Goals, Goals, and More Goals

I’ve been really busy lately. Like really busy. My whole life seems to be: work, gym, school, work, gym, school, work, gym, school, military, work, and sometimes I eat.

This year is going by so quickly that I didn’t notice it was already May until I received my monthly email that my AdoreMe showroom was ready. Lorenzo and I have a lot of plans this year. We are already booked through August. Some are military events, some family, and others are business related. We even purchased a few finance books from a pop up book store and Amazon on finance and investing in order to brush up our skills and figure out ways to make more money.

Books
Some books about money

 

One of the things I love the most about being married to Lorenzo is that he is a very goal oriented person. Every year we have new plans for things we want to accomplish in the upcoming years. Last year, it was getting a married, going on our honeymoon and getting a raise at work. We did all three. This year we want to save more money, help remodel Lorenzo’s mothers house, start looking for our own home, get business certifications (Six Sigma and PMP) and try to find time for a vacation.

The primary goal is to save $100,000 (this was Lorenzo’s ambitious number that he came up with). When he first presented the idea to me, the first thing I wanted to say was, “impossible”, but I checked myself. Why can’t we do it? We are both pretty smart, business minded people and we’ve managed to do everything else we wanted to do last year so why can’t we? We did the math and if we are willing to make some changes (like move into a less expensive apartment until we are ready to buy a home), we can probably do it in a little over a year. It may take some sacrifice, but wouldn’t it be worth it in the end?

It will involve  combination of cutting costs and seeking more money producing opportunities. I read somewhere online that millionaires always have more than one source of income (3 was the magic number). So we are looking to get other sources of income. I want to say I read that on Business Insider but I could be wrong.

Anyway, our 2015 goal was: Make more and now our 2016 goal is: Save more (while still having fun)

I think this will be interesting.

feature photo credit: Crossfit Wappoo 

Staying In Your (Financial) Lane

Whenever a junior enlisted soldier tries to step too far above or outside of the realm of their pay grade, their Sergeant might tell them to “stay in their lane”. This term can be used for other times as well, like when someone is getting a little too comfortable with telling you their opinions about how you should: run your life, raise your kids, spend your money, etc.

It’s easy to tell other people to stay in their lane but I realize that some people have a hard time staying in their own lane, especially when it comes to finances.

A few of the things I love about Lorenzo is that he is ambitious, realistic, and responsible when it comes to his job and his finances. We are always, and I mean always, talking about what we are going to do to make more money, ways to save money and how we plan to capitalize on the money that we make and save.

He tells me stories about people he knows who complain about their financial situations, their spouse not working or wanting to work, how they want to do things that they feel they can’t and so on. His question is always the same, “What do they talk about in their relationship?”

My response is always the same, “Not their finances, obviously.” I always wonder why they just don’t sit down, work out a plan, and stick to it to meet their goals.

I try to a imagine a relationship where we don’t talk about the important things, and I just can’t do it. Even if we disagree on how to get there, at least there is a dialog and sooner or later someone will have to compromise for the greater good of the relationship.

Lorenzo and I don’t jump on the bandwagon either. People have tried to convince him to buy a house, buy season tickets for the Hawks games, and even have a baby all because it was something they did.

www.thenation.com
http://www.thenation.com

Now, while the other stuff didn’t bother me, the baby comment did. Excuse me, dude, Lorenzo having a baby is a decision that he has to make with ME, not you. What’s crazy is that I’ve never met the guy, so its not like he’s a close friend and our kids would grow up together…so what was he expecting to gain from that?

Ugh…I digress.

We do things on our own time, and even though we take small steps, we are at least taking steps instead of complaining about what we don’t have. We cut back when we have to, and spend when we want to.

Lorenzo likes to write things down; it completely helps when making major decisions- especially when it comes to money.

What do you do to improve your financial situation? Any tips for saving money, making more money? How do you talk to your significant other when it comes to important topics like money, goals, and plans for the relationship?

 

School, Work, and Honeymoon Dreams

I am the worst when it comes to taking classes online. I haven’t touched my online training in about 2 weeks. This is terrible. I have zero discipline.

My work schedule will be pretty much the same until January, but I’ve been super lazy lately: not working out, not studying, and lacking on my job search. I need to find some motivation, and I need to find it quickly because I’ll have no one to blame but myself for my plans not working out the way I wanted them to.

