Every week I share five frugal things that I’ve done during that week just to show you that the small things you do all add up to a great frugal lifestyle where you can learn to live a fabulously frugal life.
Before I start though, I do want to say that being frugal to me is about getting the best value for our money – it’s not about doing without for us or about not having nice things. We all have different financial situations and we’re all frugal for different reasons – we’re frugal so we can afford to do nice things together.
I’m going to be totally honest with you here and tell you that I’ve struggled with being frugal these last few weeks.
You’d think that now we were debt free and overpaying our mortgage each month that I’d be more motivated than ever but it’s been completely the opposite in reality. It’s almost like I’m using the fact that we’re doing OK to justify extra spending but I know from experience that with us, it can be a really slippery slope so we can’t afford to let our good habits slip away.
We’ve had a good sit down this week though (see number 1) and I’m confident that we’re back on track.
1) We sat down and did our half-yearly budget review earlier this week which was almost a pleasure to do this time around. It was sitting down together doing this that made us start talking about money and the state of our finances in general, as it does every time we make the effort to do this together.
I won’t go into detail as I shared everything in my post earlier in the week but sitting down together talking about money and working out our budgets together definitely helps us as a couple – we’ve been there in the past where we haven’t been on the same page and it’s a genuine struggle. When we do this, we make decisions together which is so much better all round!
2) I was away last weekend for work and it was genuinely the hottest I’ve ever felt in the UK! I was working behind the scenes at a festival in London and it was thirsty work thanks to the heat.
There were free tapwater stations around the park so rather than buy water, I use the water bottle I arrived with and just kept filling it up. Free hydration. 😉
On another note, I was so impressed with Kings Cross who were handing out free bottles of water to make sure everyone was kept hydrated in the heat!
3) I helped one of my friends re-write her CV last week because there’s a job she’s wanting to apply for coming up where she works in the near future and she wanted to be prepared. I wasn’t expecting anything for helping her but she popped round last night with a box of freshly laid eggs from her Mother-in-law’s chickens. They were huge so Master Frugal had dippy eggs and toast for tea and the rest of us had the most amazing chicken and avocado salad using chicken leftover from Dinner the night before, tomatoes from the greenhouse and chopped boiled eggs.
Obviously, I realise a photo of the actual salad at this point would be great but it was so hot that I couldn’t be bothered to try and find my phone to take one. 🙂
4) Last week our lovely little puppy had an accident on the beach thanks to someone not taking their rubbish home with them! Monty loves a good roll in the grass and he managed to roll on something and put a little slice in his leg when we went to the beach last week.
It didn’t seem to bother him oddly enough but even so, we took him to the vets the following day as it wasn’t looking too good! The vet said she would like to sedate him and put some stitches in and quoted us around £400-£500 for this – the cost itself isn’t a huge issue as we do have insurance for him but we do pay an excess and the cost they quoted seemed excessive for a cut the size it was as well as the fact that Monty is a pretty nervous dog anyway so we wanted to avoid anything that could cause him distress. Mr Frugal queried alternative options and was told that they could use staples which would do the same job but that wasn’t as recommended as there was a higher chance of infection. He was told they would be significantly cheaper but he didn’t question how much as he wasn’t sure what the best thing to do was.
I was at work and in a meeting so poor Mr Frugal asked for a few minutes and sat and had a quick Google in the waiting room – he saw that staples were faster than stitches and would mean he didn’t need to be knocked out but stitches were more thought to be a little more comfortable when healing and would leave less of a scar.
He went for staples but never got the price as he didn’t even think about it (typical) and it worked out for the best as Monty was done in just a few minutes and spent the rest of the day snuggled up on the settee happily sat with his Dad rather than being doped up for the day.
We took him back on Wednesday this week to get the stitches out and his wound had healed brilliantly – not only that but we got the bill for all the treatment – including his antibiotics and the staples it came to £48.00 which is a massive massive difference to the amount we were quoted and is actually less than the excess we would have paid if we’d made a claim.
It feels a bit wrong to say we’ve saved money on dog treatments because honestly, I would have paid the higher amount if I’d thought it was the only way to go but Mr Frugal weighed up the options and went for the staples to save money and because he thought it was better for Monty.
5) I’ve got a gammon joint cooking away in the slow cooker as we speak and I plan on serving it for tea tonight with Yorkshire Puddings and veg. I’ll use some of the leftovers in a risotto tomorrow night with some chicken and if there’s any left, I’ll make a quiche on Sunday with the last of the eggs that my friend brought around. Not bad for a reduced gammon joint that I bought a few weeks ago for £4 and popped straight in the freezer.
As usual, we’ve been having some really good discussions this week over in our Live Well, Spend Less Facebook group. We’d love to welcome you to our little community if you fancy popping in.
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