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Long Overdue Update

January 1st, 2009 at 04:17 pm

Wow, has it been a long time since I've written on this blog! Lots of changes for us in the past 7 months.

DS#1 is in his last semester of college. He is pursuing an art degree. DD#1 is taking a semester off of college and working to save money. DS#2 graduated high school and is now in paramedic school. He's working as an EMT and loves it. DS#3 is a junior in high school and working on getting his driver's license. DD#2 is in the 8th grade and is growing up way too fast!

DH and I are going through Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University. We bought the home kit and just finished the Dumping Debt lesson. We are no longer using credit cards. We should have mortgage #1 paid off this year and the car paid off next year. DH is really getting into it now that he sees it's not boring and it does work.

Our 24th anniversary is this Sunday. We celebrated by buying Walmart's cheapest DVD player ($30) because the Playstation 2 that we'd been using will not play the newer DVDs. We'll go out for dinner on Sunday and use gift cards that we received for Christmas.

I completed 2 more semesters towards my accounting degree. I have 6 more to go. This past semester I took 2 classes instead of just a single and it really worked out well so I'm doing the same this semester.

I have also met my weight goal with Weight Watchers in June and became a Lifetime member in July. Soon after I began working for them as a receptionist. I normally work one meeting a week, but sometimes substitute for others an manage to earn a bit more money. I really enjoy helping other people meet their weight goals.

All in all, 2008 was a pretty good year for our family. I'm hoping 2009 brings a lot of financial advances for us as we strive to pay off the debt.

Discover Open Road Card

January 25th, 2008 at 06:07 pm

Last month I applied and was accepted for the
Text is Discover Open Road Card and Link is http://www.discovercard.com/open-road/
Discover Open Road Card. I had been using my Chase Rewards Card and getting 3% cash back on my purchases. The Discover card gives me 5% cash back so I decided to do that. If I have to pay over $3.00 a gallon on gasoline I might as well get back every penny I can.

I pay the balance of our credit cards off each month, so I'm not spending any money on CC fees. Any money I get back on these cards will be going to pay off the mortgage.

Got DH a Chase Freedom Card

June 5th, 2007 at 04:55 pm

I sent off for a Chase Freedom card for DH. He's been using cash for his gasoline, but we decided that as much gas as his truck takes, we'd be better off getting the 3% cash back on it. Also, the money that we use to pay the Chase Freedom card will be sitting in our Electric Orange checking account earning interest all month rather than in his wallet.

So with both of us using the card to buy gasoline and groceries and almost all of our utilities charged to it, we ought to be earning some money back a few times a year.

Credit Card Debt Wiped Out!

May 1st, 2007 at 03:35 am

It is official: our credit card debt is gone as of today!!!

I paid the remaining $208.85 on the Discover Card this morning. We are credit card debt free!!!!

There is light at the end of the tunnel...

Catching Up

April 28th, 2007 at 04:13 am

It's been a while since I've been here. Life just seems to not want to give us a break.

DS#2 had another seizure on Tuesday. This time there was no doubt it was a seizure so he has lost his driver's license for at least 6 months. They did another EEG on Wednesday and found seizure activity on both sides of the brain. He goes for blood tests on the 3rd to test his Depakote levels and then we will have a follow-up with the doctor before DS#2 leaves to work at camp for the summer.

I had hope that with all the car accidents we had there for a while that that would be the last punch that life threw us for a while and we could relax. Guess not!

Let's see...financial side of life is going okay. I had to draw out $500 from our EF so that I can pay my insurance deductible on the car, so that's back down to practically nothing. But on the bright side the last Discover Card payment will be made in a couple of weeks. Then I'll snowball that payment to my car payment.

I am very close to goal #3 of having our overall debt below $70,000 this year so that's encouraging.

DD#1 is done with her 2nd semester of college. She will begin doing data processing for the summer for a local company in a couple of weeks. DS#1 finishes his semester in a couple of weeks and is coming home and hopefully can get his job back at the grocery store.


April 13th, 2007 at 03:12 am

Now that the Discover Card balance is down to $208.85 I'm scrounging around for every penny I can to get it paid off ASAP. Today I am depositing $5.50 of pennies and dimes to add to the payment. I can't wait to have no credit card debt! Because of the Easter weekend there was no overtime money in DH's paycheck to put toward the payment this week.

