Monday Money #172 Spending diary & COP26

WHAT A WEEK! Last week I was given the opportunity of a lifetime to go to Glasgow for COP26 – the UN Climate Change conference. It was all very last minute, and was born after a tweet about a conversation I had with Dr Dave, husband of Rebecca whom I stayed with in Bristol last weekend.

We were out walking talking about the hopelessness of climate change. Dave who is a green party member (and an actual PhD doctor) and super clever shared his thoughts on the impact of a two degree increase to the world temperature. Many countries will become too hot and agriculture will become impossible. Mass migration will begin, political battles will heighten and we could end up in a serious way. We could end up in a world war fighting over the only land where food can be grown.

Unless we fix climate change and stop the planet temperature rising.

COP26 is all about making solid commitments and ensuring change happens quickly. The planet must get to carbon neutrality or even carbon negative and we can start to reverse the increase in temperature and avert this planet being destroyed. It is that SIMPLE – the bigger picture.

Of course there is technology needed, money to be invested, huge companies need to make big changes, laws need to change, but it is 100% possible.

I feel powerless, BUT I’m not!

On Sunday I said to Dave I feel so powerless. Then corrected myself, no I shouldn’t feel powerless, I have 50k people that follow me and read my blog. Sharing this story and communicating with people and inspire change. I work with lots of big companies and know the CEO’s personally, so I can talk to these people and understand what they are doing to change their corporate ways to become carbon neutral.

I put out a tweet on Monday about the things I was going to do personally to reverse climate change. And I tagged a few companies and CEO’s who I work with, which resulted in a DM inviting me up to Glasgow! I immediately replied, YES!

Then ensued a couple of days of trying to find a hotel/accommodation. I ended up staying with a friend of a friend from a rather brilliant divorced mums Facebook group that my therapist runs. She had the most beautiful flat in central Glasgow, nice and close to where I needed to be on Thursday. And booking the train was simples. Just a six hour journey to Glasgow from Hertforshire.

All was sorted

And I got myself onto the train from Euston to Glasgow on Thursday morning. Here is the view of the Lake District as I journeyed up the west side of England.

I got to Glasgow with plenty of time to chill out with a £3 (yes £3) gin at the Marriots hotel. And got ready for my event on Thursday evening. I wore green of course and heels that were very painful, total taxi shoes.

The event was amazing. I met the most incredible people who are incredibly passionate about saving the world. We talked renewable energy, electric cars, the changing world of economics and cryptocurrency, we talked finance for women, diversification of investing for the future and ultimately everyone in the room was there to change the world for the better. I was SO inspired and so incredibly grateful to be have been invited. I LOVE MY JOB.

It was an early start to leave Glasgow on Friday morning to be back home for 2:30pm for the school run to pick up my children. The ones who I am changing the world for and their children and future generations.

I have a post coming later this week on the things we can as individuals can do to be more environmentally friendly and how to do that by spending less. Being green does not have to cost you more money, I promise.

New Podcast – Health Mind, Body and Wealth with Mama Furfur

I was joined by Jennifer Kempson, Mama Furfur to talk about Health Mind, Body and Wealth. We went everywhere talking with honesty and truth about personal experience of mental health and how we both got ourselves better. We spoke alot about the impact of mental health on our finances and vice versa, sadly a huge reason for suicide in the UK. You path is never determined, there is always help and a way out of everything.

Listen here or watch here on YouTube or just search for Mrs Mummypenny on Spotify, Itunes etc.

How to do Christmas FOR FREE

It’s that time of the year, have you heard you first Christmas song yet? Have you started to think about Christmas, maybe buy a few gifts? This year I am determined to consume less, spend less and actually do Christmas for free. This doesn’t mean zero gifts for my children or friends but it does mean cutting back on that huge gift list, having that conversation about giving no gifts this year. Read this rather brilliant post I wrote for Zopa bank about how to do Christmas for very little/nothing this year. It is totally possible with come clever use of loyalty apps, Facebook Market place, Music Magpie and mystery shopping. YES!!

Reverse Advent Calendar

This wonderful charity idea from the UK Money Blogger community is back. Collect a food bank item every day for the next 30 days, then deliver to your local food bank. Read more about it here, and if you go for it please share pictures with me over on Instagram or Twitter.

My Spending Diary from my COP26 week

Well firstly the costs of getting to COP26, these came to £322, but these have been covered by one of my business partners, so these are not included in my overall spend. These include train to Scotland, Uber’s fares and food.

Eating Out and Food Spend

I always start with food, what does that say about me? £193 was spent on food last week. The biggest chunk being birthday dinner for DJ at Wagamama’s for three boys and I, beautiful food but did cost £75. Wagamama’s is not cheap.

Groceries were just £65 last week and there was also a Papa Johns collection on Saturday night for £22.

Bills and Mortgage

Last week included the first day of the month when all my bills hit. These came to £1,555. Yep an expensive day is the first of every month. Mortgage is £1,236 and is now staying this way unless I get a sudden windfall to pay off a chunk of my mortgage. I am now from this month making mortgage overpayments using my new Sprive App. This app uses open banking to set aside some extra cash to over pay my mortgage automatically. Last week I overpaid my mortgage by £25. Every little helps.

Other bills include Council Tax £150, Water £19, Octopus Energy £103, Income Protection Insurance £34, TV License £13, Car Tax £12.

£138 on Children’s costs

An expensive week of children’s costs for birthday week. £61 was spent on Trampoline park entry for my eldest birthday party. Plus £44 spent on Nike trainers and Football gloves, this was the cost after a £42 voucher that I had saved from recent Top Cashback money received. I also spent £30 on pocket money and train tickets for my eldest to get to school.

Fun Money and Clothes

I separate out these costs but they are basically both wants, not needs. I bought my eldest new trainers for his birthday and got running trainers for myself too. Proper running Nikes from the sale, so I saved £20 and got an extra 8% cash back via Top Cashback. £70 spent on trainers and they feel like walking on clouds. Really! I also spent £18 on a book, a new plant and batteries.

Charity Donations

I donated £210 to British Legion £10 and £200 to Grief Encounter for our team Appalachian trial challenge. This was in lieu of my estate agent writing off any fees payable for me deciding to not sell my house. I will write a more comprehensive post but the stress got me, I couldn’t bare to carry on after losing three houses that I tried to buy. The best solution was to pull out and not sell my house. My life feels a lot simpler.

Anyhow I donated £200 to the challenge to say thank you to Darren of Mather Marshall for not charging me anything for the work he and his team had done to sell my house.

Other more boring costs

I spent £46 on car tax and pay as you go car insurance. £42 on business expenses, travel and Microsoft subscription. And £24 went into my Plum savings.

Travel Spends for 2022

Not boring at all. I paid 50% deposit of £275 towards a weeks accommodation in Isles of Scilly next April. One of my favourite places on earth and April is an incredible time to go for the PUFFINS. SO EXCITED. Not sure who I’m going with yet, or if I go alone. Whatever I am going to Isles of Scilly again. And have somewhere beautiful to stay close to Porthcressa beach.

St. Martins, Isles of Scilly. Diamond white sand. Crystal clear blue sea. My favourite island.

Total Spend for last week was £2,597. But bare in mind the monthly bills and one off expenses of holiday and charity contributions. Must spend less during the rest of November. But looking at diary, hmm this could be hard, Christmas meet ups have already kicked off. Some of them will be booze free, a sure fire way to save a fortune.


More to explore


Lynn Beattie

Aka Mrs MummyPenny

Personal Finance Expert

I write about personal finance made simple, lifestyle choices that will save you time and money, as well as products and services that offer great value.

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