DEAR ABBY: Our house will soon be paid off. My husband and I would like to have a party to celebrate, but we're not sure if we should.
None of our friends are anywhere close to paying off their mortgages. We made the choice to drive old cars while our friends all have beautiful new ones, and we were genuinely happy for them each time they proudly showed them off.
I'm a stay-at-home mom, and I am our friends' emergency contact for their kids at school. They have taken amazing vacations, and we have enjoyed their stories and photographs. We used the time and money trips would have cost to stay home and work on projects around the house. We haven't envied them; we just had different goals.
Should we celebrate this -- just the two of us, or with our friends? -- DIFFERENT GOALS IN NEW MEXICO
DEAR DIFFERENT GOALS: True friends celebrate each other's victories. With no more mortgage to pay, you and your husband will now be able to enjoy some of the things your friends have been enjoying all these years. While some couples would prefer to mark the occasion with a special dinner at a nice restaurant, if you're inclined to do otherwise, then throw a party. You deserve it.