debt debs

Personal Debt Wrangler – Had my money head in the sand – but no more!

55 Reasons it’s Okay To Be 55


55I am 55 today.

Inspired by John at Frugal Rules here are 55 thoughts about turning 55.

  1. It’s a cool number.
  2. Freedom 55 was the super sweet early retirement age talked about when we were in our 30’s.
  3. Boy that 25 years went by real fast!
  4. I have one friend who is 55 who retired this year.
  5. My Dad worked until age 71, I can’t see working for another 16 years, myself.
  6. I never thought I’d be a grandmother at 55.
  7. But I’m delighted, I am!
  8. The body is starting to feel a little old.
  9. But the mind is still in my 30’s.
  10. Feel happy to still be able to enjoy doing lots.
  11. Even if some days, I feel it.
  12. I can still ride my bike.
  13. Even though I fell off it last year trying to run a yellow light.  #mybad
  14. Thinking about trying running again.
  15. If my knees and hip will cooperate.
  16. Maybe I need to think about swimming instead.
  17. It’s tough to go out in the winter though.
  18. I’m happy to have a fall birthday.
  19. Even though I don’t really make a big deal out of them.
  20. I’m happy to be a Libra.  It suits me.
  21. Even though I don’t follow astrology.
  22. I stopped reading my horoscope after finding out it was not encouraged by my faith.
  23. Didn’t really get a lot out of it anyways.
  24. I get more from the Holy Trinity.
  25. If I were to die tomorrow, I would be content.
  26. Though I still feel I’ve got lots more living to do.
  27. I would like to live with less stress.
  28. Good thing for shingles vaccine these days.
  29. And flu shots too.
  30. When I was a kid we aspired to have cable TV and no party line.
  31. Now we are back to having OTA TV again and rarely answer the phone.
  32. My University is still trying to hit me up for donations.
  33. Will they stop now that I’ve turned 55?  #doubtit
  34. Despite signing up to block our number from telemarketers, we still get a lot of calls.
  35. My husband can block them on the software for our Ooma.
  36. Ooma quality is not good enough for me to hold conference calls for work on it.
  37. But yet I can talk through my computer on Microsoft Lync to work colleagues around the world.
  38. I had my hair shorter for a bit.
  39. But it’s getting near my shoulders again now.
  40. It’s amazing how much growth you go through even in the short space of a year or two.
  41. And I’m not talking about my hair now.
  42. Sometimes you stagnate a bit, when you are going through a period of rejuvenation to prepare for regrowth.
  43. That usually happens around a life changing circumstance.
  44. Sometimes reading the thoughts on post secret is really insightful and you almost learn something about yourself with each one.
  45. All the time it is insightful.
  46. I’m so thankful for my husband and family.
  47. Even though I may not say it or show it in a big way.
  48. I wanted to be a veterinarian and then later a cop when I was a kid and a teenager.
  49. But I don’t think accountants are boring, after all.
  50. I still think the flat Tim Horton’s boxes are bunk.
  51. I wrote a letter to complain about them when they first came out.
  52. I don’t even think I got a free donut.
  53. I’ve managed to get through this list without talking a lot  about personal finance.
  54. I think that’s okay for today.
  55. It means I’m not letting my debt define me. :-D












debt-debsDebs’ Devotions #4

Favourite articles I’ve read recently a while ago:

Not smoking could save me over $5,000 a year — wish me luck ~ Quitting smoking is hard.  I don’t have first hand experience but I equate it with trying to lose weight and giving up your comfort food.  Financially speaking and healthwise, it’s a no brainer.

Why I Will Never Make Additional Mortgage Payments ~ okay it’s not a secret now that I like to consider other views that are contrary to my own.  It’s how I learn.  I’m a big fan of paying off a mortgage in 15 years after being burned by consumer debt and stretching our mortgage into 27 years but I have to agree these arguments are compelling.

Five Tips for Making Budgeting Fun for Creatives ~ I’m a colour geek (<– uh, ya, look left please) and Liz’s ideas are after my own heart!  Who’s says budgeting can’t be fun?

Debt Free at Last: Our Debt of £41K Has Been Paid Off! ~ Okay this post is recent and it’s such great news I had to share!  I’ve been following Hayley’s blog since I first started and she’s been a great inspiration to me.  Hayley leads by example and for those of us hurting from debt horror stories it helps to know we’ve got supporters cheering us on!

