So it’s now been a year since we re-financed our mortgage.

On one hand, that move gave us great financial, well, not freedom, really, but…flexibilty, I guess.

I mean, suddenly having a sub $500 mortgage payment when you’ve grown accustomed to a $1500 mortgage payment for years on end should be lifestyle altering…

And it was…

But it feels like we’ve gone the wrong direction.

Back then, we were debt free and living pretty comfortably — a tiny mortgage payment was really just icing on the cake.

The good kind of icing where you can’t feel the sugar crystals in your teeth. I recommend Betty Crocker.

One year later, though, we’re $28k deep in credit card debt and our mortage balance $4k higher than it was.

That’s not progress…

Déjà vu?

Money’s not tight, like, “Oh crap, how are we going to pay the water bill,” but it’s not growing off of trees like it probably should be.

Still, though, while the re-fi may have sparked the tailspin of the last year, I’m still convinced that it was the right move.

I just lost my way shortly thereafter…

I stopped paying down the mortgage like a maniac.

That was a good move, actually, but it also kinda gave me that stuck-in-the-mud type of feeling. The balance isn’t falling — and how could it with $500 monthly payments?

Financially speaking, it’s unwise to overpay it. Mentally, though, I really miss seeing the balance drop each month. For a few months there, I was knocking it down over a thousand bucks per month and it felt great.

Really, though, the big mover and shaker of the past year was the major renovation that we had done last year.

I don’t regret it — it HAD to be done and it’s made our house a safer and more comfortable place to live.

At the same time, I really thought we’d have it paid for in full by now.

And we should.

I just didn’t stick to my re-payment schedule.

And I kept spending. An expensive trip last summer and the new car purchase just a few months ago were crippling, just crippling, and we haven’t recovered.

Making matters worse, in another month or so, Henrik will be joining Duncan in daycare.

Wanna talk about a budget buster?

More on that later…

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