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    • Planning ahead
    • By Planning ahead 1st Jan 17, 4:52 PM
    • 76Posts
    • 550Thanks
    Planning ahead
    Simplifying household stock and introducing routines
    • #1
    • 1st Jan 17, 4:52 PM
    Simplifying household stock and introducing routines 1st Jan 17 at 4:52 PM
    I am looking at simplifying food I have at home. I get annoyed when 4 boxes of cereal are open. I believed that if I stocked up it would save money when in reality more boxes are opened.

    Same with Jams and marmalade if I have 5 types they will all be open. I plan to simplify have one in the house - result it getting finished before going off, getting pushed to the back and another jar opened.

    I noticed the same with biscuits get three different types of Club and everyone wants one of each, if they are all the same only one is eaten at a time. I am not saying this will be the same forever but change after a few months.

    Shampoo and conditioner - my family will start new bottles because its new and different. Consistently buy one type and this problem is solved. I have been sucked into buying different ones because they are 'on offer'.

    I am beginning to think that because there is so much choice we are consuming more than we need to.
    :£120,000 / £28,000 Mortgage free date planned May 2023 Actual mortgage free date June 2030
    Debt free date October 2017 for CC/loans Earliest retirement date May 2023
Page 4
    • katkin
    • By katkin 12th Feb 17, 6:43 PM
    • 575 Posts
    • 7,264 Thanks
    katkin
    Don't know if anyone else does this one but I've found it a helpful routine when we are both out at work (sometimes I work from home) and it's handy to keep on top of the fresh stuff inventory.

    I keep baskets in my fridge full of smaller air tight boxes filled with individually prepared salad and veg ingredients so I can change the ingredients and make up mixes I fancy on the day. I keep about 3 days worth at a time. Grated and carrot sticks, chopped celery, spring onions, peppers, tomatoes cabbage etc. It means I just have to lift the whole basket out and get working straight away.

    I don't shred or rip off lettuce leaves or other delicate greens, broccoli is usually OK to floret / prep. I appreciate that I may be leaching out nutrients but I'd rather do this than not brother because it's too much work at 6.30am or coming in late from work. It means I can always have veg / salad options every day.

    Same with grating cheese, hard boiling eggs, tuna mix, lo cold meats etc, all in little boxes in a "protein' basket that can be lifted out easily.

    It's a real time saver, guides me on stock and there's always something nice semi-prepared to have.
    • GreyQueen
    • By GreyQueen 12th Feb 17, 6:50 PM
    • 11,367 Posts
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    GreyQueen
    I also do that to some extent. I make a big salad for breakfast and a smaller salad to go as a pack-up for a workplace lunch.

    I have two hard-boiled eggs in each breakfast salad, and boil them six at a time, often in the base of my stainless steel steamer pan when cooking other things above. Shell them and keep them in a small Pyrex tureen.

    I have another one on the go with some cooked pasta to add to salads, and some sweetcorn from a can, which will last me three days.

    I have three medium and two tiny clear pyrex tureens which are great for this kind of thing as I can see what I've got in them. I also have a couple of baskets in there, consolidating other salad ingredients, so the whole thing can be lifted out at prp time, rather than rummaging on the shelves and in the crisper drawer.

    Having these things already pre-prepped shaves quite a bit of time off my morning routine and means I can prep breakfast whilst in a semi-daze. I'm a morning person, but don't fire on all cylinders until properly tea'd up.
    Every increased possession loads us with a new weariness.
    John Ruskin
    Veni, vidi, eradici
    (I came, I saw, I kondo'd)

    • katkin
    • By katkin 12th Feb 17, 7:48 PM
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    katkin
    Thanks GreyQueen that's a great idea to hard boil eggs in the base of the steamer. I never thought of that!

    I'm an awful morning person, can not get on with them at all, so I need a bit of routine and organisation to get things done, especially for packed lunch boxes and prepping for dinner later.

    It does give you a wee bit extra washing up and it helps if you are a good chopper upper, but overall I find it time saving and a great way to get my 5 a day in.

