NST December: Festive Fun



  • ditty1234
    ditty1234 Posts: 2,046 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper
    Slightly off piste ... but does anybody else hate using up old light bulbs? I Just had an old school bulb pop tonight and what did I find to replace it with - an early days low energy bulb (nonLED) with a lovely green tone. Would do great for a police station.
    Grateful for volunteering, cooking, and for women's hour in the pool.
    Am too tired to actually start challenge - NSD day today though.
    LBM Jan 2019 - £25.928/Active debt £14253, 54% sorted
    Housing fund Jan 2024 £2000/6000 36%
    EF Jan 2024 £0/1000 0% Emergency fund is for worn out things like vacuum cleaner, dish washer, and washing machine.
  • mothernerd
    mothernerd Posts: 4,827 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Debt-free and Proud!
    Slow progress but things are getting done. All the cards that need to be posted went yesterday (had to go into the 'P.O.' with two of them and they were shut early on). Booked the taxi for the evening, shop with drain stuff was shut so I carried on and ended up very tired (roofs were white with frost and I think the cold seeped into my bones.

    Dried 3 lots of clothes on the radiators yesterday, another wash load done plus two dishwasher loads. The carol service was good but last year's was better. Perhaps because their leader was on holiday and they had to keep it simple. Last year included David Essex's 'Winter's Tale' and Greg Lake's 'I believe in Father Christmas' but the secular choices this year were mostly American.

    However a good time was had by all and I did lots of un-me things (they handed out lots of things to accompany Jingle bells and I was handed a small maracas. The brownies and other children had bells and had to dash down one aisle and back up the other and when it was done fr an encore it got faster and faster.

    We also did 12 days of Christmas with each number allocated to a few rows of pews and when it was your number you had to stand up to sing. I have actually done it with exercises ( so 1 star jump, two jumping jacks, 1 star jump all the way through). Seems unbelievable now (it was pretty unbelievable at the time but only 3 people had turned up + 2 instructors and it was for charity).

    Have now wrapped all the presents (nothing yet for DS1 or DS3). DS3's 'outlaws' sent a very small artificial tree so the decorations came out and they have all the small baubles. DS1 was 'sulking' on-line because my darling daughter-in-law said that although angels were traditional, weeping angels weren't allowed. I suggested having a dalek tree (she's the Whovian), the boys father suggested Angel from Buffy, DS2 said have 2 trees, a friend said they had Jack Skellington on their's, d-i-l's cousin said 2 trees - a 'grown up one' and a 'fun' one (her fun one is by the gin).

    I started this morning by writing a list (3 pages and I've not even gone into detail) after checking that more drain cleaning was not an option - it got sunnier but not any warmer and it was as much as I could do to get out from under the bedclothes, definitely not going outside, it was lunchtime before the bins unfroze enough to lift the lids.

    Amazingly they have not put the heating on today and I won't put it on, even though I would love it to be on. They're cheating really as DS3 is working from the couch with a quilt over him and Beloved was playing a game with the VR headset on but under the bedclothes.

    Have filled one bin bag with kitchen rubbish and front room clutter and gathered up paper and other recycling as I've gone along. I also did a small food order for delivery on Wednesday then looked at 'my' basket. Went to ask if Beloved had started a list. Yes - she just went through and put down all the things she liked.

    I have been buying more food for them (otherwise they get takeaway) and she has been cooking a lot (he's eating everything sshe gives him atm) but it's messing up my budget and I don't really know how to account for it, fairly. I hadn't even decided what my food budget was.

    So I counted the number of 'their' items and there were 16. I had said they were allowed 10 food items each on their Christmas list so with the curries, noodles and cordial DS3 had asked for (he also asked for yule log but that was in the list that beloved had done) that is them done.

    I also asked Beloved to check how much space was in the freezer (4 drawers worth after a shuffle round). I've taken 2 items off the list (2 expensive desserts) but told Beloved she can have them for New Year (too bulky and will take up too much space when they aren't needed yet). I am paying for this food but I won't be eating any so I'm not including it in my budget (one off Christmas food for them and any guests they might have).

