Performance Update 48/50: 2016, where did you go?

My main goal is to build an investment and cash portfolio of $1,120,000* in 1500 days**, starting from 1/1/2013 and ending in February of 2017. I made my goal earlier this year, but believe that it’s a worthwhile exercise to continue with my financial updates until the end of 1500 Days, so I continue.

It’s time to take a look at the month of December and 2016.

 

2016, where did you go?

If there was a theme for 2016, it was that we were extremely busy. Between our jobs, this blog and finishing up our home, we never slowed down. Not very fun. I greatly look forward to taking it much easier in 2017.

Random note: Most of the pictures you see throughout this post are from my 2016 travels.

screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-7-11-44-am

Sunrise in Salida, Colorado

 

Money (+$200,000)

The blog is supposed to be about money, sweet money; so let’s start there:

  • Investment portfolio: The non real-estate, non dinosaur part of my portfolio went from $1,057,961 to $1,257,128. Out of the $199,167 gain, about $100,000 came from new contributions. The S&P 500 ended up 9.6% for the year, so after I take into account the cash portion of my portfolio, my returns were similar to Mr. Market’s. Note that my portfolio still has a lot of stocks in it from my old days as a stock picker. See my last portfolio update here.
  • Net worth: My net worth went from $1,307,961 to $1,627,128 for a gain of $319,167 (!!!). $110,000 of this was due to an increase in our home’s value after we completed our improvements.
  • Moving money: I opened a self-directed solo 401(k) to allow for pre-tax investments outside of the stock market. So far, I’ve invested $145,000 in two real estate deals. One is hard money while the other is private equity.
  • Mrs. 1500’s job: The wife found her groove at her semi-new job which has been wonderful. She loves it and her employer is very flexible. We mostly lived off Mrs. 1500’s salary and invested mine.

Thoughts: Because of my new part-time work arrangement, 2016 was the last year for big contributions. This makes me sad because I enjoy deploying money to various investments.

Pismo Beach, California

Sunset in Pismo Beach, California

 

Life (no more Mr. Wheezy!)

  • Our family has been in great health and one amazing thing happened to me this year; my asthma disappeared. For the past two decades, when the temperatures cooled down in the fall, I’d have multiple asthma attacks every day. For reasons unknown, my asthma completely went away this year.
  • Home is done: We finished our home improvements (I owe you a final wrap-up on this one).
shelf

Bookcase that I built with design help from Mr. Frugalwoods

  • No TV: I kept my TV viewing for the year to 8 hours (Superbowl and the first four Game of Thrones episodes). I’ll watch a little more Game of Thrones in 2017, but I still plan to keep my total TV hours to under 40.

Thoughts: 2017 will be the year I work on tuning my life. Now that I’m not working full-time, I’m figuring out how to optimize my days. For example, I like getting up early (no later than 6am), but I do my best workouts in the evening.

Hanging out with Jim Collins in Wisconsin

Hanging out with Jim Collins and Physician on Fire in Wisconsin

 

Exercise (or lack of it)

  • No exercise: We were very busy and exercise was the easiest to give up, so I did. I’m not thrilled about it. Despite not being obese, I’ve been borderline hypertensive for a while. Not good.
  • No more knee pain: I was complaining about my IT band syndrome to a physical therapist friend. He said, “Strengthen your ass muscles and it will go away!” Well, he didn’t say ‘ass muscles,’ but you know what I mean. I started doing lunges and lo and behold, I can now run miles and my knees never complain.

Thoughts: Exercise will be a priority from here on out.

Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, California

Half Dome in Yosemite National Park, California

 

Work

  • New schedule: I went down to a 24 hour per week (Tuesday – Thursday) commitment.
  • More work! I found new and exciting work outside of my real job and blog (more on that soon).

Thoughts: It feels incredibly *&^%ing good to be down to 24 hours, but I quickly realized it isn’t enough. My Mondays and Fridays fill up incredibly fast. By the time I have to pick the children up, I still have loads left on my list.

Frugalsaurus and Spendosaurus sharing a quiet moment in the Nevada desert

Frugalsaurus and Spendosaurus share a quiet moment at Red Rocks state park outside of Las Vegas.

 

Blog (exposed!)

