Any of you that know my story know that 2012 was a tough year, both emotionally and financially. The first half of the year was the emotional stuff – J’s breast cancer discovery and treatment. Then, when we were just starting to be on the other side of that, I took over with the emotional stuff from the time of my car accident in August through the end of the year, and added some financial difficulties because I was out of full time work for the remainder of that year.
For my household, 2013 was a “rebuilding year,” just like our favorite NFL team (who will go unnamed to avoid any sidetracking discussion regarding that subject). So now we are on to 2014.
Although I avoided any serious resolutions for this year (other than running 750 miles and doing 14 half marathons), I have made a promise to get our household more on track financially. This includes tightening our belts and refraining from purchases for instant gratification, as well as paying down some of our already-existing debt, finishing off the payment of still due/past due medical bills from the accident and doing a better job at our church tithe.
And speaking of church….. While at the grocery store last weekend, we ran into our pastor. We were talking about the local 5K we had all participated in the day before – both his family and ours. From there, we switched to a conversation about the 52 week money plan. To reflect back on the conversation, I have no idea how it switched to money from running; maybe it stemmed from the fact that the cost of local 5k registrations really add up.
I didn’t give this 52 week money plan another thought until later in the week. I searched the internet for more information and within seconds I found a Facebook page and a Twitter page, and I suspect if I spent any more time, I would have found something on YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+, but when I found an article clearly outlining this challenge, I knew then that I had what I needed.
I will try to make it short and sweet, while giving also props to Kassondra Perry-Moreland, who owns the Facebook group for this 52 week challenge. Hers is a very simple plan: the first week you save one dollar. That’s right, one dollar, $1.00 U.S. Dollar. The next week, you save two dollars, $2.00. I believe with Ms. Perry-Moreland’s plan, the dollar amount increases by one for every week so that right at Christmas when you are trying to buy Christmas presents and shipping and everything else that spells H-O-L-I-D-A-Y, you are trying to put money in the bank to meet your commitment for the 52 week challenge you worked all year to accomplish.
This article I was reading set everything out just a little differently. On the third week, instead of $3.00 as above in Ms. Perry-Moreland’s plan, this one has you saving $52.00 (as in 52 weeks). The fourth week, you go back to $3.00, and so on. It sounds confusing, but once you look at the chart and earmark the appropriate amount of money to set aside, I think it seems like a very “do-able” challenge. It seems more possible to complete based upon my lifestyle.
The article I was reading listed the weeks and the dollar amounts in paragraph form, but I find that to be a little scratchy, so I’ll make it an attachment you can print separately below.
At the end of the 52 weeks, you will have saved $1,378.00 in U.S. Dollars! This will feel sort of like a Christmas bonus to me! I’m sure I will earmark the money five hundred ways throughout the year. (Shhhh…..I’m betting a dollar or two or fifty or a hundred will go toward a race registration!!)