Sunday, 8 September 2013

Catch up

Other than getting pissed with Jamie Oliver I've been busy. We are still off to Italy in December and yes this means wedlock.

Finishing up at work- I have things I want to have in place before I leave. I was there from the beginning and want to leave it in a good place.

Thinning out our houses- we are slowly going through stuff - recycling, selling and charity giving.  Have made approx £300 from selling out combined stuff via ebay and car boots.

We are waiting to see what sort of accommodation we will get. As ever last minute MOD. Apparently the order has gone in to NATO housing.  Girlie has a place at school.

We have lots of work to do on the man cave. Its Biggles job however. I refuse to get stressed about it. He has stuff upon stuff- man toys and lots of Niff naff. I could clear it in a day but he would get all pouty. Will dispose of the junk in Italy when we have a house together. mwah ha ha ha!

Small one and I went away for two nights over summer so she had a wee bit of a holiday.  We managed to do lots of free things as well as cheap things.

Wedding - we have outfits.Black and small one in lilac and black. I am reusing a mess dress and bought a bolero via ebay. Weeny has a fab dress also from Ebay for 3.50 lol plus P&P adn a black bolero. After short registry office wotsit we are going to the pub and then for a curry. May get our hair done together- small girl and I. This is it pretty much - a few flowers and done. We are selling our old gold to earn a few bob to put towards new rings. Nothing expensive or sill just rings that are simple and will last. We are both active and will batter any jewellery that we wear all the time.

Girlie is excited.

Other than that still frugalling away as much as if feasibly possible.  Soup getting stocked up in the fridge, fruit also frozen etc

Trying to lose a few pounds to an a bit more svelte for the nuptials.

Much love and all that.


Friday, 30 August 2013

Busy busy but so pissed off by Jamie Oliver!

Yes am busy. Still moving to Italia. Stuff to do. Inspired by the little oik that is Jamie Oliver and his criticisms of the poor.

What is it with poor bashing at the moment? Middle classes 'feeling the pinch' and cannot afford their  new tat for their new build houses, or to exchange the 4x4,  look to blame the poor for their sacrifice!!!. They are all scroungers, benefits cheats etc. (Pah If we all paid our taxes more efficiently the up their own arse middle classes may just find that there would be greater savings made rather than by poor bashing/welfare bashing.) What a vote winner! Moral panic created over benefit recipients to hide what ever else is going on.  Little fiddles, big fiddles, mahoosive tax dodges cost as much as benefits fraud/welfare. Now its moved further than targeting those fraudulently claiming benefit who are just as wrong as the tax dodger whether he be big or small.  If you are poor then you are irresponsible, insolent and  indolent! Deserving and undeserving categories abound. It's the fault of the poor that the are poor. No one elses. Not unemployment, 0 hours contracts... what if their ceiling is low?? No its their selfish, misguided, terrible life choices and why should I forgo my 4x4 upgrade so they can sit and watch their mahoosive telly's and eat chips.

(Lets get something clear if you vote Tory fuck off right now. This blog is not for you. Not sure who I would vote for but Tory it will never be. So if you have true blue leanings take yourself somewhere else. Simple. I think you are an arse! Now fuck off before you get annoyed, feel your god given moral right to respond, I will call you a c*nt to insult you and you will leave disgusted anway. Save time don't bother. Go now.)

ST JAMIE D'OLIVER jumps on the austerity bandwagon. Massive fucking tellys and styrofoam containers for chips- yes this is poverty.

What a poxy comparision! Has the little mockney privileged Essex boy son of a business man albeit a small one,  ever considered the value in a telly for which you make weekly payments or even pay by view? ( and yes- pay silly interest- longer term for payment but lower weekly actual payments with  higher interest. Needs must when you have very little. It happens get over it. You pay for your car on HP don't get hypocritical)

As a poor person I have two flat screen tv's. I shall not qualify how I came to possess these items. No need and I should not be judged on this. So??? I cannot afford 10 mangetout in comparison to a bag of frozen peas. The value isn't there.

I really do hate the point made about Massive Fucking Telly's. It's great to have money for aspirations.  Money makes many things possible including aspirations, If you have no money and very little prospect of making a reasonable amount lots of things are just not possible. Outwith our cultural and financial frame of reference. If things are impossible eg mortagage deposit, new reliable car what ever, you focus on what you can afford and what is good value. Massive fucking telly's if that is your main source of entertainment are good value. They last for several years normally, unlike a holiday, and can benefit everyone in the household. I know of families who upgrade their TV before it breaks so they can get some cash back and can put it towards a new one- maybe bigger and better.

Like the frozen peas its better value than the mange tout. A holiday??? Over in an instant and incomparision to the telly that you spend alot of time in front of, keeps the whole family amused,  not as good value for money.

We all have a TV or  entertainment source be it internet or what ever for watching iplayer. Get real Jamie. And chips- well we all indulge in chips every so often. Eaten best from the packaging. Nigella does it albeit with houmous.  Us poor folk do this as well from time to time. It's a treat maybe even a weekly one. I bet St Jamie d'Oliver et famille gets regular weekly treats and they cost more than styrofoam chips.

He explained poverty and poor nutrition in one sentence laying the blame on people who are poor making poor choices. Poor folk are selfish and buy telly's over good food. Simple. They value tv!!! Shoot them!!! Hell fire their skank poor arses! How dare they not aspire to painting holidays in France! The little prick knows nothing of living on a budget and how it effects ever aspect of our life.

I don't mean choosing to live frugally. This is a choice. A very good one on all accounts- environmentally, financially, morally. Being poor is not typically a choice. ( yadda yaddda lazy folk and fraud)

Poverty can come with other features such as a lack of information and awareness, ignorance if you like about how to budget, cook, discipline your kids, clean your house, health, education, whatever it is. Levels of ignorance and being just unaware are lower and more common than you think. Don't assume a level of awareness.

If the offspring  of the 'monied' middles classes when in their twenties, can ask questions such as '' Was it Hitler who was responsible for the Holocaust?, Whats apartheid? or other similar cultural idiocy then yes there are poorer people who are unable to budget, cannot work out how much their supermarket  shopping will come to, are clueless as to how to bake bread or even know what a bastard mange tout is? ( Quote from only fools and horses maybe??)

Jamie is arrogant and also highly ignorant. For the pursuit of ££££ he has jumped on the bandwagon of moralising and  poor bashing.

St Jamie d'Oliver you are just another bully.  Whining oh so hard done by middle classes you too.

Tuesday, 14 May 2013


and more meh!!!

