Testimonial from Tiffany of Wife.Mother.Teacher
In the fall of 2012 I was introduced to Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover. I found his book at our library and became a regular radio listener. With the purchase of our home, we were quickly realizing — we’d bit off more than we could chew.
Between student loans and our new mortgage, our money needed to be told what to do if we were going to survive.
That realization led me to call in to the Dave Ramsey show seeking advice. By amazing grace, I was able to make it on air and Dave gifted us his Financial Peace University class.
Let the Games Begin
As predicted, money fights ensued. My husband and I learned that we weren’t on the same page with money, and fit the bill as personality opposites.
Within 3-6 months, we made monthly budgets and usually stuck to them. But it wasn’t until around month 9 that we really got the hang of the entire plan. We were working together creating our budget, and checking in with each other regularly. We were using the cash envelope system to follow through on our budget, and feeling successful, but that’s the point where we hit our next obstacle.
We had already cut our spending dramatically — cutting back internet and cable TV, canceling smart phones, and limiting our grocery budget. And although we were making the minimum payment on all of our debts, we were struggling to really get the ball rolling on our debt snowball.
With nothing more to sell or cut out, we had to get real.
Our financial problems were no longer a spending problem. They were an income problem.
If we ever wanted to get out of a paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle, and see the debt snowball in action, we would have to increase our income.
Entering Phase Two of Our Debt Snowball
I waitressed before teaching, but with my husband’s schedule, a traditional part-time job wasn’t feasible. We don’t have an evening sitter that we could count on to babysit on such a regular basis.
Instead my husband picked up extra hours at work and I started working after school activities to earn a little extra income. It helped, but we still needed to find something more consistent.
That’s when I started tutoring online. Since completing my first lesson, I feel like I have found the key to increasing our income for the time being. It’s not a perfect solution, but until we can find another avenue, it will work.
We keep counting down the numbers as we pay off our smallest debt. I know that if we continue to persevere, our debt snowball will really start to take hold.
Whether you’re in phase one, or two, it’s important not to loose sight of your goal. No matter how big your debt, you can achieve financial freedom. The hard work and effort are worth it, especially when you learn to live on what you make. I’m looking forward to what phase two of our debt snowball has to bring and guarantee we’re up to the challenge!
This post was written by Tiffany at Wife.Mother.Teacher. – a blog devoted to sharing a passion for home management with modern, working moms – where you’ll find posts on household budgeting, teaching & raising a toddler. In her free time, Tiffany enjoys reading, exploring the great outdoors and catching up with friends and family.