For many years of our marriage, Mrs. Fat Man and I were in a financial mess. We had a couple hundred thousand dollars of debt, and we were having trouble finding two spare nickels to rub together. One of the defining moments for both of us was when middle daughter Fat Man could not go on her junior high Washington D.C. trip. She had a close nit group of four other friends who had been inseparable since grade school, they did everything together. But when we needed to come up with $1500 to send her on the trip, we could not manage it. One of the other girls parents even called to offer to pay for a good portion of the trip, but since I thought of it as a first world problem, I turned her down. It was not terribly hard until they actually left for D.C.. They were and still are kind little souls, so they called her every evening to tell her about their day, and they brought her mementos home from the trip. But having to watch one of the people that I love the most in life not share this experience with her friends was to this day one of the biggest regrets I have in my life! And it was all 100% my fault! I had so poorly managed the money I was making from a very good, and well paying job, that I had to make my child miss this great experience. So that was when I decided to get my financial house in order. Now a number of years later, we have a much better bottom line, with all of our personal debt gone. I have made a vow, that my grandchildren will have the financial means to go to Washington D.C. when their time comes. I will start to blog more about money in the future. Any post that is about finances will have the word money at the end of the title. The above situation was not the only fall out from my stupidity, so I will be sharing more of that too, along with things I have learned from others along the way. I hope that someone else will be able to learn from my research and mistakes. Because in the words of a wise woman I know, “If a person can learn from others mistakes, life is a lot less painful”.