Give Me Back My Five Bucks

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May 2012 Goals: Recap

May was a much calmer month than April in terms of spending, although we did add in two trips outside of Stuttgart – a day trip to Heidelberg, and an overnight trip to Freiburg in the Black Forest. I’m enjoying the less hectic travel schedule. We are planning picnics in the park, day trip adventures within the city, and even meeting up with some people for dinner and drinks. Although, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to head off to Athens next week. :)

As for my goals, I didn’t exactly shine this month. And while I did try, I didn’t try my hardest. I kind of blame the beautiful weather.

Over Budget:

  • Travel – Actually, considering I bought 2 flights (Stuttgart-Barcelona, Barcelona-Stockholm), and went on 2 unplanned trips (Freiburg, Heidelberg) along with the 2 planned trips for the month (Amsterdam, Berlin), I’m pleased I only went over budget by $118.53!

Net Worth Change– $3,149 (- 4.20%)

This is the first negative net worth month I’ve had in almost two years. It makes me sad to see my net worth plummet by so much, but I knew it was coming – I had to pay my 2011 taxes! Hopefully I’ll be able to start another streak of positive net worth months starting in June. :)

May 2012 Goals:

  • Get up-to-date with my administrative work and invoices. FAIL. I’m the worst. The invoices are all up-to-date, and I’ve been paid the backlog of invoices I was waiting on… but as for my e-mails and advertising admin work… let’s just see it’s a work in progress.
  • Help as much as I can with the book launchPASS. There wasn’t actually anything to do, but I’ll be waiting and willing once it starts.
  • Send one box of stuff home to Vancouver. FAIL. There could be a small (okay, big) change of plans in the coming weeks. My lips are sealed until then. :)

Ongoing 2012 Goals:

  • Post a new photo every day on my Tumblr account, My Life In Pixels. CHECK! I was a little behind sometimes because of my lack of internet connection, but I do have a photo up for every day of the month.
  • Only post my own photos on GMBMFB. FAIL. A couple of my photos were taken from the hostel website, because the photos I took ended up being on the wrong camera setting so they looked terrible.
  • Write one guest post for another blog or website. FAIL. Yep.

May 2012 Goals

May 2012 Goals:

  • Have 10 No-Spend Days. After such an expensive April, I really want to take back control of my spending.
  • Get up-to-date with my administrative work and invoices. This means following up with unpaid invoices, and figuring out if the system I’m currently using is the best one for me. Also, I need to answer the backlog of e-mails I have sitting in my inbox.
  • Help as much as I can with the book launch. Since the end of November, I have been working with an amazing group of Canadian personal finance bloggers. We have written a book, and we are looking at hard copies becoming available at the end of May. :) My lips are sealed until that time, but I’m very excited about it!
  • Send one box of stuff home to Vancouver. We leave Germany at the end of July, and I expect that I will need to send two boxes of stuff home. My goal is to travel extremely light during August (we have a full travel schedule planned), so it won’t hurt to get a jump start and ship home stuff I don’t use as well as my winter clothes.

Ongoing 2012 Goals:

  • Only post my own photos on GMBMFB.
  • Write one guest post for another blog or website. I think I’d like to try to write on a travel website or blog.

April 2012 Goals: Recap

April was a crazy month. In the last 30 days, I’ve been to 10 different cities in 6 different countries. Truthfully, it was too much – too much for my budget, and too much to try and keep a normal work schedule. I’m now looking forward to a much calmer travel schedule. In a few days we’ll be headed to Amsterdam for the weekend, then we’ll stay put for a couple of weeks until we head to Berlin, Athens, and Prague. I just can’t believe it’s May already!

Anyway, here is my April budget recap:

Over Budget:

  • Travel – I underestimated how much everything would cost. But truthfully, $1,500 for 30 days of travel is pretty cheap. I noticed that on the days I was traveling with Nic, our expenses plummeted. We splurge on certain things (like a gondola ride in Venice), but in order to do so, we don’t mind spending $3 on lunch.
  • Car & Transportation – I took the train to the airport in Stuttgart to meet my mom and sister.
  • Personal Care – Laundry! :)

Net Worth Change+ $1,211 (1.64%)

I’m surprised I ended up with a positive net worth, but I do have property taxes coming due, and I need to save for next year’s taxes. Freelancing has really been a roller coaster ride so far. The unpredictability is a little bit scary. Although, I’m sure I’ll get used to it eventually. Right?

April 2012 Goals:

  • Resume RRSP contributions. CHECK! I’m only contributing $100 bi-weekly, but it’s better than nothing. And I’m just thrilled that I’m able to contribute anything while I’m traveling.
  • Try to limit working while on vacation. PASS. Well, I still worked while I was away – how could I not? But I really tried to limit my hours to late evenings, when we were just hanging out in the hostel anyway. I only had to work once during the day, and that was just for 3 or 4 hours.
  • Get my taxes filed. CHECK! I finally got my taxes filed, and I ended up owing around $3,200 – which I think is pretty good.

Ongoing 2012 Goals:

  • Post a new photo every day on my Tumblr account, My Life In Pixels. CHECK! I was a little late posting some of the photos, because I didn’t have reliable internet service in Spain and some parts of Italy. But there’s a photo for every day!
  • Only post my own photos on GMBMFB. CHECK! Every photo has been my own.
  • Write one guest post for another blog or website. PASS. Actually, this was technically a fail, since I didn’t write a post for another site. But I did write another magazine article, so that’s why I’m counting it as a pass.

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