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  • FIRST POST
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 11th Mar 18, 7:28 AM
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    Cheery Daff
    Cheery's country living adventure
    • #1
    • 11th Mar 18, 7:28 AM
    Cheery's country living adventure 11th Mar 18 at 7:28 AM
    Hello lovely people

    I'm Cheery, been around these parts a long time now and had several DFW diaries over the years, most recently here.

    We are two - Mr Cheery and I. We've been together over 12 years now, and last week we moved from the middle of the city to the middle of nowhere. We were snowed in within 24 hours and unable to leave for a week Quite an introduction to country living

    I now have a mortgage for the first time in my life Mr Cheery had one before, but as it was near the end when I met him, we never added me, and then it got to the end of its 25 year span a few years ago. Now we have a brand new one, and I would like to pay it off as soon as possible

    It's going to take a while - we've borrowed £215,000 over 25 years A reasonable rate though (1.8%), fixed until Sept 2019. Our monthly payment is £890, and I'd like to overpay by £10 at least - with the aim of on average paying off an extra £110 a month to take it up to a round £1000.

    If we don't pay it off early, it'll run til I'm 62, and Mr Cheery is 80 A good incentive to get on with it

    Sadly our building society doesn't have online banking for mortgages (bloody ridiculous) and only sends annual statements, so it looks like I'll be ringing them up every five minutes for a new balance

    I would love it if you dropped in occasionally for a nice cup of tea, especially if you brought along some cake

    More details in a minute
Page 26
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 10th Jan 19, 9:21 AM
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    Karmacat
    This frugalish lifestyle has definitely given us choices - we could jump out of the rat race at any time by downsizing but as we are happily working at the moment we choose to travel. I also have the choice of retiring from my 56th Birthday.
    Originally posted by Busy Mee1
    Lovely!

    Other people's reactions to this are quite interesting. They range from the "why are you being so tight - you only live once" to " how many holidays are you having ?" And " you are so lucky to have this lovely house" Honestly the word lucky makes me cross...we didn't win the house in a raffle
    I know *exactly* where you're coming from on this one! There's a really good saying I heard thats a great response, especially if you're feeling grumpy "the harder I work, the luckier I get

    Childhood influences are interesting - my sister and I have very different attitudes to things, maybe because there was a lot more poverty around before her birth; my mum, brother and I ended up living at her parents for a good long while. Nowadays, I just don't care about brands, for instance, as opposed to quality, but she cares a great deal: she got quite cross with me the other day because I referred to my Hobbs dress (Hobbs is posh) as "the black/white/grey one with circles on" rather than "the Hobbs dress". I didn't dare say anything
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • rtandon27
    • By rtandon27 10th Jan 19, 2:52 PM
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    rtandon27
    ...she got quite cross with me the other day because I referred to my Hobbs dress (Hobbs is posh) as "the black/white/grey one with circles on" rather than "the Hobbs dress". I didn't dare say anything
    Originally posted by Karmacat
    Oh dear - I didn't realize H0bbs was 'posh' - just thought they were that nice store that had lovely cloths at ridiculous prices - but the sales are real ones!

    I have no clue - really I don't...
    2 YEARS DEBT FREE!!! (24 OCT 2016)
    (With heartfelt thanks to those who have gone before us & their indubitable generosity.)
    Working hard to keep all the balls in the air and juggle the budget!
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 10th Jan 19, 3:16 PM
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    Cheery Daff

    Other people's reactions to this are quite interesting. They range from the "why are you being so tight - you only live once" to " how many holidays are you having ?" And " you are so lucky to have this lovely house" Honestly the word lucky makes me cross...we didn't win the house in a raffle I would accept that we are fortunate, and we have our health and ability to work, but we make very consious decisions about where we spend our money.
    Originally posted by Busy Mee1
    Oh Busy Mee, you are SO right! I have been surprised by the reactions of some of our friends to us buying this place - most people have been lovely of course but yes, 'lucky' is a word that's appeared a few times...

    I agree - we are fortunate to have our health and ability to work, privileged not to be persecuted and largely free to go about our business - but so are pretty much all of our friends. Mr Cheery and I both grew up on council estates (unlike a lot of our friends), rarely go abroad on holiday (unlike a lot of our friends), and certainly won't be receiving a house/inheritance when our parents die (unlike a lot of our friends).

