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    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 16th Jun 18, 12:27 AM
    • 68Posts
    • 79Thanks
    Losing control, time to take charge.
    • #1
    • 16th Jun 18, 12:27 AM
    Losing control, time to take charge. 16th Jun 18 at 12:27 AM
    I had a diary that I last updated in December but life has changed a bit so thought I'd make a new diary.

    I've really been struggling with my mental health over the past few years and this has resulted in me gaining pounds on the scale and pounds of debt also!

    I hadn't quite realised how bad things have gotten over the 6 months. My husband has had multiple jobs as he could only get short contracts after getting fired last November and I'm on maternity leave right now. He is now working two jobs and I'm due back to work end of July, however childcare is going to be a nightmare so trying to find a better job before then. I had an interview today so I'm hoping I get it!

    Our debt totals stand at:
    Halifax: 523.05 (19.9%)
    TSB: 775 (0% until Sept 2018)
    Lloyds: 3998.66 (some of this was a 0% balance transfer until March 2019 and the rest is 0% until November 2019)
    Sofa: 1122.24 (0% and on monthly payment plan)

    Total: 6418.95

    The halifax card was cleared until a few weeks ago and my car failed its MOT and I had to put it on the credit card as I had no way to pay it. I also had to use the kids savings account this month as tax credits cut our money by 300 this month and my husband got emergency taxed this month so we ended up being completely skint.

    I'm determined to clear this debt so we can start saving up for a deposit on a house. I'd like to be buying our own place by the time the youngest is 5 so that gives us just over 4 years to do it.
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    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 9th Jul 18, 2:02 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    I haven't updated my totals in a little bit.

    Food: 21.40. This was spent as someone left the fridge open and the food went bad. We have to store it in the fridge as our kitchen gets too hot. We also had to buy more bread, cheese and then we spent some extra on treats. I'm glad this was before our hello fresh order was delivered!

    Fun: We spent 20 on a takeaway

    Other: We met up with my gran and waked around the garden centre, my daughter spotted a little fairy wish jar and she really wanted it. 99p on that, that was on Saturday and she hasn't even looked at it since the walk home! 3 spent this morning on some personalised stickers. The company I bought them from are doing a 'letter of the day' and if your name starts with that letter you get 35 personalised stickers free (delivery to be paid). Today was the letter my daughters name starts with so I've bought them, waiting for my sons name to be the letter of the day and I'll get him some as well. These stickers will be used on the stuff they bring to childcare. My friends ones have lasted over a year now with her washing them everyday, I won't use all 35 of them all at once so hopefully these will last me a good few years.

    So totals spent:
    Food: 155.22 / 250
    Fun: 20 / 60
    Other: 32.87 / 60

    Overspent on food but we shouldn't have to buy anything until Saturday, I've skipped the next hello fresh box as nothing much we want to try. A lot of olive based dishes next week, yuck!
    We have one box still available at 30% off which is 34.29 and then we'll be back to full priced boxes but I have 22.20 credit in our account as I complained as the avocado we got was mouldy (don't even like them so we wouldn't have used it anyway), we were missing a lemon which I'll need to buy but they aren't too expensive and the potatoes they sent were off (but luckily we had some in the house anyway). So our next full priced box will actually be 26.79. After this box is used I'll cancel my subscription again.

    I like the boxes for trying new recipes and think they are okay priced if there's a discount available but full price at 48.99 is just crazy, not worth it at all.

    Next week my plan is to use up as much in the freezer and the cupboards as we can. Theres just so much in there and it never gets used!
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 9th Jul 18, 4:37 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    Heres comes a very boring post.

    I seen someone else do it on their diary which I thought was interesting. Can't remember who though.

    Basically I want to work out how much my food costs me per day. When I lost weight back in May I ate the same thing for most meals except for tea, my plan is to do that again as I actually really enjoyed it and stuck to it. I tried to eat a lot more protein which made me fuller for longer.

    So my meals:
    Breakfast: porridge with cocao powder, protein powder, oat milk, peanut butter and agave nectar
    Lunch: chicken salad (lettuce, tomato, pepper, sweetcorn, carrot and cucumber) and a protein shake for after
    Tea: whatever I decide to cook that night
    Snacks: banana and a protein brownie.

