I’m a Planner, Baby…

Just have to say that there is one thing about this blog that always manages to amuse me.  Every single day I log on, there are some really wierd ass searches.  Like…she forced me into a nappy.  I feel sorry for people who search for swinging couples only to find my, mostly moany, blog.  One of my favourite things about blogging is seeing what people search for.  It’s great.  I wonder if, when I search for things and find a completely irrelevant blog as the answer, does the blogger think, wtf? why were they looking for that here?  I’m a boring searcher by all accounts.  I look for things like how to fix my f&%king blog when I’ve changed the template by myself.  That sort of thing. 

 I just want to pat myself on the back a little bit.  I finally made a bit of a plan for Christmas and it turns out that for once, I’m not going to be searching down the back of the sofa for a euro on Christmas eve.  Nice one…   I’ve even been saving up for the last few weeks, oh yeah, uh huh.  But then I realised that there’s one significant difference this year.  I’ll have 500euro in the month of December that I didn’t have before.  I do not like my Government but some of the things they do come in handy at times.  Such as the Childcare Allowance.  Regardless of your family situation, anyone with a child under the age of five receives 250 euro four times a year.  I have two which gives me 500euro four times a year.  It’s supposed to give people an incentive and a bit of help paying for childcare so that more families can have two incomes or can get themselves off various benefits.  A grand a year?  Deadly idea. 

But then you remember that childcare can easily cost more than a grand a month per child so it’s not that helpful after all.  But it is a bit of a lifesaver in December as I’m discovering this year.  Funnily enough, paying childcare for two youngsters even with the Childcare Allowance tends to defeat the purpose of working for a lot of people so I won’t be leaving the home until my babies are in school.  Another lifesaver in December is the monthly Children’s Allowance that anyone, regardless of their circumstances, caring for a child under 16 (or up to something like 21 still attending school or college) gets 160euro a month.  That’s 320euro a month for me, sounds great but it’s going towards my ESB bill.  My electricity bill is a killer.  It’s over 200euro even in summer, including the weeks I housesitted for my mother.  I live in a very cold, expensive shithole 🙂

Before anyone bitches about me for spending the Children’s Allowance on myself, just about everything that goes through my hands gets spent on the kids – the lump sum at the beginning of every month is just easier to hand over to pay for a bill than me saving up, trust me, I can’t be trusted to save…

Back to congratulating myself on my Christmas plan…

We’ve pestered most of our family members into telling us what they want. 

Brother Number One (who still hasn’t accepted his 21st birthday present from two months ago…):   “Nothing.  I’d be much happier if you didn’t get me anything.”

My Mother (on behalf of my little 10 year old brother):   “A game is too expensive.  Just get him 10euro credit for the new phone I’ll be getting him for Christmas.”

My Mother (on behalf of herself):   “10euro for my paypal account.”

 Me (after I tore my hair out in exasperation):   “Ah, come off it!  For f&%k’s sake, just tell me what yis want.  For the Love of God, TELL ME!”

Them (with evil grins on their faces):  Repeat above statements.

I know they’re trying to be nice.  I know they keep telling me I have my own kids to look after but that is not the point!  His family aren’t shy about giving a list, I’d just like a little bit of help with my side, just a little.  What is my mother like asking for 10euro into her paypal account for Christmas? 

So, I made out my own list of what to get them.  The people I haven’t got a clue of will be getting vouchers, yes vouchers.  Particularly as one younger member of his family asked for money to gamble with on Stephen’s Day.  Not bloody likely – that’s Mr. Claire saying that, not me.   Who is a hypocrite by the way because he won money on a racehorse at the weekend…

But I picked a certain amount of gifts for my babies too, didn’t go too mad.  Not really.  I have a rough idea of how much I’ll need and I think that I’m going to make it through Christmas this year (without panicking or freaking out too much).   If you ever spent Christmas near me, you would know how much of an accomplishment this is.  🙂  Can’t wait to send Mr. Claire out go shopping!

