Thursday, 27 December 2012

Highlights of Christmas

 Baby D in Daddy's Santa hat.
 Opening gifts together (my poor front room!!!!  Worth it though)
 Baby D napping under the tree, the only floor space left at some points lol
 The post dinner nap-time. Look at them all snugly together.
 DD was thrilled with her pile of presents
 This morning I have a very tired DD having a PJ day in her new PJ'S
And DD is barely with us either but will not let her new Sophie Giraffe teether go.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Merry Christmas from a disaster zone

  We have lots of Christmas food in the FHMH. Shame it's all in the bin!
We hadn't been in the freezer for a few days and everything was squishy already when we discovered it. A definite poop moment.
 But have no fear, as I type my husband, mum and brother are all scurrying out and about in the shops to keep tomorrows dinner on track. There will be a Christmas dinner and a nice supper afterwards, it wasn't the big disaster it felt like on Thursday. Thank goodness for family.

 I keep looking at my Christmassy dresser to keep my spirits up. Doesn't it look sweet with the Santa plates and fir cones. It's making me smile.

  I want to wish everyone who follows and reads this blog a very Merry Christmas. I doubt I will be online tomorrow so I am saying it early. Thank you for all your comments, advice and general love and support on my lil ole blog. You all mean the world to me :)

x x x x

Saturday, 15 December 2012

A sea of yellow stickers

Full Price - £36.43   Reduced Price - £8.99  Saving - £27.44

 Just as we arrived at Mr A I could saw out the corner of my eye the sacred reductions trolley. And the even more sacred lady with the beepy gun! So we stalked her slowly but surely around the store picking up all these scrummy bargains.

 All the fruit and veg was 20p a packet. Even the Mr A finest handpicked Cherries! No way could I afford them usually at £3.97 a punnet. Almost all the fruit will be processed tomorrow to save it, the fruit salad has already been half eaten, tiny fingers just can't resist strawberries. Tomorrows lunch with be the stir fry pack, bean sprout and noodles.
 I will try and post up what I do with my goodies. A lot will just frozen down in handfuls for baking, lunchboxes etc,
 I think Xmas has come a bit early.

x x

Friday, 14 December 2012

Retro Toy Joy

 I picked an Etch a Sketch yesterday in my fave charity shop for just £1. I loved mine when I was little, and I really wanted to share it with DD. She took to it like a duck to water and happily played on it most the afternoon. showing off her creations to whoever was nearest at the time. 
 Out of interest I looked them up on EBay and they are selling for several pounds of there each so I definitely got a bargain. While I was googling them to see how they worked (I'm a curious person) I came across Etch a Sketch artists! Here are some of my favourite sketches I found.

 Big Daddy and Little Sister from Bio Shock.
 A super textured armadillo.
This one just blows me away!

 Shall I see what I can come up with?

x x x

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

A little catch up

 Hello lovely readers,

 I haven't had barely a moment to myself lately. Baby D is teething, DD is always up to something, and poor old OH is now working everyday till Christmas Day thanks to being royally shafted. The bank decided that using our debit card in Asda on the same day we do every week for our weekly shop is suspicious and froze everything. Plus the general getting ready for Christmas type stuff.
 So if you don't see me posting between now and C day, do not worry I'm just catching up lol.

x x x x

P.S - Does anyone else find it hilarious that a local vicar is currently on the Paleo diet aka The caveman diet?

Monday, 10 December 2012

Microwave Meringue Recipe

 As requested :)


 Powdered sugar
 1 Egg White.


 Add sugar to the egg white until you have a pliable icing. It will take a massive amount of sugar so be warned.
Roll the icing into tiny balls about the size of a marble. Trust me when I say don't make it bigger lol.
Place two or three balls far apart on some grease poof paper and pop into the microwave. Blast on the hottest setting for up to 1 1/2 minutes. Keep a careful eye on them as they burn really quick!

It's amazing to watch them puff up as they cook! Once done pop them to one side to cool down for a few minutes and harden, then  they are ready to enjoy :)

 You will gets loads out of one egg white, so don't double up the recipe until you've tried it at least once

x x x

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Prepping for Xmas 2013

 Yes, I really did mean Christmas 2013! This year we are taking part in Frugaldom's sealed pot challenge. The idea is you save your small change found pennys, and occasional few pounds throughout the year in a sealed pot. On December 3rd we all open them together and splurge :)
 We are planning to use ours for Christmas family outing/ trip to see Santa. 

