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  • FIRST POST
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 8th Mar 15, 11:07 PM
    • 5,821Posts
    • 30,228Thanks
    AlexLK
    Renovations and Repayments.
    • #1
    • 8th Mar 15, 11:07 PM
    Renovations and Repayments. 8th Mar 15 at 11:07 PM
    Hello and welcome to visitors familiar with my journey thus far and are surprised to see me on such a sensible board and a further warm welcome to the new faces wondering what they've let themselves in for.

    Let me begin by clarifying a few points: the first one is I am not sure whether I'm actually serious or not about clearing my mortgage and the second is the fact my house needs quite a bit of work doing to it. This work I do myself and in the time my wife and I have lived in the house we've learnt all kinds of new skills. The current project involves renewing the windows and I am making the frames myself, two are done and I'm pleased to say look great.

    I plan to use this mortgage free (how very grown up) diary to document the renovations and my savings activities, out of which overpayments may or may not be made. However, I am fully committed to long term saving and making as much money as possible. A long term goal of mine is to add to the BTL portfolio I shall one day inherit and am already becoming more involved in which is perhaps a good reason to pay my mortgage off and make my current property into an investment.

    Aside from the recent interest in moneysaving I have a four year old son, run my own company, play and teach the violin and piano whilst studying for my own interest. Oh and don't mention the cars.

    Those familiar with my debt-free diary will know I'm not exactly great at record keeping but am trying to improve, so please don't expect the detailed financial updates others seem to put on here. To kick things off, I suppose I ought to confess the mortgage debt is a total of circa £185,000 and I have no real timescale or plan in mind to pay it off.

    Sorry if this is not a particularly articulate introduction, as I seem to be at a loss how to tailor it to both those who've read my debt free diary and to new readers frequenting mortgage free.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
Page 151
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 13th May 17, 8:23 AM
    • 1,556 Posts
    • 17,918 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Good to see you back Alex - your Son's illness explains where you had gone. Watch that selling stuff bug, it can become a bit of a compulsion! Before you know it you will have accumulated enough for the bathroom, then the mortgage, and next thing you'll be on the FIRE trail
    MFiT T4 #2 update 42.67% after Q7 £5,465 behind where I should be
    Save £12k in 2017 #64 - £9,260.94 saved (84.19%) after October - my annual target is £11,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2017 budget of £3,600 £3000 (reduced from Apr) - 78.56% including stores after October
    My DFD is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5593594
    • maman
    • By maman 13th May 17, 11:05 AM
    • 16,992 Posts
    • 101,611 Thanks
    maman
    Today they made one of my recipes together for lunch. They've told me they are going to try the recipes themselves and I've shown them some websites with recipes and how to use an iPad as a "recipe book" by propping it up on its stand. No idea how they'd not worked that out for themselves, though. Both are being reasonable at the moment but I'm not expecting it to last as I always have done in the past. We did have a serious talk about the fact my son struggles to trust them; my parents were devastated. .
    Originally posted by AlexLK

    That's great news! It'll give them something to occupy their time instead of relying on you to entertain them as well as the obvious healthy eating.


    Hopefully, in time, they can rebuild a relationship with LittleK.


    An absolute nightmare couple of days. My son has been violently ill (some kind of sickness bug), wife has been working away. Stayed up for 42 hours with no sleep at all on Wednesday - Thursday.


    Well, I ended up going to my parents' when my wife was away. Having been awake for 42 hours with absolutely no sleep, I was feeling rather ill myself and my son still wasn't too well but was getting better. My parents do things to infuriate me but if I really need them, they will help and in those times are usually really good. Yes, I'll accept I'm 36 and shouldn't need my mother and father. .
    Originally posted by AlexLK

    Poor little chap (that's LittleK not you!). Thinking about it though he's had minimal illness since starting school which is unusual. Hopefully it'll be the same for you when you 'start school'. It's very common to pick up every bug going until you build up an immunity.


    No problem with looking to your parents for help in the circumstances. I would imagine it must have been very difficult if LittleK was violently ill with no functioning bathroom. It's just that I don't want you (or them) to get too comfortable with you being there.


    Absolutely. Managed to be up £150 this week and we're on target to have the £1,000 surplus, so should be up £1,230 this month and we've got the rest of the month to make some more.

