I’m only 6 weeks late, so it totally still counts, plus we were out of the country for the holidays, so I actually have a reasonable excuse. We took a 3.5-week trip to New Zealand and Australia over the holidays and it was glorious. I will write a separate post with a break-down of the costs for that trip (with pictures), but this post is our life update as of the end of 2022. So here it goes:
Addition update: Our walk-in closet is now fully installed, so I’ve moved all my clothes into it. Since we’re not quite done with the bedroom, it now just means I have to walk across the house to get my clothes each morning, but no big deal because I love my closet so much. The bedroom now has flooring and a birch plywood ceiling. We’re working on window casings and trim now. We will finish up the bedroom before starting on the bathroom, so fingers crossed we’ll get there before the end of Q1. TBD. We’re also done with most of our most expensive parts of the addition, so it’s nice to put those big costs behind us in 2022.
Work update: Isn’t work always a ride? Well, everything was restructured AGAIN while I was out of town and I was moved to a new team. I’m still in the limbo between teams finishing some things up and starting new things, but I think the new team will be a better fit for my skillset and interests, so I’m actually hopeful (and so glad I didn’t even have to apply for a new job to get to a better place!). Fingers crossed I’m right.
These numbers are actually from January 11 (when we got back into the country) because it turns out, when you don’t have access to your phone number, it’s really hard to check bank accounts with 2-factor authentication. Our mortgage was at $268,700 on a 15-year mortgage at 2.125% (which was the main topic of conversation among our New Zealand cousins at Christmas dinner since most countries only lock interest rates for 3-5 years, so they were all very jealous). With our savings at Ally Bank up to 3.4%, I’m not tempted to pay this down early, currently.
Our investments ended the year at $684,000 (though, again, this was January 11). Maybe we’ll pass the $744,000 we ended 2021 with again this year? Literally no one knows.
The Year of Yes
2022 was the Year of Yes, and wow was that expensive, but we had a fabulous time. Here are the things we said “Yes” to:
- A week in NYC and 5 Broadway shows
- A week in the Florida keys followed by a week in DisneyWorld with my whole family
- Solar Panels
- A pizza oven
- The continued addition project
- Season tickets for the touring Broadway shows visiting Anchorage in 2023/2024
- Australia/New Zealand – this included tours of the glowworm caves, a day out on the Great Barrier Reef, a flightseeing trip over Milford Sound and the Fjordlands, and obviously a visit to Hobbiton.
- Tickets to Mexico for Spring Break 2023
Even with all of that, we still managed to max out both of our Roth IRAs and 401ks and put a few thousand in our SEP-IRA. Bonkers, right? High incomes, man. Still the ultimate life hack.
2023 Plans and Goals
2023 will be my year of “balance” after my year of saying yes to all the things. I was so excited to not make any large purchases or have any large costs, but then my oldest daughter got scheduled for braces next month, so that will be $8k. Oh well.
We have two goals for 2023:
- Finish a draft of my novel – I decided to write a romantic comedy novel to see if I could. I chose Romcom because it’s formulaic, but challenging to make it interesting while still fitting a formula. I’m also writing it in first person present tense, which has also been a fun writing exercise. The novel can be terrible and I can choose to do nothing with it, but I want to finish it.
- Finish the addition – This means building an entire bathroom and shower, finishing the trim in the bedroom, and rebuilding the deck.
We’ll likely try to max out all the things again, but I’m flexible on that, so I’ll keep you posted.
I hope things are looking up for you in 2023.