Frugal living – part 6

I’ve not mentioned it in a frugal post before, but I did talk about it in a post somewhere how I was planning on paying a slightly more for a different tariff for my mobile phone, so I had more internet data. I wasn’t planning on doing this until I moved to Mansfield and settled, so I could make sure I could afford, as well as still need it.
Well it turns out I did not need it, which was a good job I waited as I did, because I would not have been able to afford it now budget-wise. So keeping it as it is and using WiFi in my area I can balance my internet just right. I have only ran out once while living in Mansfield, but that’s because I got carried away looking at everyone else’s Elves on the Shelf. Lol.

Some of the places are at coffee shops where I use the WiFi, when I can afford to. Yes, it might mean buying a coffee, or something, but I’m not going out of my way to do this. For free options, there’s the library and in the town centre.

In Frugal Living – part 3 and part 5, I talked about things I wasn’t allowing myself to buy, until I ran out. Since the last frugal post, nothing much as changed. I am still not allowing myself to buy body moisturiser, because I have plenty and also received one at Christmas.
Shampoo and hand cream are on the allowed list, but only when I have run out.
Shower gel will not be needed for a while with already having one in, as well as another I had for Christmas.
My toothpaste I buy when needed and I have plenty of perfume still, so I won’t need to buy any for over a year, especially as I had some at Christmas too.

I talked in last frugal post how I hope to save in gas and electric, with living in a smaller place now. I feel at the moment I can’t compare due to issues with gas supplier when I first moved in, then changing it over to same supplier as currently electric and having issues with the electric side of things because my readings were not be used.
I then decided in the end to change supplier, due to new issues. So due to all this, time will tell in the end.

In the meantime, the spot lights in my living room and, bedroom all have LED bulbs and partly in kitchen. No plans of replacing any others with no plan of staying here now. All lights in property are spotlights. One thing I noticed when buying LED bulbs, they are not as expensive as they were just a few years ago.

Although I have changed my bulbs in the living room, I now have my lamp as you know. I use the lamp mainly, unless I am crafting in some way. The bulb in the lamp is 4 Watts and so it is cheaper to run than my main lights.

An unusual place?

With me having plans originally to have my dehumidifier in my bedroom, it meant I had to make room for it. So out came my coat stand that was in there, which I moved to the bathroom.
But as you know recently, I did not like having my dehumidifier on in my bedroom.

I have liked the idea of not having my coat stand in my bedroom and I think it looks alright in the bathroom, to hang my towels on.

Now I would normally take it strange seeing a coat stand in the bathroom, until mine went in there. But its serving a purpose, by using what I have already.

sdr

Frugal living – part 5

I have not done anything new, than doing what I’m doing already, as discussed in past frugal posts.
I am though changing how I cut my hair. I have been using this technique originally, as shared in this post, How to trim your own long hair at home. But now, I use this technique, which you will find in the link below. There are nine variations of how to cut your hair in this link and the one I use is method seven of nine, cutting pigtails.
After using the pigtail method, the only difference I do, is I don’t bring my hair to the nape of my neck, instead, I bring it into a ponytail at the front and point scissors upwards to cut, so not a blunt straight cut on the hair length.

Nine methods of cutting your own hair

The new method I now use, I have been doing a few times now. I changed the technique because I wanted to cut my hair shorter, but using the old technique would have made layers in my hair very short. This technique prevents that and it works for me.
As my hair is wavy, I find cutting my hair wet best, for previous technique I used and the one I use now.

In Frugal Living – part 3 I talked about thing’s I wasn’t going to allow myself to buy, until I ran out. I’m on my last bottle of shampoo now, so when I have run out, I will buy another. I’m also allowing myself to buy hand cream, after running out. But this is the only moisturiser I’m allowing myself, as I still have plenty of the other.

With downsizing from a two bed house, to a one bed flat, I’m hoping to see some savings. My rent is more than before, but I still hope to see some savings when it comes to heating. So this is what I will be observing the coming months.

What have you been doing in the frugal side of things? Anything new, or are you just continuing with what you have done so far?

Frugal Living – part 4

Food can be interesting when you are on a budget and you are just using up what you have already in the cupboard, or fridge-freezer. Food can be random to what you normally have, but this adds up interest I feel.

