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dave ramsey


How to Attend Financial Peace University for FREE

September 1, 2015
It’s THAT time of year again!
Itā€™s time for a giveaway around the True Good and Beautiful blog!

What are we giving away? (Like you don’t have us figured out here yet…) šŸ˜‰


To say thatĀ Dave Ramsey has a huge influence on how we choose to live in the understatement of the year.

Using his materials and methods are the sole reasons we are debt-free and living on a budget today. His message has literally changed our lives.

And we canā€™t help but pass along this opportunity to others.

Nope, this opportunity was not sponsored by Dave Ramsey.

We simply believe so powerfully in the freedom that comes in handling money Godā€™s way that we want to pay it forward to someone else. We want to bless an individual or family who would benefit from going through this class.

In fact, we did this giveaway last year and this is what one winner had to say:

“Since then (attending FPU), I’ve felt much more financial freedom in the knowledge that this is something God and I are doing together, and at the end of the day, He’s calling the shots.”

What is Financial Peace University (FPU)?

ā€œFinancial Peace UniversityĀ is a nine-week class on money taught by Americaā€™s most trusted financial guru, Dave Ramsey. Dave and his teaching teamĀ will walk you through the basics of budgeting, dumping debt, planning for the future, and much more!ā€
You can see a sample of all nine lessons here.

Most classes startĀ in a couple of weeks, hence the giveaway. You can see a list of locations, dates, and times at the FPU website.Ā If you’re in the Denver area, consider joining the class we’re coordinatingĀ (starts Thursday, Sept 24, 2015).

Jonathan and I have attended and facilitated Financial Peace University and itā€™s been a huge blessing in our life and parish. If you could benefit from sprucing up your finances or demolishing old habits and starting over, then sign up to win one of these classes we are giving away.

It literally can change your life and the lives of those around you.

Lastly ā€“ I shouldnā€™t have to say this butā€¦if you know you will not complete all nine classes and take the class seriously, DO NOT ENTER THIS CONTEST! If you are ready to dive in and apply yourself in class, ENTER ALL YOU CAN! We want to make sure the people with the right attitudesĀ are the ones who win this opportunity.

Best of luck!


The September Budget Breakdown

August 31, 2015

Welcome back to the budget breakdown here at True Good and Beautiful!

After 9 weeks of traveling this summer, I am happy to say we are HOME.


We had wonderful adventures this summer but man oh man am I glad to be back in Colorado sleeping in my own bed. I can tell Josie is thinkin the same thing.

It feels good to settle back in and nothing makes me feel grounded like budgeting! šŸ™‚

With that, let’s dive into September’s budget post.

In these posts we will write-up typical expenses that may get overlooked for the particular month. No uploading of photos this month…due to forgetting. Eeep!!

So, what expenses might you expect in the month of September:

  • Back To School Season
    • New clothes
    • Tuition
    • Backpacks
    • School Supplies
  • Labor Day
    • Getaway
    • BBQ
  • End of Season Deals (only if you really need it) šŸ˜‰
    • Patio Furniture
    • Grills
    • Swimsuits
    • Clothes
  • Holidays Travel (always some good flight deals this time of the year)
    • Thanksgiving
    • Christmas
  • Fall Activities
    • Football games
    • Baseball games
    • Football parties
    • Fantasy Football fees
    • Apple Orchards
    • State Fairs
  • Christmas (good idea to start saving a few months ahead!)
    • Gifts
    • Decorations

Again, these are some expenses weā€™ve found ourselves budgeting for this month, so they might beĀ applicable to you or not. Some of these expenses are best budgeted for as a sinking vacations or gifts.

Happy budgeting yā€™all!


The July Budget Breakdown

July 1, 2015

Welcome back to the budget breakdown here at True Good and Beautiful!

I apologize for being more or less absent this past month but we’ve been on the road adventuring. We’ll be home in about another month so if you hear from us before then, awesome. If not? Don’t worry, we’ll be back.

This post is only happening because I simply couldn’t leave all you avid budgeters hanging!

Let’s dive back into some good ole budget accountability and fun!