    Yes we have the age difference on our side (although obviously it's not always going to be 'on our side') - but basically we got here through Mr Cheery working full time (or nearly) in an office for 25 years, and me having to do similar for the next decade or two.

    Yes, we are now 'landowners', 'landed gentry' or whatever else people want to call us - some people we know seem to forget this is also an option open to them if they are also willing to work full time, scrimp a bit, spend half their daylight hours lugging stones, shovelling mud, or fixing things, drive everywhere for everything, and live miles away from their friends.

    It's not difficult to understand how it happened!

    Gosh, sorry! Sparked a rant from me too! I absolutely get and understand the concept of privilege, and understand and am very grateful for what we have, and compared to a lot of people, we have had a good start in life and a relatively easy ride. We have had no major accidents or illness in ourselves or our immediate families. In that sense, yes, we are lucky.

    But when people who are similarly privileged seem to somehow think we've been lucky (rather than just made different decisions to them) it does make me cross!

    Anyway, let's think about flowers and cheerful things
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 10th Jan 19, 4:17 PM
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    Karmacat
    Oh dear - I didn't realize H0bbs was 'posh' - just thought they were that nice store that had lovely cloths at ridiculous prices - but the sales are real ones!

    I have no clue - really I don't...
    Originally posted by rtandon27
    Sadly, thats the point - the price is the indicator I bought my Hobbs dress 7 years ago now, it was £80 reduced to £40. As you say, the sale prices are real ones There's quite a big distortion going on, but I'm not going to unpack it with her.


    ... Mr Cheery and I both grew up on council estates (unlike a lot of our friends), rarely go abroad on holiday (unlike a lot of our friends), and certainly won't be receiving a house/inheritance when our parents die (unlike a lot of our friends).
    Originally posted by Cheery Daff
    Indeed! As you probably remember, I've just inherited a third of the price of my mother's house ... it's made a *huge* difference to my finances, and that's luck, pure and simple.


    Yes we have the age difference on our side (although obviously it's not always going to be 'on our side') - but basically we got here through Mr Cheery working full time (or nearly) in an office for 25 years, and me having to do similar for the next decade or two.
    I know you'll have thought about the effects in later life of that age imbalance. But all that will be a long, long way away


    Yes, we are now 'landowners', 'landed gentry' or whatever else people want to call us - some people we know seem to forget this is also an option open to them if they are also willing to work full time, scrimp a bit, spend half their daylight hours lugging stones, shovelling mud, or fixing things, drive everywhere for everything, and live miles away from their friends.
    I just *love* the thought of you being landed gentry
    And you're perfectly exemplifying that saying that I found, "the harder I work, the luckier I get". It includes lugging stones about and fixing things, as well as the academic work for your professional life. I'm really chuffed for you that you managed to go for both.


    But when people who are similarly privileged seem to somehow think we've been lucky (rather than just made different decisions to them) it does make me cross!
    Thats the thing! 100% yes. It still surprises me that some people don't understand that.


    Anyway, let's think about flowers and cheerful things
    #raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens#


    Didn't there used to be a rainbow smiley? Have some cake instead:
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 10th Jan 19, 4:58 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Thanks KC

    Slightly embarrassed at my ranting now In truth I'm having a bit of a grouchy day - no good reason, just hormonal and got a bit of a cold and too busy being distracted and not doing what I'm meant to be doing so feeling a bit useless

    Hey ho. At least I haven't spent anything yet! That'll change though as I'm off to the instrument repair lady this evening... but that cost was planned and budgeted well before Christmas and something I use frequently and brings me a lot of joy so it's as well that it works!

    Right, have done a couple of small cheery things to get myself out of my funk, and in the half hour I've got left sat in front of my work computer I'm going to get SOMETHING finished at least, so I can start tomorrow with a sense of achievement
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 10th Jan 19, 5:08 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Ooh, forgot to say the post office savings account pin numbers arrived today Can't do anything with them as they haven't yet given us an account number but I'm hopeful this will arrive soon!

    I've made a note to open the current accounts on Monday (finances day). Trying to stick to the old Flylady idea of having a weekly plan with designated things on set days so I don't get sidetracked trying to do everything on the same day.

    how's that going for you today, Cheery?



