Last week my dishwasher died. It was over 9 years old and the last time I had had it serviced the repairman told me it was on its last legs. After a month of houseguests it had gotten quite a workout and finally quit on me.
After having the service guy check to make sure it wasn't just clogged, I went to Abt picked out a new washer. My repair guy offered to come on Sunday to install it. While I am excited to have a new washer the thing that makes me the happiest is that because I had some emergency money in our bank account there was no stress about how we were going to pay for it. Had this happened last year, I would have been in trouble. Credit cards were all maxed out, no reserve funds anywhere. I would have had to pay some bills late in order to make this work.
We still have debt but we're making progress. No new charges to the cards, keeping up with monthly payments, and paying big chunks whenever bonus money comes in. Once the Super Bowl is over I plan on taking time to get really organized with our finances. Update Mint, make a bill paying spreadsheet etc. why after the Super Bowl? Well, we're having 60 people come to our house to watch the game and it needs a thorough cleaning before that as well as a lot of food prep.