Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

Search
  • FIRST POST
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 2nd Jan 18, 2:38 PM
    • 31,890Posts
    • 188,198Thanks
    Karmacat
    Travelling On
    • #1
    • 2nd Jan 18, 2:38 PM
    Travelling On 2nd Jan 18 at 2:38 PM
    2018 really is a “travelling on” year for me: the final push, as far as finances and organisation are concerned. But I still need to look after the rest of me, so here it all is, adapted from the review I did on the last few pages of my previous diary:

    Make good memories.
    Building on last year. Carrying on reconnecting with old friends and new.
    Make new friends, especially locally.
    Our little board games group - we're all retired now!
    Rejoin the local writing group?

    Plus holidays and creative work, see below.

    Holidays
    A UK holiday for all three of us, probably to Hadrian's Wall.
    A cruise: current thinking is a 14 day-er with Tui to Norway; you could really do Norway in that time.

    Creativity
    I wanted to do lots of writing around one blog, and lots of design work around another, and I haven't done either of those things. I've missed it. A second edition of my original kindle book is needed, a new kindle is nearly ready, I can do a novel. There are a couple of options for another factual one.

    And if I'm ever going to design any cat cards or geometric patterns, this is the year.

    Jobs around the house
    The house is definitely my house now, not a work-live space. Replaster the hall, repair the hardstanding and the patio, some electrical work on the ground floor. Lots of other bits that are really little.

    Garden
    Weeding, getting compost, topsoil and bark chippings down, so I can plant edible perennials.
    Frences need weatherproofing. Prunings from hedging plants need burning to add to the soil.

    Health
    I'm carrying on
    getting better – need to get enough sleep. And I need stamina and strength – just enough to have a day out in London for instance.
    Healthy walks run by the local council. Dance classes, by the end of the year?

    Finances.
    MSE wins
    Swagbucks and You Gov right now, but I'll be going for Pinecone Research and Prolific Academic. Anything of that type that I can do from my armchair!
    Pensions
    I haven't done anything – luckily, the Stock Market hasn't collapsed, but I really do need to safeguard it, simply because I don't earn money any more.
    Online Sales
    I've kept some items back from the charity shop, things that will probably net £5 or more. Spread throughout the year, do it or donate it.
    Change current account
    HSBC have irritated me with their crazy fraud software for the last time. When my Regular Saver terminates, I'm moving.
    Insurance
    I just renewed last year, for ease, it was less than a month after the funeral. But I want a cheaper alternative, and I need to get quotes for insurance of all this jewellery I now have.

    Accounts
    2016/17 in the UK, and 2017 in France. I don't know if I'll need to do UK accounts after this year – I might have to, even though I've no UK earnings, because of the French apartment.
    French accountant
    I have the possibility of shifting accountant, people have got a computer programme going for leaseback properties like mine. Do I take the risk of moving? I'll have to decide really soon. Probably not worth it if I'm selling.
    Tackle French mortgage.
    The mortgage ends in September next year! About 630 euros a month goes to capital repayment, and the interest rate is 0.95% p.a.
    Ability to sell the French apartment?
    If I could sell it without penalty (huge VAT payment) I'd love to get rid of it now. I don't care too much what I'd get for it, even.
    My mother's house
    We'll be putting it up for sale in the summer; it was recently rewired, which is good, but it's still a fixer-upper, there's no doubt. Quite a bit of work in it.

    Counting Blessings”,says greent.
    I used to do that all the time. Last year felt short on blessings, to be honest, but even so my brother and sister and I have come together very strongly, we've met up with the Norfolk rellies, a new baby was born, I went catsitting twice, and that's just the big stuff.
    Next year will be more settled in the basics, so that everyday events feel more fun, and there'll be lots more opportunity for fun one-offs: I'm off to London this week and the next for days out. Another baby will be born in summer 2018!