    Already trying to offset the costs, maman. 9 months is the worst case scenario and I don't think it's going to be that bad. I don't want to be in debt and want to declutter the house (well, to my standard ... ), so there's going to be things to sell anyway. Also, we are trying to live a bit more frugally until this is paid.
    Originally posted by AlexLK

    I think you've done really well with your grocery budgets lately. It is possible to eat healthily without it being too expensive. I think the way forward is plenty of planning so you don't waste food or buy ready made stuff, have smallish meat portions balanced by plenty of vegetables and keep away from the cake shop!


    However you pay it off and I'm sure you will it would be good if you did it so you can move on to the next project rather than because you don't trust yourself with the 0% card.


    Hope you have a good weekend now that MrsK's back and things returning to normal.
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 14th May 17, 11:06 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Now have a day.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast.
    Start work on the bathroom More work happening over this week, I think by the end we will have some items fitted.
    Total Grocery Spend: £200 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 7 / 31.
    Meditation: 8 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 14 / 31. The one thing I'm keeping up with.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items. +£150 which will mean we're £150 less in debt once the invoice is paid.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. 3. Demolishing a bathroom.

    We are using a cashback card for grocery shopping / petrol. Finding it much easier to track spending rather than everything going through the account / cash. We set up a direct debit which will clear the whole balance every month, so no potential issues with it not getting paid. When my wife suggested this, I was very reluctant but it seems to be working well so far.

    Also set up a direct debit for the 0% card to take £300 per month, so no chance of that becoming a new nightmare problem.

    Will catch up with comments tomorrow as I'm very tired after a busy weekend.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • newgirly
    • By newgirly 15th May 17, 7:05 AM
    • 5,861 Posts
    • 40,044 Thanks
    newgirly
    I put everything on a cashback card now Alex and just have a small amount as personal money in cash, I find it so much easier to see where all the money goes that way.
    MFW 21
    Target for 2017 £38,545 / £17,514.78 paid so far

    Mortgage £47,354 years 8 months left. Total owed £62,871.22 planning to clear in 18 months
    Weight loss target 37lb/22lb gone.
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 15th May 17, 11:17 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws.
    Now have a day.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast.
    Start work on the bathroom More work happening over this week, I think by the end we will have some items fitted.
    Total Grocery Spend: £205 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 8 / 31.
    Meditation: 9 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 15 / 31. Keep finding ways to utilise spreadsheets at the moment.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items. Plan for tomorrow is to work on this for a few hours.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. Spent some time on this today. 3. Demolishing a bathroom. Think I can safely say this is done.

    Good to see you back Alex - your Son's illness explains where you had gone. Watch that selling stuff bug, it can become a bit of a compulsion! Before you know it you will have accumulated enough for the bathroom, then the mortgage, and next thing you'll be on the FIRE trail
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    I got heavily into selling stuff when I was a DFW. However, it was more buying stuff to sell on rather than selling surplus stuff we don't need. Would like to get back into a bit of antiques / pens / watches dealing.

    That's great news! It'll give them something to occupy their time instead of relying on you to entertain them as well as the obvious healthy eating.

    Hopefully, in time, they can rebuild a relationship with LittleK.

    Poor little chap (that's LittleK not you!). Thinking about it though he's had minimal illness since starting school which is unusual. Hopefully it'll be the same for you when you 'start school'. It's very common to pick up every bug going until you build up an immunity.

    No problem with looking to your parents for help in the circumstances. I would imagine it must have been very difficult if LittleK was violently ill with no functioning bathroom. It's just that I don't want you (or them) to get too comfortable with you being there.

    I think you've done really well with your grocery budgets lately. It is possible to eat healthily without it being too expensive. I think the way forward is plenty of planning so you don't waste food or buy ready made stuff, have smallish meat portions balanced by plenty of vegetables and keep away from the cake shop!

    However you pay it off and I'm sure you will it would be good if you did it so you can move on to the next project rather than because you don't trust yourself with the 0% card.

    Hope you have a good weekend now that MrsK's back and things returning to normal.
    Originally posted by maman
    My father called today for advice on using "notes" on iPad as they've slightly modified a recipe and want to share it with me. Find it rather hilarious they call me for tech advice. Quite pleased they seem to have found a new hobby, though. They are much more pleasant to be around when they are kept busy.

    They have mentioned my son and I going to them in the half term holiday one day for my son to bake some cakes with them and for me to have a day of peace and quiet. Not really going to happen in their company. I'm going to speak to my son about baking with his grandparents as a plan for a day in the holiday but am going to give him the final say for if he wants to or not.

