It’s been a long time since I’ve written a post for this blog. In fact, it’s been so long that I didn’t even know what to say.
The truth is that 2016 has been a weird year for me.
I started the year with the ambition of becoming a full-time freelance writer. As I picked up more and more work, I quickly learned that it is NOT the career path that I want. I love my freelance clients, but I can’t imagine doing it full time. I realized that I love having a steady full-time paycheck from my day job while working with clients on the side. Making my side hustle all about money caused it to lose a lot of its joy for me, which was a bummer. Once I decided that I didn’t want to do it full-time, working with clients became what it had always been: a wonderful part-time job that I love.
So yeah, full-time freelance writing was a no-go. Luckily, I discovered all of this while working full-time so the discovery came with minimal drama, but if you are considering a freelance career, I highly recommend that you look (aka: try it) before you leap. I was firmly convinced that freelancing was going to be all my #dreams and it was not.
So once I discovered that, I was left with the question: what the heck do I do now?
After some intense soul-searching and endless conversations with my nearest and dearest, I’ve reached a career decision that I AM SO EXCITED ABOUT.
I’m still figuring out a lot of the details, but I’m planning to share them as soon as possible.
So yeah, there has been a lot of (internal) career drama.
HOWEVER, this year has also included some amazing milestones:
I paid off nearly $14,000 of debt, my net worth has reached $15,000 (!!!) and I got my first ever raise.
As we rapidly move into the end of the year, I have a few very specific goals I would like to achieve for the rest of 2016:
1. Move back in with my partner, Alex (who you will meet down below!)
After doing long distance between London and Los Angeles for nearly 1.5 years, we swore we would never do it again, and yet here we are. For the past 10 months we’ve been commuting back and forth between Los Angeles and San Diego. Even though it’s only a two-hour drive instead of a 10-HOUR FLIGHT, it still sucks and I miss Alex every day that we’re apart.
2. End the year with a net worth of $20,000
This will be challenging because I have some super large expenses coming up but I’m eager to try. Also, just as a disclaimer, when I calculate my net worth, I only include cash and investments. I never include cars or any other “stuff.”
3. Blog 3 times/week
Yep, the person who hasn’t blogged for nearly two months is planning to post 3x/week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) *insert shame face emoji* I’m constantly inspired by so many other personal finance bloggers, I miss the community and I LOVE writing. We’ll see how it goes, but feel free to yell at me on Twitter if I disappear for a month again.
So now that we’ve gotten the life updates out of the way, I’m so excited for the best part of this post: introducing my better half, Alex.
But before we do that, there’s one more thing: I’m in a same-sex relationship. I realized that I’ve never officially “come out” on my blog, and I’ve gotten a few comments asking if I have a boyfriend, so I thought it might be worth mentioning. I’m really open about it in real life, and if you follow me on social media, you probably already know, but I thought I would make it official and throw myself a little coming out party *throws confetti*
So back to the introductions: Alex and I met when I was studying abroad in London (Alex is British) during college at the tender age of 19 (!!!) Well, I was 19 and Alex was 20, but needless to say, we met super young, which I love because it means we get to enjoy the maximum amount of our lives together! Alex complements me in every possible way, including money (Alex is way more laid back about spending and balances my saving neurosis), and I feel so lucky to be in a relationship with my favorite person. And as we approach our 4-year anniversary next month, I can honestly say that sharing my life with Alex is a treat.
So without further ado, here is an interview with Alex:
What are you studying and when do you graduate?
Alex: I am studying Fashion Merchandise Marketing at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in LA. It’s my second degree and I’ll graduate mid-September
Tell me about your relationship with money
Alex: I wouldn’t say I’m there yet but I ultimately strive for a good balance between saving and investing and having money to spend and enjoy. I definitely think I’m a little more relaxed in terms of wanting to be able to spend money than Taylor is – I especially enjoy clothes shopping which is probably compulsory as a fashion student! However, I think savings are the only way to truly be financially secure and feeling secure with money is my long-term goal.
What’s it like to date someone who talks about money all the time?
Alex: I actually really admire Taylor’s attitude towards money. I know her journey with it hasn’t always been easy and I think she has handled that in ways that I often think I could not have. She’s a very independent person and that shows with her feelings about money. I really enjoy that Taylor feels so passionately about savings. I was raised to think of savings as important but I’m not the most naturally disciplined person with money, and I think Taylor has taught me how to have discipline within my finances, in a way which ultimately makes me feel better about myself. I love that she always wants to learn more about it and I love that her passion for it is about enabling herself to enjoy her life to the full.
Favorite thing about living in America?
Alex: I really enjoy living in another country and being a foreigner where I live – it kind of feels like you are always on holiday and it’s really exciting and powerful to learn a new culture as an adult. As cliché as it sounds I love the landscapes and huge skies – Southern California’s mountains are beautiful. I also love the popular culture – I’ve seen bands and shows and heard music that I would have been much more unlikely to come across in England.
Alex: Indian food – specifically mutter paneer.
Favorite travel destination?
Alex: I have to say London because it’s where my entire family is. I could also name countless places I like in the US (particularly Disneyland!) but with England and America aside, I love Italy.
What are you most looking forward to this year?
Alex: I am really looking forward to moving back in with Taylor after I graduate school… as well as no longer having to do homework!
Interesting fact about yourself?
Alex: I forget how unusual it is, but I went to boarding school for five years. I absolutely hated it, but obtained the fun British status of being a member of the same boarding house as Kate Middleton.
Thanks so much to Alex for answering my random questions and thank YOU for sticking with me and reading this blog. It means so much.
Are you in relationship? How do you do money together?