We Did It, Again?

I could not believe we did it AGAIN.

How could we have been so irresponsible?

Courtesy of dollarphotoclub.com

It’s not like we did not know the implications of our actions. We were (or at least I was) just caught up in the emotions of wanting what I wanted, when I wanted it, and I always seemed to have wanted it NOW.

After we had paid off thousands of dollars of debt (car loans and credit cards), we found ourselves right back in the same position—back in credit card debt!

See “what had happened was…” I had just sat in a nearly 8-hour departmental training class on personal finances and boy, was it good. The instructor spoke about spending and managing your money, and of course, getting out of debt. I was so excited and eager at the possibility of enjoying a life with minimal expenses that I could not wait to come home and explain to my husband what I learned. Once he heard about it, he was onboard too. So we came up with a plan to pay off all credit cards and tackle our car notes first. And we did it! We were able to pay off thousands of dollars of credit card debt and thousands of dollars of auto loan debt in less than six months while also moving into our very first, brand new home.

We were elated! So elated that I realized I did not want to move our old college furniture into our brand new house. Who does that? So we went and purchased a house full of furniture…on credit, that is. After all, we had a whole year to pay it back with no interest or payments. In our minds, that was a steal.

About a year in a half later (with a credit card bill that did not get paid off), I get pregnant with Baby #1. When Baby #1 was only seven months, I get pregnant with Baby #2. Over a five-year period, not only did we get back into credit card debt, but we had more than we had before. Not to mention having to purchase another car after my engine went out. So we had more credit card debt, a new car note and by 2010 only one income (my contract for my job did not get renewed due to the recession). It was then when we realized, WE WERE IN OVER OUR HEADS!

WHAT DO WE DO?

We did the only thing we could do—ask God to forgive us for not being good stewards over our money and we came up with a plan to get and STAY out of debt.

Now I have always been a great budgeter, even while using credit cards (and getting into debt), I always had a written plan on how we were going to pay everything monthly, even if it was the minimum payments. I mainly had this obsession with budgeting and paying everything on-time because I just wanted to ensure I maintained my “Excellent” status credit score. Now, I know that having a great credit score only shows how well you manage a lot of debt. So in creating our family’s financial plan, we began to focus on changing the way we use, spend, and think about money. And over the last three years, we have been on a CASH-ONLY SPENDING PLAN and have been digging our way back out of debt…This time, FOR GOOD!

So follow us on our journey in “doing money differently.” From examining how to create and stay on a monthly budget, to teaching our boys’ ways to give, save and spend money, I’ll have it all on this blog. My goal is to show you how we are creating, building and leaving a financial legacy for our family…ONE DEBT AT A TIME!

So welcome to my blog. I hope you enjoy our journey!

Question:  Have you ever paid off a credit card only to start using it again? Let me know that we were not the only ones. Share on Facebook or Twitter.

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