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  • FIRST POST
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 11th Nov 18, 10:14 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Champagne Lifestyle on a Lemonade Budget.
    • #1
    • 11th Nov 18, 10:14 AM
    Champagne Lifestyle on a Lemonade Budget. 11th Nov 18 at 10:14 AM
    Can it be done.

    Well I have decided I am going to give it a jolly good try.

    And I invite you to join me....Please share your tips, experiences, deals, bargains.

    For those who don't know me.....a little background.

    I am a widow, aged 67. My husband died four years ago after a long illness which wrecked our finances and which changed my financial landscape, hopefully not forever. I am working on it.

    At one point I thought I would have to go bankrupt but with the help of Martin Lewis (All Hail) and the collective knowledge, wisdom and support of the lovely people on these boards I pulled myself back from the abyss and am now financially stable.

    Not rich but I have "enough".

    Now a confession ........although I am very content to live a simple and now thankfully stress free life I do have a penchant for a little luxury.....and .........before I get too old and decrepit, its time for some fun. Time to finally reap the benefit of all my hard work.

    I have just moved house. It's a money pit and I love it. Doing up old houses is my idea of fun. I love rescuing old wrecks and turning them into elegant, comfortable homes and then when I sell ........hopefully they end up a profitable investment.

    I did well on the last one, which I bankrolled and project managed.i gave all the profits to my son who put in all the sweat equity and hours of back breaking work. I was happy just to break even on that one and give him a leg up.

    However .......as we all know "all work and no play makes Jill a very dull girl". So, whilst I am fully committed to making this new house a stunner And hopefully make a nice little profit I want to

    a) do it on a tight budget and
    b) not put my life on hold in the process this time.

    So......my plan is to live off my income of 12,000 and use some of my capital as my war chest for the renovations and hopefully at some point start up a small sideline business. No idea what yet.

    So how to streeeeeetch that 12k, until, in the words of one of our dear chancellors, I think it was Nigel Lawson ....."the pips squeak". How to extract every ounce of luxury and fun.

    I am in the process of reviewing my budget. This is always an ongoing process for me. I am constantly refining my budget to make the most of what I have. Sounds a bit anal but I do it at least once a month.

    This week I had to change my mobile phone but although I now have to pay an additional 5 per month I am happy with the deal. I also have to take my car in for what I hope will be a minor repair.

    My car is getting on a bit and so far has cost me peanuts to run but it's on notice. If it starts getting too expensive then its days are numbered. I can live without a car if I have to, at least as a short term measure. We have good transport links here. I have a free bus pass and a senior railcard. A taxi into the city centre is reasonable.

    I have good practical skills, love charity shops, and make most of my own lotions and potions.

    What I really need to do is learn now is how to get the fabulous entertainment, hotel and travel deals that I know are out there. As a solo there is often a premium to pay for the privilege of travelling alone......

    So now it begins......my quest for a champagne lifestyle......

    I am sooooooo worth it. Lol.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 11-11-2018 at 10:35 AM.
Page 55
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 14th Apr 19, 8:23 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Well said moo......you are so right we don't have to be rich to have lots of joire in our vivre. we can live with panache and style even if we are skint.

    Dahhhhhlings. There is No need to wear a hair shirt when you can wear a silk one.....even if it is from a charity shop.
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 14th Apr 19, 8:33 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Good morning everyone

    Have you seen the weather forecast for the end of next week.......wahoo. A predicted 18 or 19 degrees and lots of sunshine. Just think of the savings on the heating bills. and all those lovely champagne moments spent out of doors.

    Champagne moments today......in a few minutes I'm going to get filthy by making a start on lifting that dreadful carpet. Just give it an hour or so then a nice long soak in the bath and off out later to be wined and dined by my family.

    The carpet is going to be very hard work and it will be revolting. Frankly I really don't fancy the job but I shall obey my one hour a day rule. What's that??