Some support staff are full of their own soddding self importance!!!  Had a grump with an additional learning support worker.  I hot desk when at one of our campuses. I am only there once a fortnight and typically have a PC I can use. Today I needed to use the Additional Learning support office PC. It is no ones PC. There are two typically for use by anyone. Well technically ALS staff. One whiny Zelda decided she needed to 'ask her superior' to get me to move. She is a mouthy old tart. She could have done it herself. I said yep will just finish this and go,  no bother. She was waiting for me to finish- mid email answering. I told her I was off at lunchtime anyway and she could have asked me to go earlier if she needed the computer and did she really need to get her line manager who is the same grade as me to ask me to move? She was a bit taken a back ha ha. She got all pouty and said that she would now have to work through her lunch. Told her she should have asked earlier then and that it would have been no problem. She hummed and ha haa and tried to say I wouldn't move. I said no I said I would finish the email I was writing. ''Well whats wrong with me getting my superior to'' .. I had to stiffle a giggle... There is a back story. She is a whine bag. She wanted her under grad psych student daughter to do some work shadowing in my team. I was fine with it but HR was not. She thinks its me. Ha she won't want her daughter anywhere near now!  I popped into see ''her superior''- I am same grade so she must be my equal if that sort of crap floats ya boat. Stoopid support worker pops her head around the door five mins into lunch time and is in the middle of eating her lunch. Did nt see me but I heard the conversation about her having her lunch. Desperate and going to work through her lunch hour eh??? Last time I used their office was before the easter holidays for all of an hour and move whenever asked. Normally have an office from 11am so I use the their office only in desperate times.

Anyway Zelda - as she reminds me of Zelda from The Terrahawks is all huffy with me now. Shame. Ahhh I don't use rank or any of that type stuff. I manage a small team but like to think alot of what I do is leading by example, It seems to work and we have very few problems or issues. I expect nothing of my team that I would not expect of myself.

Ahhhhh Half of the support staff sit on their lazy keisters in lessons and do jack shit. Good ALS staff are fantastic but half of ours are pish lazy buggers.  If the kid you are supporting is ok - spread yourself around a bit. But no- they zone in and if the kid is ok they sit back and text, read, pick their nose etc etc They all want lesson plans. Not getting mine. Doubt they could follow it anyway. And they don't get my resources. Sorry- they take direction or support the student as I request they do.
I do group work around topical issues for young people -sex drugs and rock n roll basically with some other elements chucked in. Lessons are active, involve participation rather than being sat at a desk writing and lesson address all learning styles in one way or another. The ALS can participate in my book. Sessions as a rule cater to all learning styles and are accessible pretty much and involve discussion rather than being lectured. I never plan for ALS to be involved in lessons as half the time they up and feck off anyway esp if its not an academic session.

The job would bore me stoopid. Failing being lazy  they take it oh so seriously. One who has some sort of counselling qualification tries to counsel her students in the classroom. Err wrong time and place love. Focus on getting them through their work. Send them to see the employed cousellor.

If you don't like being the monkey get a job as the organ grinder. Sorry- harsh but true!!!

Other than that I now make ace potatoe au gratin and home made coleslaw!!!


Cheers for the rant!!!!

My mouse is playing up so apols for the spelling. Cannot be arsed to correct it. A super chore with a wobbly mouse.


Monday, 22 April 2013

Whoo hoo £30

Yep got the email to say you will have £30 in your account. Thank you Money Supermarket.

And Thank You Bloggers re how to go about claiming. Esp Scarlet - many thanks for the explanation. I would be £30 down, it will go towards Small girls Christmas.

After a great weekend we are looking at a dull one! Biggles is off to America with work so he will be away next weekend. Small girl is off to the Y chromosome. Spose she has too eh!

leaves me on my todd. However I have a fun filled not at all fun filled weekend.

I will accomplish those terribly dull jobs one needs peace and quiet for,

1. Course work for the end of my PTTLS course. nearly finished and all gone well so far.
2. tax return for my mother
3. Cleaning - house Boo
4. Gardening - have a few bags for life I want filled with spuds and carrots and some ferns conifer things in pots that need replanting.
5. Ebay a few bits

May also drink wine and watch crap TV/films and stay away from the plethora of charity shops in Alnwick. I don't need anything!

The summer clothes may get an outing and into the wardrobe properly.

Have plenty grub this week and probably no need for shopping or only fresh stuff like milk and fruit.


Micro managing and a lack of initiative.

Just a grump really!

I have a small team of four people to manage as well as other agencies that come into where I work.
Anyway got held up this morning as I had to travel to one campus then get back to the other campus. Activities going on had not even been set up- not as if people did not know what to do. They were briefed but if I am not there to herd in the right direction no one uses initiative.

Bags put out but not opened. grrrr so annoying.  It doesn't take a lot and its not as if I havent got a well educated well qualified team. Just sometimes they mooch around in a bubble.

Oh well if I go it Italy someone elses problem.

And its bloody freezing in work - the heating was turned off and not put back on again in time for it not to be an icebox.  Shut over the weekend so it gets cold.


Sunday, 21 April 2013

Hints and tips for College based beauty and hairdressing bargains!

I partake of the developing skills of students training to be beauty therapists or hairdressers.

There are however a few things to bare in mind if you also choose to use college students.

At the beginning of the academic year ask for a level 3 student. A bit more expensive normally but still dirt cheap. They are quicker and a level 2 hair dressing qual is experienced enough and can be relied on for most simple cuts and colour. You can still go for level 2 students however they will take much much longer, Don't think you will be finished in a hour for a cut and blow dry.

Generally a college hair cut will take longer as the students will be methodical and go through all the steps. They will also have client record books to keep and will need to get their tutor to check progress at certain points.

By March - you level student is more than capable and will be a lot quicker at cutting your hair. At level 2 they are cheaper as well.

I pay £5 for level 3 and £3 for level 2 - If the level 2 does a grand job  towards the end of the year I normally just give them a fiver anyway. Much cheaper than £20 odd quid.

They will stick to lengths. If you say 1.5 inches that's what you will get. They want to pass and not make a cock up.

Tutors check with you directly as to what you want exactly and also check instructions/requests written in the students client book.

Its pretty much the same for L3/L2 beauty therapy students. Some treatments will only be carried out by a L3 and others by L2. They are more capable towards the end of the academic year.

Remember colleges do not operate over school holidays and typically will start summer at the end of June not the end of July. Also not open Saturdays.

For all cut and blow drys or trims I am off to college.  I dye my own hair from the comfort of my own home for £1 so am fine on that point.

Eye brow shaping,  leg wax, massage, etc all good and for a minuscule price at a beauty therapy spa at a college.

Typically - Students start at level 1= 1yr, then go onto level 2 = 1 yr and then level 3 = 1yr
Sometimes they may combine beauty and hair at level 3 which takes 2 yrS.

Recently featured on Super Scrimpers!



Frugal things this week.....

Yellow stickers for stewing steak enough for me and small girl for small tea this week - 55p

College Hairdressing Salon haircut - £3.00

National trust free day at Cragside with small girl and two other children. Great day- we took packet lunches and picnics. We were there from 10-5pm. We then popped to Rothbury for an ice cream and a drink. I don't mind supporting rural tea rooms every so often. Only fair as they rely on tourist trade. Independent of course- not a Costa or other type- just won't do it.

