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  • FIRST POST
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 26th Jan 17, 12:20 PM
    • 1,664Posts
    • 6,059Thanks
    JoJoC
    Getting my shhh together
    • #1
    • 26th Jan 17, 12:20 PM
    Getting my shhh together 26th Jan 17 at 12:20 PM
    It's January 2017 and I want to make a stand against myself.

    I will let me sabotage myself no more and I will take control and make my finances better!

    Where to begin? Good question! Since my husband and I bought our first house together in 2009, we have bad financial decision after bad financial decision. Not through stupidity, but a combination of naivety, laziness and lack of foresight. We are very impulsive people and it's quite tricky to rein that in when it comes to finances but we've had endless talks over the last few months and 2017 is the year that we sort our sh!t out!

    A combination of astronomical childcare costs, unpaid maternity leave, paying the mortgage for our flat when it isn't let (second property) and a few other things has meant that the last 2.5 years have been really tight and we have built up some debt that I really want to reduce. I'll declare it below!

    Credit card 1: 6,000 (on 0% interest)
    Credit card 2: 3,800 (not yet on 0% interest)
    Overdraft: 600
    Owe to MIL: 120
    Owe to uncle: 700

    I CAN tackle this in 2017 because:

    - My eldest son is starting school in August, meaning i'll be saving on nursery fees
    - I have just started a new job and my earnings will increase by around 200 per month
    - My husband is busy with additional work in the form of 'homers' over the next couple of months

    Hurdles/ challenges/ costly things happening:
    - My sister's wedding in September
    - My sister's hen weekend in September
    - It's my mother in law's 60th and we are going away for a few nights to a cottage to celebrate
    - Husband is going on my brother-in-law's stag weekend to Prague
    - We need to save for spending money as my company is paying for myself and husband to go to Thailand for a week for work.

    As you can see, the opportunities to save, to rein in what we are spending and to pay off debts are there, but it's such a busy year of commitments so I know it's going to be hard going.

    How am I going to achieve this?

    Change the setup of our banking
    It's currently one big bank account for all income, bills and spending but that's not working for us at all, particularly because we have massive outgoings so I want to switch to having a bills account, a spending account and a savings account.

    Spend time weekly on budgeting
    I have set up a comprehensive spreadsheet detailing when money comes in, when it goes out, when money is transferred to savings and when money is transferred to spending accounts. I want to ensure that this is kept on target and we aren't left short so I want to spend time every Sunday night when my husband is at football going through our finances and the spreadsheet to make sure everything is running smoothly and tackle any adjustments that need to be made. I'm paid monthly and my husband is paid weekly so it's a tricky balance.

    Striking the balance
    I need to strike the balance between paying off debt that we have and saving up for the things that we've committed to this year - I know if I focus on debt alone, we'll end up further in debt to cover things. Vigilance is the key and I will need to keep on top of what we can and can't afford to do. Considered choices will work best and looking ahead to see what's coming up will help too. I want to tackle the family debt first, particularly as they are the smallest debts and the ones that I feel bad about the most.

    I appreciate that there's a lot of debt-free diaries on here and this one isn't solely about hammering debt, but I think it's important for me to be accountable and I want to make changes rather than plan then just bury my head in the sand.

    Any encouragement along the way would be appreciated!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
Page 47
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 10:45 AM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Double hit on the finances yesterday Could be a lot worse, of course, but it's irritating when these things happen at once!

    1. I got a letter in from the energy company that services our flat saying that we owe 29 for the three months that the flat was empty last year. I checked into it and it was just the standing charge and minimal usage (I'm assuming for viewings etc). So 29 down in the spending account. I'm considering transferring 29 from the flat account to the spending account since it is a flat expense, but that account isn't very flush right now and I'd rather keep the money in there to make sure we have enough for the next factor bill which is due in March.

    2. Got a 'terms and conditions change' letter from the nursery, which is code for 'price increase'. We got one last year while both the kids were still there and we were 60p/m worse off. This year it's gone up from 796 to 818 so 22p/m worse off, but at least we only have one there now or it'd be 44 worse off. The increase comes into effect on 1st April so we have one more month before the price goes up.

    In August, my son qualifies for 15 hours funding (I know I've talked about this on here before) which means that with the new pricing our bill will go from 818 to 643 on funded months.


