Hire yourself. Make your family's finances your business. TheFamilyCEO.com

When this blog began in early 2006, I was a stay-at-home mom with a husband, two kids, two dogs, and a pretty ordinary life in the suburbs of Kansas City. And like a lot of stay-at-home moms, I was brainstorming ways I could add to our family’s income.

Our finances were in okay shape, and by that I mean we paid our bills on time and our good credit scores reflected that. But we weren’t getting anywhere with our money.

• We had too much debt and not enough savings.

• Our daughter was four years away from college and we had very little saved.

• We were in our early 40s and retirement was no longer in the distant future. Like an object in a rear view mirror, it was closer than it appeared.

But income wasn’t our problem.

You can always use more of it, of course, but we had more than enough for a good life. Our problem was that we weren’t making the most of the income we already had.

Specifically: we weren’t using it to build wealth, we were using it to qualify for payments.

While considering all of this it occurred to me that if I were to really focus on our money – like it was my job – that that could make as much of a difference as that part-time job I was considering.

So I hired myself to make our family’s finances my business, and that’s how The Family CEO was born.

As it turns out, focus is powerful thing.

Since that time we’ve been able to:

• Pay off over $59,000 in debt.

• Put our daughter through college using cash.

• Increase our retirement savings.

• Add to our emergency fund.

We’re currently in the process of putting our son through college using that same no-debt plan and, once he’s graduated (Spring, 2018), we’ll be able to supercharge our retirement savings and plan for what’s next.

We’re really excited about that.

Now, in case I made all of that sound easy, know that this has been a journey. A journey we’re still on. And our route from there to here hasn’t been a direct one.

We’ve lost focus at times, and made less than perfect decisions. But we’ve always found our way back to the path and we’ve discovered some important things along the way:

• The more we pay off debt, the less we’re okay with it. That’s why those debt-free college educations are so important to us.

 • Paying off debt and building your savings can be as fun as spending. Addictive even.

• Found money – a strategy that I ran across while paying off debt – makes a big difference in your finances. BIG. It’s like finding an income stream you didn’t know you had.

So that’s what we talk about here. If you’d like to have future Family CEO posts delivered via email you can subscribe for free here.

Thanks very much for stopping by. I’m happy you’re here.


  1. Julie,
    You are absolutely one of the best personal finance bloggers online. I love your work and appreciate your insights. Keep up the great work and I’ll keep reading!


  2. Julie,
    Just read your bio over here at Family Ceo, after connecting with you via email about Mr Rebates commissions, and I am SO similar to you in my view about our family finances and goals. I’m looking forward to reading all your blog posts!

  3. Hi Julie,
    Thanks for the comment on my blog. Glad to have found you and glad to see we have some things in common, hopefuly the debt thing we share in common will be gone soon. Adding you to my blog roll.

  4. Hi Julie,

    My name is Christy Kondogiani and I work for Cari Cucksey who has her own HGTV show called Cash and Cari. I’m a new member to her team and also will be on the show (Season 3) starting this Febr. Just wanted to say that I try to find a lot of fun articles and blogs to post to our readers (we’re also working on a blog ourselves) and I found your blog just today so I hope you don’t mind I mentioned you a few minutes ago on our RePurpose FB pages. :) Your blog is awesome as I’m also married and a mother of two little girls. Everything we stand for at RePurpose is exactly what you live as well…it’s great to see you talking about it to your readers too! :) Just wanted to say hi and let you know that I put a link to you on our FB pages…RePurpose and RePurpose Estate Services…hope it gets you more readers!! :)
    Thanks so much! Happy New Year! :)

  5. Hello, I’ve just found your website.

    You mention “hiring” yourself as CEO. I love taking a business approach around the home. There are many things we do at home, or with home finances that would never be tolerated in a business. Great site!

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