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Bad month

March 24th, 2016 at 03:07 pm

It's been a tough month. I've completely blown my very low budget of 80gbp for food shopping, withdrew some cash from savings and borrowed some money from my mum. Ugh.

I don't know how on earth I'll reach any of my goals if we keep on like this.

I redeemed 3.00 rewards from my survey today and I'm almost at enough Swagbucks for 5.00 PayPal. When these come through I'll put them towards Jason's cot that km paying off so I don't miss the deadline (29/4)and it gets added to my catalogue bill. I was debating whether to put it towards my credit card, bank of Scotland, but this is more important right now,

I'm thinking from June onwards I'll put any snowflakes towards Christmas shopping.

I'm going to make a note of how much I owe to savings. I really don't know if I'll get it paid back this year. I hate owing myself money. I worked hard to save it.

I'm on the lookout for a new job, work is getting me down.

Hubby has been invited out by his friends. We really can't afford it but I want him to go because it's been over a year since he's seen them.

Goals

January 28th, 2016 at 10:53 am

I've decided I'd like to get my emergency fund to 520 by December. With automatic deposits it will be at 487 so I'll need to find extra at some point.

I'd also like to get rid of credit card one and get the catalogue to 2k.

Lofty goals? Maybe. It'll be a challenge.

I cashed a cheque for 4.96 that's been in my bag. Using this for expenses and I have ten pounds of mum survey rewards that should be in my account soon.

Little tidbits

October 25th, 2015 at 07:30 am

Met my friend for lunch yesterday. Spent 15.00 exactly. We went to a relatively new place, it was really good.

Found out at work that we're not getting a 20GBP gift card at Christmas. I've gotten it every single year since I've been there. I was going to count it as a snowflake as well. Oh well, I'll need to think outside of the box.

Dh and I always go Christmas shopping together, well, all of us go. We can't this year now that eldest is actually aware of everything. The plan is to divide and conquer.

For the past two months I haven't collected my payslip at work. I know what I've been paid anyway. However, it is a bit lackadaisacal of me to not collect it. Yesterday I got them. My rate of pay increased at the start of the month. Obviously, it increased so much I noticed. Nope. I had an inkling it might have increased, only because it happens every October.

I'm getting the impression at work that things are not going well. At all. I wonder if redundancies are in the future? This happened to lots of management years ago. I'm not exaggerating; a ton of them went. I remember coming back from maternity leave and noticing a lot of people were gone.

At work yesterday upper management kept getting my name wrong, or my nickname rather, so I assumed he must have been talking to my former supervisor who always uses my nickname. Before he used my full name. He only got one letter wrong but I think I missed my chance to correct him since when he first did it I was dealing with a customer and I didn't think he was talking to me - since it's not my name. Never mind.

My mum told me last week that she is saving up for her funeral. Told me she doesn't want to leave me with the burden of it. (She's fine, she was just talking to her friend about it)

The clocks went back. It didn't feel as bad as last year though when I was still doing night feeds so it's not been too bad.

End of the Month Update/Snowflakes Total

July 31st, 2015 at 09:54 am

I can't believe it's the first of August tomorrow. July was definetly a quick month!

I don't think I posted about this the last time I updated, but a few weeks ago dh got a letter saying that his catalogues were merging. He is essentially paying the same company twice. Want to give them all of your money? I hate it. It gets worse... the icing on the cake is that he told me he couldn't remember one of his account numbers (he usually signs in with his email) so he was late with the payment. Did you check the shredding pile (huge bag!) No. He knows that every time we get mail - if it isn't junk, that goes straight to recycling - it will be in the beside the shredding. He came back a few minutes later with a statement.

Dh is still at me to get a best friend. Sure, I'll just magic one up. I think he forgets that you can't just become friends with people overnight. He's got a few group of friends, some of the newer ones work in the same place as us. Unfortunately, unless I suddenly become interested in gaming, I can't claim them as my own. Whenever I see them, they'll ask "How's [Dh] getting on with x game?" I don't know; aren't you playing the same game? Honestly. "Tell him I'll be online later" Ok, but you've probably already told him.

Then there's one of his oldest friends, who is completely not interested in gaming or anything else for that matter. We get on well. In fact, I remember meeting him for lunch when I was on maternity leave with SG and during my last maternity leave, he could always be relied on to ask how I was getting on with the *three* kids. Not good, want to take one of them off my hands? Smile He has recently set up house, so I foresee a wedding in the future.

I spent a while this morning thinking about how much to pay to cc#1. I decided on 39.09 because the number it's at right now - 1629.09 - is bugging me.

Why didn't I put any of that energy into cc#2? I'm still hoping I will be able to do a balance transfer soon. I had to get in touch with Nationwide again because I still haven't received the paperwork. The woman was worried because it's been sent twice, but I never get it. If I don't get it within the next 3-5 working days I've to go into the branch.

