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    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 31st Dec 16, 4:05 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    From debt to freedom...
    • #1
    • 31st Dec 16, 4:05 AM
    From debt to freedom... 31st Dec 16 at 4:05 AM
    For a couple of months I have been lurking and reading diaries which have been helpful and inspiring. I thought that I would start a diary to keep myself focussed on getting rid of the debts.

    I am a working mum, recently separated from my husband. I have a large family which makes for an interesting and busy life! I have had a couple of LBMs in recent years and tried to stick to a budget. I had 2 loans totalling 17, 000 at one point. One loan was paid in Aug 2016 and the 2nd has just over 2,000 to go and is due to be paid off by August 2017.
    Other than that, I have a cc with a 475 balance, 2 home improvement loans ( for double glazing) that both have about 1700 outstanding. These have a horrible interest rate of 22%, so I'm eager to tackle these first.
Page 42
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 4th Nov 18, 8:12 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    DD3 and I sat and did a meal plan together for the week. I'm hoping that I can prep ahead and use the slow cooker this week as our mealtimes are getting later and later by the time I cook a meal after getting in at 6.15. We did a Mr T shop which came in at around 70. I'm hoping the only spending for the rest of the week will be a top up for milk.

    The ex popped in yesterday and wanted to know how much oil I'd bought and the cost. He said he had intended to get some and criticised the amount I'd bought and the supplier I'd used, even though the amount and supplier is the same as we did in the past when we were together. I have my parents' dog with me for a week or two, while they are on holiday, so got criticised for that too. The way he worded it seemed to show he was annoyed that I hadn't discussed/told him. He doesn't live here, so why the presence of an aged dog who has always stayed with us if my parents go away, should bother him is beyond me, especially in light of the puppies that appeared here without discussion. I felt totally churned up after that while he went and took a bath again. No " Is there enough hot water for me to..." or " Do you mind if..." and he used a towel I'd put drying by the fire for a child to use later

    I got a couple of lemon drizzle cakes made and a batch of vanilla muffins. Not as productive a day as I'd hoped . Off to try and get as much done as I can today.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • crazy_cat_lady
    • By crazy_cat_lady 4th Nov 18, 1:45 PM
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    crazy_cat_lady
    I am so angry with your ex (almost as angry as I am with mine).
    Hope you've managed to get everything done that you wanted to today
    November in NY #20 NSD = 9 1 debt vs 100 days 328.51/1685
    DFD #1: 6 Nov 15 - paid 28,447
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 5th Nov 18, 12:36 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Thank you CCL. I have certainly been busy today just trying to get everyone ready for the new week ahead. I'm having some doubts about the tumble dryer. I try not to use it at all, preferring to use the outside line or drying things around the fire. Due to the rain and the necessity of getting school uniforms dry I did put a few items in the tumble dryer. Two hours later and they are not dry, nowhere near. Thankfully I got the absolute essentials dry by the fire this evening so lots of laundry shuffling going on!

    I did get out for a walk today. I must confess I took advantage of the toddler having an unexpected nap and leaving DD2 with him and most of his siblings, DD3 and I went for a medium length circular walk. Despite the rain it was beautiful and refreshing. November seems very grey but in the greyness the green of the hardier plants of the hedgerow really stand out. The glossy green of the holly bush and the mid green of the hart's tongue fern seemed almost radiant against the grey backdrop! I returned feeling invigorated and pleased to snatch half an hour with just DD3.

    Tea was homemade chicken pie with roast potatoes and veg followed by Magic lemon pudding. I've tried to get ahead by making a sausage casserole for tomorrow. As long as I remember to set the timer on he oven!!

    A NSD today, the first for November.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 6th Nov 18, 12:35 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    I thought I'd get ahead and got the sausage casserole made ( Sun evening), got the cooker set and it didn't quite go according to plan. The ex came in during the day, saw the lights on the oven were on and turned it off, realised his mistake and then turned some dials back on but not enough to make the cooking programme work . I guess on the positive side, he had the grace to admit it, as I puzzled over how and why the cooker setting had failed. So we had the evening meal after the firework display. The local display was amazing, the best display I've seen in recent years .

    DS2 presented me with a list of ingredients for his cookery lesson tomorrow - thankfully it's a baking type recipe so for once I have all the ingredients in.

