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Climate Smart Meter & Solar Panels

December 5th, 2009 at 08:02 pm

About 12 months ago I got a Climate Smart Meter Power checker installed here, one of our state government deals to reduce power usage here. Its a device that checks how much power you are using that minute and it cost. I needed do a battery change a few months back so the pricing got changed by accident and now is out by a few cents for each watt. Not that I am worried that much as the power cost has gone up since then and its in the pipeline that its to go up a lot more over next few years something like 25% more.

My hot water is not on this tariff but still shows on the climate smart power meter, when this is on 49c less any phantom power and then if you put anything else then its more. I am averaging around 12.6c most of the time. Lowest before charging batteries was about 1.6c but now is about 2.35c at night with no hot water on and just phantom power for things that needs to be still on and with no fridges or freezer on.

A few months ago I got six solar panels installed here, another government grants to the tune of $8000 plus our state government working on bulk order deal that in the end costing to low income earners a few hundred dollars to have installed this offer is now over. After nearly two months our energy supplier finely came and installed the new meter so that I can get rebates on any extra solar power that is sent to the grid because I wasnt using it. Daytime power is now mostly solar powered and I even sending some back to the grid.

Its now 14 days since that meter box was changed. I have use 83kW of grid power and generated 56kW of solar power and sent to the grid 16kW on top of what I have used. I am averaging 1/3 solar and 2/3 grid kW use per day. I have been monitoring it for 78 days now, so I can see a pattern forming of using 8 to 9 kW on grid power and generating between 4 -5.9 kW of solar power per day..

Last summer I was using 16.27kW per day with very mild use of an Air Con at times when temps got over 34C inside the house.

So in all it will cut my bill down to a bearable price and ever more if I get solar hot water installed next year as my name is down for another grant for that one too! I would never be able to afford it if I had to pay full price. So I have done my little bit for Climate Change in this household but I will be on the look out to do more in the future.

Costing of all is well over $9500 in the end I am out of pocket only $355 including the Climate Smart Meter which I got a refund of the cost from the local council.

Still to come is the Solar Hot Water worth over $2500 out of cost I am told will be with senior discount around $100 out of pocket. Which checking my inbox just a while ago I am just now waiting for the grant approval then it will just need to wait my turn for installing.

With all these schemes will, its hope save on building extra coal power stations in the near future. We do have the sunshine here as I am getting over 13 hours per day with my solar panels now!

Leonardo da Vinci Machines exhibition

September 5th, 2009 at 02:40 pm

Boy! Time get away with you doesnt it. I have had a quite few weeks here.

I did go to see the Leonardo da Vinci Codices & Machines exhibition here a few weeks ago with my son. It was expensive but worth it as he was my most favourite inventor and being self taught my most creative influence as I had to teach myself many thing over my life time and are still learning come to that.

Spending for this exhibition - concession fee $15.00 plus I allow myself to indulge on one book and DVD. So I bought the last catalogue they had $50.00 and DVD -DA Vinci Genius- $28.00 so all up cost $93. If I am ok this week, I will take myself off to the Art Gallery to see exhibition that is ending this month.

Its the end of the financial year here!

June 29th, 2009 at 03:25 am

Not that it make much difference to me but a lot of other things are happening as well to make the cost of living higher around here.

For one our state government has had an 8 cents a litre state tax subsidy on fuel here for many years now but come the 1st July it will be gone. This will increase the cost of not only fuel but cost of most things too! As our State was the only one that did not have this extra tax on fuel, it will an eye opener to the others states if the transport and supermarkets in Australia were averaging their prices with our states fuel subsidy because at times our prices for fuel were still higher then some of the other states. Someone was making money on this subsidy and not our state motorist. I see it as putting all the states on a level playing fielding but others see it as a rip off by the our state government for taking it off. Time will tell as their say.

Another price rise will be electricity price will be going up so will need to watch my power consumption until I get solar power installed. I still dont know how much but will review my contract with my supplier when I get an idea of how much. If I can get a better deal then I can change suppliers.

Another expense that is coming in on 1st July will Cat Licence this will be a problem as my cats do not like collars at all.

