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    • NinjaSavingKat
    • By NinjaSavingKat 29th Jan 13, 3:56 PM
    • 3,214Posts
    • 20,121Thanks
    The Ultimate February Challenge
    • #1
    • 29th Jan 13, 3:56 PM
    The Ultimate February Challenge 29th Jan 13 at 3:56 PM
    The Ultimate February Challenge; 28 days Later!!!
    Take Only What You Need

    We have all heard of or watched the zombie film 28 Days Later. A man wakes up in a deserted, litter strewn and creepy London. He realizes the world has been taken over by the walking dead so he runs. What does he take with him - only what he needs! He meets with others and they travel together, protecting and encouraging one another and what do they take with them - only what they need!!!

    I am on a journey! Every month a new challenge arises with barbarians ready to take on this challenge and join me on my quest of debt freedom. I am fighting the great fight against the marketing of merchandise I supposedly need, of conglomerate food prices and the ever present girly urge to buy something new and shiny!!!

    So join me dear reader, follow my rules, support your comrades and clear those debts. The theme this month is this; take only what you need! Afterall it’s only 28 days?

    It started as rioting. But right from the beginning you knew this was different. Because it was happening in small villages and market towns. And then it wasn't on the TV any more. It was in the street outside. It was coming in through your windows. It was a virus. An infection!”
    This infection = SPENDING!

    There are rules to follow but you need to create and discover your own self-restraint, your own desire to succeed and your own strength. This month’s challenge is a little bit different to others that have been posted in the past few months.

    We will use “Spend Free Day” = SFD to indicate your lack of spending on a particular day. Mark up your name on this thread and you will be added with a number for “UFC”. If you are wanting to lurk and cheer-lead please do. If this challenge doesn’t suit you please be aware it is VERY difficult to incorporate rules that suit everyone. Perhaps this challenge isn’t for you.

    1. This challenge will commence on the 1st February 2013 @ Midnight and finish on the 28th February 2013 @ Midnight.
    2. In light of some needing to avail of yellow sticker promotions when they are immediately available (me included) there is NO specifically required SFD. You are NOT tied into only doing your spending on a particular day. But if by chance you DO have a SFD tell us anyway.
    3. Those who are desperate to be told what to do and work better with rigid rules I want 20 SFD's.
    4. Set your overall budget before the commencement of UFC. Make sure you are compensating for food, possible vehicle malfunctions, birthdays, public travel and outings and also include beauty products. Then see if anything can be deducted from that. This month has to be TIGHT with the most amount of money saved.In total including food mine is 150.
    5. Ladies downshift some beauty bits. Use up EVERYTHING of what you have then reconsider that 30 foundation, the 25 face wash and such like. Are these products REALLY making a difference of providing a nice placebo effect? I downshifts my hairspray from Tresemme @ 2.89 to Tesco's Everyday Value @ 37p. No major difference!
    6. Social outing MUST be planned for and budgeted for otherwise you don’t go. Book your friends in now.
    7. Food budget has to be set and stuck too religiously. Many mishaps in January on my part will now be rectified. My budget is 60!!
    8. As with every other challenge those with stuffed cupboards need to clear them first - your budget will be for essentials like milk, bread, fruit and vegetables. You will be astounded by how much you save.
    9. Buy a homeless person a coffee/tea out of your budget.
    10. Get to grips with eBay, get ruthless and sell what you haven’t worn in 6 months and what you haven’t read. No particular budget required but I would say a minimum of 50 is a good start for each participant.
    11. Bring your lunch to work everyday with no exceptions. Stay away from Starbucks, Costa, Nero, work Canteens, cafes and take away’s. Buy a travel mug or flask and use that and batch cook.
    12. Put aside 10 for a treat at the end of the month - preferable day 28. it can be anything as your reward. Mine will food related no doubt!

    That’s it. Who’s with me?

    When joining in please do not copy and paste this entire thread and comment on each point. You are either in or out. It will take up too much space and clog the thread. When you are putting forth your name just a one liner is sufficient. Commenting, cheering, lurking and updates will commence on the 1st February only. Until then I will simply be adding names to the list. And please remember the theme of this thread is to HELP ONE ANOTHER so unhelpful, nasty or rude comments will not be tolerated and marked as spam and reported

    This Forum Tip was included in MoneySavingExpert's weekly email

    Don't miss out on new deals, loopholes, and vouchers

    Last edited by Former MSE Debs; 05-02-2013 at 5:37 PM.

