Did anyone catch the full moon on Christmas? It was the first one since 1977, and will be the last one for 19 years. Pretty wild, right?
My family took advantage of the warm weather and drove down to Plum Island, my hometown's local beach, to watch the moon rise. There were a lot of other families there, enjoying the bright orange moon beams from behind the patches of dark clouds.
My mother snapped photos from her tripod. And my sister and I attempted to set our intentions for the New Year in a full moon ceremony (burning folded pieces of paper that listed things we wanted to let go of).
As we drove off the island, past dozens of tiny cottages sprinkled throughout the marsh, I couldn't help but wonder what my life might be like during the next Christmas full moon.
19 years from now I will be 50.
What will I have accomplished?
Where will I call home?
Life passes while the majority of us are waiting for things to get better. But it's possible to write your own future. And build a life on your own terms. That's why I track my net worth.
In many ways, 2015 was a year of rebuilding. I've rebuilt my career, replenished my savings, and added new streams of revenue. In the past, I've been guilty of focusing too much on frugality. But this year, I channeled that energy into earning more. And that's how I earned an extra $10,681.71 in 2015.
Other than my busted September budget, I've managed to keep my monthly expenses around $2,500 or less. I want to reduce my food & drink spending in 2016. And maybe explore some cheaper cell phone plans. But otherwise, I'm pretty happy with my expenses.
You know what's crazy? My opinion about cash has really shifted over the past year. Right before I quit my job last year, I was only holding about $2,300 in cash and $18,000 in my brokerage account.
During those four months of part-time work, I had to sell some stocks to because I wasn't earning enough to pay my bills. I don't want to do that again. And that's why I'm building 6 months of expenses in cash ($15,000) for future emergencies.
For the past few months, my investments have mostly been on autopilot. I haven't added many new assets to my portfolio. But that will change once I've met next year's first two financial goals.
A few months ago, I started using Personal Capital to monitor my net worth. And I love seeing all my accounts in one place! Plus, it's great to see a clear breakdown of how much I'm paying in investment fees.
Note: If you sign up for a free account through my affiliate link above, I may receive a small bonus. And your support helps keep Cashville Skyline running. So, thank you!
Nashville's property values continue to climb. And the city's predicting 33-37% residential property value increases during their next tax appraisal in 2017. Many of the largest gains have been seen over the past two years in East Nashville.
Over the next year, we're hoping to tap into our home's $125,000 in equity to finally renovate the basement. It's something we've been talking about for years. And the demand for Airbnb listings has never been higher. Plus, I'm hoping my parents will visit more often if they have a free place to stay.
The value of my 2006 Toyota Corolla has been steadily declining every quarter. But with only 76,000 miles, I'd love to drive it for another 10 years. I've minimized wear by consistently working less than 5 miles from my home. And I don't plan on changing that.
With my office transitioning to partially remote, I should use my car less than ever in 2016. Also, I'm planning to buy a nicer bike and use public transportation whenever possible.
1st Quarter 2016 Goals
1. Max out Roth IRA ($5,500)
2. Save six-month cash emergency fund ($15,000)
Readers: How did your net worth change over the past year? What are your net worth goals for the New Year?