Financial Review of Week 11/52 2018

Hi everybody,

We are nearing the end of another month, slightly over half way through now. Nearly a quarter of the year gone.

I am very much thinking in terms of the next year of my life and what it will take to be debt free by my 30th birthday.

I have roughly 54 weeks to achieve my goals, and monitoring my spending on a week by week basis will help me keep track.

FOOD AND HOUSEHOLD SHOPPING

Milk, Yogurt, Flatbreads, Falafel, Houmous, Peppers, Cucumber £7.03

Face Wipes x 2 £1.98

Frozen Peppers, Frozen Spinach, Frozen Onion, Frozen Broccoli £4.87

Lentils, Chickpeas, Poppadoms, Fajita Seasoning, Wraps, Rice x 8, Naan Bread £8.40

Milk, Baby Potatoes, Apples, Potatoes, Parsnips, Carrots £4.85

Meat Pies £2

Parsnips and Yogurt £1.30

Shampoo and Conditioner £2.98

TOTAL = £33.41

Not bad, I seem to be spending roughly around this much each week nowadays. I think that is quite normal.

DISPOSABLE INCOME SPENDING

SOCIAL

Chinese Takeaway £10

Lasagne, Chips and Drink £8.90

2 x Hot Chocolates and Cookie £6.62

Ticket to see The Flaming Lips £27.50

Various Lotteries at Work* £4

*I am doing this purely to feel like part of the team at work, personally I feel it is a waste of money but it makes me feel more ‘social’

TOTAL = £57.02

A bit on the hefty side, but it does include a gig ticket for what should be a very memorable night.

NON ESSENTIAL FOOD 

Sandwich and Gum £1.55

Berry Shot and Banana £0.75

2 x Gum £1.20

Dominoes Pizza Takeaway to celebrate losing weight* £21

*Yes, my logic doesn’t make much sense.

TOTAL = £24.50

HOBBIES – HEALTH

Deep Tissue Massage £17

WORK EXPENSE

Milk for work £0.55

Coffee for Work £2.29

TOTAL = £2.84

BEAUTY

Perfume £14.99*

*Ok, little story here of what an idiot I am. I was in Savers and this perfume was one of their special offers. It was a Sarah Jessica Parker perfume. It came in a nice tin. I like tins.

I’m not really a Sarah Jessica Parker fan.

I don’t really wear perfume.

Essentially I spent £14.99 on a tin.

CLOTHING MAINTENANCE

Fixing stitching, hems and rips on 5 items of clothing £25

TOTAL DISPOSABLE INCOME SPENDING = £141.35

TOTAL COMBINED SPENDING = £174.76

I do seem to be spending a lot of money. I am for the most part only buying what I need, and I am not using debt to make these purchases, but still I feel a little wary of spending.

 

 

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Financial Review of Weeks 9 and 10/52

Hi everyone.

Now that I am working TWO JOBS I have been a bit busy and as a result have neglected to do financial reviews.

Let’s get to it.

WEEK 9 AND 10

FOOD AND HOUSEHOLD SHOPPING

3 x Beetroot Shots and Greek Yoghurt £4

Crisps x 2, Milk, Bread £4.14

Milk x 2, Scampi, Wedges, Yorkshire Puddings, Quorn Mince, Pizza, Coffee, Cucumber £10.28

Orange Juice, Potatoes, Cheese, Flora, Poppadoms, Apples, Steak Slice £9.43

Bubble Bath x 3, Chilli Spices, Face Masks x 3, £5.49

Magnesium x 2, Peanut Butter, Wild Rice £23.96

Parsnips and Carrots £0.96

Big Morrisons Food Shop £88.12

Milk, Onions, Spaghetti Spices £4.15

Bread, Choco Liebniz £1.95

Birthday Candles, Birthday Cake £7.2

Mens Body Spray, Mens Deodorant, Pizza x 2, Cucumber, Raspberries £7.35

Milk £1.09

Listerine, Dental Floss, Dental Sticks, Toothbrushes £8.96

Milk, Bread, Chicken, Rolls, Carrots £4.66

TOTAL = £181.74

DISPOSABLE INCOME SPENDING

NON ESSENTIAL FOOD

Tea and soup £5.95

Gum £1.79

Gum £1.20

Sandwich £2.10

Sandwich £2

Coffee £2.30

(TOTAL = £15.34)

