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    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 13th May 17, 9:26 AM
    • 627Posts
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    Adventures of the Boy & Me..
    • #1
    • 13th May 17, 9:26 AM
    Adventures of the Boy & Me.. 13th May 17 at 9:26 AM

    I've decided to start a fresh diary on here as I felt my last one was becoming confusing for myself to read back on and it was becoming a bit of a negative place for me to vent. I hope for this one to be more upbeat and a place I can share all the wonderful things that happen daily and any ways that I am able to save money/pay off debt.

    A quick recap about myself.. Its just me and the boy who live at home with my mum. I work in quite a high pressured environment full time and juggle this along with everything else. I also have bipolar disorder- this is where things begin to get difficult at times but I need to remain positive and accept the diagnosis. It's time to move on from my past, focus on the present and not worry about the future ahead.

    The boy is a wonderful child who is bright, enthusiastic and keen to learn. He has three hobbies and would do more if he could. I couldn't ask for a more laid back, loving and caring little individual- he's my best friend and the reason I smile and carry on. We do a lot together hence the title of this diary. It's the two of us and we're a team.

    About myself? I've always been high functioning and I always strive for more with everything I do- which isn't always a good thing. I'm still trying to find the right balance. Aside from that, I'm your pretty average plain Jane. I'm quirky in my own ways, procrastinate lots but get things done, have a cracking sense of humour and overall a nice person to be around. I have a small circle of friends, a supportive family, a roof over my head and food in my stomach. So I'm rich in many ways.

    In regards to the debt that I'll be focusing on, I had a car on PCP deal but last September decided to get a low interest loan to pay it outright which saved me thousands in interest. I paid off some lump sums and a few months later managed to move the remaining balance to 0% deals, which saved me further interest. Since then I've been overpaying as much as possible.

    Although I'd like to pay off this debt as soon as possible, I also want to enjoy things in life and grab every opportunity available whilst I can. That's another reason for the title of this diary- Adventures of the Boy and Me. We do lots of things together and I do keep costs to the bare minimum and find ways to save money and still enjoy ourselves.

    I'll update afterwards with a plan and realistic goals I'd like to achieve for the rest of the year ahead. For whoever reads this, feel free to comment and add your own little adventures if you'd like .
Page 11
    • UncannyScot
    • By UncannyScot 14th Jul 17, 8:55 PM
    • 1,417 Posts
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    When stopping smoking think of what else you could use the money you spent on fags for...
    A mate of mine gave up and saved the money he was spending for a bike... after a year and a half he had the money to walk into the Ducati dealership and buy a brand spanking new black Monster... CASH!!!! Yes, he was a heavy smoker and it was bloody great to see him shut up all the nay sayers and doubters. 12 years later he is still off the fags and he still has his baby
    It is important that we know where we come from, because if you do not know where you come from, then you do not know where you are, and if you don't know where you are, then you don't know where you are going. If you don't know where you're going, you're probably going wrong.
    R.I.P. T.P.
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 15th Jul 17, 9:24 AM
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    UncannyScot, I definitely would save a heck of a lot by giving up. I've still some fags left so I'm going to completely quit tomorrow and get my mum on board at the same time. The only aspect of smoking I enjoy is the social aspect, half the time I don't even enjoy it. It's just a habit and a hard one to break. I'll do it cold turkey as I don't want to keep the nicotine in my system. I'm not in work now until next Friday so I've plenty of time to try and get the worst of it over.

    The party the boy is attending is a set of twins from school. I've ummed and aahed whether to get both boys something and have decided I'm going to get a card for each and put 7x £1 in each of them in the shape of a number 7. I got this idea from my auntie last year who did it for the boy and I think it was just enough. I know some may say don't buy for each twin but I know the mum well and she's a lovely person.

    I'm not sure what we will do the rest of the day as it's wet and rainy. I may do some baking with the boy. I've a cracking cookie recipe. If anyone ever wants it then just ask. It makes them taste like the ones you buy from millies. Yum yum.

    Anyway I best to get ready.
    Check out my Diary
    • louby40
    • By louby40 15th Jul 17, 10:44 AM
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    Good for you quitting smoking.

    My friend had an app on his phone which showed how much money he was saving each week by not smoking- like uncannyScot says you could put that money into an account for a holiday or something special.

    I've never smoked but I can see the difficulty in giving up!
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 15th Jul 17, 1:31 PM
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    Thanks Louby. I think I'm going to do just that. We do have an upcoming holiday next year which I need to save for so it's even more of an incentive to visit.