With all the rises that are coming in like rates, water, fares and everyday cost of living with fuel subsidy coming off even I will need take stock of everything and find more money out of my pension to pay all of it. Luckily single pensioners are getting a pay rise in September but there will not be much leftover in the end.

Take Car or Bus

October 7th, 2008 at 12:54 pm

Well I didn't go to the city last week for my monthly lunch date as planned. But I needed to pay my credit card as it was due.

Instead of taking the car as usual with cost of gas the days, I took the bus and went into the city costing $2.20 for senior off peak day trip ticket.

The plan was to pay the credit card in full and take some cash of the bank and buy a pair of hosiery, but first as it was lunch time so I walked up the casino for lunch as at treat. The first thing was to play to machines for 5 minutes before I go to lunch. I like to play on one machine (1c only ones I play) if its not being used. I put my $2.00 in after 6 spins the jacket pot spin came up winning enough to play for 15 minute and a free lunch of Chicken Schnitzel with chips & salad, coming out even.

Later I went off to do my banking and the shopping for my friend.

My days outing cost $2.20 fare plus $60 on the credit card. Free a lunch and playing pokies, good walk down the Mall and three hours out of the house.

Shopping Today

February 14th, 2008 at 02:30 am

I went to the city today. Visit to the Chiro and to pay my car insurance which is due next week. Went to Hungry Jack for lunch again, having burger, coffee and ice cream as the coffee was Free, so costing $2.40 only. I did buy some batteries that I need to replace. I went and bought some birthday gifts at chemist as they had them on for buy one get lowest price free, what you do when they do this, you buy both at same price so you getting at least 50% off. I got two toiletries gift boxes that were a great price $7.48 each so I only paid $7.48 for both.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $555.90 (my cash outlay)
Savings $stretch $9.93

Update on No Spending Month

February 10th, 2008 at 04:27 am

Well I did spend a little today; I had to go to the city.

Afterwards I checked out the supermarket for markdown goods while there and spent about $5.00 on clearance food lines, saving around $11.00 there.
I did drop into the op shop on the way home and bought some more books 3 cookbooks for 50c each saving around $30.00 here on Reg. Price.

I did go to Hungry Jack for Coffee (free) and had a burger & cone as well. Cost $2.40 saving $2.45 here.
Not bad but not good when you think about it, a little of no will power.

So I spend money today
Total Money spent today $8.90 (my cash outlay)
Savings $stretch $43.45

No Spending Days:- 8

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Sunday ~ Tuna Pasta with Salad
Monday ~ Leftovers night
Tuesday ~ Apricot Chicken with Rice
Wednesday ~ Omelet with Shredded Cheese and Salad
Thursday ~ Steak with Onions & Grilled Tomato
Friday ~ Salmon Patties with Vegetables
Saturday ~ Chicken Schnitzel & Egg with Vegetables

Spending more on my books.

August 12th, 2007 at 01:48 am

Well itís almost two week since I lasted posted here.

I have been to EKKA again this year, which is on now. I wrote about it in last year August 2006 blog. I spent around $40.00 this time and $20 was on books.

Today I went to the second hand bookstore near my home and bought all the back dated copies of Australian Gourmet Travellers, which I collect. I bought around 35 copies this time. 5 for $2.00 which is good buy as they are new $7.95 each.

I got a free coffee again today - saving $2.45

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $2.45
Add to total $20 Challenge $89.95
My Spending today $54.00

Lunch out with ex-work friends today.

July 25th, 2007 at 02:51 am

In the city today, paid my credit card off again in full and paid another bill too!

We went to the Sizzlerís again, just having the salad bar & drinks today $11.95 as they have put the price up again. Saving $2.80 with my senior card. Even though I went to five other places to buy things on my list not one had them anything I wanted so I just walked out again.

Lucky I did as when I left this morning, I was having trouble with hot water system, it over 13 year old so it a replacement job. The thermostat is gone I think, and the $200 to fix it for around 2 years is not worth it. As it only will cost about $600 Ė700 to replace it for next 10 years plus. Life span is around 10-15 years for an electric hot water system. It not economical for me, to buy solar hot water system at $4000 and only $1000 rebate with about same life span.

