Monday, 30 January 2012

Versatile Blogger



Lets hope i get this right.

A lovely lady has nominated me for the Versatile Blogger award.
So a huge thank you   marmalade and catmint

I love Annes blog a very talented lady who's life always sounds so interesting.

The Versatile blogger award rules are: that you should pass it on to 15 recently discovered blogs and let the bloggers know that they have been nominated.
Then, you have to share 7 things about yourself.
Finally, you have to thank the award giver and link back to them.



I'm new to blogging and appreciate all my followers and its lovely to think people are interested in my moans and  groans and ramblings.


Here are the 15 blogs i would choose for this award


please may i
fostermummy
our new life in the country
polly dolly vintage
a thrifty mrs
bee happy home
frugal Queen
hard up hester
The Maple syrup mob
frugal down under
lavender attic
shirley goode
the vellemas
crafty fresian

Im now supposed to write 7 things about me

1/ Im blessed with 3 fantastic children.
2/I try hard but don't always succeed.
3/ I'm addicted to the Martin Lewis site
4/ I love the cinema ( especially when free)
5/ I love the theatre
6/ I'm insecure
7/ I need to diet

Anyway, hopefully all my bloggy friends will respond to this award and forward it to their recently discovered blogs
Thanks once again
nto
x

Stockpiling.....

I'm not sure what people are going to think of this picture.
For the last year i have been buying multiple items with coupons,(all legitimately used) I took advantage of Double the difference when a certain supermarket did that.
Superdrug also do loads of very good special offers at different times.
I log all my spends on a spreadsheet and my grocery budget spend has reduced drastically.It takes planning and research but I'm a huge fan of the Martin Lewis forums.

So now i have a lovely stash and don't have to buy toiletries or cleaning/laundry products for quite a while
(unless i have a coupon and or they are on special offer.)

so here is my stash
The shelves are bowing under the weight of it.





Does anyone else stockpile?

I'm Back

We had a lovely time in Bournemouth,
We arrived at about 1.30 pm as i had work.
The hotel stay was as i said before a present from my son.We couldn't check in so took a walk into Bournemouth,

It was chilly but dry and we walked along the seafront,It was so busy loads of people wondering along the beach.

Even though we had decided to make our trip as cheap as possible we went to the pub for lunch.
After lunch we wondered back through the gardens,watched a marching band and headed back along the beach to our hotel.

Checked in and went up to our room, which was very clean and had a balcony which if it had been a nicer day you could see the sea.

Our table was booked for 7pm so I had a long hot bath ( a luxury i don't have at home, i shower)
All the hotel staff were super friendly and dinner was an enjoyable experience. Once again if the weather was better the restaurant would have a lovely outlook .


After dinner we went back to our room and had a drink ( we took some wine with us)

After breakfast we checked out and headed towards Southampton,OH said we could go to IKEA as it wasn't off our route home.We were going to have a look around Dorchester but it was sleeting so we carried on.

Didn't spend much in IKEA, picked up some candles, a solar hanging light(Pics to follow on that one).

We had a great time and spent £30 excluding petrol but the great thing was neither of us felt deprived of anything.

So thank you DS this was my kind of gift.

Pub for lunch.



Marching band and gardens

walk along the beach


view from balcony, the sea and skyline have blended into one


Pudding



Room

View from balcony this morning,


PS Thanks Anne, cant wait until i get a bit of colour into my garden.

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Did anyone else go to Lidl today?

I popped into Lidl after work today to get some of the half price cheese.
Didn't realise they were having a mega non food sale.It was busy as you can imagine and a bit like a jumble sale but i had a quick rummage.I managed to get a flannelet fitted double sheet for a £1,its baby blue but only me and OH see the fitted sheet and the colour doesn't bother me. Also picked up a electric bag and vacuum sealer ( well chuffed with that)
And i actually remembered to pick the cheese up which was a bonus.

Tomorrow we are off to Bournemouth,our son has paid for us to stay in a hotel with evening meal and breakfast.It was an anniversary present and the Groupon expires on 31st Jan so i had to pull my finger out and book it or loose out.I'm looking forward to it and hopefully we wont spend lots....

