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  • FIRST POST
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 29th Jul 17, 9:51 PM
    • 111Posts
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    Downshifterella
    Looking to have a simpler life .......
    • #1
    • 29th Jul 17, 9:51 PM
    Looking to have a simpler life ....... 29th Jul 17 at 9:51 PM
    Hello you lovely lot!!
    It's been yeeeeears since Ive been on the forums ..so much so that I've forgotten my old username!!

    Anyway, new start! ....

    So I've been playing around with MF dreaming for a few years now but really knuckled down when it came to thinking about our re-mortgage plans at the end of 2017...the first aim is to save up 5000 to be able to get a better LTV for the remortgage by the 31st December!

    In terms of household there is me, hubby and a few pets but no sprockets yet . We live in a gorgeous part of the county and are busy DIY ing to get the house and garden finished ( long term project this one!!)

    Both of us have fairly well paid but stressful jobs , redundancy and cuts forever threatening and keeping us doing more with less..and to be honest , a big part of my mortgage free goal is to have a simpler ( or self-directed) work life balance . I love the idea of doing something self employed/part time or working from home....have not had time or head space to figure that out yet , so thus far , efforts have been to pay off the mortgage !!!

    Goal for the summer is cutting down on unecessary food spends, may do some business plotting but I think that is for later down the line!! Also money saving on transport ...commute into the next major city to us weekly and saving time ( but not money) on the journey so far. There is a possibility of cheaper journey ( but would look at an almost 2 hr commute ..it's an hr and half at the mo!) 15 savings each time.....

    Will figure out our basic budget when I have a chance soon! And have a read through others plastic for some inspiration!

    Looking forward to getting stuck in

    Downshifter Ella xx
    MF planning for the simple life
Page 4
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 14th Jan 18, 11:19 AM
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    Downshifterella
    Thanks Kittenkirst
    Have found I've needed to make a really concerted effort to slow down and take breaks otherwise it just seems like I'm in a whirlwind ....having pushed to the point of real panic in the past I don't want to go back to that space so really looking at how I can best look after my emotional and mental health rather than trying to "fix" it once something's wrong!

    Very excited re aunty to be -ness! And looking forward to catching up with my sis today too!

    Thanks pp
    Next week is definitely looking more manageable and the weekend d has been pretty restful and replenishing. Managed a run followed by cuppa in bed this morning which always sets me up well for the day!

    Have also been having a bit of a play around with mortgage OP calculators and worked out if we really stretched it, could have it gone in 3 years!!
    Now ....when I say stretch, I mean would need to stick to quite strict food spends 140 max p/m ( which is do able but will take planning!) and not sure till I get paid this month whether it's leave much ( or any) fun money over ....whilst I'm happy being frugal, I don't want to over commit to things and end up feeling stressed and deprived , I think it's possibly partly an anxiety thing too as part of me just wants all debt gone now ...but another part knows life needs to be for living too, not just waiting for MF-dom. I've had a few sad reminders of this the past few years with 2 close friends both dying very young ( early 30s) so I do need to remember to make the absolute most of life as you just never know what's round the corner!

    Anyway, off to see sis now complete with pudding from the freezer ( crumble nomnom) and coo over scan photos! Yay

    Happy Sunday all xx
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 14th Jan 18, 11:53 AM
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    Karmacat
    Ella, I think the two parts of your post above kind of contradict one another? I haven't been posting here very long, so I'm a bit wary of saying it, but giving yourself a rest every now and then and pushing really hard don't go together too well, in my head, anyway ... take care of yourself first! My chronic fatigue came on as a result of not doing that, so I'm very wary of it now.
    Retired August 2016
    • mmack
    • By mmack 14th Jan 18, 5:19 PM
    • 3 Posts
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    mmack
    Hi Ella,
    I'm new to the forum and just having a browse as after finally connecting work pressure and stress with periods of very poor health I want to make a positive change. I also want to work for myself, possibly property development, but would need the security of being mortgage free and having 3-6mths savings behind me to do it. So a lot of what's you've posted resonated and felt inspiring.
    My mortgage is 180k and set to pay off in 13 years! I'd like to aim for 5 although it will be a massive stretch and require 1k / month in overpayment - it doesn't feel impossible - a car loan 500/mth is set to finish soon. So that's halfway, just need to be savvy about finding the rest!
    I'm reading Dr. Chatterjees 4 pillar book for what seem very simple / smart ways to help manage stress and improve health and wellbeing. It's a start - maybe I should start a diary too.
    Anyway just wanted to wish you luck with your journey and making me feel less alone with the thoughts and challenges.
    Good luck to all MFWs
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 14th Jan 18, 8:16 PM
    • 111 Posts
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    Downshifterella
    Hi Karma
    Absolutely fine to point out what is , you are right...a totally contradictory post!

