Money Wise Talks 24/03/2022

Wowsers! What a week!

Not going to lie, but I’m on cloud 9 at the moment. Everything, and I mean everything this year is falling into place… amazing job, better salary, better work life balance and potentially a new *BLEEP*!

Sorry, I still don’t have the *BLEEP* 100% yet so I’m still keeping it under my hat. It is costing me serious amounts of cash though, even now before everything’s been confirmed. It’s making my anxiety levels hit the roof! All this money just passing through my fingers like water.

However, on the flip side of that, my general spending is so low right now (must be the fear of getting further into debt that is scaring me) and I’m on fire with no spend days and just general spending! I definitely should have done a no spend month this month!

I spoke last week about getting back into doing money challenges as I feel these really work for me and over the last week I’ve been thinking of things I can do. This is my plan

  • Save 1p a day challenge
  • Eat for £10 a week challenge – and see how long we can go for
  • April no spend month

I’m going to make the trackers for these and will upload them and let you know when these are available via my Instagram account.

Save 1p a day challenge

Pretty obvious what I need to do on this challenge but I am going to save all the money into a jar and not touch it until the challenge is up. I already have a jar where I keep my 1’s and 2’s so will use these as part of the challenge. I’ll get these counted tonight and will share the start of the challenge tomorrow via Instagram and then weekly on this blog.

Eat for £10 a week challenge

I want to only spend £10 a week on food for me and my daughter. This will cover 7 breakfasts, 5 school packed lunches, 5 lunches for me (I work from home), 2 weekend lunches and 7 dinners. This does not include toiletries, cleaning supplies or pet food. I’m sure I can do it, but will need to meal plan and be creative with the food I already have in my cupboards. To be honest, I want to get rid of so much out of the cupboard and I’m hoping by doing this, we can eat through some of the food that never gets eaten.

April No Spend Month

After a month of huge spends because of the *BLEEP* and my daughters 10th birthday, I need a reset and a no spend. However, my daughter is off for two weeks in April so I am going to set aside some cash for that. I also have a meal planned with friends at the end of April and I’m not missing that either. However, the rest of the month there will be no spending on;

  • Clothes
  • Toys
  • Takeaways
  • Food outside the weekly budget

You may be wondering why I’m still prepared to spend money in the half term and to go out with friends and I want to explain that I don’t want us to stop doing the rare things that we enjoy. It’s just not the point for me or the reason I do these type of challenges and no spend months. For me, it’s to get out of the habit of careless spending. I mean if I was out every weekend with my friends, well that would be another matter but I’m not. And I don’t know about you, but getting four friends together that all have children and some having husbands well it’s a task in itself. So when we’re all free and want to see each other we go for it. As for my daughter, this is her childhood and I want to spend the holidays with her making memories and if that means saving a very small part of my income for these times, well that’s what I’ll do.

I think it’s important as well, if you’re on a debt pay off journey, like I am and you’ve been on it years because you have a single income or whatever other reason, you need to have some elements within the journey that you look forward to. For me it spending time with my daughter and not saying no all the time and seeing my friends every now and again. Yes it may take me a little longer to pay down the debt but I want to live as well as be debt free.

What I Have Spent This Week

£10.18 Macdonalds

£6.34 Asda

£1.40 Co-op

£7.63 MoonPig

£15.87 Morrisons Food Shop

£31.00 Hair

£10.00 Cash out

£23.97 Cinema for 3

£10.92 Vet

£18.49 Trampoline pole

£33.00 Ninja Warrior

£200 Daughters birthday present – New bike

Total £368.80

Total spend on food was £33.29 which isn’t that bad at all, and that includes the takeaway. The cinema, Ninja Warrior and new bike I have paid for by pulling £300 out of savings. So although my emergency fund will have decreased, my debt hasn’t increased which is perfect. I hope to pay that back in dependent on what my salary comes out at for March. I’m hoping for great things from my salary this month so I better not be disappointed.

The trampoline pole was a replacement part from the damage to the trampoline in the recent storms. I was surprised at how easy it was to fit. Let the free entertainment continue 🙂

Moonpig cards were just because I left it to late to post someone’s birthday card. I thought if I did it via Moonpig it would get there for the next day so that’s why I was happy to pay the higher price. Anyway, it turned out it still got there 3 days later and late so I would’ve been better just buying cheap and posting it myself. I’ll know for next time!

Hair was just the usual root top up for me. This is the cheapest I can get my hair done for as I don’t have it blow dried, it’s just left wet. Last year I used to go every 3 weeks because I hated the sight of grey. Especially when it went completely white during lockdown and our hairdressers had to close. However, by me going every four weeks, it saves me an £124 every year! Amazing really that these small changes can add up to so much!

This time next week, I should know if the *BLEEP* is going ahead so I’ll of course let you all know on here all the ins and outs. But until then, have a great week.

H

Money Wise Talks 10/03/2022

I feel like I’ve been away for ages, but it’s only been a few weeks.

Time has stood still since losing my little brother. And the motivation to do anything disappeared entirely.

Grief is a crazy thing isn’t it. One minute your eating a bag of crisps, next minute your crying into them. And I still can’t believe he’s gone. Taken far too soon at 34 years. Life is really cruel.

It’s made me feel abit like I want to go ‘YOLO’, but I know I’ll be undoing all the good habits I have been building, abeit not perfectly but with definite effort on my part.

In terms of my money, I’ve not been tracking it and feel it has got out of hand. However, I have not used my credit card at all and even cash flowed two bald tyres on the car.

What I have Spent This Week

£15.80 Hobby Craft for World Book Day

£3.50 Next T Shirt for World Book Day

£17.40 Tesco

£13.61 Just Eat – Takeaway

£3.00 Drinks

£17.30 Just Eat – Takeaway

£100 Two car tyres

£0.87 Car Parking

£10.38 Macdonalds

£5.99 Football

£20.00 Donation to Epli

£10.18 Macdonalds

£60.36 Morrisons

£10.00 Cash (just in case cash – still got it)

£42.65 Petrol (to drive to funeral 250 miles away)

Total £331.04

It’s definitely as bad as I thought. My absolute worse habit at the moment is takeaways. If I’m tired or down I have zero energy to cook so always, and unfortunately more often than not, reach for a takeaway. I’m not going to be to hard on myself after what our family has just been through, but it is one of the things I’d like to do better on for the rest of this month. I’m not going to say we won’t be having any takeaways because that won’t happen, but I think trying to have just one a week at the most would be a good start.

I’ve nearly paid off my MBNA card now with two lines to go worth a total of £156.74. It doesn’t feel like it’s taken me that long to pay off now looking back when I started it in October. Once this is paid off I will keep it free and available for when my Barclaycard comes off the balance transfer rate at the end of the year so I can transfer the balance across for 0%.

With Barclaycard, I currently have a total of £5299.51 not at 0% and £6151.36 on 0% so when MBNA is paid off I’ll be putting everything I can at this to clear as much as possible off the £5299.51, so when the other amount comes off 0%, I can hopefully transfer the lot onto MBNA for 0% again.

Having a plan for my money now I’m earning more definitely needs to be my main focus now and intend to pick myself up and make it a priority again.

Thank you to my readers that have stuck with me whilst I took a few weeks off from writing. Your messages and support has not gone unnoticed and I am entirely grateful to you all.

H