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Time to be a Thrawn and Frugal lassie again

Well, I was a member on MSE a while back (forgotten all my logins and my MSE e-mail account details so starting afresh...) managed to get debt free after several years and a lot of hard work, then I let it slide. Just wee bits and pieces here and there, but then more and more. NO MORE!
It's completely ridiculous. I managed to rid myself of about 20 000 worth of debt while bringing up four children single handed, with no child support from ex, and a self employed job that paid erratically to say the least. Thank heavens for tax credits!
Now I can feel myself on a slippery slope again. OK, I'm under 5000 in debt (mostly on one credit card and an overdraft) BUT I've started smoking again (about a year and a half ago) I was drinking too much (a bottle of wine a night-although I've cut right back now) and Books! Ah books are the bane of my life. So tempting, so tantalising, and so many unread after purchase!
Things ought to be different. After all, I'm now married to a wonderful man, who looks after my children as if they were his own. Ex has eventually started (reluctantly) coughing up some child support, my self employed job now pays a bit better, yet I've filled the financial gap by smoking, starting to take foreign holidays, drinking more, cooking less frugally, and not noting down my spends.
I'm starting this diary to keep myself focused on what I'm doing in my life financially, both to get out of debt again, and stay out.
I need to save for some major house repairs (which I would have been able to afford if I hadn't frittered away my savings these past couple of years) Now I have to save from scratch after paying off the debts.
I have some things in my favour. I like a challenge, I cook from scratch and can cook tasty, frugal food quite happily. I have a house full of books to amuse myself with and hubby is quite content as long as he has a few games to play on the computer. The children are of an age where the two older ones 23 and 18 are largely amusing themselves, the two younger ones (both under 16) are not particularly demanding money wise, although they do get to go on the odd school trip or workshops that pertain to their particular interests. These cost money, but I don't see why they shouldn't have them given they are few and far between.
The foreign holiday phenomenon is quite recent. Until about three years ago I hadn't been abroad for about 25 years. Our honeymoon took us to Italy. I was a non smoker then and saved for it using the money I saved from not smoking. I'm afraid I rather fell in love with getting some sunshine a couple of times a year, and it always worked out more expensive than I bargained for. Previously I was always quite content with a wilderness camping holiday in Scotland where I live, and I don't see why I shouldn't be content with that again! It used to cost us buttons!
The biggie is, of course, the stopping smoking. I know I can do it, it's the discomfort of the first few days I dread, however I will psych myself up to it and prepare a quit date.
The drinking a lot I'm not so bothered about. That was more of a getting carried away blip. I've cut right back and only have a couple of glasses a week with a meal. Saved a fortune on it already, and I feel much brighter.
Soooooo, goals. Get back on the band wagon really. Off for a think, and hope no one minds me jumping straight in with a diary.
DEBT: NW £3800 OD £1500 SAAS £750
Savings 0/£200 Dec 1st 2011
NSD /10
Stopping smoking coming soon.

Replies

  • Itsadogslife_2Itsadogslife_2 Forumite
    798 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Debt-free and Proud!
    Forumite
    :D aaahhh another book addiction, a girl after my own heart :D

    There is a thread on this board about not buying anymore books until you have read the ones you have got. I made my confession on there yesterday and my own diary that I genuinely think I have a bit of an addition with buying books. I can't say no to a book from a charity shop for 95p or 50p from a car boot. I must have hundreds of books on my bookshelves that are unread yet yesterday I bought four or five more :o

    I also love Italy :o And I used to smoke, but gave up. I can't believe how expensive cigarettes are now :eek:

    And I am also self employed :p
    LBM Debt as of 01/05/11 - £39,483.84 :eek::naughty: _pale_

    Debt free as of 24/07/13 :T:T :beer::beer:
  • LOL Itsadogslife :) Were we separated at birth?
    Thank you for the thread pointer, I'll have a look at that.
    My problem is eclectic tastes! I have ten, yes ten bookshelves, tall ones, full to the gunnels with books on everything from preserving and charcuterie to travel and olden times! Aaaah temptation is a terrible thing. I do look on the online library website to see if they have what I want in stock, but sometimes, when it's only 1p on Amazon I give right in!
    Ok, have had a think about my "must spend ons" These are regular spends that come in week after week.
    They are
    DD2- lunch money- £5 pw, it's a bit far for her to come home now they've shortened the lunch break at the high school
    Trampolining £3.50 pw She enjoys it, it's healthy and she meets her friends there.
    DS1 Lunch money £5 pw, ditto
    Home ec. £5. He's doing a higher and that's the contribution they need towards ingredients.
    DS2 Pocket Money £3 pw Too young to get a job and needs some ready cash.

    These can't/won't be removed, so total = £21.50

    Definite Optional Spends
    Cigarettes....... £6.90 a packet.... and I smoke about 8/9 packets a week._pale_ £62.10
    Wine Three bottles a week at £5.50 a bottle £16.50
    Hubby- Crate of beer @ £12.00 pw
    Hubby Cigarettes as above but smokes less than me, so £42.00
    Optional Spends total £132.60 GOOD GRIEF :eek:

    Oh I can definitely get that optional spends down. That's as much as I was taking out of the business for a wage last year! What a muppet!

    Going to look at foodstuffs and post back later.
    DEBT: NW £3800 OD £1500 SAAS £750
    Savings 0/£200 Dec 1st 2011
    NSD /10
    Stopping smoking coming soon.
  • Itsadogslife_2Itsadogslife_2 Forumite
    798 Posts
    Part of the Furniture Debt-free and Proud!
    Forumite
    I think we must have been :p

    I think ex smokers are the absolute worst when it comes to people smoking. £62.00 per week on cigarettes is :eek: You will feel so much richer and healthier when you give up :D
    LBM Debt as of 01/05/11 - £39,483.84 :eek::naughty: _pale_

    Debt free as of 24/07/13 :T:T :beer::beer:
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