Friday, 14 January 2011

Do the sums

My maths isn't that good, I can just about get by with the basics, add, subtract, multiply and divide, but hey, that's enough to work out the price of food. The thing is, sometimes it is a good idea to work out how much something is costing annually if you buy it on a regular basis.

It may not seem very much when you open your purse and get a cup of coffee every day on your way to work, but multiply it by how many days you work in a year, and it is a heck of a lot. Not that I would ever leave home without a cup of coffee in the morning, but some do.

Popping into the newsagents for a paper can be a costly habit if you do it every day. Try and get out of the habit and see how you are quids in every month. It's worth sitting down and doing a few sums, what starts off as one small purchase can unbalance your finances if it turns into 5 a week, 20 a month, or 240 a year.

This is a little sum I did. I buy the Tesco cartons of orange at 62p each. If I buy one every week that will cost me £32.24 a year. (If the price doesn't change)
If I dilute it 50/50 with water, I only need to buy half that amount, 26 cartons, that will cost £16.12. But I dilute it 25% juice, 75% water, so I can get my annual consumption down to 13 cartons costing £8.06, and you can still taste the orange.

I dont buy cans or bottles of fizzy drinks, too expensive and too much sugar. This is what I drink at home during the day, after my one cup of nescafe in the morning, and if I go out I make up a plastic bottle of diluted juice to take with me.

I only get fruit cordial when it's on special offer. The lemon juice is similar to Jif lemon, but cheaper, usually found on the continental speciality food section. Sometimes I get Tesco lemon juice, but I found this lime juice was cheaper at 48p. Lemon or lime, doesn't matter to me, all the same.

So to make my drink I usually use a mug and not a glass, sometimes hot or sometimes cold water. You only need a splash of juice, just to give the water a hint of flavour, the bottle lasts ages. When I make a lemon or a lime drink I add a half teaspoon of honey, just to take the sourness off it. Sometimes I will mix the juices and leave out the honey, it works just as well. You get loads of drinks out of a bottle, and it is a good way to encourage you to drink plenty of water, if you don't like the taste of plain water, I think it's horrible. So no excuses for not drinking enough, this way it's cheap.


  1. I do almost the same but, sometimes I like a bit of fizz, so use Tescos' carbonated water.

    Sandie xx

  2. Your opening paragraph reminds me that I believe that there are only three types of people; those that are good at maths and those that aren't.


  3. Brian, you make me laugh, thank you.

  4. You are so right: The little things add up. Hey, so do the not-so-littles!

  5. I'm a big fan of plain ole water, except when I have a cold. like now. then water just tastes flat! I'm getting tired of all the juice, so I'll be trying your idea. thx, MQ!

  6. I'm going to have a try at your juice idea to! My daughter doesnt seem to like to drink water either so this would be much better in her beaker than additive filled rubbishy squash.
    x x x

  7. The thing with cordial is that you should use it very sparingly, so you just get a hint of flavour. The cartons of juice can also be diluted to your own taste, the more water the better. If you are going to drink it neat as part of your five a day, you only need a small glass, not a tumbler full. I think it is much better to use a small amount and make it into a big drink with water.

  8. I dilute juice in the same fashion, and you are right. It still gives enough flavour. I`ve started to drink a hot mug of water with lemon juice and honey, in the morning. It`s a good prevention for the dreaded cold. Money does not go as far as it used to, so we must find ways to stretch the pennies or even make the products last longer. It works for me.

  9. We dilute pure juices half and half.
    Remember that the pure juice is full of vitamins.
    Vitamin C helps iron absorption...try a glass not so diluted after something with a nice amount of vitamins in like cabbage or chickpeas/pulses etc. and this will help your iron absorption no end :0)
    Pleased you've got your new car sorted.


Comments are welcome from anyone with a Google account. I have had to change the settings due to the amount of troll comments coming through. My apologies to genuine readers who have been with me for a long time.