    A NSD today making 2 days in November thus far.
    Last edited by Honeysucklelou2; 06-11-2018 at 12:38 AM.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Cherryfudge
    • By Cherryfudge 6th Nov 18, 9:58 PM
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    Cherryfudge

    I did get out for a walk today:...Despite the rain it was beautiful and refreshing. November seems very grey but in the greyness the green of the hardier plants of the hedgerow really stand out. The glossy green of the holly bush and the mid green of the hart's tongue fern seemed almost radiant against the grey backdrop!.
    Originally posted by Honeysucklelou2
    What a lovely description! I went out for a walk at dusk today and took a few photos... there's a gap where a footpath at the field edge goes through a hedge and the yellow leaves at either side positively glowed in the fading light. I love the gentle colours of the stripped-back months and some day when my family get my photos to sort through they will wonder why I photographed so much dead grass!
    MFW #30 Paid off 3,535.94/3000 as of 6/11/18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 6th Nov 18, 10:23 PM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Winter sunsets are always amazing too! The colours across the sky are often breathtaking. I always think the sunsets are compensation for the cold of winter!!

    Today was mentally exhausting. Meetings, including performance management took a fair amount of the day. Thankfully DD2 cooked this evening, so we had stuffed butternut squash which was quite risotto like but lots of Mediterranean vegetables. As a vegetarian dish, it was certainly filling. I am always thankful to eat tea that I haven't had to cook

    It has been a low spend day rather than a NSD. Halfway through the performance management meeting I realised it was my aunt-in-law's birthday, so nipped to get her a gift after work. It is a big birthday so was important to remember. DS 1 needed food for his event tomorrow so stocked him up with energy snacks!
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 10th Nov 18, 9:02 PM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Yesterday I enjoyed a quieter day off. It was just the toddler and I and the toddler ended up having a long nap in the middle of the day, so I had time to sit down, complete the spending tracker app and pay a few bills. Such time for concentration without any distraction is extremely rare .

    I paid the nursery bill yesterday and 70 off a debt before thinking about the menu plan for the coming week. It was then that I remembered Mr T's click and collect and when I went online I found that if I completed an order within half an hour, it was possible to collect when I had to pick up children from school . I think I got the food shopping for less than I would have done with children with me (I'm usually accompanied by at least 3!) .Unfortunately DD2 wanted some ingredients to be able to make puddings so I ended up going back to Mr T's with her, this afternoon, to pick up her requests which came to 20. I think I'll have to suggest cheaper seasonal fruit based puddings next time.

    Today DD2 invited me to go for a walk with her and the puppies , which was lovely. We went to a water meadow a few miles away. After the torrential rain of yesterday, the river was really fast flowing. Despite the sogginess, it was lovely to get out and enjoy the fresh air. On our return DS1 then wanted me to go with him to walk his dog. We were able to persuade everyone and went in a walk to the local woods. The path was a carpet of brown, orange and yellow leaves - stunning. The exercise has certainly done me good and as ever, simply being outside is so exhilarating and relaxing.

    I got some tasks for work completed this afternoon and have finally got the Christmas cake made. It's been soaking in rum for the last 2 weeks waiting for me to have time to sort it out, but thankfully that job is now done at last!
    Last edited by Honeysucklelou2; 10-11-2018 at 9:22 PM.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 11th Nov 18, 9:30 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    I didn't sleep very well last night, simply worrying about future living arrangements. I need to get our house valued, which is a job in itself with the destructive chaos that the puppies leave behind them. I know much will depend on the valuation and then negotiation, if possible, with the ex. If not possible then I guess a court will settle it. I do love where we live at the moment, but don't like the fact that the ex can wander in and out whenever he wants, so buying him out would be best, if I can afford to, which I won't know without a valuation. My friend has just had a new kitchen fitted and commented that an estate agent had said to her that if she'd had her old kitchen and put her house on the market, they would have knocked 20k off the asking price and said in the advertising blurb that the house would need modernisation. It got me thinking about what needs to be done in this house. I have started the painting but every ceiling could do with being painted to freshen up and most rooms. Not sure how to fit that in, both in terms of money or time. On the other hand, as the children get older and become adult I'm wondering if finding somewhere with an annexe would be better. Or whether I can afford anything at all. The downside of living in the county I was born in, is the high number of second homes that pushes prices up. You can see I've been going round in circles for much of the night.

    Last night DD3 wanted to make toffee apples. She remembered the fun we had making them for last Bonfire Night, when I couldn't find any in the shops. I had forgotten how relatively simple they are to make, so we had fun making 7 for pudding at some point today.

    I have to get one DD to a birthday party this afternoon. I'm hoping the weather will hold so that I can go for a walk while waiting for her. Driving back home is not an option due to the distance.

