Saturday, December 31, 2011


"When presently the twelfth stroke of the clock shall have sounded, we stand again at the opening of a new year... He knows all the trouble that this year shall burden your heart.... And therefore do not fear and neither be afraid, but now at the change of years, in childlike confidence grasp the faithful hand of that Father who is in heaven."
- Abraham Kyper

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Why Wait?

Three days until I am officially no longer purchasing fast food.

Three days until I am no longer driving through to pick up a McDouble and a Sweet Tea.

Three days until I won't allow myself to drive through for a Happy Meal just so I don't have to pack a lunch for the kids.

Three days until I will need to make my own homemade mocha (1 pack of cocoa + 1 cup of coffee, stir, get fancy with a little whipped cream on top) instead of driving through Starbucks or McDonald's.  Yeah, I realized Starbucks counts as fast food when I realized they have a drive-through.  But some don't ... is this getting hung up on a technicality?  I'll have to ask Lennie Freeman, the one who started me on this "fast food fast."

Three days until I replace nutrition and common sense with convenience and laziness.

Three days until I eat deliberately instead of on a whim.

Three days until I take control of my habits instead of letting them rule me.

So, why wait three days?  Why not start now?  I only have $9.00 left in my food budget for the month. Why waste that on trashy food?  Is a so-called value meal that valuable to me anyway?

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What a long, strange trip this will be

I have retooled things a bit as I turn my sights toward 2012.
In 2011, we got rid of our TV.  It was an old RCA console monstrosity that was ancient when we obtained it second-hand in 1999.  To part with it was not a heartbreak for me, especially since we can watch TV on and, and the possibilities are mind-blowing for the modern family.  But we have eliminated our television, and that helps our budget, and makes us a little weird.
Thanks to a dare from a high-school friend, I have also decided to cut fast food -- any restaurant with a drive-through -- from my (and my children's) diets for one year.  Again ... a little weird, but it could help my food budget, cholesterol level, and improve the health of my family.
My husband and I have a goal to pay off our remaining debt (not counting our home) of $30,000.  It's a home equity line we took out a while back to pay for a used car, a new porch and new ceilings in the downstairs of our 1926 home.  Repairs needed to be made, but we just didn't have the cash on hand.  Since we've started applying principles we learned in Financial Peace University, we have paid off around $24,000 in consumer debt, and are beginning to pay down this line of credit.
We are getting ambitious this year.  We think we can pay this off in 2012.
It will require significant sacrifice on the part of everyone in our family, but we're excited to finally be free from this chain tying us down.
My blog posts may be a little strange this year ... counter-cultural, confessional, and a little crazy.  I promise I won't try to convert you, and I'll try not to make you feel sorry for me (although at times, I'm sure I will be a little pathetic).  I hope you'll follow along with me on this journey, and cheer me on when I need a little encouragement.