Nearly-There November, Week 1.

Monday, 5th of November.
Walked to and from work today, as the weather was nice and bright. I have begun to realise that it now gets dark here earlier and that by 5pm it is dark. It is not as nice to walk in the dark, to be honest, but I will carry on with it as it’s good for me to move about.

Tuesday, 6th of November.
Learning new procedures today at work – feeling very self-conscious of being the new hire. I hope I won’t disappoint.
Husband has had to take some leave this week to get used to a reduction in his meds, so he very kindly made dinner as he was home. Nothing like coming home to dinner being ready and waiting for you.

Wednesday, 7th of November.
Day off today.
Spent a good two hours catching up with my lovely line manager from my previous job. We went to M and S, and using my M and S gift card from when I switched bank to them, it meant I could buy us a lovely drink and a piece of cake each from the cafe for no money.
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I then attended a meeting at my weekend workplace regarding the settlement programme the government is piloting for EU residents. As someone from the EEA I am not eligible to take part at this time, but it was still informative and useful to attend. The weekend workplace have stated they will pay the fee for applying for settlement status, £65, so as soon as I find out what the procedure is for EEA nationals I will apply to ensure I get the money reimbursed.

After the meeting, I went and did a bit of self-employed work for one the the firms I do work in Norwegian for. Nice to have some extra money coming in for next month. And it didn’t take all that long either.
We decided to have fast food as a treat for an early dinner, before I parceled up and went to post some eBay sales we’ve had.

Thursday, 8th of November.
I suddenly realized when I went to bed Wednesday night that the 24 hour bus ticket I had purchased through the app, meant that it was in fact valid for 24 hours!
Sorry if it sounds daft, but paper day tickets expire at the end of the day, but these you buy from the app are now valid for 24 hours after activation, until the next day. So as I got the bus before 9am on Wednesday, I decided to use the ticket up to take the bus to work in the morning.
Hey, I’ve bought the ticket, I want to get as much use out of it as humanly possible!

Walked home from work, going by the Co-Op to get milk coming back. Looked for bargains but sadly, there were none. Think 5.30pm is a bit early to look for the magical yellow stickers to appear.

Friday, 9th of November.
Work was very quiet today, so caught up with shelf-tidying.

Had a text from M and S bank to say another £5 has been added to my gift card (you have to have £1000 go in every month, and have two Direct Debits go out, to get the bonus applied). Think I will put it towards Christmas presents for this year.

When I checked my emails that evening, I was pleasantly surprised to find I was one of the ‘posters of the month’ on one of the online boards I am part of, which meant they sent me a £30 Amazon voucher. It was duly stashed in the Christmas/Birthday fund.

Saturday, 10th of November.
A quiet morning at work, meaning we could get on with this year’s stock projects. As usual, I found stuff to borrow.

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Two very interesting items I borrowed. The one on the right is a graphic novel about the experiences of a man who worked as a mental health nurse in a locked ward. The one on the left is a mental health first aid manual, designed for use in remote places of the world where mental health provision may be basic or not even exist.

Tempted to place a borrowing embargo on myself now, got so many books to read, yet keep finding interesting stuff on the shelves! Gah!

Sunday, 11th of November.
Had a quiet morning at home with Husband before going out.
Managed to make breakfast, do the dishes and take down and fold two loads of laundry before I left.
Using Husband’s pass to save on the precious few days of travel I have purchased for myself, using the travel app the bus company has.
We are collecting for three charities as a department this year for Christmas, so went by the shops to get some of the items that have been requested.

I also managed to swing by Foodprint before work. They are celebrating their first anniversary in December; I am so grateful it exists. It has saved so much food from going in the bin, and it’s saved us so much money. Managed to get lots of lovely bread which will make up Husband’s lunches at work over the next few weeks (it will all fit in the freezer, thankfully!).

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Lovely food for our lunches and breakfasts, saved by Foodprint from the bin. This cost me £5.75. It’s been such a boon to us, and has saved us so much money. Mr. Stabby is keeping an close eye on things.

Work was quiet, so managed to catch up on off-desk tasks and emails.
My colleague again offered a ride home as he was getting a taxi anyway, so grateful for this as it saves me so much time travelling home from work on a Sunday night.
This also meant I could go by the local shop and see if there were any bargains, which there were.

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Got these lovely donuts, 16p, and sausage and cheese and onion bakes, 34p a bag.

Husband went to Sharing Sherwood with our neighbour, and brought home some lovely food (and dinner for me).
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Here’s hoping next week will be as frugal.

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Visiting Stonehenge.

My sister and I spent a few days together in London last week. Before we went, I said that one of the things I had never done was to visit Stonehenge – sure I have lived and worked in the UK for a good few years now, but have not travelled much and seen a lot of the country (too busy working and studying).

