I’m honored to share what I have learned and experienced with you to help you achieve your own financial goals.
Growing up in a lower class family in a single-parent home, I was never taught how to handle money. In 1996, I met my husband, and when we started our family in 1998, we agreed that I would stay home. Neither of us had any kind of plan, and as time went on, we earned money, but didn’t have any savings or retirement plan. Our life was like the Sonny and Cher song that goes, “They say our love won’t pay the rent, before it’s earned our money’s all spent.”
As I homeschooled our children, I did the accounting on a very successful appraisal company that my husband and I ran. I knew I didn’t want the same life for them that I had growing up with no parks, no vacations, no real-world experiences. I wanted to give them everything I never had. But the more we made, the more we spent.
Eventually I made the decision to seek financial knowledge. I knew there was a better way to be handling my situation. I came across a cash envelope system and did pretty well with it, but when my income became irregular, it was hard to manage. Because of that, I stopped entirely and went back to my old habits. I knew in the back of my head that we needed to do something, but I didn’t know what that looked like or how to begin. Being so far behind was overwhelming and I didn’t think we’d be able to catch up.
In 2014, I came across Dave Ramsey’s “The Baby Steps” system. I fell in love with the simple step-by-step process. I felt like I could do it, that it wasn’t too late. After a time using this system, I took my knowledge a step further and shared the principles with our kids, their youth group, and even other people at our church. The best feeling was watching the faces of others light up when they realized they could do this system. Because of that, I became a Financial Coach a year later and started on this amazing journey.
With Proverbs Financial Coaching launching in 2015, my family was able to save money, live on a plan, and pay off debt. That same year, my husband took a management position after telling the company “no” for the last two years. His reasoning that the pay increase would help us pay down our debt faster, and within a few months, we paid off on of our vehicles, eliminating off a $715 monthly payment.
Following that, our business began to dwindle month after month until it was barely covering our expenses. That loss of income took a large toll on us, but had it not been for our budgeting, understanding what we had coming in, and diligently doing the cash envelopes, our story may have ended differently. Now, our cash flow has increased, we have peace of mind knowing we have a plan and are that much closer to our goals.
This period of hardship and resurgence has taught our kids valuable lessons as well. They know to live within or below their means, save their money, and pay cash when possible. They also know the amazing feeling of handling money God’s way. At 18, our eldest daughter has earned an AA degree and is debt-free. Working full time, she’s saving her money with plans to return to school in the fall. Our youngest two also work, and are actively saving for college. They know that work equals money, which equals more options for them in life. The peace I have knowing that they are going to be okay in this world brings me such joy.
These same principles that I utilize in my life, and that my children have also implemented are the same ones I use in my financial coaching. I have seen these principles in action, and know that they work. There is no better reward than bringing hope and understanding into the lives of others!