Your browser isn't supported
It looks like you're using an old web browser. To get the most out of the site and to ensure guides display correctly, we suggest upgrading your browser now. Download the latest:

Welcome to the MSE Forums

We're home to a fantastic community of MoneySavers but anyone can post. Please exercise caution & report spam, illegal, offensive or libellous posts/messages: click "report" or email forumteam@.

    • thriftylass
    • By thriftylass 29th Aug 17, 3:16 PM
    • 3,358Posts
    • 27,571Thanks
    NST Super September Scrimping challenge
    • #1
    • 29th Aug 17, 3:16 PM
    NST Super September Scrimping challenge 29th Aug 17 at 3:16 PM
    A warm and fuzzy autumnal welcome to the NST Super September Scrimping challenge, for newbies and seasoned debt busters alike.

    (Don!!!8217;t want the following to sound too harsh but I need it this month)

    September means for many getting back into the swing of new school and work routines. Also, the colder months are looming and we should maybe consider starting to get ready for winter and the festivities or at least start a wee bit of forward planning.

    The whole idea of this challenge is for you to start looking to where you WANT to be, consider why you aren!!!8217;t at that point and start realising what is going WRONG. And also, I need you to help me because when I have people to answer to I won!!!8217;t spend anything!

    Seriously though !!!8211; you can!!!8217;t save for a house if you have debt. You can!!!8217;t have a new kitchen if you can!!!8217;t afford the food to put in it!!!8230;!!!8230;!!!8230;!!!8230;!!!8230;. you need to get a debt free day graved in stone and start aiming for it. Enough is enough. Christmas is but 16 weeks away !!!8211; are you ready for that little charmer?

    So again, I!!!8217;d like to go back to basics and a few stricter rules back form NinjasavingKat!!!8217;s days.

    These are the rules!!!8230;.. clear and simple!

    *This challenge starts on the 1st September at 00:01 and closes on the 30th September at 00:00.

    *Try and check in once a day with your progress !

    *Get a little notebook that you can fit in your bag, or a slip of paper! Write down everything you spend - good and bad!!

    *You will aim for 18 SFDs!(Spend Free Days). If purchases of !!!8220;yellow sticker delights!!!8221; are made without full price items this is an SFD. Medication and normal monthly DD!!!8217;s or CC payments are exempt and you may class these days as SFD!!!8217;s also.

    *Pay you debts and bills first, budget to live off what is left!

    *You must decide on a budget for food now. This must be stuck to rigidly until the last day of the month ! Consider how much you REALLY need to feed your family, make meal plans, limit snacking with the kids or tell them !!!8220;when it!!!8217;s gone that!!!8217;s it until next week!!!8221;. Mine is 350.

    *Try and eat everything in your cupboards and freezer BEFORE buying any more. Money spent each week will be for essentials !!!8211; bread, milk and fruit & veg before buying more. Get right down to the bottom of that chest freezer, get out those nearly out of date packets of rice. Stop stock piling for Armageddon and wasting money. I don!!!8217;t care if you are prepping for visitors or a !!!8220;just in case!!!8221; situation! (note to mainly myself: STOP SPENDING SO MUCH ON FOOD!) I need to defrost my freezer and clean my fridge so this rule will help

    *You must bring your lunch to work every day. No coffee shops, no work canteen, no cafes, no sandwiches !!!8211; NOTHING. You will waste SO many precious !!!8217;s when something better can be created at home. If you think it doesn!!!8217;t matter and I won!!!8217;t find out !!!8211; you are right. But you are cheating yourself.

    *Plot the course of your social life now before the beginning of September. Make sure you have a budget planned for meals that can!!!8217;t be wormed out of and birthdays etc. Money placed aside for holidays can be classed as !!!8220;no spend days!!!8221; !!!8211; anything over the budget will ruin that SFD!! Cancel something you really don!!!8217;t want to go to !!!8211;you HAVE to start making sacrifices now.

    *Decide on your DFD!!!!8211; when do you want to start doing what you want to do???

    *You will accomplish some sort of exercise per week, 3 sessions of 20 minutes anyway you want. Walk someone!!!8217;s pooch, walk to work, walk around your block 5 times!!!8230; anything!

