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  • FIRST POST
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    • 1,063Posts
    • 10,080Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed....
    • #1
    • 12th Feb 17, 9:56 AM
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed.... 12th Feb 17 at 9:56 AM
    £67,031.92. Seriously. £67,031.92. That is a SCARY number. I can't believe our debt has peaked (and it is the peak, I am determined) at this level.

    Our light bulb moment actually happened a few months back, but it's taken since then of wrangling utilities and carefully watching out income/outgoings (using You Need a Budget) to really figure out where we were overspending and how the monthly shortfall of anything from £200-£1,000+ was happening.

    We have literally nothing to show for this debt, it's just crept up over the past 8 years or so, and has always been at manageable levels, but back in October we realised we were spending more on credit cards each month than we were paying off.

    We committed that cardinal sin of taking out a consolidation loan, but alongside it we looked really carefully at our spending over the next couple of months, budgeted realistically for what we spend and have (I think) picked off all the easy 'low hanging fruit' of budget cuts and really identified why we were overspending.

    The main reason for the debt is, erm, me. Not that I'm the biggest spender (neither of us are amazing), but because I am self employed with a hugely variable income and basically worked out our budgets on the basis I would always earn my 'best' month's income. Which was, with hindsight, maybe a TINY bit deluded.

    The aim of this diary is to keep us on track with actually reducing our debt every single month, not doing it in a three steps forward, two (or four) steps back sort of way. Having sat down and put our numbers into the whatsthecost site, it appears that we are looking at 7 years and 1 month of repayments to clear the debt (and that's assuming we can get rid of the shortfall showing below). I REALLY want to reduce this term as that just seems bonkers.

    SOA below, with a couple of explanatory notes.

    Statement of Affairs and Personal Balance Sheet

    Household Information

    Number of adults in household........... 2
    Number of children in household......... 3
    Number of cars owned.................... 1

    Monthly Income Details

    Monthly income after tax................ 250 (variable, but this is the minimum I have earned in any month in the last 5 years)
    Partners monthly income after tax....... 2711.86
    Benefits................................ 192
    Other income............................ 0
    Total monthly income.................... 3153.86


    Monthly Expense Details

    Mortgage................................ 698
    Secured/HP loan repayments.............. 0
    Rent.................................... 0
    Management charge (leasehold property).. 0
    Council tax............................. 174 (including overpayment for a period when we messed up during a house move 18 months ago and didn't restart the direct debit for the new property. Will drop by a little under £50 after either March or April, can't remember which)
    Electricity............................. 52 (gas and electricity are one combined DD, I haven't checked the exact split but the total is £104)
    Gas..................................... 52
    Oil..................................... 0
    Water rates............................. 104 (also including a debt from previous property, but I think this will be included for another 6 months or so. I'm not sure what our actual usage is)
    Telephone (land line)................... 18.5 (includes internet)
    Mobile phone............................ 85 (£45 for my contract, which I use for work as well, £40 for DH)
    TV Licence.............................. 12.12
    Satellite/Cable TV...................... 0
    Internet Services....................... 0 (included in landline cost)
    Groceries etc. ......................... 520 (Includes £40 for one lot of school lunches. I am REALLY struggling to reduce this, but feel I could and should be able to!)
    Clothing................................ 100 (growing children, plus see notes below re clothes)
    Petrol/diesel........................... 225 (90% DH commuting costs)
    Road tax................................ 16.27
    Car Insurance........................... 25.22
    Car maintenance (including MOT)......... 30
    Car parking............................. 0
    Other travel............................ 50
    Childcare/nursery....................... 70 (this will disappear in April as child 3 gets free 15 hours)
    Other child related expenses............ 81.85 (music/swimming lessons x2, cubs and beavers, National Trust membership as they love visiting them)
    Medical (prescriptions, dentist etc).... 5
    Pet insurance/vet bills................. 0
    Buildings insurance..................... 27.07
    Contents insurance...................... 0
    Life assurance ......................... 16.26
    Other insurance......................... 0
    Presents (birthday, christmas etc)...... 90
    Haircuts................................ 20
    Entertainment........................... 135
    Holiday................................. 75
    Emergency fund.......................... 25
    Total monthly expenses.................. 2707.29