    It sounds awful but I use smoking as an escape. I take that time out for me and it's the only thing I do spend money on for myself. However there are tons of other things I could buy for myself. Maybe I should write a list.

    Off the top of my head I can think of..

    - New glasses.
    - New make-up.
    - Getting my hair done.
    - Spa day.
    - Days out/nights away.
    - New clothes (need to lose weight first).
    - Holiday fund.

    I'm sure there's plenty more so it anyone has any ideas feel free to share
    Check out my Diary
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 15th Jul 17, 2:20 PM
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    I have finally got on the laptop. I have been doing a lot of thinking lately on what I would like to achieve. I know in the past I have posted things and I may not always stick to them but that's life sometimes and not everything is going to be easy or straight forward. The three big things I think about are debt, weight and my health.


    As mentioned before, the debt is not spent on wreckless things. My current debt is for the purchase of my car. The debt I shall accruing over the next month or so is for dental work that I feel will be beneficial to my confidence.

    Rather then throw myself into paying off both debts, I am going to solely concentrate on one debt at a time. So my first priority will be my car debt which is spread over two accounts. I will continue to focus on the MBNA debt first whilst paying minimum to the Halifax debt. Once the MBNA debt is gone, I will then focus on the Halifax debt until the balance is zilch.

    Once that is gone, I can then focus on paying off the debt accrued from having my teeth done. I've yet to receive a full quote for this but will the next time I visit the dentist. I need to discuss my options and work out what the best option is for me. Whilst paying off the car debt, I shall only pay the minimums to this until other balances are cleared then I will tackle this head on.

    I am going to use a different approach then I have been doing. After all my bills come out, I will look at the surplus left and split it into three categories- debt payments/savings/spending money.

    I will set aside an amount I deem suitable to pay off the debts and I will try not to make over-payments unless necessary. I am becoming far too obsessed with this. In regards to the savings, I have a holiday I need to save for so I will make a payment each month and build up a cushion again to pay for this and any other expenses. The spending money aspect will just be for days out, meals out and money to spend on myself in general should I see something I would like. If I haven't the funds available then I cannot buy it .


    I have been saying for a while that I would like to lose some weight. I really need to start making an effort because since my holiday I have put on over a stone and whenever I look in the mirror, I feel disgusted with myself.

    I think I am going to follow SW but do it from home by myself. I have good enough knowledge regarding this and the groups do not suit me. I basically pay to get weighed. Ideally I would like to lose around 4 stone if not a bit more. If I reach that target I can reevaluate things and see how I feel in myself at that weight.

    My motivation is my sisters wedding next year where I will be bridesmaid. I do not want to deprive myself too much but I do need to eat healthier and watch how much I am eating. The medications don't help. I need to gain back that sense of control and plan ahead for the week what I intend to eat. I stick with it better if I plan ahead.


    My overall health is another big thing. I always concentrate on the state of my mental health and often forget to take care and be mindful of my physical health. One obvious aspect which I am going to tackle is the stopping smoking. I also intend to find the motivation to get back to the gym and improve my physical health through exercise. And I am also going to focus on my emotional well-being and look at coping mechanisms and ways of dealing with things.

    That's pretty much everything that has been on my mind.
    Check out my Diary
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 15th Jul 17, 7:21 PM
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    Today has been pretty productive if I must say.

    The boy thoroughly enjoyed the party he attended and came out with a big smile on his face. Whilst he was there I went for a coffee with a couple of the other Mums which was lovely. I hardly ever see them due to not always being able to do the school run , so I very much enjoyed this.

    Talking of birthdays, the boy is 7 next month. He agreed to do a day out so we have decided on Alton Towers. I have booked a hotel for an overnight stay for £65 which is close by and we will take some food with us. I've no doubt we will also eat out for a meal. This way we have two days to spend at the park and what we don't get done in day one, we can do in day two. The hotel looks absolutely lovely and children orientated. I've yet to decide what to get the boy for his birthday but I won't be spending much, I would rather give him presence then presents.

    Today we have been to the butchers and stocked up on meat for the next month or two. All of the goods were portioned up and put straight into the freezer. We have also had a pizza night here tonight followed by eton mess.. yum !

    So I am going to spend the rest of the night chilling out and relaxing whilst I can. I am about to wind down and start to plan ahead for the next week.

    Hope everyone has a good evening.
    Check out my Diary
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 16th Jul 17, 9:18 AM
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    I forgot to mention yesterday when we went to Aldi, we picked up some of the packs of short sleeved shirts, a pack of two for £2.49. What a bargain.. We picked up two packs of each size so it should last the boy a while.