    My son has had a few illnesses since starting school, nothing major or like last week, though. The school is very small which I think probably helps and he seems to have quite a strong immune system, thank goodness.

    Thank you re. grocery budget. I am pleased with it too and we are eating healthily, probably more healthily if truth be known. Planning has become something I'm slowly becoming accustomed to it. I've gone from dreading it to embracing it. I was concerned it would potentially bring some issues of control I used to have but it hasn't. Glad I'm over that and understand things cannot always go exactly as one would wish, nor can one hold much influence over others.

    We will definitely pay off the 0% card. I am concerned about the debt but I also realise if I am going to be successful with some of the business plans I have for the future, I need to be able to deal with debt / borrowing in a sensible manner.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 15th May 17, 11:20 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    I put everything on a cashback card now Alex and just have a small amount as personal money in cash, I find it so much easier to see where all the money goes that way.
    Originally posted by newgirly
    I remember telling you I could never be comfortable with doing things this way on your diary.

    Not 100% comfortable with it now but after the first few DDs have gone out of the account and I realise we can sensibly manage our finances, I do think it may ultimately be the right choice and well, there's the money for nothing element but that's because I'm a tight northerner.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • maman
    • By maman 15th May 17, 11:38 PM
    • 16,992 Posts
    • 101,611 Thanks
    maman
    It's great that something as simple as cooking is proving so good for you, LittleK and your parents. I do hope he feels able to take them up on the invitation for half term.


    I remember telling you I could never be comfortable with doing things this way on your diary.

    Not 100% comfortable with it now but after the first few DDs have gone out of the account and I realise we can sensibly manage our finances, I do think it may ultimately be the right choice and well, there's the money for nothing element but that's because I'm a tight northerner.
    Originally posted by AlexLK
    I do almost all my shopping this way just keep a bit of cash handy for the odd pint of milk. It's all credit to you (excuse pun) that you can use a card and not overspend.

    Managing things like using the card and the 0% for the bathroom are great steps towards bigger projects in the future. You've come such a long way.
    • kelpie35
    • By kelpie35 16th May 17, 1:53 AM
    • 1,522 Posts
    • 4,835 Thanks
    kelpie35
    You are doing so well Alex.

    Keep up the good work.

    Pleased that your son is feeling so much better, long may it continue.
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 16th May 17, 7:54 AM
    • 1,556 Posts
    • 17,918 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    My son has had a few illnesses since starting school, nothing major or like last week, though. The school is very small which I think probably helps and he seems to have quite a strong immune system, thank goodness.
    Originally posted by AlexLK
    School is the place to develop your immune system a bit - exposing the children to each other so that if one gets a bug, they all get it at the same time. It's much "healthier" that way and their immune systems all benefit. My Mum had a German Measles party to make sure we all got it. We always seemed to catch everything but have really good immunity now. I hardly ever get colds or chest infections (just as well with asthma!). My Sister only got mild chicken pox and subsequently the virus came back as shingles when she was in her thirties. That was much more serious.

    My husband also gets a batch of snuffly grunty infections with each new year's intake as he gets exposed to a new mix of germs - and they catch them from each other as their localised immunity is tested with batches of different local germ colonies.

    So a long way of saying don't worry. There's a lot of merit in the old saying, "Whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!"
    MFiT T4 #2 update 42.67% after Q7 £5,465 behind where I should be
    Save £12k in 2017 #64 - £9,260.94 saved (84.19%) after October - my annual target is £11,000
    OS Grocery Challenge 2017 budget of £3,600 £3000 (reduced from Apr) - 78.56% including stores after October
    My DFD is http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5593594
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 16th May 17, 10:41 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Now have a day.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast. 3. Son baking with parents.
    Start work on the bathroom More work happening over this week, I think by the end we will have some items fitted.
    Total Grocery Spend: £205 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 9 / 31.
    Meditation: 10 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 16 / 31. A little to do after writing this.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items. Plan for tomorrow (today) is to work on this for a few hours. That didn't happen.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. 3. Demolishing a bathroom.

