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  • FIRST POST
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 28th Oct 16, 12:08 PM
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    EssexHebridean
    EH - Essex > Hebrides...facilitating the next step of the adventure?
    • #1
    • 28th Oct 16, 12:08 PM
    EH - Essex > Hebrides...facilitating the next step of the adventure? 28th Oct 16 at 12:08 PM
    Well well - here we are again then, new diary as threatened promised - the previous one can be found HERE - there are others too - if I can be bothered to go find them I'll add in some links, otherwise feel free to go stalking if you should wish to!

    Previous diary to the previous one mentioned above...
    ..and the previous one to that, too...

    So, I've been here a while (since 2008, in fact) and can't ever imagine quite managing to leave entirely now. I've made some seriously good friends thanks to this place (Stripes, Cheery, I'm looking at you ladies!) - and for that reason alone I'll hang about like a bad smell for as long as they'll have me. A brief summary of "me" - too short to reach anything interesting, Londoner (full of resentment due to being forced out when we wanted to buy somewhere to live - damned incomers and property prices!) currently living in Essex with MrEH. The username is Essex = for where we are currently, and Hebridean = representing the fact that the long term plan is to move to the ludicrously far-flung but ridiculously beautiful islands off the west coast of Scotland. (as and when the move happens I shall be requesting a change of name to LondonHebridean so nobody even THINK about taking that one, OK?)

    Started on here with a loan and a tenuous grasp on our money, plus a mortgage. Budgeting happened. An emergency fund was built. We discovered we liked the challenge of teaching financial institutions a lesson. The loan was kicked into touch first off, and then we started the onslaught on the mortgage. Various adventures along the way including losing half my income practically overnight and a 6 year experiment with being self-employed, all good fun. We waved a cheerful goodbye to the mortgage on 30th September this year - paying it off over 12 years early and according to MrEH's clever spreadsheet saving ourselves around £35k in interest had we left it to run to term. Go us, eh?

    So - this is the next chapter, really. While debt free (and that seems amazing) we want to:

    a) Stay that way
    b) Build a savings pot - firstly to ensure that we can at the least put down a chunky deposit against a future "Islandy" dwelling, and secondly to assist with a lifestyle which is less work and more full when we get there.
    c) Do up our existing flat to make it into a fab place for us to live while we're still here, and a desirable rental for when we're not.
    d) Have fun. Lots of it.

    There will be food, regular lunatic visitors (that's this thread, not at home, although sometimes at home too), a reluctance to wield hairbrushes, some Little Red Jets, and hopefully some laughs along the way. Want to join me for the ride? Well I'd be delighted - grab a chair!!
    Last edited by EssexHebridean; 17-11-2017 at 6:58 PM.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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Page 34
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 9th Oct 17, 9:13 PM
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    beanielou
    I agree beanie. I stopped commenting on the thread in question because I felt that there was a bit defensiveness and denial going on.

    Everyone has a different approach, but I have never seen Essex be anything other than supportive and helpful.
    Originally posted by HairyHandofDartmoor
    So very true.
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 2 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.*** ***Keep plodding***
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 9th Oct 17, 9:15 PM
    • 889 Posts
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    Cumbria lass
    EH always welcome at my diary don't get many visitors, but it keeps me focussed so very happy with that.
    Nov 2017 CC1 £3329 CC2 £600

    Debt Free Nov 2019: earlier if I have my way
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 9th Oct 17, 10:45 PM
    • 3,265 Posts
    • 8,388 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    Please don't butt out of my diary EH, or stop posting on your own - I always find what you post thoughtful and helpful (and together with DIA, you are my role models for the meal planning I will do when I grow up).

