This idea came to my attention via Minibreak Mummy‘s blog, and it seemed like something I could try to achieve.
Frugal February is about cutting back on everything you possibly can. When you are disabled and your partner is your unpaid, stay-at-home carer, being frugal is a neccessity rather than an option. We always find inventive ways to reuse leftovers, grow as much of our own produce in the summer months as possible, and we don’t splash out on electrical goods and fancy gadgets for the sake of it (the last of these were my Kindle and my Wii Fit – one for convenience of travel and the other under my doctor’s advice while I was unable to get around).
Now that my weight has settled I don’t have to buy new clothes every few months and can return to buying only when I need to. Neither of us has a credit card, and now that I’m more mobile we can go to Asda instead of paying Asda to come to us with our groceries.
My wedding gown, shoes and ring are all paid for. We take advantage of as many deals for disabled households as possible (free cavity wall insulation for instance) and do our best to keep energy costs and general household bills down.
So I’ve recently spent a shedload on pickling jars; on the other hand, if spending money means that eventually you’ll save money in the long term (especially if it also means learning a new skill) then I’m all for it. It will be worth it this winter when I have lots of chutneys and pickles and jams that I grew myself that will last for years, and I can pickle my own beetroots, cabbage and onions for Christmas too.
My main outgoings seem to be naughty little treats such as:
Doctor Who Merchandise.
Cross-stitch Kits (as if I don’t already have a few hundred in folders, magazines and kits that I’ve not touched yet!)
Fandom DVDs (Life On Mars, Ashes To Ashes, Marchlands, Leverage, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Moonlight, Misfits… that’s just for starters and I still don’t have every show that I insist on having in my life).
CDs that rarely – if ever – get played once burned onto my computer, laptop and Mp3 player.
New Age Neo-Pagan bits and bobs. Not because I know what to do with them. Because they’re pretty/smell nice.
Enough Lush stock to begin my own branch! Excuse: I didn’t know everything spread on hair and skin so well that you only need dabs of it rather than giant squirts! (I have, of course, known this for years – but that’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it).
Doctor Who and Cross-stitch magazines that might get read once. Do you see a pattern forming with Doctor Who and Cross-stitch here?
Annual RSPB membership renewal. An acceptable expense to conserve wildlife and nature, in my humble opinion.
Annual renewal of my Epilepsy Action membership. Self explanatory.
So, let’s see what I can cut down on. Definitely the Doctor Who and Cross-stitch stuff – I don’t really need to own a Madame Vastra figure right now, after all.
CDs and DVDs are a luxury item when you think about it (so are seven ukuleles, but I’ve already paid for them so they don’t count).
I don’t need the new age stuff. Dom’s sister and my best friend have plenty of that for me as it is!
Kindle books. I haven’t even started most of the ones I have. Not yet having Black Beauty on my Kindle isn’t exactly the beginning of the Apocalypse.
I recieved yet more Lush products over Christmas, so aside from shampoo, deodorant, toothpaste and my prescription mouthwash (which – due to disability – I am exempt from paying for anyway) it’s unlikely that I shall need to replenish anything else this year, never mind this month!
That’s my list of no-no’s for Frugal February; I think I can get through this without too many withdrawal symptoms!
If you’d like to give Frugal February a go, you can sign up HERE.
Also, please add this rather cute clickable piggy on your blog to let everybody know you’re participating!