Extra meals- cooked extra noodles on Friday. and flavoured them by using the last remnants of veg, some soy sauce and wiping round the wok! Got the last bits of goodness and flavour. Now frozen for lunches for next week.

Sundays Chicken roast dinner - we now buy bags of chicken legs and bags of chicken breasts. One large chicken breast and one leg will feed the three off us easily. Biggles still gets some chicken skin and feels like it s a proper roast. A chicken a week would leave me with a lot of left over chicken - even the small ones!  Cats would be fat and my freezer bursting! We eat a lot of chicken breast in stir frys, curries etc etc so this works for us.

Healthy scrambled egg - made three eggs stretch to three of us for breakfast - goodly portions of scrambled egg and three slices of eggy bread for Small girl.  Defrosted my saved egg whites and added them to three eggs. Egg whites were saved from recipes using egg yolk only! Seemed a waste to drop all that protein down the sink plug hole!

Grated some cheese near its best before date and froze it working really well!
Will def do this with cheese in the future- excellent for putting on pizzas, defrosts in no time at all.

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

30 ways to save a pound

Well I might not get to 30 but here goes and I am not claiming the £30 lol

Just for fun!

1. Make up your own cleaning spray using an old spray bottle. Dilute cleaner, bleach etc with some washing up liquid and bobs your uncle!

2. Use the pound shop hair dye - it costs a £1 and is just as good as the expensive ones 1

3. Double curtain and use draft excluders- save on heat

4. I cook extra pasta or rice just enough for a lunch portion when making Curry's or pasta sauces. The extra pasta gets chucked in the pan with the dregs of the sauce and maybe some frozen veg, heated through then frozen for quick lunches to take to work

5. Freecycle! If you wait long enough it shall come to thee and there is hardly anything I am desperate for!

6. Who needs pyjamas- I recycle old T shirts a bit past their best as night wear

7. Old clothes can be cut up into cleaning cloths. Dead easy to sew round the edges if you have a sewing machine. T shirts or polo shirts work well I find!

8. Buy a foot measure for kids feet and then buy your Clark's shoes from Ebay! Saves loads! I never pay anymore than £20 for good quality kids shoes that fit just as well as the ones bought from the stores.

9. Check your super market prices and buy certain items at different shops. You can get phone apps to check prices, Phone apps are free! Only works on smart phones or iphones of course

10. Make your own Christmas cards- you can do this on line using publisher and customise them with festive pics of the family . Email them to people and its up to them if they want to print them off or not!

11. Turn beach detritus into works of art, pebbles, drift wood, shells cost nothing! If you have kids this is cheap and fun.

12. Keep an eye on national trust website for free weekends. If like me you live somewhere so pretty that you can't justify joining then you still get to go but save loads.

13. Bulk out food - stews etc with a grated carrot, oats etc etc Grated carrot is cheap and easily disguised especially in mince dishes!

14. Mini oven - god send and beats utilities prices. Heat up a much smaller space. Can be bought very cheaply or acquired via freecycle

15. Freecycle your stuff instead of going to the tip. Save money on petrol.

16. Cinema trips - most will have a cheap day! Check out when online! Tuesdays are half price. Great if you have kids and you can still go but save a fortune!

17. Cinema again - popcorn is great but make your own at home and take it with you.

18. Packed lunches- instead of using cling film to wrap sandwiches use a sandwich box- spend a little so save alot over time. Same with drinks- squash in a drinks bottle is cheaper than cartons. Alot of day care places do not like fizzy drinks as they make a right mess.

19. Make your own cakes and biscuits for packed lunches for kids or if you are buying value take the wrapper off. No one will know the difference.

20. If a recipe calls for yolk but not whites save the whites by freezing them. Defrost to make merangues or add to a full egg to bulk out when making healthy omelette's or scrambled egg

21. Buy yellow stickered bread and freeze. Toasters do not care and toast tastes the same. If you are toasting use the cheap bread. Sandwiches are different I think and taste better fresher.

22. Sell bundles of clothes on Ebay if they won't sell individually.

23. Check petrol prices and fill up where its cheap. Living in the country sometimes it works out cheaper to travel and fill your tank than pay £1.59 per litre for diesel, get your shopping at the same time at a large supermarket. Forward planning saves money.

24. Halloween - save the string bags you get fruit in - tack  them together to make spider webs

24. Collect green bits and bobs - evergreen of course from wasteland to make your Christmas wreath. Rustic and free and highly original

25. Make Christmas tree decorations from old Christmas cards or make gift tags. A pair of crimping shears works wonders as does a bit of glitter. Keeps kids busy as well  and quiet....

26. If you do Christmas in a big way buy your wrapping paper and cards for the next Christmas in January and put them with your decorations. mark on your calendar that you have bought them in case you forget, This serves as a reminder.

27. Drive steadily. Saves on petrol and wear and tear on your car.

28. Party invites are available on line for nothing - saves money and time writing them out.  Use a colour printer if you want to be flash or if b/w make an invite that little kids can colour in.

29. Save paper for drawing and scribbling only.  Most kids love to draw. Save letters that are blank on one side and flatten between books.

30. Recycle envelopes. Easy to do if you have stickers or sellotape. Especially big ones that you use infrequently

31. Save margarine tubs and ice cream tubs for freezing left overs.

32. Freeze. So much stuff can be frozen especially if it will end up in a stew or a fruit pie. Brambles, apples, rhubarb,carrots, broccoli stalks taste just fine in a veg soup.

Bargain basement- got two extra!

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

A fond farewell...................and everybody is at it!

I don't think so. Yes you know of whom I speak. Also I completely disagree about paying for her funeral. Didn't agree with the Royal wedding either so there and that prob boosted the economy and tourism.

Yes yes  Arthur Scargill and the unions and industry needed an overhaul but not to that extent. Decimating communities, soup kitchens in the Durham coal fields, unemployment rising astrononimcally.Privatising national industry  including utilities ( now I am paying profits to share holders so I can heat my house), not building social housing stock so now my taxes go to greedy landlords to house the poor who are on council housing waiting lists. I remember the recession in the late 80s, I remember the poll tax and I remember interest rates going ballistic and home repossessed when the yuppie bubble burst. We had tea with Pol Pott who was not such a bad chap non??? Pinochet on our Christmas card list?? Why yes!!!!  Lets keep Germany separate - no to bringing down the wall!!!
Buy your council house, start your own business- make the loans available.... then boom and bust.

Gordon Brown adn labour spend all the money.  There were two wars we financed ( Afghanistan and Iraq- don't come cheap) and the banks and a global crisis. Gordon brown is still well respected by economists for his decision to bail out the banks. FTSE drop in 2008 not been seen since hmmm 1987 in the time of Thatcher.

