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  • FIRST POST
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 31st Jul 17, 7:37 PM
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    redofromstart
    <<<out of cheese error>>>
    • #1
    • 31st Jul 17, 7:37 PM
    <<<out of cheese error>>> 31st Jul 17 at 7:37 PM
    New name, new diary, new approach! I regularly read, and sometimes post, on the diaries of others but haven't started one myself as it is such a public thing to do. Anyway I need to stop drifting and get our finances back on track before we run out of cheese.


    Family is:
    Me - PT, self employed, bit of this bit of that. Currently on a PT contract with a few months to run.
    OH - generally works as a consultant and has a famine or feast income. On a rare direct employed contract at the moment
    DC - two boys


    Biggest challenge is a huge mortgage, taken out in the days of huge lending and post retirement mortgage dates. Stuck on high SVR as we haven't managed to both be in secure employment at the same time for years. The plan was to overpay and reduce the term but life got in the way a lot.
    10 years of chipping away at it may mean we can now try to remortgage but the barriers are two debts that I need to deal with so that they do not impact on affordability.


    Debt 1 is a student loan, 840 left at 94 per month - 1.5% interest (maybe?)
    Debt 2 is a 0% credit card, 2500 with over a year left to run. This is a carry over from the last famine, and has been reduced from a total that was closer to 15k.


    We do have a couple of months mortgage in savings, but that is the 'emergency job switched off fund' and is generally untouchable.


    OHs works full time and his wages cover the mortgage, and basic outgoings. Its up to me to generate the income for overpayments and debt clearing . I have to work round the boys as we don't have family local or any childcare in place.


    This diary is to try and keep me on track, before the big red lever turns the mortgage off. If we can remortgage, even with reducing the term to his retirement date, it knocks 200 a month off our payments which is a huge amount of leeway next time the famine hits.
Page 64
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 5th May 18, 9:07 AM
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    greenbee
    It's definitely gardening weather! I have holes to dig, weeding to do and need to get some petrol so I can get the mowing done.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 5th May 18, 4:37 PM
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    redofromstart
    I hope everyone has the same glorious sunshine? Its lovely here so we all went for a local walk, round to the (aptly named) stinking woods to squelch through the mud and admire the bluebells and the wild garlic. I could have done with the time in the garden, but it was nice to go for a family walk and the boys not moan all the way round like they used to.

    Bit sore now so not much else will be happening today. I've watered the tunnel, and notice that the first peas are through in the veg plot which is good - old seed and wasn't sure they would grow.

    I picked up an (expensive) pack of british asparagus so looking forward to that later with a one egg mix of this delia foaming hollandaise. I've got some chicken bosoms out for flattening, marinading and pan frying - we will be having it with some wild garlic, mint and tomato couscous which DS1 says will work as a result of a 'no wild garlic and polo mints don't mix' discussion on the walk. Its great when he thinks about food combinations like that I also cooked the last few potatoes from the old bag, cold with chives and mayonnaise will be nice.

    The dry goods list told me I have a tin of evap milk. No idea why, its not something we use actually but then I remembered a recipe I had from my mother. Early summer Sunday puddings as a child revolved around home made no churn ice cream, spooned thick toffee sauce and mini meringues. There was always a jar in the fridge, and it got spooned over sliced bananas too.

    No churn ice cream (Caution: contains raw eggs)
    4 eggs, 4oz sugar, 10fl oz whipping or double cream, and vanilla essence. Seratae the eggs then whip the whites to stiff peak then whip in the sugar one spoon at a time. Fold in the beaten egg yolks and vanilla essence. Whip the cream and then fold into the egg mixture. Freezer over night, no need to churn , etc.

    Toffee Sauce
    2oz butter, 3 oz brown sugar, 2 oz white sugar, 5oz syrup in a pan, slowly melt together and then let it bubble gently for five minutes. Take it off the heat and beat in 4 fl oz of evaporated milk and some vanilla essence. This thickens as it cools, and is best stored in a jar in the fridge. No idea how long it lasts for, its always been gone within a week. Freeze the rest of the evap milk in 4oz blocks (says my frugal mother)

    She sent me the recipes when the boy was three weeks old as I clearly needed more calcium because she knew I wouldn't eat properly. I measured the evap today in the last of his old feeding bottles. This amused me. He is 15

    Mini meringues
    I've also made some tiny meringues to serve it with, two egg whites, 4 oz sugar. Egg whites whisked to stiff peak, then whisk in a spoonful of the sugar at a time and take back up to stiff peak. Teaspoons of mix onto a baking papered tray, into the oven for 20 minutes at 140, then 20 minutes at 100 then switch it off. I'll report back on the timings, I've mixed a couple of recipes.
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 5th May 18, 9:15 PM
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    HairyHandofDartmoor
    It does look like excellent gardening weather. I love bluebell woods, even squelchy ones I hope you have a productive and enjoyable weekend Redo.
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = 58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    "Tough times never last, but tough people do" - Robert H Schuller
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 7th May 18, 9:41 AM
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    redofromstart
    Thanks HHOD More glorious sunshine. although I was a bit stiff to do anything useful yesterday other than usual washing/ironing marathon. DSs did the lawns so the place instantly looks better. Hoping to get more done today, if I had a push at it I could clear the last of the long border ready for planting.

