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Single Mum: Freedom in Narnia

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  • LeighofMar
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    Sorry about your boy's foot. I hope he's not in too much pain and can hop around a bit. 
    Mortgage start date Dec 2015 - $64,655.00
    Mortgage end date Dec 2045 - NOT!!!!
    Mortgage balance  - $4600.00
    Business Savings $43,310/100k
    Hope to be mortgage-free by end of 2023 
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    Thanks @LeighofMar. He's enjoying being waited on currently, and I made his fav dinner: Salmon, peas and cous cous.
    Thank you yellow sticker salmon!

    I've been thinking today about the things I do to make my money go further and have decided to compile a list:
    1. Budget and try to stick to it! 
    2. Include different pots for expenses within my budget. I've got Xmas/gifts, Holidays, DIY etc. Vets bills, and Emergency fund.
    3. Meal plan and make a shopping list.
    4. Survey sites. Toluna, Curious cat and Qmee.- This is going towards holidays currently until April then will switch to Gifts.
    5. £co and TopCB. 
    6. Stretching food. EG. mince = spag bol, cottage pie, pasta bake.
    7. TGTG- useful for bread stuff mainly but I've had a good few meals too.
    8. Free cycle/free stuff FB market place- give and get- saves taking stuff to the tip!
    9. Selling stuff on FB. Need to get back to that soon.
    10. Only putting the dishwasher on every 2-3 days.
    11. Hot water bottles rather than heating as much as possible.
    12. Buying wood for the fire in bulk. My first lot came today, lets see how long it lasts.
    13. Educating Creative boy about money. I show him my books and help him save.
    14. My money book. The best gift my Grandma ever gave me! I write a budget weekly for 4 weeks at a time so I can isolate savings etc. I tick off every DD and work out my spends for the week. 
    15. My sobriety. I've been sober for 10 years now and I thank God for every day of it!
    16.  I think hard about every purchase. If it's a big one- like the microwave I had to buy yesterday, I read reviews, get vouchers and go through £co or TCB. I ended up getting a convection microwave for £121 which was the very best price I could find for what I wanted. 
    17. I put pennies, 5p, 2p in a pot and use it to pay for my shopping when I'm skint. 
    18. I re-use or re-purpose as much as I can. 
    19. Save gift bags.
    20. Freeze small portions of leftovers to eat when Creative boy is at his Dads to save putting the oven on.
    21. I have been known to make soup out of veg peelings- it was ok but I'm hoping those days are behind me!
     22. Buy second hand as much as possible. I love charity shops but am finding them a bit expensive these days so I tend to wait til stuff goes down in price before I get it.
    23. Give to charity shops- I don't have a lot but I do try to give what I can. I also donate £20 a month to the local foodbank. I remember when Creative boy and I had to use it. It saved us at one point so I'm doing what I can to help.
    24. The local church has a buy or swap bookcase- it includes dvds so I got Creative boy hulk on dvd for 25p on Sunday (stocking filler for next year. I buy throughout the year to minimise December pain.)
    25. I love a good jumble sale- not been to one for a while but im on the lookout. 
    26. Re-gifting when I can get away with it! My sister always gives me loads of stuff and while I'm thankful, I end up giving or selling some of it due to the amount of space it takes up.
    27. Receipt snapping, shopmium and checkout smart. It's all going towards xmas/gifts this year. I'm hoping that xmas won't actually cost me anything because I will have earned it all throughout the year. 
    28. Making all crap beautiful. I'm handy with a paintbrush and love to up-cycle stuff. I'm less able due to my illnesses but I still do my best.
    29. Buy Christmas cards in Jan sales. Always!

    That's all I can think of for now. I'll continue to list them as I think of them.
    JAK
    x

