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Some Very Exciting News

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I have been holding in some very exciting news. I don’t like holding in things, but I had to make sure it was a done deal first, and I am excited to say that it is!

First, let me start of with a few things I’d like to say about this site. I started this site two and a half years ago and thought I’d have maybe 100 visitors a day. Scott Burns changed all of that when he interviewed me for an article for the Dallas Morning News. Then a few months later I was interviewed for an article in the New York Times by John Leland. My little blog grew beyond my wildest dreams and put me directly in the spotlight. Now, if you passed by me on the street, you probably wouldn’t have even noticed me. I’m the shy girl…the wall flower. I don’t try to draw attention to myself and when the spotlight is on me…the real me…I get very, very shy.

I almost pulled the plug on this blog after both media mentions. But I kept blogging. I thought it would help me break out of my shell a little bit. It has some – I have met some great people through this blog and many of them I consider my friends although I have never met them. I have read so many stories of people in the same situation that are glad I am blogging about our debt reduction. Those emails and comments kept me going with blogging and with our debt reduction. The conversations I have had made the world seem less small and made our situation seem not so bleak.

But being in the public eye has put a bit of pressure on me. I worried about my site breaking, I worried when I sat down to write something and I didn’t have anything debt related to say, I worried if I wrote too much personal information. I worried a lot. That is one character trait of mine that I wish would go away. I’m getting better with it, but I still have a lot of work to do. Blogging is also a lot of work behind the scenes. There are the emails to reply to (although I usually run behind with replying – I have replied to almost all emails received). Then there is the site maintenance to keep it online. I didn’t know anything about running a website when I started – that has greatly changed now. For every problem, I had to spend hours scouring the web trying to find a solution. Many weeks, my blog became my 2nd full time job.

I have received income from advertisers on this site, but I never felt right making more than minimum wage with it. In fact, I made less than minimum wage most of the time. There is potential to make a lot more, but then it would affect our debt reduction too much. I didn’t want the site to do that. I also never have the desire to have a career in debt reduction and write a book, in essence becoming a “debt guru” of sorts. I’m not a finance professional, and have no formal training in financial issues, so I don’t feel I’m qualified to do that. The one thing I was qualified to do is talk about our life and that is what this site became…our debt story.

Because so much of myself has been put into this site for all to read, I had made up in my mind a while ago that I would not continue blogging about our finances once our credit card debt was paid off. It was time to step away from the spotlight and be the wall flower again. But I still wanted the site to remain active without having the administrative duties associated with having this website. Then I received an email.

The email was from Jeffrey Strain from savingadvice.com. You probably already know of his website (that he runs with his partner Nate). In fact, since near the beginning of this site I’ve had a link that displays a money saving tip of the day courtesy of his site. He also is behind the pfadvice.com blog and you can see his name attached to many personal finance articles, even some on Yahoo Finance. They have a great site for people to work on saving money, but they were looking to have a place for people in debt to go so they approached me about purchasing my blog.

I have been approached a few times by individuals interested in purchasing my site. I even received a nice offer from one of them. But I didn’t do it. At the time, it didn’t feel right. I always had a dream that this site could keep going on forever with people blogging away their debt. Jeffrey shared that vision with me. Right then and there, the discussions I had with him became very serious and we came to a purchase agreement.

So Jeffrey and I finalized the paperwork, I received the funds and the site is now transferred to their servers. I’m not going anywhere right now, though. I’m still going to be here and I’ll still be blogging away our debt. The purple and green will still be here. The same ads will still be here. Not much will change right now at all, except the search will begin for a new person to take over writing on here (and earn some extra money!) once our debt is paid off. An announcement about that is coming soon – so keep your eyes peeled if you are interested!

I know what you are thinking…what about the money from the sale? I had to think long and hard about what to do about the money. We could put it all towards our credit card debt. I didn’t want to do that though. What I have decided to do is draw a salary from the sale for the months that I am still blogging. The exact details I will discuss in another post since this one is already becoming a novel and there are some updates to give regarding our income in general. I agreed to stay on here for at least six months, possibly longer if our debt is not paid off. That brings us very close to our original debt payoff goal date of May 2009.

It’s hard to put in writing how excited I am about this sale. I don’t think I could have asked for better buyers of the site. I am also very excited to no longer have the administrative duties associated with keeping this site up and running. I can focus solely on writing and get out many of the posts that I have been wanting to write and I’ll have extra time to work on our business, which I am really excited about as well. That means I can write that huge post on saving money on groceries and I can get some more monthly expense posts up (I brought those back only to start slacking again). Once our debt is paid off, this site will live on as I had hoped it would under awesome ownership – and I think that excites me most of all.

