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2009 Money Saving Alternative Calendar

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  • There's a lot to be said for being organised and planning ahead, but a whole year :eek: :eek: :eek: What about being spontaneous and enjoying the opportunities that life presents you with :confused::D

    Is this possible? We're eating casseroles, pasta bakes and other rib-sticking food atm. We won't be doing that in June ;) Food and sharing time my family is to be enjoyed, not organised to within an inch of its life :D

    This should work, but do make time to enjoy your DD's birthday. She'll rmeber the tiem you spent with her, not how organised you were.

    Penny. x

    I think the more organised I can be the more time I will have to spend with my family and I'll be able to be more spontaneous. Instead of thinking "omg...what can I do for dinner....hmmm fish fingers?" I'll know that as it is the 2nd Tuesday of the month I just have to defrost a HM chilli for example and can spend time playing with my dd. Or for my daughter's next birthday if I am organised well in advance I'll be able to pick up In The Night Garden bits and pieces if I decide that will be her theme and be able to grab bargains if I see them. I was also thinking that it would be nice to have some planned activities/outings with her so we make the most of this year and any local events that are going on. I can only see benefits to being super organised if I can do it :rolleyes: but I appreciate your thoughts and agree that it does sound a bit too strict but if I can do it it will be a plan to live around not to be restrictive (I'll happily leave that chilli in the freezer if my OH wants to take me out to dinner:T) and I'll menu plan according to the seasons now ;)
  • csarina
    csarina Posts: 2,557 Forumite
    Buying wrapping paper cards and presents in January is a good idea, but for meal planning why don't you split the year into 3 that way you can plan for the coldest months, then half way through look your summer menu and then autumn through to winter again.

    Personally I plan a months menus ahead, we do not necessarily have them in the order but it gives me a guide, and as I like stews, casseroles and spag sauces to mature, I generally make them a day in advance and keep them in the fridge. Cooking enough for two meals and freezing one is always a good idea.

    If your little one still sleeps in the day you could use that time to prepare and cook a dish either for that night or the next. I keep a stock list and menu list on the fridge door, so I can look at it and know a) what shopping I need and b) what the supper is. I also do a freezer audit once a month when I do my shopping list. Right now I have a lot of meat , chicken and turkey, so will only need to buy minced beef, fish, liver, sausage ,and bacon next month, and I can plan my menu's accordingly.

    Let us know what you decide to do.
    Was 13st 8 lbs,Now 12st 11 Lost 10 1/4lbs since I started on my diet.
  • Pink.
    Pink. Posts: 17,675 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    This thread on the Special Occasions board would probably be of interest to you :)

    The Thrifty Gifty Girls 'n' Guys 2009 (Organised & Money Neutral for All Occasions)

    Pink
  • I'm a bit like this, I definatly get xmas things in sales and larger size clothes in the sales for the kids. I tend not to get too many toys as they change their mind by next christmas but if your daughter will be 2 there will probably be quite a few things you could pick up, jigsaws, dollys, cuddlies etc. Both of my kids were born in Dec so I HAVE to be organised and start planning things earlier in the year cos otherwise nothing would happen. As for menuplanning, I use a monthly plan as I find it really allows me more time to spend with the family and room to be spontanous as I can switch around meals easily as changes demand! I don't repeat the monthly plan each year but have a core group of meals that get used each month. Planning and organising definatly allows me to spend more time with my family, eat more variety of food, (rather than fishfingers all the time as you say), save money as I waste nothing and get everything in the sales but also allows me to be spontanous as I can move things around easily but then I can be a little OCD!
  • Hello Lalaland......Surely there's a compromise to be reached. :confused:

    I manage to be organised with just doing a weekly meal plan and picking up gifts and cards when I see them in the shops. Maybe what you're proposing would work for you but it would be a bit anal for me I'm afraid. icon7.gif
    Life is too short to waste a minute of it complaining about bad luck. Find joy in the simple things, show your love for those around you and be grateful for all that you have. :)
  • I always get my gift wrap in the shops after Christmas and put it away. I have not had to buy any at all this year as it was all bought in January.I make all my own cards anyway so thats not a problem. I do have a big plastic box that I chuck in 'bargains 'that I have spotted over the year and it does help at Christmas time when I'm sometimes stumped for ideas.
    Not too sure if I could organise a year ahead in food as I often eat whats in 'season' at the time. but a good idea if you've got the space to by some 'staple food ' maybe as the price of food will never come down again so you could save some cash there I guess
  • I always get wrapping paper reduced in the sales and the presents reduced at Boots with 75% off for birthdays etc through the year. I have a pressy box that it all goes into and this must save me a fortune. At Boots I use my points to pay for the majority too, so not actual money being used IYKWIM.

