"Enjoy the LITTLE THINGS in life for one day you will look back and realize they were the big things."


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Come on in and sit awhile while I talk about the "Little Things" in life. I will share my journey of everyday life.... homeschooling, raising my children, homesteading, gardening, health and wellness, and real life.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Debt Free Living

We have been on a jouney the past few years (about three) to be Debt Free.... and we have finally made it.  Wooo hooo!  And I want to make this point VERY clear... I am not bragging!  Actually, I have been afraid to tell anyone for fear they will think I am bragging.  And there are so many people going through tough financial times and I do not want to "rub this in there face" so to speak.  We have had tough times ourselves and I remember thinking it was going to last forever and wondering why on earth others seem to always have extra.  The reality is that I know they probably had "extra" alright... "extra" debt.  It is real easy to look at the person with a new car, new house, new shoes, and new pedicures and envy them, but the reality is that they probably are in debt for it.  I told my husband this the other day:

"It SEEMS we have sacrificed a lot to get out of debt, but the reality is that those in debt have to sacrifice everyday to be in debt."

And just in case that does not make sense I will explain it a little more clearly.  Yes, we have given up having the newest cars, the fanciest clothes, the well manicured lawn, the fun pedicure, salon days, full price brand name shoes, boats, four wheelers, fancy dinners, etc..  We have never had excessive debt.  We have worked hard to keep it that way.  We have not spent money that we have not had to spend with exception to charging our home and cars or something that was a necessary NEED*.  We have been careful with our money.  We have vacationed in cheaper motels/hotels.  We have searched out things we want or desire in thrift stores before buying it full price in the store.  We have done without a lot of stuff that others would buy without considering the strain it would put on their finances.  We have avoided completely paying any high interest.  If we charge on a credit card, we ALWAYS pay the amount in full on payday.  We do use credit cards sometimes, but it is well thought out like when we vacation and do not want to carry a large amount of cash.  We also like the cashback that we can get with our main credit card and the promotional offers that sometimes are offered for a new credit card (I'll gladly take $10 off my $100 purchase, but it is not worth the trouble to take $1 off my $10 purchase.).  We have sacrificed, but for those that are running up there bills higher and higher with no end in sight due to mounting interest charges they will sacrifice much more.  Most of those people will have to have both parents working just to afford their lifestyle.  Those parents are going to miss out on spending the time I get to spend with my kids everyday.  They will sacrifice way more for their debt than I have ever had to sacrifice to stay out of debt. 

And if you are out there reading this and thinking there is no way you could ever be debt free I say... Yes, you can!!!

I was raised this way...  You don't buy something that you can't pay for!  It is simply really.  I am in awe of the way my parents did things, but I also know from my mother telling me that they had to learn the hard way.  Wouldn't it be so much easier to not learn the hard way folks?!  I would have NEVER guessed it, but apparently my parents had run up a bit of debt and had to consolidate all their debts to one loan so they could get it all paid off.  After that time they did everything different and that is the part I remember and the part I learned from.  There is this stuff called money... Yes, MONEY!  And if you don't have it, you don't spend it.  If you see those new shoes that you want so bad and even if they are on sale for $20, you don't buy them if you don't have the money.  And no, those ever-so-popular things called CREDIT cards do not count as money.  Let's redefine "credit cards"... they are debt creators.  If you don't want to be in debt you need to stay as far away from credit cards as you can.  And if you already have credit debt you need get it paid off as soon as you can.  The interest rates on these things is outrageous.  You don't want to end up paying three times the amount for that $20 pair of shoes.  ~~I am tempted to post advice on paying off debt, but there are soo many scenarios.  If you need advice on what to do, you can always ask and I will be happy to help.  If you want to do that privately my email is littlethingstx@att.net
*Need = Something that is required for living. -- So, I must admit what I am talking about as a "necessary NEED" in reality is not even such.  We have financed and an air conditioner, cars, our home, etc..  In all seriousness these things are not REALLY necessary NEEDS like food, basic clothing, etc..  We could have done without air conditioning, even cars if we did not require them for our job (for use we did, but actually do not now), and we could have stayed in our smaller completely paid for home (although I am glad we did not). 

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