Friday, December 29, 2006

Happy (Frugal) New Year

We calculated six months of our spending, saving and more spending. It took us weeks, but finally every number was accounted for; right down to every single little $1.50 charge from using the wrong ATM.

Then, we hit ‘send’ and chewed on our fingernails. This morning, the verdict:

What a beautiful couple you are. Unfortunately, that won’t help to mitigate what you lack in good financial sense (which is considerable).
--Financial Guru

And, The Budget. This roadmap of colour-coded numbers will be our bible for the foreseeable future.

The news that makes me throw up a little:
- We’ve been spending three times more than we make.

The bad news:
- our variable spending (food, transportation, entertainment, etc.) is cut by a whopping 67%. The first year is going to be very tight.
- What we could easily spend in a weekend is now our entertainment budget for the entire month.
- THERE IS NO BUDGET FOR THE SALON.

The good news:
- If we stick to this, we’ll be completely out of debt in 2 ½ years. Completely. Out. Of. Debt. I can't tell you what it feels like to say that.

It makes Trevor nervous that I talk about our finances on my blog. You’re all mostly friends and family, so I’m less nervous about it*. But yes, I feel the shame, too. We’re meant to be smarter than this.

But as my parents pointed out last night, the strength is in owning up to the problem in the first place. Forget the ego bruising. We have to take pride in the fact that we made the first, most important step.

The debt stops here.

*if he asks me not to post about something, I don't. This is Trevor-Approved (TA).

posted by Working From Home Today
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5 comments:

Anonymous James ~ 11:20 AM

It's Trevor's podcasting mic that put you so far into debt, isn't it!

Sorry, I had to say something.  


Blogger Working From Home Today ~ 11:33 AM

I'm hoping we can make stuff like that pay off. Meanwhile, I'm in mourning. I have to cancel my audible membership. Crap.  


Blogger schmutzie ~ 10:04 AM

I think it's good to write about financial stress, especially since you don't reveal personally endangering information. The big scary $ freaks people out, and we tend to talk about that less than far touchier issues. The taboo is what keeps a lot of people silent and poor due to the resulting lack of education and knowledge of resources.  


Blogger Working From Home Today ~ 11:14 AM

Good point.

Out of everything, this makes me feel the most naked (florescent lighting kind of naked). Still, I work on an debt makeover show and I had an opportunity to use my connections. I felt guilty asking families to put their debt life on TV if I wasn't walking the talk, let alone admit to it on my little blog.

The truth feels much better.  


Blogger The Little Woman ~ 7:06 PM

I have two words for you: Dave Ramsey. You can listen to his web cast for free daily if he isn't in your area. I am still trying to get my husband on board, but I am telling you - he is right on.

Okay, I'll go away now.  


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