We paid the car off on Friday, 7/29/11. I don't think it's quite sunk in yet. This was a HUGE milestone for us, as it's now one less thing for us to have to worry about. We've had a couple of Negative Nellys who were trying to discourage us, but as Dave says, if we're being made fun of, then we're doing something right.
However, with this accomplishment, we reach a "hurry up and wait" point. Jonny's school plans for his CPA test prep have changed once more...hopefully for the final time this time. The latest plan is that he's going to take his final 4 classes this Fall to meet the 150 credit hours he needed to get his CPA license. Originally he was going to wait until Spring to take those classes, due to a particular elective being offered. He was able to get into another class in its place for the Fall. So now the new plan is that in the Spring he'll begin taking the 4 parts of the CPA exam.
He's taking classes at night, so he'll have the availability to take on a full time regular working hours job, IF he can find one. He still hasn't been able to find anything more permanent. We are fairly certain though, that his current employer will keep him through December, but once he's done with Fall classes, if he hasn't gotten something else lined up, then he's not going to have an income anymore. This is a worst case scenario that I really REALLY hope doesn't happen. Since is is a possibility, though, this means we HAVE to temporarily halt the baby steps and build up as much cash as possible. We are entering Storm Clouds mode. Why? Because my income alone is not enough to cover our regular expenses plus student loan payments. If we didn't have the student loans, my income would cover our basic living expenses. But because off the student loans, we don't have the luxury of being a 1 income only family.
So....for the next 5 months, we're going to follow our written budget, pay the minimums on the student loans, and anything extra at the end that would "normally" be applied as a snowball payment to the student loan, is going to be put into our emergency fund. This will cover us so that if we have a few months of him being unemployed, we'll still have a way to pay the bills. I pray though, that he'll find a full time job soon, and we can resume working the baby steps.
Until next time....