Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sunday shopping...

I wonder if it's worth going between three different places for your shopping on a Sunday, when you'd much rather be sat at home watching Eastenders and eating crisps... First stop was B&M for dry goods, juice, soap etc, then Lidl for fruit and veg, then Morrisons for the little extras.  Took me ages, and in total came to about £60.  Oh please let it be worth it.  Let it save me money this week (cos there's not much left to last me til next weekend!)

Quite a busy week coming up so I need to be organised and have a menu:

Monday - Lidl ready meals for 3 cos I'm off out! Reduced to 99p each and decent ingredients too.
Tuesday - Gammon steaks, pineapple, chips and peas.  Needs to be quick as R's off to the camera club and I've got friends coming over.
Wednesday - Pepper and tomato risotto.  E's working so I'll make it after lunch so she can have hers in her break.
Thursday - Pizza for the girls as R and I are off to a wedding.
Friday - Spaghetti, meatballs and tomato sauce, before C goes to her piano lesson.
Saturday - Baked potatoes with egg mayonnaise and salad.
Sunday - Sausage casserole with potatoes and veg.
Back up meal - Sweet and sour stir-fry.

Should work if I stick to it!

So Saturday I spent ironing and Sunday I spent shopping and washing my couches.  I'm a strange woman cos I quite enjoyed it and feel nice and organised for my week ahead!

Be back soon.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Poppodoms and Pasties!

I don't understand why I'm not rich and rolling in money...!  Popppodoms for tomorrow night's curry down from £1.79 to 50p, and not a broken one in the packet.  And tonights' tea, pasties and mini steak pies reduced to, wait for it, 30p for 3 steak pies and the pasties were silly money as well (don't remember the exact price!)  Really happy with that considering all I've bought this week are vegetables.  Just need to make sure I get time to cook and don't stray from my menu.

Now for a reminder of one of my bargains from months ago!
My gorgeous 50p scarf that I wear aaaall the time.

It's silky and has butterflies in all different colours so it goes with anything.  Love it.

And now to my reading list, as I dream of watching less tele and becoming an avid reader of all kinds of books... And I will become that woman once X Factor, Strictly, the Bake Off, Masterchef and Wife Swap go off the tele forever!

Since taking these photos I've read Queen of the Big Time.  Best book I've read in years.  I just love Adriana Trigiani.  I first read her when I was holed up in a freezing tent during the Wickerman Festival... Damp, smelly, desperate for the loo and needing a clean toilet, I lay reading Lucia Lucia, set in a beautiful part of Italy, surrounded by gorgeous.  Will never forget it.

Well, off I go for a bath, but will be back soon!

Wendy x

Monday, September 2, 2013

I'm Back!

This is ridiculous.  I've been writing blogs for three years for work, and never have I left it for four months between posts!  So, a catch up:

Had my surgery, and now, six months later I'm a new woman.  Still ache a bit, get really tired and knackered, have another half a stone to lose and am still a bit restricted in what I can do.  But it doesn't matter, my operation was a success and it's only been six months.  Am feeling very lucky.

It's funny, when I was unwell, with such limitations to what I could do, I got plenty of time to pootle round the charity shops and look for bargains.  It was my way of winding down and didn't take too much energy. So now... not so much!  Six months of letting things build up, gathering dust and clutter, means I'm more focussed on cleaning out cupboards, decluttering and making life a bit easier for myself!

I've been gradually getting the house cleaned and tidied, am being ruthless in getting rid of anything we don't need, and am desperately trying to safe money in my weekly shop... not easy!

So for the forseeable future I'm going to record my housekeeping expenses on this here little blog.  Any bargains I happen to get (like tonights tea!), I'll post up here so I can revisit it and remind myself of the odd foody bargain!  Sounds good.  Let's see if I actually do it!

Be back soon!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Pretty in Pink!

Gawd, I'm struggling a bit with this taking it easy.  I'm really trying but it's been 5 weeks since my op and I'm feeling so much better... It was much easier when I didn't feel like getting up and I actually enjoyed lying in bed watching dvds.  So a pattern seems to be forming and it's driving me mad - I feel wonderful one day, so I go for a walk or do a bit of paperwork, then I end up with a swollen scar and bone ache that leaves me lying in bed watching dvds... So frustrating and making me wonder how long exactly my recovery period's gonna be.

