Sunday, 29 January 2012

No spend days and tomorrow is pay day whoopie!!

Well hello to my new follower Green flag.  I do not always see my new followers so hello to all my followers and thanks for continuing to follow me!

I did the no spend challenge in January and I stuck to it as much as possible!  I said no to the book man no to new clothes - other than those that were ordered and bought in December.  I said no to eating out. 

It meant that I had about £130 pound left over from my wages - I did have almost £100 come December accrued from underspending the months before but this went on Christmas.

I also got £16.00 cash back from my credit card which will go towards my Ipad.  I have about £250 saved including that money now.

I did not count the no spend days but there were at least 15 could have been 20.  The rest were low spend.  I was tempted - it is so hard.  I shall get paid tomorrow.  I shall try to make February a low spend month - only I need some work clothes and I am going to a Solicitors lunch the week after next and am going to get a new suit and top.  I shall use my Christmas vouchers towards it which I still have left!

Tomorrow evening OH and I are going out for a meal at Prezzo's courtesy of Tesco's clubcard - only got £20 but that will do we shall have to pay for our drinks - soft drinks of course!

In terms of meals I am going to try and meal plan I did this for ages until our board fell off the kitchen wall.  I keep asking OH and I am sure he will put it back up soon.

I have been buying a lot of yellow sticker items, I went to Mr S last night and this morning and bought nearly all reduced items.  I bought some shampoo and conditioner which were less than half price and next week I shall buy more as  I have not bought ay bulk buys this month in order to stick to my no spends but I do need them to save me money throughout the year.

Not been well this week, feeling a bit better today.  My sister came over with her OH and little ones, they bought me some flowers to cheer me up and bought some cakes. 

Have a good week y'all!

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Cheap Breaks

Recently, I was looking on the internet for a hotel for two nights in Easter on the way back from the Lakes.  We are going the Lakes with Chris's parents to celebrate their Golden Wedding anniversary.

We decided to stop at Oxford.   Most hotels I checked were expensive even the ones you think are cheap.

I found a website called Trivago.

I recognised it from the T. V ad.  Firstly, you have a hotel in mind and type it in and then it searches various websites such as Laterooms,, expedia, and others to see where you can get it the cheapest.  We got two nights in Oxford, B and B for £110.00 for both of us - amazing.

Monday, 16 January 2012

The Iron Lady

OH and I saw this yesterday and we thought it was amazing.  It had me engrossed from beginning to end.  It has so much in it.  I am surprised they managed to fit it all in. 

It was no holds barred.  It  really showed her in a good light and bad light, the real MT. It had me in tears a few times and I always knew that she cared after all why would you get a job trying to help the Country if you didn't.

I did know her background but this film really shows how hard she worked to get to where she did despite her background and despite being a woman.

I am surprised it only seems to get three stars in its reviews I would give it 5 out of 5.  As for Meryl Streep I kept having to remind myself it wasn't MT.  For me she is one of the best actresses ever.  Is a shame we always need American's to be the lead.  I would thoroughly recommend this film whatever your politicial pursuasion!

Also a shame it costs best part of £20 to watch a film these days!!

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Just a quickie . . .

Hello to my new members.

I am low today.  G.P put me on anti-d's not depressed though work stress. 

Hope to be better tomorrow and will blog soon.

Take care  x J

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Low Spend rather than no spend but it all helps!

You may recall that I was having my sister's little lad, Macauley who is agred 10.

He arrived yesterday at 9.30 a.m.  My sister offered me money for food and I said no but perhaps give Macauley a little pocket money to spend.

I had a few errands to run namely getting some money out and gettinh my prescription from Boots.

I took some money out of the hole in the wall when I saw a shoe sale.  I popped in and saw I some boys trainers for just £7.99 well knowing that Macauley's shoes were starting to get too small I decided to buy him a pair as he seemed to really like them.  It will save my sister a few quid anyway!

