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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Better late than never

My 2011 Goals.

You'll notice not one of them is being on time ;-)







1) Eliminate Non Housing Debt

I gave this one a good start in 2010 but ran into some added expenses which set me back.
I have a monthly plan in place and I am going to stick with it. Hopefully I will be able to put a much bigger dent into my balance this year. Knock on wood . . .





2) Beat Averages

Last year I increase my return average 50% to set a new goal. That was ambitious. For 2010 I did beat all the averages but feel short of the 24% mark. If I increase my 20% return by 50% that would push my goal up to 30%. That is a bit too ambitious even for me. This year I am going to keep my “beat the averages” goal with a stretch goal of 24%.

3) Cut Expenses by 10%

One way to increase savings and add to paying off debt is by taking a long hard look at your expenses and “cutting the fat” as they say.

We currently do “OK” but I know we can do better. Especially in the area of finding and shopping for deals. Some of the phenomenal success stories of the past year has been the rise of sites like Goupons and Couponmom. This year I am going to take a more serious look at saving with coupons and actively look to “trim the fat” from our daily / monthly expenses.

4) Double followers

I currently have 24.
I’m actually going to split this one out to 36 followers with a stretch goal of 48.





5) Win Fantasy Football

I came oh so close to this but fell short in the end.
I may never actually accomplish this but hey, I’m keeping up the hope and the goal.
OK lets split this one too:

- East Coast wins the championship
- With a stretch goal of me winning.


6) Fence and Shed clean out Garage!

A few months ago, one of my favorite shows – Criminal Minds – had a quote at the end of the show regarding a statistic which stated before 1960, there were virtually no personal storage units in the US. Today, there is more than 2.35 billion square feet of self storage in the U.S., or a land area equivalent to three times Manhattan Island under roof. It seems that the U.S. certainly has become the land of excess sometimes and personally I would like to do my part in reversing that trend.

Now, we are nowhere near as bad as compulsive hoarders or anything like that, but like many people we have “collected stuff” over the years. Stuff we probably do not need nor use or even know exist anymore.

Welcome to my garage.

Part 1 of this goal is to declutter my life and garage. The decluttering should help in finances, free time and finally getting at least one of our cars into the garage.

Part 2 of this goal: Putting a shed in the backyard will help with storing outside yard tools and stuff like bikes and sleds.

Part 3 of this goal: Putting up a fence will help with keeping said shed stuff from finding little feet and ending up cluttering the neighbors yards and provide our dogs some true running room.

Speaking of dogs . . .

7) Get Lola a Forever Home

My daughter, Alaina, will hate me for putting this up here, but hey, maybe it will ultimately inspire her to add a 2011 goal for herself.

Lola is our current resident foster greyhound.

Current Resident, because she has been here about 7 weeks. This is almost an all time record for us keeping a foster before getting him or her adopted.

Foster because she is a foster, which means the intent is to find her a forever home (other than ours).


As you can see, she is a very cute black and white greyhound. And trust me she is very affectionate and playful and will make a good addition to any home.

Her original racing name was Rico's Hailey and though many greyhound agencies frown on renaming a foster we took that liberty because, well, she simply was not a Hailey or Rico.

We tossed around several potential names like Betty; if you are familiar with Ram Jam or Leadbelly you will know the reference, but thought it better to avoid potentially politically incorrect names for a black dog. Lola seemed to be a name that she responded well to and, well, it makes for one or two rather good Kinks songs too.

Oh, There is just one little caveat.

There seems to be a condition which has come up recently that says if Alaina gets a job, she can keep Lola as a pet. Hmmmm – I wonder who came up with that one. So, perhaps Alaina will add getting a job to her 2011 goals. This will go a long way towards giving her some much needed money, added responsibility and convincing me to actually keep Lola.

But until then . . .

Please contact the Virginia Greyhound Adoption Society for more information.

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