Why I know it needs to be replace is for the last few weeks it been just eating the kWh big time. I have been reading the meter every few days, have use 68 kWh since Saturday, and had NO hot water when I went to shower this morning and I used so little hot water in that time too! It took over 20 minutes to fill the tank until it overflowed, then I read it and check the meter box was on too! When I came home this afternoon I read it again I had use 13 kWh in 7 hours which means that thermostat is not turn off when hot and all I am getting is the laundry full of steam instead. I rang the energy company and found when the next power reading is and as I am 100kWh over now and still 4 weeks to ago before next reading. I spoke to a plumber, we will buy one and replace it on Saturday. In the meantime the power tariff that is on 24/7 used only 12 kWh in all this time since Saturday with 2 large refrigerators & chest freezer as well all the lights, TVís & computer etc. So another Major project expense this week, lucky I bank that $1000 rebate a few weeks ago.

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $2.80
Add to total $20 Challenge $87.50

Shopping again & menu

July 1st, 2007 at 02:01 am

I went shopping this weekend, and bought heaps of fruit & vegetables as the Granny Smiths Apples, brown onions, sweet potatoes were only 79c kg. So I bought a lot of them as I have dehydrator with 10 trays so I will be over next few days, I took over 3 hours to cut and lay out seven trays today. I had to cut them up very finely for what I need them for, as I am making seasoning mixers. I have to do the onions on they own but the others can be done together. I also bought celery, peppers, & kiwi fruit. I will do the apples & kiwi fruit together then get around to them. Dried apple slices are 250g for $2.99. Before I went shopping, I went to Hungry Jackís and got a free coffee and single cone 40c, with my senior card. Saving $2.45 here.

Weekly Main Meal Menu
Sunday ~ Ham Omelette with Tomato Salsa
Monday ~ Chilli Con Care & Corn Chips
Tuesday ~ Chicken Schnitzel with Tomato Salsa & Steamed Vegetables.
Wednesday ~ Pea & Ham Soup & Toast
Thursday ~ Spaghetti Bolognese
Friday ~ Poached Fish with Steamed Vegetables
Saturday ~ Thai Satay Chicken with Steamed Rice & Green tea

Adding Coins $20 challenge -$12.50
Todayís Senior Card Savings - $2.45
Add to total $20 Challenge $84.70
My Spending today $35.56
Any Savings today $12.45

Lunch in the city today!

June 27th, 2007 at 12:15 am

I went to the city to have lunch with my ex-work friends today! We went to Sizzlerís as usual, I just had the salad bar. Saving $2.00 with my senior discount so that another $2.00 for $20 challenge.

I did pay my credit card balance off in full. But as my internet bill was not on this, I had to ring to fine out why and make sure that I wasnít cut off at end of this month. They did as no I would be and I would be charged for last month & next month on the next bill. Not happy with that but it was they problem not mine!

I bought some markdown organic pasta 1kg saving $1.50 and bacon bones to make pea & ham soup to-morrow.

Yesterday it rained all day but only light showers, my tank is full again! I now have enough water to last for a few months if didnít rain for a while. I will use only full recycle & tank water for the next month or so.

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $2.00
Add to total$20 Challenge $69.30
My Spending today $445.00
Any Savings today $3.50

I went for a walk today!

June 24th, 2007 at 01:09 am

I dropped into the antique store and had a look around and end up buying a $3.00 very old cookbook with lots of old style recipes in it. It's instruction book for a refrigerator in the 1950's.

While I was out, I walk up to Hungry Jack's and had a free coffee $2.45 that's add to $20 challenge. It not bad for a treat now & then for 40c for ice cream cone that I have with it.

Here one of my favorites that I still make. This recipe is from the booklet above.

Peach Melba
Open a can of cling stoned peaches halves.
Put a half peach in each glass dish.
Fill centre with a good ice cream, pour over some raspberry syrup toping, then pile whipped cream on top of all.
Garnish with a maraschino cherry.
Vary this by using fruit syrup (peach) from the can instead of raspberry syrup topping.

