18. New Year! New Me! (and all the other cliches)

This year is especially exciting for my Family. We are debt free. We’ve saved quite a bit of my severance. We’re doing well in our careers. We’re healthy.

When we think of 2020, what is it this family wants to accomplish? What is it that I want to accomplish? It’s time to set some goals. The family needs to sit down, have a discussion and map it out. Goals to come…

16. I Was Laid Off…

Really. I was. I have been struggling not to take it personally, mainly because I put a lot into the company I worked for. I was told regularly how much of an impact I made and the Team I built was solid and engaged. When I take a step back, I do understand the business decision.

I wasn’t the only one to be laid off either but thankfully I was on contract. Although I won’t be working, I will still be financially stable for a time thanks to my severance agreement.

I plan on taking a little time to breathe then some more time to figure out what I really want to do next. Will I start my own business? Will I turn a hobby into a career? Will I jump back in to the workforce? I’m not sure but I’m excited to figure it out.

On to the next chapter…

15. I’m Back!

Written April 15 but not posted:

I’m back from maternity leave and back at work! There’s been so much going on that this blog was set on the back burner, but now I need to catch everyone up.

In addition to a new baby, we also MOVED! The goal was to downsize to save in rent and utilities and we accomplished that. I think it’s fair to present out new listing of bills as they stand now. We surely have more money each month ($1,210) to pay down our remaining debt.

Monthly Expenses April 2019

Here’s a glimpse at our debt today:

Debt April 2019

Over 5 months, we have made GREAT progress. As I mentioned…this was written in April, and since then we’ve had a new life event. I’ll post the details this week (week of May 12). Until then, Happy Mother’s Day to all the Mother’s out there!

12. Payday!

I feel like we’re in a rut! Not much debt payoff progress these last two weeks. This may just be a bit of my impatience with the process. Anywho..time to pay bills.

According to my “Bills Budget,” this period’s paycheck covers the expenses below:


After paying these bills, what is left from our pay is $1,635. We are taking $800 for groceries, gasoline, needs for the kids and other things we may need for the family over the next two weeks. The remaining $835 is going toward paying down Credit Card 2.

Since last payday, our debt has gone down only $464 (sad face), but next pay period we will have more to pay towards debt given the bills we pay from that check are lower. Once I get over this impatience, I’ll be able to focus again on the overall progress we have made and remain confident that we are moving steadily toward our goals

That’s all this week. Thanks for reading and the support. Also, follow me on Instagram @financially_me. Take care and share!

11. Catch Up Post!

Yikes yikes yikes! My first post of the New Year is so behind schedule AND I missed the January 4 Payday post. Let’s get caught up!

Since the New Year, my husband and I have reviewed our 2019 Financial Plan. The focus this year still is paying off the remaining debt balances. Assuming we REMAIN DILLIGENT, our debt will be paid off on September 13, 2019. That is a very short time from now and we (me mostly) cannot be more excited. I say I am most excited mainly because I have a much lower tolerance for debt than my husband. Much lower. After today’s paycheck, our debts look like this:


Progress is beautiful! Some contributors to additional debt payments have been my husband’s bonuses. He received a quarterly bonus for Q4 2018 as well as a holiday bonus. We applied the entire holiday bonus to debt and 30% of the Q4 bonus to debt. The remainder of the Q4 bonus went to our entertainment and travel fund. As I mentioned before in The Plan, it is important that we are still able to enjoy our time now together and keeping that balance is key.

Now to pay bills! According to my “Bills Budget,” this period’s paycheck covers the expenses below:


After paying these bills, what is left from our pay is $2,739. We are taking $1,000 for groceries, gasoline, needs for the kids and other things we may need for the family over the next two weeks. The remaining $1,739 is going toward paying off the last open Student loan account and pay down Credit Card 2.

Here is what our debt looks like today, down another $4,020 since 12/21, and down $23,923 since we started on November 23:


I’m liking that steady decline in the Total Debt number! As, always, thanks for reading and the support. Also, follow me on Instagram @financially_me. Take care and share!

