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Friday, February 29, 2008

"THE TOTAL MONEY MAKEOVER"


Last night, our book group met to discuss this book by Dave Ramsey. The feedback from the women who actually read it was mostly really positive and enthusiastic in regards to the Money Makeover Plan. Dave Ramsey’s plan consists of 7 Baby Steps.

Without going into details, the 7 baby steps to attaining financial peace are:

  1. Save $1000 in an Emergency Fund
  2. Pay off Debt using Debt Snowball
  3. Grow Emergency Fund to cover 3 to 6 months’ of expenses
  4. Invest 15% of your income for retirement
  5. Begin college savings
  6. Pay off home early
  7. Grow wealth and give

You start at Baby Step 1 and don’t move to the next step until you have solidly completed the current step and so on.

HunnyPot and I are currently on Baby Step 4!! WAHOO! (Although, I guess it might be considered cheating since we have had an Emergency Fund for years and haven’t had debt for years. But still!) So nice to be closer to the “pay off home early” step.

BTW... When interest rates dropped a couple weeks ago, we refinanced our home to a 15-year fixed mortgage at 5.125%. FIFTEEN YEARS! Even if we only make the minimum payments, we will have the house paid off before our first child is 16. Of course, we’ll pay it off sooner than that, but hey! Isn’t that exciting!!!!

Oh, so anyway… I found a group of people online who are using the 7 Baby Steps. I wondered if any of you (who I know for realz) are following that plan. Let me know! If you aren’t one of those folks, what are your plans or strategies to be debt free and financially at ease?

Friday, February 15, 2008

He's home! He's home!

HunnyPot has been gone for 2 weeks (minus a weekend) and he's coming home today! We spent Valentines' Day on separate sides of the continent for the second year in a row, so I thought I'd decorate and surprise him today when he came home.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Our Furry Child

Look how cute he is!
And he better get his freakin’ act together before this baby comes!

Indy is our cairn terrier of three years. He turned 5 years old a few weeks ago. We got him for free off Freecycle; we weren't looking for a dog, but when I saw the listing for a young cairn terrier who came neutered, microchipped, and pedigreed with his own leash, toys, and doghouse I told Honeymoonie about it. His response, "let's just go look at him" sent us driving into Santaquin to the dog's location.

I remember sitting in the young family's living room when a scraggly-looking dog ran in and jumped on our laps. I thought, "He is filthy. Let's get out of here!" He looked nothing like the photos of cairn terriers I had googled just hours earlier. This dog was dirty, matted, icky. Honeymoonie said "let's get him!" while I tried sending him telepathic "hell no" messages through my eyes. I faked a smile and asked "Really? You sure?"

The following minutes were a blur. The next thing I remember is riding home in my husband's old hatchback with a dog peering at us quietly through a doghouse sitting in the back. It has been love ever since. At least for me.

About a month later, Honeymoonie threatened me with "we're getting rid of your dog!" MY dog had been pooping and peeing in the house and Honey was sick of dealing with it. I asked the vet for advice, and he gladly printed off some information for me. Within a couple weeks, Indy was trained. (He's a smart dog; we just aren't smart trainers.)

Not long after Indy had learned to do his business outside, I overheard Honeymoonie talking to someone about HIS dog.

"YOUR dog??" I exclaimed. "Ha! Caught ya!"

Now OUR dog has Honeymoonie wrapped around his paw.

Indy is an intelligent dog who can pick up on new commands within 10-15 minutes of being introduced to them... as long as I actually spend 10-15 minutes on introducing them to him.

Currently, Indy needs to stop going berserk* whenever he sees the UPS truck, the FedEx truck, the mail carrier, the garbage truck, kids on bikes, dogs on leashes, cats on the prowl, and leaves floating by. (*Berserk meaning barking up an ugly storm while throwing himself against the windows and scratching off the drywall under windowsills.) It’s not that he can’t get it, it’s that I’m not consistent enough in teaching him. After all, it's a challenge to teach him to become familiar with the garbage truck when said truck only shows up for a few minutes once a week.

The second thing Indy needs to learn is that human children are always higher up than he is in the chain of command even if he has been here longer. This he needs to learn in less than 3 months. However, that involves undoing the million times the following has occurred:

If only I could stop spoiling MY dog.



Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I peed myself.

I think I'm done. Surely I must be nearly finished. How much longer am I expected to expect?


(Me, two weeks ago,
at 22 weeks pregnant
and a long ways to go.)


I had just gotten dressed for the day. I was brushing my teeth and had a mouthful of toothpaste foam when some saliva slid into my throat. I tried coughing it up without spitting out the foam. (Cough, cough.) That was apparently the secret signal for my bladder to release urine. Yes, I peed myself. I think that's when I realized I am in for a few more surprise symptoms before this pregnancy is through. This pregnancy is going to go on and on and on before it's finished.


I've had a pretty good pregnancy, so I can't complain. But I will (for just a little longer, I promise). No matter what anyone has ever told you about pregnancy, they haven't told you everything. And you will never hear all of it. I'm amazed at all the cute pregnant women wobbling around looking chipper. They never told me about the insomnia, the breathlessness, the constipation, the bloating, the heartburn, the excess saliva, the backaches, the midnight hunger, the nosebleeds, the bleeding gums, the wobbly hips, the leg cramps, the fluctuating libido, the overheating, the pillow hoarding, and oh-there's-so-much-more.


I currently sleep with one pillow wedge and 5 pillows. I lay my back on the pillow wedge with a small pillow under my neck. I have two pillows propping up my legs and a pillow on either side of me (1) to keep me from rolling sideways and (2) to use as armrests. My husband calls it my throne. He can approach only if I have beckoned him. Afterall, he wouldn't want to startle me and have me pee the royal knickers.