    Same with menu planning and lists, I love ticking off my lists x
    • Planning ahead
    • By Planning ahead 26th Feb 17, 6:06 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 550 Thanks
    Planning ahead
    Had a quick look at the garden and decided that a climber that flowers for one week a year, has to go. It always looks untidy and wild. I've cut it right back and the other plants around get more room. It reminded of the items we keep because we have paid for them even though they do nothing to enhance our lives. The other plants will have a better chance to thrive and I do not have to waste time and energy trying to keep it tidy. I have decided that if something has too much upkeep in relation to the benefit it provides time to get rid.
    :£120,000 / £28,000 Mortgage free date planned May 2023 Actual mortgage free date June 2030
    Debt free date October 2017 for CC/loans Earliest retirement date May 2023
    • GreyQueen
    • By GreyQueen 26th Feb 17, 7:17 PM
    • 11,367 Posts
    • 218,710 Thanks
    GreyQueen
    Had a quick look at the garden and decided that a climber that flowers for one week a year, has to go. It always looks untidy and wild. I've cut it right back and the other plants around get more room. It reminded of the items we keep because we have paid for them even though they do nothing to enhance our lives. The other plants will have a better chance to thrive and I do not have to waste time and energy trying to keep it tidy. I have decided that if something has too much upkeep in relation to the benefit it provides time to get rid.
    Originally posted by Planning ahead
    Good for you!

    With a similar rationale, I am in process of getting rid of two strawberry beds. This will leave two behind, but they're on notice and will probably be taken away this autumn.

    I like strawberries but so does every other blessed thing which slithers, scampers, flies or hops, it seems. I end up spending a fair chunk of time on bended knee weeding the beds and am lucky if I get a couple of bowlfuls to show for it.

    But I do get to see plenty of partially-eaten fruit which I could have had, had not the woodlice, blackbirds, mice, rats, slug etc etc got there first.

    Compare and contrast the fruit bushes; they require minimal maintenance, just a few minutes of pruning once a year, and the picking of the fruit, and that's it. It will be less painful to buy a punnet or two of English strawbs when they're in season.
    Every increased possession loads us with a new weariness.
    John Ruskin
    Veni, vidi, eradici
    (I came, I saw, I kondo'd)

    • oldtractor
    • By oldtractor 3rd Mar 17, 9:35 AM
    • 2,197 Posts
    • 14,987 Thanks
    oldtractor
    I started eating out of the freezer and cupboards a month ago. really reduced the things in there. much more manageable and my bank balance is healthier too.
    Trying for 10 a day
    • Planning ahead
    • By Planning ahead 12th Mar 17, 5:28 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 550 Thanks
    Planning ahead
    I have sorted out the freezer, and made a list of what I am stocking in the future. The chicken Kiev have multiplied, along with suspect BBQ items these are all now in the bottom drawer if not eaten in the next few weeks I will cut my losses and feed them to the dog. The fridge is now organised,the too hot sauce has been thrown away instead of taking up room and being accidentally used and making food inedible. I now have space for a jug of chilled water, instead of using bottled water in the house.
    :£120,000 / £28,000 Mortgage free date planned May 2023 Actual mortgage free date June 2030
    Debt free date October 2017 for CC/loans Earliest retirement date May 2023
    • Primrose
    • By Primrose 12th Mar 17, 5:56 PM
    • 7,800 Posts
    • 26,151 Thanks
    Primrose
    Interesting question, this issue of choice. Many years ago we entertained somebody who has since become a friend who spent a weekend with us from the Soviet Union at a time when there was no consumer choice st all. They could queu up for an hour to buy a jar of jam. No choice of flavour, you just had whatever flavour the allocation system provided to the shop in question, and virtually every food product Had the same restriction.

    We took our visitor into a large supermarket. He thought he had died and gone to heaven. He simply could not believe the wide choices available in every category of product available and was totally overwhelmed. Eventually his comment was quite telling. "Well we queue for an hour to buy the only jar of jam flavour available and you seem to spend an hour shopping trying to make up your mind which flavour of product to buy".

    The marketeers always try to convince us their specific brand is superior to all the others. In reality, most of the stuff we buy will do the job in question. We have just been seduced by the marketeers' arguments.
    Last edited by Primrose; 12-03-2017 at 6:20 PM.
    • e4rly
    • By e4rly 13th Mar 17, 8:25 AM
    • 65 Posts
    • 503 Thanks
    e4rly
    Has anyone tried hair shampoo and conditioner bars?
    Originally posted by Planning ahead
    I have, as part of my drive to reduce the amount of plastic that I use rather than from an economising perspective (I had an overhaul last year when I became sick and tired of all the waste I generate - in part motivated by another thread).

    I bought some from Lush, so they were more expensive initially than regular shampoos but they do seem to be lasting for a while. My hair is also a lot softer, which is an added bonus, and my scalp is a lot calmer (in the past it has been easily irritated). I'd definitely recommend.
    Save £12k in 2017: £4,530 / £5,000 (No: 59)
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    • oldtractor
    • By oldtractor 13th Mar 17, 8:32 AM
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    oldtractor
    I like this idea.

    Much choice is actually delusion. Most conserves like jams and marmalades are only flavoured sugars, shampoos are pretty much of a muchness, with perfume and colours and additives to effect viscosity etc giving you an illusion of differences. Cereals are a load of sugary carp in most cases.