In these posts we will write-up typical expenses that may get overlooked for the particular month. No uploading of photos this month, due to being on the road.

So, what expenses might you expect in the month of July:


How To Buy A Used Vehicle on Craigslist

March 18, 2015

When people hear that we purchased two new-to-us vehicles on Craigslist they think we are crazy.

I get it.

People assumeĀ that Craigslist vehicles are posted by scammers, craz-o’s, or bad owners who didn’t maintain it well.

This isĀ oftenĀ true.

But not always.

And that exceptional situation is the one we want to help you find so you can get some serious deals on your future used vehicle purchases.

To aid in this post, I have solicited the input and advice from a well trusted auto-mechanic…Mr. Joseph Nissen.

AKA myĀ dad.

Not only does he have mechanical expertise, the man is a deal hound.

Come to think of it, I’ve learned all my best wheeling and dealing strategies from him so to say I trust him is an understatement.

Below are a few nuggets of wisdom from him about sniffing out the deals on Craigslist:

The Preparation:

  • Scope out the photos for context clues…What does the neighborhood look like? What items are in the background?
  • Your best deals will be with individual sellers, not dealers.
  • Call about vehicles that interest you and ask lots of initial questions to get a feel for the owner. Are they shady or do they seem normal? Interview them about the vehicle…why are they selling it? Do they seem trustworthy? How do they claim to have maintained the vehicle?
  • Find a trusted mechanic who can answer questions for you and provide an inspection of the vehicle prior to any offer/purchase.

The Hunt:

  • Meet people in public places, such as grocery store parking lots if you can. Don’t wander into dangerous areas alone. Use common sense.
  • You are inspecting the seller just as much as you are the car…how do they carry themselves? Do they appear like a meticulous owner who maintains themselves and their vehicles well? Do they have any maintenance receipts and records?
  • Turn the key to on position and make sure the “check engine light illuminates” as well as “air bag”Ā  light if so equipped.Ā This is worthy of checking to make sure they actually light up..if they donā€™t, the bulb is burnt out OR the person removed the bulb to hide a defect.
  • Take the car for a test drive and check the transmission fluid afterwards. What color is it?Ā If the fluid is brownish and when you wipe the dip stick off and there are signs of blackish remains that may indicate a transmission that hasn’tĀ been serviced properly…not one I would purchase.
  • Check the oil level…also check the oil filler cap to see if there is a white-ish type sludge under the cap…if so the oil may not have been changed with any regularity.
  • Check tires to see if they are all the same type and make…if people care about the car they usually replace all 4 with they same type.
  • Have that trusted mechanic available to inspect the car, perhaps on your test drive.

The Offer:

  • If things are checking out and your trustworthy mechanic has given the thumbs up, it may be time to make an offer. First things first…what’s the car worth? Check out Kelly Blue Book’s website and enter all the necessary data.
  • In order to snag a good deal, offer a few hundred dollars under asking price.
  • That offer….it better be CASH!!!!!!!!
  • But don’t actually have the cash on you, unless in a very public area…that is a good way to get robbed. If they accept your offer, then you can drop by the bank.

Batta-bing, batta-boom. You my friend, have a new-to-you vehicle! šŸ™‚

Like I said, we recently purchased a 2004 Jeep Liberty and 2007 Crystler Town & Country using Craigslist. We got eachĀ vehicle for at least $1KĀ under Kelly Blue Book value. On one of them, we even had the owner split the cost of new tires. The other, the owner threw in an awesome car top carrier for FREE! Way to go dad! šŸ™‚

My handy-dandy father served as our trusty mechanic and did the actual inspecting, offering, and purchasing for us and we simply paid him back. I know, you can’t get much more of an ideal situation than that but we wanted to at least offer SOMETHING for y’all out there who want a good deal on a newer vehicle.

If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask! Happy car hunting!


The March Budget Breakdown

February 28, 2015

It’s that time again.

Some good ole budget accountability and fun!

A recap from last time…In these posts we will write-up typical expenses that may get overlooked for the particular month. Then we have a photo link up portion where YOU can upload a photo of your budget committee meeting for the month!

So, what expenses might you expect in the month of March?

