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Showing posts from May, 2013

Make using Voucher Codes part of your shopping habit

Habits, they take time to instill and not all of them have to be bad.  I used to always forget to take my reusable bags with me when I go shopping, but not anymore I have made it part of my shopping habit and it means that I always have them with me (plus means I get extra loyalty points in some shops too and stops me paying out for them in others). The same could be said about introducing searching for voucher codes before making a purchase too.  Not only do they often save me money, but they also make me ponder my purchase making sure that I do not have "buyers remorse"! Seriously you can use voucher codes to save money on pretty much EVERYTHING from £10 off your first online shop with sainsburys to 3 months free membership at The National Trust. You will be amazed to see the diverse range of discounts available from such a wide range of companies.  So you can see the benefit from checking them routinely before you buy anything. What are Discount Voucher C

Win a XXL'MAN SIZE' Faux Leather Bean Bag for Fathers Day

I have a fab competition for you to win a  Man Sized Bean Bag just in time for Fathers Day from Bean Bag Bazaar , which is worth £69.99. We are big fans of bean bags as they make perfect additional seating and can be popped in the garage when not in use and we are looking forward to reviewing one in Maxi's new bedroom . a Rafflecopter giveaway

8 ways to encourage children to be frugal

One of the things that are important to me as a parenting is encouraging my children to live a frugal life and this means teaching them good money management skills. We do this in various ways, but for me and my children I find practical examples have the biggest impact.   Both the boys get £2 a week pocket money of us and they are allowed to spend this how they chose, however, once it is gone, it is gone. They also get money off their nana and grandad on a pretty regular basis and for birthdays too. Spontaneity doesn't pay - Sometimes when the boys hear the sound of the ice cream van they are keen to get an icecream or lolly.  But they have learned that their money doesn't go far with the van, especially during the holidays when he is here on a regular basis.  However, I encourage them to buy (or ask me to buy) value cones, ice cream and ice lollies  or even better make their own) on my weekly shop and they pay me rather than the icecream man.   Buying in

Low cost simple pleasures or back to basics parenting #5 - Homemade bubbles

This weeks bubble pleasure has been brought to you because I was sent  @hitofhappiness and it contained some bubble mixture in it.   My boys adore bubbles and they didn't even get out of their school uniform, they just got hold of those bubbles and off they went!  They spent a good hour out blowing bubbles (I did top up their mixture) and it was such fun. You can even make your own with    1 cup water, 2 tablespoons glycerin and 4 tablespoons washing up liquid, so you never need be without bubbles! 

Maxi's dream bedroom

Maxi has been in his current room since we moved into the house nearly seven years ago and is no longer a baby, so would love to update his bedroom.  Therefore, when I saw that     Laura Ashley  and  Tales of Annie Bean  have set bloggers the chance of winning a room makeover me and him put our thinking cap on and sat down and designed his dream bedroom. He wants a room that will grow up with him and is going to pass half of his bunkbed on to Mini and wants to keep his desk area too, but he would like to have his walls white and some new furniture which will last till he leaves home or longer. This is where Laura Ashley comes in, we really loved the look of the Brompton range including the the  Brompton Oak Wardrobe  the oak side table (which we would use as a bedside cabinet)  and the tall chest of drawers . They are classic and well made and would be perfect long term.  I am a great believer that if you have the bones of a room you can add and take away from accessories to make the

Being thrifty - it's all about happiness

The lovely Jane who many people will know as Northern Mum has had a challenging few years and made the decision to change her working pattern so that she could spend more time at home with her three children. I know full well how hard it is to cut back on to primarily one income and "cut your cloth" accordingly, I also know that everyone wants that champagne lifestyle on a larger income. When we made our life changing decision to come back to the North East of England, so that I could stay at home with the boys we made many a sacrifice so that it was affordable, but in todays financial climate living frugally is no longer a choice, it is a necessity. Jane currently has a competition running on her new blog From Spending to Saving  to win £400 of Amazon Vouchers in conjunction with Which Offshore  and she is looking for thrifty tips and also why to have an offshore pension. For me having a pension is all about being prudent and making sure that I am responsible for me i

