Damn, this was an awesome year! Well, not everything was perfect, but it was close. The year 2017 is definitely a year that will go down in the books for me! So much has happened in politics, entertainment, globally, and in my personal life. In this post, I will reflect on how things went in several “life categories” and what’s up next for me and for you the readers in 2018.
Last month, I listed a few goals that I can officially cross off of the list. I had the opportunity to host my first vision board party which was a success. Old friends and new friends came together to create and share their vision and goals for 2018. We discussed finances, traveling, love, fitness, and food. This was a phenomenal experience that allowed us to set attainable goals for the upcoming year. I was inspired by the robust conversation and the energy in the room. Not to mention, the food and wine made the evening enjoyable.
I wrote a review on the Total Money Makeover Book by Dave Ramsey in a previous blog post. For those of you who are interested, click here to read the full review. The book definitely inspired me to continue on the path of debt payoff with “gazelle intensity” as he would say. The ultimate goal is to be financially independent within the next 7-8 years.
Financial Accountability In Full Effect!
Thanks to the information I received from Jamila Souffrant of Journey to Launch, I finished the Certified Financial Instructors Course which will allow me to speak with authority about managing finances and to assist others in need. I am also signed up for her Mastermind Budgeting course. Last but not least, I did pay extra money towards bills.
I joined a couple of very active Facebook budgeting groups and gained more accountability partners. I purchased a budgeting planner and I created a separate board for savings challenges. One of my goals this year is to increase my net worth thanks to the “Dream Catchers Group.”
How about that new tax reform bill?! Yikes. I know that my tax bracket moved from 28% to 24%, limited deductions, businesses get a huge tax break and the provisions sunset in 2025. What will happen next? For detailed information, tune into “The Money Guy Show” on iTunes. The host provides a comprehensive breakdown of how these provisions will affect you. Also, check out this article on FactCheck.org. This information can also be used as guidance to help you understand the new tax law.
First Time for Everything
This year was the first time I had ever flown in a helicopter, thanks to my significant other. I was nervous, but we had fun! We went on a tour of the city “Axelrod style” for those of you who partake in the series titled Billions. We also visited Bermuda in October by way of the Royal Caribbean Anthem of the Seas cruise ship which was also a first for me. What a beautiful place to visit! Click here to read the full article.
On a Personal Note
I started the blog this year and it has been amazing! I get to share my stories and connect with other bloggers around the world. I had the opportunity to interview friends and to guest post for other bloggers. I’m grateful for the support from my friends and family for encouraging me to keep going.
I had surgery in April and I’m grateful for all of the support during that time period. I was still able to run two races after the fact and I stayed on top of my fitness goals. I even managed to drop a few pounds.
I’m grateful for all of the family events that I was able to attend this year and for being able to connect with old friends. Unfortunately, we lost our beloved dog, Daisy Watkins in December. We rescued her when she was 5 years old from the SPCA and she lived to be 13 years old. This was a very difficult time for my family because she was the only dog we had ever raised. I would encourage you to adopt a pet and give him or her the life he or she deserves. Click here to read the full article.
Did Cardi B do her thing or what?! I also enjoyed listening to Kendrick Lamar and Jay-Z this year. Click here to read my review of Jay-z’s 4:44 album.
In the world of television, I enjoyed watching This Is Us, Green Leaf, Ozark, The Get Down, Queen Sugar, and Insecure. Check them out if you haven’t already!
Podcast Favorites in December
Below are my top picks for December:
The Read (Entertainment)
So Much to Say (Entertainment, Life Topics)
Gettin’ Grown (Entertainment)
The Friends Zone (Entertainment)
The Money Guy (Finances)
Pay Checks and Balances (Finances)
Choose FI (Finances)
So Money (Finances)
Debt Free Divas (Finances)
Moving forward, there are a few goals that I want to tackle this month. Thankfully, the recent Facebook communities that I’ve joined are helping to keep me on task. Below are my January goals:
- Organize my budget using my Happy Planner and Mint. I was going to try YNAB, but I’m comfortable with Mint for now.
- Planning my content for weekly blog posts.
- My savings goal for the month of January is $350.00 or more. Currently, I save in four different accounts which are labeled, house, emergency savings, car savings and vacation savings. I may develop more sinking funds. I also created another vision board with specific savings challenges.
- Review my 457 plan to see if I need to increase contributions again. I just did this last month, but I may need to do it again.
- Work on increasing my net worth with the Dream Catchers group.
- Adding another day of strength training.
- No more skipping at home facials!
Readers, please note that my goals include “business and pleasure.” Please be kind to yourself this year, whatever that means to you. Do you have goals or tips to share with our community? What did you accomplish in 2017?
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