Wednesday, June 29, 2016

What Financial Health Means to Me

Grand kids on the Beach in Florida -Vickie's Kitchen and Garden

Imagine going to bed every night and not worrying about how you are going to pay your next bill. Imagine sitting and watching t.v. and not hearing a phone ring from a debt collector. Imagine getting a chance to retire young and being able to accept the offer. Then imagine not having to get another job to help make ends meet when you do. Being free of debt and living frugally gives us the freedom to do just that. That's what having good financial health means to me. My husband was just 49 years old when he retired. He worked at the same business for 32 years. His company offered a buy out and he found out that he was eligible. After much discussion, we decided that it was time for him to retire and he accepted the offer. As for me, I retired a year earlier then he did but I'm not eligible for my small retirement benefits for another 5 years. It's been eight years and we love every minute of it! How do we manage to make it on a limited budget? One of the first things that we did was pay off our house. Not having that big mortgage payment makes living on a monthly pension easier. Without that, I'm afraid the going might be a little harder. We do have a small car payment for our used van that we bought to take the family on vacations. Thankfully, besides that we are debt free. Of course being retired does not mean that we just sit around. There are cars to fix, homemade dinners to make, gardens to plant and weed, and diy projects. All this helps us live a sustainable life on a budget.

Where is the fun? I know by now you may be thinking that living frugally and within a strict budget cannot be fun. It has been just the opposite for us. Within reason, we are able to take vacations when we want to and not worry about the big credit card bill when we return. We save up for the big trips like last year when we went to Kentucky and Florida with the grand kids. Making use of coupons for hotel room stays (you can find them at rest areas) and places to eat out help soften the financial blow. Another fun thing that we do is to take advantage of free activities. For example, we go to free parks, free festivals, free concerts, and participate in free library activities. One of the programs that I'm participating in is the adult summer reading program at the library. After reading 5 books this summer, I'm eligible to receive a gift certificate for a fast food restaurant and my name will be put in for their Kindle giveaway. Sometimes sacrifices are made to keep us from going into debt. For instance, in order to take that vacation I mentioned, we did forgo remodeling our bedroom until next year. Our goal is to have great financial health so it is all worth it in the end.

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This post has been linked to The Penny Pinching Party, Thrifty Thursday, Financially Savvy Saturday, The Art of Homemaking Mondays, Making a Home-Homemaking  Party,  Thrifty ThursdayThis is How We Roll, Motivational Monday, The Saturday Sharefest, 

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