    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
Page 156
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Jun 19, 6:02 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Be grateful they admitted to not feeling confident with a sealant gun!
    Originally posted by badmemory
    I am, I assure you! "I don't know how" is infinitely preferable to bravado

    Morning Karma! Glad you took my message yesterday in the way intended, I get rather worked up about it all and hate to think that you might take it the wrong way! With the £200 grocery budget I forgot to say that that is largely organic and zero waste, with milk and veg box, so it can be done on a relatively tight budget.
    Originally posted by themadvix
    Not a problem, madvix And you do mostly organic on that? Okay, *that* I can't do, I'm super impressed I use organic eggs and honey, and thats about it

    Am writing on phone on boat WiFi, so not going to try to quote! But your point about making things from home grown/foraged stuff - doesn't it taste so much better from the effort you've put into it!
    Thank you for popping in under those circumstances! And yes, it tastes so much better, there's a real appreciation there for me

    Sorry to hear builder has mucked you about a bit, hope the rain gods have a day of rest today and you manage to get out in the garden. Totnes always sounds really cool, Totnes pound, zero-waste shop -I'd love to go there!
    It's utterly beautiful, all this afternoon, I can hardly believe it! And sadly, I can't stay at Totnes *and* get to Greenway very easily - ahem - it will have to be Paignton which I think is one of the towns known as "god's waiting room" it's my first normal holiday (ie on my own, under my own steam) for years, and I don't think I'm up for two centre shenanigans.

    I love Totnes, and used to spend lots of time there. You know it's twinned with Narnia don't you?
    Originally posted by greenbee
    greenbee, thats just perfect thank you for that

    I've cleared away lots of grass in the borders (it was soooo long ) rescued the pots I put there (most are dead - with grass like that, I've just been breeding slugs but I'll put some effort into them, see if they reanimate) plus got the living room ready to be a living room again, not a storage centre. And I may have moved the tv/audio stuff around to get rid of a *lot* of dust. And the room may feel really different, in a good way
    Last edited by Karmacat; 14-06-2019 at 10:20 PM.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 14th Jun 19, 8:38 PM
    • 2,293 Posts
    • 9,513 Thanks
    teapot2
    Hope the rain stayed off - triffids here too, think I could see the weeds growing in all the rain.

    What a pain about the builder and having to wait. My experience is they move on to other jobs quickly so sometimes the last bits of a job get pushed to not being a priority which is very annoying if you are waiting to get work finished off.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 15th Jun 19, 4:20 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Hope the rain stayed off - triffids here too, think I could see the weeds growing in all the rain.
    Originally posted by teapot2
    It did stay away, thanks - I had another short session of weed-pulling much later on in celebration

    What a pain about the builder and having to wait. My experience is they move on to other jobs quickly so sometimes the last bits of a job get pushed to not being a priority which is very annoying if you are waiting to get work finished off.
    It's **exactly** that, yes! He's thinking "they're all little jobs" and I'm thinking "I'm not putting my stuff back on the kitchen worktops because it will all have to be moved again" - implications of said job are huge!

    Anyway, I did a bit of plotting yesterday to leave it all behind - went to see Thomas Carlyle's house, a National Trust property in London. And two addresses for the family who rented Agatha Christie's property down in Devon too! They were in the block of flats at the back of Carlyle's house, weirdly. Plus a favourite author of mine - Vera Brittain, the pacifist author who was a nurse during WWI, lived a block away from the NT house, for a long time. Pootling about in Chelsea, one of the beating hearts of capitalism, was a lot of fun
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • earthgirl
    • By earthgirl 15th Jun 19, 6:23 PM
    • 2,700 Posts
    • 28,157 Thanks
    earthgirl
    Wow, this sounds brilliant Karma! You are really getting your use out of the NT membership!
    15/5/12 Paid off Mortgage 1 (£220k) Bought Dream House Dec 13 - Mortage 2 -£116,508. 15/7/18 Mortgage Free Again

    Progress not Perfection
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 16th Jun 19, 9:42 AM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thanks earthie! Yep, I broke even last time, which was okay, but I want to do much better this time, and I've a better chance too, because I've ticked off some long term projects.

