I’ve come back from our trip to Santa Fe with renewed vision and focus on planning and saving for retirement. Santa Fe turned out to be a place where we could really see ourselves spending time in retirement. Our commitment to being debt-free comes first, so the only thing standing between us and a retirement of our choosing is having the savings we need.
‘You can’t take a loan for your retirement’ – Mr. Saver
Mr. Saver is eligible for retirement in his mid-50s, approximately 15 short years from now. This will occur just after our daughter would finish college. We are saving as though he will retire in his 50s so that when the time comes that option is available to us. I find myself running through a mental to-do list of items to put my attention on so that we are prepared:
- Remain debt free. Interest on home, cars, and credit cards is money that isn’t available for savings. “Rather to go to bed hungry than to rise in debt” – Ben Franklin.
- Budget money to maintain the things we already own, like home and cars, so that they last.
- Roth IRA – we should have a goal to fully fund both of our Roth IRAs every year from here on out. For more on this, see my prior post.
- It’s all about the weekly meal-plan… keep planning meals at home based on sales and what pantry items are available. Maximize veggies and beans, which are cheap and nourishing.
- Weekly budget meetings so that we are on the same page about where money should be allocated based on what expenses are coming up. It’s July, so now is the time to think about saving for holiday expenses, and so on.
- Practice contentment. We do not have the fanciest clothes, cars or house, but right now I value doing what we can to become financially independent so my husband can be in charge of when he retires. Contentment helps keep me out of the mall!
It’s a lot of moving parts to keep an eye on! What the trip to Santa Fe did for me, among other things, is enhance my vision of what we could create in our future. Having a vision of what you want is one of the most important steps to take when you have a goal that requires sacrifice. You can read more on creating a vision in my post “Imagining The Future.”
Do you have a vision for the future that is beginning to take shape?