I then went to Boots and as usual was asked to wait half an hour so we went to our Library.  There were adult and children books on sale.  Children's bundles were 50p and I offered to buy him some but they were not to his taste.  I had a quick look at the adults ones which were 20p each but remembered my no spend in January.  I couldnt justify it so left them and went to get my prescription.

I dropped my prescription home to get my hat and scarf, which I had bought with gloves from fat face in the sale all  for about £17.00 reduced from £54.00 - bargain and we went to the Quay for chips.  I had them with a pea fritter and can of coke and Macauley had them with battered sausage, sauce, drink and a toy.  I think the total was about £7.00 and Macauley's was £3.40.  I know it is a spend but it brought me up a bit from being down and I forgot about work for a morning, as we had fun!

On the way home we went into the amusements and Macauley spent some of the money his mum gave him.  I gave him some change too.

Chris - my husband got some chocolates for us to eat whilst watching tv. 

Today was better I just bought some shopping - went shopping Thursday at Asda and I couldn't get everything I wanted - so today was Sainburys.  I was shocked to see the increase in prices since Christmas!.  Okay so my chilli tomatoes and basil had only increased by 1p but the mashed potato I get (which I think I have previously mentioned in my blog) had increased by another 10p.  That means it has increased overall by 21p.

I usually buy Ecover washing up liquid usually reduced or an alternative but it was selling at £2.60 a litre but I thought no way that is too much.  I bought some Sainsbury's Lemon washing up liquid for £1.36 (or there abouts) per litre.

I bought (or thought I had) two fresh quorn items for £4.00 - pieces and La Sagne however, I was charged full price and it took the assistant ages to sort it out.  She tried t say that the La Sagne was  not included as it didn't have a sticker on it (put one on then I thought to myself), but she came back and said she was confused as it included the La Sagne but the Classic one.  I said that was the only one that Quorn do as far as I am aware and they gave me £1.70 back - that's quite a lot of you ask me!

Peas well do not get my started on peas, they seem to cost abour £3.00 per bag, I went to get some Petit Pois from Birds Eye on special OOS but then a lady came over to fill them up.  That was lucky.  I told her how I could not believe how the prices of items had increased lately at the store, poor lady she has five children and they eat a lot she said and she finds it really difficult to make ends meet.

For dinner we just wanted something different.  I had a Blue Dragons Shot which is new and I got it free so I thought why not get a stir fry and guess what:

Yes they were reduced to nearly half price.

I am sorry they are sideways but on  my pc they are face on and am unsure as to how to change them to face on on here.  Strange!

Off to work tomorrow.  Dreading it already but have had my spirits lifted this weekend so fingers crossed!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Birthday and Christmas Presents

For my birthday (40th) I got : a spa few days from my husband  at Cedar Falls in Somerset:

Then afternoon tea at the Chewton Glen Hotel - pics already posted.

A silver plated compact
Lush smellies
Next Smellies
Boots Smellies
£50.00 Next vouchers
Album of my life
Photoframe with me and OH in it
40 badges x2
Bear with 40 on it
Glass with "fantastic at 40" on it
Meal out
Cinema - Arthur in 3d - pizza hut
Bridesmaids DVD
Small bottle of cava
£10 New Look voucher
£10 worth of lottery scratch cards
Necklace and Bracelet from Next

I think that is it - I know I am spoilt!

For Christmas I got:

Tiffany Necklace
New mouse for laptop
White Collection Smellies
Soap and Glory Smellies
Chocolate Santa from M and S
£10.00 lush vouchers
2 boxes of mikado chocolate
5 small No 7 nail polish
No 7 eye make up set
Articulate Game - Chris and I joint pressie
Afternoon Tea Hamper - Chris and I joint present
Nivea giftset
£10.00  M and S Gift Voucher
Bottle of wine
£68.00 from work
Meal out from work

I think that is it other than two secret santa gifts and a gift from Slimming World.

I feel bad now - I did tell people not to buy for me and some didnt so less than last year anyway.  I would welcome someone giving to charity on my behalf if they wanted.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Christmas Decs are down and back to normal

We took advantage of the extra day off yesterday and took the decs down andcleaned and tidied up.