Get a free two month Friends and Family Railcard

Thanks to Cass at  Frugal Family for the heads up on this one. Wherever you're going, take your Family & Friends Railcard with you to save on rail fares. As long as you have at least one child travelling with you, you'll qualify for Family & Friends Railcard discounts. A Family & Friends Railcard costs just £30 per annun and you save 1/3 off adult fares, and 60% off kids’ fares on travel throughout Great Britain.  If you travel with a child between five and 15 years old then you’re eligible.  Up to four adults and four kids can travel on one card, and they don't even need to be related. So, for what works out to around £2.50 a month, you can look forward to dramatic savings for the year.  All child fares are subject to a £1 minimum fare. Even better you can get a two month free Friends and Family railcard with Daily Mail .  But be fast as the offer runs out at  23.59 hrs 23rd May 2013.

Save on beauty brands - Save over £50 on a Rodial Glamoxy Snake Serum Pen Light

I was sent a Rodial Glamoxy Snake Serum Pen Light to review last week.  Now I have only been using it over the weekend, but I wanted to share the following voucher code with you so you can save 68.6% (which is over £50) on one too. Use SAVEONSERUM at the checkout to Save 68.6% Off Rodial Glamoxy Snake Serum Pen Light  10ml at .  This offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other voucher code promotion or VIP discount. Valid now until Midnight GMT 24th May 2013. FeelUnique is an online beauty store  who offer free delivery worldwide on everything!  They stock over over 18,000 products from over 550. ·         Cheaper than RRP / High street on 90% of our range ·         Wish List - Make & Send lists of your most wanted products ·         Outlet - save up to 80% Off RRP! ·         VIP club - 10% Off your favourite brand for life! I have just placed an order for some Moroccan oil.  I swear by it to help stop the frizzes in my ha

No cost simple pleasures or back to basics parenting #3

This weeks simple pleasure is the joy I get from hearing my children laugh, giggle and shout when playing outside after school.  I love the lighter nights, so that they can play outdoors with their friends. I am a huge fan of free range parenting and encourage my boys who are eight and nearly seven to get out and play.  Make their own fun and games within the boundaries I set.    

The constant risk of liability

The constant risk of liability No matter what kind of business you run, there is always the potential for liability. It comes in many forms, but there is no business that is truly exempt. As such, it is something you need to watch out for. With this in mind, here's a quick rundown on liability. Whether its understanding who can claim liability, and why, or protecting yourself with the correct liability insurance for small business, the more you know will make you more prepared in the long run. Your business, as a result, will be better off for it, both legally and financially. Who can claim liability? First and foremost, most people can claim liability. As the owner of your business, you are responsible, as the business, for what happens. As such, members of the public can claim liability for anything that happens that they deem your fault. This isn't just limited to anything that happens within your premises, either. If something happens when your staff visi

Walkers Hoops and Crosses Review

My boys do not have packed lunches very often, but when they do they love to have a bag of crisps.  Now I know that whole grains are really important in our diets and if I can find ways to encourage this then that makes me a happy mum.      56% whole­grain corn meal per bag. 85 calo­ries per bag. No artificial colours or preservatives They are baked Hoops and Crosses come in three flavours,  Roast Beef, Prawn Crack­ers and Salt  and  Vinegar Mini was delighted with the monkey, who has been named Mack, but both the boys disliked the roast beef hoops and crosses and they remained uneaten for the best part of the day, until MadDad ate them. He told me they were pretty much like Monster munch and he liked them.   When I went shopping this week I got some salt and vinegar ones for the boys to try, which they both liked.  So if they need packed lunches for trips out etc then I will get these for them.  They were £1.89 for six bags or are on offer as Asda 3 bags for

