Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Choosing Happiness

I could find many reasons to complain and feel sorry for myself, but instead I am choosing to look on the bright side. After all, things could always be worse!

I used to always cook from scratch and bake treats for my family. Since I started working that quickly fell by the wayside making our food budget skyrocket. Now, I am careful to plan my meals according to my schedule, take stock of my pantry before shopping, make a list paired with coupons, use up leftovers, and bake. We are eating better and spending less money.

I could complain about not being able to redecorate the house. Instead I use a portion of my time off each week to Spring clean and get rid of our excess belongings. It's amazing how a good cleaning and lack of clutter can bring about a whole new look for nothing.

Okay, I  could  do complain about having to work, but I really try hard not to! It provides a much needed source of income, I've made friends with a few of my co-workers and I'm good at my job. I'm choosing to be grateful that I can contribute to our financial well-being, though I do not plan on this being permanent. I eventually will return home full-time, but that is several years down the road.

I could complain about not being able to spend money on _____ (insert stupid stuff here). But we have a dream of becoming 100% debt-free and I want to give my husband that before he turns 50 years old which is 8 years away. How fabulous of a birthday gift would that be?!!

We didn't get into this mess overnight and won't get out of it as quickly as I'd like, but this is going to be a lifestyle change. Eventually we will have a little free money, but I never, ever want to go into debt again once we are finally free. 

Determined to conquer,


Patty said...

Hi Tracy! I'm so proud of you! You can do this! When my husband and I got married five years ago we decided to get rid of all of our debt ($70k) and we did it in a year and a half (using the Dave Ramsey plan). We worked extra and threw all of our money at our debt. We also do mystery shopping so we actually got to eat out at some fancy restaurants and get paid for it while paying off our debt. It's an amazing feeling being debt free! Once you're there you'll never want to go back in debt again. A real life lesson! Best wishes!

lisa said...

Good for you and you inspire me,,,, We are trying to be debt free by November of this year...My husband will be 62... after being debt free we will concentrate on having a large emergency fund...we have a small one that is building little by little...he wants to retire in 5 years,,, We have a nice chunk in the 401K.. It is a good feeling when you save money... What I do each month is I add up all the coupons I use and see who much we saved this month in rebates and coupons... Then if I am tired and want to eat out and when I don't I write down what I saved by not giving into my temptations of eating out.... I love seeing the numbers and it helps me realize how much I wasted for so many years... Just some thoughts... Lisa

Tracy said...

Patty, congratulations on paying off your debt! I can only imagine the feeling of being debt-free. We'll get there one day! :)

Lisa, what a great idea! Hope you reach your goal this year. Thanks for sharing!

Fiona said...

50 is the magic number for me too Tracy. We want to have our house paid off (our only debt) by then which is 7-8 years away. It thrills me to think of all the choices you can have when you're not paying back money, but instead building it up. You have many people behind you, and please know that your posts are always inspiring.

Tracy said...

Thank you, Fiona! Your blog is one of my very favorites and I am always happy when I see you've posted something new. You are an inspiration!