Monthly Goals - September 2012 Recap
1. Attend CPFC12 (Canadian Personal Finance Conference 2012).
I did, and it was a good time. I met really cool bloggers like Nelson from FinancialUproar. I learned lots about search engine optimization, monetization, and building traffic (I started a TimelessFinance Pinterest account for pics of Cat, by the way). I got in touch with a really cool affiliate rep from Questrade, too, so I can recommend yet another excellent low-fee service that I already use. My favourite part of the weekend was hearing the thoughts of two personal finance editors and one pro-writer (who has written books on topics besides personal finance) on PerFi writing.
During September, I thought about the weekends on TimelessFinance. Traffic on the site drops off on Saturdays and Sundays. I suspect that’s largely because most people read PerFi blogs like I do — in the morning on a coffee break or at lunch while eating. But there’s more than just search traffic between Friday and Monday. Moneyville and MoneySense put out content on the weekend, even though it’s reduced. Clearly, in spite of the commandment that Sunday be held as a day of rest, some readers want weekend content. Heathens.
I didn’t want to take on researching, writing, and search-engine-optimizing a full extra day of content. The natural compromise in such situations is a “reader” — a list of excellent material prepared by other minds in the last week-or-so. But I’m not capable of preparing a good reader. I’m not concise and I’m hyper-critical. Adina has been interested in getting more involved with TF. She also reads way too much. The result was yesterday’s inaugural Sunday Reader.
2. Save $2500.
I did it. Now my goal will need to drop because I received my last topped-up paycheque
3. Continue the crusade to find an affordable (and actually deliverable) leather couch.
I didn’t find one. TV season is here — Sons of Anarchy is back, and The Walking Dead returns soon — so it may be another winter of discontent bums.
4. Continue eating more vegetables and walking.
I did pretty well, until I went AWOL a few days before CPFC. I left my heart at Five Guys near Warden and Eglinton.
5. Pound out the car dent.
Nope, and the dent mocks me.
6. Run a blog contest.
I did and I had a lot of fun. Grant Cochrane, who lives in Alberta, won. Congrats, Grant! In case you missed it:
7. Deal with basement moisture, part II.
Cool story: I called the plumber in September. I told him that I’d be going to Toronto for CPFC and gave him the dates I’d be available. He called me on Friday morning, when I was in Toronto, and asked whether he could come over that day. I asked him to come anytime in the next week, but he couldn’t make it. So this is an automatic “re-post”.
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Monthly Goals for October 2012:
1. Further blog improvements
The blog has finally started taking on a life of its own. We have a much less codependent/angsty/adolescent relationship. At the moment, I have a good deal of spare time. When I return to work next year, I won’t. If I want the website to continue on its course, I need to reduce my daily input of time while maintaining the site’s posting schedule (I’d actually love to expand it to Saturday).
- Cognizant of these impending realities, I need to help Adina upload and search engine optimize her own posts. Then I can focus on my true calling: adding pithy comments to her articles. This involves ceding a modicum of control which goes against my nature, but she’s the most competent person I know.
- Even still, the current schedule often leaves me writing four posts a week. That’s fine for now, but my head is too chockablock with non-post ideas to commit all of my blog time to writing. I need to consistently run guest posts on Tuesdays during October (excluding tomorrow only). If I don’t have a guest post, I need to feign serenity and leave the spot unfilled.
- I also want to find somebody to run a column on Saturday. I want it to be written by somebody who has debt, but who is actively working toward its elimination. Just an idea; not saying it’s going to happen immediately.
2. Save $1000.
My salary top-up is over. I now depend on Father Federal Government for my only regular income. And let me tell you, EI’s not much.
3. Deal with basement moisture, part II.
I just need to get the plumber to attend the house. Easier said than done, it would seem.
4. Winterize the house.
October shall be the month of home maintenance. Or, more specifically, winterizing.
Thanks to glorious summer weather, an abundance of time, and Ontario’s socialist (read: expensive) electricity system, I didn’t use the dryer all summer. I hooked up the new washing machine and stacked the dryer, but I didn’t bother to finish venting the latter appliance. Since we can’t hang-dry in the snow, I need to finish this.
The house had really dirty siding, which I largely rectified with some heavy-duty pressure washing. I don’t “do” ladders that are higher than six feet, so I didn’t look in the gutters. I can only imagine that they’re a horror-show. I’m going to look into gutter cleaning. If it’s $100 or less, I’ll just pay the first respectable/insured person I can find. If it’s more expensive then I’ll get a couple quotes.
5. Car dents.
I really hope I deal with these this month, or I’ll have to do it in the snow. In which case I’ll definitely procrastinate until the spring.
6. Earn my free Sony Internet Player and cancel old accounts.
8. Free TV.
In September, I posted about why almost nobody should be paying for cable or satellite TV.
Gene, a regular commenter around these parts, told me about the Local Television Satellite Solution (LTSS) from Shaw. Some rural homes that depend on free, over-the-air TV (like mine) lost TV channels during the CRTC-imposed conversion from analogue to digital service. The CRTC and Shaw worked out a deal where Shaw would give a free satellite dish and receiver to up to 31,500 homes (it appears that they agreed to do this as one of the terms of their Global TV buyout). The service (in my area) offers five free channels: CBC, CTV, Global, CityTV and OMNI.
I called up Shaw and found out that my house qualifies for the program. I need to fill out a document and deal with what will presumably be an intentionally arduous process. Nevertheless, I resolve to have free satellite TV by the end of the month so that I can watch Saturday Night Live when it’s actually live.