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  • FIRST POST
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 18th Jan 13, 11:19 PM
    • 3,452Posts
    • 9,082Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    Balancing not just the budget
    • #1
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:19 PM
    Balancing not just the budget 18th Jan 13 at 11:19 PM
    Well it's been more than a few months and I seem to still have more than a few questions, so I think it's time for a new thread

    (The old one is here http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=3629199)
    Last edited by RosaBernicia; 18-01-2013 at 11:32 PM.
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


Page 1
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 18th Jan 13, 11:28 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #2
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:28 PM
    Why now?
    • #2
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:28 PM
    Because there are going to be quite a few changes going on this year, and I'd like for them to be positive choices rather than imposed dramas IYSWIM.

    The last couple of years have been a bit hectic and messy - I got my Masters degree but only after a near meltdown after trying to combine it with work, lost my last remaining grandparent, and had to face up to a lot of uncomfortable thoughts about what I get myself into and what I really want. Though I also finally got a flat on my own and a couple of rescue moggies . I'm now turning into one of those really annoying people who tell you that their meltdown was one of the best things that ever happened to them

    Seriously, I learnt a lot last year. But I'm conscious that if I don't keep some things in mind then I may slip back.

    The money situation didn't really make much progress last year and is just coming back under control. My next target is the overdraft and I hope to get that sorted by the end of March.


    The other reason I'm posting this now is that I have a limbo situation for the next couple of days. I'm waiting on hearing back from a job I applied for, to see if I get through to the next round, and that's due on Monday. I've also just had an email telling me there will be a delay in work sorting the job I am effectively acting up to (and no of course they're not paying me to do so).

    Both of these options are relevant because of course they'd increase my income and help pay off the debt that way. But I really should have learnt from last year that work is not life and I want to make sure I think properly about all the options, not just chase the obvious ones. And figure out my priorities.


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #3
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    January to March goals
    • #3
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    I think the first three months ought to be about looking after myself and finishing up getting organised.


    Looking after myself
    • Porridge and fruit juice for breakfast
    • Drink at least 1 cup of favourite herbal tea per day
    • Keep nails glossed (I don't like polish, but gloss looks sort of finished when unglossed doesn't, so I like having that instead)
    • Use face packs regularly
    • Have a facial for my birthday

    • Find an exercise class I like. A friend wants to go to salsa, there's yoga nearby, or I could think about going back to pole class (but that's expensive and needs focus, so think I might leave that til later)
    • Holiday break somewhere nice


    Getting organised
    • Complete graduate training scheme application (note complete, not necessarily succeed at)
    • Follow up contact who is interested in helping me get my MSc thesis published
    • Scan my college files and store on disk or cloud


    ONE MSE focus goal
    • Pay off overdraft, or at least get it well within interest free limit.
    Last edited by RosaBernicia; 21-01-2013 at 10:37 PM.
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #4
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    March to June goals
    • #4
    • 18th Jan 13, 11:42 PM
    And the next three months I want to focus on more looking after myself but this time including exercise. Plus I'll add another aspect nearer the time.


    Looking after myself
    • Do more exercise (it will be light enough to go walking by then).
    • This needs to include cardiovascular stuff.
    • NB. investigate finally getting a bike.
    • Decide where and when to take a Proper Two-week Holiday. (For anyone new whose jaw just dropped at this being on a goals list, I have spent the vast majority of my adult life studying as well as working, and I haven't had a fortnight's holiday away in er, well, ever actually. The last time I had two weeks when I wasn't working or studying I was still sort of at home because I was living abroad )


    Other things
    • Investigate possible new places to live. (I moan about the South East being really expensive but I haven't actually really checked how much difference it would make if I could find a job that paid the same but in a cheaper area. So I can't really do anything about weighing up the benefits against the problems of eg. moving away from friends.)


    ONE MSE goal
    • Focus on paying off most expensive credit card.
    Last edited by RosaBernicia; 21-01-2013 at 10:48 PM.
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • vasseur
    • By vasseur 21st Jan 13, 10:17 PM
    • 3,055 Posts
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    vasseur
    • #5
    • 21st Jan 13, 10:17 PM
    • #5
    • 21st Jan 13, 10:17 PM
    Happy new diary (great title btw)

    *subscribes*.....
    It's not how far you fall - it's how high you bounce back....
    Happiness is not a destination - it's a journey
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 21st Jan 13, 10:26 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #6
    • 21st Jan 13, 10:26 PM
    • #6
    • 21st Jan 13, 10:26 PM
    Hi Poles, welcome
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 21st Jan 13, 11:23 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #7
    • 21st Jan 13, 11:23 PM
    • #7
    • 21st Jan 13, 11:23 PM
    OK so trying to keep myself on track...

