A Life Worth Living by Nancy Buxton

Posts tagged ‘finance’

Where Does Your Money Go?

We are almost finished with Financial Peace University!  We have learned a lot.  I only wish we had taken a class like this 40 years ago.  When I think about how I have spent money it makes me sick.

Oh sure we educated two children through college (no subsidy) and they came out with no debt.  We don’t have any credit card debt.  We have paid off one house and then built one we are still paying for.  We only owe for the house and we are working hard on paying it off early. We pay tithe and we give offering.  That’s all good.

But, when I think of the silly stuff I have spent my money on I know I could have done better.  When I think of the places we have invested our money, I know we could have invested much more wisely.

You know and I know the Lord expects us to be good stewards, it is Biblical.  Please if you ever have a chance sign up for Financial Peace University, do it.  If you have adult or near adult children pay for them to attend,(without offending) it is worth  the money.

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Oh No, Do I Have To?

I know, I know what you’re thinking–why didn’t she figure this out sooner!! Well, I knew it, I just didn’t want to face it.  Self Control–SELF CONTROL–that’s what I’m talking about.  Do I have to, do I have to find self control? 

It should be obvious that if human nature is the single greatest obstacle to happiness, controlling our nature is pretty important.  But, have you noticed when people talk about happiness, self control is rarely mentioned.

Self control is difficult, and I think most of us want an easy fix as far as happiness.  Plus self control does sound like a “downer.”  Saying no to yourself does not sound like the road to happiness.

Yet happiness is impossible without self-control.  If you want to be financially successful you have to use self control.  If you want to be at a healthy weight, you have to use self control.  If you want a relationship with Jesus, you have to use self control.

The way I see it self control really give us freedom.  I know it sounds backwards but it isn’t.  Controlling your finances gives you freedom from debt.  Controlling your weight, gives you freedom from disease, low self esteem and letting food control you.  Controlling your time so you can have your devotions, frees you from trying to do everything on your own.  Addicts do what they want and they are among the least free people on earth.  Freedom is being able to do what will bring you happiness and that takes constant self control.

So you can see I am working on self control.  My weight loss has been a big issue.  I am almost at my goal, where do I go from here?  I am doing some study on self control and I will continue to tell you what I find.

I hope your week is filled with Jesus, self control and happiness.  Mine is going to be filled with all of the above plus a flurry of getting ready for one more retreat, piano lessons and a trip to see my grand kids, oh and their parents.  Just kidding we look forward to seeing the big kids as much as the little ones.

Baby Cakes. . .

 

 cookbook 001

This is my new cookbook!  It is vegan and uses some odd ingredients but healthy ones.  I can’t wait to bake something, but who’s going to eat it? Speaking of eat, I weighed in today down 1/2 pound, 33 pounds in all.  I’m headed to the Red Clover in a few minutes just to get some ingredients.

LOL I am back from my shopping and I left $89 behind at the store.  Red Clover has good prices but mercy this natural stuff is expensive.  I am leaving town I think I will make a surprise for my man and put it in the freezer.

I wonder, did I need another cookbook when I have all of these?

cookbook 002

I would guess  an extravagance like this will be out of the question when I am fully on the Dave Ramsey plan.  Looking at the bright side, I had the money to pay for it I didn’t have to charge it.  Oh mercy, this Dave Ramsey thing may not be very fun.

Financial Peace University

Ramsey blog 007

Our church is holding Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University and we are committed to attending.  We paid our fee and we have our material now all we have to do is go.

I know what you are thinking, at their age do they need to attend this seminar, are their finances in that big of a mess.  Yes and no, we have no credit card debt, we have an emergency fund and we have some savings and we give to our church.  We feel we can do better and we want to do better because we want to be able to give more and to be more responsible with our money.

Just this weekend I read in our local newspaper that 80% of men die married, 80% of women die single.  Women outlive men and they pay the price for poor financial decisions made earlier in life.

Here are the 5 financial rules:

Don’t spend more than three times your annual household income on a home.

No more than one third of your annual household should be spent on cars.

Don’t take on more debt than you expect to earn, on average, over your first 10 year out of school

It costs more than $130,000 to raise a middle class child to age 18, and that is before any higher education. Think about that before having children.

