I can't believe it's already March, and yet at the same time, this year feels like it's lasted for six months. I realized I have given exactly zero thought to my New Year's Financial Resolutions, so I decided it was time to do a check-in, good or bad. Maybe there was a chance I was sticking to the resolutions without realizing it. Probably not.
Be a Better Budgeter
One big goal was to be better at making a budget and sticking to it. I've been doing this, but more because I have to. I go to physical therapy thanks to an old injury, and it used to only cost me the $25 co-pay. Now my PT is no longer in network, so I have to pay a higher percentage of the fee. I have to pay it upfront and wait for insurance reimbursement. My insurance tends to reimburse within four weeks, which does help, but this extra cost has certainly made a dent in the budget and I've had to be very careful in other areas to make sure that I have the funds. It's certainly far from ideal, but it's made me look seriously at some of my expenses and cut back where I really don't need to be spending any money. Maybe something is only $5 a month, but all those $5 a month charges certainly do add up.
Increase Savings for our Child
Other than taking our son's gift money and investing in CDs, we haven't made any positive moves in this direction. My husband and I need to sit down and have a conversation because this is a very important financial resolution. Education costs are going to be tough when our son gets older and I want to be able to help him as much as we possibly can, while also making sure that we aren't putting ourselves into a bad position when it comes to our retirement.
Continue to Declutter
I was slow to start on my decluttering goal, but it has certainly picked up. I haven't gotten to the financial side quite yet though - I have a large pile of things on my guest bed that I need to list online for sale and just haven't gotten to it yet. But I have made a few passes through my closet and gotten rid of things that I certainly don't need. We've also been donating quite a bit of things and also gifting things to others. While I'm sure I could have made money on some of those items, it just wasn't worth the effort to me - and it's nice to be able to pass on the benefits we received. It's only tangentially part of my financial resolutions, but it's still important.
Increase Regular Charitable Contributions
I did set up a regular donation to one of my favorite charities, which is nice for my budget but also nice for the charity to know that they have regular money coming in from me every month. I'm also working to set aside some additional funds every month to be used for charitable donations as opportunities arise. I want to be mindful of where my money is going. One goal for me is to really look at hyper-local charities right now. Where can my money go in my neighborhood? It's always easy to see the big-name charities and want to donate there - and that's great, but I'd like to really focus locally and see where I would like to help here.