    Assets

    Cash.................................... 0
    House value (Gross)..................... 210000
    Shares and bonds........................ 0
    Car(s).................................. 800
    Other assets............................ 0
    Total Assets............................ 210800



    Secured & HP Debts

    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Mortgage...................... 173733...(698)......3.14
    Total secured & HP debts...... 173733....-.........-


    Unsecured Debts
    Description....................Debt......Monthly.. .APR
    Barclaycard....................6880.21...156...... .0
    MBNA...........................9614.71...98....... .0
    Parental loan..................20000.....0.........0 (see notes below)
    Tesco loan.....................21000.....377.......10
    Total unsecured debts..........57494.92..631.......-



    Monthly Budget Summary

    Total monthly income.................... 3,153.86
    Expenses (including HP & secured debts). 2,707.29
    Available for debt repayments........... 446.57
    Monthly UNsecured debt repayments....... 631
    Amount short for making debt repayments. -184.43


    Personal Balance Sheet Summary
    Total assets (things you own)........... 210,800
    Total HP & Secured debt................. -173,733
    Total Unsecured debt.................... -57,494.92
    Net Assets.............................. -20,427.92


    Created using the SOA calculator at stoozing.
    Reproduced on Moneysavingexpert with permission, using other browser.


    Regarding the (relatively) high clothes expense, it is a combination of 3 growing children (8, 6 and 3), plus the fact that my job is in the fashion industry, and as a self employed person I need to have the right sort of 'look' in order to get work (think along the lines of a self employed personal shopper - people need to see you looking good in order to book with you).

    The parental loan was for a house deposit. The parent in question has no idea about our debts. She is not desperate for the money back and isn't charging us interest, but has asked us to save £150-200 every month into a savings account and then once we've saved a decent sum to either repay them or 'reborrow' it for work on the house (basically they want us to be able to make repayments if they suddenly need the extra income, but meanwhile are happy for us to benefit from it. I am not saving the money while our debt payments are so high - we are hoping to have paid enough off that if the parent ever needs it that we can reborrow it and pay them back). This isn't great, but realistically I think the best solutions is to treat it as the lowest priority for snowballing - once we have paid back the other debts we will throw the entire £630+ at this debt.

    So, there is a freaking enormous shortfall every month, which is somewhat depressing. Most months it is covered by the fact that I earn more than my 'bare minimum', but it is those months where it isn't covered that the debt creeps up again, and I am a total disaster for going 'oh well, we've spent on the credit card, we might as well keep going' and buying more clothes or something for the house - this is probably a significant proportion of our debt problem.

    We have managed to get rid of the balance on the one credit card we were spending on, so the remaining ones are both on 0% deals (although one expires in September). I have not cut up the remaining credit card, because we don't have an emergency fund in case of eg boiler repairs, but it has not been used for all of a month, and I hope to keep it that way.

    A DMP or similar isn't really on my horizon right now - I feel like we should be able to make the cuts to make our budgets balance, and I am optimistic that as my income goes up (when I can work more as child 3 starts school) that we will be able to make overpayments.

    My plan for now is:
    1) Try to wiggle those budget numbers around enough that we don't have a shortfall any more.
    2) Make a plan for any months where I make extra - do I use it for an emergency fund, as a fund to cover future months' shortfalls, to throw money at the debt to try to reduce minimum payments in case of future 'shortfall' months?
    3) Try to make more money. Not quite sure how this will work as I am largely limited to working around DH's working hours (I work evenings and weekends and the 5hrs childcare per week we are paying for for child 3).

    Now that's all down in black and white I am feeling a combination of relieved (to be clear on the numbers) and immensely stressed (by the semi-regular £180+ shortfall).

