Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Complete Honesty #1: Shoe Clutter

Clearing Shoe Clutter
As one of my first decluttering projects, and partially because of my blog name, I am tackling my shoe "collection". Here's the complete honesty part:

There are 2 white shoe holders stacked in my closet. They both have 15 shoe slots, I have all 30 slots filled, with AT LEAST 1 pair per slot, some have 2 or 3 pairs depending on flatness of the shoes.

Here is the floor in front of the shoe holders, another 18 or so pairs here.

This is another shot showing 18 pairs unique from the photo above. That makes an estimated minimum of 66 pairs of shoes in my closet.
There are also about 6 pairs floating around the house and in the garage.
Now here's the scariest part of all:

These two baskets are hidden in a corner of my bedroom in a cubby. I think they both have shoes in them. After I get them down I discover:
Indeed this one has flip flops in it. About 15 pairs or so. But:

This one contains shorts! Some workout shorts I thought I had previously gotten rid of. Plus, 1 pair of water shoes. These baskets bring the shoe total to about 88 pairs of shoes for 1 person in my house!
Since I don't wear shorts for my workouts, I got rid of 3 of the 4 pairs in this basket by donating them. I kept 1 pair of black shorts in case. I know, I know "in case" is not a very good reason, but bear with me this is my first de-cluttering project!
Now to tackle the shoes. I started by bringing all shoes into one place with a big open floor space, but I forgot to take a picture. :(
Now that they were all assembled, I started one "category" at a time, ie: heels, flats, wedges, etc. I put the ones I knew I was keeping back in the closet but I didn't organize them yet. Then I tried on the ones I wasn't sure of and made the decision based on comfort and if I had worn them in the past year.
After a couple hours, the project was done. Here is the trash bag:
There's 4 pairs of rubber flip-flops and 1 pair of totally worn out tennis shoes in there.
Here is the garage sale/donate sack:
It contains nearly 15 pairs of shoes!
Here are the after views of my project:

Only 1 pair per slot now and look at the empty carpet in front!

Half as many pairs on the floor of the closet now! Look at all that space, I can walk in front of my clothing bar now because there's not shoes blocking the whole thing.
This is the sandal/flip-flop basket. Before all it contained was the rubber flip flops, now it holds the rubber ones and the nicer dressy ones I can wear to work in the summer.
This is the basket that previously contained my shorts. Now all it holds is my water shoes for camping and outdoor activities, but I may move them to a different location anyway.
I decided to sell 2 pairs of shoes on ebay.

I posted them Sunday morning and as of this morning, both pairs sold! I will use this money from decluttering to go toward my savings goal.
Now that one project is done, I am so excited to see results and I can't wait to do more decluttering! Weigh in to help me decide what area to do next.
Update: I am continuing decluttering a little bit at a time. I find myself looking around with new eyes now thinking, "What do I have laying around that  I can do without?" or "What am I storing for no real purpose?" I am finding more and more things that fall into this categories.
On the debt front, I made 2 returns to different stores to get money back onto my credit cards. These will be reflected when new statements arrive!
Side note: You can find my shoe organizers here. (affiliate link)

Monday, December 30, 2013

2014 Goals: Financial, Clutter and Otherwise

2014 GoalsAlthough I am new to blogging, I can see how having some goals will help me in my journey to a debt and clutter free life. Therefore, I am setting some goals for 2014. I am calling them goals rather than resolutions because I have never stuck to resolutions very well.

Without further delay, here are my 2014 goals: Financial, Clutter and Otherwise

  1. Increase savings account to $1,000
  2. Demolish $10,000 worth of debt (This goal may have to be revised throughout the year as I have no idea yet how quickly I will be paying off principle and how much interest I will be accruing each month)
  3. NO OVERDRAFT FEES! They are just dumb and if I'm following the budget I've laid out they should not occur.
  4. Clear out clutter (This may need to be more specific but I currently have no idea how to do that) This goal also includes using the 1 in 1 out rule thus not undoing my clutter progress each time new items come into my home.
  5. Continue going to Crossfit (affiliate link) 3x/week
  6. Paleo (affiliate link) 80/20 and eat down my non-Paleo food stores without replacement (except for the occasional treat of course ;) )
  7. Loose weight and continue to tone-up
  8. Continue to NOT chew my fingernails (Yes I am a recently reformed fingernail biter)
  9. More books, shoes and clothes out of my horde than new ones coming in, this kinda goes along with #3 but I need to be focused on these items especially as they are a big issue for me
  10. Read 52 books in 2014, that averages to 1/week
  11. Find areas to scale back involvement so I have more free time at home
  12. Spend more time with family, friends and my pets!

I plan on revisiting these goals after 2-3 months to evaluate my progress and update or change them as needed. Some people don't believe in changing their goals, however I do because what's the point of having a goal that is too hard or too easy? The point of a goal is to make you stretch to reach it but to also be attainable.

On the clutter front, I worked on a project this weekend! I have caught the clutter bug and I am ready to rid myself of the material things that suck up so much space, time and energy. I can't wait to show you all some results!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

My Story

My StoryAfter reading my first few posts, I'm sure you are all DYING to know more about me right? Well after I post this, I will be copying it into a page called "About Me". My name is Shoeaholic No More and this is my debt story.

