Quarterly Review #4

Is it really the end of the year? 2014 just FLEW BY!

This is last Quarterly Review (QR)!


14 Goals for 2014

1. Balance checkbook every month

2. Complete the 52-week savings challenge

3. Donate to Goodwill once a month

4. Find & make 14 new recipes

5. Finish 2012 novel

6. Finish 2013 novel

7. Invest in pastel painting / artwork

8. Map routes in neighborhood to walk / run / rollerblade

9. Read at least 5 new books

10. Reduce screen time

11. Take a Medical Terminology class

12. Take iron pill every day

13. Walk 20 minutes during lunch

14. Yoga


1. QR: COMPLETE! I’m so happy to have caught up with my finances!

2. QR: COMPLETE! I saved so much money this year!!!

3. QR: COMPLETE! Although I’m planning to lock myself in my bedroom this coming weekend, and not come out until the closet is clean and all the random boxes are gone 🙂

4. QR: COMPLETE! This was such a fun challenge. I plan to keep this going in the years to come 🙂

5. QR: This didn’t happen this year. But that’s okay, because next week ushers in a new series of blog posts related to this!

6. QR: See #5.

7. QR: This didn’t happen exactly the way I had hoped this year. However, I made a bunch of wreaths, and I love that!

8. QR: This didn’t happen exactly the way I had hoped, but the FitBit is still awesome!

9. QR: COMPLETE! It took me down to the very wire, but I did it!

10. QR: I’m getting better at this! Continuing to work on this in the New Year 🙂

11. QR: COMPLETE! I got a 95 on my midterm exam in October! I maintained an A average in the class, so that made me exempt from the final exam. I got an A in the class!!

Photo Credit: http://www.123rf.com/

Image Credit: http://www.123rf.com/

12. QR: This didn’t work out as planned. Still having issues with consistency. However, I’ve been able to donate blood in October and December, so I must be doing something right!

13. QR: This didn’t work out as planned, mainly because of the up-and-down weather! I’ve definitely been more creative in this department, though. Planning to take more and more steps in 2015!

14. QR: This didn’t work out as planned, but I thoroughly enjoy and look forward my meditation times in the mornings and evenings while I’m in my bed 🙂


This exercise was great for me this year. My parents were especially complimentary and shared it with many people.

With that said, I’m not going to do this again for 2015. I just want to focus on the year ahead. There are so many wonderful things, already, to look forward to:

  • Al and I celebrating our engagement
  • Al and I getting married
  • Al and I buying our first home together
  • Visits and reunions with wonderful friends
  • Traveling and having amazing adventures with great people
  • Reading more books
  • Seeing family, some for the first time in YEARS, as a result of the wedding
  • Getting at least two tattoos
  • Getting closer to receiving my Paralegal Studies degree
  • Continuing to write on this blog
  • Making progress on my three novels
  • Helping others
  • Being Laura Beth
Image Credit: moviepilot.com

Image Credit: moviepilot.com

Happy New Year to all my readers – Thank you for making this year one of the best!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

 

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Quarterly Review #3

I’m getting a little better about posting these QRs in a timely fashion!

I give you QR #3 🙂


14 Goals for 2014

1. Balance checkbook every month

2. Complete the 52-week savings challenge

3. Donate to Goodwill once a month

4. Find & make 14 new recipes

5. Finish 2012 novel

6. Finish 2013 novel

7. Invest in pastel painting / artwork

8. Map routes in neighborhood to walk / run / rollerblade

9. Read at least 5 new books

10. Reduce screen time

11. Take a Medical Terminology class

12. Take iron pill every day

13. Walk 20 minutes during lunch

14. Yoga


1. QR: COMPLETE!

2. QR: COMPLETE!

3. QR: I’ve been donating when I fill at least two weeks. It’s nice to have a Goodwill literally a block away from my office! Oh, and that overhaul weekend I mentioned in the last review? Hasn’t happened yet. However, my bedroom is far cleaner and much more organized than it used to be (i.e., I can see a lot of the floor now!), so I’m happy with where I am, almost six months into being back home.

4. QR: Loving this challenge. I joined this group training thingy at the gym over the summer called FIT360 (Functional Intense Training), and they had a Nutrition Panel in August. I got a free cookbook out of it! Al and I made the shrimp scampi out of the book for our anniversary dinner, and it was AMAZING!

5. QR: Haven’t started, and I’m bummed about it! I am excited for November though, because I’ve already outlined what I want my novel to be. I hope to take some time over Christmas break and finish my previous ones.

6. QR: See #5.

7. QR: Work in progress. I’ve made several more wreaths for friends’ weddings, and I have several more to finish. I’m very pleased with the ones that I have made so far. I hope to feature them in a post at the end of the year 🙂

8. QR: My FitBit rocks! I think this is one of the best gifts that Al has ever given me!

Courtesy: fitbit.com

9. QR: Trying to finish book #5 soon!

10. QR: Work in progress. I rarely watch TV at Mom and Dad’s anymore, and I’m getting better about turning off the iPhone and computer before bed. I actually read a couple of magazines to help me fall asleep recently, rather than using music or something on YouTube to lull me to sleep.