    Well whenever I'm faced with a difficult task or something I really don't want to do I give it one a hour a day until it's done.
    • alice-mary
    • By alice-mary 14th Apr 19, 8:43 AM
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    alice-mary
    [QUOTE=lessonlearned;75702419 one hour a day rule. What's that??

    Well whenever I'm faced with a difficult task or something I really don't want to do I give it one a hour a day until it's done. [/QUOTE]

    I am SO glad that you wrote this as I really need it! I have so much decluttering and cleaning to do, when all I want to do is to knit by the fire

    I will do some of the nasty but necessary stuff for ONE HOUR today, then reward myself with some sock-knitting

    I am now in a much more positive mood than when I woke up...thankyou LessonLearned,

    Alice
    xx
    Debts in March 2007:
    Loan 24,180 Argos Card 2000 C Card 2000 O/draft 2000 Mortgage 113,000
    Debts in Sept 2018:Loan 0 Sister 0
    Argos Card 0 C Card 0 O/draft 0
    Mortgage 107,000 (finally on a repayment mortgage )
    Getting there slowly .....
    • joedenise
    • By joedenise 14th Apr 19, 8:45 AM
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    joedenise
    That's a great idea LL. Think I'll have to give that a try!
    • candygirl
    • By candygirl 14th Apr 19, 9:31 AM
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    candygirl
    I love that idea LL I've got so much decluttering to do before the kitchen gets done, but today I'll use that whilst I go through my holiday suitcasesBe careful lifting the carpet though, as Mum wrenched her shoulder doing hers
    "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

    (Kabat-Zinn 2004)
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 14th Apr 19, 10:01 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Yessss....54 minutes to lift a stair carpet, the bedroom carpet and load it all into the car for a tip run tomorrow, the guys at the tip are fab they always help me unload stuff their end.

    Need to have a break now and rest my back. Some brunch and a well deserved soak in a bubble filled bath.

    I've also got a bag for the charity shop tomorrow.

    Like you Candy I still have masses of decluttering to get through. I sometimes feel like King Canute, trying to hold back a sea of clutter.

    Little and often......
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 14th Apr 19, 10:07 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Ps the underfelt and grippers look ok. That will save me some money. Although the floorboards look in pretty good nick too. Carpet or nicely waxed floorboards......I'll decide later.
    • sugarbaby125
    • By sugarbaby125 14th Apr 19, 10:49 AM
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    sugarbaby125
    My birthday celebrations have begun
    My Champagne moment was going to the pub with my 2 sisters for a night of dancing. We all had a really good time dancing. My sister J mostly has to dance sitting down because of her morbid obesity and the resultant health issues she suffers.

    As the word is out that my birthday was imminent, I was made a fuss of over the mic by the DJ and I had to blow out 5 candles on a birthday cake. This was all a huge surprise to me and I was a bit embarrassed as well as being chuffed to bits. My sister J took a movie of the whole episode and it was lovely to watch at home.

    My younger daughter took photos of my sister J and I in my living room and when I looked at them I was so pleased. I looked good and my sister J and my daughter agreed. The exercise has really paid off. I looked really happy and relaxed which was how I was feeling. I look a lot slimmer in the photos than my current weight of 15 stones 11 pounds should make me look.

    I really made an effort. I layered my perfume with the matching body powder and body lotion. I wore eye make with clear nail polish and clear lip gloss. I wore my Coast gored full circle brown chiffon skirt, with my Kaleidoscope strapless top with my new Hobbs brown leather peep toe sling backs. I wore my brown lightweight Marks and Spencer jacket with my black leather long line jacket on top to keep out the cold.

    I was getting quite a lot of male attention last night, but I am extremely happy being single again, so I take the compliments but do not let them lead to any interaction with a man. It is always gratifying to receive compliments when you have made a real effort with your grooming.

    Wayne was at the pub and as usual he was spending so much time watching me talking, laughing and dancing with my sisters. At one point he annoyed me as he tried to talk to me, but I was not in the least bit interested in anything that Wayne may feel he had to say to me. He said hello to my 2 sisters when I was dancing, but neither returned the greeting. My sister Hope inclined her head in acknowledgement and my sister J gave him an incredulous look, as she was amazed at his cheek. I am so over Wayne, that unless he brings himself to my attention in the pub, I can overlook his presence in the pub.