    On the road of life..
Page 2
    • Learning2Budget
    • By Learning2Budget 29th Jan 13, 9:15 PM
    • 1,067 Posts
    • 4,906 Thanks
    Me. I NEED THIS!!! Will sort figures later. L2B.x
    LBM 2008 45,091.23 eek: now 15,402.25 Debt free date 19/04/2019
    • fairy3
    • By fairy3 29th Jan 13, 9:49 PM
    • 416 Posts
    • 3,842 Thanks
    Me please!!! looking forward to battening down the hatches but will post targets tomorrow.
    Was looking for the original quote for 'Onwards and upwards' and there are about four....liked this one though
    "And so, lifting as we climb, onward and upward we go, struggling and striving, and hoping that the buds and blossoms of our desires will burst into glorious fruition ere long. With courage, born of success achieved in the past, with a keen sense of the responsibility which we shall continue to assume, we look forward to a future large with promise and hope. Seeking no favors because of our color, nor patronage because of our needs, we knock at the bar of justice, asking an equal chance." Mary Church Terrell (born 1863)

    Thank you everyone for the great support it has been appreciated......x
    Not Buying It 2015!

    No SM's in 2015
    • lionheartedgirl
    • By lionheartedgirl 29th Jan 13, 10:12 PM
    • 866 Posts
    • 3,039 Thanks
    count me in please thanks Kat X
    Never sit in the comfy chair - Jake Humphrey
  • CandyCupcake
    Count me in Kat


    Total debt to date: 3,238.10
  • wiggysgirl
    I'm in

    Will work out my budget and update later
    JAN 2013 - NEW YEAR - NEW LIFE
    Sealed Pot Challenge # 2014
    UFC #23 SFD 1/14 Fuel 20/120 Groc 25.23/120 Spends 7.88/140
    • nannygladys
    • By nannygladys 29th Jan 13, 11:57 PM
    • 938 Posts
    • 9,295 Thanks
    Hi everyone, Kat count me in on this one please, I will also update with targets later.

    Thanks for the January challange, took some doing but I mostly made it

  • dottydoodle
    i'll have a go of this please, 1 friends birthday this month so a night out and a meal is already planned so i will include that in this months budget..
    • total food budget for me and the kids 150
    • SFD - with various kids activities and needing to pay for them on the day i will only be going for 15 sfd's
    • Ebay - only just got my account up and running again so hoping to sell a few things so put me down for 50 and we'll see how close i get!
    This is going to be interesting as i seem spend money almost every day, this will be the biggest challenge for me i think
    Last edited by dottydoodle; 30-01-2013 at 12:41 AM.
    • Marylea
    • By Marylea 30th Jan 13, 12:48 AM
    • 79 Posts
    • 556 Thanks
    I'm in please.....January started well, but is now looking pearshaped, but I am learning as I go!

  • poodlegal

    "And so, lifting as we climb, onward and upward we go, struggling and striving, and hoping that the buds and blossoms of our desires will burst into glorious fruition ere long. With courage, born of success achieved in the past, with a keen sense of the responsibility which we shall continue to assume, we look forward to a future large with promise and hope. Seeking no favors because of our color, nor patronage because of our needs, we knock at the bar of justice, asking an equal chance." Mary Church Terrell (born 1863)
    Originally posted by fairy3
    Love it very apt for us Barbarian Zombie slayers!
  • Everhopeful09
    Hi All,

    Kat please can I get a number?

    January I fell off the NSD wagon, but back to start afresh for February!

    Eh xx
  • km1977
    Me tooo I want in, in fact I will have to have had my hours cut at work grrr have just had my pay slip and only just have enough to cover my bills :-( I get some ct and wt credits but I am defo in will work out a budget later have to go to work now have lots of food in so will work my way through that first and just get fresh veg and bread etc we are also on a gas and electric meter so have to budget that in to will walk to work too or bike to save on the pennies 3.40 a day is a lot to save 3 days a week neeeed another job with more hours but then I get taxed more so dont really know what to do arrrggghhh at least I have one just wish it was for more hours :-(
  • Happybeingme

    I've set my budget at 310 for everything (Food budget is 260 for 5, I don't drive and am planning one outing during half term. This budget also includes the 10 'end of month treat').

    I don't do ebay so won't be joining in with that one ~ hope that's ok?

