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Dumping Debt and Building Wealth with Dave Ramsey~ MARCH - Page 13

post #241 of 284
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMama View Post
Thanks for your responses about food budgeting.
I just am feeling really really down today. DH and I had a silly squabble this morning about drinking day old coffee left in the pot (he thought it would save money ) insread of me brewing a whole new one. It spiraled downhill from there. Usually we are totally on the same page and doing really well with budgeting, sacrificing, planning and snowballing.
The real issue is that I am getting tired of trying to manage our whole family's multiple food issues (overweight DH, picky kids, kids with food sensitivities on an elimination diet, trying to buy farm raised meat and organics) on what I feel is a pretty frugal budget.
I am tired of having to think so much about food all the time instead of just having a frozen pizza or going out for Thai food sometimes. And part of that is due to the food sensitivities and not really frugality or DR per se, but I feel like you guys are my tribe so I'm whining to you.
I just feel like we are bleeding money instead of getting ahead. We started off snowballing with a bang and I thought it would stay like that.
Then we had to go and get all responsible and adult-like and we picked up health insurance, life insurance, HSA and we are paying a couple hundred more dollars a month to bills now. I don't know what else we could cut back on.
Well here's 2 questions for you....
1.) Should we drop our gym membership? (I'm pretty sure we should) we are not using it at all and it's $70 a month. The drawback would be if we decided to join again the rate would be higher.
2.) My DP suggested last night that we halt our $100 a month IRA contribution for right now. This is where we have differed from DR because I thought we had enough cushion to budget and snowball and still do this. Now I'm not so sure. My reason for wanting to continue investing in the IRA is that I am a SAHM and my DP is self-employed and probably always will be. So we have no company match and barely anything saved for retirement so far. DP wants to either put it into savings for a larger EF or snowball it.
What do you think?????

I am so sorry you are having food budget issues. It sounds like it would be stressful to work around so many issues. You just have to do the best you can and what feels right and what you can afford :

For your first question: I am not really against gym memberships if you don't have many other options and you actually use it. My doctor has put the wrath on me to lose weight and I work 70 hours a week so my time is limited and I will go for walks outside but not fast walks. So in my case, DH and I have decided to keep my Curves membership- but, I actually use it. And there are some days when the money I pay is the only reason I DO use it, but it works for me and gets me there You could probably get just as good a workout with some exercise DVDs or playing with the kids. I lost a bunch of weight when I was a Nanny for a two year old, and this was just chasing after her for day to day activities. And the good weather is on it's way so you could get out with them more to do stuff. Plus, even though the rate is higher if you join later, at least you aren't wasting the $70 a month now by not using it. And you never know, some gyms run specials at various parts of the year, so you could lock in a good rate later on when you do have the time to use it.

2. My DH wont budge on his 401K contributions. I do not have one because my job does not offer it, so he just will not give this up. If your DH is self employed you might want to keep contributing. Will you ever want to work outside of the home, or would you like to stay home even after the little ones get older? If so, that would be another reason I might keep saving it.

Good luck with what ever you decide : And my DDDDC is still there
post #242 of 284
TM - Can you put your gym membership on hold? Sometimes gyms will allow you to stop paying for a while (and not go) if you have a good reason. Maybe threaten to quit because you are busy for the next X months. See if they will suspend your membership.

I went today to get my car appraised at Carmax and we are more upside down in the loan than I thought. On the plus side, it looks like my work is going to renew my contract early (they usually only give 2 weeks notice of renewal) so next June won't be as stressful as usual. And due to structure changes I should get 5 extra hours a week which is a lot of extra money! Currently I am only working 25 hours a week and will go to 30 so it isn't that bad of a schedule either. If I was in France, I wouldn't even be fulltime yet. I don't know yet what we are going to do about a car. Maybe I'll put it up on Craigslist and see if I get any takers.
post #243 of 284
We are a family of four and budget $300 every two weeks for food and $25 for eating out. It always feels like it's not enough though.