I am still using my parents' car since mine is at the body shop awaiting parts. There was a delay with the insurance so no work has begun on it yet. I hope to have it back in 2 weeks. Our EF will take a $500 hit when the car is done, but I keep telling myself that's why we have an emergency fund.

My Chase Freedom card is working well for me. I've earned over $70 in cash-back rewards since I opened it in November. I just started having our utilities billed to it each month, so that should start racking up some points. I'm goint to wait until I reach $200 to redeem them so that I get the extra $250.

Pay Off Mortgage or Car First?

April 9th, 2007 at 04:00 pm

Now that the credit card payoff is within sight I need to decide which loan I'm snowballing next. Should it be mortgage #1 or the car loan?

I have gone back and forth on this decision, but I'm leaning toward the car loan right now.

The mortgage has a higher interest rate than the car loan and has a lower balance. If I were to snowball into that loan it could be paid off in 2008.

But my thinking is that the car loan is for something that depreciates quickly and if we were to have to get another car and this loan were not paid off we'd be rolling a lot of money onto another loan.

What would you guys do?

Money in the Mail!

April 7th, 2007 at 09:28 am

We hit the jackpot today when we got our mail! Our long-awaited state tax refund was there AND DH's check from Prudential for the cash value on his whole life insurance! So totally we had $6252.09 in our mailbox! A nice little sum, indeed.

I got right to work and started assigning each dollar a job. It really wasn't that hard though. The $901 from the state is being held to pay for DS#2's replacement car this week. He'll reimburse us when the check for his totalled car comes in the mail. The rest of the money went to pay the Discover Card almost off. There is $208.85 left to pay on that and then that debt can be retired. Woo hoo!!!

A very good mail day.

Surrender Papers

March 30th, 2007 at 04:09 am

DH called Prudential last night to have them send him the surrender papers for his whole life insurance. Of course, they were not happy and gave him a hard time about it. He finally told them that they might as well not waste their time going through all the numbers, just to send the papers. So I should be getting a fax at the library today and hopefully we'll be able to fax them back tomorrow. Hopefully the cash value check will arrive within the next month. Soon the Discover card will be paid off!

Received Confirmation Letter

March 23rd, 2007 at 05:32 pm

We received a letter today confirming that Zander received our payment for DH's term insurance, that it is now in effect, and that we can now begin the process of cashing in his whole life policy. Yeah! The cash value on his policy is over $4600. That will take a big chunk out of what we owe on the Discover card!

Luggage Purchase

March 22nd, 2007 at 04:02 am

Bon Ton was having a sale at the beginning of the week on luggage. Prices were 50% off and if you opened a credit account you got an additional 20% off.

DH and I needed luggage for our trip to Mississippi this fall so we took the opportunity to get the luggage now. I applied for the credit, charged the purchase, and then immediately wrote a check to pay the balance. What started out as $200 luggage ended up costing less than $80.

I never shop at Bon Ton and only went this time because DH noticed the ad in the paper so this card will be collecting dust.

DH's Term Insurance

March 9th, 2007 at 03:12 am

We got notification that DH was approved for his term insurance. They say the final contract will be sent in the mail. After all the paperwork is done and we know the coverage is in effect we will cash in his whole life insurance. The cash value on that is almost enough to pay off the Discover card. We had agreed, way back when we started all this, that if we could get term insurance we would use the money from the whole life to pay on the CC.

It feels good to know that soon these debts are going to take a big hit and we'll see the numbers reduced by quite a bit.

Tax Refund

February 26th, 2007 at 03:12 am

I did our taxes last week and despite our changing our number of exemptions last year, we are getting a huge amount back from the government. It is mainly because of the 2 college kids.

So now we are trying to decide what to do with the money. I know that most here would automatically say to pay off the Discover card. I would love to do that, but we also have a house that needs some major renovations. We've been doing a bit here and there a little at a time but it's not making much of a difference. We still have no heat in the kitchen and several days this winter have gone out to find the cat's water frozen! Garage and porch need a new roof, one bedroom is still bare bones (sheetrock, plywood floor, no ceiling, etc.)

One thing we are going to do is finish paying off DH's truck loan. Some of the money we want to put aside for the college kids so that we can help them out when they have a need and no resources to meet the need.

Endless possibilities, but what is wisest?

Bank of America Paid

February 4th, 2007 at 01:55 pm

I just made the payoff on the balance of our Bank of America credit card. This is the one that I transferred the balance to the new Discover Card so that it was interest free for a year. It wasn't much but it feels like an accomplishment to me.