Net Worth and other stuff

Net worth

This was not a good year for our net worth.

Over the summer, we remodeled both of our bathrooms.  At the same time.

1 out of 10: Don’t recommend.

We love the bathrooms, but–as with any project–it went over budget.   Sucks to be us.

Then, towards the end of the year, we decided to push hard and pay off our mortgage in 2015.   Part of doing that meant paying the credit card off slower than we’d like.   It wasn’t the best long-term decision, but we’re mortgage-free now.

Those decision, coupled with a small slump in our investment accounts means we are worth $7650 going into 2016 than we were at the start of 2015.

Disappointing.

I’m also disappointed that our credit card discipline slipped last year.

New plan:  No debt before tax day.   Every cent of Linda’s paycheck, every cent of my monthly bonus checks, and every cent of any extra money we make is going into the remaining credit card debt.   My math says that last debt will die on April 1st.

Then we get to talk about what to do with out money when there’s no debt.   But never fear, I have a plan.   A boring, boring plan.

  • We’re going to save for college at a rate we should have started 10 years ago.
  • We’re going to max out both of our retirement plans.
  • We’re going to take some nicer family vacations.
  • We’re going to buy a pony.

So not that boring.

And when our kids all decide to become certified sign-spinners, we’ll have a huge nest-egg in the college fund savings account to spend on lottery tickets.

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Where the hell have I been?

For the last year or so, I haven’t been writing much, which feels weird.  I used to write three timer per week.   I’d write about saving money, investing, frugality, sometimes, relationships and parenting.2016-01-13 18.51.30

But that stopped.   Why?

When I started this site, I was about $110,000 in debt, and just starting my journey out of it.  A few months before, I was looking into bankruptcy, because I didn’t know how to get out of debt.

For years, the ways I saved money, cut corners, and earned extra money was fodder for this site.  Everything I did was about saving money, earning money, and paying off debt.

Now?  I’m about 2 months away from being completely debt-free.   I paid my mortgage off last month, and have about $10,000 in credit card debt at the moment.   I know, I paid that off backwards, but there are reasons.  Reasons I’ll share another time.

4 years ago, I was essentially working 4 jobs.   My day job, my gun training business, my internet marketing business, and my websites(including this one).   I was working all of the time.   It was necessary, but it’s a path to burnout.   Then, I changed jobs a couple of times, nearly doubling my day job’s pay.   My business partner got promoted out of a position that generated leads for one of our businesses, then had an accident that the other shared business on hold for a while.

Suddenly, I had free time and enough money coming in that I didn’t need to work all of the time.   It was a crazy place to be after spending more than a decade pretending to be a workaholic just to keep my head above water.   (Here’s a secret:  I’m incredibly lazy.  I’m just the busiest lazy man I know.)  So I started pursuing hobbies.

Linda and I have been taking ballroom dancing lessons and are nearly to the point that competing is a real possibility.

I cleaned out my garage and assembled a decent wood shop, which is something I’ve wanted to do roughly forever.2015-12-25 14.49.08

I’ve been taking blacksmithing lessons with my teenage son.

I’ve been playing games with my kids, dating my wife, and simply enjoying my life.

This site?

Through all of that, I haven’t known what to write about.

“Dear audience, this month, I paid my bills, didn’t go on vacation, and bought a drill press.”

“Dear audience, my debt went down another $500 this month.”

“Dear audience,  I didn’t buy a car I can’t afford this month.  Again.”

Those aren’t good articles.   Financially–while paying off debt is disturbingly exciting–my life is very repetitive.   That’s the hardest part about paying off a lot of debt.   It’s good, it’s necessary, it’s boring.   My wins have been spaced out by several years lately, and I haven’t been creatively frugal.  Screw frugal.   If you can afford some conveniences and luxuries, frugal sucks.

Anything new happening in my world that would apply to this site would make it read like an accountant’s ledger book.   $100,000 minus $1500 plus $10,000 minus $300, ad nauseum.

Instead of inflicting boring accountancy on you, I’ve been absent.

What next?   Who knows.   I enjoy writing.  I enjoy writing here.   I’ve started writing a novel.

What would you like to see here?

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