One Day At A Time

So I had a realization the other day while I was driving to work. I was feeling discouraged about some goals we set for ourselves several years ago which have not come to fruition. 2015 was supposed to have been the year that would launch us into a new era financially. In 2014 we made some big changes at the office and put ourselves in a position to hunker down, get the last of our debt paid off and to begin saving and making our financial dreams come true. We hired a business coach, created a vision for our business and set up a strategic plan to move things forward to make the vision a reality. We completed phase one of an office remodel just before Christmas and were ready to face all the greatness that 2015 had to offer.

Christmas Eve 2014 / Tiffanyaolson.com

Christmas Eve 2014

See, we’re on this plan, a Dave Ramsey plan. I know I have mentioned him several times before but if this is your 1st time reading my blog, in short he is a guy who helps people through a seven step process get out of debt and begin to save and eventually give money away. We discovered him several years ago when our lifestyle of outspending our income became so overwhelming that we sought out a way to make changes in how we were handling money. It sucks to see how much money you have on paper and yet have no clue as to why none of it is actually in the bank. Dave’s plan teaches you how to be in control of your money and to know where every dollar is spent.

We are all in. The prospect of being debt free is so exciting that it helps us stick to the plan. The problem? Well, life is the problem. See if you listen to Dave’s radio program, (or podcast or youtube channel… he’s everywhere) you start to see a pattern where most of the people are out of debt (except the mortgage) in 18 to 24 months. The big caveat is to listen to the debt free screams of those who have paid everything off including their mortgages. I am still waiting for our moment and we have been at this way longer than 24 months. There are a few things I have come to realize along the way. First of all a lot of those debt free screamers are under the age of 35, have very small children or no children at all and they live in the midwest where a really nice house is $150,000.00. This realization does not make me want to give up nor does it make me think that people that are older and have a lot more hurdles to jump through can’t themselves become debt free. What it does is make me realize that I cannot compare myself to them because our life, your life, is different.

In 2012, just after we had made the decision that we would no longer go into debt for anything no matter what, our daughter, then 8, got pneumonia. The fluid from her lungs seeped into her blood stream and we won a 3 day hospital stay in our home town and then a 4 hour ambulance ride to a children’s hospital in Portland where they inserted a tube into her chest and invited us to stay in the hospital for another 7 days. Thankfully she fully recovered and has had no lasting consequences from that adventure.

To mention that this was a budget strain is a huge understatement. (This all happened 6 months after Aimee died, so you can imagine how well I was handling this emotionally.) Fortunately the debt we incurred was medical and had no interest attached but all of our other debts took a back seat while we took care of this. Fast forward to 2015 where I said we were going to “git r done?” Well, as most of you know I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer on December 31, 2014. What is even more awesome than that is that while I was taking my turn in, The Chair the previous owners of our business decided to open up shop down the road. Because we didn’t know about Dave when we purchased the business we purchased it with debt and we owed them quite a bit of money. The hit was great enough that legal counsel was sought and the lawsuits began. I decided that my new goal for 2015 was to not die and I asked Mr. Wonderful to handle the legal stuff without me. As with most lawsuits the real winners were the lawyers as they were paid handsomely while neither suing party fared very well in the end.

I say all of this not to infer that my life is harder than other peoples but to shed light on the fact that if your progress isn’t what you hoped it would be then make sure you are taking a look around and discovering why instead of giving up because it’s too hard. I am proud to say that through all of this we have not occurred any more consumer debt. We cash flowed both cancer and lawyer fees. We did borrow a bit from a family member but paid him back two months later.

So here we are in 2017 once again ready to finish off the last of our debt. The ride hasn’t been pretty or easy or fun but we still have the will and determination to follow the baby steps and finally be in a place where we are no longer a slave to what we owe.

A friend of ours said the other day, “Living in debt is like being and indentured servant, as long as it’s there you have no control over your life.”

Living your life without payments… just how great would that feel?

