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Jenniffer's Journey:

Happy New Year!

2017 has been quite a year for my finances. Grab a cup of hot cocoa or a Starbucks tall decaf raspberry non-fat no whip no foam mocha and sit down next to fire to reminisce with me.

January – As I counted down to the new year on December 31, 2016 with Ryan Seacrest and Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve, I made one wish:  please let my medical bills disappear. Bam! The ball dropped in Times Square, I sang “Auld Lang Syne” and promptly went to bed (because I am usually sound asleep before the weather on the 10:00 news every other day of the year). On January 1, I logged into my online medical billing account hoping to see that my wish came true, and the ball dropped again. My medical bills did not disappear as I had wished less than 12 hours prior. Hmph!

February – After a month’s worth of feeling indignant over the failure of my New Year’s Eve wish coming true, I continued to receive medical bills from additional procedures, follow ups, and a few routine visits in between. Oh, and the charges to my credit cards from my Christmas overspending spree also did not disappear as I had wished my medical bills would. Hmph!

March – I hadn’t maxed out my credit cards yet, and I needed to still pay those irritating medical bills, but I also still needed to buy groceries and pay all of my other bills. I decided that the best way to cope with those mounting bills was to create more bills by spending more. Made sense at the time. Then I realized one day that something’s gotta give. I should apply for that Summit Credit Union Project Money thing. If my luck at getting accepted to Project Money is as good as my New Year’s Eve wishes coming true, I don’t have much of a chance. After all, I’m not even a Summit member. Hmph!

April – More bills, more bills and more bills. One day in April, I got a call from cheerful Amy at Summit Credit Union asking me to come in for a recorded interview for Project Money. “Yes, yes I will!!! Does now work for you?” Seems my interview went pretty well because by the end of the month, I was accepted into the program, became a Summit member, and met my coach, Melanie. And so my journey began.

May through December – I blogged, vlogged, posted, tweeted, interviewed and talked (and talked and talked and talked) about my Project Money journey. I learned A LOT about my finances, my money mindset and most importantly, the value that I place on my happiness and my future with Ashley and my fiancé Scott and his boys (in case you missed it, I got engaged during Project Money!). And what role my bi-weekly paychecks should (and shouldn’t) play in that happiness.  

When I made my wish on New Year’s Eve 2016, I never expected this was how my wish would come true. I must have added a caveat onto my New Year’s Eve wish that I couldn’t remember because of the haze from all of the sparkling grape juice I had consumed that night – “I wish my medical bills would disappear…..(caveat) but not until the end of 2017 and not until after a whole lot of work. And perhaps some divine Project Money intervention.”

That brings us to this week’s financial fun fact: good things come to those who wait. And to those who put time and effort and passion into achieving their financial goals. I have achieved all of the goals that I set out to accomplish in Project Money, but not without a lot of blood, sweat and tears. Well, OK no blood and not really any sweating (technically) but there were definitely some tears. And a whole lot of time, effort and passion.  

So, here’s to a year of finding my way to financial freedom, a complete metamorphosis of my money mindset and experiencing the joy and happiness that comes from achieving the financial goals I never thought I’d achieve.

May you find the same joy and happiness in your finances this year and all the years to come. Happy New Year!


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