Since we have officially rung in the new year, I thought it would be fun to list some of our highlights from 2019. As always, some of these will be personal finance related, and some not. We had a pretty darn eventful year, filled with plenty of high highs and low lows. This year has really made me appreciate the low lows. I truly believe that those hard times help us to not take for granted the good times. They help us to appreciate things more fully and teach us important lessons that I don’t think we can learn in other ways. Life is good.
(1) We paid off more than $111,000 in student loan debt.
I’m happy to say that in 2019, we paid off more than $111k in student loan debt! We’ll have the official number in a few weeks once they prepare our actual 2019 document, but from my quick calculation, it’s about $111k. We had a lot of expenses this year. Buying the dental practice, creating an app, and undergoing IVF were a lot of big fat expenses, so we didn’t pay off as much debt as we anticipated. We are still SO happy to have paid off another 6 figures of student loan debt and finally be in the $300k’s (we used to be above $650k!)
(2) We moved!
In March, we sold our house in Tulsa, Oklahoma and moved to Gilbert, Arizona. Time has flown since we’ve been here and we feel like Arizona was made for us. We miss our friends and family in Oklahoma! But we do love all of the hiking and mountain biking we get to do here. People are SO friendly. And if you can hold out over the summer, the other 9 months of the year are simply amazing weather. Danny is enjoying the dental practice we bought– his patients, staff, and the kind of work he gets to do. I’m enjoying working from home and being my own boss. All in all, we feel blessed. [Related: How to Sell a House Fast]
(3) We started creating an app.
We’ve been working hard on a debt payoff app that we’ll release in the spring. We’re beyond excited to bring it to life!
(4) M got to go to Disneyland.
In January, Danny’s aunt took M to Disneyland. He still talks about it all the time and I’m pretty sure it was the highlight of his life, so I had to share it here. That is something we probably won’t be able to afford until we’re debt free, so we couldn’t have been more thankful. It was a huge hit to say the least!
(5) Danny and I celebrated our 10th anniversary!
Danny and I have been married for over 10 years now! Blows my mind. We keep smiling looking back at old photos. Those kids had no idea what was in store when they said I do. I wouldn’t change a thing! We celebrated by mountain biking through Sedona over a weekend. It was magical.
(6) I quit my job to blog and lawyer from home.
When we moved, I made the big leap from working in public service law, to reviewing contracts and running this blog from home. It was more of an adjustment than I anticipated but I’m finally in a good groove. It’s allowed me to spend more time with our son and live a little more intentionally. I loved public service law, but it’s been really fun and rewarding to do my own thing.
(7) M started preschool.
I can’t wrap my head around the fact that this kiddo started preschool! He loves school and asks to go every day even though it’s only 3 days a week. We save money on preschool by going to a little in home preschool in our neighborhood. It costs $130 a month versus our school district’s options which run $300-$600 per month! M loves his teacher and his cute friends in his class, and it’s only a few blocks away from our house.
(8) We celebrated Christmas in New Zealand!
We have been saving up credit card rewards points forever and decided to spend them all in one place! We spent the holidays in New Zealand. With all of our points, we only had to pay for one AirBNB. The rest of our travel was free! We’ve never used credit card points to travel so we are really excited. We figured it will be our last big hoorah as a family of 3 before the twinnies come. Danny was very excited to check out some Lord of the Rings scenes and I was very excited to hike and play at the beaches. For this trip, we used the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and the Chase Business Ink since you get generous sign on bonus points and 3x’s the travel points.
(9) We survived IVF.
We made the big announcement last week that we underwent IVF this summer, that’s how we got our twinners after several years of not getting pregnant. You can read more about our experience and how much IVF costs here.
(10) We’re having a BOY AND A GIRL!
Last but not least, if you missed the news on our Instagram, we are having a BOY AND A GIRL!! Could not be more excited. I didn’t think I had a preference for genders but when we found out they are a boy and a girl, I was really really happy so I guess that’s what I wanted after all.
How was your 2019? Drop a comment and tell me something good that happened to you in 2019!
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Here at Deeply in Debt, we offer tons of personal finance advice (even down to how much IVF costs!) based on our own journey paying off $650k of student loan debt. If you have student loan debt and aren’t sure where to start or what to do, I highly recommend the CFA’s over at Student Loan Planner to help you put together a solid financial plan for your student loan debt. We personally used them and it literally saved us over $200,000 on our student loans. You can check out the Student Loan Planner here.