Simple, sustainable and slow: Glenda's MF marathon

in Mortgage-free wannabe
83 replies 5.4K views


  • Quick weekend update: 3rd NSD achieved yesterday, did a TT this morning to find £10 for an OP. Another few quid and I'll hit my monthly goal.

    Planned spendy day today but all budgeted for. Better get moving a clean the house before our guests arrive!
  • A great day was had by all yesterday, and the celebrations came in under budget. We then had leftovers for supper, and rather than chucking the mince I was planning to use up (it needed cooking), I made a chilli that we can have today :A.

    I think I may have had another LBM: I've been traveling through the excellent resources on the Frugalwoods blog, and have signed up for Frugal January, which gets me the daily email tips. I have been struggling with motivation re money saving, as it's much easier to focus if you are paying off a debt or saving for a particular event. Just building up savings or paying a bit off a 20+ year mortgage makes it harder to see the direct benefit.

    However, I do have long-term goals, and I'm in the very fortunate position to be able to decide what I spend my spare cash on once all essentials have been paid for. I suppose I fell into the trap of assuming more spare money had to mean more discretionary spending, especially on treats for the kids. In reality, they will benefit from us having a more stable future, and they enjoy doing a mix of money-saving and spendy things.

    I had a good chat with Dad, who is very like me on that he prefers to be in control of his finances and know exactly what is going on. Despite my parents being in low paid jobs and having to rely on credit for big purchases when we were growing up, they still managed (through careful planning) to pay off the mortgage earlier, save into pensions/cash savings/investments and retire a few years early. I'm on a better wage, and don't have any excuse to not do the same. Plus, I enjoy tracking my spending and being creative about not spending money :p.

    It's time I actually thought about my long-term financial goals, and started matching my daily spending choices to ensuring they could happen. My anxious mind keeps telling me that things could go horribly wrong, but then the more I'm in control, the better I can weather any storms.

    Gosh, that was a screed! Will be back later to post some mercifully short aims for next week :o.
  • Spendy day today - ferries booked for summer holiday (eek!) but we got a good price and can think about where we are going later on. Plan is to take the tent and travel about as we wish - so much easier to do interesting (but still cheap) holidays now the boys are older and up for a bit of an adventure. Also, costs were budgeted for this month (polishes halo).

    I've also decided to reactivate my Evestor account and start my S&S ISA. £50 found in the budget so that will go out at the beginning of the month.

    Right, goals for next week:

    - Aim for a whopping 4 NSDs if I can manage it. It may mean trying for a weekend NSD which isn't always easy! Anyway, I should be able to manage at least 3.
    - Grocery shopping: only get what I need for a week, check stores and MAKE A LIST
    - Try to only check my budget/balance every few days rather than every morning, but input any transactions into YNAB immediately
    - No frivolous spending! Frivolling last week was at an all-time low, so I'll try to keep it up
    - Plan work lunches and outfits in advance to save time and money

    Have a great week, all :)
  • 2 NSDs clocked up so far :T. I've signed up for the Frugal January challenge and it's been very interesting. It's really helped in cutting down on thoughtless spending - rather than telling myself I can't buy something, I'm thinking of the better things that money will go towards.

    Budget tidy means another £10 can go to the mortgage - Jan target met :j.
  • MSE action of the day: opened a new online savings account with a bette rate of interest than my cash ISA - £1500 of EF moved over. The rest will be saved in my regular saver at 2.25%. So that's some free money sorted.

    Today: need to buy train tickets for a family visit next month, and food shopping. Must. Make. List. We're going this evening, so a chance of YS bargains too :D.
  • Woohoo, it's Friday! It's been a good and productive week.

    - 3 NSDs, hoping for a fourth today
    - Lunch to work every day
    - Under budget on groceries (so far)
    - Mortgage OP target hit
    - EF target in sight (fab if I could get to 2K before next pay day)

    Fairly quiet weekend planned, it's looking a bit dreary so indoor activities will be the priority.

    I'm enjoying the Ultra Frugal Challenge - although it's oddly easier to not spend money when I have a bit spare. When I'm squeaking by with the budget, it's hard to keep motivated about spending. Much easier when I have the luxury of choosing between 'treats' and saving for future goals.
  • New month, new goals! I manage (by dint of budget shuffling) to reach all my Jan budget goals in 10 days, so I'm very pleased. No more money in until the end of the month, so the next few weeks are going to be about keeping a handle on my spending and tidying small amounts to savings/mortgage where possible.

    Jan goals:
    - Monthly 1% OP goal met
    - £2000 in EF
    - Savings pots on track
    - Grocery and fun money spends on track and some small savings

    Feb goals:
    - Another monthly 1% off (£134.50)
    - £100 to EF (stretch goal 140)
    - Top up savings pots
    - £50 to S&S ISA
    - Reduce grocery budget if possible

    Other MS wins last month:
    - New savings account opened with better interest rate
    - S&S ISA opened
    - Cheapo advance train tickets booked for mini break in March

    I'm trying my best not to worry about how stable things are at the moment - I'd usually be fretting about the next crisis but I'm trying to enjoy the moment rather than worrying about things I can't fix. Work in progress :D.
  • First OP of the month: £10, so £124.50 to go.
  • Forgot about goals for this week. Here goes:

    - Grocery spends under £60
    - Three NSDs
    - Get outside every day
    - Tidy any spare cash towards home 'pot' as I'd like to get rid of a few bulky items, which means a collection (our council charges for this)

    Should be NSD1 today. Avoided paying out for coffee despite being out of the office this morning, and I brought a v tasty packed lunch.
  • 2 NSDs so far this week, aiming for a third today. I even managed to avoid a cheap work lunch by taking food in, and I'm pleased at the state of my grocery and fun money pots.

    Another small delay repay claim came through - I'm saving in the house pot this month so I can book an extra council bulky waste collection without budget shuffling. £13/£42 saved so far.

    I am eyeing some Kindle books for train reading, but they are all under 99p so they won't break the budget :D. The main thing to watch out for this month is half term - time off with the kids always seems to be spendy.
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