We still don’t have a date for moving into our own house (whaaaaaa), but are feeling more settled at Grandma’s. Most of the week she has been kind enough to take us to and from school in her mini bus, and the kids have loved it! In between that we have fun on the Northern Trains hopping on and off to and from school and sometimes taking our journey a little further afield. On Thursday Ethan took his bike on the train too – that was interesting!!!

We are all thoroughly enjoying this glorious weather that has graced us this week (What an improvement to last!) the kids have spent endless hours in the garden, and yesterday Alice and I took advantage of the lovely sunshine and hopped on a train up to Bridlington to see my mum and sisters for a lunch date. Together we celebrated mums and my little sisters Birthdays and it was lovely. It was so great to wander, see the boats, soak up the views and just generally be thankful we only live 20mins from this lush coast now!

Go Ape Competition

Next Saturday we are heading to Dalby Forest to tackle Go Ape with the kids for Megsies birthday celebrations. Unfortunately last week we had to postpone as Nathan has a job interview, but we are excited. Whilst looking into it I saw they had a competition running and wanted to share this with you all as it looks like a great way to be in with a chance of a FREE visit to your local Go Ape as well as some other goodies!

Basically they are searching for the UK’s most adventurous authors between the ages of 4 and 12, with the chance to win a selection of adventurous books – as well as a group adventure in the tree tops with their tribe!

“Go Ape is all about living life adventurously, and Mini Tarzan’s will simply need to write 100-500 words describing their favourite adventure for the team. These tales can be completely made up or a real account of an exhilarating escapade – if it’s fictional, then imaginations can run wild!

Prizes will be awarded to the winners of the following categories:

  • Best fiction author (for ages 4-7 and 8-12)
  • Best non-fiction author (for ages 4-7 and 8-12)
  • Best character (for ages 4-7 and 8-12)
  • Best use of language (for ages 4-7 and 8-12)

As well as this, an additional prize will be awarded to the favourite entry by Go Ape’s two Chief Gorillas – Tristram and Rebecca Mayhew.

Within each age range judges will review the quality relative to age, so all monkeys, whether big or small, will have the same chance of winning!”

Entries are open now until midnight, Thursday 22nd June, 2017 and for further info, T&C’s and to enter visit goape.co.uk/adventure-stories. Handwritten entries can be scanned in and sent to marketing@goape.co.uk.

Family & Friends Railcard

With our new school run being somewhat of an adventure and several miles away, I decided last week to invest in “family & friends railcard” so as to be able to save 1/3 off our adult fares, and 60% off the kids when using the train.

It has been mint and has cut down my travel expenses significantly (especially now that Megs is 5 too).

It usually costs £30 for the year but with code FAMILY10 you can save 10% making it just £27 (offer ends 2 September)! What’s great is that you can use it for up to 4 adults and 4 kids 5 – 15 in any one journey, which I find rather generous. I figure whilst it does cost initially with all of the travel we are doing now it will easily pay for itself.

I am very excited for the Summer holidays where we plan on having adventures galore, and it is going to prove to be very valuable!

Enjoy the scorcher of a weekend we’ve been promised… I am thinking beach, sandcastles, ice creams, paddling and hopefully some sneaky fish & chips. Why not when it’s on our doorstep??

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Erm where did Summer go please? I am really not enjoying the monsoon season we seem to have been flung into and it’s really thrown me off, making me all a little sad. I need some sun ray’s on my skin very soon please!

This week has been a funny old week, not only because of the torrential rain we’ve been subject to, but also because we had my Granddad’s funeral on Tuesday. That combined with still fighting the tiredness from moving and a complete change to life, I feel really weird right now. I am hoping that I will start to feel more me again soon, but in the meantime its been all systems go with the kids starting school in the village we are eventually moving to, their uniforms ordered (nothing frugal about that bill!), and then I have been trying my best to establish some routine for us whilst we are here living in limbo at Grandma’s house. In the process of all of that I have of course scouted out a few bargs along the way!

Raincoats

Rain coats (or any coat for that matter) have been the bane of my life this week. When I was packing to move it was a heat wave and all the coats/jackets and raincoats were put in a box and then went into storage. I wrongly assumed summer was here and we would be fine for a couple of weeks before we were reunited with them again and it was just extra “stuff” to take to our temporary home. But in true British style here we are in the midst of a down pour!

I headed into town yesterday with the goal to find Megs and Alice a raincoat to keep them going (Ethan thankfully had one in the car) and managed to find them both one very cheap. Megs was a pink “Lilly and Jack” mac for £3.50 and Alice a Next raincoat from the charity shop for £2.99. I was delighted!

Pizza Party

Megan turned 5 on Wednesday, it is not a party year but despite that we always treat them to a tea party or something special for dinner. We hoped to go out but are all done in and so said we would do that over the weekend. As a compromise Megan really wanted some cheese pizza and asked if we could order in Domino’s!

I was all for buying it (it was her birthday after all and an excuse not to cook), but then when we nipped into Tesco we saw they had the Chicago Town Take Away stuffed crust Pizza’s for £2.50 on offer. The stuffed crust drew her in and as they are super yummy she really wanted them instead (SCORE) so we bough 4 of those (to share with family too) and spent only £10 instead of £20-30!