Until later
nto
x

Friday, 27 January 2012

The simple things that keep you busy

I'm bored are words that do not come into my vocabulary.I didn't like my children saying it and its not something i ever say.I can always find something to do.
If I'm watching TV I'm normally doing something else as well.

One thing I'm attempting at the moment is this blanket.


I don't know much about crochet but i can continue these blankets.My MIL starts me off and i then just go round and round.One day i will look at a tutorial and try something different as i love seeing what the other crafty bloggers can do.

Its taking time as i can only do it when i get given oddments of wall but it keeps me warm in the evenings.

Spare room was cleared of decorations last night so it now just needs a hoover.Its still full, Toys and some of my stockpile of toilet roll,hair conditioner and fabric conditioner.

I'm going to have another cup of tea now before i go to work but at least i have something exciting to look forward to on Sunday.Will tell all later.

Until next time
nto
x

Thursday, 26 January 2012

I just want to pay you.....

As you all already know,I'm trying to pay off my OH's debts.Sometimes it easier to just go in and pay something over the counter.
Well not this time,the company involved bank with the same bank i think the Queen banks with.Well i phoned them this morning and was told i could go into any Nat West or RBS and pay.So off i trot and was told no i have to have paying in slips and you cant get paying in slips.Ahh so frustrating.

Debt busting  is slow ,I'm always looking for ways to make a bit extra or save a bit extra money.
Any ideas?

Tonight we had homemade pizza,I cooked a ham so we had a ham pizza.The rest of the ham will be used for tea tomorrow night and go in OH's sandwiches.



OH has finally brought the steps home so we are just about to put the Christmas decorations in the loft.
got to go
until later
nto

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Old school pudding

Earlier in the week i googled Old school puddings.My children used to have a chocolate pudding at school, served with chocolate custard.

I found this recipe




"chocolate crunch" which they seem to serve quite often at school dinners and the kids love it:
Melt 4oz margarine in a saucepan, add 1tsp vanilla essence.
Mix 8oz Self Raising Flour, 4oz sugar and 1 oz cocoa powder in a bowl and then stir in the melted marg with 1 beaten egg.
Press into a greased swiss roll tin (or similar). Brush top with water and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at gas 3-4 (sorry don't know equivalent for electric) for 30 minutes. Cut into squares while still warm
I usually buy an instant chocolate custard packet mix to have with this (from Morrison's) but you can use a chocolate blancmange as custard or even make your own with cornflour, cocoa powder, milk and sugar. 

I served it with Chocolate custard ( a small pot i had in the cupboard from a previous Tesco glitch)


This is a 2nd helping ( explaining why choc is up the side of bowl)


It was lovely.

Dinner was cheap and cheerful.I had left over fish pie.OH had frying steak which had 25% off in Lidl and homemade chips.
Definitely not £50 worth of food wasted a week in this house.


I went to my eldest dd for a quick cuppa this morning before both of us went to work.
Her landlady had a book on the side that i had a quick look through called

Nice and simple I'm so tempted to get it.I have some vouchers which 
i could use but i was saving these for Christmas so not sure what to do.
I begrudge spending money big time.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Only one came tonight...

As you all know by now.Tuesday is family night. Only the littleone came tonight ,her sister had been unwell all day.
She was on top form as usual.
here's what she did to her daddy with the milk stickers that came in the post.




What a miserable day it has been today. I work inside so it doesn't directly affect me apart from carrying my things to and from the car.

Did anyone watch supercrimpers last night? Didn't really learn anything new,was hoping that there would be a few new things for me to do..saying that i have never used the netting on lemons etc as a scourer.
Did any of you learn anything new?

Until later
nto
x

Monday, 23 January 2012

Happy New Year

I would try and be clever and say it in Chinese but i would have only Googled it.

I was born in the year of the horse so this is me


You are a Horse

Very hardworking and independent. Will work on and on until a job is finished. Very intelligent, ambitious and expect to succeed. Can cope with several projects at once. Easily fall in love.

