wednesday February 6 2013 and that is the LAST car payment I will ever make.

I need to tell you a little bit about the journey that we’ve been on in our financial lives because it really has been amazing. In the fall of 2011 I went back to work after my maternity leave, and as many of you know working full time and having kids puts one big fat expense on the family budget – Daycare. Daycare is our single largest expense in a month, in fact it’s more than our mortgage payment every month (yeah we live in a cheap house thank God!). Pay day would come and go and after all the bills were paid there was very little money left for anything extra. We have always tried to pay cash for the luxuries of life that we enjoy from time to time and haven’t carried a credit card balance for years. Our debt had not grown for a long time but we had some as we were young, broke, and naive when we got married. Apparently it’s hard to live on $9000/year in Canada. In fact at this time last year I would say we were probably pretty financially normal in comparison to everyone else out there. What we were learning though was that SUCKS!

100% ours

Yup this is the McHale Mobile 100% ours

One day last January I was googling potty training and I came across a blog that included a host of potty training information but also a post about the family having paid off almost $60,000 in a three year period by following Dave Ramsey’s plan. I finished reading the post, found the book on Amazon and told the Hubby we were doing this. After listening to my (poor) explanation he quickly got on board. When the book arrived I read it in a weekend, and here we are a year later DEBT FREE! The next step, save up 3-6 months expenses in an emergency fund.

So how much have we paid off this year? Well the car alone was $11,781.00 and we also paid an additional roughly $10,000 on various “emergencies” (like the washing machine upstairs flooding the bathroom downstairs) in cash, and took a 2 week trip that turned into a 3 week trip home to Ontario for E’s birthday this fall. So yes, do the math, we paid cash for roughly $22,000 in necessary expenses including the debt plus went on holidays. Our annual income you ask? Well for 2012 it’s in the $55,000-70,000 range. Pretty average for a family with two incomes in the area we live in.

The even more amazing thing about this whole journey is the impact that it has had on our personal lives. The growth in our marriage has been phenomenal. It’s amazing how much better everything else runs when there is good communication about the money in the house and where it’s all going. We’ve struggled, and we’ve still disagreed from time to time about what the priorities are, but we’ve also communicated much more clearly about what we want (financially and otherwise) and set plans in action to achieve it while supporting each other. We have both set ourselves personally and relationally on paths of personal growth for 2013 that I don’t think we would have even considered if not for the Total Money Makeover that has happened in our lives, SO check it out it will change your life.