Thursday, August 27, 2015

The 27th (Loan 1-12 Paid in full!)

I was so excited to pay off my ugly 1-12 loan with a balance of $4031.60 with the ugly interest rate of 6.8%. I decided to keep a baseline amount in my savings account and use anything over the baseline to pay off bigger balances off my loans to take an avalanche approach, so I free up more money to put towards my loans.

My other loan at 6.8% is the 1-10 that I am working away at still and plan to have gone by the end of this year. So here is the breakdown of what I did:

Amount over baseline savings: $4068.00 (Used to pay off 1-12)

My 7/31 paycheck I have an extra shift and my two pay raises from the past 2 years that I pretended that I did not get: $224.29

8/14 I received a quarterly bonus from work: $462.80

My 8/14 paycheck I have an extra shift and my two raises from the past 2 years that I pretended that I did not get: $224.30

My auto debit for my monthly payment is now $168.15, I still pretend that I have a payment of $200, so I added the difference which was $31.85

Total put towards loan 1-10: $979.64

This leaves a remaining balance on 1-10 of $2398.07

I plan to have this paid off by the end of 2015.

I have been very busy with work over the past month, which has been stressful in the short term, but if it helps me to pay my loans off faster, it will help me in the long run.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

A Day of Nothing

I call my no spend days "Days of Nothing." It's a psychological thing. If you call it a no spend day, you focus on what you cannot do on that day instead of the possibilities that could happen when you choose not to spend money. It's like if you tell yourself that you can't have chocolate for a full day that you find yourself thinking about chocolate through most of the day instead of focusing on the good and healthy things that you can have, like fresh fruits and vegetables and you may even splurge on making your favorite smoothie recipe in a blender to make it feel like a special treat that you don't even miss the chocolate.

So I make my "Days of Nothing" feel like a special treat. Today was a beautiful day where I live and I spent most of it on my hammock with a good book from the library. I have a patio in my backyard where my hammock is and I laid under the patio umbrella and I also plugged in a fan to circulate the hot air. When I was tired of reading, I just watched the white wispy clouds float by in the perfect blue sky of today. Think about the last time you really looked at the sky, besides a casual glance to see what it was doing out there. It gives you an appreciation of life and your place in it and also allows you to disappear in your thoughts for awhile. On my "Days of Nothing" I try not to do mindless things online to take up my time, but to be intentional in the way that I move and think on these days. The time does move slower, but you feel more appreciative of time off work on those days.

I think that there is a huge focus in our culture now that we have to always be doing something, or always be entertained or always working on something. I challenge you to stop with all of that for one day and think of three things that you would like to do that does not involve technology or being in a constant state of business. My three things were to go for a long walk, read my book and spend some time on my hammock to think and also to cook dinner from scratch. You could argue that writing this blog post is work, but I feel since it is so late in the day and this is what I thought about doing today as well and I had such a good day that I wanted to capture it in this post. Writing does not feel like work to me because I enjoy it so much. I didn't even think about spending money today because I was so focused on doing enjoyable things that I don't always get to do everyday that it never crossed my mind. I didn't even get in my car to go anywhere today.

My husband (who is a maximalist) even said that today was such a good day. He was out riding his bike and spent some time on the patio with me and the television has not been on all day, which when he is home, the television is always on. We both got to enjoy each other's company and talked about things that we never discussed before in the almost 8 years we have known each other, like toys and games that we liked to play when we were children, books we enjoyed reading and things that happened when we were in elementary school that we both almost forgot about. It's amazing how conversation starts again when the technology and running around spending money plans stop for a day. I challenge you to have a "Day of Nothing" to experience this for your yourself.