    I'm aiming for 20 SFDs

    Sealed Pot Challenge #103 (SPC '13 ~ 197) (SPC '14~ 74/350 Target for Christmas/400 target for Holiday ~ 750 Total)
    ~ Star from Sue-UU

    Bank of Mum 40/3600; Catalogue 165/165; Overdraft 250/250
    • nannygladys
    • By nannygladys 30th Jan 13, 11:01 AM
    • 938 Posts
    • 9,295 Thanks
    Hi everyone, well I have done the budgets and following my sucess in January (if you take the OD out of it) Im going to go for a really tight month, I live on my own, have quite a lot still in my cupboards and freezer (realise now that I hoard food - must have been a squirrel in previous life) and as far as I know I havent any do's planned with the family and if there is they can treat meso the upshot of all this is wait for it .....67 for the 4 weeks, I arrived at this figure cos its the amount of cash I have in the house, so Im aiming on NOT using the bank account for anything, its going to be sooo.... hard but Im determined to get that OD down.

    Im also going to cut the amount of electric and gas I use and read my meters everday to make sure - I read them once a week so I know how much I use at present, cos I only pay 50 for both of them so I have to be careful - well Im going to be even more careful

    I know it sounds a bit extreme, well it does to me but whilst Im all fired up I'll have a go at it. I also only want to go to the shops once a week so I will have to be ultra organised on the food front and hope I dont need anything urgently

    And finally, I will have a look at ebay, I have a few bits to get rid of but ebay doesnt really do it for me, but when needs must.... so here we go, looking forwards to February and I will update my sig soon.

  • karmachilovething
    I've just crunched the numbers.... I feel a bit sick

    Everything that is going out has been accounted for but I really don't want to post figures because it looks so completely ridiculous! I was on such a high but now i feel, well... blah. Not good. I don't want to have to rearrange the whole month and we will have physical money to cover it all and still make a dent in the debts just not as big a figure as last month. Someone send some positiveness my way please? And remind me that it is okay to have a life as long as you're still paying off the debt and not using credit?
    Originally posted by mayfair1985

    I was pretty shocked by my numbers too, but it's just an expensive month for me. March should be A LOT better as I will explain . . .

    So . . . I pledge
    20 SFDs
    And total budget of 446

    But this includes:
    60 for food (10 less than last month)
    50 for petrol (hopefully less, but that's a tank)
    120 for social I'm hoping I won't need all this but I have a friend who's leaving work, my housemate is leaving, a friends birthday, and two friends who are moving to France. Each of these has a separate event. Work do might be cheap (management buy a few rounds ) and might not make the French thing . . . we'll see. Better to have the money spare than the other way round!
    50 to rent a van and 156 for storage: My lease is ending and I'm going to stay at my parents for a while. The storage is paid 3 months in advance, but is absolutely the cheapest in the area, half the price of anybody else.
    10 Treat

    I knew February was going to be a expensive month, but I didn't realise that bad! But the other way to look at it is that before NSK a month like that would mean serious additions to the debt (as most of it would go on the credit cards), whereas now I know I have the cash. I won't have much cash for overpayments but I know the debt won't get worse either
    Total debt: 9473.62 7,384.87 22% PAID
    TAF #25 NSD 8/12 | Food 43.45/50 | eBay 0/20 | Exercise 5/18
    Proud to be Dealing with my Debt
    DFD: June 2015
  • squinky
    Please could you count me in for this one J

    I will be on holiday from 4th-14th but wont count this as its all already paid for, all inclusive and I have got my spending money. I am a sucker for cosmetics so will just have to shop my stash instead of buying more! I have already downshifted my hair appointment, I would previously spend 100-120 on my hair but have found a new salon with a great offer and even with a tip should only spend 55, my appointment is on Saturday & I have the taken the cash out already to pay for this. As long as I plan well, lunches shouldnt be a problem and I am sure if I was honest with myself I could find some things to sell online too.

    Right so I only have 50.50 in my bank account, I get paid again on 25th and so will add an extra 5 a day until 28th and hopefully will get back the 25 I am owed making my budget for this challenge 95.50 (or 150.50 if you're counting Saturday's trip to the hairdressers?!)