I hope all of you are excited as well and I can’t wait to meet the new blogger. I am excited for them because this has been an amazing journey, and all of you have been so supportive and helpful. I feel very selfish at times – I’m not sure all of you realize how much all of you have helped me! I don’t say it enough – thank you!!!!

There is more to discuss about all of this, including the particulars of the sale. I’ll talk about those details later. For right now, I wanted to let everyone know about this before I burst from the excitement πŸ™‚


39 Comments

  • Reply Ian |

    Contratulations! I know it’s both exciting, and probably a bit scary. You have come so far. I hope that even when you decide to step away from this blog you will continue to blog. You have been an inspiration for me.

    ~Ian (‘Family Man’)

  • Reply Cos |

    a very big CONGRATULATIONS goes out to you! its been fun to follow your story right up to this icing on the cake.

  • Reply Nerd Money |

    You have created an awesome site with all your hard work and have inspired so many people with your story. Congratulations Tricia! I hope that even after you finish blogging here you’ll come back every so often for an update.

  • Reply rj |

    Tricia, that is wonderful news. YOU have accomplished so much and probably much more than you expected especially with your latest news. I have been following your blog since Scott Burns mentioned you in the DMN. I wish you luck in your future endeavors and this may be a future career for you as well…

  • Reply Mrs. Micah |

    Very interesting. It’s particularly awesome that this blog will help pay off your debt.

    I also think they’re wise to keep you on board (and you’re wise to stay on board) at least for now. When I hear about blogs being sold, I wonder if they’ll survive without the personality who shaped them.

  • Reply MB |

    Congratulations!

    I was saddened and confused by one aspect of your posting: you said that your website could have earned you more money over the years, but you held back because you didn’t want it to affect your debt pay-off too much. That’s really limited thinking that I’m worried will hold you back in life. I understand that you didn’t want some windfall to just knock out your debts, and it’s smart that you decided to focus on making long-term life changes with how you handle money. However, that’s no reason to purposefully earn less. You could have been taking the extra money from the last two years and placing it straight into a college savings account for your child. You could have put it directly into a retirement account that you can’t access until an older age. There are many options other than just choosing to earn less!

  • Reply Tricia |

    Ian – I don’t believe I will still blog, at least not in the personal fashion as I’ve done here. If I happen to change my mind, Jeffrey is fine with me making an announcement.

    Nerd Money – I do plan on following the new blogger, so you’ll see me around πŸ™‚

    MB – This blog could have brought in more money, but given how I felt about this blog – it wouldn’t have felt right to me. But that is unique to this situation. I’m all about making lots of money with future endeavors πŸ™‚

  • Reply CanadianKate |

    Congrats! And I’m glad you can finish off your blogging without having to deal with the maintenance and technical issues. I swear computers, with their technical issues, rob us of almost as much time as they save us.

    It sounds to me from your post that blogging out of debt has also helped you discover what is important to you as a person. I think it is wonderful that you are willing to walk away from this (which you are obviously talented at) to focus on your true passions in life.

  • Reply Frugal Dad |

    A hearty congratulations to you, Tricia! I’ve followed your journey over the years. In fact, you were one of the first financial blogs I followed, and were part of the inspiration behind beginning my own blogging journey.

    More importantly, I’ve enjoyed watching those falling debt balances and have been inspired by your perseverance. Best wishes in your new endeavor!

  • Reply paidtwice |

    Congrats Tricia! What a nifty way to end the credit card debt story πŸ™‚

    You have more restraint than I do, I would be paying off the credit card as we speak. I don’t do well with waiting. πŸ™‚

  • Reply Jim ~ mydebtblog.com |

    So you sold your blog to pay off your debt then? I guess you got what you were after.

  • Reply Nicole |

    Congratulations Tricia! It could not have happened to a nicer, sweeter person. I have been lurking here and cheering you on from the beginning. I have been a little worried lately because your posting frequency and particularly your financial updates seem to have decreased. I am so happy it is for this great reason! You are such a rare person in our world today…I have always been in shock when you don’t do something because it “doesn’t feel right.” There are far too few people who uphold high standards and morals today. Good for you on being true to yourself, and congratulations again!!!!

  • Reply Sherri |

    Tricia! Wow. That’s such great news.

