Year in Review 2011

2011 has been a really great year for the Yates’ (Yateses? Yates’s? Yates?)  I have accomplished a lot this year, although figuring out how to spell the plural form of my new last name is not one of them!  It’s the apostrophe that tricks me up because I just want it to be plural, not possessive but it looks weird without the apostrophe.  If you know how to spell my name please, let me know!  Anyway, here is a look back at 2011 in our house:

Financial Accomplishments:

1. Paid off my car (only took 3 months from when we finally set down and wrote a budget…and stuck to it!)

2. Almost have Dustin’s truck paid off (2 more months to go 3 months now that we had to put new tires and adjust the alignment on both vehicles!)

3. Paid cash for Dustin’s college tuition (something we plan to continue until he graduates.)

4. Set up a minimally funded emergency fund (which will hopefully be fully funded by this time next year.)

5. Saved and paid cash for our Vegas vacation (with the help of flier miles and a gift from my parents!)

Household Projects:

1. Installed plywood flooring in the attic which seems to have at least tripled the amount of storage space because we can now get to areas that were previously too hard to reach.

2. Reorganized the garage and attic.

3. Pressure washed the front of the house and driveway.

4. Rearranged the living room.

5. Learned how to make homemade laundry detergent and homemade dishwasher detergent (thanks Pinterest!)  The laundry detergent actually works really well, was very easy to make, and made enough to last us probably a year and cost under $20 for all of the ingredients.  The dishwashing detergent I haven’t had a chance to try yet.  I am waiting for it to harden up in ice-cube trays so that when it clumps up it will be in manageable sizes.  It was also very easy to make.  It cost about $20 for the ingredients and made enough for about 100 loads.  There was also lots of the ingredients left over so I will be able to make another batch for about $5 when I run out of this batch.

6. Started collecting coupons in an attempt to save money (this was fun to do during the summer when I had more free time but quickly ended when school started back up.)

7. Fixed the sprinkler system twice…I think we’ve finally learned how to properly winterize the thing so hopefully we won’t be needing to fix it again any time soon!

8. Cleaned all the grout in our house with a little bleach and a lot of elbow grease!  That is not a project that I ever want to do again!

Career Accomplishments:

1. 100% of my students passed the TAKS test!

2. Started tutoring several times a week to supplement our income and help pay for Dustin’s tuition.

3. Planned and taught 4 weeks of summer camps.

4. Taught professional development courses for the teachers in our district.

5. This one goes along with #3, 4, & 5…taught or tutored the following levels: pre-k, k, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, college algebra, adults

6. Survived a full year being the technology liaison for my school.

Personal Accomplishments:

1. Celebrated our 1st wedding anniversary.

2. Babysat my nephews over night for 2 nights for the first time.  Everyone had a great time, nobody got hurt, and we only had a few pee related instances.

3. Ran in a marathon relay – nothing compared to many of my friends who have run half and full marathons but the 5 miles was the farthest I’ve ever personally run!

2011 has been a great year but I am excited to see what 2012 will bring us!

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