Month 12 of Our Journey to Become Debt Free: December 2013


This is the 13th post in Our Journey to Become Debt Free. If you would like to read the others, you can find them here

We made it through a whole year! I’m so glad we did not lose steam and kept trucking every month on this journey to become debt free. Clint and I both have pretty short attention spans unless we’re doing something very rewarding.. and this definitely has been rewarding. Of course, it was our hard work that has made it rewarding 😉

I want to do things a little bit differently this month. Instead of posting the “where we stood” at the end of November, I want to tell you about December and all that we’ve accomplished this year.

We did really good in some areas and really bad in some areas in December. I guess that’s life. We spent $516.33 in groceries. We had a few special things with the holidays. I also bought a bunch of Lucas friendly stuff in an attempt to get him to eat more throughout the day. We’re having a hard time getting him to eat food over his milk, so it’s worth it.

We also ate out a lot in December. I mean, a lot! My Etsy store Aqua Anchor Designs was really busy around Christmas so rather than try to cook and make earrings, we just picked up something. We’re bad, I know!

I made payments on Lucas’ hospital bills from back in October of $727.24, all of which were budgeted for. That left $625.68 for us to use as our Snowball. And we most certainly used it!

The $625.68, along with the usual payment of $178, paid off the CR-V!! We made our goal for 2013!! We are SO happy about it!
Now, our only debt left is Clint’s Civic, which is $9,523.59.

So here are our monthly Snowball totals:

Debt Payoff Progress through December 2013

We paid almost $14,000 in debt off just this year! Last December, if you would have told me that we were going to be able to do this well, I would have laughed at you.

Here are are debt balances at the end of 2013:

Debt Totals through December 2013

The bad thing though, is that I have some stuff going on with my job. The position I was in was eliminated so now I’m doing something I don’t particularly want to do. I’ve been trying to decide if I want to just stick it out until we pay off the Civic (which would probably take around a year), get a part time job somewhere (which would take us about 1.5 to 2 years to pay off the Civic) or just go full time somewhere else and pay the Civic off even sooner. If I can get another position, I will probably make more money than I’m currently making. I just don’t want to get something just to keep it temporarily, so if I went full time it would be for the long haul. What would you do? Decisions, decisions!

Clint and I are celebrating the progress we made in 2013 this month. I’ll tell you more about that towards the end of January.

Reaching your goals feels absolutely amazing! Were you able to fulfill your goals in 2013?


Don’t forget to enter my giveaway for a chunky scarf or pair of shotgun shell earrings! Deadline to enter is January 7 at 11:59 PM CST. You can find it here.


11 thoughts on “Month 12 of Our Journey to Become Debt Free: December 2013

  1. Autumn

    Nothing beats being a stay at home mom, even with a part-time job. Having those extra hours with your son is something you will never regret. It may take a little longer to pay of your debt completely, but if you’re careful, you can do it! You did this much. Maybe God is showing you this opportunity by your change in position now that you’ve paid off all this debt. Praying for you and blessings for the new year!


  2. Congrats on meeting such a wonderful goal! I can’t imagine how good it feels to have paid off so much debt. (if only I could get the husband on board with that!) I’m working hard to meet my goals in 2014…though it’s going to take some definite discipline. Now that you’ve done so well, I’m sure that it will be a cinch to pay off that last bill this year!


    • Sara Herrin

      Lead by example.. If he sees you cutting back with things you’d normally spend on, maybe it will open his eyes? Boy I sure hope we get this last one paid off quick! Thanks for the encouragement!


    • Sara Herrin

      We tried that this year with a jar and it ended up empty by July. Lol My advice would be to put in something like a Christmas Club account at your bank 😉 thanks for stopping by!


  3. Belinda

    Wow – paying off $14,000 in one year is fantastic! Congratulations!!!!! Looking forward to reading about your continued progress this year.

    I’m a stay-at-home mum to two sweet little boys, and really treasure the time that I have with them. We are still managing to make excellent inroads into our debts at the moment, as I can really focus on making things from scratch, doing intensive meal planning and really shopping the sales for bargains. So, although we only have one income coming in, we seek to maximise the income that we do have and live as frugally as possible.

    Goodluck with your decision-making re full or part-time work!!! Happy New Year!


    • Sara Herrin

      Thanks for your point of view Belinda! I bet you are right.. Time will equal money (saved in this situation). I told Clint earlier I needed to start couponing again, but I really don’t have the time right now. If u had more time I could definitely make more things from scratch and do some couponing. We’ll see what happens!


  4. What it comes down to is praying for guidance on a personal decision, but since you asked for input, here’s my two cents (which I normally wouldn’t share so freely):

    The time with Lucas will be worth any extra time it will take to pay off your car. It may not seem like it makes a difference day in and day out since he is so young (and being a SAHM is definitely not the easy way out), but it does!

    You will be able to cut costs in other ways by staying home, as was already mentioned. Plus, your etsy shop is taking off, which will bring in some nice extra income.

    The danger of finding a new position is that it will be even more tempting to stay a working mom (which is fine, but you have shared your desire to stay at home many times, I know it’s important to you) and before you know it the time is gone.

    I have a friend who has wanted to be at mom for years and years, and now that she finally has kids (thanks to IVF) she is too caught up in her job to stay home with them like she had always planned. At first it was going to be just working until they were 6 months, then it was going to be a year, and now, who knows. It makes me sad to see her giving up her dream because her job keeps reeling her in with more money.


    • Sara Herrin

      Well I absolutely do appreciate you giving your input Stephanie. That really does put it into perspective. Spending time with him would definitely be more worth it, in my eyes. My mind is just so clouded by the momentum we have right now in our debt payoff, I think. Not to mention, I’m such a planner so I know that by working less hours it’s going to take an additional 24 months or whatever to get debt free.
      I’m hoping and praying my Etsy shop will keep doing well but I guess I’ll only know once I am home more what kind of money I can save. Too bad there isn’t a formula for that..? lol
      I completely think you are right about the new position though. I’ll get sucked in and not want to quit. I’ve really been praying about this, and I feel like being home with him more is the right decision, I’m just so indecisive. You’ve really helped solidify my decision though. I appreciate it!


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