Some random meals I have been having, when it just comes to using what I have:

  • Mashed potato, some tuna out of tin, peas, Black Eye Beans and Haricot Beans.
  • Mash potato, broccoli, carrots and fish cake.
  • Brown rice, mixed veg, mixed beans, with drizzle of mint sauce over my veg.
  • Noodles and mixed veg.

Freezing bread

I started freezing bread, as mentioned in “Frugal Living – part 3.” I have found doing it this way much better for me. It’s certainly made an impact and I notice how much I don’t buy bread, to before, even though before I hardly wasted bread.

Selling old gadgets for new

In my post, “Challenging a need and a want,” I mentioned how I needed a new phone, that would cope with the internet and my needs. But as I mentioned in that post, I wasn’t just going to draw out money and buy it. So due to the way I access the internet now, which is just on my phone, meant I no longer needed my Macbook Air laptop.
If by chance I was to have internet at home again, I have my desktop computer anyway, that I also use to play DVD’s on.
Knowing I will stick with Apple when it comes to computers, should this break down and can’t be fixed, I will buy another second-hand like the one I already own, or a new one. So it was obvious to me I had to sell my laptop for cash. Selling my laptop, paid for my new phone, I also had lunch and I had change.
Being happy with my new phone, I sold the old one for cash and put it away towards holiday next year I hope to have.

Still saving inners from cereal boxes and glass jars

I’m still saving inners from cereal boxes and glass jars. But it won’t be long before I don’t need to save anymore glass jars.

Challenging a need and a want

With me using my mobile phone more, for accessing the internet, with this being the way I access the internet at home, I am noticing my phone cannot cope with it.
It’s not the network, which I quickly ruled out and the phone I have, which I bought second-hand, cannot be updated to the latest browser.
I also see, after comparing to a phone I intend on buying, after looking at different ones before choosing, that the new phone will be better than my current one, for my needs. Better processors inside the phone and up-to-date android system.
In the past, the last couple of occasions I have bought phones second-hand, but this time I intend to buy new.

So I know I need a new phone and I will allow myself a new phone, with this being my way of accessing the internet now, whether via my own network, or WiFi.

But this is now where I challenge my needs and wants.

I don’t want to just draw out savings, to buy this phone. So what am I going to do?

Well, this is simple, but it also the challenging part for me. I am going to have to sell something.

And this being you ask?

My Macbook Air laptop.
I have not used this much, since I bought my desktop Apple desktop computer, which is also second-hand. The Apple desktop I have, I watch dvd’s on, as better sound for me, even though I still use my subtitles, like I would with a TV. It’s a bigger screen compared to the laptop too.
I occasionally use my phone’s hotspot with this and if I was ever to have home internet again in the future, I rather do it through this.
The desktop is my entertainment. So it is obvious to me, what to let go. The challenging part is letting go, but I knew one day I would do this, because there is no need to carry a laptop around me for WiFi, when my phone can do this and why keep something that doesn’t hardly get used, or probably not at all later?

If I want the new phone, then I need to fund it by selling what I no longer need. By looking where I plan to sell my laptop for cash, this should cover for the phone I plan to buy. But if it’s not quite enough, then only a small amount will be needed, to cover the difference. Once I know I am ok with the new phone, I shall sell the old one at the same place for cash, which I see I will get more than I expected for. The money from that, will go in my savings.

I am not a gadget person, but although I love the laptop still, it’s not getting used like it once was. Something I no longer need can’t be left just lying around, it would start to create clutter in my eyes. So as it is no longer wanted, I will sell this for the phone that I need, otherwise I would not allow myself the phone.

Frugal Living – part 3

A difficult month money-wise, between last post and this. My budget did not go to plan either – money I wanted to save, I ended up touching. I did end up putting some away, but not what I originally planned. I suppose I should be thankful that I did put something away, because I wasn’t expecting it to happen.

Starting to freeze my bread

I know a few of my friends do this and just take out what bread they need. I have just started doing this myself now and it makes it so much easier for me, than I realised. I wish I did this sooner. I have been careful in the past when buying bread, to reduce wastage. But doing it this way, is much easier I have discovered and I totally recommend it.