But its all yay broke the miners, The Falklands... which if diplomacy was her string point by expert opinions conflict could have been avoided. Wonder if Cameloon will try some heavy handed tactics to win the next gen election ... hmmm

Nough Said.

Some young peeps who were born in the 80's fall for the same political crap now, that the Tory party spewed forth then.  The 80's yuppies have left their materialistic legacy.

We shall refer to her as the fair haired one. The faired haired one at work. TFHOAW is a supported of the right. We discussed the benefits situation. Yes I agree its not right to de fraud the system. However the poor are being demonised. The deficit is not solely their fault. Nor can the blame be laid with the welfare budget 50%+ of which goes to pensioners in one way or another -winter fuel payments, bus passes etc etc those who have not worked for long enough have their pensions topped up etc etc. Any means testing here????

We came to an agreement that de frauding the system into which we all pay our taxes is wrong. Paying your tax is good. I then asked if her partner paid tax on the work he does outside of his normal job- employment where he is taxed by the usual method. No this is cash in hand says she. I said that this in effect was also defrauding the system... .IE should be taxed....and if this money was to be taken as their income then they may not qualify for child benefit or child tax credit, or child care element of working tax credit. Who is also defrauding the system??? If we are going to demonise all benefit recipients then this should include those who receive child benefit. It is now means tested.We should include those who receive Child tax credit etc. They need to be checked for fraud as well.

Fraud is fraud is it not???? Not so happy now. Sorry but had to point it out. Creative accounting etc etc cash in hand etc If you work and receive your tax allowance from your main job then its tax on everything else isn't it???? And what do they spend this on??? Materialistic tat!

If people work overtime they are taxed and what they declare they earn on P60's is taken into account or child tax credit payments the following year.


Are we still using coal........???? Where do they buy it from???????:-)


Thursday, 4 April 2013

Daily Mail and Precariat status!

Every time I see that rag I fume more and more.

As a benefits claimant - yes that's child tax credit and child care element of working tax credit I am insulted by the accusations of the hate rag. I cannot even begin to comment on their horrid claims that the Philpott bloke is an example of welfare Britain!

How dare they use this tragic tale to further their diatribe against the welfare state. AN Wilson- I have no words to describe your vileness.

People are falling for this moral panic!  Good sense will tell most people that there are some frauds and cheats who work the system. This is wrong. There are many more who get paid a pish wage and to raise a family and  work require support from the state either in payment or in the provision of social housing.  Those such as I would be royally fucked without child care assistance and would be claiming a lot more and paying nothing back in, not paying a pension and not paying national insurance.

Where are the what welfare enables people to do stories???? There are many out there frugalling away making their pennies stretch. What are the figures for the long term unemployed? Overall how many are in this category? Not as many as those who are temporarily unemployed and move back into work. I would hazard a bet that its more fluid than the cretins of the Daily Mail and their non thinking readership would have us believe!

There but for the grace of god!  Stock markets can falter and pension investments can be wiped out and house prices descend to negative equity.....

Our new class system!

Apparently I am a precariat. New social status - The lowest of the low if you go in for all that crap. The new social class takes account of your cultural and economical capital and social preferences/connections.

WTF Precariat means I really don't know.Apparently something to do with having a precarious lifestyle! Its below Marx's proletariat clearly! Working class people now own property. So not me then! If I work the answers and use preferences to reply rather than what I actually can afford to do socially then I become an emergent worker... Again WTF????

I am not emergent. I have been at the working game for a long time.  I am not young.

If you want to take the test its here! As social scientists I am sure they have a well though out methodology and rationale. Ok society ain't what it used to be  - see the two Ronnies and John Cleese clip from the 60's, 70's - upper, middle and working class nice and easy distinctions but I don't know enough to comment as to whether this new structure is the best description . Interesting bits are the percentages for each new tier I suppose.

Life's looser that's me - I shall shout it from the roof tops to all Daily Mail readers and Tory voters and doff my cap and catch crumbs from their lordships tables....  yellow stickered grub that no bugger else wants approved foods etc ! Technically the waste that I am truly  thankful for!

Yes my life is precarious!  If I crash my car tomorrow it will be a disaster, If my fridge breaks down it will take a chunk out of my meagre savings. New furniture is not an option. Yellow stickers are my staple. Second hand clothes make up my entire wardrobe. Foreign holidays not in my league. I am not the only one. There are plenty of us out there, More than the moralisers think. Charity shops and 'vintage' has never been more popular. Free cycle and skip diving - more and more competition!

Daily Mail readers have an open invite to walk a mile in my shoes with my finances but be warned I do not shop at Waitrose or M & S not sleep between Egyptian cotton sheets not use the central heating.

My washing liquid is nearing its end. I bought in bulk last time from AppFood lets see if some Daily mail reader can find me as good a deal or maybe I shall set them to work making me some washing liquid??? Just because its good.

NB. I treat my finances separately to that of Biggles who is apparently in a much high class than me. He is slumming it with precariat me!

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

yellow split peas

Cheap in Morrisons. Bought for making of soup. Will they work as an alternative to lentils which were twice the price? Answers on a post card please.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Never the time.....


Never really get the chance anymore but may all change.

Work is busy. Home is busy. Blogg neglected lol

We are not considering Bucks as a priority anymore potentially Poggio Renatica - yes that's Italy not far from Ferrara where they make those speedy cars that petrol heads drool and lust over.

Lots of questions to ask before we decide it is worth Biggles being boarded for. And its the military so what ever they decide goes really.

Schools need to be researched, housing too then there is the question of what I do with myself for two years. I am not a lady of leisure. I couldn't be. I will need to have structure. Jobs are unlikely. I would like to study at least to give the hours when small one is in school some purpose. However I want any study to have currency when I return to the UK. A working qualification or at least counts towards one.

Completing the  academic modules of a JNC youth and community development MA would be ideal but is it possible??? Is it buggery!

Open University I hear you cry. NO. I do not need any more purely academic and very expensive courses thank you. I would enjoy them but a waste of cash I do not have or which could have a more practical use.  If I am going to do a another HE qual it needs to mean something in the real world and have a function. Not just be for fun or pleasure.

I am too long in the tooth to take two years out of working and do nothing.

I can just about manage to not pay the state pension for two years. I have a few stacked up and its currently 30 yrs contributions to get full whack. I will succeed this target with some to spare so bugger the gov they are not getting anymore. ( They still fecking owe me, the bastards with their austerity measures!)

So I shall return to searching out somewhere that may let me take a few modules that can count towards a post grad or a masters degree.....I am not hopeful.

B is getting info on housing and schools and other such stuff.


Monday, 11 March 2013

Price rises! And losing a tenner!

Pah I have lost a tenner already and its not even April!