If I do have to go into the branch, I'll get dh's birthday card while I'm there since I have to walk past the shop anyway. He told me what he wanted me to get him, but I ordered him something online from the kids yesterday. I saved 20%, or 4.58, so that is counted as a snowflake. It's going straight to my emergency fund.

Here's my snowflakes for this month:

8.25 Approved Food discount
3.50 Tesco coupon
2.50 Opinion Outpost rewards
15.00 Swagbucks rewards (paying myself back)
3.00 MySurvey rewards
4.58 20% discount savings

Total: 36.83

This is my best month yet! Of course, it helps that I paid myself back for Swagbucks a few months ago.

My total snowflakes YTD are now sitting at 165.07.

I think it's safe to say that July shaped up to be a good month.

Goal Update etc

July 19th, 2015 at 08:02 am

I realised I haven't posted about my goals recently.

As of today, I have 227.40 in my Emergency Fund. This means that I have to add 122.60 to reach my goal of 350.

Credit card debt is sitting at 4635.22. Bank of Scotland is almost under 3k, sitting at 3006.13. If I get accepted for Nationwide's new credit card, which is offering me 0% on balance transfers for 26 months I think, I will transfer about 1000 I think.

Bank of Scotland's minimum payment is now at 56.xx. If I do get accepted for Nationwide, I will ideally work out a payment plan to get it paid off within the interest-free period (Ideally, Tesco too but I've only been paying the minimum, or just a bit more, to that)

Catalogue debt is slowly decreasing too. Minimum payment is still in the hundreds though, currently at 133.xx. At its highest I'm sure it was 180, maybe closer to 190. I am also working on paying off J's cot and mattress.

Come December though the BNPL items I couldn't afford to pay off will be added. I'm not looking forward to that, although with my extra payments it won't be as bad.

I think I'm pretty close to achieving my snowflakes goal of 150, so I may have made that too low. However, having the first three months of the year off definetly helped that.

I bought SG a new top, two pairs of leggings and slippers in the sale yesterday. That was less than ten pounds in total. She absolutely loves them, although I will now have to get another pair of slippers for nursery since these are her only pair in her new size.

More spending etc

July 12th, 2015 at 07:21 am

I've been picking up little shops after work, usually between 10-12GBP.

A while ago, I redeemed 25 Paypal rewards from Swagbucks. I sent 10 to debt/EF but I kept the other 15 in the bank because I was a bit short. That was months ago, but I finally paid myself back this morning. And now my emergency fund looks better for it.

I've been feeling a bit rundown these past few days. I think I just need to start taking better care of myself.

I was talking to my co-worker the other day and I realised that he has the same birthday as Laura/KeepingItFrugal. At least, I think he does. 15th December, am I right?

I need to catch up on the blogs. I've been skimming but not reading properly if you know what I mean? I like to know what everyone's up to.

We're taking SG to get her feet measured tomorrow. It's been a while so I think she might be up a size. J isn't walking yet so he won't be getting new shoes yet.

Spendy Day

July 6th, 2015 at 04:32 pm

I spent way more than I planned to today...

We went to Tesco this morning, with the intention of getting some milk, bread/wraps and some other things. We were later leaving this morning so I ended up buying a sandwich, fruit and juice for lunch. And something for SG too. In the end, that was almost fifty pounds (we stocked up on much-needed toiletries, found a few hair accessories for SG, socks for J, t-shirt for dh plus fresh fruit) I saved 3.50 using a coupon so that will be counted as a snowflake.

We also went to the Costa that is inside Tesco. Spent 7.10

Before we left I paid two weeks worth of rent and 30 to Tesco credit card.

I'm working four hours extra tomorrow. My manager persuaded me. She's good at her job.

Oh I just received a ton of email notifications from other blogs, one of them was from when Crreditcardfree gave away a book. Did this happen to anyone else?

June Snowflakes Total

June 30th, 2015 at 07:26 pm

15.00 Mumsurvey rewards
2.50 Opinion Outpost rewards

17.50 worth of survey rewards accumulated. It was divided 70/30 between debt and the EF.

May Snowflakes Total & Tracking Spending

May 31st, 2015 at 07:23 am

For the first time this month, I included my colleague discount savings in my snowflake - or at least, a few weeks of with it. I stopped when my manager reduced my hours. I'm not sure if I'll add it for June, we'll see. (I also still owe myself 15.00 of Swagbucks rewards)

6.00 Tesco coupon
7.25 Colleague discount
2.50 Opinion Outpost
3.00 My Survey rewards

18.75 Total

I have now accumulated 110.74 worth of snowflakes, or 74% of my goal. I must have set my goal too low at the start of the year, but it was just a guess.