    Useage now stands at £34.50/£72, including Carlyle's house. I think I'm going to have to put it in my sig, to keep track

    Filthy weather again today! Dear me ... never mind, I did a lot of walking yesterday, in the surrounding streets, I could do with a rest. I think it's a day for computer and sorting paper, rather than clearing the rubble at the back of the bookcase
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • apple muncher
    • By apple muncher 16th Jun 19, 6:31 PM
    • 9,036 Posts
    • 69,516 Thanks
    apple muncher
    Are your bookcases breeding rubble?
    NST July jogger #5; NSD 10/18; Ex 19/31; remove bagfuls (31)

    Mortgage £15,451 (01/14: £78,201; 01/15: £59,629; 01/16: 39,915; 01/17: 27,295; 01/18 23,143; 01/19: 18.275) MFWDate???
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 16th Jun 19, 8:48 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Are your bookcases breeding rubble?
    Originally posted by apple muncher
    No, it was my builders using them to breed rubble the hole for the RSJ poked through into the living room, and everything tumbled down the back of the (open at the back) bookcase

    I've found yet more things-that-need-to-be-in-the-kitchen. Plus I did about 20 minutes in the garden, rescuing the space between my sage and my lemon balm from weeds, and that is that, for the whole of today! Really needed a day off of doing absolutely nothing, and thats what I gave myself
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 16th Jun 19, 9:41 PM
    • 2,293 Posts
    • 9,513 Thanks
    teapot2
    Glad you had a more gentle day today, sometimes they are just needed.

    Your NT outings sound good, I think I read Testament of Youth years ago.

    Hope someone turns up to finish the bits of the building work so you can gradually get everything sorted.
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 17th Jun 19, 1:14 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Hi teapot, thanks for that the builder is supposed to come along one morning this week. Mind you, he also offered to text me the date of the visit, over the weekend, and that didn't happen. We'll see! It's a mystery!

    I did the healthy walks thing this morning, got there properly on time for once, and even accompanied them to the coffee date afterwards. Which ended up setting my head rocking. I thought it was going to be good even so, but I sat at one end next to a very loud and opinionated fascist lady who wanted to put everything down. I'll try again, because there are some lovely people in the group too, but I can't put myself through that again.

    Anyway, I'm surfacing now, I have those few online tasks that I still haven't done, so today would be good, then off outside to the garden, I think
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 17th Jun 19, 9:45 PM
    • 2,293 Posts
    • 9,513 Thanks
    teapot2
    Hope you hear from the builder soon with some definite news.

    Boo to the fascist, you'll have to try and sit next to one of the lovely folk instead if you go for coffee again.
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 18th Jun 19, 7:30 AM
    • 3,058 Posts
    • 28,155 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Maybe mention to the builder the impact of him not finishing off is having on you - he is probably thinking about it from his end "Oh it is just..." without understanding the disruption for you that is ongoing.

    Sorry to hear about the opinionated woman. We have a parallel here. Our Social Club bar has become a place of moaning misery on Sunday lunch-times, with a little group of regular moaners who can't work out why the numbers have dropped so much. There was another person with really bigoted views who has moved away, but by then the numbers had dropped off. There are moves to improve things and a more fun session (which the miserable people don't attend) recently, so we will persevere. I am sure they do not see themselves as part of the issue.
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (£59,998) Q1 £26,828 or 44.71% paid - Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 78.13% £31,251.65 including July
    Save £12k in 2019 - #68 target is £7k £4,998.99 or 71.41% after May
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target is £3k - 46.03% spent so far, mid July
    My DFD is here
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 18th Jun 19, 3:18 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thanks both, for both builder and fascist feedback

    I've been to the auction house this morning, my word! The picture that we had a postcard of is a print - under the microscope we could see the dots of the printing format

    The book was accepted for examination, its turned out to be a real oddity - only a third of the pages are printed, and the chapters are misnumbered. So it might be worth tuppence ha'penny, but as its such a famous book (Peter Pan) it might be worth oodles and oodles. Turns out it was owned by our mother a lot longer than I thought - the thinking currently is that she picked it up at a junk shop at Hay on Wye, which she'd have visited going home from Oxford, where my sister worked early in her career.

    Otherwise, absolutely nothing at all, though I might text the builder again along the lines suggested.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • earthgirl
    • By earthgirl 18th Jun 19, 4:47 PM
    • 2,700 Posts
    • 28,157 Thanks
    earthgirl
    Will you find out what the book is worth or will it depend on the auction? Hope the builder hurries up soon!
    15/5/12 Paid off Mortgage 1 (£220k) Bought Dream House Dec 13 - Mortage 2 -£116,508. 15/7/18 Mortgage Free Again

    Progress not Perfection
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 18th Jun 19, 5:15 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Just had news, earthie it's been accepted into a specialist book auction in mid-July - £300-500, with a reserve of £250 I think? Not sure why we have a reserve, thinking about it, but maybe just putting it by for another auction. They say it's likely a salesman's copy, touted about before publication, which is why all the numbering is odd! Who'd a thunk?


