(Originally published on The $76K Project on 4/10/2018)
Money in the $76K household is tight. We're awaiting medical bills related to the Kiddo's appendectomy, and although it's possible that the total cost of surgery won't be as high as I'm expecting it to be, I'm still very much on edge about it and want to keep a tight grip on the budget until we know where we stand. At the same time, we're determined to make a significant credit card payment this month ($1000) and plan a small but fun birthday celebration for the Kiddo.Although we're paying all of our bills on time and making progress with debt repayment, there isn't a lot of room for extras and non-essentials:
- We still don't have a real kitchen table. We're eating off a tablecloth-adorned card table and sitting in folding chairs.
- We've had to delay the purchase of other furniture, such as bar stools for our kitchen counter. (The horror!)
- We're not going out to eat as often this month.
- We're being more selective about paid activities. The Kiddo's summer soccer league is a go. The running series is not.
Needless to say, nobody is happy about this, especially my son and his grandparents. But the trip seems financially ill-advised given the likelihood of steep medical expenses. The price of plane tickets will be in the hundreds of dollars, even if we're able to offset the cost with our limited Southwest points. Then there's the car rental, the gas, and the inevitable restaurant meals and kid activities. We just can't afford it, is the truth.
But is it worth accruing more debt at this particular time? I don't know. I don't think so, but in this case, I'm not 100 percent sure. Either way, it feels like a risk. A part of me is holding out hope that the medical bills will be miraculously low and we'll be able to book the trip anyway.