Oct 09

September Goal Progress & Income Updates

student debt survivor

I’ve missed a couple of months worth of goal progress posts, so I thought it was important to do a little update to remind myself where I am. I’ve actually been making a fair bit of progress in some areas, and since the end of the year is nearing, I want to kick my efforts up a notch in some categories.

**Updated to add, these goals started out as my goals for 2013, and I’ve updated/changed some of them as the months have gone by to re-focus on what’s most important to me, make the individual goals more challenging, delete goals that I no longer want to work on etc.** 

Personal Goals

  • Cook 1 new meal per week- I’ve actually been doing really well in this category. I wouldn’t necessarily call some of the things I’ve been making “meals” but I have been trying to cook from scratch more. I’ve been experimenting with a bunch of new recipes (I’m going to post a few in the next couple of weeks) and I’ve tried some new breakfast ideas, including these mini omelet muffins.
  • Read 6 books- Still reading books and articles for school, so pleasure reading is pretty much non-existent. In fact, I’m taking this goal off my list until this semester is over.
  • Lose 17 pounds- OK, so this one is a little touch and go. I’ve made some progress, then I fell off the wagon a little bit and now I’m back to 133.5. I’m not sure that Weight Watchers is going to be the program for me, but I’m going to continue to try to eat healthier and cook more from scratch. I’m also going to stop stressing when I “slip up.”
  • Jog 3 times a week- I’ve still been jogging/walking 5k, two times per week, but getting in that 3rd jog doesn’t always happen. I know it’s good for me and will help with my strength and weight loss, but I’ve been feeling a little overwhelmed with work and school lately, so jogging has not really been at the top of my priority list (although it should be).
  • cowlMake 6 knit projects-Big progress this month! I finally finished a cowl I’d put on hold since last year. I also started knitting again on a hat that I’d started a long time ago. Only 5 more projects to go.

Professional Goals

  • Finish the graduate course I’m taking- I finished my summer course successfully (A :-)) and I’m completing my 3rd of the three clinical courses that I need before I sit for my licensing exam. I just wrote my mid-term, so my final paper is the last paper between me and the exam.

Blogging Goals

  • Get my Alexa Ranking below 200k 100K & keep it there- Right now I’m hovering at 100k (low is good). I’ve recently received a lot of support from fellow bloggers and readers lately (you guys are the best!)
  • Have 1000 Twitter Followers- During the last update I was at 912, now I have 1128! Thanks to all my new followers, I feel so popular!
  • *New Goal* Increase my facebook following. Right now I have 32 likes. I’d love it if you’d like the SDS facebook page. 
  • Have 250 500 RSS subscribers- Yay! Goal achieved. 253 of you are now subscribed, holy cow! So I’m going to think big and try to increase that number to 500. Go big or go home, right?
  • Guest Post at least 4 times this year- I’ve finally made some progress on this goal. I guest posted a couple of times over at Economag. It’s a really fun and entertaining site and I encourage you to stop by if you haven’t already. Good stuff! Interested in guest posting here on SDS? Just shoot me an e-mail I love to support fellow bloggers.

Money Goals

  • Save $12,500-So far this year I’ve saved $8853.00 in my Capital One savings account. Technically I’ve saved $10853.00, but I had to spent $2000 to pay for the two courses I needed to take at my alma mater. **Shameless plug-If you’re in the market for an online savings or checking account I’d recommend Capital One 360. New customers get a $25 bonus for setting up a savings account and a $50 bonus for opening a checking account-you can get both bonuses-I did!**
  • Make $200/mo in extra income- In September I made $570 in extra income. $50.00 was from freelance writing, $10 was from a beer rebate (curious about how I made $350 last year with beer rebates?) read more here $150 was from blog advertising and $360 was from cat sitting. I really would like to get my freelance writing income back up. I haven’t had as much work at the site I was writing for, so if you’re looking for a writer/blogger/guest author please shoot me an e-mail!
  • Travel to Las Vegas- We’ve been trying to plan something with my parents, since they are interested in going with us. It looks like this might not happen until next spring because my mom is a teacher (only gets school holidays) and my step-dad can’t really travel during the winter months because of his job. We have, however been planning a trip with my grandparents. We’re thinking we might do a cruise, but we’re waiting on my grandfather’s passport, which unfortunately has been held up by the government shutdown, ugg (#firstworldproblems). Once he gets the passport we can finalize our travel plans and destination.

