Has it really been two weeks since I posted? I'm sorry, that's lazy blogging. Time just seems to be running away with me at the moment. And it's taking all my money with it.
A service and MOT on my car last weekend landed me with a bill of over £500. Thank god for credit cards. But I'm painfully aware that the car, my plans for the garden, and my trip to Germany later this year are hanging heavy over me. I've done some maths and while I can afford these things, I need to be pretty careful with my cash and a bit more sensible when it comes to my shopping habits.
I have a pretty bad relationship with money: My parents are keen savers, and as such we were never given pocket money, or allowed to spend our birthday money on fripperies. I'm sure their plan was to make us appreciate the value of things: Actually all that seems to have happened is that now I'm at last in control of my own finances I have a "I want it; I'll have it" attitude. I've had REAL financial troubles in the past though, and I'm keen not to repeat those. I hope I'm getting to a point of balance.
I hate to turn this into a "Why single parents have it so tough" post, but I do feel the weight of financial responsibility pretty heavily. A colleague at work yesterday told me how her husband had paid off her credit card for her. HA! What a fantasy life that would be!
It's not so much the money - it's the fact I have no one to share the burden with. I believe that's one of the toughest things about being a single parent: I have no one to cry over it all with at the end of a day when I've cancelled the direct debit for the gas so I can pay for the electric (NB - It's not that bad really, not yet anyway).
As part of my economy drive, I'm back to meal planning, shopping online, voucher hunting and generally being thrifty. More veggie meals, more home baking instead of buying snacks and I may even begin darning our socks.
(I have no idea how sock darning is thrifty. Or even how you do it.)