For the past couple months I have just felt so unmotivated. Keeping the house looking half decent and putting dinner on the table are pretty much all I’ve been able to accomplish. But about two weeks ago, something just hit me. Like a ton of bricks. All of sudden, I realized I was just wasting my time. I was wasting all the opportunity that was presented to me. Not even just considering the fact that I have been lucky enough to stay home full-time with my children instead of going into work, I am an able-bodied human being with a creative mind and a good amount of privilege. Why am I not taking advantage of everything that is just sitting right in front of me? And when I say, it hit me like a ton of bricks, I mean, I physically felt it. When the realization came to me, I just started weeping. I was completely alone, but I felt embarassed and disappointed in myself for allowing such a long period of stagnation to go on.
On the blog past Friday I provided a quick synopsis and review of The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsay and the 7 Baby Steps described in the book. If you haven’t already read last week’s post, I recommend you read it first before learning about my progress. We’ve been following the baby steps for almost a month now, and we have kind of fast tracked our way through them since we were already being pretty responsible.
I have really been loving fall in Alabama. The weather has been gorgeous with very little humidity and quite a few sunny days. It’s winter in Alabama, that I’m not so sure about. It has been raining non-stop since Saturday. That’s four full days of rain. I’ve been waiting for flooding and an ark to float by, but this clay does a pretty good job of soaking it all up. Not to say there aren’t some areas of Huntsville/Madison that could flood. Ryan and I were perusing the realtor sides, you know, typical Saturday night stuff for twenty-somethings, when we found this house for sale at a STEAL in a neighborhood we love.
In my last post, I mentioned that the reason my husband and I are holding out to purchase a home is because we don’t want to pay PMI for having less than 20% down. One of the reasons I chose to start talking publicly about our finances is because it allows me to look at things from an outsider’s perspective. When I edit blog drafts, one of the many things I do is ask myself questions I think my readers would propose as they read through. Of course, immediately after I typed out, “I don’t want PMI so I’m saving up the 20%” I realized “but if you’re planning on paying off your home, there might be some overall savings if you take the small hit from the PMI instead of paying rent every month”. For instance, if you’re paying a $50 PMI on top of a $850 mortgage, that’s still cheaper than $1000 in rent.
How is it already November! I feel like October completely flew by! I remember starting the month with a checklist of activities I wanted to do. Somehow I let the month get away from me, and I accomplished maybe half of them. Guess I’ll be waiting another year to carve a pumpkin, visit a haunted corn maze, and watch “Hocus Pocus”. I need to stop letting my adulting get in the way of my fun. October was pretty laid back as far as activities, and it definitely reflected in the budget actuals. But before I get into a review of the October budget v. actuals, here’s a quick explanation of how I budget each month.
During my time as manager for a student housing company one of my absolute favorite responsibilities was going through the monthly financials. I didn’t so much view it as a responsibility so much as an exciting treat. When my property accountant would email me that our financials had been posted, I would literally drop whatever I was doing to see how we had done for the month. For those that work in the same field, you’re probably thinking “well, duh, you wanted to see if you would made your month and earned your bonus”. Yes and no. My first year at my property, I didn’t earn a bonus. The projected budget I came into was pretty tight, and we had a lot of expenses that needed to happen to improve the community. I could have stayed within my budget and earned my bonus or spend what needed to be spent to achieve our goals of 100% occupancy as well as keep the facilities well mainted and our residents happy. Guess which I chose.
When I started this blog, I had the idea that it would be your typical lifestyle blog with a green twist. I would blog about beauty products, skincare, recipes, all of which would be geared towards safer, healthier options. Eventually it would morph into a money-making opportunity with lots of sponsored posts and ads. I wanted it to be like those aspirational lifestyle blogs you follow because they’re beautiful and you want some aspect of that in your life. The problem with this type of blog is that it is consumer-based. And I am not someone who wants to encourage people to buy what they don’t need. Once you purchase the items you saw that one time in that flat lay, your life will not be perfect. You will just move on to wanting that scarf from your favorite Etsy shop or that field jacket you were never really into, but now you see EVERYWHERE so you feel like you MUST have it in your life. This is not the person I want to be, and this is not the person I want to inspire other people to be.