Rent is increasing by £8 and Weeny's swimming by £1 which when you add in pennies comes to best part of £10!

Now £10 may not be a lot to some but it is to me. So that will be £74 quid spare I have per month in April when I review finances again.

I fully expect day care to increase and tax credits to decrease.

Ho hum. back to the meal planning. petrol expenses going ok. Desperately trying to keep it at £40 per week however I have work journeys to make so it doesn't always work.

My £20-£25 per week for food is going ok. I don't religiously stick to that each week but rather look at a monthly amount. Some weeks are for eg £40 typically at the beginning of the month but the others are then below and just for the perishables really.  Its a Lidl week this week for items that are cheaper in Lidl mostly. Other stuff will wait till next week.

Lets see what the budget brings eh!

Lighter note!

Its residents weekend this weekend and if you have an address in Northumberland and fill out the relevant form this means you get to go to places for free or for half price or two for one.

We are doing free things.

Cragside - home of a geordie genius! Fantastic all day type trip to a massive estate with lots to do.

Either Keilder for Birds of Prey Centre or Lindisfarne- Holy Island.

The tide is right  so may do Lindisfarne and the beach. It will also depend on the weather. Here's hoping. Kielder is a proper trek as the county I live in is vast.

Only accessible via a tidal causeway! Ransacked by dem vikings on numerous occasions! We get the castle for free and can play on the beach with a picnic.

Maze, lakes, watermill, posh house with lots to see, massive play park and lots of walks. You get to take the car round  on a one way system as the estate is so large.

Mothers Day was cool. We went to Sheffield. This meant no cookign for me1 We had a takeaway courtesy of Biggles for his Mum. Cards and little pressies from use. Biggles bought his mum a mobile phone as she wanted. He is in the goodbooks. Its for her birthday too.

Not a mothers day gift type person- like Christmas I like spending time and a hand made card from small girl is worth a million shop bought cards.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Pros and Cons.. Bucks and other stuff

That would be Buckinghamshire and RAF High Wycomb towards the end of the year. We are considering it.

We need to work out if the job is a good promo job for Biggles or not. He is making enquiries. if so it may be a go - er. Question is what do we do. I am looking into re location seriously but as Biggles earns enough for us to be taken out of the Child benefit equation completely it needs some serious consideration.  Small girl and I will be dependent entirely on him till I get myself a job. He will only be there for max 2 yrs. This has implications for my career. Also as he earns a bit it means I will not be able to get funding for alot of future study options.  Also Bucks is in a pish location for future study options such as Social work however i could look into a Youth and Community development masters distance learning through DE Monfort in Leicester if I am employer for a minimum of 12hrs per week in a related position.  Its also ruibbish for commuting at weekends for Biggles. I couldn't visit as he would be living in the officers mess in a room.

Ahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Will see what Biggles brings to the table with his research form other respected military types. He still quite likes the idea of a Italy and working for NATO but this is generally a career and promotion killer.

My pension will be in jeopardy as well. Leaving a local authority pension not great. However as he says if he makes Wing Commander it would be a mute point as hi WC pension would be most excellent.

Small Girl would be happy. The schools are fine locally and till she begins her GCSE's and starts secondary or high school we have some breathing space.  She is not happy that he leaves to go back to London and continues to cry and get upset. I thought she may have got used to it by now but no.

other than that we are planning residents weekend and a visit to Mother Biggles in Yorkshire. Next weekend Sheffield. Weekend after the local tourist attractions are open at cut price or free to residents of Northumberland.  Cragside most def.

It you caught countryfile last night on BBC1 7pm. Thats where we live! Well local to thew place and have even bunked in the old school visitied by that Julia Badbury girl who walks a lot!


Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Back again....

We took in the smoke!

I cooked up 10 meals for Biggles freezer- bolognese, chilli and spicy sausage bean stew as well as cooking when I was there. 

I always add extra to any mince based meal - fillers! grated carrot, oats, extra veg chopped up! It goes that little bit further and its good for you! Dead easy when you have been working long hours to defrost your main and chuck it in the micro wave and add a baked spud, pasta or rice.

Hopefully they will be stretched out! I was generous with portions so he could with added carbs go for two meals esp if he is trying to cut down. This has been explained but we will have to wait and see... I am not hopeful.

We took in the zoo in the smoke. Weeny's choice and Biggles paid! £22 quid each for adult and £17 for Small girl!!!! Bloody buggery shite I nearly choked!   She did enjoy herself however and we spent the whole day freezing though it was!

 Back to the grind we go!!!!

Dancing and swimming and meal planning and work!

We have turned the heating off again! We are back to the oil filled radiator and bed sharing!

Its nearly March for goodness sake! Time to get jiggy with it! Its a use it up from the freezer week !

Meal plan-

 Monday veggie sausages and the last frozen fish piece with frozen chips
Tuesday- steak pie and veg, frozen chicken dinner meal
Wednesday- pizza or eggy bread with beans and beans on toast- possibly a shopping night! so speed is essential!
Thursday- baked potato, beans, cheese, salad
Friday- lasagna with veg - frozen ready made by me!
Sat- Thai Curry - a Saturday staple! Can you tell we like it lots????
Sun- Pasta again I think.... use up the salad. I may make chorizo pasta

I am trying to run down my freezer a little. So am eating the junky quick food this week- All yellow stickered or costing less than £2 for four meals of course! It comes in handy as we didn't shop  much at all last week as we went away on Wednesday.

Its pay day this week so a big - ha ha my version of big shop is in order!

See you later!!!

PS am feeling a bit steam punk and having fun with it!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Having one of them days....where you focus on what hasnt happened, been lost, goals not accomplished and opportunities wasted or missed.....shitty. It will pass.

Monday, 18 February 2013

Demonizing the poor.. bring back the workhouse!

WTF is it with this government!

The bedroom tax, The benefits cap, disabled claimants ''invited''- I shit you not-  to apply for PIP and if you don't no money for you!!!!! Seriously when you look at the bigger picture and see how much revenue this will bring in compared to what they need to get us out of the shit, how much tax avoidance schemes lose money for the common coffers pot, how much banks get away with you realise how much the common garden chav is being made a scape goat!!!

Ok I don't believe that you should get more than 25k to live off from benefits. I understand that bit. But its not a cure all and effects in reality very few famillies overall. Yes its a big number overall   but we are looking at a population here!

The bedroom tax!!! Most council housing stock was built to accomodate famillies. Few houses have one or two bedrooms. If we have smaller places then great but don't penalise if there are no choices of moving to smaller houses. Homes are no longer homes they are temporary. Why take pride in a place when you will be forced to move??? I think most people when there kids have flown the nest properly and are established in their own homes with incomes etc are happy to downsize but kids being kids come and go for a while before they fly the nest for good. I know I went back after uni and then after a marriage break up. Why no mansion tax then??? Bigger houses - bigger carbon foot print potentially! ( yes some folk are green I know).

