Well we are still running behind on getting to our debt

free goal for the first six months of the year, but we are also accomplishing stuff we’d planned on waiting until the second half of the year to do, so I guess it is a wash on the good and the bad.
We had originally planned on putting most of the truck repair off until after the cc were all gone, but then the head gasket went and…since it is our main source of transportation it was either dig into the FFEF we had already started instead of waiting until we could get $5,000 in the recently depleted truck repair fund or try to fit all 3 of us in ds club cab Colorado which truthfully has no back seat to speak of—it would barely hold a baby seat.
So we decided that we’d take out the $5,000 and do the truck. I know some folks would say putting an additional $5,000 into this truck after the over $2,000 last month into may seem foolish. But we are talking a one ton diesel dually and anyone who has ever purchased one of those brand new with the type of “extras” like the towing package and such on it knows we are talking $55,000 and up to replace it. We of course wouldn’t buy a brand new one, but at least with this truck we know its history.
The body is sound, the motor is sound, tires are in decent shape and with the repairs last month it has all new hoses, belts, water pump, windshield washer motor and blades and brakes. It gets decent mileage for such a big truck and pulls that fifth wheel with no trouble at all. We have hauled a ton of feed in it on more than one occasion and it never even acted like it was there. So we felt that we could not replace such a truck for the total of $7,000 we were looking at.
Now the good news, the original repair price came down a BUNCH, first a little under estimate, then they applied a 10% discount because of the three trips in during the last month, so the total came down to just (choke) $4,200. CELEBRATE, but there is more. It’s a good thing we took it in when we did. When we picked it up Friday the guy asked if we had pine trees. Of course we do. He responded, well you also had a small fire! Apparently in the drive home from Branson we should be very thankful for the very cold weather we drove through. Some pine needles had gotten into part of the engine compartment and had partially burned, melting the covering on a lot of wiring in that area. They replaced all that for FREE! So now I have a new wiring set-up under there too. So we are very glad we went ahead and did the repairs when we did.

When I went to put the money back into the ffef that was the difference dh stopped me demanding I get my eyes checked now too because my double vision is getting very bad and such things as walking on certain solid colored slopes or stairs is becoming more and more difficult to judge the depth. I agreed to as long as he got his eyes checked as well (it’s been 7 years since he had his done) Our appointment is a week from tomorrow. We’ve discovered we have a VERY good vision plan that should cover most of the cost, so some of the money MAY go back into the fund yet. Better to use the plan while we still have it and before Obamacare tries to mess with it!

By doing our vision checks now we will be able, should we decide to, cancel our vision insurance that is coming up for renewal the first of May. Timing is everything. We’ll see what Doc W says about my eyes first though.
My deep cleaning is still in full force. Saturday we finally got a non-burn ban day with no wind and we burned trash from all the deep cleaning all over the house I’ve been doing for 6 hours straight. I cannot tell you how great it felt to empty all those trash barrels and bags. We still have more to do because I’m still digging things out. I was serious when I said I was going for scorched earth on clutter. The cats are starting to get nervous!
We seldom drink canned sodas, but we had nearly $7 worth of cans to recycle from dh’s office. No one up there wants to recycle, so dh brings them home and we get about $7 every few months. It’s a good deal for us, not a big amount of money, in fact our running joke is “That’s two cokes at WDW”, but it’s two more than we’d had. So we hauled off the aluminum, and all the cardboard from the “storage” boxes I’ve been emptying since our last run to the recyclers.
While there ds picked up a list of what they now take at that center and we discovered a lot more we can recycle, including some softback AutoCad manuals we’ve been trying to figure out what to do with. So we’ll be hauling a lot more to the recyclers and less to the dump now. A win for everyone involved.
This last week saw dh doing more repairs around here as I dug out more to get rid of, ds found out he’s making a B+ in his class he’s taking and that will go to an A if he turns in two projects for the nights he missed due to ice. He did those projects this weekend.
Dh tried to take the last of his 2013 vacation time this last week, but they had a rush job, so negotiations were done and if all goes well he’ll be taking off Friday of this week through Tuesday of next week. Sure hope the weather is good because we have so much we need to do around here to get ready for summer, which in Oklahoma could be next week! He did get in writing that they are not going to take that time because he hadn’t used it by today. They were threatening (that comptroller again) if he doesn’t get it used soon. His part simply said he’d take it as soon as the company would allow. So we’ll see. LOL!
In my odd hours I’ve been design cards and scrapbook pages so once I start creating daily I can go full out. I did use some of my craft budget to shop that huge sale I mentioned last week. I’m excited for all that stuff to arrive and have already started preparing tidy storage for those items.

While our second mortgage isn’t a balloon one

It is at a lot higher interest rate than our first mortgage and there is less than $10,000 separating the two in balance. So by the time we get to the mortgages later this year I may move the second one up for two reasons:

1) The 3.9% difference in interest—I know DR says not to look at that, but on around $40,000 that is a lot of money to consider (roughly $300 per month)

2) Once the second is gone we can put the full amount against the first, where if we pay off the first before the second because it is the lower of the two we could only put part of that snowball money on the second because we would still have to come up with the money each year for the things escrow normally covers.

If I had a balloon looming I’d definitely add it into the snowball and kill it fast because while $6,000 doesn’t sound like much it could be huge in 2020—life happens.

Balloon mortgage…

I haven’t been around lately, but that doesn’t mean we’re not working towards getting rid of debt! :)

We’re actually doing ok right now…putting money towards snowball, making all of our bills every month, etc.

I wanted your thoughts on a balloon second mortgage. Yes, I know I shouldn’t get one..but too late, we did, 9 years ago. Our original mortgages came in two…a larger one, and a smaller, balloon payment one (what can I say, we were 24 and stupid)

So, with all of this paying down of debt….wondering where to put in the balloon mortgage? It’s currently at $25,000, and if we paid at current payments, we’d have to come up with $6,000 when it matures in 2020. My next in line snowball is my car…which is at 8,000. So, do I add the balloon mortgage after the car is paid off? Or do I throw money at the balloon? Keep in mind our house is currently worth less than we owe…we’re closing that gap, but still not there. I’m hoping that it would be possible to refinance to a smarter, 15 year mortgage before the balloon comes due…but not a guarantee. We committed to not walking away from this house and leaving someone else holding our debt.

Other good news – many of our stupid things things of the past will begin to roll off our credit report this year!! Yay for improved credit if we do try to refinance!!