Thanks to other awesome bloggers for recently linking some of my posts:

Dan @ Our Big Fat Wallet ~Weekend Reading: Market Meltdown Edition

Myles @ Myles Money ~ Smart Money # 4

Blogger Classifieds ~ How to Blog Carnival – Create a Blog That Makes Money

Financially Savvy Saturdays #59 pick of the week which is very appropriate as it was the year I was born

I’ve been guest posting or featured here since my last Debs’ Devotions:

Cash Cow Couple ~ Women Crush Wednesday

Canadian Budget Binder ~ To Take or Not to Take Early CPP

So I’m excited to tell you that yesterday, Erin’s guest post here was featured on Globe & Mail site, Carrick on money.  Isn’t that awesome?  It’s so wonderful to have your work profiled on a large site and I couldn’t be happier for her.  I’m also happy for me as my traffic hit it’s highest at 980 views (more than double my highest) yesterday (about 725 unique views)!  How’s that for a nice birthday present?!


Author: debster

I am a fifty-something wife, mother and new grandmother, who admits to having their “head in the sand” about their financial situation until amassing $247,500 worth of consumer debt for a total debt of $393,500. We've paid $121K in 2 years with four more years to go. Join my journey at sharing ideas and motivation to all those coping with poor money management and bad debt decisions.

102 thoughts on “55 Reasons it’s Okay To Be 55

  1. Happy Birthday Debt Debs. Hope you have a lovely day and wknd.

    Roadmap2Retire recently posted…Omega Healthcare (OHI) Dividend IncreaseMy Profile

  2. Happy Birthday. Yes I was 50 this year and think how on earth did that happen so quick!
    Only found your site today and find myself in just about exact debt position as yourself so am enjoying reading your older posts for inspiration and helping me think there is a way out of this mess.

    • Thank you Ruth. So happy you found my site. There is a way and you can do it, one step at a time! Feel free to email me if you have any questions at debt.debs gmail com. I look forward to following your journey too. It’s important to know that you’re not the only one and we need to take the stigma out of discussing personal finances, but especially debt. We’ve got a whole generation of millennials that we don’t want following in our footsteps. :-)

  3. Happy Happy Birthday! My mom is a bit younger than you, but you seem much more energetic! :D Which means… Don’t let age defines you, because you yourself that defines what kind of person you are. I also don’t follow astrology, but I’m an Aries, and it creepily suits my personality as well…
    Poor Student recently posted…Should You Take On Student Loans? How Much is Too Much?My Profile

    • LOL, that’s funny about the astrology signs and thank you for the compliment, I’ll take it! ;-) Ya, it’s a weird dichotomy when you want to hang out with the young ones at the office for team events and feel like you fit right in but then can’t wait to hit the sack at 9 p.m. some nights! My head is not old but my body sometimes says otherwise. {giggle}

  4. Happy Birthday!

    I think the flat boxes are much more awkward to carry. But I appreciate that I don’t lose all the chocolate off the pot of my Boston Cream donut on the bottom of the one next to it.

    If you order a smaller amount, do you think they’d give them to you in a TimBit box?
    Emily @ Simple Cheap Mom recently posted…Cut The Cable, Keep Your ShowsMy Profile

    • Thanks for the birthday wishes, Emily. Exactly, they are more awkward to carry which is why I don’t like them but thanks for pointing out the benefits. You know I never noticed that problem before which is probably why I still think the flat boxes are bunk. At this point, it’s really just first world problems and you know I don’t really go to Timmy’s anymore unless it’s to meet my blogging friend, Prudence Debtfree. ;-)

  5. Happy Birthday! Love the pic of your hair too! :)
    Nichole @Budget Loving Military Wife recently posted…10 Steps to STOP Living Paycheck to PaycheckMy Profile

  6. Happy Birthday! Hope it is a good one and here’s to many more. Tims should have sent you a free donut! Sending a virtual one your way…. Cheers!
    May recently posted…The Shy Person’s Guide to Getting a Price DiscountMy Profile

  7. Happy Birthday fellow Libra! I’m 44 and your 55…there is something poetic about that? I have no idea, but let’s pretend that means we both are going to have great years! :)
    Tonya@Budget and the Beach recently posted…What I Know About Myself and MoneyMy Profile

  8. Happy birthday! I hope you have a good day :)
    Nicola recently posted…Foodie Friday: Spaghetti PuttanescaMy Profile

  9. Wishing you a very happy birthday Deb. I hope this year is filled with peace and prosperity for you! And thank you so much for the mention : )
    Liz recently posted…6 Surefire Ways to Hurt Your Credit ScoreMy Profile

  10. I LOVE everything about this list! Knees, hips, bikes…Oh my! Happy birthday. Wishing you many many many more. This has to be the cutest thing on (but not really) personal finances that I’ve read in a long time.
    Toni @ Debt Free Divas recently posted…6 Financial Lessons We Didn’t Get in Home ECMy Profile

  11. Happy Birthday Deb. I turned 56 this year and I totally identify with the list. Have an awesome birthday weekend!
    LeisureFreak Tommy recently posted…Early Retirement Side HustleMy Profile

  12. Woohoo! I hope you have fun plans for today! I’m guessing you’ll get to see your grandson? =) “Even though I fell off it last year trying to run a yellow light. #mybad” That made me chuckle, although I hope you didn’t get hurt. My mom has actually been getting back into riding a bike, and she’s only two years older than you. I have faith you can get back into running or swimming if you wish!

