No matter how much I squeezed it, the five pound note in my purse was only going to stretch so far. I did the normal scramble around my room in search of loose change, but as I’m always prudent with my money, this only yielded 20p. Then, I remembered Belle, of Beauty and the Beast fame.
In our first semester in this house, contributions were added to the Belle-shaped moneybox to purchase household items. Now we have a new system whereby each of us is responsible for a different item. My job, for example, is to maintain supplies of washing up liquid and sponges.
“Is there any money left in Belle?” I asked my house mate.
“No idea, no one’s checked for ages,” said she. “Have a look.”
The content of the moneybox was £1.20, all in silver and copper coins.
“Oh, that’s not real money.” The housemate said with a sigh.
“Do you mind if I have it then?”
Yes, it was cheeky, but if you don’t ask than you don’t get. And I do assist the household by buying washing up supplies. So my budget for my food shop soared to £6.40! I spent a grand total of £6.23 in the end and here’s what I got:
I went into Sainsbury’s armed with a list, like I normally do. Next to each item is the corresponding price. That way, I have a rough idea of how much my grocery bill will be. But this trip, each time I made a saving on an item, I made a note of it. For example, I had written down 20p for onions, but they only came to 12p – 8p saved. They totted up as I was going round the shop. I had 90p allocated to buy butter, so when I saw the reduced posh Lurpak butter for 99p, I knew I could afford it because of the savings I made elsewhere. I’m sure most of you shop in this manner already, but it really did help me to stick to my budget, so I thought I’d share my new found knowledge.
It felt very satisfactory knowing that I was getting the most from each penny. Even the kind checkout lady commented on the amount of products I had managed to buy. It did feel good carrying home my heavy shopping bags, filled with my lovely bargains. I do believe I’ve caught the frugal living bug good and proper.