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The Simple Bare Necessities feat. Gratitude & Recipes

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The Simple Bare Necessities feat. Gratitude & Recipes

edited 29 October 2016 at 8:24AM in Debt Free Diaries
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Greying_PilgrimGreying_Pilgrim Forumite
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edited 29 October 2016 at 8:24AM in Debt Free Diaries
Hello :hello:

I think that the time may be right to start a new diary. So much has changed since I started my 2nd diary, which can be found HERE and we're a whole lifetime away from my first diary, which can be found HERE

Whilst my first 2 diaries concentrated on living a simple life, concentrating on debt-avoidance for my (then) DP and I, we had a 'bit' of a tumultuous 2015, which meant that my DP became my DH and we 'Two' became 3, with the safe arrival of Baby Greying :D

Our focus has changed dramatically. Far from contemplating 'downsizing' (a bit of a misnomer in terms of our house, honestly, I've been in bigger 'flats'! :rotfl:) and somehow achieving early retirement; we now have a future focus that needs us to be super fit and active for as long as we can be. Also, as older first time parents, we are both committed to try to be in Baby Greying's life for as long as possible, without being a burden. Because whilst being older does have some distinct advantages when applied to parenting, there is no denying there's a downside too..............

Also, the economic climate is changing once again. Blame it on whatever you like, but there is always some reason why prices of x, y or z rise. There is always a reason why, when you find a way to combat inflation; someone comes along and changes the rules of the game. A good example of this is our wood burner. When we had it installed, we had access to a goodly amount of free wood, we both had the time and energy to process it and we could live with parts of the house being cold. Forward 10 years; more people have stoves - and are all chasing that 'free' wood, 'purchased' logs are now very expensive around here and we've no time to stack nor chop wood. It's become easier, and 'as expensive' to flick the on switch for the central heating....... a cleaner in-house option, that can keep the whole house a manageable temperature and Baby Greying at a safe and comfortable temperature.

Now it does matter if our hair-brained money saving wheezes make our teeth fall out or our toes freeze orf, because it impacts on our ability to look after Baby Greying in the now and in the future. Our health and well-being is a priority - but still not at any price. We want to have it all,;but with only a modest budget available, we're gonna have to get creative. I rarely shop in the 'big 4' supermercados. We purchase some things from mrL, some from mrAl. A smattering from mrW, mrT and m&$ (bananas mostly), with h0me bargins and h3ron f00ds being the sources of our regular shopping. We also have access to a food co-operative and I occasionally get to go to the next city along to get bulk purchases of pulses and spices.

Our focus now (that we've got over the shock of Baby Greying :D) is to move on from Greying Towers. The long and short of it boils down to it not being the right environment for us to bring up a child here. There are nicer places. We need to find them. So a move is on the cards. However, some renovation of the towers is necessary, and whilst funding has always been an issue; now we have the added upheaval of trying to do work around a baby. Not impossible, but not ideal. It's also still proving impossible to find reliable tradespeople. We're looking for a plumber, again :(

The one thing that I've come to recognise with age is that there is always 'good stuff' in every life. Even when you're really going through the mill. There are good people, who say or do good things to help you. There are the wonders of nature to take in at every turn. There is humour everywhere, even if you have to look under a few rocks to find it. It is important to be thankful, even on the dark days. And I try to do that - and find writing it down, in my online diary a good exercise in stopping. And thinking.

We like food at Greying Towers. I write about it alot. I take pictures of me tea. We're vegetarian (at present) and so vegetables feature. Alot. When it's gifted HG produce, it's even better :D

So, do you fancy climbing aboard for the new adventure. Taking some time out to Fall apart in my backyard with Me, DH and BG?

Greying X
'Larger than the World's chaos, is it's miracles...' - Katherine Rundell, Author.

'I am not in the pursuit of happiness, only in the discovery of joy' - Joyce Grenfell
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Replies

  • Greying_PilgrimGreying_Pilgrim Forumite
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    Good Morning :hello:

    So here we are at Thursday.

