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It has been a beautiful summer holiday! I’ve had an amazing six weeks off and have spent lots of time with my family. We have had plenty of days out and seen lots of friends but I think I have kept a good grip on the spending. With the new academic year starting, I needed to start preparing for work by getting clothes and supplies. I’ve barely worked over the last three years, what with two years of maternity leave and feeling rather sick whilst pregnant in between. This meant that many clothes were past their best and some things were just far too big for me now.
Therefore I went out shopping this week for new things. This always makes me nervous. I don’t want to overspend but I do want to get products that are going to last me and make me look suitably professional. All-in-all I think I did a good job and kept the spending in check. The things I bought should do me for at least a couple of years of winters.
To counteract all that expenditure I need to be extra frugal this week so here’s this week’s top five:
I talked last week about how I had been selling things on eBay and Facebook. (You can see that post here.) But I need to mention Facebook Marketplace again because I love it! I’ve never not sold something on there. And I have sold all sorts of things. This week I advertised a pair of winter boots that I bought last year and they didn’t fit well. I decided that rather than keep them for another year just to collect dust in my wardrobe I should sell them. I advertised them Wednesday evening and they were sold and collected the next morning. This is fairly typical of my experiences with this platform. If you haven’t used it before, you should! Get selling!
Last autumn I got really into cooking double/triple portions of food and eating what was left for lunch the next day. It seems that I had fallen out of habit of this over the summer. Anyway the cooler weather reminded me how great it is to eat a warm meal at lunch time. Therefore, this week we have been having leftover lunches. You can see what we have been having on this week’s meal plan. But honestly, it makes for very easy lunchtimes. Particularly when you’ve got small children or you are working the next day.
I mentioned Shoppix a couple of weeks back (see here) and Receipt Hog is very similar. You scan in your receipts and get “coins” for doing this. I make a habit of scanning my receipts in as soon as I get them. It is quick and easy and I can then forget about them. Yesterday I was able to trade my coins for a £3 Amazon voucher! Yes, it isn’t going to change my life. But I basically got paid for my receipts. I don’t know many other people who get paid for that. I’m collecting up Amazon vouchers and intend to use them to help with my Christmas shopping.
I have spent this summer trying to sell old academic textbooks. These were leftover from my studying days and I’ve moved them from classroom to classroom with the view that I might use them again. Well, I’m not! I stuck them on eBay to start with. Some sold and I made about £40. But these, they’ve been relisting for weeks so I decided to find a new way to move them on. That’s when I decided to see how much they’d be worth on the Ziffit app. You basically scan in your books, they tell you how much they will give you and then you box them up and take them to a collection point. I did this for three books and they’ve offered me about £8. That’s three more books that I don’t have to dust.
For this last one I asked my husband what frugal things I had done this week. His response was “you didn’t go to GBK for dinner today.” I laughed at first but then we discussed it and he is right. Frugality is about the choices we make everyday. Choosing the road less travelled. We could so easily have gone out for dinner yesterday but instead we ate a beautiful meal at home in the garden. We saved ourselves £20-30 and it wasn’t even that much of a sacrifice. My husband was so right! The most frugal thing I have done this week is not spend money when I most wanted too.
You’ve heard from me but I’d love to take further inspiration from you. Let me know what you’ve been up to. Or, like me, you can link up with Cass, Emma and Becky in this week’s ‘Five Frugal things I’ve done this week’ linky.
Disclaimer: Remember the information you read here does not represent advice. Any ideas or suggestions are just that and may not work for you. Read the full disclaimer here.
Looking After Your Pennies is an eco-friendly personal finance blog written and managed by Charlotte Jessop.
I write on a variety of topics including frugal lifestyle, eco-friendly living, money making ideas and generally how to make your money go further.