So true, My husband is a Tiger and his is so not him  (i think his mum must of lied about when he was born)

I have said before i adore the people i clean for on a Monday...Today we were talking about freezers, she showed me her freezer and i have NEVER seen such an organised freezer.She has baskets made to measure from these people
1 Basket is meat,1 veg,so on and so on.
I was showed a pot of freezer jam, i never knew you could freeze jam.Bless her heart she said i could have it,Raspberry freezer jam, it had defrosted enough to decant into a jar before i left.The raspberries are grown in the garden.I was told the best variety to buy so I'm going to look for those in a mo..
I also left with another pack of seeds.leeks this time.

After all work was completed i popped to Morrison's,they have whole chickens for under £2.50 bigger than the ones that are 3 for £10 in most supermarkets.They also have Utterly butterly for 90p a pot and Welsh cheese half price,These are all things i use alot .Just wish i had more room for the chickens in my freezer.
My cake from Sunday has gone....so i made another today,dinner and cake done in mini oven.

Was supposed to go to cinema this evening ( freebie) but DD didn't think she would be able to get comfortable with her ankle if the cinema was busy.

Superscrimpers on TV tonight hopefully i will learn something new but i doubt it.
Debtbusting is going ok.Im so close to having OH's van loan paid off, next month i think.You will all know when i have.

Until later
nto
x

just a quicky...

Have a look at this,a lovely lady is having a giveaway




Crafty giveaway

I would love to win this.

until later
nto
x

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Dont you just love blogging...

I read a selection of different blogs everyday and find lots of different ways of doing things,new recipes and i love it.Some people are just so talented.
Well this morning with the help from the littleone we mad a cake from a recipe on a blog.
It was fun and she went wild with the sprinkles.


And it tastes delicious...
Need to get more margarine now to do more baking...

Ive managed to do some sewing  and washing this morning and its lovely to see it blowing on the line.



My solar charger is showing a bright green light meaning that it is charging so hopefully i will have some nicely charged batteries.

update

my washing dried beautifully  on the line,OH is cooking tea tonight.I'm going to carry on with my blanket and watch Dancing on Ice.

Hope you all had a wonderfully weekend

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Every day seems the same...

I had work  again today, Wasn't allowed to start till 9.30,which is always hard as i work on my own on a Saturday and have to get the majority of the pub done before 11 am.
Well i wont bore you any more with my work day suffice to say it was long and hard.

After work i came home,Oh had walked to pick up our granddaughter the youngest who is staying with us tonight,


Maddie playing with her ball ( Mia hoping the ball will roll her way)

Popped to Tesco to get bread and milk and no reductions how disappointing was that.

I'm so looking forward to tomorrow, I have a day off,no ironing ,no cleaning,I'm so excited.

Lastly just wanted to say thank you to old and new followers.

Until later
nto

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Holidays....

Not for me, we cant afford one again this year.My DD is going on her first girly holiday.We have been looking at all the best options available to her within her price range.
Its a worrying time but her siblings  did it so i cant say no to her.( even though as my baby i want to wrap her in cotton wool and not let her go anywhere without me at her side,)
Shes a good girl.
She is also going on holiday with her boyfriend about 2 weeks before.So its Ibiza at the beginning of Aug and Zante in the middle of the month.She has lots of saving to do.....


tonight for dinner i made burger and chips,all handmade,even made an American burger sauce( from the secret takeaway recipe book) It cost for 3 of us to have burger and chips (OH had 2) less than 1 burger and chips from the well known burger chain.



Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Purple cast...

DD's cast was causing her discomfort The sock inside had come away and kept slipping down inside her cast,leaving a very rough top.I phoned the plaster room up this morning and they said we could come down and they would make her more comfortable.

So after her exam this morning and a quick cup of tea we went back to the hospital.I seem to be spending a fortune on parking at the moment....
We didn't have to wait long,DD went in her cast was cut and removed a new sock put on.Original cast then put back on and bound in a purple bandage.I think it looks great.DD was more worried that she doesn't wear purple and it will clash with her clothes....
We went from the hospital to a large Boots as the 75% sale had started.Managed to pick up a few bargains to put away for Christmas and birthdays.
Until later
nto
x

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

A PARCEL

My daughter rang me today to say a parcel had arrived for me.OH and DD had already opened it (good job it wasn't anything secret)
This was what it was













another small win.