11. QR: Intro to Med Terminology is going well so far – I think I have a mid-B in the class at the moment! I am taking my midterm on Friday morning, so wish me luck! I am feeling more confident with the material as each week passes – I can’t believe the semester is already half over! I also plan to register for the my coding certification course next month 🙂

12. QR: I have really struggled with this one. Pills and Laura Beth don’t mix well, at all. I’m going to try to give blood again this evening at a church near my office!

13. QR: Work in progress. I’m especially motivated this month because my company is offering prizes for the employees who log the most steps in October! This weekend was fantastic I logged over 11,000 steps on Saturday alone! This was mainly because of dancing and having a blast at Amanda and Dan’s fabulous wedding at the Chrysler Museum of Art, but I’ll take what I can get!

14. QR: I haven’t committed to a yoga class at the gym, but I’m taking more time to meditate in the mornings and evenings, when I first wake up and when I get ready to go to sleep at night. Deep breathing alone is doing wonders for me!


Look for one more review in December.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Quarterly Review #2

So, about posting my second Quarterly Review (QR) at the end of June … well, it’s July 24th. Whoops!

In all honesty, the end of June came up really quickly, and those last few days were nuts. I was trying to do a million different things, plus get ready for my week-long vacation! More about that in several posts, I promise!

Without further ado, here is QR #2!


14 Goals for 2014

1. Balance checkbook every month

2. Complete the 52-week savings challenge

3. Donate to Goodwill once a month

4. Find & make 14 new recipes

5. Finish 2012 novel

6. Finish 2013 novel

7. Invest in pastel painting / artwork

8. Map routes in neighborhood to walk / run / rollerblade

9. Read at least 5 new books

10. Reduce screen time

11. Take a Medical Terminology class

12. Take iron pill every day

13. Walk 20 minutes during lunch

14. Yoga


1. QR: Work in progress. I got close to being completely caught up in April (!!), but then moving back home and all those details got in the way. I wrote a check the other day and realized then that I’m still behind on getting everything completely updated. I’m now motivated to sit down on a Saturday or Sunday and knock this backlog out, once and for all. As soon as that’s complete, I’ll commit to actually balancing with my statement every month 🙂

2. QR: This is complete! I was really bad about making the weekly transfers. Until I moved back home, that is. I vowed to myself when I moved back in with my parents that I would take one full paycheck per month and just drop it into my savings, no questions asked. I’ve done that for June and July, and that money has already met (and surpassed) the 52-week savings amount! Plus, last week I went ahead and set up a transfer every two weeks so that the money gets squirreled away almost immediately. It feels so good to strike through a goal!!

http://score-contest.org/images/Score-logo-transparent.png

Courtesy: score-contest.org

3. QR: I’ve been relatively consistent with this goal. It’s motivated me to evaluate what I use/wear and what I don’t. I still need to block off a weekend and do a major overhaul of my bedroom and the guest room, along with my bedroom closet.

4. QR: This goal came to a bit of a halt with me moving back home. However, I’ve continued to troll Facebook and Pinterest for recipes. I’m excited to be able to make my first recipe in a while this weekend: Brownie Bowl Sundaes!

5. QR: Haven’t started, and it’s bugging me! I just need to schedule some time soon, since I have about three weeks between the end of the summer semester (final exam next week!) and the fall term and just crack it open. I feel like I’m ready.

6. QR: See #5. I am determined!

7. QR: Work in progress. I found a card table that will work, but so far I’ve only used it a couple times to create my wreaths! I’ve made two so far (pictures to come soon!) and I have several more on the books. I love crafting; the problem is making the time for it. I plan to do a whole post, or two, about the wreath endeavor.

8. QR: Like many of my other goals, this was mostly derailed by my decision to move back home. However, I loved the Hidenwood softball team; I think we finished with something like an 8-8 record. There’s talk of having the team be in the fall league, which is exciting! Also, I’m re-joining OneLife Fitness next week! I’m determined to get into a consistent exercise routine starting in August. I also plan to invest in a FitBit, a Blender bottle, and protein powder from a place like bodybuilding.com in the next few weeks.

Courtesy: fitbit.com

Courtesy: fitbit.com

Courtesy: amazon.com

Courtesy: amazon.com

9. QR: As of the middle of July, I have finished four books! I’m so excited!! But I think I’ll combine these last two with book #5 into one post since it’s a popular trilogy. I do have two other books in mind for reviews #4 and #5, but I want to finish the trilogy first!

10. QR: Work in progress. I successfully completed a social-media-free WEEK when I was on vacation (more to come about that!)

11. QR: I will complete this goal by the end of the year! I have enrolled in an Intro to Medical Terminology class that is online. I’m excited to be in that class, along with a paralegal class, for the fall semester. I look forward to learning more as I prepare to get my coder certification in the spring of 2015!