  • Exposure! 2016 was the year we received massive exposure via a front page feature on CNNMoney and Yahoo!. It was terrifying. I’m a private person and to see my face on one of the biggest websites in the world was very strange and uncomfortable. For those who don’t know, news outlets pick up these stories and publish them without our input, knowledge or permission.
  • Exposed! The exposure also exposed us. My coworkers read my story. So did some friends and family. I was pleasantly surprised when no one asked us for money. I was even more surprised that no one gave even the littlest shit.
  • Relief. After the dust settled, I’m happy that our cat was forced out of the bag. The blog is a big part of my life and I always felt a little funny keeping it hidden.
  • Biggest post: My most popular post of the year (22,000+ views) was the one where I announced I had achieved my goal: http://www.1500days.com/1120000-fi-and-a-bad-case-of-sphenopalatine-ganglioneuralgia/ 
  • MMM: The guy with the big mustache was one of the folks who got me started on the FI path and the reason I blog today. It was surreal to guest post on his site.

Thoughts: My 1500 days is up next month. I’m still figuring out what happens after that.

Las Vegas

Las Vegas

 

Travels

I love to travel and we had a lot of fun in 2016:

  • April: Nevada/Arizona to visit family over girls’ spring break.
  • May: Berkshire Hathaway meeting with the Penny Planters and Income Surfer.
Berkshire meeting, from left to right: Right before Warren and Charlie take the stage, Mrs. 1500 asking Warren a question, Warren and Charlie in massive head form.

Berkshire meeting, from left to right: Right before Warren and Charlie take the stage, Mrs. 1500 asking Warren a question, Warren and Charlie in big-head form.

  • June: Yosemite and Pismo Beach.
  • July: Wisconsin (Jim Collins), Chicago (work) and Tennessee (family reunion).
  • September: Salida, Colorado.
  • October: FinCon in San Diego.
  • November: Ecuador for the Chautauqua (I still owe you two more posts).
  • December: Chicago for work and play.
  • December again: Nevada and Arizona for the holidays.

Thoughts: Yikes, we sure got around in 2016. We have a couple big trips for 2017, but plan on sticking around home more.

screen-shot-2017-01-05-at-6-59-37-am-7-17-59-am

Old truck in the Arizona desert

 

The Bad

  • Sleep deprivation: Too many things kept me busy in 2016. More often than not, I woke up exhausted. 2016 was the year I realized how harmful sleep deprivation is to my physical wellness and mental state. (Mrs. 1500 note: 2016 was not the year I discovered that sleep deprivation is harmful to his mental state…)
  • Unhealthy: Exercise, ha! What’s that? I weighed in at 172.6 recently, about 15 pounds over my optimal weight for my slender frame. (Mrs. 1500 note: Not a CHANCE I’m divulging my weight… Last year’s goal was to lose 40 pounds – only 50 to go!)
  • Family time: We didn’t give our children enough structure. Our youngest child can destroy her room in about 6 minutes. She is a human tornado. It then takes her hours to put it back together.
  • Hoarding: Mrs. 1500 has a slight hoarding issue. She isn’t like one of those crazy people on TV that have to make paths through boxes of old magazines and dead cats, but it isn’t pleasant. I like less stuff in my life. The hoarding has made life difficult:
    • We moved to a home that had almost 5000 square feet and it was filled with stuff. We moved to one that was 1400 square feet and Mrs. 1500 was reluctant to get rid of much of anything. 43 months later, we still haven’t made much of a dent in getting rid of stuff.
    • She also loves to stockpile food. If you looked in our cabinets and freezers (note the plural), you’d think we were preppers, getting ready for the apocalypse.

Mrs. 1500: Look at all of this stuff at the grocery store that was on the bargain rack!

Me: Look at how our cabinets are completely unusable because they’re completely packed! Look at the avalanche of crap that falls out of the freezer every time I open the door.

The result of this is that we’ve been living in clutter for almost 4 years. I like to live simple and this wreaks havoc on my my mental well being. 2017 will be the year we declutter.

(Mrs 1500 note: I’m completely on board with this, but need to move in baby steps. I took an entire car load to Goodwill just today. I’m trying, and making plans to remove all the stuff I don’t wear in my closet. Yikes, that’s a car load in itself…)

 

Performance Update

In December, my portfolio increased from $1,230,058 to $1,257,128 for a gain of $27,070. I’ll take a gain like that any time:

screen-shot-2016-12-30-at-2-24-58-pm

Chart from Personal Capital***!

