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I've been reading Morningstar and The Motley Fool for months now. I sometimes feel my head is swelling from too much information. My husband and I are new to money. Well, what I mean is that my family now has a positive net worth. After 12 years of spending more than we made, we finally got it.


Yes, can you believe it? 12 years of spending more than we made. We were $48k in credit card debt at the height of our ignorance. We started our relationship in debt. I had $1200 in credit card debt from clothes and trips and my husband went into debt buying my engagement ring. We then continued to finance our lives by borrowing for our honeymoon cruise and a whole house of brand new furniture. I spent years paying off credit cards with other credit cards and making minumum payments, very stupid. We always had excellent credit though, never a late payment. I was very good at juggling it all. When I used student loans to pay off credit cards, that's when I knew it needed to stop. Finally in 2004 we put ourselves on a budget and stuck to it. For the first time in 12 years, we actually spent less than what we made. Then, to get out from under the HUGE debt we had accumulated we sold our townhome at the height of the real estate market and made 150% profit (after sales costs). I was able to pay off all our credit card debt and have a very healthy amount of money to start our IRAs, emergency savings account and a brokerage account. We still have our student loans, but at 3% and the interest being tax deductible, we don't sweat it.


It has become so fun to pick our mutual funds and stocks then watching them grow. I really enjoy all the reading and research, but for a time felt I had too much info and had paralysis of analysis. I got over it. We make regular monthly deposits to our investments now. The savings is like another bill we built into our budget.


Now, we just have to figure out how to save even more now that we have two children who may potentially go to private schools and college. I've started selling items on eBay that we had accumulated with the $48k in credit card debt. I hope to do enough of that to start some education funds. It is daunting to think what raising children costs, expecially if we choose private schools. Although, once the kids are out of diapers we will realize some savings there!


So, what does one put in a blog now that I have told my life story?


All I can say is that any company that comes up with time saving ideas and products that are cost effective gets my scrutiny as a stock pick. Although I work only 21 hours per week in the office, I still never feel I have enough time to do things. I bank online, pay bills online, do a fair amount of shopping online, but with two children under the age of 2, I'm always searching for more shortcuts. One thing I would like to suggest to more restaurants is CURBSIDE PICKUP or DRIVE THRUS. We can only eat so much Sonics, Chik-Fil-A, and Wendys. I can't leave the kids in the car, not even for a second to go fetch take out and loading them up to go in a restaurant or store for five seconds doesn't have good enough ROI.


There is a whole population of parents just waiting to be served through drive thru! At least Walgreens caught on with the drive thru pharmacy, but I wish they would sell me my Sunday paper or shampoo that way too!


Well, that's all for now since this became as long as a novel. I'll save up my other thoughts for another day.









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