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Uber Frugal Wrap Up

January 31st, 2018 at 03:11 am

Last year's UFMC was way more successful... This year's just highlighted how much money is going towards debt. Despite watching spending, I'm still cutting it pretty close. Payday is on Friday.

This month highlighted that we pay too much on our mobile phone bills - mine will be cancelled in a couple of weeks, but I'm still paying for a sim card for a tablet that broke months ago (but the contract isn't up yet, and we didn't take out insurance!). It's in hubby's name so I need him to check when it's up so we can cancel.

I know I complained about the extra debt repayments, but I know it's worth it to have it gone.

I'm going to keep up using cash only for shopping. I really like doing this. I think I'm more accountable that way.

All in all, I could've done better.

Using Things Up

January 26th, 2018 at 05:52 am

I made a batch of chocolate caramel muffins. I had a tin of Carnation Caramel that needed using up. I've also made up some raspberry jelly that I bought months ago. We're having pizza for dinner using a pizza base mix. I'll put some leftover sweetcorn on the pizza.

Next Friday is payday. We'll be eating from the freezer until then. I have some frozen mince, stuffing and pigs in blankets, possibly bread rolls too. And I've almost finished the bag of mixed veg.

Update

January 18th, 2018 at 06:00 am

I finally phoned to cancel my phone contract. I'll be taking over hubby's next month.

I realised from just using cash this month, that a lot of our money goes to debt. I knew that was the case, but this makes it clear. At least, I'm paying more than the minimum and I should only have to do this until the end of next year - hopefully I'll be debt free by then (November 2019,hopefully). So, although I won't have saved a lot, I think I'll keep up this cash only habit because it really makes me think.

In other news, I'm almost finished that bag of lentils. Finally. I'll buy in a 500g bag the next time, not a kilo. We're having the last of the turkey for dinner tonight. Afterwards, we'll have rice pudding that's in the slow cooker.

12 Years Blogging

January 14th, 2018 at 03:29 am

I started this blog 12 years ago today. Way back when I was a young twenty year-old. Wow.

I was thinking the other day that I need to actually write down estimated payoff dates. I know the loan is May 2019. I can't remember when my 0% card finishes - August 2019? Then after that, I'll put all that money to hubby's card.

In other news, I spent 43.xx at Aldi. Way more than the 25 I wanted to. Ugh. But never mind. I'll deal with it.

Meal planning

January 11th, 2018 at 11:04 pm

I'm going shopping today. I meal planned, wrote a list then checked old receipts for prices. I'm hoping to spend less than £25 in Aldi.

This is what we're having:
-spaghetti bolognaise (SG picked, I'll make it tonight)
-frozen pizza
-turkey cacciatore (last of the turkey)
-lentil meatloaf (uses up lentils)
-tuna pasta bake (2 tins in the cupboard, plus pasta)

Now I'm hoping that I'll have one week where we can mostly just eat out of the freezer. We'll see. I bought frozen veg in last week and I haven't opened it yet. We're almost out of potatoes but I didn't put them on my list because we've got plenty of rice and pasta.

Update

January 10th, 2018 at 06:26 am

I think I'm doing okay, ten days into Uber Frugal Month. I don't know how much money I'll actually save, but I am more conscious of my spending.

I returned three unwanted Christmas presents yesterday. The store didn't offer store credit, so I exchanged them for a new pair of boots for J, and a loofah. Spent 50p.

I also bought a box of baby wipes because I seen they were on offer. Originally, I was going to get them next week but I changed my mind.

Meal planning has been going well. I think I bought in too many bananas though, so I'll get less next time. I shouldn't be shopping until Friday.

Next week I will use up the last tub of turkey in the freezer. I'm still trying to decide how, though. I froze half of the chilli that I made too, but I don't think I want the same again (we had it with rice and tortilla chips)

Observations

January 6th, 2018 at 09:54 am

#1: It's less stressful carrying cash. No need to check my bank balance today

#2: I was asked if I wanted to contribute to someone's retirement gift. I used to work with her. Everyone that currently works with her is giving 10; I'll give 5 (from next week's money, not this week's)

#3: It helps to look around (I found those black beans in one of my normal supermarkets in the world foods aisle)

#4: I spent 179.xx last pay period on groceries. The aim is less, ideally 140 (or less)

#5: I might not end up saving as much cash on my Uber Frugal Month this time round, but my attitude has changed.

