Thursday 23 May 2013

The £2 House Keeping Challenge - Top Up Shop

Yesterday I called into to Sain*burys for a couple of watering cans and I spotted these Meringues on offer for just £1 a pack and knowing that I had bought the Strawberries at the end of last week and that there was a tub of cream in the fridge my mind instantly thought Eton Mess, well actually it said "Oooooh Eton Mess".... Lol.
So I splurged and I also got some more peppers for a choppy salad and some more tomatoes (Oh how I wish my plants were further along, they would save me soooooo much money!!  So yesterday I spent £5 on food, five pounds on four things, that feels so extravagant in my now frugal shopping mindset.  Roll on the home grown stuff is all I can say!
Now the £2 House Keeping tin is starting to look very forlorn, I daren't stack the coins anymore it looks so sparse if I do. Each time I update the stand alone page it brings it back how little cash we have for the rest of the year and I wonder how long we will be able to keep going with this Challenge.  Hopefully for a while if the home grown salad stuff kicks in soon because that seems to be where I am spending the bulk of the money at the moment.  We don't use much milk, about two to three pints a week at most and I have two more two pint bottles in the freezer.  Virtually all our bread is homemade using the flour and yeast I bulk bought at the end of last year.  There's lots of jam and spreads in the larder so we could exist on bread and jam if necessary but I don't think we will will come to that (so don't panic Mum).  The good thing about nipping into Sain*burys was that I got my Nectar points total on my receipt and I have about £23 available.  So I am going to see how much I have in vouchers, coupons and points and see if we would be able to live purely on these for the month of June and even in July and then we will be over half way through the year.
 My new running total for the £2 House Keeping Challenge is -
What can I say ....... only as so many other Bloggers say - EEK!!
Being extremely frugally minded I rummaged in the freezer to see what we could have for a quick tea (I was cutting Lovely Hubby's hair last night so it needed to be something easy) and pulled out these.  Two small sized Value pizzas (£1.55 for 4) , a tub of Mediterranean Veg  (approx 40p) and a tub of grated Cheshire Cheese (about 50p worth left) ...
... and we had pizzas for tea, costed out at around 84p each.

Followed by Eton Mess , using a quarter of one of the packs of meringue at 25p, half of the Strawberries at £1 and half the little tub of cream at 28p, with a sprinkle of crushed Flake on top (25p each from AF).   I've worked out this dessert cost us 89p each, not bad at all compared to restaurant prices and there's the same again for after tea tonight - yummy.
So total cost of our filling and delicious two course quick tea is £1.73 each.  Sets my mind at rest a bit that we can do this Challenge and still eat well for a quite a while yet.
I haven't been taking any photos of the cupboards or freezers yet as there is little difference in them to my eye and because as we eat things I have been consolidating all the foods from other places into the two main food cupboards, the big larder one and the wall cupboard.  Soon all our food will be in these two cupboards and then I will start taking weekly photos as they go from full to empty.
Because eating our way through these is the only way we will make this money last as long as we possibly can.
Sue xx


  1. Eaton Mess.................looks so, so good!! I have gone way overboard on my grocery shopping this month, dare not add up the totals!!!

    Gill in Canada

  2. Hi Sue

    Could you not make the meringues with your lovely eggs? Just a thought.


    1. You're quite right and I do make my own if I am making Mayonnaise with the egg yolks (I save them up in the freezer until I have enough to make it worthwhile and I know the oven will be on for something else), but I have none spare at the moment and I worked out that it most likely would have cost me more than they did in electricity for the oven to be on for the length of time needed (the pizzas only took 10 minutes). For £2 I have got enough meringues for 8 or more desserts so I thought pretty good value.

  3. Mmmmmm....Eton Mess indeed!

  4. I love Eton Mess too!

    I think I've finally made the decision to get a small chest freezer! I know I could save money on grocery if I had one, and I' fed up missing out on yellow stickered items because I don't have any room in our fridge freezer :)

    1. I think if you bought a small one it would pay for itself in a very short time. I always had extra freezer space, until we went travelling. I do miss it, but we are generally living much more simply anyway so tend to buy what we need instead of bulk buying. However my tiny icebox is always full to capacity!

  5. Oh I do miss puddings sometimes, although to be honest I had some 'value' custard powder passed it's sell by date, and have been making this up to eat with my daily cooked fruit at lunchtime - it has been so cold this week. I even made an impromptu batch of soup. When is your next car boot sale - are you making goodies to sell again?? That would add to your tin.

  6. Yummm! I love Eton Mess. I managed to get some yellow-stickered meringues this week as well, so we are having it tomorrow as I have some left over cream to use up. At least the food is summery, even if the weather isn't! Lesley x

  7. I so need to be more like you Sue. I know I say that every time I visit, but I'm not making a lot of improvement. I am meal planning for weekdays now, so that has helped a lot.


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