    Also yesterday I discovered the back of my phone has a crack. I'm not sure how I've managed that as I usually have a case on my phone that is pretty indestructible. However I have used it lately without the case. It's sods law isn't it. I am yet to cancel the insurance but will do as soon as I get round to it. The crack doesn't effect the use of the phone. At least I don't think it does. If worse comes to worse, I'll just keep the insurance until the end of the year and review my options then. My contract runs of end of December/beginning of January which I'll then switch to a sim only deal. I refuse to pay the price of a contract any more. Times have changed, once upon a time a phone contract used to be a good deal, these days they are all extortionate prices. I'd rather buy a handset myself then be stuck in a two year contract.

    Today the boy has his ice skating lesson. I haven't been to watch him for a while due to work so I am excited to go along and see how much he has progressed. This hobby is usually a spendy one but I always make sure there is enough money in the pot for him to do it as he enjoys it so much. His Nanny is going to buy him his next pair of Skates for his birthday.

    In regards to smoking today is my quit day. I've downloaded an app to try and keep me on track and motivated. I will be doing it cold turkey as I don't want to replace one addiction with another such as vaping or NRT. I need all the luck I can get.

    Later on my plans are to sort through all food in my house and work out a weeks worth of SW menu planning. I'll weigh myself in the morning and start from there. I also need to up my water intake and get my body moving. Ideally I'd like to lose 2lb a week for the first couple of weeks, if it's more then fantastic. I'll probably set myself a small food shopping allowance each week to allow for extra bits of fruit/veg. I saw a picture of myself from four years ago the other day and the difference in size was amazing. I want to be back to that.

    It's time for a new chapter of my life and I need to do my best to change all aspects. As time goes on my confidence will improve and my outlook will change. I hope to pick up some hobbies and discover who I really am as I lost myself along the way. I don't want to stick with the label of the person with bipolar. I want to be seen as more then just my illness. I don't want the bipolar to define me. I want to exceed expectations and live my life again.

    Have a good day folks.
    Check out my Diary
    • louby40
    • By louby40 16th Jul 17, 11:24 AM
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    I joined Weight Watchers at the end of April and I've lost just over a stone. It cost me £32 for 3 months but if you lost 10lb in 8 weeks you get 2 months back - so I've filled a form in to do that!

    There is also a big Facebook support group - maybe there's something for SW too on Facebook, I need to be accountable sometimes.
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 16th Jul 17, 9:54 PM
    • 627 Posts
    • 1,653 Thanks
    Reasons to stop smoking.

    Itís an expensive habit.
    - It leaves me more susceptible to infections/viruses.
    - It makes my clothes stink.
    - It affects my taste buds.
    - I want to set a good example to the boy.
    - I want to improve my physical health.
    - It dries out my skin. If I stop my skin will be much healthier.
    - It isnít attractive.
    - It can stain my teeth.
    - Itís a self-destructive habit and practically self abuse.
    - I could do something more productive with my time.
    - I deserve better then what smoking does for me.
    - I rely on it as a quick fix during stressful times, it does not solve anything.
    - Itís an impulsive behaviour.
    - It makes me feel bad as a person.
    - It makes me feel like an outcast at times.
    - If I want to see the world improve then start with myself.
    - It will enhance my pride, appearance, confidence and self esteem.
    - No more yellow, smelly smoke fingers.
    - My coping mechanisms will become more natural.
    - My sleep pattern will improve and more time in bed in the morning.
    - I can enjoy my break at work with friends.
    - No more feeling foggy and jumpy.
    - The thought of being nicotine free in 72 hours.
    - The thought and actual self-belief that I can do it.
    - Realising that recovery from such a habit is good and not bad.
    - I can save up for a holiday.
    - I can use the money saved for nice days out.
    - I can use the money saved for paying off debt/become debt free quicker.
    - I can socialise without having to smoke.
    Check out my Diary
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 16th Jul 17, 10:05 PM
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    I thought I would write a list as above about reasons why to stop smoking. I am sure there are a lot more but they are the only ones I could think of.

    Anyway today has been a bit of an up/down day.

    The boys ice skating lesson went really well and he is looking forward to getting back to doing this properly. At the moment due to restrictions at his rink, he is not skating as much as he used to. He used to do three/four lessons a week which although it was expensive it was worth seeing his face. He still states that it is his favourite hobby and he would not want to give that up.

    The boy then went off to his Dads for the weekend. Tomorrow he has beavers which both me and his nanny will attend as its the last meeting until after the school holidays and its a family event too. I'm sure this will be a fun event for all whom attend.

