Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Thing That Couldn't Die, Part 1

I’m starting a new series, in addition to the Pizza Diaries. This one will be entirely devoted to our debt pay-off. I think it’ll help me stay motivated. Enjoy! 

“Great was the curse laid upon it
Great was the evil power granted it
Buried for 400 years, it still lives
Stare into his eyes if you dare
For every woman that does 
Becomes a willing slave to
The thing that couldn't die
And every man becomes a monster
Greed had made them unearth a monstrous evil centuries old
Now they and they alone have to face the consequences…”

Did Sallie Mae exist in 1958, when they made The Thing That Couldn’t Die?  Whoever wrote that trailer seems to be sending them a message.  At any rate, take out the “400 years” part (my loans have been due for only about five), and you have what amounts to a perfect description of how I feel about my federal student loans.

The First Day of the Rest of Our Debt 

Looking at my current student loan balance, I can’t help but wonder if it will ever go away. 
I do have to give us credit for making as much progress as we have.  So far, 18 months into our debt repayment plan, we have paid off $68,101.52.  (Plus, we have cash-flowed holiday trips home, my mother’s final arrangements when she died, as well as an anniversary party for my in-laws.)  That’s an average debt snowball payment of $3,727 per month.  Not bad.  But we can do better.  We have decided the other half of our debt (approximately $70K – my federal student loans!) will be paid off within a year, hopefully sooner.  I know we can do it for a few reasons:
  1. We only have one loan payment to make per month, versus the five payments we were making a year and a half ago, which means every extra penny will be going to just this loan;
  2. We have decided not to do any traveling this year, and we don’t have any big events coming up to throw us off course;
  3. I’m still moonlighting (although at a more sporadic rate these days) 
  4. Our original goal to pay off everything was three years, and we want to blow this out of the water.
Our current goal is to pay off $5,800 per month during this final year of debt repayment.  With our bonuses, we should be able to pay off the loan in less than a year.  But, life sometimes has other plans, so we’ll see…

October debt snowball payment so far:

   $3,000 (already saved)
+ $2,780 (remaining wages owed to us, minus our ginormous rent payment due November 1)

We need to find an extra $20 somewhere.  Maybe we can eat ramen for the rest of the month? 

Most Recent Indignity

Photo courtesy of
Getting out of debt isn't pretty.  Literally.  I ran out of the pricey face wash I normally use, so for the last couple of weeks I've been using a seemingly never-ending bottle of a generic cleanser I purchased a couple years ago.  I think I originally bought it to clean my makeup brushes, but I think it's one of those all-purpose deals, which you can use to wash skin, hair, or a cakey litter box.  At any rate, it was making me break out big time.  Then yesterday, I remembered that I had $40 left in my "miscellaneous" envelope for this month, so I was able to stop at Sephora after work.  Your move, Murphy

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