Thursday, 6 September 2012

Debts and Cake

I know I've not written on here for a few of days but that's not to say I've not been around. Whilst catching a sneaky five minutes during my dinner hour (15 minutes)  looking at all the other blogs I follow, I've also been trying very hard at becoming more frugal, thrifty and green; and this takes time!
When I started this blog I wanted to share events in my life that would interest like-minded people.  Little did I know the effect it would have.  Not only is it like diary, but also an education at the same time.  I am learning so much from the other blogs.  Frugal Queen's blog entitled 'Fish and Chips Twice' certainly made me think twice about the amount I spend on a Friday night takeaway.  £15-£20 a week = £780 - £1040 a year = shocking!
Little Cottage Comforts blog about harvesting in 'So many shades of grey' .  I'm nowhere near at the stage of being self sufficient but I am a willing learner and have started my own kitchen windowsill of herbs (another time, another blog), and also, a lovely Australian blog that has encouraged me to try and bake my own bread.  There are also loads of other blogs that I have gained a great deal from and will mention them in future posts.

I've also read about snowballing debts - when one debt is paid off, use that money to pay off extra on another debt.  I like to think I have always been pretty good when it comes to managing money but as I have learnt, there is always room for improvement.  I've said au revoir to two catalogues this week. Next is hubby's overdraft and then the biggy, MORTGAGE!  Our mortgage is not by any means large (a little under £60,000) but while interest rates are low I want to take advantage of making over- payments. 1- to pay off the mortgage quicker and, 2- that when (and believe me it will happen) interest rates go up it will not affect me as much and finally, 3-to have that feeling of finally owning your own home.  So that is why I have examined food cupboards for soon to be out-dated food as every little helps towards. Below is last night's tea:

 Traffic light pasta = green pepper that needed using along with a spring onion and a couple of tomatoes and cucumber.  The sweetcorn, tuna and pasta are always somethings I have in my store cupboard.
I decided to make a Victoria Sponge to use up the eggs and to make sure my hungry lots little bellies' were full.  I warn you now, it's laden with calories and sweet enough to make your dentist turn you away at the door. But, hey,  at least I know exactly what has gone into it, and needless to say didn't last  more than 24 hours (false economy there then). I have used food that would have been otherwise thrown away and I'm also a firm believer in 'a little of what you fancy does you good'.  As long as it's in moderation and you are active, why deprive yourself.


  1. Hello:
    In these very difficult times it does indeed make very good sense to look at the way one lives and to see if savings can be made by cutting out, or at least down, on unnecessary items. Like you, we find so much of interest and information through other people's blogs.

    Kellemes hétvégét.

  2. I made a marmalade loaf cake yesterday to use up an odd jar of marmie hanging about (strange, I don't remember buying it cos we don't actually like marmalade!) and that also lasted the day and no more but hey, as you say, a little bit of what you fancy...

  3. Speaking of inspirational blogs to follow. 'Down To Earth' is a very good one if you are trying to learn thrift, simplicity and selfsufficiency. I`ve learnt an awful lot from that one!

  4. The sponge cake looks delicious, no wonder it didnt last!
    Whilst in France we were almost self sufficient as far as fruit and vegetables went. With an acre of ground and time and health on our side it wasnt hard.
    Here it is different with a tiny garden , but we are still eating our own runner beans, and have more ideas on what to plant next year.

  5. That sponge looks good enough for Mary Berry! and what a great plate you have served it on.
    Unlike ElizabethD [of whom I am in total awe - within weeks of relocating back to the UK she was harvesting her food crops] I struggle to grow cress on a flannel. I HAVE managed herbs though - rosemary, thyme, chives, mint and lavender [the latter mainly gets used in lavender sachets- but I also sprinkle buds on scones and use them to flavour puddings]
    Very impressed with your efforts. Wish my mortgage debt was as low as yours.

    blessings x

  6. Years ago I read that if you paid £100 per month extra into your mortgage you would repay the whole lot ten years early - such magic of compound interest inspired me, and I found that paying extra, however small, made such a difference. I am a great adherent of the store cupboard - it keeps you away from the shops which tempt you into unnecessary expenditure!

    And thank you for the mention - I am quite amazed at the thought that anyone can learn anything from me - and very flattered!

    Pomona x

  7. mmmmm, that sponge looks lovely! It is satisfying to make a meal out of 'bits n pieces' and have it turn out delicious, isn't it?
    Thank-you for the mention of my blog! I am pleased that you want to try making your own bread - though be warned: it's hard to eat store bought bread once you get used to the tastier, fresher alternative ;)
    Sarah <3

  8. We're overpaying our mortgage for the exact same 3 reasons! Good luck :)

  9. Even though we're on a really low income we are making overpayments on our mortgage. They're not huge but at the moment they're enough to reduce the term by several years. We're doing it so that there's the possibility of my hubby retiring earlier than 67. My Dad died at 55, his Dad died at 61 - that has coloured our judgment, and made getting rid of the mortgage really important.