Thursday 31 January 2013

The £2 Housekeeping Challenge - January Report

Well here we are the final day of January already, wow it's gone fast, although I guess having this flu for the last couple of weeks or so has meant that I've been a bit off the normal day to day treadmill.  Strange how everything grinds itself to a standstill and all your efforts are spent just trying to get through each day.  I almost feel as though things have been happening in my absence, and then suddenly yesterday I felt like me, do you know what I mean?  Although I am still kicking myself for not having shares in 'Kleenex'.  That's almost the entire years stash of tissues used up already!!
Anyway yesterday I decided that I just had to go shopping, partly for supplies and partly that I just wanted to be out and about talking, well croaking - I've still got a dreadful sore throat,  to people.  So I braved Mr Sainsb*rys for a stroll around the shelves.  It's nice shopping on a quiet day when there's not a lot of folk about and also not a lot you have to buy.  You can wander the aisles taking the time to look at products and read labels, to marvel at price increases (do they honestly think we don't notice!!)
I spent a total of £26.27 on the things in the photo, there were a few good offers that I took advantage of the Yeo Valley yogurts were £1.50 each or 2 for £2, the Quorn products 'Buy 2 get 1 Free', the sweeteners 'half price' and the pack of Caramel Snickers for just £1, ideal for this week as I'm travelling tomorrow and Lovely Hubby will be left to fend for himself at home for the weekend watching the rugby, so I did have to get him a couple of treats, hence the 'Steak Flavoured crisps and sliced ham to make himself a bun with.
The two packs of bread rolls were quickly separated when I got home and popped into a large box in the freezer, this way we can take a single bun out whenever we need one and they all stay as fresh as possible. It's watching the pennies like this that really allows you to save the pounds.
I also got him some bottles of beer and a pack of cider but that I have decided comes out of my spends.

We re-evaluated our spends at the beginning of the year, LH gets £30 a week and I get £20.  LH spends £20 of his on lunches or snacks in the staff restaurant at work and I spend mine on my six weekly haircut and monthly prescription, there really is nothing else I need and I was ending up really in profit at the end of each month, at first I offered for this to go into the 'house' savings fund but then we decided that my excess would be our 'drinking and eating out' money.  Just the odd case of cider and a couple of bottles of wine, and the occasional meal at our favourite eating place when we have a voucher to bring the cost down,  it does mean that we get some good treats for the weekend without having to dip into the housekeeping money.  Sometimes you need a little treat to keep you on the frugal path and yet still sane!
So now - total housekeeping spend for this month.
This has come in at a grand total of £43. 
Mostly on food but with a few other things thrown in, namely a couple of Radio Times, a battery for the WW scales yesterday and what seems like a years supply of Paracetamol to zap these flu germs.  To see the money spent in each individual week have a look at the 'stand alone page' at the top of the Blog entitled  'The £2 Housekeeping Challenge for 2013 - Less Spending'.
Now it's on to February, a shorter month and one in which I want to spend even less.  If we look at the fact that I have £480 to last the whole year this breaks down to £40 a month and January has seen me spend more than that....OOOPS!!  But on the whole I am really pleased at how it is going, there are still lots of things left in stock both in the store cupboard and in the freezers, so I can continue with just top up shops, it's also almost time to start planting, a sign that we will be eating ridiculously cheaply very soon and I've even figured out how I don't have to embarrass myself by standing at the checkout in the supermarkets counting out £2 coins into the hands of the waiting cashier........I use the self-serve tills!   We have two larger ones at our local Mr Sainsb*rys with their own conveyor belts which means you can process all your stuff quicker (folk even do full trolleys worth of stuff)  than on the little ones so now I use these, and only me and the machine knows that I am feeding it a stream of £2 coins :-)
Sue xx


  1. I bet a good number of the staff in the store would be fascinated with your challenge, Sue! I think you've done well for the month too - there were a few unexpected items in there like the paracetamol for a start!

    Glad you're on the mend, now.

  2. It is difficult planning what, how and where to spend the old pennies. I'm hoping to continue to make extra meals throughout February (our month runs from 24th - 23rd of each month). Then hopefully, come March, we will have a whole months worth of meals to use up for 'free'. Am going to try that for the rest of this year as we need to save money towards class 2 Voluntary contributions!

  3. Sue,

    I love your posts especially as you have bought my fav quorn picnic eggs...yumyumyum
    Must pop to sainsbugs next week as they are on buy 2 get one free.
    Onr decision we are toying with is.....normally buy £60 per month saving stamps for Morrisons that way at end of year we get £662 worth food for christmas and our less spends all through year.BUT morrisons are expensive no offers at the mo..... so then the money we would have spend on food(which we have goes in sealed tin for our holidays)so we are thinking to set aside the £60 per month and whenoffers are on stock up the pantry.

  4. I think you should ask Mr Sainsbury to open a special £2 coin only till - there might be more people following your lead soon! What a good month and well done - hope you can finally shake off the flu and then your shopping bill will definitely be lower next month! x

  5. I really need to re-evaluate our spending. I have been trying really hard to cut back but it seems to have made little difference. Having read your last few posts I realise I am not trying hard enough ... so new spending regime starts today!


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