31 Aug 2018

August Progress Report

August seems to have gone in the blink of an eye!  We had reduced money to throw at the mortgage this month as the loans on our IPs are changing and I've started sending extra to them.

  • $142,369 down from $143,985
  • $17,789 redraw down from $18,825
  •  total mortgage reduction $1,616
Retirement Savings
  • mine $110,204
  • DH   $282,907
  • total  $393,111
  • total increase $8,060
  • $50 CC points
  • $53.22 savings
  • $103.22 savings
No exercise, too many carbs and coffees and too much stress this month have all taken a toll. I have put on weight and feel just exhausted. This is how I felt before I had my year off and really don't like it. Thank heavens I am about to go on leave as I know my weight goes down when I'm away from the stress - so expect a big drop next month.

My extra job - wonderful! My regular job - Awful - too much of everything except time to do it all.  'nuff said!

not much done at home this month. I did shred another lot of old client files that came due for destruction and we've been eating down the stockpile but thats all. Fortunately it will soon be spring and once we get back from our trip DH will have more time to work around the yard and house.

30 Aug 2018

.Working for the man...

Its been a busy & stressful week or so since my last post. My workplace is just very chaotic at present, and everyone is stressed to the max with all the changes and rumours of changes and cuts to budgets and services. I simply cannot keep up with the amount of work coming my way and so there has been some conflict and last week. I just walked out a few hours early one day as I simply could not take it anymore. I knew if I stayed I'd say something I'd regret.  So I, and many of my colleagues are just in survival mode right now.

Yesterday I met with my manager and who assured me of their full support and confidence in my decisions and priorities. That does help a lot! After a week of hearing the rumour our jobs might go before Christmas my manager refuted this and is pretty confident my job will remain, but may change slightly.I try not and get caught up in the rumour mill but sometimes it hard. Another colleague was let go last week.

So I've been living on coffee and carbs - not looking forward to my weigh-in tomorrow! Not much happening her but working and sleeping.

21 Aug 2018

More meals from the stockpile

We're doing well with out stockpile eat down. Heres what we've been eating the last few days.

DD made Vegetable Tortilla Stew from  Chrissy Teigens 'Cravings' book (p 54). OMG this is fantastic! and is now going to be a regular meal for me - I loved it! The recipe includes:

olive oil
chopped onion
green capsicum
ground cumin
chicken stock
black pepper
2 cans tomatos
3 cans beans

So we used up five cans in one go. I ate this on toast, with corn chips and also put some in the freezer.

I've been having fruit smoothies to use up some of the fruit, almond milk and protein powder.

Then yesterday DH made a lovely stew with minced beef, onions, carrots and potato - delicious! 

In the next few days my plan is to make a big pot of soup and also cook with the almond flour. The shelves are gradually emptying!

15 Aug 2018

Using up the stockpile challenge

So we're a few days in to our challenge and making good progress! heres what we've eaten so far:

Baked dinner on Sunday with leftover roast beef for sandwiches

box of pumpkin soup
ham & cheese sandwiches
I juiced the fresh pineapple and oranges

then I  made a pasta bake

pkt grated carrot
4 zucchini chopped
2 boxes of tomato & garlic minced
1 tin red kidney beans
1 onion
1/2 pkt pasta
1 pkt haloumi cheese
grated cheese

I did the veggies in a little olive oil, soaked the pasta in water for 10 mins then put it all in a baking tray and sliced the haloumi cheese on top and baked it. While it doesn't look that great in the picture, it tasted fantastic and I will definitely be making this again.

DD has been using up the frozen pastry to make chicken and veggie tarts and they've also had home made pizza with veggie toppings.

 Yesterday I stewed up the apples which had gone a bit soft.

So we've had stewed apples and cream for desserts and I am going to make whats left into apple crumble tonight using some mixed nuts and brown sugar.

So far, so good....

12 Aug 2018

Using up the stockpile!

