Sunday, January 01, 2006

365 Concluded. 365 Begins!

One year ago, I started this little blog because I had some stuff I wanted to do. Get out of debt, lose some weight. You know. The typical New Year's resolutions everyone makes every year.

Only this blog kept me honest, and I did them. I really lost weight. I really started building muscle. My waist got smaller and I started getting shoulders. And by taking control of my money, making a budget, and paying off my debt instead of adding to it, I actually started ending the month with money still in the bank, and could do extravagant things--like go to the doctors when I needed to--with impunity.

Of course, life happened. And about halfway through the year I got a church assignment that messed up a lot of what I was trying to do. It stopped the exercising cold. Since the assignment was for early in the morning, I was too tired at night to blog. Plus, a couple of financial things came up that, while we were able to afford them, slowed some of the debt reduction.

But that's life, right? That stuff happened.

So even though I gained back some of the weight, the point is I'm still twenty pounds lighter right now than I was a year ago. And even though the debt's not all paid off, the point is I now have all my medical bills paid off and can afford to pay them as they come, and have almost half the debt I started the year with.

In other words, things have really turned around.

But now that I have my new schedule, and I've figured out the ins and outs of this new assignment, the trick is getting back on track with the new assignment. In other words, how do I still lose weight?

Also, they're switching me to a pay schedule that's every two weeks instead of twice a month. The old schedule made budgeting a breeze--One paycheck went to rent, and one went to bills. An every two weeks pay schedule is going to complicate things more.

Plus, there were problems with my original budget. It was as aggressive as I could make it, and consequently, it didn't leave room for things it should have. You know, things you need all the time. Like clothes and car repairs.

So the new pay schedule will bring a new budget. And the new daily schedule will bring, well, a new daily schedule. One that still allows time for exercise and fiction writing.

Fiction writing, in the new year, will happen every night. What may not happen is blogging.

But it is going to happen. Because I've learned that this blog is the best way to keep me on track that I have--when I lay off of it, I've laid off of everything.

But I also got a lot of the nuts-and-bolts posts out of my system last year. Hopefully, this year will be more practical stuff. You know--how all this stuff plays out in the real world.

How do you lose weight when you're on a food budget? How do you pay off the debt and keep a hectic schedule and still have fun?

Hopefully, this year we'll find out together.

I'm not going to be posting daily. Tuesdays, for example, probably aren't going to happen. And, though today's an exception, Sundays will always be out. Don't even bother checking.

But I'm going to be here. I hope some of you I lost during my absence find their way back. And I hope I find a lot of new readers this year.

But mostly, I'm excited to see what we can accomplish this year. The last year was a great foundation. Now let's see how we can build on it.

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