    Productive
    I managed to get ahead with quite a bit of work yesterday which was great (until another 100 things fell into my inbox between then and this morning...) but it was good to get things out of my way.

    I also managed to order my son's school trousers replacement from M&S (2 pairs for 11, so 4 dearer than the Sainsbury's ones that I returned but at least I know these will fit!). I've done C&C so will pick them up on Saturday.

    I booked a restaurant for Saturday and I have a voucher for so that my husband and I can make the most of our night out on Saturday for our friend's birthday. Looking forward to getting dressed up and going out.

    I've been to the gym quite a lot this week and did two classes last night - this morning I feel like I've been hit by a bus! My body is aching, mostly my back, but that'll be to do with the weird positions I was in at yoga last night, I'm sure. Today is a day off from the gym!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • monz
    • By monz 8th Feb 18, 11:25 AM
    • 3,120 Posts
    • 9,814 Thanks
    monz
    Honest to god as if you dont pay enough for nursery!!! I remember how much it ripped me off. Its extortionate xx
    Debt (1/9/14) 6,702.11 Debt free (30/11/2016)
    house deposit 6,720.99/10,000
    car PCP - 149/11848.25 (0 overpayment)
    mums July birthday vouchers 0/50, Niece birthday June 0/50
    Holiday spending 200/300, Belfast 30/500 (252 for apart
    ment)
    • Mumoffourkids
    • By Mumoffourkids 8th Feb 18, 11:59 AM
    • 592 Posts
    • 2,864 Thanks
    Mumoffourkids
    Talking of nurseries, I expect mine will be sending out a letter regarding increase in fees soon as well! Luckily it will coincide with my son getting 30 hours funded from April and then in September the youngest will get 15 hours funded! I cannot wait until September!
    Total debt Dec 2017 23090.83
    Mar 2018 6247.86 72.94% paid
    Emergency fund 472.50/600
    Total Savings 1704.02
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 12:29 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    I know Monz - I paid circa 28k in nursery fees between January 2016 and August 2017 so even these slight increases are just like a kick in the teeth! I know I shouldn't take it personally, but it's such a lot of money and it almost crippled us for the 20 months they were both in nursery.

    Mumoffourkids - I'm not surprised you're counting down the days until September! It'll be such a weight lifted and extra money in your pocket! In Scotland we only get 15 hours, they're not rolling the 30 hours out until 2020 i believe, which is the year my youngest goes to school - TYPICAL! Anyway, I'm grateful for the 15 free hours when they come (will save us around 175p/m for 9 of 12 months of the year) and then we also have the tax-free childcare scheme where they pay 20 of every 1 you pay of childcare so that does make such a difference.

    Fingers crossed your fees stay the same!

    It seems like this year everything is getting more expensive - price increase for nursery, electricity and gas costs are rising and i just saw on the news that council tax is set to rise 6% in April (it only spoke ab out England, though, so not sure if this is Scotland too...) but it just seems like price rises are rife! When I took my job last year, in the contract it stated that the company does a pay review every year and they generally raise wages in line with the rate of inflation, but this starts in year 2. As I've just completed one year, I'm not eligible for a wage rise until next year so if things keep going the way they're going, then my wages may become tighter and tighter!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 8th Feb 18, 12:41 PM
    • 1,608 Posts
    • 9,573 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Trouble with pay review is that it means just that, 'we reviewed it and we decided not to increase it' is an option. Was fairly common last time things got tight sadly.

    I share your pain on council tax as ours is similar. I did look at appealing but when I checked most of my neighbours are in a higher band so I left well alone.

    I do not miss nursery fees at all, and the unfair bit is that the staff rarely get more than minimum wage. When that goes up the fees have to. I know the owner of the one my pair went to is really struggling financially to keep the nursery going, and the one at my former employers used to lose quite a lot of money but charged the same rate as the local ones did. It didn't make me feel any better about what I was paying!
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 1:36 PM
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    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Redo, i do feel for the nursery workers. They're generally just young girls (and one young guy!) and I'm pretty sure they're not that well paid but they do an excellent job of looking after the kids so although it hits our pockets hard, I really can't complain about the care/ the learning. In the pre-school year, they learn Spanish which is amazing!