It is best to never loan money to family, if you do consider it a gift or get the repayment terms in writing.

I know this is a boring subject to most of us, but I think it is one we all need to address.  If you don’t know about your finances find out!

Here We Go Again. . .

As I look over this blog the posts you like to read the most are the ones on finance.  This is a surprise to me, I thought you would rather read about marriage, women’s ministries or prayer.  Nope, you are very interested in finances.  Oh I know you love prayer, family stuff and ministry but you are really into finance.

I am not great at finance but I can tell you a couple of things I have done to help mine out.

1.  I changed banks, I found a bank that will pay 5% interest on my checking account up to $25,000 balance.  There are some things I have to do but I don’t mind electronic banking, on-line bill paying and using my debt card 13 times a month.  It is worth the extra interest to do these things.

2.  I reason things out before I make the plunge. Think about need compared to want and I usually don’t buy.

3.  I have planned to save 10 percent of what I earn this year and maybe more.

4. I give money freely to those  in need and gladly give my tithe and offering.  I have never missed any money I have given away, that is amazing to me but it is true.

5.  I have established an emergency fund that I can easily get to if I need the money.

6.  I (we) paid cash for a good used car this year

7.  We added $15,000.00 to our house payment this summer. (I know what you are thinking. . .at her age it should be paid for)  Well it was until we got the wild hair to build a new house.

8.  I am on the weight loss plan to be healthier, that should save money in the long run.

Retirement is getting closer, I really never want to retire, I would be very bored.  I love this story from Dave Ramsey’s book.

Investing for retirement in the context of a Total Money Makeover doesn’t necessarily mean investing to quit your job.  If you hate your career change it.  Do something that you like.

Harold Fisher is one hundred years old.  He works five days a week at the architectural firm he founded.  Mr. Fisher doesn’t work because he needs money, not by a long shot.  He works because he finds joy in what he does.  He is a designer of churches.  His favorite saying is, “People who retire early, die early.” “If I retired, what would I do?” he asks.  Harold Fisher is financially secure and able to do what he wants, and that defines retirement.

Dave recommends you develop a five year game plan for transitioning into what God designed you to do, but don’t wait until it is too late to do what you love.

What About the Bargains?

Have you missed me telling you about the bargains I have been finding.  Have you missed my LOL’s when I  come home with several bags of products for pennies?

I have to tell you the bargains in couponing have dwindled considerably.  Is it a sign of the times?  Idk–if you don’t know what that means you must not text LOL. (I don’t know)  I don’t text much myself so don’t think you are the only one that still talks on the phone.  I miss my couponing days and I hope they come back soon.  I still find a good deal now and then but not like I use to.

In the mean time, I still believe we must take care of our money.  As I garage sale during the summer months, I am astounded at the things people pay big money for and then turn around and nearly give it away at a garage sale.

When I look around my house and see the stuff I have spent good money on and realize I don’t even like most of it, it makes me stop and think how much money I would have had I not spent  foolishly.

Today I bought my grand daughter a mocha something or other from Starbuck’s, it was pennies short of $5.00 for one drink.  Think of the people who do this nearly every day.

We have some friends who were paying nearly $100 for cable tv, they didn’t even use half the channels they were paying for.  They also were paying by the minute for their long distance.  They didn’t know there are plans that have a flat fee for long distance.

My sisters, we must get smart about our spending.  Think about your expenses, is it necessary to have unlimited texting for the whole family? Do you need a land line?  What about gym fees, downloads, bottled water, eating out and a dozen other expenses. 

The Lord expects us to be good stewards, let’s start now.

What Do You Do With Those Unless Credit Cards?

A great way to recycle your cut-up credit cards

I found this little post at a blog that I visit now and then called Money Saving Mom.com, I thought you would get a chuckle out of this idea.

If you’re a Dave Ramsey fan like me, you probably have become quite adept at cutting up credit cards. Up until now, I’d never considered a way to recycle them, but this mosaic idea is brilliant. Not only is it a way to show your disdain for credit cards, but you can do it in a beautiful way!

Mosaic
photo from CraftStylish.com

Oh and if you are still sold on using plastic, you can read The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey and you will know why you should cut up those cards forever and find freedom in using real money.

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