Day 5

January 5th, 2018 at 05:45 am

It's payday. I went to three different shops due to offers, and spent 59.61.

Over the next week, we will be eating:
-macaroni and cheese
-pizza
-chilli with rice and Tortilla chips (making a double batch and freezing the rest)
-Turkey burritos (leftover turkey, burrito mix needed using)
-loaded potato skins with salad
-leftovers

I withdrew 140 cash for the week. It's a bit more than needed but I'll need enough change for bus fares. Leftover money will be rolled over. Next week I'll be withdrawing less since I expect to spend less now. All that's left to buy now is nappies - and wipes, but we're not out yet.

On Sunday I want to buy a couple of tins of black beans to make soup. I have to get them from Tesco because nowhere else sells them. While there, hubby wants us to treat the kids to a babyccino (about 55p) plus he'd like a coffee. Not frugal, I know. I did say no to food there though (3.50+ for a toastie). Anyway, if the weather's really bad I'll just go myself.

Oh, I paid off the catalogue today. Almost forgot that.

Day 3

January 3rd, 2018 at 07:44 am

And I need to remind myself that I'm trying to get out of debt. I'm not looking to take the kids to Disneyland. Is this completely random? Yes. But only because I seen on Facebook that an acquaintance is just about ready to take her kids there, and I just wished that I could do that.

Two years to go! (I hope!)

Update

January 2nd, 2018 at 06:23 am

Yesterday was a NSD - I really need more of those!

Today I bought:

-bus ticket (4.30)
-topping up electricity (5.00)
-milk and some reduced items (3.96)

I'm working the next two days. That'll be another 8.60. I'm thinking this month I won't buy a weekly ticket since it might actually be costing me more.

Last night we had pork loin steaks, the last of a frozen bag of broccoli and cauliflower, and the last of two bags of rice and leftover noodles. Tonight it'll probably be baked potatoes with beans and whatever else I can find.

Payday is on Friday.

Thinking about UFM

December 9th, 2017 at 11:42 pm

Yesterday I spent some time thinking about UFM. I checked bank statements from January and February this year; I put 107 extra towards debt after this year's Uber Frugal Month. I don't think I'll be able to match it next 6ear for two reasons: 1. We aren't getting warm home discount yet (I switched suppliers and I've been told we're in the latter stages of the process) and 2. I pay the equivalent to dh's credit card. Anyway, I will definitely give it my best shot, especially since I've had more time to think about it this time round - last year I only heard about it from Debtfreebythirty's blog post.

DH is going to decrease the number of screens on Netflix in preparation. I'll remind him today.

I need to phone my current phone supplier to cancel since I'm taking over Dh's plan - he's joined a new one via our cable supplier.

I checked online for recipes using pearl barley and saved a few. I've got a bag in the cupboard that's barely been touched.

Lastly, I reread some blog entries from fellow SAers who took part.

Not so Frugal

July 10th, 2017 at 07:09 am

I took SG to the cinema. It was 2.49 each. I got her a kids snack tray too. Spent 7.49.

Later, I bought her a new jacket and socks. Plus socks for hubby. 25.05

By this point, I was hungry and it was lunchtime. Spent 4.25 on a sandwich and fruit salad for us. Not frugal at all.

Black Wednesday

July 5th, 2017 at 07:27 am

For my bank, that is. I logged on and I couldn't view my current or savings accounts, only my debt. I've reported it to them. I did some further research and found out that online banking has been intermittent since this morning.

Sigh. I didn't realise how dependent I am on the internet.

In other news, day 5 of UFM involved buying some more fresh stuff because hubby threw out some veg from the salad drawer that he didn't like the look of. Anyway, I used my gift card so I didn't have to use any cash. I also put a fiver in a collection for a girl at work who is going on maternity leave.

Day 3

July 3rd, 2017 at 06:29 am

I spent 23.69 on shopping today. I ended up going to Aldi, rather than hubby. I wasn't well last night and he's the same today. I must have bought all of their Super 6 today.

This week's meals are:
-bangers and mash
-roasted veg and feta puff pastry tart (I've still got another packet of ready rolled puff pastry to use up next week)
-spaghetti bolognaise
-Butternut squash risotto (the mix is from a jar though, not sure how it will be)
-tuna pasta
-leftovers

Day 2

July 2nd, 2017 at 05:46 am

We're almost out of fruit. Hubby is going to go to Aldi tomorrow, with a list.

