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Miserly March? Make plans here...

(427 Posts)
Ohhelpohnoitsa Sat 16-Feb-13 20:37:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Helenagrace Thu 21-Mar-13 07:27:45

I've been really busy with my two jobs but I'm enjoying it so I don't mind how busy I am.

Spending wise we're doing really well. I went to the butchers and bought enough meat for 14 meals for £45 at the weekend and £23 in the farmers shop for all our fruit and veg. I've been making bread in the breadmaker too. I think our spending so far is about the same as last month - so still 40% of what we were spending this time last year.

We're carrying a small CC balance from when DH was between contracts last year but we've moved that to another 0% deal and his next bonus should clear half of it. We managed to pay down quite a bit of it off over the last few months.

Things are looking good!

wheredidiputit Thu 21-Mar-13 08:18:32


I would start with making a list of what you have in your freezer and cupboards and see what meals you can make from there.

Munchkin08 Thu 21-Mar-13 08:56:32

Hi lizardqueen, I am on slimming world. I did a lovely curry - look up slimming eats keema curry - they cook it with mince but I use the same recipe for chicken/lamb. I am finding I can convert most things into slimming world recipes but would also be grateful for some ideas.

Thingymajigs Thu 21-Mar-13 11:16:24

lizardqueen I hadn't cooked a whole chicken before last month. It is really easy! Much easier than I had realised although I did give it to DP and my 12 year old DS to carve tear apart. I try to be very careful with my calorie intake so I eat porridge for breakfast, vegetable soup for lunch and try to use as many low fat/cal alternatives as I can for my main meal. We love the change4life app/website for healthier family recipes.
That's great helena. It's amazing how much of a difference it makes by just planning ahead and being careful. I'm also going to the butchers tomorrow. I'm making my first ever beef pie so I've decided to stick with the local organic butchers which we can afford now we save in other areas and have cut back on meat in general.
Well, yesterday I dropped my phone in the toilet whilst messing about with ovulation predictor kits. That's my backup 3gs dead not long after losing my iphone4s which had replaced another iphone which had been dropped in tea. Instead of immediately thinking about how to replace it I started to wonder if I'd be better off without one. I'm going to go cold turkey on smart phones and mobiles completely to see how I get on which for me is pretty huge. There isn't an area of my life that isn't managed or involved in some way with my iphone. I've still got £343 left to pay on this contract so I want to make sure I don't jump in to another long term and costly contract.
Other than that act of clumsiness I'm pretty pleased with myself. I've paid off and cancelled my overdraft today. It's very odd not seeing that extra amount on my balance, its almost a little worrying but I'm happy its gone. Now I can build up my balance bit by bit so I'll never need an overdraft again.

Leilandri Thu 21-Mar-13 20:06:21

Well done Thingy re: the overdraft. Our plan is to get ours gone by the end of the year. And sad about your phone(s) I've gone cold turkey and removed my data package from my contract, saving £12 a month. My phone now only does calls and texts ... it's quite liberating!

Lizard Yes Aldi do stock pull up nappies. I used them for over a year with DS1, no problems. I would also vote for Aldi over Lidl personally.

Helena Glad you are enjoying both your jobs smile

Didn't manage a NSD here afterall as we needed milk, and I also bought coleslaw to go with dinner. so £2.50 spent.
PAYDAY tomorrow grin grin

IsThatTrue Thu 21-Mar-13 20:23:15

A LSD today as had toddler group so just £1 for that.

Made bread again so kids can have toast tomo (if I made a loaf every day they'd eat a loaf a day, so I'm trying to keep it to every other day).

I'm not planning on spending at the weekend either, mil has invited us for Sunday dinner too so I don't even have to do a roast!

Looking at my account I should have £1100 in savings by the end of the month. This is pretty amazing considering at the beginning of the year I was facing the prospect of being minus £500 a month and having no savings left! Am thinking I should put it all into my ISA before the tax year is out and my new allowance kicks in. I can build up the accessible savings over the next few months. I want 1k readily accessible and then the rest of money in an ISA.

