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Archive for January, 2008

Busy Day Out

January 30th, 2008 at 09:40 am

Today is the day I go to the city for lunch with friends. While showing this morning I hit the nail on my index finger on the shower tap and it was a bit sore with a black spot on it. My first appointment this morning was the doctorís so I wasnít too worried. As it was raining the bus just got to the city in time. After checking me for my annual medical check and writing up scripts for blood tests and medicines. He checked my finger I had a piece of metal in the nail so no gardening for a few days.

I did put more money on my pre-paid mobile plan for another year. Mobile phone prepaid recharge
Taking this total too $149 for 4 years averaging 37.25 per year, very few calls, mainly text messages.

Paying my rates and water bills and I had only 9kL of water in last 92 days. So I am on track with my water targets that have been set by the government. Which is a goal of 140L per person mine is only 97.8K.

Meeting up with some of my ex-coworkers, at the casino, there is a deal going there for $10.00.

I had Fish & Chips with Salad (reg. price $13.50) and vanilla slice as usual (reg. price$5.90), posted in this blog October 29, 2006 in recipe section. Coffee (reg. price 2x $3.00) total = $25.30. I did play the 1c poker machines for just two dollars then left.

As for shopping I only bought some books again today spending $13.00 (reg. price value $175.65) on them.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $369.00
Savings $stretch $168.15

In the last 30 days I have

January 29th, 2008 at 08:05 am

Gone shopping or bought something 10 times

Travel to the city by bus 2 times

Drove my car only 8 times

Had food bought or had for free away from home 5 times

And had 20 No Spending Days since the last count.

Letís see what next monthís will be

Misplaced some cookbooks

January 28th, 2008 at 09:13 am

Going through some of the baskets of cookbooks & files, I didnít find too many to chuck out but I put them back into better order than before. I have still got along way to go in this computer room and library. As Iím looking for a set of cookbooks for my next monthís menu. Not that finding them is a problem as I can always look on the internet if I have too! Thatís what you get when have more than one bookcase of cookbooks. I want to do some OAMC cooking and single meals for one over the next month with new recipes with a few old ones if I donít fine the missing cookbooks.

Itís another no spending day here.

500

January 27th, 2008 at 09:11 am

This post marks my 500th post. When I started I didnít know if I would get to my first hundred let alone 500. I have leant a lot about blogging and post to forums over this time. It was a great learning curve.

When my visitors came yesterday, I just use want I had in the house for afternoon tea. I did have a chocolate mud cake in the freezer which I had cut into slices before freezing so I took out half of the cake, and I had some cans of lemon squash for the kids with coffee for adults. I also had Scotch Shortbread and a dip & crackers if they had wanted something different, as my niece had them drink fruit cordial while on holidays.

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Sunday ~ Chicken Schnitzel & Egg with Cabbage & Tomato Sauce.
Monday ~ Curried Sausages with Rice
Tuesday ~ Easy Tuna Dish with Rice & Salad
Wednesday ~ light snack as lunch out
Thursday ~ Omelet with Shredded Cheese and Salad
Friday ~~ Steamed Fish and Salad
Saturday ~ Leftovers night

Weíre dropping inÖ

January 26th, 2008 at 08:56 am

Well I have been busy cleaning up my house for visitors, who were on the way to the airport from their holiday unit on the Gold Coast. They did come to visit me; itís almost 18 years since the last time the husband has been up here, my niece does come more often though this time their children were with them and it a first time visit to the family home. You got it right; I live in the family home and that has been in the family for three generation now. Itís a house that my great aunt built for her retirement just after WW11 before that the family lived in another house near by since 1913.

My niece and her family live in an old stone Federation house in a country town that why she is getting some pieces that belonged to her grandparents. Today I gave the young boy, small toy cannon and the girl got some of my belts, she is a young model so they may come in handy for her. Classic belts donít go out of style but I donít wear them anymore, some were over forty years old too!