    *Beauty spends are not allowed to exceed 10. That includes you boys as well. Use up all that you have in the house BEFORE spending anything more on beauty bits !!!8211; seriously how many body moisturisers do you need ladies?

    *Make time for yourself this month. Even if it!!!8217;s only 10 minutes a day do something for yourself whether that is going for a walk, having a bath with loads of bubbles or sitting outside with a drink !!!8211; we need to make the most of the evenings.

    *Keep the heating off as long as possible, put a jumper on etc. We live in the north of Scotland in an 80s bungalow with metal windows. So it might be a challenge

    That!!!8217;s it!!!8230; think you can keep up?

    1. thriftylass
    2. apple muncher
    3. greent
    4. DawnW
    5. determined new ms
    6. Calling14
    7. jojitsui
    8. misstara
    9. f0xh0les
    10. Tempus01
    11. 1LuckyLady
    12. cybertortoise
    13. dizzyblnd
    14. mothernerd
    15. Shakey87
    16. clippy_girl
    17. Fmess
    18. stoplurking
    19. ChasingSunshine
    20. Eager_Elephant
    21. Tjzdazz
    22. Kerry Woman
    23. FurryBeastOz
    24. Buffethedebtslayer
    25. bizzie
    26. squanderscouse
    27. Sun Addict
    28. LD_13
    29. NelliePie
    30. vintagebrighton
    31. indigowarrior
    32. crazy_cat_lady
    33. LollyPop0312
    34. foxgloves
    35. redofromstart
    36. Lauralozzle
    37. Abundant
    38. ooitsme
    39. threepenny bit

    This Forum tip was included in's weekly email!
    Last edited by MSE Andrea; 13-09-2017 at 9:13 AM.
    NST June
    SFD 5/20 spends 474 (incl MOT which I might claw back form savings if needed)/540
    Exercise 5/20
    Debt - all 0% 1015 to go from 5290
    DFD 11/2018 Mortgage 109343 (04/17) 102400 (07/18) OP 0
Page 21
    • vintagebrighton
    • By vintagebrighton 14th Sep 17, 9:24 AM
    • 557 Posts
    • 1,695 Thanks
    Check in 14/30

    Today WILL be NSD 7

    Nothing much planned. Need to do a room turnaround for another one nighter but then have someone staying for 4 nights. We have the room booked every night till 26/9. I've then blocked 2 weeks as I have an op on 27/9. It'll be strange just being the 2 of us for a while.

    Beauty spends - 0

    Using up stuff - cooked chicken out of the freezer for dinner. (every little helps )

    Me time - netflix and crochet later

    Selling a few things on eBay so anything I make I'll put into savings.

    Exercise - not yet but will go out for a long walk. It's not raining here at the moment!

    Heating - nope. I got the extra covers out for the guests though. No-one's complained yet but I feel strangely guilty.

    Have a lovely day scrimpers

    VB x
    Australia (1% Challenge #6) ~ 0/100
    Weight Loss Challenge ~ 0/42
    Save 12k in 2018 #32 ~ 4250/6000
    • thriftylass
    • By thriftylass 14th Sep 17, 11:13 AM
    • 3,358 Posts
    • 27,571 Thanks

    Lost an SFD yesterday but will have one today, number 10, yay. Milk was running low, had no bread for two days, oil was low and a few other bits and bobs. So I took the opportunity to go to lidl by myself rather than wait for the big shop on Sat with everybody in tow. 28 spent. Made dinner but DH didn't eat much so another two lunches ready. Also used up two wraps, some cooked chicken and other bits from the back of the fridge to make two snack wraps. I have one with my lunch salad today.

    Had the heating on again last night on timer (only set to 18C) as the washing just doesn't dry and some items start to smell for some reason (others still smell freshly washed).

    Prepared lamb meatballs for dinner tonight.

    Was meant to have a night out tomorrow but not sure if I'll go. Might just have on or two drink and get the bus to keep it under a tenner.

