Baby Steps Update!

It’s been awhile (September to be exact) since I’ve given a baby steps/paying off debt update!

If you aren’t sure what I’m talking about, Craig and I have been working on paying off our debt and getting our finances in order since April 2019 when we hit our financial rock bottom. You can read more on that here:

We just reached a big milestone in our debt payoff, we are OVER HALFWAY through our debt! We keep track of where we are with our debt with the EveryDollar App – it is from Ramsey Solutions and we use it for budgeting, learning about the baby steps, and keeping track of our debt snowball. We’ve made a TON of progress since September – we’ve been kicking ass actually. That’s the thing about the “snowball” effect – once it picks up speed it really picks up speed.

Last year at this time we were pain stakingly paying the minimum on several payments because there wasn’t a ton of room left over. Just since July we’ve reduced our debt by about $20,000. December and January have been good to us, we’ve had some extra cash floating around we’ve been throwing at the debt.

For more on our debt free journey, check out these blog posts:


Back on that DEBT FREE wagon

Our Debt Free Journey: NO MORE CREDIT CARD DEBT!

A few decisions and sacrifices we’ve made is that we are not going on our annual trip to Wisconsin Dells which really bummed Carver out. Not only because of the Omicron variant that is ravaging the country right now but also because we are SO CLOSE (about 1 year) away from being totally debt free and then we can REALLY go on vacation! We’ve also decided that our August trip to Crosby (just me and Craig) will also be postponed to focus on the debt.

We can’t wait to go to Nashville, visit Ramsey Solutions, and do out debt free scream on the Dave Ramsey show! Hopefully by then Carver will call him DAVE instead of what he currently calls him: “Mom, are you listening to the Dam Ramsey show?” HA! He’s listened to the podcast with me and does the debt free scream every time it comes on the show. He’s been keeping up with our progress too. Hopefully in one year from now we will be planning our Nashville trip!

December was a big month – we paid off our Home Depot card that we racked up during our bathroom remodel (which still isn’t totally finished) which was about $2,000 (now we officially own our unfinished bathroom.) We paid off a few things that we don’t consider part of our debt snowball, just cash flowing expenses like Craig’s endodontist bill for his root canal, Carver’s dentist bill, Gannon’s speech therapy etc. So we are all caught up to really hit it hard again this month!

One part of our budget that was out of control last month was our groceries! We hardly ate out at all in December and that reflected in our grocery budget. This month I’m being much more cautious and planning out meals. I’m also only using grocery pick up to make sure that I’m intentional about our purchases.

This January we are set to pay off our bikes (we will officially be credit card debt free once and for all!) and start chipping away at Craig’s truck payments! Student loan payments got delayed yet again so we have a BIG GOAL to pay off all debt that isn’t student loans by May 31st when interest starts back up! It’s a lofty goal but we are determined!

So the order will be: Trek Bikes, Craig’s Truck, Kalissa’s Car, and then student loans. It would be so cool to OWN BOTH OF OUR VEHICLES!!! by my May 16th birthday!

Anywho, that’s us! The debt total is: $46,638 PAID OFF and only $45,948 to go!


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  1. Ellie
    January 8, 2022 / 1:08 pm

    Congratulations! You have made great progress. Something to consider while you young that may seem a long time away is putting a little bit aside toward your retirement. With the benefit of compounding interest very small amounts grow on their own and make a nice nest egg for later.

  2. Elle
    January 8, 2022 / 3:07 pm

    Congratulations on your successes. Intention begets great results! Cheers to ya’ll. I have no doubt you’ll carve out plenty of play time, bike riding with the boys and some mountain biking for the 2 of you, family picnics and time in the pool, and of course snow play this winter, so that ‘postponed vacations’ aren’t feeling like a punishment because this will contribute to your goals!

    Hugs to you 🙂

  3. Donna
    January 9, 2022 / 12:03 pm

    A big wow and congratulations to you – what a milestone!

  4. Carolyn Sullivan
    January 9, 2022 / 12:09 pm

    that is so awesome! proud of you!

  5. Kim J LeMere
    January 9, 2022 / 3:35 pm

    You two are doing great on the dept and I know the dam ramsey scream will be so worth it, We have taken to grocery pickup since Covid and I must admit it make the food bill less expensive . Keep it up, the end is in sight.

  6. Susan the Farm Quilter
    January 9, 2022 / 3:41 pm

    Great choices to postpone vacations until you are debt free!!! What an amazing accomplishment for the two of you!! That gazelle focus on paying off debt should be easier now that you are over half way there!!! Love hearing that debt-free scream from people! Live like no one else now so you can live like no one else later – the postponing of gratification is good for you and your kids. Just because you want something NOW doesn’t mean it is necessary to get it now. Being able to pay cash for things you want/need feels so good – hasn’t it been nice to pay cash to the dentists and speech therapist? That’s an addictive feeling!!! Are you including your house in your debt? I love being totally debt free and would never willingly go into debt. Ride that wave!! Won’t it be amazing to see the money you are currently throwing at debt be invested for you and your family’s future? Way to go!!!

  7. Molly
    January 10, 2022 / 6:53 pm

    You are so lucky to not have any mortgage debt, for most people that is a huge amount.

    Good luck on the rest of your journey!

    • thepinkshoelaces
      January 11, 2022 / 12:03 am

      We do have mortgage debt. When we consider ourselves “debt free” is when we have everything BUT our house paid off. We owe about $70,000 on our home. We follow Dave’s Baby steps so we are not focused on our mortgage right now. Here is a link to the baby steps:

  8. Lolaz
    January 12, 2022 / 8:52 am

    I would recommend you check into dental insurance and disability insurance. They tend to not be very expensive but disability insurance can be a life saver if either of you get injured or sick.

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