    Again, I’m really excited the post got picked up, and that you saw such a big traffic spike! I haven’t checked my stats yet, but I have a feeling you’re going to be taking over the blogosphere next year. =)
    Erin @ Journey to Saving recently posted…Being Grateful: Forty-Eighth EditionMy Profile

    • Yep, I’m going over there shortly. Thanks for the kind words, Erin, and thanks again for your guest post!

      I actually did hurt my collar bone (aggravated an old injury) when I fell but managed to just complain about it for only about three weeks. I felt kind of sheepish because I was partially at fault.

  13. Happy Birthday Debs but you know you will have to do a 56 list next year!
    Victoria @thefrugaltrial recently posted…The Debt TrapMy Profile

    • LOL, Now you’ve just given me an idea, Victoria. For next year since I’ll be 56, I’ll write about all the things I want to do in the nine remaining years before I turn 65, since 56 is the inverse of 65. Now if I forget, you’ll remind me won’t you? After all I’m pretty old. ;-) Thanks for the birthday wishes!

  14. Great list and of course, happy birthday! Keep on inspiring others to enhance their own financial lives with your site!
    DivHut recently posted…Expanding Waistlines Growing DividendsMy Profile

    • Thanks, Keith, and likewise. It’s good to know there’s a lot of learned investing folks we can reach out to, like yourself.

  15. I wish you a very happy birthday Debs and pray that you live to see many more. I too wanted to be a vet and cop, in that order when I was much younger :)
    Kassandra recently posted…When Being Frugal Becomes UnethicalMy Profile

    • Oh wow! You’re a kindred spirit, Kassandra. So funny, and look we both turned out to be PF bloggers!! Thanks for your kind wishes and prayers. :-)

  16. I wish you the happiest of birthdays Debs. May your year be filled with joy. And thanks for the link :)
    Mario recently posted…HBO now lets you buy HBO Go without a cable subscription — one step closer to cutting the cordMy Profile

  17. Happy birthday! I don’t think accountants are boring either (most of the time) but of course I’m a bit biased :)
    Dan @ Our Big Fat Wallet recently posted…Costco’s Secret Price CodesMy Profile

    • Well your a good example too, Dan! Your little social icon coffee cups on your site are adorable and I’m pining to figure out something unique like that for my site! We all know about creative accounting and you are what I call a creative accountant!! :-D

  18. Debs, Happy 55th Birthday to you! Oh, congratulations on pulling to write those 55 reasons off. I don’t if I could come up with 25 reasons. You’re really great Debs. :D
    Jayson @ Monster Piggy Bank recently posted…WTF Toys for KidsMy Profile

  19. Happy birthday! May your next 55 years be better than the first 55.

    What? It could happen.
    Nelson recently posted…How $1 Million Isn’t Quite $1 MillionMy Profile

  20. Happy birthday, Debs!

    My dad turned 55 only three days ago and I think most of your list above applies to him too. Well, not being a grand-parent, because I’m not ready for that yet, but definitely most of the other stuff! :)

    My grandfather always tells me life only started after 55, so you have some great years coming up!

    My great-grandfather… I guess it’s time to stop talking about my lineage! ;)

    Enjoy your birthday,
    No More Waffles recently posted…Net Worth Update: €45,361 (+0.59%)My Profile

    • Oh, how cool is that, that your Dad also turned 55 and he is a Libra too?! Is he the 15th? Happy belated birthday to him and I’m glad we share other things in common on the list too. My youngest is just slightly younger than you, she will 25 in January, and yes, too young to be a parent yet. ;-)

  21. Pingback: Weekly Wrap-Up, October 18 | No More Waffles

  22. I’m with Nelson, may your next 55 be as enjoyable. I am hoping it happens, given I am 53!
    Big Cajun Man recently posted…Crashing Markets, Ebola, Low Loonie, Cheap Gas and #BestThisWeekMy Profile

    • Thanks BCM! You know the FIRE movement means Financial Independence Retire Early … let’s start a FILL movement, Financial Independence Live Long! ;-)

  23. Happy birthday DD! I turned 55 a few weeks ago myself (this is my “Sammy Hagar” year because he sang “I can’t drive 55″).
    Noonan recently posted…An Open Letter About My Great IndebtednessMy Profile

  24. Happy birthday, Debs! You are more than enough to prove that accountants aren’t boring : )
    Prudence Debtfree recently posted…Debt & Imbalance: One Spouse Shoulders Financial Burdens Caused by the OtherMy Profile

  25. Debs,

    Happy birthday!