    RE: the pay review, i think my colleagues got a few percent which isn't too bad at all. Although one was moaning that what they received was likely to be only half what the rate of inflation is for the year ahead but I don't really know about that stuff. Although I didn't get a pay rise, I did get a bonus in my Christmas wage which was very welcome.
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • abba1772
    • By abba1772 8th Feb 18, 2:49 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 15,873 Thanks
    abba1772
    That's a scary amount to be paying for childcare fees........I've not put my fees up in 3 years and I'm the only childminder in my area for a 2 mile radius so could practically name my price but don't like ripping people off xx
    NEXT TARGET HALIFAX CC WAS July 17 3572.57 NOW 983.26
    POAMAYC 2011 6382.66 POAMAYC 2012 5000.78
    POAMAYC 2013 3480.04 POAMAYC 2014 4085.14
    POAMAYC 2015 7565.24 POAMAYC 2016 8000.90
    POAMAYC 2017 7278.80 POAMAYC 2018 4012.74
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 3:47 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    That's a really understanding and decent thing to do Abba, as long as you're not selling yourself short?

    It's a crazy amount! I'm just living for the day that both kids are in school and our disposable income is up around the 1500-2000p/m mark. Then it'll feel all the more worthwhile! We'll be debt free by then too and be able to really focus on what we want for the future. (Mortgage free, travelling, getting the whole hose how we want it...). I can but dream!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 4:05 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Spending account summary
    I'm trying to keep a really close eye on the spending account this month so that we keep on track and I'm still really hopeful that I'll have something left over for the end of the month to go into savings.

    Balance on the account is 254.68
    Husband just filled up again so that should take him approx to the end of the month
    My car still has 3/4 tank of fuel so that will be fine for the rest of Feb
    If i am sensible with shopping, that should account for 135 (45p/w x3)
    Haircuts required - 20 max
    Money has been set aside for our night out at the weekend.

    Taking all that into account that leaves 119 in the account so i'll need to keep everything nice and trim to have a decent amount left. There's always something that pops up so i'll try to minimise spends as much as possible.

    I targeted myself with 50-100 left at the end of the month surplus since it's a short month and I'm still working hard to do it!


    Days until pay day: 19

    Also got another 15p survey on OnePoll today so balance is 36.70 (3.30 to go)
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • abba1772
    • By abba1772 8th Feb 18, 4:13 PM
    • 4,662 Posts
    • 15,873 Thanks
    abba1772
    That's a really understanding and decent thing to do Abba, as long as you're not selling yourself short?

    It's a crazy amount! I'm just living for the day that both kids are in school and our disposable income is up around the 1500-2000p/m mark. Then it'll feel all the more worthwhile! We'll be debt free by then too and be able to really focus on what we want for the future. (Mortgage free, travelling, getting the whole hose how we want it...). I can but dream!
    Originally posted by JoJoC
    I don't think I'm doing too bad tbh as we are surviving on my income whilst hubby gets this garage up and running properly and we are still reducing our debt xx
    NEXT TARGET HALIFAX CC WAS July 17 3572.57 NOW 983.26
    POAMAYC 2011 6382.66 POAMAYC 2012 5000.78
    POAMAYC 2013 3480.04 POAMAYC 2014 4085.14
    POAMAYC 2015 7565.24 POAMAYC 2016 8000.90
    POAMAYC 2017 7278.80 POAMAYC 2018 4012.74
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 8th Feb 18, 4:18 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Savings accounts
    My savings system isn't very sophisticated - I don't have emergency savings, as such, just some general savings and a holiday savings fund.

    Our savings took quite a hit last year with our crazy-packed year but we're trying to build it back up a bit this year. We'll likely use some of it to continue to do bits up in our house as we go along and keep a nice balance as an emergency savings.

    I've just transferred the council tax money into the savings since it's free this month and the balance is now below:

    General savings account: 440.17
    Cash savings: 50 (Just money that we haven't got round to banking yet)
    Holiday fund: 212.73 (This isn't to pay our holiday as that's budgeted separately, this is the start of spending money savings and maybe to book car hire and is mostly paid for by rounding down accounts, survey money and any extra bits)

    Still to come
    1. We are still owed 50 from a job that husband did way before Christmas (any day now...)
    2. We will put 240 from March's council tax into the savings too
    3. We are owed 132 from 4 people which we should receive over the next month or so. Total 528.