TattooedMama I'm right there with you with the food issues. I can't have wheat so buy a lot of gluten-free stuff which of course is $$. I also can't drink cows milk so my rice milk is $$. For myself and kids we do as much natural and organic as possible, so our milk for example is twice the price of a regular gallon. DH is a weightlifter and carnivore extraordinaire so our protein costs are extreme (rarely do organic for him because with the amount he eats we'd have to take out a loan). BUT <sigh> some of those are issues we choose to have and aren't willing to compromise so I guess I shouldn't complain, but it just gets hard sometimes.

I sure wish I had the "latte factor" so many financial planners talk about so I could just cut something small and "find" a few hundred extra a month.
post #244 of 284
Oh! On the gym membership issue I wanted to say that when we bought our house DH gave up his gym membership and bought weights for home. You can look in the classified ads in your newspaper and find sets of them for cheap all the time if you have the space to put them. Other equipment too like treadmills and bowflex, etc...

Also when and if I feel the urge to go on an exercise kick, I like to check out DVD's from our library. It's linked with about 30 other libraries we can request stuff from so the selection is pretty huge and it costs nothing. Plus you don't get as bored doing the same thing all the time since the videos eventually need to be brought back and something new can then be checked out.

As for the retirement money, that's hard. We only recently resumed our contributions because we had to stop for quite some time (and we get 5% matching too, so that really killed me to not be able to afford to contribute and lose that free money. Ugh...) Sometimes you just have to take care of the here and now though, and try to get yourself in a better place to be able to take on the future, yk?
post #245 of 284
Also on the workout factor, if weather permits, DH and I do the couch to 5k outside. It is the only thing that ever took weight off DH. There is a thread for it in the weight loss health subforum. (there is even a podcast so you don't have to time yourself.)
post #246 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhinderliter View Post
i do go through the "i hate my own cooking" stages at least 4-6 times a year though...thats usually when i shake up my roladex/cook book and spend a week not eating very well. :

also as for you gym membership. i have a MUCH better thing for you to check out. www.buymygym.com i saw an infomercial for this and i really liked it since i had resistance weights AND cardio in this tiny little thing. i went on ebay and got one for $71 SHIPPED. seeing as how you pay $70/mo for your gym you'll save a lot. i've only had it for a week but i really like the compactness, versatility and the cardio all in one.

GL
Yes I get sick of my own cooking too. I think that is where I am right now. Thanks for the suggestion about the gym thingy.
I'll let DH know.
post #247 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kierdan'sMom View Post
TM: I don't recall how long you have, but how far are you from debt free? If the extra 100$ would make you debt free say, next year, yeah I might consider it, but if ypu've got a few years left, well, I don't know that I would as I'd prefer to have it compoundingas long as possible. >>>>>>>>>> Garage sale some stuff? Ebay? Pick up a paper route (Sorry, I suggest this to everyone as its our way to make extra $$ without cutting into family time too much) - Any chance of finding something small to help with income? Also, got a discount grocer near by?
Well, in the grand scheme of things we aren't that bad off. I don't think.
Here's a recap of our debt:
Loan #1 $580 (should pay off in April)
Taxes for 2007 $4200 (ouch we just found this out! We didn't pay any quarterlies. ) so we are adding this to the top of our snowball.
Van loan $5500
Student Loan #1 $5,000
Student Loan #2 $13,000
Mortgage $100,000

So I am also bummed about the taxes, we were in line to snowball our van off by the end of this year but it got bumped for the taxes now.
I appreciate your suggestions about garage sales and Ebay and whatnot. I don't think we have anything major that would sell that would make it worth my time.
My DP already works so much that it literally leaves me with almost no time ever without my kids that I could get anything done to make money. I have tried doing some WAHM sewing from home but the money is terribly terribly minimal considering the time I put in.
I wish we had a discount grocer. I hear all these amazing stories from people across the country here in the F & F about getting organics at a discount.
I am jealous!!! Our stores that carry health food/ organics are small specialty stores and they are EXPENSIVE! We don't have anything like that. We belong to Costco, order from United Foods Buying Club every 8 weeks, just bought meat from a farmer and joined a CSA for the summer.
I don't buy ANY boxed or convenience foods. Everything my family eats is made from scratch by me. So really to answer my own question, I don't think we can go any cheaper unless we ditch all the healthy eating and go back to cheaper groceries. I don't think we need to do that just yet.