    Onwards and downwards (for the debt, not me)!

    edited to add: the original £67,031.92 figure was based on the total figure for the Tesco loan, which included all interest payable over the entire term of the loan. I have updated the debt figure in my signature and in all posts going forward as at 4th June 2017 to reflect that actual current debt balance rather than the balance plus interest over the lifetime of the loan. This has knocked £7,911.62 off the debt figure, but means that each monthly payment will have the interest for that month deducted from it, so it won't affect the DFD if I don't make overpayments.
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 04-06-2017 at 2:58 PM.
Page 78
    • Kittychick
    • By Kittychick 4th Sep 17, 10:38 AM
    • 223 Posts
    • 541 Thanks
    Kittychick
    Just tried the audio book thing, it downloaded fine but doesn't recognise my library... Might try and get my daughter to join hers and use that-her library comes up straight away....
    Loving reading your diary BTW, great to see it's not all hairshirts-you have to live through it, and it seems to me like you are making improvements... It's all about balance x
    • armchairexpert
    • By armchairexpert 4th Sep 17, 11:03 AM
    • 693 Posts
    • 4,437 Thanks
    armchairexpert
    Ooh, now school lunches is something I can help with! No hot lunches (or canteen/tuck shop/whatever this is called in England) at our school, so it's pack or perish.

    Generally: I have tried things like the thermos, and also picky things like crudites or crackers and dip, but what I find is that the kids are so impatient to be done with lunch so they can play, they don't eat enough. So I gear things towards: easy to eat fast, minimal mess. I don't know if they have to sit and eat for longer in a school with hot lunches - in which case ignore!

    THINGS I DO:

    Pasta salad, which is just penne, pesto, bits of chopped ham and olives or whatever I have in.
    Pizza is a big one. I am lazy and don't make my own dough, I just buy the bases, but they take ten minutes to assemble and then the girls get slices of cold pizza for at least three days.
    Mini muffins, savoury or sweet.
    Things on sticks! A mini sausage on a toothpick, that sort of thing. Think retro party kids' food.
    Wraps are more popular than sandwiches here for some reason. Or I just give them slices of cheese and salami and crackers to assemble themselves.
    Cold boiled eggs. Scotch eggs are even better if you can bear the faff, which I cannot.
    Leftover dinner! Today I sent them with chunks of cold roast lamb and cold roast potatoes with a little pot of gravy. Ridiculous but popular. I will also make extra coleslaw or potato salad with a dinner and use those in lunches.
    Homemade sausage rolls. Also faff, but you can make a lot at once and freeze, then bake a few in the morning from frozen.
    Cheesy vegemite scrolls. Marmite in your case. Get a sheet of puff pastry. Spread with Marmite. Sprinkle grated cheese over the top. Roll up. Slice so you have pinwheels. Bake until puffy and golden. Also works with jam.
    MFW diary here. 1 Feb 2017 $229,371 - MFD Feb 2043 aiming for May 2028
    14 August 2017 - Refinanced: $220,000
    October 2017 - $216,963.86 Current MFD 31 July 2035
    • The Arrowmaker
    • By The Arrowmaker 4th Sep 17, 8:29 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 112 Thanks
    The Arrowmaker
    Good plan to move from school to packed lunches, especially when your children are having a proper dinner in the evening anyway, but...

    His school lunches cost £2.10 per day, and I'm thinking I can make some nice stuff with an extra £10.50 a week in the food budget
    I wonder whether you might be able to squeeze the packed lunches out of your current food budget, rather than add an additional £42 every four weeks (in term time) to it. Without freeing up that extra £10.50 per week for something else, are you not rather defeating the object of cancelling the school lunches?

    I mean this very kindly, but I wonder about your wish to make elaborate packed lunches for your children. Keeping things simple will not reflect badly on you, and your time may be better spent on your business. Sometimes as parents it's important to be gentle with ourselves. Quick and easy lunches do not have to be unhealthy or monotonous (although the young Arrowmakers have gone through phases of loving the same thing day after day after day). Wrap, sandwich or pitta with peanut butter, marmite, cheese or hummous; a piece of fruit; some chopped veg or salad and a yogurt are simple, healthy and tasty choices which will hold together well until lunchtime and beyond. Also good to provide food that will stay fresh for the day, so that if it goes uneaten at lunchtime it can fill a hungry tummy on the walk home from school.