Am all for getting people to work and pay in, but on one hand they cry lets make work pay and on the other they are looking at getting rid of the agricultura lworkers  minimum wage. This is a travesty for Farm workers- shepherds, tractor drivers, herd managers. Cut benefits and cut wages. Fuck you if you were not born bright and clever with a silver spoon in your mouth . Caring society????? Very.

Hard work gets you everywhere - Yes but people have a ceiling. For some its their top possible achievement to do a labouring job, work in Greggs. Thats it. Some people just aren't bright enough. No matter how hard they try they won't get promoted or become brain surgeons or investment bankers. But pah who gives a jot about them anyway!

And people fall for this moral panic time and time again... its the chav at the end of the street who lies in bed  while you go out to work, its the single mother of 8 kids with different dads who takes your hard earned cash... Yes that 25k in benefits she gets will go along way to paying off the debt from the banks, the tax lost due to loop holes.....

Indolent, insolent poor take thyself to the workhouse !!!

All excuses for minimising state input. Good old Tory aim as ever- one of their foundations actually and gets you so scared of Labour fucking up the economy again that  you keep voting them in.

Actually Labour didn't inherit a great ecomony. They worked with what they had. Brown kept it afloat and pulled the banks out of the shit.  I take it Mr Brown is also responsible for the fiscal cliff in America?? Problems in Iceland???? Ireland, Spain, Greece... yeah all his fault......

DM readers???? Who are they ???Where do they live??? What do they do that makes them so blind??? They are conned along with every other tory voter. yes you r consumption and you rhouse that looks like something out of a catalogue makes you middle class. of course dear! Your furniture is tomorrows bric a brac not an antique or an heirloom! Get real and hope you never fall on hard times!


London Calling.....

Yes I did like The Clash.

Off to the smoke on Wednesday. Will be a four day break with Biggles. Free tickets yet again.  Doing little bar seeing friends and taking in parks and the queen. We are off to see the queen again and walk in that big park! Maybe do dinosaurs again.....Flasks and pic nics.

We take very little with us as we can wash clothes there. So just enough for four days.

Could do with some time at home really but you can't look a gift horse in the mush!

Pea soup to be made this evening. Pizza tomorrow. Off to London Wednesday night.

Hello to everyone who reads. I am really ignorant compared to other bloggers who welcome new readers!

Hope you all have a nice peaceful half term.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Bath Smellies ....

I never bother. When Small girl was a baby - soap for dirty bits and the teeniest dash of olive oil from the chemist. Not the frying type!

A good scrub all over and done. Nothing else required. Not so much that you slip in the bath either!

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

A new financial plan

I have planned and calculated.

I will save £100 a month.
I will  be saving £35 per month towards car expenses- MOT, servicing and tax.
I have arranged the DD's. Some are very annoying and will only accept being paid mid month which is confusing. I like to have clear figures in my bank account!
I am repaying Biggles a small amount each month. I also do the food at weekends as he does treats and petrol most of the time and it is a godsend and very nice of him. It pleasant to go out for a cheap lunch with your working away partner and also the occasional coffee and trip to London of course. We have another planned for half term.

I have £84 left over each month to pay for dancing lessons and clothes and other expenses such as hair cuts, dentist etc etc This is pretty good I feel. I can cope with this. I remember the days when  we had £400 a month spares to play with lol pre redundancy and I had a healthy bank account and a house and maintenance... sigh, Onwards we go.. maybe not upwards but onwards nonetheless.

I don't use any Child tax credit either. I pay for the child care completely out of this amount and save the rest. I won't use it as the buggers always get things wrong. If at the end of the tax year when new calculations are made I am over or under there should be funds either to save or to repay the buggers.  Technically they only pay 70% of any child care so there is never much left over but it all adds up and can go towards a repayment or saving depending on what the outcome is in July after the p60 goes in.

I am still doing the save the change round up account thing. The bank automatically rounds up to the nearest pound and puts the pennies in a separate account. I am still saving £10 a month for Small girl till her 18th birthday.

I am continuing to pay £50 for electric. Its been cold and we have needed the central heating. Also over christmas it is nice for Small girl to feel comfortable when she plays in the house. I want to avoid any bills or being in debit to them. You can claim this back so I feel it is worth it for peace of mind.

I have budgeted for £200 on petrol and £120 on food  still however I hope to reduce the petrol in May when I go back to only working four days. With the CPD qualification I need to come in on Fridays ( 50 mile round trip). I also plan on doing £80- £100 on food per week and saving the rest. I may do the envelope system next month for food! Withdraw and spend it in cash each week.

So the coffers are coffed! With £320 for petrol and food plus £80 for extras. Not a bad life I spose.

And Small girl loves her dance class so far. Swimming then Modern dance on Saturday mornings.  Money well spent. Its £4.50 for dancing for 45 mins. Swimming is a DD of £21 per month and for 4 or 5 lessons per month depending on the number of Saturdays I couldn't take her swimming for less.

Now time to transfer the cash to the savings account!! See ya later.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Catch up!

Bah last chance to do my mums tax return so blogging is out for a while. I have all the sums but don't like the online bit. Phooey.

Payday Thursday so am working out a new budget for the year now that Xmas and birthday is over.

Paying bills which is poo but gotta be done. Note to self - Make last £11 payment to Credit card! Whoppeee!

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Snow days and reminiscing

Yes schools closed. Two days now.

Small girl in the house. Yeah! Off work.

Yesterday she had a play date.Today we have had a jama day- made cheesy scones, foam 3d picture thing from a kit, felt pictures, some tidying, jigsaw and some TV. Lots of spontaneous drawing. Building of things with bricks

Cheesy scones, fruit and tomato soup. Meal plan out the window today! But we'll just re arrange adn eat the veggies tomorrow with a stir fry!

Heating on low all day.  No more than 16-18 degrees. Its cold. It irks though. If I had a room without stairs in it the heating would not be on!

Saved on childcare - £30 and Travel approx £16. Lol probably spent this amount on the sodding heating!

Back to the grind tomorrow. I have a course starting and also a benefits training session to do. Late start tomorrow as its 10am start locally based training. Then Thursday and Friday before Weeny's expensive soft play party. First and last.

Small girls  birthday treat from the other family was a trip to Matalan to buy clothes she doesn't need. She is five. Some clothes in wrong size 4-5. Then they went to pizza hut. Ah well what can I say. She was disappointed as she likes to open presents and likes surprises.

On her actual birthday  on the 18th we had a wee chum to tea. We decorated a cheapie choc cake ( 75p) had pizza and hot dogs and crisps and carrot sticks, strawberries and cucumber on a blanket on the floor. The girls dressed up, got to put on kiddie makeup and be princesses, danced to Mamma Mia, played up stairs and trashed her bedroom and made necklaces before the singing of songs.

