Saving money and a little bit of the planet.

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This is going to make me sound like a Grumpy Old Woman, but it has to be said. What happened to scrimping and saving, otherwise known as using our resources wisely?
Changes in our domestic economy have focused our minds wonderfully 🙂
Yesterday we had a lovely Saturday morning potter round our market town including a tour of the Charity shops. I think Charity Shops are a very British animal. All the big charities have shops here, Oxfam, Save the Children, British Heart Foundation are a few on our High Street plus Animal Welfare charities and Homeless ones. The joy of Charity shop shopping is discovering the hidden treasures. A designer label t-shirt for next to nothing, pristine shirts, a bit of Wedgwood or Doulton. The fun is in the Chase. I was laughing, remembering how a few years ago, when very short of money I had a job interview and found a fabulous smart linen jacket to give me that little extra edge of confidence in the Animal Welfare shop.
Somehow my kids haven’t caught this bug. Although they are not materialistic I think they have caught the 80’s / 90’s trend for new, shiny and oh-so-disposable. Such a waste! I know that for some people there is a sense of shame or the fear or rememberance of poverty attached to second-hand. Maybe our 60’s/70’s culture of left-wing politics, communal living and the absolute determination to be independent paved the way for our self-sufficiency.
Travel rather than fancy hotels, a big pot of chilli a bottle of wine and a group of friends rather than dinner out, and the love of a bargain and not subscribing to a materialistic capitalist culture were all part of our heritage along with fair trade, anti-racism and feminism.
Of course nowadays you can look great on cheap as chips clothing from Primark, eat out at McDonalds for 99p, and I am sadly, as much of a sucker for new Apple technology as the next girl. But something can get missed along the way.
We are rediscovering resources in ourselves and each other. We eat really well, but we cook from scratch. The most processed food over here is tomato ketchup. We won’t be having a fancy foreign holiday but we have a collection of tents, and nothing beats cooking over a fire and playing cards under the stars, or watching the sun come up with a mug of tea.
We have enough clothes to keep us going for a while and as we lose weight my charity shop shopping is going to be even more fun. Being a more ‘normal’ size will increase the options!
We’ve swapped lunches out for a latte treat and we’re keeping the gym as a luxury cum necessity for our healthy life plan. ( I know that is cheating a little, but I never claimed to be a saint). We have fun and playtime with the dog, and each other, gardening, cooking, baking,reading watching films, playing with friends and family, digging out the scrabble and the playing cards, writing a blog or playing on Facebook 🙂
Yes I think I might be a Grumpy Old Woman sometimes but I love my life and I am loving it even more with less money and a lot more Life.

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