GIFTS

Treats for Work Colleague’s £1.60

Big Issue £5

Buying the shopping of the person in front of me* £5

Various donations over the week £5.10

Donation £0.70

TOTAL = £17.40

POSTAGE AND PACKAGING

Posting Little Brother’s Birthday Present £3.40

Parcel envelopes £4.39

Posting Mum and Step Mum’s Mother Day’s Presents £6.80

TOTAL = £14.59

SOCIAL

Burger Takeaway £8.70

Pizza Express Meal £30

Curry Night £8.64

Taxi £3.50

TOTAL = £50.84

HOMEWARE

Soup Mug x 2 £1.58

WORK EXPENSE

Tissues for work £0.39

Milk £0.55

TOTAL = £0.94

HOBBIES – HEALTH

Runners World 3 issue subscription £3

Women’s Health 3 issued subscription £3

TOTAL = £6

CLOTHING

Black and White striped dress £12

HOBBIES – MONEY

2 x 3 issue Money Magazines Subscriptions £2

In short I have spent a lot of money recently.

OK, so I have bought a lot of magazine subscriptions. They were my reward for getting the second job. I love magazines but rarely buy them as they are really a waste of money. I looked around for cheap deals and for the price of 2 impulse purchase magazines I have got 12.

*OK, so long story here. There was a women in front of me in a store buying a few things. It came to about £5. She tried to pay by card, her card was declined, she tried to pay by cash and it turned out one of the coins she thought was a pound coin was actually a Euro. She didn’t have any other means of buying her shopping.

I don’t know the circumstances for why she couldn’t afford to buy her shopping, all I know is once I couldn’t buy a cup of tea for similar reasons when I was in an Arts Centre in my town (one I later worked in) and the person in the queue behind me paid for it. I always vowed to return the favour ‘to the universe’ one day.

Also I have been giving away a lot of money recently as call me a superstitious idiot but when I went to my interview for the second job, I passed a homeless person and I gave them money as I got it into my head if I did something good then the Universe would treat me fairly. I have also read many theories that the richest people in the world have attracted their wealth by giving a lot of it away, plus in general I live my life by the idea that I would be ashamed of myself if I had something/wealth and I didn’t do something to help those without.

I have finally realised at long last that people create their own luck, but sending a few good ‘vibes’ out into the world won’t do any harm.

 

 

 

 

Status Revelation

I have secured a weekend job.

8 hours, 4 Saturday, 4 Sunday.

At a certain retailer.

I am overjoyed.

I had my induction today, and I continue tomorrow.

After tax, national insurance, pension, and union fees (I joined the union, for security) I won’t be on mega bucks, but my first full month payslip will coincide with the increase in my wage at job 1.

This means if I pretty much work everyday over the next year (annual leave will be paid and thus taken, don’t worry) I can maybe just about be debt free by my 30th birthday. Potentially.

Let’s recap the debts:

Balance Transfer Card 1: £1080

Balance Transfer Card 2: £2720

Debt to The Boy: £1800

Debt to Sister: £70

TOTAL = £5670

I also want to save £1000 as soon as possible.

At this moment in time I feel very strong, very happy, very confident. At this moment in time I feel like I am going to smash my goals.

I feel E P I C.

 

 

I Don’t Care (In a Good Way)

I am pretty sure someone I work with doesn’t like me.

He has seemed a bit off with me for a while.

The old Flo would have been agonising over this. The old Flo would have been crawling the walls with worry and anxiety. I would be going over and over again every exchange we had had together looking for proof he hated me, looking for signs, trying to fix it.

I would have been a simpering mess of a woman, practically resorting to bribery and flattery to win him over.

I would have done more to make him like me then I have done for previous crushes/lovers.

But now?

Well, I went over the ‘data’ calmly and rationally. I have no proof that our relationship has changed (though there does seem to be an increase in digs). All I have is speculation.

I look at the facts.

Do I think I am worthy of love, affection, good will? Yes. Do I think I am a good, hard working worker? Yes. Do I think I have done anything heinous to warrant this perceived change in his feelings towards me?

No.

So I am not going to invest any more time or energy on it.

I have finally realised something that has long traumatised me. That no matter how lovely, pleasant or agreeable you are as a person the law of averages dictates that someone, somewhere will dislike you. Probably for being so lovely, pleasant and agreeable in the first place.

I have shied away from social media, I have kept my opinions to myself, I have been afraid of rocking the boat or being outspoken lest I offend anyone. Whilst I don’t necessarily think that is the worst way to live, I have now decided to define my self worth on the opinions of those who matter to me.

