Growing up by 30… or at least acting like it…

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I turn 30 years old this Sunday! I’m really excited to reach this milestone. A year ago, I did this blog post, “29 lessons learned in my 29 years.” It was a great post, but at the same time, parts of my life still felt like I needed to learn more lessons. I wasn’t quite where I’d imagined I’d be by 29 years old. So I made some plans and vowed to get myself a little farther down the line to feel a little more grown up by the time I hit 30.

1. Get outta debt.

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I didn’t have anything crazy like $50k in credit card debt or anything, but with my car payment, dental/health bills, credit cards, and student loans, I had more debt than I wanted or needed. It didn’t seem like a lot of bills, but when I sat down last year and added everything up, it totaled about $12,000. I hated having to spend money each month paying on things, so I set to work on getting rid of all of it. (More on this in tomorrow’s post.) I am happy to say that I made my last payment on my last bill two days ago. I am officially out of debt! Now I can start working on “building my wealth.” #shitgrownupssay

2. Investing in my future.

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That sounds in credibly grown up, doesn’t it? Investing. What a ridiculous undertaking. Yes, I have a savings account, but there are SO many other ways to invest money, most of which I’m completely lost on. I made one of my new year’s resolutions to open an IRA this year and when I went to the bank on January 2nd to do it, the banker asked why I wanted to open an IRA. My response? “Because you’re supposed to.” Then when he started asking me whether I wanted stocks, bonds, or mutual funds, I just sort of blinked at him. Slow your roll, buddy! One thing at a time! Just put this money in that account and leave it alone. I gotta get rid of my debt real quick and then we talk about bonds and shit.

3. Working a little bit more.

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Being self-employed is really cool on some levels; you get to pick when you work, you can take off as many days a year as you’d like, you really like your boss, etc. But it also has its downfalls. Not working as much means not making money as much. BOO. So to meet my financial goals this year, I reeled it in on the fun spending and cranked it out on the work front. The more work I did, the more opportunities popped up. My business blossomed and I got all my debt paid off. Boom.

 

4. Floss Regularly

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I mean, flossing takes less than a minute and it’s really not that big of a deal, but it feels like such a pain in the ass every night. I just want to go to bed! But every time I go to the dentist and they ask me if I’ve been flossing, I want to feel good knowing I can say yes… and also so I don’t have to spit out a pint of blood when they do it for me. I’ll allow myself two skip nights per week; usually Sunday nights when I’m arriving back in town from a work trip, and Friday nights because reasons… Ever since I had to have a root canal and crown last year (with no dental insurance, it cost me $1500) I realized it can be quite beneficial, physically and financially, to floss my freaking gums every night. And get dental insurance. And who knows when I might need to strangle my enemies? ; )

 

What grown-up things have you caught yourself doing lately?

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The House That Built Me

My Dad is selling the house I grew up in. 
He and my stepmother have retired and are moving to the country. 
I went today to pick up the last of my things there… 
I sobbed like a baby. 
The House That Built Me by Maranda Lambert on Grooveshark
The street where I learned to ride my bike, 
played endless games of kickball and hide-n-seek, 
and where we knew all of our neighbors. 
The mailbox that sent me my letters of acceptance
from my performance arts high school and college
(told you this was going to be sappy).
Although the tree, sandbox, swing set, and picnic table are gone,
it’s still a SWEET backyard.
The first address I memorized.
It’s ridiculous to hold on to all my old trophies from dance years,
but I’m keeping my very first one.
Last photo on the front steps,
through teary eyes…
Goodbye, house. 
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