    By artificially restricting availability, such as having refills under lock and key until the current item is used up, you may be able to train the household to be more efficient. Good luck!
    Originally posted by GreyQueen
    ^^^^^
    spot on
    Trying for 10 a day
    • Primrose
    • By Primrose 13th Mar 17, 9:13 AM
    • 7,800 Posts
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    Primrose


    I find bathrooms terribly fluffy places and by having only one shampoo and one bottle of bath jollop out at a time, I speed the cleaning process no end. Not endless arrays of dust-gatherers out. I use the shampoo, and wipe the shoulders and top of the bottle before putting it back, ditto the bath jollop. Takes about three seconds and ensures that I never have smeary dusty bottles around the place dragging down the mood.

    ..
    Originally posted by GreyQueen
    Totally agree. Where does all this dust come from? Human skin particles? I have only to go into our bathroom 48 hours after giving everything a thorough clean and it's as bad as ever. The fewer toiletries you use and have on display, the easier cleaning becomes.
    • Planning ahead
    • By Planning ahead 18th Mar 17, 5:07 PM
    • 76 Posts
    • 550 Thanks
    Planning ahead
    Hi e4rly thanks for the feedback will ask for some shampoo and conditioning bars as a present for mothers day xx
    Last edited by Planning ahead; 18-03-2017 at 5:13 PM.
    :£120,000 / £28,000 Mortgage free date planned May 2023 Actual mortgage free date June 2030
    Debt free date October 2017 for CC/loans Earliest retirement date May 2023
    • kboss2010
    • By kboss2010 18th Mar 17, 5:54 PM
    • 1,031 Posts
    • 7,811 Thanks
    kboss2010
    Totally agree. Where does all this dust come from? Human skin particles? I have only to go into our bathroom 48 hours after giving everything a thorough clean and it's as bad as ever. The fewer toiletries you use and have on display, the easier cleaning becomes.
    Originally posted by Primrose
    Tell me about it! Frustrates me no end. Even my cleaning products gather dust at an alarming rate.
    "I want to be a glow worm, A glow worm's never glum
    'Coz how can you be grumpy, when the sun shines out your bum?" ~ Dr A. Tapping


    I'm finding my way back to sanity again... but I don't really know what I'm gonna do when I get there
    ~ Lifehouse
    • GreyQueen
    • By GreyQueen 19th Mar 17, 9:49 AM
    • 11,367 Posts
    • 218,710 Thanks
    GreyQueen
    Totally agree. Where does all this dust come from? Human skin particles? I have only to go into our bathroom 48 hours after giving everything a thorough clean and it's as bad as ever. The fewer toiletries you use and have on display, the easier cleaning becomes.
    Originally posted by Primrose
    This has puzzled me a fair few times, too.

    My conclusion is that bathroom fluff is a mixture of human skin cells, human hair, shed fibres from towels and shed paper fibres from t.p. Obvs, for those whose WC is in a separate room, the latter won't be a contributing factor.

    Totally agree with minimising clutter in bathrooms to speed clean-up time.This is one area of the home which you want to keep on top of, because it can quickly start to look pretty sordid and unpleasant.

    And who wants to start the day looking at grunge and grime?
    Every increased possession loads us with a new weariness.
    John Ruskin
    Veni, vidi, eradici
    (I came, I saw, I kondo'd)

    • oldtractor
    • By oldtractor 19th Mar 17, 11:19 AM
    • 2,197 Posts
    • 14,987 Thanks
    oldtractor
    I like this idea.

    Much choice is actually delusion. Most conserves like jams and marmalades are only flavoured sugars, shampoos are pretty much of a muchness, with perfume and colours and additives to effect viscosity etc giving you an illusion of differences. Cereals are a load of sugary carp in most cases.

    By artificially restricting availability, such as having refills under lock and key until the current item is used up, you may be able to train the household to be more efficient. Good luck!
    Originally posted by GreyQueen
    absolutely correct.
    Trying for 10 a day
    • Bumblebear
    • By Bumblebear 21st Mar 17, 1:44 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 449 Thanks
    Bumblebear
    Been meaning to read this thread properly for ages... trying to keep things a bit more simple is definitely on my agenda for the year. Since December I've been working my way through 'varieties' of ambient foods and toiletries that have accumulated in my life, and are unnecessary; when all of a type of item has run out, I've tried lots of things in quick succession and can make an informed choice about future purchases. Simple! I'm doing this with everything from pasta to shampoo to make up.