    My birthday celebrations have started off really well. I am so glad that 2 of my sisters were able to come to London and share my birthday celebrations with me.
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 15th Apr 19, 4:50 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Sounds like you having a wonderful time SUgarbaby. Hope you Have a fabulous day today and are spoilt rotten. You are sooooo worth it.

    Well I had a lovely afternoon. My son cooked a scrumptious dinner and I had a fun filled time playing with my grandson and enjoying being with my family. Of all the pleasures in the world nothing beats spending time with people you love.

    My son and DIL have been using/storing lots of my old furniture in a couple of rooms that weren't used. Dil is now ready to bring those rooms into service so we went through everything. I surprised myself by saying keep what you want and we can ditch the rest. And I meant it.

    I am ready to let go now, I no longer need reminders of my past life. It's amazing how easy I'm finding it to let go. I'm shedding both weight and possessions, must be the Marie Kondo effect working its magic.
    • sugarbaby125
    • By sugarbaby125 15th Apr 19, 9:41 AM
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    sugarbaby125
    My Champagne moment last night was going to Karaoke with my family and friends and having a fantastic time.

    My Champagne moment today was being awarded my PIP and receiving back pay.
    • Prinzessilein
    • By Prinzessilein 15th Apr 19, 12:09 PM
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    Prinzessilein
    The Afternoon Tea was WONDERFUL!...And was so huge I brought some back in a plastic box for the next day!

    I was given a box of chocolate (gianduja) as a pressie ...which will bring me a couple of champagne moments when paired with a cup of the 'good' coffee!

    I have also treated myself to two large tumblers...with summer coming up, I thought it would add a little 'something' to drink my squash and sparkling water out of 'proper' tumblers instead of plastic beakers!!!....I have a teapot-for-one too, I have had that for some years...and I definitely find that a pot of tea is more of a champagne moment than a mug of the same brew!....new tunblers are NOT cut-glass- in fact they are not even glass (but look like it!!!) as I am a klutz who will drop and break things!

    Went to the Haberdashers this morning...two bags of assorted decorative buttons for the princely sum of one GB pound!... I use then for making bookmarks et.c for my Bibles.


    Sugarbaby
    - well done on the PiP and backpay! I know only too well the stress it can be waiting for the award you KNOW is justified!....treat yourself to a little something! You deserve it!
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 16th Apr 19, 7:42 AM
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    lessonlearned
    Good morning everyone

    Champagne moments yesterday......having a wardrobe sort out, finding summer clothes that now fit, and losing another 1lbs this week. Aiming for more wardrobe sorting in the next few weeks when I will be able to get rid of some of my too big clothes.

    Prinzessilien. Yesssssss to the nicer glassware. So often we do this, we save things "for best" whilst all our nice things remain in cupboards, never seeing the light of day.

    Where's the luxury in plastic beakers.

    I too can be clumsy so in the past I would be nervous about using my good things. Not now, as I gradually declutter I am now starting to use and wear all my nice things.

    Sure, it takes a bit more effort to dress nicely, lay a pretty table with flowers and nice crockery and glassware but it makes every day feel a little bit more special. Just a few simple tweaks can add to that feeling of luxury and abundance.

    Yesterday I bought a nice table runner from a charity shop for 0.75. I have several in different colours. I keep the crockery to plain white and ring the changes by switching table runners and the flowers to add colour.

    Flowers are nature's Chanel.

    I might not be able to dress in Chanel or even run to Chanel perfume but I can buy a nice bunch of flowers ......and when my garden is more productive I will even have some free flowers.
    Last edited by lessonlearned; 16-04-2019 at 7:44 AM.
    • sugarbaby125
    • By sugarbaby125 16th Apr 19, 7:47 AM
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    sugarbaby125
    Thank you Prinzessilein, at least I only had to wait 14 weeks from applying for my PIP to being awarded it.

