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2014 Reading Challenge



This year, I'm again pledging to read at least 52 fiction books, though shooting for 60.

I did exceed my 52 book goal from last year.

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Monday, August 5, 2013

Yeah, it's Monday...


It's even Movie Monday, but I couldn't bring myself to watch a movie. Just had no desire to do so, so MM is taking a hiatus for however long I feel like it.

But Fort Worth Friday will return. Sonshine and I had our date yesterday morning and he wielded the camera, so who knows how the pics turned out. Kidding! I'm sure they're fine. I'll be sorting them this week and prepping for future posts.

I still have one last day of pics from Nashville, but I'm sorta tired of the topic, so I'll just post the link to the albums once they're up.

I spent a lot of time on research last week. Not for writing purposes, as I've shifted focus, but for life/financial and business purposes. First I decided I needed an accounting software package for my proofreading business so I Googled those. What I found, eventually, was budget software. Which, yes, I need for business, but actually caught my eye for our personal finances. Its philosophy is simple: Every dollar needs a job. It's easy to use once you get how it all works. It's a very short, barely there learning curve. It also offers a 34-day free trial.

So I downloaded the You Need a Budget software. Herein known as YNAB. All the features are available in the trial. It's not an online thing like Mint.com, though the files are saved into Dropbox and sync with any PCs and devices like smartphones you're gonna use. Very handy!

I added all my data. Figured out how to tweak it to account for all my buckets. That's a term hubby and I use to refer to a specific holding account for something. Like the grocery bucket. All funds designated for food, would be in the grocery bucket. It opened my eyes to how poorly I've managed our money this year. I was--I AM--very disappointed in myself.

I had big plans--as short a time ago as Thursday--for my proofreading earnings. But now I see that aside from the $100 per month I'm putting in a certain credit card bucket (on top of the regular payment plus the payment rolled over from the other CC I just paid off), everything else just needs to go into the main coffer to replenish the money that's been spent here and there on random incidentals over and above the budgeted allowable amount.Yikes!

So back to the drawing board. But now I have my own income that I earn outside of our other business. I feel so much more free and happy and in control of things than I did just a few short months ago. Amazing what a vacation and an attitude adjustment will do for you.

Hope you had a great weekend!!!

3 comments:

Regina Richards said...

Go Jen! The new budgeting software sounds good. :)

Jen FitzGerald said...

Thanks, Regina. You know I'll keep you posted. :)

Lara Lacombe said...

Sounds like you're getting things in order! :)

About Me

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Jen FitzGerald
Thanks for stopping by one of my little corners of the world wide web. So, a little about me...My husband and I have been married for twenty years and we have three adult children although our youngest is still in high school. We've lived in Texas for fifteen years and for the rest of the story, click here.
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Jen's Glossary of Terms

  • DH = my husband
  • my Brown Eyed Girl = my oldest daughter
  • DD = my Darling Daughter (the younger one)
  • Sonshine or Marching Band Boy = my son
  • NT = the North Texas chapter of RWA
  • RWA = Romance Writers of America

2014 Goals

  • lose weight--get down to 120ish pounds (that's 16 lbs.)
  • pay off the credit card with proofing money
  • create bulb bed/plant bulbs on the side of the house
  • work on back yard
  • bookshelves in living room
  • ramp up proofreading
  • publish three more Romance Writer's Guides books
  • get my son graduated
  • read up on how to make the body work like it's supposed to and help my hubby lose weight and get healthy
  • read 64 books, including 12 books on plotting

