There is so much in the news currently about debt, and how much debt as a country we are in, it's quite a shocking figure. Debt can be such a crippling thing to live with, and I fear for even harder times ahead depending on a change in government and future plans to cut spending/recoup losses which may result in job losses, higher bills etc etc, it's a bit of a vicious circle as the fear of debt and redundancy makes more of us want to be frugal and thrifty, yet the government then becomes concerned saying consumer spending is the only way for the country to recover, how inconceivable it is to many of us to spend MORE even though times are harder.
Personally, Mr G.T & I have done a lot since we married to sort out our finances, debts so easily accrued when we were far too young plus a struggle to set up home together in a rising market that has now crashed... we made big steps to come out of using our overdrafts, consolidated our debts to get them paid off manageably, built up savings and live within our means, it was so easy for things to happen that threw us off course though and the past 2 years have been tough. We are by no means in as bad a state as some I know, thankfully my redundancy didn't mean we lost our home, or defaulted on payments, but it means credit cards had to be used, the overdraft is back, savings are depleted and we spend a lot of our monthly income paying back these debts. The best laid plans can very often get blown off course so easily, it's been a tough lesson to learn and I hope soon to get back on track again and rebuild our savings so we again have a cushion to fall back on, it just happens so instantaneously yet takes months/years to recover from.
I dread things going wrong because I know we struggle to afford the bills to fix them. Currently something seems wrong with the car and I always dread that as it can be something easily sorted (thankfully Mr G.T is handy and can do quite a few minor repairs himself, plus my brother-in-law is a mechanic so is on hand for advice) but if it's something that needs a new part or proper garage work, it can be so pricey, it's only just had it's service too so I am hoping so strongly that it can be put right as quickly and painlessly as possible. But these sorts of things just highlight to be even more how much money problems weigh on my mind and conscience, and how I hope one day soon to make it a better situation.
I'm carefully planning Christmas already, I am hoping to handmake a lot of projects as gifts for friends and family, and reduce spending on food to good quality ingredients but nothing extravagant, i think sometimes it is so easy to overspend and overeat at Christmas which is not what the festivities should be about really. The past couple of years we have managed to enjoy a basic simple but delicious Christmas, so am hoping for the same or better this year, i am hoping early organisation and planning will help, as the last 3 Christmases have been last minute rushes for a variety of reasons which often means I spend more than I need to also. So I am planning a thriftier and more environmentally friendly Christmas all round, I hope I can achieve it.