We have reached our 6 year TMMO anniversary and I have been doing a lot of soul searching. We are obviously not where we wanted to be at this point. I sat down and asked myself some really hard questions and have been doing a lot of thinking on the subject this month.
Where we are now:
6 healthy children
Blog that is paying for 90% of our homeschooling needs
2 paid for vehicles
BEF is down to $220 after a major car repair this month
Debt free in February (again)
Rented off base house that is being covered 100% (including utilities) by our Housing allowance
$1,000 a month snowball
I have been thinking about why we can not maintain a 3-6mth emergency fund and why we keep slipping back into debt. Some of my thoughts:
Dh's addiction. A typical week saw anywhere from $100 to $1,000 in charges depending on his ability to control it.
My injury. By not being able to cook or grocery shop we were spending $2,000 to $3,000 a month on food (I wish I was kidding)
Homeschooling with no pre-planning. We decided literally overnight to pull our girls out of public school and homeschool them. We had to buy everything brand new and immediately so that we could start ASAP as we were threatened by CPS and terrified we were going to have our children removed from our home.
Moving off base. We did NEED to move but we should have done it with savings specifically for moving. We instead had 30 days to get out of our base housing and used our FFEF to cover the expenses. Of course Murphy then visited and I was seriously injured.
Buying 2 used cars with savings. Adding our 6th child caused a huge shift in vehicles in a short time period.
Moving from Hawaii to New Jersey. Yes we received payment through the military but it didn't cover 100% of the costs and we used our FFEF to buy things like pillows, air mattresses, washer and dryer, winter clothes for 5 kids, etc while living in an empty house and waiting 3 mths for our things to arrive from Hawaii.
Seeing Debt as a tool. I don't think we ever made the mental switch from typical American thinking and realized Debt is not a tool it is a giant money sucking pain in the rear.
Not drawing that line in the sand. We never got truly mad at the debt. We didn't like having it but we never reached our breaking point and said "never again"
So what exactly do we plan to do about this now that we are about to be debt free for the 3rd time in 6 years?
Cancel the CC. We are not waiting till we have a FFEF to cancel the card this time. We have made that mistake before. Having it around is obviously not working even when we don't physically have it on our person. Just knowing it is there as a safety net is stopping us from making progress.
Continue to work hard at my blog to continue to cover homeschooling costs.
Dh is doing amazing with therapy and his addiction. At this point it has been 6mths since he stumbled. He is determined not to break his streak.
Detailed plan upcoming expenses.
Sinking funds for upcoming expenses.
An overfilled FFEF. I would ideally like 8 mths of expenses.
Making up several weeks of freezer meals. If I get hurt again, or just don't feel like cooking, I want the meals done and ready to go.
Get mad at the debt. I am mad at it now. I am sick and tired of the cycle and I am totally finished with the back sliding.
Draw the line in the sand. NO NEW DEBT. Not only is it a line in the sand it is a 6ft deep trench filled with sharks. I am so done with debt and there will be no new debt.
Anyways there is our 6yr update. I am praying the 7 yr update is a much happier one