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February Recap / March Goals

March 2, 2016

February Recap:

February was a fine month, despite starting off with T out of the country.

Work was OK.  The opportunity  (#3) mentioned here was confirmed, and is slowly ramping up.  I’m super excited about it for about 50 reasons.  I’m organizing the rest of my stuff in a way that I’m happy with, and now I just have to make sure everyone else is on board and happy too. I think we will get there.  The remote team role I signed up for involves traveling for ~1 week/month. In the short run, this isn’t a big deal (although I prefer being home, and I also do lunch time dog duty, so this impacts T.  We got a dog walker on an as-needed basis.). In the long, long, run, I have some worries. But I’m going to go forward in the direction that I think makes sense, and I have confidence that future-me will be able to figure it out if my worries materialize.

Our finances are in good shape.  We got our giant tax refunds, and sent it to various targeted savings, and mortgage prepayment. I adjusted our tax withholdings to a more appropriate level, and our cash flow is a lot better than last year.

I’m looking into a student loan refinance with Earnest.  Most people in my financial position would probably simply pay the dang thing off – it is a small fraction of our cash on hand.  But I don’t want to – so why not reduce my rate further? The savings are relatively small since I don’t have much left, but they are not insignificant and I don’t see any disadvantages of doing it.  I’ll write more about this once I’ve finished the process.

I signed up for the Chase United MileagePlus Explorer card. There was a $50 statement credit, waived fee,  and 50,000 miles with $2,000 spend (within 3 months).  The spend within 3 months wasn’t a problem since we regularly use our personal cards for booking work travel.  We obliterated our frequent flier mile accounts in 2015, but they were super helpful for last minute emergency trips back home.

My tiny goal list was not even obliterated.

  • Schedule a haircut.  Fail.  Why is hair such a low priority in my life?  Will do ASAP.
  • Send more to the mortgage (at least $10k).  Win.  Yes!  It is so fun to see the balance go down in such big chunks. I would like to send in $7k more this spring, which brings me to the $25k I wanted to do last year (but was too scared to follow through on).
  • Schedule our last big house project (this is on T’s to-do list).  FAIL.
  • Sketch out 2016 budget and goals/plans. FAIL.  I mean, I have plans and goals, but…

March Plans & Goals:

I have two work trips planned, a M-F in Colorado, and one late this month in Minnesota for two days for the new project.  Conveniently, my sister lives in Minnesota, so I’m going to get to see my family!  We’ve also been talking about a backpacking trip on a long weekend, and I think it is going to happen.

Here are my goals.

  • Run at least 6 times. I’m planning a short trail race in April – but I’m keeping running goals extremely low key right now.  I let the dog run with me a few times on trails, but we are less like the graceful pair in envisioned and more like…man-being-dragged-by-dog
    OK, not that bad, but he’s certainly not trotting along in a heel position.  We’re working on it.  With daylight savings time ending soon (right?), this gets easier.
  • February hold overs
    • Schedule our last big house project (this is on T’s to-do list).
    • Sketch out 2016 budget and goals/plans.
    • Haircut!

That’s really it.  If I can stay on top of work and get in a few runs and a haircut, we can call March a success.  Even better if we also do a backpacking trip!


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