Courtesy: medicalnights.com

Courtesy: medicalnights.com

12. QR: This has been difficult. Like most people, I don’t like taking pills. I’ve been trying to incorporate more “natural” iron sources from my food into my diet. I successfully gave a pint at our blood drive in June, where our 5,000th unit donor was recognized. The next one is a week from Saturday – Fingers crossed.

13. QR: This has also been difficult, with the weather and eating at my desk almost every weekday. However, I think I’ll be able to get back on track when I invest in my FitBit.

14. QR: Not much progress. I hope to find a yoga class at OneLife when I re-join next week!


Look for two more reviews in September and December.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Quarterly Review

Seeing that the first quarter of the year is almost over (already – I swear every single year gets faster and faster), I want to do a bit of a review.

As 2013 came to a close, I started thinking about the New Year. In the past, I made New Year’s Resolutions, but like 99.9 percent 0f all humans, I never followed through.

However, inspiration struck. I decided on 14 things for 2014.

2014

I took a cardboard box top and proceeded to write my 14 goals in multi-colored Sharpies.

1. Balance checkbook every month

2. Complete the 52-week savings challenge

3. Donate to Goodwill once a month

4. Find & make 14 new recipes

5. Finish 2012 novel

6. Finish 2013 novel

7. Invest in pastel painting / artwork

8. Map routes in neighborhood to walk / run / rollerblade

9. Read at least 5 new books

10. Reduce screen time

11. Take a Medical Terminology class

12. Take iron pill every day

13. Walk 20 minutes during lunch

14. Yoga

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1. Quarterly Review (QR): Work in progress. This has never been my favorite thing to do, but I know how important it is.

2. QR: So far, so good. I’ll admit, I have to write it down in my little black book (a.k.a. planner) every week; otherwise I have to go into my online banking and combine several forgotten weeks together on one Friday. However, I have been faithful since week 1. By year’s end, I will have added approximately $1,378 to my savings account! Want to know more? Check out the form that I’m using this year.

3. QR: So far, so good. This is one of the goals where I’ve actually managed to go above and beyond in these three months – I have also donated to several people in need, to a charity yard sale benefiting Relay for Life for the American Cancer Society, and I’m constantly on the lookout for local charities / thrift stores in my area.

4. QR: So far, so good. I have really enjoyed this goal, especially since Al and I have a standing Tuesday night date night at my apartment. I have around an 80/20 split so far in terms of successes. Most of the screw-ups have been desserts that really needed a mixer, but Al ended up being my strong man with long-lasting arm power. Fortunately, Al’s mom was sweet enough to buy me a Hamilton Beach mixer, so problem solved! Favorites so far: Chicken Alfredo lasagna roll-ups; Oreo cheesecake cookies; and my first crack at homemade pizza last week!

5. QR: Haven’t started.

6. QR: Haven’t started.

7. QR: Work in progress. Al took me to one of the best art supply stores in the 757 – Jerry’s Artarama in Virginia Beach. I’m talking an art student’s mecca. By “investing,” I mean to invest in creating again. I loved my Visual Arts class in high school – I focused on pastel painting then and I want to get back into it. The next big project to tackle for the pastel work is finding / making a table that is large enough that I can create. In addition, I am starting a side business of crafting custom wreaths as wedding gifts – Stay tuned on that one.

8. QR: Work in progress. The weather’s been so unbelievably snotty, it’s been mostly a lost cause. Plus, I need to invest in a new helmet and wrist guards before I strap on the rollerblades. Side note – I did sign up for the Hidenwood Presbyterian Church’s newly-forming co-ed softball team; games start April 7th. I can’t tell you how excited I am. I played softball for the Western Branch Little League for one season – 8th grade in the spring of 2003 – and I never forgot it.

9. QR: Work in progress. I have several of the intended books on my headboard shelf, but I’m still working my way through book #1. I intend to post book reviews to the blog once I finish reading each selection.

10. QR: Work in progress. I was diagnosed with computer eye strain several years ago, so much so that I can’t wear my contact lenses at work. I definitely want to complete a social-media-free weekend soon and blog about that. Want to know what a social-media-free weekend is all about? Check out Nikki’s reflection.

11. QR: Work in progress. I full intend to complete this goal during the summer session of classes at TCC.

12. QR: Work in progress. I was diagnosed with anemia in college. I try to give blood at my home church – Aldersgate UMC – every eight weeks, and I have to take iron supplements to meet the hemoglobin requirement. Interested in learning more about blood donation? Check out the American Red Cross. Every 2 seconds, someone needs blood. Every blood donation can save as many as 3 lives. 

13. QR: Work in progress. See #8 – The weather has been ridiculous thus far. I will say, however, that my music on my iPhone has been great motivation. Frozen soundtrack and Taylor Swift for the win.

14. QR: Haven’t started. And I have no excuse, now that my DVD player has been successfully tested. I need to buck up, block off some time in my planner, and connect with the yogi I found at OneLife Fitness last year.

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Look for three more reviews in June, September, and December.

Do you have any goals for 2014?

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