    I haven't managed to knock quite so much off the OD as I'd hoped this month, only 125 rather than 150 - but that's due to having to buy cat food early (big mog keeps hoovering little mog's expensive kibble :/ ), 15 of expenses I forgot to budget for and treating myself to a meal out with friends on Saturday. I have remembered to claim my expenses though so should get 30 back in Feb.

    I had forgotten that a social life costs may have to do some budget adjustments.

    Doing really well with the breakfast thing, and must do my nails shortly - following face pack and teen-style extended shower . Thought I was being MSE by using up a different body lotion tonight and ended up back in the shower washing it off as I had an allergic reaction to it not sure how that happened or how I didn't notice before, but my skin is kinda bonkers to begin with and also I think my body is still settling down after all the stress last year. Haven't really eaten properly tonight though as I left it a bit late, but will try and stick with healthy easy stuff (that's miso soup again... )

    I've FINALLY set up the new printer despite the installation CD not working and having to get the drivers online . Haven't got the scanner part working yet as that needs different ones but will do that tomorrow night. Annoyingly it looks like it may not really do duplex scanning after all but at least it does have the auto doc feed so if necessary I can do odd sides then evens and maybe find a way of editing the pdfs to put them together - will still be less irritating than having to stand there and turn pages over. Also, I just remembered to check for the 30 cashback and fortunately it runs til 31st January so will get that posted tomorrow.


    The graduate scheme thing was supposed to tell me today whether I got through to the next round and I haven't heard anything so still no idea where that's going. I did email my contact about the MSc thesis though, and what's more I tidied up all my MSc computer files. Took ages but now I know I've got everything in one place and ready to add scans of the paper stuff. I mainly got it ready because I have now emailed the lady who might help me with getting it published - am quite excited about this as I did pick a subject that interests me even though most people think it's a bit bonkers and totally obscure, so I'd be really pleased if it turns out to be of use to people in real life. (And I'm only not posting the subject because it would basically ID me!)


    Debating going food shopping tomorrow but thinking I should try and hold off til I get paid on Friday :/ as I have enough stuff really.


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • kerri gt
    • By kerri gt 22nd Jan 13, 7:41 PM
    • 6,991 Posts
    • 49,174 Thanks
    kerri gt
    • #8
    • 22nd Jan 13, 7:41 PM
    • #8
    • 22nd Jan 13, 7:41 PM
    [*]Find an exercise class I like. A friend wants to go to salsa, there's yoga nearby, or I could think about going back to pole class (but that's expensive and needs focus, so think I might leave that til later)
    Originally posted by RosaBernicia
    I definitely think you should get back to pole...but then I am biased Actually I found I lost my focus a bit with routines before xmas, general Dec distractions and then the xmas break it's been quite hard to get back into it. However our teacher has given us lovely little 'work' booklets listing our moves to practice at least once a session, new moves we want to aim for (and our target date) and conditioning moves to work on that will compliment our new moves. We also have a section we can fill in for moves we can already do so we don't forget to practice them too (we've got to fill that out as she said there were too many ) Silly me opened my mouth and said I wanted to add iron-X to my list of new moves... I'll let you google that if you're not familiar
    Feb 2015 NSD Challenge 8/12
    JAN NSD 11/16


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 22nd Jan 13, 8:00 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    • #9
    • 22nd Jan 13, 8:00 PM
    • #9
    • 22nd Jan 13, 8:00 PM
    I definitely think you should get back to pole...but then I am biased Actually I found I lost my focus a bit with routines before xmas, general Dec distractions and then the xmas break it's been quite hard to get back into it. However our teacher has given us lovely little 'work' booklets listing our moves to practice at least once a session, new moves we want to aim for (and our target date) and conditioning moves to work on that will compliment our new moves. We also have a section we can fill in for moves we can already do so we don't forget to practice them too (we've got to fill that out as she said there were too many ) Silly me opened my mouth and said I wanted to add iron-X to my list of new moves... I'll let you google that if you're not familiar
    Originally posted by kerri gt
    Have googled, am suitably scared and very impressed!