    We've had a good start to the day, long may it continue :D

    There should be no need for spending today, so I may yet snag a NSD :D We will go out and about to get some fresh air though - might head in the opposite direction to the High Street though.

    'Buddha Bowl' is on the meal-planner. I don't think I'll make the version that I was going to. You may well just see a distinct resemblance to a deconstructed pumpkin and black bean chilli before your very eyes........;):rotfl:

    Right, off to seize the day! :D

    Greying X
    'Larger than the World's chaos, is it's miracles...' - Katherine Rundell, Author.

    'I am not in the pursuit of happiness, only in the discovery of joy' - Joyce Grenfell
  • Cheery_DaffCheery_Daff Forumite
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    Yay, shiny new diary!:j :j Looking forward to all your new adventures Greying :j Hope you don't get involved in a seemingly never ending cycle of renovations-before-we-sell-the-house like we have been stuck in for the last two years :eek: I'm sure you're more sensible! :D Good luck with your quest :j
  • Greying_PilgrimGreying_Pilgrim Forumite
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    Hope you don't get involved in a seemingly never ending cycle of renovations-before-we-sell-the-house like we have been stuck in for the last two years :eek: I'm sure you're more sensible! :D Good luck with your quest :j

    :rotfl::rotfl: Cheery - sensible is not my middle name! Choice of shoes maybe, but not in my dna :rotfl::rotfl:

    We're most likely going to be reluctant landlords, rather than sellers of a 'perfect home in show house, ready-to-move-into condition' so we've got some structurals to consider (windows and shower) and basic, uniform decorating to carry out. It doesn't sound much written down like that, but involves flaky plaster, moving 'stuff' from pillar to post, switching off water supplies and how the heck do ya paint stairwells (I ain't papering it!!)

    I have cooked the black beans in the PC - YAY! So we will have summat to eat this eve! :D

    I still can't find that blessed recipe :think: But in looking for it, I came across one of my recipe notebooks, which co-incidentally seems to contain quite a few recipes with autumnal/winter ingredients and flavourings. So I'm minded, for November, to keep on with my basic meal planner system, ie 'Soup' = Tuesday, 'Curry' = Saturday etc, but to put in the recipes from this notebook each week were I can and where seasonality adds to saving the pennies. In addition, if I like recipes and transfer them to my index, the notebook will become redundant and can be put for paper recycling :j

    Right, best hop to it and do a bit more.

    Greying X
    'Larger than the World's chaos, is it's miracles...' - Katherine Rundell, Author.

    'I am not in the pursuit of happiness, only in the discovery of joy' - Joyce Grenfell
  • mrsinvisiblemrsinvisible Forumite
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    New Diary, YAAAY l found you, hope all your plans come to fruition, you have earned it, and have taught me lots of new recipes, including 'scrabble' that DGS loves.
  • Tilly_MFW_in_6_YRSTilly_MFW_in_6_YRS Forumite
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    Really looking forward to following your new diary. Interesting chapters lie ahead and although we all know life can be a bit 'snakes and ladders' at times joy is always close by.

    Good luck with your house moving plans.

    Much love Tilly xxx
    2004 £387k 29 years - MF March 2033:eek:
    2011 £309k 10 years - MF March 2021.
    Achieved Goal: 28/08/15 :j
  • greenbeegreenbee Forumite
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    Be very careful about going down the landlord route GP - have a look on the house buying & renting board for a while. It's not necessarily the easy choice. My DB & SiL rented out their flat for a few years, and it probably cost them more than it made them with repairs, refurbishment, voids etc. They're very relieved to be rid of it finally, although my SiL was very emotionally attached to it.

    Your house doesn't have to be perfect to sell - just presented nicely (clean, tidy, fresh and looking as spacious as possible). You usually find that any 'improvements' don't make you back what you spend on them. A lick of fresh paint is sometimes a good idea but that's it.

    I suggest getting a few EAs round and asking them.