I have decided to keep track of any impulse purchases and note exactly what I spend in the baby category, and gifts etc. So far, it's looking like this:

food: 25.20 (140 budgeted)
baby: 90p (70 budgeted)
gifts: 9.00 (zero budgeted)
impulse: 1.80 (two bottles of Oasis juice, zero budgeted)

My cousin had her fourth baby boy a few days ago, so I bought some clothes and a card for him.

April Snowflake Total

April 30th, 2015 at 08:19 am

5.00 Found money in jeans pocket
9.00 my survey rewards
2.50 opinion outpost
5.00 paypal swagbucks

Total: 21.50

I think that I might be able to reach my goal of 150. I just need to find other sources because I haven't been doing surveys as much - very little, actually. Next month I will be on the look out for coupons and I will include my colleague discount savings, although sometimes that can be as little as .30 savings.

This could be a long update

April 23rd, 2015 at 01:25 pm

It's been about a week since I updated. I've been reading the blogs, I just haven't had the time to update mine. You guys have been busy. I'm really pleased that some other SA members have joined the Facebook group Organized Friends.

I'm getting by at work, still adjusting to my hours and in bed by 9 most nights. I got away an hour early yesterday because they had overspent on wages (not enough sales). Normally, I would have stayed but SG had an appointment with the speech therapist.

I think we're going to save up for a tv, I'm hoping dh will come round to my way of thinking. It'd be good to pay cash for it.

I ordered SG's mattress and a cot for J from my catalogue. SG is finally in her new bed, she loves it. Next to set up is the cot and move him into SG's room.

CC#2 updated, it's now 4052 I think. So close to being under 4k.

I think as of payday on 1/5 I will start to count my 10% colleague discount as a snowflake.

My mum almost has 200 in her savings. She still doesn't know.

An Update

April 16th, 2015 at 06:07 am

Both of my rewards were credited to paypal the other day: 5.00 from swagbucks and 3.00 from my survey. I transferred them to my bank this morning, then immediately sent 70/30 to credit card #2 and my emergency fund.

I noticed that Suits is now on Netflix, and I found disc four from season 3 I think that I had from Love Film. I sent the discs back yesterday and officially cancelled it this morning. I use Netflix more these days anyway.

I've been better with shopping after work - I have only been buying essentials. Starting next month, I think I will do one online grocery shop to save myself some time.

I need to start putting money aside for J's cake smash/family photo shoot in June. I should have done it already. We also need to buy new outfits for us all.

I am so pleased with my emergency fund balance. As Decisive Paradox noted, it's the highest it has ever been. I just hope I don't need to use it anytime soon.

Dh is taking the kids to a birthday party out of town on Saturday. I never got the holiday so I can't go.

We got a cheque from our utility company for 4.96. I need to get it to the bank soon.

Work/Life update etc

April 9th, 2015 at 05:57 am

I'm off today so I finally get to update here. I've been too tired at night to do it.

I'm slowly adjusting to 4.30am rises,although I'm in bed by nine most nights. I've not even been watching once upon a time on Netflix, I've been too tired.

Last night Dh and I sorted out our holiday/vacation requests. He's handing them in today. It's mostly just for J's birthday and Dh's.

I've abandoned swagbucks, I just don't have time. I might try on my days off though.

I found a five pound note in my jeans pocket. I'll be counting that as a snowflake.

I've been shopping after every shift so far. I haven't totaled up the damage yet.

I need to come up with another easy meal plan. We had three days of chicken this week after I cooked one in the slow cooker.

I think that's all. I'm away to see what you all have been up to.

March Snowflake Total

April 1st, 2015 at 08:04 am

I managed to accumulate 25.50 worth of snowflakes for March. I'm more than happy with this.

2.50 TESCO coupon
12.50 Opinion Outpost
0.50 Baby cereal coupon
10.00 Papyal (swagbucks)

NSD, survey rewards

March 23rd, 2015 at 02:46 pm

Today has been a NSD, thankfully. I love those.

I redeemed two 3GBP my survey rewards over the past few days. I also redeemed 5GBP opinion outpost rewards. I'm still working on Swagbucks, 300 + to go now. If I keep at it I can probably request it this week but I'm trying not to spend too much time on it.

I'm just really looking forward to those rewards so I can payoff debt and add to my emergency fund. I am easily pleased these days.

I updated my sidebar the other day. My goal for the year is to obtain 150GBP worth of snowflakes, for the first two months of the year I'm at 49.99, which is 29%. I think it could still go either way though. I had zero snowflakes last year so I'm not complaining.

Debt Paid

March 10th, 2015 at 09:28 am

This morning I paid off what we owe to mil: 190. It feels good knowing we don't need to worry about that now. Dh is happy because they still aren't talking.