I've also experimented with microwave meringues and can thoroughly recommend the recipe. Life is far to short to make them in the oven!!!

xx x x

Friday, 7 December 2012

Going's on

 I've not blogged for short while, we are all suffering the sniffles here. Not quite enough to call it a cold, but it's throwing the small ones off balance.
 Picked up some more bits on my travels, 2 books from a friend who thinks I'd like them, And a gorgeous silk scarf. I picked up because I liked the colour and pattern, but when I looked at the label it said 100% silk and Made for the John Lewis partnership. Not bad for my 20p.
 A better picture of the scarf's detail.
And some of you will have noticed my new tab at the top of the blog. It is a link to the FHMH's very own shop. I'm trying to sell some crafted items to take part in the 2013 Frugaluer challenge. Feel free to pop over for a looksie. The FaceBook store is only temporary until I set up an Ebid page,

x x x

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Nanny's care package

 My Dad popped down to see us all today, and brought with him a little clothing parcel from my mum and our Christmas decorations. The 5 little dresses for Baby D are stunning, one of them is Jasper Conran! Goodness knows what they would cost new! I can't help looking at the lovely fabrics from a crafters eye as well lol.
And of course DD wasn't left out with three lovely new tops and snugly pink hoody.
 Best of all? They come washed and ironed ready to wear. Thanks mum

x x x

Frugal Homemade cooking

 We made a mystery meal last night as I am determined to waste as little as possible. We hunted through the fridge and found two eggs. So we made a simple batter of flour, milk and eggs. And hunted some more.
 1/2 dozen cherry tomatoes - chopped and bunged in
1/2 tin of sweetcorn - sprinkled in - the other half will be DD's snacks
4 slices of garlic sausage - chopped and added
4 chipolata sausages - chopped and added.
 Pour over the batter, and give it a moment to sink down through the layers.
Bung it in the oven at 190 until set and golden. Ours took about 35 minutes and was utterly delicious.
 Everything used up nicely and enough dinner for 4 adult meals and 2 toddler meals.

x x x

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Budget shopping

  Glove puppet and story - 20p  Tiny Doll - 20p

I knew I shouldn't have popped into a local charity shop on my way to Lidl. I can't resist hunting through the bargain bins and sale rails. All these bits came from the same shop.
Teddy set for Baby D - Disney top for Baby D - Pudsey top for DD
 I cannot believe the things that some places put into their 4 for £1 bins! I wonder if it's because the volunteers don't want to mark prices on all the baby items. There are some quality items to be found from having a good dig right down to the bottom. Most people just glance at the top three items.
 Summer weight hoody - £1 on the sale rail

 I never worry about shopping in season, in fact I try to do the opposite as things are priced so much cheaper. Hence this lovely Cederwood state hoody. Short sleeved and light weight perfect for summer.

Grandad Jumper - £1 from Sale Rail

I love the pattens on this jumper and I've seen a rather nice tutorial about how to make them into cushion covers. That's for after its been worn for at least one winter though

x x x x

Monday, 3 December 2012

Frugal goings on

  We have been moving furniture around this weekend. Baby D is now attempting to sit up from on her back and getting her head far to high for the moses basket to be safe. So she is officially upgraded to her cot which we've moved into our room. In order to make room we relocated one of the sideboards into the kitchen. We brought the one above for just £25 at a local charity shop several years ago. Doesn't it match with the dresser and table nicely. I think my dining are is looking rather vintage at the moment.
 I have also made some fudge using up the last of the clotted cream from my tea party. It tastes like heaven. It's even set properly! Usually mine comes out more like toffee or caramel sauce :)
 And finally with all that moving things about I have rediscover so many things I've tucked away. Like my wooden sewing box I'd lost,  a vintage linen hanky ready to embroider and an embroidery panel of a crinoline lady.
 Once I have finished my current secret project (can't wait to show you all) I will try and get the two project above done. Best get to work :)

x x x

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Church Christmas Fayre

 Talking Shrek - 75p  Talking Donkey - 75p.

  Me and the bambino's popped into a local Church's Christmas Fayre earlier today. We live almost opposite so it was a nice little walk without getting to chilly and not far to lug things home if we brought anything big. It also meant DD could stretch her little legs, not easy to do when your little and it's chilly.
 DD is really fond of Shrek at the moment, we've been watching to movies over and over for the last few days. I didn't realise they talked till we got home and I gave them a look over, found the battery packs and turned them on.

 Jigsaw book - Simpsons Annual - Water for Elephants - 25p each

 Books, books, books, we are quite a family of readers and have a small mountain of stories dotted around the flat. DD tends to get bored of them after a few readings except for a select few so I like to keep some new ones on hand.
 I saw the film version of Water for Elephants recently and have been looking out for a copy of the novel for a few weeks. Don't you just love it when that happens?   