    By April, the balance should be sitting at around 1,000 and we'll just keep plugging away at it with any overtime that my husband gets or any spare money that comes to us (like the 50-100 I'm hoping to save this month!).

    Feeling like we're getting there, although we have a few things to get through in the mean time that may eat a tiny bit into savings (i.e. it's beyond our budgeted spends).

    I do need to find a better way of saving so that we have an account with savings that we don't touch but we also have money that is accessible when there's things that come up outwith our normal spending budget...things that aren't very easy to plan for etc.

    Anyway, i'll stop rambling but just wanted to get that down 'on paper' to get it out of my head!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 8th Feb 18, 4:26 PM
    • 1,683 Posts
    • 9,968 Thanks
    Cumbria lass
    I think you sound very organised, I have a EF which will be back at 500 again this month , enough as I live in rented accommodation.

    I am trying to build up a small buffer , like my own overdraft as my SOA is very tight now . I guess this is similar to what you are doing.

    Nursery fees are very high , but 25 yrs ago we paid a lot then. You will feel like a millionaire when you stop paying them .
    CC1 3655 April 2018.
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 8th Feb 18, 5:19 PM
    • 2,898 Posts
    • 14,111 Thanks
    doingitanyway
    You sound as if you have everything under control. It is great to have a holiday fund ring fenced as it helps when life gets tough to see it grow and have it to look forward to. I need to do this. It is so important.

    Have a good evening.
    JANUARY 2016/SECURED DEBT=24,822/March 2018=0 DEBT FREE 23/03/18
    MORTGAGE FREE 25/07/16
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 9th Feb 18, 11:55 AM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    I think you sound very organised, I have a EF which will be back at 500 again this month , enough as I live in rented accommodation.

    I am trying to build up a small buffer , like my own overdraft as my SOA is very tight now . I guess this is similar to what you are doing.

    Nursery fees are very high , but 25 yrs ago we paid a lot then. You will feel like a millionaire when you stop paying them .
    Originally posted by Cumbria lass
    I know Cumbria - I keep saying that! I'm sure by then there'll be something else for the money to be spent on - there always is - but it's nice to think that in 2 years we'll be debt-free and mostly childcare costs-free (300p/m max for after school club for the two). Then we can start really living again!

    Glad you're working on your EF and buffer - I'm sure it'll all make the world of difference.

    You sound as if you have everything under control. It is great to have a holiday fund ring fenced as it helps when life gets tough to see it grow and have it to look forward to. I need to do this. It is so important.

    Have a good evening.
    Originally posted by doingitanyway
    Right now I feel fairly under control, which is a nice feeling. It chops and changes depending on my mood, though, so i'll enjoy this feeling while it lasts.

    Good luck with getting a holiday fund started! You're right - it's such a lovely feeling to see it creeping up
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 9th Feb 18, 12:05 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    After yesterday's financial 'negatives' that I posted, I have tried to find a couple of positives today! I do believe that a lot of the time, you create your own luck and I'm trying to see these 'wins' today as self-created. Keeps the positivity and good mood strong.

    Good financial thing #1
    Our bill for broadband has been sky high lately and we've had an outage the last week and a half so I called to see what could be done about it. After speaking nicely to the lovely chap on the phone, I've shaved my bill down from 48.47 to 36 p/m, so a saving of 12.47 per month starting in March.

    After explaining about the connectivity issue that I've been experiencing for the past week, he's added a 20 credit to our account too.

    I must remind myself when my BB bill is due out next month to transfer the 20 we've saved to the holiday fund.

    Good financial thing #2
    I logged on to Onepoll this morning and there was a flurry of surveys on there - I'm pretty sure I did around 8 of them! So my new balance is 37.85, with only 2.15 to go until cash out. Feel like I've really pushed this last 10 and looking forward to cashing out soon. Wonder if I can do it before the end of the month? I'll give it a go!

    Still nothing on PA. And I must get back to VO to make a dent there as I think i've only got 3 ish in there.
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 12th Feb 18, 11:58 AM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Hello all - this morning's update comes to you from a snowy street in Scotland, but blue skies and sun shining so that always improves the mood.