Breath, relax, read a book and chill out... It won't last forever.  (Read this back to yourself Wendy!)

Anyway, over to pretty things that will look lovely on me when I'm back on my feet and feeling my old self!

First, over to one of my "gorgeous til you try it on..." purchases.  Such a shame cos it's lovely, just not on me sadly!  This is a lovely David Emanuel coral top, in a lovely fabric, with some nice detail and really, I'm gutted. £1 from the Hospice shop, when it was having a half price sale, just love that!

Pink isn't a colour I wear very much at all, but when charity shopping you come across things you would walk past in m&s and I think that's a good thing.  This little t-shirt was brand new, with its tag, and cost me 50p, suddenly I love pink!  A basic t-shirt, but then not every day's a frilly one is it?!

Oh, I wish I had a figure like this mannequin...

Then I went and bought this cheeky little spotty number for me 'olidays!  Not at all sure what I think of this, I'll decide in the Summer when it's all warm and sunny and I'm in a foreign country where nowhere knows me! Or I'll wear it in the garden...! 

Finally to my very prettiest pink thing.  Me Cath Kidston make up bag that I just love love love.  I got this off eBay for a fiver cos it has a small stain on the inside.  Well I don't mind and I think it's perfect, yes I do.

So now I'm going to go and move nice and slooowly, making no sudden movements, while I cuddle down and watch Wife Swap Australia.  Cos I have to.  I'm recovering donchya know!

Be back soon!


Friday, April 5, 2013

A little of what you fancy does you good.

My mighty long absence can only be down to one thing... post op recuperation, woohoo!!  Got my op on the 5th March, after getting a very short notice cancellation.  It went like a dream, I woke up pain free, and now I'm slowly recovering.  I'd like to also say patiently, but I can't...  I still can't type comfortably due to not being able to look up or down, get days when I feel I can conquer the world, swiftly followed by two days with the most awful bone ache, but am I complaining?  No siree!  Give me bone ache anyday, doesn't even compare to nerve pain!

I'm not able to drive for a few more weeks and so am being starved of any charity shops or car boot sales I'm afraid, but am not missing it a jot, don't have the energy yet!  Besides, I have quite an archive of photos to keep me going anyway.  So, today I'm gonna share some of my favourites things.  Like elephants!

I've had a thing for elephants all my life and have collections all over the house; ornaments, hangy things, fabrics, a teapot, bags, skirts... you get the idea.  I'm fussy though.  It has to have a lovely face!  Now this little beauty just spoke to me she really did.  I saw her, she saw me, it was love at first sight and then I ignored her, convinced that I had enough pretty little elephants already.  But every time I looked over, I swear she was watching me, with that cute homemade face that I just couldn't resist.  50p paid, and home she came.  Oh my, I love this little cutie, she's been sitting on my dvd player in my bedroom all through my recovery and we have a bond.  Really.

And now to my other love, bags!

A gorgeous jade green, like new, Next handbag for 50p.  Oh how I skipped out of the smelly, really not my favourite, and very rarely visited charity shop.  Takes my bag collection up to probably too many, but who cares!?!

And finally, my other favourite; costume jewellery.  Cheap and chips but can finish an outfit and add real individuality.  I've always struggled to display my favourite bits and pieces, but on one of our "£5 charity shop challenge days" with daughter number 2, I came out the resounding winner, with this £3.50 unique and rather amazing jewellery holder.  Behold.

I got it in the Salvation Army and I do believe that it could well be my most expensive charity shop purchase!  God I'm a skinflint!  I obviously thought it was worth it and I was right cos it's so unusual, quirky and very very me.  Worth every penny.

So, isn't it true, a little of what you fancy does you good.  Surround yourself with things you love, things that make you smile, and if they only cost £4 in total?  Even better!

Be back soon!

Wendy x

Monday, February 25, 2013

Home Bargains.

It was a beautiful day on Sunday here in sunny Ayrshire.  Imagine that, in February!  The light was so good that it sent me on a mission to take a pile of photos to save for future posts - and then I ran out - when the sun was still out (bummer!)  So, while contemplating, I was looking out my kitchen window and spotted Millie (free cat), rooting around in the bamboo (free cutting) and these sights were framed by my cucumber and melon seeds (proper bargain...!), and my 10p tin plant pot.  Get the theme yet?  Home Bargains!

