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
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 15th Mar 16, 9:12 AM
    • 2,190Posts
    • 17,922Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    It's not a lot, but it's enough
    • #1
    • 15th Mar 16, 9:12 AM
    It's not a lot, but it's enough 15th Mar 16 at 9:12 AM
    Good day to you all.

    Can I start by saying I feel a bit embarrassed about starting this diary. Not because of my debt, but because in comparison to other peoples situation I seem to be in a better position to clear it. However Iíve been considering starting a diary like this for a while as I feel itís really been getting me down, like thereís a huge black cloud following me everywhere I go. I feel I think about money Ė or more specifically my debt - all day, every day, and hopefully having a place to come and post of my attempts to reduce it will help keep my chin up and motivate me.

    A bit about me. Iím 25 and I live with my mum for now and I have a steady and comfortable paying job. I was in a relationship for 8 years and we had a joint savings account with a view to buy a place. When that relationship ended, I went off the rails. I blew my half of the savings while at the same time took out a credit card telling myself Iíll use it to increase my credit score by only using it to buy petrol and paying back at the end of every month. That didnít go to plan. I know have 2 credit cards (just recently paid off my third); Tesco Credit Card - £2,614.19 and Barclaycard - £693.88. Both of which are 0% interest for now.

    The thing is, I know that my debt is manageable. Iím not spiralling out of control with interest. I donít have a mortgage. I donít have any kids. My expenditure is relatively low. I can and I will do this!

    Although this is a Debt Free Diary, I have a view for this to become a Saving Diary once Iíve cleared these cards. I want to feel the way I felt 3 years ago with no debt and thus no worries. To be happy again.

    My plan to clear this debt was originally to still try and maintain an element of my lifestyle that got me into this mess while being sensible. At the end of each month, any remaining money in my account would be transferred to my credit cards, this is already on top of my direct debits to meet the minimum repayments. However I found that this technique gave me too long a leash and I wasnít being tight enough. This month I actually have a stag do in Amsterdam (paid for by said credit cards) and with no savings, I had to use money from this months wages for spending money, leaving me skint for the remainder of the month, but goes to show that I can stow away a large chunk at the start of the month and force me to make the sacrifices. So thatís the plan, so put away a sizeable amount at the start of each month, the day I get paid.

    Thank you for reading and appreciate the support.

    Peace and Love!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
Page 45
    • crazy_cat_lady
    • By crazy_cat_lady 30th Jul 18, 6:31 PM
    • 4,222 Posts
    • 36,167 Thanks
    crazy_cat_lady
    It's hard to know what to do when you have birthdays etc so early on in a relationship. It seems like a lot, but if that's what she wanted to do... and she's obviously quite keen if you've met mum as well. Enjoy it though - who knows where it will lead? As long as you're not unhappy then it doesn't matter.
    Couple of costly things as well. Ouch. But at least you had the money to pay for it.
    December in the Tardis #16 nsd = 6 New life = new debt
    DFD #1: 6 Nov 15 - paid £28,447
    • Toni'sfriend
    • By Toni'sfriend 30th Jul 18, 6:47 PM
    • 1,703 Posts
    • 16,675 Thanks
    Toni'sfriend
    I can understand why you're a bit uncomfortable with the excess of presents and meeting the mother unexpectedly. Maybe she's just a naturally generous person but I'd agree it's a bit much so early in a relationship. Go with your instincts.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 31st Jul 18, 8:46 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    CCL - Yeah I appreciate that it's always difficult to judge what to spend early on. But I've became a man who is good with money and I can't help but think that could be better spent. I really do appreciate the sentiment though.

    Toni'sfriend - She does come across as the type of person who would be generous with gifts and the like, but still...I'll approach with caution.



    Grey skies and a bit cooler this morning. I think there was rain overnight.

    Yesterday, after work, I made my dinner, applied for some other jobs online and played football. Was shattered after, so in bed for 10 and I recon I fell asleep 10 minutes later.

    Been up and at the gym this morning. With no plans tonight, I might stay a little bit later in work and then go to my mums for a bit of gardening. Hopefully the rain will make it easier for weeding.

