Abstemious April ... the trials continue

(233 Posts)
roguepixie Mon 02-Apr-12 08:26:42

Righty-ho, here's the April thread.

After a disastrous March I am more than ready to get to grips again with all things frugal. grin

BenderBendingRodriguez Mon 02-Apr-12 09:02:55

Likewise grin

Had a good start though - my Phase Eight dress sold for £46 on ebay! Going to parcel it up now.

Debs75 Mon 02-Apr-12 09:51:22

Well done on the Ebay sell. I am getting a bit disillusioned with Ebay, stuff not selling, buyers being awkward. I think it might be better to do a car boot.

April for me will be another big spend as easter hols and dd1's 16th. Will try and keep the dc's busy with free stuff

Leilandri Mon 02-Apr-12 10:09:52

Hi Ladies.

Completely fell off the wagon end-Feb/March. So much so that I am refusing to even attempt to total things up.
Fully on board now for April, especcially as we have decided that I shall not be returning to my current job at the end of mat leave, so my purse needs to be tighter than a ducks arse firmly shut as often as possible until I get another job.

Do feel slightly better about March after our recent heatwave, as alot of my spending has been on gardening bits, and a peek in the greenhouse today has revealed LOADS of seedlings for my veggies grin
Also planted a herb bed, and some raspeberry canes all of which have settled in nicely. Got DS1 on board with the gardening aswell, and he is very proudly looking after the strawberry plants, and his own little patch of garden where he is growing sunflowers and pumpkins (he is 2.10 smile)

NSD planned here today. DS1 is in nursery, so spending some quality time with DS2 to improve his sitting skills, and maybe inspire some forward tummy movement! (DS2 is 8mo)

Hope everyone has a good day grin

Wretched Mon 02-Apr-12 10:38:39

Hi can I join? We have been totally off the wagon for ages, I have been buying plants for the garden, tat from dunelm, lots of lunches in coffee shops and bottles of wine at a tenner from the cheap carvery blush

Desperately need to cut back, I have told myself I'm in the throes of babymoon/ first two months of maternity leave etc but I will be on basic smp from this month so saving starts here.

Will have a nsd today as chilling at home this morning the. Taking dd1 to stay for a sleepover at her Nans. Me and dd2 will probably just come home and I will nap do the housework/ ironing. Tonight I'm planning on making a risotto with leftover roast chicken and some leeks that have been loitering for a week! We do have some social events this coming weekend, I need to make an eton mess for one party and bring wine, for a BBQ Easter Sunday we need to bring BBQ meat and wine. So will try and shop cheaply for these bits and eat from cupboard/freezer stocks until Friday. Good luck everyone!

Wretched Mon 02-Apr-12 10:44:56

Oh yeah forgot it's Easter hols so will have to find ways to amuse dd1 at some point when she tires of nickelodeon, vtech and iPad amusements! Dd2 is only holding her attention as a playmate for around ten minutes (pretty good for a ten week old)! I'm thinking park, which is free and local farmyard which is free but has extortionate cakes and sandwiches. I can avoid these by eating before we go and taking some snacks for dd1. It's the soft play which will cost as its about 3.50 a go! And I just had to shell out fifteen quid for rainbows and fifty quid for swimming lessons for nespxt term! Why do they always ask for the money before the holidays?

spewgloriousspew Mon 02-Apr-12 10:56:04

Hello again!

April starts off with a rather large, but planned, expense: the patio. We are paying for this from savings and is not a frivolous expense. My aim for the month is to cut right back on trips to Costa and other unnecessary costs. I am making a photo book with our pics from the last 3 months, as I actually find this a much more cost effective (and nicer) option that just sticking them in albums. Truprint normally have lots of codes floating around, too.

And, welcome, wretched smile.

spewgloriousspew Mon 02-Apr-12 10:59:03

Just checked bank account, as mortgage etc have just been paid out. We have £680 to last the month.

Becaroooo Mon 02-Apr-12 11:41:51

ohhhh...march was baaadd

And April looking to be as bad tbh...6 birthdays, a wedding anniversary, easter...sigh.

Took dc to town this morning to check their shoes still fit ok (took them last half term and their foot measurement hadnt changed) and they have both gone up 2 sizes!!! In 6 weeks!!! argh...

So, £75 later....<weeps> Cant believe ds1 has had to have new school shoes with only 1 term to go.

Going to York tomorrow to see a friend I havent seen in 2 years...train fare was £37, will need lunch money too. Oh dear.

