Getting Out of Debt in November - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 143 Old 10-31-2009, 11:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Alright everyone, lets kick it into high gear this month. Who is in for a month of getting out of debt and getting into financial shape? Most of us use Dave Ramsey's method but please join us even if you're following someone else/your own plan. All welcome!

Here's DR's plan:

These are the Baby Steps:

Pre-Step 1: Get current on your debts and do a budget
0.1 Commit to NEVER borrow $$$ again
0.2 Talk with spouse and get him/her on the same page as you concerning finances.
0.3 Do a written budget
0.4 Temporarily stop all retirement contributions
0.5 Get current on all the basics (Shelter, Food, Utilities, Basic clothing)
0.6 Amputate "toys" (bikes, boats, ATV's etc) if they will keep you from completing the snowball within 12 months
0.7 Cut lifestyle (Cut CATV, Cellphone, Regular phone "extra's", Internet, Eating out, etc) and/or take second job if $1000 EF will take more than 30-90 days.
0.8 Get current on ALL bills

BS1 $1,000 to start an Emergency Fund
1.1 Chop up/freeze CC's (You have an EF now)
1.2 Get Health insurance NOW if in the US (chances of getting sick w/ major medical bills are larger than that of death)
1.3 Get Life insurance NOW if you have considerable debt/your family couldn't make it financially if you died.
1.4 Amputate cars that you can't pay off within 24 months
1.5 Consider raising insurance deductables to $500 or $1000

BS2 Pay off all debt using the Debt Snowball
2.0 Do the debt snowball, paying all your debts from lowest BALANCE to highest.
2.1 You can take your first vacation since finding Dave if you can pay cash for it (no using the EF !!!)

BS3 Three to six months of expenses in savings
3.1 Start car replacement fund
3.2 Save up 20% for home purchase OR pay down existing mortgage to the point you can drop PMI.
3.3 Start furniture or other non-essential stuff replacement fund

BS4 Invest 15 percent of household income for retirement

BS5 College funding for children

BS6 Pay off home early

BS7 Build wealth and give! Invest in mutual funds and real estate



Here's the link to Dave Ramsey's website:

www.daveramsey.com

Please join us!
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#2 of 143 Old 10-31-2009, 11:43 PM - Thread Starter
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If you need added or removed from the list, or I got your details wrong just let me know and I'll fix it.

Pre-Step 1
anstar
BelovedK
BonnieNova
dfunk98
eirual
greenmom4
kittywitty
lactivistmama
madsommer
Miasmamma
Stephenie

BS#1: Save up $1000
2lilsweetfoxes
annettemarie
Contrariety
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crunchymomof2
dex_millie
Evenstar
fairydust020409
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JamieB
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JustKiya
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mamabain
MamaPam
mommaknowsbest
neveryoumindthere
NWmt_Mama
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teenyToona
Tryingforbaby

BS#2: Pay off all Debt (except the mortgage)
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Contrariety
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smallmama
stellarae
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thenaturefreak
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tynme
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BS#3: Build up to 3-6 months of savings
akichan
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mammamo
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MCsMom
mtm
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phillytwinmama
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sarafi
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BS#4
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BS#5
Maluhia

BS#6
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#3 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 01:08 AM
 
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I'm in! Still plodding away on Baby Step 2. Did get our Stupid-Medical-Bill paid off last month. Extra big relief since it was a mega-inflated bill in the first place, and now I don't have to think about it anymore...

So now it's the car loan to pay off, and then back to BS3, which is in pause mode at the moment. I like Dave Ramsey but don't follow by the book on all things.... I like a bigger cushion than what he recommends, especially considering our huge health insurance deductibles.

BS1- DONE
BS2- $11,680 remaining on car loan
BS3- paused (67% complete)
BS4- Continuing to invest 5%

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Freedom is slavery.
Ignorance is strength.”
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#4 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 01:11 AM
 
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I am sooooo looking forward to getting the medical bills paid off. We're planning on using a big chunk of our tax return for that. It may not be, strictly speaking, Dave Ramsey's way, but it will be so worth it, emotionally, to have it gone.

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#5 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 02:08 PM
 
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Please add me to BS 1!

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#6 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 03:41 PM
 
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Still on BS#2

October was a bust. Hopefully November will go better. We though budgeted for Christmas in Oct. and Halloween. Also paid for the inspection of the house. So we didn't go more into debt but we didn't pay any off either.

We got out of the contract on the home we were interested in. We realized ( we are slow LOL) since neither of us is handy buying a 100 year old home that is in good shape but will always be a project was not a good fit for us...not to mention it was all brick and no insulation can you say EXPENSIVE to heat even with a new furnace. There was allot of drama from the Realtor thinking we were crazy for backing out but he will get over it.