Have a fabulous day my friends!

 

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. Candy Adams says:

    Hey Tiffany we are in this get free of debt gig too. We were two years out from our goal and then moved to an area that has much more expensive housing. My disappointment was great that we had to add a few years to that debt payoff. We are choosing to live in a way we can make a payment and a half every month. Now shooting for our new goal of being debt free.I’m proud of you.

    • Thank you Candy! Dave makes it sound so much easier on the radio huh? No matter where we are at in this process we are so much better off than when we were creating more consumer debt! I wish you guys only the best! I miss you♥

  2. Bill Moldt says:

    Hey Tiffany, you guys are an inspiration to us. We are working on the same goals as you guys after having taken the course with you all. Life happens and you adjust the plan just like you guys. Watching you and your Mr Wonderful and awesome kids has been a help to know that is worth the battle and we are not alone. So, I would tell you “you are not alone” we are doing the thing thought not in the same life experience as you. Praying for you!

    Work the plan, cause the plan works. you guys are doing great.
    Blessings in Christ

    • Thanks Bill! Life just keeps us on our toes. Thank you for all that you do. I know that this transition time cannot be easy but you guys are handling it well and we are excited to see what God has in store for all of us at Hauser. Have a great afternoon!

      Tiffany

  3. Dennis Wartenbee says:

    Hi Sweetie i no what your saying at this point in my life I think I can say been there! But I’ve learned that when everything is going great we stop growing and moving into the Promise Land. The order seems to be blessed,
    trail, growing and becoming stronger then Blessing. The timing of events is up to us, how long we stay in the desert walking around a mountain is up to us.
    However God says were ever we put our feet in his direction leads to promise land life. We must always no were hear and influenced by the world for now and at times its hard to keep our eyes on the Word.
    But when we do we always live stronger
    in the Promise Land. I love you to the moon and back! Read Joshua again!
    Pa Pa Dennis

  4. You see they only had seven yrs in the Promise Land they could have lived there
    forty yrs earlier and stayed had they followed Gods plan for there lives. But letting the influence of the world (Satin ) took it away. If we follow what the Lord tells us threw
    our prayers, which requires us to listen after we pray its amazing how things turn out.
    We don’t always get it right the first time so we return to the source. (The Lord)
    I believe we all have a calling on our life its not the same as anyone else now or ever
    before, we are each special for what our gifts are but sadly many of us never seek to no what we’ve been created to do. That makes a sad life! You have a gift in your writing and think what led you to start I think it came out of your low in life. You no what I mean, See God never leaves us in our Valley of despair if we seek him, he always lifts us back into the Glory Land which Joshua led the people and fulfilled Gods
    Covenant he made with Moses,same one different day. That’s faith in following!
    I think I finally stepped into my calling.
    Love, and wishing you Blessings!

  5. We just started FPU. I started super-excited and completed the first week’s homework with great enthusiasm. Then I sat down and paid bills. My fervor died. Dead as a doornail. Thanks for the encouragement here! It means so much!

    • The budgeting part really does get easier. I actually like the budget now because it gives me freedom to spend in certain areas with no guilt. Once you get past these first few weeks, things really begin to fall into place and there is a rhythm to the plan. Like I stated in my post the journey has been a lot longer than we anticipated but we are soo excited for the freedom that no payments will bring that we are going to duke it out till the bitter end. Even the kids now understand saying no to certain things so we can say yes to others. After teaching this class with our buddies we are going to teach it again as a sunday school class at our church. I am going to have my kids sit through it (they are 13 and 11) so they can hear from someone else all this no debt stuff we have been talking about for so long. Go! Kelly Go!♥

  6. It’s that Rocky Road, and I’m not talkin ice cream, that pastor Ken was talking about on Sunday! “….yet I STILL belong to You, You hold my right hand. You guide me with Your counsel, leading me to a glorious destiny.” Psalm 73 LOVE and just saying one more time…you are my hero!!!

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