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My ‘teensy setback’ – The End?

Hello! Right... Things are much more sorted – and again credit goes to the ever wise Weenie from over at Quietly Saving who knows about these things. Thanks Weenie!  I should know about these things too but, you know... ‘Goldfish brain’. I joke about this but I really don’t have a head for facts and figures. They’re in there somewhere but getting at them is the problem. Mind like a quagmire I tell you. But this is ok because it demonstrates that one doesn’t have to be a financial wizz to be an investor and to work towards FIRE – moderate intelligence is enough... The knowledge is online and easy to access. Of course it helps if one remembers to do this before publishing half-arsed posts. I’m looking at myself here... But I’ve been on a ‘journey’ as we like to say these days and I’ve now reached a rest-stop – taking time to pause for thought and have a look around. I logged into the DB pension website and there it was – the payment estimate calculator – right in front of me. I had use
Recent posts

Low carb = FIRE

Hello! Sit yourself down... It’s the run up to Christmas 2015, I’m 5’ 10” tall and I’m not far off 17 stone. Darn...  I love food and I dislike exercising for the sake of it. A fab combo. I’m in my mid 40s and middle-aged spread is well under way. I’m kind of ok with this, accepting it as the norm, but I worry about getting bigger as I get older. What can I do? Eat less. Exercise more... Urgh. I love hill walking, gardening, diy and housework and enjoy being active. As long as what ever activity I do can’t be labelled ‘exercise’. It’s Saturday 2nd January 2016 and I’m visiting family and I meet a cousin who I’ve not seen for many years. He’s a personal fitness trainer. We talk about diets and nutrition and he mentions that when we get older we don’t need to eat carbohydrates so much but we should eat more protein. I say that sounds like the Atkins diet. He doesn’t disagree. In a completely non-judgmental way, my cousin opens my eyes to a different way of thinking about food and nutriti

My ‘teensy setback’ in dramatic plot twist!

Hello! So, a quick recap... In my first post I itemised what I believed to be the four funds that would fuel my goal to FIRE@55. My S&S ISA. Pension 1, my current work pension. Pension 2, my very ye olde deferred pension from the olden times. Pension 3, my deferred direct benefits pension from 17 years ago (jeesh, that made me feel old). Then a few things happened kind of semi-simultaneously. Firstly, I remembered that I had some paperwork from 2016 regarding Pension 3. I barely understood a word of it especially regarding exactly when I could access this pension. Then the wonderful Weenie from over at Quietly Saving mentioned that her own defined benefits pension wasn’t accessible until 65 years of age. Weenie also explained, in language I could understand, how a DB pension works and what their key differences are to a defined contributions pension. I’m now at peace regarding their differences. Thanks Weenie! I had also emailed my DB pension provider asking for clarification, in

Fuel to FIRE – October 2020

Hello! Any fans of Agnes Obel here? She’s a Danish singer/songwriter/musician who composes beautifully haunting melodies with introspective and mysterious lyrics. I first heard her on BBC 6 Music a few years ago and have been a fan ever since. Fuel to Fire is one of my favourite tracks. So this is my first official Future Fund update. I’m not sure how I’m going to format these. FIREists do it in so many different ways. I’m going to keep it simple until I learn how to use Blogger's formatting tools. £31,855.08 @ 1st November – S&S ISA. £83,806.52 @ 2nd November – Pension 1, my current work pension. £106,249.00 @ 1st July 2020 – Pension 2, a deferred pension from ye olden times. I only get an updated figure once a year, unless I request a transfer value. £221,910.60  @ 2nd November  – is my Future Fund. -6.65% since 25th October. So a drop of 6.65% since I first outlined my Future Fund figures in my second post. Ouch! But that’s just within a week so , although unpleasant to l

Reasons to be FIREing, Post 3

Hello! So just why do I want to FIRE@55? I missed this biggie off my introductory post due largely to my goldfish brain but also because the reasons seem insubstantial and I have to think about how I should express them in writing. I have a nice, cushy office job so I know I’m very lucky. But I don’t enjoy working in an office – like many people. The internet’s great for revealing that you’re not the only one who has a particular range of thoughts, feelings, anxieties and dreams. It's the usual suspects, office politics, business culture, the handful of colleagues with whom I have difficulties. Then there's the people who are ill-advisedly chosen to be managers – people who are thoroughly unsuitable for such roles. And my own foibles and flaws that cause issues for my colleagues and cause embarrassment for me. I do my best to avoid the colleagues with whom I have issues. Hard to do though when they happen to be my manager... At the moment I discovered FIRE it was a perfect fit

A teensy setback. Maybe...

Hello! So only my first post in and I may have already tripped up. In that first post I enthusiastically presented a breakdown of what I believed to be my net worth that would help me to FIRE@55. But before I go on, from this point onwards, I’m going to report on the value of my ‘Future Fund’ and not my net worth. It’s my Future Fund that will directly finance my FIRE. Now I know being mortgage-free will also fund my FIRE but that aspect is a bit too abstract for me to work into my calculations at this time – I’m not financially savvy and I’m very rubbish at maths. I’ve read the for and against arguments about including house equity in one’s FIRE forecasts and I will post my thoughts on this in due course. Ok, so back to my teensy setback. In my first post I listed my three pensions which I believed would fund my FIRE. I may have been wrong. My defined benefits pension might not play a part in helping me to [oh dear this is going to get annoying] FIRE@55. I had completely forgotten tha

Please allow me to introduce myself...

Hello! Welcome to my blog about my journey to FIRE – Financial Independence, Retire Early. I’ve been saving specifically for FIRE since January 2016 when I first stumbled across Mr Money Mustache’s blog completely by accident. At that time I was scouring the web for info about low carb diets (I’ll be posting on this topic too) and MMM had posted about low carb eating . And suddenly I was plunged into the fantastic world of FIRE. Before January 2016 I was a big saver anyway, generally have been since the early ‘00s, but on discovering FIRE I started to increase my annual savings rate and look more closely at my savings accounts, pensions and investments. It’s now October 2020 and it’s now that I’ve decided to start this blog. I turned 50 this year (eeek!) so I’m in countdown mode until 2025 when I’ll know if I can FIRE@55 or not. At this moment in time, and despite the turmoil caused by the pandemic, the probability of me FIREing at 55 is high. It’ll be ‘skinny FIRE’ but I’ve been livi