Anyway we are still looking for homes but no biggy if we don't find one. We seem to always be happy in ranches so we are going back to that route for now..nice straight easy to care for , heat ranches LOL
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#7 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 03:49 PM
 
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Can you add me to Pre Step 1.. I have joined off and on with a few questions here and there, but I really need to get it in gear! I am in the process of a pretty messy seperation from dh, and now that I am "alone" I am REALLY realizing how important this is! I am trying to get a budget in order and if it is ok I may post it in a bit to get a little different perspective. I am a full time working mom, a student mom, and now a single mom, so my finances are tapped out! And Christmas is coming. How do I even begin to think of that!!

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#8 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 04:26 PM
 
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Move to BS1 please As we have the $1000 EF, just need to look at life insurance. It makes me nervous we don't have any yet and have so much that could go wrong if either me or DH get wiped off the earth.

I'm tempted to stay in pre-step 1, as we have a written budget, but last month was the first time using it and yeah....tweeking is required, but I think BS1 is the right place...

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#9 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 07:56 PM
 
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Can you add me to pre-step 1, please?

After dealing with some fraud and subsequent late bills, we really need to get on track.

I can't stop all retirement contributions as it's a required stipulation of dh's teaching job. If he doesn't contribute so much, he loses his job. Seriously. We do bare minimum right now and it's still a major loss from our paycheck, it seems.

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#10 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 08:34 PM
 
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Can you move me into BS 5?

We are saving up for a big down payment so we won't have to take much of a mortgage at all when then time to buy comes.

I'm finally going back to college and it is paid for by the post-9/11 GI Bill for 36 months which will finish my BA in Psychology and start me on the 1st 1/2 of Law School (*squeal* I just said that out loud). So we are saving towards a house down payment and the 18 months of law school in case I can't find grants/scholarships at that time.

Our Daughter's College Fund is funded every month in a 529 and UGMA plan so she should be good-to-go when the time comes.

I'm looking at my budget yet again and trying to make sure I don't go over the deep end in Nov. and Dec. and end up not having any savings (which is my new "low" month, when I spend all the "extra" cash instead of building savings - SO much better than adding to debt in the past).

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#11 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 09:02 PM
 
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We are fired up! I love the freedom of sticking to cash. It takes away too much choice if that makes any sense. I also feel good about the debt snowball. usually, I would just pay random extra amounts to the car or HELOC but now that we have a plan, that is also simpler. DH is reading the book and he leaves me funny notes in the morning when he leaves for work (at 5:30) like "Pay off the car in 2 yrs? Can we DO it?- gazelle intensity!!"
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#12 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 09:44 PM
 
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Count me in. We're just starting, but realize we aren't in as bad of shape as others.

Before starting we already have BS1 completed. We have over $1000 in a savings account and we contribute $100-200 per month to that account. We already have health and life insurance through DH's job. My car was paid for by a very low interest loan thru my husband's job, so we're techinically paying a loan and not a car payment so getting rid of the car wouldn't take away that debt. It should be paid for in a year though.

Dh's car we just got because his died. We found the cheapest car we could find that we could run into the ground and last for ages but we still have a couple of years on that one.

As far as debts go the biggest one we have is a CC debt. It's about $12,000. We have the car loan that's between $1000-2000. We have another low interest loan that we got to pay our realtor when we sold our house. We lost about $6000 when we sold our house. We still have about $4000 left to pay on that one.

I know DR suggests paying the lowest balance first, but those 2 loans have the lowest interest rates, i.e. 3-4% compared to the CC which is about 10% Shouldn't we pay the CC off first?

We already contribute to our retirement fund and have been for awhile. My husband would never consider giving that up because he can retire in 10 years and he wants to make sure we will still be functional when he does. What do you guys think is the best way to tackle our debt.
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#13 of 143 Old 11-01-2009, 10:54 PM
 
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Could you add me to pre-step 1, please? I'm new to mothering.com, but I've been following this thread for the last few weeks, and it's been very helpful to me. I'm very good at keeping track of our (large) debts, but not so good at cutting expenditures!
My husband and I are in our mid-fifties; our daughter, her husband, and their two little ones are living with us until he graduates in accounting in December. They've been living with us for three years and, wonderful as it is, it has strapped us financially quite a bit.
Thanks so much!
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I'm here, still in step 3. We are working on really getting our budget to reflect our priorities. Having Dh back from Iraq is wonderful, but going back to his civilian pay, living in our old house instead of with my parents, etc. etc. etc. Just a bunch of changes and we are still getting everything back into allignment.

We have been keeping track of every penny, which it has been over a year since we last did this together, has been kind of interesting.