    Anyway

    Monday - YNAB and finances
    Tuesday - admin (paperwork, filing etc)
    Wednesday - errands, posting things (usually the day I'm in the city)
    Thursday - washing
    Friday - general clean round the house
    Saturday - clean out the chicken house
    Sunday - get all the rubbish out of the cars

    Only had a week and a half and I'm not doing great But the intention is there!
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • WannabeFree
    • By WannabeFree 10th Jan 19, 5:18 PM
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    WannabeFree
    Jumps out of luking

    Realises I just 'lucky' in the wrong sense and can offend people I'm so guilty of this I would say 'Oh you're so lucky to have such a nice house' Not mean lucky you've had it handed to you on a plate but more in the sense 'its nice you have such a lovely house' But now I've read the posts I realise it doesn't come across that way sometimes

    P.S I'm sorry if I have said that to you Cheery or anyone else

    Turned into a longer post than I thought - jumps back into lurking

    x
    ďOnce you hit rock bottom, that's where you perfectly stand; That's your chance of restarting, but restarting the way.Ē

    POAMAYC 19 #70 £1561/£2070
    • Busy Mee1
    • By Busy Mee1 10th Jan 19, 8:32 PM
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    Busy Mee1
    Aww Wannabe I doubt anyone could take offence at anything you said because clearly everything you say and do comes from a good place and is meant in the right way.

    I aspire to be as nice as you
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 11th Jan 19, 12:29 AM
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    Cheery Daff
    Aw wanabee, please don't feel bad! darn it, this always happens to me when I rant I do it so very rarely and then when I do I always upset somebody nice

    I'm just grouchy today hormonal and unproductive and Mr Cheery is grouchy too and now I've upset cheery people on the internet and really I think it's about time I just went to bed
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • WannabeFree
    • By WannabeFree 11th Jan 19, 12:47 AM
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    WannabeFree
    I'm not upset and not at you certainly not, I just realised how it 'sounds' when it's wrote down and I agree with you btw it would make me want to say something back I'm glad you are/where grouchy and posted it as I'd have never have thought of it from the other side.

    I hope you and Mr Cheery are both feeling better/happier soon.

    x
    ďOnce you hit rock bottom, that's where you perfectly stand; That's your chance of restarting, but restarting the way.Ē

    POAMAYC 19 #70 £1561/£2070
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 11th Jan 19, 8:58 AM
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    Karmacat
    Awww. When its well meaning people who speak up, with kindness, even though there's grumpiness involved somewhere internally, it usually ends well


    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • shangaijimmy
    • By shangaijimmy 11th Jan 19, 12:04 PM
    • 2,924 Posts
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    shangaijimmy
    No such think as luck - Luck is where "Opportunity" meets "Preparation"
    MFW: Turning June 2036 into March 2025...
    48 out of 120 Payments - Total Reduction: £51,500.83
    Current Balance: £84,499.28
    MFiT-T5 #8 - 0% of £41,000
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 12th Jan 19, 7:48 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Evening MSE chums

    Aw, thanks wanabee, glad you weren't upset at my ranting and raving

    Urgh, I'm completely full of cold Bleurgh. Had really disturbed sleep the last few nights, had a couple of nights on the sofa bed, and then last night half in bed then transferred to the actual sofa about 2am. Urgh.

    Today I've been useless - popped out to slimming world this morning (lost 2lbs) then after a quick nip round the supermarket, I headed to the cosiness of my usual seat by the living room window, where I've stayed since approximately 12pm, reading my book and looking out of the window occasionally. It's been great

    Can I also confess we still have the Christmas tree up?? It's so very dark here, we can't see anything at all outside once the sun sets, and neither of us can bring ourselves to get rid of the cheerful tree We have no neighbours to judge, so it's still here, and it might well still be here til the clocks change

    Ooh - the savings account details arrived today If I could be bothered doing anything at all productive, I'd transfer our savings into it. Sadly I have entirely given today over to idle staring, drinking tea and blowing my nose, so it will have to wait.

    Anyway, I'm a day or two (or three) behind with Uber Frugal Month so I'll do a bit of catch up...
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • WannabeFree
    • By WannabeFree 12th Jan 19, 7:52 PM
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    WannabeFree
    Hope you're feeling better soon Cherry and manage a good nights sleep
    x
    ďOnce you hit rock bottom, that's where you perfectly stand; That's your chance of restarting, but restarting the way.Ē

    POAMAYC 19 #70 £1561/£2070
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 12th Jan 19, 7:56 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Uber Frugal Month Day 10

    So, Day 10 was about grocery shopping. Mrs Frugalwoods suggests some things that many of us old MSE hands likely do already:
    * shop from a list - er, actually, I DON'T do that at all Largely because Mr Cheery is in charge of food shopping in our house and he is not a list-making man. But even I'm not very good at regular food lists..

