When I last posted, I had found out that the baby I was carrying had a condition called Trisomy 18, i.e. "your baby is not compatible with life outside the uterus " About 6 weeks after we got the bad news, Baby Hope made her quiet transition from inside me back to The Father. I delivered her at a natural birth center down the street from where we live. It was a quiet, peaceful event and somehow we came home with a sense of calmness if not joy, which only makes sense when you consider God said he would do that for us, give us peace at the strangest of times. The months since have been mostly sunny with a chance of rain, if you know what I mean. But we are moving on, us and our scars, and I'm back at this master's degree. So about last semester...
You can imagine how much an event like losing a baby will screw up your plans to develop and execute a home made masters degree. However, I did complete most of my assignments from last semester. I have to say that the Finances course was LIFE. CHANGING. I took Financial Peace University at a local church and let me just tell you that if you have ever thought about taking that course, you can stop praying about it right now and just sign up. Go ahead, stop reading this and sign up now. So here's the class in a nutshell:
1) Put $1,000 in a beginner emergency fund
2) Get out of debt. Yes, including school loans ("what the...?!" Yes, including school loans)
3) Put 3 to 6 months of expenses into savings
4) Invest 15% of income into Roth IRA's and pre-tax retirement plans
5) Save for your children's college education
6)Pay off the house early
7)Build wealth and GIVE!
We got our beginner emergency fund in place, started budgeting like crazy and started hacking away at those student loans. Hopefully we can get those blood-suckers off our back soon and move on to the fun stuff.
I did what I could with my Child Safety course, but all that talk of kids stuck in a burning buildings and choking on hotdogs only brought on some killer nightmares. So I am moving on to bigger and better things: Physical Fitness and Food Science. Stay tuned!