    Have good day
    Last edited by thriftylass; 14-09-2017 at 11:21 AM.
    NST June
    SFD 5/20 spends 474 (incl MOT which I might claw back form savings if needed)/540
    Exercise 5/20
    Debt - all 0% 1015 to go from 5290
    DFD 11/2018 Mortgage 109343 (04/17) 102400 (07/18) OP 0
    • dizzyblnd
    • By dizzyblnd 14th Sep 17, 12:10 PM
    • 409 Posts
    • 3,697 Thanks
    Hoping for nsd#6 today. I'm never going to make the 18 target. It's so cold n wintery here. I'm not giving in to putting the heating on tho.
    NST2018 mortgage-free wannabe #145
    • ChasingSunshine
    • By ChasingSunshine 14th Sep 17, 12:29 PM
    • 132 Posts
    • 1,003 Thanks

    Today won't be a NSD, food supplies are running low so need to do a shop but think should only need a small spend to bulk out the food in freezer. I knew I had a good bit but hadn't realised just how much there was. Freezer in new place is smaller so won't be able to stockpile to same extent.

    I will likely put the heating on later for a short while as need to do some hand washing and it just won't dry without some heat in the house! Of course that assumes I am productive enough to face the dreaded pile of washing, reminds me of why I need to be better at checking labels when I buy clothes.

    One of my trips away for later in the month was cancelled and rescheduled for October. Probably a good thing as it was lots of hiking and abseiling. Given how easily I bruise this means I can avoid looking like an assault victim at my cousins wedding a few days later.
    • misstara
    • By misstara 14th Sep 17, 1:32 PM
    • 2,796 Posts
    • 19,789 Thanks
    No more NSDs to report as yesterday and today have both been spendy. Forgot to lift my soup out of the fridge yesterday morning so had to buy a wee something for lunch and also went out for tea with the girls (one of my planned social spends for this month).

    First day of holiday today . Spends at the dentist and small amount at the supermarket. Not much else planned for today, watched a film while waiting for the numbness in my face to wear off. Now it has, I think I'll have some lunch and then go for a wee walk along the beach.
    Debt at LBM Jan 2014 10458.09 Now 0
    New flat debt Jan 2017 2302.75 Now 678.01 (70.6% paid)
    Car debt Nov 2017 797.68 Now 471.72 (40.9% paid) + monthly payments 146.82 7/60
    Emergency fund - 50/1000. Car fund - 122/1000.
    Mini Targets in July
    Exercise target - 7/16. Groceries target 157.95/200. NSD target 9/13.
    • determined new ms
    • By determined new ms 14th Sep 17, 5:03 PM
    • 6,882 Posts
    • 40,382 Thanks
    determined new ms
    Had the heating on again last night on timer (only set to 18C) as the washing just doesn't dry and some items start to smell for some reason (others still smell freshly washed).
    Originally posted by thriftylass
    Have you thought about getting a heated drier thrify? I got mine from John L3wis about 5 years ago. Cost around 80 but it sees us through the winter months. We have it in the kitchen and it takes the chill off when I come down to make a coffee first thing I'll be getting it out of the garage later for it's first outing of the season

    check in 14/09

    Today wasn't a SFD as realised this morning we only had 2 crusts of bread and a thin scraping of marge for madam. Decided to get 2 loaves, 1 to freeze, and got an extra 4pts of milk and have frozen so we should be ok for groceries until next week. We have spent 56.53/160 groceries budget Think I'll be able to get us a bottle of vino or 2 and still come under budget

    As I was spending I got petrol and I will be ordering a mattress tonight

    Lunches taken to work each day - not really a challenge for me!

    Have done 15 mins of power walking but will do some hula hooping when madam is asleep

    We're going to friends for dinner tomorrow and I'm going to make an apple crumble to take and going to gift her a butternut squash instead of taking wine - a BNS is as good as a bottle of vino, riiiiiiiight??! So that way will be socialising and bar any emergency it should be a NSD.