    I'm going to take our tea out of the equation as its the only thing that will change.

    Oats: 89p for 1kg at Aldi, I use 40g so 4p a portion
    Oat milk: 1.50 for 1L, I use 100ml so 15p a portion
    Cocao powder: 1.99 for 100g, I use 5g so 10p
    Agave nectar: 2.50 for 250ml, I use 5ml so 5p
    Protein powder: 24 for 2.5kg, I use half a scoop which is 12/13g in my breakfast so 12p
    Peanut butter: 6.50 for 1kg, I use 25g so 16p
    Total: 67p

    Lettuce: 50p and does 3 lunches so 17p
    Cucumber: 50p and does four lunches so 12p
    Sweetcorn: 1.30 for 3 small tins, use half a tin a day so 22p
    Peppers: 1.25 for 3 and lasts 3 days so 42p
    Tomato: 69p for 6, lasts 6 meals so 12p
    Carrot: 30p for 500g, lasts around 5 days so 6p
    Chicken: 2.50 for 200g, I use 100g so 1.25
    Dressing: 1 for 180ml I use 20ml so 11p

    Total: 2.47

    Protein shake after lunch:
    24p for scoop made with 50ml water and 100ml unsweetened almond milk (1.80 for 1L) 18p

    Shake: 42p


    Banana: 13p each

    Protein brownie: 75p

    Total for day: 4.44

    will carry on post on new post as this is getting long
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 9th Jul 18, 4:59 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    So some main areas I think I can save on.

    Cut out the cocao powder and agave nectar, I like the cocao powder as it makes it chocolately and the agave nectar sweetens it up. I don't really need it. Cutting those out will be 15p per day.
    Peanut butter, buy it from the same place as my protein powder as its only 4.95 for 1kg (I like to get stuff that is pure peanuts, no added salt or oil) I actually got some as a free gift last time I ordered. Switching to cheaper brand, 12p a day instead of 16p a day. Saving 3p.
    Total saved would be: 18p on breakfast

    sweetcorn, buy lidls instead of asda as its 1.19 instead of 1.30. I know I could buy bigger tins for cheaper but I find they don't last and I end up throwing it out before I've used it. 20p instead of 22p for saving 2p

    Peppers: buy the pack that has the green pepper in it, I prefer to have all sweet ones but they are 99p instead of 1.25 which will save 9p a day

    Chicken: I feel this is the main one, I currently buy the precooked stuff. If I buy 650g of raw chicken breast for 4 and cook it myself. It will last 6 days and will be 67p instead of 1.25 so saving 58p.

    Cut almond milk and just make with wate, 18p a day

    Total saved: 1.06

    The next thing is the protein brownies and shakes, if I manage to buy it on the buy one get one free sales (normally manage to get between 35% and 40% off, I've put the prices for the 40% off above)

    That would save a further 2p at breakfast, 5p at my shake and 15p on my brownie for another 22p.

    They always seem to be giving away peanut butter so if I get that free (I have 2kg unused in my house currently!) then it saves 12p.

    If I do all of that and manage to buy things at the right time, 1.39 saved so daily cost will be 3.05.

    Its still high but a bit better at least
    • Toni'sfriend
    • By Toni'sfriend 9th Jul 18, 5:18 PM
    • 1,397 Posts
    • 13,319 Thanks
    sweetcorn, buy lidls instead of asda as its 1.19 instead of 1.30. I know I could buy bigger tins for cheaper but I find they don't last and I end up throwing it out before I've used it. 20p instead of 22p for saving 2p
    Have you thought of buying frozen sweetcorn and freezing it in portion sizes. I used to buy tins for my son and found exactly the same thing - waste. Now we do this and there's none. Just a thought.
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 9th Jul 18, 5:43 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    we have frozen sweetcorn for our teas but I prefer the tinned sweetcorn for salad as it has a nice crisp to it. fussy I know.

