My 50/50 Pot

Finances are a constant strain and worry for me at the moment. I will post a lot more in detail in future about how I do or don’t get everything to balance out but here is a quick summary. Basically my income is pretty static at just over £1100 a month. My expenditure is a bit more flexible, although it is already squeezed pretty tight, and is just a balancing figure by the time the mortgage etc is paid, and there is rarely any money left for luxuries.

However, just before Christmas a couple of things happened that made me realise that this constant teetering on the edge doesn’t work. First off my mortgage company decided to write a few days before Christmas to tell me that I was behind with my mortgage and that I needed to pay the shortfall by the end of the year. Timing was rubbish. And it was the first time that they had informed me that I was not paying the correct amount each month.
Then my boiler packed up. Yet again. Just a couple of days before Christmas and right in the middle of a particularly cold spell, with both boys home from school.
Both things combined sent me into a real spin. I wanted to just cancel Christmas, and hide under the duvet with a hot water bottle and sleep until it was all over with. But as a lone 2017-01-13-20-28-02parent that is just not an option. So I simply had to deal with it, although it was a hard lesson to learn. Thou shalt not get by by the seat of your pants………

So I am trying to build myself a bit of a buffer. I’ve come up with an idea, my “50/50 plan”. I am going to try to save £50 per month on my current expenses, but also try and make an extra £50 income per month. I am hoping that the income 2017-01-13-20-28-36will work alongside my 31 Day Minimalism Challenge, but tightening my already pretty squeezed expenditure by a further 50 pounds a month is going to be tricky
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I did start this in December, as there is no time like the present to start, but January will be my first month to see if I can actually do it. I’ve drawn up a page in this year’s planner, so that I can see it visually, and that will hopefully help me along with it when I need a push. Here is progress to date. I’m really chuffed with how well I’ve done on selling things I don’t need any more, reducing the bills is proving a little harder, so needs more thought. But 13 days in, and it looks positive.

Allison x

Ready. Steady. Go.

So, where to start. I have been writing this blog for some time now, but for the last year or so I think I have become lost. I have lost my way in life, I have lost ‘me’, and I have definitely lost sight of what I wanted out of my blog.

A quick summary for those of you who have not followed me before or do not know me.

Hello **frantically waves and smile**. I’m Allison. I’m a lone parent (I hate the term single mum, but yes I’m one of those aswell). I have two boys who are now 11, and 4, a rescue collie who is 8ish, a beautiful black bunny who is 8 months old, and 4 fish, who are a few years old. I live in a relatively big house, which I have a pretty huge and unaffordable mortgage for. I’ve been divorced for almost 3 years now. I was married for decades before that, I kind of lost count of how many years.

I have a lot of things that I should be happy about. Yet I am not happy. In fact, I am decidedly unhappy. I dislike my life a lot of the time.header2

I hate my body, even though it has given me my amazing boys. It is blobby and gross, and there is too much of it. I used to love my hair, but it in an awful moment of upset a few years ago I hacked it off myself. Now I don’t even like my hair. I’m constantly tired, and I feel fat and frumpy and horrid.

I really hate my house with a passion, I always have done, and I never really wanted to buy it, I panicked and allowed myself to be talked into it. It had ‘a lot of potential’, said my ex. What he really meant was ‘it has a lot of potential to be a huge money pit that will never be worth what you pay to put it all right’. It has never felt like a home. I am messy and unorganised, and my house looks like a bomb has hit it, even though I blame the kids, it is really because I just don’t care about it to take care of it.

I hate that I am always broke, only just managing to keep my head above water most weeks. It wasn’t always like this, and this is a choice that I have made in order to spend time with the people who are most important in my life. My children.

I feel like a rubbish parent. I am always yelling at my children, I have smashed things in anger, I have sworn (about them and at them), I feel like I am not being a good example. I feel like I cannot provide them with all the latest gizmos that they want in this technology driven era, and am embarrassed at the way they look because we can’t afford for anybody other than me to cut their hair, or because they are in hand-me-downs that are 10 years out of fashion.On the really dark days, I will admit that I wish that I did not have them. Not that they were no longer here, oh my god no, just that they were somebody else’s responsibility and hassle. Life would be so much bloody easier if they weren’t my responsibility. But I also know that I couldn’t bare not being with them, feeling their little bodies creep into my bed in the darkness of the night sometimes because they have had a nightmare, or don’t feel very well. Or just because they want me.

Generally in life I am just not happy. I am unhappy. Really unhappy. And I don’t want to be. I want to be happy, and to lead a fulfilling life. I want to be a good mum, and bring my children up to be good young men. And that is where I started with this blog a few years ago. To help me on that search. For happiness. For ‘Me’.

To be continued…….