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  • FIRST POST
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 27th Feb 18, 4:06 PM
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    foxgloves
    Put away your purse & become debt-averse
    • #1
    • 27th Feb 18, 4:06 PM
    Put away your purse & become debt-averse 27th Feb 18 at 4:06 PM
    I've decided to start a diary to show that it's possible to change from a terrible money waster into a a bit of a budgeting ninja. OK, I'm not perfect....we all have slip-ups now & again....but I am proud that by my budget efforts & our surprising willingness to change from big silly spenders (we really were a pair of narnas!) to really quite sensible people, we managed to become debt-free. We paid off around 35k & really, just learned how to live differently And you know what? We really enjoy it! Turned out that all that spending & having to have stuff immediately didn't really make us happy. Who'd have thought it?
    Pre-LBM, my principles for money management were:
    1) Buy pretty much whatever I wanted when I wanted. Overdraft was seen as another word for 'more of my money'.
    2) Open bank statements, look at the balance through semi-closed eyes, carefully fold & replace in envelope & put in drawer.
    3) Tell myself bank balance is fine because it's only 3 weeks till pay-day.
    4) Always withdraw useful wodge of cash the week before pay-day just in case that pesky bank was planning to show me up in the supermarket by stopping my debit card.
    5) Never budget - why waste time on this when my own system worked so well?
    6) Tell myself not to worry about savings. They would be nice, but I 'didn't earn enough'
    That was about it, really. I didn't budget at all & made no effort to spend within my means. I lived outside my means from the age of 19 & didn't become debt-free till my 40s!
    The LBM was huge. I had it first & my partner showed initial signs of resistance, but when he saw my debts disappearing, he soon wanted in on the act & is now like a different person with money.
    Two years ago, we borrowed a modest sum to help us buy a car, We always knew this would happen & we made sure we saved up a good deposit. It was always our intention to re-pay the loan early & we did manage a nice overpayment of £2000 last year. However, our 2nd overpayment was almost ready to pay in when we had a string of expenses which we didn't want to put on credit cards, so we used our loan overpayment money to pay those. Last year was difficult in many ways & although we didn't return to our previous naughty spendiness, I think I started to lose some of my focus. Before Christmas, our Loan Pay Down Fund (LPDF) was down to just £60. Now it is already up to £421, really just from little savings, selling a few bits & bobs here & there. One thing I'm going to be really BIG on this year is 'Shopping from home', as in doing that first, to see if a spend can be avoided. I've got off to a really good start with that, starting with my new year de-cluttering & have found all sorts of useful stuff that will save me money further down the line. I also intend to do a full kitchen cupboard audit. Although I'm a DFW 'Small things' regular, I've never done a DFW diary before, so I'm going to use it to focus my efforts & get that LPDF up to £1000, then the next £1000, etc, asap. If you are the sort of person who gets excited about the contents of other people's cupboards & the satisfaction of saving a few quid here & there, then do join me for sharing ideas, laughs & moans, & I promise to throw in a few tales from my Spendy Decades - I have kept a journal for a lot of my adult life & I absolutely wince now, reading some of those diary entries about my cavalier attitude to money. I suppose they show that if I can change, anyone can! Oh well, onwards! I loved being debt-free & just a small amount of effort will mean that I can soon be again.
    F x
    Last edited by foxgloves; 27-02-2018 at 4:13 PM.
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
Page 5
    • 1LuckyLady
    • By 1LuckyLady 11th Mar 18, 10:53 AM
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    1LuckyLady
    I wouldn't say you over-plan Foxgloves, I totally agree with planning being a huge part of getting life straight.
    Sticking with the "Small things" thread to keep up us on the straight and narrow.
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 11th Mar 18, 2:59 PM
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    foxgloves
    1LuckyLady - I think you're right. It's funny, but I think the same skills I learned for budgeting also applied to weight loss with me. After the financial LBM & learning how to budget & dealing with the difference between a want & a need, I started tackling my significant weight problem (I was in the morbidly obese BMI category) & applying all the same skills.....budgeting with calories, dealing more rationally with impulsive food decisions & just cutting back on over-consumption etc....I lost 6 stones between Jan 2011 & Nov 2013. I went from a size 26 to a size 16. I have yo-yo'd with keeping it all off.....I'm currently between 1.5 & 2 stone heavier than the lowest I got down to (depends on how good a week I'm having) but I have kept off the remaining 4 to 4.5 stones & I'm convinced that this is down to planning. I'm back onto calorie counting & logging my steps now & food choices fall into place much more easily when there's a plan in place......taking food out with me can prevent me from being tempted by high calorie food choices, as well as save money.
