2012 goals - Give Me Back My Five Bucks

2012 goals

I am really excited for 2012. My life has changed so much over the past 12 months, and I am really looking forward to the next 12 months.

This is my opportunity for a brand new start. I have so much that I want to accomplish this year, and I know that if I work hard and put my mind to it, I can do it all – and maybe even surprise myself along the way. :)

Q1 updateMarch 30, 2012
Q2 updateJune 29, 2012
Q3 updateOctober 3, 2012
Q4 update: December 28, 2012


  • Earn $70,000. As I embark on my journey as a full-time freelancer, this will be my only financial goal for 2012. I just don’t know what to expect, or if this is even a realistic goal. But since all of my other financial goals hinge on how much money I can earn, I don’t think there’s any sense in creating more specific goals. This will be my biggest personal finance challenge ever.


  • Travel. Being based out of Europe for 7 months out of the year will help me achieve this goal. :) Countries on our “must see” list are Germany (obviously), Switzerland, Austria, Netherlands, Sweden, France, Belgium, Italy, and Luxembourg. I also want to see Slovenia, Denmark, and I also want to get to Iceland. But I somehow doubt that’ll happen. Back in North America, I want to get to Toronto (for the 2012 Canadian Personal Finance Conference), and to wherever the Financial Blogger Conference is going to be held. So, a lot of traveling this year. On a potentially tight budget.
  • Go on a trip by myself. I would like to accomplish this in Europe. There are a few places on my list that I know Nic doesn’t want to see. Perhaps I can work up the courage to go by myself.
  • Learn basic German and French. I don’t know any German, and the last time I spoke any French was in high school. Since I’ll be living in Germany, I really want to learn how to have at least a basic conversation with someone. And since my boyfriend is French, I want to at least learn how to read it (so I don’t have to rely on Google Translate to help me figure out what he’s saying on Facebook all the time!). And have a simple conversation without being laughed at because I can’t pronounce anything properly. :)
  • Read 12 novels not related to marketing or personal finance. I think I might burn out if I spend my leisure time reading up about job-related material. Even though I like reading about marketing/PF/social media, I think I will be a more effective worker if I step away and try to clear my head by reading completely different stuff.


  • 2012 Canadian Personal Finance Conference. This is turning into a bigger event than both Preet and I could have ever imagined, and I am really, really excited to be a part of it. To finally have all of Canada’s top personal finance names under one roof, sharing ideas … well, it’s going to be an incredible experience for sure.
  • Write one guest post each month on another blog. I’ve never written guest posts before, but I want to try to write on blogs that will help me grow my reach. So, basically blogs that are more popular than mine, or ones that don’t necessarily fall within the personal finance niche.
  • Take all of my own photographs. This has been one of my goals for a long time now. Because I think I’ll have more time this year, I feel like I’ll have more of a chance to be creative.
  • Post a new photo every day while abroad via Tumblr. Because I didn’t think you guys would want to be bombarded by a million photos of Europe while I’m gone, I decided to create a Tumblr account instead (follow me!). My goal is to post at least one new photo every day for all of 2012.
  • Take on three steady freelance assignments. Right now I have two steady assignments. I think adding one more steady stream of income will help me feel more secure as a freelancer. It doesn’t have to be writing – it can be graphic design, marketing, social media – I’m open to pretty much everything.


  1. Very cool! Love the goals. Hope you achieve all of them. While in Europe – check out Prague if you can fit it in! Was there for Christmas and it was nothing short of amazing! Vienna and Prague are a simple train trip apart.

    As for guest posting – I would love for you to guest post on my blog. Feel free to come check me out – I write about travel and experiences. Drop me a note if you are interested. Check me out at http://traveldestinationbucketlist.com – thrilled to have you guest post.

  2. Hello!

    You definitely have a lot of good advice on your blog, and I want to thank you for sharing it with us, the public!

    I’m curious, if you dont mind my asking, what kind of job do you have to allow you to work in Europe? My dream job revolves around working in Europe, and I speak French fluently and German decently well to understand and be understood. I am currently looking for a job (I just finished school in December) and have only found a few that have sparked my interest. What did you study for your undergrad?

    Well, good luck with your goals this year!


    • Hi! To answer your question, I’m a freelance writer & designer, so I can essentially do my work anywhere without it affecting my work performance. My education is in marketing & communication. :)

  3. I think last year you had more points/goals- like rrsp contribution goals etc.. what are you doing with your money that you save every week? it’s not just sitting in a bank right- you dump somewhere useful non?
    Sounds like you probably save 2500-3500 a month after you have paid your mortgage and all your bills AND your other spending which is a lot of Extra money to have left over every month.. what do you with it?

    • Yes, I definitely had more finance-related goals last year. The reason why I only have one goal this year is because this is my first year as a full-time freelancer. With secure income coming from a day job last year, it was a lot easier to create specific goals – like RRSP contributions, Emergency Fund allocation, etc. Because all of my financial goals are directly affected by how much I can earn this year, my only financial goal is to bring in $70k in income. This is the most challenging financial goal I have ever given myself.

      Any extra money I make goes directly into savings. It either gets funnelled into my RRSPs, mortgage, saved to pay taxes, or spent on travel (or any other big ticket item I want to buy).

  4. I have read through many of your blog posts and really love your blog. At the start of this year I created my own blog to help university/college students save money. Do you have any tips for me personally when it comes to blogging and what would you do differently in university when it comes to saving your money and spending it better?


  5. Hi Krystal,

    Just a reminder that your Q2 update is now almost 4 months late, and your Q3 update is coming up in about a month.


  6. Nice goals! It’s going to be hard to learn German and French this year with all the other stuff you have going on, but I’m sure you’ll find a way to do it.

  7. Hi Krystal,
    I really enjoy your frank, to the point style of writing and the layout for your blog! I used to freelance for Reuters and I’m currently thinking about getting back into this. You certainly have a very dynamic website, I’m wondering, how did you go about writing for msn?


  8. I love that you break apart your goals into Financial, Personal and Professional. I feel like I focus too much on one area of my life and forget the others. Looks like you’re on top of that!

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