A Belated Happy New Year!

Christmas 2014 family photo
In front of the San Francisco City Hall Christmas tree

In a break from the tradition of our annual holiday pilgrimage to Austin, this year my whole family and Stephanie’s mom came to celebrate Christmas with us in San Francisco. At one point we were eight people sleeping under one roof and sharing a single bathroom—and we’re all still talking to each other! We spent a lovely week together and we look forward to seeing everyone again soon!

Learning how to save, eight years later

Just before my birthday I got an email that contained a retirement factoid I’d never heard before:

Fidelity suggests that by age 35, you should have at least one times (1X) your yearly income saved to meet your basic needs in retirement.

Nothing like a little extra retirement anxiety on my birthday. Thanks Fidelity!

But it did succeed in getting me thinking about how I measure up. If I combine both my Roth IRA and my 401(k), I’m a hair over 50% (or 0.5X) of my salary. If I also include my brokerage account (which isn’t strictly earmarked for retirement—it’s more medium-term savings), it bumps up to just over 60%. So by that yardstick, I’m coming up short. Their email obviously had the intended effect, because I increased my 401(k) contribution from 6% to 75% just in time for my final paycheck of 2014.

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Emergency Kit

It’s been on our todo list for a long time to put together some kind of emergency kit. It all started with a trip to the Container Store a few weeks ago. While we were there, we decided to buy an extra 41.2qt watertight tote for that emergency kit we’d always been talking about.

Watertight Tote from the Container Store

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Rockstar Life

Most of my work days are pretty benign. And then there are days like today. Though to tell the whole story, I need to go back to yesterday.

I put in a full day of work on Wednesday, shipping an important feature just before 5. Went home to chill for a bit and pack for my 11:40 red-eye to Chicago—to attend a meeting early the next morning. Scooted with Stephanie to Shalala, her new favorite ramen shop. While there found out that my flight had been delayed until 1. This was actually good news, because after dinner we had tickets to the James Vincent McMorrow concert at the Fillmore, one of my favorite artists as of late, and the reason I opted to take the red-eye instead of leaving earlier in the day (with my three compadres from Sincerely). I had been planning on ducking out of the concert a little early and heading straight to the airport, but this meant all pressure was off.

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So we did this thing

Justin and Stephanie's wedding selfie
The wedding selfie

I figured it might be important to post something about it here for those of you who don’t also follow Stephanie on Facebook—where the news was initially disseminated, far and wide.

In common parlance: we got married! Last Friday, amidst the rain and the Giants Parade and Halloween, the two of us went down to San Francisco City Hall, filled out the requisite paperwork, and had a poignant ceremony lasting just over two minutes. The tripod was our only witness, recording the brief event to share with our families in Texas, France, and beyond. Though we would have loved for them to be there with us, it just didn’t make sense for everyone to come so far for so little. (Don’t worry, we’re going to try to get the families together in France next summer!) Afterwards we went up to the fourth floor of City Hall and took photos of each other in our new spiffy duds for over an hour. Et voila! We were married.