    So yep....I expect some people might think I overplan, but I think we all just have to find what works for us, don't we?
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • Onebrokelady
    • By Onebrokelady 11th Mar 18, 9:06 PM
    • 361 Posts
    • 973 Thanks
    Onebrokelady
    Since joining this site Iím coming to learn that planning is essential to success for everything ,Iíve been doing slimming world for the past few months and got to goal about back in January I have learned that planning really helps ,itís gone out the window over the last month because I was so ill with a chest infection and lost my appetite then was so lethargic I just ate junk,Iím trying to sort my diet out again now and hoping I havenít done too much damage,Iím planning my finances quite well now I just need to sort out the rest of my life
    Just keep swimming
    Original Debt Owed Jan 18 = £17,630 Paid To Date = £636.00 Total Now Owed = £16,994
    Emergency Fund = £400.00 Xmas savings = £200.00
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 12th Mar 18, 6:54 PM
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    foxgloves
    You're right Onebrokelady - all areas of our lives benefit from planning. Your post put me in mind of that saying which always crops up on training courses....."If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail". I've planned my calories like a good 'un today!
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 12th Mar 18, 7:03 PM
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    foxgloves
    Hi,
    Was there even a two minute gap in the rain today? I don't think so! Generally good frugal day today. Very positive 'rubber chicken' activity in the kitchen. It did a roast dinner yesterday & the leftovers have stretched to 3 more meals (for two people), some sandwiches & 3 containers of chicken stock for the freezer. But for potential loan pay-off activity today, that's been me making a nice hot cafetiere, getting my bum in a chair & finally listing that pile of stuff on ebay. Only little bits & pieces for small amounts, but it all adds up & like all the little extra amounts of cash I make, any sales money will be paid straight across to the Loan Pay Down Fund.
    And isn't de-cluttering a great feeling. It kind of sorts my head out as well as my house.
    Wishing everyone a good debt-busting week.
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • 1LuckyLady
    • By 1LuckyLady 13th Mar 18, 6:08 PM
    • 798 Posts
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    1LuckyLady
    Hope you had better weather today Foxgloves, here today we've had lovely blue skies all day, such a change from the wet, grey, dark day we had yesterday.
    Sticking with the "Small things" thread to keep up us on the straight and narrow.
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 13th Mar 18, 7:55 PM
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    foxgloves
    Lovely today, thanks 1LuckyLady. Doesn't it lift your spirits to see some sunshine.....a lovely Brimstone butterfly too.

    Spent lots of time in the garden today. It's good free fitness & toning activity and I found all sorts of planty treasures while I was clearing & digging.
    Back in the Spendy Decades, I used to spend ridiculous amounts of money in garden centres......of course it was invariably the bank's money too, rather than mine. New plants were a big weakness & I've quite a big garden to fill. It's not very wide (about 30 ft) but it's 130 ft long. About a third is our veggie garden & the rest of it is lawn & big flower beds. Well, it's AMAZING what treasures can be found at this time of year. All those self-sown plants are FREE & just waiting to be transplanted. Today I found 6 big healthy foxgloves, 1 aquilegia, 8 pot marigolds, 2 parsley plants & 2 strawberry plants. The parsley is now in my herb bed, the strawberries have been added to the strawberry tower & I've started filling gaps in the flowerbeds with the rest. I did love going to the garden centre for a big planty splurge, but it's very satisfying to find free self-sown ones & to divide up clumps of stuff I already have to make new.
    Can't wait to see what I might find next time. Back aching from digging though!
    F
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • brizzledfw
    • By brizzledfw 13th Mar 18, 9:04 PM
    • 7,275 Posts
    • 35,697 Thanks
    brizzledfw
    Liking the diary foxgloves.. Have just subscribed..
    MFiT-T4 Member No. 96 - 2022 is my MF goal
    Winter 17/18 Savings Rate Goal: 25% [October 30%]
    Declutter 60 items before 31.03.18 9/60 ** LSDs Target 10 for March 03/10 **AFDs 10/15 ** Sales/TCB Target 2018 £25/£500 NSDs Target 10 for March 02/10 Trying to be a Frugalista
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 14th Mar 18, 12:37 PM
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    foxgloves
    Welcome Brizzledfw.
    I've really been applying the 'Shop from home first' principle this morning & will pop back later to bore you all with it.
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Mar 18, 12:58 PM
    • 1,674 Posts
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    redofromstart
    I love wasting money in garden centres on new things for me to kill

    Love free plants even more though, every so often I find another shrub (usually azaleas or hydrangeas) that I put a stone over a branch a few years ago in my last fit of gardening enthusiasm.