Free Gift Voucher Shopping

January 23rd, 2008 at 09:37 am

I was sent a gift voucher from Jewelry store for $25.00. It expires at end of month.

So I went to a shopping centre to spend it. I got 4 photo frames 50% off for extra $5.25 out of my own pocket. They did have much marked down to choose from without spending too much, I need spend much more if I didnít buy some things for my gift box. I did spend some money on a nice wallet for myself to use later. This was marked down to $4.95 from $19.95 so it was great buy. I did have lunch out today, just hamburger and soft cone with a free coffee all for $2.40.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $12.60 (my cash out lay)
Savings $tretch $51.45 + $25.00 gift voucher = $76.45

Stock market

January 22nd, 2008 at 09:18 am

I glad that I sold my shares when I did last October, I had only a few hundred shares and they were being taking over by other company back then, since been taken over. At the time the value of that company was around $47.00 per share now around $31 and lost 97c today on the stock market. Many years ago I read a book that said to buy in bear market and sell in a bull market. I sold my shares at top of the bull market for my shares. Now I am a pension I will not be able to buy shares again. But most of my superannuation is mostly in balanced fund so all I can do is to ride it out now.

Itís a no spending day here.

Nearly a No Spend Day

January 21st, 2008 at 09:36 am

Today I went with DF-M daughter & her husband shopping, we went to the Main Fruit & Vegetables Market to see someone there. Itís open to the public on Wednesday to Friday so they may go back then they are open.

Next it was on Brunnings Hardware store, they spent but I didnít buy anything there. Off to the supermarket where I did buy some grapes & Ĺ a sugarloaf cabbage thatís all I bought. Grand total $3.00, Iím happy with that amount as my follow shoppers spent over $300 on the day.

Flooding update - Emerald is under water and its water will in the end will up going out to sea via Rockhampton Qld. Charleville still waiting for its peak around 9am Qld Time tomorrow and its water will end up in the channel country a heading for Lake Eyre in South Australia but it likely to get that far. Once many years ago when we had weather like now it rain & Cyclone weather in the Gulf country around Normanton Qld flooding there which end up in Lake Eyre and flooding all way down. Have a look on Google Earth to see how far.

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Sunday ~ Steak & egg with grilled onion & tomato
Monday ~ Omelet with Shredded Cheese and Salad
Tuesday ~ Easy Tuna Dish with Rice & Salad
Wednesday ~ Leftovers night
Thursday ~ Curried Sausages with Rice
Friday ~ Pasta with Tuna & Tomato Sauce
Saturday ~ Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce on Baked Potato

Weather - Flooding in the outback

January 20th, 2008 at 09:57 am

I had a quite day today, just doing the washing between showers as itís still overcast here and flooding in the outback with two-third of the state under water.

One of the dams near Emerald Qld, is overflowing for first time in 17 years and it looks like flooding the town too! Our dams around here are still only just over quarter full. So that two dams full and overflowing and others arenít getting much rain around the catchments. So with most of the state has some flooding our area still need more rain. My tank is still full as itís been raining in the city area as we have had over 140 mm since Boxing Day and overcast skies most days. Well the outback got rain and they are happy about it even if itís flooding. Charleville Qld was two weeks off finishing their flood barriers around town. The government flew in the missing parts so they could fill in the missing parts. So now some of itís under water yet again here are some pictures.

Charleville Ďprotected from floodingí
Charleville floods
our weather since Boxing Day
Index of Floods Stories

another no spending day

Paper Shredder

January 19th, 2008 at 06:26 pm

A few weeks ago I told you that my paper shredder died. Well in yesterday junk mail there was a better paper shredder for sale, as itís a new model they had an introductory price for it saving over $50 on it as well the staff discount that I get. With all the gift cards that I got for Christmas & birthday this month for this new paper shredder as had said this want I wanted to get this year, my cost came to just over $4.74. Oh and I didnít buy any this else even though they had some very good bargains this time of the year with Back to School Sale on, as I had the car out yesterday.

