Monday, 15 July 2013

Oh Lordy

If you live in the UK then you will know we are in the middle of a heat wave. If not, well then you do now.

We spend 51 weeks and 6 days of the year moaning about the weather here and the twenty four hours it is scorching, us Brits moan, whine and whinge about how hot we are.

Our homes do not come with air conditioning and the best we can do is run down to Argos to buy a fan so the hot air is redistributed in our homes.

Last night was unbearable and so at about eleven pm I wrapped my pillow in a bin liner and shoved it in the freezer. When I went to bed it did provide some relief, at a fraction of the cost of the fan going all night.

The weekend was glorious and made all the better as my little 4yo nephew came to stay and I had him all day Saturday.

I picked him up from my parents at eight thirty and we went to Asda to spend the money his Grandpa had given him.  We then went to near Stoke on Trent where they have a monkey forest. £7 for adults and £5 for kids. You then walked around a forest where monkeys roamed free. You were not allowed within 1 metre of the primates, but they were lovely and it is great to see these little things playing and interacting around you. "M" was enthralled! He also loved the sausages for lunch and a good hour in the free adventure playground, before back to look at the monkeys again.

We then went to a local summer fete which only cost a pound to enter. He fished for ducks, watched the acrobatic team, and dog show and them vigorously entered all the races, getting two firsts and a second. Such home spun and typically British activities that were all wonderful fun in the sun. Made all the more perfect in a 4 yo eyes as he had the superman logo painted on his face.

Back to my house to see the cats and have an ice cream with The Chap before we wended our way home to my parents where I was babysitting. We ate scrambled eggs and had a bath before reading dinosaur books and going to bed at eight thirtyish. At this point I am not sure who was most tired, but he had dark circles under his eyes and kept rubbing them though of course he was not tired!!

I did spend money taking him to the forest and having lunch out, but really such precious memories are priceless and the fete cost me all of £5 including entry, face painting money and plastic duck fishing. Really we could have both gone for a long walk and taken a picnic as all he ever wants is someone to play with.

If you do have a family, or have memories of spending time with little ones, they are the most amazing entertainment and fun to be with. 

I read with interest this week that padding pool sales are up 816% in the Uk  with this weather and getting hold of buns, salad and sausages is virtually impossible.

But really if the rain was coming down, wouldn't you go to the cinema? Or visit an undercover shopping centre? Spending far more than the cash I laid out for a fabulous day!

On the positive side the kitchen is almost finished, TC has done an amazing job and I hope to have pics shortly.

Frugally yours

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Unexpected Benefits

I have been working in my new job for two weeks now. So far I am loving it!

Every morning I wake up at my normal time six thirty, I then lie in bed for half an hour whilst The Chap has a shower. I slowly come to with the cats walking all over me. At seven I get up and wrap myself in my dressing gown before wandering downstairs for a cup of tea and to make a sandwich for lucnh before the chap gets ready to go to work.

Seven thirty, I wave TC off and go upstairs for a shower. I then go into the spare room where I keep all my clothes and products. I grab my new IPad and watch an episode of The West Wing as I dry my hair and actually have time to put make up on. 

At eight thirty I am out the front door and walking to work arriving 10 mins before nine, and so at my desk before all my new colleagues arrive. Thus also creating a great first impression.

All very different to the 30 mins I used to have leaving at 7.15am before a horrendous hour long journey to the office in a car.

I am so much happier now, yesterday I had enough time to do a load of washing before going to work and hang it out,

The sword of Damocles that used to hang over my professional head has disappeared, and my new boss keeps passing words of encouragement and trusts my opinion. So far it is all going so well.

I now walk through the door at 5.30pm rather than seven pm and am not shattered. 

I have only driven once in the last seven days to visit my parents on Sunday and life generally seems better. 

Not only has my petrol bill been drastically reduced, but also my new 30 mins lunchtimes means I can no longer go out half way through the day. Indeed, I am not so desperate for a few minutes out of a depressing environment either! However much you try not to spend, when you work in a town centre and you go out every day then money does get spent.

I cannot tell you how wonderful it is to no longer be a sales person. 

I wish I had got this job years ago.

My personal life has been a joy since I met TC, it got better when we moved in together at Christmas and now my professional life has followed. I think he is a little jealous though, as recently he is not getting in until 8,9 or 10pm often after getting up at 5am. As I write this, he is asleep on the sofa next to me exhausted. 

This extra  time at home does mean I have taken all responsibility for the house from him and he gets home to dinner and I make him a cup of tea as soon as he walks through the door. It is the least I can do. Plus, nowadays I am not too tired to do it.

If I had one wish it would be that my good and long time friend "G" who I used to work with would get another job too. I know how I would have felt if she had left and I had still been there . The one thing my new job lacks is you to share an office with. Xxx Miss you honey!

Frugally yours

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

A Touch Of Luxury

My new job has sent me away for a night as I have a training day starting early tomorrow nearly 200 miles from home.

The negative? The Chap flew off to Norway on Monday for two night and arrived home this evening well after I had left to go "up north".

So I will only see him tomorrow evening.

The positive? I was expecting a Premier Inn or Travel Lodge, and I got a Radisson Blu. It is so luxurious.

After some pub grub, I wandered my way back to the hotel and have had a lovely bath using all their pots of silliness.

I am now lying on the bed about to watch old episodes of The West Wing on the IPad, using the free wifi that is available to guests. All without the guilt of "I should clean the bathroom / do the ironing".

I could never be a commercial sales person, on the road day after day, night after night in some soulless hotel. But as a one off this is pure bliss.

Frugally yours

A Weekend Away

I am 37 years old and have lived in the UK all that time and never until Friday visited Scotland.

I was supposed to go a few years back, unfortunately the afternoon before I was due to fly I had a nasty accident involving a kerb. I broke my knee and spent weeks in plaster ankle to groin. On crutches and totally unable to fly.

So I was delighted to be invited to wedding up near Sterling.

It was such a lovely day, and great to meet The Chap's extended family who were all so friendly.

The castle was fairy tale.

The decoration was just beautiful.

I felt so smart in my new super cheap coat.

The hat was a loaner from my Mum.

I wore a dress that was bought years ago from Monsoon in better times.

We travelled up by car, putting the miles onto TC's company vehicle, which is also cheaper as it is diesel. 600 miles on one tank at £70.

Going to a wedding is never cheap, but your travel and outfit shouldn't have to break the bank.

Frugally yours