What a week! I know I’ve said this before, but I’ve put myself in a bind for the next month with a lot of evening/weekday activities, so I’m feeling the pressure somewhat. There just isn’t the usual time to consider everything, and I’m a little worn out some days. So, not much surprise that I’m late on this week’s Five.
- This is the first time in ten years I haven’t camped out for the bank holiday. Saved c.£30 in petrol, £50 in ticket, £25+ in food, £10 travel expenses, and didn’t generate substantial rubbish or CO2. Spent much less than this donating to the honeymoon fund of two friends who got married this weekend and generously invited us to share their day, feeding us two meals and giving us an excellent excuse to dress up and dance!
- Gave a lift back to town to a wonderful couple who we met at the wedding, saving them cash and cutting down on journeys/petrol/CO2 between us.
- Didn’t buy a shredder, instead burnt old papers in the backyard. I think considering the cost of producing a shredder, shipping, electricity, and our only very occasional need to destroy personal papers, this is the best solution.
- Had a extravagant (for us) but broadly well behaved Anniversary day with my partner, eating out at an all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant and drinking tap water, and using a Meerkat Movies voucher to see a film for half price afterwards. Total cost c.£44 for both of us.
- Complained about a book I bought off an Amazon seller that was listed “as new” and has a torn dust jacket and water staining. Pleased to be given 50% off; I don’t mind the damage to the book and I’m happy to keep it, I just mind the listing being wrong.
As ever , this post inspired by Katy and the NCA folk.
Small victories are what I looked for this week. The first part of the week was pretty emotionally stressful and exhausting, and it pretty much didn’t let up until today.
- I spent nothing on Monday which, considering how utterly miserable and overwhelmed I was, seems like a major achievement. I did buy comfort food on Tuesday, but I’ve discovered that a sugary something straight after therapy is really good for recovery, so I think that might be a new tradition and I refuse to feel guilty about it!
- I went in an amazing fabric shop at the weekend and didn’t buy anything. This is a new thing for me, as I love fabric and the Japanese and Asian fabrics were so desirable. But I resisted! My current fabric stash is embarrassingly huge anyway.
- I returned a black dress I’d bought from a charity shop which didn’t fit. Normally I’d just put it in the next donation bag, but it cost more than a fiver and it was easy enough to swing by the shop so I put the effort in to return it.
- New housemates have both signed contracts, and one has moved in, so bank accounts have grown a bit and we now have people to feed the cat free of charge when we go away next!
- I’ve done a bunch of repairs on clothes, old ones and new things from charity shops, to make them wearable, which saves them from the tip and gives me cheap and lovely clothes. I’m also hoping I can get a stain out of a really nice shirt I picked up this week. Fingers crossed!
As ever, this post is inspired by Katy and her readers.
I’m completely over committed this month. I realised yesterday when I looked through my schedule for this month, and then factored in the emotionally demanding things that make up some of that. Foolish foolish foolish! I’m starting to take the scythe to my calendar in pursuit of some time for myself, but we shall see. However, due to being stressed and tired and out a lot, things have not been that frugal. But, I do still have some wins:
- Signed contract with one new housemate, and should sign another with a second next week! So, a full house with less alone time but a lot more money in our pockets. A compromise I’m willing to make for a few more years. Plus, it makes full use of this house, instead of bedrooms being empty whilst people struggle to find affordable accommodation.
- Did an extra three hours training with my secondary job, which will go some way towards the missed hours on bank holiday, which I don’t get paid for but had to take off.
- Made it away and back last weekend on only a single tank of petrol, just. Chose to travel outside rush hours to avoid traffic jams, and didn’t speed. Saved c.£20 I think.
- Found a small mirror in a charity shop, something I’d been looking for ever since my partner came back from physio with instructions to do the exercises in front of a mirror, and stole my bedroom one. Great to pick up a second hand one instead of buying new.
- Rack-drying my clothes instead of using the tumble-dryer, making coffee at work instead of buying, taking the bus rather than driving to work (even though it is arguably the same or less money to drive, and takes half the time!), and borrowing books instead of buying. Boring things, but I hope they help.
As ever, this post inspired by Katy’s blog community.
I did it! Plus some. The aim for his month was eight buy-nothing days. And I totally cracked it, which is weird when I consider I did really bad at spending in general this month and went way over my desired budget. I actually spent more than I earnt this month, by a disappointing chunk. It’s okay, I have built up a buffer, but I really have my hear set on adding to that, not taking away.
Big sources of spending were gifts (basically a chunk of cash given to my partner to cover them whilst they were without debit cards due to fraud), health (minor ailments plus therapy) household (the bloody gloss paint that didn’t work and the long-needed curtains), and transport (a three month bus pass) and groceries.
Of those gifts, transportation and household were all abnormally high, totally £300 probably between them. Realising this has made me a little happier, but damn, what a month! I really need May to be better, but I’m wary. I’ve a wedding and two weekends away, and a weekend with my mum in May, none of which is conducive to frugality. Ah well, fingers crossed, and check in next month to see if I survived!