    I'm not going to bother nosying on the other thread as I'm sure what you said was fine. I spend very little time on the boards these days as real life is so busy and I also don't 'technically' belong here any more - but I really appreciate both the encouragement and the occasional butt kicking I received early on, in fact I have no idea how I would have managed money-wise without this forum. And I still really appreciate having a space to keep myself on track and remember how scrimping in some areas lets me pursue dreams in others... as well as the chat and giggles


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3%


    • Silver Queen
    • By Silver Queen 10th Oct 17, 9:17 AM
    • 165 Posts
    • 1,002 Thanks
    Silver Queen
    EH you are one of my favourite people around here and one of my favourite diaries to nosy about. I suck at updating my own diary because not much is going on in my life but I love reading yours. Your advice is always helpful and you're always friendly so I do hope you continue
    Debt Totals November 17:
    £350 Natwest Credit Card / Now £0 £15,500 Loan from Parents 1 / Now £12,500 £500 Loan from Parents 2 / £500 £2,000 Overdraft Now £1,700
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 10th Oct 17, 10:28 AM
    • 8,214 Posts
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    EssexHebridean
    Oh my - you lot! Massive hugs all round - thank you. It's funny - it only takes one comment like that one that got to me to make you question what you're doing and destroy your confidence - but by the same ticket as feeling that the other poster confirmed needs to realise that not everyone who's taking her to task can be wrong, I guess I also have to acknowledge that it was a single remark, almost certainly designed to be unpleasant, and generally, those are best shrugged off, tough as that is. You lot most definitely CAN'T all be wrong - and again, thank you for your lovely comments.

    Beanie/HH Yes - I think you're right - I've felt for a while that the OP concerned there was the archetypal "playing at it" poster - perhaps debt-busting is the trendy middle class thing to do at the moment so she's joined in? No idea, but bearing in mind she's said that she doesn't actually care about being in debt (how on earth someone with several kids can feel like that I can't begin to imagine - surely you'd want to make sure you had security for them if nothing else?) I can't see her really having much success sadly - and less so if she refuses to listen to people trying to steer her on the right path.

    Time to draw a line under it I think - what's the phrase - "You can't help them as won't help themselves" isn't it?!
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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    • Hiddenidenity
    • By Hiddenidenity 10th Oct 17, 10:36 AM
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    Hiddenidenity
    Time to draw a line under it I think - what's the phrase - "You can't help them as won't help themselves" isn't it?!
    Originally posted by EssexHebridean
    Exactly this. You tried and even if not taken on board by who it was intended I am sure like me many others take on the advice you have given.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 10th Oct 17, 10:49 AM
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    EssexHebridean
    So general update then:

    Prolific - few odds and ends yesterday - £2.74 payable, £5.70 pending. Hoping for a few more oddments today/tomorrow to get me to £10 for Thursday, but we'll see.
    OnePoll - sitting at £32.85
    Got a YouGov survey yesterday - think I'm at 2750 there now - and losing the will!
    Populus - quiet as a quiet thing.
    Secret Surveys - £3 payable which I may log in and extract in a bid to remind them I'm here again!

    3 months to the end of the year and looking at what I've already paid off the 0% card that suggests that I *ought* to be able to hit my £700 target. £184 to go to reach it, or £61 a month. £28 of that is achieved with the standard DD anyway so £33.33 from surveys etc - doable I reckon?

    Last night's chicken stew was most tasty - and there is plenty of both the sauce and the chicken left for another night. In fact I think there is probably enough of the chicken left to do a lunch one day as well - will ask MrEH to factor that in I think. I'm currently thinking that I'll do the roast veggies tonight - MrEH has rugby training so it works well to have a meal that is easy to prepare separately for him. I can easily prep the squash for the risotto at the same time though to make life easier. That leaves the stew for tomorrow and risotto on Thursday. We do still have three eggs left but they've got enough left on the date that they'll wait until next week or the weekend to be used.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
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    • Silver Queen
    • By Silver Queen 10th Oct 17, 1:21 PM
    • 165 Posts
    • 1,002 Thanks
    Silver Queen
    I actually haven't had a single thing from prolific in weeks


