dear diary >> getting myself back in order

We are back home from our little jaunt to Scarborough making memories with the family and all three grandchildren – I managed the journey OK and had a good week with my back holding up quite well. The kids had a whale of a time and loved every minute. Packing though in that intense heat was something else and a task I wouldn’t want to repeat again. We decided to travel after tea when it was cool and the roads less busy. It was a good decision even though we didn’t arrive until midnight at the holiday house.

As I unpack I am slowly putting everything back in order. We took fewer clothes than last year, in fact we took less of everything mainly because DH’s estate car broke down two days before we were due to leave and no-one could fix it in time so we had to use my much smaller car. We have recently hummed and hawed about keeping it but it proved very useful to get us on holiday and will make the decision to sell it even harder now.

I feel slightly in chaos today; as well as more ‘putting away’ I have a menu to plan and shopping to do as we need to top up with fresh fruit and veg and dairy for the fridge. Each week we buy the scan shop offers on both mine and DH’s nectar cards – they are worthwhile savings – and check to see what the offers are on the extra points list. It is a good way to keep the costs down even though it is quite time consuming, but in this climate needs must and being retired now we have the time. DH does the scan shops for both cards as he is much better at it than me and I do the main shopping that I take through the ordinary manned tills. It works for us.

I still have a pile of ironing that didn’t get done before the holiday as it was just too hot and I have to attend to the finances. The holiday spending was perhaps more than I had estimated – entrance fees, ice creams and rides are all going up in price but even on holiday we managed to find a few good deals by choosing family tickets or any available discounts for prebooking. Many of the things we did were free as the children just loved to play on the beach all day.

Marks and Spencers are doing a ‘Kids eat free’ with one paying adult deal at the moment in their cafes and the guy on the till put each of our adult meals through in a seperate transaction so that each grandchild got a free lunch and they were also giving out a free piece of fruit – so well done Marks and Spencer – we ate in their cafe twice as I also had some vouchers to use from my Sparks card and the rest of the week we made our own packed lunches and just bought drinks out for the adults – the grandchildren only drink water so that is easy to take from home.

Conserving the pennies is something I am going to have to do in earnest now we are back home – the increase in the cost of living is frightening and there will be no pay rise for pensioners – after all we cannot go on strike for an increase! So later today I will be overviewing our financial situation and looking at making more economies.

18 thoughts on “dear diary >> getting myself back in order

  1. So glad you were able to take the family holiday and that your back held up. Always costs a bit more than we anticipate, but good to have memories to *bank. Sounds like everyone had a good time.

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  2. It sounds like a good time was had by all. You did well scouting out the special family offers to keep costs down, it can be scarily expensive going out as a family these days.

    I think we are all going to have to find ways of saving money from now on. I went out with a shopping list of four items earlier today and came back with two bags full of shopping … and my purse almost £40 lighter. I need to throw myself into a Challenge I think to get things under control again.

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  3. Good news that you were able to enjoy a lovely family holiday despite the back problems.

    I did a ‘stock up shop’ yesterday, bought multiples of things on offer than we use all the time, and the final total was eye-watering. Not helped by seeing a news item last night that some ‘expert’ thinks UK inflation could reach 18% next year. I am not sure I can comprehend what that might be like . . .

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    1. 18% is frightening. M&S are advertising some sourdough on the TV at the moment for £4 a loaf. It may be wonderful but I won’t be buying it especially if you add on a tub of butter to spread on it at £5!!. We managed to get a yellow sticker sourdough in Sainsbury’s for 90p and it was very nice.

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  4. I don’t understand why our two nectar cards have different offers. We take a trolley each round the store in order to get most benefit. Except somebody sneaks”off list”items into their trolley “because its a bargain” I’m pretty thrifty, but aware that our regular food shop has cost more of late, even though we eat more homegrown veg now

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    1. I am a hopeless scan shopper so DH goes off to do both our cards – one after the other – it keeps him busy whilst I seek out other red sticker offers around the store. There is very little now that I buy that is not on offer – I have to be desperate ton pay full price for anything.

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