This is the first time I’ve logged into my blog in almost 2 months let alone written anything, the first time I’ve had both the time and the head space to be able to get some thoughts down in a remotely articulate way. It’s been a busy time; work has been tough, a busy time of the year and I’ve been trying to secure a job change that I’ve been working towards for a while, family life with 3 children and the daily school run routine is always hectic and I’ve been trying to build up my running before my first race of 2016. Combine all that with the festive season and everything that it entails it’s probably no surprise blogging hasn’t been on my radar.
But I do want to take a moment to mark the passing from one year into the next, New Years day is such an arbitrary moment in time, not really different to any other day yet still feeling like a great big reinforced oak door has shut on the prior year consigning to history everything that happened. I don’t do resolutions but I do like to take the time to reflect and remember rather than just hurry into the next year on the conveyor belt of life.
Ok, maybe not care free but certainly a big step towards it. Back at the start of the year I wrote about my objectives for the New Year ahead. One of these objectives was to get our family finances in order to allow us more flexibility with regard to the lady of the manor going back to work. So I am pretty bloody happy to announce that as of this week we are debt free (if you ignore that big fat mortgage of course). For the first time since I started university we have no overdraft, no credit card, no loans and no consumer finance for furniture etc.
It’s been hard work getting to this point and taken a bit longer than intended after graduating (7 years) but it feels pretty damn good. We’ve certainly taken a gamble at times with our finances, but with no children or mortgage for most of it and me in a job where I was making good progress up the grade ladder it seemed worth it and thankfully has paid off.
There is no doubt that the free and easy credit of a few years ago didn’t help, making it all too easy to borrow. But while the banks own some of that responsibility for their lending behaviour, we still said yes so must own our piece as well. Something which I’ve noticed a few people not doing recently. They place all the blame at the banks for ‘throwing’ credit at them. But we’re all grown adults aren’t we? It doesn’t take a genius to realise that you do have to pay back what you borrow at some point.
But that aside it is an exciting time, we can finally start building some savings, make plans for our expanding family and make choices that are good for us rather than simply the ones that our finances decide. With this new financial situation I am also making a resolution. From now on we will only borrow if we truly have to, we won’t buy things just because we can get credit to do it. We won’t get into that situation again so that if a rainy day really does come we can easily buy a new umbrella.
Now where did I put that vintage champagne…..