Weekly Main Meal Menu
Sunday ~ Homemade Hot Curry Chicken Soup & Toast
Monday ~ Spaghetti Bolognese
Tuesday ~ Spicy Pumpkin & Sweet Potato with Lentils
Wednesday ~ Scramble Eggs on Toast
Thursday ~ Garlic Chicken Schnitzel with Tomato Salsa & Steamed Vegetables
Friday ~ Poached Fish with Steamed Vegetables
Saturday ~ Curry Ground Beef & Rice with Sambal

Today's Senior Card Savings - $2.45
Adding to total $20 Challenge $67.30
My Spending today $3.40
Any Savings today $2.45

Bargain in spice mixes

May 24th, 2007 at 01:48 am

I walked up to the shops today, and went first to Hungry Jackís and got a cappuccino & a cone 40c spent here, as I got my cappuccino for free Senior Card Discount so that another $2.45 for $20 challenge. I drop into the supermarket and check the price on the eggs $2.85 so different of 56c between price for the same packaging & same company supermarket that I bought the other day. While I was there, that I had a look at the bargain bin, and found some spice markdown here our supermarkets are downsizing they stock so that they put in their own brand copying Aldi. You never know what they will be cutting out next at 60% off for items with a long shelf life I will not say NO, to thing that I can use. I bought Hoytís brand Cajun Spice Mix 125g @ $1.60, Oregano Leaves 60g @ $1.14 Hot Dried Chillies Crushed 100g @ $1.62, all normally priced in the $3.00 & over range. It looks like you will be only able to buy the 14g packets in future if they donít cut them out too! They have bought a range of herbs & spices in they up market range store brand Select at over $2.00 -15g per bottle. I will be looking at Asian, Indian & Italian deliís around the place. If I am to make my own mixer, I still need to base spices and some herbs that I donít grow. So I will need to look outside the normal supermarkets for these. I saved around $5.00 here.

I did drop into the thrift shops on the away home. I pick up some more Gourmet Traveller magazines 5 for $2.00 and a Womanís Weekly cookbook for $2.00. Along with some Tupperware containers 3 for $3.00, one was a large serving container with a lid, that is not in their normal range and two spice containers. Saving heaps here, all in good condition. Spending $7.00. RRP for this lot books $52.70 & add about $35.00 for Tupperware, you are looking $88.00 for $7.00. So not a bad day at the office.

I did go on line to today, banked some money in ING, I have started to bank some of my $20 challenge money. $120.00 of which $40 is $20 challenge.

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $2.45
Add to total $20 Challenge $34.85
My Spending today $11.76
Savings today $88.45

Shopping, & Bills

May 21st, 2007 at 02:34 am

Today I did a big run around shopping and pay my bills, as I havenít been out for a while. I went to thrift shop on the way up the street and bought a large plastic container, for $2.50 that is normal sold for about $12.95 new. I also pick up some more Gourmet Traveller magazines, 5 for $2.00 I now have quite a number of theses now. I bought some grocery $4.70. I want to get some film developed but no one does it any more but at large shopping centres. So I had to go the another shopping centre in my car. So as I need to pay some bills as well, first put the film in to get developed, $11.63 then I had wait for 3 hours but I needed to shop, have lunch and pay the bills. Going to Aldi spending $19.93, buy some underwear $11.94, having lunch for $1.65 saving $1.50 on coffee with my senior card. Paying my car membership $62.00, and another bill for $94.50. I did buy the book The Secret $20.94 so I will know want it all about. I still have a few more bills to pay via my credit card. I will pay this before I need to put my next annual Chiro bill on it. But I will have it paid off along before the interest is due on it.

Weekly Main Meal Menu

Monday ~ Chicken Mustard with Rice.
Tuesday ~ Beans Rissoles & Salad
Wednesday ~ Toasted Savoury Mince Jaffaís
Thursday ~ Scramble Eggs on Toast
Friday ~ Poached Fish with Steamed Vegetables
Saturday ~ Spicy Pumpkin & Sweet Potato with Lentils
Sunday ~ Chicken Schnitzel with Tomato Salsa & Steamed Vegetables.

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $1.50
Add to total $20 Challenge $32.40

My Spending today $231.79
Any Savings today $11.95

Doing my son a favour.

