Thursday, 31 December 2009

Happy New Year

Not blogged lately.  Been so busy with Christmas etc.

Now is the time to think about resolutions.  I think my resolution will be saying "no" more in 2010.  Mainly to spending but also in relation to my job.  I work very hard and I love my work but things are difficult for me and in 2010 I want to say no just a little bit more. In relation to curving my spending, I am already good - I have bought my next year's christmas cards and have enough leftover wrapping paper.  I had thought about not giving cards next year but I think it is nice to give and receive cards.  I have not yet bought my christmas crackers and I may not bother.  The last time I bought some was three years ago and we used the last ones this Chrismas - they were £15.00 reduced to a fiver and had really good presents inside, useful.

I got lots of presents for Christmas mainly vouchers which I will put towards clothes - I buy from Next, mainly due to the fit.  I have spent quite a bit in their online VIP sale before Christmas.  I got 70% of their tall range, bargain.  I also bought a pair of jeans on Boxing day and have since bought a pair of slippers reduced to £4.00.   I know their are cheaper places to buy clothes but Next items always seem to last ages and usually washes well.

I needed a diary even went in to M and S armed with a Voucher that I got from filling in an online insurance quote but they didnt have any left.  I then almost bought one for  50p but changed my mind.  I have now been on to a  moneysaving website and ordered one for FREE.

Finally, I have recently been able to put in £20 worth of petrol for free by way nof voucher.  Now that pleases me.  Although petrol prices are going through the roof this New Year.  I understand that we have too many cars on the road but I do not understand why petrol prices are increasing all the time.  I am lucky that work pay some of my mileage usually when I attend Court Hearings.  That helps!  I only use my car for  work being a recent driver having passed in 2006 so I could do my job.  

Happy New Year Everyone lets hope I lose more weight - 8 pound to go. I will explain more in the New Year but I had lost 2 stone 3 pound between end of July to Mid December then Christmas happened and I put on 4 and a half pound!!

Sunday, 15 November 2009

More De-cluttering

I think I am getting the hang of it.  I have thrown out stuff that I have for ages and not used for ages but might use one day tut tut!  My home is looking less cluttered.  Still have a little way to go but I feel refreshed.  I need to do other rooms this coming weekend.

One problem I have is keeping to one room at a time.  I must confess that I get side tracked and this means it may actually be taking me more time than it should.  Oh well upwards and onwards.

Back to work tomorrow - oh well soon be Christmas!!  Oh and I love it!

Saturday, 14 November 2009


I am trying to de-clutter my home.  Easier said than done I found out.  The biggest problem I faced was the fact that both my husband and I are book lovers.  My home is full of them.  I must have thrown out 15 and put a pile aside for my daughter, most of which was cookery books. 

After an hour or so there many books remain although they look a lot tidier.  So that was the front room.  In the bedroo I could not find any books to throw away and I have a cardboard box full near my bed and a bookshelf!!

I have also de-cluttered a cupboard in the front room.  I feel like I have a long way to go but I am pleased with what I have done so fat.  I also feel the need to just empty the whole home and start again its full of rubbish which I do not seem able to throw out.  If any of you have any tips I would be very very grateful.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Winter Blues

I still don't seem to be able to shake myself out of the doldrums.  Still working hard.  Feel that the flat is a mess, needs doing up but we are so tired.  Cannot afford to get someone in to sort it out.

Busy week last week at work and the week before. I had to work yesterday afternoon and at little this morning. This week looks like its going to be busy this week.  At the High Court in London this week for a case, am excited and a little nervous at the same time.

Did a pile of ironing last night and the housework is nearly done.  I should be feeling happier but its so dark and horrid outside.  Off to see my sister and her family later, it is my neice's birthday tomorrow and I am taking a present round.

On the subject of presents I have bought some Christmas presents,  I am also going to use some of the vouchers I have saved up over the year for pressies too.  In terms of food I have, cake, sweets, and Christmas pud so am getting there.  I do not have a hamper this year after the debacle one year where that company went into administration.

Well I am off now to see if I can cheer myself up!!

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Tough week

Had a really tough week.  Work was a challenge I am pushing myself to learn more and better myself but it is so tiring.  I find it even more difficult as I am a perfection well I try but nothing I do ever seems to be so.

I feel that my home and husband are suffering as a result.  I just feel so tired this week and sometimes I wonder if it will ever get  better.  I have been qualified almost one year.  I even had a positive appraisal but somehow no matter how may things I do really well I seem to obsess on the things I didn't do well.

Today was a good day I met a friend for coffee in the sunshine today although it was everso cold. Had a walk too.  I then had my hair done before havinf a relaxing evening in front of the tv.

