Updated: Mar 4, 2020
Let's go back to April of 2017. We were living paycheck to paycheck and up to our necks in debt. We were as Dave Ramsey says, normal. We were strapped with 108,00 dollars in non-mortgage debt. We had a combination of auto, student, personal and credit card debt. We never did an actual budget. We just swiped, swiped, swiped and would look at our bank balance and freak out! Where did the money go? We made good money and there was no way we spent all of it! Oh, we sure did spend it! We spent all of it.
We had purchased the Total Money Makeover book in late 2013. We read the book and started doing what is referred to as Dave-ish. We paid off about 25,000 dollars in debt and then stuck our heads right back into the sand. After an out of state promotion, we traveled back to normal town and continued to live with reckless financial abandon.
By April 2017, we had had enough. It was time to get serious and take care of this habitual problem. We immediately buckled down and went all in....for about 2 months. We sold our vehicles and moved into more affordable vehicles. Affordable as in we paid cash for one and took a much smaller loan on the second vehicle. We cashed out our retirement savings, which is highly inadvisable by Dave! We paid off our personal loans and I believe two credit cards. We continued to do Dave-ish until November 2017.
We actually ended up moving back home in November. We had been living out of state for a few years because of work. There we were, living in my parents house. It wasn't so bad. My mom is a great cook, her baby was home and my dad let me bolt a squat rack to his perfectly smooth concrete floor.
Michael and I decided it was time to get our finances in order for real this time. We opened the Total Money Makeover book...again. We downloaded Dave's podcast and we got to work. I mean we really got to work. The Dave-ISH days were done! When we moved back home in November, we were pretty much back to where we started debt wise. We moved into an apartment in May of 2018. We have been on a “beans and rice” budget since. We are not living scorched earth, but our spending habits have changed drastically. Our Friday nights consist of our weekly budget meeting, wine and freezer pizza! That’s our date night for now.
I created a paper debt chain and it's been hanging on our wall. Each time we pay off 1,000 dollars, our son Chase, cuts off a link. My husband, God bless him, has worked so much over time! We are almost done with baby step 2. I won't list all the baby steps here but, you can listen to the podcast or purchase the book to get Dave's plan. We started out with 108,500 dollars in debt and we are down to 16,500 dollars to pay off. It has taken two and half years of intentionally following the plan.
Along the way, we have had several high fives from God. When we make sound, disciplined financial decisions, God money shows up. It's hard to explain, but there have been random checks, bonuses, refunds that have appeared. We call it God money. It's money for the snowball. I will keep you all posted on when we pay the last payment!
I can't wait to go to Nashville and do our DEBT FREE scream! We will meet Dave, scream, We're Debt FREEEEEE, meet Christy Wright and then go straight to Toot's for the best hot wings and fried pickles in the world!
Proverbs 6:4–5, “Give no sleep to your eyes, nor slumber to your eyelids. Deliver yourself like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, and like a bird from the hand of the fowler.”