Books Read in 2014

  • The Roles We Play by JoAnna Grace
  • Whip Me Up, Tie Me Down by Lavender Daye
  • Game of Fear by Robin Perini
  • Lost in Temptation by Lauren Royal
  • What Wendy Wants by Nikki Sex
  • Improper Proposals by Juliana Ross
  • Kira's Keeper by Jan Schliesman
  • Improper Arrangements by Juliana Ross
  • Improper Relations by Juliana Ross
  • How to Kick Your Fat in the Nuts by T.C. Hale
  • Stop!!! Manifesting Money by D/C Russ
  • A Lady in Defiance by Heather Blanton
  • Secret Obsession by Robin Perini
  • Rebooting Your Life: A 12-Day Program for Ending Stress, Realizing Your Goals, and Being More Productive by Gibbons
  • 30 Daily Weight Loss Tips for a Healthy Lifestyle by Joshua Wylie
  • Stealing the Preacher by Karen Witemeyer
  • Coconut Oil Recipes: Nature's Remedy for Health, Beauty, Weight Loss, Allergies & Detoxing by Scarlett Aphra

Books read in 2013

  • Incredibly Delicious Soup Recipes from the Mediterranean by Vasela Tabakova
  • Madam President by Jerry Beller (didn't finish)
  • Kick Menstrual Cramps in the Nuts by T.C. Hale
  • Blurred Lines by Janie Crouch
  • Love Me or Leave Me by Kristine Mason
  • Wish On a Star by Lauren Holly
  • Paradise Valley by Dale Cramer
  • Take a Chance, a Private Delights novel by Lavender Daye
  • Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally
  • Protecting Their Child by Angi Morgan
  • Outlaw by Angus Donald (didn't finish)
  • The Warrior by Wanda Ann Thomas
  • Private Designs by Lavender Daye
  • Private Passions by Lavender Daye
  • Northern Lights by Nora Roberts
  • Pick Me by Kristine Mason
  • Kiss Me by Kristine Mason
  • Missing by Beverley Bateman
  • Bedded By Her Bodyguard by Kristi Avalon
  • Playing for Keeps by Jamie Denton
  • Dare You To by Katie McGarry
  • The Cradle Conspiracy by Robin Perini
  • Behind the Lies by Robin Perini
  • Ain't Misbehaving by Molly Cannon (audio book)
  • Undercover Texas by Robin Perini
  • In Her Sights by Robin Perini
  • Christmas Conspiracy by Robin Perini
  • Hunted by Beverley Bateman
  • Private Delights by Lavender Daye
  • Desired & Defended by Kristi Avalon
  • Cowboy in the Crossfire by Robin Perini
  • Finding Her Son by Robin Perini
  • Collision Force by C.A. Szarek
  • A Texas Baby by Linda Warren
  • Highland Moon Sifter by Clover Autrey
  • Trusting Her by Starla Kaye
  • Nurses in Vietnam: The Forgotten Veterans edited/compiled by Dan Freedman and Jacqueline Rhoads
  • Station Hospital Saigon: A Navy Nurse in Vietnam 1963-1964 by LCDR Bobbi Hovis, NC, USN (ret.)
  • Joyful Momma's Guide to Shopping & Cooking Frugally by Kimberly Eddy
  • Home Before Morning: The Story of an Army Nurse in Vietnam by Lynda Van Devanter
  • Whistling in the Dark by Tamara Allen
  • If it Ain't Love by Tamara Allen
  • The Only Gold by Tamara Allen
  • Downtime by Tamara Allen
  • Off Her Game by Suzan Butler
  • Bet on Love by Barbara Witek
  • The Hand of Vengeance by Mike Mendoza
  • Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (audio book version) by J.K. Rowling
  • Offside by Juliana Stone
  • The Memory of You by Laurie Kellogg
  • Plotting: A Novelist's Workout Guide by Aaron Allston
  • Relentless by Cindy Stark
  • Don't Let Me Go by Catherine Ryan Hyde
  • 100 Ways to Save and Grow Your Money, Financial Fitness for Regular People by Peter Sorrells
  • Short Straw Bride by Karen Witemeyer
  • I Want it Now: A Memoir of Life on the Set of Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory by Julie Dawn Cole
  • From Dunes to Dior by Mohanalakshmi Rajakumar
  • Aggie's Inheritance by Chautona Havig (didn't finish)
  • Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
  • The Boleyn Inheritance by Philippa Gregory