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Just in response to Greg's post,

We have an emergency fund with about $12,000 in it, althought I think I'll take $2000 out of it to fund a Roth IRA on Scottrade. We have a "Freedom Fund" for stuff like car payments etc. that we contribute to monthly. We are also saving to buy a house and expect to have about $50k in 18 months put away. A lot of that will come from money gifted from my elderly grandmother. We're not currently saving for a child's education because we are three or four years away from even trying to have a child, and we have our own student loans to work on paying down right now.

I agree that there are a set of smaller components that add up to a bigger picture. We are in a fairly advantaged position. Even though we only make about $50k a year right now between us (hopefully we'll be up to $65k if my wife gets the position she's hoping for), We only live at about $2000 a month (this could probably be lower, but we're comfortable with it). $550 of that is debt (car and student loans). We also don't pay rent or a mortage because the private school I work for offered us a free house to live in. We hope to be in it for the next 18 months, although it's possible we'll be here until 2007.

Again, thank you for all the replies.

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