When I first began following the Debt Free Community on Instagram I was drawn in by the stories everyone would share about their debt free journeys. I find it fascinating to read about the progress others are making and also reassuring to know that I am not the only one in my position.

Your Debt Diary is a guest blog series by money bloggers and members of the debt free community for My Debt Diary. Each week someone new will share their debt story. This week The Penny Pinching Js shares their journey so far and the extraordinary challenges they have faced.


What stage are you at in your debt free journey right now?

We are in baby step 1 – snowballing our way out of debt.

What is your debt total?

Our debt total is $89k+. Mine alone is $52k and my husband’s is $37k.

What is your “why”?

To improve our credit score and save for a house without worrying about other debt.

Are you following a specific plan or method?

We follow Dave Ramsey’s steps and have taken the Financial Peace University.

What challenges have you faced along the way?

Challenges to date? Oh my, where do I begin! We are actually on attempt number two. During our first attempt I lost my husband’s car keys and used part of the emergency fund to replace them. Recently, our kiddo went into surgery so I had to exhaust my leave since I do not qualify for FMLA until December 2018 and ended up taking leave without pay for a total of 24 working hours. Our home island was hit by a super typhoon and we made the mutual choice of donating half of our emergency fund to relief efforts and using the other half to buy items for our family members still on the island. My car was in the shop for a week and with our emergency fund exhausted, I had to use a credit card that was paid off during our first attempt. That caused us to start all over again from baby step one.

What are you doing to speed up the progress of your debt free journey?

To speed up the progress I’ve been working overtime when I can. Thankfully my career pays for my commute hours so I work the usual work day and get paid for my travel to and from the work site which pushes me into 5+ overtime hours a week. My husband doesn’t have that luxury because his salary is fixed since he’s military. I have a small side hustle of teaching dance and I’ve been looking into driving for Uber and Lyft.

When do you plan to become debt free?

We have honestly not established a “debt free date” for the purpose of getting a hold on anxiety and causing meaningless tension in our marriage. We just take it month by month and apply the method we’ve learned. We’ve got a total of twelve debts since I broke the group of my student loans out to individual loans and we’ve paid off debts 1 & 2. Now onto debt 3!


I’d like to thank the Penny Pinching Js for today’s post! Please make sure to visit their Instagram at The Penny Pinching Js

You can read last week’s post here. If you would like to share your story with Your Debt Diary please leave a comment below with your email address or Instagram and I will get in touch. You can find me on Instagram here.


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