Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Time to crunch the numbers again

Evening folks. I get paid tomorrow but the cash is already earmarked to go straight out. When we moved to the new house some unexpected things ate into the little pot of cash that we had for the move. We got as much done as we could but some things had to be put on the back burner. One of which was a carpet for the hall , stairs and landing. All the rest of the house is done but we ran out of cash. What didn't help was that the carpet people upped their quote by £400 at the eleventh hour. It may have been a tactic to squeeze us for more money but I didn't fall for it. I told the carpet guy that I would do without the hall and get it at a later date. We have used offcuts on the upstairs landing and in the hall way as we had a long off cut the length of the lounge which was 24ft . We had intended to get the carpet this month but there has been some spending on the credit card so the carpet will have to wait again. I don't want to be in debt again, at least not for something that can wait a few weeks. That's where we went wrong in the past, the 'must get it now' mentality. Also the man is coming tomorrow to look at the conservatory and I'm sure that it will cost ££££.

Monday, 24 September 2012

Leaky conservatory

Good Evening. For the last 24 hours almost it has rained non stop here and everywhere is soaking wet. Having recently moved house we are still discovering things that we have inherited from the previous people and today's find seems to be a leaky conservatory roof. It didn't leak previously in the summer when it rained a lot. It is only a slight leak and maybe its due to having had a months rainfall overnight but nevertheless it is time for another tradesman to come out just when I thought I'd said cheerio to the last one. Hopefully it wont be too expensive as we are having a friend of a friend come out to take a look. TTFN x

Sunday, 23 September 2012

New Jeans

I had to go and get some new jeans today. My current ones are now a few years old and look shabby plus I hate clothes shopping so I always find it an ordeal. I forced myself to go today as someone gave me a 20% off voucher for M&S dated this weekend. |I went to the big M&S in Birmingham and was astonished to get two pairs that fit and look OK. I tried a few pairs on but strangely it was the economy range at £12.50 per pair that looked and fitted the best. As they had two of my size in stock I snapped them up and got £5 discount so it only worked out at £10 per pair. I opted for the indigo blue colour which is more of a navy than a denim colour. After that I managed to find another bargain in WH Smith, a wooden ball in a cup toy priced at 25p in the bargain bin. I got this for someone who loves wooden toys for their children so I know it will be well received. En route home I always pop in the little Waitrose who sometimes have great reductions. No great ones today but I did manage to get two packs of Aberdeen Angus steak mince reduced from £3.99 to £1.39 each,  3x peppers reduced from £2 to 89p and a wholemeal loaf reduced from £1.59 to 39p. I am going to make another batch of Chili tomorrow for later in the week. Its getting rather chilly round these parts nowadays and theres nothing better than a pot of Chili on a chilly night. Well its time to get snuggled down and ready for Downton Abbey, I do believe we have the wedding tonight dear readers . TTFNxx

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Getting there slowly

Evening all and hope you are well. Productive day today, slowly getting things packed away. Managed to tackle some of the boxes in the garage and sort through and re home some of the stuff. Most of it went in the cupboard under the stairs but the garage is slowly being freed up from its alternative life as a storage unit. Another trip to the tip as we seem to have cardboard boxes multiplying. One of the finds today was a box full of camcorder tapes from years ago, I am thinking maybe of having some home movie nights during the winter months ahead. I was also very good and gave the Dyson a good clean, the removable bits have all been washed and left in the conservatory overnight to dry out, the filter was more than fifty shades of grey but now looking much cleaner. It said to wash the spongy bit every 6 months, I don't remember doing it before and I have probably had it more than two years. I also tackled my wardrobe , folded and organised everything. It now looks so much better and less like a jumble sale and I can find things more quickly too. Feeling tired now so will say nighty night. Its almost midnight and I might turn into a pumpkin. TTFN x

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Pays to be prepared.

Good afternoon dear bloggers and I hope you are all well. Apologies for the recent absence. It was unexpected due to a hospital appointment last week and a procedure that the doctor decided to do immediately. Being taken by surprise has its advantages as at least I wasn't dwelling on it days prior but I was writhing around in agony for a few days after ! Almost back to normal now but I have to go back in 2 months to see if the treatment has to be repeated. Luckily I had some time off work so I could writhe around without having to tell people why I was off work, you always get the nosey ones don't you.

Making some meals in advance really helped me out last week and goes to show how its best to have some stuff in as you never know what is around the corner.When I was recouperating I happily wolfed down the chilli I had made earlier in the week prior to my treatment.  We had an unexpected guest for lunch on Sunday so the roast chicken didn't make it through to Monday but nevertheless we have been doing well with meals. On Monday we ventured into the unknown with a vegetable stroganoff. We all love meat in our house but I fancied giving something different a try however it wasn't that much cheaper in all honesty once I'd bought all the peppers, mushrooms etc to go in under the veg category. Although it tasted nice I did notice the absence of meat but it was a good meal if you wanted a veggie alternative. Tonight I am cooking gammon which I hope will last a day or two.  TTFN xx

Monday, 10 September 2012

Cooking once, eating twice

Evening all. I feel really tired today and my husband offered to cook tea. I am not knocking his kind offer but it was comical as I had cooked the meal yesterday. Trying to cut costs and save time, I am cooking meals to last a day or two again. Yesterday we had roast chicken and I made enough veg for the same meal at dinner again tonight. The chicken even saw us through for yummy chicken wraps for supper and a couple for our lunch today at work. Tomorrow I will be making a bolognese/chili for tea on Tuesday and Wednesday. I have the generic ingredients for both , onions mushrooms and peppers both topped off with some grated cheese at the table. Tomorrow I am giving Tescos Everyday Penne pasta a try, I think it was about 39p for a bag. I am trying the value brands to see how they work out. TTFN x

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Getting a bit more done

Good Afternoon and welcome to new reader ' sh3ri301', thanks for following.