    Had an impromptu meal out with my wife and son as she was working in Derby for the day so we drove there after school, had a walk around the city (which is awful and seems to get worse every time I visit ) then met up with my wife. Avoided going in a couple of shops that are nice, I have far too many clothes and don't tend to buy things that go out of fashion luckily so haven't needed to replace any items for a long time. Think I will order a couple of new shirts for September which will be expensive (sorry but I refuse to buy cheap shirts) as a couple could do with replacing and I need to buy a new Barbour this autumn too. One I've had for years is awful and the other, whilst OK, could do with becoming the dog / shopping jacket and replacing for a new one to wear for school. Considering also buying another linen jacket for school during spring / summer. So this year is looking a little more expensive than the last few for personal clothing spends. However, a few years back I didn't think about what I needed and would just buy things which I still wear today. My wife has admitted she doesn't need to buy any new clothes this year which is definitely a first.

    It's great that something as simple as cooking is proving so good for you, LittleK and your parents. I do hope he feels able to take them up on the invitation for half term.

    I do almost all my this way just keep a bit of cash handy for the odd pint of milk. It's all credit to you (excuse pun) that you can use a card and not overspend.

    Managing things like using the card and the 0% for the bathroom are great steps towards bigger projects in the future. You've come such a long way.
    Originally posted by maman
    My son is going to my parents' to bake. I saw mother and father today and told them if I hear of any unsavoury behaviour I will not accept it and they will not see my son or be invited to days out over summer. They were surprised but seemed to accept the terms. Took father for an appointment with his GP, to my surprise he has opened up about his problems with control / regret / guilt and has agreed to try counselling. Quite pleased he recognises the way he has treated my son and I in the past is unacceptable. However, I can't say I'm convinced he will really change all that much.

    Thanks, maman. I am concerned enough about debt that I will not overspend. As we plan our spending now, there's not really any room to overspend thankfully.

    You are doing so well Alex.

    Keep up the good work.

    Pleased that your son is feeling so much better, long may it continue.
    Originally posted by kelpie35
    Thank you, kelpie.

    School is the place to develop your immune system a bit - exposing the children to each other so that if one gets a bug, they all get it at the same time. It's much "healthier" that way and their immune systems all benefit. My Mum had a German Measles party to make sure we all got it. We always seemed to catch everything but have really good immunity now. I hardly ever get colds or chest infections (just as well with asthma!). My Sister only got mild chicken pox and subsequently the virus came back as shingles when she was in her thirties. That was much more serious.

    My husband also gets a batch of snuffly grunty infections with each new year's intake as he gets exposed to a new mix of germs - and they catch them from each other as their localised immunity is tested with batches of different local germ colonies.

    So a long way of saying don't worry. There's a lot of merit in the old saying, "Whatever doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!"
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    We've always been very lucky with our son health wise but I do wonder how he will fair with the cold / germ / bug type infections when he attends a larger school.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 17th May 17, 9:55 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Now have a day.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast. 3. Son baking with parents.
    Start work on the bathroom Work is happening but it seems all too slowly. Going to our neighbour's for a shower everyday is getting old, despite them being nice people and making us breakfast and nightly visits to the loo outside isn't helping me to get a good night's sleep. A bit too much information there. The bathroom situation is bothering me the most but I think that's because I'm here all day and am dealing with the work being done.
    Total Grocery Spend: £215 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 10 / 31.
    Meditation: 11 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 17 / 31.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. 3. Demolishing a bathroom.

    Not in a great frame of mind today. Took the dogs for a walk with my mother and she thinks I'm causing my father to be "reflective". I have had a few difficult conversations with them about how they treat my son and I recently which I know has upset my father and prompted him to do what he did yesterday. She got a bit annoyed with me again showing she thinks anything can be solved by throwing money at it.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • Red-Squirrel
    • By Red-Squirrel 18th May 17, 11:32 AM
    • 1,888 Posts
    • 5,186 Thanks
    Red-Squirrel
    There's research that a shower everyday is unnecessary and bad for your skin. You could skip the odd day and just brush your teeth and have a 'festival wash' with some baby wipes or a soapy flannel.

    Or if you have a swimming pool/leisure centre in driving distance what about a swimming or sport trip as a family a couple of times a week and use their showers after?

    It'll all be worth it when the new bathroom is done! I'm decorating at the moment and doing it all myself between shifts and the disruption is starting to get to me a bit now, so I feel your pain!

