Blogging Goals for 2011

by Gina on December 30, 2010

I shared a few of my personal and financial goals with you last week for 2011, but it’s time for me to also share my blogging goals for the new year. While I do not believe in New Year’s Resolutions in the traditional sense, I DO know that is important to set goals. Goals must also be backed with a plan in order to work. Setting lofty and ambitious goals may sound good when spoken or read, but what do they matter if you don’t actually work towards them and really focus on making them a reality? That said, here are a few of my blogging goals along with the plans I have to work towards achieving them:

  1. Stick to a blogging schedule. I no longer have to deal with my schooling since I graduated in August and I am also not dealing with the lousy feelings of pregnancy, so it stands to reason that I should be able to focus on this goal easily, right? Ha. I have a full time job, marriage, and an infant which keep me VERY busy. However, I am going to utilize one of my favorite blogging tools…the a post scheduler. That’s right. If I have to, I will schedule posts well in advance to stick with a schedule and ensure I have new content posted daily. I also have a brand new calendar that will be dedicated to this blog, which will keep me on track.
  2. Switch to WordPress (successfully). Ahh yes. This one is already in the works for January and I have my deposit in and a wonderful pro scheduled to help me make the big move. My blog was shut down for a period of a few days with Blogger this month and since then I have been in even more of a hurry to get the heck away from them. I can’t deal with downtime + no technical support. I will move to self hosting platform which will cost money, but will give me a large boost in peace of mind.
  3. Learn how to make my own buttons and graphics. Does anyone recommend a good program for this sort of thing? I love fooling around with graphic design, but I must admit I don’t know the first thing about which software to use for web based graphics. I would like to research this topic and invest in a good program.
  4. Improve my photography. I LOVE looking at the beautiful, inspiring, and absolutely delicious photos that some bloggers post. I think great quality, unique photography can really take a blog to the next level. I cannot afford a high-quality ( and high-cost) SLR camera right now, but DH bought me a new point and shoot digital camera a few months ago that I would love to learn more about. I think if I can learn more about photography and perhaps the ins and outs of MY camera, these will be steps in the right direction. Can’t hurt, right? I am also going to check out the 31 Days to a Better Photo series that was recommended by Mandi from Life…Your Way.
  5. Keeping it Real. This one may be my biggest challenge of 2011. Those who know me personally will tell you that I am a very private person. Some may call it shy, but I like to say that I am very “guarded.” I don’t easily let people in to my personal life; therefore, it can be difficult for me to write things of a personal nature…even this post! Since there are hundreds of personal finance/couponing sites out there, why in the world would I want to add another to the mix that simply adds more of the same generic info that many others are already sharing quite successfully? I want my blog to be more personal, so that I can provide a look into my life, and my family’s unique situation, and share how WE are doing things to save, pay off debt, and live well on less. I want this blog to incorporate a number of things, and I still want to share some great deals along the way, but first and foremost I want to be able to keep accountable to the grocery goal that has been set before me for 2011. Keeping it real is the only way that this goal will be attainable.

Thanks for keeping me accountable to my blogging goals! I would love to know what goals YOU have in store for 2011!


Goals for 2011!

by Gina on December 20, 2010

Have you started thinking about your financial goals for next year? With 2011 literally right around the corner, there’s no better time than the present! I shared with you my 2010 goals last year; these included:

  • Completing our emergency fund
  • Paying off all consumer debt (not including student loans and the mortgage)

With the new addition to our family born in May, and DH still working at a job making a less than desirable income, I have to say we did pretty well! I will say, we did not complete our emergency fund or pay off everything (we still have a bit left on our car loan), but I am happy to report these things will be complete by April! We ended up doing a decent amount of saving AND paying down of debt, and even though we didn’t meet our goals, we are so much better off than we would have been – that’s what it’s all about!

DH and I had a great discussion this morning about our goals for 2011 and beyond. Ultimately, we would love for me to be able to quit working by August 2014 so that I will be able to become a SAHM and home school my son and any other future kids we have – a dream I have had for a while. As for this year, we will pay off the car loan and complete our emergency fund goal by April. This will be accomplished with the money we are planning to get from our tax refund (having a new child and because both of us were students this year we expect a sizable amount) as well as my annual February work bonus.

Once these goals are behind us we will throw the money we had been funneling monthly towards our savings and the car loan onto our student loans and mortgage. Ultimately we want to pay those items off as early as possible. We hope to stay in our home for a long time and cannot wait to make the final mortgage payment! Along the way, we will remain free of any other consumer debts. We are also going to begin contributing again to our Roth IRA monthly to put away some money for a “new” used car for whenever one of our existing cars decides to kick the bucket. This way we will hopefully avoid having car payments again in the future.

Among our discussions about such savings goals we also discussed our grocery budget. We looked over the numbers and were kind of disgusted by the fact that we were continually over budget on groceries, which made for a pretty large overage at the end of this year in this category. Therefore, our budgeting goal for 2011 is to definitely stick with no more than $400 a month for groceries (this includes expensive baby formula, pet food, and other necessities). Certainly, better planning and less food waste is what needs to happen here. We are also going to stick to cash only in this category. Once the $400 for the month is gone, it is GONE.

So… we will continue to trudge on, paying off debt, saving more, tracking every expense, learning ways to cut our costs, finding awesome deals, and have a great time in the process. I am really looking forward to what 2011 brings!



Goals for 2010 and Beyond…

November 25, 2009

Since the end of 2009 is approaching I thought I would reflect on what my husband and I have been able to accomplish this year and start thinking about goals for the upcoming years.2009 certainly brought challenges, but also rewards. At the very beginning of the year my husband and I moved into our dream […]

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