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  • FIRST POST
    • mum2one
    • By mum2one 31st Dec 16, 1:04 AM
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    mum2one
    Santas challenge 2018 and beyond xx
    • #1
    • 31st Dec 16, 1:04 AM
    Santas challenge 2018 and beyond xx 31st Dec 16 at 1:04 AM
    A warm welcome to old and new friends.

    What is Santas challenge...

    We're a lovely thread, may be small but we're good... I know Christmas happens every year, yet by planning throughout the year this can take off some of the financial pressure of finding everything last minute, spread the tasks throughout the year.

    It's not just about Christmas, it's birthdays, Easter, Valentine's Day,x cleaning those kitchen cupboards, having a general moan about life, yet being there as well.

    The great plan is for a challenge on the 24th of the month, so that by Christmas Eve we are all ready and can sit back and relax...

    A big welcome to everyone. Xx
    Last edited by mum2one; 18-01-2018 at 1:59 AM.
    Tackling the debt free life one day at a time xx
    RIP Dad, - Always love you, - He was 1 in a million xx
Page 17
    • chanie
    • By chanie 27th Nov 17, 7:30 PM
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    chanie
    I think we cross posted. Yes, I did manage to get the TV for DS today.

    How annoying for your family to drop in on you like that. My in laws are Ďgo with the flowí types and Iím the opposite, so it drives me mad, as I like to know plans in advance and that those plans will be stuck to. Still, at least youíve told them you wonít be in.

    My Ďsavingsí challenge is a little personal challenge I do, where I try and reduce the cost of anything I buy. This could be through buying in the sales,using a discount code or loyalty points. Itís similar to what you do for Christmas, but I include all purchases.

    The ideal solution is just not to spend any money, but we have a growing family, so there is always Ďsomethingí involving spending. My thinking is,
    ĎIf I have to spend, try to get it as cheap as possibleí.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 28th Nov 17, 11:37 AM
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    Happy Kitties
    chanie we definately cross posted!

    I'm with you with Black Friday. I'm so glad that u got a tv for DS. I've been looking for a coat that is practical for Prague-it will be an early Christmas present. The budget I was given, couldn't find anything at all but in the Black Friday sales I found a lovely Regatt# jacket that when i checked it out not only was it something that would suit me perfectly but did have savings on it. I think if you are after something definite, do the research then there are definite bargains to be had with Black Friday although I couldn't bear to go to the shops with it.

    I'm sure the Christmas pud will be lovely.

    2nd parcel was posted today and some Christmas cards dropped off at my mum's. I think DM is getting a little upset at the lack of thought within the family this year, that DB is taking advantage. It is causing some issues.

    Brilliant savings and I'm the same, if I have to spend I want as much as possible for my money, and will make savings wherever possible to maximise this.

    I hope everyone's Christmas preparations are going well, i never totally stuck to my target of being completed within mid November, but the end of November is looking good!
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • chanie
    • By chanie 28th Nov 17, 8:46 PM
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    chanie
    Well done on the coat savings. I!!!8217;m sure it will be lovely and toasty for Prague. Totally agree about doing research before the sales. I also bought a backpack on Black Friday. It was something I!!!8217;ve been eyeing up for a few months and I!!!8217;m delighted it was half price.

    I think your goal of getting everything done by the beginning of December is a good one. Mid-nov doesn!!!8217;t feel quite right to me! At least you can have a relaxing December knowing it!!!8217;s all done.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 1st Dec 17, 6:47 PM
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    Happy Kitties
    Nearly all my cards posted and all of my parcels were posted except DD now wants me to pop something in in the post from her spare present stash for a friend at uni who has been upset, so with another friend they're planning a few cheer me up presents. Will do this on Monday with the last of my cards

    I'm impatient as I now have to wait for DD to finish uni before the tree can go up-not until the 15th I can't get to the bits, DD offered to get them out ready for me to put the tree up today but I said I refuse to put it up without her........even if she does get bored in the middle and I'm left to finish decorating it At least I can get on with tidying up the living room, there has been bits everywhere with the decorating
    chanie I would have been well chuffed with the backpack and the savings. Thats the sort of thing I would do, I would have been eyeing it up aswell to keep an eye on the price!!

