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The frugal community on social media is such an inspiring one and I absolutely love picking up their money savvy tips. It has always been important to me to keep on top of my spending habits and prepare for the future, but there has never been a more significant time than right now. With a baby on the way and a pandemic to deal with at the moment, finances have become a priority for myself and my husband. Here are my five frugal things for August 2020.
Hand painting cards. As I’m still avoiding the shops at the moment, I’ve had to get a bit creative with birthday cards. The online food shop is never reliable for ordering them in and so my excessive art supply stash has actually come in quite handy. A couple of months ago now I painted a card for my Grandma which actually felt much nicer to send than something shop bought.
With my brother’s birthday coming up, I realised that I’d used up all of my blank cards. Of course, my friend Amazon has come to the rescue. After a quick search I decided to order a pack of 50 square cards for about £6. I’ll be able to have my bother’s card in the post on Monday (Morrison’s do deliver stamps thankfully) and then I’ll have the next 49 celebrations covered too. At 12p a card, I’m pretty happy with this thrifty effort!
Discovering Treasure in the Attic. OK, treasure may be a little bit of a stretch, but the other day whilst clearing out our attic we found several boxes that had been there since the 70s. Amongst them were around two hundred different comics, a very 60s mirror and a tiny organ. The organ was missing a plug, so Mike spent five minutes attaching one and we soon had some rocking tunes going on. I kid, but it does work!
We’ve decided to list a lot of the items on Ebay after going through them. Not sure they’ll be worth too much, but even if we make £50 from the sales, that’s £50 more than we had before. I feel a little guilty about selling the items in a way as they may have meant something to the previous owner. We would of course offered to hand them back, but the lady who used to live here is no longer around. Hopefully she wouldn’t mind.
The power of a smart google search. My husband has the magical ability to find really good deals on the internet. I can spend a long time looking for something, googling, scrolling and comparing and coming up with very little. Then Mike hops online and has the perfect solution within minutes. It both drives me nuts and makes me very happy in equal measures.
This time, I was on the hunt for a nursing chair. We had spotted one for around £140 on Aldi in the earlier stages of my pregnancy but we weren’t ready to buy. That has now sold out and so the hunt was on again. I wanted something that would be really comfortable, preferably with a rocking base, which could also then be used as a normal chair elsewhere in the house when baby is older. The best I could find was a snuggle chair on Mamas and Papas for £500. Beautiful, but more expensive than I was hoping.
Of course I called on Mike for help and within five minutes he had found a chair in a beautiful grey fabric, with both normal and rocking legs, for £240. Just like that. We’re getting the last bits of decorating finished this weekend and then we’ll be placing an order. I’m not letting this one sell out too!
Shopping the freezer and pantry. Every Sunday night we sit down and decide what we want to buy in our food shop for the week ahead. You know, the usual; make a meal plan, check ingredients in the cupboard, add in a few snacks. This week a quick check of the calendar, freezer and pantry told us that we didn’t actually need to do any shopping at all.
We still had a meal from last week that hadn’t been made due to a sneaky takeaway. That was bumped up to Monday. Then we realised that on Saturday and Sunday we have plans which mean no meals are needed over the weekend. We still had fish, chicken, frozen pasta bake and a few other leftovers in the freezer and plenty of pasta, beans and tins in the cupboard. Why spend £30 or more on shopping when we could just use what we had? That’s a nice little saving made!
A new book for 49p. I’ve really wanted to spend more time reading recently. Something to take my mind off the world when it gets a bit too much. To help relax me when the pregnancy exhaustion is taking over my day. Ever too impatient to wait for a paperback to arrive in the post, I jumped on to Amazon to have a quick nosey at kindle options. It didn’t take me long to decide on a Christmas Carol. I’ve never actually read the Dickens novel. Although a bit out of season, the story is a favourite of mine, so I thought it was the perfect choice. Being an older book, it was only 49p. Bargain I thought.
Of course bargain hunter Mike later pointed out that novels no longer under copyright can actually be found for free…oops. I can’t say I’m mad about the amount I paid, but he’s definitely showing me up on the frugal front lately!