May 8th, 2007 at 12:08 am

What do you do when the heel of your shoe breakís and you just started a twelve hours shift and canít go home to get another pair of shoes or get them fixed? You guess it! Ring mum as she the only one not working today. So I had over a 50km around trip to my DS place to get another pair of shoes then on to where he is working today. While I was out I had a McDonaldís meal and a free coffee, saving $1.50 here, as it was a Senior Card deal.

Thatís what mother is for!

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $1.50
Add to $20 Challenge $29.40

Meeting up with my friends so itís Lunch Out again!

May 2nd, 2007 at 02:14 pm

We all meet today at our usual spot Sizzlers. They have put they prices up so I will now need to re-think what I buy in future. Today I had the salad bar & drinks with the managerís special of fish. Costing $15.90 with the senior card off of $3.00. We put in $2.00 each for a lotto between all of us each time we meet up but never won a large prize, it would be nice to won! I bought my only magazine that I each time comes out for $2.60. Recipe + is the name of the magazine and I have never seen it 2nd hand. I paid my credit card so it's back to Zero again.

Todayís Senior Card Savings - $3.00
Add to $20 Challenge $27.90

Lunch Out

April 30th, 2007 at 02:12 am

Today I need to get some pet food & cat litter so as had to drive the car. So I went to Hungry Jackís for lunch seeing that they had two for one deal vouchers on their Spicy Baguettes, I bought that and got single cone and 2 Free cappuccinos with my senior card. Saving $9.75 adding $4.90 to $20 challenges.

While at the grocery store I found some can pineapple chunks on clearance trolley with a good shelf life. At 40c a can instead of $1.73, so I bought 4 for my bulk assets pile. Saving $5.32 here.

Opening $20 challenge $20.00
Todayís Senior Card Savings - $4.90
Total $20 Challenge $24.90

Last day of the Mirror Image Challenge

April 26th, 2007 at 01:05 am

Well itís the last day of this Mirror Image Challenge, keeping up with the tally sheets and doing all the Maths did take sometime and at times days. Especially when you find after 28th weeks that the numbers are out by around 1000 dollars because you were adding in the wrong column into the totals at times and had to do the figures again and then go and fix it in the blog. Until I made up templates, it did take time to work it out and to keep it going for whole year. But it was worth it in the end, as now I do know that I can save money on what I am doing and where I am saving it. I will do a summery of my senior card discounts and pension rebate discounts and give you all and idea what different if I didnít have this extra.

Some of our pensions here arenít allow these discounts. So not all get them, our Age & Disability Support Pensions do but the others donít to my knowledge, depending on the age of the person (60 plus) with different rates for couples than singles but with all pensions and allowances do get Pharmaceutical Allowance and some other benefits. All my figures were for a single household on Full Age or Disability Support Pension and in 60 plus group.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Turkish Bread with Hummus Lettuce Tuna Marinated Feta with Marinated Peppers
DINNER Poached Fish with Salad Coffee

Another No spending day

Paying bills & shopping

April 19th, 2007 at 02:08 am

I drove down the shopping centre to pay my bills. Rates and phone bills $339.00 with seniors discount savings of $239 to be added for a full price amount in this challenge.

I went to Target to buy a gift card and birthday card for MIL. Spending $33.00 here.

While I was at the shopping centre, I went to the supermarket for DF-M to get her some plastic containers that she wanted. I had to get 10 x 1 Litre flat plastic containers costing $2.95 each. This all bought too at the supermarket!

BREAKFAST Boiled Eggs & Toast Coffee
LUNCH Chilli Tuna Salad & Crackers Apple Coffee
DINNER Thai Satay Chicken with Steamed Rice & Green Tea

Todayís Full price Tally $611
Todayís Savings - $ 239.00
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10877.46

Lunch at Hungry Jackís

April 16th, 2007 at 04:01 am

I did the washing today saving all the grey water that I could. Using every trick that I have mention before in other post so that I could to get every drop. This routine does take a little of more time (around 1Ĺ hours for two loads and one load of hand washing) than when I can just leave it to go down the drain.

