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    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 4th Dec 17, 8:37 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Drawing a line under the debt. Take two.
    • #1
    • 4th Dec 17, 8:37 AM
    Drawing a line under the debt. Take two. 4th Dec 17 at 8:37 AM
    So, I can't believe that I haven't updated my diary since the end of march. So much has happened in that time I feel a fresh new one is better. Here is the link to my previous one.

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5585379

    So what has happened. Well my husband FINALLY got a job! He was made redundant in April 2016 and started a new role in June 2017. In that time I was holding down two part time jobs so that we could pay the mortgage and bills and in that time I also made a bit of a dent in the debt we owed. The role he got was originally a six month contract through an agency so we were obviously concerned for the future, but within a month he was invited to apply for a full time position and got it. So since the end of September he has been back in a permanent role, and we have no concern that he won't pass his probationary period which is up just after Xmas. The job is also with a very good company, and he gets a discount card for two shops so that is great too. The only downside is that he has to take two trains to get there which is about 300 a month and he is only on what he was on in his previous job, but due to our finances being in much better shape now it is doable.

    I started YNAB in Oct 16 and have used it very carefully for the past year. I adore it and plan to keep it forever

    So what has been happening to the debt. Last time I was here I had cleared our big loan due to wanting to avoid having too much in savings because of a massive mistake by the job centre with my husband's JSA claim. He signed off the week after the interview we had with them and I was planning to xfer the child benefit to his name for his NI to be paid but then he landed the job. We have heard nothing from them at all. I still think they may try to claw back the money that we received that we shouldn't have and of course if that happens we will dispute it as we didn't lie or omit anything, it was a massive error in their part, but we will pay money back if we have to. But nothing, not a word at all

    I had managed to get the debt down from 22k to 17k with aggressive debt payments but in may I received a decent sized inheritance from a family member. Enough to buy a new (to us) car (mine finally died in early September at 17yrs old) clear 10k of debt and do some of the much needed home improvements. The reason I didn't clear all the debts was that we would have been left with nothing at all for the home improvements (and I was bored of having half a kitchen and no bath) and our back fence fell down in July so we have had a lovely new back fence out up, and am getting the back garden landscaped, had a new bathroom put in, finished the kitchen (apart from tiling, need to save for this) plastered the rest of the house, and had some new carpets out in. The relative that left the money was huge on owning your own property and I felt I needed to use some of the money to add value to the house. There is still stuff to do and I am saving for that now.

    So our debt stands at about 8k total. One loan and one interest free credit card. My go going forward is to not add to that and clear the credit card within the time limit.

    This coming year we are planning two big holidays so everything spare is going towards that, I need 3500 by the end of march, I have 1000 towards that already but debt busting will be taking a bit of a backseat while I get all this money together.

    Personally, I have quit one of my jobs. Once we knew my husband was employed full time by the company we looked at the finances and due to some quite serious issues our smallest child is having ongoing at school, we decided it was important that I was home more in the evening. Also the company that took us over a year ago are a shocking company to work for so the decision was an easy one to make and I quit my evening job. I miss it so much, it was a job I adored and I loved most of the people I worked with. But it was right for us as a family. So now I am self employed school hours, mon-fri, which is hard work. I get no time to myself and feel I am constantly playing catch up at home, but it needed to be done. The smallest boy did improve quite a bit after I finished work, but this past week has had a huge backslide again

    Anyway enough about me now, I am off to catch up on the diaries I used to follow to see what everyone has been up to. So pleased to be back
Page 9
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 6th Feb 19, 8:06 PM
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    Drawingaline
    So been an eventful week! Snow descended on Thursday night so schools shut. Hubby was alrea working from home and I cancelled my clients. Glad I do as by 1.30pm it was really coming down. And by 4pm the whole town was in gridlock due to the M3 coming to a standstill. It happened back in 2009, basically the amount of snow was way more than predicted, so everyone left work early and our town is always one incident away from gridlock at the best of times! I am glad we were safe indoors.

    Sat had to cancel a job, so more money lost, but no chance of getting the car out. Sat night froze everything to sheet ice, and Sunday was our trip to London luckily my sister has a 4x4 and bil actually knows how to drive it. So he got us to the Station and the trains were running. It was so odd to get to London and see no snow at all had a lovely day, went up to the skygarden, which was fab, love something free and me and the girl had bubblewraps, and my neice had an ice cream where they shape it to look like a flower.