    Thank you!
  • rosiecheeksblossom
    Hello MSErs,

    Just being sitting trying to sort figures for feb budget and feel pretty carp about it. Everyone else's budgets are way lower than mine.....
    I have left my food and petrol the same as Jan, as they were only a few quid out give or take. My going out is slightly more this month but a weekend away arranged and Ive not spent a 1/3 of Jans budget which is good. Presents is a smidge more than Jan and Ive given myself 20 other. My car is also due it's 1st service which Ive allocated 30 for as already pay a special DD for this.
    Blooming number crunching, will have final total tomorrow hopefully.

    TTFN xx
    Halifax CC All paid Mort 7669.99,Car loan 31 months to go
    Food 99.25/100 Petrol 133.12/150 presents 59.12/80 going out 73.75/150 toiletries 4.50/5 other 179.07/100 money made 480 SFD 11/20
  • mayfair1985

    I was pretty shocked by my numbers too, but it's just an expensive month for me. March should be A LOT better as I will explain . . .
    Originally posted by karmachilovething
    You sweetie. You have made me feel a bit less dirty about this months budget. Ok, I'm coming clean......

    700.00. For two of us. To Include

    Tobacco (don't shout, please. I know. I Seriously know. But it's a low cutting down process and this month a total of 9.00 will be spent on this.)
    A payment on a Hen do
    A 30th Birthday celebration & Present contribution (50, and it's a must. This person has helped us a huge amount last year and we need to say thanks!)
    A dinner party for the parents
    A little valentines day treat (20)
    A new pair of boots because i can't ignore the hole in the sole that is giving me wet feet and in turn a hole in my soul....
    A casino day at a friends that has been in the diary since before christmas
    A baby shower
    And a few other bits that are planned. The list goes on.....

    So that's me. Pre-confession. BUT not a penny of this will be on credit. This time last year most of it would have been so it's a good step.AND we'll still make a dent in the debt. So even though the spends are I think i'm okay ish with it. And i'm ok with having a tight March to compensate.

    • niksyg
    • By niksyg 30th Jan 13, 6:44 PM
    • 677 Posts
    • 3,566 Thanks
    I have crunched some numbers so I have come up with a budget of 200.

    That is to cover all food (for 2 adults), going out and incidentals (for me).
    I have made up 4 envelopes ready for the 4 weeks - that way I can easily see what I have in the way of cash for the week.

    I have worked it out so that I have a buffer of 50 left in my account incase of emergencies - that way I won't use credit.

    Will update daily to help me keep track
    Trying hard to reduce our debt and live more simply.
    1% Challenge No. 305: 100% of 1380 paid
    • gien
    • By gien 30th Jan 13, 7:32 PM
    • 1,408 Posts
    • 13,681 Thanks
    eurgh, I know that sinking feeling when the numbers don't add up!

    So, I am in again with a very limited budget, as bad as last month really.

    I have a couple of medicale bills I have to pay although I am waiting from my health insurance to reimburse them. They always take ages.

    Food - 380
    petrol - 40
    kids lunches - 50
    speeding ticket (yes, I know,) 100 (I could cry)

    we also have the half term break this month which will probably mean we spend a bit more than normal, but We'll keep it as low as possible.
    on the plus side, we really should be due some tax back but I have no idea how much or when.
    we can't spend too much this month because we simply don't have it, and I'm not going to put anything on the credit card, so when the money is gone, it's gone.

    thank goodness February is a short month!
    Trying to keep in budget.
    • StressedSteph
    • By StressedSteph 30th Jan 13, 7:53 PM
    • 2,746 Posts
    • 10,448 Thanks
    Count me in please Kat, Thanks for doing this.

    Had my LBM three months ago, and am starting to feel the strain. Hope this challenge will keep me motivated.

    Food Budget 200 (Family of 4)
    Petrol 160 (Oh's van and my car)
    Half-term - 30 I have Tesco vouchers for a day trip out but may need more Petrol etc.

    I am going to go for 25 SFD's. Not too hard for me as I live in a quite an isolated area with 7 miles to the nearest shop, so not much temptation

    Don't think I can buy a homeless person a coffee as I never see any.

    Roll on February
    Argos 395 / Barclays 850 / Next 1972 Littlewoods (2479)
    Overdraft (3264) - 724 / Barclay cc (1852) - 1080
    Virgin CC (4371)-1598 / Tesco CC (5336) - 1725 / Lloyds cc - 2300 / Bank of Scot - 896
    LBM Dec 2013 20,519 - September 2015 - 8,323
    Paid off 59.5% (205 = 1%)
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