Wednesday, 26 October 2016

366 Day Penny Challenge: 300 days update

The trouble with writing scheduled blog posts is that you never really know what will happen in the mean time.
I had started to write this post on Monday 17th October, all ready to be scheduled and posted live today - 26th October, but I've got good news and bad news.

The good news is pretty much what I had written in the next paragraph.

We are getting so near to the end of the year and to the end of the challenge, I must admit I have really enjoyed doing it. If you can remember from my last post I said I had fallen behind with making payments into my 366 Day Penny Challenge jar, but I have made it up and am well on target to saving £671.61.

After a quick tot up, I now have the grand total of £451.50

365 366 day penny saving challenge

The bad news is that since writing this post last week, my poor car had a rather nasty malfunction. The power steering went, and of course being my car it wasn't going to be a simple quick fix, oh no, it's always the worst case scenario where I'm concerned. The whole steering rack needed to be replaced, luckily my garage did get it fixed and back on the same road within a day, but I've had to use my saved up money to cover the cost.

So my 366 Day Penny Challenge jar is now looking sadly empty, however there are still 66 days left till the end of the year, and I will continue to save as I have been doing, so I reckon I should still have a good saving by the new year.

How are you all getting on? Are you still saving or have you decided you couldn't be bothered anymore and already spent the money? Or have you had to use it for an emergency like me? Let me know in the comments below.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

#MealPlanningMonday - 24th October 2016

The nights are drawing in and there's definitely an Autumn chill in the air, so I think it's time to start making hearty stews, cottage and shepherds pies, broth and dumplings, toad in the hole and all those sorts of comfort foods.

I actually like this time of year for food and cooking, mainly because I can chuck everything in my slow cooker and leave it. It's also a good time to get Squiggle to eat different things because I can hide them in a stew and he never notices.

So this week, we shall be having

  • My mince & mash - I usually chuck whatever veggies I have, (usually a carrot, parsnip and some onion) in the pot and slow cook with the mince all day, add some gravy granules towards the end and hey presto.
  • Fish fingers, mash and beans
  • pizza
  • spaghetti on toast
  • chicken & butternut squash risotto
Not sure what I'm going to do next week as it's half term and Squiggle is off to his dad for the week, I may try and freeze a portion of what I make this week and then I can just zap it in the microwave. 

Hope you all have a great week,

Thanks for reading.

Monday, 15 August 2016

#MealPlanningMonday - 15th August 2016

Yet again my meal planning plans have gone astray, the school holidays have really messed my daily routine up, and Squiggle's tantrums don't help as he usually gets sent to bed in the afternoon and sometimes doesn't wake up.

We're hopefully going away in a few weeks so ideally I would like to just eat what's in the cupboards, and freezer and then I can start afresh when we're back. Plus I really need to defrost the freezer as I think they're is probably more ice than food in there at the moment!

So after having a rummage through the cupboards it looks like we're eating this lot, this week.

  • Fish fingers, waffles, peas
  • Burgers, potato croquet, beans
  • Lemon tempura battered fish fillets
  • Homemade lasagna
  • Cottage Pie
  • Vegetable omelette
  • Roast dinner, with lots of veggies
I've also half a dozen packs of noodles so they'll be used up at dinner time and the rest of the eggs will be used in some baking.

Hope you all have a great week, please leave me a comment and let me know what your plans are.

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Tempers, Tantrums and Tears

Three weeks into the school holidays and I've started to question my own sanity, method and morals. Squiggle has turned into a nightmare child, he wakes up bright and breezy and all cute and loving but then as the day goes on he turns into a bad tempered, angry, rude stroppy little stress head, and I just don't know what to do anymore.

I appreciate that no child likes shopping, but when the child asks to go to a store to buy a toy and then kicks off in the store saying they don't like shopping, what are you supposed to do?
Today Squiggle wanted to go and spend a voucher in Toys R Us, so I took him ( along with backup - my mum and grandma, it was a family day out ). Of course he wanted to buy everything he saw, and couldn't make his mind up between Pokemon, Turtles, Star Wars, Lego, Hot Wheels, Hexbugs, everything he looked at came with the usual cry of "I WANT IT, I WANT IT!".  We managed to narrow the choices down to one or two that were within his budget and explained that the dearer ones would need to come from Father Christmas which Squiggle seemed to understand, but then all of a sudden he snapped, and started throwing himself on the floor and crying that he hated shopping and that we were all mean by taking him to the toy shop.
This continued as we headed to the car and came home..

Another day he had an outburst in another shop and was consequently frog marched from the store screaming and crying, whilst everyone looked on at us.
Now I must stress that I don't really care what strangers think of me when Squiggle is having an outburst, but it really bothers me when he does in front of people we know. He once had a major meltdown after school and laid himself on the pavement so that parents had to step over him to get home.
I've been told that it is my fault for being too soft on him in his earlier years ( he's only 6 btw ) and that I've let him get away with things for too long, it's true, I admit I've done that in the past, but when you're in constant agony and pain, sometimes it is easier to say yes just to keep the peace, but now I just don't know what I'm doing wrong. He gets sent to bed when naughty, has his toys confiscated and is grounded from playing out, but yet he never seems to learn. The only thing I haven't done is smack him, should I be considering doing this?
I don't know how strict his dad is when he goes to visit and do notice a difference when he comes back ( this is when he's at his worse ).
I guess I just want someone to either tell me it's all ok and this is a normal phase that he is going through or advise me on what to do.
Is there anyone out there that can help me?

Friday, 1 July 2016

366 Day Penny Challenge: Half way Update

Can you believe it's the first of July today, that's the 183rd day of the year which means we are already half way through 2016 and more importantly half way through the penny saving challenge, and, well, truth be told, my penny pot isn't as full as it should be. I went away on holiday back in April and the pot has been somewhat neglected since then. I have still been contributing to it every now and then, I just haven't been doing it on a daily basis but I guess more importantly I haven't taken anything out of it.

I've already spent the money in my mind on a brand new pair of Irregular Choice shoesand a Merlin family pass to take Squiggle on some days out next year, and hopefully I should have some leftover for something else, but you never know, my shopping list might change before the end of the year.

But before then, I need to stash the cash and get back on track.

If you've been doing it properly you should have £168.36 saved by now.

266 365 Day Penny Challenge

Keep up the good work!

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