Monday 17 October 2011

Pension Day

We receive our disability pensions today so it's budget and shopping day here. Every alternate Monday I write down how it will be spent or saved starting with the rent and any utility bills that must be paid this fortnight. We each get our pocket money and I put $10 aside for car insurance, house insurance, car registration, Christmas, birthdays and starting today I'll try to save $20 towards the high summer electricity bills that will come via the air conditioner. Petrol must be bought and I can usually squeeze a little into the savings account...even if it's "only" $20 it's a step in the right direction as it would be very worrying for me if we did not have this emergency fund.

Then onto the local shopping centre which really has everything we need. My list has changed greatly over the years...from buying everything in the supermarket to spreading out my purchases over several smaller shops. I still buy the dairy products, frozen vegies etc there but buy flour, dried fruit and legumes in bulk at Pantryman, freshly made peanut butter at the health food shop and eggs(2 dozen free range), fruit, veg and nuts at the greengrocer. A little fresh meat from the butcher for Joe and then home again, home again jiggery jog!

On Friday I cut my own hair and mowed the lawn which are two more ways I save money...Rhonda today mentions Anti-Poverty Week and the talk she will give at her Community Centre. She plans to encourage people to change the way they shop and to make a few things at home to reduce their reliance on charities and hand-outs.

Cooking from scratch means that I buy 'ingredients' rather then meals and save a lot of money as well as eating better. I grow fresh herbs and a few vegies such as silverbeet, lettuce, tomatoes and we have broad beans almost ready at the moment. Our bread and other baked goods are home-made as are jams and pickles etc. Making your own soap and cleaning products is another great way to trim down that shopping bill. Heat packs, wash cloths, knitted jumpers, hats. gloves, scarves, sewn items such as quilts, shopping bags, pillowcases, table linens and clothes of course can all be made at home, often from re-purposed materials.

How do you budget, if you do? We take advantage of free transport, doctors visits and prescriptions already so we are very fortunate in that regard. Can you suggest other ways I can save money?

Summer is indeed on it's way and here is the sun peeking out from behind the very high clouds yesterday...I took the photo through a tinted looked quite eerie.

I do hope you are well and looking forward to fresh new week,
Love from Sue

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