It’s the end of the year so today I’m looking back on the successes and challenges I faced this year on the frugal front.
Things that went well
- I kept a whole year’s spending records on a spreadsheet which has been quite an eye opener.
- I managed to buy a second hand car without taking out a loan.
- I managed to save up for Bee’s school ski trip and our holidays by putting money aside in a separate account.
- I set up this blog – with help from OH who is good with computers and I have thoroughly enjoyed writing regularly. There have been some challenges (see below) but I have kept going, tried different things, and the blog is now set up pretty much as I want it.
- I learned how to cook and freeze meals rather than using ready meals all the time.
- I have learned a little bit about setting goals and working towards them and this will influence how I go about what I want to achieve next year.
- We’re still spending too much on non essential items. If I am to achieve my goal of financial freedom, some habits have got to change.
- I get caught out by the ‘unknown unknowns’, e.g. the school geography trip. I haven’t yet learned to look far enough ahead when I’m budgeting. I could plan better than I do.
- The house is still disorganised and we lose things easily. We wasted money buying duplicate items. We have far too much stuff.
- I have really struggled with the technical aspects of setting up a free-standing blog.
On the last point, I’m a right brained arty sort of person. I have the vision and ideas, I know exactly what I want to do, but on many occasions I’ve struggled to put this into practice.
The language used in articles and support guides requires a PhD in computer science. It’s a real shame that ordinary people posting genuine queries on support forums are slapped down by other users supposedly with more knowledge. (Perhaps these persons need a little time away from their computers to learn to communicate in the real world?) I’ve almost given up the blog several times, because the technical side has left me floundering and I’ve been unable to find the answers easily. I’ve had to try things out for myself to see what works and what doesn’t. As far as I’m concerned:
html = Help it’s Taking over My Life.
Onwards and upwards
With that whinge out of the way, I’m spending today thinking about what goals I’m going work towards in 2012 and how I’m going to move forward to a simpler life.
How did you do with your frugal goals and challenges in 2011?
Until next time, Tawney x