Sunday, 6 July 2014

On Not Getting Trouted.

I came home on Thursday night after doing a particularly frugaltastic bit of shopping and I felt like this.

Weird, because I'd gone to Morrison's

However, after reviewing my post, seeing some bills that I forgotten all about and not budgeted for, I felt like this.

Yes, I'd put my bags down. They do mask a lot of problem areas.

One of my revenue streams has dried up, and now I have a few extra associated costs - just as we are approaching the most expensive month for us, August, which includes a lot of travel and hotels and temptation.


And July isn't a cheap month either.

Oh blimey!

So there's nothing for it, but to try our utmost to cut corners where we can. But there's a catch... we cannot cut corners as far as health is concerned, and our diet must be tip-top to enable me to shed a bit of excess pud, and OH to be event-ready. Him being an athlete and all that.

OH is the fella on the left. When he next sees a finish line, it will be after a much, much, longer race. Eek! Yep, they're holding hands. No, I don't know who the other fella is.
Did you see The World's Best Diet last week? What an eye-opener! As different as the world's healthiest diets were from each other, though, it seemed clear to me where each improved on the typical British diet, including mine. Apparently, the typical British diet consists of three principle ingredients: potatoes, flour and vegetable oil. The three principle ingredients of my diet are flapjacks, cider and any cake going. But that's not better just because flapjacks have super-healthy oats in them, boo.

Will this frugal-ish floozy be able to change her sweet, cheap ways?

Until yesterday, I'd managed to spend mere pennies and got a substantial amount of food in, thanks to some voucher-tastic shopping. As much as I hate the gutter press, as a past-recipient of mucky Murdoch money for my work in publishing, I can't be proud. So it was with just a few qualms that I bought a newspaper that informed me that Jade, 22, has mammary glands, bully for her. I hope they give her some comfort in her dotage, or at least a cranny for secluding her Murray mints. In the newspaper was a voucher for £5 fruit and veg which I happily trundled to Morrison's, along with a couple of other vouchers I wanted to use. I'd heard online about people buying up several copies, being made to leave the shop and come back rather than put through different baskets as different transactions... and it was the first time I'd heard the expression 'trout', a particularly derisive term applied to a checkout assistant - usually female - who hates money-off coupons and tries to find any way they can of not putting it through. Well, my vouchers got queried, but it was no 'trout', just a lovely, polite young girl who wasn't used to vouchers and had been through a bit of a baptism of fire learning the job on a big voucher day. But we were soon able to sort things out with her supervisor and with a spend of just £1.12, I got all this!
mushrooms; YS grapes; multi-grain bread mix; cola; cassava; apples, spuds; turmeric root; peppers; melon; lettuce
We managed to have access to a car yesterday to buy enough cat food and non-food shopping for July and beyond, also, we have in some treats from the Northampton Food Festival. We have spent just under a third of our July budget, so the challenge is on to keep spending as low as possible for the rest of the month.

So, not to dwell on the negatives, here's all the fun stuff I've done this week:

Dawn O'Porter can sod off learn a lot from Vintage Vixen.

Seriously... there is no need to spend so much money on your clothes, lady! Personally, I am always rocking the vintage with clothes that are chazza'd; schwinged or hand-me-upped. As yet another building collapsed last week on top of underpaid garment workers in Chenai, the benefits of buying vintage mean that you can go some way to avoid being complicit in exploitation and corporate manslaughter, as well as avoiding perfectly good clothes ending up in landfill. However, I think it's rather unfortunate that Dawn Porter's programme This Old Thing focuses so much on rich Londonistas who would rather pay £500 for a dress from the 80s than be thought of as cheap. That's not going to sway the opinion of someone who'd happily pay high street prices and buy often, rather than save up and invest in their going out-out outfit. Please can you think of us lesser mortals, Dawn?

Last week, I ended up buying a new outfit from the high street as I needed to avoid wearing black, red, or white for a wedding, I was not confident with what I could mix and match from my current wardrobe, and I'd wavered over some options available in the charity shops. In the end I found this dress in Dotty P, which was entirely made in the EU. Joy! Already in the sale, I haggled it down from £32 to £13 as it was missing the belt and had a small pull. Trying to think like Vix, I accessorised up with DM Dolly shoes in pink and white (£20 from the outlet stall years ago), a silver bolero (£3 in a New Look sale) and my hair slide and clutch from my own wedding. My brooch was made by Lauren of Skulls and Robots for my birthday. My hair started out Goldfrapp-crazy but had calmed down by this point - a mix of ragging on the bottom and pin-curling on top.

Eyes on the Prize

You know those little trader magazines that pop through the door - the ones you probably put straight in the recycling bin? Well, I scanned through the last one and spotted a competition to win 4 tickets to see Horrible Histories at the theatre. I didn't win... but I was next on the list when the winners couldn't take the prize. Yay! I offered the prize to my brother and has family but was able to take the 4th ticket. A great night out - and winning the prize saved us £64. It was an incredibly tight production for the tiny cast of 4, with a few props, and scenery all done as a computer-animated background, which is 3D for the second half. It was so well done, and really, really funny. Age-appropriate, of course. Here is Boudicca with the Romans, who 'beat up' her kids...

Boudicca was awesome - a great singing voice, very expressive and great comic timing

My nephew, who is 5, took off his 3D glasses as there were rather a lot of skulls and bats flying into his face, which he found a bit disconcerting. Great for kids who like spooky and gory. And for not-so-grown-up aunties.

Lovin' Northampton

Yesterday, we were spoilt for choice with good stuff in Northampton. First, OH and I went for a healthy march up to Delapre Abbey where we hoped to learn about the Battle of Northampton.

Medieval people. Sitting about. That's getting medieval on yo' ass!
We went round the exhibition, and an expert was due to lead a walk which we were interested in, but we realized we would miss the battle demo, so we gave it a miss. But with mot much else going on, we decided to head into town to go to the Northampton Food Festival instead in the beautiful Guildhall, totally free entry.

First, we went to a no-cooking cooking demo by Ondine Hartgroves, who despite the venue restrictions, was able to demonstrate how to make ceviche cod, and made us tortilla biscuits to eat that with, and seared beef salad wraps for which she made a gorgeous, fresh and fragrant salsa verde.

We sampled various lovely local ales and ciders.

And we met these lovely people from Beckworth Emporium, happily only  a cycle ride away from us, and an outlet for many local producers, as well as nursery, winter ice-rink, and theatrical venue. They are staging a production of Pride and Prejudice on Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd August. Oh, Mr. Darcy!

I have also been doing some baking, which will feature in a follow-up post.

No comments:

Post a Comment