MoneyQueen's now to retirement and everything in between diary

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in How much have you saved?
19 replies 2.8K views
MoneyQueenMoneyQueen Forumite
926 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in How much have you saved?

A little background about me first. I live in Scotland with my wonderful DH. I am half Indian and half scottish. DH is Indian and he moved to UK twelve years ago. I met him 8 years ago and we have been married six. Both of us are in our early thirties.

I have had a diary on the MFW board before which I followed for more than a year but then ended it as I had reached my target and with the interest rates this low, it didn't make sense to pay off the mortgage. Then I started with a diary on the savings board as I passed through a phase when I so wanted to be a millionaire after I was 40. That phase too passed and so was the diary ended in a day or so.

Recently things have changed at the personal front. We have been told that we can't have a baby normally as I don't ovulate at all so we are waiting for me to be referred to find out what options are available to us. So at the moment we are two and very happy but at some point may be three - if not a baby then we would want to have a dog.

Anyways enough of my ramblings.... This diary is for me to keep a track of my life. I would be updating it with my spendings, savings and everything else. I may be able to give you some tips and learn from you along the way. I also want to loose some weight but in a MSE and healthy style so will be writing about that also. I think that's more than enough for my first post so I will shut up now.



  • Right, just a bit of financial information. We are in the fortunate position that we can pay off our mortgage whenever we want as we have enough in savings for doing this. I am not sure of the exact amount but I am trying to find out and will be updating my diary soon with that. I am also trying to organize my finances at the moment because I have accounts in far too many banks/ building societies to get the best rates and it's reaching a point where I am not able to keep track so I need to close the accounts which we are no longer using/ need. For this I need to go through all the files to find out where all I have accounts and how much money is in them.

    I am sure I have got some accounts where I am not being paid any interest in them at all so I need to move money from them to a higher paying account.

    But thats all for later
  • I know in the last post, I talked about consolidating my finances and limiting the number of accounts I have so opening another account was not a good idea but one year fixed rate bond at KRBS was too hard to resist especially as it doesnt look like the interest rates are going to increase anytime soon. So have transferred £3000 to that account from one of the Lloyds Vantage 3% account.

    I have also been working on costing our meals and have been trying to make cheaper meals and in general trying to reduce stocks in the kitchen and freezer. As I hace all the building blocks of the meals in my stock cupboards, I am trying to only buy milk/ eggs and fresh fruit and veg. I have decided a budget of £15 each week for it.

    Today's meal was Tesco soya veggie burger with salad, homemade onion and tomato relish.
    I had one and DH had 2

    Wholemeal burger Buns:5 p (They were reduced at 10p for 6)
    Burgers: 56 p (£1.50 for 8)
    Salad: 30 p (a bit of lettuce and cucumber)
    Onion and tomato relish with mango chutney: 30p
    Gas/ Leccy/ oil: 25 p I think

    Total: £1.46 for both of us

    Yesterday was mushy peas curry with Couscous with salad and leftover veg from the day before

    Mushy Peas(one can): 36p
    Baked Beans (1/3rd can): 10p
    Mushrooms: 25p
    Onion: 20p
    Spices/ Oil/ Gas: 30p
    Leftover veg from the night before: Free and generally it would have been binned
    CousCous/ Stock cube: 15 p

    Total: £1.36 for both of us. This is a slimming world recipe and surprisingly very tasty

    The meal before that was chinese curry with rice and stirfry vegetables

    Curry Sauce: 24p (I had made 5 portions last week. Used the last 2 for the chinese curry on Monday night - 60 p for 5 portions)
    Rice: 30 p (I think - I used 200g for the two portions)
    Pepper: 83p
    Mushrooms: £1
    Onions: 30p
    Carrot: 30p

    Total: £2.97 for both of us. This meal was more expensive than the other two but it had all the taste of the local chinese takeaway and much cheaper in comparison to that.

  • Costing for today's meal

    Fajitas with wedges


    Home made tortilla wraps - 10p
    Pepper: 42p
    Indian Paneer: £1
    Onion: 10p
    Leftover relish from last night: free
    Seasoning/ Gas/ Leccy: 10p
    Yogurt dressing: 10p
    Leftover Pineapple and baby corn from the freezer: 5p (They were reduced)
    Potato Wedges: 13p

    Total for both of us: £2.00

    There is one portion left that I will have for lunch tomorow.

    This is the first time I am costing my meals and TBH it is an eye opener. I never thought, homemade meals can be so expensive!!
  • I have recently started making my own yogurt and wouldn't want to go back to the shop bought one as the home made one tastes so much better. Spent £20 on lakeland yogurt maker and I am sure it will soon pay itself off.

    I have also decided to meal plan for next week and try to build meals around what I already have. This weekend I will also be looking at the Finances file to findout where all the money is!! I know most of it is in Lloyds Vantage accounts but as the interest rate on these are no longer what it used to be, I think it makes sense to open more regular savers at 4% so will be looking into that also this weekend.
  • edited 18 October 2011 at 9:39PM
    MoneyQueenMoneyQueen Forumite
    926 Posts
    edited 18 October 2011 at 9:39PM
    I and DH have been having duscussions about when we would want to retire. To me 50 seems perfect but DH thinks we will very soon get bored so we should try to go parttime at that time for another few years before we retire for good.

    On a completely different note, I recently bought some soaps from Texstyle world when they had 50% sale on a brand called Bomb Cosmetics and I am very happy with them. I paid £5 for 500g of soap and they are as good as Lush if not better. I am finding that they are lasting longer than Lush Soaps so am well chuffed. I will surely buy them again when I go to Texstyle world if they haven't closed down as the sale was a closing down one.

  • Finally the weekend is here. It's been a mad week so I couldn't post. Hopefully I will be regular from now onwards

    I have just been going through my credit card statement. In September, I have spent £99.64 on groceries and £22.99 on Eating Out. Though this included a big party that we had where we catered for 20 people so I think it's fine.

    In October, I had spent £66.71 till day before yesterday and there's been a shop done yesterday but I still aim to finish the month under £100 as I have plenty of stuff in the fridge and freezer
  • I have got a mealplanning spreadsheet from the which will help me with planning my meals based on what I have in the cupboard/freezer. I have been entering the meals that we like in it and finding it very helpful. The only problem I see is that I can't use my IPhone to edit it on the move as IPhone doesn't support it!!
  • gallygirlgallygirl Forumite
    17.2K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Mortgage-free Glee!
    MoneyQueen wrote: »
    I have got a mealplanning spreadsheet from the which will help me with planning my meals based on what I have in the cupboard/freezer. I have been entering the meals that we like in it and finding it very helpful. The only problem I see is that I can't use my IPhone to edit it on the move as IPhone doesn't support it!!

    :mad: Thanks for that :mad:. Here I am supposed to be painting the living room ceiling and you go & post a link to site full of [STRIKE]toys[/STRIKE] useful tools. Perhaps you'd like to come & explain to my OH why the celing has yet to be painted. :o. Bye bye weekend :rotfl:

    PS Can't see the meal planner, but will have fun looking for it ;)
    A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort
    :) Mortgage Balance = £0 :)
    "Do what others won't early in life so you can do what others can't later in life"
  • Hi gallygirl, thanks for visiting my thread. Did you finally find the meal planning spreadsheet? I am on my iPhone at the moment but will send you the correct link when I login into my laptop tomorrow.

  • I have visited my thread after so many days as things have been so mad at work. We have booked a holiday to the las Vegas next year. Have only booked the flights till now. Still need to sort insurance and hotel. Both of us are so excited as this is our first ever trip to USA
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