Wednesday, September 17, 2008

a bump in the road

We bought our house over a year ago now, and we've been doing our best to keep up with the payments. Even though our income is really good and we have great jobs, we have a negative amount of dollars in the bank as I write this, with no pay coming until the 1st. This moment has been a long time in the making because our approach to finances is as follows:

1. We get paid on the first of the month.
2. We pay all of our bills the first week of the month.
3. We celebrate and go out to eat and do fun things the first week of the month.
4. We spend the rest of the month panicking that we will overdraft our bank account.
5. We ignore our bank account.
6. We overdraft our bank account.

So you could say that we are not good with money. It's not that we go out to fancy restaurants or buy expensive clothes or go on elaborate vacations. It's that our house costs so much. And since it has lost $100,000 in value, we can't refinance. We basically have very few options. On top of that, we have child care, student loans from fancy schools, credit card payments, etc.

So after crying and freaking out a little yesterday, I sat down with Ryan and we worked out a budget. And we can do this. We can keep our house. (We haven't even gotten behind yet.) We can pay our bills. We can even save a little. But we are going to teach extra classes. We are canceling things we don't need like Netflix and pest control. We are severely limiting any eating out, even if it's just fast food.

The great thing about Ryan and me is that we don't blame each other. When things like this happen, we pull together and we make it work. It isn't going to be fun or easy, but we know we can do this.

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