    If your father is reflecting, that can only be a good thing. It might not be easy on your mum but maybe it will trigger some uncomfortable feelings and thoughts for her too. Just because changing and becoming a better person isn't easy doesn't mean we shouldn't try to do it. Look at you, it's not been easy for you to get to where you are, but you've grown so much and made such positive changes to the way you think and how you approach people and situations.
    Last edited by Red-Squirrel; 18-05-2017 at 11:34 AM.
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 18th May 17, 10:23 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Planned a few more details today.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast. 3. Son baking with parents. 4. At least one quiet day dog walking etc. 5. Swimming (thanks, Red Squirrel ).
    Start work on the bathroom Starting to see some progress with this now items have started to be fitted today. Not in a usable state yet but despite being concerned about our budget the suite so far looks fantastic. Also means we are getting a lot closer to the 0% debt going live. Managed to have a laugh with my father about it today, though. He said if a 0% debt was all he had to worry about at my age he'd have been grinning from ear to ear. I asked him if he thought I'd be able to handle this responsibly and he said he thinks I will.
    Total Grocery Spend: £235 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 10 / 31.
    Meditation: 12 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 18 / 31.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. 3. Demolishing a bathroom.

    Struggling a bit today. I've been volunteering at school and it's been a bit of a hard day. Pupils have been generally bad tempered and I don't think I delivered a particularly good session to one group or handled some behaviour issues in the best possible way. I'll move on from it and know what I need to do next week. Things like this happen sometimes. Going to have an unexpected car bill also which it has only threw at me today; having investigated I've also found another problem which means I'm going to be re-building the diff so might as well do a rear brake overhaul and a few other jobs. Mrs K and I will probably be able to get it all done in one weekend, though we need to get the car we want to sell gone.

    We've decided we aren't going to France this summer. I'd rather put the money towards getting the debt paid and we are still going to have a holiday as we're going to go to Spain for a week which will cost our flights and food only. My mother is going to drive us to the airport to save on parking / taxi fees. Definitely going to France next year, though.

    Told my parents I won't see them until next week as we are busy with other things. I suppose I was quite blunt about it but I do need to have some boundaries in place.

    There's research that a shower everyday is unnecessary and bad for your skin. You could skip the odd day and just brush your teeth and have a 'festival wash' with some baby wipes or a soapy flannel.

    Or if you have a swimming pool/leisure centre in driving distance what about a swimming or sport trip as a family a couple of times a week and use their showers after?

    It'll all be worth it when the new bathroom is done! I'm decorating at the moment and doing it all myself between shifts and the disruption is starting to get to me a bit now, so I feel your pain!

    If your father is reflecting, that can only be a good thing. It might not be easy on your mum but maybe it will trigger some uncomfortable feelings and thoughts for her too. Just because changing and becoming a better person isn't easy doesn't mean we shouldn't try to do it. Look at you, it's not been easy for you to get to where you are, but you've grown so much and made such positive changes to the way you think and how you approach people and situations.
    Originally posted by Red-Squirrel
    Never heard that. IIRC you are a nurse, so I assume would be privy to such research?

    We have a leisure centre in driveable distance and go swimming sometimes. Not been for a few weeks so have made it a "something to do" over the holiday. Also gives us something to do this weekend as we were a bit stuck. Thank you.

    The decorating between shifts sounds like hard work. Yes, I'm starting to see the project will be worth it now.

    I think I have inherited at least some of my father's depressive tendencies. Never realised it at the time and he would always deny it until recently but I think he has some issues with mental health. Recently, his memory has been of concern but this seems to be improving. He is under the care of the medical profession and they have thankfully not found anything untoward (he does have other health concerns but everything is stable at the moment). Father goes through periods of remorse and regret for the past, though he usually returns to his old self which in turn disappoints me. I don't want him to be upset, just to not tell me he wishes he'd behaved in a different way only to behave in the way he regrets to my son. Anyhow, he'll do what he'll do ultimately.

    My mother is different. She doesn't regret any actions she has taken in life and believes they / she are / is were / was right.