    All cards are bought when I see them at The Card Factory and generally buy the 29p cards as most are lovely looking and look very expensive. I buy a selection of cards needed for the year and a few odd ones (sympathy, new home, job, pass test etc) but again just the 29p ones or ones reduced. Maybe spend a max of £5-£8 a year for all cards inc Xmas ones.

    I can just about manage a menuplan for 2 weeks, possibly a month but dont think I could do for a whole year. Maybe a summer and winter one???

    HTH

    PP
    xx
    To repeat what others have said, requires education, to challenge it,
    requires brains!
    FEB GC/DIESEL £200/4 WEEKS
  • nickynoo08
    nickynoo08 Posts: 1,860 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    I'm a mum of a 2yr old and buying as much as i could in the jan sales this year was the best thing i could of done. There was no way i was gonna try and take a 2yr old around the shops at this time of year. I'd still be there now.
    In the sales at the begining of the year i bought all my cards, wrapping papper and about 80% of birthday and xmas presents for everyone. What i did was write a list of everyone i was gonna be buying for and as i bought a present i wrote down what i bought and for who otherwise you could easily end up double buying for people.
    I also stocked up on a lot of toiletries for us too - all gift sets that had been reduced. Just make sure you've got plenty of storage space for your presents! All of mine were put in my wardrobe and was a total nightmare. I've now sorted a cupboard especially for my xmas/birthday goodies.
    Any presents that i never got in the sales i got through out the year - summer sales/special offers etc... I always keep my present list on me so i know who i've still got to buy for, then that way you wont be double buying again;)

    I'm still trying to get my head around meal planning:o , sometimes it works well for us and others not so well. But i've decided that come the new year i'm gonna give it a go again.

    Next year i'm aiming to have a 'free' xmas. I started saving my boots points, nectar points and money and vouchers from survey sites a few months a go. My boots points will be getting used in the sale, as will my nectar points. If theres nothing worth getting i'll be saving to use through out the year on presents. I'll still be getting my cards in the sale tho.

    Sorry everyne i've just realised how much i've waffled on:o
    £387.39/£196.46
    Pay my debt by End of Feb 2022
    49.28% paid!

    £199.55/£500 savings by End of April 2022
    39.91% saved!

    Make £2022 in 2022 - £20
  • I always get wrapping paper reduced in the sales and the presents reduced at Boots with 75% off for birthdays etc through the year. I have a pressy box that it all goes into and this must save me a fortune. At Boots I use my points to pay for the majority too, so not actual money being used IYKWIM.

    xx


    Are Boots points really worth it? :confused: I find Boots so much more expensive than the supermarkets where I buy my toiletries (and which also pays clubcard points) which leaves me real money left over to buy gifts from whatever shop I like. ;)
    Life is too short to waste a minute of it complaining about bad luck. Find joy in the simple things, show your love for those around you and be grateful for all that you have. :)
  • nickynoo08
    nickynoo08 Posts: 1,860 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Are Boots points really worth it? :confused: I find Boots so much more expensive than the supermarkets where I buy my toiletries (and which also pays clubcard points) which leaves me real money left over to buy gifts from whatever shop I like. ;)

    I know what you mean. I dont shop there unless i know i'm getting a good deal. Over the last year i managed to collect £104 worth of boots points. I'm a member of there parents club and you can collect double and sometime trebble points on baby stuff. I usually buy there wipes when on offer and boots own nappies and believe me the points soon mount up. If i'd bought them elsewhere i may have paid the same price of maybe even a few pence less but the amount i get back in boots points makes it worth while for me.
    On one shopping trip last year my little un had recieved some boots vouchers for xmas so i used them to stock up, i got double points on all of his baby stuff, plus extra points from the machine for spending £25 or more plus extra points on baby food or summat (cant remember exactly was ages ago). Ended up getting about a tenners worth of points for paying with vouchers. I couldnt complain with that;)
    £387.39/£196.46
    Pay my debt by End of Feb 2022
    49.28% paid!

    £199.55/£500 savings by End of April 2022
    39.91% saved!

    Make £2022 in 2022 - £20
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