In an effort to pay off my debt as quickly as possible, I’m looking beyond simply making extra money. I have been assessing all of my spending habits, adopting a more frugal lifestyle wherever I can. Each month I will be sharing Five Frugal Things that I have done to help improve my finances and ensure I can reach my goal of becoming debt free as soon as possible.
Pumpkin soup and pumpkin pie. Off the back of a very autumnal weekend we spent pumpkin picking with friends earlier in October we wanted to make the most of our orange friends. The tendency is of course to carve up your pumpkins and leave them on the front step of course, but after a very quiet Halloween last year we wanted to put them to better use.
We decided to try out some new recipes, one sweet and one savoury. Both were delicious and the ultimate comfort food for the season. Of course the added bonus is they cost us very little, having spent just a few pounds on the pumpkins themselves. Everything else we needed was already in the cupboards!
Walks instead of taxi fares. As the nights get colder and darker drinks in the garden are no longer an option. Instead, we’ve been favouring the pub quiz down at our local with friends. The distance from our house to the pub is just long enough to warrant a taxi if you’re not feeling energetic. With the drinks themselves being quite affordable, or at least cheaper than your standard city prices, it’s always easy to try and justify throwing money at a black cab.
Of course it is healthier and cheaper to just walk. We give ourselves plenty of time to get ready so we’re not in a hurry and force ourselves to do the walk. It never takes too long in the end. That’s a tenner saved each night!
Shopping my cupboards. At the beginning of the month I had a long shopping list of several toiletries and household things I thought I needed. Everything from cleaners to toothpaste. Minutes before going leaving to go to the shops I thought I should quickly check my laundry cupboard, just in case.
I soon realised that I had bought duplicates of most things last time I was at the shops and forgotten about them. Money saved and I got to avoid some of the busy shops I had planned to visit. In fact, I actually had multiples of some things and should be set until the new year. Make sure to always check your stash before giving money to the shops!
Lunch leftovers. For years and years sandwiches were my go to lunch. Now that I live with my fiance however, we rarely buy lunch food. He is the cook in our house and when I first saw the amount of food he was cooking for just the two of us I panicked, what a waste!
In fact, it became quite a handy trick instead. Most of our dinners can be split into four portions, if not more. Two become dinner that evening, the rest becomes lunch for the next day. It means we always have something filling to eat and it saves the effort of having to make another meal which is great on a really busy day.
A week in the countryside. Frugality isn’t just about pinching every penny. Sometimes it is about affordable treats. If you read my other blog, Sunshine and Rain, you will know that I have been enjoying the quiet of the countryside this week. To celebrate my Mother in Law’s birthday we have taken a trip to the Yorkshire Dales as a family.
Whilst I am on my my debt free journey holidays aren’t really an option. However, time away from work and life in general is important for all of us. We found the perfect compromise here, staying in a big house in a tiny village for just £480. For a five night stay and with ten of use here, we were really happy with that price. We have been making all of our own meals and spending a lot of time outside so costs have been kept low but the enjoyment hasn’t been compromised. It’s the perfect frugal week away!
There they are, my Five Frugal Things for the month of October. You can read last month’s post here.