    So my food comes to £19. This was the 'fish' offer (I have included prawns which is one of my Christmas items - if I don't get to eat them they will be saved for my birthday), 2 large blocks of mature cheese (good price even if some gets snaffled by others), bacon and a couple of cheapo ready meals (if I get cold and hungry I have something that can be done in 5 minutes).

    I'd really gone off food by then anyway. I have fish, veg and tinned pulses to live off for the next couple of weeks and lots of things I can make with what I have. I did make some economies. I'd downgraded from a turkey to a small chicken and finally opted for a turkey piece wrapped in bacon, they're having a small piece of stuffed chicken and lamb chops instead of a leg of lamb.

    Feel as though I am in 'crisis mode' but in this case it's a war of attrition against the frailties of my own body. I already know I'm not going to get 'everything' done and our current way of life is unsustainable - I need next year to be 'better'. I have a couple of organisational tools that I'm going to employ.

    One I saw last night (for when you are worn out) was a series of questions to ask:
    Does this need to be done now?
    Does it need to be done at all?
    Can someone else do it?
    Is there another way of doing it?
    etc, etc

    I need to ask this for every single task and develop routines. I need to ask Mr and Mrs Builder to step in at an earlier stage (as soon as I understand it's not something I can manage easily). I need to think again about getting a cleaner (either one off or maybe once a month for some of the jobs I can't do any more).

    I've already decided that after Christmas I need to start on the garden on every good day (weatherwise or when I am having a good day). I'm rapidly approaching the point where I will no longer be able to arrange things how I want them so need to do it asap (general putting things at a height where I can tend to them more easily).

    Topped up my phone today by £10. They will give me £20 credit but that disapppears at the end of the month. Had to charge it as well (and I haven't done the phone call I originally picked it up for). Need to do a light bulb check - the one in here keeps flickering and I'm not sure what spares I have, bought a load of the kitchen ones but think they've all been put in.

    Today I am grateful for finding out that Beloved's wish list with furniture on it is the'moving out list' (not that there's much prospect of that), for getting things done when I long to huddle under the quilt and hibernate and for finding easy food options (bulky bits from the freezer and soup for a second meal).
    My mission in life is not only to survive,but to thrive and to do so with some Passion, some Compassion, some Humour and some Style.
    NST SEP No 1 No Debt No mortgage
  • misstara
    misstara Posts: 3,883 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post I've been Money Tipped!
    Foodbank/charity donation - usual charity donation will go out as a direct debit tomorrow.
    Eat well - trying to cut down on snacking on between meals, today I only had my advent calendar chocolate and 1 biscuit. Had veg packed beef stew for tea with extra veg on the side.
    Savings/debt repayment - no extra payments today.
    Treat yourself - gingerbread candle has been lit and started reading a book.
    Invitations - girls night planned round at one of the girls houses. Going to the cinema this week to see Frozen 2.
    Very merry Christmas - had a look online for some more present ideas.
    Exercise - steps: 11,435/310,000, gym: 0/4, run: 0/4.

    Fun - went for a lovely walk today, cold but sunny :).
    Understand what motivates you - done.
    NSDs - no spends today so 1/15.
    Debt Dec 2022 - £2972.68. Current debt - £0 (100% paid). Flat deposit - £10814.10/£15000 (72.1% saved). Emergency fund - £1562.44/£2000 (78.1% saved).
  • shabbychic12
    Well l have moved the money round to cover the next months spends and so the festive onslaught beings with a trip to the TC . I have a list which as long as remember to take it l will be fine. Everyone has been told that we are cutting back and as a family hv gone down the secret Santa route to save money too. I think as l have become older l hv become less tolerant of waste and spending because you can. I’m becoming a more mindful spender theses days. Wrap up warm and hv a good day x
    Count down to retirement 2023
  • mothernerd
    mothernerd Posts: 4,827 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Debt-free and Proud!
    Thank you shabbychic. I am list writing and was dreading the day ahead. I am getting myself worked up because one of today's many jobs is to make something the way I wanted to do it in the first place. I will try to have a good day and will calm down now, getting worked up won't help. Zen calm is the order of the day.

