Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Almost Blowing the Budget

I had a £4 off a £40 shop coupon courtesy of Lovely Hubby, who when he buys fuel at Sainsbugs always foregoes the ease of the 'Pay at Pump' and instead goes inside the shop to pay ... just on the off chance a coupon will spew forth from the till.

It did, and I tucked the coupon into my purse.  As I needed fuel when I got to the supermarket I thought I wonder if this will work for me too.  So I went into the shop to pay and lo and behold I got another coupon, this time £6 off a £60 shop.  Now I thought long and hard about what I could possibly need that would make me spend £60 and I went in to the shop open minded about what I would buy.

( I only found out recently that as long as you spend the amount of the highest offer voucher, all the others will be accepted at the same time.  So in this instance I got a total of £10 off my £62.45 shop and double Nectar points on the whole amount as I had a coupon for those as well.)

I had a small shopping list of grapes, milk, soft cheese and coffee, all things we really needed but other than that nothing that would bring my total even close to that magic £60.  Then on my way round store I spotted the things that were on offer, and it turned out I could buy a new fitted sheet for our bed at half price, ours has gone uncomfortably bobbly and worn, shower gels and toothpaste of our favourite brands were all less than half price, so I stocked up for the next six months, and new dog collars for the pooches in my life just shouted out at me from the shelf.

I have to keep some spares in the house as Rosy is apt, every now and then, to leave hers down a rabbit hole.  So if you ever see a wild bunny wearing a red and white spotty collar you will know it popped out of a rabbit hole in our neck of the woods and picked up Rosy's while making a snappy exit!!   ;-)

Oh, and I have to confess to a new jumper for me ... well it look so good on the mannequin in the doorway and looked so incredibly cosy.  

Sainsbugs customer 'tempt them in the doorway' technique 1  -   Sue  nil

Looking at the food part of my purchases I thought I had blown my budget, after all I had only £37.81 left of my Mini Challenge budget, available to spend and on the drive home with two exhausted dogs snoring away on the back seat of the car (we had stopped off for a walk in Rhos on Sea and walked a lot further than usual, hence our being in Sainsbugs neck of the woods) I was wording in my head today's blog post.  Title ..... 'Blown the Budget', text about how I could not resist the tasty bargains that I had found and sorry but the challenge was over a lot sooner than expected.

Well to my utter delight after taking away all the non food items I was stunned to see just the above things left on the worktop, virtually all included in my Capsule Kitchen (not the Ryvita crackers) and all just coming under the available allowance.

So I spent ££36.53 and I have remaining £1.28.

Not a lot is it, but with my 47p T*sco coupon I should just about be able to last another week, if I just buy milk and a couple of bananas next week.

As is my way the breaded fish portions were individually wrapped and added to my 'fish box' in the freezer, reminding me that I have yet to make my freezer inventory.  Something I think is vital now that I have just about ran out of money and it will be nice to have a list showing exactly what is in there to save me standing with the lid open wondering what to cook.

This picture reminds that someone asked did I know of any freezer labels that didn't peel off and lose themselves in the depths of the deep freeze, leaving you with lots of boxes and packs of unidentifiable freezer objects.  Why not do as I do and simply snip off the part of the label on the food packet that describes the contents and pop it in the box or bag with the food you are freezing. 

 Sometimes I write on the label what each item has cost me for budgeting purposes, but after buying these particular fish portions constantly for a while now, I know for a fact that they come out at 83p each.  Which makes for a nice cheap tea when combined with either a leafy salad or a few chips and garden peas.

'Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves' ..... a good mantra for me to keep in mind with only £1.28 left to spend  :-)

Sue xx


  1. You're doing well like that, to take advantage of the offer when they're on. I'll buy over half a dozen deodorants at one time if they're on offer or enough dishwasher tablets to last the year. and like you I like to know roughly how much each meal is costing and try to budget around five pounds or less for the four of us in total a night if I can, that way if we have a gammon steak (share between us) we can have a cheaper meal of faggots the next night or even cheap roast potatoes and shallots, garlic and squash mash the other night (out of the garden is pretty much a free meal in my book!).
    Good post Sue!

  2. I try & use an offer to my advantage if I can. I am good now though I do tend to tear up the coupon if I can't make it work for me just in case I get tempted.

  3. Sue, I clip coupons, but from your description, they are entirely different in the States. I am pleased if I save 10% at the checkout with my coupons. Some foods are becoming very expensive, and they are often the ones that are the best for you to eat!

  4. I didn't know you can use more than one voucher at a time, Sue, so thank you for the tip. Wow, you did very well on the shop and a new jumper to boot :-)

  5. thanks for that voucher tip!

  6. Rhos not been there in ages, the children loved it when they were young! I have done something like you today. No vouchers but have stocked up with stuff on offer that we use. We don't eat meat or fish but managed to get some tofu offers which can be used in different ways and my bargains will keep us nourished for weeks to come! I only have a tiny freezer since my old one died but I still do my best to use it to best effect!

  7. Don't you just love coupons. There is something quite thrilling about getting your bill and then watching the total drop.

  8. It's a fine balance between low spend and getting the bargains when you find them, I would rather overspend and stock up when the lower price is on offer

  9. I'm another label snipper. I forget how long to cook things for, so the instructions are what I pop in the sealed bag.

  10. I don't buy freezer labels at all. When we order items online (we live in the sticks so this is how most of our non food shopping is done) the parcel usually includes a delivery note with the top corner consisting of a white adhesive label, with white blank adhesive surrounding it. I cut those corners off and keep them in the cupboard to use as freezer labels. They're not very big, but big enough and they certainly don't come off (in fact they take some scraping to get them off the tubs, which are usually spread tubs - A*di ones are the strongest and stand up to dishwashers).

  11. Thanks for the tip Sue...although I haven't had a money off coupon for ages!


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