IsThatTrue Thu 21-Mar-13 20:23:56

Oh meant to add a big thanks lizardqueen I shall look into it.

takeaway2 Thu 21-Mar-13 21:08:04

So I went into town this afternoon. Had a meeting there. Was there early so I did my eyebrows (planned £9), collected some free hotel chocolat chocolate courtesy of o2 smile. Also, bought new bras. Given that I've been wearing bf-ing bras for the last 5 years or so, I think I deserved it. It was also because the store had a but one get one half price bra event on. Hadn't bought bras in ages - omg they are expensive!!! But I have boobs now!

Then I went into boots. Primarily to get shower gel. And came out with £20 worth of stuff! Doh. But they were a god son's birthday present (£7 Lego thing), some small bottle toiletries at 3 for 2 (going abroad for work for 3 days), and some children's shampoo (was on the list too). And I had a double points coupon and basically redeemed everything I could....

I then went into Zara and got a pair of beige trousers for a tunic top I was going to wear to a wedding but looking at the weather - I'd better put some thing on the bottom as well. £30. hmm

Will be spending tomorrow but only on top up shop of fruit, veg, milk and bread.

Last month's credit card bills were lower than the previous. Am hopeful that other than the mot bill, everything is lower.

One part of me keeps wishing each week over so that we are nearer pay day (end of month) and also we are nearer to my DD's 3rd birthday which will help with nursery bills. The other half of me feels guilty about that. Argh.

Ohhelpohnoitsa Thu 21-Mar-13 21:48:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ohhelpohnoitsa Fri 22-Mar-13 07:14:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wheredidiputit Fri 22-Mar-13 07:16:22

What an amazing video. Stunning photos.

Rosvita Fri 22-Mar-13 12:18:51

Morning all well after a stupidly expensive yesterday -food shop,petrol,tax disc,holiday payment-am hoping for a NSD today!well done ladies and keep up the good work!

Leilandri Fri 22-Mar-13 20:34:35

Spent £48 today on Petrol. £22 on a snack shop for DS's so that when I do the main shop tomorrow they won't be nagging me to eat all the snacks! £16 on a new kettle - suspicious burning smell from ours this morning and godawful tasting coffee £107 on 6 months car tax ... so spendy but all needed.

Paid off the last of our debt to nursery grin so we are on target with paying things off, next is Bank of Mum and Dad, hopefully have them reimbursed by end of June.

Tomorrow will be spendy. Need to do big Aldi shop (£130 or so) Morrisons for bits Aldi don't stock (£70ish) I need new work shoes (£15) DH needs some ingredients for home brewing (£5) need wrapping paper for Dnephews Bday (£2) Night out with friends (£30) also need some new shoes for going out in as I only have my work shoes very un-glam and my holey boots ...

Fluffycloudland77 Fri 22-Mar-13 21:39:52

Shoeaholics is good, they are on the eBay fashion gallery too, cheaper postage on eBay outlet too.

lizardqueenie Fri 22-Mar-13 22:01:48

Evening all
Thanks for the chicken tips! I think I just need to give it a go- how wrong can it go blush!

Thank for the tips with Aldi. I'm on countdown to pay day too & in some ways countdown to dd getting some nursery funding (not until Jan) but it will help. Had a chat with DH tonight about our finances. The next 6-9 months might be tight financially until my pay improves/ childcare gets cheaper. I felt quite down at the start of the conversation but now I know that things will improve financially I feel better about it & more determined to cut our budget in different ways & save money.

Saw some of DH's family today & his sister made a comment about her children having different coats for the week & weekend. She can be a bit of a cow bag sometimes & I don't knew if I am just being a bit sensitive but felt it might be a comment on my DD, who wears the same coat to nursery & at the weekend but she's 2 fgs! She hardly needs to be on a fashion parade! Just made me feel a bit sad which is silly really. Felt this was the only place i could mention something like that. Though DD does need new shoes but we get a discount in clarks through a family member which helps.

Another plus a NSD today!

Thatsinteresting Fri 22-Mar-13 22:29:41

Different coats for the weekend? I'm confused. Why would a child need a different coat at the weekend? My dc usually have 2 winter coats (I'm very lucky and get a lot given to me) but that's because they both get filthy sitting in puddles and I couldn't wash and dry a coat ready for the next day. I have a tumble dryer now though so can wash and dry in an afternoon so just the one coat will be needed next winter.