For her opening pressies I purchased two £1 craft sets, a 1.50 jigsaw, a tu tu and a leotard from a charity shop and she was very pleased. Biggles bought her goggles as he is going to pay for dancing lessons for her.  Happy Small girl!!! SGDD from now on! She is getting a bit big to be a weeny anymore.....

Bless five years since the crowning burn! Given that Gas and Air made me sick and I waited so long before going in to hosp  there was nothing else in the way of PR available! All au naturelle! Don't know about you but I gave birth like a dog on all fours. None of this sat up with my hair splayed around my head. Lots of swearing and feeling devastated when after all the pushing I could feel her head slide back..Lol two steps forward and one back and I was distraught after all that hard work! She actually popped into the world with very little fuss really. Tiny despite being over by 8 days but the breast feeding sorted that right out (Much to the chagrin of the other family who found it disgusting) I fed till she wanted to give up around 2-2.5. Easy peasy. And now five! Loved most of it lol


Monday, 21 January 2013

Roll on Feb! Money musings

Battening down the hatches after xmas. I have bills that need paying. French lessons and a car maintenance bill for £90.

I am itching to get my finances in order and start again after xmas. The last of the credit card bill is to be paid in Feb so we have a clean sheet sort of.

Future wise we wait for the all powerful MOD to make its decisions and cast up its offerings to Biggles. He is past the half way mark so moving on rears its head.

We have things we all want to do and make plans for but we wait.

All depends on his next report and what the MOD offer him. He wants to see if he will be recommended for promotion or not. If he is he will take promo enhancing jobs if not he is happy to take jobs for enjoyment. You have no choice in the Military they tell you when and where and how high.

From my point of view I just want to be able to pay my pension and save money for the future. No chance with the mortgage and property owning. Pension and saving however yes.

Do I want to go abroad???? This is will be a non promotion job for Biggles
Do I want to relocate to the middle of nowhere - Lincoln, Wilts, Hampshire for max two years.

I think if I stay here I will want to move closer to work. The reasons being
1. DD will get more and more homework. I want to ensure this is done and she develops good study habits
2. Money. I spend approx 200 on fuel each month and this is only set to rise.
3. Time - less time spent commuting - see point one.

It means the less rural chunk of the county and less pretty.

I will have to still apply for social housing and any move will need to be considered in depth and research done on the area in depth including with the local cop shop re issues in any estate I move to.

I would save £100 a month which can be saved in pension pots or other.

I know what my budget in Feb will tell me. I know what I need to do to get by but I would like to make progress in saving or pension planning. I need to see some sort of progress not stagnation. I think moving will be one of the key areas that will afford me more money in the long term.

Quality of life time wise will be better. Not sure about other areas as I live in a cool wee town with lots of bits going on and a nice community feel to it but overall in general more time spent with small daughter is a good and invaluable thing.

See what the military overlords doth offer and profess....

Payday next week - 30th Jan.

Thursday, 17 January 2013

A birthday...

Its Weeny's big day tomorrow.  She is having a friend for tea and cake after school before her party at soft play next Saturday. We have cakes to bake and decorate and silly things to do!

Shopping wise I need:
hot dogs, milk, beans and cheap bread veg and fruit and bread. That's is it. Ham maybe for sandwiches.

We have lasagna tomorrow from the freezer for Biggles and I. Its a small one but Weeny will have eaten earlier.

Sat - Thai Curry
Sun - Chicken dinner
Monday- Pie or pizza not sure which yet!
Tuesday- Stir Fry with left over veg
Wednesday-Baked potato and cheese and beans
Thursday- Eggy bread with beans
Friday- Curry!!!!
Saturday-sausage and bean casserole
Sunday- lamb chops and veg mash and sauce

My approved food order was fab and I have lots of beans- kidney and butter beans.


Friday, 11 January 2013

Am liking the meal planning but it needs to be flexible!

Meal plan doing fine. We have Curry for tonight as I recall. I might do lemon chicken tomorrow instead of lasagne as I have lemons that need using up. They have been there since christmas. I will use what I need for the recipe and then juice the rest. I may freeze some of the juice and use the rest.
We will have jacket potatoes with the lemon chicken.

I hate waste!! The lasagne can stay in the freezer till next Friday night.
Lemon chicken
Pork Sunday dinner

Meal plan for next week
Monday - Pizza . Cheap one with added toppings. 60p per pizza with left over ham etc etc Easy meal for Monday night and quick!
Tuesday- Sausage and mash- with peas and gravy  Veg sausages!
Wednesday - Fish and chips with peas
Thursday- Tomato soup and bread - Quick and its shopping night! Better for bargains though they are sparse at the local Morrisions.
Friday - Lasagne and garlic bread with veg
Saturday- Thai Curry
Sunday- Chicken pieces roast dinner

At weekends for lunches we have snack foods - pitta and cheese and cucumber, tuna etc etc

During the week  I will have left overs and porridge and sandwiches for lunch next week.

The regular shopping buys I have are mostly fresh stuff and cat food!: potatoes, veg, fruit, milk, bread

I alwasy look out for yellow stickered bread and meat.

Also as a silly thing I have a daily outfit total cost at work. The team now ask me how much I spent in total on todays outfit. I should do pics. lol its an expensive one today totalling £28 quid but thats including boots, coat, jeans, top waistcoat thing and under vest.

Yesterday was a below a tenner day. the team were impressed but not yet ready ot make the move to second hand clothes lol

Thursday, 10 January 2013


Well mostly stuck to the shopping list.I did buy yellow sticker mince reduced from £4 to 2.89,  veg sausages, the linda mac ones reduced to £1, garlic  ciabatta reduced 19p. This is as good as yellow stickering gets in my local Morrisons. Spent £28 but yellow stickers for meat and good stuffs is allowed as an investment. I only buy special offer meat or try to.

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Squeeeee! Freecycle and the first resolution!

Mostly so far so good.....

I have acquired a sewing machine from Free Cycle. It is a huge old heavy thing - works ok I hope. Haven't tried it yet. I also have a new tea tray. I swapped one at work.

I have got work to pay for the PTTLS course. ( Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector- minimum qual to deliver anything in FE or adult ed.) Starts Jan 23rd.

No joy with fitting in the exercise yet but hey ho there is time.

I have had a no spend day today. Monday was a farce however. Weeny needed her shoe strap fixing. I am not forking out for new shoes for a few weeks! When she gets into the size 11's I have for her all well and good.  I also had to fill up the car. I intend on only filling up at supermarkets. I will endeavour to do so once a week and not forget and leave myself having to get even a small amount of petrol locally as it is too expensive.  Hmm I failed the charity shop test. I just went in for a browse then found a skirt for £4 however the it was brand new and the attached label said RRP £55 so its going straight to Ebay. I then spied another skirt also for £4, some cushion covers- 3 for £1.49 and a sale rail long waist coat for 99p. I only went in for the 99p sale rail. The skirt  for me is very cool however, I would keep the other one but will chance my luck on Bay. Its by some silly label it looks like. Never heard of it but thats not a surprise. Its black, full skirted, hipster style goes to the knee with silver thread through it. Sounds odd but is very nice. Ebay it is however.