    That chicken stew sounds yum!
    Debt Totals November 17:
    £350 Natwest Credit Card / Now £0 £15,500 Loan from Parents 1 / Now £12,500 £500 Loan from Parents 2 / £500 £2,000 Overdraft Now £1,700
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 10th Oct 17, 2:21 PM
    • 4,833 Posts
    • 9,129 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    Oh my - you lot! Massive hugs all round - thank you. It's funny - it only takes one comment like that one that got to me to make you question what you're doing and destroy your confidence - but by the same ticket as feeling that the other poster confirmed needs to realise that not everyone who's taking her to task can be wrong, I guess I also have to acknowledge that it was a single remark, almost certainly designed to be unpleasant, and generally, those are best shrugged off, tough as that is. You lot most definitely CAN'T all be wrong - and again, thank you for your lovely comments.

    Beanie/HH Yes - I think you're right - I've felt for a while that the OP concerned there was the archetypal "playing at it" poster - perhaps debt-busting is the trendy middle class thing to do at the moment so she's joined in? No idea, but bearing in mind she's said that she doesn't actually care about being in debt (how on earth someone with several kids can feel like that I can't begin to imagine - surely you'd want to make sure you had security for them if nothing else?) I can't see her really having much success sadly - and less so if she refuses to listen to people trying to steer her on the right path.

    Time to draw a line under it I think - what's the phrase - "You can't help them as won't help themselves" isn't it?!
    Originally posted by EssexHebridean
    I think you make some valid points and I definitely feel you should not take a backward step as you did nothing wrong. Many posters I am sure have benefited from your advice as having dealt with your own debts capably.

    Unfortunately some posters just think short term and are not willing to listen or realise that short term sacrifices pay dividends in the long run. Sometimes I feel like knocking a few heads against a brick wall (not literally of course) but they are far outweighed by the people who are genuinely trying to improve their situation and take constructive advice on board.
    2 weeks to go until early retirement in December . Debt free and mortgage free.

    I'm a Board Guide on the Debt-Free Wannabe, Mortgages, Banking and Budgeting boards. I volunteer to help get your forum questions answered and keep the forum running smoothly. Any views are mine and not the official line of moneysavingexpert.com. Pease remember, board guides don't read every post. If you spot an illegal or inappropriate post then please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 10th Oct 17, 5:36 PM
    • 889 Posts
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    Cumbria lass
    Thanks EH for your helpful comments today , I feel like I am going in the right direction. I always read your hints and tips on other people's threads and if I think they will work for me then I take them on board .
    Nov 2017 CC1 £3329 CC2 £600

    Debt Free Nov 2019: earlier if I have my way
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 11th Oct 17, 1:00 PM
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    EssexHebridean
    Thanks ES & Cumbria!

    Silver the chicken stew does work nicely - I literally cook off onions, mushrooms and a couple of peppers sliced up until everything is soft, add garlic, lots of smoked paprika (I use the mild one) and a pinch of thyme (well OK usually too much thyme - one day I'll remember that "less is more" on this!) salt & pepper to taste. I either use a tin of toms or a carton of value passata for the sauce - or when I'm doing a double batch like the other night one of each - and add a half tsp of sugar to take the edge off the toms. I also throw in a tin of chickpeas or other beans if I want to bulk it out a bit. Then it's just a case of cooking it for a while to let the flavours meld together, and lobbing in the chicken at the last minute assuming it's already cooked. Very tasty and goes well with rice, couscous or even pasta.

    Nice little flurry on OnePoll last thing yesterday - £33.55 on there now
    Further nice little flurry on PA this morning - £4.64 payable and £7.55 pending there.
    No change anywhere else.

    So much for having an easy to prep meal for MrEH last night - he got caught up at work, didn't leave until well after 9pm, and so had to grab himself something on the way home as it was going to be too late to eat by the time he got here. Thankfully he was able to get a pasta salad on M&S so ate that on the train. He was out again well before 6 this morning too as he's had to go back to Oxford again, so goodness knows what time he'll make it home tonight.