Image: lululemon athletica


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  1. Alicia @ Financial Diffraction

    I love that cowl! I wish I could knit but my grandmother gave up on me because I am left-handed and I was confusing her when she tried to teach me at 7.

    Regarding the jogging: I find it easiest to do every other day assuming you don’t have other evening activities so that it rotates three days one week, four days the next. Conversely, you could do that rotation with every three days and you’d end up with a two-run-per-week, and a three-run-per-week. Just a thought.

    1. KK

      One of my co-workers is right handed but her grandmother taught her to knit left handed because that’s the only way she knew. I love stories like that. There are a lot of great utube videos that are really helpful if you’re interested in learning.

      Thanks for the jogging tip, I’m going to have to try that once my class is over. For now I can’t run Monday or Tuesday nights because I don’t get home until way too late (I guess maybe I could run in the mornings but I’m so tired when I get up).

  2. Holly@ClubThrifty

    I just liked your Facebook page =)

    It sounds like you are doing awesome on your goals. I’m trying to shake off a few pounds as well. It’s frustrating when my husband buys donuts every day!

    1. KK

      Thanks Holly, I really appreciate it!

      Bf constantly buys sweets as a “surprise” for me. I keep telling him I don’t want them because I’m trying to cut out sweets, but he tells me I’m beautiful they way I am (love that man!)

  3. jefferson @See Debt Run

    These are yearly goals, not monthly .. right? If so.. you are very much on the right track. For the weight loss, have you given Paleo/Primal a try? Check out Mark’s Daily Apple (google it) for some tips and tricks. It has made a world of difference for me..

    1. KK

      Yes Jefferson, they are yearly and I update with my monthly progress (well I used to, I’m trying to get back on track with my progress posting).

      I’ve heard a lot of good things about paleo eating. It’s definitely something I’m interested in learning more about. I’m going to head over to the site your recommend and see what it’s all about 🙂

  4. Kasey @ Debt Perception

    How did you get in to cat sitting? I’ve been on Care.com and Sittercity for two years trying to get in to babysitting, pet sitting and housecleaning for side income but I haven’t gotten one single opportunity yet.

    1. KK

      My cat sitting has been mostly word of mouth referrals, but I also have a website. I’ve had good luck putting ads on craigslist in the “pets” section letting people know that I’m available and I also have a Care.com profile (I have picked up a few clients that way). Once you can find a couple of pet parents and they like you, they’ll pass the word to their friends. Pets are my passion so it’s a natural fit for me and something I really love doing.

  5. Grayson @ Debt Roundup

    Quite the set of goals you have here. Very ambitious for just one month or what it looks like anyway! Thanks for linking to my government rant. I appreciate the support.

    1. KK

      I actually updated the post to indicate these are my yearly goals and I try to share my monthly progress towards them. I wish I could be that productive in 1 month 🙂 I really enjoyed (and agree with) your post, very well said.

  6. Demaish @ Borrowed Cents

    Congrats on your accomplishments and keep up pursuing the other goals and you will achieve them too. The only way to not achieve them is if you do not try.

    1. KK

      Thanks Demaish I appreciate it!

  7. Dear Debt

    Sounds like you are doing well! Congrats on the increased followers, subscribers and income. Woo hoo! i hope to continue to increase my income and pursue more opportunities.

    1. KK

      Thanks 🙂 I’m really please with how things are going, I’m so lucky to have such wonderful friends/readers. I’m sure increased income is coming your way. I love reading the “dear debt” letters on your site. Very inspirational.

  8. Mr. Utopia @ Personal Finance Utopia

    Way to get back to posting your goals. It may not guarantee that you accomplish them all, but I think it definitely helps when you document them and then share them publicly. It keeps you much more on track. Good job on the blogging goals, it’s looks like you’ve exceeded some original expectations.