 Pumba - La la - Octopus - 3 for 50p
 If you remember from a previous post that DD has two other Lion King characters so he will be a great addition. The two little toys are perfect for Baby D who is just starting to grab at things now, they are both super soft and they rattle.
Spot's Christmas - 25p

 And finally one more book, which I haven't been able to get near yet lol. But DD tells me it's very good and she is rather pleased with it.
  We played £1 on a tombola but didn't win a sausage, and had a refreshing drink and biscuit each for 30p. Picked up an Xmas present for OH, and brought everyone a nice cake for tea. All together I spent about £6 once you include the entrance fee. Not bad for a mornings entertainment.

x x x

Friday, 30 November 2012

Back to Frugality

  It's looks like there are going to be some dark times ahead for us at TFHMH. As a family that pretty much live on there CTC & WTC (Tax credits), all the info about universal credit is worrying us. OH is the bread winner, but he is a self-employed breadwinner But what will be will be. In the mean time we can make good use of our knowledge by squeezing as many pennies as possible and saving what and where we can.
 So when we need something we will try to get it for free, make it ourselves or at the very least buy it for the cheapest amount we can wrangle.
 For example, look at these lovely lovely coats above! 4 rather posh suede coats in my size- from a wonderful lady on Freegle. I only asked for one, and because of my politeness and other peoples rudeness she gave me all four. These will keep me going for a long long time :) And after they have given up the ghost can you imagine all the wonderful crafty things I could do?
 Another thing I am going to try is Frugaldom's 2013 Frugaleur Challenge. The idea is to set up a small money making business for a small start up cost. I am starting out with £20 and making craft items to eventually sell on a stall somewhere. So far I have made some little pin cushions using drink bottle lids, some toy stuffing I've had forever, and 2 baby tops from the rag bag. Each one takes about 10 minutes to make so they are perfect for those little snatches of time the kiddies give me here and there.
 When they are asleep in the evening I am knitting a rather nifty baby outfit with plans to sell it in OH's shop once it's complete.
  I am also trying an experiment. Making my own shower gel, by melting some soap and adding a small amount of water and glycerin. At the moment it is melting in the kitchen, I will keep you posted on how it turns out.

x x x

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Floral tablecloth

 Angela from Tracing Rainbows asked about my tablecloth from the last post. So here is a few close ups for you :)
  I picked it up from a favourite charity shop an age ago. I think it was around £1.50.
 Close up of the large patch. There are three of these down the centre of the cloth.
 The small patch. There are two of these each side. I try and line up the seat so they fall between the settings.
And the stitching is just as beautiful on the reverse. I'm pretty sure it all hand stiched as there are slight differences between each bit of the same pattern. Some one has certainly spent many hours on this, only for it to end up in a charity shop for pennies. I love love love handcrafted things and I am a very proud table cloth owner!

x x x

A big success

My tea party went down a storm, the scones were a huge hit and there is nothing left apart from a few dregs of tea. I am definitely doing this again! I'm my head I am already planning it :)
 Now all the washing up is done I shall be knitting in front of a nice movie.

 x x x x

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Tomorrow's Teaparty

 My SIL and her fiance are popping over tomorrow to coo over our new baby and just have a general catch up. So I decided to have a homemaker moment and create a little tea party for us all. And a frugal tea party at that!
 I've laid out the table for 5 ready, getting out the lovely Royal Doultan set I was given for last Christmas. I am so in love with my set that I've scoured Ebay since last Christmas for more pieces. I now have a matching tea set for 5 and 4 more bread plates (£6 on Ebay using Fat Fingers)
 I've even splashed out in the pound shop for these sweet blue floral serviettes. And after this party I will have plenty left for more tea partys.
All the food will be made from scratch. The first course is finger sandwich's which I will make in the morning, a choice of tuna mayonnaise or Cheese and tomato.  Second course is homemade scones with homemade jam. I splashed out with one of my Tesco vouchers and picked up a small pot of clotted cream. The third course will be homemade brownies with chocolate frosting which is... you guessed it.....homemade!  I have also made a handful of sugar lumps for the occasion.
 I hope they enjoy eating it all as much as I've enjoyed creating it.

x x x

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Thrifty Thursday

  3x Jeans for me - £1 each  Accessorise Wrap BNWT - £1  Football mug for Xmas gift - 20p  Toy for DD - 25p

So here is my usual charity shop haul. I do love having a mooch round on a Thursday, and this week I also had my hubby keeping me company with an odd afternoon off. He won a bet yesterday so we had £10 extra pennies to enjoy. We blew £5 straight away with a nice lunch in MacDonald's using some vouchers a gave us. We all had a burger and fries each (not Baby D lol) for just under a fiver.
We also made a trip to the Free Book shop and snaffled these.
Fun to Learn - Perfect for some home school with DD
First Knits - Gorgeous knitting patterns for newborns-three year old.
Practical Craft Projects - A huuuugggeee heavy book with some lovely ideas for gifts.
The Sugar Plum Christmas Book - Full of poems, activities, crafts, storys and pictures. I will hide till the 1st and we will work through a little bit each day.

X x X