High Interest Saver

And finally by far the best frugal choice this week…one that hasn’t saved just us money, but made us some! It comes in the form of interest. Our house is sold but we have not yet made a purchase, so in the mean time our money from the sale is sat doing nothing. We decided to open a high interest saver which pays 10x more interest than a regular and so until the purchase comes through it is sat in there making us a nice little chunk on a daily basis!

This weekend we are doing more celebrating of Megsie being 5, and hoping for a chilled one. Whatever you are doing I hope its great and filled with deals and bargs along the way!

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As I have sat in a house looking much like an episode of hoarders special this week (and squashed in one corner), I have enjoyed catching up on a few episodes of a programme I love – “Shop Well For Less”! Have you seen it? It makes me laugh and I find it fascinating to see how people choose things, the psychology behind marketing and people’s purchasing behaviours. It’s really interesting to see other peoples homes and their thoughts into spending money. I just love to see why people opt for pricey products and cringe at bargains, but mainly I feel like if I ever had a TV show it would be something like that! I love it!

This week has been a super busy one with the move, but of course we always have time to make a few savvy choices along the way and squeeze in the odd barg!

Legoland Free Tickets

No joke here you can get 2 FREE Legoland tickets when you collect tokens from The Sun newspaper. You need 10 tokens, and then you send them off with some possible dates, then they send you 2 FREE tickets for one of those dates. I am hoping we can go somewhere around Ethan’s Birthday in October  … we currently have 6 or 7 tokens and it runs until next week.

Moving ourselves

Moving house is unavoidably a very expensive affair! We have chosen to save money by doing it all ourselves. We hired a van for 2 days at a cost of £48/day, and then used a mix of free boxes from friends and good ol Morrison’s banana boxes. Then with the help of friends from church and family, we managed to load and unload all of our stuff.

It was obviously way more demanding, tiring, and at times very stressful compared to if someone did it all for us, but for that price it was well worth it!

A 15p Yorkie?

Finally I saved 50p on a sneaky chocolate bar this afternoon when I nipped into Asda for our lunch! Being exhausted from 2 days of cleaning and moving, I felt in need of a little choccie pick me up. As I reached for the Wispa’s I noticed that the Yorkies were reduced to 15p each… a chocolate fix for 50p less – what a barg!

Right now I am so done in, rather achy, but so very relieved that our move/sale went smoothly. I expect that come Monday when I realise that this is my new life I will suddenly go into panic mode that I am now homeless and living with family for a few weeks out of a handful of bags! I will then realise all that is still to be done, and be busy sorting the kids new school and planning our new life here. But for now I shall soak up the view, eat more chocolate, enjoy listening to the birds, and just pretend I am away for the weekend at Grandma’s!!

 

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The word of the week this week is certainly “Busy”! Alice and I have been travelling around West Yorkshire, sneaking up on people and observing classes for a friends business, and its been all go! She finally had her first messy play session as a result of all of this, and has had taster sessions galore of everything from Baby massage to sign, Yoga and mini movers. Its been tiring but a lot of fun too, especially to see some old faces from the days when I taught all things baby too.

As a result this week has been pretty scarce on the bargain front, but very fulfilling on the frugal front.

One Dinner into 4

This week was all about the left overs again, and on Sunday I made a gorgeous roast dinner which quickly evolved into not just one meal, but a further 3! I decided to buy a large chicken to make it do another meal at least and the extra 50p or whatever if was, was certainly worth it. And of course I always make too much veg, so that too helped to boost the foundations of some left over meals this week.

Monday we had left over chicken with a lentil salad. Tuesday was pitta/pesto/salad and leftover chicken, and then last night was a delicious veggie curry with all of the veggie left overs. It had peas, parsnips, carrots, and then I added some extra sweet potatoes, yogurt, chopped tomatoes and spices!

I couldn’t believe how much one roast dinner stretched. With a few cheap bits to make into something more (chopped tomatoes, lentils, pitta) it made some really tasty meals this week that we all enjoyed and that were all really good for us!

Princess dresses in Home Bargains

Megan turns 5 in 19 days (and counting) and at the top of her list are several princess dresses. Beauty and the beast, Aurora and a new Elsa dress. My sister is taking care of the first (all will be revealed), and then with the other I was wondering how I could get her them, as well as the toys she wanted. We never have a huge budget for birthdays, usually about £40 -50, but with my magnificent bargain hunting, they always come out with a nice stash of gifts from their wish lists.

Whilst in Home bargains last week I noticed they had a mock Aurora dress which Megan showed me (believing it to be the real deal) for £7.99 and then coronation Elsa for £5.99. What an absolute barg! The Aurora one has a lovely velvet bodice and Elsa too is of nice quality.

I always think that buying kids dress up from places like Disney is a bit of a rip off because they will quickly grow out of it or lose interest and move onto something else. I love places like TK Maxx and home bargains that sell look a likes for a fraction of the price and look so lovely. I bought her a size bigger so that it will last the year and they seem really decent. I couldn’t’ even make them for that price (and they’d look tat), so I am excited that at 5 years old her life will be made, because she wont only have the dresses but there is ample budget for the my little pony, accessories and barbie stuff she wanted too! That’s what I call a MumWin!

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