2014 New Year’s Resolutions

2014 New Year’s Resolutions

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I love to make lists. To set goals. To realize my intentions. I also absolutely love to look at everyone else’s goals, so if you have a good list of resolutions for next year, let me know, and I’ll compile it all together into one amazing many-bullet-pointed list. Cool? Cool.

Below are the things I’m going to make happen in 2014. Ready: go!



  • Clear $20,000 in side income. In 2013, I made just over $10,000 but spent about $4,000 on the business, so this represents a quantum leap in earnings. I’m excited to find out how to make money — real money — on the internet. Stay tuned!
  • Save $15,000 in my Twinstar Account. I have an interest-bearing checking account that is currently returning 2.25% interest if I follow their rules: log in to their web portal once a month, and make 12 transactions with the debit card. This is a great deal for an account I’d like to keep liquid, and it hits a limit, so only the first $15,000 gets the good interest rate. I like how I can write “only $15,000″ and not freak out. Because let me tell you, when I had “only $15,000″ in credit card debt? I thought I was going to drown. The other side feels so nice.
  • Max out IRA. This is becoming old hat. It’s now just something I “do” rather than something I strive toward.
  • Start investing. I’m still really afraid of investing, and I don’t understand the lingo. By the end of 2014, I will no longer be scared, and I’ll understand how to navigate investments outside my IRA.
  • (Joint) Save $75,000. Brent is living with me now, and we’re saving money together. He’s maxing out his employer-sponsored 401(k) ($17,500), we’re both maxing out our IRAs (mine’s traditional, his is Roth = $11,000) and I’m funneling half my income to savings. We’ll get there, but it’ll be a real challenge. False. It’ll be a “first world problem” challenge.



  • Run a half marathon in 2:15. Brent and I are headed to New Orleans to run the Rock and Roll half marathon on Super Bowl weekend. We’ve been training for it and the training is hard. Running is hard, and it messes with my ego. Every good run is followed by runs (or parts of runs) that are miserable.
  • Run other races. Maybe the Shamrock run in Portland? Maybe a half marathon in Portland? Maybe a race somewhere else?
  • Go to yoga 4-5 times a week. When things get busy, yoga is the first thing to get cut out of my schedule. This is a vicious cycle because I get busier and busier, and more stressed out. In 2014, yoga will be a priority. Also I have so many yoga pants. They really should see the inside of a yoga studio more often than the couch.
  • Fit back into those jeans. Not new jeans, just jeans that fit last year that don’t anymore. I’d like to feel more comfortable in my clothes. Indulgences need to be less frequent.
  • Join the CSA again. I loved getting all those fresh fruits and veggies. I think I could even get the whole share myself, now that Brent and I are committed to cooking every night.
  • Start using my new health insurance. It’s been awhile. No time like the present to get a check up!

Frugal Portland


  • Get 5,000 followers on Facebook. Help me out here, if you’re not a fan already.
  • Get 10,000 followers on Twitter. I tweet a lot. Follow me!
  • Get 1,000 followers on Instagram. My feed is private, so I’ll have to approve you. But I will approve you, so long as you’re not “I know where you live and I’m coming to get you” creepy.
  • Get 1,000 followers on Pinterest. Pinterest is fun, actually. I finally get it. You can learn a lot about someone based on what they are pinning. Also, they’re not manipulating their algorithm (whatever that means) so if you follow me, you see what I post.
  • Create more resources. I’m working on an ebook about blogging tools and resources.
  • Start more conversations. I love the back and forth in the comments more than anything.
  • Use this site as my outlet. Since I’m so focused on freelancing, I end up putting my own blog last. I’m writing about 20 articles a month on other sites about work, money, frugality, savings, debt, credit cards, and living simply, and when I get back here, it’s like coming home and putting on a pair of comfy pants. I like that I have a place where I can write about anything I want. I’m learning about new tools, I’m reviewing books, I’m figuring out some goals, and I love being able to have my own corner of the internet.
  • Post 150 times in 2014. That’s about 3 times a week, on average.
  • Send 25 newsletters in 2014. Have you signed up for the newsletter? It’s also an outlet for me at the moment. I’m still getting my sea legs on this, but I like the intimacy of having a note in someone’s inbox verses just out here on the internet.