    * buy in bulk - we do tend to stock up a bit, although we don't do REAL bulk buying for anything other than chicken feed. Something to investigate...

    * buy raw ingredients - this we DO do. porridge oats rather than cereal, rarely buy ready meals etc. Our ready-cooked 'indulgence' if you like is veggie sausages

    * economise where you can - well yes, we do - budget brands of most things There are some things I'd rather spend MORE on (I won't buy non-fairtrade tea, for example, and when we bought eggs I wouldn't buy non-free range).

    * Don't shop at an expensive shop - nope, budget ones all the way for us

    Not saying we couldn't make improvements to our food shopping - clearly we could The main issue is ME - Mr Cheery went food shopping yesterday, but forgot yogurt (no list!! ) so I nipped into the supermarket this morning. I spent almost £20!! I mean, I bought fruit, frozen fruit, scones, a new windscreen wiper thing, some tinned fish... but we could have managed without pretty much all of that... Naughty cheery

    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • Cheery Daff
    • By Cheery Daff 12th Jan 19, 8:21 PM
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    Cheery Daff
    Uber Frugal Month Day 11

    Day 11 was all about frugal friendships - and on the whole I think we're pretty good at these! We don't have any REALLY spendy friends (and those we do, we don't see very often). Most of our socialising is done in people's houses, or ours. If anything our socialising weakness is cafes - but we don't even do that too often with other people, and when we do it's mostly for tea and perhaps a scone, rather than lunch, and we rarely spend more than £5 each.

    Not toooooo bad.

    UFM Day 12

    Day 12 is all about banishing excuses, and one of the accompanying readings is about making use of time constraints to get loads of things done...

    http://www.frugalwoods.com/2018/03/21/leveraging-the-power-of-time-constraint-to-get-more-done/

    I confess I DO make excuses about things (about why we spend more than we could do on food, why we have the heating on for so many hours a day, why we have a treats budget and spend all of it in cafes...). And I don't always use time as efficiently as I could

    Right now I don't even know what to say about that I'm tired and sniffly and uncomfortable and can't even be bothered feeling like I SHOULD be doing something so I won't
    Mortgage overpayments £1200 in 2018, £139 in 2019
    • Karmacat
    • By Karmacat 12th Jan 19, 9:35 PM
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    Karmacat
    Urgh, I'm completely full of cold Bleurgh. Had really disturbed sleep the last few nights, had a couple of nights on the sofa bed, and then last night half in bed then transferred to the actual sofa about 2am. Urgh.
    .....after a quick nip round the supermarket, I headed to the cosiness of my usual seat by the living room window, where I've stayed since approximately 12pm, reading my book and looking out of the window occasionally. It's been great

    Can I also confess we still have the Christmas tree up?? It's so very dark here, we can't see anything at all outside once the sun sets, and neither of us can bring ourselves to get rid of the cheerful tree We have no neighbours to judge, so it's still here, and it might well still be here til the clocks change
    Originally posted by Cheery Daff
    Poor Cheery! You don't sound well at all - the tree must be a very addition to the room in the circs you're describing I think I probably need to let you know I haven't taken my Christmas cards yet either
    UFM Day 12

    Day 12 is all about banishing excuses, and one of the accompanying readings is about making use of time constraints to get loads of things done...

    http://www.frugalwoods.com/2018/03/21/leveraging-the-power-of-time-constraint-to-get-more-done/

    I confess I DO make excuses about things (about why we spend more than we could do on food, why we have the heating on for so many hours a day, why we have a treats budget and spend all of it in cafes...). And I don't always use time as efficiently as I could

    Right now I don't even know what to say about that I'm tired and sniffly and uncomfortable and can't even be bothered feeling like I SHOULD be doing something so I won't
    Originally posted by Cheery Daff
    Well, you *shouldn't* be doing something, you're ill! I like this point, day 12, it sounds like that saying "if you want something done, ask a busy person". And I've certainly found that if I have a deadline, I get more done, the closer it gets. I don't hear the "excuses" thing quite as strongly as you're hearing it on this, but I really, really love the points she makes, the priorities, eliminating unnecessary tasks, all of that. I'm bad at that last one in particular I can ignore my list in a second and just go do something else

    Not doing anything else right now, though - nice hot drink, a dvd, I'm done.