    Poundland do decent 'clip and lock' boxes for...£1. Pop them in a lunch bag with a long strap (Argos do a couple of different styles) so that it can be carried across the body by your children keeping their hands free (otherwise you know who'll end up carrying everything ).
    • enthusiasticsaver
    • By enthusiasticsaver 4th Sep 17, 11:08 PM
    • 4,675 Posts
    • 8,773 Thanks
    enthusiasticsaver
    I also wonder where does the saving come from if you are cancelling school liunches only to up the food budget?
    5 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
    • bizzie
    • By bizzie 5th Sep 17, 12:17 AM
    • 102 Posts
    • 1,180 Thanks
    bizzie
    Variation on the veggie scrolls is pizza pinwheels. A ready rolled puff pastry sheet spread with jar of pasta sauce (or thick homemade) as a base layer, add chopped peppers / sweetcorn / tuna, topped with grated cheese rolled up along the long edge and cut into 2cm thick slices and cooked until golden. Think I got this off a children's cookery programme a few years back where the children did the cooking.
    Groceries 43.37/400 Personal Spends ..../100
    NST November #11 NSDs 4/12 @05/11/17
    Goals for 2017: Balance in
    Self: Health: Wealth :
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Sep 17, 5:04 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Thanks for all the school lunch ideas! Liking the sound of the various pastry/homemad pizza options. And yes, I'm hoping to free up some money, but I am not going to pretend, with my current challenges sticking to the food budget, that I can produce an extra 5 meals a week (even children's ones) for exactly the same money. My aim is to add £4-5 a week onto the shopping budget for lunches.

    Also, I just think it's nice to have a nice lunch, and DC1 is doing something he doesn't want to do (give up school lunches) because of the budget, so I'd like to make it a positive and rewarding experience for him - he knows we are saving for the extension, and has had it presented in this way (saving money on lunches = more efficient saving for the extension), and I'd like that to have a positive association for him. If he decides he wants a cheese wrap every single day, I will not be complaning though! Also discovered yesterday that lunches have gone up to £2.30, so even more potential for saving (£11.50 per week).

    Yesterday's list:
    1. laundry, again. Done, although rain is making it tricky to get more than one load a day on.
    2. ironing, again. Done. Woohoo!
    3. continue to work on DC3's project with him. Not done. Must focus on that today.
    4. pack orders for smaller business. Done.
    5. clean dining room. Almost done, need to organise and declutter all the art supplies.
    6. Order DC1's birthday presents. Done. £80 in total, around half our usual spend. Quite proud of that.
    7. batch cook bolognese-type sauce with all the leftover slightly sad vegetables that we brought back from holiday with us. Done. Enough for 900 people to come for dinner.
    8. Book trampoline place for DC1's party. Not done, going to make sure both friends can do the day first, although they have provisionally said yes.
    9. Start knitting socks for a relative's significant birthday. Not done, remembered something else (cheap) that they really wanted and ordered it with DC1's presents. <£10
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 05-09-2017 at 5:06 AM.
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Sep 17, 5:15 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 30: day 3

    Last day of the summer holidays! Not sure whether to cry or celebrate. I will miss my little team when they go back to school, and I am nervous about all the extra hours I will have to work and the risk of not actually making any more money. Just got to throw myself in and hope I swim I suppose.

    Good news - the car passed the MOT yesterday with absolutely nothing needing doing. It has an advisory note about a bit of work that will cost around £150, but it can be put off for a month or two.

    to do today
    1. laundry, again.
    2. ironing, again (although only a little bit, as I cleared it completely yesterday morning)
    3. finish DC3's project with him.
    4. finish cleaning dining room.
    5. make pasties.
    6. batch cook something packed-lunchy while the oven is on. Maybe just small pasties.
    7. DCs back to swimming lessons, boo.
    8. library for end of the summer reading challenge.
    9. nip down to school to buy jumpers for DC2.
    10. redo stoozing snowball calculator. I know our DFD will have dropped back, and I need to calculate, face the music, and update signature.