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#15 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:16 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by p1gg1e View Post
We got out of the contract on the home we were interested in. We realized ( we are slow LOL) since neither of us is handy buying a 100 year old home that is in good shape but will always be a project was not a good fit for us...
Glad you realized before you went further. We have a 90 year old house that is really in pretty good shape for it's age, and oh my, the projects 'never' end. Even though I was talking with a friend who moved recently into a custom built house and she said that they are still working on projects as well. . . maybe it is just owning a home and being 'able' to make changes???

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#16 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:32 AM
 
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Glad you realized before you went further. We have a 90 year old house that is really in pretty good shape for it's age, and oh my, the projects 'never' end. Even though I was talking with a friend who moved recently into a custom built house and she said that they are still working on projects as well. . . maybe it is just owning a home and being 'able' to make changes???
:

Our previous house was about that age (actually we still own it since no one will buy a fixer-upper around here) and, though i love old homes with all their charm, i will never buy a fixer-upper again until we are debt free and actually have the money needed to throw at all the problems! DH is quite the handyman, but at this point we just don't have the money needed for all those building supplies!

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#17 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:35 AM
 
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OMGosh, we had the best time at FPU tonight!

We were in the small group, and when she announced next week was mutual funds and investments. My friend and I looked at each other and I said "I'll bring the vodka!" and she said "I'll bring the OJ!" We then devised a Dave Ramsey drinking game. My husband (the pastor) was only mildly amused.

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#18 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 02:26 AM
 
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WELCOME to all the new people!

P1gg1e - I have to second (third?) the pp's....I think you made a great choice. Dh and I are SO NOT HANDY. Sometimes I wonder why oh why did we choose to by an older home.....I feel excited when a light bulb gets changed around here after being burnt out for a week.

We are still working on BS2. I expect us to have a great month. It is an extra paycheck month which will cover Christmas presents, an anniversary trip to Seattle and with what's left, we should be able to pay off our last CC! Then after Christmas, I can start throwing all our extra $$$ towards our car loan. Can't WAIT to get that thing paid off ($13000 to go).
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#19 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 04:38 AM
 
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ooh I want the details of the DR drinking game, sounds like a fun idea

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#20 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 08:46 AM
 
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Could you add me into baby step 1. I may even be in step 2 now I am not sure.



BS1 $1,000 to start an Emergency Fund
1.1 Chop up/freeze CC's (You have an EF now)
I am going to start using cash for most everything right now, but for my husband he uses the credit card (seems to lose cash) and we do a lot of bulk shopping online with a credit card. It does give us rewards and I lke how it tracks where we spend money..SO we will still use it, BUT pay it off in full every month.

1.2 Get Health insurance NOW if in the US (chances of getting sick w/ major medical bills are larger than that of death) We are coveed by the state right now

1.3 Get Life insurance NOW if you have considerable debt/your family couldn't make it financially if you died.
OK we have not done this, we had some through my husbands work and then he go cut to part time and lost benefits. I do think either one of us could still make it if one of us died though, and we don't feel we really need it right now.

1.4 Amputate cars that you can't pay off within 24 months
We always pay cash for our cars, so no loans here.

1.5 Consider raising insurance deductables to $500 or $1000
They are all pretty high right now.


So the only thing in BS 1 we have not done is the life insurance. We keep going back and forth on that one. We both work and I think we could both make it with family support if the other passed away.

For BS2 we have no credit card debt as of now and we have over $1000 in the bank at all times. We do have a HELOC loan of 14K and a mortgage of 142K, so we are working on the HELOC debt first to free up another 400 dollars a month.

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#21 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 11:00 AM
 
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Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
OMGosh, we had the best time at FPU tonight!

We were in the small group, and when she announced next week was mutual funds and investments. My friend and I looked at each other and I said "I'll bring the vodka!" and she said "I'll bring the OJ!" We then devised a Dave Ramsey drinking game. My husband (the pastor) was only mildly amused.
I'm going to have to join your Church !!

I'm looking at a couple ranches this week that will be in easier to care for age range. Thanks for your insight. That house was our dream home but not a Dave Ramsey Dream home thats for sure. We don't mind projects but not ones that are more emergencies. You get that when owning a home I know but at least we could live with an old kitchen and bath room in our old house...so long as the roof was good and foundation was good...KWIM?
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#22 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 11:31 AM
 
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P1gg1e are you still watching your SIL kids? How did that work out for you?

I ask because I recently agreed to start watching my sisters 3 kids 4 days a week for around 4+ hours a day. OMG is it a lot of work. Not to mention now I cant leave the house 4 days a week. My mornings are spent preparing for my sisters kids arrival and my evenings are spent cleaning the house after their arrival. 4 days a week are gone for me and the kids. It makes it almost impossible to homeschool.... All this for a few hundred a month.