This was 2ft tall when we got it about 5 years ago.  Now it's 4 times the size and is my favourite garden plant. I love it. Thank you Gordon my gardener friend! 

Introducing Millie the family cat.  We've had her for five years, having got her when she was just 6 months old.  A terror, but we love her anyway!  Again, free to a good home so thank you Sarah!  (I hope Millie agrees that it's a great home, not just a good one!)

Who knew you could grow melons in a cold climate?? I got these, plus cucumber seeds (with propogators) for just £1.50 each.  And they are yet to die (just don't look too closely at the back row...)!

6 precious cucumber seedlings.  I think I may love them more than my family, so besotted am I... (and very wrong to say such a thing...!)

TKMaxx for 10p.  Need I say more.

This is one of my kitchen shelves.  Look up the top and admire my £3 picture, some of my collection of monks bought all over the place (read, can't remember where), and some of our inherited china.  Love this shelf.

Now, I paid big bucks for this by my standards.  Robbie was aghast!  It was in the bargain bin in Next because the glass was missing.  £3.  I told ya.

Not everybody will get this, but I know I'm quirky so it's fine!  Two silver spoons, one tablespoon and one serving spoon.  Drumroll please.  10p each. They need a bit of a clean and a polish (as if!!) but I just love em.  So pretty. 
See you soon!

Wendy x

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Swoon for Monsoon....!

I had such a lovely day yesterday, just loooovely.  First, I made it through a morning at work without completely exhausting myself (even though we had a crisis, a dent in a head, and a trip to the docs for one of the little uns, poor thing...)  By the way, I run a Nursery!

Then I had a friend and her gorgeous baby come for lunch, which was fab despite the fact she had to sit in a dirty pit of a house and eat from my empty cupboards... A true friend, never complained once!

And on top of all that I had time to pop into my favourite charity shop, and did I get some gorgeous new things?  You bet!  Photos to follow very soon of my 2 new scarves (one black with little butterflies and one emerald green), a David Emanuel coral pink top and a brand new, with tags, New Look cardigan that was originally £15 and I got it for 2.  If I could have skipped out the shop I would!

Today though.... Awful.  I overdid it at work, (though to be fair I think I maybe did a bit too much yesterday, looking back...) took to my bed to lie still for four hours, and now, at 9pm I'm finally able to use my hand.  Hate that my health is so bad just now.  Makes me miserable.

But not to worry, let's take a look at another of my latest acquisitions that barely dented my housekeeping!

One of the things I love about eBay is when someone takes rubbish pictures so gets no bids til I come along and take a chance!  This was 99p.  I know!  I can promise that the minute the weather stops me needing to wear thermals under my jeans, I'll be wearing this beauty.  It's, again, from Monsoon... I notice a theme starting, and I just can't help it because I absolutely love Monsoon stuff so sniff it out whenever I can.

It's very pale blue, a perfect length for me, nice and long, but not trailing 3feet behind me... (am only 4'11"...)  I think this skirt will go with just about anything so I know it'll be a regular wardrobe staple.

Followed neatly on by....

I'M GUTTED!  This was also an "eBay 99", is Monsoon, the most gorgeous deep burgundy, has jingly bits and is my dream skirt, seriously.  Oh to be 8 foot tall.... cos it's too big.  NOT FAIR!

I know I should re-auction it, but I'm going to look at it for a while beforehand cos it's so blindingly blummin beautiful.

Be back soon!


Sunday, February 17, 2013

It's ridiculopothy!

So, as I said in my last post, the clothes that I've bought recently are all part of my new wardrobe.  The wardrobe that will feel and look fab, just in time for the better weather (well hopefully...) and me being fully recovered and feeling fit again.  I'm banking on this.  The surgery I'm getting is for cervical ridiculopothy, to give it its official name, and it has an 80% success rate.  Nothing to worry about... !

I've had incredible luck in the charity shops these last few months actually.  I can't believe some of the gorgeous clothes I've got for literally pennies.  Who in their right minds sells a beautiful silk monsoon skirt?  Even if it didn't fit I'd keep it just because it's so lovely!  This isn't good is it?  I wonder if I'll run out of wardrobe space soon...