    to do this week
    1. plan DS1's birthday party. Done, just need to give invitations out tomorrow.
    2. get the house tidy and decluttered ready for new term at school.
    3. start a list of camping supplies that need replacing/repairing for next year - will be much better to do that in stages over the winter than in one big spend next May.
    4. have a look at last month's food spends and see where improvements can be made.
    5. make some packed lunch supplies and freeze for DC3, who will now have lunch at preschool 3 days a week.

    to do this month
    1. keep the total spend for the month below £3,500 (last month was miles better than the previous average £3,900, going to try to repeat the feat).
    2. get my new website finished and launched (crosses fingers, toes and eyes).
    3. just work as much as possible and make some money back to recover the enormous shortfall that faces us this month!
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Cherryfudge
    • By Cherryfudge 5th Sep 17, 11:49 AM
    • 887 Posts
    • 3,581 Thanks
    Cherryfudge
    Good news about the car.

    I hope the new term goes well - for you as well as them. Re: your list of camping supplies: I bet people will be selling off bits and pieces cheaply rather than store them over winter (that's how I bought a barbecue for a fiver). It may be worth checking 3bay and local ads as well as the sales (or even put an ad on your supermarket's board: camping items wanted.
    • Savertobe
    • By Savertobe 5th Sep 17, 1:31 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 175 Thanks
    Savertobe
    General progress with debt busting

    I wonder whether it is time for a new SOA - to take account of changes such as new income and paid off utility debts (if indeed this has taken place now). Your doing well with money saving but you probably need to sit down and reflect as a couple where you want to be in 2 years when the bedroom space will be more urgent for you/new car also needed/secondary school looming etc. I found running a simple spreadsheet showing debt and the reduction each month quite satisfying (if this is possible) it tends to keep the momentum up - on its own it does not cut expenditure of course. Your SOA is static and it could look better if all the calculations are correct.

    Work out when you're able to borrow more for the extension and keep this as your goal. Try to avoid burning out as you are so busy. There is only three ways to improve your financial situation - (other than changes in gov policy such as tax breaks) reduction in lifestyle - money saving habits but maintaining lifestyle - increasing income. You do all these but less perhaps on reduction in lifestyle. It might be worth some short term pain to get to a slightly better place.

    Keep up the good work
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 5th Sep 17, 7:27 PM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Good point on the camping gear Cherry, must think about what we need (mainly cooker related).

    Savertobe I'm holding off doing a new SOA until DH has that payrise in his hand (or at least his payslip), as I'm still convinced something's going to wrong at the nth hour. I do have one ready to go when it happens though, with fractionally more wiggle room in some areas and a chunk towards saving for the extension. No extra debt payments though - any extra money I earn will go towards that.

    Off for a bath and an early night before the stress of first day back at school!

    to do today
    1. laundry, again. Done.
    2. ironing, again (although only a little bit, as I cleared it completely yesterday morning). Done.
    3. finish DC3's project with him. Done.
    4. finish cleaning dining room. Not done, busier afternoon than expected.
    5. make pasties. Done. Yum.
    6. batch cook something packed-lunchy while the oven is on. Maybe just small pasties. Done.
    7. DCs back to swimming lessons, boo. Done.
    8. library for end of the summer reading challenge. Done, they are very proud of themselves.
    9. nip down to school to buy jumpers for DC2. Whoops.
    10. redo stoozing snowball calculator. I know our DFD will have dropped back, and I need to calculate, face the music, and update signature. Not done.

    to do this week
    1. plan DS1's birthday party. Done, just need to give invitations out tomorrow.
    2. get the house tidy and decluttered ready for new term at school.
    3. start a list of camping supplies that need replacing/repairing for next year - will be much better to do that in stages over the winter than in one big spend next May.
    4. have a look at last month's food spends and see where improvements can be made.
    5. make some packed lunch supplies and freeze for DC3, who will now have lunch at preschool 3 days a week.

    to do this month
    1. keep the total spend for the month below £3,500 (last month was miles better than the previous average £3,900, going to try to repeat the feat).
    2. get my new website finished and launched (crosses fingers, toes and eyes).
    3. just work as much as possible and make some money back to recover the enormous shortfall that faces us this month!
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 6th Sep 17, 4:56 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 30: Day 4

    Back to school day! How exciting. Have decided I am going to throw poor DC3 straight in on full days (although she is only in Mon-Thu, so only two days left of this week) and just see how she copes. We only live three seconds from the preschool, they can call me if she's totally lost the will to live.