Thanks guys!
post #248 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*Jaime View Post
I am so sorry you are having food budget issues. It sounds like it would be stressful to work around so many issues. You just have to do the best you can and what feels right and what you can afford :
Thanks for the hug!

[/QUOTE]For your first question: I am not really against gym memberships if you don't have many other options and you actually use it. And there are some days when the money I pay is the only reason I DO use it, but it works for me and gets me there>>>> [/QUOTE]
Well that used to be motivation enough to get us there. Now we just never go. My DH used to go with the little kids several days a week, but we are not big fans of the quality of childcare there so we tapered off. I personally hate to go to the gym with little kids, It just seems like it takes up my whole morning and then I feel like I have no time left to do the things I still have to do. Arrrrggghhh.
I do enjoy getting out with the kids and walking in the warmer weather, so at least that is coming soon.


2. My DH wont budge on his 401K contributions. I do not have one because my job does not offer it, so he just will not give this up. If your DH is self employed you might want to keep contributing. Will you ever want to work outside of the home, or would you like to stay home even after the little ones get older? If so, that would be another reason I might keep saving it.

Good luck with what ever you decide : And my DDDDC is still there [/QUOTE]

Yeah, I'm still really torn about this. The $100 a month would help our snowball but I LOVE saving for retirement. : We need to talk about it more. I think I'm going to email Dave Ramsey and see what he says. All of this discussion and minor squabbling at our house has come on the heels of planning for how long I'm going to be a SAHM which is going to be several more years. Which is fantastic and we are totally in agreement on, but the fact that I could be out earning a bunch of money eats at me a little bit too.
post #249 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland42 View Post
Also on the workout factor, if weather permits, DH and I do the couch to 5k outside. It is the only thing that ever took weight off DH. There is a thread for it in the weight loss health subforum. (there is even a podcast so you don't have to time yourself.)
Hey thanks lauriem33 and lalaland....
We actually started this last year and DH has the podcasts on his Ipod. I hurt my knee and didn't end up doing the 5K but we are already talking actively about spring approaching and looking forward to running again. I think it just didn't work for us last year because DS#3 was a baby. He's 15 months old now so we could arrange to run early in the morning on opposite schedules.
Thanks so much everyone for your support and great suggestions. I really do feel better today.
post #250 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by Einley View Post
I've been listening to Dave on this

http://radiotime.com/program/p_20156...msey_Show.aspx

I've been having a ball listening to the debt free yells!


Nothing much to report as far as progress goes. I decided that I wanted a $2000 emergency fund and we are at $1300. Still paying on debt- wish it was gone
Still working on getting the budget right, canceled cable, and still trying to decide if I need that ING account
I really like my ING account. I tucked away $150 (savings for a 3rd anniversary gift for DH - leather La-Z Boy) while I was working last year, and it's nice that we have a little extra cushion. And if we don't need it, then I will keep saving for the next 1.75 years and buy that leather recliner!
post #251 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by JennaW View Post

So there you have it. It makes me embarrassed to no end to share that but I'm getting real. We have a butt load of stupid, stupid, stupid (add about a billion more stupids) debt. We also have a mortgage and oh why not? A second mortgage!
Don't be embarrassed.

I have a credit card that I charged up to the limit ($11500) at.....
Starbucks (among other things, like groceries, fast food, and the occasional DVD).

Yes, I went $11,000 in debt, one latte at a time.
post #252 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by ~*Jaime View Post
This has been really bothering me lately. Am I the only one who gets creeped out when people refer to us as "followers" on other threads?

It bothers me for several reasons. DR is a man, not God, and in the Bible it specifically states that we are to not follow the world. Although DR's advice is fairly sound from a Bibilcal perspective- even though is off on his 15 year motgage idea, God warns against anything over 7, I still don't consider myself to be "following" DR. I just agree with his advice, and implement it. I don't think he is a replacement for God in my life.