  • Vehicle Maintenance
    • Tires
    • Windshield Wipers
    • Oil Change
    • Vehicle Registration and Title Costs
  • St. Patrick’s Day
    • Festive Meal
    • Party
  • Fish Fry
    • Entrance Fees
  • Spring Break expenses
    • Travel
    • Food
    • Activities
  • March Madness
    • Parties
    • Food at Restaurants/Bars
  • Easter
    • Travel
    • Gifts for family/friends becoming Catholic
  • Spring Cleaning Supplies
    • Mop, Broom, Vacuum
    • Organizational boxes
    • Filing Cabinet
  • Expenses Related to Taxes
    • Accountant/CPA
    • Turbo Tax, etc.
    • E-Filing Fees

Again, these are some expenses we’ve found ourselves budgeting for this month, so they might beĀ applicable to you or not. Some of these expenses are best budgeted for as a sinking fund.

However, we purchased a van this month (in the budget) and have to pay registration/title fees which we didn’t have a sinking fund set up for. Therefore, we have to shuffle our budget around to accommodate this cost. It will be a tight month but because of budgeting, we have the freedom to make it all balanceĀ and have peace that it will all work out.

Now it’s time for your part!

[inlinkz_linkup id=501274 mode=1]


Dave’s Smart Money Tour: A Review

February 26, 2015

Last week Jonathan and I attended Dave Ramsey and Chris Hogan’s newest Live Event – The Smart Money Tour.


This is our review of the event.

Overall, I would rate the event a 10/10 and it not only met our expectations, it exceeded them.


1. Foundational and Fresh

We brought a couple of friends with us, each of us at different places in the Dave Ramsey Baby Steps.

Of course, theyĀ more or less revolved around those 7 Baby Steps, which could have seemed boring for us since we’ve read the book, coƶrdinated Financial Peace University, etc.

But theyĀ repackaged and condensed the timeless principlesĀ alongside new stories and partially a new voice – Chris Hogan.

I will get to him in a moment though.

They did an outstanding job of keeping the old and new fans engaged and inspired throughout the entire event. Below are some nuggets from Jonathan’s Tweet fest.


2. Free Budgeting Software

This may have been the MOST exciting news of the night.

Dave’s team has spent the past few years and a couple million dollars creating budgeting software called Everydollar with an app for your smart phone.

Best part?



We’ve been proudly sharing our love of YNAB – You Need a Budget software for over a year now…but this may change our tune.

Free is always better, amirite or amirite?

It launches next month but everyone who attended Smart Money Event received a code to use it EARLY. Boom.

Expect a review on that once it’s up and running. I would love to do a side by side analysis of Dave’s software vs. YNAB.

3. Chris Hogan

This guy is on fire right now.

He’s hilarious, animated, inspiring, and made me cry at least four times with the stories he tells.

Dave was smart to bring this guy on the tour with him. Not that Dave himself isn’t awesome…but it’s great to see him bringing other voices to the Baby Steps and his timeless financial lessons.

Chris also has a new website that I am pumped to use. It’s for retirement forecasting, which can be both motivational and terrifying at the same time.

4. Free Will Kit!

Dave gone and read my mind!

Did you know 78% of people die without a will? That’s CRAZY since 100% of us will die someday.

Now that we have Josie, it’s time to update our life insurance beneficiaries and create a will to navigate those funds in the result of our untimely death. Lord willing it won’t be necessary anytime soon but I will have peace of mind knowing we have a plan for her financially if something, God forbid, should happen to us both.

Below is Josie getting excited about us making a will!


5. Inspiring and Upbeat

The entire event was just a lot of fun!

There were giveaways. A live debt-free scream on stage. And most of all, content that was relevant to all, presented in a way that gave hope.

It wasn’t dry. It wasn’t ordinary. It wasn’t hum drum. It was anything BUT those things. Which isn’t always what you expect when going to a financial seminar.

I love how Dave and his team strive to make learning about money fun and encouraging! Really, it’s what sets him a part in this area.

Overall, I highly recommend this event to others! It’s only happening a few more weeks but keep it in mind if it comes to a city near you in the future!