Thursday, February 2, 2012

How am I doing on my goals for 2012?

At the beginning of January, I put out a list of goals that I hoped to accomplish in 2012.  After one month, I thought it would be a good idea to see how I'm doing.  Some things are going well, and others not so much.  Let's take a look -

My Blog - 

1. Revamp - I'm doing well here. I've redesigned my header, designed and installed a button, made and installed a favicon (that little picture up in the tab - I'll talk about that more next week), cleaned up my "Where I Link" and "Featured" pages, and rearranged some stuff on my sidebar.  I still have some work to do - I want to make my page links a little prettier, add social media buttons, etc.  But I'm pleased with the progress so far.

2. Add new features - again, I'm on track.  I have included some cleaning tips, money saving tips, and  shopping tips.  I even started another blog, thrifty house just to share more of these tips.  It's a new blog, and I'm still working on it (yes, there will be a new header soon), but I hope to develop it into an overall resource for thrifty living.

3. Introduce new blogs.  I've kinda done this one.  I love finding new blogs - and new ideas!  So I've been doing some features titled "I Pinned it - and Did It".  I think it helps to know if some of these new ideas actually work.  So far, I've had a lot of success, but I will definitely share the failed projects/tips too.  And hopefully, you find some new ideas and blogs through this series.

4. Host guest bloggers.  So far - not one.  Sad.  I would love to host a blogger over here.  If you are interested, please send me an email -  I am completely open to anything here - new projects, old projects or household tips.  And if you have never been a guest blogger, I can walk you through the process - it's not difficult!  I hope to get some of you talented people on my blog this month!  I don't want another 'F' in this section!

5. Start a linky party.  Nope.  Haven't done it.  I still haven't decided if I'm going to add this to my blog.  I love searching through the projects on other blogs, so I think it would be fun to host.  But, so far, I haven't gotten to it.

My House - 

Ok this part will be quick - not as much progress as I had hoped this month.  Many of the projects I listed in January (guest bath, laundry room, and landscaping) were really meant for summer projects.  I have shared a few smaller projects, and I'm in the middle of a big one (I hope to share it next week - fingers crossed) but it's always really busy at this time of the year with kid activities.  And this year is no different.  We knock out a lot of our bigger projects in the spring and summer.  So, I'm not too worried about the lack of progress here.  But if I don't see more check marks in September...

My Budget - 

1.  Save more.  We did this.  I declared a 'no-spend January'.  Yup.  And we did our best to honor it.  It's amazing how much everyone jumps in when you set a goal.  It didn't go perfectly - we had a car repair bill, my son needed boots, and a few other things popped up - but overall, it was a success.  When we set the goal, we wanted to reach it.  Every purchase was given more thought.  And we didn't buy the extra stuff (well except that $1.49 lamp - but how could I resist such a deal).  Now we are going into 'no-spend February'...

2. Earn more.  So far, not much.  But I have won a couple of things from other bloggers.  Does that count?  And I'm still working on ideas for an etsy shop, a garage sale, and some craigslist listings.  Hopefully, I'l do more in this category.

3. Spend zero on Christmas.  I've talked about this a little.  I really need to do a more in depth post soon.  But so far, I'm happy with my start.  I have some gift cards in my Amazon account - $55 worth.  And I earned them all from Swagbucks.  I started saving them up at the end of last year and added $10 in January.  If you are interested in joining - click the link below.  It's a great way to earn gift cards for searching the web. There are more ways to get that dollar amount up quickly - playing games, taking surveys, and watching videos.  I've been using Swagbucks for years (I explained it in my How I'm Saving and Earning Money post). I'm hoping to have a few hundred dollars saved up by December.

What else am I doing to make my free Christmas a reality?  I take surveys.  It's really easy.  And yes, I've been doing this for years.  I have a couple of the survey sites I use on my sidebar.  These are hit and miss.  I've tried some sites that I didn't really like and some that I love.  And I haven't made too much on them - but they also haven't taken too much time. I'm close to getting a $25 gift card on one of them.  And I'll probably be able to earn two more by December.  That will help me reach this goal.

And I'm not sure if this counts, but I tossed all of my coins into the coinstar machine and received a $31 gift card to Old Navy.  I'm saving this for my Christmas adventure too.

I'm happy with my progress on this goal - we'll see how it goes.

My Life -

1. Eat better.  Ummm...not sure if I've improved any.  I want to add better habits.  I still have some work to do on this one.  

2. Be more confident. I don't really know how to measure this.  I don't know if I've improved or not.  I'll keep working on it.

3. Stick to my schedule.  I know I haven't done well with this.  And it's driving me crazy.  I've had so many little things pop up this month.  I need to make new lists (it's an illness...) and get reorganized.

4. Start a small garden.  Well, it's a little early for this one.

5. Get more organized.  I guess I confessed to my lack of organization in #3.  I have organized some kitchen cabinets (I'll share that with you soon) and cleaned out a couple of closets, but I need to get much more organized in every day life.  I'm working on it.

So there you have it - my progress so far.  Some success and some failure.  It's a great to see where I stand - and what I need to keep working on.  So far, so good.