    You could also share the details with us if you're brave and we can help work out what its sensible for you to do and what isn't. Some things do impact value, some impact how quickly it will sell, and some are only worth doing if you're planning on staying. If improvements won't impact on purchase price or speed of sale, don't bother!
  • Greying_PilgrimGreying_Pilgrim Forumite
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    greenbee - I don't want to be a landlord. But the alternative is to 'give' the house away, due to circumstances out of our control. I'm minded to do that, but DH won't hear of it. And quite frankly, if he's going to moan on for the rest of our lives that 'we woz robbed' well then........

    Thankfully we've only 2 windows to contemplate replacing, and although it'll be the whole shower unit, plus some remedial work to the surfaces in the bathroom, it's not a total refit or anything like that. The other 'ware' is functional. May not be to everyones taste (a couple of the pieces are original to the house), but they work.

    We wouldn't make 'more' out of renting than our costs. It certainly won't allow us to live rent free somewhere else. What it may do is enable us to live. This is currently a priority for us.

    Greying X
    'Larger than the World's chaos, is it's miracles...' - Katherine Rundell, Author.

    'I am not in the pursuit of happiness, only in the discovery of joy' - Joyce Grenfell
  • greenbeegreenbee Forumite
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    I suspect you're going to have to do those things in order to rent the place out as well, so much as I loathe having work done (which is why downstairs has wires hanging from the ceiling, second-hand vinyl and carpet on the floors and no kitchen), I'd suggest you get the quotes now and start planning the work in.

    Windows (apart from the cost) are relatively painless. And if you're not planning on staying, cheap and cheerful with a FENSA cert will do. For the bathroom, again, as you're not staying, basic and functional (including boring plain white tiles - big rectangular ones may work out cheaper than standard small square ones and look a little more classy) will do and maybe paint the walls a cheerful colour and accessorise with colourful bath toys and nice towels.

    Baby stuff around the place isn't actually a bad way to sell the house - it makes it obvious that there is space, however bijou, for a growing family. When I sold the last place I specifically 'dressed' the spare room as a kids' room, and made sure the high chair, toddler crockery and cutlery and toys were visible but contained. It sold to a couple with a baby on the way :)

    Tell you what... if you go and get your quotes and start planning, I'll organise my boiler repair and call the builder about coming back and doing the upstairs snagging ...
  • EssexHebrideanEssexHebridean Forumite
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    :j:jNew Diary Dance! :j:j

    Welcome to your new home Greying! The subscription has happened! :T

    We're probably going to be looking at renting our place out as and when the move "North" happens Greying, again not specifically choice, but frankly we'd be mad to sell somewhere in the South in those circumstances - with no mortgage on it it can at least provide us with a modest income from rent. One thing we have categorically agreed is that it will be done through an agent though - thus avoiding those telephone calls at 3 in the morning over something the tenant "thinks" is life or death...

    Buddha Bowl (Ish) for me tonight too - mine will contain a quantity of chickpeas and some 'shrooms! :D
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016 :D
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  • VerbatimVerbatim Forumite
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    And be aware of the new rules for Landlords. If you buy another house you'll be paying an extra 3% purchase tax as a buy to let l/l. It doesn't matter that the new house isn't the one that you'll be letting it's that you'll have two.
    Also the amount of interest on mortgages as an allowable tax deduction is being reduced and I think phased out. Add in regular maintenance, gas and electricity inspections, legal liabilities and the costs of landlord licences, which many councils are introducing, void periods, tenants not looking after the place or subletting and you've got an unpleasant, time consuming extra job. Furthermore if you employ an agent to manage the property and they don't do something required by law it will still be you who is responsible and accountable in law.
    CCs @0% £24k Dec 05 £19,621.41 Au £13400 S 12600 Oct £11,981 £9481 £7500 Nov £7250 D £7100 Jan 6950 F £5800 Mar£5400 May £4830 June £4660 July £4460 Aug £3200, S £900, £0 18/9/07 DFW Nerd 042
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