I am enjoying the sunshine and getting jobs done. I still have boxes and bags around that I am slowly getting unpacked. Rather than doing it all at once I am doing a few each day so I don't get fed up, I figure that way I can keep productive and still enjoy my new surroundings without feeling burnt out !
This weekend we have managed to get some more things done, not big things just time consuming. New blind in the bathroom which seemed the simplest job but took forever ! New curtain rail in our room and a new shower curtain rail. Because we have a corner bath, we ordered a bendy rail which you can bend to suit. A lot of corner rails come in sections which eventually fail so although a little bit more expensive, we opted for the bendy as it comes in one piece. The bathroom does look transformed with the new blind, its amazing how little touches can finish a room off. At the moment we have a fitter here , fitting a new bathroom door as the old one had split and was beyond repair. This should be the last of the tradesmen type people now for a very long time. It will be nice to give the purse a rest as it has been open none stop these last few months and the pot is now empty. The essential jobs have now been done but the more cosmetic things will have to wait until we have more cash to hand, whenever that will be !! Enjoy your weekend, TTFN xx

Saturday, 8 September 2012

I am '' Little Red Hen''

Who remembers the story of Little Red Hen ? I am that Hen at the moment ! This post is a bit of a moan so look away now if you don't want to read my gripes !! I have just moved into my new house and with the exception of my parents , no one else has helped us in any way shape or form. This includes family and friends who I have helped in numerous ways over the years and also in recent months. Since we completed in May I have been in a mess , like most people, working to financial and time constraints. I have been working at my place of work, then working into the evenings at my house most days and weekends. Eating meals out of sync, keeping my daughter amused as she was completely bored with us working away. Fetching, carrying back and forth etc etc.No one has offered to help, babysit or give us a welcome hot meal or packed lunch ! Now here's where it gets a bit ' Henny'! Now we have moved in, these people who have lay back dormant, silent and invisible seem to be reappearing , suggesting come dine with me meals and housewarming parties. Is it me fellow bloggers or do you also think its a bit of a cheek ? I try to stay positive but this has shown me what short memories people seem to have and how people are willing to take but not give.

Friday, 7 September 2012

Planning for Christmas

I am always quite organised buying gifts in advance for Christmas but this year I thought I would make up a food hamper in advance to cut down on the expense and running around nearer the time. It started last week when I went into a local shop and saw the shelf of reductions. Amongst other things was jars of cranberry sauce and cartons of Birds brandy sauce. The cranberry was 69p dated 2013 and the brandy sauce was 50p dated Dec 2012. This prompted me to start buying. I plan to buy something each week with the weekly shop. Last week I bought some breadsticks and tonight I got some non alcoholic beer for one of my guests which was on offer. I hope to get some of the offers ahead of December. I already had my Christmas pud in stock, a luxury one with brandy which should have been  £7 before Christmas reduced in January to £1.50. Its dated BBE Sept 2012 but I have no doubt it will be OK. It will be our first Christmas in our new home so I have invited a few family members over for lunch. Are you thinking about Christmas yet ?

Thursday, 6 September 2012

New School

Good Morning and firstly apologies for the delay in welcoming new follower Halfrida, thanks for joining. Also a big thank you to fellow blogger SFT for awarding me the ' Lovely Blog award' a few weeks ago. Thank you so much and sorry for the delay in accepting.

This last week has been another milestone for our family, we have moved into our new house and my daughter has started at senior school. We are hoping that this stress of the last eighteen months is now behind us and a new period of calm will follow, time will tell !

I am sat at home all alone feeling strangely redundant. Daughter has gone off by herself to catch the school bus. Its weird, completely different from the more hands on approach that you had to have at primary school. She has stayed school dinners so I have no idea what she will eat until she gets home and tries to recall what shes bought. At least with packed lunch I could police the meal but now my control has been taken away a little. First day she ate pizza and a brownie. I have tried to advise that she needs to make healthy choices or she will have to take a packed lunch.

She looks smart in her new uniform, but that has also been a costly exercise. I have managed to save some money as her school shoes and trainers still fit her from before but inevitably they will need replacing in a month or two, it is only a temporary saving. The uniform I had to get from one of two suppliers as it is has school emblem sewn on and not plain. The suppliers had sold out of everything so it was a bit close getting everything in time, will make a note to self next summer to get anything I need before July so I don't have the same problem again . Here's what she had to have ;

School coat ; £52 Next, managed to find black decently made duffel style coat for winter with a hood. Lots of the coats are fashion style and poorly made.

School blazer ; £32

School trousers; £17 one pair ,managed to get these from M&S. Again had to be straight leg which was hard to find as they are all boot leg fashion style trousers which are not allowed.

School skirts ; £18.50 each bought two.

School Jumpers ;£17 each bought two.

School cardigan; £18 each bought one.

Black tracksuit ; £24.50,  Had to be plain black with no slogans/brand. Got this from M&S, bought hoodie style jacket £15 and black joggers £9.50. Some parents said they don't wear this much, luckily as its plain she could wear it at home for casual clothing so not too worried about that.

School PE top; £9

School shorts ; £5

School ties ; £7 each, bought two

School blouses; £12 for a three pack from M&S, got two packs.

That little lot does not include new socks, tights, stationery etc that she had to have as well.

I'm not moaning it was inevitable, its just come at a time when we had a lot of expense with the house move and all we have done for the last two months is stand at tills paying for stuff !

Enjoy your day, TTFN xx