On Monday Ross and I celebrated a relationship milestone (and no I do not mean my iPhone). We combined finances. The old "what's mine is yours" has a whole new real meaning now.
Joel once told me that when you sit down and have a family budget meeting, get everyone's eyes on the same target, that magic happens. I can't say that magic has happened in the past 48 hours, but I have to say, I do feel more like a team already. We had been sharing snippets of financial information with each other. For instance, he knew I had college loans and I knew he charged his day to day stuff on a credit card that he paid off each month. That was kinda it though.
In just 48 hours I feel like I know so much more. We haven't had just one talk but several small ones. Today's was the most detailed. What comes in and when? Exactly what goes out and on what days? At the end of the month do we break even or have a little for savings? Can we put enough into savings (really) to buy a house next year?
Ross wants to carefully track everything for the next month while we work out the timing of all our many bills now from just one account. I'm really pleased with how proactive he's being on it. I like the feeling of joint control and leadership as opposed to one saying "here's the scoop" and the other following. The shared effort is what makes us a team.
The target our eyes are on is a house. We've set a goal for next summer but I can't help but look now. I get really excited when I see houses that we could afford now. It makes me want to buy one now. Forget resigning the lease, let's buy a house! However, despite the tempting nature, I have Ross to remind me that now is not the greatest time. We're just on our feet. No need to stretch ourselves thin. Ironic since I just said the same thing to him earlier tonight when I made the case for saving for a starter home, not a forever home (he agreed). Just hours later the same words came right back to me.
I guess that's an example of being a team. We alternate between dreaming HUGE and saying "dear, let's be more realistic." I'm glad we do that because it would be rotten for one person to always be the realistic one or for one person to always be shot down. We have a lucky balance going on.
And my new phone, still super fun. Amazingly fun actually. (Ross is so wonderful for getting it for me.) It is GPSing me all over town, sending me texts from friends, being my messenger and a acting as a Lexi/Ross picture frame.