YES! If you went back into debt, you start over

$1000 BEF, then the debt snowball. So throw the extra $500 at the van, and get it paid off as quickly as possible. I’m considering ‘yelling’ at you for financing a van because ‘I had to’ is a convenient excuse. That’s the same excuse that keeps most people in debt for life. But in most cases it’s a lie, and there could have been another way to do things.
Not saying that’s what happened in your case, but others have avoided going back into debt after they’ve gotten out…

I promised I would be more active on here..

this is NOT DR related but hey, its all I got for now! Once in awhile we get hit with what we call the plagues of Egypt. By this we mean that we are hit with multiple difficulties at one time. My husband flew to L.A. for business for 3 days and my children from hard places were terrified he would not come back, that he would die, etc. Plus my youngest girls birthday is tomorrow and that makes a nasty brew for these kiddos….they act out like crazy because of their fear levels. Add in me still going through this blasted miscarriage (can we say frustrating…its been 4+ weeks), the two littlest have croup and my eye is hurting like its either a sty or a pink eye, hubster now has really bad jet lag, etc…see what I mean? Lots on our plate that all falls at once. But these are passing and fleeting and we’re so glad that the plagues do eventually abate.

We have issues with this too

Our budget is between $300 to $500 a month depending on what yearly bills are due that month. We live in Southern Cali where we are a family of 6 with 2 very big male eaters (DH is 6’4 and 270) 4 cats and 3 dogs. Also one in diapers so we use cloth diapers which saves a ton and is so easy to use.
I use coupons, loss leaders, clearance racks and try to make as much from scratch as I can that I cannot get cheaper with coupons. It always seems to be a balancing game. I had been sick the last few years ending in 2 surgeries last July. I am getting my strength back so we are back to growing some of our food. Just planted some carrots today.
I know people call those that use a lot of coupons and store a lot hoarders but it really makes a big difference when you do not have to worry if the kids will be able to eat. When there are great coupons I try to get as many as I can and stockpile all I can. Last couple of months there was a $1 off 1 Progresso soup coupon. I have about 60 cans ranging from zero to .28 each. We tend not to eat a lot of canned soup so that could last us a year. Also Walmart gives overages on coupons so when it is a coupon where the item is priced less then the coupon I shop there. Birdeye recipe ready is a good example. They range from $1 to $1.99 but there are coupons $1.50 on 1 and $1 on 1 so a lot of free and very cheap veggies for the freezer