    Ok better get on.
    DF as at 30/12/16
    Wombling 2017 3016.55/Roadkill 8.73
    Wombling 2018 145.73/RK 0.04
    • greent
    • By greent 14th Sep 17, 5:23 PM
    • 7,153 Posts
    • 72,835 Thanks
    Day 14 in the greent house......
    SFDs - now 8/18. - another one achieved today. Tomorrow won't be, though

    Extra monies/ debt repayment - nothing today. (although final DDR payment to pay off tax credits op went out today )

    Food - running total 185.21/ 450

    Eating up/ using up stuff - yep. All meals from home stuff today. DD & DS1 having chicken from the freezer for dinner

    Lunches taken - 3 x packed lunches for children today.

    Social life - none

    Exercise - 2/3. Have achieved min 10K steps every day this week so far - today's is at 8.3k but with several hours to go until bed.....

    Beauty - 2.73/ 10

    Time for self - read a few chapters last night of book. Will do the same tonight.

    Heating off - yep.

    * communication systems - enabled school bus stuck on motorway let parents know they'd have to find an alternative way of getting child to school (cue mad dash here, but it worked out ok)
    * getting some housework done and it not being as bad - or taking as long - as I'd thought
    * comfort food
    * umbrellas....
    * new (council) recycling boxes being delivered
    I am the master of my fate; I am the captain of my soul
    Repaid mtge early (orig 11/25) 01/09 124616 01/10 104927 01/11 89873 01/12 76317 01/13 52546 01/14 35356 01/15 12133 07/15 NIL
    BTL Mtge 12/16 69786. 2018 OPs (#18) 2772.47/4000
    Net sales 2018 558.92/1000 PAYDOX18 (#15) Done 18918.90
    • Kerry Woman
    • By Kerry Woman 14th Sep 17, 6:38 PM
    • 2,383 Posts
    • 23,189 Thanks
    Kerry Woman
    Day 14
    SFD today so 8/18
    Took lunch into work away, walked 20 minutes and read my book.
    A friend did ask me to go to bingo but refused due to being tired after work. So money saved.
    My job interview date was changed to next Wednesday. Have informed my agency, but have to tell the school tomorrow that I need the day off.
    Frugal Living Challenge 2018
    Mortgage free as of 1st August 2013
    NST 07/2018 - Survive July! NSD 15/20
    • apple muncher
    • By apple muncher 14th Sep 17, 6:48 PM
    • 7,479 Posts
    • 56,333 Thanks
    apple muncher
    Am grateful today for a dry day, for lovely y11s, for good chats with pupils, for a good run (part-way) home, for prompt buses, for getting dd to do some online maths hwk (she cries every time), for bacon + tomato soup for tea, for not working on a Friday, for reading the 4 hour work week.

    Fmess - any news on the bath?
    NST Survive July #4; NSD 9/15; Ex 13/20 ; craft / (77); remove 29 (509)
    2018 Pay off: 2334; 2
    018 sell 49.10; WLOSW /10

    Mortgage 20,809 (01/14: 78,201; 01/15: 59,629; 01/16: 39,915; 01/17: 27,295; 01/18 23,143) MFWDate Dec 2018
    • redofromstart
    • By redofromstart 14th Sep 17, 7:31 PM
    • 1,842 Posts
    • 11,286 Thanks
    A spending day - on doughnuts. Pants day and still have a headache. Should not try to make myself feel better with food, its counter-productive.

    Still working on clearing the freezer to avoid major food spends. I've noticed I spend more on the animals than I do on the humans!
    • foxgloves
    • By foxgloves 14th Sep 17, 7:32 PM
    • 4,147 Posts
    • 21,533 Thanks
    Evening Scrimpers,
    Check-in 14/30
    SFD 4/18
    Beauty spends 6.50/10
    Daily exercise - no. Busy doing other stuff so didn't go for a walk to boost my step count.
    Me time - spent an hour watching a tv prog & knitting.
    Useful scrimpy activity:
    Reconciled September's budget as it's mid-month & paid off a cc in full (only use it for loyalty points). Did a nice creative meal plan for the next fortnight making the most of our honegrown produce & stuff already in stock.
    Baked a lovely sourdough loaf.....Aldi's new extra-strong bread flour was v effective. Rose really well & fab crust. Also baked pear & ginger muffins to boost packed lunches without a spend. Mr f is currently busy looking at various sim only deals to see if we can knock our mobile contracts down. I think we definitely can.
    Anyway, carry on scrimping everyone,
    F x
    Money can't jump out of your purse on its own so ask 'Can I borrow one, make one, grow one, bake one, re-purpose or recycle, acquire it for free?' Yes? Then put that purse away & keep your money because little savings grow!
    Loan pay-down fund instalment 2 = 470-01
    Payment received from surveys: 2015 = 320 2016 = 210 2017 = 304 2018 = 264
    • Sun Addict
    • By Sun Addict 14th Sep 17, 7:35 PM
    • 5,918 Posts
    • 39,237 Thanks
    Sun Addict
    SFD 7/18 I think my record is 8 in a month so should smash it