Ignite Fire


  • Post once a week. This is a joint project between Brent and me. Caitlin (my little sister) is interested in contributing, too.
  • Grow social media numbers.
  • Find fellow relationship bloggers and start networking with them. It’s intimidating to get into a new niche, let me tell you. It’s like switching elementary schools (which I never had to do, but know to be traumatic for kids). I know all of the players in personal finance. I know exactly zero relationship bloggers. I need to remedy this.

Lil Stumptown Sweets

temp logo

  • Get a professional design. Working on it. This will happen in January.
  • Find a commercial kitchen. So I can start making caramels for sale.
  • Market caramels, and sell them in stores and online. You will know when this happens, friends. Get excited!



  • Make my house a home with Brent. He moved in, and he’s still somewhat in boxes. I want to focus on making our condo as homey for him as it is for me. So far, I think it’s working!
  • Make sure my friends and family know they’re a priority. Cards/letters/caramels are coming, friends!
  • Continue the Christmas letter tradition. Only next year, ask for an editor (because a typo leaked through!).
  • More quality time with my sister. Now that she’s not living with me, we’ll have to make each other a priority more intentionally.
  • Travel monthly. Visit family in Nebraska, Tennessee, and Virginia. California, too! Take a weekend at the beach to relax and unplug. Take pictures.
  • Remember my priorities. There is simply no need to work my tail off on projects (side or otherwise) unless they increase happiness. I’m out of debt, so I need to remember that working all the time will only bring me more money, not more joy. And I’m in the business of increasing joy.

I’m not interested in adding to my freelance writing, since I think with all the above, I’ll be writing my little fingers off!

Well, it really looks like 2014 is going to be an amazing year. Two of my best friends are having babies in the beginning of it, and I JUST CANNOT WAIT to hang out with new tiny people (until they scream, then mommy can have them back). Life is short, you guys. Remember that. Make sure to actually live while you’re living. Don’t just breathe.

What are you working on?

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  1. Andi B.
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 07:22:59

    It's not a run, more of a walk, but I really want to do the Parkinsons walk this year (One of my cousins suffers from early onset Parkinsons). I would love some company and last September it was at Oaks Park. Want to join me?


  2. DC@Young Adult Money
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 07:31:33

    My blog cleared over $10k in revenue this year but I also had some expenses, approximately $3k. I would like to hit $20k (or more) next year as well. I know that will require a lot of work but I've been focusing on affiliate programs as well as content that will keep my traffic figures going in the right direction. It sounds like you have some ambitious goals but definitely achievable!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 07:42:41

      Wow sounds like we have EXACTLY the same spreadsheet! I think expenses will be lower this year, but then again, maybe not!


  3. Budget & the Beach
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 07:36:44

    wow new design!!! Awesome! Great goals. I love how you said you have a good run followed by a shitty ones. I know the feeling. I'm going to attempt my first wog (walk jog) today to test out the lungs after being really sick, then hopefully doing a long run on sat. One of my goals is to do an obstacle course run. Come to LA in April and do the Warrior Dash with me! :) Good luck with the rest of your goals!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 07:41:58

      Is the Warrior Dash some kind of thing where you have to sign a waiver so nobody sues them when you get electrocuted in the mud?


  4. debtperception
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 08:17:51

    Where in Virginia is your family?

    I hope you post about the things you learn about investing. I don't know much about it either and am interested in learning for the future.


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 09:27:03

      Abindgdon, on the Tennessee line. I will do that, I promise!


      • Financial Samurai
        Jan 09, 2014 @ 15:05:09

        I’ve been to Abingdon! Nice place!

        Ex girlfriend used to live there.

        $75,000 in savings is huge! Make sure they are separate accounts!


        • Kathleen
          Jan 09, 2014 @ 15:21:31

          Make sure what are separate accounts?


  5. Dear Debt
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 10:06:41

    I love this list! You are kicking butt, Kathleen. I'd like to pick up some freelance writing gigs, pay off at least 15k in debt (this year I paid off $1660.29!), travel to FinCon and Iceland for my 30th birthday, increase side hustles to pay for previous two, stress less, meditate more, write 2-3x per week on my blog, continue biking to work and do at least one race, spend more quality time with friends and family. It's going to be an adventure filled life and I am trying to make sure I can handle it all. Congrats on your side hustles, that's amazing.


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:56:56

      I think you missed a digit, didn't you? I am sure you paid off more than 1600 bucks!