    Okay done that and it's helped block out the pain from my leg (multiple pains). This will be a good day. Things will get done. I will not shout at my mother (unless she shouts at me). No I will smile sweetly and look mysterious (that really annoys people).

    Today I am grateful for the company of my mother, for fruit and cereal bars and for being good at solving problems and finding alternative solutions.
    My mission in life is not only to survive,but to thrive and to do so with some Passion, some Compassion, some Humour and some Style.
    NST SEP No 1 No Debt No mortgage
  • [Deleted User]
    Count me in please xx

    Foodbank/charity donation - add a few items when you're doing a food shop or buy a gift to donate. A local charity here collects gifts to give to deprived children at Christmas so going to buy something to donate. Will add some to the food bank trolley when I do my food shop on Friday.

    Eat well - It can be very difficult to eat well over the festive period with all the lovely food around so enjoy but don't over-indulge. Will try!

    Savings/debt repayment. Pay to your debt or savings first and live off what is left. Aim to pay 10% extra this month. Made a £200 payment to a CC on payday, will make another £10 over payment today.

    Treat yourself - Make sure you take time for yourself during December. Relax and read a book, have a bubble bath, light some candles, etc
    . I plan to start tonight with a nice relaxing bath once I can take a stupid plaster off of my arm

    Invitations - Accept a maximum of 2 invitations during December. Works night out, panto, girls night out, whatever you have planned, set a budget and stick to it. Don't imagine I'll get any invites, but will accept if I do :rotfl:

    Very merry Christmas - Don't get sucked into all the consumerism that surrounds Christmas, set your budgets for presents, food, etc and stick to them. Mostly sorted anyway.

    Exercise - At this time of year, it can be difficult to motivate yourself to get out the house and exercise. Aim for at least 10 minutes outside, even just a short walk around the block. Will aim to close my Exercise goal on my watch (30 mins) every day. Tonight we are swimming :)

    Fun - Think of fun things to do during December, preferably free. Wander round a Christmas market, watch a Christmas movie, make mince pies, etc.
    Will search for ideas.

    Understand what motivates you - Think about what you want to achieve next year and why. How will you achieve your goals? working on my New Year's Resolutions list :)

    NSDs - Aim for 15 NSDs. Usual rules apply, you won't lose a NSD for ys items, petrol or medical reasons.
    NSD 1/15 today
  • crazy_cat_lady
    Hello :wave:
    Another spendy day today - but...
    I have finished my Christmas shopping! :j:j I have the day off work today, and went out with my list straight from dropping ds off at school. I had decided that everything I couldn't get in store today I would order online, which is exactly what I've done. I have 1x £5 secret santa present to buy for someone at work but need to find out a bit more about them before I do that.
    Now I'm settled in at home for a couple of hours to watch a bit of telly and a bit of crochet before the school run again. I'll need an early night tonight though - I've been awake since quarter to five this morning.
  • XSpender
    XSpender Posts: 3,811 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    Foodbank/charity donation - I completed my reverse advent calendar for the food bank last month so will be making a donation to DS school this month

    Eat well - DH has requested to go vegan part time so aiming for 12 vegan days this month 0/12

    Savings/debt repayment - Having to dip into EF for emergency repairs this month but aiming not to use CC at all and all debt repayments on DD.

    Treat yourself - paint my nails, read my book, new diary and notebook for 2020 (on my Christmas list;))

    Invitations - I don't usually go out much but December is an exception. Girls Christmas night out, Panto, Christmas NT event, Christmas Eve meal with friends.

    Very merry Christmas - budget set and only some £1 stocking fillers to buy and a token gift for parents. Will make a conscious effort not to blow the Christmas food budget with careful planning. I have 7 to cater for on Boxing day lunch and dinner and no idea!!

    Exercise - Will be walking the dog

    Fun - I make DS an activity advent calendar each year with activities in like decorating cookies, writing cards, watching a movie etc. and have some fun events to look forward to as a family

    Understand what motivates you - I want to half our debt next year. I want more financial security and to have more options around our stressful jobs. I also have a few small jobs to do around the house and a garden makeover to do next spring!