Try to be positive Lizard you are doing something useful to make life better by budgeting. The next 6-9 months may be tricky but that's actually not that long. By then you'll have got into some great habits and will be able to look back with pride that you managed your finances so well.

Spent £22 on fruit, veg and milk for the week. My new system of meal planning for the month, doing a big shop for freezer and cupboard stuff and then topping up weekly for fresh seems to be working as I've still got £27 for next weeks shop.

Going to have a lsd tomorrow. Either we'll play in the snow or we may treat dd to cheap showing at the cinema. We have birthday parties to attend on Sunday but I bought the gifts a while back when they were on offer so sort of nsd then.

lizardqueenie Fri 22-Mar-13 22:40:22

Thanks TI that's definitely the way to look at it! She does have a spare coat that's second hand & perfectly warm & fine. Hand me downs rock!

Enjoy the snow!

IsThatTrue Sat 23-Mar-13 02:04:27

2 coats?! Gosh my dcs must be deprived they've never had more than 1 winter coat. They do have seperate waterproof coats, but those are bought at least a size too big so they get more wear out of them!

NSD yesterday today. Hopefully I resist the urge of the shops this week. Just remembered I forgot my repayment to my dad in my calculations this month. So factoring that in I have slightly less in savings than I thought but my debt is going down, only 10 more months and it will be paid off smile

takeaway2 Sat 23-Mar-13 06:55:05

We don't have 2 coats so don't worry! (Having said that we are all on the credit crunch thread so maybe that's why!!!). The kids have one coat each. Dd who is younger likes using DS's old coat but that doesn't count (it's destined for the bin!).

It was a LSD in the end yesterday. Went to play gym and paid £4 altogether. Of which £2 should come back to me at some point (brought friend's kid). So that's ok.

Today will be mad busy - 2 birthday parties and a shop to do. Plus packing for a work trip tomorrow .... Which hasn't been done. And I also promised my son I'd do some baking with him to bring to school... Help. No time!

wheredidiputit Sat 23-Mar-13 08:05:47

Lizzard My dc have 2 coats but that only because they have older cousins and have hand me coats. I certainly would buy more then one coat myself. Well maybe for ds who is a mud magnet and have to wash his coat at least once a week.

Need to do shopping today, also buy some bit for ds birthday tomorrow. I think I do some pizza's, cold chicken/gammon new pots & salad. So if we have more snow i won't waste any food if family can't get here.

lizardqueenie Sat 23-Mar-13 08:25:12

Hi all, thanks for your replies on the "second coat issue" grin I'm probably being overly sensitive about this!

Today at some point I'll be stock taking the contents of the freezer & cupboard but we might be going to a indoor fair this afternoon which costs £5/ family & is for a good cause.

Watch out for the snow!

Helenagrace Sat 23-Mar-13 09:48:41

Mine have two coats but only because I buy a new coat a size too big each year so it lasts them two years. Each winter they then have the new too big coat and last year's coat which now fits perfectly. I buy coats when I see them on sale. DD's current winter coat was reduced from £75 to £19 in the Monsoon sale last year. It was the summer sale so no one was buying coats do it was even more reduced than usual. I bought a size up so she'll have it for next year too. Actually I must start hunting for next year's coats...

Ohhelpohnoitsa Sun 24-Mar-13 08:56:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wheredidiputit Sun 24-Mar-13 09:10:13

I spent my usual £80. And DH paid £50 for DS birthday which didn't come out of the housekeeping.

Leilandri Sun 24-Mar-13 11:51:47

Yesterday was indeed spendy, but all needed -
£127 in Aldi (included a £6 bottle of port as a present)
£55 in Morrisons (£5 of Xmas saver stamps included)
£10 in Morrisons cafe for lunch for me and DS's - have fruit bags and freddos left over for today.
£8 on Bingo entrance, £10 on drinks all evening.

Pleased that my predicted spends were accurate, and I was under budget for Morrisons and night out. Still need to get work shoes and some bits uptown but couldn't be arsed to do more shopping yesterday!

Should be a NSD today. Need to get to allotment as the police are there all doing doing free security marking. Also need to bake a cake smile

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