    The boy also has a celebration assembly at school tomorrow which I shall attend. This is his second one in two weeks so I will be interested in hearing what his teacher has to say. He went all year without getting one then all of a sudden gets two in one go.. this was after I questioned his teacher why. Other kids in his class had been getting two or three awards and the boy had none. He's very well behaved at school and tries hard in everything he does so I could not understand it. The boy had no idea I spoke to his teacher so I will not burst his bubble about getting them. It is just funny he has all of a sudden got two awards. Nonetheless I am proud of him whether he gets awards or not. I just don't feel he gets the recognition for the hard work and effort he puts in at school. He gets plenty of certificates out of school, maybe I should be one of them parents who sends their kid to school with every little certificate they get in order for him to be acknowledged. The boy knows he is loved and that he makes us all proud, we reiterate this every day and when he does ask questions answer them the best way possible.

    After his assembly tomorrow I am going round to my friends house for a coffee and a catch up. This should be fun. I haven't been round in a while as I have just been so busy with things. It will probably do me the world of good.

    Anyway I suppose I best be off to bed! I have an early morning ahead of me.

    Good night.
    Check out my Diary
    • SpekySquarehead
    • By SpekySquarehead 17th Jul 17, 9:26 AM
    • 1,921 Posts
    • 15,450 Thanks
    There was a guy I worked with who wanted to quit smoking and he read a book about it (I'm sure there's plenty) and he managed to stop. Not a very helpful post given I don't remember the name, but the point I'm trying to make is that there are a plethora of tools out there to help you.

    Think of the cash you'll save!!!!

    Good luck.
    Debt Free Date: 29/09/16
    • Hiddenidenity
    • By Hiddenidenity 17th Jul 17, 9:42 AM
    • 5,213 Posts
    • 26,717 Thanks
    Allen Carr stop smoking is supposed to be good, I've heard some amazing reviews about his book.

    Hope you have a nice today Well done to your boy too
    • charlies tribe
    • By charlies tribe 17th Jul 17, 9:57 AM
    • 760 Posts
    • 5,574 Thanks
    charlies tribe
    Just wanted to say good look Chandelier. I've never smoked but when DH stopped 15 years ago, it was a 2 year struggle on and off. He hasn't smoked for 13 years now and said he still sometimes gets the 'I might just have a smoke feeling but he feels so much better and healthier now.
    LBM in April 17 - £6655/£33554 (19.8%) paid.
    2018 PAID OFF TARGET £1031/£5000 (20.6% paid)
    SPC #591
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 17th Jul 17, 12:21 PM
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    • 1,653 Thanks

    I've been to the boys assembly. He got the award for honesty throughout the year which I'm proud of. It's a quality I've always encouraged and this shows both at home and and school.

    The boys Nanny has bought some gifts to give the teachers at the end of the week. This has saved me from buying something, I was just going to send a card .

    I've been to my friends for a coffee and a catch up which was fun. We haven't had the time to properly catch up in a while. We've discussed some possible plans for the summer.

    We currently have the electrics people round to fix something with our meter. So I'm waiting for them to finish now.

    Tonight I have the family event to attend with the boy and his Nanny. This should be fun. The boy is very excited. That will be it with Beavers until September. The boy is sad about this.

    I don't know what will happen in regards to the boys football. He has to step up a team but they play on a Monday and a Saturday. The boy already does something on a Monday so I'm not sure what will happen. It may be that this is the end of the road with the boy and football. It's hard to say as he really enjoys it but what else are we suppose to do?

    He does football, swimming, ice skating and beavers. If he had the choice he would do more.

    The football side of it was more for the social aspect and fun that they have. If he can't attend both training aspects I wonder if they'll let him attend one. Who knows I can only find out later on this week.

    I have a few little bits to do today but I'm taking each thing in my stride and not trying to do too much at once.

    I finally sent off the form for the boys hooded jacket that I'd put off for ages.

    I need to book the boy into breakfast club for Friday. I'll start there and see how I get on.