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 14th Mar 18, 7:18 PM
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    foxgloves
    Redofromstart - Oh, do you mean getting free new shrubs by 'layering', where you weight a branch or stem down & it roots? I've only done that with penstemons but it did work. Agree free plants are the best kind. I used to spend such silly money at the garden centre.....I mean, £50 just to plant up a couple of tubs outside my front door every season. Yes, they looked nice, but not '50 quid nice'. Foxgloves, aquilegias, centaurea, alchemilla, marigolds & borage seed prolifically in our garden, but that's fine by me as they all flower their socks off & cost me now't!
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 14th Mar 18, 7:40 PM
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    • 20,699 Thanks
    foxgloves
    Hi Diary readers,
    Heard from Ziffit today & they've paid me for the last small box of books & CDs I sold them. That's another little bit for the Loan Pay Down Fund.

    Well, it's been a real 'Shop from home first' kind of day. Had 4 things on my shopping list today. Two of them were potatoes & lettuce. Checked veg basket & found we still have 3 large potatoes. Double-checked meal plans & we just need 2 for jacket potato night tomorrow, so crossed potatoes off the list. We had run out of lettuce & I'd planned to serve salad with tonight's meal, but shopping from home turned up a quarter of a white cabbage & half a leftover red onion & we have mayo & carrots, so I decided to make chunky coleslaw instead. So that was lettuce crossed off too. The other 2 items weren't supermarket items so that meant I didn't need to visit the supermarket at all, so avoided all the little temptations that go hand in hand with that purse emptying horror, the 'top-up shop'. My Spendy Decades were full of top-up shops....I'm sure there were weeks when I shopped for food 5 days out of 7......sometimes simply because I fancied something different to all the stuff I'd got in......& you know how it is, you get to the check-out & find the invisible supermarket pixies have somehow managed to fill your basket with premium brand crisps, chocolate, big pants inducing desserts & glossy magazines. And you only went in for milk & crispbreads!!
    I'll tell you about the rest of today's shopping from home in a minute......
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 14th Mar 18, 8:06 PM
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    • 20,699 Thanks
    foxgloves
    OK, sat down with a nice hot cafetiere & did some Easter planning today. I love baking & agreed to provide home baked pork pies, an Easter cake & a trifle for a family buffet. We are a small family & we always give gifts at Easter. I intend to make all mine & they'll be 'foodie' things.....biscuits, fudge etc. Found all my recipes & wrote complete list of all ingredients needed......29 of them. Then went through cupboards & was able to cross off 11 of them. Also decided to bake Mary Berry's Easter biscuits....partly because they're traditional & yum, but also because they include ingredients I'll have leftover from making the cake.
    Also checked supplies of cellophane bags, ribbons & home made gift tags & I have plenty, so will be able to present my gifts attractively. This will definitely be a lot cheaper than buying everybody an Easter egg or similar & I will enjoy making & baking everything. Giving home made fudge as a gift has been a revelation. I mean, how can a collection of such a few inexpensive ingredients produce so much joy in the recipient?
    Anyway......plans are in place & a much reduced Easter baking shopping list at the ready. Feeling organised & being organised always saves us money.
    Oh, all that talk of Easter goodies has made me fancy some mini-eggs. My money's safe though. I've zero intention of going out now & I shan't have the car tomorrow.
    Saved from myself again!
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Mar 18, 8:37 PM
    • 1,674 Posts
    • 9,975 Thanks
    redofromstart
    Yes, we have dry stone walls that back onto the 'shrubbery' and lots of elderly shrubs so sometimes it is accidental layering and sometimes I forget I did it.

    Nice work on the make do front.
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 15th Mar 18, 6:50 AM
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    • 20,699 Thanks
    foxgloves
    Well, either way, it's free plants, Redofromstart, & that can't be bad!

    Morning everybody else,
    I'm intending to do my mid-month budget check-in today, so there'll be a bit of number-crunching going on. Just need a bucket of coffee first.......
    F
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 15th Mar 18, 7:43 PM
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    foxgloves
    Oh....it felt like Calculators at Dawn today. I always aim to do my Big Budget Day at the end of the month, either on.pay day or as soon afterwards as possible. I also like to do a mid-month budget check-in around the 14th or 15th to make sure we're on the right track & no weird 'money leaks' have appeared.
    So that was pretty much my morning. Not exactly riveting on the entertainment front, but don't you just feel better seeing the figures in black & white?
    No nasty surprises today. The only bit I couldn't reconcile was about a fiver of surplus cash. I shoved that in the grocery budget as the forensic levels of investigstion required to determine its true home seemed more than a fiver's worth of my time!