    It's going to be a tight week this week as DD2's insurance is due. I pay it monthly but it's 105 that I've tried to squeeze into the budget, that has little wriggle room. DS 1 can learn to drive in 3 months time, so I've had a chat with both of them, to explain that ( and I felt awful about it) I can't afford to pay 2 lots of insurances so the best I could do was give them 50 each a month towards their insurance and that they would need to earn the rest. DD2 has got a job that would enable her to do that. DS is looking for 1.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Cherryfudge
    • By Cherryfudge 11th Nov 18, 9:45 AM
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    Cherryfudge
    You've got me thinking about Mum's old house - the bathroom and kitchen need replacement but there is still some sorting to do elsewhere and people tell me not to put money into changes that 'new people will just rip out'. I find this emotionally hard (have people got no clue that it causes emotional pain to hear about a house I love being 'ripped out'?) but a house that obviously 'needs doing' won't fetch as much. For me that balance is whether to put a lot into it in the hope that that can be recouped... but it would be a gamble. So I do see where you're coming from!

    I assume where you're located doesn't give you an option of going outside the county? It would be too costly to travel to jobs, etc.
    MFW #30 Paid off 3,535.94/3000 as of 6/11/18
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 11th Nov 18, 9:50 AM
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    Spendless
    Isn't it annoying when a main grocery shop comes out reasonable and then a top up shop for a particular reason is a hefty percentage of what the weekly bill was!

    Wish I had some suggestions for you re the house.

    Young drivers are just so expensive nowadays, right from the driving lessons thru to their first car. I'm hoping my DS passes his test before I lose my job at Christmas due to the cost. When I passed my test I had help from parents buying my first cars but they never had to help with running costs like insurance. It's just too dear now for the youngsters without help
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 11th Nov 18, 10:26 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Thank you Cherryfudge and Spendless.

    Going out of county isn't really an option because my job is in the middle of the county, I live at one end and my parents live at the other! Going out of county would necessitate a new job elsewhere and the next couple of counties have the same issue with second homes. Certainly while I have 3 at secondary, I would prefer to keep things as stable as possible and not have to move schools.

    It's reassuring to realise that most youngsters need help with the running costs.

    Sorry to read about the loss of job at Christmas, Spendless.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • crazy_cat_lady
    • By crazy_cat_lady 11th Nov 18, 6:17 PM
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    crazy_cat_lady
    Hope the rain held off for you HSL...
    It is a pain about the house isn't it? So sorry that you have so much worrying you - it's no comfort now but it will come good in the end.
    I have to say, I'm dreading the day dd is old enough to drive. I need to be a billionaire by then!
    November in NY #20 NSD = 9 1 debt vs 100 days 328.51/1685
    DFD #1: 6 Nov 15 - paid 28,447
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 14th Nov 18, 1:30 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Thank you CCL. The rain did hold off but I completely blew it on Sunday afternoon. I had to get DD to the birthday party but we already have a Sunday morning commitment, so the timing was quite tight, so tight that we had to go straight there without having time to stop for lunch. 3 hungry children in the car miles from home meant that I ended up getting them lunch at McD0nalds while the DD was at the party. I was cross with myself that I hadn't been more organised.

    One positive MSE thing I've done is to change phone & broadband provider. We don't use the landline that often, only to call family, which might be 2 calls a week, which are evening calls. I ended up with a 300+ phone bill which I thought was ridiculous especially when I looked at MSE's broadband page and realised that I could get broadband and landline for half the price than I'm currently paying. So we switch next week
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 15th Nov 18, 12:20 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    A very busy day at work with a late meeting. I got home about an hour and a half later than usual. The plus side was a NSD because I was too tied up at work and then too tired to do anything other than go straight home!!
    NSD 3rd in November.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 17th Nov 18, 5:43 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    Glad to have got to the end of the week, it's been crazily busy this week and next week looks to be the same as well. I've had to ask DD2 to help me with the logistics, due to the busyness at work, so have spent an extra few pounds giving her petrol money. If she's making these extra journeys for me, it's only right. She'll be helping me again in the coming week, so will give her the same amount again. Thank goodness she can drive...not sure how I would have managed this week's meetings without her, as twice the meetings over ran the nursery closing time.

    I have menu planned and got round Mr T's with 3 children, but stuck to the list. It is interesting how the children pick up on things. Usually DD3 will plan with me, but yesterday DD4 sat down and said "Right, what do we need from Mr T's?" followed by "Hang on let's write a list of dinners first". I was pleased she had remembered and could see the link between menu plan and shopping list.

    Next week is not only busy, but am also doing an extra day, so really need to get on top of housework and cake tins today to allow for as smooth a week as possible next week. Hopefully I will get an extra day off the following week to make up for the extra work day next week.