Initially we thought we would take the train to Salisbury and then find our way up, but when we discovered that two singles one way from London to Salisbury would cost us £100 (!!!), we decided to take a coach tour instead.

We went with Evan Evans Tours and paid £102 for both of us. This included the travel to and from Stonehenge directly and entry for us both to Stonehenge with an audio guide each to use. We had about two and a half hours to spend there before getting on the coach back to London. This was enough time for us to walk round the monument while listening to the audio guide, get the bus back to the center, see the exhibition, browse the gift shop and have some soup from the cafe before going back.
Aside from leaving 25 minutes after the stated departure time (quite cheesed off as you are asked to meet 30 minutes before departure of the tour as well!), things went swimmingly.

Pick-up is at the Orginal London Visitor’s Centre in Trafalgar Square, on the return you can be dropped at Gloucester Road or at the Victoria Coach Station.

 


My sister visited almost 30 years ago and commented on that they have really built it up since then. There is now a shuttle bus service from the new visitor’s center that takes you to the monument and back again. I found the visitor’s center to be nice; the architecture is unusual but ‘fits’ with the landscape if that makes sense? We were also lucky with the weather – I think you can visit Stonehenge in any sort of weather but naturally you want it to at least be dry. It’s no fun being stood in torrential rain looking at it (as my sister ended up doing when she visited).

 

What a place to visit. It’s so primordial and just unique.

 

It just raises all sorts of questions. How did they do it, moving the blocks of stone from so far away? And shape them, with no metal implements (metalworking wasn’t a thing when Stonehenge was built)? They must have had a lot of knowledge about astronomy and the movement of planets and things for this to be built the way it was.

There was so much about Stonehenge I didn’t know.

Such as that Stonehenge was not built at the same time but that Stonehenge and the earthworks around it were built over a thousand years. And that there are many barrows around Stonehenge, several of which have yet to be excavated.
The remains they have found they have DNA tested, and these people have been shown to come from places quite far away in Europe. How did they know Stonehenge was there and to come there?

It was a very profound experience and I’m really I had a chance to go.

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An Overdue October.

November is now here, and winter is really approaching now, after we have had a lovely warm summer and fall. We caved at the end of October and put the heating on in the evenings.

How did we do for October?

  • Unlike last month, we were below budget for groceries for October. Long may it continue. Olio and Foodprint once again came through and helped us save a lot of money. I also got some good reduced food deals and my Wilkos voucher meant we could buy a lot of toiletries and household stuff for very little money. Old habits die hard.
  • Husband was finally and at long last given his overdue backdated PIP payment. It will pay for everything he needs to be able to function and take part in everyday life.
  • Husband and I have both been paid. Hopefully as we go into the New Year, we will build up our savings again. I will apply the overpayment to the mortgage again when I have some free time next week.
  • Silver had her birthday. I received a lot of good wishes and lovely gifts. And I got to see my sister and spend some quality time with her.
  • Husband is settling in well in his new workplace, doing part-time. I can’t help but feel a weight lifted off my shoulders. I can be sure that he is okay at work and feels safe and appreciated there. He had to have a few days off work due to his foot swelling, and he said to me that he ‘looked forward to going back to work.’
    Be still my heart, be still!
    I know that you can’t expect to always love your job, or like everyone you come across. Life is not like that. However Husband has always had a raw deal with everything, work, school, college. Not really feeling like he fitted in anywhere.

    I think this time, things will be different.

 

The end of Austober and the start of Nearly-There November.

(For the previous week, you can go here.)

Monday, 29th of October.
I go to London to meet up with my sister tomorrow, so today has been spent packing and getting the house ready for when I am away.
Went to buy food, collect my boots from the cobbler and cleaned the whole house, also did laundry. Made a huge shepherd’s pie and took a pasta bake out to defrost so Husband wouldn’t have to worry about making dinner. Also made two lunches as he will be working while I am away. That way when he comes home completely and utterly worn out, at least he doesn’t have to worry about making food as it will be just ready.

Tuesday, 30th of October.
Off to London!
To save money, I ensured I made myself a packed lunch the night before. I had breakfast before leaving the house, and used my already-paid-for bus pass to get to city centre, and then walked down to the coach. It cost me £3.31 one way which is amazing value. Once there I bought a day ticket and found my way to the hotel to wait for my sister to arrive. Spent the afternoon just chilling at watching TV, something I very rarely do.
Once my sister had arrived and we had eaten an our favourite Chinese place, she wanted to do some shopping before the stores closed. My family very generously gave me money for my trip, so we went to Primark where I bought tights, nightwear and other things I needed.
I also had a chance to do the Quality Street experience at John Lewis. For the uninitiated, this is pick and mix, where you choose which Quality Street chocolates go into the tin.