    Made the most of the sparks offer £10 off coats and jackets at m#s. DD didn't want anything so I bought myself a nice fleece to go under my jacket for Prague for only £5. DD will pick it up along with other half price goodies I've bought for next year-Christmas and birthdays

    I cannot believe it is December, November went in a flash.

    I hope everyone's preparations are coming along well. Can't believe 2 weeks on Sunday i go to Prague-DD is already talking gingerbread and baubles!!

    .
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • chanie
    • By chanie 3rd Dec 17, 8:50 PM
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    chanie
    Prague must be wonderful at this time of year. What a great way to get in the mood for Christmas.

    Happy kitties i know you are looking forward to putting up your tree, we never put ours up until the second week of December. It stems back from my parents not putting up the tree until after my sisters birthday. We bought our tree today. They are in Costco for £40,which is the cheapest we!!!8217;ve seen where we live. Last year, OH kept putting off going to Costco and then they sold out, so he ended up paying more. I!!!8217;m pleased he learnt his lesson.
    Whilst in Costco, we picked up a set of Roald Dahl books for under £20. SIL asked us to pick them up for DS for Xmas, so OH distracted him whilst i put them in my fold up bag to hide them. Whilst we were in the queue, dS found the books and knew they were for him. So, we!!!8217;ve been practising his !!!8216;surprised!!!8217; face for when he opens them at Christmas.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • chanie
    • By chanie 6th Dec 17, 9:02 PM
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    chanie
    I haven!!!8217;t started wrapping yet, but I!!!8217;ve sorted through the unwrapped presents to decide how I!!!8217;m going to wrap them. I normally just use wrapping paper with the occasional gift bag. I have some boxes I received with online shopping which can be reused for Xmas gifts.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 6th Dec 17, 11:29 PM
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    Happy Kitties
    I have to admit to being very impatient for putting the tree up, I can't wait, said to DD I don't care how tired she is next friday the things are coming out and the tree will go up! We travel to Prague 2 days later so if we don't do it then we won't have a tree at all.

    I was multi tasking today, wrapping selection boxes for a club I belong to and speaking to DD, but have eaten a selection box........i will never be thin.

    chanieThe Roald Dahl books, had a similar situation when DD was a toddler with bestie hiding a big cuddly toy she had been after. Fortunately DD never spotted this big yellow thing that my mum still has today.
    Even though DS found the books it will still be really exciting for him to know he is getting them and the 'surprised face' made me smile I think we've all had to do one of those during our lifetimes, I know I have several times.
    Prague is very cold but amazing. We booked last year to get into the festive spirit and going with bestie this year I am even more excited. Just finishing last minute bits off I have to do as I'm away this weekend aswell.
    Seemed to be forever posting bits to DD, said I refuse to post anymore. It didn't help that Specs#vers sent her contact lenses home instead of to the uni so I sent them on after sending the parcel with the present she wanted out of her stash. Was able to pop a Christmas card in for her-one from me and one from her cat
    Just a few cards to hand out now
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • crazy-cat-lady
    • By crazy-cat-lady 8th Dec 17, 7:39 PM
    • 376 Posts
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    crazy-cat-lady
    Hi everyone.
    I've been missing forever. Missed doing challenges and reading everyone's prep and bargains. I've been having a few health problems and been seeing the cardiologist. Few more tests, but all finally seems to be ok. Not felt overly christmassy with worry and all that hanging over my head.

    Now i can relax a little, the decorations are up, cards written and presents wrapped and i can hopefully get more in the spirit of things. All the early sales buying and putting away has really come in handy. Even had spree presents which i've donated, a few to a raffle for my sister's friend. Diagnosed with breast cancer, she's only 30 and has 2 small kids. They're having a raffle to raise money and help her have an easier Christmas hopefully. Also some to a few different kid's charities. So, at least nothing has gone to waste and everything will find a good home. I'd like to do a few more charity bits as i do try to every Christmas, got to get a look out.

    I have at least managed to get my little girl out to some Christmas events. We went to see Santa arrive on his sleigh at a garden centre and she saw the reindeer, the local rotary club sleigh was round the streets last night, we went on the Santa train last week and she got a lovely toy from the big man and was laughing at the elves. That was a sweet day. We went to the Christmas markets in Manchester the other day on the way to hospital too.