Am going to cancel my hair appt on Friday...its £20 I need frankly sad

After tomorrow I reckon I will have £250 for food for the rest of the month....any tips gratefully recieved sad

umiaisha Mon 02-Apr-12 12:02:26

Can in join in too please??

I am quite an enthusiastic saver, but also love a good splurge. Have just gone back to work after 13 months maternity leave purely for mortgage purposes (we are moving house) as my childcare costs (2 kiddies) make it not worth my while. I do all the usual ebaying, online surveys, product testing, money off vouchers etc but enjoy getting money saving inspiration from others!

I have a load of Topshop summer clothes to go on ebay, which in the past have sold really well. In fact some of my dresses have gone for more than I have paid for them. Only problem is my ebay account is on stop apparently due to me charging high postage, which IMO I have not. Often I have undercharged postage. Have tried ringing ebay, they have told me to reply to the email which notified me of the 'stop' which I have done twice but have had no reply back.. any ideas? Anyone know if I can set up another account and transfer my 100% feedback??

louiespence Mon 02-Apr-12 13:45:42

Hi all, am new to this thread too! Trying all sorts at the moment to cut back on my spending as reducing hours at work in order to spend more time with DC before DS1 starts school in September.

So far I have exchanged my Ocado shop for Tesco and Aldi; using flannels instead of endless baby wipes to clean up the kids hands and faces after eating (simple i know!); washing clothes at 30degrees (haven't noticed a difference!); turning off radiators in rooms where not necessary (again not noticeable, although it has been getting warmer).

Will also be trying to walk/cycle a lot more instead of using the car; growing some of my own fruit/veg (ambitious as I'm no gardener!) and am thinking about cancelling my cleaner and doing it myself, though this feels like a big deal as I dont know where I'll find the time to do it myself with a messy 2 & 4 year old around!!

Looking forward to reading about how everyone else is managing to cut back and sharing tips!!

louiespence Mon 02-Apr-12 13:48:54

Umiasha - I've sold quite a few things recently on eBay too, but haven't come across this particular issue. Difficult to overcharge on clothes postage anyway as they have put a £4 limit on now. Perhaps post in the eBay section for more advice?

roguepixie Mon 02-Apr-12 13:56:53

Welcome all the newbies.

uma, I don't know if you can transfer your feedback score but I am pretty sure you can start another account. You might want to post that question under the Ebay threads - Fergoose is the one you want...she's the Ebay guru on this site smile.

Beca, I am i the same boat this month and next with regard to birthdays and then in June we have DS's birthday ... never a cheap event.

Like many, I have been to the garden centre and bought plants and seeds for planting. I tend towards herbs but have also bought 2 x gooseberry bushes and 2 x rhubarb plants to see what I can make of them. I have also broadened my horizons and added a bay tree to my little herb garden. I want to add some raspberry canes as well as DS can strip his Grand-dad's raspberry bushes in mere seconds grin.

roguepixie Mon 02-Apr-12 13:57:27

umi - x-post with louie

serin Mon 02-Apr-12 14:17:35

Hi, can I rejoin? I did so well in Jan and then fell of the wagon in fab and March. I am determined to do better this month.

Sainsburys sent me some vouchers so I used those to stock up on Persil non bio which is reduced to £7 for the giant boxes (we have to use this as the kids have eczema)

I have also planted up a couple of pretty plant pots with herb seeds to grow on, they will make nice (and free) presents for DS's teacher at the end of term.We dont usually do teachers gifts but she has been an absolute sar with him this year. I have also applied for my free tomato seeds on the dolmio site.

We are going camping over the Easter weekend (£32 for 4nights) we will probably freeze but at least I wont be stuck in the kitchen cooking expensive roasts smile

Chilenachica Mon 02-Apr-12 14:32:58

Ooh, ooh, ooooooh - they have creme eggs, here in Chile, Creme Eggs I could hardy believe my greedy litttle eyes. There are really expensive so I won't be buying them frequently again.

So, £2 road toll going to school, nothing coming backgrin, sat in the car sipping coffee, from home, then went to the local supermarket to get fruit juice, where I found creme eggs, did I mention that? £15 on fruit juice, cereal, bananas, yoghurt, and creme eggs. I'm going to have avoid more road tolls to recoup all the money I spent on creme eggs.

jenduck Mon 02-Apr-12 14:57:59

Just marking my place as am busy weeding the patio while the sun lasts to make place presentable for IL's visit & birthday tea for DS2/Easter weekend.

Have not quite finished totals for March, but it was not good blush. April could be interesting as have DS2's 1st birthday on Sunday (have my eye on a Smart Trike on Ebay, £25) & DNan's birthday, plus water bills, big nursery bill & council tax starting up again! Oh, and we have put down a deposit on a Eurocamp holiday for September (3 weeks, tent/mobile home/tent + ferry for £580!)