I redeemed 7.50 of rewards from Opinion Outpost.

I ordered SG's dolls house. I had a coupon for 2.50 off. Another snowflake. They seem to be few and far between this month though. I am still aiming to redeem 25 GBP paypal rewards from Swagbucks, although I haven't been meeting my goal so it will probably be April before I can do this.

Dh is away out to work this morning to pick up his bike. While there he is going to try and talk to his manager about changing days when I'm back. He's also handing in my return to work form. If he can't swap days I hope I can.

February Snowflake Total

March 1st, 2015 at 08:16 am

As usual, my snowflakes were from survey rewards. I actually did better than last month.

5.00 Paypal (Swagbucks)
12.50 Opinion Outpost
9.00 My Survey

Total: 26.50

I have been allocating my snowflakes 70/30. 70% goes towards cc#2 while the other 30% helps to slowly build my emergency fund.

A Snowflake

February 24th, 2015 at 10:49 am

I had enough points from Opinion Outpost to redeeem a 2.50 paypal reward. The funds are now in my bank. I will be dividing this 70/30 between cc#2 and my emergency fund.

I told dh this morning that I have been putting my survey rewards towards credit card - I never mentioned savings though. I suggested he could do the same but he wasn't interested.

I think that will be the last of my snowflakes for this month.

January Snowflakes Total

January 29th, 2015 at 09:13 am

With only two days left of the month, I don't foresee any more snowflakes. So I thought I would update with my total for this month.

All of my snowflakes for this month came from survey rewards. This is what this month looked like:

5.00 Amazon Gift Card
2.50 Opinion Outpost Paypal reward
5.00 Mumsnet survey
2.50 Opinion Outpost PP reward
3.49 Amazon GC

18.49 Total Snowflakes

If I can keep this up every month I will exceed my goal of 150.

A Free Present!

January 23rd, 2015 at 08:03 pm

I don't know if anyone remembers that me and DH were considering getting SG a dolls house before Christmas. Then we came to our senses and decided to wait until her birthday in March. I've been checking online occasionally, but never seeing anything. The plan was we were all going to make a day of it and go shopping. Well, I found one on Amazon tonight for 3.49. It was the last one. I quickly told DH who told me to go for it, even though he hadn't seen it. Well I ordered it. And I had a gift card. And it was free delivery.

2.44 sent to cc#2, 1.05 to EF

I really hope we're happy with it. It comes with accessories, I'll need to see what else we have to buy.

Early rise, rewards

January 18th, 2015 at 08:04 am

Both kids decided that it was time to wake up at 5, despite a late night.

By 7am I had claimed a PP survey reward from Opinion Outpost. 2.50 again. I paid 1.75 to cc#2 and 75p to the emergency fund. I noticed that it's been ten days since I first claimed. Hopefully in another ten days I'll have enough points to redeem again.

I'm quite enjoying finding snowflakes. I've got no idea how much I'll find for the year, but it's fun anyway.

Another Snowflake!

January 10th, 2015 at 09:31 am

My paypal account was credited with 2.50 today from Opinion Outpost. I sent 1.75 to cc#2, 0.75 to EF.

Snowflake #1

January 9th, 2015 at 06:41 pm

I just ordered a Christmas tree storage bag from Amazon. It was 8.99, I had a 5BP gift card. I sent 3.50 to cc#2, 1.50 to EF Smile

Last day of 2014

December 31st, 2014 at 08:48 am

I think I'm the only one that's pleased that this year is almost over. It's been my worst year to date so I'll be glad for 2015 to be here.

I was thinking about snowflakes last night - the money kind, that is. I haven't really got any disposable income since I put all extra towards debt repayment so I will take "snowflakes" out of my budget. I'm not sure if this will work, I'll see next year. For example, if I save £5 off my shopping I'll just include that in my budget as spent. The only exceptions will be direct bank deposits and Paypal, which I am considering aiming for most of the time from Swagbucks, or at least every other time. It costs more than an Amazon GC but I think it will be worth it.

I was also wondering whether I should aim to find x amount of snowflakes. When I tried this almost two years ago I didn't do well, but I never made a goal and I don't think I was as motivated then. So my goal will be to find £150 worth of snowflakes. Realistic? Who knows? We will find out in 2015.

Oh, a snowflake!

December 19th, 2014 at 12:18 pm

I just checked my bank balance there and noticed that 5GBP had been deposited. I done a survey a few weeks ago and the reward was 5GBP. I know it's not officially January yet but money from this pay will go toward January until I get paid on the 9th. So, as per my new 70/30 rule:

- 3.50 to cc2
- 1.50 to EF

It couldn't have came at a better time because I'm feeling particularly happy today. This time last year I ended up having emergency surgery; today I finally got round to doing some baking with SG. All in all, a good day.