Dave Ramsey Would Give Me Serious Side Eye

I’m typing this while looking at an old computer monitor that we dusted off and hooked up to a new tower. The keyboard is new and clicky compared to our old laptop.

Our poor old laptop that must go out to pasture. May it rest in peace.

Matt also insisted on a fancy dress (not ethically made, which I worked out my thoughts on here).

And we’ll be paying for my prosthetic any day now.

Why the sudden outflow of cash? Two words: Tax. Return.

Separately, I listened to a lot of Dave Ramsey in college. Like, that was my flavor of Kool Aid. I wrote about it on an old blog and it got a lot of traction at the time because I think other people felt the same way: this guy makes so much sense…but I just don’t measure up.

So when our big tax return hit (and we get one on purpose after having to pay in for several years when I was taking in much bigger freelance total than I do now), I could hear Dave talking about how big tax returns are just a reminder that you’ve been loaning the government your money.

But it works for us. And increasingly, I’m okay with taking what works and leaving the rest.

I read a piece about one blogger’s complicated feelings about the FIRE (financial independence/retire early) movement) and found them helpful:

That doesn’t mean I don’t learn from FIRE ideas, taking what’s useful to me and ignoring and leaving the rest.
Furthermore, I’ll always credit FIRE-related online writing for being my first source of concrete information regarding a method for calculating how much I should save for retirement. And that’s a pretty important and very good thing that’s hard to find elsewhere!

Dave Ramsey’s work helped us develop good money habits and think beyond what is “normal” with money and life stage. We are okay being weird with money if it means we win in the end. I owe him a great debt (pun intended) for that.

So, we still have student loans. And instead of throwing my freelance income at them this year as I planned, I’m saving to go to Paris because those loans aren’t going anywhere–but my chance to go abroad with my husband (sans kids!) while work pays for most of his trip? That ain’t gonna happen again anytime soon.

And also we’re considering getting a credit card for the rewards to help in the whole going abroad thing, don’t say anything, kthanxbai.

Or maybe go ahead. We’re putting money away for the future, paying our bills, raising our kids. We’re not perfect but we’re making decisions that make sense for our family. And that’s enough for me.

Especially if it includes croissants by the Eiffel Tower. 😎

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