After I did drive up to the Hungry Jackís for lunch. They were having a two for one deal again so I had a Spicy Chicken Baguette for $5.25 for both. Using my senior card I was able to get two cappuccinos for free saving $4.90 and I bought a cone for 40c. So as I only ate one baguette at lunchtime I will have the second one for my dinner, as I was able to refrigerate it before it was unfit to eat. Less than two hours is the limit we have been told here. Four elderly people have died in a nursing home from food poisoning just last weekend and over twenty are very ill. This was in Victoria but the risk of food poisoning here is high because of our hot climate so we maybe more watchful.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH lunch out *
DINNER 2nd Spicy Chicken Baguette Grapes Coffee

Todayís Full price Tally $10.55
Todayís Savings - $4.90
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10612.51

Itís coming to end of My Mirror Image Challenge.

April 14th, 2007 at 02:47 am

In a few weeks time I will be coming the end of my Mirror Image Challenge. I am working on summery of my Senior discounts against my other $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings ways of saving money. So to see how much being a senior on a pension with discounts that are available here.

So at the end of this month I will be able to post this summery answering that question that I asked in my first post in April 2006

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Chilli Tuna Salad & Crackers Apple Coffee
DINNER Curry Ground Beef & Rice with Sambal

First meal at friends house.

April 11th, 2007 at 03:05 am

It was a busy day, first off I went shopping and got some very good meat markdowns today. 2 trays of sausages for $3.35 and two packets of 4x Turkish rolls for $4.00 saving $8.14 here.

I also went to the thrift shopping and bought some cookbooks one is a collector item. A long with some other books all for $5.00. saving over $45.95 on them all. One a hardcover copy ĎA Book of Mediterranean Food by Elisabeth Davidí for $1.00. I priced new a paperback by her last week for $27.95. I do collect Elisabeth David cookbooks.

While I was out had morning tea at Hungry Jacks buying a single cone for 40c and got 2 cups of cappuccino for free, saving $4.90 here (Senior Card Discount.)

Later in the day, I went to help young couple move into their first home, shared with their parents first meal in their first home. I did watch this young man grow up from a new baby next door. It was lovely to share this moment in time.

BREAKFAST Boiled Eggs & Toast Coffee
LUNCH Chilli Tuna Salad & Crackers Apple Coffee
DINNER Thai Satay Chicken with Steamed Rice & Green Tea

Todayís Full price Tally $71.74
Todayís Savings - $ 58.99
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10570.86

Day off and meeting up a friend

March 21st, 2007 at 01:10 am

This morning my handyman friend arrived at 6.30am to finish off the security door section he was working on so I could start painting before he went off to do job for someone else. Before going we went to the locksmith to exchange & buy the new lock. Buying a right lock & refund $55.38 and spending another $163.20 for a better and stronger lock a deadlock this time.

After this I left him and walked to the city from the locksmith, as it was only about 2km across the Walk Bridge then though the gardens up to the city this took me about hour. I am going to meet a friend for lunch, we havenít seen each other for around eight years as she lives interstate and is here for the week. As both of us are into spending for the sake of boredom. We went off to the State Registry Office so that she could apply for her Parents Marriage Certificate, when jump on a free bus for trip around the city so that she could see the charges to our city since lived here 40 years ago. When it was time to go to lunch, we used our senior cards here and saved $5.00 each on our meals.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Lunch out *
DINNER Grapes, Muesli & Milk Coffee

My major project door spending to date. $ 1305.25

Todayís Full price Tally $180.88
Todayís Savings - $5.00
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10413.69

Working on new door project Ė Day 2

March 16th, 2007 at 01:31 pm

As only the brickwork was removed yesterday and extra bolts bought. Today we worked on removing the old window and the rest of the walls. No one could have broken in last night, as the original wall was still intact. This is one of the big days on this project as the plan was to have the new door lockable tonight. Which I am happy to say itís the case.

My friend is a master builder, this the first time he has put a door in of this type and did work too!

I did set a bit of problem in making these doors, yes they are two doors but you wouldnít know it by looking at it from outside. As itís one standard door and half panel door in French door style, but we have made look like a standard door with a half panel. I did buy extra bolts so that the half door is bolts at all times but when you need to remove furniture you can unbolts this panel door. It even has a mock centre wooden butt screwed and glued to extra half door so that it looks like a half panel.

