Thursday, February 23, 2012

Book Review- "Good Debt, Bad Debt"

I have decided to read one non-fiction book a month (besides my Bible- I spend time with God each morning reading a chapter a day). Continued education doesn't require paying an institution in order to learn your entire life. Thank Goodness- I did enough of that. :-)
I read a book in January called, "The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant." Very simple and quick read with 12 basic principals for successful living.I highly recommend it.

Right now my focus is on eliminating debt and spending wisely, so what a better way to start than reading a book called, "Good Debt, Bad Debt" by Jon Hanson. (Thanks to my FPU buddy Josh Moreland- he is my personal finance education library!)

Each time I read a new book I would like to review it, briefly, and tell you what I learned and why you should (or should not) read this book. Though I doubt I will read many that I do not recommend, I probably wouldn't finish a bad book. 

This book talks about Good debt- debt that increases your net worth and value, and can be sold for a profit verses Bad debt that decreases your net value and is preventing you from taking control of your finances. Within the eleven chapters he talks about the effects of debt, spending verses income to determine wealth, delayed gratification in finances, retirement, insurance, real estate, why car debt kills, writing down your goals, why you and your spouse have to be on the same page financially and MANY other topics. 

These are some of the terms I learned courtesy of Jon Hanson and his book: 
Burn rate, Consumerati, Debtabetes, Econowise, McSpending, Reality income, and Wealth metrics. Sorry- you'll have to read the book to learn more about what they actually mean... hope those terms make you WANT to read the book. 

This is yet another book I wish I would have read in my high school years (it was published in 2007- so unfortunately I couldn't but I am sure there was something like it around back in high school). Here are a few things I learned: 

-A new car depreciates at a rate of $250 a month for the first 2-4 years. Buy used cars and get over thinking that your car defines you! 

-People spend on average 40% more when they use credit cards instead of cash. 

-2/3 of American's dream of retirement, yet only 1/3 actually take steps to move in that direction. (I wonder what the other 1/3 are doing).

-The 4 Effects of Debt = Loss of Freedom, Loss of Cash Flow, Loss of Time, Loss of Opportunities.

Some of my favorite Quotes: 

"There are more people with poor spending habits than we have poor people." Jon Hanson

"Debt robs a man of his self respect and makes him almost despise himself." - P.T. Barnum

"When we think we need to do as others do, many of us are afraid to stand alone." Regarding finances and spending recklessly to impress others.- Jon Hanson

"Real happiness is cheap enough, yet how dearly we pay for its counterfeit." Hosea Ballou.

This book was very helpful and encouraging. There was even some humor- including cartoon funnies to change it up every now and then. I need books like this to help remind me why we are sacrificing (even though some times it doesn't feel real hard). If you would like more information about this book please check out Jon Hanson's link:

Click here for the Good Debt, Bad Debt Website

Next on the list is, "The Richest Man in Babylon," by George S. Clason.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

New Look

I changed the look of my blog again... I think I like this one better. Today was the first day I didn't put up a picture frame or put a bed together or open up a box! We cleaned and explored the neighborhood. Kellen and I went on a 3 mile run, first run with the jogger since the beginning of January. There are a lot of hills in our neighborhood!
I'm slightly frustrated because I am missing three important items. My iPod, and sunglasses. I use these when I run. And our canon camera; we use this to take LOTS of pictures of Kellen. I have been taking some on my phone, but our camera takes better videos. Hopefully they will show up soon. They are probably somewhere in the garage.
Kellen and I went on a 1.37 mile walk on Monday (I tracked it on It actually had a little bit of jogging in it! Kellen was so cute. We would jog for a short time, and then he would say, "OK, we need to take a break." He ran about half of it. I know it's a little premature, but I can't wait till we can take "runs" together! Yesterday we went on the same course, but walked the dogs. Needless to say Kellen had a great nap yesterday, homeboy has so much energy!! I think we may need to make that a daily routine (walks).
Well, have a great week everyone!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

All moved In...

Last Wednesday, we had a pleasant and slightly nerve wrecking phone call from the property manager at the Rock Point house. I assumed they were calling to let us know they had some possible tenants that wanted to look at the house. However, the phone call was to let us know that a renter was all set up and wanted to know if we could be out of the house by Saturday. That way they could have it ready for the new tenants by February 1st. I was happy and freaking out at the same time! We would be moving on the date we wanted to, but we would have 3 days to do it! Of course as soon as I got off the phone with her, I called Colin to let him know. And then I started calling all the utility companies to cancel water, electricity, gas etc. And then I started packing right away! I had 3 days, and Thursday we would be gone for our Financial Peace University class, and Friday Colin had a soccer game. I figured, I get as much stuff packed as I could so that Saturday it was just a matter of moving everything.Saturday came quick, and Colin's brother Tymon (pic below)

and our friend Renee were GOD SENT!!! I don't know what we would have done without them! The photo of Renee is a photo of her wittiness with STUFFING a car with as much as you can. She had the massage chair underneath her while she drove, and I had the TV on my lap! Mind you since we only had 3 days to move, we didn't have much time to get boxes. The locations I usually hunt out to find boxes (furniture stores, grocery stores etc) did not have ANY boxes at all!! We moved everything in one day because of their help! Brian Henderson also showed up at our new place to help unload. It then took me about 4 days to get everything the way I wanted it.

Here are some photos of the house. Picture number one is part of our bathroom. We have a nice size tub, with a shower, 2 sinks and a toilet.
This photo is the VANITY area in the master bathroom. I get a place for all my stuff!
I needed two pictures to show you how large the closet is! It's pretty sweet. We have ALL our clothes in here, including some extra stuff to store, and all our jackets that are usually in a jacket closet elsewhere. 
This is the bedroom. The drapes were already there and they completely block out the light at night time when we go to sleep. Pretty nice.
This is Rudy... Kellen's new best friend!

This is the kitchen, most of our stuff is in the 4 cabinets farthest in the photo. 

This is the office, all our stuff fits nicely... and there is an elliptical in the corner that Lori, our room mate, lets us use. 
This is a 3 car garage so the area for the third car is where we store all the things we don't need at the moment (some kitchen stuff, my scrap book stuff, Christmas decorations and our regular garage stuff.)
A closer view of the pool, I mean tub. Kellen takes a bath in it, and we barely fill it. I think because of the shape, we actually use less water than we did at the old house!
This is the living room, no TV in here, still trying to figure out how to arrange some things. Kellen eats his meals at the little yellow table, courtesy of Aunt Carroll. 
Kellen decided to get a work out in before breakfast this morning! :-) 
This is a picture of Kellen's room. He is sleeping very well, and usually wakes up around 7:30 every morning now. And his first question usually is, "Where is Rudy?" 
We have settled in nicely. Cheaper rent and already gazelle intense on our last two debts! (Plus, no utility bills, praise the Lord!) I also have all kinds of new terrain to explore! I am looking forward to some new runs. My first run was down to the shell station to return a Red box. It was the infamous Tuscany "Hill." The one you can see from the freeway (and just about anywhere in Lake Elsinore) It wasn't so bad, and I think the change in elevation is actually less than the hill at our old house. Thank you for your prayers and advice everyone! We'll keep you posted.