February 2023 Savings, plus other updates

This month saw me and my sister attending an uncle’s funeral – he’d died at the grand old age of 91.

Although a sad affair, it was an opportunity to catch up with extended members of the family (first cousins).

There was one cousin I last saw while we were both still at uni and it was interesting to hear that he and his missus had done the whole geo arbitrage FIRE thing.

What I mean is that they jacked in their jobs in 2019 when they both turned 49 (he an IT consultant, she a dentist with a share in private practice), sold their house in Croydon and relocated to Thailand, where they’ve been renting an apartment in Bangkok, enjoying the benefits of far lower cost of living. They’ve no kids so unlikely they would have made this move if they had.

He dabbles in a bit of trading for pocket money, she spends her time helping out in the local community and it sounds like they are living their dream. Both are modest and happy to live a simple life, and they have been taking the opportunity to visit other countries in eastern Asia.

I wonder if they had heard of FIRE? I didn’t get the chance to ask them.

Anyway, attended another enjoyable pub meet up in Manchester this month (next face to face is in April) and I forgot to mention that at the end of last month, I had a a good catch up (online) with TheFIREStarter (yes, I did ask when his next update would be!) and SavingNinja, who was dialling in from the US.

No update on the Twitter issue but a big thanks to the 138 new subscribers to my blog – thanks for reading! 🙂

So, let’s take a look at how I did in February:

I saved 16.6% of my net salary.  The above includes £67.17 from doing Prolific surveys.

Shares and Investment Trusts

I can’t remember buying anything new so I guess I just topped up existing investments.

Current share/IT portfolio can be found here.

(Entire portfolio here)

Future Fund 

A bit of a wobble in the stock markets but nothing to be concerned about.

At the end of the month, my Future Fund was down a little at £231,522.

Dividends and Other Income

Dividends continue to roll in as usual:

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Au Revoir, Twitter?

The other day, I got this:

What rules did I break?

Say what???!

I wouldn’t know how to even begin to do any sort of ‘evading’ if someone was paying me to do so!

All I do on my account is post when I publish my monthly blog and read some of the tweets of the accounts I follow. I’ve received no notifications of any impending suspension, just this.

Anyway, I’ve submitted an appeal, for what it’s worth.

If nothing comes from it, well it’ll be a shame but I can live without Twitter.

January 2023 Savings, plus other updates

January seemed like a long month though not in a bad way, as it was punctuated with several social outings with friends and colleagues, and a couple of enjoyably quiet weekends.

One of my minor goals is to complete a 1000-piece jigsaw and the quiet weekends have had me doing my jigsaw puzzling. Have spent many hours on this activity already and have enjoyed listening to music or podcasts (or just silence) while I’ve been working on the puzzle.

Since I can’t watch TV at the same time (not properly anyway), I’ve cancelled my Netflix subscription. Once the puzzle’s completed, I’ll probably switch it back on again. Or not. I still have some Amazon vouchers from Christmas so might have a look for my next jigsaw.

The gym is very busy with new year enthusiasts but I’ve been getting my sessions in regularly, through the dark, rain and snow!

Need a Man in my Life to Open Pickle Jars

This sad thought flashed across my mind as I struggled in vain the other day to open a large jar of pickled gherkins.

Maybe I shouldn’t have made the attempt after a gym session, with my arm muscles still fatigued from the workout. I gave up after several strenuous minutes of cursing.

The next morning, the jar sat smugly on the kitchen table, as if goading me.

I grabbed it and was shocked when I was able to relatively easily pop open the lid – phew! Maybe my previous efforts had loosened it!

Perseverance is a virtue for all things in life, whether opening pickle jars or aiming for FIRE! And no, I didn’t have pickles for breakfast!

Anyway, on that random note, let’s take a look at the first numbers for 2023:

I saved 16.6% of my net salary.  The above includes £66.90 from doing Prolific surveys and a £10 charity lotto win.

Shares and Investment Trusts

No new investments, I just topped up existing ones.

Current share/IT portfolio can be found here.

(Entire portfolio here)

Future Fund 

Despite recession, strikes, high interest rates and high inflation, the markets moved somewhat in a positive direction, so my portfolio was up to £233,500.43.

Who knows if this will continue? If the government drops another bombshell à la Truss and Kwarteng, there could be another panic causing more big dipper moments!

Nobody has a clue, least of all me (or the government, it seems), so I’ll just carry on investing.

Dividends and Other Income

A decent month for dividends:

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2023 Goals

I think most will agree that 2022 was not a particularly great year.

Who knows what 2023 will bring? The optimist in me hopes that it will be better but the realist in me reckons it will be much of the same, just a slightly different flavour.

Regardless,  I’ll just roll with life and its challenges and will try to make the most of what is thrown at me.

So here goes with my Goals!

Please contain your excitement, as there’s a fair bit of of copying and pasting here!

I still prefer to keep to simple annual goals, ones which have some meaning to me, even if they might be meaningless to others. They provide me with some focus while I get on with the humdrum day-to-day stuff.

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