Sunday, 28 April 2013


Brrrr - it's cold this morning.  There's a frost about, the cars look pretty with swirly, ferny ice patterns over their roofs and I am reminded (golden oldie moment alert) of when I was young and used to wake every day, or so it seemed, to similar frost patterns on the inside of my bedroom window.  Mum would go round the upstairs windows after we'd gone to school, wiping off the moisture on the window ledges.
No upstairs heating in the Olden Days, you see!
It makes me, like Diane, very glad I haven't planted out anything tender yet.

Yesterday was an interesting day.  As my regular readers will have seen, I had a big ponder regarding cutting how much I spend on food - cutting it pretty dramatically too - and have decided that I'm going to give it a go, although in a modified way.

'Modified' means that I am being chicken and making it between £1.25 and £1.50 a day - ideally the former, never above the latter.  I am being flexible too, so it's £8-75 to £10.50 for the week, so I can borrow and pay back, so to speak.  That's still a huge amount less than I spend at the moment so fingers crossed.  Maybe later on, if I get into the way of it, I can see how to reduce it more.  And if I crash and burn, no harm done.

I've discovered that my favourite drizzle of maple syrup on my breakfast porridge is more expensive that I would like (blame my choice of maple syrup here) so today I used home made strawberry jam.  Now, to be fair, I have no idea what it costs because I made it last year and just cannot remember what I paid at the PYO, but it cannot be anything like as expensive as the maple syrup.  Once I get onto the blackberry jam, it'll be even better as the fruit was free (Streele Farm foraging!)

I've hit the wall in other ways too.  For example, I have a whole load of dried pulses in packets but no idea how much they cost and My Supermarket is strangely silent on the subject of pulses unless they are tinned.  This means a visit to Morrisons to 'research' and I'm trying to avoid Morrisons!  Never mind, I can make an educated guess and hope.  It cannot be anything as bad as the tinned versions.  So at this moment I have 100g of dried butter beans in soak and these will be the basis for two or three meals over the week.  A soup, a bake and something else, maybe a sauce for pasta . . .

Butter beans soaking make some very attractive patterns, don't they?
I can see I am going to get boring about this.  Apologies in advance!

As almost every Sunday, today I look forward to Beth and Alex coming over for lunch.  Given that I have copious piles of eggs at the moment (no complaints),  cheg and salad is on the menu today, followed by stewed apple and plum with either custard (proper custard!!!) or natural yogurt (yum).  I will have to come off the challenge for this as the cheese makes it more expensive, as do many of the salad ingredients, but it's still a pretty frugal main meal.

Oh, well, better stop rambling and get on with some planning for tomorrow.  It won't do by itself, unfortunately!


Annabeth said...

Before sealed double glazed units the Swiss houses had secondary glazing (complete windows in frames), which was put in before the start of the winter and kept in storage in the cellar over the summer. The 'ice flowers' magically appeared on the outer panes overnight!

Good luck with the frugal living, the supermarket's online shopping web sites should give you all the prices you need.

Joy said...

They must have looked very beautiful.
Thanks for the 'good luck'. I wonder how long before I get fed up with it. I'm laying no bets! ;-)

J x

JuliesMum said...

I thought the beans were some sort of fancy embroidery project at first! They are rather lovely - almost a shame to eat!

Joy said...

Almost - but not quite. They are merrily boiling away now and the intriguing patterns have disappeared.

J x