    Hi e4rly thanks for the feedback will ask for some shampoo and conditioning bars as a present for mothers day xx
    Originally posted by Planning ahead

    I used to use Lush shampoo bars but do sometimes find they left a build up on my hair which I didn't care for, I also struggled to stop them melting too quickly, but that's probably due to room temperatures. I've settled on* Pure Nuff Stuff's shampoo bars at £4 a pop, I found them in my local health food shop but they also appear to have online shopping - http://www.purenuffstuff.co.uk/Hair-Care. They're also free from SLS which, whilst not deadly, does seem to unsettle my skin with repeated use.


    * When I say settled, I've probably got about another 3 months of other shampoos to use up first before I can justify buying again. Annoying, but it saves money and I will no longer have a bathroom shelf of half used bottles!
    • firebubble
    • By firebubble 21st Mar 17, 6:11 PM
    • 37 Posts
    • 388 Thanks
    firebubble
    A few years ago I had a huge declutter after recovering from depression. I think stockpiling was part of the anxiety which went with the illness. I started one of the 'no toiletries' challenges in January, and the first thing that ran out and I needed to buy was shampoo.... in November

    I've since noticed that in relation to toiletries I like to try the new products that are out, but was also thinking that 3 for 2 etc were 'bargains', and also was trying to be economical by buying the biggest sizes. The combination of this thinking was an enormous stockpile of toiletries, a stockpile that would have been far more useful as money in the bank, rather than zillions of bottles.

    It was only by not buying new that I could really see how long something lasts, and in particular, how long that last couple of inches lasts (weeks - plenty of time to buy a new one without panicking I'd run out). I could see how much I was really using over the months, and I realised that my 3for2 often meant I was buying a year's worth of something, when in a few weeks, there would be something new I wanted to try...

    Now I buy the small bottle, as I know that it feels pampering and nice to have a wander round boots and choose a new shampoo or whatever, but I only buy one, and then use it up (or pour it in the handwash bottle if I don't like it). Generally, it's just come out so it's at the discounted launch price as well. I think overall this saves me money, as a stockpile is only useful if you get it at a much lower unit price than normal AND you use it up.... as I never actually used up the stockpile, this money was not used well....

    I also realised that shampoo, shower gel, handwash (and in a pinch, washing up liquid) are basically all the same - just liquid detergent of different strengths.
    • Primrose
    • By Primrose 21st Mar 17, 6:47 PM
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    Primrose
    [QUOTE=firebubble;72287568. ........

    I also realised that shampoo, shower gel, handwash (and in a pinch, washing up liquid) are basically all the same - just liquid detergent of different strengths. [/QUOTE]

    Just shows how the Marketing people and all those fancy TV adverts get people hooked, doesn't it?
    • Bumblebear
    • By Bumblebear 21st Mar 17, 9:51 PM
    • 98 Posts
    • 449 Thanks
    Bumblebear
    I also realised that shampoo, shower gel, handwash (and in a pinch, washing up liquid) are basically all the same - just liquid detergent of different strengths.
    Originally posted by firebubble
    Not the cheapest, but there is a soap available called Dr Bonners which openly admits it has 18 (yep, 18) purposes. It's a pretty basic formula available in a selection of fragrances (rose, aloe, green tea etc) - like most things with less ingredients these days, that means it costs more...

    I think I might treat firebubble's 11 months of shampoo as a challenge! I don't think I'll get that far but I wouldn't be surprised if I get to 6 months. I've done the same in buying large bottles of the-one-I-liked-at-the-time on 3 for 2, thinking this was a money saving idea. Nope. This will sound awful at first - but I've also helped stretch out my stash by cutting down on how much I wash my hair. I used to wash it every day, which was time consuming and costly. Now I'm down to twice a week (as per the suggestion of my hairdresser I might add).

    Lipsticks, glosses and tinted lipbalms are a whole separate issue - I'll be at that particular stash for years.

    Cutting down on groceries was a lot easier than this, unlike the toiletries I didn't have a year's worth of anything I didn't particularly enjoy!
    • wort
    • By wort 21st Mar 17, 11:21 PM
    • 418 Posts
    • 6,927 Thanks
    wort
    Being a Marie Kondo konvert, I have to confess I shuddered when I read Tiddlywinks description of her stock. I'm sure it works for her but I'd much prefer the space and freedom to choose to keep the money in my pocket till I need to buy it. As most have said I also have one item in use at a time with 1 in stock , that gets put on the shopping list when it goes into use.
    There is only 2 of us and we are near to shops and have never had to run out and buy anything ,not even milk. I usually have a rough idea of what we will eat that week , my freezer always has fish and meat in so stock piling really isn't my thing.
    In fact the less in my cupboards the better
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
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