    Exercise 20,845 steps which included 30 minutes in work gym at lunchtime

    No heating yet as quite warm in the sun here today
    Virtual Sealed Pot 2018 296.07
    Debt 2300
    Weight loss 1/6LBS
    Emergency Fund 4000/10,000
    • DawnW
    • By DawnW 14th Sep 17, 7:49 PM
    • 5,107 Posts
    • 40,382 Thanks
    Day 14/30
    Spendy day today, had my bi-monthly haircut, not sure if that counts as a 'beauty spend', more a matter of being able to see out really, 22 plus a tip
    As it was not a goer as a SFD, I spent 2.14 in Iceland and bought a couple of bits in the charity shop, 2.50. All spends recorded. Must update the grocery spends in my signature in a minute.
    Managed a couple of miles walking today, as I walked into town for my haircut instead of taking the car.
    All food from home
    Use ups - dealt with a carrier bag of pears that someone had given OH. Made a pear crumble, stewed some for breakfast fruit and have some in the dehydrator
    No heating
    No social spending
    July NSDs - 6 / 13
    Groceries, toiletries, cleaning supplies and pet supplies - 195.07 / 250.00
    • bizzie
    • By bizzie 14th Sep 17, 10:49 PM
    • 169 Posts
    • 2,032 Thanks
    Check in #14/30
    Spending today included ingredients ready for the weekend baking and replenishing some basic store cupboard items.
    Me time was a cuppa with a neighbour catching up after their holidays.

    I also recommend the heated rail option, which I find is good for getting heavy items like denim and towels dry before they start smelling when they're not dried quick enough.
    Groceries 90.13/300.00 Personal Spend /100.00
    NST July #19 NSD 6/13 @09/07/18
    Goals for 2018: Balance in
    Self: Health: Wealth :
    • stoplurking
    • By stoplurking 15th Sep 17, 7:29 AM
    • 349 Posts
    • 2,330 Thanks
    Sorry I missed check in 14/30. Definitely not a SFD, paid 60 for yoga and a 2k deposit on an event. So, not very scrimpy. Met up with good friend and a bit of exercise so that's a win on social/me time front. Lunch to work 10/21. Dinners from stores/freezer. With the weekend coming up if I get 1 SFD I'll be happy.
    Hope everyone has a great day.
    LBM Oct12 Debts at LBM 17715.93.
    Orig DFD Apr15 DFD 24/12/13
    3-6monthEFC#9 1193/4000 29.8%
    • f0xh0les
    • By f0xh0les 15th Sep 17, 7:41 AM
    • 1,549 Posts
    • 12,804 Thanks
    Today will not be a NSD as I am paying the scaffolding bunny, so have done a food inventory and will menu plan and do a small shop while I am at it.

    Not looking forward to the double glazing cheque going out, and my safety net looks more like a hammock.


    It's not raining!!
    MFW START DATE May 16 118,340 : Oct17 - 109,495.00Dec17 108,800Jan 18 108,392.98 March 18 108,504.72April 108,099May 106,999June 105,999.99
    July 105,300.00
    NEXT GOAL is sub 105k before JulyMortgage-free wannabe 2018 #65
    • thriftylass
    • By thriftylass 15th Sep 17, 9:18 AM
    • 3,358 Posts
    • 27,571 Thanks
    Hello fellow scrimpers!

    f0xh0les there are some hefty bills coming up. But remember it sounds like you have saved the money and it's hard to part with it but it's getting paid without more debt!

    Spend day here too. Booked tickets to the enchanted forrest and booked a good deal on a cabin for three nights after it. That's the first Oct holiday week covered. The second DS will go to holiday club.

