Monday, April 27, 2015

Our Financial Story

I've been asked several times over the past years, how we can afford to do the things we do. Up until two years ago, we were considered quite poor based on our income. Kyle made less than $10 an hour at his job, and I made under minimum wage doing daycare while staying home with our girls. Yet we still went on vacations, out to eat, had nice clothes, and lived a very comfortable life... All without using any government assistance.  It confused the heck out of people. Still does.

 To understand, you have to know a bit more of our history. Kyle and I met and fell in love when we were very young... At only 14 and 15, we were babies really. By the time we graduated, we knew we wanted to get married. We took the next year of Kyle working full time and taking welding classes, and me baby sitting and going to college. During that time we lived with my parents (still in seperate bedrooms lol). We took extra odd jobs on the weekends. We mowed yards (paid for schooling), we baby sat my younger siblings for my parents to go out (in exchange for our weekly date money), we painted rooms in my sister's new house (hello engagment ring!), we sat with an elderly neighbor man (bought Kyle's truck), and pretty much did whatever needed done. We did most of these things together so it didnt feel like as much work as it was.

We saved our pennies, we stayed the course, and by summer we had $7,200 in our savings. With that money we did something that now seems crazy... A week before our wedding, we bought our first house... And paid CASH. It was a 1976 double wide. It needed a complete remodel. Alot of our friends and family got us Lowe's gift cards as wedding presents and my parents bought us new siding sinse we chose to have a $500 wedding rather than a big event. We worked on it bit by bit on the weekends, paying cash for supplies as we had the money. We did luck out that my dad loves projects like this and was a great help. It took a year of living with my parents and paying them a small rent. But when it was done, it was all ours. We were debt free. 


The mere words "debt free" make me smile. Living that way has opened up so many doors for us that would otherwise be closed. Imagine your life without payments... When you are debt free, that is a reality. We do our best to honor God with our finances. The absolute worst times in our marriage have been when we started straying from that lifestyle. We have always been quick to get back on track with our budgeting though. It is a huge help that we have never had credit cards. We did make a bad vehical purchase a couple of years ago, right after Kyle got his new job. We paid cash, but basucally it was just a money pit and to get away from it, we ended up buying our current car with a loan that we quickly paid off. Looking back it was just bad judgment. We should not have bought the money pit. We should have just bought something cheap to get out of it and saved up for the car we have now. 

This brings us to today. We still shop at thrift atores and off clearance racks. The vast majority of our daughters' clothes are hand me downs. We save where we can, to spend were we want. We do currently have a loan on our NC home, that we plan to pay off in just few years. We have already paid off a fifth of it since December 2013, which I feel pretty great about. We also want to have some savings and are looking into investing (still trying to gain more of an understanding about all that). Kyle has a great job here and will probably never make this kind of money at another job, so we will be in WV for a good long while.

To summarize, I guess I just want to say that we are very blessed, BUT we did not luck into this life. We worked hard and sacrificed. We made goals and plans to meet those goals. We started young and that was a major help. Most people our age are just starting out really. It is never too early to have dreams... It is never too late either.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Bathroom Busters

Well we tackled our first remodeling/sprucing up project at our NC home. The upstairs bathroom was probably the worst room in the house. Nothing really horrible. Just outdated and in need of some tlc. 

We stripped the wallpaper and painted (Vintage Grey), replaced the mirror, and added some nice touches.

Bunny picked out the art.

I love it! I am so excited to really dig in our roots and make this home ours.

Update: We ended up taking thjngs up a notch by replacing the flooring and sink top, and painting the cabinet. It is finally perfect!

My Life In Between

If you are following me from Like Mama ~ Like Daughter, you found me! If you are new to my writings, welcome!

My name is Hannah. Im married to my highscool sweetheart, Kyle. We have three beautiful daughters, Bunny (5), Squirrelly (2), and Mousey (born October 2014).

I am starting this blog for many reasons. A little over a year ago, my life dramatically changed. After living the majority of my life in West Virginia, we bought a house in coastal North Carolina. By we, I mean my husband and I, along with my parents... I know what you are thinking, "Oh my gosh, she wants to live with her parents?" Well, yes. Actually we all get along great. We have similar goals and rather enjoy each other. We split all of the bills down the middle, so no one is mooching off the other. It works very well.


But... And this is a big but... We don't actually live in NC yet. We moved in together here in WV (mostly to let my sister rent out my house so she and her children can be closer), and are paring down and paying off things before we move. My hubby has a great job here that he loves. That is how we can afford this dream. Someday, we will be there full time. But there is a lot if work to do here first. We go down several times a year, but the rest of the time, we are here. This blog is the story of my life in between.