Thursday, March 15, 2012

Visual Clutter

I love the new Newborn nappies from Aldi. No cutesy design in pastel colours.

They're just Plain White.

I didn't realise I didn't like the other nappies with the baby designs until I saw this one. Clean & Nice. I like it.

I find Visual Clutter just as bad as real clutter. I don't even like photos on my fridge. But for my kids' sake, I stick photos up (colourful and messy) because friends are important. Family is important. And relationships are important!!

When I was a kid, my mum used to say to me, "How can you study in there? Look at the mess in your room/on your desk?" I used to always dismiss that as Parental Nagging, but now I know better :) Visual Clutter does make a difference. Can't concentrate, can't find stuff, can't find space.

I think visual clutter affects me more than I think. The instant I tidy up and put everything away, I feel a lot less scattered and is more productive.

As for my desk, I need HELP!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Minimising Food Bills

One thing I learnt last year as I cooked for a few extra mouths (we had homestay students) is how to pad out a meal.

I have learnt that Your Labour/Time = what you save in $.

So for example with fish, it's easy to buy three packets to feed eight, and pan-fry or steam or bake. But to save money you can pad out just one packet by adding stuff like vegetables & flour, and making them into little fish cakes. It goes a long way.

Currently, I am spending about $45 per week per person on food.

This seems a lot especially because two of those persons are little kids under 7. And we don't eat extravagantly.

This includes the Franklins receipt, including foods like cheese, dip, and worchestershire sauce, but also things like toilet paper, dishwasher powder, and shampoo. I'm not going to sit there and split it! So it's counted all in under "food bill".

My aim this year (once head is above water for 2 minutes after Baby #3) is to bring down the weekly cost of food to under $200.

$80 fruit & veg (incl. $25 veg co-op)*
$30 meat
$20 Korean groceries e.g. seaweed, curry block, dumplings
$60 Franklins
$10 Here & there/Buffer

I am learning to cook more Frugally.

*$25 veg co-op buys me a lot of stuff. But I also spend about $55 at the local fruit & veg shop to buy lots of fruit (we eat a lot of fruit!), pasta, milk (6L), passata, nuts, bread and herbs. I think some savings can be made here...

What I gave away on Freecycle this week

What I listed on Freecyle this week:

1. Two wooden puzzles (gone)
2. One earthenware stew pot (gone)
3. Eight music CDs (gone)
4. Four Chinese paper lanterns (no takers)
5. A wooden white single bed frame (no takers)

One of the postings on freecycle recently stated, "OFFER: bag of baby clothes sizes 000-0. Pick up from Thornleigh. Please state when you can pick up. No sob stories".

I thought that was hilarious!

I got my own sob story today.

"Could I please have the earthenware pot? I am coming from Beecroft, but I'm not sure if I can pick up today, as my 17 year old Poodle is dying, and I need to spend more time with her, and she can't stand up properly".


I should have more's probably true.

A Thoughtful Friend

A friend texted me the other day...

"Hi Glorya, I want to buy you a present for Sam. But with your minimalist desires, I don't want to get something you don't need or want. Is there anything you need?"

How very thoughtful!

I suggested some baby wipes. Or a long sleeve jumpsuit.

She bought me both.

I love it when friends and family are very accommodating of my "unusual hobby".

Three Big Garbage Bags

Three Big Garbage Bags donated to the local op-shop today.

It felt good!!

I really don't know how I end up with all this stuff I don't need. I did mention I went on "Holiday Mode" for a bit over Christmas. Plus I guess I do have a Newborn Baby!

I gotta do a better job of not letting them come into the house in the first place.

Some things in them bags were:

1. toys my daughter (3) no longer plays with
2. some books: I'm slowing editing my bookshelf
3. my son's school shoes: still some life left in them!
4. bags (plastic bags, paper bags, present bags): the shop re-uses these