I once read that you can tell how good a person was with money by the organization of his or her wallet. If the money was not grouped together in increasing (or decreasing, whatever your anal retentive preference) denominations then you had no “respect” for the money, and were deemed “bad” with money. This reading even suggested that not having the money all facing the same direction was a sign of utter disrespect to the Almighty Dollar.
I, at the tender age of 17, understood this to be some type of magical correlation. If I organized my money then I would be good with money! I was working off of that idea that smiling, even if you are in a bad mood, puts you in a good mood. Organizing my money, even if I’m naturally bad with money, would make me good with money… that’s what you said, right???
I say all this to say that this organization of bills in my wallet is about the extent of my financial planning. The real kicker? I don’t even use cash!
I don’t do budgets, I use all my Jedi-might it ignore people when they talk about things like retirement, savings, investment, doing something to money that sounds like it requires an MBA. Little secret? I don’t know how to balance my checkbook. Um, isn’t that what online checking is for? Don’t judge.
I am was completely content to live the rest of my life explaining to people that, yes, my finances are in order…. the twenties are together (all facing the same direction, of course), the tens, fives…
And then I got married.
And he said all these words. Some I understood, some I did not.
“Dave Ramsey” – old dude that gets people out of debt the spiritual-tough-love kind of way, right?
“budget” – I think that one is French… have to ask Susan what that means (heh :D)
“school loan payment” – Right. Here is my plan. I’m just going to not open the envelope when the bill comes. If I don’t see it they can’t charge me, right? Why are you laughing? What do you mean that won’t work?
“eat out less” – Blasphemy!
Needless to say, my financial plan was not chosen as the McKinney-Oates Cereal way to financial peace, love, and harmony. We are going to try our hand at some Dave Ramsey-ness and make our way down the path of Financial Peace.
We decided during all of this that we should keep a log of everything we buy this month… just to see where the money is going.
Marie: So are we starting today?
Mark: Yeah, today would be good.
Mark: What’s ‘sweet’?
Marie: Well, I bought one of those beautician level super power straighteners yesterday…. so we don’t have to see where that money went…
Marie: AND, you bought your airplane today… so we have to write that down, and YOU get to look like the crazy, extravagant overspender… I like this game… let’s go to McDonald’s!