10. How Did You Pay Off Your Debt?

While cooking dinner today, I was listening to a podcast discussing various methods to pay off debt. During the podcast, the hosts were speaking of a woman who was comparing the “Debt Snowball” method of Dave Ramsey to paying the debt with the highest interest first. In her opinion, paying higher interest first was a no-brainer because it costs less in the long run.

One of hosts mentioned that the reason some go for the”Debt Snowball,” starting with the smallest debt balance then moving to the larger, is to get a sense of satisfaction and accomplishment as you eliminate debt after debt. I totally agree!

In trying to pay down our debt, starting with the highest interest rate which was also our highest balance credit card, it seemed like the balance barely moved and I was often discouraged. Not only was I discouraged, but it was enough to think there was no point. We had multiple student loans and multiple credit cards, I really couldn’t see a reasonable end. Now, since focusing on smallest balance, we’ve paid off 3 of 4 student loans and 1 credit card. Also, those minimum payments that are no longer there have been shifted to pay off the next balance.

This last month has given us so much hope and I feel a sort of control again. We are taking this debt down!

What are your thoughts? How did you pay or how are you paying off your debt?

8. My Financial Advisor – the Cheerleader

I recently had an update call with my Financial Advisor and let me say I left that call in SUCH a great mood. I updated him on the progress we had made and he just genuinely ¬†expressed how happy he was that we stuck with the commitments we made. I think for my family, its important to have someone we can talk to about our plans and seek advice, even if that advice isn’t necessarily profitable for the Advisor at that point in time.

Let me tell you, talking through the items crossed off The Plan and being congratulated for each just felt good. I like a pat on the back from time to time!

financial advisor

7. Payday!

We got paid on Friday! And now it’s time to pay some bills. Looking at our “Bills Budget” we have $4,837 in payments to make, made of up the items below:


My 401k deductions stopped this paycheck, so I do have that extra money to pay down debt. After taxes, we received $6,473.80. After paying bills, the balance is about $1,600. We are taking half of that for groceries, gasoline and other things that come up over the next two weeks. The other $800 is going toward paying off the balance of Credit Card 1.

After making this additional debt payments, AND completing Steps 1-5 of The Plan, our debt now looks like this:


We have paid off $18k since we started. When I look at this number, even though we have pulled money from savings, I feel quite a bit of relief! If we have any interesting updates prior to next payday, I’ll be sure to write about them! Until next time…

6. Expense Reduction – Car Insurance

I was listening to a podcast and the host mentioned she shops her car insurance every 6 months. Reason being is because Insurance companies regularly offer new incentives and discounts that are available to take advantage of. I have been with my car insurance company for 12 years!! It’s definitely time to shop.

I used a website called coverhound.com to shop multiple insurance companies at once. As you may remember, we pay $365 per month in car insurance for two leased vehicles (for a 6-month premium of $2,162.26). On CoverHound, we found a major insurance company offering the same limits for $1,489.74! This saves us $672 ever 6 months! Aww man why didn’t I think to do this sooner?

We are moving forward with purchasing the new policy and that extra money will help pay down our debt even faster. I’m really happy with this.

Tomorrow, is Payday! so look for an update on bills being paid, remaining debt balances and what we have to pay toward reducing debt. As always, if you’re enjoying this blog, please like and share it.

Expense reduction

5. “The Plan” Update

Here are some updates from “The Plan” mentioned in my “I’m Tired of Debt” post.

From Step 2: I checked my bank account and see that we received the withdrawal from our investment savings account in the amount of $6,909. I used that money and paid off the largest student loan balance we had which ended up being $6.913. We used a few dollars from our 2-week House Fund to cover the difference.

From Step 4: We received the check from my 401k loan in the amount of $4,795.21. There was a small processing fee deducted from the balance I withdrew. Once the check clears, I’ll make a payment to the next largest Student Loan to bring down that balance. Looking forward to it!

I think once I get my next paycheck, I’ll update all of the outstanding debt balances to get a glimpse of where we are now. Already feeling a some satisfaction!

the plan