It's a Bank Holiday Monday and I'm not going anywhere today. I'm not a fan of Bank Holidays, far too many people out and about. I like to take my days out/holidays Monday to Friday if possible. I'm planning a walk with Louise for Thursday in the Peak District, that's if it is not pouring down with rain so we'll keep our fingers crossed for that. The weather has rather put a dampener on things this summer, it's been difficult to avoid it at times.
I have a gap where I can fit in a camping trip with a shopping trolley and a bus pass, that's if the weather is kind. Then I am planning to walk across Britain again, this time starting at Ellesmere Port and walking through Cheshire, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire. My home made coast to coast as I call it, or, from the Mersey to the Humber. This will be done whatever the weather. At this time last year (mid September) I did the River Trent walk and I was lucky with the weather so I am hoping for the same again.
Anyway, are you keeping up with my food diary, the link is at the top of the page. I am still posting my food shopping up there, so you can see what I eat and how much I pay for it. I am not doing a monthly total as I already know from the previous experiment of eating as cheaply as possible, that I can get it down to around about £10 - £12 a week. Anything less than £15 a week I'm happy with, it keeps it within my budget. When I say food diary I mean just the food I put in my mouth at home or pack ups. I very rarely buy any food out, maybe fish and chips twice a year, and I just can't bring myself to go into a cafe or restaurant. If I haven't planned very well and feel a bit peckish I will pop into a shop and buy a cheap tummy filler over the counter. I never buy bottles or cans of fizzy drinks, or even the supposedly healthy drinks, they are too expensive and have far too much sugar in them.
Some people add on toiletries, household cleaning products, and pet food to their shopping list. I don't, I have a seperate budget for these. My use of toiletries is negligable. I am still using up the home made soap which I used to sell seven years ago. Sales dropped dramatically and I was left with stock I couldn't sell. I buy the cheapest shampoo and moisturisers, and use them sparingly so they last a very long time, sometimes years. I don't bother with anything fancy just the basics. My last deodorant is what my sister gave me four years ago, I keep forgetting to use it. I find a wash under the armpits works just as well. No perfume, I hate it when you walk by someone and are almost choked by the powerfull fumes coming from them. And have you ever walked by a house when the occupants have just let the bathwater down the drain? The whole street is enveloped in perfume, what a waste of money. I just like to feel clean and not smelling of anything at all.
My household cleaning budget is also negligable. I mainly use diluted wash up liquid in an old spray bottle, does the job as well as any expensive gunge you can buy for lots of pounds. Some people are hung up on zapping every square inch of surface with powerful chemicals. Hot mildly soapy water will do the job. I do buy cheap bleach for the toilets, but use it very sparingly, maybe four small bottles a year. A regular scrub with a brush keeps them sweet. My other indulgence is two cans of spray polish a year. No I don't want to use vinegar and newspaper for the windows, I don't have any newspapers and I don't buy vinegar. I maybe dust and polish the furniture about once every three or four months, so my two cans a year are more than enough, and I can afford them.
The cats? Well they get what they need, but I always look for reductions/special offers. They have a treat now and again. This week they had a whole cooked chicken, it was reduced from £4 to £1. I didn't enjoy pulling it to bits, the things I do for love. There was enough for Rocky as well.
Anyway, enough of the waffle. I bought these deli wraps for 27p, reduced from £1.80. There's no way I would pay full price for them. Wraps seem to be the 'in' food at the moment. I can't see why, they're only like thin bread that you wrap your filling in like a parcel. It all goes down the same way. But they were cheap so lets have a go at wrapping.
Spread the wraps with the same cheese and garlic spread. Put half the mixture in the centre of each wrap and add half a sliced fresh tomato. Wrap up and zap in the microwave for 30 seconds, lettuce to garnish. I eat it with a knife and fork. My posh sandwich was lovely.
On the other hand I have a good crop of runner beans and courgettes, I'm eating these every day. Every little helps. It's a shame that my cucumbers are late, there are loads of flowers on the plants, but I fear we may run out of summer before they have a chance to produce. I live in hope and keep watering them.
Got to go, time for Rocky walk. Enjoy your Bank Holiday Monday. Toodle pip.
Tour of the Plot - Part Four
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