Here's to a better week next week!!

See someone else on my bloglist has had a tough week!

Monday, 12 October 2009

Car parking charges

My husband and I went for a day out in Oxford.  Lovely day.

We first went to the University Botanical Gardens

We then had a look at Magdalen Bridge.

Unfortunately, after such a lovely four hours we turned up to discover that we had to pay £9.40 for parking.  There was no indication upon entering the carpark that the charges were so expensive.  We soon found out the hard way.  But really £2.30!!  I live in Poole Dorset, which is in my view quite expensive but I certainly not aware of such a charge for parking!!
We intend to stay for the weekend next time and obtain bargain accommodation.

I would however advise you all that if you intend to go out of your area by car to make sure you find out what the parking charges are.  If you cannot see a price you cannot in my view afford it!!

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Lazy Sunday afternoon

I went to my daughter's house today.  I have not mentioned her in my profile mainly for privacy reasons but I feel a bit more brave now so may update that shortly.  However, she called Jessica and she  is 20 years old.  She lives with her boyfriend Jon not too far away from us.

Anyway they invited us over today for a 3 course lunch.  We had Tomato and basil soup for starter and both my husband (Chris) and I were shocked it looked like it should have been in a magazine.  It also tasted fabulous. 

For our main we had stuffed peppers.  The  stuffing was couscous and chill flavouring with goats cheese - again this was tasty - for dessert we had Ben and Jerry's icecream cookie dough flavour which was amazing.  We ended up having cake a little later which was a mini Thorntons caramel flavour cake it was yummy.  I certainly would not have had that a home. 

I went out into the kitchen and Jessica had thrown haldf the packet of basil in the bin.  I had to stop myself from fishing it out and taking it home.  Chris and I did try to talk her into freezing it.  But to no avail.  Oh well she will learn - she does do a budget though!!

Saturday, 3 October 2009

To put the heating on or not

At this time of year I seem to ponder when is the appropriate time to put the central heating on.   I have gone to bed with a hot water bottle on two nights during this last week.  I do still have the summer duvet on thouge must make sure I get the winter onw dry cleaned.

I am rather cold in the day as well as the evening even wearing a long sleeved top.  I know I should put something else on but I am very tempted to put the heating on not constant but twice a day.  They have put some heating on at work already - I do  not have to pay for that of course!

I was cold today when I went out and wore a nice warm fleece lined coat.  I felt snuggly.  I even wore it for a while in doors and it made me feel warm but surely I shouldnt wear it all the time lol.  I wonder when others put their heating on if at all.

I would welcome any ideas in fact I am off to look through your blogs to see if you have mentioned this subject.

Sunday, 27 September 2009


Its been a while since I last posted - busy week. 

I have been looking at vouchers I have received recently, this morning.  Firstly, I received a capital bond voucher in the sum of £5.00 from TNS, then there is a Boots voucher in the sum of £5.00 that I received from GFK, and this week I received £5.00 M & S voucher for getting an insuranced quote from Churchill which I didn't believe would turn up. 

I also have a voucher from Pavers which I received through a complaint I had which I may well spend next week in the sum of £20.00 and my darling OH has given me £40.00 in Next vouchers for our anniversary.

I note that I also have £60.00 worth of vouchers to come from nationalshoppingmonitor which I will use as Christmas presents.  I have about £20.00 of Nectar vouchers to come which I will spend on Christmas, £10.50 of Tesco vouchers and goodness knows how many boots points I have but its over £20.00. 

Most of my vouchers are obtained through surveys and scanning shopping so I am pretty pleased with myself this morning.

Saturday, 19 September 2009

Using up what I have none grocery items

In my bedroom I have a stacker which you can get from Argos which is about 5 drawers deep.  I keep most of my personal hygiene products in it such as hair care, bubble bath (I also have some in the bathroom and scattered around the bedroom), skincare items, and other bits and pieces.  I have a lot of make-up and perfume too.  I am going to set myelf a mini-challenge where I have to use up what I have got - which is not easy when living in a town.

I think it is good to do this for a while so that I can save money, clear up the clutter and enjoy using products that I had forgotten I had.

Wish me luck.  Will let you know how I get on.

Monday, 14 September 2009

A few moneysaving tips

I read MSE everyday so I do not want to repeat the forum's tips.  I am trying to recall some that are not well known.

My main one is buying men's disposable razors.  They are cheaper and more robust - they last me ages - okay so they are not pink.

Another one is I live in town so no travelling to the supermarket.  I live near Sainsburys, Aldi and Asda.  I also live near M & S, Wilkinsons and all the usual suspects.  When I first moved here I spent more than I do now as you get used to it.  There are many charity shops.

