Saturday 29 February 2020

This Week and This Month........................

THIS WEEK....................3 Firsts

  1. First seeds sown at last. I plugged the propagator  in to check it still worked and it did, so that's set up in the conservatory with aubergine, peppers, tomatoes, cucumber, basil and parsley.
  2. First rhubarb pulled and cooked............... lovely.


3.First daffodils brought in from the garden

On Tuesday I met Rachel-from-Norfolk for coffee in Morrisons and succumbed to a jam doughnut (deliciously light and fluffy) so just had fruit for my lunch later. It's donkeys years since I counted calories and stuck to a diet  as I've been the same amount of over-weight-ness for about 10 years. Not sure I'm good at it losing weight anymore, I like my food too much but as I've signed up for the Free 12 week course I'd better at least make an effort. (Promise not to bore you with all the details of diet and food!)
 Although I might mention the course. The girl running the course (young and slender!) said she doesn't tell everyone the weekly subjects as she doesn't want people to cherry pick which sessions they attend but as I have the leaflet given out by the OneLife Suffolk speaker at WI last year and they are listed online I know what they are - but will try to get there every week if I can.

Week 1 was Welcome to OneLife Suffolk  - why are you here? what do they do
Week 2, yesterday, was How to lose weight......(no need to tell me = Eat less/different + Move more!)
After the 12 weeks there are monthly maintenance sessions for one year.............if the course continues as there were 9 people on the first week and only 5 in week two.

I was quite surprised Wednesday evening when BBC Look East news said that the doctors surgery in Bacton (Big WI village and the other half of the doctors practice where I go) had closed for deep cleaning after someone went to the surgery after coming back from somewhere where the virus has been found .........despite all the instructions to stay at home and ring up.  I've not heard any more about what happened next.

Wet snow Thursday, it didn't lay and just added to the amount of water. The septic tank was pumped out but clean water from the high water table just ran straight back in from the soak-aways - Big problem. Shall I have to spend about £8,000 on a proper sewer treatment thing?
Electric went off  on Thursday again. I dialed the UK Power networks number which recognised my phone and knew my postcode and told me they were aware of the problem in the area and engineers were on the way. I'm quite happy with this sort of big brother technology - very useful. It was only off for an hour so no hassle.

This week I'm grateful for .........
  • Living in Suffolk
  • A quiet swimming pool
  • A few hours of sunshine
  • Seeds  sown

THIS MONTH................
Was February Frugal?...........................No, of course not!

Spending in February started straight away with an unexpected expense of a new tyre for the car. I noticed a small bulge in the tyre, so ran the car round to my friends at the repair workshops and asked if I should be worried about it. Yes, slightly, was the answer and they ordered a new tyre and fitted it later the same day. Tom the boss said I'd probably gone hard into a pothole...........there are certainly plenty of them about. On the little back road between home and Eye there was a pothole so deep that it had a traffic cone stood in it and you could only see the top half of the cone! - thankfully it's been filled in now but there are plenty more.

The biggest but predicted expense was the house insurance. For some reason Saga wanted £80 more than last year, when I rang them the bloke said it had already been queried as an unexpected price rise but had come back the same. So I said I'd swap to a local broker who were offering a £50 shopping voucher for new insurances. Their price was only £5 more than I paid with Saga last year - plus the voucher (which I've not had yet, although she did say it would take a few  weeks and it's not been two weeks yet).

All the usual spending............. food for me and the cat, diesel for the car, direct debits for the phones/broadband and charity.  My 20 swim ticket needed renewing - a bargain at £37. There was the follow up loo-roll delivery from 'The Who Gives a Crap' company. (I've delayed the next delivery of 48 until December).
Also purchased were my seed potatoes and compost, a new peanut feeder for the birds, gifts and all the usual bits and pieces for keeping a house and home going. Then the sewer pump out added £99 to the Out column right at the end of the month

 Thrifty bits
  • The half year water bill arrived  and was £6 less than same time last year.
  • A charity shop coat for £3
  • Bulk purchase tub of  Bicarb for cleaning
  • New bra reduced by £3 in a closing down sale
  • A few leeks from the garden
  • Still making bread
  • Still catching the cold water before it gets hot enough for washing up to use elsewhere
  • Free 12 week weight-loss management course 
  • First rhubarb from the garden
  • Picking the right days to do the washing and hang it out - only used tumble dryer once

Still Clearing out..............
Old coat to clothes bank
Few more bits of craft stuff to charity shop
Few tea-cloths  to Youngest Daughter.