  6. Ben @ The Wealth Gospel
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 10:35:46

    Great goals, Kathleen! It’ll take some doing but they’re definitely achievable. I’m working on trying to launch a full-time freelancing career so gathering new clients is definitely the top priority next year. Hopefully I can be self-employed by December :) Thanks for sharing!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:57:16

      end of next year! HOLY SMOKES that is awesome!


  7. Rebecca @ Stapler Confessions
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 10:46:52

    I am working on … my New Years' resolutions!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:57:30

      Let me know when you get 'em!


      • Rebecca @ Stapler Confessions
        Dec 30, 2013 @ 07:46:23

        Got it! http://bit.ly/1hPXLY2
        1. Pay off 2 student loans
        2. Make our 2013 IRA contribution
        3. Make as much $$ as I made in my job before getting laid off
        4. Make my small business self-sustainable
        5. Make enough money from my blog to justify all the time I spend on it (which also entails working smarter on my blog, so hopefully I won't be spending as much time on it)


        • Kathleen
          Dec 30, 2013 @ 11:18:35

          Good! I know you can do it. :)


  8. Ronnie-Frugal Ladies
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:19:25

    Great goals! I didn't write mine down in such detail – it would probably be great to work on them one by one. I'd love to make a nice amount of side income as well… it would go into my upcoming MA studies. *So excited for 2014!*


    • Kathleen
      Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:57:50

      Holy smokes going back to school! EEE!


  9. Brittany
    Dec 28, 2013 @ 19:19:44

    I actually DID make $20,000 in side income this year, so I think that's a good goal to shoot for! I love your resolutions!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 28, 2013 @ 19:29:06

      Hot dang! Good work, friend!


  10. Jay@MoneyBulldog
    Dec 29, 2013 @ 23:15:30

    I definitely will try to use my extra time more efficiently, I think I have been way too unsatisfied with my work schedule and I would like to spend more time resting and just unwinding.


    • Kathleen
      Dec 30, 2013 @ 11:19:00

      Same here! I could be so much more efficient, and I really want to be.


  11. bethh
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 07:07:39

    Learning to invest is also high on my to-do list this year – I'm in solid shape for retirement savings (at least I am on a good trajectory) and since my mortgage rate is so low (3.35) I decided it makes more sense to learn to invest than it does to pay down the mortgage aggressively, at least for now.

    I'm also in Portland, and I often do better if I have in-person plans and deadlines. Want to invent a learn to invest club? I'm sure it would make you some great blog fodder!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 30, 2013 @ 11:23:51

      Goodness I'm not sure I have the bandwidth to lead something like that! I'd love to be a part of it, though.


  12. therandompath
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 08:47:51

    I love, love, love the new website design!!!!

    These are great goals Kathleen :) Health and yoga are definitely going to be priorities for me next year as well. And also, my other ginormous goal happening next summer! Good luck with your goals; 2014 will be your year!


  13. Little House
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 10:09:56

    These sound like some solid goals! Mine are a bit simpler – pay down $6,000 of debt this year and save $5,500. I should be able to do this. Good luck with your caramel business! P.S. I'm glad the white is behind the comments. I love the new design!


    • Kathleen
      Dec 30, 2013 @ 11:31:34

      Thanks, me too! I think your goals are totally doable. Good luck!


  14. Tushar
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 20:33:40

    Wow, great goals Kathleen. I like that you are making a priority of your friends – or making it a priority that they know they are a priority, in any case. I am sure you've always made them a priority. Looks like you have a busy and productive year ahead!


    • Kathleen
      Jan 02, 2014 @ 13:11:00

      Thanks Tushar! Happy New Year!


  15. kara
    Dec 31, 2013 @ 18:30:47

    Your new site looks awesome, Kathleen. I love your resolutions. This year, I was feeling lazy about making mine, especially for The Frugal Feminista but you have reinspired me. And by the way, thank you for your recent guest post and sharing your resources. I plan to pay it forward in 2014.


    • Kathleen
      Jan 02, 2014 @ 13:11:15

      Thanks, Kara! So nice to get to know you. :)


  16. Quinn
    Jan 07, 2014 @ 09:42:13

    Great list of goals! It's inspiring. Good luck with everything in 2014!


  17. [BLOCKED BY STBV] How to Save Half Your Income
    Jan 09, 2014 @ 08:18:23

    […] half my income is part of my financial plan. Lucky for me, Brent is on board with this too, and we have a combined goal of saving $75,000 (which, for the record, is more than I make) in […]


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