We had leftover chicken stir fry for lunch. I'm making a bacon, veg and tomato casserole for dinner because there's veg needing using up.

I've been spending some time decluttering and organising today. No spending here.

Day 1 of UFM

July 1st, 2017 at 06:47 am

I had to buy nappies and milk. I didn't have to buy some reduced snacks but I'll use them next week at work. Spent 7.51.

Excluding direct debits, I'm hoping not to open my purse again until Tuesday. And that should only be for bus fare.

We're having chicken quesadilla for dinner, using the last of the roast chicken. Homemade popcorn for watching Daredevil on Netflix. Hubby cooking dinner tomorrow, bangers and mash.

UFM

January 31st, 2017 at 07:16 am

I think that was a quick month. I was definitely more conscious of my spending. I said goodbye to impulse buys at the checkout (sweets and cola, usually) - they were replaced with a bag of nuts that I got from Poundland, and I drank the water I had with me.

We also didn't get a takeaway at all, despite Pizza Hut regularly texting hubby and the Indian texting me. My only eating out was 7.40 and that was with J.

For the first time ever - except for when we were really struggling - we made an effort to eat what we had.

Now, my totals might be a bit off because my spending app was playing up in the beginning and I uninstalled it - which meant I lost my data. But I spent 154.24 on groceries (less than normal), 34.24 on repairs, 7.40 on eating out, 50 on utilities (will be more next month when the 140 we got in November finally runs out), 67.40 on bus fares and 46.22 on kiddy stuff. All in all, I should have an extra 112 to put towards the catalogue on Friday (I'm just going to pay it on payday as normal).

I'd love to continue another month of uberfrugalness but I have to start getting organised for SG's birthday and I know we're going out for lunch for my birthday next month. Either way, I'll still be paying attention to my spending because I've got goals I want to reach.

NSD

January 29th, 2017 at 09:58 am

I've been at home all day. I baked raisin biscuits with SG then made a fruit loaf. There's rice pudding in the slow cooker for later. We had butter bean and vegetable curry for dinner. I'm going to use the last tin to make butter bean dip.

I've started an online food shopping order to arrive after payday. I want to make the pinto beans and rice recipe that Ceejay gave me so I've ordered a bag of those, and chickpeas too. I've decided that they're cheaper so I'm getting those from now on.

Last night we finished watching Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events. I think I want to read the books now. Suits is back tonight so we'll probably watch that.

I think that's all.

Day 28

January 28th, 2017 at 09:48 am

I woke up this morning to find that our heating wasn't working. I was getting ready for work so I text hubby about it. Later, he said that he'd fixed it. So, crisis averted.

I had a long day at work. Bought a couple of frozen pizzas and garlic bread for dinner. Only spent 2.xx. Way cheaper than a takeaway. We're having peach crumble for pudding (homemade)

I have to total up what I've spent this month. I do have to get a few things on Tuesday though.

Meal planning

January 25th, 2017 at 10:31 am

Here's some meals we will be having, in no particular order:

-lentil meatloaf recipe with potatoes and veg http://allrecipes.co.uk/recipe/5969/lentil-meatloaf.aspx?o_is=LV
-belly pork strips in barbecue sauce http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/collections/barbecue-recipes/belly-pork-strips-in-barbecue-sauce
-falafel with pitta bread and salad (uses up chickpeas)
-cottage pie/lasagne (ragu in freezer)
-butterbean and veg curry http://www.thriftylesley.com/butter-bean-and-vegetable-curry-24p-a-se/

Day 24: Repairs

January 24th, 2017 at 06:31 am

We had a leak on Sunday. Luckily, we got a plumber out via the council at no cost to us.

What I did have to spend money on, however, was a new pump and filter for the washing machine. Spent 34.42.They tried to charge me 9.xx for next day delivery but I noticed and changed it to standard.

I haven't read Frugalwoods' email yet.

Had leftover soup for lunch. I feel like all my posts this month have been about food. I guess that's one area that I can control.

This & That

January 23rd, 2017 at 03:10 am

Not much going on. Still trying to be Uber Frugal. I made creamy tomato soup yesterday rather than buy a tin of Heinz. Everyone loved it. Kids are eating it for lunch today. I also made tomato and bacon spaghetti - we've got a full tub leftover!

I'm making us salmon and rice for dinner tonight. I need to start making more dishes using lentils again, I've still got a bag of red and green lentils to use.