Living in town and it is quite quiet, means that I can catch the whoopsies or reduced items.  I also live near the sea so I can go on walks in the summer near where I live which cost nothing.

I do not want to appear dirty but I only wash my bedding every two weeks in the Winter although if it needs doing before then I do it.

I shower most days and just have one bath per week.

I hang the washing to dry over the radiator even in the summer - live in a flat and no washing line.

I turn off all appliances at night - nothing is on standby in our home.

I often cook and we have the same meal the following night as leftovers.

I do like Heinz baked beans and branded coffee but other than that I have done down a brand some are value or economy.

I am a vegetarian and that saves money and I believe it is more healthy - just my opinion.

Before I go shopping for non-groceries i.e. Loo Roll I look at to see who has the better offer.

I only used my car where necessary - I get mileage if I drive my car for work which quite often pays my petrol and more.  I only work 6 minutes from home - need to drive my car as I may need it urgently.

Close curtains at dusk to keep the warmth in.

Only put the heating on where necessary.

When heating is on make sure I have enough clothing on and keep the heating to a minimum.

I have had my drier for 14 years and it cost be just over £100.  I empty the fluff compartment every time I use it and I believe this has helped it last for so long.

Use vouchers I have earned from surveys throughout the year to pay for the bulk of my Christmas presents.

I always shop around when spending a large amount of money - my laptop was the last one in Tesco and they reduced it by over £100.  We saw the TV we wanted in Tesco and then my husband did an online search and ended up getting it - wait for it over £350.00 cheaper - it is a big TV my husband likes his TV. 

As I have said previously I am not tight I just want what I want for a more reasonable price.  I am ready to save in some areas so I can have what in want in others.

I cannot think of anymore tips that most of you don't  know already - I  hope you found at least one thing helpful.

Other websites I look at are and lovemoney - both of which help me save money.

P.S I am so pleased that I have a follower - never thought anyone would be interested in my blurbs.

Sunday, 13 September 2009

Saving money

I managed to save over £250 on my insurance this week. I received my renewal and including breakdown it came to over £650. I tried some comparison sites and it brought the price down a little. I then logged on to Direct Line for a Quote and it came to just over £400. Needless to say I was very pleased with myself.

I ready a popular forum everyday in the hope of saving more money. I have been trying to understand the concept of "clicks", "matchbetting" and also free scratchcards on bingo sites. I have done surveys for ages, including Television as scanning in my shopping and of course every little helps. I even do the odd click but the matchbetting and the bingo sites scare me. I am worried that I will end up in debt.

This scares me so much. I have been in debt in the past when I was student and I have no intention of doing this again. I don't spend ages on looking at special offers in shops and looking for voucher codes just to blow my hard earned money on gambling sites. I will continue to investigate how they work but who knows.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Need to keep on blogging

To be honest I lost my way a little with this blogging lark. I wonder, who will even read it?

However, after watching a free premiere of Julie and Julia I have renewed enthusiasm.

I have also won a Vodka Cocktail kit and received a free packet of pringles in the post. I have started comping again. Within the last few months my biggest wins have been two meals out with my local radio station.

My blog will essentially about my attempts to save as much money as I can. I am not tight perhaps frugal but its about getting more for less money.

As I said in my previous blog, I work and I am not poor but I do have limited funds. My main aim however, is to reach retirement and not to have to worry about money at all and to be able have a relatively worry free lifestyle when I get there.

I must say that since I have been considering my future I have started to spend less. Very rarely do I ever spend in the week and my changes include taking my own packed lunches to work. I spend less on shopping as I meal plan from week to week. It is not really that difficult because if we do not fancy a meal one night we can chop and change.

Don't get me wrong we do have the odd takeaway but try to keep it down to once per month.

Saturday, 28 March 2009

New to blogging


I am Justine and I am new to blogging. In fact, this is my first day. I have been thinking about trying it for a while but was a bit apprehensive. I was not sure it was for me.

I have also joined Twitter and to be honest I am finding that really difficult. I have worked out how to find some people and add them but have not yet been able to work out how to send a message. As soon as I find out I will let you know how I get on.

In the meantime, I am a keen moneysaver and today I will be going to the Next sale to grab a bargain. I ordered a few items last night to start me off.

Although I am not poor I do have limited funds, as a newly qualified Legal Executive, I am not exactly rolling in it and of course I still have my student loans to repay eventually. I started studying law in 1996 and in 1997 I embarked on a Law Degree but was unable to afford to qualify as a Solicitor at the time. I had to home study with Ilex Tutorial for a couple of years. I am from a working class background from a deprived area and I am therefore proud of myself and would like others to realise that they can do whatever they want to do whatever their past and background.