budgeting, chickens, gardening, marriage

Debt Free Journey Update!


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Oh boy, here we are with the first update on our debt free journey. I would like to say we did some crazy stuff since the last time we talked. It’s not as exciting as I want. We are now credit card debt free and down one of Aaron’s student loans. It feels amazing to free up 3 minimum payments to go elsewhere in the budget! Here’s a recap of where we started: https://thewildpaduanos.com/2019/02/03/starting-our-journey-to-debt-freedom/

Summary of debt payoff

This time last year, we had also completed Baby Step 1. Almost immediately after saving it, the car needed a part. It has been a struggle to get it fully funded again. Getting these paid off means momentum in the snowball. Up next is another larger student loan of Aaron’s. The plan is to throw everything we can at it. Gazelle intensity as Dave Ramsey calls it!

However, this means I need to go over the March budget again. I wasn’t sure the tax refund was going to be deposited in time. Naturally, this means I need to go remove the paid off items from the budget. I will be doing that tomorrow, cause I am exhausted. Much too exhausted to look at numbers and not mess something up. It would be a shame to mess up the budget after this exciting step in our journey!

After all this excitement, it’s important for us to keep our end goal in sight. The goal obviously is being debt free, but we need to focus on the why of this goal.

Our Why

I am sure by now you have heard that if you do not have a strong enough “why” it’s a pointless goal. Well, our why is to purchase our own chunk of land. It has always been a dream of mine to build my own homestead and give our children a simpler life. As simple as one can in today’s world swimming in technology. I recently read an article that states children should be spending four to six hours outside. While we spend some time outside, it’s not usually near that range. This time of year is terrible for that in our area. High winds are an every day thing usually. So, even though we bundle up it’s difficult to spend more than an hour outside.

The ultimate goal is to be as self-sufficient as possible. We want to grow as much of our own produce as possible. Raise animals for meat and hunt as much as we can. I am still debating whether or not to experiment with a few meat chickens this year. Once we finish building our new chicken run, I might have a more final decision on that. I do know that we will be adding another 3 laying hens to our flock to add a little more color to our eggs. I am hoping to get my dream chicken a Speckled Sussex, here’s a little fact sheet:

Isn’t it gorgeous?! I hope to have several Speckled Sussex when we have our own homestead. For now, our tiny backyard flock will just have to settle for one.

March Debt Freedom Plan

As discussed earlier, I need to go over the budget another time and tweak things. I will be making fabric cash envelopes, inspired by this Pinterest post. I should mention that I will sort of be winging it, because while I have owned a sewing machine for over 10 years, I still haven’t taught myself to sew. It’s sad, but I am going to start learning how. I need to be able to fix rips, tears, etc in kid pants. Maybe reinforce the knee area as well. That seems to be wear Wildchild rips his pants the most. Usually I just save them for outdoor only pants, but we are gonna start running out of acceptable pants once we are outside more.

We will also do another no eating out challenge. February was easy to complete because it’s such a short month. NotSoLittleDude has a birthday this month and no fast food is going to be challenging. We will keep up the tradition of making and decorating a cake with him at home. Something we have been doing since he was three years old! I’m thinking we might do an at home make your own pizza type party too.

Since we will be doing a no eating out challenge again, meal planning, pantry, and freezer inventory are going to be paramount. Aaron is better at experimenting with random ingredients than I am, so we are going to be relying heavily on him for this challenge. At least to suggest stuff for me to throw together some nights since he works. One day, we will be so financially free that he can stay home with us. We saved a portion of our tax refund to do a medium grocery haul. Now we just need to stick to the meal plan and we will be golden.

I am excited to see what we can do with our debt free journey for March.

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