So it is time for that difficult second post, what to write about?
I was thinking yesterday evening about mindset, and how much mine had changed in the last three years and completely shifted in the last 12months. I will give you an example.
Last night after work I had to pop to my local Tesco to pick up an order at the Chemist. Unfortunately, it was not ready, so as I had a bit of time to spare I grabbed a basket and wandered round.
Having started this blog so recently, getting the most for my money was uppermost in my mind and I only had £10 on me in cash so I was determined I would not exceed that.
In truth, I have lots of food in, my freezer compartment is stuffed full of food as I tend to cook in bulk and freeze the rest in portion sizes. Anyhoo, I did need a couple of store cupboard goodies.
But first I happened to glance into another customers’ basket (am such a nosey shopper – also checking to see if another customer has got a better deal) where I spied a wooden spoon and as I have been concerned that my wooden spoons are about 7 years old I decided it was high time I invested in 2 new ones.
I scurried off to the kitchenware section and found a set for nearly £3…. Harumph. £3! I think not! And as I was turning away I saw their value range tucked away at the back, a wooden spoon for about 60p. Much more like it- I picked up two.
I remembered I needed to replace a couple of tins of chopped tomatoes I used at the weekend, the value range were 41p. Again I picked up two.
Then wandered over to the discounted food. You can find such bargains here if you go at the right time. I picked up two items - a packet of 8 chicken drumsticks for 95p, yes that is right 95p! and a carton of Merry Mushroom New Covent Garden Soup for 20p reduced from £2.10. Both were due to go out of date in 24 hours.
So the 2 spoons, 2 tins of chopped tomatoes, and carton of soup and 8 chicken drumsticks all came in at about £2.50. Now that is thrifty shopping!
I did not want to eat any of my acquisitions last night, so the drumstick got bagged up into pairs and frozen along with the mushroom soup to be used at a later date.
So what did I eat, and did it meet my frugal criteria? – yes it most certainly did.
I got home and had a rummage and came up with a bag of all purpose potatoes I picked up from Tescos the day after Boxing Day reduced to 11p. Yes 11p!!
I grabbed three very big ones and still have about 75% left in the bag and boiled them, mashed them and added a tin of tuna my mum had given me about three months ago, I dashed in some butter, milk and salt / pepper.
I then moulded 6 huge fish cakes, dipped them in a bit of beaten egg and then made some breadcrumbs from a slice of the bread I had baked and frozen about a month ago then fried two for dinner about 2 mins per side. So really all it cost me was about 3p for the potatoes, and the eggs were 10 for 99P so the whole thing I reckon came in at under 20p for 3 meals. I added two corn on the cobs from Iceland (bag of about 8 for £1) and it was so tasty. Plus no nasty additives.
Don’t get me wrong, I am happy to chuck in a frozen pizza often when I get home and am shattered after a day at work, but last night I did think for about 30 minutes of effort I now have dinner also for tonight plus two fishcakes to freeze for another day.
So, getting back to my original point, my mindset has changed – I am trying to spot a bargain and ensure it is used to its full potential. I still want to eat well, but not expensively when I am only cooking for myself.
If I can continue to roll out this change of mindset across other areas of my life then I can hopefully continue to pay off my debts, as i want to reduce it to under £1000 by the end of 2011. One can but hope.
Frugally yoursAbigail x