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • wishingthemortgaheaway
    • By wishingthemortgaheaway 15th Mar 18, 10:44 PM
    • 1,314 Posts
    • 6,115 Thanks
    wishingthemortgaheaway
    At least it was a fiver found and not a fiver lost.
    The 100 payment countdown (each payment = £400) 2018 Starts at 13/100 o/s £34,750.
    Jan 18 14/100 Feb 15/100 March 18/100 April 19/100
    Term Mortgage free date: October 2029 Current mortgage free date: April 2025 March 2024 Jan 2024
    MFW 2018 Challenge Member #162 £1600ish/£2,500
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 16th Mar 18, 8:26 AM
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    foxgloves
    Wishingthe mortgageaway - Yes, you are so right. I always think I've made a mistake in my calculations when there is spare money & have to check evetything in case it comes back to haunt me later. So different from my old pre-LBM budgeting method of looking at my statement balance for about 1 second with my eyes closed, before shoving it in a drawer!
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 16th Mar 18, 5:18 PM
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    • 20,699 Thanks
    foxgloves
    A nice little £10 gift card arrived in the post (survey income). I'd normally use this for a household or grocery items & pay the equivalent cash into the Loan Pay Down Fund, but not this time. Mr f has a big birthday at the end of this year & I am saving all vouchers for this particular store to put towards his present.
    Friday is my weekly cleaning day, so I've been busy with that & am now sitting by the fire in a clean tidy house. I don't know how anyone else feels, but one of my bugbears is the ridiculous amount of cleaning products on supermarket shelves. Do we really need so many different products (invariably in planet polluting plastic bottles) for every cleaning job? How can there be so much difference between cleaning a bathroom & cleaning a kichen that we need 2 separate products. When did we get suckered into believing all that hype?
    I use 'Stardrops'.....neat on tough jobs & diluted in an old spray bottle for most jobs & one bottle of the concentrate lasts months. I also buy washing up liquid, supermarket own label loo cleaner & laundry detergent. I like multi-use things, so washing-up liquid is also used for pre-treating stains on clothes before washing & with a dash of vinegar to clean windows, polished off with scrunched up newspaper. We buy the old fashioned bags of soda crystals for tough jobs....pre-soaking whites, cleaning the oven, unblocking sinks, etc. Even my floor mop is an old style string one on a wooden handle. I've tried various higher spec ones in the past - all more expensive, all non-recyclable plastic & none of them did the job any better. There are whole categories of this stuff I just can't see the point in......fabric softeners to perfume my washing, plug-in plastic air-fresheners, loo blocks in little plastic cages, gizmos to drop into my vacuum cleaner cylinder to puff out a chemical fragrance while I'm hoovering......
    Oh, & I use polish on wooden furniture now & again....I like the old-fashioned beeswax polish in jars or tins. It lasts ages as you only need a tidsy bit.
    So when I go down the cleaning aisle in the supermarket & am assailed by all those plastic bottles.....not to mention how many chemicals we are inhaling over a lifetime of sustained use, I do feel our choice to use just a very small selection is probably good for more than just financial reasons.
    Must go & let cat in now. He's sitting on our front wall telling anyone who goes by that we are horrid cat-hating meanies who don't feed him!
    Have a good Friday night all,
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = £714-70
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = £320 2016 = £210 2017 = £304 2018 = £244
    • Baileys Babe
    • By Baileys Babe 17th Mar 18, 9:20 AM
    • 2,242 Posts
    • 10,895 Thanks
    Baileys Babe
    I so agree with you regarding cleaning products. We use washing powder, soda crystals, vinegar, bicarbonate of soda, washing up liquid, beeswax polish, toilet cleaner and dishwasher powder. Which to me seems so much. Where possible I use things for multi purpose ie vinegar - rince aid (dw), cleaning the windows, in wm (where the fabric softener goes), on our chips.
    Where possible I try to avoid buying things in plastic, our dw powder comes in a cardboard box and our laundry powder comes in a large paper sack.
    To cut down on packaging and to reduce how often we go to the shops we try to buy in bulk and decant to a smaller container if necessary. For example we buy wu liquid in 5 litre container, laundry powder sack lasts 9 months, box of dw powder lasts 4 months.
    I also prefer to use powder to tablets in the dw & wm as it is easy to adjust the amount of product you use dependent on how soiled the load is.
    I absolutely loathe air freshers and other things that put artificial fragrance into my life. The scent is vile as well I often react by coughing or sneezing or runny eyes or nose, also I find they effect the taste of any food or drink I consume in an environment that contains them.
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