    The meringues worked well, crunchy outside and a nice chewy middle which is how I like them. The toffee sauce is runnier than I remembered but very nice.

    Yesterday we had a slow roast leg of lamb. Quartered onion, big fat garlic gloves (in their skins), rosemary (or a sprinkle of mixed herbs) into the roasting tray. Added the lamb, salt, pepper and oiled it then tipped in 600ml of beef stock. Loosely covered in foil and then ignore it in a 150 fan oven for four hours, take the foil off and give it another 45 minutes to brown. Neither of us will eat rare lamb so slow cook makes for tender well cooked lamb. You could make gravy with the juices if you separated off the fat, and the garlic is soft and sweet apparently.
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 7th May 18, 9:48 AM
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    greenbee
    Don't overdo things in the heat... but do make sure you spend some time sitting in the warm looking at the garden.

    I got three of 4 holes dug and 2 of the plants in. Didn't get the lawn or the weeding done, but have done some laundry and clearing out of the garage. I also did some reading and alternated lying around in the sunshine with lying around indoors.

    Today I need to get the hornet out of the stove (windows are open, next I need to be brave enough to open the stove), pot up the rest of the nicotiana plugs that I'd forgotten I'd ordered (hope I have enough compost as I don't fancy going shopping, although I also need rose food), plant the last 2 shrubs and a geranium, split some logs and hopefully do the mowing when it cools down. Plus laundry and packing away some of my winter clothes to make room for the summer ones - all my travel until at least the end of this month is to warm or hot places so I should be OK to do this!

    Food here will be salad, if I can be bothered.
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 7th May 18, 10:31 AM
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    doingitanyway
    Redo, I finally got into the garden yesterday. Looks much tidier but so much more needs doing. Your lamb sounds nice
    Emergency fund 500/1000
    If not now then when?
    • EssexHebridean
    • By EssexHebridean 8th May 18, 12:02 PM
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    EssexHebridean
    Oh my - your food sounds amazing! I'll happily eat pink lamb but also love a beautiful slow cooked bit - I usually do shoulders cooked for hours until it's dropping off the bones (mainly because done any other way it's an utter bar-steward to carve!)
    MORTGAGE FREE 30/09/2016
    Sainsbugs 0% card: 22/12/16 1229.00/1035.63 (09/07/18)
    SOA Calculator for DFW newbies: Stoozing.com SOA Calculator
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 8th May 18, 4:19 PM
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    redofromstart
    It worked really well EH, and shredded nicely.

    A&C sent me another code so I have waited until they had british asparagus in, as that plus a medium veg box took me over the 20 spend to use my 10 off. Double asparagus, double mushrooms and double kohl rabi makes me for an unusual veg box but at least I know it will be eaten with enthusiasm. I've not seen kohl rabi anywhere else but I have planted some seeds which have germinated.

    More asparagus and hollandaise tonight, followed by an experimental use up the lamb biryiani with pistachios and mint. MrM had some short dated shelled pistachios at 60p so I have those in stock for once.

    Too hot to do much outside today, will have to crack on tomorrow and get the green waste bins filled.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 9th May 18, 2:02 PM
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    redofromstart
    Clothes Spends:
    4.98 in Lidl on two long line cotton vest tops, a default wardrobe item for me. I'll put them away till current collection need replacing but I rarely see these under 4 so a good buy.

    I've taken a number of photos of myself for the style challenges and am bothered about my size creeping up again. I try to avoid scales (or I get obsessive) but a bit of focus on F&V consumption wont do any harm. I'd exercise but by the time I have finished in the garden my knees and back and old lady hips just don't want to.

    Wrestling nettle roots out is a lot easier after the mix of sun and rain.

    The lamb thing was ok, used stuff up but not a keeper of a recipe. Tonight we are on prawn stir fry (RTC stir fry veg, with extra mushrooms and big fat raw prawns (Makro, 700g of huge frozen raw king prawns 10ish)
    • Bluegreen143
    • By Bluegreen143 9th May 18, 2:11 PM
    • 1,101 Posts
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    Bluegreen143
    Those recipes above for the ice cream and toffee sauce sound absolutely divine - thanks for sharing! The lamb sounds good too, I never think I like it much but occasionally my parents serve a big roast and its always nice there. Husband isnt keen either which is why I!!!8217;ve not bothered to cook it ourselves but then he would eat it at my parents house too so maybe I should give it a bash!
    Married 1 March 2014 DS born 06/12/15

    Debts
    CC - 2,182.17/2,182.17
    Family loan 1 - 1,680/1,680
    Family loan 2 - 3,500/5,000
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 9th May 18, 7:26 PM
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    HairyHandofDartmoor
    Good luck with losing weight Redo. Will the style course change what type of clothes you buy from now on?
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = 58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    "Tough times never last, but tough people do" - Robert H Schuller
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 9th May 18, 8:44 PM
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    greenbee
    Going into the office is reducing the amount of exercise I get, but it's also reducing calorie intake. I don't have time to snack on office days, so as long as I manage to prep food to take I think it probably balances out!