My sister very kindly brought us food from home; some steaks, sausages and some cured ham. It’s frozen so to keep it, we put it in the hotel fridge. So grateful to my sister, this will keep us going for weeks.

Wednesday, 31st of October.
Still in London. The hotel has a continental breakfast buffet so ensure I eat my fill before we go out.
Sister wants to visit a variety of shops. I buy a tub of paprika (!) and manage to get a free drink through Shopmium. I also use my M and S gift card I got for signing up with their bank to buy some presents for Husband at M and S. I also went by the American food shop and bought the weirdest and most wonderful food I could find for him to try.

Husband sent me a picture of the Cat.
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Thursday, 1st of November.
Visiting Stonehenge today.
It rained buckets when we left London; fortunately it cleared up when we arrived there. What an amazing place. I am sorry, maybe it’s because I am young and not very wise. But visiting Stonehenge was a profound experience.
They must have had an great deal of knowledge about the sky and what moves where, at what times in the year. And to think of the labour it must have taken to shape and build it all, without metal implements. And getting the stone blocks from so far away.
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Once back in London, my sister wanted to visit an exhibition, so I wandered around a bit. Got quite a few jobs added to the Jobspotter app on my phone, which will help towards redeeming an Amazon voucher.
Also found the entrance to Chinatown. Maybe a place to visit next time?

Friday, 2nd of November.
Spent the morning visiting more shops, and then it was time to travel home. I was sad to see my sister go as we had a great time together, but I am looking forward to going home to see her and the family this Christmas.

Went to board the coach back home in the afternoon.
At this point, things really went south.

I didn’t realise that the coach company did not permit frozen food or meat onboard. As we were about to leave, the driver came up and asked who owned the green suitcase. I spoke up and was asked to come outside. At this point they explained that they couldn’t let me take it, not even in the hold, and that it would either have to be thrown away or given to someone to keep. I think the frost on the outside of the case gave it away.
Feeling numb, I went to the nearest dumpster and emptied the freezer bag into it.
All 8 kilos of it, just gone.
I spent the journey home feeling weird and unsettled, and so disgusted and upset I didn’t know what to do with myself.
That food would have fed us for weeks.
And my sister had carried it so far. Only for it to end up in the bin.
Had to really fight not to cry. Felt very sorry for myself and for the gent next to me who had to deal with a very emotional lady all the way home.

Saturday, 3rd of November.
Back to work today.
Open day at work today, so work kindly provided a lunch. There was even enough leftover for me to save some for Sunday.
Found an interesting looking book. This is one of the perils of working at the library. You find stuff you want to read.
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Had a colleague make an unkind comment about me in the presence of our two new hires! Fortunately they could see through it that a. I was becoming upset by it, and b. deduced that what she was saying was mean, and also, c. not true.
Still trying to fight off the horrible feeling since Friday. Really don’t want a lovely week to be ruined by these things happening. Haven’t even finished unpacking my suitcase, due to losing the will to live a little bit.

Sunday, 4th of November.
A quiet-ish morning at home today before going to work. Did some laundry and the dishes before I went.
A colleague who lives nearby very kindly offered me a ride home in the taxi he was taking. I offered to split the cost but was kindly yet firmly rebuffed.
I had a chance to go by the Co-Op before they closed, and got us some nice treats from the reduced section.

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Lovely donuts, 16p a bag, and some lovely bread too.

Had some leftovers for dinner and was organised, so made my lunch for the next day as well.

All in all, a lovely week, but with a rubbish end to it.

You can read about week 1 of Nearly-There November here, if you feel so inclined.

 

Austober, week 4.

You can read about week 3 of Austober here, if you wish ^_^)

Monday, 22nd of October.
Made the decision to take the bus to and from work today – Husband and I were going out after work for my birthday dinner together and would have had to take the bus anyway, so I decided to use the travel for what it was worth! We had a lovely dinner together.
A nice end to a not-so-nice day as Husband had finally been called back in to have a second go at taking the bloods they were not able to do last time. Husband had to wait two hours for the bloods to be drawn and even then we had a call later in the afternoon from the consultant. She apologized but unfortunately there were tests they hadn’t done, and could we come back sometime?
I am unsure how this can have happened as Husband’s sister who works at the hospital, accompanied him and saw that they read the notes about what needed to be taken. So how could there have been tests they missed? This is now the second time this year something like this has occurred (Earlier in the year, they didn’t process the bloods they took in time, so the results were not accurate. Husband had to go back twice for this to be done correctly).
What happens to patients who don’t have anyone to advocate for them?
I need to have the letter come through from the consultant and see what it says. Then I will write a complaint.