Granddaughters have just gone, another hectic evening.
DS helped mash the potatoes with his daughter.


Fostermummy do you recognise what she insisted on wearing.





Another show was put on and Maddie entertained us, she is such a show off.
Until later
nto
x

Monday, 16 January 2012

Its a little bit closer....

If we are able to snowball into our mortgage after our loans are paid off,we are now 1 month closer to being mortgage free.
Tax man came today,went OK,which is a relief.

This morning before i went to work i had to take my youngest daughter for her theory test,it was scheduled for 8 am.No where to park so i dropped her off as close as possible so she could hobble in and waited down the road,First time in ages i was able to read for 45 mins undisturbed (bliss)
She rang at 8.50 for me to collect her and i could tell by the size of the grin on her face she had passed.
Dropped her home and then went to work.
My first clean ( 3 hrs) lovely couple,i could talk to them for hours.Today's topic was vegetable growing.He sorted me out some spare seeds how nice was that....

Cant wait to get planting..

Also cant wait to get to that crock of gold at least then the loans will be gone. I f I'm being positive i can say I'm alot better off than this time last year .

Sunday, 15 January 2012

My Daughter

This afternoon i picked my eldest daughter up and she came home for dinner.Little things you take for granted but it has taken 2 years to get to this stage.
She is currently chatting away snuggled up on the beanbag.Its lovely having both my girls with me.I visited my son today for a cuppa after i went to see a cleaning job which i got by the way.So a lovely family day.

I tried to take a couple of pictures as this is something i missed.She hid so here;s one i managed and one from her day job.She's dark again now ( it changes like the weather)




I planted some garlic.
ironing
didn't get any sewing done but never mind
until tomorrow
nto
x

Nearly forgot OH was given a onesy from DD's boyfriend So OH tried it on and is still wearing it.

Morning all

Apart from a huge basket of ironing to do and a job to see i don't have work at the pub/hotel today and it feels great.It seemed to catch up with me yesterday and i was asleep by 7.30 ish....

This morning I'm sat on the sofa with a blanket over me(heating turned off,OH in bed and DD at BF'S)
With a few candles burning .BLISS ...I'm as snug as a bug in a rug..

I'm planning my day here's a list of what i would like to achieve.

Ironing (only paid )
Washing
Plant some Garlic
Peal potatoes for dinner (Eldest daughter coming for dinner again)
Sewing.
Look at job and hopefully get (they have already spoken to existing customer for reference)
RELAX....

If any of you UK based people pass by a Tesco have a look for these


,they are normally hung on a clip strip.I found them at a store yesterday.OH had to look at a job directly over the road from it so i went in whilst waiting for him.
They scan at a 1p
you pop them in your bag so your never caught short.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Eating Out

I had work for a change today ( that's supposed to be a joke)
OH rang me to say my Clubcard Deal tokens had arrived as well as my DD's.
Let me explain during the week we both had an email to say Clubcard rewards now covered the Hungry Horse,a local pub restaurant.For £5 worth of clubcard vouchers you get £20 worth of vouchers for food.

So it was decided that we would eat out today with DD and her boyfriend,We didn't go to our normal one,(mistake number 1)

We chose and ordered,
Starters, mains and a pudding for DD and her Bf and drinks,it came to £49 so we had to pay £9.
We knew there was going to be problems when the starters came out at the same time as the mains, The mains were sent back.
The mains came out again later and were cold...
so i went to see the manager who was apologetic and said he would get them cooked again and gave us a round of free drinks.
Whilst waiting for mains the pudding came out.....
The mains were disappointing but i was ordered not to complain again...

I then asked for the pudding to come out . DD took one mouthful and found a huge hair in it,
We then decided to leave as enough is enough.Took it to bar and said it had been disastrous from start to finish.
I'm going to write and complain...