How difficult did I find going back to work today.  I didnt post about it but I did threaten to quit the Thursday before Christmas if I was given proper resources.  I didnt want to put a downer on Christmas and it isnt really resolved although I am assured it will be. I just feel sick again all the time and this went off a little at Christmas so I know I am suffering stress at work.

Today there was power cut at work due to a power line coming down so we sat there for over two hours doing nothing.  I tried to do some work but it was rather impossible.

As a result of the long day and feeling unwell I decided not to go shopping as I had planned and instead made do with what we had.  I did an easy meal of mash, southern fried quorn burgers and beans.  I found a dessert which cost about 9p some time ago, it was a basics strawberry dessert:

Not bad to be honest. The less time I spend at the supermarket the longer my money stays in my purse!

For lunch tomorrow we will have cheese and crackers left over from Christmas, as we did today.  I have rested a little this evening and feel a little more positive.

Monday, 2 January 2012

No spending on . . .

One saving I shall make this year, is by not buying any books at all this year.  I like hard backs, paperbacks and e-books.  I shall read what I have.  If I want a knew book I can download a free one on to my kindle, but to be honest this shouldnt be necessary.

We had to get rid of lots of books last year, I chucked some and gave some to charity.  I had to do it quickly as it goes against my nature to ever get rid of books. I still have lots left.

Well I think not buying books should save me at least £50 this year.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

New Year and New resolutions

No sooner have we finished with Christmas and I see an advert for a Valentine's Day offer for a meal.  New beds, sofas, washing machines etc.

Well I need a new bed, new bedroom furniture, new bathroom - (have done for years) a suit blah blah blah.  It can wait.  My first resolution is for a no spend January. 

I know that doesnt sound hard but it will be.  I am excluding necessities just as food and groceries, but I am not buying clothes or treats for myself.  It will be a little easier than usual as I have had treats for Christmas but even so that doesn't usually stop me.  I am going to try and make do with what I have including food.  I am having a sort of detox.

I may extend this to February but if I do I do need to buy a suit so may exclude that.  I have some vouchers to pay towards it and have just bought (ordered not yet received) a cheap work dress from Austin Reed- at a bargain price and hopefully it will fit, as their clothes last forever! I was going to buy a nice cardi in the sales but as it is now the 1st Jan I am too late.  I did spend some money in the sales but spent about a third of what I usually spend. 

I do not want to buy too many clothes as I have put on a stone plus of the weight I lost in the past.  I want to lose that buy June if not before.  I know I can do it as a few weeks ago I lost 5 pound in one week although I felt a bit nauseaous all week so I wasn't very hungry - so that is number 2.

In the meantime, I have been saving for an Ipad and this year I really want to save enough to buy one,  I saved money given to me for Christmas by work and others and also  money from selling my mobile recently for about £35.00. I also put away £10 a month for a few months and now I have about £203.  That is my number 3 to save more money and use what I do spend to the best of its worth if you see what I mean.

I really do want to continue to spend less and get more from my money.  I got paid on the 29th which was good as it meant I couldn't spend the money beforehand.  I used vouchers from shop and scan towards presents, as well as some savings and some Nectar Vouchers for food but even so it was not pain free - ah well.

Finally, I am really apprehensive about this year, my mum isnt well she has primary bilary sclerosis, my step-dad isnt well - he has COPD by working in a foundry and smoking no doubt, my BIL isnt well and in hospital with an infected foot as a result of diabetes he is the father of 5 children and my sister works full-time as it is as well as juggling family life and is now at risk of having to jack it in.  They own their own property and it is likely they would lose it.  I feel a bit useless.  I have thought about giving her some of the money I have saved but she wouldn't take it and it wouldn't be enough.  No idea when her husband is coming home and she is going away this weekend 7 and 8th  for a break.  All I can do is have one of her children, Macauley - I am his Godmother.  I am proud to be so.  She has now managed to get sitters for the one night two night break so at least she can have some respite.  It is so hard for her as she doesnt even speak to her husband much anymore and they need to split, none of them are happy.  All I can do is listen.