    Weekend spends
    We spent an absolute FORTUNE at the weekend - much more than I'd have liked to spend and our heads were a bit fuzzier on Sunday than we'd have liked them to be, but it's done now. And we did have a really great time with friends! The money that we spent came out of the funds that my husband kept by from a job that he did and although that money was available to us, i was really hoping to spend less and have leftovers to go to savings. Alas, the pull of a night out was just too much and we got swept away in the moment.

    Shopping for this week
    I spent 9 on Friday and 37.72 on Sunday so my shopping spend this week stands at 46.72 and we're planning on being REALLY good this week so no reason to spend any more (other than bananas which I need to buy today).

    We have meal planned, we have no disruptive plans this week and we only have three out of seven meals that are based around meat (the others are either veggie or just have a small meat inclusion like bacon bits).

    Health
    Aside from our blow out on Saturday night, we've been doing pretty well at keeping exercise levels up and eating well. I lost two pounds this week and can really notice a marked difference in my clothes over the last couple of weeks. I don't have a lot of actual weight to lose, I'm just trying to change my body shape, tone up and get a bit stronger.

    My husband is trying to lose some weight so we're working on it together and motivating each other.

    As we don't have any disruptions this week (like a meal out or a 'party') then we'll likely fare a bit better this week, providing we stay focused.
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 12th Feb 18, 2:09 PM
    • 2,898 Posts
    • 14,111 Thanks
    doingitanyway
    We spent an absolute FORTUNE at the weekend - much more than I'd have liked to spend and our heads were a bit fuzzier on Sunday than we'd have liked them to be, but it's done now.
    Originally posted by JoJoC
    I am starting to think about cost v value. Its a bit like a well known slimming agency. They know the calories of everything and the nutritional value of nothing. So, spending time with your husband and kicking back has a huge value so it was totally worth it because the value to you as a couple and as a friendship group matters too. (Steps down from soap box)
    JANUARY 2016/SECURED DEBT=24,822/March 2018=0 DEBT FREE 23/03/18
    MORTGAGE FREE 25/07/16
    • Cumbria lass
    • By Cumbria lass 12th Feb 18, 2:48 PM
    • 1,683 Posts
    • 9,968 Thanks
    Cumbria lass
    It's all a balancing act , between paying off the debt and living a life. Sounds to me like you have it sorted .

    Glad you had a lovely weekend , i think you enjoyed it.
    CC1 3655 April 2018.
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 12th Feb 18, 3:07 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    Surveys
    Onepoll: 38.10 (1.90 to go)
    Valued Opinions: 5.75 / 15.50 (9.75 to go)
    PA: 6.92 + 50p pending (so, so quiet on there still and I'm checking it multiple times per day)
    Topcashback: 14.44 pending (there's actually 19.44 in there but 5 is being held back for my account fee)
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
    • JoJoC
    • By JoJoC 12th Feb 18, 3:11 PM
    • 1,664 Posts
    • 6,059 Thanks
    JoJoC
    I am starting to think about cost v value. Its a bit like a well known slimming agency. They know the calories of everything and the nutritional value of nothing. So, spending time with your husband and kicking back has a huge value so it was totally worth it because the value to you as a couple and as a friendship group matters too. (Steps down from soap box)
    Originally posted by doingitanyway
    You're so right! We had a lovely time catching up with friends and being 'us' for the night rather than mum and dad. It truly holds a lot of value! Dancing, laughing...just a lot of fun! And we had a great time with the kids last night after being away from them for a while. We missed them a lot, moreso getting up in the morning and them not being there/ no one to look after. Don't get my wrong, it was bliss, but still strange and it does make you wonder what they're up to.

    You've given me a new perspective, so thank you!

    An observation from the dinner table in the restaurant: we were sat next to two couples (both younger - late teenagers/ early twenties) and at one point, both couples were sitting on their phones not conversing, looking at each other, interacting in the slightest. I did wonder what the point in going out for a meal was if they weren't going to even look at each other! My husband and I, on the other hand, relished the opportunity to talk about everything and anything uninterrupted for a change!
    CC1: 4601.14/ 5031.14 (10% paid off, 480) | CC2:3407/ 3807 (12% paid off, 450) | Loan: 10,788.72/ 15,000((28% paid off, 4211.28))

    July debt total: 23,838.14 | New debt total: 18,796.86 | Total debt paid: 5,141.28 (22%)
    *My debt busting and savings diary*
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