    Will be back later
    Last edited by thriftylass; 15-09-2017 at 9:24 AM.
    NST June
    SFD 5/20 spends 474 (incl MOT which I might claw back form savings if needed)/540
    Exercise 5/20
    Debt - all 0% 1015 to go from 5290
    DFD 11/2018 Mortgage 109343 (04/17) 102400 (07/18) OP 0
    • ChasingSunshine
    • By ChasingSunshine 15th Sep 17, 9:47 AM
    • 132 Posts
    • 1,003 Thanks
    Morning and happy Friday,

    Yesterday ended up being a NSD as was just shattered when came in from work and so didn't bother to hit the supermarket. Today have no choice as to keep using up food have to buy some fresh ingredients to make up the meals.

    Good news that a neighbour from home is coming to visit in October. Staying for a week but will entertain herself when I am at work and we can just hang out in the evenings / weekend. Need to look up some cheap / free things to do locally as know she is going on mat leave soon and cash is tight.

    Well done on having all the money saved for the windows f0xh0les can imagine it hurts to pay it out but how good not to have to borrow for any of it.
    • mothernerd
    • By mothernerd 15th Sep 17, 10:38 AM
    • 2,462 Posts
    • 25,736 Thanks
    Sorry for missing check in - fell asleep whilst reading the column and when I woke up the battery needed recharging. Made it to mum's and did a small shop for each of us so no SFD. Did a little bit of work on sorting some crafty stuff and made meals for us both, but otherwise very lazy. Oh and booked a 5 day break in Harrogate in December for us both (mum paying). The 'Twixmas' break in LLandudno was fully booked - not sure whether to be sad or relieved, mum has already started issuing edicts about what I should wear (includes sandals 'for the evenings'). She has already said I need to start dieting for DS1's wedding (and cannot wear trainers under my dress - I gave her the look).

    More of the same today, small shop (slightly further away than yesterday) for us both then taxi to mum's (will bring my shopping home later). Sun is shining so wondering if I can paint a fence post or two? Mr and Mrs Builder are still frantically busy (and Mrs Builder has sustained a couple of injuries), mum contacted the lad who painted inside the house but he hasn't got back to her so painting the yard and finishing the kitchen has reverted back to me ('we' mum says as in she says what needs doing and I do it - very slowly, in 15 minute chunks).

    I am grateful for taxis (really could not even manage the bits I have done without them), for being able to walk about a little bit and for there being lots of benches in the town centre where I can stop for a while. I know I said I wanted to stop the world and get off for a bit, but I wanted to be fit to do some of the backlog of stuff accumulating - rest has done me good but I want to DO.
    This year I will be fierce
    NST Jul #10 SFD 6 /13 Food 100.54/150 Travel 17.60/15 Ent/diy 6/30
    No Debt No mortgage
    • thriftylass
    • By thriftylass 15th Sep 17, 10:46 AM
    • 3,358 Posts
    • 27,571 Thanks
    DS1's wedding (and cannot wear trainers under my dress - I gave her the look).
    Originally posted by mothernerd
    I think you could, maybe not the dirty gardening ones . Most dresses are long enough so no-one would notice. Or you could get dressy flat pumps or sth. A friend of mine got married and she has a bad spine. So as the bride she wore high heels for the ceremony and then slipped into her favourite golden trainers . No-one bat an eyelid as they knew she couldn't wear heels all day.

    I turned up to a wedding in high heels but had my trainers in the car. The ground was so uneven that I had to take my heels off and wore my trainers with my 50s pencil dress.
    Last edited by thriftylass; 15-09-2017 at 12:04 PM.
    NST June
    SFD 5/20 spends 474 (incl MOT which I might claw back form savings if needed)/540
    Exercise 5/20
    Debt - all 0% 1015 to go from 5290
    DFD 11/2018 Mortgage 109343 (04/17) 102400 (07/18) OP 0
Welcome to our new Forum!

Our aim is to save you money quickly and easily. We hope you like it!

Forum Team Contact us

Live Stats

2,067Posts Today

6,744Users online

Martin's Twitter