November ninety – day twenty-nine

Had quite a nice morning at work, particularly as I’d said I would help someone with some poster art and they seemed very pleased with what I produced. There’s always a bit more of a relaxed feel to Fridays as well.

I was worried it would chuck down with rain just after leaving work, but apart from a few spots of rain the sky just decided to brood.

I had finished the whole pack of crispbreads I bought yesterday by the middle of this morning, so popped over to Currant Affairs to get another. Hopefully this one will see me through until Sunday. After leaving the shop I cut through to St Martin’s Square, passing some unusual foliage in planters by the outside seating area of Mrs Bridges Tearooms. My phone-cam doesn’t really do them justice but they were such a bright lilac I wondered if they’d been sprayed! Closer inspection seemed to prove the colour natural though, and it wasn’t from flowers, it’s the colour of the leaves themselves. Anyone know what they are?
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That’s £1.20 spent today, and I’m probably going to leave it at that, it’s too cold and windy to walk anywhere this afternoon. Instead I’m huddled up reading free e-books from Project Gutenberg. The Leicester libraries service recently launched free e-magazines and I haven’t really checked them out properly yet, so I might take a gander at those later.

Total spend for the month is now £82.72.

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£100 challenge – day seven

Whoop-de-do, I made it a full week on £16.75 so far, I’m below budget! I would dance a jig, except I just stubbed my toe REALLY hard.

There’s no cause to be celebrating just yet anyway. While I’ve already forked out for my ticket to the only paid-for gig I’m going to this month, I do also plan on visiting my parents, who live 80 miles away. I put the details into Google maps, which give a rough idea of petrol costs per journey, and they estimate this will cost £15.80 each way. For comparison, I checked the price of train tickets, which came in at over £40 for an off-peak return. When I’ve told people about this challenge there have been several who  made it clear they were not remotely impressed. “£25 a week?” They scoffed (in a 31- day month it’s actually £22.58), “that’s easy!” And maybe it is if you’re a person who doesn’t expect to go out with friends much or have to travel anywhere except under your own steam. I don’t think it’s that much of a luxury to want to see your relatives every couple of months but any way I can get to them costs a fair whack of the budget.

Today’s breakfast was overnight oats. I love overnight oats so much I made a fan page for them on Facebook! It’s a shame they’re not very photogenic though, especially when using a phone-cam. I have these little plastic pots with lids, I think they hold 400ml which hold 250ml, and they’re ideally sized for making an individual portion of overnight oats that I can take to work. Today’s oats had been covered with a blended up small apple with some water, and then had a sprinkle of flaked almonds and a few dried cherries stirred in.

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Like I say, not very attractive, but a good breakfast nonetheless. Lunch was leftover cauliflower-Vegusto in a bread roll with some chutney I made earlier this year (with rhubarb from my garden!) and I think dinner will involve lentils and onions, and maybe a pie I made and froze last month.

In case it sounds like I’ve done nothing but work and eat ( or plan to eat) today, I did also go to the library.

set of library shelves showing spines of fiction books.

And drank coffee. There’s a luxury I’m not going to run out of in the next couple of months because it’s my favourite brand so whenever it’s on special offer I stock up, and last time I bought six bags!

coffee mug, coffee in bag and pot of coffee on desk.


£100 challenge – day three

Spent today: £0

Total spend for month so far: £3.35

I did my normal job this morning then had some casual work this afternoon. Took a packed lunch consisting of banana cake sandwiched  with Lotus speculoos spread, and a really nice spicy chickpea stew – onion and mushrooms fried up with some paanch pooran spice blend, chickpeas added then simmered in a sauce of tomato passata, garlic and chillies.

Came home, made apple and banana smoothie, ate leftover cold baked potato, hummus and Finn crisp rye crackers. 

Realised this month is going to be extremely boring both to blog about and actually live through unless I can plan some penny pinching adventures. I did bring some books back from the library with me, and hope to have a cooking adventure this weekend where I actually follow a recipe, hopefully using ingredients I already have, with the extra money-saving advantage of not having had to buy the book.