And more importantly myself.

Do I like myself?

I can honestly say for perhaps the first time in my life I like myself. I am not perfect, but no one is, and I like myself in spite of or maybe because of my flaws.

I would go so far as to say I am great.

(However The Boy still maintains he is the best person in the Universe and I am at most second best).

So I don’t care if someone doesn’t like me. And I don’t mean in a petty, childish, antagonistic way. I am not about to be discourteous to my work colleague, I will still be professional, I harbour no ill will feelings towards him, I genuinely wish him nothing but the best.

But I have finally accepted that self worth should come from within, not from the opinions of others.

Thanks for reading guys, love to ya all.

Gooey Date Bars

This is my interpretation of a recipe I came across on the Money Saving Expert site.

I intend for these to be a post gym snack.

MAKES 16 SQUARES

INGREDIENTS

20cm x 20cm Baking Tin

250ml Water

200g Dates

180g Plain Flour

1/2 Tsp Bicarbonate of Soda

180g Soft Brown Sugar

200g Porridge Oats

180g Butter

METHOD

Cook the dates in the water over a low heat until the water is evaporated and you have soft, sticky dates.

Add all the other dried ingredients (sifted) into a large mixing bowl and then add the butter and mix together (it will be quick sticky/wet).

Add the date mix and combine well.

Press down the mixture into the lined tin and then bake in the oven for around about 50 minutes on Gas Mark 5, or until a skewer comes out clean.

Leave to cool and then cut into 16 squares.

These are so good that when I had one I went to The Boy and said ‘I feel sorry for you not liking dates, as these are great!’

Store Cupboard Granola (Batch Cooking)

This was inspired by a recipe in Eat Smart by Niomi Smart, which I currently have out on loan from the Library.

This recipe relegated from my cupboards my seeds, walnuts and cranberries which has freed up a lot of space.

INGREDIENTS

60ml Coconut Oil

125ml Agave Nectar

200g Porridge Oats

260g of mixed nuts, I used walnuts and pecans

60g Mixed Seeds (or seeds of your choice)

120g Dried Fruit, I used Cranberries and Prunes

METHOD 

Heat the oil and agave nectar together until melted, then set aside.

Add the nuts to a food processor and pulse until you have ‘chopped’ them into a mix of sizes.

Add the oats, nuts and seeds to a bowl and then pour over the oil/nectar mix, mix together.

Baked in the oven on Gas Mark 3 for 40 minutes/until golden and toasted.

Add the dried fruit and mix together.

Look at your depleted cupboards, smile and think ‘I need to go shopping’.

 

Batch Cooking My Work Lunches: Red Lentil and Coconut Soup

It’s been a while since I’ve been able to batch cook.

(Ok, that is not strictly true, I made 2 portions of a swede, cabbage, onion, carrot and pea soup earlier this week, but for various reasons it smelt and tasted bad, we all make mistakes).

I have decided to use up what I have in my cupboards, perhaps inspired by being stuck at home due to the snow, and I decided to tackle a bag of lentils I bought in 2017. Probably mid 2017.

I had a quick look on BBC Good Food for ideas and made this.

Note: I have divided it into 4 potions, but I think it would have been better as 3, but maybe I am greedy (I am greedy).

INGREDIENTS

150g Red Split Lentils

1 Tbsp Chopped Ginger (I used frozen)

2 Gloves Garlic (I used 2 tsp of lazy garlic)

1 lovely sized tsp of Turmeric (There ain’t no party like a Turmeric party)

1.2l Vegetable Stock.

1/2 Onion, or 2 handfuls of Frozen Onion

3 ‘clumps’ (technical term, obviously) of Frozen Spinach

400ml Can of Light Coconut Milk

METHOD

Add the lentils, turmeric, ginger and garlic to a large pan and then add the stock.

Bring to the boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes, until the lentils are soft.

Add the coconut milk, mix and then add the frozen vegetables and simmer until cooked.

Lean over the saucepan and smell your delicious soup.

When The Boy suggests you assign your coloured soup mugs to certain days of the week – e.g. Red = Monday, scoff at him, but actually think it’s a good idea.

(What colour would you guys assign to each day?)

(I would have Red = Monday, Pink = Tuesday, Green = Wednesday and Blue = Thursday)

(They only had 4 colours in the shop, poor Friday).