being thrifty, crEAting, fEAsible, getting things done, managEAble, taking stock, wEAlth

Are we really half way through January?

I cannot believe that already January is slipping away fast and there is still so much to do to turn my house from mess to order.  I seem to have begun to re-order so many areas and completed none as yet. So what have I done so far?

I had a pile (and I mean a pile) of old magazines to go through to tear out the articles and pictures that I wanted to keep.  Every month I buy Country Living and Country Homes my two favourite magazines.  I love the articles and pictures and even though I have tried to be ruthless and throw out as much as possible I find this process hard for three reasons firstly,  magazines are now so expensive and as I said before I hate waste so I feel in a dilemma that I need to hold on to something to justify the cost otherwise I feel like I am putting £4 in the bin!  Secondly, I spend so much wasted time organising the mountain of clippings.  Thirdly,  I find many of the articles and ideas quite useful if only I could remember they are there!

Unfortunately,  I do have a bit of a weakness when it comes to magazines and this is the first aisle that I see as I go through the door of my local supermarket and temptation is too much.  So on top of my two regulars I may pick up an additional craft or health magazine each week, whatever looks promising on the cover.  This all adds to my future clippings pile and my further frustration of organising them.  I am quite worried about myself when I find that I have a collection of clippings of every kind of Detox plan going only then to read that a lot of well-known TV doctors do not believe them necessary!

My new challenge to myself is to bypass this aisle (sorry Sainsbury’s – and I hope your profits do not take a dive!) unless I am specifically buying my two ‘allowed’ magazines each month.  Even better I have thought about having a cut price subscription which would save me money over the year.  But – am I strong enough not to be tempted back to browsing the magazine aisle?

My shopping at home plan is going very well and the stock in my cupboards should keep me going for a while until I have used up all those gifts and freebies of hand creams etc and multiple buys of cleaners and detergents.  All I found necessary to buy this past week apart from a small supermarket shop was some tissues – 2 for £2 at Boots and two display folders of 100 pages each from Rymans enough to contain my recipe and craft clippings, expensive I know at £9.99 but hopefully useful.  Oh and we bought a new bed!  Well it is not the kind of thing that I keep a stock of in my cupboard!  I can’t wait for it to come for a good nights sleep.   I only wish we could have decorated the room first but then we would have missed the special offer at John Lewis.  Decorating plans are in the pipeline once the house is decluttered.

The Christmas decorations are now returned to the loft and I have updated my card list and addresses for next year.  One of the messiest areas in my home was the office come craft room and taking one drawer or shelf at a time I have had a thorough clear out and re-ordered most of it.  There is still plenty to do in here and I will require a trip to one of my favourite stores – Muji  for some additional storage trays.

As I have bought quite a lot of blank cards in the past my second challenge to myself this week is to make time to produce some cards that will be suitable for birthdays.  This will not only help to reduce the space I need for storing all the blank cards and special papers that I have collected but will also save money on buying birthday cards from the shops.  I find that most of my friends and family like to receive the homemade ones so I need to get creative and think of some new ideas.  For some reason I find Christmas cards easier to do.  Below is the 2011 Christmas card I made using a ‘Snowflake’ stamp kit form Muji that I received as a gift last year and some white embossing enamel and glitter.  (Apologies again for the quality of the picture – I am sure it is me not my camera!)

Snowflake Card

For the rest of the day I have to look at some paperwork – balancing statements and shredding old receipts to make way for this years.  When I see the mountain of receipts that I have from the whole of last year I know we have to reduce our spending – I can’t believe how much time I must have spent on purchasing things – even just the necessities!  Living simply in a tent somewhere and becoming more self-sufficient suddenly becomes appealing as I would not have to deal with all this ‘stuff’.

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2 thoughts on “Are we really half way through January?”

  1. I know my comment is far too late but I liked the sound of your blog so much I’m starting at the beginning! I have country living on subscription and it does save a few pounds. I asked Dave (the boyfriend) for a subscription for Christmas last year which cost £30 and I now have an offer to renew it for £23 which I think is quite reasonable. I feel the same about throwing them out but I can’t bear to keep them. I always sit down to read them with my camera at my side and I photograph anything I want to keep in order to build up a clutter free digital archive of clippings and inspiration.

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