God works in mysterious ways! In May 2013 I wrote a journal entry about living our high consumer lifestyle. In the journal entry I said:

From the looks of our lifestyle we appeared wealthy and as if we were living the American dream.


My husband and I both have terrific jobs. He works in the private sector in technology for a well-known company making six-figures. I work in the public sector, in public safety and made a decent income. Between the two of us we are making well over six-figures. Three times that of other (Utah $55,869/U.S $50,502) two-income families, in Utah and the U.S.

Now, I don’t mention the figures above to impress anyone, rather to show just how far into the trap of consumerism we fell.

Canyon’s consumerism dirtbike

In September 2013 I took an inventory of our current lifestyle. Here is a brief summary:

  • We are a two-income family making over six-figures a year.
  • We have a mortgage on a 2,400 square foot home
  • We have a half mortgage on a similar size home for the in-laws
  • We have 2 newer vehicles – both of which are financed.
  • We have 2 A.T.V.’s & trailerĀ  – and I had no clue where we stood financially on those
  • We have 3 dirt bikes – all of which are financed
  • My husband has a new Harley-Davidson – which is financed

When I reviewed all of the possessions we had compounded with the debt I knew I alone had, I was utterly ashamed, sick to my stomach and afraid.

God has shown me, through the desire to blog, just how much we have consumed and the severity of our debt. Again, I am ashamed and ill! Yet, I vow to do everything in my power to reduce our debt, free us from the bondage to our creditors, and to start following a life of voluntary simplicity.

I would love to hear about any money problems you may have experienced in the past and how you over came them. Please leave them for me in the comments below!

4 comments on “Our Fall From Grace: American Over-Consumers”

  1. The first 10 years of my marriage were the same way. We were drowning in debt. We finally were at the point of bankruptcy when we got a second mortgage to pay off our high credit card debt. We have been credit card debt-free ever since. It’s mostly because my husband realized he couldn’t feed his family if something major didn’t happen, and we both vowed never to use credit cards beyond what we could pay off each month.

    • Susan – it’s so easy to get to this point and a very scary place to be in. It was opening last months credit card statement that finally scared me to the fact that our consumerism is out of control. I knew I had to find a solution to combat how we got here and since I was interested in the voluntary simplicity movement 15 years ago I’ve begun looking into it again. We just can’t keep this cycle going.

  2. Oh, I cannot go into detail but let’s say, “the more you make, the more you spend” in America and I too, have fallen into that trap. We make very close to 6 figures but seem to pay ourselves first and our debts later. We eat out often and but things for the kids, who are college age now. We have one in college and one who wants to move from New England to California to start his life as a grown-up. (lol) So we have been trying to buy things for him here and there for his living space.

    We too, need to crack down and live more simply. I’ve been feeling it for years. I wish you the best and can tell you that I completely relate.

    Thank you for sharing.
    Missy Bell

    • I totally understand Missy! For us eating out is the a major part of our debt. When I added up our credit card debt 1/3 of it was dining out! That is too much!
      I also get wanting to help out your college age son – luckily ours are still younger and living at home. I can’t imagine when they want to move out. Even now we haven’t given them very good money habits to go out into the world with.
      Hopefully, with my drive towards voluntary simplicity I can fix what in our life I seem to have broken.

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