For goodness sake how gorgeous is this?  I got it off eBay for £2.50 and the photos don't do it justice I'm afraid.  It's duck egg blue silk and is a lovely fit, woo hoo!  It sits on the waist and has a bit of a fifties feel.  Definately for summer though as it befits bare legs, sandals and a summery strappy top.  Can't wait.  Might just save it for Paris...!

And now onto my £1 bargain from my local Cancer Support shop.  I always look through the bargain rail, rarely finding anything as this shop doesn't move its stock very quickly and doesn't often have anything I fancy.  Couldn't resist this though as I liked the detail and had a feeling it would become a bit of a staple, with jeans, which are a very regular part of my wardrobe!

It's George from Asda, a size 8 and in excellent condition.  I've already worn it out for lunch and, being quite a loose fit it worked very well in hiding my expanding tummy!

Apologies for the poor focus.  Maybe, as time goes on with this little blog, I might get better at taking photos.  Either that or I could get my youngest to take them, seeing as she enjoys it and is doing it at school this year.  Wish I'd already thought of that!

So back to work tomorrow.  But first I suppose I should fold all the washing I've ignored all weekend!

Be back soon!


Thursday, February 14, 2013

A slipped disc and a snuggly cardi

Well this has taken much longer than I expected... What with a slightly painful slipped disc in my neck (understatement of the century!), and a total lack of energy due to a dose of painkillers that would knock out an elephant... taking photos has taken a bit of a backseat this month in favour of major tele time in front of hoarders, mad men and grey's anatomy.  Life's not all bad!

My neck problem's been ongoing for seventeen months now (!) and as a result I've seen major changes.  For starters, I've put on weight for the first time in my life (very unhappy about that one),  I've got less energy than I've ever had, I'm in chronic pain all day every day, I've stopped cooking, I do less housework, I go out less, I sleep more and I shop less.  Well that's a good one I suppose!

But the good thing is I've slowed down and when I do get a bargain I love it all the more!  These clothes by the way are my "new wardrobe".  I see myself wearing all this lovely stuff when I'm feeling better and am back on my feet again.  I cannot wait.

So, first of all my goijus Amarylis.  This has brought me no end of joy since I got it.  For Free.  It has given me two beautiful flowers and has been in both my living room and bedroom, giving me so much pleasure every day.  Just a shame I'm rubbish at taking pics and one of them has turned out yellow!

The other fab bargain I want to share is my chunky knit grey River Island cardigan.  This is rarely off my back.  I get very cold when I'm sitting around eating double deckers (instead of looking after my business and getting my emails read...)  I wear it with a super long scarf wound round me nineteen times, and oh my, tis lovely and warm.

Now down to business.  This little beauty cost me £2.00 in my most favourite charity shop, the Ayrshire Hospice.

Well that will do for now.  Am working tomorrow so need my beauty sleep, which will be followed by my early morning cuppa and weetabix in bed, courtesy of my lovely, long suffering hubby.

Be back soon!

Wendy x

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Just for starters

The sidebar says it all.  The first post is always the hardest so i will begin with photos of three of my most recent bargains!  Excited wasn't the word when I found these...

This gorgeous Betty Jackson waterfall cardigan was tucked away in my local CASE charity shop and cost me £1.50.  It's washed up beautifully, is a gorgeous mellow yellow and will go with the majority of my wardrobe, so I know I'll wear it til it falls off me.  Good result there then!

This is a beeeeutiful Monsoon skirt, size 8, bought on eBay for £4.99 (+£2.50 p&p).  This is one of my most expensive second hand buys ever but I couldn't resist it.  Will go lovely with a plain black top for a night out with hubby.  In the meantime I'll just keep taking it out the wardrobe and look at it!

Now here's a story....!  I was in Lidl, saw this lonely Amarylis just sitting by itself without a label or tag and took it along to the checkout.  The checkout lad had no idea what it was, held it up and shouted for one of the staff to go and find a barcode for it... and after a bit of to-ing and fro-ing, a lot of confusion and a rapidly growing, impatient queue behind me, I was given it for precisely nothing, yes nothing!!

The thing is, I love to grow an Amarylis every year, I just adore the huge, gorgeous flower, and I seriously cannot wait for this one to bloom, so to get it for nothing?  Am squealing, just as well you can't hear me!

Be back soon!

Wendy x