    This means that there is still a pile of roasted veg to get used somewhere - so I have prepped a smaller amount of butternut squash for tomorrow's risotto and will add the roasted veggies as well. There is also half a chunk of halloumi needing a home - I'm thinking my lunch on Friday will now be "squeaky cheese flavoured" Tonight is the rest of the chicken stew, probably with couscous again I think, don't mind it two nights on the trot.

    Struggling with NSD's at the moment - needed "ladies supplies" yesterday, and have the gym tonight. Might make tomorrow a NSD? Not sure whether anything might scupper that plan though. I am going to start paying the Gym on a card rather than cash though as it occurs to me it'll stop me taking out £10 to cover the £7 gym cost - meaning the £3 change just disappears... I'll try using the card and see how that works.

    A photo project I'm currently working on will have some cost associated with it in a week or so as I'm putting together a gift for someone that will need to be ordered. That'll come straight from my "presents" budget though and I will be searching around for codes ahead of ordering to reduce the cost as much as possible.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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    • Plush
    • By Plush 11th Oct 17, 3:22 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 185 Thanks
    Plush

    A photo project I'm currently working on will have some cost associated with it in a week or so as I'm putting together a gift for someone that will need to be ordered. That'll come straight from my "presents" budget though and I will be searching around for codes ahead of ordering to reduce the cost as much as possible.
    Originally posted by EssexHebridean
    Hey, are you into photography? I am too... sort of. I'm a beginner and I don't have a proper camera but I really like taking photos so I joined a photo meetup. I have not managed to go out with them yet, due to lack of time, and they seem a bit too proud of their gear so to speak, even though most are beginner-ish.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 11th Oct 17, 4:28 PM
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    EssexHebridean
    Plush I LOVE my photography - it's my main hobby really. There are certainly some camera clubs and similar out there where the members can be a bit snooty about kit - personally my view is that if it's a good photo, it's a good photo regardless of what it was taken with, it's just having more ("better" for want of another way of putting it) kit gives you more scope for the kind of photos you can take. If you're interested to see the sort of stuff I do have a look at "photozone72" on flickr or Facebook, or my username on Twitter is the same as on here. You'll find aircraft feature quite heavily...particularly Little Red ones!

    I use my phone a LOT for photos on the go - generally speaking the heavy stuff comes out when I'm going somewhere specific.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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    • Plush
    • By Plush 11th Oct 17, 5:27 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 185 Thanks
    Plush
    wow, you've got a ton of aviation photos! you must have good lenses, judging by your flickr wildlife photos - those are taken with long telephoto lenses, no?
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 12th Oct 17, 11:30 AM
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    • 43,474 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    wow, you've got a ton of aviation photos! you must have good lenses, judging by your flickr wildlife photos - those are taken with long telephoto lenses, no?
    Originally posted by Plush
    Haha yes, aviation is my main "thing" - that's where the majority of my weekends during the summer months go! The most recent (last few weeks) wildlife stuff has been with my new "baby" - canon 100-400mm lens with a 1.4x converter attached - an absolute dream of a combination and one I'm seriously glad I saved to purchase! that sits on a 7D mark 2 - the very camera it was designed by canon to work best with. I've also got an 80D which mostly gets used with a shorter (cheaper!) Sigma zoom. I freely confess that one of the main driving forces for me wanting to be debt/mortgage free was to enable me to save for camera kit!
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 12th Oct 17, 12:44 PM
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    EssexHebridean
    Morning all....or actually afternoon as it will be by the time I post this!

    All ticking over here. I'll need to look at the CC payments in the next few days as we've reached the end of the statement month. Quite a chunk of that will be mind to pay for the clothes I've had to get - but I'm hoping that as much as possible of that can come from my current account.

    Purse currently has £12 in it (I used the card at the gym last night as planned) and I will need to visit the cashpoint either later today or tomorrow so I've got enough for my admission at speedway tomorrow. Will also need to remember to grab myself a sandwich deal or something on the way up so I have food - and probably something as a snack for the way home too as I'll end up eating quite early I think.