2016 (as of 12/31/2016)

  • Days elapsed: Done!
  • Days remaining: 0
  • 2016 gains: $199,167, (including 401(k) and some after tax contributions of about $50,000)
  • 2016 401(k) contributions: $51,000****

Since the start (1/1/2013)

  • Days elapsed: 1460
  • Days remaining: 40
  • Gains since 1/1/2013: $671,085
  • Needed to quit work ($1,120,000 in investments): Mission accomplished!
  • Net worth*****: $1,627,128

 

P90Xing

In November, I committed to get my ass in shape through P90X and running. It hasn’t been going so well:

  • At the start of December, I slipped on ice and fell on my ass. On the way down, I whacked my left elbow. I didn’t break anything, but it bled for 12 hours******. Over a month later, it still hurts. I have just started easing back into my workouts.
  • I was on vacation a couple weeks ago and the hotel had free beer in the evenings. It wasn’t good, but even Bud Lite tastes OK when it’s free. I threw my “no drinking Sunday through Thursday” rule out the window and visited the free beer station Sunday, Monday and Tuesday.

My bum elbow and beery ways didn’t help with my fitness goals:

Left (12/1): 167, right, (1/1): 169

Left (12/1): 167. Right, (1/1): 169

Better luck next month?

 

Stock Picking Experiment

screen-shot-2017-01-09-at-3-35-11-pmI’ve done incredibly well as a stock picker. My biggest hit was buying Google at IPO. Buying Apple in 2007 was another hugely profitable move. I’ve mostly given up my stock picking ways, but there is a little part of me that still thinks I can beat the market. Are you done rolling your eyes yet?

Anyway, I created a little experiment so you can see how I do. With $10,000, I designed a mini-portfolio on Motif (no affiliate link because I don’t endorse this behavior). This experiment started in April and for a while, I was killing the market. The election quashed my winning streak as my tech heavy portfolio took a swift kick to the groin. Since then, I’ve made a comeback. I’m not beating the S&P 500, but I’m thisclose:

screen-shot-2017-01-06-at-1-38-17-pm

My portfolio is blue while the S&P 500 is green. Also, don’t try this at home.

 

2017

More than anything, I want 2017 to be the year when we start living and stop working so much.

  • No more spending entire weekends remodeling.
  • No more staying up until midnight to work on the blog.
  • No more reactive living.

Instead:

  • Board games with the children.
  • Family hikes on Saturday mornings.
  • Dates with Mrs. 1500.
  • Dinosaurs.

 

*My goal isn’t to have $1,120,000 at the end of 1500 days, but at any time before the day count was up. Why? It all goes back to the 4% Rule. Remember that our little friend, Mr. 4%, is nothing more than the most conservative safe withdrawal rate. So, if I were to quit my job now, I could spend about $48,000 in my first year of retirement. I’d stick very close to that number too because market valuations are ambitious. Let’s say that Mr. Market caught a cold tomorrow and my portfolio dropped down to $800,000. No big deal. This would mean I’d be safer stretching my spending a little north of 4%.

**My original goal was $1,000,000 and no debt, I later raised the goal by $120,000 to $1,120,000 because I will have debt in the form of a mortgage and I firmly believe in not paying it off. My compromise is to have enough money put away to cover the mortgage at the time of retirement. So, to retire today, I would need about $1,120,000.

***This is an affiliate link. If you sign up, the blog (me) makes some cold, hard, beautiful, cash. Personal Capital is a totally free and awesome way to keep watch over your investments. It’s worth it for the fee analyzer alone. I would never recommend anything that I don’t personally use and completely believe in, so give it a try. If you’ve already signed up through the link, please know that you are a fine person of above-average intelligence.

****My 401(k) contributions include my own, Mrs. 15oo’s, and the contributions from my corporation. Self-employment with a solo 401(k) is a very powerful savings tool. I should have done this years ago.

*****The numbers on the right side of the page only reflect my investments and cash. Net worth includes, but is not limited to:

  • Home equity ($350,000 after the appraisal!)
  • Cars
  • Bicycles

******If I wasn’t making sense at Goose Island that night, it’s probably because I knocked my head on the way down. Also, sorry Brent for the blood all over your place.

Join the 10s who have signed up already!

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77 Responses to Performance Update 48/50: 2016, where did you go?

