Tuesday, January 25, 2011

New Zealand: 3 Weeks!

I have an app on my phone called "Countdown" that has all the important and/or exciting dates we have coming up, and it is probably my most frequently used app on my phone! I check this app every morning when I first wake up (I know, that's ridiculous). I have a countdown (or three!) for our upcoming trip to New Zealand, and I love it every morning when I check the time left to our big trip and there's so little time left!

We still have so much to decide on, plan, and book! So far, we have our plane tickets and a reservation to go diving in the reef. And yep, that's it. We're planning to leave a fair number of days wide open in case our plans change slightly and we decide to stay in a city for an extra day or anything like that. But still, we have a lot of work left to do! We still need to at least find hotels, a rental car, and some more activities to fill up our 2 weeks there, even if we don't make the reservations beforehand.

This trip is the second part of the travel plans on our "Baby Bucket List" (Alaska was the first part). This list is different than the Bucket List on this blog, it's a more concise, travel-centric list of places we want to visit before we settle down and start our family! We feel that getting these experiences out of the way now while we have the time and money is important for us and feeling "ready".

And the coolest part is that we're going to get to tell our kids about all these cool experiences we've had! (Crossing our fingers that they will think they're as cool as we do!)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


If you've known us for very long, then you know that we very much would like to buy a house. And you may know that we've been trying to buy a house (or various houses) for almost 2 years now. It has been a journey, and we have learned a lot throughout this whole process, including the fact that God's timing is perfect :)

When we first attempted to buy a house, we were determined to make it happen (and quickly). Nothing was going to come between us and a house. Oh how naive we were! Our several attempts at buying a home failed because of one reason or another: the seller's bank took forever and then decided they needed $10,000 more, or our bank wouldn't secure a loan for the house because it was in a partially commercial building, or the house just plain sold to someone else. As hard as we tried to buy a house, God tried harder to stop us. It took a while for us to actually slow down and hear Him saying "not yet".

These days, we are still trying to buy a home, but we go about it very differently. We find a house we like, and then we pray "Lord, if this is the home You want us to live in, if this is Your will, please make it clear". Then, if we put an offer in and it doesn't work out, we say "Praise God for answering our prayer!" Ok, maybe it's not quite like that. There may or may not be a little moping that happens first, but eventually, we are thankful that He is in control because we know whatever He has in store for us is going to be awesome!

So recently, we found a house we like. And we put an offer in. And we prayed. And so far, we have an accepted offer! The home is a short sale, so we still need to get the offer approved by the seller's bank (which could take weeks or even months). But for now, we are rejoicing :)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Our 2011 Goals

Hello, New Year!

This past year has been a really great year for the Wimmers, but we are SO pumped about 2011! Amongst other things, we will be going on a dream vacation to New Zealand and (hopefully) buying our first home! Yeah!

Since it is a brand new year, we decided to set some brand new goals. Aaron and I have always been fairly goal-oriented, but it didn't really "click" for me until I read Dave Ramsey's book, "More than Enough". In it, he first quotes Proverbs 29:18, "Where there is no vision, the people perish." Then, he goes on to say:
Perish as in die? Yes. When we surrender vision, we surrender our dreams, our hopes, and reach a despair or, worse yet, a level of apathy as thick as syrup.
When I read the rest of this chapter, I was totally inspired. I was traveling for work and reading this book on the plane, and when I got to my hotel that night, I called Aaron right away and we started brainstorming some goals. One of the things Dave recommends is to set a big goal first, like a really crazy and wild one, and then set smaller goals or baby steps that lead to it. For us, this goal started out something like "Have the freedom to do whatever we want". Very generic. In the book, Dave states that any good goal must:
1) Be YOUR goals, not someone else's idea or suggestion. You must own the goal.
2) Be measurable. Convert your goal into a number so it's measurable. Measurability in money is alright if money isn't your only motivator. Try to measure your vision in something other than dollars.
3) Be written down. There is something powerful that God does for you when you force your thoughts onto paper.
4) Have a time limit. Monthly, weekly, daily, or even yearly is fine but there needs to be a finish line.
Love this! Ok so our goal evolved into something like "Be salary-independent by the time we are 40, so we can spend more quality time with our family and travel the world". Which we then broke down into smaller, more imminent goals around budgeting expenses (and sticking to them!), saving for a healthy down payment on a house, contributing to a college fund, and building passive income. And some of these goals we reached in 2010! Hence, why we're coming up with new ones for 2011!

And, we haven't just created financial goals, we've also talked about personal and spiritual ones too. Like "Grow spritually" (I don't like to translate this goal into something number-related, I like to just leave it open like that and then decide at the end of the year whether I did this or not). However, I did write down some more measurable sub-goals or action items like "join a Bible study or small group". And, my personal goal for this year is to "get more organized!" I'm currently going through all of the super messy areas in our apartment and organizing them as part of the 21 Days to Getting Organized Challenge at A Bowl Full of Lemons. More on that later...
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