Monday, 2 June 2014

How to spend £55 in 15 minutes

My freezer was looking pitifully empty and, as I had a £5 coupon off a £50 spend at FarmFoods, this morning I enlisted DD1's help and set off to fill it up. I'd already written a list based on their latest offers and we went early so managed to whizz around and through the checkout in under 15 minutes.

The actual bill was just over £60 but with the voucher it was around £55. For this amount I bought:-

3 x 1kg bags of chicken breasts (3 for £10), 
4 x 500g lamb mince (4 for £10), 
3 packs x 18 rashers back bacon (3 for £6), 
2 x minced steak and 2 x minced beef (any 4 packs for £10), 
2 x 8 Gammon steaks and 1 x 10 pork loin steaks (any 3 packs for £10), 
3 bags x 6 frozen baked potatoes (3 for £5), 
2 x 2 packs Birds Eye barbecue chicken grills (2 for £2), 
2 bags frozen sweet potatoes (2 for £1), 
2 packs x 4 chunky breaded fish steaks (2 for £4), 
2 x frozen carrots and 1 x frozen mixed peppers (any 3 veg for £2)
1kg fresh carrots (49p)
1 x cucumber (39p)
1 x Maxwell House 8 pack Cappuccinos (£1)

Okay, so the cappuccinos were a treat for me and not strictly necessary, but DH has his hot choc sachets from Aldi and I have my coffees and I only have 1 a day. 

Even though DS2 is back at home now, I'm hoping that lot will last me a good couple of months interspersed with vegetarian meals, .

I also made a trip into town and managed to get 2 packs of menopause vitamin supplements from Superdrug for £2 a box (one month's supply in each) instead of £4.99, and I bought cod liver oil capsules for £1 from Savers. I'm having all kinds of trouble with dry skin and some really horrible eczema patches since I went through the menopause. I have never before suffered from eczema, although my sister has had it all her life and was so bad she was hospitalised when she was in her twenties. I'm hoping that taking some supplements - especially fish oils - might help. I've tried various creams and lotions including Sudocrem, E45 and over the counter hydrocortisone but I also think I've developed an allergy to some of the other ingredients in them as none have helped and have even seemed to make it worse. Any suggestions gratefully received as it's driving me crazy at the moment.

Just so this doesn't end up as a words-only post, here are a few pictures of my latest makes. I had all the pieces cut out and the applique applied before half term but I was out and about so much last week I didn't get my sewing machine out once. This afternoon I just needed to sew everything together.

That's all for tonight. Slimming club tomorrow. I've had a mixed week food-wise so don't know how I've done. Hope everything is fine with you and yours, love Helen x


  1. I am a new fan of Farm Foods, I did a super fast "fill the freezer" shop once we had moved in and got the freezer up and running. The little retail park in Pontardwe has a Farm Foods, Lidl, Home Bargains, Poundstretcher and Argos, 3 minute away there is a 24 hr Tesco. It is so handy and only takes 10 minutes to get there. I haven't touched my sewing yet, that will be another week at least. The bags are looking great, they make my fingers twitchy, but I need to do some more sorting out before I play.

    1. Farmfoods offers are amazing and I also buy my milk there at 2 x 4 pints for £1.80. I know a lot of people aren't keen on frozen meats and poultry but fresh is generally so much more expensive. Like you, we have lots of shops close by although we don't have lovely countryside views like you, but we are only a 20 minute walk from the sea, and there's gorgeous countryside close by. We used to have a view of the castle from the front of our house until they built the flats opposite us. I really enjoy making bags and now I have my die cutter I'm sure I'll be doing a lot more applique on them.

  2. Beautiful bag! Also impressed with your shopping - I don't know where we have a Farmfoods in this area, but I know we have a couple of Icelands scattered around, so perhaps I should have a look in there more closely for deals - you certainly did very well with that.

    1. Hello, Morgan, thank you for the compliment about my bags. I do enjoy making them. Farmfoods is great for both frozen foods and also some fresh fruit and veg (strawberries and grapes for £1 a punnet, cucumbers 39p, carrots 49p, onions I think are also 49p) and I get milk there at 2 x 4 pint bottles for £1.80. Before we had a Farmfoods I used Iceland a lot for frozen stuff. I have no store loyalty; I tend to shop in lots of different places depending on products, price and quailty. We're lucky to have Aldi, Morrisons, Asda, Farmfoods and Iceland all within easy walking distance. There's also a big Tesco store a couple of miles out of town, but we don't use it much because I find them quite expensive nowadays and there's no need to travel with everything else more or less on the doorstep.

  3. Hi Helen, I have just posted a new blog article which offers a holistic approach to managing eczema. I was thinking of you when I wrote it.

    1. Thank you for the link, Sarah, the article is very interesting. I've had a quick read, but there's a lot to think about and I'll need to go through it more carefully. I do think that some of my problem is obviously age as skin dries out anyway once you go through he menopause, but also diet as I've been losing weight over the past 2 years and eat very little oil or fat in any form. Also there is a hereditary element as my sister has suffered all her life. I am definitely going to look at adding extra oils into my diet and have started taking cod liver oil and evening primrose capsules. If necessary I will look again at cutting things out but with weight still to lose I already generally eat a restricted diet. Thank you again for taking the time to respond to my post. Love, Helen x

  4. Hi Helen, I know what you mean about spending money quickly, what a nice bag, I have read a few blogs lately and everyone is going bag making crazy,it is on my list of things to learn.x

    1. You should give bag making a go;its quite addictive. Once you've made a couple of bags and know how they go together they're pretty simple. I even have a 15.5 inch square acrylic rule now that's just the right size for cutting out the main parts.