    1. KK

      I like to make them public, at least then if I don’t reach them people can publicly shame me (err support me and tell me how they have been successful in similar pursuits ;-)).

  9. Girl Meets Debt

    I love the pretty colors of your infinity scraf you knitted! Your blog has always been on of my favorites. Keep up the great work KK!

    1. KK

      Thanks Wendy, that means a lot to me, since GMD is one of my favorites as well!

  10. Michelle

    I love that cowl. So pretty and love the color! That stinks about the passport issue.

    1. KK

      Thanks Michelle. I bought the yarn last year at the New York State Sheep and wool festival. Going to the festival is one of my favorite events all year, so every time I wear the cowl I’m going to think about what a good time I had. The passport delay is frustrating, but there’s nothing I can do ugg.

  11. E.M.

    Sounds like everything has been going well for you! That cowl is really pretty. I hope to learn to knit (or rather, learn to have patience) in the future. My aunt loves to do it, and my mom has knitted a few blankets. It seems like a relaxing thing to do at night while watching TV. Congrats on your blog goals, too!

    1. KK

      I love to knit. If you have any interest at all you should definitely give it a try. It’s super relaxing and makes me feel really productive. Plus it’s pretty neat to when you get compliments about a knit piece to be able to say, “Thanks I made it”.

  12. Mackenzie

    That is so cool that you knit! I’ve always wanted to learn how.

    Congrats on the progress of your goals 🙂

    1. KK

      I always encourage people to try knitting if they have an interest. It’s fun and a really great way to make all the custom knitwear you’ve ever want. Hats and scarves that perfectly match your coat and are exactly the right fit.

  13. Micro

    I’m about a month and a half into the yakezie challenge. When I started out my Alexa was sitting at 1.6 million, lol. I’ve been able to slowly work it down a low 300k. Congrats on getting near 100k. You seem to be kicking but in a bunch of your other goals too, which is awesome.

    1. KK

      It’s really cool to see your Alexa drop. 1.6 mil to 300k is a really significant drop in such a short period of time, well done!

  14. anna

    Yum, the mini omelette looks so delicious, and the cowl is gorgeous!! I love the rich colors you woven together. Congrats on all your blog success, as well – it’s well-deserved! 🙂

    1. KK

      Thanks Anna. The cowl is one of my all-time favorite knit projects that I’ve made so far (and I’ve made a lot).

  15. Budget and the Beach

    I wish I had a skill like knitting but I somehow doubt I have what it takes to learn and/or find time to do it. Maybe while I’m watching TV? Nope, I get up and check the computer all the time when I do that. Great job on your goals. Oh those tough fitness goals…sigh…

    1. KK

      You totally have the skill (it’s not hard once you figure it out, everybody makes mistakes at first). I have to make time to knit, since I always have my computer on my lap when I’m watching tv. If only I could find a way to blog, comment on blogs, knit and watch TV at the same time. Just not enough hours in the day.

  16. Laurie @thefrugalfarmer

    Amazing job on your goals, KK, and I love that cowl – it’s beautiful! You’re doing awesome, friend – keep up the good work!

    1. KK

      Thanks Laurie, as always I appreciate your support and kind words!

  17. Brian @ Luke1428

    Great job on your goals KK! When I first started running I was NOT a morning person. But I found it was the only time I could consistently find time to get it done. After work and into the evening always seemed too busy with family activities and working around dinner was always a challenge. Something would always come up and I was usually tired from a long day at work.

    It took me about 3 months of getting up early for my body to change its biorhythm. Now, I run 4-5 times a week, getting up each morning between four and five depending on how far I’m going. Course I go to bed at 9 or 10 on nights before I run. (Obviously I’m not running tomorrow as you can see when I posted this:)) I’ve found I like the peacefulness of the morning and getting my workout in gives me energy for the rest of the day.