    TGFW sent me 2 emails; the confirmation of our flights to London and the confirmation of our hotel. She loves travelling and does a lot of it so she's racked up air miles and a free stay, so all in, this cost her £100, which I've agreed to split. I am looking forward to it, but I'm already dreading the spend when I'm down there!! And although it's only London we're going to, it seems a bit much early on. It's not until September, so perhaps by then I'll be thinking differently. We'll see.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 31st Jul 18, 12:29 PM
    • 1,686 Posts
    • 9,124 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    Let me know what you're thinking of doing when you're in London (ooh that didn't sound right - you know what I mean!) and I'll see if I can help suggest a couple of good value things to do that won't make you look cheap but may make you look like you have the inside track. There are also some great restaurants that fit into this category too.
    Also look up Time Out (nearer the time) and Secret London either online or Facebook as they show lots of cool things that are often free, experiences you wouldn't have and just things that people don't generally know.
    Not sure if any of your other followers still live in London but they'll be able to advise too. I go 2-3 times a month and we still have a property and friends there so I feel reasonably up to date, but it's not quite the same as living there.
    • efes shareholder
    • By efes shareholder 31st Jul 18, 1:08 PM
    • 389 Posts
    • 1,040 Thanks
    efes shareholder
    I live on the outskirts of North London and go in to town quite a lot

    Worth getting a taste card if there is an offer on them for the trip as lots of places to eat will accept them on the weekend.

    As Joey says its possible to do lots without spending a fortune depending on what floats your boat
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 1st Aug 18, 8:31 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Thanks for the suggestions. I'll do some digging to see whats going on.


    The weather was pants last night so my gardening duties were postponed. I didn't do anything productive in it's place though, aside from an early night.

    Woke at 3.30 after a nightmare involving confronting a burglar and being stabbed (!!), decided to get up and go to the loo and strangely thought of all you lot who would no doubt be up at that time too!

    For the first time since moving into my flat (over 13 months ago), today I will have fully functioning internet. So today's a big day. After work, I'll get it all set up, make dinner and then play football.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • crazy_cat_lady
    • By crazy_cat_lady 1st Aug 18, 8:34 AM
    • 4,222 Posts
    • 36,167 Thanks
    crazy_cat_lady
    I don't know if you've seen, but there's a link on this weeks MSE email about 50 things to do in London. Might be worth a look.
    Enjoy your fully functioning internet.
    December in the Tardis #16 nsd = 6 New life = new debt
    DFD #1: 6 Nov 15 - paid £28,447
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Aug 18, 8:39 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    AHhhh. I somehow missed that. Great spot CCL, thanks.



    Yesterday was a busy day, lots of meetings in the morning and then an event at night might meant I didn't get home till after 11.30. No gym this morning subsequently.

    Tonight will be the Friday tidy and I think I'll enjoy using my shiny new internet with some of the boys playing FIFA or something.

    I've taken a chicken breast out the freezer, not sure what I'll make from it but it'll be dinner.

    The Girl From Work (TGFW) is coming over tomorrow. We're not going out or anything, quite the opposite actually. Sitting in, chilling, watching TV - which tbh, is exactly what I feel I need.

    She phoned me last night as we made our own way home from work and she was discussing London. She likes to be organised, so she's looking at booking a restaurant and the likes. I already have the fear that it'll cost a lot. But I'll talk to her tomorrow about where I'm at financially. As she's still living with her parents, she has 10 times more disposable income than I do. I'm sure she'll understand.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • efes shareholder
    • By efes shareholder 3rd Aug 18, 9:42 AM
    • 389 Posts
    • 1,040 Thanks
    efes shareholder
    There are some excellent deals on groupon and tastecard is accepted pretty much everywhere in central london

    Or do as I do when City breaking on a budget and head to the yellow arches
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Aug 18, 10:10 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    There are some excellent deals on groupon and tastecard is accepted pretty much everywhere in central london

    Or do as I do when City breaking on a budget and head to the yellow arches
    Originally posted by efes shareholder
    Ahhh - my go-to, fast food joint has to be the Kentucky King. Love that place.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 3rd Aug 18, 12:53 PM
    • 1,686 Posts
    • 9,124 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    Turn it on it's head. Go somewhere special for a drink - yes it will be eye watering but you can get the vibe for much less than dinner - then do something different for dinner.
    Consider Chinatown (almost anything asian), Edgware Road (persian, iranian etc) or Brick Lane (curries but also north african), look out for food markets/trucks on Time Out or Secret London...
    Also consider going somewhere for ice cream rather than having a pricey pud - Gelupo in Soho is marvellous but there are a couple in Covent Garden too. You can then have a wander around in London at night which is always entertaining.
    • efes shareholder
    • By efes shareholder 3rd Aug 18, 12:59 PM
    • 389 Posts
    • 1,040 Thanks
    efes shareholder
    Turn it on it's head. Go somewhere special for a drink - yes it will be eye watering but you can get the vibe for much less than dinner - then do something different for dinner.
    Consider Chinatown (almost anything asian), Edgware Road (persian, iranian etc) or Brick Lane (curries but also north african), look out for food markets/trucks on Time Out or Secret London...
    Also consider going somewhere for ice cream rather than having a pricey pud - Gelupo in Soho is marvellous but there are a couple in Covent Garden too. You can then have a wander around in London at night which is always entertaining.
    Originally posted by joeyjimbles
    Salt beef bagel from the bagel shops on Brick Lane - open all hours and to die for
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 3rd Aug 18, 1:23 PM
    • 1,686 Posts
    • 9,124 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    ^^ Absolutely - though I'm a smoked salmon and cream cheese girl myself.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 3rd Aug 18, 2:25 PM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Both sound incredible to be honest!!