Years ago when I had finish with any papers that I did want I would burn them now that we can't light fire anymore in our area but for BBQ's, and at time not them either. $$$ Another Strategy letting it go

Having a paper shredder is the nearest too burning, a letting go of the past feeling that use to get back then.

What's in those boxes?

January 18th, 2008 at 09:38 am

Is a question that Iím thinking about at moment? I have two rooms that have mixed boxes in them. These are my junk rooms where I put any stuff that I donít need there while I have visitors to stay. Well I did start today on one of the rooms, first that opened only had a few books on top then some coat hangers on the bottom. Another box has my OAMC cookware in it, so that 2 boxes down today.

I had my hair cut today costing $17.00 for a style cut. I did go shopping since I last wrote, buying pet supplies, my cats get a treat each day of more expensive dried cat food just a small handful when I have morning tea each day, O boy do they tell me if I forget to give it to them. They do get another dried cat food normally but they only like one kind of that brand. I am having trouble with their cat litter that they like as the company making it has had problem at the factory. We are being told it could up to six months before they can supply it. So now I need to try a new brand each time at double or triple the cost of the old cat litter, so spent $13.46 on them today. Iím not to happy with that one.

My Night Out

January 17th, 2008 at 11:06 am

I did go to a Chinese restaurant for dinner we had a good time too! It was my birthday and I was given some very nice presents. We often go out to a restaurant for our birthdays the person who is having the birthday gets to pick the restaurant. What did we have as there were four of us, my son and I had Chinese banquet for two at $18.00 each plus drinks and the others had soup, Main meal & drinks.

Banquet had in it one Curried Puff & Spring Roll each, chicken & corn soup, one plate of each beef & chicken meals, fried rice for two and ice cream & fruit salad. I had green tea the other soft drinks.

Our main meals were King with Egg Noodles, Mongolian Lamb & Beef, Sweet & Sour Chicken, with streamed &fried rice. The bill came to $90.00 for four of us. I do find that a banquet is the best buy if you can get them here. Value of the banquet separately would have been around $28.00 one of the others paid $29.00 for what they had ordered. Lucky we donít have too many of these feast each year, but most are in the first half of the year.

A little second hand shopping

January 16th, 2008 at 08:49 am

I had quite day today, I did go shopping and walk. Dropped into the 2nd hand Charity stores, I got temped and bought a very nice Pottery fired small fruit bowl for $1.50 value $15.00. I would think never used ideal for a gift of homemade goodies, plus two magazines one has some nice craft patterns in it at the other 2nd hand Charity store only $1.35 value $10.90 other than that I spent very little else only some cheese for lunch. I booked a hairdressing appointment for Thursday.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $4.75
Savings $stretch $25.15

Typing up my grocery inventory

January 15th, 2008 at 06:40 am

Well it was time to get onto the computer and update my grocery inventory so far. I have 9 pages of stuff, how did I get so much. Little here and little there I think is the answer, when something is on a good special or itís mark down to below cost like our local small supermarket does is the answer to all this stuff. Now I will have find away to use up too! Most of it can be still used past it before date. All I have bought in the past two weeks is pet food, eggs and fruit & vegetables. So I want to get down to one cupboard in most of this stuff. There are canned food in the way of tomatoes, fish, corn, soup, baked beans, dried beans & lentils, powdered milk, coffee & tea, Oatmeal & cereal. Plenty of paper goods and cleaning stuff for a year. Almost two shelves is flavoring or condiments so flavoring my food for the next year will no be a problem I donít think. Will I make Mexican, Asian, Italian or Middle Eastern meals this month I wonder?

I'm going out to dinner tonight it's Chinese.

Lunch with a friend

January 14th, 2008 at 08:02 am

My friend took me out to lunch today, as she had to go shopping at one shopping centres. I just was so good in my non- spending goal that all I did was walk around with her as she spent her money other than paying the balance money off my credit card. She even paid for our lunch which is nice of her, we both had Mediterranean salad and quiche with coffee. We did pick out a birthday present for later in the week and she bought her annual new watch 50% off at the jewelry sale there. Later we came home and we had tea & cake at her place on the back deck. It was definitely a girlís day out.

