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.
1) I volunteered at a charity shop this week to spend some time helping them to sort out the donations that they’d been kindly given in time for their big Christmas fayre this weekend and it was a fantastic but eye-opening experience.
My job for the day was going through people’s kind donations and sorting them into what the shop can sell and what they can’t and I was pretty surprised that the number of boxes I filled with things they couldn’t sell was pretty much on a par with those that they could sell. Obviously, it’s a good thing to donate your unwanted things to a charity shop but look at it before you put it in your donate pile.
Things with missing pieces, giant cracks and years worth of dirt are probably not going to be bought which means that the charity shop then has to get rid of it – at their own cost which defeats the object really.
Anyway, the frugal part of this story is that the lady who showed me what to do said I could have first choice of anything I sorted that I liked but although there was a lot that I liked, I only ended up spending £5.00 and I promise that nothing I bought was tat just for the sake of it – everything had a purpose.
I’m really trying to reduce buying things ‘just because’ but it’s not as easy as it sounds. 😉
(PS this was a me thing – not a blog thing ;-))
2) I just bought a Christmas present for Miss Frugal – don’t tell her though. 😉 I saw something that I know she’ll love on offer thanks to Black Friday so I went for it and used TopCashBack to make the purchase so I’ll get a few pounds back in my pocket as well as getting a good deal!
If you’ve never used a cashback site then I wrote a post here answering a few of the common questions I get whenever I mention cashback sites and you’re more than welcome to use my referral link if you do sign up.
Aside from that, I’m going to avoid the internet for the rest of the day because I’m no doubt going to be bombarded with a million and one brilliant offers for things I don’t need yet will tempt me anyway because they’re a good deal. 😉
3) If you’ve been following a while then you’ll know that we’re currently overpaying our mortgage by as much as we can each month with standing orders set up to overpay by £350 a month. Last week I somehow underspent on our food budget which never happens these days so I transferred the money to my mortgage account.
On its own, the £25 isn’t going to make much impact but it does reduce my mortgage balance by £25 which saves me £36 on interest over the course of my mortgage according to the mortgage overpayment calculator on MSE.
With our standing orders alone we’re on track to pay our mortgage off 11 years early but with the extra payments I make like this, I’m hoping to get that down even more. It helps that I have online banking with my mortgage linked to it so I can just transfer any extra money over in seconds – I get it done before I change my mind and find something more fun to spend my money on.
It might not seem like a huge deal but to me, it represents a bit of a change in mindset
4) At the Festival of Thrift this year, I bought a little crochet circle that was being sold as an alternative to a cotton wool pad. The lady had a huge stack of them and I can’t remember exactly how much she was selling them for but I’m pretty sure it was about 30p as I remember thinking how cheap that was and looking back, I could honestly kick myself for not buying more.
I’ve been using it on a night to take off my makeup (I only wear foundation really) but obviously, it needs a proper wash every couple of nights which is a faff. I was telling one of my friends at work about it and she’s promised that she’s going to make me 6 more in exchange for a bottle of Prosecco I won a while ago and a cake stand I have that she’s been eyeing up for ages.
This means that I’ll have seven so I can use a clean one every day and just pop them in the wash at the weekend.
5) I know I’ve moaned loads lately about being tired and feeling a bit run down but I’m feeling so much better this week. It’s amazing the difference that a few good night’s sleep can make but honestly, I feel like a whole new person.
I’ve got a lot going on at the moment but I feel pretty good and have managed to stick to our meal plan this week which, if you knew how busy I’d been, you’d understand what an achievement this is. 😉
Delegation has been key this week – I made Mr Frugal make toad in the hole one night and Miss Frugal made chicken fajitas and guacamole on another night which meant that I could be doing other things instead of cooking tea.
Master Frugal was planning on cooking us his speciality, scrambled egg on toast, one night but he’s been hit by the cold I had last week.
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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