Do you freeze your bread and only take out what you need?

My monthly phone contract

I ran out of internet allowance on the final week, so I had to buy an add-on. This did not help my budget and I hope to not do this on next month’s. I do use wifi, but because of where I was and what I needed to do, I had to get one.

No more cling film

Now I have no microwave, I don’t need to buy anymore cling film, when I run out. The remainder I have, I have had since last year because I hardly used it. I don’t know how much I have left, as I have not really looked. But I would not be surprised if I still had this box next year.

What I am not allowing myself to buy

You may remember the book review I did, “The Year of Less,” by Cait Flanders. I’m using one of her tips I have not used before and that’s creating a list of items I am not allowed to buy, because I have plenty of it.

What I have banned myself from buying:

  • Perfumes
  • Moisturisers
  • Shampoo
  • Nail varnish

I meant to share this in an earlier frugal living post.

If you liked this post, you can find past frugal living posts by scrolling either to the right, or further down, depending on whether you are viewing my page from laptop, or a mobile device, clicking on frugal living, under the categories.

Frugal Living – part 2

At the end of the post of, “Chit-chat June, with a bit of frugal living,” I talked about how I was looking at alternatives for my internet. I shared there, how I found having a contract sim on my mobile was best and cheapest for me. Although I still was in a contract for my  internet, I decided to cut my losses with them and end my contract early and change to do what I need to now, to save money in the long-term.
I was so glad to see the back of them, due to their no customer service that I have experienced this year, which was not like them, in all the years I was with them before. With saving money as well on top, I just did not want to wait till end of contract.
I sorted out my monthly contract sim for my phone and this is where I will do everything, saving me mostly £3.52 per month, if I compare to how I did it before. But sometimes £13.52, when I had to top my phone up again. So if you see some weird typos in my blog posts, then this is the predictive text on my phone and me not being very watchful. But hopefully, I will get on with it this way, it just will take me longer to write-up a blog post possibly. I have to get on with it this way. 🙂 (This post was started on my computer, but finished on my phone.)

My new diary from next year, will be looking like this.

 

I know this is a long way off, but I wanted to sort out a diary that I would use at home, that I knew would work for me. Each year, I would normally buy two. A very small one that would fit in my work pocket and then an A5 size for home and to carry in my bag, when out and, about and not at work. Both diaries would have the same thing in, but the larger one with a little more detail at times. I like a larger diary to write in, so buying a smaller one for work, has been needed.

Last year, I had to create a large A3 monthly view calendar, because I found that I was double-booking myself. To explain how this was happening, would make it a very long post, but to put it short, what I was reading, my brain was feeling a bit scrambled by. So I used this in conjunction with my home diary, while at home and it worked for me.
As I know that a diary where I can see monthly works best for me visually and by printing off my own blanks to fill in, I thought I would look for free monthly A5 size blanks to fill in.
I bought an A5 folder from Amazon and punch my papers to place it inside and this is what I will be using next year. As I will be using this, I have saved some money by not buying an A5 size diary. Also, because I will be using an A5 size monthly planner, I won’t need to create my own A3 size version anymore. The the only diary I will be buying, is my pocket-size one, for work.

Sold some books

I sold four books via an online website and made just under £9 for them. These books were what I bought when learning to drive and as I know I will never have any intentions of future lessons, or wanting to drive, even if I had the money, so I was happy for the money received on these unwanted books.
This is something I have felt for the last three months now, where I know in my heart I don’t want to drive.
This feeling came about after chatting with a friend when she asked me, would I continue my driving lessons, had I had the money to? Originally I said yes, but when I got home, the days and now months later, I realise more that I don’t want to.

Saving inners from cereal boxes

I started the last few years, the lazy way of using instant mash, when I wanted mash potato. But I realise that if I start to buy my potatoes again for mash, as well as boiled, it would work out better savings wise. But I am aware that even just with a small bag of potatoes I buy, that I don’t want to let the others go to waste. So I have started doing something that my friend Kathryn suggested in a comment on, “Frugal living – part 1” and that’s save the inners from cereal boxes. As these bags are like a greaseproofy type bag, they will be excellent to save my diced potatoes in the freezer, for future mash potato.