Tuesday, 23rd of October.
Walked to and from work today; there is definitely a nip in the air. It’s getting colder.
Husband was at work late today so did some work around the house and some cleaning.
Both Husband and I have been paid!
As Husband has not been allocated any annual leave, I sat Tuesday night and booked my flights and transport to the airport and back again for when I am travelling home to see my family at Christmas. As it’s only me travelling and I can cope with it, I have made the decision to take the coach to London and then use the Underground to get to and from the airport. Sure, it takes a bit longer, but it’s far less expensive than the train and the coach.
Going to the airport I have decided to try Sn-Ap, which is…crowdfunded coach travel, I think? You set up a route and a date and time, and if a certain amount of people book it then it goes ahead. If not you get your money back. So if you can plan in advance it may be something that’s handy to use. And it meant that a one-way ticket to London cost me £5.
Went by the Co-Op to see if there were any bargains to be had before they closed.

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Really chuffed with these, two loads of mozzarella, 33p each, and a tub of potato salad, 19p. Husband was very pleased!

Wednesday, 24th of October.
Day off today, which was spent part relaxing and part doing errands. I also did things we have been putting off due to Skintember and Austober, now that we’ve been paid, such as buying a new keyboard for Husband and a new computer mouse for me, and sending a pair of boots to the cobbler to be reheeled and resoled.

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The Cat, enjoying the sun in our bedroom.
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The carnations I got for my birthday from our neighbour are just coming out, and brightening the living room up.
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I got these for free with some coupons I had. Added them to the cupboard.

Thursday, 25th of October.
Walking to and from work today, enjoying the autumn sunrise. I managed to save a piece of cheese my colleagues were going to throw out. I took it home and we had it as part of our dinner.
Husband was sent home from work tonight with a very swollen foot. Have helped him clean the nail that’s causing a bother and soaked his foot in very salted warm water.
I had the liver and bacon I bought very reduced at 25p as my dinner while Husband rested. I have never had offal before; it tasted ok but was very filling, so think I will only have a small portion if I have it again in future.

Friday, 26th of October.
Walked to and from work today, saving those pennies and making a deposit in my ‘your body is not meant to sit all the time’ account.
Husband was fortunate and got an emergency appointment at the GP in the morning, who took one look at it and prescribed him a course of antibiotics. I have also continued to soak his foot in a warm saline solution and it’s looking noticeably less angry than it did on Thursday. If he feels more himself he will try to go to work on Monday.

Saturday, 27th of October.
Quiet day at work today, which is what I needed. Managed to do quite a few surveys that have been sitting in my inbox for some time. Also did the annual staff survey which gave me a voucher for a free hot drink from any outlet at work.
After work I went by Krispy Kreme and got a free donut with my loyalty card <3.
It has gone very cold suddenly, from Friday to Saturday, so Husband and I made the decision to turn the heating on now. We have managed to hold off until now which I think is no mean feat. It also meant I could check the system was on and function properly for when I go away next week.

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The Cat, being cozy.

Sunday, 28th of October.
We had a quiet morning together, Husband and I, before I had to go to work. Managed to do the dishes and do and hang up a load of laundry before I left. And have a nice cooked breakfast together.
After work I had resigned myself to that I would have to wait some time for my bus home, so began my walk down the hill to the bus stop. So imagine my surprise when I saw the bus idling at the stop before! I ran hard and managed to get to my stop before it passed, meaning I got into town much earlier than normal.
This meant I had time to wander by the reduced section in several shops and got some lovely bargains;  mushrooms, celery, bagels, bread and much more. So pleased with my reduced scores.

Can’t wait for next week.
Have a day off on Monday, and then I will be seeing my older sister Tuesday to Friday. It will be so nice for just her and me to spend time together. A rare treat for us, as most of my time when I travel home is spent helping and supporting my mother, so we don’t get a lot of time to spend, just her and me.

You can read about the end of Austober and the start of Nearly-There November here.

Austober, week 3.

You can read about the second week of Austober here.

Monday, 15th of October.
Walked to and from work today, saving money and moving about, both of which are good things! It’s getting colder in the evenings, but during the day it is still warm.
Went by Wilko’s to collect our order today. So pleased I got the £10 off any spend voucher, as it meant I got all of this for 5p.

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Got us some toiletries and some bits and pieces for the house.

Husband has had his PIP back payment paid in today ❤ This will help us immensely. Most will go into the savings that have been wiped out with paying for Husband’s counselling and the renovations. Some will go on bills. And some will be put in the vacation fund<3. And a teensy weensy bit of it was spent on whatever Husband fancied for dinner. So we had a takeout.

Tuesday, 16th of October.
Walked to work and back again, enjoying the fall colours. Feeling more confident at work now, like I know more things and procedures, and I am not just a new hire.

