No, We Haven’t Killed Each Other, Yet

Our wedding!

Today marks two whole months since R. and I got hitched!  Time has flown by, and we’ve definitely had our hands full since the wedding!

Speaking of busy, I’m here to tell you the cold, hard truth of combining finances with your spouse – why it sucks, why it’s fantastic, and why it’s the best thing to keep your marriage together.  I may not be an expert on marriage yet, but I know what old married couples have told me.

Even the thought of combining accounts is enough for some of us to jump out a window.  Especially when you’re in your 30’s and have managed money independently for some time.  It feels like there’s suddenly a rooster in the hen-house.  “Hey, um, what are you doing here?  No, no, that’s mine – please don’t go through my things!”  It’s weird.  Not only does your spouse have access to all of your money, but you also hand over an equal vote to what happens to that money.  And it’s not just your money anymore, it’s our money.  Every feminist bone in my body wanted to jump out and burn a bra in solidarity of my independent sisters not needing men.  Continue reading


I’m Debt-Free! (Freaking Finally)

libertad-interiorThis, folks, is the post I’ve worked so hard for the privilege of writing.

I made my LAST debt-payment ever on April 15th (Tax Day, ironically), with my second-to-last paycheck from my job in the insurance industry.  It was $963.70 to be exact.  I must say, I have never been so happy to fork over $963.70 to anyone, but that was all I needed to buy my freedom.  Let’s recap my debt board: Continue reading

To My 18 Year-Old Self

young-1208208_960_720Here we go with the debt standing:

Student Loan 003: $1,749.06

Student Loan 004: $4,464.77

Total Debt: $6,213.83

In 5 weeks and 3 days, if everything goes according to plan, I’ll be debt-free! I’m so close I can feel it. I can’t wait to walk down the aisle on April 23rd confident in both myself and soon-to-be husband that we are on solid financial footing. That’s a kind of peace that is priceless (other than the cost of paying off debt, of course).


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They Can’t Repo My Bachelor’s Degree, Right?

Photo, diploma, mortarboard and booksColor
High res
Photo Credit: Flickr – State Farm Graduation and Safe Driving Album

Here’s my current debt standing:

Student Loan: $7,283.39

Loan 002: $0

Loan 003: $2,764.48

Loan 004: $4,518.91

I paid off Loan 002! The way I organized my debt snowball when I finally got to my student loan made a huge difference in my attitude. This is the crown jewel of my debt – the one that filled me with both dread and excitement when I started chunking money at it. I graduated college with about $22,000 in student loans. When I got to it last year after paying off the car, the balance after paying the minimums for 5 years was still about $18k. I sighed when I looked at the balance. Then I realized that I can use the same Debt Snowball strategy to break it up by the individual loans and handle one at a time.

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What is Your WHY?

My current debt payoff amount:

Car Loan: $2,303.36

Student Loan: $17,941.09

Total: $20,244.45

Yes, I’m below the $3000 mark on my car loan!  And below the $18,000 mark on my student loan.  If you’ve been following me for the last few months, then you’ll see that I’ve paid off about $4000 on my car since November of 2014.

Now, this progress is a little bittersweet for me.  Unfortunately, I have one of those temperaments where I have little patience and want things done, like, yesterday.  I was hoping to pay my car off by the end of this month, but it’s not going to happen.  I just don’t have any extra room in my budget, unless I completely destroy it.  I’m receiving a bonus tomorrow with my regular paycheck, which I thought would pay off the car loan, but it turns out I calculated the tax rate incorrectly.  I anticipated my regular 17% tax rate on my bonus, but turns out it’s closer to 31%.  Ugh. Continue reading