It’s been a funny sort of a week. One of those where there always seems to be lots you want to achieve, you are always busy, but you don’t appear to get much done! We have done a bit of tidying up though.
Although this is, loosely, a round up of my frugal life, it hasn’t been a very frugal week, mainly because of Archie the dog. More about him in a bit.
Actually, I did a lot of listing from my pile of shame (clearing and sorting it was one of my goals for July), so I have achieved something. I found some gems in there that I had forgotten I even had, particularly shoes. Two boxes of them in fact! So they are now listed and put away. You can’t leave shoes lying around with Archie about….
The pile is getting smaller. I now need to go and move the books and magazines that are there into a box in the shed and the space will be clear. I have already sorted the cardboard box stash on the other side of my office, another of my July goals.
Talking of the shed, Mr S has been tidying up in there as well. We have three sheds in the garden. One of them in particular had become a dumping ground. He has let go of some things that we kept because they ‘might come in handy one day’. One day could be 15 years down the line, and in the meantime we can’t get to our bikes!
He wants to clad that shed with plasterboard so that the items kept in there don’t get damp. It also doesn’t have a door currently, so he is looking out for one. Lola the cat loves to sleep in there, so the door might need to have a cat flap too.
Mr S is a bit of a hoarder, so I love it when he has a clear out and does a bit of tidying up!
Archie has been off his food for a while, then this week had a very upset stomach. I thought it might have been the marrow bone I mentioned in Sunday’s post, but it rumbled on (literally – his belly sounded like a whirlpool!). He wouldn’t look at any of the dog food we have bought – not even the expensive raw food I mentioned previously.
The only thing we could get him to eat was chicken and rice, which is usually what’s recommended for poorly dogs.
We took a trip to the vets, who was alarmed when we mentioned Archie’s habit of picking up and eating cat and fox poo! He gave him all sorts – an antibiotic, a probiotic, some antacid type meds and some kind of antiviral.
Archie liked the vet to start with but wasn’t keen on the antibiotic injection, so has gone off him a bit.
We mentioned that he was already getting very fussy with food and he suggested that we stick to a good quality kibble like Hills Science or Royal Canin, rather than constantly changing to try to get him to eat. He said he was healthy enough and would eat when he was hungry.
This all makes sense, of course, so we bought a bag of Royal Canin (£25, thank you very much – will be looking to see if I can get it cheaper!), and he did eat some later that evening, thank heavens.
With that and the £55 vet bill, we came out £80 lighter, but at least Archie seems to have perked up a bit now.
Pets are not cheap! I have always known this, and don’t skimp on our animal care. However, getting his diet sorted will save us money in the long run rather than having half packets of this and that all over the house.
A trip to Dunelm
My mum asked me if I would take her to Dunelm, as she wanted to get some new curtains. I hadn’t been there for ages, and was impressed with how many nice, reasonably priced things were in there.
I bought these cute mugs for £3 each, which I thought was reasonable. Often the ones I like the look of turn out to be £8 or £10, which I am not spending on one mug. I must have expensive tastes! But these have a nice shabby chic type feel without being ridiculously dear.
We have a lot of mugs that are stained, cracked or chipped, so I am keeping my eye out for some more decent ones. The mug cupboard needs tidying up and sorting.
Mum couldn’t find her curtains, but mentioned she was looking for a duck egg blue. I suddenly remembered our old ones in the attic – they are nice quality ones that we had made to measure, and are a duck egg gingham. Because I loved them I kept them to use elsewhere at some point.
She will need to get them altered, but that will be much cheaper than getting a new pair made up.
Sorting the spare room
We said goodbye to our lodger of nearly two years this week. She and her partner have bought a 5 bedroom house in Yorkshire, which cost about the same as a one bedroom flat would here in Essex!! How crazy is that?
So the spare room is free again. It needs repainting desperately as it is looking too tatty as it is. The bed and mattress need replacing, so I am looking out for a second hand bed frame, but will invest in a new mattress.
Our lodger stuck 101 things up on the walls and cupboard with blue-tack. I think I may request that whoever comes in doesn’t repeat this as it is going to be a bugger to get off!
So another job to do asap so we can get it advertised. I am hoping to get another nice, quiet masters student from the university, but we shall see. The income the room generates is really useful, so that should motivate us to get it sorted.
Time for the soup factory
The courgettes are now coming thick and fast! This is good, since our runner beans were really stunted by black fly in the end. Despite spraying them with a soapy mix, they are covered. We have had a few meals, but far fewer than expected – they were doing so well! Never mind. You win some, you lose some when you grow your own.
So, it is time for making soup for the freezer, which I will do this weekend. I do love home made soup, and if I am organised we will still be eating it in December.
So that’s it for my weekly round up. How has your week been?