31 August 2016

Short notice I know but I'm talking to Christine Anu tonight at 8:10pm

I'm about to talk to Christine Anu (Evenings with Christine Anu) on ABC 702 (Sydney) tonight at 8:10pm.

We'll be talking about stress and money and the relationship between money and stress - something I think we've all experienced at some point in our lives.

Tune in if you can get 702, or listen live on your computer/mobile device   http://www.abc.net.au/sydney/programs/listenlive.htm

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Mega Grocery Savings by Savvy Shopping

Cheapskates Members know how to shop. They know how to find a bargain: the stores to frequent, the time to be there and which items to concentrate on.

These savvy shoppers are so tuned into getting a grocery bargain that they even know the time of day different items are marked down! And they make sure they are there to snap up the best deals.

There are some simple guidelines that will help you with your mark-down bargain grocery shopping, ensuring you’ll always get a good deal.
  1. Know the regular price of the item
  2. Check to see if it’s on your shopping list. If it isn’t, is the item something you use regularly?
  3. Will you be able to use it before the Use By date?
  4. If not, do you have the capability to freeze it, store it, dehydrate it, bottle it?
  5. Will you be able to use it within a reasonable period of time? There’s no point in storing 15 cans of furniture polish if you only polish your furniture once a year!
Here’s some advice from Cheapskates Club Members:

Double Up 

When doing your grocery shop, for the week/fortnight. Double up on a staple, such as tea or sugar. Put them in a separate place, and in a couple of months, you will have nearly a whole shopping list of staples. I usually treat myself, with the savings, to something special. I also do the same thing with specials if I can afford to.
Contributed by Josie

Easy Ways to Cut Down on Your Grocery Bills 

Make sure you take a good look at your weekly supermarket catalogues before you head to the supermarket. This way you can save lots on washing powder, toilet rolls etc. If you need to buy nappies or wipes also keep an eye out in the catalogues (supermarket, Target, Kmart, Big W). I have compared just about every price in Sydney for nappies and wipes and I find the cheapest time to buy them is when Kmart have 15% off storewide or Woolworths have Huggies Bulk Box Nappies on special for $29.99. Also for meat talk to your Butchery Dept at your supermarket and find out when they reduce their meat (when it only has a few days left on the expiry date). The meat is still fine, and you just have to put it into the freezer. For fruit and veggies take a trip to your Asian greengrocer - they have a fantastic variety and are much cheaper (if in Sydney try Cabramatta) Hope this helps.
Contributed by Olivia

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Freeing Up Cash

Today's Tip of the Day is one after my own heart. When Disaster Struck the first thing we did was switch to a cash budget using the envelope system. In those day's I'd go to the bank every second Thursday and withdraw the cash we needed for the next two weeks. I'd have to go into the bank because I wanted the right change for each envelope. The night before banking day I'd sit down with the budget and work out exactly how much I needed to withdraw and the currency needed.

Then, when I finally made it home, I'd sit down at the kitchen table with a cuppa and sort the money into the envelopes. Those envelopes lived in a drawer in our bedroom. When I needed grocery money I'd take what it from the grocery envelope, petrol came from the petrol envelope and so on.

It may be old fashioned but it works and it is a great way to control your money and your spending.

Freeing Up Cash

When I started out seriously budgeting, we had 2 school aged children, credit card bills, mortgage, car payments as well as everyday living. We both work full time and weren't getting anywhere fast or had any spare cash so I set up an envelope system for my bills I split it all up into fortnightly amount (that's when we get paid) and started putting the money away. For the first twelve months it was hard but if you persevere it will get easier. I now can make double payments on the house, have cleared the car payment, credit card bills, have just sent my husband to Germany for a holiday with his family and have spare money in the bank. I have never felt more in control of our money than I do now. Our children don't miss out on anything and now our son works he realises the value of money and saves his up. He has already purchased a car for when he gets his license.
​Contributed by Presley Dostal

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30 August 2016

In-a-Hurry Vegetarian Lasagne

This lasagne is so quick to put together, it's perfect for a quick lunch or dinner, and so very tasty that no-one will even notice that there's no meat! Serve it with a big green salad and garlic bread for a really delicious meal.  You'll have everyone  coming back for seconds.

In a Hurry Vegetarian Lasagne

6 large lasagne noodles
1 jar of tomato based pasta sauce
200g low fat cottage cheese
2 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
2 tbsp of dried parsley

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.  In the bottom of a 22cm x 33cm baking dish place 3 uncooked noodles. Spread half the pasta sauce over the noodles and then carefully spread  all the cottage cheese on top of the pasta sauce. Top with 1 cup of the grated cheese. Repeat, ending with grated cheese. Sprinkle on parsley. Cover tightly with foil and put into a pre-heated oven. Bake for 45 minutes. Remove foil and continue to cook a further 10 - 15 minutes until the cheese begins to brown.