    Got to go back and have a big catch up now. Hope everyone is ok and well on the way to being ready for the big day.
    Cat blankets crocheted for local rescue: 1/12
    Read a book a week: 4/52. Money made on surveys and cashback: £30
    • chanie
    • By chanie 9th Dec 17, 8:25 PM
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    chanie
    Tip The Christmas bank holidays can affect bin collections, so don!!!8217;t forget to have a clear out before Christmas so that your bins aren!!!8217;t overflowing. Despite recycling as much as we can, I find that Christmas and the children!!!8217;s birthdays means our bins are often full.

    Over the last few weeks, I!!!8217;ve been having a clear out in advance of Christmas. This has included getting rid of broken toys, out grown clothes and out of date food.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • chanie
    • By chanie 12th Dec 17, 10:37 AM
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    chanie
    The tree is up and I've slowly started to wrap presents. I wanted to try and 'tart up' my wrapping this year and I'm pleased with what I have done so far:

    gift boxes - I have a couple of decent boxes from online shopping/posh shops which I am re-purposing for gifts. I've wrapped them in ribbon, so they look nice.


    brown parcel paper - IKEA provide this for breakables, which you can use to wrap after you've done your shopping. I always wrap my items to limit creasing the paper, so that I can reuse it for gift wrapping. I may tie them with string (those are a few of my favourite things..... as the song goes).


    gift tags - I normally don't bother with these, but my Mum bought some posh crackers a few years ago and they had a nice embellishment on it, which I've turned into free gift tags.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • crazy-cat-lady
    • By crazy-cat-lady 12th Dec 17, 3:10 PM
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    crazy-cat-lady
    Looking at the sales lists. Formulating a plan !!!128514;
    Itís all too tempting to get this because theyíre cheap, ether I need them or not.
    Got to be good this year and not buy a million gift sets I donít need in the sales just for the sake of it. Iím going to get warm clothes in a size a year older for my daughter and paper and crackers as usual. Boots is always my first call online but last year it was a disaster and closed half way through. Me and everyone else lost all the basket full of shopping and it had half sold it when it opened again. Still did ok, but I did have a log of nice woodwick and yankees that got lost. I got some toys in the sales already when Iíve seen really good offers. Ones that will come in in a year or two. Things that wonít age or go out of crazes.

    I got some nice hot flavoured teas and hot chocolates from whittards in the sales last year too that are good til next year. So dig those out now. Nice way to save money later. So I have to have a think of other items that will last like that. Chocolate is no use. It wonít see Christmas, never mind going away.
    Chutneys maybe? Any ideas?

    Something strangely comforting and nice about getting a start for next year early on.
    Cat blankets crocheted for local rescue: 1/12
    Read a book a week: 4/52. Money made on surveys and cashback: £30
    • mum2one
    • By mum2one 12th Dec 17, 7:18 PM
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    mum2one
    Apologies again , seem to be missing in action....
    It!!!8217;s been a madhouse, between running mum around, bailey been back and forth to the vets with his ears... apparently he has an allergy, he!!!8217;s. Had steroid jabs, antibiotic jabs, ear cleaning, were now on 2day ear solutions, with a view to hi. Hsv8bg surgery....

    Running miss hoodie about bless her...

    Christmas planning. The tree went up 1st weekend do december, have a silver and purple theme.

    All cards been wrapped, - those needing posting have gone 2day.
    Presents,. All wrapped, the postal ones gone way, delivered some presents

    Weather... we!!!8217;ve had over 12 in snow, been a ngtmsre been housebound from Friday, went out 2day took an hr for mr and miss hoodie to clear the snow off the car, the schools have been closed yesterday and 2day not sure when / if there reopdn8ng 2mor.

    It!!!8217;s prague on Friday... think it will be warmer over there, can!!!8217;t wait xx
    Tackling the debt free life one day at a time xx
    RIP Dad, - Always love you, - He was 1 in a million xx
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 13th Dec 17, 9:22 AM
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    Happy Kitties
    Ooooooo im Prague on Sunday mum2one.......can't wait......more excited than last year

    Chanie I'm going to pinch ur brown paper wrapping paper idea for next year, really like the sound of that idea especially as some of the presents i have next year are just one 'big' present that would look better out of a gift bag than in plus I have a ball of string that I could put to good use that is rattling about a drawer

