Meaningful within Your Means: New Years Financial Goals #holidaymeans

 

This is a repost of Kasey’s 2015 New Years savings goals – it’s completely relevant to this year as well and I just wanted to repost for anyone who hadn’t seen it!

Anyone feeling the after the holidays financial hangover? I recently read that over 70% of ALL American’s live paycheck to paycheck. If this is true, then the holidays would definitely stretch most peoples finances. This year, we really took a simplistic view of the holidays and kept gift giving to a minimum. We mainly bought gifts for the kids. I would have loved to have spoiled my husband, but knew that it was more important for us to stick to minimum spending like we had agreed upon.

Now, that it’s the new year and the holidays are behind us did you make any new years resolutions or goals concerning your finances? We have determined that this is the year we will get our finances under control. Several years ago, my family experienced 3 corporate layoffs over a 5 year time period. As a result, we have just been in survival mode the past couple of years. Now, that it feels like the fog has finally cleared and life has settled down we are ready to get back on track. Before the layoffs, we were very intentional about our savings. In fact, had it not been for the years we spent saving, getting out of debt and creating an emergency fund the layoffs would have been absolutely detrimental. I don’t like the current state of our finances right now. It felt so much better when we had an emergency savings in place. So, this year is all about getting our feet back under us. It’s time to get out of the debt we accumulated in the midst of job losses. Thankfully, we were able to keep it to a minimum but it will feel so much better when we are debt free again except our mortgage. And, we are going to start saving again.

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Here are our financial goals this year:

  1. Get out of debt completely (except our mortgage) – write down all of our debt in order from highest to lowest and begin tackling the lowest debt first. Schedule a yard sale first quarter of 2014 and use proceeds towards debt.
  2. Create a savings plan to establish an emergency fund- Put 10% of money that we received as Christmas gifts in our savings account. Put 5% of each paycheck in our savings account.

Since the overall theme for our life this year is to simplify, I’ve kept our financial goals simple. Having two goals will help us stay focused on exactly where we allocate our money. I’ve also included action steps or a plan, otherwise I’ve only created a wish list.

How did we come up with our goals? We thought about what was currently in our life that we wanted to eliminate. Debt stresses me out. Not having an emergency savings account stresses me out. What about you? If you could change anything about your finances (within reason) what would it be? Now, what steps would help move you forward?

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A fun way to help lead you in the right direction to better money habits in 2015 is this money personality quiz. With your quiz results you will have the opportunity to explore content that is relevant to your results. Use this information as inspiration and motivation as you plan your resolutions. My results are in the image above. It actually made me feel more confident about reaching our goals. Yes! I can stay the course and I am a disciplined problem solver.

At SunTrust Bank their purpose is lighting the way to financial well being. They help you get organized, make a plan, and stay on track so you can get and stay in control of your finances. When you are confident about your money, you can save for your goals and splurge knowingly on what matters most to you.

What is your money personality? Find out here

To find advice, tips, tools and motivation to start your new year click here

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of SunTrust. The opinions and text are all mine.

Target Christmas Clearance Schedule 2015

Are you as ready to run out and hit allllll the Christmas Clearance goodness as I am??  Well, you might want to save your $$ for a little later when prices have dropped.  Based on the previous few years, here’s the Target Christmas Clearance Schedule 2014 dates:

  • Dec 25 | 50% OFF and Food will be 30% OFF

  • Dec 29 & 30 | 70% OFF and Food will be 50% OFF

  • Jan 3rd & 4th | 90% OFF and Food will be 70% OFF

 

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We have some great Pro-Tips about Target Christmas Clearance couponing – including a printable “Watch List” of what to seek out while you’re there.  Check it all out here!

Walmart Green Monday Toy Deals | Paw Patrol, Nerf, Little People

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Here’s another Walmart Green Monday deal roundup – this time we’ve got lots of awesome RollBacks on toys!

Fisher-Price Little People Big Animal Zoo – $16.98 (Reg $29.99)

Paw Patrol Plush (Several Characters!)- $14.98 (Save $37!!!)

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Giant Care Bear -  $16.97 (Reg $34.84!)

Disney Frozen Elsa Ice Castle - $119 (Reg $149)

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 Air Hogs Star Wars Remote Control Zero Gravity TIE Advance X1 - $22.80 (Reg $49.97)

 

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Nerf N-Strike Thunderblast Launcher – $9.97 (Reg $25.96)

 

 

 

Stores Open on Christmas Day 2015

Merry Christmas! If you happen to need to run out today or are traveling we’ve compiled a list of stores open on Christmas Day for your convenience. If you need to shop, you can always shop online if your favorite store is closed. If you happen to be traveling and are wondering which stores are open on Christmas Day you may want to call ahead to confirm hours of operation.

Drug Stores:

  • Rite Aid – Call your local store for hours
  • Walgreens – Call your local store for hours
  • CVS – Open call 1-800-SHOP-CVS to check verify hours of your local store.

Other Store Openings:

National Restaurant Chain Openings:

All of the store names listed above are linked to each company’s website.  Click the store name for a list of store locations in your area.

Other Helpful Links

  • Christmas Clearance Watch Lists and Tips here
  • Amazon’s 800 Number here

 

Note:  Please check your local store locations for store hours.  I cannot guarantee that every store listed above will be open on Christmas Day.  Although I have tried to research to provide you with the most accurate information, it is subject to change. Please check your local store location.

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Cyber Monday Shopping at ebay! Earn 2% Cash Back!

Disclosure: This post is underwritten by ShopatHome. All opinions and text are my own.
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Of all the places to shop for Christmas presents this Cyber Monday you may not have considered ebay. I love ebay and have found incredible deals over the years from hair bands for my baby, homeschool curriculum, a watch for my husband, and Legos for my son just to name a few. If you’ve never shopped ebay before here are a couple of helpful tips:

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ABC 25 Days of Christmas Shows Schedule

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Ever since I can remember I’ve looked forward to the ABC 25 Days of Christmas event – but this year I DON’T have cable.  I ditched it awhile back for Netflix and Hulu instead.  But that doesn’t mean I want to miss out on my favorite holiday movies!   If you’re in the same boat or just can’t seem to catch the shows you love – here are the showtimes, plus a link to the DVD so you can make your own schedule :) Thanks to I Heart the Mart for the list

Below you can also see the TV schedule for times and days of when your favorite Christmas Movies will be appearing on ABC…

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Home Depot: Trade in your old/broken Christmas lights to receive exclusive Coupons!

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Starting tomorrow through 11/15, you can bring in your old, broken or used incandescent holiday light strings to your local Home Depot store for recycling. Get a discount for each recycled string on a single receipt, in-store purchase of LED lights.
Get more details on this promotion HERE!
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Mason Jar Sewing Kit DIY {Practical + Cute Gift!}

Mason Jar Sewing Kit DIY

Jamie here!  I’ve always got guys losing buttons, ripping seams and generally needing a mend.  I made this Mason Jar Sewing Kit to keep in the kitchen drawer, and it is the cutest and handiest little thing!  The top is a pincushion and the bottom holds the day-to-day essentials I may need for mending. (Including a couple spare buttons).
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Here’s how to make one for yourself, or a cute gift!

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