    Then we went to see a musical called six. OMG, it was amazing. We had cheap seats, so a slightly restricted view, but it was a tiny theatre and felt really close. It's more of a concert than a musical, but basically it's Henry Vlll wives all singing a song about there lives. So many emotions, cried my eyes out during one song, proper belly laughs during the next was amazing, have downloaded the soundtrack and have been belting them out at work the past few days. Will definitely be going back, it's booking for the rest of the year so can wait a bit. Feeling broke right now

    Money wise, I have almost paid off the holiday, should be gone after payday, have paid deposit for thw weird one's residential at the end of the year and set up a goal in ynab. Not convinced he will make the full week, but determined that e will go and experience it. School have had a quick chat about how to accommodate him, food will be the biggest issue, due to sensory issues he has a very narrow palate and dislikes using cutlery. Anyway hoping it works out OK.

    Have a plan for the coming months, but this month's wages will be light as I lost 9hours due to the snow (schools went back late on Monday so lost another job then) and I haven't replaced one of my regular clients who has cancelled. But I am enjoying the extra time, so I am trying to find a good balance.

    Anyway off to bed, feeling a bit rough atm, hope I am not coming down with something.
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 7th Feb 19, 7:37 AM
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    doingitanyway
    I love skygarden. Sounds like you had a fab trip.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 7th Feb 19, 11:46 AM
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    Drawingaline
    So, holiday is paid off using the tax credits. New tyres on cart premium this time as I do alot of short journeys and definitely noticing the wear on the budget ones. And I had the funds budgeted. Managed to get teem done as had a cancellation today, next month's money is going to be short anyway, plan is to clear the 0% credit card by the end of March. Will be tight, but is doable. Have looked over next month and need to out money aside for my daughters trip to London to see a band, and for half term, nee to pay the teens for either working with me or looking after the smalls. But otherwise nothing else extra needed. Just can't book anything interesting going to be a quiet month.

    Am in the process of switching one of my current accounts to the n@tiobwide one that pays 5% interest. And been looking at the n@twest one that does cashback for our joint one. Need to decide next week for that one. Been with thq black horse bank for 25years,but am fed up with my teens getting interest on their n@tionwide accounts and I get nothing. Now I use ynab I have a decent balance, makes sense to get something back.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 9th Feb 19, 11:23 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Been to work for an hour today. Boss has some jobs lined up for me to replace the clients that have left so from march I should be back up to 30houra a week. Much as I am enjoying the extra time off it is a worry.

    Been bssy at home, never ending laundry, need to cath up with cleaning and the porch needs sorting out desperately! May have to do that later. Also need to hang some shelves this weekend.

    It's going. A quiet one though.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 20th Feb 19, 6:18 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Been a while! Last week was all about surviving to half term. Quiet weekend, did a tip run and also took loads of stuff to the recycling and clothing banks.

    This week the boy has done some jobs with me so has earnt money. Had yesterday off so drove to catch up with a friend with my sister and another friend. And a variety of kids. The girl stayed home to revise as she has her year 10 exams starting next week. The boy went to my mums for the night, he loves having some quality time with her. The day out was fun, cold but sunny, the small boys really needed a good run around after being cooped up all weekend. And it was nice for the four of us to catch up too.

    Been buy working, boss is lining jobs up faster than we can do them looking at March should get a decent amount.

    Money wise half term is always hard. Spent a bit on the credit card, but will clear it next month. The interest free one is at 1k, have set up a standing order to clear it in 5 months with the tax credits. Which will be reduce after April as hubby has had a promotion with a 4k payrise. Which is great if we do decide to either remortgage or move later this year. Atm I have set up some goals in ynab to save for the holiday and kids week tickets and a couple of weekends away I am planning. The loan will tick along for the time being, it will appear that debt busting will be slower for a time.

    I am still trying to be careful though. I entered a couple of west end lotteries and won cheap tickets for a show next week. So taking the boy, but total including train will be less than 50 for two band A seats, so I am not saying no! :J

    Anyway have two very busy days lined up with work, and am hoping for at least one day out this weekend.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 2nd Mar 19, 7:57 AM
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    Drawingaline
    I have fallen off the wagon.

    My credit card has taken a bit of a hit. Am so annoyed at myself. This is what I do, pay off loads of debt, feel deprived, spend on card, pay off too much.