    I hope everyone has a nice day.
    Check out my Diary
    • Peabody
    • By Peabody 17th Jul 17, 12:34 PM
    • 276 Posts
    • 383 Thanks
    Mum works in a school, a card would have been perfect she normally ends up with death by chocolate!
    Total at 9th Feb 12 - £17,500 Now - £6,851.05
    Loan - £6022.05, Card 1 - £3293.85, Card 2 - £2287.04, Sofa - £825.00
    Wedding Pot - £0.00
    • kittykatneedscash
    • By kittykatneedscash 17th Jul 17, 3:32 PM
    • 55 Posts
    • 137 Thanks
    Hello well done on making the positive step to stop smoking. Iíve smoked since I was around 15 and Iím now 34. Iím on day 10 of not smoking I have to say my number one motivation to stop was the cost It is crazy! I have the smoke free app and find it really good. It works out what you have saved so far and what you will save in a year. My yearly amount is £2844.26 I worked out I am effectively giving myself a 5k pay rise as that is what my pay would have to increase by to have that much extra take home pay each month. I hate always feeling skint and watching what I spend then just go and blow a fortune of smoking. My app is telling me that so far I have saved £77.54. You have to be ready to stop though, I got the audio book Alan Carrís easy way to stop smoking for women without gaining weight. I could then listen to this walking to the train, walking the dog etc. When I decided to stop and that I wouldnít buy another packet I had 5-6 left so listened to the remaining part of the book the evening before stopping and finished off the next morning. It encourages you not to stop until the end of the book and I really did feel that it changed the way I through about smoking and stopping didnít seem daunting. I do feel the benefits I feel like I have more energy and feel far more positive about things and also very proud of myself it sounds strange but I just feel happier and have a more positive outlook on life. I kept thinking Iím going on holiday in 3 weeks maybe I should wait till I come back to stop then suddenly something clicked and I though what the hell if I stop tomorrow by the time I go I could be on week 3 of being smoke free what am I waiting for. Good luck remember you are doing it for you and only good can come from stopping
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 17th Jul 17, 4:15 PM
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    Peabody, that was my idea.. They either get bundled with lots of chocolate... or wine . Either way a present is sorted now for both the teacher and teaching assistant.

    Kitty thanks for your comments. It definitely does make you think. I'm sure I have the Allan car book somewhere. I must dig it out.

    There's nothing much money wise going on at the moment. Everything is paid for and I'm just going to ride out the month with what money I've got left.

    I need to sort out childcare for the school holidays. I'm looking at putting the boy into a holiday scheme here for children which is £10 a day which is a bargain I think. I'm just hoping they have places.

    I've also been given an extra shift at work this week. Bonus

    Maybe things are going to work out for me. I hope they do.
    Check out my Diary
    • nextyeartina
    • By nextyeartina 17th Jul 17, 7:16 PM
    • 722 Posts
    • 1,053 Thanks
    Good luck with stopping smoking. I stopped when the smoking ban came into effect. My niece gave up a few months back and swears by the Alan Carr book. She bought it from Ebay for £2
    The £1,000 emergency fund challenge #163 - £536.16/£1000
    • Chandelier.
    • By Chandelier. 18th Jul 17, 9:33 AM
    • 627 Posts
    • 1,653 Thanks
    Thanks for the advice .

    Well it's a lovely Tuesday morning and I'm sat in my garden once again with a cuppa.

    I've a few little jobs to do today which should get done. I found out I had an extra shift booked so I need to sort childcare for that.

    The boys beaver event went well last night. They had sandcastle building competitions and all of them had lots of fun. There is no more beavers sadly until the beginning of September which the boy is sad about. We have lots of fun stuff planned for Summer though.

    The boy also phoned me to say his aunties dog died. The boy loved this dog and was very upset on the phone. It was such a sudden thing to happen and the dog wasn't old either. I think it just collapsed .

    To be honest I would love to have a dog but we can't whilst I still live at home. When I finally move out I plan on getting a dog/rescuing one possibly as I think I would benefit massively from this. There is a therapy dog at work who is gorgeous and always brings me great joy. I understand all the costs and implications a dog could bring but it's something I've always wanted.

    I've not yet started a meal plan. I need to get my head in the right frame of mind. I'll try to focus on that at some point.

    My moods have been up and down and changing frequently. I think a lot of it is due to upcoming appointments in the next week or so. I have one with my consultant and another with someone else which is going to be very stressful. I need to prepare myself mentally. I'll have support with me but it doesn't mean I'll be feeling okay on the day.

    The boys birthday is coming up and I need to decide on what I'm going to get him. I've given other people a few ideas which they've gladly accepted. I just need to sort something for him myself.

    Anyhow I best get back to my day instead of spending time on MSE reading diarys
    Check out my Diary
    • louby40
    • By louby40 18th Jul 17, 11:39 AM
    • 1,355 Posts
    • 3,680 Thanks
    Have you stopped smoking Chandelier? I hope it's going ok if you have.
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