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My new colleagues gave me an early birthday present ❤ Making my desk a bit more mine now<3

Husband was at work, so spent Tuesday evening at home cleaning and tidying the house. No fun having to do that stuff on my day off. So try to do it before or after Wednesdays, if possible.
Something lovely happened. I was walking past the greengrocer on my way home from work when I saw that they were selling bags of apples for 45p each. The lady was busy closing up the shop so I hurried inside with two bags to pay for them – at which point she said I could have them!
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Found this piece of music which I am listening to on repeat. Jeremy Soule did the music for the Elder Scrolls game series and this is just the sort of thing he would compose. Both calming and melancholic at the same time. Wish it was available as a CD as it would have been the perfect present for my father.

Wednesday, 17th of October.
It’s Silver’s birthday!
Naturally my day started with coming down to feed the Cat, to find she’d barfed in the living room. And I stepped in it.
Not to worry as it went better from there. It was a lovely sunny day, so did three loads of laundry. Good friends sent me gifts:

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What a wonderful present. Just have to try not to kill these plants inadvertently now…

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What an amazing creation, all from cut fruit! This was from my best friend.
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Sadly it was too tall to sit in the fridge, so had to take it apart to get it all to fit. Lots of fruit and veg for our lunches here (and breakfast and dinner, too!).

Husband’s mother came over and we had lunch together before I went with Husband to have his Hepatitis B vaccine regime started. We then had a quiet afternoon resting at home, before neighbour came by with some lovely treats and flowers for me in the evening. Posted the spending study back so I should have a voucher arrive in a not too distant future.

Thursday, 18th of October.
Taking fruit with me for lunch – the melon pieces are cut like petals, and are just delicious. Walked there and back again which also helps the bank balance and is good for me. And I found a £5 while walking to work, score!
I spent the evening clearing my inbox of surveys and tidying and dusting the office.
Husband was quite dejected coming home; he has not been allocated any leave at all over the whole of the Christmas period. This means that I will be travelling home to see my family and mother on my own. Husband is already starting to panic as he isn’t sure he can cope with his low mood alone, coupled with working and having to look after the house and the Cat and himself.

I need to make a plan.

Friday, 19th of October.
Quiet day at work today. Walked there and back again, and there was a definite chill in the air that morning. I am continuing to resist putting the heating on at home. May do it while I am away, so that Husband and the Cat are comfortable at home.
Spent the evening prepping some food and emptying my inbox of surveys. I try to cook and prep things when I have free time, so that when dinner needs to be made we can just throw it in to cook. No fun having to microwave something with your eyes, willing it to cook faster if you’re hungry.
I made my lunch for Saturday, chopped veg finely for Sunday’s dinner, and roasted some sweet potatoes for a future dinner.

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What a gorgeous colour they are. So pleased I had time to do these.

Picked the last itty bitty tomatoes we’ve grown in the back yard. I’ve put them with the bananas in the fruit bowl in the hope that they will ripen, as they just weren’t when we left them outside.
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Saturday, 20th of October.
I was really tired this morning; did the dishes and inhaled a piece of toast and some tea before going to work. Thank goodness I had the foresight to make my lunch the night before. I also made the decision to pack some dry snacks to keep at work, just in case, just some pot noodles and some cuppasoup. Hunger kicks in again in the afternoon most weekends, so it will stop me from going to the vending machine to get something unhealthy and grossly overpriced.
Work was quiet today, so managed to catch up on a lot of emails.
Went to see Husband’s family after work and have a birthday dinner with them. Husband’s family gave me a lovely planner for next year, a The Body Shop Gift Card, and a whole lemon drizzle cake! I shall be like a barrel by the time this month is over…

Sunday, 21st of October.
Had a quiet morning at home, having breakfast with Husband before setting off for work. Needed food for us and the Cat so went shopping. Managed to get some good bargains and to swing by Foodprint as well. Also managed to get one of my birthday freebies from Krispy Kreme ❤

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Very chuffed with my Lidl finds. That pasta bake for 70p is enormous! I’ve frozen it for Husband for when I am away so he doesn’t have to worry about having to prepare dinner.
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So pleased I was able to visit Foodprint before work. Lots of bread for Husbands sandwiches for lunch, and lots of snacks and treats for him to take to work as well. This cost us £4.75.
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My lovely birthday freebie from Krispy Kreme.

While I was waiting for the bus to work, I spied this little gem:

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The end of Austober is in sight. Not sure what comes next, perhaps, as per Hip Roof Barn‘s suggestion, Nearly There November?

You can read about the next week of Austober here.

Review: Olay Daily Facials cloths.

The legal (?) bits: I was given these to try for free by Supersavvyme. I am not paid to promote or endorse the product. All pictures and opinions are my own. Thank you. You may proceed.