 We've been eating down our stockpile for a few months now and spending much less on groceries as a result. My stockpile has saved us a lot over the years. I buy items when they are on special, often half price and its a part of our working pantry. I built a big pantry storeroom when we built this house years ago. I had visions of shelves stacked with preserves and a nice big food storage. We used to have our own fruit trees and a vegetable garden but that has gone by the wayside in last 5-10 years.

I've kept my pantry full and costs down through smart grocery shopping  over the years, knowing when items come on special and stocking up enough to last till next time. I refuse to pay full price when I can get things way cheaper just with a little planning ahead.  I use a different coloured sticker for each calendar year and every item that went in the pantry got a sticker. That made it easy to rotate foods. But I realised earlier this year that its time to cut way back so we've already eaten through a fair bit of what we had.

I took these photos this morning of what is left of our stockpile. I've made a list so I can focus on meal planning around using up whats left before we go on holidays. And I'm going blog my meals so I can keep myself focused.

 There is also some food still left in the freezer and what is in the fridge.  This is going my big challenge for the next five weeks - to see how I can use up these foods. I'm not someone who likes to cook much or menu plan and I need to just suck it up and do it anyway as it will help us save money.

The plan is to get the freezer and pantry as empty as possible before we go on holidays then when we get back I can clean out and declutter the rest of the pantry/storeroom and then plan what we need to stock up on and how much is reasonable for us to keep now.

So I'm going to create a new page for this challenge and get myself out of this funk I've been in for the last week. I kicked it off with having a box of pumpkin soup from the pantry for breakfast this morning. Its snowing out of town here and really cold after a beautiful sunny 18C day yesterday - a good day to menu plan!

7 Aug 2018

Just Keep Swimming...

We've started going through our expenses to see where we can cut back. Today I put our Audible membership on hold for 3 months, then I'll cancel it. I am not renewing my professional membership and got a cheaper quote for my insurance.  We will also cancel Austar which has been our entertainment budget as we don't go out - but we can live without it.

Audible $28/month
Austar $90/month
Professional Membership $57/month
Professional Insurance -$12/month

Total savings: $187/month

I was a part of a class action against the banks. For those outside Australia we are currently having a Royal Commission into banking here some practices have been a bit dodgy. Well I told I get a refund of $61 today so thats a bit extra off the mortgage.

I'm really struggling at work at the moment, just super stressful and I'm just so tired all the time.  But I need to shut up and show up and keep paying down this mortgage...


1 Aug 2018

July Progress Report

July was very cold here, broke weather records with our coldest day in 27 years! Heres how we're tracking:

  • $143,985  down from $146,991 
  • redraw $18,825 up from $16,955 
  • $1,136 total mortgage reduction
I decided to just pay out the credit card completely and paid it from the redraw. We used to use it for our general expenses and then pay it off each month so we've never paid interest on it. So our redraw balance has gone up but now the plan is to get it down to $0 asap.

Retirement Savings
  • mine - $106,660
  • DH -   $278,391
  • total -  $385,051
  • total increase - $12,662
This month we reached our 2018 goal of $380,000 in retirement savings. The stock market is doing well so our retirement funds are doing well. 

  • $30 cc points
  • $22.34 savings
  • $50 gift card
  • $92.34 total savings

oh dear...  I only walked twice this month, I ate too much carby/sugary junk and got back in the daily cappacino habit ( made at home)  and my weight went up again - 1.1kgs/ 2.4lbs. I had my eyes tested and they had improved so no need for glasses expenses. I also had another trip to the dentist for a filling.


DH had his work hours reduced this month.  His income will stay the same until the end of the year and then it will drop by just over $500/week. While we are fortunate he didn't get laid off as others did, this will have a big impact on our plans. 

I had a chance to get organised and caught up at my day job. I billed $1420 for my extra job this month.


I got back to decluttering and did the bookcase and some of the lounge room. I ended my book listings on fishpond and donated the remaining books to the op shop. I sorted all my towels and am making bathmats out of the ones that are getting thin.