Welcome back to a new year of thrifty living. It's been about 5 weeks since I last posted but both Darren and I have kept very busy. We had a lovely Christmas Day at Megan's home. We opened presents with Jessica, Megan and the grandbabies - Luka and Bryson. Then the extended family came over for lunch and more present opening. Luka was beside himself with all the presents that arrived under the Christmas tree. In his words " more presents ".
A few days later Darren and I sailed over to Tasmania for a week to help Darren's Dad celebrate his 80th birthday and see in the new year. We enjoyed lots of good food, stayed in a heritage building converted into a Bed and Breakfast and did a few day trips.
While we were in Tasmania a family member sent Darren information regarding a new job opportunity. Darren applied for it, organised references and had a phone interview just two days before returning home. I'm pleased to say that Darren got the job and he's really enjoying it. He's working from home which is a lovely change and is saving on our petrol costs. Although this job is a temporary one, there could be more opportunities within this company. We are praying that this is the case but know that God will provide no matter what.
Here's how we've saved money this year -
* Made 15 jars of apricot jam using apricots from our tree.
* When we were in Tasmania, we went to a local Kmart and they had heaps of Christmas decorations on clearance. Darren picked up big containers of baubles for 50 cents a container. I found beautiful Christmas tea towels, a table runner, Christmas wall art and a few other things. Thankfully we took our car on the boat to Tasmania so we could load up on all the bargains. We've done this a few years running as it seems Kmart there overstocks or the locals just don't buy.
* We took water bottles wherever we went in Tasmania. We also took muesli bars and Darren's step mum gave us lots of baking for our day trips.
* We used our saved Flybuys dollars to buy meat and salad items for one dinner and a few lunches.
* I made four bottles of air freshener using cooled boiled water and essential oils or fragrance oils.
* Made 2 x 2litres of double strength Miracle Spray. I will dilute it down when I fill up the spray bottles.
* I made up two bottles of surface spray using cooled boiled water and dish washing liquid. One bottle is for our home use and the other I use at my cleaning jobs.
* Added water to the bottom of the shower gel bottle and poured it into the foaming hand wash pump. Not a scrap was wasted.
* Picked rosemary from our garden and dried it in paper bags that I hung up.
* Adjusted two dresses that didn't fit well. One was slightly too big and the other was too long. The dress that was too long was used as a template for the dress that didn't fit well.
* I made cushion covers out of European pillow cases. Our loungeroom couch really needed new cushions but I couldn't find ones I liked. I bought cushion inserts from Big W and the pillow cases from Spotlight ( on sale ).
* Made a half batch of yoghurt. With just the two of us at home, we find the one kilo batch is too much to eat in a week.
* Picked raspberries, apricots beans, tomatoes and strawberries from our garden.
* Made a triple batch of laundry powder. Although I used homemade laundry liquid for the washing, I do like the powder for soaking soiled items.
* I knitted many dish cloths and face washers while we were on holidays.
* I made 24 Christmas cards on the boat over to Tasmania. I like to keep myself busy when travelling and it keeps my mind off the rocking of the boat.
* Bought lots of knitting cotton on clearance at Spotlight in one of the Tasmanian stores.
* Recycled Christmas cards into gift tags or made them into new cards.
|The first bowl of apricots from our tree|
|Home grown beans|
|The tomatoes are finally ripening|
|Pizza subs on Turkish bread for dinner|
How have you saved money over Christmas and the school holidays ?