    I started reading your blog after hearing a story about it on NPR. (I just searched for the story: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=11596225.) I went to your site, and I got immediately hooked. I’d never been a blog reader before, and yours was the first I read. I started checking it daily (before I realized the wonders of Google Reader) and also looked for other blogs I liked as much as yours. I have 11 blogs on my Google Reader now, and yours is by far my favorite. I don’t even HAVE credit card/consumer debt and you kept me coming back. I think that speaks to your writing skills in many ways, but particularly how your warm personality shines through. I’m sure if we had met instead in “real life” it would have been easy to stereotype each other as being very different. People can say what they will about blogs, but one thing they have done for me is cause me to try and strip the superficial differences away and realize that, at the core, many people are more alike than not. The more society tries to draw lines and fraction our country into little blocks: “Wal-mart moms,” “elites,” “blue-collar workers,” etc, the more I resist. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog, and am so happy that you will be passing along your blog to someone else you feel will carry on its vision. I know you are not leaving us yet, but I wish you all the best in your life once you step out of the “spotlight.” I’ll still be rooting for you.

  • Reply Natasha |

    I have only really been reading your blog the last month. You have been very inspiring. I am sad you are now going to stop but am excited for you and hope everything goes well.

    Congratulations.

  • Reply arduous |

    Wow! This is amazing news. I am so happy for you, and also sad, because I’ll definitely miss you when you stop blogging. πŸ™

  • Reply Him and Her |

    You started blogging only a month after we started. Even though we don’t comment much we both read your blog and you have remained an inspiration for our own debt reduction.

    Good luck in your future endeavors!

  • Reply Maniac |

    Congratulations! Great news for you and your family. I am only sad that I just discovered your site last week. Your story is an inspiration to many. Good luck and best wishes in your future endeavors.

  • Reply Cap |

    congrats to the sale! no better future owner than jeffrey, and double congrats to another big step forward to hammering down those debts.

  • Reply Jana |

    I’m so excited for your new decision. I’m so sad to see you go… in 6 mths:) you inspired me to acknowledge and get to work on my cc debt. i am a daily reader of your blog and i will miss your humor, honesty and dedication to your family. However, as a private person myself — i am with you 100% Good Luck!

  • Reply hs@ourdebtblog |

    OMG! YOU SOLD OUT YOUR READERS!!! Hey I can’t blame you, money makes people do strange things, the temptation of having more LOL, oh well money talks! good luck with all your future projects.

    HS

  • Reply Wren |

    To Jim at mydebtblog.com – according to what I read, Tricia isn’t actually going to use that money for paying off her credit card debt, but take it as a salary while she is still blogging. She even says that, by doing it that way, they will remain relatively on track for paying off their debt by next year. Seems to me, if she were taking the money and running, she would pay it down now and be done, don’t you think? As for HS, I don’t see how she’s sold out her readership… if you’ve read any of the history of this blog, you know that she never intended to do this forever. So eventually she would be saying goodbye to those who follow her, no matter what. So why shouldn’t she find someone who will actually continue what she’s started in some way? I think it’s a good thing, and wish you all the best, Tricia.

  • Reply mapgirl |

    WOW. Tricia, that is fantastic. Jeffrey is a great guy and I’m glad you felt comfortable enough to sell your blog and let go when you’re ready to let go.

    Thank you so much for your inspiring posts and dedication to debt reduction. I admit, I have a little bit of the green-eyed monster when I look at your numbers, but I wish you all the best in your future debt-free, blog-free life with your family.

  • Reply Joy Smith |

    OMG Congratulations!!!!!! I am sooo very happy for you. I am glad to see that you will still be here for a while, but when you do go, will you let us know where your new blog will be? I’d like to continue to follow you! I really enjoy your blog and it’s funny because I am a wall flower just like you.

  • Reply kalimah |

    Congrats!! Just goes to show that when you help others, it all comes back to you. Continue to serve and inspire those around you and it will always come back. I wish you all the best.

  • Reply Jonathan |

    Congratulations! So many people have no plan for what their blog will become after they stop posting in it, and too often it becomes abandoned and just collects spam comments. But this is a great plan to keep the domain going and continue to attract readers. Bravo!

  • Reply Eva in TX |

    Congrats! I’m going to miss hearing your daily triumphs and setbacks, but I wish you only the best as you move on to other opportunities. I hope you’ll let us know how your family’s doing from time to time.

So, what do you think ?