Paying Down Debt – May 2016

Well, last month I bluntly proclaimed that April sucked but had high hopes that May would be better.

It wasn’t.

{Insert incredibly frustrated sad face with one small tear trickling down the cheek}.

In order to pay off our student loan debt by our goal date, which is December 31st of 2016, we have to pay off about $3,000/month.  We allot $1,218 from our teaching salaries each month to go toward the debt {we were able to “find” that much money from canceling cable, limiting our grocery bills, putting a hold on our kids’ college funds and our retirements funds, etc.}.  The other $1,782 has to come from extra work we do.  Because of many different factors in April, we weren’t able to put any extra money toward our debt, so we were only able to pay off $1,211.

This past May we were only able to pay off $1,158.  You can click here to see our current balance.

Despite making little progress, we’re still working our butts’ off.  That’s what is so frustrating.  It feels like being someone who only eats kale and works out 16 hours/day, but is still fat.

Here were some of our roadblocks this past month:

  • May is typically one of my busiest months for my Bondbons business.  People order for Teacher Appreciation Day, Mother’s Day, graduation parties, and Memorial Day. For whatever reason,  I had few orders this year and May ended up being one of my slowest months since the inception of my business.
  • Remember that huge house I mentioned last month that Randy’s painting crew was four weeks behind on?  Yeah . . . they’re STILL not done.  Because of the rain and other personal issues, they’re now eight weeks behind.  No one gets paid until it’s finished.
  • We still had some extra summer expenses that had to be paid.  The little extra we made had to go toward that.
  • Randy had some unforeseen business expenses that have actually put his business in debt.  I thought about adding that to our debt total, but decided not to since I feel it is a separate matter.  However, a large chunk of his business profits will be going toward the business debt instead of the student loans for the next several months.

Sadly, the future may look worse.  Randy and I are both public school teachers in Kansas, and as of right now, Kansas schools may not even be able to open in the fall.  We’re praying that the government is able to solve this and everything will be fine, but for now, we will be socking away as much money as possible just in case.  If a solution isn’t figured out by June 30th, we won’t receive pay checks after July.  Until then, we will only pay the minimum payment on our student loans, which is $218.

Guess how much of that will go to interest.


Sigh . . .

As I mentioned earlier, we still have been working extremely hard.  Here are a few things we did in May in addition to our teaching jobs to generate more income:

  • I supervised every Saturday detention we had in May {I usually do one or two a month}.  There was not a Saturday I got to sleep in.
  • Randy has been working on some painting jobs on his own.  There were a couple of nights in May he didn’t get home until 4:00 in the morning and then turned around and taught the next day.
  • I put in over 30 hours of working with two home bound students through my district.
  • A friend of ours started building custom tables and hired Randy to do the finish on all of them.
  • I subbed as much as I could during my plan periods.
  • Since my Bondbons business has been extremely slow, I started helping my husband paint.

Y’all, that last one . . .

Let me tell you something.  I loathe painting.  I would seriously rather pop the pimples of a stranger. {By the way, if anyone would actually pay good money for that, let me know}.

When you paint a house, you get sweaty, messy, and there’s like . . . bugs and stuff outside.

Nonetheless, I told the husband that if I wasn’t going to be busy fulfilling cake pop orders, I might as well help him get painting jobs done to help speed up the process.  The first time I helped him, I painted outside for five hours straight.  I thought my entire arm was going to fall off the next day.

I will continue to do it though—I refuse to sit at home and do nothing while we’re wallowing in debt.  I just keep thinking of how sweet our life will be once we’re debt free. The freedom we’ll have for ourselves and the ability to give outrageously will be priceless. That is worth a summer of getting sweaty and messy.  Oh, and even the bugs.

When we’re out of debt, I vow to never touch a paintbrush again.

June looks grim, but I pray it will be better.  I’ll update regardless.


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