    He set some goals up in ynab, set s/o up to clear main credit card in five months and am leaving the loan to run atm.

    In other news, hubby got a promotion, the extra money will be useful when our mortgage term is up as to what we might be able to borrow if we do want to move. Day to day a little bit extra a month to help out too.

    Went to london with the boy on monday to see school of rock. Total bargain seats as won the online lottery. He adored it, it was fun, but not one I am in a hurry to see again. Got stuck at Waterloo trying to get home due to an earlier issue, ended up on the stopping service so got home at 12.30am, on a school night Tuesday was hard but the boy needed the one on one time, he has been struggling a bit atm.

    Anyway that's it atm, quiet weekend planned I think. Hubby was out last night so don't think he will be up to much
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 9th Mar 19, 4:53 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Been a bad week financially and the smallest had an awful few days at school. He wasn't excluded but he headbutted his teacher. Its been months since he was this bad which almost marked it worse. He did turn it around at the end of the week but still makes me so sad which doesn't help my impulse spending.

    My bank account swit all went through and I have a creiit card with n@tionwide. So am xfering the small balance from lloyds onto it. MBNA one is now at 800 interest free, four more payments left on that. Tax credits got screwed up as I changed the bank details to the new account. Luckily the operator warned me so I logged into the online account and could see how they were splitting the next two payments. It totals the same but they are paying it weirdly. But overall its all OK.

    This week saw another London trip. This time to wembley to see the girls favourite band. I ended up goig with her (hubby was supposed to but with starting the new promotion job he said he couldnt get time off!) it was an experience not my type of band, but watching her having the best time of her entire life was worth it! Budgeted money for it and came back with 6 spare doing it all again for her and her friend for her second favourite band at the o2 at the enof the month

    It's her birthday next week, presents all bought, and have 10 cash to buy a cake.

    Going forward I am trying my hardest to plan better and m resigned to having the debt longer than planned.
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 26th Mar 19, 2:03 PM
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    doingitanyway
    You sound a bit low. I hope things are looking up.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 8th Apr 19, 7:22 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Right, need to get back to being accountable!

    Financially I am at around 8.5k of debt. Credit card interest free, 200 a month going to it. Loan will just run atm.

    Goals all looking good in ynab, and I feel more in control. 250 a month being saved into a 5% savings account. At the end of the twelve months should be 3k in it. Which is basically my emergency fund.

    Went to the O2 with the girl and her friend. Ws an experience, and stayed in budget. Been to Brighton for a day trip this weekend, again stayed in budget. Have a theatre trip planned on Tuesday with the big two, have funds set aside. But am going to enter a couple of theatre lotteries for next week so may end up a little over for the month, but it's Easter hols so have more time spare.

    Not taking time off over the holidays, but have had to budget to pay the big two. The girl stays home with the small ones and the boy comes out with me. It is nice that I don't need to worry about childcare though. And they have to save 10% of earnings.

    May be away next weekend at in laws, but it's the smallest boys birthday in May and he wants to go camping, so may leave it and camp up near in laws in a few weeks instead.

    Tight budget for the holidays so will be doing some cheap and free stuff after work most days, weather dependant of course!

    Anyway need to get back into the habit of posting more regularly again. Stops the impulse spending.
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 8th Apr 19, 6:01 PM
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    doingitanyway
    Well done for getting back in the groove
    Target by end of Aug goal: 2000/4000
    Car costs savings: 500
    Xmas savings 50
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 8th Apr 19, 6:24 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Today's after work activity was not cheap, 90 spent in lidl, a bit more than usual tbh. Main months shopping being delivered early tomorrow morning, then just top up shops from @sda throughout the month.

    Tomorrow I will get out early to do my jobs. The girl will be in charge. Once I am home I will try to get the little two out to the park for a bit, then off to London to see everybodys talking about Jamie. Saw it at the cinema back in January and the girl has been desperately trying to get me to book it since. Got her tickets for her birthday. 20 each for me, her and the boy up at the top. Typically a new cast member has been announced for a short run in may/June who is one of her favourite drag Queens so may be revisiting it in June but it is an awesome show and really good for their age group. Told her I will wait until we have seen how these 20 seats are and if they are OK will book them again.

    Anyway signing off for the night now.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 9th Apr 19, 10:05 PM
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    Drawingaline
    On the train back from London. Jamie was amazing. Seats were not. If we go again I will go up a band and book the other side of the theatre. Always a risk with the cheap seats. Anyway the girl and boy loved it so worth it.