    The time sure flies by, doesn’t it? But it’s wonderful that you’re viscerally aware of that and taking control of your time via taking control of your money.

    Hope it was a great one. Here’s to another 55. :)

    Dividend Mantra recently posted…A Look At Four Great Dividend StocksMy Profile

    • Thanks, Jason, I appreciate the kind words and support! It sure does go fast!! I can’t believe I even have a son your age. ;-)

  26. Happy Birthday! I hope you are enjoying your birthday weekend. And congratulations on the traffic.
    Genevieve @PFTwins recently posted…Weekly Gossip & Sunday LinksMy Profile

  27. Happiest of birthdays to you!! I hope you had a wonderful weekend!
    Amy recently posted…Weekend PlansMy Profile

  28. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!! I really enjoyed your list. I agree it’s a very cool number. We bought our son hockey skates tonight and they have a 55 on the back :-)
    Kara recently posted…The Weekly Blend #6My Profile

  29. I almost don’t want to comment, because at the time of writing you have 55 comments. :) Happy Birthday!! I hope it’s a good one. I can’t believe your university is still hitting you up for money! Sheesh. Congrats on getting picked up by the Globe and Mail. That’s awesome!
    Melanie @ Dear Debt recently posted…The Versatile Blogger AwardMy Profile

    • Ha ha, I noticed that too, Melanie. I’m in my 56th year though! Oh ya, it gets tiresome all the phone calls. Thanks for visiting and the birthday wishes!

  30. Happy Belated Birthday Debs! Loved your list of 55 thoughts on being 55. I especially like no. 25 – not many people can say that. Thanks for mentioning my debt free post and for all your support over the last year or so Debs – much appreciated as always. Congrats to Erin on her excellent post here too! :)
    Hayley @ Disease Called Debt recently posted…Debt Freedom in all its GloryMy Profile

  31. Happy happy birthday!! Your hair color rocks!

  32. Happy 55th birthday! I had my hair shorter too last year and I don’t want to do it again! lol!
    Clarisse @ Make Money Your Way recently posted…7 Tips On How to Keep Productive and Focused As a FreelancerMy Profile

  33. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Debs!!!! :) I hope you have a great day. And 55 is a really awesome number :)
    Natalie @ Financegirl recently posted…How I Saved Big Last Week At Macy’s (And It’s Not How You Think)My Profile

  34. Happy belated Birthday Deb! Hope it was a great one!
    Brian @ Debt Discipline recently posted…CommissionMy Profile

  35. Happy Birthday Deb!!!! Your birthday is my wedding anniversary, so it will be easy for me to remember going forward. Also, my best friend is a Libra and it seems there are lots of Libra bloggers I adore, so I must have a thing for Libras. :-) I hope you had an awesome day and I am seriously impressed with this list. I don’t think I could come up with 37 for me for my next birthday, but I am sure with enough cocktails in me I could find inspiration. :-)
    Shannon @ Financially Blonde recently posted…Music Mondays – MushaboomMy Profile

    • Yep, I was delighted when I saw it was the same date as your wedding anniversary and you guys were 11 years this year! Thanks, Shannon!

  36. I missed your birthday??? man oh man oh man oh man …

    Happy Belated Birthday Debs! Loved that list. Funny to see that party line part. We had an 8 party line when I was a teenager. What a lot of aggravation that was! Maybe it’s best anyone who doesn’t know what it is never has to hear the details, eh?

    I’m heading for that double nickel myself in just a couple ‘o short years, myself.

    Enjoy the next 55, Debs!

    (I’ll renew that when you hit 110!) :D

  37. Happy belated birthday!!! :D
    Morgaine recently posted…Pregnancy ShoppingMy Profile

  38. Happy Belated Birthday. I hope it was grand.

    • It was and I love that word! My Irish cousins always say “You’re grand, you’re grand” whenever someone offers to help them with food prep or serving or something, as in “No, sit. I’ve got it covered”. Thanks, Kim!

