Saving money where I can: five frugal things I have done this week

Well, it’s been a funny week. I am still struggling with a stabbing pain in my neck and shoulder, which I had assumed was fibromyalgia. I finally went to the GP yesterday and it turns out it is a trapped nerve! That is exactly what it feels like as the pain moves around. It has made me feel quite sick at points and totally sorry for myself.  The doctor has signed me off for a week to get me away from being static at my desk. I hope it helps as I have been suffering for four weeks now and I have had enough! I am still saving money where I can. Frugality can’t stop because of a pain in the neck…

Saving money on pain relief

I have been throwing back the ibuprofen and paracetamol, using ibuprofen gel and also heat pads. If you buy branded pain relief products, they cost an absolute fortune. If you look closely at the ingredients they are pretty much the same as the cheap generic brands you can find in the chemist of supermarket.

I am not into paying for fancy TV adverts and other marketing. If I can get the same product for 45p as I can for £3, it is a no-brainer. Saving money on drugs is easy if you stick to own brands.

I have been using various self heating stick on pads as well, most of which we had from when Mr S had back problems. When I came to buy some more I couldn’t believe the price of them! The best are Deep Heat, but they are about £2 each! You can get cheaper ones in Poundland, but you have to put them on your clothes and the heated beads inside tend to fall to the bottom after a couple of hours. I am also trying to stop buying single use products.

The solution appears to be a reusable microwaveable heat pad. There are loads on Amazon, but I have gone for this one because its shape means it goes over my neck and my shoulders. The reviews are good as well, and it should work out much cheaper than disposable heat pads. I think it will also make me look rather regal. Perhaps I should get a tiara to go with it?

Shameless canvassing for votes

Saving money

I am off to the SHOMOS, a bloggers event, next month. The schedule has just been announced so I can work out my timings and pre-book my train ticket. Much cheaper! I saved around £8 by pre-booking and it would have been even cheaper if I had specified particular trains. However, I want a bit more flexibility on the day.

Talking of the SHOMOS, I have been selected for two categories: the Best Frugal Food Blog and Best Money Saving blog. However, all blogs go into the Peoples’ Choice Award and this is where you can help by voting for me!

Please click here to vote for me. I really appreciate all your votes. Having come in the final three up against some huge blogs with a much bigger readership last year, it would be great to do the same again.

Making my own natural, plastic free toiletries

I think I mentioned in last week’s Five Frugal Things that I had ordered a book called Natural Beauty: 35 step-by-step projects for homemade beauty, featuring recipes to make your own beauty products.  Well, it arrived! It is a gorgeous looking book and brand new. I wasn’t expecting that for £1.25. In fact, I was incredibly lucky to find it at that price as it’s usually £9.99.

There are so many things I want to make. The ingredients aren’t particularly cheap, but if I make a few things using similar items it will spread the cost. I think it will work out cheaper than buying similar quality natural products, as well as save on all the packaging. A body butter is probably a good place to start as I have dry skin so always moisturise all over. Maybe I can start during this enforced period of rest! If anyone has ideas of where to buy reasonably priced cocoa butter, shea butter and the like I would be very interested to know. Thanks! Saving money as well as cutting back on chemicals and plastic are all important to me.

Bargains

saving money

I have been charity shopping again! You can’t keep me out of them at the moment. I found a nice little pine bedside table for – get this – £5.75! My daughter took the desk from her room when she went back to university. She has moved into a shared house now and there wasn’t one. This left a gaping hole where the desk had been and this little set of drawers fills it perfectly. What a great bargain! I love saving money buying second hand.

I will give it the once over with some linseed oil to brighten it up.

saving money

I also found a gorgeous pair of leather boots for just a fiver. I wish they fitted me as I love them. However, they are too small so I will list them on eBay. I hope to get at least £20 back on my investment – now is the time for people to buy their winter boots, after all.

Extreme money saving

Did you see my post 25 extreme ways to save money in the week? I really enjoyed writing it as it reminded me of all the things we should be doing to keep our costs down and renewed my determination to do so. In truth, I don’t do all of these  ideas for saving money – I wouldn’t eat road kill, for example – but most I am happy to do.

Anyway, how has your week been and how have you been saving money?

I am linking up with  Cass Emma  and Becky in their Five Frugal Things linky.

This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and make a purchase,it won’t cost you anything but I will earn a small commission. Thanks!

14 thoughts on “Saving money where I can: five frugal things I have done this week

  1. I do hope you are not taking ibuprofen tablets at the same time as using ibuprofen gel as it lowers your blood pressure, I’m sure your g.p.would have informed you.

  2. Hi Jane

    I too have fibro, along with a myriad of other things and was at the doctors this week because the pain has been really bad. I also don’t really like taking painkillers but because I’ve been so bad lately, I’ve had to give in. My doctor has suggested looking at the following website which has tips and short 5 minute videos to look at. No need to type www ……….just type into your search engine
    my.livewellwithpain.co.uk

    I’ve found it to be informative but am having to take my time reading it as I get tired easily at the moment. Hope this helps.

  3. Ouch.I Hope the rest and painkillers do the trick.
    Good luck with the awards. Put my vote in for you! 🙂

  4. 1. Cooked all meals at home
    2. Baked from scratch
    3. Shopped only for the really necessary groceries – no extras
    4. Combined errands so that I only had to use one transit fare (a 2hr window applies)
    5. Worked a few extra hours this week at my Church job

    Voted for you – good luck!

  5. My husband suffers from a bad back, whilst we were on holiday in Spain recently he was in agony with it. I bought some tiger balm costing 6 euros and rubbed it in, he moaned that it was hot and smelled funny, he was convinced that it wouldn’t work or have any effect. Later that night he admitted his back had stopped hurting.
    I’m not saying it’s a miracle cure but after suffering on and off over the years he was amazed. Worth a try?

  6. Re the heat pads, I’ve suffered with lower back pain for years and like you the, migrating beads in the pad really annoyed me. I came up with my own version of a heat pad based on stuff I’d seen online etc. You need a robust material, not thin cotton, at the moment I have a rather fetching on-trend (sheer coincidence!) red velvet pad. Cut a strip of fabric the length you want plus another 4 inches. Fold in half and divide it roughly into several sections. Sew up lengthways but leave a gap of about an inch wherever there’s a divide. Then sew width ways along these divides. Buy the cheapest bag of rice you can and then fill each channel with the rice (through the gaps you’ve left on the lengthways side. Sew those up. Voila! your own little customised heat pad. The beads do still migrate to the bottom of the channels but because you’ve got several, they still stay in place overall.

    And re the ibuprofen gel plus ibuprofen painkillers. My pharmacist told me it was ok to double up on gel and tablets pre bedtime as no long term liver damage and would help me sleep which is what helps you most (relaxing muscles). You don’t have to bother about combining paracetemol and ibuprofen tablets, You can quite safely double up on those but there is evidence out there that says paracetemol not really that good at pain killing in these situations. Check out Lorimer Moseley on YouTube, Australian researcher. Very interesting work on how the mind deals with pain.

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