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, as always feel that I should 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. 😉
1) You might have read that this year, we’re planning to have a much more relaxed Christmas than we’ve had in the past. We’re going to spend more time doing the things we enjoy doing and less time doing the things we’re doing just because we feel like we should be doing them.
One of the things I planned was to spend more time cooking, crafting and generally creating and over the last few weeks I’ve had a great time doing exactly that. This week, I’ve made the kids Christmas stockings although I decided not to put too much pressure on myself so I bought a couple of cheap ready-made stockings that I just decorated.
The stockings cost £1 each from Hobbycraft and the fabric was some that I had in the garage so the kids have a cute handmade (ish) stocking ready for the 1st December when we hang them on the kids’ doors ready for the little treats we pop in them throughout advent.
I’ll probably do a little post about my stockings as I’m so proud of them (:-)) so keep your eyes open for that next week.
2) Remember the beeswax wraps that I made? Well, I’ve been using them more than I thought so I’ve ordered what I need to make four more.
I’ve used them as a lid for leftovers in the fridge, for wrapping half an avocado and even one for transporting half a pack of grapes and one to wrap a sandwich for lunch at work yesterday. I’ve avoided cling film and foil for ages now to the point where I’d use a plate to cover up a bowl in the fridge rather than anything else so to be able to use these has been brilliant.
3. I’m not sure if this one is more of a frugal fail than a frugal triumph but basically I made some homemade hand warmers and presented them to Miss Frugal telling her (rather smugly) that we’d be all warm and toasty when we go to New York next month. I was so proud of how they look and how warm they’ll keep our hands warm after they’ve been in the microwave for a little bit. They hold their heat quite well so my plan was that they’d be great to heat up and then pop in our pockets or inside our gloves for a little added warmth.
My smug-ness was wiped off my face though when Miss Frugal quite rightfully pointed out that there won’t be a microwave to use in New York so we won’t be able to warm them up! 🙂
4) I know there’s pretty much nothing about McDonalds that classes as frugal but with ongoing fridge freezer dramas at the start of this week (it was fixed, then it wasn’t, now it is again), I just couldn’t face even the thought of cooking. So, part one of this is that Miss Frugal who normally is all about a McChicken sandwich was persuaded to go for a 99p Chicken Mayo burger with a small pack of fries as she’s not a huge fan of the fries and always leaves some. The Chicken Mayo burger tastes pretty much the same as a McChicken Sandwich if you ask me but it’s about a third smaller which is ideal for smaller appetites and saved a good £2.50 ish over the meal price seeing as we didn’t buy a drink either (we’re not mean, we were just eating at home and we have drinks in).
Then, when we got home, Mr Frugal filled in the survey on the receipt which takes about three minutes and then gives you a code for £1.99 Big Mac and Fries which is again a saving of more than 50%. He can use that to buy lunch at work one day when he’s on lates at work. Every receipt has a survey on like this so in theory he could just fill one in every time and always be able to buy himself a cheeky Maccydees when he fancies one – not that he would as you’d soon get sick of them. 😉
5) I made a huge batch of my easy slow cooker mince and onion last Sunday as I got two packs of mince half price when I popped to the shop on Sunday afternoon about an hour before closing. I popped the mince in the slow cooker and we had jacket potatoes and mince for tea which was so tasty and super easy which is what we needed after a busy day.
I also managed to freeze two family-sized portions – one I plan to make cottage pie with and the other I’ll defrost and cook with dumplings.
We’ve had some real dramas lately with our fridge freezer which threw a hissy fit a few weeks ago now. Luckily we had insurance to cover the repair but we lost a LOT of food as we had to throw away everything that was in the freezer section and a lot that was in the fridge part as it must have happened sometime after tea on the night but we didn’t discover it until the next day. Everything in the freezer was fully defrosted and everything in the fridge was warm. We did what we could but you can only do so much so most went in the bin. ;-(
It then took a few weeks to get it fixed because of issues with appointments/wrong parts/sickness and then it died again as the part had a faulty wire or something but I’m still reluctant to fill it again just yet so we have one empty freezer and a half empty fridge. My other freezers are also looking empty at the moment too as we’ve been working our way through everything that was in there so my plan is to empty them as much as I can in the coming week and then have a full weekend of batch cooking before I do a proper shop.
As always, we’d love you to join in with us by sharing anything you’ve done that’s been thrifty or frugal from your week – whether it’s an Instagram picture (#5frugalthings), a blog post or even a video. Just add your link to the Frugal Friday linky at the bottom of this post.
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