    We're staying at The Marylebone Hotel, which I think is pretty central to a lot of things. I'm going to get my creative and MSE hat on and get thinking.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 5th Aug 18, 5:06 PM
    • 1,686 Posts
    • 9,124 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    Gorgeous hotel - very swish.
    Near to Marylebone High Street for lovely (window) shopping, also Oxford Street and Hyde Park.
    You can also easily walk down towards Notting Hill and Portobello Road - are you there on a Saturday or Sunday for the markets? There's a fab breakfast/brunch place off Portobello called Kitchen & Pantry 14 Elgin Crescent - really good food, nice place and decent value for one of the hippest parts of West London.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 6th Aug 18, 8:56 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Brill, thanks for that Joey. Very helpful


    Rain this morning, and lots of it. Of course, this was due to happen as I cleaned the car last night.

    I had a nice weekend. TGFW came over to mine on Saturday, we got a takeaway and sat in to watch some good TV. It was ideal.

    Tonight, I've got football and not much else planned, although I think I'll opt for an early night as I didn't have a good one last night.

    I'm also trailing a fast for the next 2 days. Water only. I've done fasts before, and I really enjoy doing them oddly, however I've included coffee and other liquids. This time, water only. I feel it's good for the system, mentally and physically.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 7th Aug 18, 8:41 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    Good morning,

    Horrible morning in Glasgow. Rain, wind and dark grey clouds.

    I'm still going on my fast, water only, since Sunday nights dinner. Not hungry - so far. Thankfully it stayed dry for football last night and I've been to the gym this morning too. No plans this evening although I might stay late in work.

    I've booked flights to Gibraltar next Monday (with work) and I've realised that my passport is still with the passport people for renewal and not due back till after the trip. But, i can get it faster for £101. So I'm going to ask my boss nicely if work could cover it as it's a really important trip. Not sure how he'll take it tbh.

    Anyway, I'm off with another glass of water for breakfast.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • Toni'sfriend
    • By Toni'sfriend 7th Aug 18, 1:38 PM
    • 1,703 Posts
    • 16,675 Thanks
    Toni'sfriend
    Cleared up a wee bit now, Specky. Hope you get the passport sorted.
    I like the idea of going somewhere really special for a drink and then finding a nice cosy restaurant for dinner. We do this a lot when we go away - one of the posh cafes in Paris for a drink and a local bistro for dinner. Lots of good advice on here.
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 8th Aug 18, 8:29 AM
    • 2,190 Posts
    • 17,922 Thanks
    SpekySquarehead
    TF - The rain is always around the corner, so I never get my hopes up! That is a nice idea. Although, I'm not the most adventurous of drinkers. A pint will do.

    Yesterday went exactly as expected as I stayed late in work - and I've still got lots to do. Broke my fast last night with some light nibbles. I think it was boredom that made me hungry more than anything else tbh.

    Tonight is date night with my gran. First I'll take her to the chiropodist and then we'll come back for some food. Really looking forward to it. I typically leave hers around 9pm, so I'll aim to do some job searching during that time before bed. I'm going to buy her that full sheet magnifier that you suggested joey. The family are going on a trip to Aviemore next week and it would be good if she had it for that.

    Last night I broke my fast of 48 hours with some light snacks. I think it was out of boredom more than anything else. Wasn't hungry in work or anything. So I'm feeling cleansed and fit. Ready to start eating healthy going forward - although perhaps not with date night tonight!
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • joeyjimbles
    • By joeyjimbles 8th Aug 18, 4:24 PM
    • 1,686 Posts
    • 9,124 Thanks
    joeyjimbles
    That sounds like a good idea, much easier for her if she wants to read a book or the paper too - less strain on the eyes, and more fluid for her too.
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

3,937Posts Today

7,821Users online

Martin's Twitter