    NSDs - Aim for 15 NSDs - will do
    Save £10,500 - £2673.77 - 25.5%
    Pay off £7000 - £1743 - 19.4%
    Make £2021 extra income - £99.75
  • lcc86
    lcc86 Posts: 2,370 Forumite
    First Anniversary Photogenic Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Evening all, quick check in tonight:

    Foodbank/charity donation - one DD has gone out today, the other one goes out later in the month.
    Eat well - salad for lunch today. Halloumi and veg for dinner tonight (slightly naughty!).
    Savings/debt repayment - done. Big DDs have gone through today as well.
    Treat yourself - nice bubble bath last night and a good sleep.
    Invitations - sticking to the 4 I have, won't accept any more.
    Very merry Christmas - bought a few snacky bits today in town before work.
    Exercise - gym today before work.

    Fun - gym was fun, work not quite so much fun but has to be done!
    Understand what motivates you - already done.
    NSDs - Aim for 15 NSDs. Still on 1/15. Ordered my mum some flowers for her birthday as there was a sale on today only so I also bought snacky bits for Xmas and a few bits I needed for the pets. I got my 2020 diary too. Might do some more Xmas shopping online later while I'm on a spend day, there are a couple of bits I know I can get.
    Save £3,000 emergency fund #79 - £2,073.28 as of 05/24
    Pay off credit card by December 2024 - £392/£2,000
  • mothernerd
    mothernerd Posts: 4,827 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Debt-free and Proud!
    Got to mum's early but the Builders had had to go to an emergency first.

    I put 24 toilet rolls, 8 kitchen paper rolls and 4 x 2l bottles of waterinto a kichen cupboard
    4 small hard as rocks fruit cakes broken up and put out for the birds

    small sponge cakes that have been in the freezer 12 months defrosted
    bottles of cleaning stuff moved from spare room to kitchen (needs sorting)
    All clothes from the cupboard nearest the wall taken out and moved to 3rd cupboard
    Spare curtains (labelled), spare cushions and an enormous bed cover moved into the end cupboard (now inaccessible) BONUS found 1.2kg box of cornflakes so took them off the shopping list
    Cornflakes and oats put in the cupboard behind the already opened ones
    Toys taken out of a cupboard and replaced with the recipe books (loose recipes still to be culled)
    Box of DVDs for the cs into a box to be brought home with me
    Lunch for me and mum
    Was about to start again when the Builders arrived

    Mrs Builder and I have moved 4 sets of drawers. Mr Builder put up the new post box and then did the shed roof. Helped him find the second squirrel which was hiding behind the deer and nailed him back into place on the shed. Also found him a red rawlplug in one of my tool bags.

    Mrs builder and I have attached the finials to two curtain poles. Mum wanted the crystal ones on the front room pole (finials wider than the pole) and the blue ones in the bedroom (finials smaller than the pole). Moved lamp and ornaments into mum's 'new' room and sorted the electrics.

    Two pieces of the old table moved out into the yard. I trimmed all the runners off the strawberry plants. Checked which bit of concrete needs drilling out and where mum wants the small edging fence pieces going. Mr and Mrs Builder went off to buy door knobs and a corner shelf unit to be fitted tomorrow. I have to buy two more long hooks to hang the remaining garden chairs on the shed.

    I had a shower, made food for me and mum again and have since moved a few bits around (couple of dining chairs, reshuffle/ stock check in the soupery, bin bag of rubbish including one broken household item). Work to recommence some time after 10am tomorrow morning.

    Came home early as I was falling asleep in the armchair.

    Today I am grateful for Mr and Mrs Builder (so nice to have workpeople who will talk things through and come up with a solution between us), for mum being content to sit in her chair and just rattle off jobs that needed doing as she remembered them - I didn't care as long as she stayed out of the way and did not fall over anything and for easy food (all from mum's cupboards).
    My mission in life is not only to survive,but to thrive and to do so with some Passion, some Compassion, some Humour and some Style.
    NST SEP No 1 No Debt No mortgage
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