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9 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    bluesleepy said,

    Well, Ms Planner Claire, since you have everything planned out already, what should I get my husband?? LOL Oh my goodness, I have no idea. My daughter is easy — buy her a toy or three. Done. I even managed to get a my brother and my dad a present, and I have thoughts on my mom. But my husband??? Ye gods.

    It doesn’t help that my brother, my sister, and my mom (not to mention my best friend and another good friend) all have birthdays in December. My sister particularly insists on both a Christmas and a birthday present, and she’s the hardest to buy for!!

  2. 2

    cardiogirl said,

    I still am kind of working on that as well. Isn’t that funny when you write a post and then you anticipate what people are going to say and you tell them, hold on just one minute here. I already thought of that and this is the deal on that!

    I just did that today.

    That’s cool that you have some extra cash when you need it! Happy shopping. I have done everything online so far and it has been really nice receiving boxes in the mail (no mall shopping, yet).

    Good luck!

  3. 3

    cardiogirl said,

    p.s. I got sidetracked on bluesleepy’s comment and almost started writing to her, to say I can’t stand it when someone has a b-day in December. And then I remembered, hey this is claire’s space.

    Get in line!

  4. 4

    webmiss said,

    I love it when the comments section on a blog, takes on a life of it’s own.

    Don’t look at me Claire, this is the first time since I was a child that I actually provided my family with a Christmas list. Pathetic, I know. good for you for thinking ahead. I’m going to go with what I usually get everyone, a Christmas card and a smile 🙂

  5. 5

    clairec23 said,

    Ah crap, I was still feeling all proud of myself until bluesleepy reminded me that I have to get something for Mr. Claire too…I’m really going to have to think on that one. Bluesleepy if you come up with something first, let me know 🙂

    Cardiogirl sometimes it just saves time! I love shopping online but I haven’t done it this year so far.

    And yeah, birthdays in December are bad. March is a really bad month for me actually. Most of the people in my family were born in March, then there is mother’s day, paddy’s day and Easter too. I have to start saving after Christmas just for March 🙂

    Webmiss, I would love it if people gave me a list. It would be okay if I was good at picking gifts but I’m the worst present buyer in the whole wide world.

    Wouldn’t you think that buying something for your partner would be the easiest thing in the world? Everything he buys me makes me go, aw, I can’t believe you remembered that! I just cannot evoke the same response! If any men read this, please tell me what men want for christmas 🙂

  6. 6

    antibarbie said,

    It is fun to look through all your weirdest searches, isn’t it? I am still laughing over someone searching for nude antibarbie on Teeni’s blog… People are such freaks!

  7. 7

    clairec23 said,

    wtf? SERIOUSLY???? hehe that’s so funny!! I love the searches…although I sometimes wonder if anybody that finds my blog finds what it is they are looking for. It seems like nearly every single search is a wierd one. There are some that are really wierd, they say things like who was I when that was there – odd…

  8. 8

    melbs1969 said,

    yeah, you got to get mr. claire something…even if he…er, i mean, santa…doesn’t get you a new computer!
    i’ve been having a nervous breakdown, with the shopping. i think i’m moving over by you. i have five kids, all under the age 12…that’s 2500/month…i think your gov’t would go out of business, if i moved into town! that’s awesome, though. it must help keep your heads above water, on the most part!
    as for the search thing…i have no idea how to find out how people came across my blog…i’m assuming that it’s because i stopped at theirs and commented…
    sleep…meet you for coffee later!

  9. 9

    clairec23 said,

    I suppose he deserves something *mumbles begrudgingly*

    I wouldn’t be able for five kids during Christmas. We already stay up all night Christmas Eve trying to get the toys out of those stupid plastic wire thingys in the boxes, we’d never get it done in time for five 🙂

    I think I saw your name on a couple of people’s blogs so had to check you out. Its’ mad how many blogs I end up visiting regularly because of their comments on other people’s blogs.

    Will work for coffee at this stage!


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