Our local restaurant which takes 5 mins to walk to is spot on,so I'm going to order some more and try again next month.

Its so nice to be back indoors,i love being at home,Its 17 degrees indoors but feels positively tropical

Friday, 13 January 2012

Friday 13th!!!!!

I was never seriously superstitious.always thought you made your own luck.Always tried to be positive.
BUT today is Friday the 13th
and this is what happened on the last Fri 13th



This was parked on a customers drive whilst OH and son were working around the back of the house.
Luck was on side in someways that day,Our dog used to go with them every day and sit in the cab and watch but it was hot that day and she was left at home.If she had been in the cab my son would have opened the door to get her out and fire brigade said he would have been seriously hurt or worse if he had opened the door,If it had been parked 10ft back or forward the house or trees would have caught fire too.

So today as i cant hide indoors I'm treading carefully.

Are you superstitious?
nto
x

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Life!!!

Life is tough sometimes at the moment its sh*t.


I'm working my but off to pay of my OH tax debt and sending them money every week and they are still chasing....They also are coming round to do a records check..not that they will see much, we lost loads when we were flooded a few years ago,so he started keeping receipts etc in his van.Last year on believe it or not on Friday 13th his van caught fire whilst parked in a customers drive and was burnt out and everything was destroyed.Luckily nobody was hurt and the property was undamaged,but we were totally out of pocket with the settlement.
So he will probably get into trouble for his record keeping,this has all snowballed because of him owing tax....and its not even a huge amount.

Sorry today I'm rambling ,the OH isn't overly nice to me at the best of times( just how he talks to me) I just wonder why i bother ....
DD is wonderful and keeps me going...she had an eye test this afternoon as she broke her glasses and even though her eyes aren't bad,if she strains her eyes she gets migraines. Because of her age,eye test was free and we had to put £25 towards them.Ready on Monday,just in time for her exam on Tuesday.

Until next time
nto
x

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Evening all.

Today my dd had an exam it was only and hour so it was pointless me going off and coming back so i went to the small town centre near school.(dd is working from home because of her ankle and Dr's advice)

It was nice to have a wonder.

Tonight for dinner i made a chicken pie and mini roasties.All done in my mini oven.I love it so glad i got one.



So all in all not a very exciting day.

Did anyone else get the Boots vitamin offer ( i did)




I know i have mentioned this before about stats but i would love for all the people that read this blog to say hi and say where your from.
Until later
nto
x

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Peter Pan...

My youngest granddaughter walked through my front door wearing a headdress she made at playgroup and making Indian noises.She complained that everyone at school were Indians and that there were no "lost boys".

Madz is obsessed with Peter Pan and wanted to play Peter Pan..My dd made a Peter pan hat out of paper and some swords out of paper and foil and we all took turns at being Hook.




It was noisy and fun but dd was pleased it was over as she is trying to revise for exams and as you will see she has notes stuck all over my walls to help with her revision.

I managed to cook dinner in the mini oven again, we had sausages , some of us had home made chips ,some mash,The mash was obviously done on the hob,.Hopefully i should notice the difference in gas consumption when i next do my meter readings.

Before the girls went home i helped my eldest GD do her Triops( see monkeys) they take a few days to hatch and are currently sat in my kitchen,What are these creatures?


Until later
nto
x

Monday, 9 January 2012

Dont know how realistic these figures are....

This afternoon i have bee trying to sort a few things out to see if I'm on the correct tariffs.

1st
 i phoned up to see when my phone contract ends,its March but can change or leave from 15th Feb.
What i would like to do is keep my phone and do a sim only contract as this should drastically reduce my bill.

2nd
energy company my tariff ended on 6th Jan and i have been moved to a standard Internet one.I asked if there were any better options and the only one is a fixed 2 year rate and i would only save £16 a year based on last years usage,since I'm being even tighter with energy decided to hold off getting into a fixed rate until something better comes along or i shop around.