    In other news, I'm shattered all I can think of right now is going to bed. I may even take the kettle upstairs, because I suspect a sleepless night is ahead, I feel quite stressed with the kitchen fiddlefaddle. At least I don't have to get up to go to work, sigh ...
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 18th Jun 19, 8:34 PM
    • 64,495 Posts
    • 287,762 Thanks
    beanielou
    No wonder you are tired.
    Nice news on the book
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 19th Jun 19, 10:53 AM
    • 2,293 Posts
    • 9,513 Thanks
    teapot2
    Just had news, earthie it's been accepted into a specialist book auction in mid-July - £300-500, with a reserve of £250 I think? Not sure why we have a reserve, thinking about it, but maybe just putting it by for another auction. They say it's likely a salesman's copy, touted about before publication, which is why all the numbering is odd! Who'd a thunk?

    In other news, I'm shattered all I can think of right now is going to bed. I may even take the kettle upstairs, because I suspect a sleepless night is ahead, I feel quite stressed with the kitchen fiddlefaddle. At least I don't have to get up to go to work, sigh ...
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    Hope you slept and are feeling less tired today?

    The book sounds promising . I guess the reserve is to stop it just going for silly money on the day and gives you the option to put it back in an auction in case there is not much interest initially. Have they said if it'll be on the internet as well? I've never been to a live auction but from watching them on TV, it seems that internet bidding can make a big difference. Good luck anyhoo
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 19th Jun 19, 11:10 AM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    Thanks teapot I can't see the specialist auction on their website, which shows *other* specialist auctions, so I'm a bit concerned, but they're the main auctioneers in the county, so I'm not concerned *that* way. I do want to check, because we both want to go along - I've attended an auction, but never sold anything at one, I'd like to see what happens, need to talk to my sister or see the email that was sent to her.

    As for sleeping and feeling less tired - I woke at 5, with adrenaline pounding through me, I'm currently getting through the dishwasher, the washing machine and sorting/ getting rid of ornaments that were packed away (warbling at some length on the Kon Mari thread, I'm afraid!). Going to stop now and make myself eat something - I'd sent a pitiful voicemail to the builder, but no reply. Probably doesn't sound pitiful to him, it probably sounds pi$$ed off ...
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 19th Jun 19, 11:52 AM
    • 64,495 Posts
    • 287,762 Thanks
    beanielou
    Hope you hear from the builder soon.
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 19th Jun 19, 12:44 PM
    • 31,890 Posts
    • 188,198 Thanks
    Karmacat
    I rang again, beanie, it was getting unbearable. He says the main guy that did the work here will be round tomorrow. He was just putting me off at first, I could tell, but I begged a bit more I *think* it'll happen. Builder tried to give me a sob story too, but I'm not buying it, though I'm not telling him that!
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    New kitchen fully installed June 2019
    • beanielou
    • By beanielou 19th Jun 19, 1:29 PM
    • 64,495 Posts
    • 287,762 Thanks
    beanielou
    It is all such a blooming faff.
    I have stayed in for two blooming days for the central heating man.
    Lou~ Debt free Wanabe No 55 DF 03/03/14.
    **Credit card debt free 30/06/10~** **Weight loss 2 stone 11 lbs **

    "A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of" Jane Austen in Mansfield Park.
    ***Fall down seven times,stand up eight*** ~~Japanese proverb.
    It starts with you, it starts from now. *** It is ok to be me.***
    ***Keep plodding***
    Out of debt, out of danger. ***Be the difference.***
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

2,121Posts Today

7,301Users online

Martin's Twitter
  • RT @MartinSLewis: I sued Facebook for defamation over scam ads & settled in return for 2 things that LAUNCH TODAY -1on1 scam help at new C?

  • Bizzare German twitter mash article has called me "MARTIN LEWIS, der Geldsparexperte," Any german speakers out the? https://t.co/1tXEzCe4Y3

  • Have you ever been scammed? If so did you keep it quiet? If not would you keep it quiet or tell people? Please vot? https://t.co/68bkmbT9gc

  • Follow Martin