Home > "Saving" Money This Year... Sort of

"Saving" Money This Year... Sort of

August 21st, 2023 at 03:10 pm

The last couple of years have been very expensive for us and made it difficult to pay down our debt by much. I’m not complaining, just explaining. We didn’t decrease our debt by much and we were able to cashflow a lot of expenses! Going forward, things should change.

We have had two “senior years” in a row. Our son graduated in 2022 and our daughter graduated in 2023. Senior year is expensive. There are all the normal school expenses that everybody has: yearbooks, ASB, PE clothes, school supplies, dances and winter ball, sports, etc. But on top of that there are: senior portraits, prom, powderpuff football, senior trip, senior sunrise, senior sunset, senior beach day, senior movie night, senior ditch day, and that is just what I can think of off the top of my head!

Senior year was expensive for each kid but having to do it back-to-back was brutal! (I feel so sorry for parents of twins!) Quite honestly, just not having a senior this year (or a kid in school at all) is going to help our budget! It’s crazy to me how expensive public school has become. (And just to be clear, I am saying this as a public school teacher. Overall, I think there is great value for money, but the cost of extracurriculars has skyrocketed!)

In addition to not having a senior (YAY!), my daughter aged out of dance last year. We spent a TON on dance. I understand we could have told our kids no about any number of things to get ourselves out of debt faster, but we decided our kids shouldn’t have to suffer because of the financial mistakes we made, so they were able to do most activities that they wanted. (No judgement on anybody else’s choices either!) We paid about $1000 per month for dance, and it was always paid for in cash. We never charged anything for dance. Some of that money is going to be absorbed into our budget, but over half of it is going straight towards debt. Dance is, quite honestly, prohibitively expensive, just like so many elite sports in America are. We feel very luck that we were able to pay for dance, all while making slow progress on our debt, and contributing heavily towards our retirement.

Dance was so expensive. We had to pay monthly tuition, competition fees (which have skyrocketed since Covid), choreography fees, costume fees, and for food, gas, and sometimes lodging at competitions. We always brought snacks and drinks with us, but the costs still added up. I’m very happy to not have dance to pay for anymore. That’s going to help us pay down debt and fatten up my envelopes.

3 Responses to “"Saving" Money This Year... Sort of”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    I totally understand your comment on how expensive all the extras are. As a former public school teacher, I get it.

  2. mumof2 Says:

    wow living in australia we don't do anything but a formal for their senior year...thankgod...that is ridiculous but I do find that we don't do all the competitive sports etc as much here either we have private school teams but not in public school (usually) and any extra curricular are not that you guys must be so happy not to be paying an of that anymore and I hope that your debt comes down faster and you see some real progress...but any progress is progress...thats how I see it...good luck

  3. LivingAlmostLarge Says:

    I think everything for kids is getting more expensive. It's crazy how expensive just a test is. I registed for the SSAT for private school and it was $250 to take the test to apply to private school? Um okay. I bought her a book for $20 and i'm not even sure it's going to help.

    That being said there is just so much other activities. I am dreading.

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