While this was going on I drove down to shopping centre and paid my bills so that I wouldnít forget to do so next week, when we will be still working on this project. Saved $30.00 on my power. (senior discount). I bought a few groceries as I am feeding an extra person for next few days.

MMM I will be very lucky to have any no spending days this month, at the rate Iím going now!

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Salad & light Cream Cheese on Crackers Apple Coffee
DINNER Poached Fish with Salad Coffee

Todayís Full price Tally $238.10
Todayís Savings - $ 30.00
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10395.69

A walk and a free coffee

March 9th, 2007 at 02:24 am

I went for a walk today up the chemist for my medicine saving $20.00 with Senior Health Card. Drop into Hungry Jack and had a free coffee & cone saving $2.45 here.
After I came home and did my ironing for the week, as I will be painting this weekend.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Crackers & Marinated Feta Cheese with Marinated Peppers Fruit Coffee
DINNER Pumpkin & Lentil Stew with Garlic Focaccia Bread Coffee

Todayís Full price Tally $27.75
Todayís Savings - $22.45
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10324.77

Lunch with Friends & Paying Bills

March 8th, 2007 at 01:46 am

Itís that time of the month again lunch with my ex-work friends, there eight of us today. we went to Sizzlers again, I had the manager special as it was still on seafood for $3.95 plus salad bar & drinks*. Costing $15.10 saving $3.85 (senior card).

I paid my Household Insurance today, $658.50 and yet again paid my credit card off. I do have a debit bill on this card so need keep on top of it at all times.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Lunch out *
DINNER Curry Ground Beef & Rice with Sambal

Todayís Full price Tally $717.45
Todayís Savings - $ 3.85
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10,302.32

Meeting up with old friend for a chat.

March 5th, 2007 at 12:47 am

Today I decided to go the art gallery for a look at the latest collection. While I was there, run into an old friend that I meet a few months ago. She had been away overseas late last year. This was the first time that I had seen her since then, so went to the coffee shop and had a chat on what we both have been doing since we last saw each other. While she was away her son download a virus on to they computer so that is why I hadnít heard from her, and her had to buy a new one too! I just bought a coffee today $2.80 and the cost on my bus fare was all expenses that I had today saving $2.00 (senior discount) on fares, as I had taken my lunch to eat.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Turkish Bread with Hummus Lettuce Ham Marinated Feta with Marinated Peppers
DINNER Pasta with Pasta Sauce & Tuna

Todayís Full price Tally $ 6.80
Todayís Savings - $ 2.00
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $10,020.97

Buying Gas & Lunch Out

February 28th, 2007 at 12:19 am

Today I filled my gas tank, as the price was right for a change and I had a voucher for 6c off a litre also. Saving $1.73 but last Sundayís price was $1.10L but today I got it for around 93.9L. not bad.

While I was out I took myself off to Hungry Jackís and had a chicken baguette and ice cream cone along with 2 free cappuccino @$2.90 each (senior discount). Saving $5.80*

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Lunch out*
DINNER Omelette and Mild Chilli Salsa Apple Coffee

Todayís Full price Tally $29.53
Todayís Savings - $ 7.53
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $9993.67

Mobile phone prepaid recharge

February 17th, 2007 at 12:46 am

I had to recharge my pre-paid mobile today as it is soon due and I didnít want to lose my credits if I forgot to re-charge it on the date due. Too much to lose, and I not talking about cents here. itís annual pre-paid plan that I am on as I only use it for SMS & incoming calls. I will only use it for actual calls if I am in trouble or have lost the person I am with and need to find them. As we all have mobile phones in our family. My family bought this mobile phone about three years ago so that I could have on when I am driving back and forth from they place 20 minutes away on a freeway and they can find me if I am out. Itís when I do put my mobile on.