    I've also just decided I'll either have half a brownie a day or one every two days, I don't really need one per day. I dont want to cut them out though as it makes me feel like Im still eating something nice but it isnt as bad for me as a chocolate bar
    • Toni'sfriend
    • By Toni'sfriend 9th Jul 18, 5:56 PM
    • 1,397 Posts
    • 13,319 Thanks
    we have frozen sweetcorn for our teas but I prefer the tinned sweetcorn for salad as it has a nice crisp to it. fussy I know.
    Not at all. That's fair enough. If you're trying to loose weight the worst thing you can do is not enjoy what you're eating. I love sweetcorn - unfortunately it's usually on the cob covered in butter!!!!
    • GlendaSugarbean
    • By GlendaSugarbean 9th Jul 18, 6:56 PM
    • 57 Posts
    • 393 Thanks
    Re the weight loss, new advice is that even small weight losses and upping activity levels have massive gains in terms of your health. Personally, I'm not going to get anywhere near my pre-kids weight, but I can try to keep within healthy limits and move around as much as possible, especially as I'm in my crumbly 40s! You've got a lot to manage at the moment, so be kind to yourself
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 17th Jul 18, 8:16 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    Shamefully posting to say I've spent on the credit card. I lost my debit card and used my credit card and told myself 'I'll just pay it off as soon as I get home' Did I? Nope! I ended up using it for a few days and ended up spending 119.72

    In my budgets I have 103.69 left so I'm leaving myself 50 for the month and pay the rest to the credit card which means we've overspent this month by 66.03.

    I'm a bit annoyed at myself but I'm taking it as a learning curve. I worked out from November 2017 to June 2018 I spent 2842.77 on the credit cards which is on average 406.11 spent each month. This month is a lot less and as long as I don't spend anything else on the cards we will have improved. 9 days until I'm officially back at work which will hopefully make money things a lot easier.

    I've done a couple of small money saving things recently though.

    Earlier my daughter asked for an ice lollies out of the lidl brochure we got, I was about to say yes and then I remembered we had ice lolly moulds so I've used two of the capri suns I bought the other week which my daughter decided she didn't like the straw (children are odd) and I've frozen them into the moulds. She'll be able to have one tomorrow as they will be frozen by then.

    Another thing I've been doing is using up the shower gels/conditioners etc we have. I get bored of scents and end up chucking the half used bottle into the cupboard. We have loads of products we haven't used! This month I've finished off 1 shampoo, 3 conditioners and 2 shower gels. I'm also using the body butters I have as well. None of it is cheap, the majority of it is the body shop stuff. I'm hoping to try and use it all up instead of it sitting in the cupboard.
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 17th Jul 18, 9:21 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    just doubled checked the money spent on the credit card and it seems the last 3 payments are pending twice (it did this the other week and confused me!). So if I count up how much we've spent its actually 90.22 not 119.72. I'll keep an eye on this and update the proper figures when all the pending payments but if the 90.22 is correct, we've only overspent by around 36
    • Caspeia
    • By Caspeia 18th Jul 18, 10:10 PM
    • 68 Posts
    • 79 Thanks
    I've made a list of most things in my cupboard (not any spices/herbs as I have too many and not my baking cupboard either).
    There was some suprising finds, I found pork tenderlion in the freezer. Didn't know I had this.. I have 5 tins of tuna and 8 tins of chopped tomatoes... I'm not sure why I need so much of either of them! We also have a lot of frozen veg that we really need to use.

    Things in the fridge that need used up is one pepper, couple of onions and some potatoes.

    To use up these I've decided to do:
    1. veg curry. We have two microwave rices we can use up, couple of spices, coconut milk, an onion, the pepper (I also have frozen peppers I can add!) and some frozen butternut squash and sweet potato chunks. I want to attempt to make naan bread but not sure what I need. I have flour in the house
    2. I will use the potatoes and make them into wedges. I found a herby packet mix for wedges and we'll have them with the pork tenderlion (not sure how I'm going to season the pork yet) and also some frozen green beans
    3. Spaghetti bolognese with the mince in the freezer, will use the onion and bulk it out with some lentils. I have plenty of chopped tomatoes for this!
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