In other news, the wedding planning is slowly coming along. We still haven’t make a definitive decision about what we want but at least it’s being talked about more than it was in the past. I feel like Lorenzo wants something bigger than what I’m willing to be a part of, and he feels like I’m not contributing enough to the planning process. We are both right…and wrong. When talking with other people, the advice I seem to get the most involves us just spending everything we have on a huge, unforgettable wedding and worrying about everything else later on. Lorenzo and I don’t function that way. He’s an extremely logical thinking and he’s a planner, I am very much a “prepare for the worst case scenario” kind of person. So just “going for it” and worrying about the what if’s and the minor details after the fact is just not an option for us. We are weirdo’s like that.

We are also conflicted on where to go on the Honeymoon. I will admit planning this part has been a bit easier than the rest. There are SO many places I want to go: Europe, Hawaii, Australia, Brazil… uggghh…too many options. I need to just win a few million dollars in the lottery so we can just go see the world on a private jet whenever we feel like it. I mean who doesn’t want that?

Fiji_Islands

My bridesmaids and maid of honor are going to be my sisters and the friend that introduced me to Lorenzo. I think they are more excited about this than I am. Its pretty cool. I hope they keep this attitude throughout the entire process. I promised myself that I wouldn’t be a “Bridezilla” because I know how picky I can be sometimes and how it gets on my sisters’ nerves. I don’t think its going to be that much of a problem for us because my family and I tend to be brutally honest with each other and my sisters have no problem telling me when I’m being pain.

I still need to shape up with my work routine, school, working out, and this planning. I’ll get it together… I promise.

Here Comes the Bride. Almost.

Bride

 

 

 

 

I think Lorenzo and I are going to (finally) start taking this wedding planning seriously. This past Saturday we went back to one of the first venue’s we visited last year to get an updated report on the vendor list, and to ask more questions about the pricing.  I really liked the place, it was my favorite of all of them, but at the time is just seemed to cost too much. Once we compared it to other Venues in Atlanta, like the Botanical Garden or Cheatu Elan, it didn’t seem so bad.

This all came about when we found a place in Myrtle Beach. Once Lorenzo picked apart the quote that they gave us, we decided to give this place another chance. We started doing all the venue shopping before we set a budget. To be honest, I don’t think we’ve set a budget yet- I just remember stating a lot of things I WASN’T going to pay for. Lorenzo is lucky that I’m not someone who will take advantage of this suggested budget that we have for this wedding. I’m not thinking about the day of, I’m thinking about afterwards. I don’t want to spend so much on the wedding that we spend the first 6 years of our marriage paying it off. So that just means that I have to make my money work for us. Besides, we only want there to be 100 people-including us-so it doesn’t have to be super extravagant. We even got an idea to have picnic the day after the wedding so that our families can get to know each other in a more casual setting, and it will give us a chance to invite more people without having to worry about all the pomp and circumstance.

I think at this point once we find a caterer that we like, then we will set a date. I know that seems kind of backwards to find a venue then set the date but we’ve been dragging our heels on this and at this point we have to take what we can get and be flexible. Once we secure a venue I’ll have to stop being the Anti-bride, suck it up and actually plan this wedding. I’ve held out for as long as I could and I’ve failed miserably at convincing Lorenzo to elope.

Even though we are taking our time and being super picky about what we want to pay for, I still think it will be a nice event. Lorenzo doesn’t do things that aren’t classy. I don’t want us to be SO cheap about it that we ruin the experience for everyone, because if that’s the case we might as well skip the formalities and just have a barbecue. I told him I want it to be an event that I would like to attend. If he’s going to make me do this, then it has to be done right.

 

Uggghhhh….this means I have to go dress shopping now. I should try to sign up for Say Yes to the Dress….

The “90 Day” Rule

90-Day

 

 

 

 

Ahhh, Instagram.

Things that your friends post on social media can tell you a lot about them…what they are thinking about, what they think is funny, or if they are just trying to get a rise out of people.

One of my friends on IG posted this the other day and I thought it was super interesting take on the 90-day rule (at first I thought it was funny, then I thought, “hmmm, I wonder what people will say”). So later on that day, I went back to check.

He didn’t have as many responses as I thought: one or 2 “Yes’s” and about 3 “No’s”. Now, mind you, I don’t know his friends so I just gave my answer, which was “Yes” because A) I have my own money and B) I would like to see how creative a man can get when it comes to dating and there is no money being spent.

He began to tell me how the base factor for a relationship should be companionship- someone to share your dreams and goals with-and that there shouldn’t be a “quid pro quo” basis- money for sex, or sex for money–and then suggested street walking as an alternative if that is what you are seeking.