    I seem to have been playing counsellor to others again today. Friend from school who had a bit of drug problem has now fell head over heels in love with a girl he's met a couple of times (story of his life, there) but is concerned she won't be interested when she finds he's divorced / has some financial problems. Mrs. K. put it in perspective when she said "so, he's not concerned she'll run a mile over the fact a few months ago he was high practically everyday but a marriage that didn't work out and a few late payments mean it's doomed from the start ... tell him not to give her his log on to Experian and that at our age I doubt she's still angelic." Harsh but she does amuse me.
    Last edited by AlexLK; 18-05-2017 at 10:26 PM.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
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    • gallygirl
    • By gallygirl 19th May 17, 10:07 AM
    • 16,455 Posts
    • 107,807 Thanks
    gallygirl
    Struggling a bit today. I've been volunteering at school and it's been a bit of a hard day. Pupils have been generally bad tempered and I don't think I delivered a particularly good session to one group or handled some behaviour issues in the best possible way. I'll move on from it and know what I need to do next week. Things like this happen sometimes.
    How positive is that! The 'old Alex' would have seen it as 'proof' of how useless he was rather than putting it in perspective as you rightly have . How far you've come .


    Told my parents I won't see them until next week as we are busy with other things. I suppose I was quite blunt about it but I do need to have some boundaries in place.
    Ditto, how far you've come .

    Mrs. K. put it in perspective when she said "so, he's not concerned she'll run a mile over the fact a few months ago he was high practically everyday but a marriage that didn't work out and a few late payments mean it's doomed from the start ... tell him not to give her his log on to Experian and that at our age I doubt she's still angelic." Harsh but she does amuse me.

    Save
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    A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort
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    "Do what others won't early in life so you can do what others can't later in life"
    • LadyGnome
    • By LadyGnome 19th May 17, 12:15 PM
    • 420 Posts
    • 1,550 Thanks
    LadyGnome
    Alex, your parents may never develop the ability to change their behaviour, some people don't, partly because they might not want to deal with their past behaviour. However just being able to recognise that your parents have issues and this affects how they treat people might allow you to distance yourself from the effects of their behaviour. It really is them not you. I work in a stressful environment with people who can be under quite a lot of pressure and so I have learnt not to take a lot of behaviour directed at me personally. Its hard at times but it really does help your own equilibrium if you can take a mental step back and see it as the other person not coping very well.

    Alex, I agree with the others that the change in tone in your posts is wonderful. You have come a long way over the last few years, you should be proud of yourself.
    Mortgage
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    June 2017 £248,590.81 Reduction £61,409.19
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    End Oct Sept 2034 but I have a cunning plan...
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 20th May 17, 12:28 AM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Going to call this done.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast. 3. Son baking with parents. 4. At least one quiet day dog walking etc. 5. Swimming (thanks, Red Squirrel ).
    Going to call this done, also.
    Start work on the bathroom One more week and we should have a fully functioning room. Nearly there.
    Total Grocery Spend: £235 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £230 / £1,000.
    11.30pm bedtime: 10 / 31. Hectic day today, literally only just stopped at midnight. Actually had more hours working today than Mrs. K. Plus other Friday commitments. Had a really good day, though and am now definitely ready for the weekend.
    Meditation: 12 / 31.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 18 / 31. Haven't managed to update. I have put a reminder in my phone, so that will let me know tomorrow what I need to do.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3.
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. 2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. 3. Demolishing a bathroom.

    How positive is that! The 'old Alex' would have seen it as 'proof' of how useless he was rather than putting it in perspective as you rightly have . How far you've come .

    Ditto, how far you've come .


    Save
    Save
    Originally posted by gallygirl
    Thanks, Gally. I only realise this from reading your comment but for a week or so I've managed to not instantly see myself as a failure. I actually thought the other day that I'm where I need to be right now and the past needed to happen for me to not remain the ***** I was, also to make me a better parent. To be honest, I would have very little time for who I was but I'm starting to see that refusing for my wife to display a picture from our wedding or similar because I don't particularly like or even really recognise myself from then isn't how to move on.

    We're all a product of our upbringing but I'd like to think in adulthood the choices we make can improve who we initially became once given our own freedom.

    Alex, your parents may never develop the ability to change their behaviour, some people don't, partly because they might not want to deal with their past behaviour. However just being able to recognise that your parents have issues and this affects how they treat people might allow you to distance yourself from the effects of their behaviour. It really is them not you. I work in a stressful environment with people who can be under quite a lot of pressure and so I have learnt not to take a lot of behaviour directed at me personally. Its hard at times but it really does help your own equilibrium if you can take a mental step back and see it as the other person not coping very well.

    Alex, I agree with the others that the change in tone in your posts is wonderful. You have come a long way over the last few years, you should be proud of yourself.
    Originally posted by LadyGnome
    Thank you, that makes a lot of sense and I hope you're right, LadyGnome re. being able to distance myself. I also hope my parents will make meaningful and lasting changes but am not going to pin my hopes and self worth upon it. I've had to step back quite a few times in teaching so far and I'm sure I have a lot more of that to do when I have a class of my own (hopefully, one day). Therefore, I do and can understand this.