    Hope you sleep well, Cheery.
    Downsized and paid off mortgage 2010
    Retired August 2016
    Paid off French mortgage September 2018
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 12th Jan 19, 10:49 PM
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    greenbee
    I think one of the things you need to think of through these exercises in UFM is how far you want to take things. For example, the heating - I work from home full time, and it costs me a LOT less to heat the house thatís it would to drive to the office. And I need to keep it warm enough for my brain and hands to function. I havenít always been very good at this in the past, but frankly when itís so cold that even wearing gloves iím struggling to types then itís not fair on my employer who is expecting me to be working efficiently. So I now prioritise heating.

    I also prioritise food - like you fairtrade and free range, real food and where possible organic. I do occasionally indulge in junk, but itís tends to be when Iím tired and run down. TBH as I hate shopping, I rarely get the opportunity to buy stuff so I have to want it enough to make the effort!

    Socialising is important too. It doesnít have to cost much, but a life with no heating, poor quality food and no friends isnít much fun - and if you can afford it then you shouldnít feel guilty. Save towards retirement, pay off the mortgage, but remember there are no guarantees that youíll get to spend your savings, and you canít take it with you, so try to get the balance right and enjoy life now, while making sure that you donít have to worry too much about the future.
    • angela110660
    • By angela110660 13th Jan 19, 9:57 AM
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    angela110660
    I think one of the things you need to think of through these exercises in UFM is how far you want to take things. For example, the heating - I work from home full time, and it costs me a LOT less to heat the house thatís it would to drive to the office. And I need to keep it warm enough for my brain and hands to function. I havenít always been very good at this in the past, but frankly when itís so cold that even wearing gloves iím struggling to types then itís not fair on my employer who is expecting me to be working efficiently. So I now prioritise heating.

    I also prioritise food - like you fairtrade and free range, real food and where possible organic. I do occasionally indulge in junk, but itís tends to be when Iím tired and run down. TBH as I hate shopping, I rarely get the opportunity to buy stuff so I have to want it enough to make the effort!

    Socialising is important too. It doesnít have to cost much, but a life with no heating, poor quality food and no friends isnít much fun - and if you can afford it then you shouldnít feel guilty. Save towards retirement, pay off the mortgage, but remember there are no guarantees that youíll get to spend your savings, and you canít take it with you, so try to get the balance right and enjoy life now, while making sure that you donít have to worry too much about the future.
    Originally posted by greenbee
    Totally with the last paragraph above- shrouds have no pockets.
    Free films - 2009: saw 7 films. 2010 saw 7 films. 2011 saw 7 films. 2012 saw 5 films;2013 saw 7 films; 2014 and 2015 saw 1 in each. Nothing since!
    • teapot2
    • By teapot2 13th Jan 19, 11:34 AM
    • 1,936 Posts
    • 6,917 Thanks
    teapot2
    I think one of the things you need to think of through these exercises in UFM is how far you want to take things. For example, the heating - I work from home full time, and it costs me a LOT less to heat the house thatís it would to drive to the office. And I need to keep it warm enough for my brain and hands to function. I havenít always been very good at this in the past, but frankly when itís so cold that even wearing gloves iím struggling to types then itís not fair on my employer who is expecting me to be working efficiently. So I now prioritise heating.

    Socialising is important too. It doesnít have to cost much, but a life with no heating, poor quality food and no friends isnít much fun - and if you can afford it then you shouldnít feel guilty. Save towards retirement, pay off the mortgage, but remember there are no guarantees that youíll get to spend your savings, and you canít take it with you, so try to get the balance right and enjoy life now, while making sure that you donít have to worry too much about the future.
    Originally posted by greenbee
    I'm also someone who prioritises heating particularly at the moment when I'm recovering from surgery and not able to get out much. I felt guilty at first but it makes a big difference to how I'm feeling and what I'm motivated to do in a day. I make sure I'm on the best tariff I can find etc and do wear extra jumpers, sit under a blanket as well.

    Having lost my OH recently, I'm very aware about 'you can't take it with you' so am trying to find the balance between living well and enjoying life but also being mindful of my somewhat precarious finances and the limited buffer I have to cushion my approaching retirement years No easy answers I feel!
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