    CCL also have a sales list prepared for B@@ts. I did well online on Christmas Eve when items went 50% plus DD likes to do on boxing day before cold cut and chips
    Everyone sounds as if they are doing well with their Christmas prep and everything is going well. Still waiting for my tree to go up, DD comes home Friday and the tree is going up then.
    Have been getting extra food bits in while doing normal shopping so I don't have to do a lot when I come back.
    Was away last weekend, everything clear of snow outside my house but only 10 minutes away snow and car accidents happening so I pinched a lift with friends.
    I can't believe how quick December is speeding by
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • chanie
    • By chanie 13th Dec 17, 10:14 PM
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    chanie

    Chanie I'm going to pinch ur brown paper wrapping paper idea for next year, really like the sound of that idea especially as some of the presents i have next year are just one 'big' present that would look better out of a gift bag than in plus I have a ball of string that I could put to good use that is rattling about a drawer
    Originally posted by Happy Kitties
    I bought some alphabet stamps From tiger and stamp names and messages on the brown paper
    Last edited by chanie; 15-12-2017 at 8:24 PM.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • chanie
    • By chanie 20th Dec 17, 11:12 PM
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    chanie
    Last minute rush to finish the Christmas shopping, which is a bit stressful. Although all of the big stuff has been bought, I still have lots of little bits and pieces to get. Iím not working tomorrow so that I can pop to town. I did buy a couple of bits at lunchtime today though.

    This is the first year in recent memory where I feel unprepared, even though I have been planning all year. There are a couple of reasons for this:

    1) much of what I have seen in shops is !!!! and I donít want to waste my money on stuff that will end up in landfill/charity shop. I do try to get stuff that people genuinely want or have a use for. In saying that, I have seen quite a few bits in the Xmas aisles recently.

    2) MIL asked us to pick up a gift for the children. She has struggled to get the items we suggested we so she asked us to get them for her. This is good in so far as we get to choose, but less than a weeks notice isnít ideal!

    3) OH is interrupting my flow. Basically, some of the children in the family have asked for vouchers. OH also wants to get them ĎSomething to opení. I suggested small stuff like sweets, but OH keeps on suggesting items which are £10+. I have pointed out to him that if does this, it will mean that some DNs will have spent more on them than others and this isnít fair, particularly when we will be opening the gifts together. The trouble is that OH doesnít think this far ahead and will end up wa during around aimlessly on Xmas eve trying to buy extra presents for the children who have had less spent on them. Iíll be annoyed that OH would have wiped out any savings Iíve made on presents.

    One of the gifts I bought today, Iím pretty pleased with. Its a gift for someone I didnít account for throughout the year and suddenly thought Iíd better get them something. This person has a disability which affects their arms and legs and they struggle with pretty much most tasks. I try not to buy them anything that they will find too difficult to use, but was struggling with ideas. Today, I bought them a blingy cup with a lid and straw which Iíve filled with sweets and chocolates. Iím going to wrap it in cellophane with some nice ribbon.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 21st Dec 17, 2:44 PM
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    Happy Kitties
    Back from Prague, didn't get home until 2am as flight was delayed due to bad fog. Did more exploring than last year, more gingerbread and baubles brought back and DD brought a couple of special presents back with her. Had a brilliant time and very christmassy. Feel so tired now esp when we got back we were wide awake so sorted the bags and dirty washing out and didn't go to bed until after 3am.
    Went to the morris#ns at 9am to stock the cats up for over Christmas, was starting to get really busy so was glad to get back home.
    The tree is up but our 6 month old kitten is like a tinsel monster. She had pulled most of the tinsel off while we were away, the cat sitter kept retrieving it from the stairs, the kitten didn't quite manage to get any fully upstairs. Me and DD have repaired the tree but it doesn't look the same, u can sort of see parts where the kitten has face planted the tree!!!!!!!
    chanie a brilliant present for a person with a disability. I work in all areas of inclusion. Frustrating about the lack of time from it MIL but tbh it's the sort of thing my DM would do aswell!!!!

    I've picked up some great sale bargains of make up items next year-urb#n decay for my Dsis in law. Relied on DD for extra info and using her student discount we ended up saving over £23. Aiming for good savings again next year, I think there are some nice things out there, it's just finding them, and in stock.