  1. Looks like financially you had a great 2016! Congratulations again on making your goal. You have lots of good things in store for 2017-can’t wait to hear more about it

  2. Tawcan says:

    Amazing year you had in 2016. Really cool you are now working part time and have more time to spend on things you love. I got Sushi Go for Christmas gift and it’s a really cool game, check it out if you want something new to play.

    And yes, free beer always taste better, even if it’s Bud Lite.

  3. My hardest struggle with losing/maintaining weight is always free stuff! I have the willpower to not stop at a donut store but half of that is just being frugal. If you offer me a free donut it almost makes my brain explode to refuse it.

    Anyway, great 2016 and hope you enjoy your 2017 even more!

  4. I highly recommend Exploding Kittens (the not-NSFW version) and Monster Misfits (Dancing, Hairy, Buttface Monster game) if you’re looking for new games to play!

    Otherwise, it looks like you had an overall successful year. I’m thrilled we got to meet up not once, not twice, but 3 times in 2016! I will hopefully see you at FinCon in Dallas and maybe in Omaha? Who knows!?

    Good luck on a less crazy 2017!
    Gwen @ Fiery Millennials recently posted…Monthly Status Report: December 2016My Profile

    • Hey Gwen, thanks for the game recommendations! We just got Ticket to Ride (kids edition) and they love it.

      No Omaha this year, but I’ll catch up with you in Dallas.

      Happy New Year!

  5. What a great year! Congrats on hitting your goal and slinking down to 24 hours a week of work, that is awesome!

    You’ve got some good goals for 2017, I’ll be looking forward to reading how they turn out!
    Jon @ Be Net Worthy recently posted…The Easiest Financial Hack You’re Not UsingMy Profile

  6. Wayne says:

    Very proud of you since day 1.

  7. Brian says:

    Congrats on a great financial 2016! Looking forward to hearing about all the new things for 2017.

    Asthma disappeared? Wow. That’s got to be an increiable refielf. Our youngest son out grew it, but we dreaded the cold weather and days of nebulizer treatments
    Brian recently posted…EvoShare Review: Earn Cash for Retirement or Student DebtMy Profile

  8. It gives me a sad to think this blog might end. I like anything with dinosaurs or other lizards for sure!
    Financial Velociraptor recently posted…Monday Trades – AMLP, PMT, COFMy Profile

  9. Looks like a great financial year for you. I’m curious to see where you take the blog after February. I gather after retirement it can be tough to keep it going as the focus of posts changes. Either way I look forward to reading about the transition.
    Full Time Finance recently posted…Money Doesn’t Buy Happiness, Money Buys Options.My Profile

    • Hey, thanks FTF!

      I have some ideas for the blog. When I started, I was prepared to hit the Delete button next month. However, I enjoy it too much to quit. I’d continue even if I had to pay to do so.

      Much more soon and thanks for your vote of approval.

  10. Money Beagle says:

    Congrats on the progress. I wonder if something in your home improvement work was tied to getting rid of your asthma. Maybe you somehow eliminated some mold, mildew, or materials that were causing you problems.

    Or maybe having less stress of money was a contributing factor. Reduced stress seems to help cure many ails.
    Money Beagle recently posted…Avoid Walmart Site To Store Around The HolidaysMy Profile

    • “I wonder if something in your home improvement work was tied to getting rid of your asthma. Maybe you somehow eliminated some mold, mildew, or materials that were causing you problems.”

      I wondered about this too. It very well may be the case, but there have been a couple years in the past when I wasn’t working on the house and I still got it.

      It perplexes me because nothing has really changed much in our lives.

      I definitely do stress less about money…

  11. tilMan says:

    Everyone seems to think that 2016 was a terrible year but it seems like you had some huge learnings.

    I love your natural style of blogging. It’s so easy to read that I feel like I’m listening to you talk.

    tilMan

    • Hell yeah, it was a great year. And I hope yours was too.

      Thanks for the kind comment. I’m glad my voice resonates with you. Looks like you may have a blog cooking too…

  12. Look at those gains! And sure, while the part-time thing sucks from a salary perspective, I argue that it’s worth it from a quality of life perspective. Not too shabby. 🙂

    And congrats on that asthma. I know how awful that stuff is. Are yours allergy induced? Maybe you … stopped being allergic to something? I dunno. But that’s great that the attacks stopped. 🙂

    I see you have snuck a few extra dinosaurs into this post, per your 2017 goals, so I salute you for that, sir! Dang, I had no idea the news outlets picked it up without you knowing; I thought you had submitted your story. It sucks to lose that anonymity, but it’s funny how people don’t really care in the long run. I think internet strangers get more incensed about it than real-life people.