I couldn’t believe it when I got these through in the post – I have been a member of SuperSavvyMe for a while, but have sadly never been selected for a project as it’s very popular and spaces are limited for each product. When I saw them on the website I decided to apply for them because it sounded like a product right up my street to try.
Olay Daily Facials are aimed at people who want a skincare routine but wants it done simply and quickly (and could be more than a bit short of time, like me…), without having to use too many products at the same time.
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You are after all, reading a review from a lady who applies her makeup on the bus and who paints her nails at the bus stop while waiting for said bus, with a piece of buttered toast hanging out of her mouth and a mug of tea sitting in her bag. Just putting that out there.

So this seemed ideal for me.

They come in a box, and are kept inside a pink plastic wrapper. There’s 30 in a pack.
One thing I wish they could have done would have been to make the pack resealable. As it was, I just tore a hole in the bag and hoped for the best to be honest. I would want it to be resealable so I could put it in my wash bag without having to worry about the
contents getting contaminated.
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They look like this.

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I wish they were bigger, to be honest. I find that the small area of the cloths isn’t really big enough for me to wipe my face. Maybe my face just is larger than average, who knows?

The difference about these cloths compared to wipes is that a. they are made from cloth and b. they are dry in the pack. You need to wet them yourself under the tap, only a little water is needed, and then squeeze them gently which causes them to get foamy. I prefer to use warm water to do this as I do like using a warm cloth on my face before going to bed as part of my bedtime routine.

I do like that they have nice scent once wet, they smell nice and fresh. And they’re good at removing makeup, especially mascara, in my experience. You don’t have to rub your eyes and look like a panda, the majority of it comes off with the first few wipes of your eyes.

What you then have to do is rinse the cloth and then you use the same cloth to wipe your face, to get rid of the foamy stuff you got on your skin when you used the cloth the first time. They are not flushable (PSA: nothing that says ‘flushable’ on it, is in fact flushable!), so they need to go in the bin.

The pack says they remove makeup, cleanse, exfoliate, improve skin look and retain moisture.

I like that they are made from cloth, and that the products smells nice and that the skin on my face feels clean and fresh after using these. The cloth is strong and it doesn’t disintegrate in your hands when using it.

They certainly removes makeup really well, and cleanse well too. I wouldn’t say they exfoliate my skin well and regarding retaining moisture and improving skin look, not sure. Still have to use a moisturiser after using these.

And I think they are quite dear for what they are. A pack of 30 cloths cost £6.99, that’s way out of my budget! (Hint: Silver doesn’t spend very much money if she can help it, and certainly not on herself) So while they cleansed my skin and removed makeup well I don’t think this would be something I would buy very much of at all.

Austober, week 2.

(You can read about the start of Austober here, if you haven’t already)

Monday, 8th of October.
Walked to and from work today.
Husband and I have been pseudo-paid. Because our employer pays at the end of the month, I was expecting it then, but some has come now, for some reason. I was very pleased when I checked our bank accounts. It means I can pay the tax bill and I know there will be a water bill to pay in a not too distant future. And I can rest easy about the mortgage and council tax going out now.
Spent some time downstairs hoovering, dusting and cleaning the kitchen up.
Have had two vouchers through today, one for £10 off any spend over £10 from Wilkinsons, and a free birthday donut from Krispy Kreme.

Tuesday, 9th of October.
Continuing to walk to and from work, but keeping an eye on the weather, all the same. Today the weather was quite mild so hung a load of laundry out before going to work.

After work I spent some time at home doing laundry, cleaning and doing the dishes. I had just sat down for the evening to have my dinner (much to Cat’s delight as she could climb on my lap), when I got a notification to say there was a new listing on Olio, for some onions. I asked if I could be considered as the listing was quite local to us and the gifter said yes. Off I went to collect.

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This will help us so much, and be for our lunches and dinners. So pleased with this.

The gifter, as it turned out, had lots of fruit and veg they had saved from being thrown away and encouraged me to take more (and was putting food in my bag at their insistence). I am so grateful for this food and can’t wait to make some nice dinners with it.

Wednesday, 10th of October.
Day off today. Was supposed to accompany Husband for his first round of vaccinations, but Husband’s parents came by and gave me an early birthday present!

While they were being hung up, I went and did a few errands. Donated some stuff to the charity shop, found a dress on the £1 rail for work, posted an eBay sale, collected a parcel at the depot and bought some groceries and toiletries.
I had run completely out of sweeteners so decided to try the Stevia ones. Blergh, what a mistake! Maybe I am not using it for the right sort of drink (need a sweetener in my tea), but it just didn’t taste nice or sweet enough for me at all. I don’t want to waste it so will have my tea with one sugar and one sweetener just to use it all up, and then carry on buying it from Lidl as I have before. A lesson learnt I suppose.

