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Hello, I am new to this board and am a regular on the cc/cd board. I'm hoping for some help with allocating my 401k contributions and with learning about retirement planning, in general. I started at my current job 1.5 years ago and parked the 401K money in the Money Market option because I foolishly (lower case f) feared the markets so much! Now I have made some allocations, but I would greatly value any opinions / suggestions if one would allocate differently than I have.

I'm 34 and have only a modest amount saved for retirement thus far (appx $35 - $40k total - another 401k and a couple of small IRAs). DH has only around $3 - $5K. Right now DH and I have a sizable amount of debt that we are trying to dig out of, so most of my/our energy still has to be focused on that. But I need to start paying attention to this, too, as (surprise!) we are getting older each year. (Translation -"how the heck did I get to be 34 already?")

I understand that I will probably be told "read the prospectus on each of these funds and then decide for yourself" but when you are as green as I am, sometimes the prospecti (?) make things even more confusing. I'm here to learn the "why", not just the "what", so I hope you'll bear with me!

My 401k is via Securian, and the available funds are listed below, with my current attempt at allocation listed immediately below:
- 30% - Large Value Equity III - T. Rowe Price Value Fund - Advisor Class
- 30% - Large Equity Index I - Advantus S&P 500® Index
- 30% - Small Value Equity V - Allianz NFJ Small-Cap Value Fund, Institutional Shares
- 10% - International Value - Templeton Foreign Fund- International Core II, Julius Baer International Equity Fund, Institutional Share Class

---- here is the full list of choices ------
Lifecycle Portfolios:
- LifeStrategy I
Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth Fund
- LifeStrategy II
Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth Fund
- LifeStrategy III
Vanguard LifeStrategy Conservative Growth Fund

Fixed Income:
- Short-Term Bond
PIMCO Low Duration Fund, Institutional Shares
- Long-Term Inv-Grade Bond
Vanguard Long-Term Investment-Grade Fund, Investor Shares

Specialty Funds:
- Real Estate
Ivy Real Estate Securities Fund Class Y

Domestic Equities:
- Large Value Equity II, Vanguard Windsor II Fund
- Large Value Equity III, T. Rowe Price Value Fund - Advisor Class
- Large Growth Equity III, Janus Adviser Forty Fund
- Large Growth Equity V, Fidelity Advisor Equity Growth Fund, Class T
- Large Equity II, Fidelity VIP Contrafund Portfolio
- Large Equity Index I, Advantus S&P 500® Index
- Small Value Equity V, Allianz NFJ Small-Cap Value Fund, Institutional Shares
- Small Growth Equity VIII, Vanguard Explorer Fund
- Small Growth Equity X, Ivy Mid Cap Growth Fund, Class Y

International Equities:
- International Value, Templeton Foreign Fund- International Core II, Julius Baer International Equity Fund, Institutional Share Class

I greatly appreciate your help! - lynndawg
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