    Having said that, I'm home late today so wine for supper...
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 10th May 18, 1:13 PM
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    redofromstart
    hello bluegreen, we only have lamb when its on offer, but we both really like it usually
    HHOD the minute I cut out the grains the bloating goes and I am ok again, I shouldn't let them creep back in. The course is certainly making me think about my choices, which will help me to stand firm on no more 'it'll do' purchases but it is making me want to spend money.
    greenbee that sounds like my kind of supper, although a friend of mine tells me off for it

    This site is interesting and has some useful (free) bits, if you sign up for the newsletter it gives you access to the e-books which are interesting. Her approach to colour is slightly different to the others I have read, and its thanks to her site that I found the perfect jeans last year.

    Yesterday was lots of fruit, asparagus and then a prawn stir fry for dinner. Handful of nuts and some ice cream, I'm not counting calories, I'm just cutting out grains again.

    I've had a flurry of kitchen activity: just skinned and cooked some chicken thighs that had been lurking, neglected, in the bottom of the freezer. They will give me something cold to peck at from the fridge, and distract me from the fast easy delicious poison that is toast. I also made my usual coconut macaroons (1 egg beaten with 3oz sugar, then stir in 5oz coconut, heaped spoonfuls for 10 minutes at 180) and these peanut butter cookies so that I have something suitable to snack on. Cooked some RTC salmon to have cold with prawns and salad for dinner, and crisped some cooking bacon for the boys (DS1 will be having with mac cheese, DS2 with bread, kohl rhabi, etc). Also roast the rather tasteless A&C tomatoes with some aubergine so I can make this tunisian salad.

    In between that I span plates on SBs etc, and used the carpet washer on the living room which sadly continues to have a faint hint of incontinent puppy The treadmill is in there and I will not use it till the smell has gone, so a daily carpet wash is scheduled.

    In happier news, the wisteria has finally started flowering Its very late this year but the first hint of smell and purple has started up by the hall window. It'll be glorious soon. My favourite thing about this garden without a doubt.
    • Chrystal
    • By Chrystal 10th May 18, 3:24 PM
    • 404 Posts
    • 2,610 Thanks
    Chrystal
    Redo
    Apparently bio washing detergent is the best for getting rid of the urine odour. Worth a try?
    I Believe.....
    That it isn't always enough, to be forgiven by others.
    Sometimes, you have to learn to forgive yourself.
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 10th May 18, 4:59 PM
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    redofromstart
    Redo
    Apparently bio washing detergent is the best for getting rid of the urine odour. Worth a try?
    Originally posted by Chrystal
    Thanks, its supposed to be something to do with enzymes isn't it? The specialist pet carpet wash has reduced but not cleared the problem so tomorrow I shall try the bio wash stuff. Luckily I kept the dregs of the last bottle as both boys are very allergic to it.
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 10th May 18, 8:00 PM
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    greenbee
    I hate the smell of bio washing powder... large quantities of bicarb (I buy 5kg at a time) worked on vomit in car. Also worked when a friend of my mum's with dementia had some issues when staying...
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 10th May 18, 8:01 PM
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    greenbee
    greenbee that sounds like my kind of supper, although a friend of mine tells me off for it
    Originally posted by redofromstart
    What do they know?
    • HairyHandofDartmoor
    • By HairyHandofDartmoor 10th May 18, 8:25 PM
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    HairyHandofDartmoor
    I'll have a peruse of that site Redo.

    I love Wisteria they always make me feel summery .
    Finally Debt Free After 34 Years, But Still Need to Live Frugally
    Debt in July 2017 = 58,766 DEBT FREE 31 OCTOBER 2017
    NEW GOALS - Build Emergency Fund & Loss of Income Fund. Save for house repairs.
    "Tough times never last, but tough people do" - Robert H Schuller
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 10th May 18, 10:04 PM
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    doingitanyway
    Nice, healthy food over at yours. I do better with fewer grains too, that's why I found vegan didn't work for me
    I have often found A&C tomatoes to be a bit meh.
    However, you got some good A&C bargains there
    Emergency fund 500/1000
    If not now then when?
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 13th May 18, 9:28 PM
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    redofromstart
    Busy couple of days so not had time to update.

    Free electricity Sunday runs till the end of the month so a busy day as always. Made a goodfood recipe mashed potato based lemon drizzle cake, which wouldn't cook and then fell to pieces and wasn't great tasting even in crumbs so not one to make again. Hate wasting ingredients. Made more pnb cookies while the oven was on so at least some more gluten free snacks for me. Bloating is gone, amazing the difference a few days makes. Lots of F&V consumed by me for once, at least five portions every single day!

    Been reading a couple of interesting books on clothes/style/body shapes (free via my 99p/3 months kindle unlimited thing) which has given me a lot to think about too.

    Hope everyone is well, must try and catch up with diaries tomorrow. Considering I'm not actually working I don't seem to have a huge amount of free time at the moment. Trying to get garden stuff done while the sun is shining for once.
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