    I did the Green Swan’s 70 things in 7 days challenge for decluttering. It’s pretty simple–you just get rid of ten things a day for seven days. You can either donate it or sell it, but it’s gotta go. I was able to get rid of quite a lot of stuff and I’m sure you could lengthen the challenge to take it more in baby steps.

    Oooooh damn, sorry about that elbow. Last year I dislocated my hip doing Zumba (guess I was shakin’ it too hard or something) and it’s never been quite the same. Booooo. I hope you’re on the mend!
    Mrs. Picky Pincher recently posted…How to Have Fun with Kids Without Busting the BudgetMy Profile

    • My asthma was induced by allergies and cold weather. I don’t have the slightest clue why it went away. Good riddance though!

      Dislocated hip! That sounds awful and I’m sorry it isn’t the same.

  13. Some great goals for 2017! Mrs CK and I have been going more and more minimalist. We just did reverse gifts, taking a car load of stuff to Goodwill over the holidays, and the freedom from our crap inspired us to do a second round. It’s nice to finally clear things off the floor in our guest room and not have our closet exploding with work clothes 🙂

    Bad luck with the fall, dude. For me, lifting weights has been the most effective way to stay in shape and keep weight off. Plus I only like running if I’m chasing a ball – kinda like a dog I guess 😉

  14. Kevin says:

    I enjoy reading your blog. Thanks for posting and congrats on your accomplishments.

    Keep the pictures coming, I will live vicariously through you.

  15. Congratulations! Looks like you had an awesome 2016! Here’s to a great 2017 and I hope you accomplish your goals!

    I look forward to seeing the dinosaurs the most, haha.

    Hopefully you can get rid of the sleep deprivation and sleep more, I currently have it and it’s quite a pain.
    Smart Provisions recently posted…Net Worth Report: December 2016 EditionMy Profile

    • “I look forward to seeing the dinosaurs the most, haha.’

      I often think that I should just turn the blog over to the dinosaurs. They write better, have better personalities and are better looking.

  16. Mrs. BITA says:

    Congratulations on your mysteriously disappearing asthma. One does have to wonder a bit though where it slunk off to and whose life it is currently making a misery. Sorry about your elbow, but on the other hand how nice to have a legit excuse to not P90x. So much better than “I didn’t do it because I didn’t feel like it and now I can’t do it because I’m sitting here crushed under the weight of all the guilt of not doing it.”

    And Google at IPO? Holy mother-f.
    Mrs. BITA recently posted…To Buy Or Not to BuyMy Profile

    • Google at IPO was my best move ever. By far. $85/share. $42.50 if you account for the split.

      Funny story: I was going to buy twice the number of shares that I eventually decided on. A well meaning, but unwise friend told me he thought it was a bad idea, so I cut my order in half. A couple years later, he got hired by Google. Sigh…

  17. Congrats on all your successes in 2016 Carl! And moving to part time! That’s got to be life changing!

    I know leaving the regular 8am-6pm work schedule made a huge change in my life!

  18. When do you go from 24 hours to 0??? Sounds like you had a great 2016. Hope 2017 is just as good or better!

  19. Mike Hardy says:

    “I was pleasantly surprised when no one asked us for money. I was even more surprised that no one gave even the littlest shit.”

    Totally my experience. Glad it was yours. Though I’ll admit I’m a little surprised there was no blowback for some of the family rants! Arguably better to have that in the open then move forward (or not) but some of that was definitely tough medicine 🙂

    Also re: exposure, it serves as a great litmus test. If it affects your relationship with folks (in ways that aren’t deepening in good ways) whelp, now you know who not to care too much about – what a timesaver!

  20. Matt Miner says:

    Great post Mr 1500. The 2017 focus areas – Board games with the children, Family hikes on Saturday mornings, Dates with Mrs. 1500, Dinosaurs – are unbeatable, and you are guaranteed a good year if stick to it. All the best to you!

