I thought it might be about time that I updated here on where we're at with our money saving mission seeing as I haven't done it for a few months now!
To be honest I've not updated purely because I've been a bit (ok, a lot) rubbish at saving recently. We've had quite a few unexpected large bills including everything from fixing broken windows to a rather pointless £600 vets bill. On top of that, Miss E's not been sleeping recently so sometimes it's just much easier to reach for the ready meals when you're delirious from exhaustion instead of planning and preparing from fresh.... I know it's bad but needs must! Onwards and upwards though, ay?!
We're currently trying to work out if it would be worth overpaying on the mortgage or of we can rethink it in any way in order to reduce the monthly payments. We obviously have to consider any unexpected house/vet related bills (we've had enough of these recently so we know how much of a blow they can take to your finances!) and leave enough for essential work that needs doing on the house, etc but we intend to talk to the bank about all this very soon!
I currently have two sealed tins for coins on the go. I'm currently collecting any 5p's and £2 coins I have in my possession and don't plan on opening each one until they are completely full! These will be used for a treat or a night away so I'm really looking forwards to filling these!
We've been doing a lot of online grocery shopping recently using Morrisons, our proffered supermarket. We love that delivery is only £1, items are always fresh and so far we haven't had any missing items. Shopping online means we are less tempted by offers and products on the shelves which helps us stick to a budget!
We have also very recently started using Aldi for baby basics such as nappies, wipes, etc. This will be saving us a significant amount of money as their nappies are £4.49 for example as opposed to the £11.99 we were paying for Pampers.... The quality is just as good too!
Picnics! We've been making the most of the warmer weather by sometimes swapping eating out for a lovely picnic in a park..... even if we are getting the picnic from M&S, we're still saving on eating out! I've really enjoyed doing this, especially as we don't have to worry about Miss E throwing food everywhere and Elsie wandering off to other tables!
Outlet and sales shopping for discount designer brands. I'm a big fan of The Little White Company for Miss E's clothes and by signing up to their mailing list they often send out discount codes such as 20% off so this is excellent for saving a few pennies! We also visited their outlet shop in Bicester where I went a little bit mad buying her pyjamas, toys and clothes..... Everything was at least 30% off though so that's ok!
Car boot sale shopping throughout the summer. Here is where we find a lot of toys for Miss E and clothes for all of us. We've found some amazing bargains recently so it's worth getting up early for! We're also planning to stand at a car boot soon as we have a lot of stuff to get rid of.... Hooray for decluttering!
I'm still using coupons wherever possible and cashing in Tesco club card vouchers in exchange for admission tickets to various attractions. I've also been using Valued Opinions for a while and recently received vouchers to spend on Amazon so I'll be using these towards some books and toys for Miss E's birthday!
Continuing to track our spending using this app on the iPad. Still spending way too much on eating out and entertainment but hopefully we can make a real start on cutting back!
Not buying 'stuff'. I know this sounds simple but I'm a sucker for buying stuff, especially candles and bath products. For now we've agreed to not buy any more and I'm really enjoying using up some of my stash!
If you're interested in reading about what I did during past months you can hop over to the following posts by clicking on the links below:
New Year 2014
If you are trying to save money for a special occasion or just cut back a bit please do let me know your top tips and favourite websites for saving money!