    Came in on budget, but not a lot of money left for the rest of Easter. Have one job tomorrow and then a quick trip into town to get the boys eyes tested, then I have a job at 3.30.

    Shopping was delivered this morning. Put the frozen away before work then left the girl the job of emptying the fridge and washing it all out. That went down well put everything else away when I got in. Not a lot left for food for the next four weeks, but I have two cash jobs this week and next so will use that for top ups.

    Back on the diet tomorrow, definitely not lost weight this week.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 11th Apr 19, 4:56 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Won the ticket lottery for aladdin next week so taking the smallest one. Also booked a campsite for the first may bank holiday. the smallest has his birthday thst week and is desperate to go camping so going up near the in laws do hubby can stay with them (and the girl) while I camp with the three boys found a very cheap campsite about 10miles away from the in laws but don't need many facilities if we are up near them.

    Looking foward to the weekend. Fridays are always hard, but at least it is slightly less time pressured tomorrow as no school run. can't wait for four days off at Easter. and am going to take off the Tuesday after too. one client is on holiday, another will give me paid leave so only need to cancel one.

    Anyway best get going, need to pick hubby up.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 13th Apr 19, 9:04 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Going to have a step away from the phone this weekend I think. Been browsing and losing so much time this week just scrolling.

    So have a bit of a list to do today.

    Set up new lawn mower
    Mow grass
    Sort library books out
    Town, library, barbers with smallest
    Help the girl gut her bedroom. She has lost her purse (no concern, it must be in her room as she had it on Thursday!) she also wants to redecorate and get rid of furniture, but I won't let her until she has sorted out all her stuff
    Clean upstairs bathroom and downstairs shower.

    Hopefully get paid on Monday, I have a list of what needs to be paid/saved etc. Won't have a lot of money, wil be glad once I have saved for the few things that are costing quite a bit every month.

    Anyway, off to get dressed and sort the mower out.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 15th Apr 19, 6:49 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Didn't get through all my list. Set mower and did the back lawn but not the front. Will get that done this week. I did go through the girls bedroom with her and found her purse, surprisingly where I told her it would be and she told me it wasn't as she had already looked

    Busy day today, three jobs with the boy, then dropping him for the night at my mums, then off to a big one off job on my own. We'll, if the boss ever sends me the address that is! She is rubbish at Admin, and sometimes infuriating with it!

    Sjould be payday today, but boss is away. Nothing needed desperately as I am nearly fully buffered, but I want to give those pounds jobs in ynab. She is normally pretty good with the money side of things though,and will text or call if there is going to be a slight delay.

    Anyway off to sort my kit out for work. I normally do it on Friday when I get it, but didn't this time!
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 15th Apr 19, 8:50 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Pay hit the account. All budgeted out in ynab. I have 750 set aside in the higher interest savings account which is my emergency fund, holiday all funded, camping trip funded and finally have some money for clothes! I need new socks and the small two definitely need a few bits.

    Long day today. Did my normal jobs with the boy, then a big job (boss finally gave me the address lol) but I enjoyed it.

    Tomorrow I will get an early start as first job is a village hall so will go at 7am when I take hubby to the station. Come home, breakfast then onto next two jobs. Have a doctors appointment for the girl (non urgent issue) so the small two will have to get dressed and leave the house. Which is no very fun. Wednesday is my half day and have an oven clean booked in, then free time.

    Overall money is tight for the rest of the month. But it's doable.

    Had a tutor around today to help the forl with her maths. She has been struggling, but is way better than she thinks. She liked the tutor so hopefully will be an ongoing arrangement. It's an expense, but this tutor was pretty resonable and they seemed to work well together which is the important thing.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 17th Apr 19, 12:09 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Finished work for the day at 11.30, last time the boy was helping me this holiday. Atm I have a lovely man in the kitchen cleaning my oven. Stupidly excited about how pristine it will be afterwards

    Am having to revisit my trip to London this evening with the smallest. Was planning leaving at the last minute, but all this protesting (which I am totally behind) is making me think besttet to get there a bit earlier. But that will make it so much harder for the smallest..... And then I buy stuff anyway going to try and get in for 5.30/6 rather than 6.30, walk over the river to the west end, go to my favourite cake shop in China Town and maybe get a pot of chips in five guys. Keep it cheap. Already bought a bag of sweets from @sda to take with me, and will take water too. Am hopeful he loves it, but am glad I haven't paid full price. We also have the friends and family railcard so loads of savings on rail fares. It runs out in August, but I have a line in ynab set as a goal, so will be able to get another one straight away.