I need to buy some baby wipes this week, and some fresh stuff.

I'm going to attempt to make apple pie for pudding later. I bought a shortcrust pastry mix for 38p so I want to try it out.

Hmm, I don't think there's much else.

Day 18...

January 18th, 2017 at 07:33 am

Yesterday I felt as though I was losing some of my motivation for UFM. I was just not feeling it. Then I had a bad sleep - thanks J! I woke up absolutely shattered this morning...

This sounds as though this is leading somewhere (like an insane spending spree) but it isn't. I remembered that one catalogue will be gone soon - fingers crossed - and that I have other stuff I need to put money aside for (SG's birthday, weddings,gifts)

We're having leftover chicken and rice for dinner. Tomorrow I'll cook something from scratch. I spent 11.26 on groceries today - we're at 100 or so spending so far. Next few weeks should be minimal - they will be.

Eek!!!

January 16th, 2017 at 01:08 am

Well my Monday morning is officially going well: I just signed on to check hubby's catalogue payments for next pay (they always update about now) and one catalogue is in the three hundreds!! I never expected that! It's obviously because I just paid off the final ever Buy Now Pay Later item, and they've deducted the interest that was already added to the account. I'm so happy. It's a couple of hundred less to pay off.

In other news, I have to come up with a meal plan for the rest of the week. Yesterday I had to buy milk and I ended up spending 7.xx on reduced stuff too (including salmon for 1.25 and a cheesecake for 62p). We're having soup or leftover lentil casserole for lunch.

Eleven Years

January 14th, 2017 at 05:28 am

Eleven years ago today I started this blog. Crazy!

In other news, Thursday and Friday were NSDs. I baked some more, then today I took some of it to work with me.

SG got a party invite this week for next Saturday. If I ever book a party for my kids, I won't send the invites out that late. That's just bad, isn't it? Ten days before the event? I'm just going to buy this girl a colouring book.

UFM Day 12

January 12th, 2017 at 02:31 am

It should hopefully be a NSD. It's snowing here so I've just made a batch of lentil, veg and bacon soup. I'm making cottage pie for dinner tonight instead of bolognaise to use up some potatoes that I bought with shopping.

My loan updated today: it's now at 5947.01. Slowly getting there.

Nothing else to report. Pretty boring really.

UFM: Gifts and Shopping

January 11th, 2017 at 04:21 am

I mentioned at the start of the month that I had to buy a couple of birthday presents for a birthday party this month. Yesterday I bought two gifts from the nearly-new baby and kids shop. I bought two cards too from the local card shop. Total spent: 6.82.

My shopping was delivered yesterday too. Total spent was 58.32.

We had leftover lentil bolognaise (from the freezer) last night because I was too tired to make toad in the hole. I'll be making it later though.

My only spending today was 4.70 on my bus fares. It's quite nice finishing work then not having to buy anything.

Meal planning etc

January 9th, 2017 at 09:49 am

Tonight we had leftover tuna pasta and veg. The rest of the week looks like this, roughly:
-toad in the hole with veg
-peanut butter noodles
-bacon, veg, tomato and soft cheese casserole
-bolognaise or chilli
-leftovers

Some Spending

January 8th, 2017 at 05:20 am

I bought some groceries yesterday and today. Today's ones were all reduced. I bought more bread to freeze. Grocery spending is now at 22.45 for the month so far; I've got shopping arriving on Tuesday late afternoon.

I found a bag of wholegrain rice in the cupboard. Everyone likes it, so that's good.

Tomorrow won't be a NSD because I have to pay for SG's snacks at nursery.

Today I'm baking some biscuits with SG. We can have them as snacks for a few days.

UFM Day 6

January 6th, 2017 at 04:32 am

I broke a rule: I ate out. Hubby wanted us all to go to the local pub for lunch. I said I'm trying to spend as little as possible this month, so he suggested I take J to the local cafe for some one-to-one time instead (we're going to the pub next month for my birthday). I spent 7.80 total and that included bringing some food back for hubby and SG.

I also spent 1.40 on reduced naan breads (froze those), reduced mince pies and bread (half in the freezer).

I'm defrosting some hummus to have on a sandwich at work tomorrow, and I'll defrost some fruit for breakfast.

Spending:

Groceries:9.84
Transport:9.40
Utilities:20.00
Eating Out:7.80

NSD: 3/21

Tomorrow should be better.


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