Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Our Total Money Makeover

So we had an awesome weekend, did you? The Dawgs won. Yeah, barely, but hey - a W is a W. We actually missed most of the game, however, because we were at Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover Live event at the Gwinnett Arena on Saturday. Did any of you other peaches go? It was amazing and incredibly motivating! As I've mentioned here and there - 2008 has been a totally cruddy year financially for us. And it's not for just one specific reason or event, but it's due to several unforseen circumstances and lots of well, stupid past decisions on our part. But I'm just not a person who lives in the past, full of regrets. Yeah, this and that happened and sure, we did stupid stuff - but here we are, and it is what it is - so let's figure how to fix it!

I've been a fan of Dave Ramsey for a while. He's spoken at our church several times and I'm sure some of y'all know he does a radio show. We even started to follow his money makeover program a while back - remember I mentioned his cash envelope system? We did great for a while, but just weren't disciplined enough and eventually fell off the wagon. Ohhh, but girls, we are BACK on it! The Live event was so over-the-top motivating and we are going hard core to get debt free. That's his whole thing - to live debt free and build wealth.

We joined one of his Financial Peace University classes that meets once a week. Our first class was Sunday - yeah, we didn't waste any time. All I can say is we are pumped! He is still on tour and if he's coming to a city near you, I highly, highly recommend checking it out! Yes, it's a long afternoon - but it FLIES by. He's hilarious and so entertaining. Even if you have little or no debt, you can learn so much from him. All he teaches is common sense, but it's just very different from what we hear everyday in this society of consumerism.

His money makeover is a series of baby steps. We're making some quick decisions and working fast through Baby Step #1 - which is to put $1,000 in an emergency fund. He wants you to get #1 done fast - in a month or less - so you can quickly move on to Baby Step #2, the debt snowball. That's the biggie - where you attack your consumer debt. It is really cool how it works, so I'll let y'all know once we hit step #2 and give updates on our progress!

The first big step of our own we took this weekend... we did a little "plastic surgery," as Dave calls it...


Bye bye, credit cards! Weeeeeeeee!!!

We learned so much, but one of the best principles we learned this weekend was ordering our money...


1. Give.

2. Save.

3. Pay bills.


Wow - and all this time it's been... 1. Pay bills, and if there's anything left we'll give and save. And the amazing thing was that the sermon at church on Sunday totally reinforced this. Coincidence? It was really the sermon that drove home the idea of giving first. Our pastor literally echoed Dave and said: Give, Save, Live on the rest. OK I get it! God doesn't need our money, but throughout the Bible it says that wherever your money is, that too is where your heart is. By unclenching our fist around our money and giving it to God, we're trusting in him. And dude, God knows his stuffs - so this sounds like a plan. So anyway, yesterday I called the church and increased our giving to 10%. Anyone looking at our budget would think we're insane for doing that... but we did it! It was scary at first... but I'm excited about it. And it comes out automatically from our account - that's probably a good thing! Otherwise it could mysteriously turn into a pair of new shoes! A really good pair of shoes too.... damn. ;-)

OK girlz, enough money talk. Just wanted y'all to know where we were at the moment. More fun topics to follow, pinky swear. Hope y'all are having a great week!

14 comments:

Mrs.Preppy said...

We are in week 3 of FPU at our church and so far, we love it...Good luck with the rest of your course!

Preppy Pink Crocodile said...

Good for you Bestie!! You have me curious to look into this too.

Also- since you are not in the market to buy things right now- pop on my blog post today. Giveaway for a free (and cute!) bag. I love free + cute!

Scarlet O'Kara said...

My BIL & SIL have been followers of his for years now. They are almost completely debt free now!

My husband just got the Children's Game and Books for our girls.

Just wish that his company was located in Sunny, FL...'cause hubby would love to work for him!

Lauren said...

Good luck with your new financial plan!

Erica said...

fiance and i are taking FPU right now too! We just started this past weekend. Not all of it pertains to us, but it's a great picture of how to handle money and live debt-free! Good luck!

the pink putter said...

Mr. P and I have been discussing finances this week and he mentioned Dave Ramsey. We're thinking of either doing FPU if we can find it, or just buying one of his books and following his advice.

tlm said...

I love hearing about stuff like this. It is so important to think about no matter what is going on in your life. I am in AWE of the 10%. I am getting there...slowly!

Belle-ah said...

Good luck with staying on the wagon...this season is a HARD one for me...my need for retail therapy (oh, and the holidays, lest we forget) seems so much higher right now. Maybe you can keep me motivated!!!!

Jillian, Inc. said...

I'll bet seeing Dave's event in person was awesome. When hubby and I got married nearly 5 years ago we were covered in debt. He from his divorce and me from too much shopping. I am now totally debt free (except the house) and hubby is nearly there, too. I also contribute to an IRA, have only one credit card that I pay off monthly (Amex), we have a house that is well below our means, and we rarely eat out or spend on "extras" that we don't need. Well...okay...except for my SHOE SHOPPING. I am sorry to say we are lax on the giving part, which is really the most important. Must work on that. Thanks for the recap! Any bites yet on your town home?

Buford Betty said...

Jillian - that is awesome!!! Good for you guys!

And actually, there is some news on the townhouse, but I'm staying mum till the fat lady sings. We've had two contracts flake out, so yeah... hopefully I'll have some news to share soon!

So glad several of y'all are also doing FPU! Very cool. The hub and I are going ape shit on ebay and craigslist. It's kind of addictive... Hehe!

Breezy said...

Please keep us updated on the finance make-over...with my hubby in his last year of law school we certainly need some "getting debt free" advice! Good luck!

LSU Melanie said...

I LOVE DAVE RAMSEY!!! I have the Financial Peace University cd's and like a BIG nerd I listen to him in the car:) I follow my budget and I pay everything except for my bills in cash. He is sooo motivating..I can't wait to pay off my house and call in to his show and scream FREEDOM!!!!!:)

Hair Girl said...

You will reap the rewards of tithing. Nothing is better than having it auto deducted from the account. It does feel funny to "pass the plate" without dropping anything in, but I was to easy to distract with other bills. Good for you.

E.B. in Tennessee said...

I would LOVE to take one of Dave Ramsey's classes! I have heard nothing but good things about it. Some of our good friends do the cash and envelope thing and are doing great.
Good luck!