Monday, 12 March 2012

My own mini supermarket

Good morning. I must do an update on my food diary, link at the top of the page. I did a shop on Thursday night and have been too busy to put the list into the diary. The reduced items were a bit thin on the ground so I did some bulk buying to get it up to a £30 spend so I could use the £4 off voucher. Sixteen tins of baked beans for £4.00. Twelve tins of mushy peas for £1.20. Twelve tins of rice pudding for £1.56. Here is my restocked tins department, prices all marked up so I know if they have gone up at the next shop. Everything is sorted and stacked in rows so I can see at a glance what I have. Nothing can get lost at the back only to emerge ten years later, very much out of date. I like to keep things tidy.  
When I was in town with Annette on Friday we called in the Asian shop. I bought 2kg of brown rice for £3.99, and 12 tins of chopped Italian tomatoes for £3.49, which makes it 29p a tin.
I've been doing a bit of chopping and changing with my cat litter, trying to find ways to cut the cost. For ages I have been buying Morrisons cheapest clumping litter. It started off at £1.09, then £1.19, and it's been creeping up ever since. Now it's £1.54.
I don't want to pay top price for a fancy litter which is only going to get thrown in the bin. Sainsbury's is cheaper but it's a slightly smaller bag. Tesco's is a similar price to Morrisons, but it doesn't clump so well. Now I have found This Bob Martins stuff in Home Bargains and it's £1.29 so that's an improvement. HB have opened a bigger store close by so I will be able to drive to it and pick it up. The label on the bag says it's a mix of all the materials they pack in that factory. Sweepings up basically. Well I would go and sweep the floor myself if it meant I could have it free, ha ha.
I see there are some new people who have found my blog, that's nice. Welcome and come on in. There have been some lovely comments, blush blush, now I am feeling very chuffed. Thank you.


  1. It's always nice to see a well stocked larder, even more so when it's full of real bargains.

    I love that the cat litter bag admits it's full of sweepings up!!

    Sue xx

  2. Hello
    My name is Pam and I discovered your blog recently. I am really enjoying it and look forward to reading it when I get a minute.
    Hubby taking voluntary redundancy soon so I need all the help and hints I can get.
    Best regards

  3. I might try that litter - I've been using Sainsburys too at £1.29, but as you say it is smaller.
    I won't let my cats read the label though, i.e. 'sweepings up' they may consider themselves above using that !! ha ha

  4. Hi Ilona, Just thought I'd let you know that Sainsburys are doing two frozen salmon fillets for £1.00 until 24 April, they were £3.49, in their taste the difference range.

  5. Well I've been and got some of that litter, just one bag for now to see how it goes - I get through a lot with all my feline friends - now numbering 7 since a beautiful black boy decided to adopt me recently ! I did all the usual, signs on lamposts, informed local vets, put notes through letterboxes but no one has claimed him - so looks like he's mine now ! gosh that's a blow (!)
    Willow - I'm going to get some of that salmon - thanks for the info.

  6. Hi... Just a quick tip I picked up (some people think its silly but I like it!) - store your tins of food in your cupboard upside down - then the settled stuff will be at the top when you open it and you'll never have to try and scrape out that last bit from the bottom of the tin again!
    Love the blog - I look in every day

  7. Whoops didnt mean to be anonymous !!!

  8. Just pinched this from moneysaving site

    Cat Breeders secret .. use Layers Pellets.

    It comes in large sacks from Pet City and farmers-type shops. A large sack will cost you about £5 and will last absolutely ages. Use the pellets quite thickly and it'll 'clump' into a 'pancake' which is easy to scoop out. The pellets are very good at absorbing smells and any liquid.

    Yes, Layers Pellets is, in reality, chicken food! So a *major* advantage is that if kittens eat it, as they occasionally do when investigating their surroundings, it won't hurt them as it's already food. There have been very bad outcomes from kittens eating 'super-clumping' cat litter....

    Hope this helps

  9. Ilona, car boot fairs are sometimes a good place to pick up a bargain. I went to one yesterday and came home with a 10kg sack of onions for just £1.00
    The fruit and veg sellers at car boots have very good prices and it`s worth a try to get some lovely grub. I`m also looking forward to our local farmers markets starting again. That`s another place for cheap and unusual veggies.

  10. I wish I had such a wide cupboard to store my tins, mine is half the width of yours. I have to put something in it so tins will fit in as they can be stacked up. I need the width for plates, cooking dishes etc.

    You did well there.

    That's a good tip about the upside down but in reality I like my tins the right way up as they tend to fall over the wrong way round.

  11. Hmm - good idea about the layers pellets, I used to buy those when I had my smallholding but would never have thought about using them for litter - definately worth a go if it will save money. (if it doesn't work I'll just have to get some chickens)
    The jury is still out on the HB litter, my lot consider themselves only fit for the best don't you know - so they are still deciding whether to or not to lower their delicate little bottoms onto 'sweepings' up' - I'll let you know.
    Must dash - I am late with their breakfast and they are not best pleased !

  12. Hi Anon. Interesting about the layers pellets, I heard about that. I have been looking into it, but the prices for a 20kg sack range from £6.50 to £14.11, so that isn't as cheap as 2 x 10kg from Home Bargains at £2.58. I don't know if it lasts longer due to the clumping qualities. There might be more volume in a bag due to the lightness in weight of the product, so does this mean you don't need to use as much in the tray. I don't know. I suppose the only way to find out is to try it.

    Yes, I hadn't thought of storing tins upside down, thank you AnnBB. There always seems to be more sauce at the top of a tin of baked beans. If you have a basic tin opener like I have, stab it and lever around the edge, you can always open the tin at the bottom. New fangled twisty knobby things wouldn't work. Or another way to distribute the contents evenly would be to shake it first.

    There is a man who sells fruit and veg at our local car boot sale, I must have a look at his wares next time I go. Thanks for that reminder Sarina.

    That's a good price for the salmon Willow, thanks. Must call in and get some.

    Hello Muppet Pam, glad you have dropped by. Don't worry about your hubby losing his wages due to his voluntary redundancy. Between the two of you, working together, you will have a better quality of life. Think of it as a new chapter opening up, a new challenge to beat the system. You can and will survive. Best of luck.

  13. Just found an Asian shop that sells basmati rice 10 kg bag for £9.99

  14. Wow, that's a good price Wean, much better than my 2kg for £3.99. Did you buy some, how long would it take you to use it up? I reckon a bag like that would last me ten years, ha ha.

  15. yes it is a lot isn't it ? but I went 'halves' with a friend, but still an awful lot of rice to get through !
    I want to start stocking up on dry goods anyway, I have a freezer full of goodies and plenty of tins, spices etc., already. I think flour may be next.
    I think I may become a hermit - plenty of provisions in the house so I don't have to go out !

  16. What a well stocked cupboard. I buy a lot of my stuff from Home Bargains these days.

  17. The thing I hated about bar codes was that each can or box was no longer priced so I could look at the prices when I restocked my food and see what had gone up in price. I felt like I had lost control a bit.

  18. Ilona ever thaught of making own rice pudding? slow cooker powdered milk sugar cinamon raisons. very cheap and can be frozen.Tastes so much better than savers watery pud. Kizzie. Guess mushy peas could be done same method.


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