Thursday, 28 March 2013

I have recently stumbled upon a great wee blog by an amazing girl called Jack. She posts thé most delicious sounding recipes, for pennies per serving. The ingredients are not 'exotic' or hard to come by.
Take this weeks recipe, Mexican Chocolate, Chili & Black Bean soup, at 25p per serving. I actually want to go home and make this today, but I am stuck at work. And do not have any Black Beans. Need to remember to put Black Beans on my list of things to get whilst out doing my mail run for work.
I totally recommend reading this girls blog. Her situation is somewhat similar to mine after having Lyle. Lost my good paying job due to lack of affordable childcare, uncompromising employers who used indirect sexual discrimination against me (more on that another time), which left me unemployed, with a mortgage, a credit card, and all the household bills {that reminds me, I need to get my spreadsheet done for March, oh, and February too!} to pay. Their was a time were all I bought to live on each week was pasta, goats milk, ready brek, eggs, packets of ham, jam and bread for making sons sandwiches. When I went to Uni and was paying £420 every four weeks for childcare, £134 month for train tickets, £10-20 a week for petrol, £423.24 a month for mortgage, £40 a month for electricity, £35 for TV/lline/BB, £18 a month for mobile, I had pennies to live on, to feed and clothe us, I lived in and over my overdraft of £800, so my bank was constantly at negative eight hundred, we ate a lot of breakfasts for dinner and a lot of scrambled eggs, boiled eggs, omelets, and pasta with cheap sauce with reduced veg added for some real vitamins... I always tried to have apples and bananas in the house, and hunted the reduced area for fruit and veg. It was tough going, and one of the few reasons why I didn't go back to Uni.

So I touched on not having a bank card for a while now, just shy of two whole weeks. My bank balance isn't looking any healthier for it. Even though I am unable to take money out, nor pay for things over the Internet or in shops, good points, I am not squandering my money, bad points, I can't buy birthday presents for Lyle! I'm looking to get him some Harry Potter type robes and glasses and pick up a few Skylanders to go along with the guitar, crystal growing kit and a telescope that I got him, all for £10 each! They were £46, £35 and £55. I have also picked him up some wooden versions of board games.
Shopping these past few weeks has been a bit like when I was at Uni, using cash so I have to stick with what I am going in for, using a basket instead of a trolley.

Last nights dinner was a chopped onion cooked with abt 200/250g of minced lamb, crumbled two lamb stock cubes, 1 large carrot chopped up, and two handfuls of oats added, mix all together and then added hot water that was just boiled in the kettle, grated about half a carrot in as well, and chopped some button mushrooms to add as well. let it all boil up, and reduce to a simmer, cooked some shell type pasta. If you make your own spaghetti, you will notice that I have only missed out a tin or two of chopped toms and some tom puree and a spoonful of sugar.
Grated carrot should almost dissolve/disappear in the dish, and the oats, if you don't use too many, they soak up all the lovely meaty juices and blend in with the meat. Its a great way to bulk out any minced dish.
That small amount of minced lamb fed 2 adult gannets, one small gannet, and enough for him to have in his packed/bento lunch today. If I was doing portion control, that would have been enough for 5 or 6 meals.

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Spring in is the air....

... Oh wait! That is the smell of SNOW!

Yep I am smelling snow. It is a rather distinct smell. To me its similar to a powder I use to make chocolate milkshakes/chocolate butter icing for on top of cupcakes. Now it doesn't smell like those, but more like the smell of the taste of them. Strange I know, but I have never professed to be anything other than strange.

We are at the end of March, and as I sit in my cold office with my hat still on, watching the snow swirl around outside, I am looking on Pinterest to see how I make some Easter Bunnies with some sort of egg inside them to give out as presents.

I ordered a new Nokia Lumia 920 yesterday, but have now asked my neighbour NOT to accept the delivery, It looks good, it sounds good, BUT its way behind with regards to apps, and concidering I have been using mobile fones with app abilities since around 2005 (MDA, MDA3, G1, HTC), I'm loath to 'go backwards', although the fact it has Windows 8, was a selling point, oh and the spectacular camera, I just dont want to be frustrated with the slow internet, the frozen screen and constant soft resets that I keep reading about. So back to the warehouse it goes and then I will order a Samsung Galaxy 3. And give that a try.

Back to Easter; I have NO chocolate eggs in the house! And my lovely son informed me he just loves Easter because the Easter Bunny leaves clues to go find his eggs. And how exciting is that mummy, when you get up in the morning and are allowed to go hunting for some chocolate eggs! so later today, I shall be scouring the local pond shops for some Easter Egg Hunt kits, as I have really left it too late to make my own.
Good Friday this week. My son was born on Good Friday 6 years ago, his birthday this year is a week and a day later. He has asked for a Harry Potter themed party, I have soo many fantastic ideas going on in my head (some that I have garnered from random searches on Google), but I can't get anywhere to hold the party. Community Centres are booked out by after-school clubs for years in advance, sport centres are too big, cost too much, social clubs won't even entertain the idea due to the party being for under 18 year olds and they wont make any money from them not buying alcohol, which I find really crazy. The hall is empty (they were willing to book it out, so nothing else was booked in), they wont make any money for that day. They could book it out, and make £30-£50 for a few hours. But no, they dont want to make money. instead they would rather be empty, make no money and close down.
The social clubs I called are all in financial trouble, they are not getting many membership renuals, they all have licences for having children on the premises, host their own Christmas parties sometimes.

My bank card has been compromised. Someone tried to use my details to pay £100 to William Hill, many times. Thankfully my bank, Lloyds TSB declined the transactions. I have now been left without a bank card for nearly two weeks. Really annoying, but a small price to pay to keep my account safe.