Dreams

Our big, crazy dream list and "someday"s
Our big, crazy dream list and “someday”s – not in any particular order. Just wrote them as they came to me.

I recently started writing down goals.

I’ve never been one to write them down. In fact, I’ve never been one to really “dream” at all. Living paycheck to paycheck tends to suck the dreams of “someday” away.

We have been fans of Dave Ramsey for years, and we have his Financial Peace University set. When we first read Total Money Makeover, it kicked us in gear. That was probably about 5 years ago. We read it on a road trip down to Florida when I was pregnant with Pumpkin.

Then life happened. Best intentions, right?

Well, this past fall, we re-evaluated things. We got back on the cash budget bandwagon and started having our monthly budget meetings. That took a huge amount of pressure off of me, because trying to figure out all the finances all the time by myself was awful. So now, we’re a team again and have been working towards the same goals together.

Since then, we’ve rolled that snowball and paid off two more debts. (Woohoo!) But financial freedom isn’t the point of this post.

For years, Hubby has wanted to go onto a 10-month contract with his company. He has never loved having to scramble to find hours over the summer months, and as much as he loves his job, he would not miss being “off” in June and July. He has never considered it a real option because, again, the paycheck to paycheck thing kind of holds you back from taking a pay cut by choice. But, we’ve talked about it, prayed about it, and have been “pretending” that we have to live on what he paychecks would be if he did take the pay cut. (Added bonus – that money has then been rolled into our snowballs, helping with those two now-paid-off debts!) For the most part, it’s been doable, but barely. There were a couple of months where we couldn’t put that full amount towards the snowball – we just couldn’t pretend it wasn’t there. There were other months where there was no real problem because he was working extra coverages or substitute teaching. But none of those “extras” are guarantees, so the idea of cutting down to 10 months still seemed doubtful.

Not anymore.

We started on a journey together, as a team, with these essential oils. We doubted – at first – that they would really do much for our income. But, we tried it. It started bringing in a little extra money and helping our family with wellness issues to boot. We started seeing a bigger picture, and we started dreaming. We’ve never let ourselves really do that before because it just seemed to set us up for disappointment. In April, I started writing down monthly goals and started a list of some of those dreams. Some, like going down to a 10 month contract and paying off debt, seem reasonable (but still a struggle in current circumstances). Others, like my dream cabin in the woods, seem like they would never happen.

Well, the paycheck we received in April allowed us to reach that first dream. We officially bring in enough money from this oil journey to get Hubby down to a 10-month contract. We have enough monthly income from it to more than cover the pay cut. So, as of August 10th, he will officially be on a 10-month contract. We are reaching our dreams!

Where will this journey will lead us? We still want to be debt free as soon as possible, so that’s the next dream to reach. After that, who knows? We’re learning to dream big!

And you know what? It’s awfully nice to be able to put a “completed” date next to something on that dream list.

I Belong?… I Belong!

So, there’s this group. It’s a group I don’t talk about here, because I didn’t want to be one of *those* people. It’s a business group. It’s a life group. It’s a group that I’ve been a part of for a relatively short period of time. It’s a group that others feel super strongly about, and I’ve been just…. there. I believe in this group and I think this group is awesome, but I don’t think I really got the group. I didn’t really feel like a part of the group, more like an observer of the group. I knew the secret password to get in to the clubhouse, but not the secret handshake to really belong. And it was not for any reason other than my own stubbornness and putting-offness. (Yep, making up words again.) I didn’t know if I really wanted to be part of the group. The group was big, and I was small. The group was amazing, and I was, well, just kind of hanging out there. I was riding along with the group, but not a true part of the group. I was afraid to really dive in because, well, what if….. What if I don’t belong. What if I don’t succeed?  What if I can’t find my place?

But today, I GOT it. Today, I AM a Lemon Dropper.

It took a video from the heart. A video of people who speak my language, who share my struggles. People, women just like me, who have messes day in and day out. They struggle. They live. And they thrive in this group.

I want to be them.

I AM them.

I just didn’t realize it until today.