  39. Sorry I’m late, Debs. Happy Birthday! Break out the champagne!
    Myles Money recently posted…#SmartMoney | 19th Oct 2014My Profile

  40. Happy birthday!! I know I am late to the party but that is really great. Hope you had a fabulous day!!
    Debt and the Girl recently posted…One of My Reasons for Working Hard…My Profile

  41. happy birthday! I’ve got 20 years go to catch up with you and by that time I hope I’m wise :)
    Cecilia@thesingledollar recently posted…Mid-month check-inMy Profile

  42. Happy birthday, Debs! That was a fantastic list. I really like the stream-of-consciousness item to item–that’s exactly how I make lists! I can’t be contained to a single line! And, is that a photo of the back of your head?! I’m so excited to see you (or your cute hair at least)!
    Mrs. Frugalwoods recently posted…Music Mondays: What’s Your Mushaboom?My Profile

  43. Happy Birthday! Hope you have a good one!
    DC @ Young Adult Money recently posted…You Won’t Believe What the Show Breaking Bad is Actually AboutMy Profile

  44. A slightly belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! I love the list and hope you had an awesome day!

  45. Hi Deb and Happy Belated Birthday!

    I love your list of 55 and man I can relate to many of the things you mentioned since I also turned 55 this year. Maybe there’s something about our 55th years that makes Globe & Mail somehow attracted to our work…I was also picked up recently!

    Congratulations and keep up the inspiring work :)

    Ree Klein recently posted…Reflecting on Failure as a Byproduct of GrowthMy Profile

  46. Happy belated Birthday, Debs!!

    And I’m a little horrified your university is STILL hitting you up for donations. Ugh.
    Mel @ brokeGIRLrich recently posted…Grocery Shopping Is My Side HustleMy Profile

  47. Happy, happy birthday, Deb!!! Had to laugh at #8 and #9 – I find myself often looking in the mirror, going, “Who is this older lady, and where’s the young whipper snapper that I know I am?” Here’s to many, many more happy birthdays for you, my friend. :-)
    Laurie @thefrugalfarmer recently posted…2014 Garden ReviewMy Profile

  48. Happy belated birthday! Hope you found a nice frugal way to celebrate (even without the free donut) :-)
    Tre recently posted…Leasing Commercial SpaceMy Profile

  49. Happy Belated 55th Birthday from a new reader. In a couple of months, I’ll be celebrating my 65th. I was especially impressed with #42. So many people want to bulldoze quickly through a contemplative or down period, thinking that they’re stagnating. In truth, that period may indeed be a needed period of reassessment or strength-gathering before a new burst of growth.

    We’re not in debt, with a paid-off mortgage and car, but we want to stay that way and avoid drawing down the IRA. We’re glad to have that money, but an earlier-than-anticipated forced retirement, low interest rates on investments for many years and other factors mean that we have far less retirement funds than anticipated. In addition, a chronic illness that struck a few years ago may mean more physical limitations and costs in my future. We’re dialing down expenditures so that we can live on the much-aligned “fixed income” without depending on the IRA for a few more years, but this period of reassessment isn’t all bad. It’s one in which we make decisions about what’s important to each of us and solidify our forty-five year marriage when we try to make sure each of us gets those needs met. We don’t always agree. We think your “I spit on you!” is going to be our new tension breaker whenever financial discussions get too heated, so I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that blog post. (My husband wants to know if you’re Sicilian, since that’s his ancestry.) It’s been nice to find a blog that features some concerns of those of us not quite ready to go quietly into the sunset but certainly beyond the raising-young-family years.

    • What a nice comment! Thank you, Linda! Sorry to hear about your health concerns. I hear you about not wanting to draw down on your investments. It’s hard to know how much is enough. The 4% rule says that if you can live on 4% of your portfolio, then you should be able to make it last and not have to touch the principle. However, not everyone has the the goal of not touching the principle at all or maybe do not have enough principle. So my question is always, know do you how much principle is enough?

      I’m so glad you can use “I spit on you” for a laugh and tension breaker in any disagreements about money. It’s definitely good to have a laugh. Life is too short to sweat about such things, but it’s important that both partners needs are met and views are heard and understood. I’m not Sicilian, Irish actually, but I think we may be distant cousins. ;-)

  50. Happy belated birthday Debs! Great list – felt like less than 55 when I read it, but I think it’s the neat way you linked a few of them together!

    Was wonderful to hear number 25 – sounds like you’re in a pretty great place, as I don’t know many people who are able to say that – although 26 is just as great to hear :)
    Jason @ Islands of Investing recently posted…Confessions – my biggest investment mistakeMy Profile

    • Thanks, Jason. In reading it again, I see some of them are not even reasons of why it is good to be 55, but oh well. It’s how my 55 year old brain was working that day. ;-)