Credit Rebuilding Tips and Advice

Having a good credit rating and history makes getting good rates on financial lending a lot easier. It all comes down to risk: if a lender considers you to be high risk, the spending limits they offer you will be low, and the APR high. While this may seem to be less attractive to many, 'bad credit' credit cards make for a great way to rebuild your credit rating if it has been tarnished in the past. Poor credit usually results from irresponsible spending and poor financial planning. If you have missed payments in the past, or have regularly gone over your spending limit, this will negatively impact your credit history. In order to rebuild, you can use bad credit credit cards and, as long as you are sensible and cautious with your spending, you can gradually improve your credit rating without suffering too much financial strife. These types of credit cards are also useful for those who have yet to build a credit history, or who simply have a limited one. Again, lender

Flubit, what you want only cheaper

Flubit , it sounds like that bouncy little green ball that Robin Williams makes in the film Flubber, but I can assure you it isn't!  Flubit work with you to create the best offer on the product you are after – so once you have found a product you want, you let Flubit know and they will go off and find a better price for you!  Simply paste the link to the item on the Flubit site and you’re offer will be made! I saved 14% on both the items that I ordered   Yes 14% on items that I was going to buy anyway.  There are a couple of things that you need to bear in mind when it comes to using Flubit. It isn't an instant purchase site.  You have to wait for your offer to be produced   For me it took about six hours, but then I am a great believer in making sure that you want to spend that money and really need that item. They take postage costs  into  account. All offers are unique and created in private.   You have no obligation to buy using Flubit.

Free family days out in Cornwall

There’s nothing better than a trip to Cornwall than having plenty of fun things to see and do which are absolutely free! If you’re on a budget and want to save extra pennies then look no further, we’ve got it covered. These are just a few of the free family days out in Cornwall – to check out the rest of what’s on offer take a look at the Visit Cornwall website , and see this site to find heavily discounted last minute accommodation in Cornwall . The Beach Cornwall has over 200 beautiful beaches for you to choose from all with unique character and something different to boast about. A few of my all time favourites which I highly recommend are Crantock Beach, Sennen Cove and Watergate Bay. Whether it’s an afternoon of sand castle building, wave jumping or fishing in the rock pools, there is so much to do, keeping you and your family busy and happy all day long. To make your pennies stretch further, pack up a picnic and plenty of drinking water! Image Credit: La

Magpie Monday - A globe for MIni's birthday

Mini will be seven in June, so I am on the lookout for presents for his birthday and just like his brother he is obsessed with geography. I was delighted when passing the charity shop in the village to find a Globe Lamp.  Even better it works and had been PAT tested. It is in great condition, so I snapped it up and have popped it away for his birthday. I am trying not to bring a lot in to the house at the moment as we are saving up for a holiday, but also we are looking at decorating the boys rooms, so I am on the lookout for old fashioned wardrobes and drawers as they have more chance of withstanding the minimads!

Keeping on top of the laundry

Laundry, I am sure that it breeds.  With two boys I am becoming an expert at removing stains and keeping things clean, bright and stain free and for me it is down to a routine, rather than putting an item through the wash and having to wash it again! Keep everything in one place. I keep all our laundry treatment preparations in one place by the washing machine.  I have pretreatments there along with different types of washing products (woolite for woolens, washing liquid, stain remover and fabric softener) Sort your clothes It is important to sort your clothes in to lights, darks and different fabric types.  I separate in to whites, coloured, bedding, towels and non softer clothes (such as football kits and fleeces). Check clothes before putting in the washing machine I make sure I go though the clothes before I load them into the machine.  Yes this seems overkill, but with two boys I find pockets full of stones!  I turn all the clothes the right way round (except from

Which Decade Had the Best Music?

I cannot be the only mum out there that is shocked at some of the music that our children listen to today.  I fear that I am turning in to my mum.  I have stopped listening to Radio One and instead have Radio Two or Radio Four on all the time.   This means that a lot of the songs pass me by, until that is I hear the boys singing them!  One of the things that we have done is to password protect the music channels as the video's for a lot of songs are shocking today.  They really do nothing to enhance the song and the fact that the ladies wear next to nothing is not something I want my boys to think is normal.  I want them to grow up with a healthy respect for woman and it seems that certain rappers do not have any respect and set a bad example.   It just goes to show you that things and opinions change when you have children. My boys dancing whilst watching Glee Live My boys have experienced a wide range of music and both have clear ideas of which are their favou