Grocery bill should be next to nothing this month as freezers & cupboards full. Will talk to farmer at baby group I go to who was said she can sell me a lamb for the freezer for £90, not sure when this would be available as they are just finishing lambing now, so imagine it will be a few months [drools]

Welcome to the newbies waves

Alibabaandthe40nappies Mon 02-Apr-12 15:04:30

Hello - I need to come back to this. March was horrendous, just horrendous, but I am hopeful that April can be better. No birthdays for a start!

Two things that are going to cost but that are factored into the budget are a weekend in London at the end of the month, and we are decorating one of the bedrooms for the DSs to share.

We do have friends coming for Easter, but we are ok for booze and I have a freezer full of food - at least some of which I hope I can make use of!

NSD today - I am ill and so we are just pottering at home.

zinaida Mon 02-Apr-12 15:04:52

I've been lurking on these threads all 2012 and I'm finally posting because I've actually got some tips to share! They are all food-based, hopefully someone will find them useful:

-if you like salad but find it overpriced in the supermarket, with a very small investment of time you can grow your own peashoots on a windowledge in about 3 weeks. They are extremely cheap, because you just buy dried marrowfat peas from the supermarket and sprout them in any old plastic carton (bottom 3 inches cut off a milk carton would work fine, eg) See link here:http://www.dietgirl.org/dietgirl/2010/06/how-to-grow-pea-shoots.html
The great thing is that if you snip them off just above the lowest leaf, they will regrow, so you can get 3 harvests from one pot of seeds, and they will be really fresh (and they taste delicious).

- you can make your own tortilla wraps for about 2p, in 35 minutes, here is the recipe: allrecipes.co.uk/recipe/1864/flour-tortilla-wraps.aspx

I can't believe how expensive these two things are if you buy them ready-made from the supermarket!

zinaida Mon 02-Apr-12 15:05:22

Hmm, obviously haven't got the hang of links yet - sorry!

Becaroooo Mon 02-Apr-12 15:29:07

Oh, I am trying not to think about June!..ds1's b day, dh's 40th, dad b day, fathers day and PILs ann...gulp.

Spent £30 in the supermarket today on...just nothing...hair dye (I dye my own hair now to save money), some fruit, some pizzas for ds1, muffins, bread and rolls and some biscuits. £30!!! Good grief! I wouldnt mind if it were "proper" food IYSWIM?

CremeEggThief Mon 02-Apr-12 16:05:41

Yay, a brand new shiny thread smile. Welcome to the newbies and thanks to roguepixie.
NSD yesterday and £9.67 today. £2 of that is DS's pocket money and the rest was essentials from the Co-op.
Right, off to phone EDF and find out why they think my new DD should be £580 per month!

spewgloriousspew Mon 02-Apr-12 16:40:26

Thanks for reminding me of anniversaries, becaroo - it's our 2nd wedding one this month. Any tips for meaningful, yet not bank-breaking gifts? I like baking and sewing, but make him cakes pretty much every week...

jenduck Mon 02-Apr-12 17:23:32

2nd wedding anniversary should be quite an easy one to do cheaply spew. The traditional theme is paper, so you could write a poem, draw a picture, put together a photo album, anything like that. For my DH one year, I started a memories album, which was basically a photo album with a space for each big event of our life (& some blank spaces for the big events still to come). In each space I put photos, momentos such as plane tickets, or even just a little note on my memories of each event. HTH

Fluffycloudland77 Mon 02-Apr-12 17:31:32

That's a brilliant tip for flour wraps, I wonder if I could sub butter for oil? I'm allergic to milk so it would help. I use oil in the bread maker. You could use smartprice flour to make it.

Louie, If you check your washing machine manual you might find the 30c cycle isnt the cheapest. On ours the 40c wash uses less electric and water than the 30c. If you dont have a manual type your model number and make into google and free manuals come up.

I dont think you can transfer ebay feedback but you could start a new one. Ebay can be very tricky to deal with.

CremeEgg, I dont let the electric companies have a DD. I put by money so I earn the interest not them and I find it easier to pay a quarterly bill. Make sure they havent mis-read your meter, we had that once and they calculated rate 1 as rate 2, which was much further on so it looked like we had used 30,000 units in one quarter. They swore blind it couldnt possibly be a mistake.

It's my second wedding anniversary is coming up too, my present is to stay with him for another 12 months. It's the gift that keeps on giving.

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