Give Me Back My Five Bucks

What’s your New Year’s Resolution?

I can’t believe 2008 is already over. This year has gone by so fast – and so much has happened!

Financially, I think I’ve said it before, but I’m not in the place that I thought I’d be in. According to my NetworthIQ, my networth in January was $18,814, and my networth now at the end of December is $26,695. That’s a difference of $7,881. Not too bad considering I started the year off unemployed, moved twice, made considerably less than I’m used to for the majority of the year, and did a bit of traveling (Detroit/Toronto, Las Vegas, Edmonton, Calgary, and Seattle 3 or 4 times).

From a personal point of view, 2008 has been a great year. My relationship with BF is amazing and continues to get better, and I’ve made some good friends here in Vancouver.

Some people don’t believe in resolutions, but I think it’s nice to have something to think about throughout the year; something to improve upon or strive for.

My 2008 resolution was to speak my mind. I’ve always had a tendancy to lose my voice in relationships. I would lose who I was in an effort to make the other person happy. It left me unsatisfied and miserable. I wanted to change that, and I really think that I’ve accomplished this. I feel like I have an equal say in my relationship with BF, and in my everyday life, my motto has been that if I have the energy to complain about something, then I have the energy to try and change it. That makes me feel more productive in life, and reduces the amount of complaining I do. :)

My 2009 resolution is to try and not be so shy. With my friends and family, I am quite outgoing – but put me in a situation with new people, or in a big group, and I clam up. I feel awkward. I am sooooo much better one-on-one or with small groups. I don’t really know how to talk to people or start up conversations at parties. It all feels fake to me. Like it’s an act and the dialogue is just part of it. I need to get past the artificial stage.

And I can really psych myself out too. I will start stressing out about who I can talk to, who I’m going to know, what I’m going to say, how long we’ll be there for, etc. So when I’m actually in the situation, I get tired from stressing out, self conscious because I don’t know anyone, and grumpy because I’m not having fun and it seems like everyone knows everyone else, and everybody is talking and laughing and having a good time but me.

I think I’m getting better though. When I was home for Christmas, I spent a lot of time with BF and his relatives. I didn’t necessarily talk all that often, but I felt comfortable around them and I occassionally joined in on the conversation, which is a big step for me. Usually I feel self conscious and I say nothing.

So, we’ll see how I do this year.

Are you making a New Year’s Resolution?

Brown bagging in December

I’ve brought my lunch to work every day this month. It was definitely a lot easier than when I did my February-March Lunch Challenge, and I feel a sense of accomplishment.

I’d like to start doing these monthly challenges again because they definitely helped me. But they were a lot of work, doing the weekly updates and posting up everybody’s progress. Perhaps if I do it again, instead of posting everyone’s progress, I’ll just write a post asking for updates, and participants can just scroll through the comments to see how everyone is doing.

But if I did a monthly challenge again, I’d probably do groceries. That, or dining out. Those seem to be my real budget busters these days.

Free entertainment

BF has been teaching me how to play Scrabble. I just assumed I would be good at it, since I’m pretty good at Boggle. But there’s a lot more strategy involved, and the words you have to create are directly affected by what the other players are doing – which obviously isn’t the case in Boggle. I’m getting there, but he’s still better than me for now. :)

Since we’re both trying to save money this year, board games are a fun and free way to have fun for hours. We’ve been playing a lot of them lately.

What other completely free activities do you do with your friends?

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