May 2020 Progress Update

This month started and ended with the pandemic still affecting our daily lives. I continued to work remotely and Mr. Vine was recently called back to work. On the first weekend of May, we had some of the best weather we’ve seen all year. We took full advantage of this by hiking a lot, including a five mile hike in strenuous terrain. I enjoyed my run streak, feeling back to normal after experiencing a minor calf strain for the previous few weeks. 

With all spring races canceled and my sub 2-hour official half marathon time now out of reach before my 101 tasks list expires in June, my running became listless. The run streak (running at least one mile every day) has given me a sense of purpose during this isolating time. Our building’s gym, along with all others in our state, is closed. This means that my run has to happen outside. During a time where it feels like we’re all confined to our homes, getting out for a run is a respite. Even on the days when I run a single mile and am back home 10-ish minutes later, it makes a difference. I’ve also added in a regular yoga practice to my morning workout routine. It is not enough to satisfy that item from my 101 tasks list, but it does help me feel more focused throughout the day.

A cold snap came in during the second week of May and we celebrated Mother’s Day. We were on top of things this year and splurged on flower delivery for each of our moms. They were both delighted with what we’d picked for them. I especially struggled with not getting to visit my mom in person. Being a month into my new job and with Mr. Vine back at work, things feel somewhat closer to normal, or at least a new normal. The cats are our best indicators of this–they’ve largely returned to their daily routines. 

During May, I indulged in some online retail therapy. For the most part, I purchased timeless pieces that will see a lot of use and be comfortable while working from home. After two months of this, I’ve learned what I like wearing and what I don’t. Eventually, I became tired of wearing the same hoodie and lounge pants every single day. But I’m still not interested in wearing a tailored suit while working from home. And when I do return to the office, it will be a more casual environment. This spending busted my personal budget for the month, but is less than what we likely would have spent on our canceled trip. 

As Memorial Day weekend arrived, we felt the pain of having canceled our anniversary trip. The flight was ultimately canceled by the airline, so it’s doubtful we would have gone even had we not opted to cancel. Wanderlust is strong and I continue to look at travel websites and consider the possibility of booking something. Mr. Vine is adamantly opposed to this for the time being. He is not certain that our December vacation will happen. 

While we celebrated our anniversary, protests over racial injustice gave way to riots in our city and many others across the US. It is exhausting and a lot to take. Racial and social justice are important issues to us. Although this blog is not specifically about those issues, we don’t want to ignore what is happening around us. Moving forward, we are doubling down on our focused charitable giving for causes like our local community foundation and the Southern Poverty Law Center, whose work involves fighting racism and hate. We’re talking about this to encourage others to contribute to the fight in whatever way they can.

The markets are crazy. We had huge gains in May–erasing much of our losses from the first quarter. We are now roughly back where we were in October of 2019. May was a new low-water mark in monthly spending for the year. With Mr. Vine back to work, we increased our investments and when you see the June update, these numbers will be above our pre-pandemic numbers. The steady decline in that orange expense line is what we like to see!

Lastly, let’s take a look at how our May goals turned out:

  • Combine HSAs
    • Finally! I printed and mailed in the forms. I don’t believe this is complete yet, but it’s out of my hands at this point. I probably paid $25-50 in fees as a lazy tax for letting this linger on so long. 
  • Perfect month closing all activity rings (Ms. Vine)
    • I came close to this, but thanks to two lazy Sundays, I missed this goal. 
  • Clean out garage
    • This goal continues to elude us. 
  • Celebrate our anniversary
    • We did this with an overnight trip to a resort town not far from us.
  • Stay healthy
    • We did this!

June goals:

  • Maintain run streak
  • Declutter one area of the apartment
  • Write a new 101 tasks in 1001 days list
  • No unplanned spending

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