    1. KK

      Thanks Brian. This morning I actually woke up at 5:30 for no reason. I almost put on my running tights, but then rolled over and went back to bed. I think I probably could run in the mornings if I didn’t stay up so late at night commenting and reading other blogs 🙂 I don’t get home until 9pm or so on Monday and Tuesdays and then I feel like I have a lot of things to catch up on so I stay up too late. I feel better when I run, so it’s something I need to make time for.

  18. DC @ Young Adult Money

    I’m sorry, I just can’t help but say – LOL at how almost all these comments are about knitting! I just liked your Facebook page and I’m sad to say that pleasure reading is essentially non-existent in my life as well. It seems like the only time I get to do it is on vacation, and I don’t go on vacation that often so it really doesn’t happen. Congrats on the savings goal, I am trying to plow some money into savings as well since I haven’t really been good at consistently saving in the past.

    1. KK

      I have a crafting blog that I haven’t updated in a really long time, maybe I need to start updating and posting a few links for my pf craft lovers. I’m thankful for the support either way. I’ll really be glad when I finish this course so that I can start doing some pleasure reading again. I did get in some reading in August when I was on vacation, but it looks like the next vacation wont be for another month or two. Maybe we need a pf blogger book club to keep us reading 😉

  19. Kyle | Rather-Be-Shopping.com

    Um, yeah, so the beer rebate dealio really got my attention and now I am totally bummed I don’t live in a NBPR state.

    1. KK

      Total bummer. I’ve only lived in NBPR states since I found out about them (not on purpose, but it’s worked out well). My folks live in Maine so I’ve gotten them into the rebates too. My dad’s in florida which has some rebates but you have to buy the beer which makes them not as good of a deal (unless you were going to buy the beer anyway).

  20. Mark Ross

    Congratulations on your achievements! Keep it up and good luck!

  21. KK

    Thanks Mark, I appreciate the support!

  22. Hayley @ A Disease Called Debt

    Well done on your savings! I love the idea of cat sitting, that’s a great way to earn extra income. I didn’t know you liked to knit – love the cowl! I l enjoy knitting but just haven’t had time lately. The most advanced item I’ve knitted so far is a hat. It had loads of holes in it! Lol! Just liked your facebook page. 🙂

    1. KK

      I learned to knit from a college roommate and have gotten better over the years (teaching myself from utube videos and books). It’s something I love to do. My first knitted items were pathetic. My poor family was probably embarrassed to wear them. Now they actually appreciate my gifts (because my skills have increased). I always make baby sweaters baby showers and they seem to be a big hit. Thanks for like, I appreciate it!

  23. Jen @ Frugal Rules

    Whoa, what a list of goals and I’d say kudos to you! You must be busy as a bee – physically and mentally. I would not dare ask if you were able to do all of them within the time frame you intended to but I thought I’d let you know that just seeing how well you planned it all is already an inspiration. Then my eyes fell on the knitting project plan and I turned green because to this day, I have yet to learn knitting yet my desire to learn was like ages ago. Sigh!

    1. KK

      I like to stay busy (and the goals are over the course of the year, so it’s probably not as ambitious as it looks ;-)) Knitting is much easier to learn than you’d think. I know people who learned when they were little kids. Don’t be afraid!

  24. Matt Becker

    Guest posting is something I’d like to do more of as well. I think it’s an important way to both build links and expose yourself to a different set of readers. I would also love to get back to reading more, but I just feel like I don’t have the time.

    1. KK

      I agree with you Matt. Guest posting is really great for so many reasons, link building, finding new readers, establishing better relationships with fellow bloggers. If you ever have interest in doing a guest post just shoot me an email! 🙂

  25. Ajaveen

    Wow KK I love reading about your success I stumbled upon your website a few months ago as I was paying off 8 credit cards. I just paid the last 3 off last week Friday 🙂
    My goal now is to tackle my student loan of $27,000 which I plan to pay off in 5 years or less.

    1. KK

      Wow that’s amazing progress, congrats! With all that success “under your belt” the student loans aren’t going to be as bad as you think. Keep me updated on your progress. I’m really glad to have you as a reader.

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