    I am so looking forward to getting on top of the house. It's funny, nowadays I can really see the correlation between being short on time/energy and the increased desire to shop - I've mentioned it before, but once again I have really had to resist the urge to buy things that would be useful if I had lots of time (books and equipment for random new hobbies, nice house stuff, relaxing bath things). I understand now that what I am trying to buy is the illusion of free time, not the actual thing. Hopefully that urge will decrease as my free/working time increases with DC's preschool hours. And maybe I'll actually get to use up some of my acres of sewing/knitting/crafting supplies!

    As I type I am sat three feet from the most enormous spider, which has apparently decided to come out from its hidey hole and keep me company on my first mega-early start of the term. I think I could have coped if it had left me all on my own for this enterprise.

    to do today
    1. packed lunch for DC3
    2. clean the dining room
    3. bake sourdough.
    4. bake flapjacks.
    5. make a quiche.
    6. batch cook columbian black bean stew.
    7. redo stoozing snowball calculator. I know our DFD will have dropped back, and I need to calculate, face the music, and update signature.
    8. email my parents with ideas for DC1's birthday present
    9. catch up on the many work bits on my list.
    10. give out invitations for DC1's birthday (only two!).

    That list is looking rather longer than I intended for my first day of peace in seven weeks!

    to do this week
    1. plan DS1's birthday party. Done, just need to give invitations out.
    2. get the house tidy and decluttered ready for new term at school. Not exactly done ready for the new term, but at least I've made a start.
    3. start a list of camping supplies that need replacing/repairing for next year - will be much better to do that in stages over the winter than in one big spend next May.
    4. have a look at last month's food spends and see where improvements can be made.
    5. make some packed lunch supplies and freeze for DC3, who will now have lunch at preschool 3 days a week.

    to do this month
    1. keep the total spend for the month below £3,500 (last month was miles better than the previous average £3,900, going to try to repeat the feat).
    2. get my new website finished and launched (crosses fingers, toes and eyes).
    3. just work as much as possible and make some money back to recover the enormous shortfall that faces us this month!
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Savertobe
    • By Savertobe 6th Sep 17, 8:00 AM
    • 27 Posts
    • 175 Thanks
    Savertobe
    Creating me time

    Reading your diary is exhausting in itself I'm glad I don't try to put so much into each day.

    Given your new enterprises I'd have thought giving your self a day asap to spend on yourself (facial, nails, exercise etc) should be on your agenda. It will keep you sane - even if it means egg and chips for tea! They won't die.
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 6th Sep 17, 9:54 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Creating me time

    Reading your diary is exhausting in itself I'm glad I don't try to put so much into each day.

    Given your new enterprises I'd have thought giving your self a day asap to spend on yourself (facial, nails, exercise etc) should be on your agenda. It will keep you sane - even if it means egg and chips for tea! They won't die.
    Originally posted by Savertobe
    Surely you mean organic eggs and homemade chips?

    You're absolutely right - I have been limping on in a state of semi-stressed out knackeredness since January (when DC3 should have started more hours at preschool but couldn't), and I really feel like I need to take the chance to slow down a little, take stock. Facial might be a push (last time I had one I fell asleep halfway through ), but I might indulge in some weekday surfing.
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 6th Sep 17, 11:53 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Pleased to see the DFD has so far only dropped back one month. I know it will get further away this month unless i have some shock earnings, but it's good to know it hasn't completely got away from us yet.
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Cherryfudge
    • By Cherryfudge 6th Sep 17, 12:55 PM
    • 887 Posts
    • 3,581 Thanks
    Cherryfudge
    Week 30: Day 4 It's funny, nowadays I can really see the correlation between being short on time/energy and the increased desire to shop - I've mentioned it before, but once again I have really had to resist the urge to buy things that would be useful if I had lots of time (books and equipment for random new hobbies, nice house stuff, relaxing bath things). I understand now that what I am trying to buy is the illusion of free time, not the actual thing.
    Originally posted by Treadingonplaymobil
    You have such insight - that's me to a T!