In March there is an electric bill due, car MOT and of course council tax.

Well done if you've read right through this rather wordy post! And welcome to new followers who've boosted my numbers this week.

Have a good weekend
I'll be back Monday


  1. You've been busy as ever! I did smile at the comment about being the same level as overweightness for a decade. Me too. Is it an age thing? My weight has been pretty stable. But I just have a little too much of it. I did not attempt no-spend January or Frugal February. Yesterday's dental visit means there will be big bills in March too. But I'm still fed, and clothed, and the Lord will continue to provide, I know. I hope your septic tank issues are resolved. Have a good weekend x

    1. The only way to sort the septic tank is for it to stop raining!
      In reality I ought to lose 3 stone, but even one would help with healthyness

  2. Lovely pink rhubarb there, Sue. Presumably it’s forced, so how long does it go on to produce? I’ve never forced mine, but thought about it so many times :)

    1. Yes forced under an old dustbin for a few weeks now. I move the bin onto another clump after a while

  3. Your rhubarb looks good; mine is only just coming through. Did you force yours?

    1. Yes as soon as I saw it coming through I put the old metal dustbin over the top

  4. the rhubarb looks fantastic.

  5. I do hope you don't have to pay for the sewer which is a lot of money.
    My son is coming to day to put new taps on my sink in the kitchen and several other jobs, I hope it is an easy job for him.
    Have a nice weekend everybody.
    Hazel c uk

    1. I think I will have to pay out for a new sewer system before I sell the house

  6. Yes Sue, I have read it through and I must say I am full of praise from the serious - and sensible - way in which you keep a check on finances. As to the weight thing - I need to keep my weight constant because of arthritis in my ankles. Every time I am tempted by things which are fattening I remind myself that every pound gained (I have not gone metric) adds more for my ankles to carry round. Love your header by the way.

    1. I have to keep a check on outgoings as until April next year when I get my state pension I'm living on the spouses pension and savings

  7. One of the schools was shut here because of the returning school party of 5th years from Northern Italy where they had been ski-ing. It was supposed to be self quarantining and no school. I found hoards of them in the cinema and on the train on Friday afternoon!

  8. My son has done the taps and the greenhouse window, we finished with a good chat over the early days it's good.

    Hazel c uk

  9. It's always such a thrill to get seeds going for a new season. I've not had a Frugal February either, but that happens. The weight-loss programme sounds good - I managed to loose a few kilos on my journey but it has sort of stuck now. I've changed my focus to health instead of weight (been overweight for years) and feel better about it. Enjoy my food too much!

    1. I like eating all the things that are wrong and full of calories - if only I loved salad, life would be easier!

  10. I really hope you don't have to pay £8k to sort the tank out! It's an expensive time of year for us with car insurance and caravan site fees and it's all gone up since last year even with the discounts Mark haggles for on the phone and gets.

    That rhubarb looks lovely. I especially like a rhubarb crumble but it's a real treat because I need to add so much sugar so I can eat it. Although if I lost some weight I'd be able to eat more of it lol. xx

    1. Last year I made crumble with my first rhubarb, this year I was good and just had it stewed and luckily it didn't need much sugar

  11. What a treat to have the first rhubarb of the season! Arilx

  12. We've eaten haravested rhubarb from the community garden this week, and very nice it was too. Hubby started his seed sowing this weekend in the propagator, he's getting all excited about the growing year. Just need the rain to stop so he can be out in the garden.
    Have a good week

  13. My mum was quite excited to tell me about the snow flakes - and I told her about our latest snowstorm lol. I had her beat. I love Rhubarb! I think I have some somewhere in the garden, but always miss picking it at the right time!

  14. You are always so busy and doing something.

    Another rhubarb lover here.

    God bless.

  15. The rhubarb looks lovely. Our allotment rhubarb is only just coming up although G has covered it with an old tub to force it. I can't wait for the weather to sort itself out so that G can get into the garden as well as the allotment. I need him out from under my feet!
    I hope the septic tank is sorted, it sounds expensive and not the sort of thing you want to spend money on :/ Angie x

  16. Wow, lovely rhubarb, you are well ahead of us. Our rhubarb is currently about four inches long … but looking good.

    You've been busy, busy, busy as usual. I find it almost impossible to keep off any weight I lose. I seem to have a default weight that I go back to each and every time I knock a stone off, it's very frustrating.