    The next financial hurdle emerged this week...DS1 is old enough to start driving in Feb. He has been looking around for a vehicle and saw one this week. It's for sale locally and he has been to see it with the ex. The ex has told him that he will contribute 500 which is equal to what he spent at auction for DD2's vehicle. The problem is that I would need to find the rest which is just under another 500. The only way I can do that is to empty my emergency fund, which has already taken a couple of hits this year, so only has about 200 in it. The rest would have to come from my next salary payment at the end of the month, which would put a huge squeeze on my budget Although I didn't contribute to DD2's vehicle ( didn't know about it until it appeared), I have paid for the provisional license, tests, driving lessons and am now struggling to pay monthly insurance costs. I am worried about ending up having to pay 2 lots of insurance. I did chat to them last week about giving them 50 each a month to pay towards insurance with the expectation that they work to fund the remainder but in the last week DD2's shifts have gone down, to the point that she may well have to look for another job, that isn't in walking distance, like the one she has now.

    On a different note, if 2 of my children are driving , it does mean I could downsize to a 7 seater myself.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 17th Nov 18, 10:38 AM
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    Spendless
    Oh, awkward one! Is the car DS1 saw a very good buy, bearing in mind he can't start driving until Feb anyway and then it's going to take time to pass his test? Who is going to fund his driving lessons?

    What's DD2 plans for next year when she'll finish college? Will she then be looking for f-time work? If she is can she then start paying all her car costs herself and DS1 start driving lessons etc at that point?

    You're not going to be able to fund all of them, however much you'd like to.
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 18th Nov 18, 2:07 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    You are right Spendless, no matter how much I'd like to, I simply can't afford to pay for it all. I went to see the car yesterday ( Sat) and it seemed a good buy. The man who was selling it had just got back from a test drive with someone else and said he'd had about 6 others ring up, so it did feel like we had to make a decision today. The ex knows the seller so I believe him about the others. At the last discussion, it looks like I might be able to contribute 25% and then DS will use some of his money from his grandfather to fund the rest.

    DD4 wanted to make a carrot cake, so she had a go doing it on her own, although I was pottering around in the kitchen at the same time. While the oven was on, I made a batch of chocolate brownies. Unbelievably both were gone by evening. The teenage boys in particular, need snacks hiding to stop them eating all of it! Will have to bake more for the tins today (Sun).

    The weather was glorious so I got a load of washing dried on the line:J and DD3 helped me by ironing some of the items . I don't often get any help with housework tasks so her help was much appreciated!

    A NSD on Sat, bringing November's total to 4. I'm hoping for another NSD on Sunday too.

    The toddler and I are battling the beginnings of a cough. It might have to be a quieter day for us today.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 18th Nov 18, 9:35 AM
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    Spendless
    Well that sounds like a plan if DS1 can contribute some money from savings.

    Hope you're not all starting with the cough I've got. I can't shift mine, it started on Halloween.
    • Honeysucklelou2
    • By Honeysucklelou2 19th Nov 18, 12:59 AM
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    Honeysucklelou2
    At least this way I can contribute without it completely breaking me financially.

    I've felt horribly grotty all day, so we've had a quiet day. No diesel has been used and nothing spent so NSD 5 for me.
    paydbx #93 899.50/8,000.
    Loan 17k - paid off in Aug 2017. Home improvement loans 3342 March 2017. 2994 in Aug 18
    • Spendless
    • By Spendless 19th Nov 18, 4:15 PM
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    Spendless
    The predicament re the cars and associated costs reminds me of a dilemma that another sometimes poster with 8 kids (Kim) made a while back. Her issue was the cost of all 8 learning to swim at the same time. Several of us chipped in with ideas but the suggestion that stood out to me the most was for her to let 2 at a time learn and once passed the next 2 did and so on.

    Obviously your issue is dearer and more on-going than being able to swim, but I wonder if going forward you could say to them 'I can fund x for so much until x starts working then I can fund y for so much until this point and then I will be funding Z for so much until Z is doing ......' Rather than it being as they each hit 17 driving and having a car being what they do next, that the next one hitting that birthday has to wait until a next sibling up gets to their 'goal' where they take over car/driving costs. Part of that would need to be they have savings for the costs just in case they suddenly lose their job or have hours cut etc.

    Just a suggestion, might be a rubbish one. I don't know how child 4 to 8 are spaced out, so it might be years before it becomes a huge issue anyway, other than I know child 8 is a toddler and by the time he is learning to drive hopefully you'll own a multi million pound industry/have married a billionaire/won thousands on the lottery and it not be an issue.
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