Thursday, August 11, 2011

Lofty Debt-Free goals...

These past two weeks have been a little rough in our house.  I've told you about the car problems, some of them anyway seeing as how the Kia is in the shop AGAIN.
Anyway, I was ready to just start from scratch, get rid of the car that is causing us to hemorrhage money and buy a new (to us) car.  Well, thank goodness I have a level headed husband.  He keeps telling me to stay strong and keep to our plans.  We both know a car payment is never going to be OK with us again.  We have worked hard to get out of debt and we plan on staying there.  Apparently that means driving an ugly, dented, rusty car with no air-conditioner in the 110 degree heat.  But if driving that ugly paid off car helps us get ahead in our financial goals in life then doesn't that make it a beautiful thing?

We are doing the hard work now so our children will never have to know what it is like to have to worry about money or debt.  I want to sacrifice now so that we can go on family vacations later, pay for college and retirement.  Thank you God for giving us a car that has served us well for 2 years and will hold together long enough for us to save up the cash to buy another one outright.

Delayed gratification, according to wikipedia, is the ability to wait in order to obtain something that one wants.  This is a foreign concept to most Americans.  Why wait?  We have the ability to just sign a piece of paper and walk away with a brand new car today.  Why work hard to save up money for emergencies?   Mastercard, Visa or Discover can easily handle any emergency that pops up; right?  This is the mindset I am still working on and one I never want my kids to have.  So, we are going to drive our beautiful car until it just won't drive anymore while we work hard to be able to pay cash for the next one.

Sometimes it helps me to stay on track by listing out our future goals.
1.  Take memorable family vacations.
2.  Be able to help kids pay for college so they don't have student loans when they graduate.
3.  Have a fully funded emergency fund so we don't ever go into debt again.
4.  Have a fully funded retirement fund so our kids don't have to pay for our future needs.
5.  Provide financial security for my family.

Driving a newer and better car, and living in a nicer bigger home is not on this list of goals.  I need to keep these things in my mind all the time when I'm bombarded with the "I wants" disease.  Trust me, I get it all the time.  I need to stay with the concept of being content with what we have and making the best of every situation.

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