  21. Aaron Biek says:

    “Moving money: I opened a self-directed solo 401(k) to allow for pre-tax investments outside of the stock market. So far, I’ve invested $145,000 in two real estate deals.”

    If not too personal, where did you choose to open this account? In my research, it appears that self-directed solo 401(k)’s tend to carry higher fees than many of my other accounts. May still be worth it, just want to minimize as much as possible.

    • I opened mine with Sense Financial: http://www.sensefinancial.com/

      They were wonderful; very knowledgeable and even got on the phone with me and Vanguard I ran into problems.

      It isn’t cheap. Initial setup was $800 and it costs $200/year after that. The real estate deals are outstanding though and the peace of mind I get from the diversification is priceless.

  22. Curious what you thought of Salida? I had a client who lived in San Diego look at moving to Salida. They LOVED it there (and it was SO different from San Diego!) They ended up choosing a larger more metropolitan area in Oregon but when they talked to me about Salida you could tell it was a real struggle to X it off the list.Looking forward to what will happen post 1500days….
    Vicki@MakeSmarterDecisions recently posted…Make Smarter Decisions – Saturday Share Day, 2017 – Week #1My Profile

    • Salida was wonderful and beautiful, but it is small. I’m not sure I’ve want to live there. I enjoy cities between 100,000 and 300,000 people where there are lots of things to do. Madison Wisconsin is my picture of a perfect city.

      Happy New Year Vicki!
      Mr. 1500 Days recently posted…Performance Update 48/50: 2016, where did you go?My Profile

      • Thanks! Yes, the size of Salida was the big issue for them too. They ended up in a city in exactly the size you mentioned. We live in a very small city of about 10,000 – I had a long talk with them about life in a city our size (and Salida was about half our our town!)

  23. Congrats on all the awesome accomplishments in 2016! I’m sure 2017 will be even better.

    BTW – That 8 hrs of TV in the whole year is blowing my mind! I need to get closer to that, but dang, sometimes that couch feels sooooo goood!
    Freedom 40 Guy recently posted…Book Review – Automatic Wealth, by Michael MastersonMy Profile

  24. D4F says:

    Congrats on all your accomplishments, I been following you and listened to your interview with Madfientist. I just started and still a baby in FI and have some years to go, but seeing other people get to the finish line is definitely an inspiration.
    D4F recently posted…2017 GoalsMy Profile

    • It seemed like a long way off for me just a short while ago too. You’ll be amazed at how quickly that snowball grows once it gets moving.

      Onward and upward in 2017!

  25. I’m with you on the part time work. I left the corporate world 4 years ago at 39, then went back part time. I was only working 2 days a week, but I’m on a project where they need me three days a week. I have to say that 2 days per week is what I consider the perfect ‘sweet spot’ between full time work and early retirement. I should be back to 2 days in a few months.

    Great job on the real estate also! That is definitely one of my own passions.
    Primal Prosperity recently posted…How to Make $1,000 per Hour and a Better WorldMy Profile

  26. Ines says:

    Congratulations on your achievements for 2016! It is really inspiring how you make FI seem so possible 🙂
    https://piggy-banking.com/

  27. Thanks for the update. What you said about moving to part-time meaning less opportunity to deploy new investment capital really resonated with me. That must be a hard psychological moment, as like you, I can imagine missing those future opportunities to try out a new investment vehicle or idea. Do you have a strategy for making yourself more comfortable with that narrower opportunity to deploy new capital?

    • Yeah, not being able to invest big sums of money is difficult. I think we’ll see a lot of volatility with the new president too. Volatility == opportunity. So, leaving those big paychecks behind is especially difficult. I love the game.

      Thinking about it now, riding my bicycle up a mountain road on a weekday at 8am when everyone else is on their way to work will more than make up for it. I hope it does.

  28. Joe says:

    2016 was a great year for you guys. Nice job. Except the exercise, of course. Good luck with PX90. I’m going to exercise more this year too, but the key for me is to do more and keep it less intense. I can’t do these kind of intensive programs.
    Net worth looks really good. Also, I think it’s really awesome that you cut back some hours. Probably need to go all in and pull the trigger on ER if you really want more time. I still don’t have enough time in the day. 🙂
    Good luck in 2017!

    • “Probably need to go all in and pull the trigger on ER if you really want more time. I still don’t have enough time in the day.’

