Spend more, save more?

Posted June 28th, 2006 by Penny Wise

Haven’t been able to get much blogging done lately, my computer decided to pack up totally after the lightning strike so am using Mum’s computer. What with one thing and another I am wondering if I have ‘MUG’ stamped on my forehead or some such message. Just a few days ago I was wheeling a full barrow-load of firewood up to the house when I slipped on the wet ground and landed flat on my back, the wheelbarrow flipped up 90 degrees and the handles bashed in to my chest and the entire load of pine fell on top of my head. It blooming well hurt! Thank goodness the neighbours couldn’t see me, sat in a wallow of self-pity and plastered from head to foot in mud and cow poo, it must have looked rather comical. Then yesterday, with the bumps and bruises still smarting, I managed to cover myself in boiling chicken stock. I received a call from the school asking me to come and pick up Ali as he was unwell, so in my efforts to be a good nurse Mummy I decided it was the perfect opportunity to make chicken noodle soup, using a recipe from the Discussion Forum. All was progressing nicely until I went to pour my chicken stock into the same old jug I have always used and the darn thing literally exploded, sending boiling water all over my legs and feet. I was in a right old state, hopping around trying to get my trousers and socks off (which Maxine informed me was totally the wrong thing to do, I was supposed to get the cold water on first so am lucky I still have all my skin!) A little lavender oil dabbed on the burns meant I was soon pain free, but unfortunately in my haste to get under the cold shower I had left my pot of soup vegetables on the stove and by the time I returned the smell informed me that the contents was significantly more burnt than my leg.

Luckily I managed to retrieve most of the ingredients and the soup that resulted was divine (thanks to Natalie B for sharing her recipe!), but even after the most lengthy soaking and scrubbing, it looks as though another pot has bitten the dust. This got me thinking about something that has crossed my mind a fair bit lately – do you think sometimes we have to spend more to save in the long run? Certainly I think that this is going to be the last time I am going to buy cheapo pots and pans – I only bought a set of three from the Warehouse for $19.95 a few months ago and already I have had to replace two – it’s not like I burn things THAT often, but they just don’t seem to stand up to a lot of wear and tear. I really think that in that department at least I would rather spend a bit more in future for a product that lasts. Don’t laugh, but another area I have found the same applies is to underwear. I thought I was being so clever last year when I bought a load of $5.00 bra’s and $3.00 knickers at a well known factory shop, but it only took a few months before all the colours had faded into oblivion and the bra fabric had worn almost transparent – it ends up being a kind of false economy! Mind you, I have read heaps of tips about dyeing clothes to give them a revamp, so maybe I should try that before I write them off completely. Can’t say the same about the pots though…

Am still doing pretty well following the $21 Challenge. I did one online grocery shop last week and spent just over $100 which I didn’t think was too bad, and this week I am back into menu planning and have spent a total of $37. It’s taken me a while and goodness knows how many times I have read it in the Vault but I have finally learned to browse the mail flyers from my local store to see what specials they are having for the week ahead. I managed to save heaps this week with a little smart shopping! I did my menu plan on Sunday and wrote a shopping list. The store specials were due to change the following day, so I took my shopping list in that afternoon and bought all the items I needed that were not going to be on special – I was really chuffed to find that most of them were actually discounted from the week before! Then on Monday when the specials changed, I went back into the store to get the rest of my list at the cheaper price. What an easy way to save! I dread to think how much I have needlessly spent over the years by not keeping up to date with what my local stores are doing, but I am finally learning and it’s a routine I don’t plan to stop!

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