So I get irked. I was just wondering if I was the only one who gets offended by it.
You are getting upset by semantics. Of course we aren't "followers of Dave" but of his advice (which he fully admits isn't even his - It's "God's and Grandma's")

Not to say that you are silly to be bothered by it. Just throwing out another perspective.
post #253 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by lalaland42 View Post
I went today to get my car appraised at Carmax and we are more upside down in the loan than I thought.

One thing to remember about Carmax is that they offer WHOLESALE, not private party rates.

DH and I sold the truck through them because we weren't getting an serious offers at the private party prices, and we just wanted out from under the payment. We paid the difference with a cash advance on our credit card, and then paid half of that off with our tax refund. The rest will be paid off when we get our $1200 rebate check, unless we get the refund on the extended warranty first. (I want that money NOW!) :
post #254 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by bc1995 View Post
This was not a great month for us either. We had tons of extra money coming in this month, and as a result I felt like we were bleeding money. It is all gone (most of it to where it was intended to go, but still!). We have not added to our cc debt, and that is a huge deal for us. We had an unexpected expense for the plumber at $239 that wasn't in the budget, but I was able to pay it without dipping into the EF. I feel like we really are on the right track. I just wish this train could go faster! I am looking foward to Monday being the 1st and the start of a new month. I am hoping we can do a better job of staying on budget in April.
This is how I feel too. I feel like the snowball needs to get rolling to help keep me on track. Heres to a better April for all of us :
post #255 of 284
Oh mamas, you are all so inspiring! And, can I just say after reading this thread (okay someof it ), that I feel SO MUCH BETTER? I mean, not because we are all in debt, but because other, clearly intelligent and resourceful people did the same dumb things I did :roflmao I may be financially PPHHHTTT, but I'm not alone, and better yet, there is a light at the end of the tunnel! I am going to go eat supper, but I will be back to tell my tale and get some guidance. I am also re-entering the workforce after a LOOONG hiatus, though that time did include owning and running (uh, but not in a stellar way my own business. More later and thank you all for your honesty and hope
ETA: Am I correct in gatherig that DR's program is Biblical? I am Buddhist, but we have similar precepts about debt. Just curious. I'll try anything at this point
post #256 of 284
Thread Starter 
I have everyone updated
post #257 of 284
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by laoxinat View Post
Oh mamas, you are all so inspiring! And, can I just say after reading this thread (okay someof it ), that I feel SO MUCH BETTER? I mean, not because we are all in debt, but because other, clearly intelligent and resourceful people did the same dumb things I did :roflmao I may be financially PPHHHTTT, but I'm not alone, and better yet, there is a light at the end of the tunnel! I am going to go eat supper, but I will be back to tell my tale and get some guidance. I am also re-entering the workforce after a LOOONG hiatus, though that time did include owning and running (uh, but not in a stellar way my own business. More later and thank you all for your honesty and hope
ETA: Am I correct in gatherig that DR's program is Biblical? I am Buddhist, but we have similar precepts about debt. Just curious. I'll try anything at this point
Welcome DR's books have a bit of religion in them, not as much as some other authors I have read though. I don't think it will be a problem for you.
post #258 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by laoxinat View Post
ETA: Am I correct in gatherig that DR's program is Biblical? I am Buddhist, but we have similar precepts about debt. Just curious. I'll try anything at this point
I'm an atheist and have yet to find Dave's bits about religion offensive enough to send me screaming for the hills.
post #259 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by all in green View Post
I'm an atheist and have yet to find Dave's bits about religion offensive enough to send me screaming for the hills.
Ditto, but it annoyed DH enough that he didn't want to read the TMM, so I summarized and tabbed pages
post #260 of 284
Quote:
Originally Posted by all in green View Post
I'm an atheist and have yet to find Dave's bits about religion offensive enough to send me screaming for the hills.
I'm an atheist too and religion usually bothers me but I found DR's quotes easy to skip over.
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