    I do try to strive to be a lifelong learner and improve myself. Might not seem like it at times but I think we all have the capacity to improve. I hope I can pass this on to my son and he will be in a better position to cope with adult life in the first place.

    Well, that's my philosophising over for the night as bed beckons ready for a good night's sleep and a bright (or rainy ) morning.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
    • EatingTheElephant
    • By EatingTheElephant 20th May 17, 6:29 AM
    • 1,152 Posts
    • 6,177 Thanks
    EatingTheElephant
    So much positivity in your posts Alex, even when you hit issues, really good stuff
    • heartbreak_star
    • By heartbreak_star 22nd May 17, 11:23 AM
    • 7,611 Posts
    • 16,788 Thanks
    heartbreak_star
    Alex, if I could "thank" your last few posts twice I would.

    Brilliant work long may the positivity continue!

    HBS x
    I believe in ordinary acts of bravery, in the courage that drives one person to stand up for another.

    #JC4PM
    • Elephantchunks
    • By Elephantchunks 23rd May 17, 4:11 PM
    • 110 Posts
    • 592 Thanks
    Elephantchunks
    Hi, I've just finished reading your entire diary Alex. It's been emotional and extremely interesting to get an insight into your life. I love this new positive Alex and hope he's here to stay x
    • AlexLK
    • By AlexLK 24th May 17, 11:35 PM
    • 5,821 Posts
    • 30,228 Thanks
    AlexLK
    May Targets:
    Days getting longer and summer only around the corner, May is the month to sell a no longer wanted classic, I think. Still not done this.

    Organise trip to Rutland Water with in-laws. Going to call this done.
    Organise Whitsun holiday. 1. Trip to R.W. 2. Trip to the coast. 3. Son baking with parents. 4. At least one quiet day dog walking etc. 5. Swimming (thanks, Red Squirrel ).
    Going to call this done, also.
    Start work on the bathroom After a weekend / start to the week working on this, we're almost there.
    Total Grocery Spend: £235 / £400.
    Surplus Money: £1,230 / £1,000. Going straight to the bathroom project.
    11.30pm bedtime: 11 / 31. Managed an early night yesterday.
    Meditation: 12 / 31. Not managed this for a few days.
    Schedule / Spreadsheets: 18 / 31. I'm behind with this again. I need to have a couple of hours on this tomorrow and have planned to do so tomorrow evening.
    De-clutter and Sell: 1 / 5 items.
    New Recipes: 1 / 4.
    Books read for pleasure: / 3. Hardly read at all but June is a new month ...
    Learn something new or refine a skill: 1. Continue learning and applying new knowledge to create more sophisticated and streamlined spreadsheets. Think this will need to carry over to next month.2. Learn a new piece of repertoire. Getting there with this. 3. Demolishing a bathroom and rebuilding it. .

    Life has been very busy over these past few days. Not really sure where the time has gone if I'm honest. Anyway, I'm back and realise how far behind I am with my targets (apart from the surplus money one ). Sat here wondering if I set myself targets that are difficult to keep, yet at the beginning of the month they seem quite easy to meet. However, I seem to blink and another month passes before me. I'm quite disconcerted about this, to be honest.

    So much positivity in your posts Alex, even when you hit issues, really good stuff
    Originally posted by EatingTheElephant
    Thank you, I am trying. Not sure where the months are going at the moment but things are quite good at the moment so trying to enjoy life a little more.

    Alex, if I could "thank" your last few posts twice I would.

    Brilliant work long may the positivity continue!

    HBS x
    Originally posted by heartbreak_star
    Thank you, HBS.

    Hi, I've just finished reading your entire diary Alex. It's been emotional and extremely interesting to get an insight into your life. I love this new positive Alex and hope he's here to stay x
    Originally posted by Elephantchunks
    I don't think I could sit and read my entire diary with all the rants / completely off topic things I post. Anyhow, erm, congratulations, you are through it and have reached the end for now.

    Thank you, I hope I can retain a balanced but more positive outlook too.
    Saved £11,000 in 2015, £9,800 in 2016.
    From a £32,000 debt on 2/9/2013 to debt free on 12/1/2015.
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