    Chanie I know OH means well but when u have been working towards ur own plan and have made savings the last thing u want to happen is for it to go pear shaped. That would really stress me out.it would be awful for you both if you had to go out Christmas Eve for extra presents

    Plan is to just get the house clean and in a presentable, trying to be tidy state now. Plus relax so that I'm not over tired for Christmas. Got a couple of bits to deliver to DM but DD is going to do that which makes life easier for me.

    I hope everyone is doing well with their Christmas prep and we are nearly there. We have propped each other up and kept going with present ideas, it will all come together I'm sure.......and hope(remembered to take the gammon out of the freezer-a good start for me!!!)
    Last edited by Happy Kitties; 21-12-2017 at 2:45 PM. Reason: Spelling
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • chanie
    • By chanie 21st Dec 17, 9:04 PM
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    chanie
    happy kitties Iím pleased you had a nice time in Prague with DD, even if you were delayed by fog - how annoying. But at least you arrived back home safely.
    Itís great that youíve made progress with next year. Iíve bought one small stocking filler for DD, but I have lots of ideas, which Iíve written down.

    Iíve pretty much sorted out the gifts now. I did an order with amazon today. Iím rather annoyed with myself as I had to choose the express delivery for £6 so that it would arrive before Xmas. I begrudge paying postage fees, but I couldnít order anything until payday.
    I also popped into town today to finish off the gifts I needed to buy. It wasnít too busy when I arrived, mid morning, but was getting busy by the time I left. I managed to satisfactorily sort out the ĎSomething to opení gifts - I bought those money tins you have to cut open from the pound shop. I wrapped them in cellophane with a £1 coin and a couple of chocolate coins. OH is happy with this and means Iíve spent £2 on each one, as opposed to £10.
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
    • mum2one
    • By mum2one 21st Dec 17, 9:48 PM
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    mum2one
    Happykitties... glad you had a gd time, soz u had a delay, we got delayed by an hr this morning, waiting to have the plane de-icer.

    It was a great break, we went out for trip in classic car, and took trip to the outlet centre... even outlet it was expensive.... got miss hoodie some phone cases, I had a blanket wrap, lots of gingerbread and little tree decs.

    Wish was still out there... but reality bites...

    .......
    All deliveies arrived, just did a quick radley order this morning. Energency present (for me....) just got mums and miss hoodies to wrap, shopping on Saturday fir few little stocking bits...xx
    Tackling the debt free life one day at a time xx
    RIP Dad, - Always love you, - He was 1 in a million xx
    • Happy Kitties
    • By Happy Kitties 22nd Dec 17, 9:03 PM
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    Happy Kitties
    Chanie will def be pinching ur 'something to open' gift idea. I have so many younger ones to buy for.I try to do lots of little things in a gift bag. going to cut back next year bec of having so many to buy for, the money tin idea will be brilliant to pop in a gift bag. Boo to the express delivery, I hate paying for any delivery

    Mum2one they also had to de ice the plane with us, but as we were running late anyway we just went with the flow. Saw the classic cars but with 2 wheelchairs and me going mad on a scooter (nearly ran bestie over when upping the speed to max for a test drive!!) they wouldn't have been practical but we saw quite a few, they looked lovely. The weather i found was strange in Prague. We land with snow, there was a snow shower one day but def found it warmer than last year.

    Gammon all cooked and relatives starting to arrive/visit tomorrow so def feel like Christmas has started
    2017 birthday savings shopping frugally = 481.15:money. 2018 birthday savings so far=359.51
    • chanie
    • By chanie 24th Dec 17, 9:19 PM
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    • 10,411 Thanks
    chanie
    Merry Christmas for tomorrow everyone. Hopefully all your hard work throughout the year is paying off with a well organised Xmas.

    A few epic fails from me
    1) forgot to pick up marshmallows and print off labels for snowman soup.
    2) the tv we bought for DS has a wall bracket included, so I didn!!!8217;t need to buy one (can!!!8217;t take it back, as we opened it)
    3) bought a duplicate present (the famous alcohol baubles). I can!!!8217;t find the receipt for them though.
    4) DD accidentally smashed her new Santa plate on the floor, before she even opened it.

    I can laugh at my misfortune.......
    2018 challenge to save £1000
    Spend less - £444.13
    Live more - £1669.05
    My spending diary - Spend Less, Live More - a spending diary
    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5576179
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