19 GOALS IN 2019: The Final Recap

I think it's fair to say that 2019 was the year blogging sat on my back burner. I was working full-time, studying for exams, and using my spare time to try and keep up with two energetic little men. As my brain soaked up as much finance-related information as it could, it left no room for reading or writing.

Now that we're over a month into 2020, I'm thankfully not as over-committed as I was last year, but it's admittedly been difficult to get back into the swing of writing. Blogging is at best a dying art, but I've poured so much of my life into this silly pastime that it breaks my heart even thinking about giving it up. I started writing here just before I boarded a plane to Uganda in January of 2009. Over a decade of my life is chronicled here and I sincerely hope to do a better job of documenting the next 10 years. Not to mention, if I want to call myself a writer, I kind of need to write...

Anyway, I did a piss poor job of checking in on my 2019 yearly goals, but I want to wrap up so I can move forward with a fresh set of goals for 2020.

Here is my final 2019 BUCKET LIST recap: 


As a full-time working Mama again (in a brand new-to-me industry), there was so much professional development for me to conquer in 2019!
  1. Pass my registration exams. COMPLETE! I passed my first exam on December 31, 2018 so it didn't technically count for 2019. But I passed my second exam in May and then earned a professional designation in December! I'm really proud of the fact that I went into this job and those exams with no prior experience in the financial world and I passed all three on the first try!


In my heart of hearts, I will always be a bookworm. But with everything I had going on, I wasn't putting any pressure on myself to participate in book challenges or spend all my spare time with my nose in a book.
  1. Read 35 books. NOT COMPLETED (26/35) I still averaged over two books a month which wasn't terrible- my Top 3 favorites would probably have to be Searching for Sunday, Little Fires Everywhere, and Educated.
  2. Read 3 books published before 1990. NOT COMPLETED (0/3) Not a single book published before 2010.


2019 was the year we really dug in our heels and began making some progress with our debt snowball. 
  1. Increase my credit score by 5%NOT COMPLETED My credit score was a rollercoaster over the course of the year and I wound up about where I started. Womp, womp...
  2. Save up enough to buy a minivan in cash. NOT COMPLETED Ha! Not even close, though I did pay down a lot of my current auto loan.
  3. Contribute at least $500 each to Charlie and Crosby's 529 college savings accounts. NOT COMPLETED The boys got some birthday money to put toward their college savings, but I didn't contribute much extra to their 529s as we have more pressing short-term financial goals
  4. Pay off remaining credit card debt. COMPLETE! Finally! One I can proudly say we crossed off in May.
  5. Pay off remaining medical bills. COMPLETE! A couple months later, we paid off all our medical debt in July!

I wanted to continue working on living a healthier lifestyle with manageable and realistic goals for my busy schedule. It went okay...
  1. Go to the gym at least 2 mornings per week. NOT COMPLETED In fact, I cancelled my gym membership pretty early on in the year.
  2. Run a half marathon. NOT COMPLETED Ugh, I was so close but due to a heat advisory I wound up running a 10k instead of my planned half marathon.
  3. Attend yoga class at least once per month. NOT COMPLETED Also, nope.
  4. Plan one vegetarian meal per week. COMPLETE! I did this pretty informally. I wasn't tracking, but I did a pretty been decent job eating vegetarian a couple times per week, even if it was just eggs and toast.

I love, love, love my house and making it more of a home is one of my favorite things to do. I had big aspirations (bigger than my wallet!) for 2019.

  1. Finish converting upstairs room to a fourth bedroom. NOT COMPLETED Although it wasn't completed, we did make progress! Our friend installed a window, new lighting, and some shiplap-type siding for the accent wall. We still need to install a closet, paint, and purchase the bunk bed, mattresses, and bedding.
  2. Convert downstairs bedroom into an office/guest room. NOT COMPLETED Not yet.
  3. Remodel downstairs half bathroom into a full bathroomNOT COMPLETED Not even close.
  4. Landscape the front yard. COMPLETE! It still doesn't look great, but we did have a local landscaping company grind the stumps leftover from when we lost all our front trees to an ice storm in 2018 and planted some grass seed.

    These were the few random, miscellaneous things that I wanted to see happen in 2019 for me and my little family.
    1. Adopt a four-legged friend. COMPLETE! We did it, we did it! Reggie joined our family just a few days before Christmas. 
    2. Take a kid-free weekend getaway. COMPLETE! Over Labor Day weekend, Chuck and I dropped the boys off to go camping with Grandma while we stayed in Watkins Glen, NY and attended a friend's wedding. It was the perfect way to celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary.
    3. Take a photography or cooking class. COMPLETE! Back in January, our favorite family photographer offered an Intro to Photography class. It wound up being just the two of us and I was so appreciative of the time we spent together. I haven't practiced much, but at the very least, I can now take pictures in manual mode.


    We didn't do a lot of the house things we wanted to and my half marathon medal remains elusive, but at the end of the day- 2019 brought us some major professional and financial wins, so I'm calling it a success!

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