    It does all look so cool but I am really not generally fit at the moment and that's just an added frustration because it does hold back what you can do on pole. And there's the problem now that I need to go home and feed moggies before going back out so it's not just on the way home any more. Hmmm.

    I also do want to do the salsa class that a friend suggested as it's only 6 weeks and that should be enough to get the basics into my head ready for use at nights out. One go at the proper thing every couple of years just isn't enough and I've never found friends volunteering before (it's odd actually as I'm sure I asked the same friend, maybe there's a reason she wants to do this class!).

    Think I'll do the salsa class and then see.

    I suppose I could also look around at different classes - any recommendations for trainer associations etc welcome


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 22nd Jan 13, 8:16 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    STILL no reply from the graduate application thing. I reckon this is all to lull me into a false sense of security that I haven't got an interview, so they can spring it on me and I'll have less prep time. Am plotting to outflank them by doing some interesting-but-relevant reading

    Budget knocked back by another 25 today as I got basic food stuff at lunchtime and petrol on the way home. Was glad I did as it was snowing when I left. It's only 2 days to payday anyhow (no, this is not the right attitude, Rosa!). Annoyed to find that credit card bill is higher than I expected as I forgot about the gown hire and photo fee for graduation... and having found out it's a bl**dy 2-hour ceremony am rather wondering if I really want to go. But have invited friends now so will just get on with it.

    Have finally got the scanner to work so now I can at long last pack up the old printer and get rid of it - as well as shoving the new printer's box in the shed. Should make the place look a bit less of a tip

    Oh and in rather good news, my landlord has sensibly declined continuing with the rip-off letting agents - turns out they were fleecing him just as much as me . So we're moving to a direct contract and this means no renewal fee, no stupid clauses about rip-off insurance and only 10 a month rent increase.

    Right, must get bum off sofa and do some moneysaving things. Need to do electric meter reading and also email Plu5net about ending my contract - am thinking of doing one of the pay in advance ones as not having to pay CTax this month would about cover it.


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • kerri gt
    • By kerri gt 22nd Jan 13, 8:45 PM
    • 6,991 Posts
    • 49,174 Thanks
    kerri gt
    Have googled, am suitably scared and very impressed!

    It does all look so cool but I am really not generally fit at the moment and that's just an added frustration because it does hold back what you can do on pole. And there's the problem now that I need to go home and feed moggies before going back out so it's not just on the way home any more. Hmmm.

    I also do want to do the salsa class that a friend suggested as it's only 6 weeks and that should be enough to get the basics into my head ready for use at nights out. One go at the proper thing every couple of years just isn't enough and I've never found friends volunteering before (it's odd actually as I'm sure I asked the same friend, maybe there's a reason she wants to do this class!).

    Think I'll do the salsa class and then see.

    I suppose I could also look around at different classes - any recommendations for trainer associations etc welcome


    Rosa xx
    Originally posted by RosaBernicia
    Let us know how the salsa goes, I've kinda fancied it before but have two left feet when it comes to coordinated dance moves like that.

    Iron-X is deff a work in progress, I've been doing boot camp for the past 9mths which has really made a diff in my strength - hate the ideas of gyms and knew I'd never progress further if I didn't do something.
    Feb 2015 NSD Challenge 8/12
    JAN NSD 11/16


    • vasseur
    • By vasseur 23rd Jan 13, 9:14 PM
    • 3,055 Posts
    • 9,881 Thanks
    vasseur
    I definitely think you should get back to pole...but then I am biased Actually I found I lost my focus a bit with routines before xmas, general Dec distractions and then the xmas break it's been quite hard to get back into it. However our teacher has given us lovely little 'work' booklets listing our moves to practice at least once a session, new moves we want to aim for (and our target date) and conditioning moves to work on that will compliment our new moves. We also have a section we can fill in for moves we can already do so we don't forget to practice them too (we've got to fill that out as she said there were too many ) Silly me opened my mouth and said I wanted to add iron-X to my list of new moves... I'll let you google that if you're not familiar
    Originally posted by kerri gt
    I think you should go back to pole too Pole gets you fit!!

    kerri gt - I've not heard of that move but we would call that a twisted grip and that's one of the ways we do hand springs - which I've only just managed.......then again it took me ages to do shoulder mount and I thought I'd never do them and now I'm pretty good at them and love them

    Rosa - great news about the landlord contract
    It's not how far you fall - it's how high you bounce back....
    Happiness is not a destination - it's a journey
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 23rd Jan 13, 10:20 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    Budget busted but for a VERRRY good reason... I GOT AN INTERVIEW

    Am ridiculously pleased. Still only a slim chance of actually getting the job, but now I know I can do it and just need to prove it.