Now my mother wants me to start managing an 8 apartment building an hour+ away from me. It means taking phone calls from 8 renters, collecting rent, following through on the on site manager... Ugh. For a few hundred a month. And I will be taking on the duplex thats only a block away from me as well. I just keep telling myself that its worth it.

All the little stuff adds up right?

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#23 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 11:49 AM
 
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Still at BS2.

The rate of paying off the car loan and medical bills has slowed dramatically as I prepare for the holiday season. We're not getting our usual (or ANY) bonuses this year at work so I'm needing to set aside some money for Christmas.
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#24 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:06 PM
 
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Originally Posted by major_mama11 View Post
:

Our previous house was about that age (actually we still own it since no one will buy a fixer-upper around here) and, though i love old homes with all their charm, i will never buy a fixer-upper again until we are debt free and actually have the money needed to throw at all the problems! DH is quite the handyman, but at this point we just don't have the money needed for all those building supplies!
We have a 100+ year old home. We just bought it but luckily the previous owners put 20k and 3 years of work into it. Even the inspector said it's in better shape than most new homes he sees. We got really lucky.

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#25 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:23 PM
 
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Can you move me into BS 5?
Maluhia - I am in awe of you!
Now I'm getting excited about getting out of debt all over again!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by annettemarie View Post
OMGosh, we had the best time at FPU tonight!

We were in the small group, and when she announced next week was mutual funds and investments. My friend and I looked at each other and I said "I'll bring the vodka!" and she said "I'll bring the OJ!" We then devised a Dave Ramsey drinking game. My husband (the pastor) was only mildly amused.

Details please on this DR drinking game!

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#26 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:30 PM
 
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So far the only things we came up with was
"Can I get a yes" = 1 shot
"Live like no one else so you can live like no one else" = 2 shots
I think we should get something special everytime Dave makes a sexist/misogynistic statement, but that might just be me.

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#27 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:38 PM
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Hi Again, I'm here for a November to remember! I think we are on BS2, with a jumpstart on BS3 perhaps?
We keep track of the bills and we basically budget for groceries and entertainment, wedding gifts, birthdays, etc. But, I still wish we had even more of a budget that included the long term plans like car fund, furniture, things we know will break or need replacing soon. We just assume our monthly contributions to savings will cover that. (it ends up that if we do replace something, it depletes our savings, and we just have to build it back up again. not that fun.

We have $1000 emergency fund, plus about 2.5 mos living expenses so far, if we were at bare minimum. We decided rather than deplete savings to pay off debt, in DHs volatile industry, we'd be better served with some savings to pay essential bills if something were to happen to his job. G-F.

we have no CC debt, 3 SLs, and 2 car payments to pay off, plus the silly bed payment. (although, i will say, that bed is worth every penny- i sleep like a rock every night!)

So, it will feel good that when the debt snowball is finished, we will be able to already have part of BS3 on it's way. Also, we're scheduling a re-appraisal for December so we can hopefully refi to a lower rate 15 year mortgage, so we can build up equity more quickly. Our PMI should be eliminated after this one last project.


So my goals for November are:
* make a definitive budget for November and December
* Set financial goals for 2010 and make budget plans for the year.
* Pay off at least one loan
* finish house projects to increase value for re-appraisal and eliminate PMI
* get a jumpstart on frugal holiday shopping.

The babymoon isn't over! Our long awaited A born 7/18/10, making us laugh and smile every day.
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#28 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:44 PM
 
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I can't remember if I told you all this.

We were at Old Navy a couple weeks ago and when we were checking out, the sales lady asked if I would like a store card. Katie Grace (8) pointed at her and yelled "CHEETAH!!!!" So funny. I had to tell her not to do it anymore because it's not nice to point or to freak out clerks.

Flowers, fairies, gardens, and rainbows-- Seasons of Joy: 10 weeks of crafts, handwork, painting, coloring, circle time, fairy tales, and more!
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#29 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 12:55 PM
 
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We just paid off the loan that was a combination of the car and my student loans! This is a big deal for us, because we never had a bunch of little debts, only a few big ones. It will probably be over 2 years before another one disappears.

Mommy to  N baby.gif, born 2/20/12.

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#30 of 143 Old 11-02-2009, 01:21 PM
 
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I was just able to transfer another $100 from Paypal towards the emergency fund. Yay! I haven't heard back about the refund, so I'll email her again.

Flowers, fairies, gardens, and rainbows-- Seasons of Joy: 10 weeks of crafts, handwork, painting, coloring, circle time, fairy tales, and more!
Check out the blog for family fun, homeschooling, books, simple living, and 6 fabulous children, including twin toddlers

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