3rd
I entered my details into a mortgage calculator to see what they estimate the value of my property would be
(this is on Nationwide.co.uk)

Here's the results

Results:-
A property located in Outer Metropolitan which was valued at£136950 in Q2 of 2000, would be worth approximately £255196 in Q4of 2011.
This is equivalent to a change of 86.34%.

1st figure is what we paid and when 2nd is worked out by market values in area and how much they have gone up or down.


Its nice to see the figures but I'm realistic enough to know that a house is only worth what someone is willing to pay
and I'm not moving as if i was to downsize i would be paying about this much plus fees.
So I'm staying put and hopefully when my mortgage is paid off we can get a smaller property and pay outright for it.
I'm going to make use of my garden this year and grow more veg.


Now a question to all you clever people.
What can be planted now or in the very near future?
I look forward to hearing your answers.
until next time
nto
x

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Day off( well sort off) Part two

We did go to my brothers , spent a lovely 2 hours chatting and drinking tea.

Had to pop to Tesco on way to drop ironing off as i had no olive oil for my spuds.

In the freezer section i noticed Christmas meats with no sel, i scanned them got a 3 bird roast and a turkey roast that serves 3/4 for £2.50 and a huge Turkey crown for £6.

I must not buy anything else as my freezers are full!!!!

Yorkshires were a disaster,....

Dinner was all done in mini oven and slow cooker.Beef was beautiful and we have loads left,which i have sliced and some will go in OH's sandwiches tomorrow.Will portion the rest and freeze it .if i can squeeze it in,,,,



Now my favourite programme has just started Dancing On Ice..

Day off( well sort off) Part one

Today i don't have to go to pub/hotel to clean ( yippee)(they didn't need me today)
I know its money but it means i can do a few things today.

I have a basket full of ironing to do for a customer but that should only take an hour or so.

So plans for today.

OH still in bed!!!!!!
when he gets up i shall shower and get dressed and start ironing.

Since i have been up Ive done some washing and hung it on the airer.
Emptied dishwasher.
Put very large joint of beef (on offer) in slow cooker for tonight's dinner.


Cooked some of the cocktail sausages i got last week(reduced) to ATTEMPT toad in the hole
Made batter mix for said toad in the hole and Yorkshires.
As i have said before Yorkshire puddings just don't come easy to me....

I'm doing all this in my mini oven.


and i made a few fairy cakes whilst cooking the sausages.

Hopefully at some point today we will go and visit my brother and sil.
Hope you all have a great Sunday and i look forward to reading all about it.
Until later
nto
x

Must clean tiles they look shocking in the pictures lol (busmans holiday)

Friday, 6 January 2012

I won....

A few years ago i started entering competitions.Had some really good wins including an amazing family holiday to Bluestones National park ,hotel stays and premieres.Well last year i hardly entered any.

After finding out my SIL had won a couple of great prizes i decided to start again,
Well i had my first wem yesterday, for non compers that stands for winning email.
Drum roll.....
my 1st win of 2012 was An Apple cooker.Hopefully it will be just the start and i will be able to report more wins.
Just hope i have enough hours in my day to do all the things i want to do as well as go to work.
Jazz Apples

Thursday, 5 January 2012

It was lovely but the jurys out...

It was lovely having my eldest daughter back in my home...She chatted 10 to the dozen was very grateful for her meal.

I dropped her home a while ago,came home and didnt really get the reaction i was expecting from OH and DD.
My family drive me mad.....

Today was the day....

Lidl 's home offers started today and after reading so much about them i decided to invest in a mini oven.
it cost £29.99 with a 3 year warranty,

More often than not cooking is for 2 people and as I'm trying to cut back my energy consumption i went down bright an early( before work) to get one.

So hopefully between this ,the slow cooker and the halogen oven,i will only have to use the gas rings....

I'm trying it out with a lemon drizzle cake....




My eldest daughter is coming for her dinner tonight,which is very exciting,Fingers crossed it goes OK.

Audience....

Every day i check my stats and it always a pleasure to see people from all over the world are viewing my blog.
I would Love for you to follow me so i can see who im talking too.

So please press follow.
thanks
nto
x


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