During a conversation with a group of girlfriends last week, the topic of financial savings and goals came up. In a “Round Robin” sort of way, everyone started casually sharing what their family is saving for or working towards.
A couple girls mentioned purchasing new vehicles in the next year or two to accommodate their growing families, one friend is saving for her husband’s birthday trip next spring, one couple needs to set aside another couple hundred to buy a new mattress, one friend has her sites set on paying their home off more quickly, etc.
I’m comfortable with and often enjoy having financial conversations with others (I wrote a whole post about it here), so I found myself fascinated as each openly shared where their heads are at with future goals and purchases.
I’ve shared before that our finances suddenly looked very different when we transitioned out of the Army (the unknown of all of it was TERRIFYING while trying to figure out how it would iron out). What was coming in and going out all looked completely different than it had before, which caused us to take a close look at every bill/subscription/insurance that we have and align it with our new financial situation.
During this time we also decided to speak out loud about certain goals we individually had and agree on them together. How much do we want to maintain in an emergency fund? How do we want to go about saving for Christmas, cars, home improvements, our annual family vacation, etc.? Jamie wants to know WHEN DO I GET TO MAKE OUR ENTIRE GARAGE A BALLIN’ CROSSFIT GYM? Um, err, never, my love. 🙂
Psst: As I share personal financial junk and how we do things, please understand this is just how we do things and not necessarily how everyone should do things. We’ve had to climb ourselves out of school/car/random spending debts in years past, so we’ve personally had to learn a lot about financial maturity over the years. Not claiming to be a long-time expert over here. 😉
So at the bottom of our bills Excel spreadsheet, we keep an ongoing list of goals. Next to each goal lists approximately how much money we need and around the timeframe we need the money by.
What we do now is we shuffle around and reprioritize those goals as necessary. For example, we put “living room update” on our goals sheet a year ago (or more). We assumed we’d have the money by the spring and do the update then. Well, then I got pregnant, so we prioritized a van purchase and Jillian’s nursery above the living room. We had also already booked our trip to Grand Cayman, so that became more of a priority too. Then we had Sadie’s annual preschool payment and various other things that kept pushing new living room furniture further down the list. Priorities… they’re a funny thing.
It’s generally so helpful to see what our goals are, what we have coming up, and how to responsibly save for what we need and want if money allows. We didn’t do a great job of planning during our mid to late 20s, so having a reset was so necessary. We are digging our 30s and making better financial decisions. 😉 Imagine that!
Anywho! So, what are you saving for? What’s on the short term and long term goal sheet per se? If you’re comfortable, I’d so love to hear!!
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother in today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to two little girls (ages 5 and 2) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo