Family

Day 23 – Financial Hope

Today I’m trilled to be sharing a story of hope on My Life (His Mission). Head on over to Kerry’s blog and check it out, she’s sharing 31 Days of Hope.

AND there’s a giveaway!!! I’m SO excited to be blessing someone with Financial Peace University. The best part? It’s the online class so you can do it on Baby Time, in your own home.

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Don’t you want to be WEIRD?!

Family

Graduate!

Today I completed my final session of Financial Peace University!!

I signed up for the online course in August, and 15 weeks later I’m done! Since we started FPU, Merfman and I have made some awesome changes in our finances, but I’m most thrilled with the change in HOW we look at, deal with and spend those hard earned dolla’ billz.

It’s not rocket science my friends. It’s living within your means the way your Grandparent’s did. If you follow the steps and work the plan it will blow your mind. I promise. When you control your money, you don’t let it control you. I know we’ve all had those weeks and months where we check the bank account and our lighter wallets and wonder…WHERE did that money go?

We have a plan in place, and we’re working toward a financial goal. There’s a snowball to tackel, as Dave calls it, but it’s doable and we’re sick and tired of being normal. Because Normal = Broke. Weird = Good. It’s not easy, it’s hard work. But seeing the results makes you want to work harder.

Is life all about money? Heck, to the no!

There is so much more to life than having a big pile of cash. But, this journey is about changing our family tree, and making much of ourselves. I want to retire someday, and enjoy life with my hardworking Merfman. I want to send my future kids to college debt free, with a solid hold on their finances. I want to GIVE and bless other families someday.

Tis’ the season of giving, and long lines at the mall…circling the parking lot for ANY space. I encourage you to gift someone an education that will change their lives. I’m not being dramatic…so what if I drank the Kool-Aid, it tasted good, it worked and I paid cash for it. We believe in the program and Dave knows what he’s talking about. It’s not some crazy self-help program that’s trying to steal your money, it’s legit. Read the testimonies, talk to people about it. It works.

Avoid the long lines and the grumpy people in the parking lot at the mall. Do you really need to give Aunt so-and-so another set of sunflower tea towels? Give a gift that really will give so much more.

Family

But I WANT it!

Last week I shared how Merfman and I are Living Like No One Else. Part of that idea is separating the NEEDS from the WANTS.

Dang, that’s hard. My Dad calls it your “want-o-meter” when you just WANT something so bad!

I’ve never been a big shopper. I was never the girl that when someone asked what my hobbies were I listed Shopping at the top of the list. No thank you, I would much rather be on a bike ride or reading a book then combing through the department store clothing racks.  That’s my idea of torture.

But, I still have wants like anyone does. My “want-o-meter” really gets charged up when I enter TARGET. That store. I love it. But man, that places can take $50 bucks from you like nothin’!!

For example, this little guy:

I was at Target grabbing some items for my Bossman and I spotted this AMAZING lamp on an endcap. I didn’t NEED it, but man-oh-man I WANTED it. There wasn’t a price tag on the little fella so I carried it over to a scanner (while talking TO said lamp) and discovered that she priced at $68!!!!! That WANT very quickly dissolved. I said my goodbyes to her and went on my way.

Dave Ramsey often talks about how much money is spent on making you spend your money. Make sense?! Marketing and Advertising is a massive industry and they are sneaky little buggers. Don’t ever think that the store isn’t laid out that way just by chance, it’s all planned out. Every endcap, each clothing section, the layout it’s a trap! I’ve fallen victim to that trap many times. You know how it goes…you just need to make a quick stop at Target to grab toilet paper and you end up leaving with a new mascara, pair of shoes and a blender. And $50 seems to be missing from your wallet.

How to avoid the trap? Well, I’ve found what works for me:

– Make a LIST. I love lists, they make me happy, and calm. If it’s not on the list, it’s not in the cart!

– Bring your CASH. Buying with cash is obvious and finite. If you only have $XX to spend, that will keep you away from the doggie lamps.

-You can LOOK but don’t TOUCH. I heard once that when you touch a new item your percentage of purchasing goes way up.

– BROWSE. I really like Target, they have some really fun and cute things. I was there last week and I walked the store looking at all the fun Fall things. I saw some really cute Plaid shirts that were calling to me, but it wasn’t on the agenda. I think I’m going to hit up the thrift store and see if I can find a knockoff version for fraction of the price :)

Dial back the “want-o-meter” and focus on the NEEDS.