    Good luck to DD with her longer hours, and tell the spider she's only welcome if she does the laundry.
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 6th Sep 17, 3:39 PM
    • 8,195 Posts
    • 42,605 Thanks
    EssexHebridean
    There is also the point that when you're feeling run down/low on energy/generally knackered you['re less able to resist the urge to make purchasing decisions that actually, if you were on top of your game, you would laugh in the face of. Sometimes it pays to remember - things don't have to be perfect, they don't have to even look perfect to others, they just have to be good enough.
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 £1229.00/£544.67 (17/10/17)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 6th Sep 17, 7:51 PM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Ah, the bliss of six whole hours of out-of-the-house childcare! NINE YEARS I've been waiting for that.

    Didn't achieve a whole lot, just had a (moderately, for me) relaxing day and got some bits and bobs done.

    MSE food stuff - made Columbian black bean stew for dinner, such a cheap recipe. I do it with dried black beans (a bag from Sainsburys cooks to roughly double the quantity needed for this recipe, so I make double and freeze). Also made flapjacks for the DCs school snacks - I add all sorts to this recipe, loads of milled seeds, dried or fresh fruit.

    Less MSE stuff - bought insulated lunch bags for DC3's packed lunches. Was going to make some simple cotton bags but I just could not be bothered, so splashed out a tenner on two bags. Good enough, right?

    to do today
    1. packed lunch for DC3. Done.
    2. clean the dining room. Not done.
    3. bake sourdough. Not done, didn't have enough starter so have fed it up for tomorrow.
    4. bake flapjacks. Done.
    5. make a quiche. Not done, didn't want to turn the oven on especially after I forgot to make it when I made flapjacks this morning.
    6. batch cook columbian black bean stew. Done.
    7. redo stoozing snowball calculator. I know our DFD will have dropped back, and I need to calculate, face the music, and update signature. Done.
    8. email my parents with ideas for DC1's birthday present. Done.
    9. catch up on the many work bits on my list. Mostly done.
    10. give out invitations for DC1's birthday (only two!). 50% success rate!

    That list is looking rather longer than I intended for my first day of peace in seven weeks!

    to do this week
    1. plan DS1's birthday party. Done, just need to give invitations out.
    2. get the house tidy and decluttered ready for new term at school. Not exactly done ready for the new term, but at least I've made a start.
    3. start a list of camping supplies that need replacing/repairing for next year - will be much better to do that in stages over the winter than in one big spend next May.
    4. have a look at last month's food spends and see where improvements can be made.
    5. make some packed lunch supplies and freeze for DC3, who will now have lunch at preschool 3 days a week.

    to do this month
    1. keep the total spend for the month below £3,500 (last month was miles better than the previous average £3,900, going to try to repeat the feat).
    2. get my new website finished and launched (crosses fingers, toes and eyes).
    3. just work as much as possible and make some money back to recover the enormous shortfall that faces us this month!
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • armchairexpert
    • By armchairexpert 7th Sep 17, 3:13 AM
    • 693 Posts
    • 4,437 Thanks
    armchairexpert
    Black bean stew looks like just the sort of thing I'd adore and my family would hate. I might make a batch for my own work lunches.

    Congratulations on having three in childcare! It's a game changer, but I agree with those who say don't try to fit too much in. It's okay to want your evenings back for leisure and not spend the extra daytime hours just making everyone else's lives more comfortable and still not getting any free time. ASK ME HOW I KNOW.
    MFW diary here. 1 Feb 2017 $229,371 - MFD Feb 2043 aiming for May 2028
    14 August 2017 - Refinanced: $220,000
    October 2017 - $216,963.86 Current MFD 31 July 2035
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 7th Sep 17, 4:41 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Black bean stew looks like just the sort of thing I'd adore and my family would hate. I might make a batch for my own work lunches.

