My thrifty summer will not be terrifically scientific in its measurement as we are not a family that spreadsheets our spending. Rather, we hope to reach the end of the month each month with a little money to spare.
However, I thought I’d do a weekly update on what’s worked and where I’ve been not so effective, as well as on the tips I’ve been given.
Firstly, my neighbour (who has had students for years, and has her own five children to-boot), gave me a great tip. Apparently Tesco’s, Holmbush in Shoreham marks lots of their fresh produce down to 1p at 8.30pm. The shop is deserted and with my kids in bed, this is a good time to shop. She picked up a whole watermelon recently for a penny, so I’m going to be trying it out next week. The M&S next door also marks down at the same time and the new Hove Waitrose marks down at 8pm.
I’ve also been told to look out for bulk buys on loo rolls and kitchen rolls on groupon. Though I think I’ll ditch kitchen rolls which are a bad habit anyway. We have loads of old muslins which if easily grabable give a good, reusable solution. Not sure I’m quite ready to let go of loo rolls like the lovely Zoe at Eco Thrifty Living so may look at a bulk deal on them. We’re three girls in our family, so use lots.
I did a shop at Aldi in the week, and am convinced it was much, much cheaper than the usual Sainsburys delivery (I was seduced into this with a three-month free delivery plan, and I must say it’s been very convenient, but more expensive in my experience).
A gorgeous old friend also recommended using my old, thin, poor-soiled, front garden to grow herbs. This is a great idea I think as fresh herbs liven up the plainest thrifty meal.
We’ve been meal-planning for a while now, which is helpful too. And I eat mostly leftovers for my lunches.
Less successful has been D’s lunches. Even though he was given this gorgeous new Blackblum lunchbox on Monday for his 39th birthday. He’s right there in town, surrounded by good eats. Yesterday he couldn’t resist a ‘Coriander Dave’ fish sub from Olly the Chef and treated himself and me to a brownie from honeycomb cakes too. I’ve not eaten mine yet but had one with Turkish delight in last week, and can confirm they are lush. All at Street Diner on Fridays at Brighthelm Gardens. Lovely, but he spent more than a tenner. Think I better bake more.
On Monday night, we went out to The Curry Leaf Cafe. It was, as I said, D’s birthday, and we had planned it for ages, so we kind of ignored the thrift for that night. It’s tricky being thrifty foodies! You can read my review here
I also met my lovely friends on Wednesday, which is my treat of the week. But even an Americano (cheaper than a latte) is £2 out and about. I had a water afterwards, and we’ve arranged a working Wednesday at my house next week.
I’ve been having that twitchy, spendy feeling a bit about summer clothes, but resisted it. I do keep seeing things I like but have committed to some slow fashion up-cycling this month with Eco Thrifty Living so need to do that instead! I’ve had a brilliant idea for some jewellery too, but need to find the right bits yet.