Beginnings of Our Debt-Free Journey

I recently stumbled upon the debt-free journey community on Instagram and I’ve been inspired to start taking debt and money seriously. Throughout college I really wasn’t thinking ahead to the loans that I would have to pay off and had really poor budgeting skills. I’m just now starting to take this seriously. A few months ago Bea and I opened a joint savings account and I recently signed up to have money from my checks sent to my 401K. I always had the thought that I would be in debt for life and chose to think of it as part of my life. Seeing other posts about people living debt-free has really motivated me to start crunching the numbers and figuring out ways to pay off the $119,328.04 that I have in debt right now.

This is everything in categories.

The first step for me in this process was actually sitting down and writing all of this out. I had some estimate of what it might look like though this was a little more than I expected. From what I’ve learned there are several ways of trying to pay of debt including the debt-snowball (start by paying off your smallest balance and working towards the largest), the debt-avalanche (starting with your largest balance and working towards the smallest), or attacking the debt with the highest interest first. I’m still figuring out what I want to do/would be most feasible for me.

I started reading this book by Gail Vaz-Oxlade and I’ve been getting some good advice for how to approach this. She recommends the first couple of steps to be defining general goals that you have, looking at what your core values are, narrowing down goals for the next couple of years, ranking them by importance and then figuring out if they align with your values. It seems complicated but it’s actually pretty simple. Below are my notes that I wrote during a lunch break one day.

Major goals and values
Goals for the next two years split into A (more
important) and B (less important) goals

This is a great way to keep in mind what you’re working towards and what you would like to do with your time and money. I’m continuing to figure out my May Budget which I’ll be posting here and what tips/tricks work best for me. Highly recommend Gail’s book Debt-Free Forever: Taking Control of Your Money and Your Life as a great place to start figuring this stuff out. Of course I also have to mention Dave Ramsey as he has a highly followed system of money management called the 7 baby steps. I’m still deciding if that is something that I would like to follow but more on that later.

-Dylan

Dear Reader…

Welcome to our brand new blog! We are Dylan and Bea. What they don’t tell you about starting a blog is how awkward it is to write your first post… Nevertheless, here we are.

We’re a couple of 20-somethings, trying to make the most out of life while navigating unfamiliar and exciting waters. We are both interested in gardening, budgeting, and like everyone else on the internet, cats. Over the past couple of summers we have been exploring the world of gardening and homesteading. We want to eventually make it to the point that we are living sustainably; utilizing our garden to, among other things, help save money and having the satisfaction of eating what we’ve grown.

We’re creating this blog to document our journey to sustainable and debt-free living. We plan on posting weekly updates about our experiences and maybe a couple pictures of our cats. Join us as we share our adventures and do our best to live happily and healthily.

Piper and Bear respectively