    Anyway, tomorrow will be fun, three jobs and I doubt we will be back before midnight!

    I also went out last night (hubby not best pleased with me ) to our local theatre. This was booked back in Jan. A comedian from my youth was doing a stand up and myself and my old friend used to be rather big fans of him back in the nineties. (he was a bit of a heart throb amongst our friends when we were 15!) it was wonderful to go and see him, and a very interesting show, apparently he does a show on radio 4, so a mix of 40yr old women with teenagers and the grey haired radio 4 brigade but it was very good. Unfortunately it wasn't sold out, and if I had known more about it would have dragged my dad along, totally his thing.

    Anyway looking forward to a quiet Easter weekend. Maybe one day out at a local country park with a picnic. Bit of gardening and a couple of local walks I think.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 17th Apr 19, 10:52 PM
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    Drawingaline
    Back from aladdin. The smallest was a super star. Ear defenders went on at waterloo, but he walked to the west end with minimum complaint, ate chips in five guys even though they were skin on fries and he was a bit suspicious of them and was so good even though it was incredibly stressful for him.

    He wasn't keen on aladdin to start with, so much complaining I decided we would leave at the interval (while being glad we had lottery win tickets) then the genie came on 20mins before the interval and he was transfixed. Al the actors were fantastic and it was certainly a feast for the eyes, but everyone bar the genie were playing very two dimensional characters, the genie pulled it all together. The magic carpet was amazing too. Anyway he was then enjoying himself so much we stayed. It finished bang on 10, so managed to get an earlier train home (after negotiating the underground which he hates), just tucked him in, think there may be a tired boy tomorrow. I have the Lion King booked for May, but it is a matinee, and I won't do any other West ends with him until he is bigger unless we all go, but will definitely look out for stuff in our two local theatres I think.

    Anyway best be off to bed need to be up in six hours to take hubby to the station!
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 25th Apr 19, 9:43 AM
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    Drawingaline
    Well, Easter has been and gone. Did write a post one of the days but it disappeared, so frustrating when that happens!

    Had a very quiet one. Popped to town on good Friday, chilled out sat, then I was up early to do the early service at church, then went back for the 10am service with all the kids. Followed by an egg hunt.

    Monday we went to a country park. Was warm! Hubby took the boys on a little train ride that runs there, and fun was had by all. Total nightmare driving back up the m27/m3 though 30mph along most of it.

    So back to work/school. The weird one really struggled and got himself into such a state, went in sobbing but has been absolutely fine since! It's the anticipation I think. The smallest has been fine, he is prepping for ks1 sats, they always keep them low key, but he is rather resistant to the reading/writing ones. Not convinced they will get him to do it tbh.

    Anyway best get on with work.
    • Drawingaline
    • By Drawingaline 25th Apr 19, 9:12 PM
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    Drawingaline
    So I had a rare day off on Tuesday. I had a huge list planned, first off getting a new light bulb for the bathroom as it went over the weekend and the little two were freaking out. I have got one before (there are two bulbs in it, but if one goes it won't work at all) only a couple of months ago from bandq. So thought, school run, nip in, grab bulb, pop to @sda, stock up fridge, back by 9.15, get painting bedroom ceiling.

    Well, FIVE shops later still no bloody bulb! Ended up going to an actual electrical wholesalers as no DIY shop had it. Apparently they are shifting all their ranges to led ones. I was a bit short in one of them 'so I have to replace my whole light fitting then?' anyway after doing @sda it was half ten when I got back. And I was in a right bad mood. So baked two cakes and cleaned the whole of downstairs instead painting can wait.

    I also went to browse a new sofa. Ours is nine years old and not been treated that well. One side has completely collapsed and the springs have come out of the bottom. Am annoyed as was hoping to go another year, so will have to do an interest free credit option. But on the pus side, hubby has agreed no point getting one until we have done the carpet and he is hating the collapsed bit more than me won't be a rush, will go and look at the weekend together and see what we both like. Hoping for a corner one. Last time we couldn't fit one in due to having old pipes in the front room boxed in, but had them removed five years ago so now it would work.

    So my day off was OK, but annoyed I didn't get as much done as I hoped.
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