February, 2017

Long story short

Mell, your recent “whining” email really resonated with me, because this debate over these big-ticket decisions has really flushed out some fundamental differences of opinion between my DH and I. I’m the entrepreneur who isn’t afraid to take some risk now and then if we have a reasonable chance of return. But DH is VERY cautious about purchases and/or investing; he doesn’t want any risk at all and can come up with reasons not to do things until the sun burns out. In the past, that discrepancy has caused a lot of friction. The combine is the single biggest purchase we’ll have made since the DR class, and the logging activity is the single biggest project we’ll ever have undertaken here on the property. Furthermore, once those trees come down we can’t really stand them back up if we don’t like the results. So in both of these contexts, we’ve both really had to push our personal comfort zones to find ways to meet in the middle. I won’t say we’re done with that process yet – we haven’t actually logged the property yet or purchased the combine. But now we recognize that while the other person’s arguments might seem like they’re coming from The Great Beyond of Absurdity (and yes we do have more than a few moments of defensiveness), both approaches have merit and deserve to be heard. I’m cautiously optimistic we’ll reach decisions on both, that we can both live with. I sincerely hope you’re able to reach the same level of compromise with your DH, in your ongoing budget conversations.

Two aren’t really “debts” in the normal sense (baseball and ASB)

These are school fees for DS17 which they have been nice enough to let me pay on installments. Baseball has to be taken care of on our next check, but ASB i can break down into smaller payments or just pay it off on our next check.
Kohls has a separate gazelle account–it is scheduled for complete payoff next check. On top of that, I have $800 to put toward debt snowball….GBR has to come out of that (it’s DH’s website fee), bringing my true debt snowball down to $683. I’m thinking I’d rather pay off WalMart in its entirety and most of Household cc ($65 balance) than pay off HH and leave a balance on WM.
Once those 3 (kohls, WM, HH) are paid off, I should have $75 a month to throw at HSBC. This of course, assumes that the IRS doesn’t come knocking at my door first. I am going to write them an offer in compromise and see if they’ll take half. I scheduled $1100 towards the IRS bill our first check in March. If they accept it as payment in full, great. If not, they’ll get the $1100 in March and the other $1k in April. I am moving them ahead of HSBC & Comerica CCs–they have a nastier pay up or else letter .
On the other hand, I may have to use that $800 in February to make travel arrangements for DD21’s college graduation. I budgeted it for April, but the hotel part of it might have to be done in February so I can lock in dirt cheap rates. I don’t really want to have to drive it (I’d rather take the train) as the costs are about the same, but I may have to if train rates rise substantially.