What I find interesting is that there are people who don’t think about companionship at all when dating someone new, they go straight for trying to see what they can get out of the other person. I’m not going to lie, when I was dating it was hard not worry about whether or not a guy was expecting sex in exchange for taking me out (and then chalking it up to “chemistry” and “attraction”). I didn’t have a 90-day rule though, if things got physical, it did because I was ready, however, some of them proved to be not worth the trouble waaaay before 90 days were up and before anything physical ever happened so I was able to walk away unscathed. Lorenzo on the other hand has some horror stories about women who flat out told him that if he was having sex with them he had to pay for something. Or after he took a girl out, she felt it was appropriate to ask for money to pay her cell phone bill. Another woman, who didn’t have a job, was living with her parents, and had a medical condition that didn’t allow for her to qualify for medical insurance said she was looking for a man to take care of her financially…and when he asked what she had to offer in return, she pointed to her body. *facepalm*

He never gave any of these women money, in case you were wondering. His response to them was “if the shoe were on the other foot”, would they date him- the answer was usually “no”.

I always wondered if a 90-day rule is even necessary. Why does it have to be there hanging over your head determining the outcome or the course of the relationship? Why can’t people just date and get to know each other, and if things don’t work out then move on. Why is money a factor? Why is sex a factor?

I guess I say these things because money isn’t a big deal to me. I work very hard for my money and I don’t mind spending it on people I care about (which is why it irritates me when people imply that I’m with Lorenzo because he has a good job and buys me nice things). I’ve never cared about how much money a man was making, as long as he was doing what he could afford to do and wasn’t always broke or going broke by trying showing off. I don’t require a man to buy me purses and shoes…I do that for myself. I just needed him to be financially responsible so that we could build a life together. Some people don’t get that.

I would love to hear some feed back about the original question: Would you date a man who made you wait 90 days before he spent money on you? Why or why not? I’m not here to judge, I just want to understand the point of view.

And guys… I also found this yesterday…how to find a wife:

 

 

 

 

His Dreams, My Dreams…Lottery Dreams

Money

They always say that money can’t buy happiness…which is true, but I think that if I had enough money to do all the things I wanted to do in life before I died that I would be very happy. I mention this because on Saturday morning Lorenzo was watching a show called “The Lottery Changed My Life” where it interviews lottery winners and tells their stories of life before and after they won. It was telling stories of a few people who collected millions at once and then started their own businesses afterwards to help secure their future, which I thought was great. The first story was of a woman who won about 80+ million and started a production company. Her story was about how she was engaged to her personal trainer and how they go gallivanting about looking to purchase private jets, Rolls Royce, and Bugatti cars. I know that I was being mean, but I was kind of curious as to why she was engaged to a personal trainer but was still out of shape??? Hmmm. Anyway another story was of a man who also won around that same amount and started an organization which hosts fundraisers and donates the money to charity. I thought that was awesome.

Lorenzo has always talked about wanting to start a business, but he just hasn’t narrowed it down to what he wants to do yet. He is very business minded and is always thinking about the future and how to make money, but doesn’t let the pursuit of financial stability overshadow his morals and ethics. We were talking about how we would take a large sum of money and invest in our financial future by starting some sort of business, or investing in real estate or something like that. Then we would take another portion and bless our family and friends. Even though it would be easy to just give people money to do with what they wish, we know that in some cases it may be best to invest in other ways…like paying for them to go to college or starting college funds for their kids. Once we started to break down each person by their personality, we had to literally make exceptions, because there are some people who are just NOT good with money; those people scare me. It was crazy how detailed we became, putting lots of thought into individuals and how we would handle them…all considering we haven’t played the lottery recently.

In other news, Lorenzo has been taking me out a lot this past week. When I came back from NJ on Sunday he took me to a seafood placed called Spondivits by the airport. We took the food to go but I remember him taking me there about a year ago before I moved down here. We got A LOT of food. We had calamari, lobster tail and crab legs. We never really have a reason to go down to the airport so I guess he wanted to make sure he stopped there. A few days ago we went to the movies to see The Lone Ranger, which was every good- and I’m not just staying that because I’m in the military, and after the movie we went to a tapas bar called Noche in Brookhaven. I’m sorry, you can’t beat a $5 margarita and 3 small plates of food for less than $30. You’d be surprised how much small plates of salmon ceviche, beef empanadas, and chicken quesadillas can fill you. Two days ago we went to C’om in Dunwoody. I’ve mentioned C’om before, the Vietnamese restaurant we normally go to is off of Buford Highway- we thought this one was affiliated with it but the owner assured us that it wasn’t. We ordered pretty much the same thing we always do- rice noodles with veggies and a meat or the fragrant rice. Lorenzo’s rice was green though–I thought was strange but he enjoyed it so I guess it was all good. (I’ll make sure to put links in the RESTAURANTS tab).

But everything is back to normal. Lorenzo and I have been extra lovey dovey this week, I am not sure why, but it reminds me of the Kevin Heart stand up when he said that he hated “new love”.