Life is funny. Sometimes the universe just shows up in a certain way – to teach us a lesson, or steer us in a new direction. My latest lesson stems from selling a couch online, and while it is a positive one overall, it does take me slightly off track from my goals.
After several attempts on Craigslist, and in Facebook yard sale groups, I finally sold our second couch through the Wallapop app. I had hoped for much more (it was a quite nice leather, power reclining couch that we inherited from my in-laws), but ended up making $300 on the sale.
I did NOT put $300 towards our debt.
I know, I know! I made a big deal about sending a tiny $2 payment towards my debt, and then when I have $300 cash in hand I don’t knock out more debt? What the heck? Am I a hypocrite? Have I fallen off the wagon?
No, I’m just human. Human and married. 🙂
In early March (before the couch sold), my husband’s grandmother sadly passed away. On a positive note, she was 93 years young and was in great health up until her last moments (no nursing homes, no hospital stay). She lived a long and happy life, and loved her family to pieces. Unfortunately, it had been a few years since we spent time with her in person, and we were never able to introduce our sons to their great grandmother.
We had to make the decision not to attend grandma’s memorial service (about six hours away from us by car). It would have required time off of work for my husband (and since he works in a commission environment, that is lost income), as well as money spent on gasoline and a hotel (and with no cash available that would have meant adding to our credit card debt).
During this time of grief, my husband expressed that he didn’t want to pass through another year not celebrating birthdays or enjoying life. He works very hard, and doesn’t get to enjoy the money that he earns. My birthday was fast approaching and even though I never make a huge deal out of it, my husband needed permission to spend.
So we compromised. I split the $300 into three categories: $50 to savings (to satisfy my need for security), $100 to debt (an extra credit card payment), and $150 to enjoying life (aka the “Birthdays, Holidays and Gifts” line of our monthly budget).
If I were single and had no children, maybe I would be attacking my financial goals with the gazelle intensity that Dave Ramsey encourages. Or maybe I wouldn’t. I’m not in a contest to win most frugal blogger or most strict budget. Life calls for flexibility.
Our situations are all different, but this is what’s currently working for us.