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29 August 2016

I Made My Own Rubit Scrubit and Saved!

I was looking at these little gadgets at the Papercraft Expo over the weekend. No, I didn't buy one. I use wet wipes to clean my stamps (and I clean them each time I use them so they don't stain). I don't have a lot of stamps, but the ones I have get a lot of use so I may well try Veronika's idea out. I just need to hunt through the house to find a case to keep it in (I have a stash of microfibre cloths I can use)!

I Made My Own Rubit Scrubit and Saved!

Approximate $ Savings: $26

As an avid stamper my rubit scrubit (stamp cleaning pad) was getting very tattered and wasn't doing the job. A friends sister-in-law has just joined a stamping party plan, and was keen to show off all her goodies (and maybe book a party or two!). I really loved the stamp cleaning device they had, a swish black case with microfibre cleaning power. But at $30, I thought I could do with my old pad a little longer. Back at home, the brain started ticking over, and I found my tin of watercolour pencils, and emptied them into another container (recycled of course) and when we went shopping purchased 2 cheap microfibre cloths for my tin - I had to trim the cloth to it and glue it to the tin and found instead of being one cloth, it was folded over and hemmed, giving me two cloths for the price of one! As well as a spare! I now have a very effective stamp cleaner, the only compromise is it's a coloured cloth, not a black one, so you can see the ink when it comes off the stamp, but with a saving of $26, I think I can live with that!
Contributed by Veronika

26 August 2016

Meal Plan 28 August - 3 September 2016

Perfect scrambled eggs on toast - great for breakfast or a quick dinner
Sunday: Roast Chicken

Monday: Chicken nachos

Tuesday: Stir-fried vegetables & Singapore noodles

Wednesday: Sweet Chilli Pasta Bake

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Apricot Chicken, mash, veggies

Saturday: Scrambled Eggs on toast

19 August 2016

Meal Plan 21 - 27 August 2016

Tandoori Chicken and crunchy coleslaw
Sunday: Roast Beef

Monday: Tandoori chicken, rice, salad

Tuesday: Satay chicken & fried rice

Wednesday: Black bean and corn enchiladas

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Pizza Pockets

Saturday: Toasted sandwiches & tomato soup

14 August 2016

The Week that Was 14th August

It has been a very frugal week here,  I spent $23 on Thursday to buy milk, cheese, eggs and some fruit and salad veggies and that was the total money spent this week.

Swapped the meal plan around. Used chicken from the freezer and the veggies were in the fridge and the rice was in the pantry so no additional.

Cooked some rhubarb. Hannah made an apple and rhubarb crumble and put some in a container to have with breakfast and froze two tubs for more crumbles or breakfasts.

Made a batch of MOO yoghurt. Flavoured it with a tin of passionfruit pulp from the pantry. It had been there a while and needed to be used. Yum!

Topped my car up when petrol was 101.07c/litre. I drove past my usual petrol station to one about a kilometre further down the road, same brand, but 30 cents a litre cheaper.

Made sure I used my membership card to get 15% off prescriptions this week.

Used some biscuit crumbs from the freezer to make a base for a slice. I empty the biscuit jar into a Tupperware container in the freezer before washing and refilling. It takes a while to get enough crumbs to make a slice but I'm not buying biscuits just to crush them for a slice.

Pulled the buttons of some old work shirts of Wayne's and added them to the button jar before cutting the shirts into rags for the shed.

Hannah gave both her brothers haircuts. This didn't really save me any money but it saved AJ and Tom $30 each.

Cut up a whole pumpkin from our stockpile and made soup. I'd been thinking about it for a couple of days and when I picked it up I noticed it was starting to go soft around the stalk - good timing and delicious soup.

Dried the washing outside on one day, by the fire the other days.

Kept the thermostat set at 15 degrees, so the ducted heating stayed off  most days. The fire was enough to keep the house warm.

What did you do to save money, time and energy this week?

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Meal Plan 14 - 20 August 2016

Cottage Pie - perfect comfort food and a great way to use up a little bit of mince
Sunday: Roast Chicken

Monday: Sausage casserole, mashed potato, steamed broccoli

Tuesday: Cottage Pie

Wednesday: MOO meat pie, mash, veggies

Thursday: MOO Pizza

Friday: Chicken stir-fry and rice

Saturday: Enchiladas