    I think the pushing myself too hard for too long has really contributed ( though albeit not completely caused) some of the health issues for me...so I definitely need to put my health first....totally right!
    Sorry you're having to deal with chronic fatigue issues too ....it really sucks!

    Hi mmack
    Definitely a good idea to start a diary , it's great for connecting with like minded people and staying on track!
    Sorry that stressful and pressured work has taken its toll ....I think that's a big motivator for me in looking for a different way of being ...but as above probably not stretching myself way too thin in the process! Will keep a look out for your diary and will look into the book which sounds great too!

    Had a lovely and very relaxing time with sis, hubbies and bump and planning on a film before and earlyish night.

    Aim for tomorrow ...relaxing, taking lunch break, doing some yoga and more realistic sums to avoid destitution and living on beans on toast for the next few years
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 15th Jan 18, 1:05 PM
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    Karmacat





    NB - the people at my chronic fatigue clinic used to talk about "the four pillars" too ... I wonder if they cribbed it from the book mmack mentions? Hmmm ...
    Retired August 2016
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 15th Jan 18, 3:30 PM
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    Downshifterella
    Thanks Karma
    Interesting stuff may look into getting hold of the book too!

    Lunch break and yoga plans both completed so getting there!
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 26th Jan 18, 8:09 PM
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    Downshifterella
    Ahhhhhh Friday!!

    Had a few hectic weeks but slowly slowing back down and it's looking more manageable after mid next week!

    In mortgage news, balance clocking in at just over 93,500

    Need to see what the food spends are looking like but hoping haven't gone too far over 150 for this month! Tho all the Christmas biscuits have now been eaten!!

    Been working on self care too as was really feeling the stress the past few weeks ... Lots of healthyish meals, couple of hours of exercise ( definitely need to get more fit! ) And a few nights out with friends and hubby in the pipeline

    Hope everyone is having a good weekend xx
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 26th Jan 18, 9:08 PM
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    Downshifterella
    January shop at 92 plus one extra reciept I can't find!! ( But estimate under 25!!)

    Am super chuffed with that , but has also included using up lots of stores and all the Xmas leftovers ...still I'd estimated we'd be heading nearer to 180 so am really happy with that!!
    MF planning for the simple life
    • pinkypig
    • By pinkypig 27th Jan 18, 5:28 PM
    • 1,130 Posts
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    pinkypig
    Hiya Ella . A successful month . Good luck with your plans for February.

    Hope you're having a lovely weekend

    PP xx
    • Kittenkirst
    • By Kittenkirst 28th Jan 18, 4:45 AM
    • 1,857 Posts
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    Kittenkirst
    Fantastic work on the grocery budget!
    2018 MFW #20 - OP 895.56/ 3000 30%
    Jan: 417.42 Feb: 260.14 Mar: 218

    Emergency fund 4K/ 6k
    Mortgage Oct '16 170.995 LTV 90% end: Nov 2041
    Overpayments 2016 255.50 2017 2600.40
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 10th Feb 18, 3:03 PM
    • 111 Posts
    • 682 Thanks
    Downshifterella
    Thanks pinkypig and kittenkirst

    There is lots of work going on on the downshifter household today ( in between tea and TV breaks! )
    MrDownshifter doing some bits of clearing in the garden ...and I have tackled the spare room and it's looking much tidier in there ....

    There is one area in the the hallway I'm determined to get through this afternoon then it's a cinema trip later ( with vouchers!)

