I have been quiet here for the last month or so. We had quite a life shake up and things are finally settling back down. We both left our old jobs for greener pastures. Well, sort of. Neither of us had jobs lined up, which seemed like it would put a damper on what had been our clear debt solution. Ha, suddenly, we’re looking at using that emergency fund we’ve worked so hard to build.
Where to begin? Well, let’s just say that we are much, much happier in our lives now, compared to a few months back. I love my new job. I am working for a company called Matrix Networks. We provide phone, data and wireless for businesses. Essentially I am on the other side of a phone system from when I worked at Powell’s. I like it there very much. It is a great group of people who know their stuff and really care about getting the job done right. I come home every night with my head crammed full of knowledge — go ahead, ask me which printed circuit board to use to add an analog line to a Toshiba CIX100 phone system — I might actually know the answer without having to consult the manual!
The upshot is that we made a momentous decision for October: we suspended the debt snowball. Until we are both working, and/or we have gotten our income back to where it was when we were at Powell’s, we need to be cautious with our money. Part of me didn’t want to suspend the snowball, but I had to agree with Debbie — it is better to be prudent. Luckily, I know that we will be beyond our old paycheck threshold in less than year. My Matrix job is sales — base plus commission so how much I make is tied to how hard I work. I love that. As Dave Ramsey would say “Kill it and drag it home.”
In the meantime, what are we doing to clear debt? How are we working our budget? Well, we are just staying the course, so far. I have the same $250 grocery budget. My commute is shorter, so we might have a few dollars saved on gas. We have not suspended our outsourced help, not yet. If things get tight, we will talk about the yard guys and Chelsea, our amazing housekeeper. We’ll talk about our Gamefly subscription and our Netflix subscription…. but we’re not there yet.
The most important thing is that we’re OK with each other. Leaving a job, money, debt — all these things strain a marriage. We talk about it a lot. Not constantly, because it is not yet an emergency that needs that level of attention. But we check in with each other about the situation. You have to, if you want to keep your marriage intact. Every purchase is weighed carefully for need, timeliness and practicality. Come to think of it, that’s not a bad habit to have no matter your financial situation.