    Oh and it means I passed a maths test which still always amazes me.


    I've booked my interview slot and also booked a hotel for the night before - that's what costs the 70. It would be 100 for the train anyway and I would have been panicking about getting there on time. This way I get to drive up the day before and be all relaxed for the interview. I might even go up at lunchtime and book myself a massage at the hotel spa in the afternoon.

    I think I can reclaim the petrol costs, so will look that up in a bit. I doubt I can get the hotel money back as then it would cost the recruiters a fortune, but I don't mind spending the money if it means I can be relaxed and hopefully perform better at the interview.


    Otherwise NSD today as I took lunch in and never managed to escape the building. Not even going to talk about work because it's gone from silly to completely nonsensical.


    Think I may just leave the washing up and treat myself to an early night, ready to get sorted and start swotting tomorrow


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 23rd Jan 13, 10:49 PM
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    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    I take the point about pole and hereby promise that IF I get the job then I will book myself a course of private lessons in celebration.

    I should also confess to a Pepperberr7 parcel that arrived today. The top is fab and only 12.50 in the sale so that will stay. The rather lovely teal dress is gorgeous and I will keep it - just going to try out the next curviness size in store on the weekend in case that's a better fit. Am tempted to wear it for my interview as it's quite a thick material so could be OK for winter if I add tights, and would make me feel suitably fab . I do love their dresses for work - because they actually fit properly and are usually knee length to avoid emphasis on both legs and bust, I don't have to worry about cleavage exposure or bending over etc and they can look really smart. I also ordered a summer dress that was in the sale but it doesn't fit quite right and I'm not sure it's worth the 4 delivery charge to try the next curviness up, so that will probably just go back.


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • vasseur
    • By vasseur 24th Jan 13, 4:56 PM
    • 3,055 Posts
    • 9,881 Thanks
    vasseur
    Fantastic news about the interview
    It's not how far you fall - it's how high you bounce back....
    Happiness is not a destination - it's a journey
    • kerri gt
    • By kerri gt 24th Jan 13, 8:51 PM
    • 6,991 Posts
    • 49,174 Thanks
    kerri gt
    I think you should go back to pole too Pole gets you fit!!

    kerri gt - I've not heard of that move but we would call that a twisted grip and that's one of the ways we do hand springs - which I've only just managed.......then again it took me ages to do shoulder mount and I thought I'd never do them and now I'm pretty good at them and love them

    Rosa - great news about the landlord contract
    Originally posted by polesalot
    You're right, it does use a twisty grip which I started learning the back end of last year and have been getting used to using my bottom hand more by learning the curl-invert (idea is that I will the invert straight to butterfly). Most of the videos I've watched for Iron-X go into it from above, although I'd quite like to see if I can lift myself into it from the ground. Yep, learned the shoulder mount / dismount last year though bit out of practice with it atm - would like to be able to do it from a total dead lift and hold with v-legs.

    Fantastic news about the interview
    Originally posted by polesalot
    Ditto....and about pole
    Feb 2015 NSD Challenge 8/12
    JAN NSD 11/16


    • vasseur
    • By vasseur 24th Jan 13, 9:21 PM
    • 3,055 Posts
    • 9,881 Thanks
    vasseur
    You're right, it does use a twisty grip which I started learning the back end of last year and have been getting used to using my bottom hand more by learning the curl-invert (idea is that I will the invert straight to butterfly). Most of the videos I've watched for Iron-X go into it from above, although I'd quite like to see if I can lift myself into it from the ground. Yep, learned the shoulder mount / dismount last year though bit out of practice with it atm - would like to be able to do it from a total dead lift and hold with v-legs.


    Originally posted by kerri gt
    Once you get back into the hang of it you should be able to do the V-legs quite easily. I never go straight up into it now.

    Sorry to hijack rosa but I have no one else to talk about pole with !!
    It's not how far you fall - it's how high you bounce back....
    Happiness is not a destination - it's a journey
    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 24th Jan 13, 9:58 PM
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    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    LOL pole talk away, just remind me occasionally of the wonders it would do for my minor muffin top.