My little resolutions now include:
  • making my own washing liquid at least once
  • making jam from brambles
  • making a simple roman blind or two
  • plus the other little stuff

Bummed out on the charity shopping but hey ho won't beat myself up about it.

Sticking to the meal plan so far and will stick it the shopping list.

Also found a free PDF thing for birthday invites. Only went for B/W but they were cute. Weeny turns five on the 18th Jan. Plans are afoot for celebrations.

I have money put aside for her class birthday party at soft play and we will do pressies and cake in the house on her actual birthday.  Will purchase a basic small cake for the soft play event and make my own for the house party.

This is the last time we do soft play parties and the only time I will do the whole class thing. Next year it will be a few kids to the cinema on a Tuesday afternoon when its cheap or a few to one of the wildlife sanctuaries. I kind of feel obliged this year as all the others are doing something similar or have done the class size party.  No birthday pressies of any significant worth however. Have gone for the party and small pressies instead. Will only be the Bratz accessories I have stashed from Free cycle. That was an excellent haul!

Off to find patterns/instructions for Roman blinds. I have old curtains and venetian blind slats as well as cord/string stuff. Fingers crossed.

Good stuff - Quals and freecycle, free invitations from the interweb!
Poor show- spending needlessly in charity shops not including the eBay find as this may be an investment

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Routine looms, frugal plans, .... and P easy soup amongst other things....

Back to work tomorrow. We have taken Biggles to the station after 17 days of loveliness! We have our packed lunches made. We have P. Easy soup made for tomorrow.

P Easy as it is literally piss easy and also made from peas lol.

I had left over creme fraiche so made Piss easy soup here after known as Peasy soup so as not to offend the sensitive. I try not to waste creams as they are not cheap. We had fajitas so had left over Creme Fraiche. Also works with soured cream. Proper fridge found dairy stuff not the nasty bottled sauce style. Bleugh!

Peasy Soup
Chop and soften one medium onion in a little oil. Add a sprinkle of mint and S and P. Add 400ml of stock - veg will do though others such as ham, chick etc work well. Not sure of the redder meats. Def not beef. Boil. Add a good two handfuls of peas - frozen ones maybe more.  Boils for a min or two but no longer. Reduce heat to minimal. Add creme fraiche ( four tbs approx) or single cream or marscapone or whipping or double. Make a judgement according to how much you have left and how thick you want your soup to be if you are using double cream etc etc.  If you only have a small amount of creamy stuff or it pleases you chuck in a handful of grated cheese or to taste or give substance!
Add more mint, S and P and blitz. Ta dah! You can strain if you like or if your frozen peas are getting a bit husky and hard. I keep the husks in, if they are soft enough.
It is very green and makes for good flatulence. I have warned you. Great with HM bread.

So I have me several lists.

Frugal to do list
  1. Meal plan to work out - reduce shopping budget to at least 25 pw and no more
  2. Budget to set and review
  3. Own washing liquid to make when  my current stash runs down
  4. Make simple blinds for the kitchen - I have the material and the old blinds so hopefully I can fashion something
  5. Ebaying - I have sorted out clothes, more stuff, shoes, etc Weeny girl stuff. I also have Biggles warehouse to sort out
  6. Car boot sale when the season starts. I shall reccie a newish car boot in the area to see what its like. I have a preference for one that I know is busy and well
  7. I shall not shop at charity shops or otherwise till at least Easter. I have no need and have many items that I can upcycle and adapt.
  8. I have seeds that this year I will plant in my boxes and tubs.
  9. To complete more online surveys. I am lazy and use my phone for many a thing so
I shall freecycle and skip dive for all other needs. I plan on going to the tip for a reccie and look see.
I also need to get to Biggles house to rescue some freezer food and some condiments and spices etc.  I shall also have a root around for any tupperware for batch cooking.

My free cycle list included the following:
Bamboo or other blinds
sewing machine
photo frames
dvd player
garden table
toys for weeny for xmas lol
oil filled radiator

I nearly caved and purchased bamboo blinds then thought no I can make stuff. So if anyone has any hints on making simple roman stule blinds please send instructions my way.

I do not have a sewing machine so all will need to be hand sewable or wonder webbable lol

General to do list
Car wash and valet - needs some TLC
Put up the princess bed thing - It has a massive screw that I need to set into a joist in the ceiling somehow. Any ideas much appreciated!
Garden to be sorted out a bit  and also the Barbecue for the better weather,
Spring clean and de clutter - will try a draw a month lol

I also have the ongoing get fitter thing and the qualification thing and most def the meal plan thing!

I have got out the mini cross trainer. I will endeavour to build up some time on this in the evening. I will also walk up the stairs and not use the lift. I will walk Weeny to school Fridays bar rain!

Meal plan 1.  7th - 13th Jan
Monday - soup and bread
Tuesday- chicken and salad, chips
Wednesday-  baked potatoes with cheese and beans, I will have beans on toast or something. Only one spud and  Shopping day is Thursday. Weeny likes her spud and beans!
Thursday- Eggy bread with beans
Friday-   Chicken Chow mein or curry
Saturday-  Lasagne- and garlic bread. Its already made and in the freezer!
Sunday-  Pork- Roast

Pudding is always fruit and we always have cucumber and carrot on the side as a snack

Thus my shopping list for this week shall be:

Eggs, potatoes, carrots, brocoli, peppers, cucumber, lettuce, chicken pieces, beans, squash to drink, milk, sugar, bread for freezer, pizza, loo roll, cheap cheese/ham, fruit for lunches and pudding- see whats on special, cat food.

Will only get yello sticker bread for freezing as I already have three loaves in stock and will see what bargains are up. So all in for £25 not including additional yellow sticker bargains??? What do you reckon????  

I will oblige my self of bargains at Lidl and Iceland for certain things ( eggs namely) as you can get 6 free range for 99p. I won't do caged. Most other stuff I find The Sons of Morri to be adequate given travelling time etc.


NYD Ochils 2. What we walked!

Castle Campbell again....
Car park not far form here and a wee road walk before you turn off and head for Sauchie falls. I could have walked from Dollar itself but have no love of walking roads and through houses and streets. I find it very boring.

View from a cairn - not quite Kings Seat. Kings Seat is a Donald and over 2000ft. I think We left it too late in the day to climb the seat. It looks a simple enough mooch however I didn't fancy the steep bits to the above cairn in the dark. just  There was not enough sunshine in the day.

The wee town of Dollar.

 Same hill in sunshine!
No pics of Kings Seat but will try to add some later.