From the beginning …

My first, post-college car (with debt, of course) was a Dodge Stratus. It wasn’t cool, but it did allow me to exclaim I drive a Dodge Stratus!.

It seems like this journey started such a long time ago.

In a way, the journey began the moment I became an adult, and grew legs as I entered the working world. I graduated from college in December 1999 with a little bit of student loan debt, credit card debt, and the debt on a car I had recently purchased.

On only those three debts alone, I have stories to tell. Those stories will come.

After college, I moved to Lawrence, Kansas for work in February 2000. I barely scraped by on my salary, although in retrospect it was probably plenty had I known what I was doing with money. But I wasn’t good with it and I lived paycheck to paycheck. Those stories will come as well.

After a few years, I got married. She also had student loan debt. She was marginally better with money than I was. We had career changes, purchased new-to-us vehicles, had children, and even bought a house. I have plenty of stories about those events as well.

In July 2016 after years of commuting long distances for work, we made a move. Instead of working 50 minutes from home, the drive was 15 minutes. We sold our house, went back to renting, and decided that it was the time to get serious about paying off our debt once and for all.

One of the first things I did after we moved was find a Financial Peace University class for my wife and I to take. We didn’t know anyone when we moved to Kansas City, Missouri, and I figured a class could help us in two very important ways. For one, it would give us some adult interaction in a new city (they offered free childcare, after all). And most important, I hoped it would help get my wife solidly on board to put all our effort into finally, totally, becoming debt free.

It worked.

And so, I’ve started this as a journal of where we have come, and where we are going. We have had many hard lessons to learn, and I’m going to get them out in the open right here. It’s my hope that these writing might help someone else out there going on the same journey, while being cathartic for me in the process.

Thank you for coming along this journey with us. It’s time to get started.

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