Tiding & checking the pantry

January 13th, 2008 at 09:35 am

I'm doing inventory of my pantry this week, so see what I have left that I had bought last year! It's good to know what you have to work with, as at times we keep on buying the same items over & over again but never using them all. I did put out four shelves today and checked dates and marked a date on it if I didnít find date and write it down too! I manage to put back three shelves today but one of my cats decided to have a sleep on the bottom one while I worked. What did I find in my stockpile, that I rarely use 4 packets of sago, 14 packets of 2 minutes noodles, 2 bags of polenta, 3 bottles of apple concentrate and lotís of sugar white, raw, brown, and caster I mainly use white sugar for chutney. Itís no good give it away as most is past they best before dates. I can use this lot if make something with them soon. Today I made Vanilla Sago Pudding and I got 5 serves from this as I use some latte mugs that I was given for Christmas to put them in.

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Sunday ~Sweet & Sour Pork wí Rice , Vanilla Sago Pudding
Monday ~ Meat loaf & vegetable, Vanilla Sago Pudding
Tuesday ~ Dinner out
Wednesday ~ Sweet & Sour Pork wí Rice, Vanilla Sago Pudding
Thursday ~ Omelet with Shredded Cheese and Salad, Vanilla Sago Pudding
Friday ~ Pasta with Tuna & Tomato Sauce Vanilla Sago Pudding
Saturday ~ Curried Sausages with Rice

It's a no spending day here

Dry Cleaning

January 12th, 2008 at 08:04 am

One of my friends had me drop off some dry cleaning during the week, so this morning I went to pick it up. It was very large lace quilt that was expensive to buy. It cost $30.00 to have it dry cleaned. I hand wash things like this and I do have the line space to dry it too! I donít remember the last time I had anything dry cleaned.

I had to use my car to pick it up.

Topping up on grocery & stationery

January 11th, 2008 at 10:59 am

Found a tray of markdown chicken schnitzels saving $3.60 with 14 servings, along with a caramel mud cake markdown to $1.49 saving $3.00, and some fresh green seedless grapes for variety in my fruit intake. Along with some display books that were a faction of their true cost saving over $18.00 here. So in light of these saving I would have had to spend over $ 24.60 extra if I did pay normal regular price on all items I bought as some people do.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $18.62
Savings $stretch $24.60

This week I filled up my car with petrol/gas.

January 10th, 2008 at 10:36 am

I paid 124.9 a litre (less 4c discount off per litre 121.9) costing around $23.30 this week as I filled the lawn mower can also. Anyway this morning the petrol /gas was 139.9 a litre, thatís 18c a litre above what I paid two days ago. I thinking if and when it gets too around $3.00 all the time, I will stop using it all together. Hopefully I will be pasted driving by then. But then I said this when it was around 30c a litre, my limit then was around $1.00 - 20 years ago so only time will tell.

Catching up with the ironing

January 9th, 2008 at 08:43 am

If you have read some of my earlier blogs youíll know that I do ironing for pin money. My friends donít like ironing so they pay me some money to help me with a little extra bit of money. One hasnít bought over any since long before Christmas it was a large pile of ironing. And other one given me her best garments to iron. Along with my own ironing I have over 3 hours of ironing to do. So this morning around 3.30am this morning I got up and started iron as this is the coolest time to iron in summer. I got most of it done now so I only got to do the best of the garments to iron then wash my own hand washing so I can iron them too!

Other than doing the ironing I didnít do too much today. So it was a no spending day here.

Grocery Shopping & its hot here!

January 7th, 2008 at 11:07 am

Oh itís hot here, not because temperatures are high but for the humidity that is around! The dams have risen 4% so far and one on the Gold Coast is overflowing.