    Hope everyone is having a nice Saturday!
    X
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 10th Feb 18, 6:02 PM
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    Karmacat
    Hurray to a cinema trip enjoy.
    Retired August 2016
    • Kittenkirst
    • By Kittenkirst 11th Feb 18, 8:08 AM
    • 1,857 Posts
    • 9,989 Thanks
    Kittenkirst
    Oooh what did you go to see?
    2018 MFW #20 - OP 895.56/ 3000 30%
    Jan: 417.42 Feb: 260.14 Mar: 218

    Emergency fund 4K/ 6k
    Mortgage Oct '16 170.995 LTV 90% end: Nov 2041
    Overpayments 2016 255.50 2017 2600.40
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 11th Feb 18, 10:36 AM
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    Downshifterella
    Went to see the greatest showman, loved it!! ( Munched on smuggled in sweets to save pennies too which were yummy! )
    Back on the healthy eating plan today!
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 11th Feb 18, 11:32 AM
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    Karmacat
    That sounds like its wonderful and good to hear about smuggled sweeties too - dreadful that they *have* to be smuggled, but still
    Retired August 2016
    • pinkypig
    • By pinkypig 11th Feb 18, 12:45 PM
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    pinkypig
    Great start to the weekend Ella, love Hugh Jackman nearly as much as I love sweets
    Have a lovely rest of the weekend xx
    • FrugalWeirdo83
    • By FrugalWeirdo83 11th Feb 18, 1:22 PM
    • 43 Posts
    • 245 Thanks
    FrugalWeirdo83
    Subscribing
    Sealed pot challenge 196
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 16th Feb 18, 7:08 PM
    • 111 Posts
    • 682 Thanks
    Downshifterella
    Bah! Just lost post ....
    Shall retry in brief with the power of emojis

    Friday ...hurrah!

    Thanks pinky , karma and frugalwierdo ....Mr Jackman and smuggled in sweets were indeed both lush!

    Spring like sunshine today! Very lovely

    Mortgage free balance sitting around 91,500 and food spends for the month 110 with little we need to top up with before payday!

    Going to try cash only spending in march to see if this changes the tendency to spend in cards and "pay later" ( not debt but not necessarily keeping track of spends)

    Cheap weekend planned with some social bits .
    Wine o clock now methinks!

    Happy weekend Xxx
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Downshifterella
    • By Downshifterella 18th Mar 18, 9:47 AM
    • 111 Posts
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    Downshifterella
    Helllooooo ....

    Well, seem to have neglected my diary for the last month! Maybe subconscious guilt as it's also been a bit spendy! One of those times where cash has frittered away on I'm not sure what and grocery spends much higher than aimed due to poor planning and multiple "I'll just stop for milk and something for dinner" trips to the shops that end up 20 lighter!!

    Not helped by the fact the last week has been pretty miserable health wise on my side ( the kind where I catastrophise that I'll never get back to "normal" again ....of course not helpful! ) ...so I thought a lazy Sunday catchinh up on some diaries in bed might help me focus the mind in a more positive way!

    So.... First things first, MF figure by my estimates standing at around 88,500 so that's pretty blinking amazing!

    Before I got ill, had made some real strides on the decluttering which I'm pleased with, and had been doing good on getting my exercise and running back up and going ( illness has put a halt to that (and could be a good few weeks of limits) which is probably why I'm feeling a bit gloomy ...they are right when they say those endorphins really do help! )

    We have a full freezer and cupboards thanks to the shopping trips so am planning to eeek that out over the next few weeks to balance things out.

    Some of the "frittering away" money has been on lovely things and self-care ....bought a book is wanted for a while, treated a friend to coffee and bought some new baby things for another friend . Mindless frittering on other stuff could be curbed tho!

    I've been thinking more about a shorter term aim for this year in terms of work/life balance (rather than waiting till our mortgage is gone!) . Currently my commute and working hours make it feel like it's difficult to fit much in after work and I'm trying to cram everything in to 2 days at the weekend and end up starting back on Mondays exhausted as much as refreshed!

    There are a few options to think about, as I think I'm pretty clear now this way of doing things is not sustainable ...

    I'm going to look into options .... some being flexible working/reduction in hrs perhaps by a half day/day a week , or again looking at other jobs with a shorter commute.
    My work life balance/ questions around "do I want to do this forever" seems to be a reoccurring theme for me, but I mostly enjoy what I do....so I'm not sure if it's the external around me I need to change, or the internal attitude about it ( or perhaps a bit of both!)

    That's all a bit deep for a Sunday morning, but I've been up since 7 and the caffeine's had a chance to kick in now!
    Hope all are surviving in the snow okay

    Ella X
    MF planning for the simple life
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 18th Mar 18, 12:43 PM
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    Karmacat
    Sounds good, Ella. Sorry you've been ill, but honestly taking notice of ways that your life isn't currently sustainable long term is the best thing you can do. I don't think I did that, and it's created big problems as a result. Short terms aims are great too, mind you
    Retired August 2016
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