    Have had surprisingly effective day today. Told director this morning she needs to sort out work situation including paying me more if I am expected to continue with current responsibilities. Am so amazed I did that, I normally just put up and shut up. Rest of work was carp however and I have to go in tomorrow instead of working from home.

    Raided M&S at lunchtime but think excusable as will take it out of tomorrow's pay. I got the Dine In which was a good plan as I'm now not only working tomorrow but going out in the evening with friends and that means all the tidying before landlord's visit on Saturday has had to happen tonight . Flat looks OK though and means I am all caught up ready to get swotting for interview. Or will be when I've done the ironing and changed the bed and washed up and sorted the stuff I need to take to work tomorrow...


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 27th Jan 13, 8:57 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    Paydate update for January 2013...
    Well it's better than I thought it would be. I didn't quite manage the intended OD reduction but heck, it was January.

    I have been good and adjusted the spreadsheet to reflect reality plus admitting to the 75 that went on the credit card to book my graduation gown and photos. Debated leaving them to pay off at the time but it will only confuse matters and I shouldn't be giving myself wriggle room .

    Anyway I did manage to knock 300 off since last month so the total debt now stands at 9,761. Nice to see it's remaining safely under 5 figures, phew. And the good news is that thanks to a very healthy car saving pot, net status is currently 8,890 ... busted a 1000 mark!

    Sadly I will have the costs of the interview to account for next month (that's 75 for hotel, plus meal and petrol will be needed) so think the plan of paying off my overdraft by the end of March may have to be revised - I think the interest free mark is 250 so it would be nice if I could get it to that for then. But the main thing is that it's all getting less rather than more.

    My rent has only gone up by 10 and as the landlord has sensibly told the rip-off agents where to go, no admin fees . I do need to sort out my contents insurance this month though and that will take up most of the no-CTax bonus. Plus I should be at the end of my phone and broadband contract, so am thinking of taking the MSE deal with Pr1mu5 even though it means paying in advance - that would about halve my current costs. I could also reduce my mobile goodybag but am not sure the risk of extra charges outweighs the fiver I'd gain - will investigate.

    Sadly the electric company have decided that my direct debit should go up by 30 ... Why can't they understand the principle that people use more electric in the winter and it will all even out by April?


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


    • RosaBernicia
    • By RosaBernicia 27th Jan 13, 9:10 PM
    • 3,452 Posts
    • 9,082 Thanks
    RosaBernicia
    I've had a couple of un-shopping trips this weekend and returned a bunch of stuff I bought in the sales. A couple of things were OK but I decided not good enough - there is no need to complicate my life and slow up my progress by keeping stuff that isn't quite right without a good reason. Keep trying to remind myself that part of the debt busting progress is about timing, so even if I just manage to put off buying new jeans for a month, that's good. (Well it's not really as they have a hole worn on the inner thigh, but I haven't found any better ones yet and it will be summer soon so I can wear dresses.) Am quite amazed that we're almost through the worst of the weather and I have managed without buying a pair of winter boots. Mainly because I am constantly wearing a pair of brown pumps instead, and I am trying to convince myself that nobody else will notice the cracked leather on my red boots.

    Also had a huge shop at Sainsbugs yesterday and spent 70 . 10 of that was household rather than food, as I got a scented candle on sale and an apple corer. Will be trying to make dried apple rings as I want to find some healthier snacks for at home and also better meals that I can take into work. So quite a bit of it was storecupboard stuff like popcorn and I stocked up on my favourite chocolate because even though it's expensive, if I buy it in advance I have no excuse to leave work and stray into M&5 .

    I've got risotto from the weekend for work lunch tomorrow and made Spanish omelette tonight so that will do for Tuesday lunch - am really impressed with myself as used up quite a bit of fading veg from the fridge, and trimmed all the fat off the bacon, so have a healthy and cheap meal that's done tonight and will be really convenient for work.

    I'm also thinking of getting a microwave steamer for work - that way I could take in stuff like the risotto or meat already cooked, and a handful of fresh veg to just fling in the steamer. Nicer and more vitamins than reheated cooked veg. May have to check W1lkos.


    Rosa xx
    Debt free May 2016... MFW progress 2.3 2.8% 3.1% 3.3%


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