I am a mid-20s single girl living in the Midwest. I graduated from an in-state university with a little over $8,000 in student debt, not bad compared to many of my peers. After graduation, I landed a good job as a, get this, credit analyst at an ag-related bank. Ironic isn't it? It gets me all the time!

Since I was now earning so much more money and I landed this job in my small hometown I decided to buy a house as rental prospects here are nil to none, and of course moving back in with my parents was out of the question! Thus I added a $120,000 mortgage onto my debt total.

After moving into my new house, I realized how little furniture I owned and I proceeded to purchase some to the tune of about $4,000, which I also financed.

Many of my new co-workers are the well-dressed type and I felt I had to keep up and present myself in the newest fashions and accessories, which is where the balance of debt and a lot of the clutter has come from.

Now, I am up to my eyeballs in debt and I finally decided it's time to reverse this trend by paying it down and investing in my future instead of the right now.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Debt Totals Finally Figured!

Official Debt TotalsI finally got the last of my balances figured out. A complete breakdown of my debt is below. It includes my home mortgage, but I will not be discussing it much because my primary focus is the credit card debt, student loan and the loan with my parents. This information will be copied to a Debt Totals page. The numbers will also be used in the side bar and those numbers will be updated as payments are made.

My current debt total is:

CC#1 - $0
CC#2 - $569.65
CC#3 - $260.82
CC#4 - $603.47
CC#5 - $658.40
CC#6 - $1,383.02
CC#7 - $1,221.54
CC#8 - $1,189.94
CC#9 - $1,397.57
CC#10 - $1,339.60
Student Loan - $7,382.74
Home Mortgage - $118,763.30
Parent Loan - $2,899.00

Grand Total: $137,669.05
Total w/o Mortgage: $18,905.75

I will not be posting this weekend as I will be busy (hopefully) working on my first decluttering project! I won't elaborate on it any more until it's finished.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Budget - Version 1

Monthly Total
Housing – Mortgage
Housing – Repairs
Utilities – City
Utilities – Gas
Transportation – Gas
Transportation – Repairs
Car Insurance
Clothes and Hair
Personal (Eating out, Entertainment)
Debt Minimums
Income (Main Job only)

I hope you all had a Merry Christmas! I really enjoyed having time off to celebrate with my family.

This is the first version of my monthly budget. Some of these categories will obviously be a savings type of fund, such as the repair categories. While some might argue that this money could be better spent on reducing the debt, I am going to add to these "emergency" type funds until they are reasonably sized.

The savings category is also being used to add to my emergency fund. I will build this fund to $1,000 before aggressively attacking debt. I will be adding more than the budgeted amount to this cause, as all income from my second job is going toward this and is not counted in my budget. The amount of this "side income" fluctuates month to month and I don't want to find myself relying on this additional income for survival.

During the first couple of months I might have to tweak this budget as I find myself needing more or less money in different categories. I have built this first budget after tracking my spending for 2 months to get an idea of what I was previously spending in these categories. Let me know if you have any ideas, suggestions, or questions!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013


Yikes! Debt TotalsUpdating my debt totals and making a true list of everything I owe is scary! I have 10 credit cards/lines of credit, 1 student loan, 1 house mortgage (which I won't include on the side bars), and 1 loan to my parents.

How did I get myself into this mess? Shopping and living beyond my means, keeping up with the Joneses or rather my friends and family who are older and more established in their careers than me, not to mention they are all married with 2 incomes while I am single and have only 1 income.

How am I going to get out of this mess? Slowly and surely, I hope. I plan on complete honesty: showing my income, budget, method and of course my total debt numbers. I hope to have this info ready to post later this week so it will all be out there prior to the official start of my debt crackdown beginning January 1st.

Thanks to those who have already found and read my first post. I hope you are still reading and will follow the rest of my journey to a new debt and clutter free me!

Merry Christmas to all!

Monday, December 23, 2013

The Beginning

My Debt Journey: The BeginningI have been reading PF, debt blogs and de-cluttering blogs for a few months now. I have also been intrigued by the idea of using a blog as a platform to express my ideas and goals, but also to stay motivated to achieve those goals.

My goals in starting this blog are to become free from my debt and clutter burdens. While these may seem different topics, for me they are related. I have read quite a few debt blogs and some clutter blogs, but no one seems to have married the idea that purchasing the clutter caused the debt. In my case this is certainly true! My love of shopping has caused my life to be stressful and disorganized, physically and financially. My basic idea is to solve both issues by clearing away as much of the clutter and debt in 2014 as possible.

As for my name, ShoeaHolic No More, you could call me a shoeaholic, but also a bookaholic, clothesaholic, purseaholic, maybe just a general stuffaholic and I am certainly a shopaholic! But my goal is to change my ways to leave the materialism behind and reform to find time and funds for the more important things in life.

While, my budgeting doesn't officially start until January 1st, I have been working on tracking my expenses for a couple of months to prepare a budget. I hope you stick around to see my progress and the setbacks that are sure to occur. Thus far I have no readers and I have no plans to tell my real-life friends and family about my blog or my shopaholic tendencies!