There's something really enchanting about Nashville in the snow.
Growing up in Massachusetts, snowstorms began losing their appeal somewhere around mid-February. Because you were tired of starting every morning shoveling or scraping. And you just wanted things to be less of a hassle.
But it's different here.
Especially when there's more than a few inches of snow.
A few inches of snow means schools are closed. Everyone's working from home. Or taking the day off. And anywhere with a hill becomes a prime spot for boozy sledding.
It's quiet; there's a stillness. Or, as The New York Times eloquently put it:
“The snow cares not for your deadlines, your happy hour plans, your scheduled C-section. It wants only to fall on the ground and lie there. And it wants you to, too.”
Last month, Nashville was hit with 8 inches of snow for the first time since 1902. Yup, over one hundred years ago! And it was such a lovely, peaceful start to the year.
The January Monthly Budget
When you stick to a strict budget for a while, it eventually becomes second nature. I checked in on my food budget a couple times. And it's still higher than I'd like. But mostly, January's expenses fell into place.
I had to replenish some personal care products. And I replaced my Sonicare toothbrush. They only last 2-3 years. But it's still totally worth it.
Note: mortgage, alarm system, internet, electric, water, gas, household, and coffee numbers reflect one-half of the total bill. I live with my boyfriend, so we split these expenses.
Note: If you sign up for a free account through my affiliate link above, I may receive a small bonus. I'd never recommend a product I don't save time with and enjoy!
Personal Care: $23.90 (Clarisonic Mia replacement brushes), $99.95 (Sonicare toothbrush replacement), $11.54 (floss), $33.98 (Morrocanoil Mousse), $10.90 (toothpaste/shampoo/conditioner)
Household: $3.14 (zip lock bags), $18.37 (mouthwash/toilet paper/laundry detergent)
Gifts: $18.03 (friend's birthday gift), $22.94 (cards)
Other One-Time Expenses: $250 (XY Planning Conference ticket), $3 (parking), $15 (ice skating downtown), $11.99 (XLR cable), $14.50 (microphone stand)
January posts: 2 (-1)
Twitter followers: 4,594 (+500)
Facebook likes: 837 (+210)
Google+ followers: 187 (+27)
Pinterest followers: 470 (+86)
Feedly subscribers: 122 (+16)
Cumulative Adsense earnings: $182.62 (+$8.37)
When I got back from FinCon, I wrote about the importance of setting intentions. Because if you want to make progress, you have to be specific.
Four months ago, I set a goal of earning $10,000 side income before next year's FinCon. This income will come from a variety of sources including:
– Freelance writing
– Social media consulting
– Dividends from my taxable portfolio
– Selling stuff
– And more!
So how's my progress looking?
September – $350.72
October – $858.61
November – $738.71
December – $823.32
January – $580.04
Total – $3,351.40
I've got $6,648.60 more to go. So I need to earn $949.80 per month for the next 7 months to reach my goal.
My side income in January dipped because I needed to make time for a couple of larger writing projects. But those should wrap up within the next couple of months.
I've written a lot about my weight.
Last year, I opened up about my struggle with binge eating. And I vowed to try a different approach to losing weight. Instead of endless diets and boot camps, I promised to finally see a therapist.
But I didn't.
Rather than trying to work through my emotional attachment to food, I wrestled with the slow-carb diet, on and off, from August through November. And I made some progress! But I'm still worse off than I was a year ago.
Failing so many times over the past couple of years has been exhausting. And constantly being hit with unsolicited nutrition advice is even worse.
You reach a point where you don't even want to tell anyone you're attempting something new. Because the last thing you want to do is let everyone down. Again.
That's why I'm getting professional help. I'm working with a personal trainer and nutritionist once a week. She's a self-described diet-abolitionist who runs a body positive wellness group in my neighborhood twice a month. She's also a writer who's publishing her first book in May.
“We operate on the assumption that everybody is always in the process of getting better or worse. Walking around the block or eating a piece of fresh fruit, we are getting better. Sitting on the couch with a bag of chips for the fourth night in a row, we're getting worse.”
This description of her wellness group made me feel more optimistic than I've felt in a long time. I'll be attending my very first one tonight. 🙂
Also, I'm going to see a therapist at Vanderbilt who specializes in eating disorders. I've got my first consultation later this week.
January Wellness Numbers
Weight: 166.4 (no change)
January Steps: 113,525 (+35,672)
Instead of setting specific goals, I’d like to shift my focus to being more mindful about balance and self-care. Working from home makes it easy to fall back into my old patterns. PASS!
I’d love to eventually establish one screen-free day a week (maybe Saturdays) to recharge and spend more time outdoors. Have you tried it? FAIL!
Keep hustling. But commit to wellness.
Trust the professionals. And block out the rest.
Readers: How was your January? What are your goals for the rest of the quarter?