Another month over, already! February seems to have flown by, as did January, and it doesn’t seem like it’ll be long until I’m back at work and the Frugal Baby will have new routines to learn and get used to. What has been lovely this month is that we’ve been on our first family holiday. We went to Center Parcs at Whinfell Forest, Cumbria for the week and it was just lovely. Frugal Baby enjoyed going in the pool and being pushed around in his pram outside so he could look at the trees. We definitely want to go back there when he’s older so he can do some of the activities and play in the play parks that are there; he was a bit too small this time for any of that, but next time he won’t be!
I mentioned in yesterday’s post that I’ve lost my financial mojo a bit at the moment; I feel a bit deflated about our finances and that I’m not doing enough and that what I am doing isn’t good enough. I know it’s daft to feel like this because I’m trying my best, like everyone else, but it feels like we’re so far away from our goals at the moment. I drifted quite a bit in February, as you’ll see below, so I’m hoping to get right back on track in March.
My Financial aims for February were:
– Have 20 No Spend Days (NSDs)
– Overpay our mortgage by something
– Put £400 into savings
My faithful system of acquiring NSDs during the month so that our budget stays in line went woefully astray this month. I’m not sure what happened! Although, going on holiday for a week was always going to test us this month. I’ve only managed 14 NSDs this month, which is the lowest I’ve done in ages and so far from my target. I’m not sure whether to reduce my target for March so that it seems a bit more realistic, though I need to reign in our spends again, so maybe not.
As our household income continues to decrease whilst I’m on maternity leave, overpaying our mortgage by vast amounts has taken a back seat, purely due to lack of funds more than anything. So, the challenge to overpay our mortgage by something is purposefully vague, as I wanted to overpay something, so that it continues to chip away in the right direction, but didn’t want to put a number on it. So, I’ve managed to overpay a tiny £3.59 this month, which I suppose is better than nothing.
Lastly, and I knew this would be somewhat of a challenge, was the savings aim. I have only managed to save £331.49 which is far away from my target, disappointingly. I really need to up my game if I want to meet our savings target for the year. It’s better than I did in January, marginally, but I need to keep going and raise these numbers as quickly/soon as I can.
My Personal Aims For February were:
– lose 4lbs
– declutter one bin bag’s worth of stuff
– don’t eat chocolate, crisps, cakes, biscuits or sweets for the month.
As part of my #30beforethirty challenge, I need to be losing just under 4lbs a month all year. This is a combination of left over pregnancy weight and just generally wanting to be a bit healthier and fitter. In February, I have lost 2 lbs which is better than nothing, but I can do better. I need to try a bit harder! I’ve fallen off the wagon a bit too. It seems to be a theme this month!
I’ve been decluttering, albeit slowly, all month. I’ve got some things listed on eBay that finish later today, plus I have thrown out some things that were no longer needed but not in a condition to sell. I think that this will be an ongoing thing all year as I try and simplify our lives. Selling things on eBay is strangely addictive too; I like checking to see how many people have viewed the items and what the bids are! I have made £52.07 this month which I’m pleased with, as it’s just things we no longer need.
I was doing really well with this last aim; right until we went away I hadn’t eaten any of these items all month and was feeling all the better for it. Then, we went away and I fell off the wagon, big time. It was nice, but I feel all bloated and horrible now, so I’m going to go back to this for March. By giving up these things I was eating more fruit which is better for me and my body, plus it’ll help with my weight loss challenge! But yes, a total fail for this one in the end.
One final note, the top three posts on The Frugal Cottage during February were:
So, February is over, and I think I’ll be glad to see the back of it to be honest. I’m determined to do better in March, in fact, I have to!
How was your February? Have you hit your aims? I’d love to hear about it!