      Love this. And I’ve realized the same thing very recently too. My new 16 hours of freedom just isn’t enough. Without kids, I think I’d be alright. With them, I just can’t fit it all in.

  29. In sharp contrast, I spent 8 hours in a single day this past weekend watching Octonauts.

    There weren’t even dinosaurs involved.
    Lazy Man and Money recently posted…How To Be Successful in the New YearMy Profile

    • I had to google Octonauts. Never heard of it!

      I need to work on calming down in the New Year. I should have put that on my goals. If I visit you over the summer, maybe we’ll have an octonaut marathon.

      • Joe says:

        Our kid loved Octonauts, but he moved on to Star Wars now. 🙂 It’s a fun cartoon for little kids.

      • I’m trying to cut down on my Octonaut watching in the future.

        I feel compelled to comment on the actual money part of the money article on the money website. I love seeing the net worth gains of $200,000 or $300,000 from some of my favorite bloggers around the blogosphere, even ones that were retired or semi-retired.
        Lazy Man and Money recently posted…How To Be Successful in the New YearMy Profile

  30. ChrisCD says:

    I love Dinosaurs and staying in shape. I’m glad that it sounds like at least in some fashion the blog will continue. Mrs. 1500 I am proud of you for facing and working on Decluttering. I am also a hoarder. My dad is almost as bad as some of those people you see on TV and if it weren’t for my beautiful wife I would probably be like that. It is very difficult which non-hoarders don’t quite understand, so Mr. 1500, keep being patient and kind. Kudos to hitting your goals.

    • Thanks for you openness regarding your own hoarding issues. And I acknowledge that I can’t relate; it is very difficult and I don’t even have it that bad. Thanks for you advice and I hope your 2017 is the best yet!

  31. There is so much good stuff in this post. Love it!

    Did you change your diet? I did a gluten free experiment a few years ago and had very strange side effects. My migraine headaches and reflux and seasonal allergies all but vanished. Maybe your asthma is somehow related to your diet.

    The Konmari method of decluttering was a painful process, but we have never purged so much stuff from our lives. It was awesome once we got through it.

    Congrats on the blog exposure. It is pretty amazing how much we worry about what other people will think about us. In reality no one really cares all that much. People are much more concerned with their own lives and have the same fears as we do.
    TheHappyPhilosopher recently posted…The Power of Love and FearMy Profile

  32. Mike says:

    Dang sorry the elbow didn’t heal well! Yeah, we did a crap job of stopping the bleeding that night. This past weekend the Goose Island closed for renovation! I really hope they actually open up again and we can all make another visit, but at least Liz and I went to the closing party. Cheers!
    Mike
    Mike recently posted…Make an Old-school two-way pager with ArduinoMy Profile

  33. Kyle says:

    Nice, at least a shit ton of accomplishments came along with being so busy. I’ve been unplugging a bit *as you may have noticed*. Very likely to go to the GABF this october though.

    My main goal for 2016 was hitting $50k in savings/retirement funds and losing weight. I’m down 15 pounds and getting back to being more serious about that again and I have closer to $70k put away. feels like slow progress, but I’m hitting beyond my goals.

  34. Michael says:

    This is from a Canadian ….. vlog … kinda cool too …. you may enjoy it …. and it is useful …. I think to picture where you are on the journey …. ‘The 6 stages of financial independence …” … I would say we are in stage 5 … but keep working because we are in Beijing ….
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnQpGYuq0cg

    God Bless, Beijing

  35. Nice job on the bookcase! Is that walnut for the top? I sometimes miss my woodworking days… to be resumed one day.

    It’s hard to give up free beer or free chocolate. I’m not too out of shape, but I can stand to lose about 10lbs. So my mornings are back with Tony again for P90X3. Appreciating the 30 minute workouts with P90X3 over the longer workouts with P90X.
    Mr. Need2Save recently posted…The Saver’s Credit: Can It Help You?My Profile

  36. Brent says:

    No apologies needed, Carl! Hopefully round two is in the future. We may have to keep to the tradition of brewery visits… I heard Half Acre and Revolution are pretty cool spots!

    I’m also trying to be better about my health. The knee pain and shoulder pain I’ve had for years have greatly subsided since I started focusing on compound exercises (lots of squats and deadlifts). And, most importantly, T-minus a few months until I start riding my bike to work!

    Cheers to your awesome 2016 and for an even better 2017!

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