    Congratulations on having three in childcare! It's a game changer, but I agree with those who say don't try to fit too much in. It's okay to want your evenings back for leisure and not spend the extra daytime hours just making everyone else's lives more comfortable and still not getting any free time. ASK ME HOW I KNOW.
    Originally posted by armchairexpert
    This made me ! I think it's going to take a few weeks to settle into this new routine and figure out how to balance my time - I had my old routine down to a fine art, and this is quite a change.

    My kids are pretty unfussy, which is great - they'll eat all manner of lentil/bean based stuff. And favourite meal for one of them is butterbean soup, possibly the cheapest meal known to mankind.
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
    • Treadingonplaymobil
    • By Treadingonplaymobil 7th Sep 17, 5:01 AM
    • 1,063 Posts
    • 10,080 Thanks
    Treadingonplaymobil
    Week 30: day 5

    The preschool giveth, and the preschool taketh away - only 3.5 hours childcare today, and none tomorrow (DC3 is going mon-wed full days, and half a day on a thurs). I think that's probably quite good for the first week back though - DC3 was noticeably tired yesterday after a full day!

    Pleased that I haven't had to do a top up shop this week beyond buying four onions yesterday. We really need some fruit, but if we can limp through to the weekend (we have frozen stewed stuff and a couple of tins, just no fresh fruit) I'll be pleased. Will mean that the week's shopping came in at only £37 including top ups (actually £52, but £15 was on nectar points and money off vouchers, so I only actually spend £37). My entire MS list today seems to consist of batch cooking food, but I do feel increasingly like I'm actually managing to make all the cooking from scratch part of the MS process, rather than an extra (as in, I'm cooking stuff that is saving us money and we're only eating that, not cooking stuff and then we're buying expensive stuff on top of it). This is good, as the food thing is important to me (as we've discussed at length before). Also pleased that I've managed to create the first two packed lunches out of what we had in the house rather than buying special fancy bits and bobs.

    work stuff - picking up. I have a client booking for two weeks time, and one for October. Not enough to dig us out of our dire finances, but better than nothing - I think I'll make around £125 for each one, although they could stretch into more income depending on how long I'm needed for. Also a provisional booking for late September, but one that only has a 50/50 chance of coming off. Will be another £200 if it happens. And meeting someone next week to discuss a work opportunity, which won't pay well as she is another tiny business owner, but is in an area I really really enjoy, so will feel more like playing than work. Also I should have a first draft of the website today, the getting-online of which is going to occupy a lot of this month, but I'm hoping it will have a positive impact on income once it's up. It's going to involve a whole new skillset for me (writing for myself rather than other people, photography, having a coherent and useful social media presence) so it's a lot of change, but it has the potential to really grow.

    to do today
    1. packed lunch for DC3.
    2. clean the dining room.
    3. bake sourdough.
    4. make pudding for family meeting tonight.
    5. make a quiche.
    6. plan dressing up costume with DC3 for next week - would quite like not to spend any money on this, so need to think it through.
    7. Balance the couple of credit card spends I have already made this month.

    to do this week
    1. plan DS1's birthday party. Done, just need to give invitations out.
    2. get the house tidy and decluttered ready for new term at school. Not exactly done ready for the new term, but at least I've made a start.
    3. start a list of camping supplies that need replacing/repairing for next year - will be much better to do that in stages over the winter than in one big spend next May.
    4. have a look at last month's food spends and see where improvements can be made.
    5. make some packed lunch supplies and freeze for DC3, who will now have lunch at preschool 3 days a week.

    to do this month
    1. keep the total spend for the month below £3,500 (last month was miles better than the previous average £3,900, going to try to repeat the feat).
    2. get my new website finished and launched (crosses fingers, toes and eyes).
    3. just work as much as possible and make some money back to recover the enormous shortfall that faces us this month!
    Last edited by Treadingonplaymobil; 07-09-2017 at 5:03 AM.
    £67,031.92 is a frightening number indeed... The debt free diary of one family and their enormous debt
    LBM debt on 12th Feb 2017/DFD: £58,608.13/1st Dec 2026
    debt on 2nd Aug 17/DFD: £55,011.96/1st May 2025
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