Hung two loads of laundry out as it was so warm. Even moved the airer to the front garden to ensure it got as much direct sunlight as possible, to ensure it dried (laundry is normally hung in the back yard, and checked on it and moved it at regular intervals to ensure it was catching the sun.

Emptied my inbox of surveys. I am so close to being able to get my incentive with YouGov and InboxPounds, I can practically touch it!
We had dinner a la leftovers today, so we could use up some stuff to avoid it being wasted.

Thursday, 11th of October.
Got to work today to find a cakestravaganza – they had an event on my day off and there were so many sweet but also savoury leftovers! This helped so much as I didn’t have to bring a lunch from home after all. Saves on the stuff we have at home.

Came home to find an envelope for us each from the DWP.

I know this might sound strange, but all the same. Following  the fight we have had to get Husband awarded the PIP he needs and deserves, I seem to have developed a phobia of brown envelopes (for the uninitiated: the DWP/Capita always send you their letters in those). Every time we get one now, and if I can tell who it’s from, I feel shaky and my heart beats faster as I open them.

The letters from DWP repeated the court’s decision to award Husband PIP, and reiterated how many points he’s been awarded for each category. It also explained how Husband would have his PIP paid. Husband is due his backpayment next week, and will be paid every four weeks after that.

Friday, 12th of October.
Still lots more leftovers at work, so ate those to save on the stuff at home. Took the bus to work for the first time since starting, as the forecast was that it was going to rain heavily. I made the decision to purchase five single use day tickets through the operator’s app.

Naturally it stayed dry all day until I got home! What a waste! Nevermind. I will see what the weather is like before using the next ticket.
Spent some of the evening making a cottage pie of sorts for tomorrow. I used the tin of corned beef we were given and a load of the onions from Olio, so it uses food up and wasn’t too expensive in terms of ingredients. Also took out my crumble to defrost.

Saturday, 13th of October.
Work was very quiet today. Rescued more food my colleagues were trying to throw out, which helped with not using stuff from home.
I sat and browsed the Wilkinson website to use up the voucher I received, and bought some toiletries and cleaning stuff we needed. I chose to get click and collect as we have a branch up the street from where we live, so got free delivery and £10 worth of stuff for 5p!
Corned beef cottage pie went down a treat with Husband as did the crumble. Lots leftover for another day.

Sunday, 14th of October.
A quiet Sunday morning spent at home, before going to work. I managed to make breakfast, do the dishes, take the recycling out and change the sheets before going.
Last day of the spending diary I am keeping today, so next week I can post it back and get my incentive for it.
Husband went to Sharing Sherwood and brought me some dinner back and donated money for some of the food on the table. And I swung by Tesco to check if there were any bargains to be had on my way home from work.

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This cost me £1.33 at Tesco. I love checking the reduced section<3
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Lovely food, saved from the bin by Sharing Sherwood.

 

 

The summer of 2018 to-do list. How did I do?

I went back to working Sundays last week. This means I am now back to working six days a week,  and I thought I would review the summer checklist for this year.

I did write one, but did not put it up unlike last year.

This summer was all in all taken over by PIP and waiting for a tribunal hearing, thus the list was not as long or nearly as impressive as last year. I didn’t want to overload myself as I felt I really needed to rest this summer, more than anything else. Especially after February and everything that’s happened to us since.

All the same, this summer I managed to:

Meet up with friend we hadn’t seen for a long time.
Clean the kitchen from top to bottom, inside drawers and cupboards, tidying them and sorting them. Taking stock of what we have in the house.
Dust all the blinds in the house.
Relist all the items whose listings we lost when my eBay page imploded in spring.
Apply for student loan reduction for 2017/2018, and send evidence in.
Do the tax return and send it off.
Dust inside all the radiators in the house and wipe them down.
Visit friends for a weekend.
Visit the Arboretum park.
Visit Stonebridge City Farm.
Dust, tidy and sort the sitting room from top to bottom.
Visit Newstead Abbey.

Looking back, I am quite pleased with myself I have managed to do all of that!
……
Even if Husband thinks I am obsessed with cleaning.

Austober, week 1.

The bank account balance is continuing to look dire, and as neither of us will be paid until the end of the month, we will have to have an Austere October (Austober?). This carries on from the month of Skintember.

Monday, 1st of October.
Weather was nice, so walked to and from work today. (Plus bus pass is empty anyway, so need to work out what option is best to add some more days to it).
Rang Husband at lunch and he let me know someone from the DWP called. They had some questions he didn’t know the answer to, so will ring them on Wednesday to ask what they wanted. They will also send a letter about what they wanted to ask. *snort* I suspect it could be about paying Husband PIP.
Went and bought some milk after work, came home and got dinner going. Dusted and hoovered the office and bedroom, and did a load of laundry.