I did go shopping today, first to get some items on special at one supermarket then off to other one to get cat food that it stocks. Oh fuss cats donít you love them! Grocery shopping for my cats was up in the range of $35.00 and I still need to buy cat litter which was out of stock today. I will try again next time; I do buy a month supply at time so I still have one weekís supply left which is my backup supply. Fruit & vegetables are getting expensive around here , just bought cherry tomatoes, bananas, pears, oranges coming to $5.20. All other fruit & vegetables were too expensive this week; I will use what I still have left instead. I do have a good supply of can tomatoes so use these in cooking.

The total today was more than I normally spend but some items were for my survival kit project in the way of extra powdered milk as I do use this item so I bought 2 bags extra than I would this time. More 2 bags BBQ heat beads giving me about 5 bags now, I donít use gas bottles for my BBQís and I have two different sizes ones. I went to the Two Dollars store and bought my first item for my carís survival kit pack, itís a whistle with a compress, key ring & thermometer called a 4-in-1 whistle. I did see other items that I may buy too! I had lunch at my favorite local food stall for a hot dog and milkshake, price $2.50 elsewhere it would be around $5.95.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $80.02
Savings $stretch $20.08

Thunder Storm & Heavy Rain

January 6th, 2008 at 07:03 am

Well I had to get off the computer at lunchtime, as I heard thunder in the distance with means a summer storm is on it way.

If I am home I always close down my computer at first sign as once we have lightening strike next door it was the first one for the day. I saw it strike too! Burnt the trees next door and they lost all appliances in the house.

It just stopped raining a few minutes ago so I checked my rain gauge and we just 60 mm - about 2Ĺ inches. My tank is overflowing as we had more than 160mm -almost 6Ĺ inches since Boxing Day in my property. I hope this last storm started near the Dams as it came from that area. They may been a storm over the dam catchments in the past few hours.

The areas that is notorious for flash flooding are up and overflowing around here. Iím lucky as I live on a hill even if polar ice caps melt by 14metres, I will high and dry.

I have been working on my HP tutorials in the last few days just more lesson to go for this month. And new ones start on Monday. Have enrolled in about four courses for January classes, one is a repeat and another one is just two lessons so I will do those one first.

Still storm clouds around so I will not stay long on the computer.

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Sunday ~ Spaghetti Bolognese Sauce on Baked Potato
Monday ~ Honey Soy Stir Fry Beef with Rice
Tuesday ~ Leftovers night
Wednesday ~ Omelet with Shredded Cheese and Salad
Thursday ~ Curried Sausages with Rice
Friday ~ Steamed Fish and Salad
Saturday ~ Pasta with Tuna & Tomato Sauce

Flooding, Raining & Junk Mail

January 5th, 2008 at 12:08 pm

I got my washing done today; last time that I washed was before Christmas as it was fine here today.
Itís been raining since Boxing Day has stopped but could start again around Wednesday.

Itís now flooding in next shire and northern New South Wales. But we still didnít get much in way of rain in our Dams yet again. Some rain but not enough to take it up even 1% higher.

I didnít go shopping today nor buy anything out of the nine catalogues that came in the last few days.
Oh there were few things that I could have bought, but part of my strategy for this year frugal challenge is to look what I have got that can be used instead of buying. Some things will be bought but I hope not as much as the last few years. An example in 3 catalogues from Avon, now remember I did a tidy up of toilettes and make up cupboard, only things that are in short supply are were perfume body spray that was on special in next 2 campaigns but could use the perfume instead and normal roll on so I donít need that. Next was microfiber gym towel in pink but I have one in navy and could use a microfiber cloth if need an extra towel or normal towel for that matter which I have plenty off. As for make up & face creams I will live with what I have got and that plenty enough to supply the whole street only problem is it past the use by date, but I can live with that. As long I donít get a skin reaction to it will be fine.