    Need to decide when to shop this week - might be tomorrow but might end up being on saturday - I'll see how things go. In any case I need a meal plan and a list ahead of going. Also need to check the fridge/larder & my journal to see what needs using up - the last potatoes and the remaining onions from the YS'd bag...and those eggs although I think I've offered MrEH an incentive to use those tomorrow...by suggesting we get takeaway on Saturday! (Works for me as well, that, as means he doesn't get tempted to linger *quite* as long at the club after rugby!) Might have enough carrots for soup for my lunch tomorrow or saturday if I add some red lentils to bulk it out - I know those carrots need used, they're just beginning to show hints of bendyness!

    Risotto tonight - butternut squash and the rest of the roasted veg. That will also use up the last of the mushrooms in the fridge plus one of the onions. Might just reheat the roasted veg and throw that on top rather than mixing it in - there;s a fair bit of beetroot in there so if I mix it in I'll end up with pink risotto!

    One thing I did discover the other day was that MrT's online prices and their instore ones don't always match up - an offer which was showing online both on their own site AND on MySupermarket didn't ring through on the till - and wasn't displayed on the shelf-edge - one for anyone who plans their shop/.spend online but visits a store for the purchasing to bear in mind.

    Al's Super 6 looks good this week and as long as the produce is British I can see me buying most of that! I see Lil's are 4p cheaper on the Onions and the carrots, but I'd use more than that in fuel getting over there (ours is on the other side of town) so I'll almost certainly stick with a walk to Al's tomorrow morning.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£656.45 (20/11/17)
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    • Hiddenidenity
    • By Hiddenidenity 12th Oct 17, 12:52 PM
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    Hiddenidenity
    Oh reminds me to go check out what the Al's and L's offers are. I always forget!

    I have some bendy carrots too, and 6 sausages I need to use today yet I'm still sat here

    I've never tried risotto. I googled and it looks like something the older two smalls would like. I just keep pinching your food plans
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 12th Oct 17, 1:32 PM
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    beanielou
    Yes, ta for reminder on Aldi super 6.
    Think parsnips is one.
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 2 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.*** ***Keep plodding***
    • Greying Pilgrim
    • By Greying Pilgrim 12th Oct 17, 1:47 PM
    • 3,931 Posts
    • 43,513 Thanks
    Greying Pilgrim

    One thing I did discover the other day was that MrT's online prices and their instore ones don't always match up - an offer which was showing online both on their own site AND on MySupermarket didn't ring through on the till - and wasn't displayed on the shelf-edge - one for anyone who plans their shop/.spend online but visits a store for the purchasing to bear in mind.
    Originally posted by EssexHebridean

    Had that EXACT thing happen to us in mrT today. I had carefully planned a shop (using mysupermerkat) to use up a £4 discount off a £30 shop. And had selected their own brand olive spread, as it was supposed to be 2 x 1kg for £3. No shelf edge label to indicate discount. I was lucky to get a helpful assistant who went off to check at the till for me, and the product was showing up as on offer. Absolutely no indication on the SEL though.

    Greying X
    'Ich habe genug'

    'I am not in the pursuit of happiness, only in the discovery of joy' - Joyce Grenfell
    • Tea&Kittens
    • By Tea&Kittens 12th Oct 17, 1:59 PM
    • 168 Posts
    • 635 Thanks
    Tea&Kittens
    I've never tried risotto. I googled and it looks like something the older two smalls would like. I just keep pinching your food plans
    Originally posted by Hiddenidenity
    They do look like such great food plans to pinch! I'm quite a fan of a risotto
    October: NSDs 6 / 17 NSDs in a row: 1 / 5
    I started my debtfree journey on 07 September 2017: Total: £20,521 £19847
    Barclaycard: £14659 £14435 Oct 2017 HSBC Credit Card : £3112 £3012 Oct 2017
    Overdraft: 350 £0 Oct2017 MBNA : 2400
    A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. I'm on my way!
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