This road sign cracked me up when I saw it the other day – it seemed pretty apt for times of change. It doesn’t exactly fit my situation; my priorities are more or less the same but I have got to adjust and refocus my spending and saving priorities.
Anyone who has read my older posts will know that I saved up for ages to have a big cushion for my maternity leave. The maternity allowance wasn’t anything like enough for us to get by on while I was on maternity leave. My savings allowed me to pay my usual amount into the joint account (where all of our main payments come from) and have a realistic amount of spending money left over. I actually spent a lot less than I originally anticipated and, while things have been very tight for the last three months, this meant I had enough left in my funds to extend my maternity leave to a full year. It was worth it. I transfered the last of the fund into the joint account this weekend, right down to the last pound. The rest of my savings are in ISAs and aren’t that easy to access (just as well). I currently have £2.95 in my wallet plus the contents of my piggy bank where I’ve collected 20ps. The next few weeks until my first pay day are going to be interesting!
Once I get paid (and find out what my take home pay is) I’ll be able to set a budget. I already know, however, that it is going to be tight. I’m more determined than ever to save as much as I can. I’ve heard a lot of people talk about how ‘bad’ it is to want to accumulate money. Here’s what I think though. If I want to go on holiday with my family, see new places, experience new things, then I need money. Not a lot maybe, but more than £2.95. If we want a house (instead of an apartment) with a garden then we need more money. If we want to not panic about our jobs or lay awake worrying about how to pay a house/car repair bill then we need financial back up. Money for it’s own sake isn’t what I’m interested in. But, as I see it, savings can give you the freedom to do a lot of things. Change jobs, visit new places, move house, have peace of mind – whatever it might be.
I’m not going to be able to save as much as I’d like so I’m really going to have to work it. The time has come to pull out every shoestring trick I’ve learned over the last couple of years. Game on…