As for the other catalogues that come are from those mail order houses this year I thinking they will just junk mail. Just removing parts with my name on them and recycling the paper. Letter box junk mail is read then recycled. I only keep the grocery ones most time until the next lot arrives then crosscheck them so any items that I need this little trick can save heaps as we donít have coupons in this part of the world. $$$ Another Strategy

Downsizing my wardrobes.

January 3rd, 2008 at 09:39 am

At the moment I am reviewing my wardrobes. So some clothes are going because the elastic are going, I know that I will not replace them and I have other clothes that I can use as my lifestyle has now changed as I am no longer in the workforce.

As I buy mainly second-hand clothes so I havenít been culling often as why would you re-buy the same clothes in the same size again? So I did go through them to see what I wouldnít again wear or wouldnít fit now as I donít worry about being in fashion. I also did the drawers and shelves in this exercise and found some items that I had forgotten that I had bought so putting them altogether in the right place; I will not need clothes, underwear or hosiery for the next year or so!
One example of lack of organization, I had been buy knee-hi hosiery thinking that I had run out of my stockpile but today, I found my stockpile in another cupboard. Enough for next two years, I would think seeing I still have heaps of in use ones as well when they were all put together.

But when I do throw things out its junk and it has lost value or I can replace for little cost.

I am more then half way through this task. I have already given away the clothes, shoes and handbags from this task that I have removed so far. Itís part of my 72 hours rule. I find that if I donít do something within 72 hours it doesnít get done. $$$ Another Strategy


It's a No spending day

Lunch at Casino today!

January 2nd, 2008 at 11:20 am

Meeting up with some of my ex-coworkers, at the casino, there is a deal going there for $10.00, you get a choice of about 8 different meals and about a choice 8 cakes or cheesecakes or fruit salad as well coffee or tea. The only catch is that you need to be over 18 and a member also came in by public transport. As our group are do all these things so itís no problem for any of us here.

I had Satay Chicken with peanuts on steamed rice (reg. price $12.40) and vanilla slice as usual (reg. price$5.90), posted in this blog October 29,2006 in recipe section. Coffee (reg. price 2x $3.00) total = $24.30
I did play the 1c poker machines for a few dollars then left.

As for shopping I only bought some books today spending $16.90 (reg. price value $63.85) on them. One I saw in the bookshop window over the holidays and as this store was closed until this morning, I need to be quick if wanted it as it was a secondhand copy too! The other book was on 1001 hints & tips from yesterday year and craft book this is my style of reading. Two out of three books were a need of that information category and time savers as I was using my internet time looking for this information and I need this information in printed form anyway.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $29.90
Savings $stretch $61.25

Note - Savings $stretch is the different between original regular price and money handed over. Coming under $tretch category

Update on - Easy Tuna Dish

January 1st, 2008 at 09:37 am

I did try this recipe and modified it a little.
As I cook only for one, I made up only half the recipe

Easy Tuna Dish (Modified)
Serve 2 - Double recipe for 4 servings

1 small (95g) can chunky tuna in spring water or brine, drained
2g Chinese dried mushroom soaked for 5 minutes then drained
or 1/2 can small of sliced mushroom, drained
1/2 can cream of chicken, celery or asparagus soup, undiluted
1/2 can (440g) pineapple pieces in juice. Drained and reserve juice if you need any liquid
Cooked boiled rice (Heated)

Open all cans and measure required amounts.
Just blend the ingredients gently in a saucepan or microwave dish and heat through.
Serve with boiled rice or fried noodles.

I have made the original recipe twice now.
Taste is a little more on pineapple side; it does have a yellow look but tastes ok.

Ideal if you need to just mixed a few cans together and you have no refrigeration.

Other variations:

Add some green beans or peas if you have them.
Instead of pineapple use dried apricots, cropped, soaked and drained.
Instead of can tuna or salmon try chopped spam or ham, all do come in cans!
Instead of rice or fried noodles try 2 minutes without seasoning.
This recipe is becoming a mix 'n' match one. It's a recipe ideal for living off your pantry or camping supplies.
Original Recipe

Another No Spending Day