Total savings to date:
NOT huge savings this month, but we are so pleased that we have made it over the $13,000 mark. Looking back at June it's hard to believe we are half way through our little project. It really has become more of a way of life than an experiment. That said we still have a long way to go!
It has been very quiet on the birthday and gift giving fronts so you would think that maybe we would have been able to tuck a few more $$ into the bank.
I won't bore you on where it all went needless to say that rates and car registration had a big part in the spend for the month.
We also spent some of our hard earned on two great veggie patches. We were determined to stick with the nothing new theme for these as well and found two guys in Melbourne who badge themselves as 'The Little Veggie Patch Company'.
They use recycled apple crates as ready made veggie patch beds complete with soil and straw. We love them!
This weekend we will be going out and getting the seedlings to grow our own veggies.
Not only will it save our grocery bill, but we also get the joy of eating things that we have grown ourselves. Fantastic.
We already have three olive trees with fruit on them. For the first time this year I have tried my hand at pickling the olives off the tree. Mixed success at this stage, but certainly very satisfying to take something from tree to table.
We made sure to bring in some extra $$ via the sale of an unused water feature and some other random household items, but to be honest there just isn't that much stuff left lying around that we don't need.
It had to happen eventually I guess.
It has to be said that in June we have made even more of an effort to curb the spending. I know it sounds crazy, but this experience is teaching us that there is always a way to slow the spending down.
The big challenge!
At this time of year you would normally find me at the big, annual toy sales pushing a loaded trolley to the lay-by department.
I have almost dug holes in our lounge chairs this year holding myself back from grabbing the car keys and making a bolt!
I cannot tell you what I will do for Christmas instead of buying copious quantities of toys for a child whose room is already fit to burst (or his cousins for that matter).
It's something I will only be able to decide when we get closer to that time. For me there is no easy answer, but I am already on the lookout for great secondhand items or trying to think up creative gift ideas for my loved ones.
I do know that anything anyone receives from me this year will have taken far more thought than I previously gave them.
One thing I did attend and found invaluable for children's toys and clothes is the Little Munchkins Market.
There was stall after stall of recycled childrens clothes and toys. I managed to pick up a jumper for Oscar ($8 and never worn) and a Christmas present for my niece ($10 and never opened). I have a feeling that you will find me at the next one in November scouring through the stalls for summer clothes and more Christmas gift ideas.
The nature of what we find entertaining as a family has changed significantly.
One rainy Saturday we improvised and had a family cooking day. Jim and Oscar made pumpkin soup, choc chip biscuits and Gyoza dumplings. A feast by anyone's standards and we all had a fabulous time as you can see.
Jim and I have also applied for free tickets as part of the Hamer Hall public ballot for the hall's reopening. Of course, there is the risk that we won't receive any tickets, but how great would it be if we could get a night out in Melbourne for free? As they say — you have to be in it to win it.
The Magic Bathroom Cupboard
Now — I am guessing that it's probably only women who will relate to this one. Women like to give other women skin and body care products.
My bathroom cupboard, like anyone who reads this, is overflowing with lovely bottles and jars of fragranced delights.
Many of which I 'Ohh' and 'Ahh' over when I receive them and then stick them in a cupboard to use once. In some cases — never.
I sat down the other day and went through the bathroom cupboard and I seriously could have been at the Myer cosmetics counter.
I decided that it's crazy to have all these beautiful things and to waste them. I selected a large, beautiful jar of pomegranate body butter and I have made the effort to use it every day.
I even found a tin of olive oil bath soap flakes that we have never used. Once those are gone I have an endless supply of potions awaiting to select from next. It was really great fun.
Try it yourself girls and see what is waiting for you right under your nose. You will be surprised.
Until next month :)