Tuesday, 2nd of October.
Walking to work and back again, feeling good and enjoying watching the leaves changing, and listening to the rustling of the trees in the wind. Managed to do dishes, peg washing out and take the rubbish out before going to work.
Came home to find a letter from the DWP asking us to confirm Husband’s bank details and some other stuff,  and post it back to them. Hoovered and dusted the front room and sitting room, and changed the Cat’s litter tray.
Husband came home and was peckish, so proposed to make a baked potato in the microwave. It gave me a huge fright as within half a minute of setting it to cook sparks were flying inside the microwave and there was a strange crackling noise. Turned it off at the wall and made a toastie instead but I really hope that isn’t the end for the microwave as a. it makes cooking a quick thing to do and b. really can’t afford the expense of replacing it now. Especially considering the kettle has been a bit slow on the uptake lately and doesn’t boil immediately when turned on. If I had to choose between replacing the kettle or the microwave, I would choose the kettle for sure.

Wednesday the 3rd of October.
Day off today.
Woke up at 5.30am as the Cat pounced on my face, wanting to be fed. Realized Husband was not in bed, and found him in the office, feeling very low. Coaxed him to at least try and get some sleep before seeing his therapist at 8.30am.

Afterwards we were meeting our neighbour at the Wetherspoon for breakfast, Keeping Up Appearances meant I didn’t feel we could decline.
Afterwards Husband passed out in bed, completely worn out, and I spent the time cleaning up the kitchen, washing Husband’s uniforms, doing life admin and running errands. Husband has quite a few days left on his pass still so can use his on days he isn’t at work.
The deadline for paying the tax I owe is the 31st of January so have pushed that back for now. I posted two eBay sales, posted the PIP form and a letter, and collected a parcel from the mail depot.

I thought the parcel I was collecting was something we’d ordered for Husband, but to mys surprise I found I’ve been selected to try Olay Daily Facials by SuperSavvyMe! I have applied for so many of their projects and not heard anything, I had given up ever being selected for anything so this should be interesting.

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I walked by the British Heart Foundation shop and they sell pre-owned microwaves there that have been PAT tested for safety so if it does give up the ghost completely, I know I can get one there for not an unreasonable price.
Will be working Sunday this week so had to check if my other bus pass would cover the other service I would need to use to get into town (there are two major operators in our local area and the bus pass for one operator can’t be used on the other service and vice versa). I was delighted to find I had £35 left of credit left! This will cover me for a few Sundays.
Had a voucher for free cake and a hot drink at John Lewis that was due to expire, so sat quietly and had that while reading my book. Heavenly.
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Thursday, 4th of October.
Continuing to be good and walking to and from work (as if I have a choice). Husband had a day off today so left him a list of things he could help me with while I was at work.

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Writing Husband a list, the Cat is supurrvising.
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Look who was waiting for me when I came back from work ❤

Friday, 5th of October.
Very quiet day at work today so spent a lot of time becoming familiar with corporate procedures and policies. Collected food through Olio after work and went by the corner shop to see if there were any bargains.

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Got this for free through Olio. This will make us some nice breakfasts!
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Bargains! Husband will be especially pleased with the mushrooms. The coleslaw was 19p, the other bits were 27p each.

Saturday, 6th of October.
Working at weekend job today. We had an open day today so lunch was provided for all the employees, so that saved me taking anything from home. They also provide free tea and coffee for staff so brought in my reusable mug.
Also managed to save more food from going in the bin today, which meant not using stuff from home.
Took my book back and borrowed some more. Must try and read the books I have before borrowing more.

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The peril of shelf-tidying in a library is that you may well find something you want to read ❤

One of my colleagues very kindly gave me a lift into town, which meant I had time to look for some bargains.

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25p for the meal! Mind you, I have never eaten liver before, but it sounds quite appetizing. I have put it in the freezer for now and may have it one night when Husband isn’t in.

Sunday, 7th of October.
I am officially back to working Sundays now.
Spent a leisurely morning at home with Husband eating breakfast and watching stuff together, then did dishes, changed the bed and put a load of washing on before leaving for work. Swung by the store to buy the Cat more food.
Work today was quiet but I can imagine it will pick up the closer the students get to their deadlines.
Then discovered at the end of the day that the bus which normally takes me into town no longer stops outside my workplace, and that its departure time is later as well! So ended up walking down the hill to the next stop and taking much longer to get home than normal. I guess this is the new normal…
Took a look at the tomatoes we’ve been growing in the back yard, they seem to be ripening ok in the fruit bowl now, after just refusing to turn red and delicious outside:

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We’ve done well and gotten so many tomatoes, just hope they’ll ripen now!

Here’s to next week ^_^