New Years, Goals & Resolutions

by Kelly · 4 comments

in Etc

Happy New Year Everyone! Or rather, happy last day of 2009.

2009 has been an exciting year for us. I finished my first year of graduate school, we bought a new car, we moved, I started a new job, my oldest son started first grade. Lots of cool stuff. There’s been some sad stuff too: our new apartment was broken into and my oldest cat died. Luckily there have been many more ups than downs, for which I’m very thankful!

2009 also marks the second year of Almost Frugal, which I began on December 27, 2007. In that time, about 1800 readers have subscribed by RSS and email, I have published 554 posts, people have left 5,067 comments and I did one blog redesign (with more blue and some nice red accents).

January 3, 2010 will mark the 10th anniversary of when I first set foot on French soil. As I only planned to be here five months, I’m a bit flabbergasted to have never left (except for vacations home and so on). I’m still not sure how long I will stay here, although I do know that when I do leave, it will be with a lot more luggage than when I arrived… three children, three cats and a French husband tend to do that to you!

My resolutions for 2009 were a mixed bag, in terms of success.

  • In periods of low stress, my hands looked nice… in stressful times, not so much!
  • I was about half way through an ‘If I Drop Dead’ file… then my computer got stolen. (Lessen to self- all new documents get saved remotely!)
  • We mostly failed at the financial resolutions as well; we took on new debt in 2009 (both consumer and car loan), but we paid off one car loan and a bunch of other consumer debt.
  • I saved the €1000 emergency fund several times… then it got spent on emergencies, several more times!
  • I did start giving my kids an allowance, somewhat irregularly.
  • I didn’t quite reach my Almost Frugal goals, but that doesn’t really matter, either; writing Almost Frugal and connecting with other people thanks to this blog has been a blast!

I’m setting three resolutions for 2010.

  • To make, and stick to a zero balanced budget, one in which every penny earned is a penny accounted for and which also includes a plan for savings.
  • To give something, in some way, every week. (More on that on Monday.)
  • To try and keep my stress from affecting my personal life. I think I’ve mastered not chewing on my fingers (!) when stressed, now I just need to stop letting it affect how I interact with my family. This is going to be a challenge, especially as I write my thesis!

To all my friends, both new and old,  from the internet and in real life- thank you for being a part of my life in 2009, and here’s to a wonderful and challenging 2010!

What are your resolutions for 2010?


1 Mrs. Money January 1, 2010

I will be posting my resolutions tomorrow! I can’t believe 2010 is almost here. I am so excited. I think you have great goals for the new year. Hope it’s a great one!
.-= Mrs. Money´s last blog ..The Best Posts of 2009 =-.

2 Kristen@TheFrugalGir January 1, 2010

My goals are coming up today too, Mrs. Money! lol
.-= Kristen@TheFrugalGirl´s last blog ..What Zoe Thinks About Second Hand Christmas Gifts =-.

3 Laura@movetoportugal January 5, 2010

Really good goals for 2010 Kelly; I can relate to number 3 😉

4 JStone January 7, 2010

Well, the cultural differences between my Chinese wife and I seem to extend into the shower.

I like to use a soap with a pleasant fragrance to it. However my wife and her mother insist on a cake of soap with an odour resembling some kind of harsh industrialised detergent.

I don’t know where they find this soap, but it certainly wouldn’t sell in a Coles or a Woolworths.

Every time I get near it I get an idea of what life would have been like in those concentration camps in China during the cultural revolution. This is really harsh soap that leaves one feeling that their body has been stripped of all vital moisture. It is certainly not a luxury item.

In any case, its always there in the shower, whether I like it or not.

In order to get around this, I recently purchased a bottle of body shampoo, as something that I could use and at least feel like I had a real showever.

The day after I purchased it, the bottle went missing.

When I asked my wife what happened to it, she quickly ran to the bathroom. She returned with an old handwash bottle.

She then proudly stated that her mother diluted the contents of my bottle, and got to fill four old handwash bottles.

When I told her that it was for me to use in the shower, she looked at me strangely and said, “why would you use that in the shower? We already have soap!”

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