    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    Toluna hasn't had many surveys on for me the past couple of days and Ccat has locked me out until the 12 Feb. Not sure why. Maybe I did too many? Not sure.
    Creative boy has gone to school. The drive was hideous this morning! Took an extra 20 mins. Ergh. 
    I'm excited today. I've got two friends coming round for lunch and I'm making cottage pie. Yum. I did the mince yesterday and am about to do the mash now. I never had people round at my old house because I hated it there. The house is polished and shining! You'd think the Queen was coming round. I've even put the heating on for a treat cause one friend is a bit old, love him, and feels the cold. I hope all goes well. I'm always a bit awkward when people who aren't family come over. My anxiety plays up. They are coming at 1pm so I'm going to go and get sorted in a mo.
    I'm using the mince my sister gave me when she went into rehab, so free to me, as were the carrots. A garlic bread from the freezer, gifted lemonade to drink and trying out my new cutlery- thank you Nectar! How exciting. I am looking forward to it!
    I hope the animals behave! My littlest doggo can be a bit of a pain with people she doesn't know very well. The cats will probably just hide- after doing an enormous poo in the litter tray just before they arrive no doubt!
    Right, must go peel potatoes! Have a great day everyone!
    JAK
    x
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    I've managed to make £380.34 through the make £10 a day challenge! I just can't believe it! Still got a fair way to go to meet my holiday challenge money but I'm inching ever closer! 
    My Mum is going to take me shopping nearer the time to get some new clothes for my holiday and I'll need to get Creative boy some gear too. 
    JAK
    x
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    I'm inching ever closer to having to make an OP decision. Nearly at £4,500 now. When I get to £5000 I'll have to give it some serious thought! 
    Holiday savings are doing well. I've got just under £150 until I reach my first goal. I think I'm going to sway my next lot of Toluna vouchers for Tesco £10 so that it's easier to change into holiday savings. Amazon vouchers are great but I can only spend so much on there! 
    I've had a bad night. I fell down the stairs yesterday and have really hurt my thighs. I'm having to rest today which is rubbish. I'm lucky nothing is broken but I'm in a lot of pain and feeling a bit sorry for myself. I've also had to miss church and going to Tesco shopping with Mum which is rubbish.
    On Friday I went to the food bingo with Mum again. It was So Fun! I won two lines and a house!!! It actually got a bit embarrassing in the end. But I got crisps and lemonade, bread and butter pudding with custard and rhubarb pie and custard! RESULT! All the old dears were cursing me. I did ask the lady we were sitting with if I should keep saying if I won and she said everyone else would so not to worry about it. So I just kept winning. It was So fun! It's every two weeks so I'm looking forward to the next one. It's nice to see my Mum smile. She's having such a hard time with my step-dad's dementia. He is almost completely incontinent now. It's terrible. She's waiting for a carers assessment to get help but the list is Long. 
    My sister finally gets out of rehab on Wed and is coming to stay for a few days. I'm really hoping she finally manages to kick it now. I don't allow alcohol in my house. I need her to sort herself out. We all have enough to deal with without her being a trouble maker! I do love her, but honestly, you would not even believe the chaos she causes! It's just exhausting!
    I was the amazing fainting girl yesterday. My heart nurse has changed my tablets and my blood pressure isn't a fan. Oh well. Hopefully things will improve.
    I'm Really looking forward to our holiday. I'm a bit scared about the flight as it's my first long-haul since I was diagnosed with heart failure. I'm hoping all goes well. The hospital have sent me links to all the heart specialists in the area just in case so that's good. Obviously I'm hoping I won't need to meet them!
    Oooh and I've lost 10.2 pounds so far! The January diet is working! 4/5 pounds more to target and them i'm fully planing on doing some shopping- mainly from my wardrobe. Thank goodness I saved most of my thin clothes! They shall fit again!
    JAK
    x

       
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • Fortune_Smiles
    Fortune_Smiles Posts: 5,093 Forumite
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    edited 29 January 2023 at 1:52PM
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    Hello JAK 🙂  Just de-lurking to say congratulations on your progress - you're doing so well.  And the weight loss is inspiring!  Do take care on those stairs though - didn't Creative Boy come a cropper on those too?.

    Fortune x

    Mortgage: 88% paid Mortgage Neutral: 100% Emergency Fund: 100%
    A Better View 🌄 'Being on the edge isn't as safe, but the view is better' - Ricky Gervais
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    Thanks @Fortune_Smiles. Yes Creative boy kicked the stairs lol when he broke his foot. Honestly. They are clearly perilous. I'll be getting grab rails as soon as possible xx 
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • doingitanyway
    doingitanyway Posts: 8,987 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Mortgage-free Glee!
    edited 30 January 2023 at 10:13AM
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    Wow you are doing well, so organised. You are making the new house into a lovely home.
    Dieting fab too and will relieve pressure on your heart.
    All good  :)
    If you have built castles in the air, your work should not be lost; that is where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.

    Solicitor/survey savings 300/1700
    Emergency fund 0/1000
    Buffer fund 0/200
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    Thank you @doingitanyway. It will certainly help my heart, that's for sure. My BMI has finally inched into the 22's. Woo hoo. Now I need to keep it there. Crisps are foe, not friends.
    Toluna has been quiet again this weekend. I seem to do best in the week for surveys. Does everyone else find that? 
    Creative boy has got to school from his Dad's but accidentally bought the wrong bus ticket so £1 wasted. It's a bit annoying but he won't do that again. 
    My legs are still very sore today but I've got a meeting at 10.30 that I'e got to attend. Luckily it's on zoom so at least I won't have to fully get dressed for it. 
    Have a nice day kids,
    JAK
    x
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
  • jak
    jak Posts: 2,027 Forumite
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    Well I bit the bullet today and phoned adult social care about the stairs. They were so nice and will try and send someone in a week to fit hand rails for me. It felt a bit gutting to be honest. I had hoped I was past adaptations. It's tricky. I'm grateful for the help but on the other hand I just really want to be at a place where I don't need those things anymore. I need to work on my acceptance and gratitude. I'm grateful for my lovely home, darling creative boy and the naughty little critters. I accept that I need a bit of help sometimes and it's OK to ask for it. There, I wrote it here so it must be true!
    On to money: I can't go shopping atm so Mum got me a few bits. She said she'd let me know what I owe her, though she did go to Sainbob so it won't be hugely cheap. BUT I didn't get tempted by anything so that helps! 
    I've saved a massive 75p into my holiday pot today (whoop, whoop) but every little helps and all that!
    Feeling a bit more cheerful now. Onwards and upwards!
    JAK
    x
    2022 Comp total (prizes + free spins): £494.81 #20 £12 a day Jan: £382.95/£372 #57 360 1p challenge: £17.70 £10 a day Feb: £571.09/£280 March: £311.96/£310
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