Sunday, 20 April 2014

A Day in the Life - Infinite Claire

Most of my friends and family regularly, and have for years I may add, get digs in that I don't do any work.

I do actually own my own business, believe it or not - and most choose not to!!

For those who don't know I'm a Health and Safety Consultant and I own my own company Infinite Safety Ltd.  I work mainly with Construction Clients in the Lancashire Area and I work part time.

I work part time for two reasons.  Mainly because

Saturday, 19 April 2014

Plum Little Yums - Review

Teething seems to be happening younger and younger and this time I've lived every tooth, unlike my other two children who seemed to pop them through without much bother.

My youngest seems to get four at a time and take a week in doing so.  He goes off his food and goes picky whilst there's one on the way and although I've tried hard foods to get the tooth through, I think they
just appear when they are ready.

We were sent two packs of Plum Little Yums to try and they have gone down a storm.  He will eat these with Cheese and Chicken when going through a teething week so they are ideal for picky lunch.  They are also ideal for taking in the changing bag as a snack as they are individually wrapped in packs of three.

They are suitable from six months on and are certified as organic. They are also a great way to get babies self feeding and don't contain added sugar or salt but still taste great.

The two flavours we tried (and we have all tried them!) were Pumpkin and Banana and Spinach, Apple and Kale.

The flavours are sweet but not sacharinny and certainly don't leave teeth coated which I find other baby biscuits can do

Both varieties went down well and didn't leave any mess, which is a massive plus from me as I often can be seen with various food stuffs around my knee level!

A box of 18 (6 packs of 3) is currently £2.49 in Tesco.  I can't find them stocked in another supermarket yet but I'm sure when they become available they will be on offer!  They are available online via the Plum website and a few organic food suppliers.

Friday, 18 April 2014

The Best Supermarket Deal

What do you do when more than one of the big supermarkets are running offers? Which is the best?  Which one do you go for?

Each offer needs weighing up to see how much you actually save.  If you are spending what you haven't got to save, then it's not a good offer for you.  However, if you usually spend the qualifying amount, then it could be a good deal for you.

Take the Morrison's £10

Thursday, 17 April 2014

The £40 12 Year Old Challenge - The First Week

Remember at the start of the Easter Holidays I gave my 12 year old his spending money for the holidays?

The idea was to give it in one lump so the daily "can I have some money" didn't add up to a small fortune.

So how did the first week go?

From my perspective, very well as I've not been asked for any money!

On the other hand £16.50 went in the first evening at the waterpark and the rest has basically been frittered on drinks at the park.

He has learnt something though as he's spent birthday money on an annual pass for the waterpark.  He worked out it would take 8 trips to pay for itself and he's made two on the pass so far.  The food is really reasonable in there and they get a good meal.  He quickly realised that paying on the door would eat up his spends and took the advice of a friend who gets a pass each year.

He has dipped into his own money box though so he could get dinner during one visit to the waterpark.  And yes I did feel mean.

So, how much has the Easter holidays cost you in spends and refreshment money?  I'd love to hear, please leave a comment below.

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Ten Minute Task - Bannisters

My life is a constant rush and unfortunately not off the adrenaline kind.

An uncluttered house is my dream and I'm working at it ten minutes at a time.

This week, I have been cleaning bannisters.  It's also good exercise!

It's a simple job but one that gets ignored no matter how many times you lean on it.

So the easiest way, I find, is grab a bowl of hot soapy water and a cloth.

I hold the cloth and run my hands down each spindle, quite tightly, to get those rings of dust.

Then I pull the cloth from side to side through the gaps, where the dust really gathers.

Then it's a quick wipe down the sides, wipe of the handrail and I'm done. 

I also do the skirting boards on the other side and it just takes me ten mins.

What can you get done in ten mins, what task do you avoid?

Have a good, clean week!!


Money Making Mojo

The hardest thing about being determined to pay off a debt or to save is to get focussed and stay focussed.

Those who have read this blog will see that I've lost focus on that goal several times.  If I had stayed focused, I would have paid off my mortgage by now and have a nice little income in the form of rent.

Most of the time, doing what you always have is not enough and you can only scrimp and save so far.

So how to make that extra money to throw at the debt you want to kill?

Firstly look at what you do.  There's 24 hours in a day.  How much of that do you spend in front of the TV?  Could you spend that couple of hours doing something else? Do you sleep too much? (I do given the opportunity)

Have a look at People Per Hour or E-Lance.  Are there any jobs on there that you could do in that couple of hours a night

I know you don't want to work all the hours, but this doesn't come easy.  Hard work pays off!!

Are you crafty?  Have a look at Etsy or Folksy.  Is there anything on there that you can make and sell to create another income stream?  I find Craftseller magazine a great inspiration.  Buy a second hand one off ebay, see what you think.

Is there anything you can do locally?  Babysitting maybe?  Tutoring students?

Do you blog? Can you write? Can you complete questionnaires for a few quid (you could do that AND watch TV!)

And your regular job, could you do more hours?  Are you worth a pay rise?  Can you do a project at home maybe for a bonus?  

If you own your own business, market yourself in different ways to get more work with a different clientelle, maybe?

These are just ideas to get you in the right frame of mind.  You have to have several income streams to make this work fast.  Have a look at the March Side Hustle Posts on Mortgage Free in Three.  Elaine's kids were determined to make a set amount and they did it.  They pulled together and they did it because they worked hard and made more income streams.

Hopefully I've got you raring to go now?! So go!  Do!!

Monday, 14 April 2014

Meal Planning Monday - The Big Cooking Session

So, last week worked really well - here's the gist if you missed it...


So, as usual I'm acting like my children actually run the house and have the upper hand, and I'm letting them do the meal planning again.  I've suggested they follow up on this and do the shopping too but they both disappeared leaving me with a 1 year old that can push a trolley but just throws money out of purses therefore can't yet be trusted.

Although they have chosen what they want to eat, I have jigged it around a bit, just to stamp my authority as an adult really, and to make it so I can cook once on Monday after I've shopped and then have more free time to clean up after the little darlings and chauffeur them around if necessary.

Here it is..

Monday - Spaghetti Bolognaise and Garlic Bread

Tuesday - Green Thai Curry and Rice with piles of mange tout and baby corn

Wednesday - Spaghetti Tacos and potato wedges

Thursday - Slow Cooker Curry

Friday - Cheesy Mash Shepherd's Pie and piles of veg

Saturday - Take Awaaaaaayy!!

Sunday - Paprika Chicken and Quinoa

and the plan for cooking...

- Make huge batch of spag bol and freeze several portions.
- Put enough in fridge for Spaghetti Tacos on Wednesday
- Make Thai Curry and refrigerate
- Mix up the curry sauce in a freezer bag and put in fridge
- Make garlic bread - from scratch!!  (anyone know if I can freeze dough?)
- Make two shepherds pies and freeze

- Make pan of rice and veg for with curry

- Dice chicken and add to bag of ingredients

- Fling chicken curry bag contents into the slow cooker in a flamboyant, I've beat this stove standing lark fashion
- Remember to switch slow cooker on at the plug!!!
- Make some rice and chips at tea time
- Defrost a shepherds pie

- Bung shepherds pie in oven and boil loads of veg

And you're thinking but what about the Paprika Chicken?

Well it's already lingering at the back of the freezer.  I found it during a lunchtime freezer dive last week.

This reduced cooking plan is really working for me!

This post is linked up with the Meal Plan Monday Linky on At Home With Mrs M.  There are loads  of meal plans on there and I urge you to read them as some are gourmet!!


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