    My Champagne moments yesterday were opening all of my cards and presents from my family. I got some really gorgeous gifts and a total of 200 in cash.

    My other Champagne moment yesterday was going to Frankie & Benny's in The Strand with my sisters H & J, my younger daughter and my younger son. We all enjoyed our food and drink and just talking and laughing among ourselves
    • joedenise
    • By joedenise 16th Apr 19, 9:00 AM
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    joedenise
    Sounds like you had a lovely birthday sugarbaby.
    • candygirl
    • By candygirl 16th Apr 19, 11:37 AM
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    candygirl
    Champagne moments yesterday, were sorting through 2 suitcases of holiday clothes, n finding some lovely stuff .Some of it, I will need to slim down for, but I still have 7 months to do it in
    "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

    (Kabat-Zinn 2004)
    • joedenise
    • By joedenise 16th Apr 19, 12:53 PM
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    joedenise
    Champagne moments yesterday, were sorting through 2 suitcases of holiday clothes, n finding some lovely stuff .Some of it, I will need to slim down for, but I still have 7 months to do it in
    Originally posted by candygirl
    I don't have enough clothes to separate them into winter/summer ones. They all fit into my wardrobe and chest of drawers. It just means some of it doesn't get used for about 6 months of the year!

    Denise
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 16th Apr 19, 6:03 PM
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    lessonlearned
    Champagne moments yesterday, were sorting through 2 suitcases of holiday clothes, n finding some lovely stuff .Some of it, I will need to slim down for, but I still have 7 months to do it in
    Originally posted by candygirl
    You'll do it......just think how great it will feel to get into those lovely things.

    How are you all getting on with the 1 hour a day rule.

    Well today I had my acupuncture and have been resting my knee so haven't done a great deal. I'll get cracking to tomorrow, I have a friend coming round. It will motivate me to get some cleaning done before she comes. .

    Chamoagne moments today........my lunch was a delicious ham and cheese stuffed croissant, a rare treat. And a bunch of deep red tulips.

    Going to watch Line of Duty ......
    • lessonlearned
    • By lessonlearned 16th Apr 19, 6:11 PM
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    lessonlearned
    I don't have enough clothes to separate them into winter/summer ones. They all fit into my wardrobe and chest of drawers. It just means some of it doesn't get used for about 6 months of the year!

    Denise
    Originally posted by joedenise
    Sounds like the perfect capsule wardrobe.

    One day I shall be a minimalist. I'm working on it. My aim is to have a perfectly edited and curated wardrobe of clothes that I adore and that make me feel like a million dollars.

    As I ditch all my old clothes when they get too big I am going to be very selective about what I buy to replace them.

    I did read somewhere that most people actually have far more clothes than is necessary and that they wear about 20 percent of their clothes 80 per cent of the time.I do now believe that "less is more". I am not going to just wantonly dispose of 80 percent of my wardrobe but I definitely won't be buying as much in future.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 16th Apr 19, 6:51 PM
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    caronc
    Good evening everyone,
    I had a major cull of my wardrobes last year and got rid of all my work wear apart from a few pairs of trousers. It was very liberating though I did then spend a fair bit on items more appropriate to my current lifestyle. I like layers so many things do me year round in one guise or another so I don't bother separating my winter/summer wardrobes. I will need a few bits this summer but will wait to see what the weather does. At least now I have time to keep an eye out for sales. I'm on the look out for a summer jacket, casual but not too casual IFYSWIM in navy or olive green- I kind of know what I want or more correctly what I don't but haven't seen it yet. I'm enjoying the fact that I have set myself an annual clothing budget, it helps me focus on what I really need but also means guilt-free spending when I do buy something as I know it's accounted for.

    • candygirl
    • By candygirl 16th Apr 19, 7:10 PM
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    candygirl
    LL I have been doing the 1 hour thing .Almost anything is bearable for 60 mins, with the exception of ironing
    You sound amazingly organised CARONC
    "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf"

    (Kabat-Zinn 2004)
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