So back to the costing of this mobile phone, Ok I got it for FREE with $30.00 free calls on it. As I canít hear it ring only see the lights when a message come in. I donít use it much to talk on, as the calls on this annual plan are .60cent per minute. I have no voice mail, rarely call out, only SMS mainly. After first 2 months, I bought $50.00 recharge and put it on annual plan. At the end of the first year I had $49.00 left which rollover to next recharge which I put another $50.00 recharge on it and next year another $50 recharge. Because now, I have still $72.00 left to rollover this year I put only $20.00 on it this time which is the lowest I can get. This is not all I saved, as I got 15% off each of those recharges as well! So whatís the cost of my mobile phone to date. As the phone was free with $30.00 in call. I spent only $127.50 out of my pocket. In 3 years I had $200 of call credits now have $92.00 left. Using only $108.00 in this time. $108.00 call credits used on Mobile phone calls in 3 years with a phone that is in daily use. Can anyone else beat this?

Also I went shopping today, bought some groceries $3.85 saving $2.00 and had lunch out $2.95 and free coffee, saving $2.45 and I bought chocolates as I do have a sweet tooth. $3.88 saving .60 here

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Crackers & Marinated Feta Cheese with Marinated Peppers Fruit Coffee
DINNER Savoury Mince on Toast. Fruit Coffee

Todayís Full price Tally $33.10
Todayís Savings - $ 8.05
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $ 9963.51

This Mirror Image Challenge and balancing my budget.

February 16th, 2007 at 12:38 am

The more I do this challenge more, I see that having the pension and claiming all benefit that you are in titled too, does save money over and above what I am saving with other areas of this challenge. I must give you a list of the things that I am getting with pension benefit and see if I can work out before the end of this challenge at the end of April. How much of this Challenge is pension related and how much frugal buying or DIY savings. I will need to review all my posts to date to do this.

Today is one the dayís that I balance my budget and check that I paid all my bills due. I do this at least twice per month. Once for my own balancing and once for this blog as they donít run at the same time and are 2 weekís apart which does keep me on my toes. All is well with my budget to this point. So much so that I did order some books in online today, and went to get at check to pay for them, as I donít use my credit card online if I can find away not too! The firm that I am buying from is Australia and does allow a cheque but it can take a little longer but in this case not as the books are not available until end of the month. Free postage is part of the saving at $7.90 per book that is a large saving here on top of saving of RRP $11.44 per here. I may have got it cheap if I bought from other online book companies but itís the postage & handling charges that cost the money and my bank cheque /check are free because I my pension card. Saving $8.00 here.

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Crackers & Marinated Feta Cheese with Marinated Peppers Fruit Coffee
DINNER Poached Fish with Salad

Todayís Full price Tally $78.88
Todayís Savings - $27.34
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $9955.46

Paying phone bill with CC & WHY?

February 13th, 2007 at 12:20 am

Today I made a special trip down to the place where I paid my bills as I am a bit old fashion and like to visualize that I paid a bill and hand over my cash or cards as the case may be. Well as I never pay many of my bills via credit card unless I am very short of money that week and I can be paid before next payment is due. What different about todayís phone bill itís only a very bill and I can afford to pay it cash too! The phone bill is only $38.35 this month I do get a payment with my pension once every 3 months for a discount on my phone bill $20.30 so I better count that in my tally as I was paid it this week.

Different is that I have more than one credit card and this one hasnít been use for a very long. While as I was talking to a cashier at another bank, I said need to make sure that I use it at a least once every few years so the bank knows that I still what it. The cashier did hear of a lady that had hers cancelled because she never used it. As I am going to the city in the morning and will have time to pay the credit card off again so itís back to zero. I donít have any fees on this card and it only there for a safety blanket, as I donít qualify for any new cards so I need to keep them open even if I donít use them. After tomorrow I will put it back in it home. This is one of the problems of having a very low income. Here you need an annual income of $25000 plus to qualify for one and my annual income is below $15000. Do any of you have this problem?

BREAKFAST Muesli & Milk Coffee
LUNCH Crackers & Marinated Feta Cheese with Marinated Peppers Fruit Coffee
DINNER 2 Sausage & Egg with Baked Beans

Todayís Full price Tally $58.65
Todayís Savings - $ 20.30
2007 Total $-t-r-e-t-c-h Savings Tally $9907.32

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