I’d like to tell you a little story.
It’s about my grocery shopping trip last Saturday.
With a £50 budget, reusable canvas bags in hand and an armful of parcels to be posted, I hit a local shopping centre.
First destination was the post office, whereby I posted some of my eBay sales. Last week I generated approx £60 from eBay sales. I’m still working on selling all my unwanted items which began back in the Spring.
Then battle commenced. It’s not for the faint hearted or the weak bodied reducing your grocery budget by 50%. It takes planning, organisation and willpower to meet the £50 target. Plus carrying all the shopping back from 4 different locations to the car park isn’t a walk in the park. I’ve said it before, but actually carrying your shopping is a real deterrent to adding more items to your basket.
My total bill came to £50.46 – so a little over, but there or there abouts. To get to this however I did have to forgo 3 items, and buy an alternative fish. The self-raising flour and bran was shelved. This was for my bran loaf. But I know I can adapt and use plain flour with baking powder, and have a plan to try out oat or wheat in place of bran. I also purchased cod instead of salmon for the fish cakes this week to halve the cost.
By the time I was hauling my last load to the car, my arms and brain hurt. Then the doubt started to creep in… why am I doing this? I could easily order online and nice Mr Sainsbury’s would arrive all polite and smiley and drop my shop at my doorstep. Okay, so it may cost me more – approx. another £25 minimum, but isn’t it worth it for an easier life?
I don’t recall anyone claiming a simple life is a convenient one…
Then as the thought crossed my mind, I heard an amazing sound. In the walkway from the market to the car park was a busker. I love buskers, and had never seen a busker in this town before although I’ve frequented it for 37 years. He was playing a violin. Busking to me symbolises true entrepreneurial spirit. To put yourself out there in the elements for all to see whilst displaying your talent to brighten someones day and earn a few pounds, I find highly admirable.
I threw a pound in his violin case.
That’s when I realised it’s not all about the money, it’s all about the waste. I don’t mind spending money, I don’t like wasting money. To spend an extra £25 on my grocery shop is a waste because I do have a couple of hours to spare, to give a busker a £1 isn’t. For my extra £25 on groceries I’d have a few more luxuries and some wine, but much of the increase would be for nothing (although I appreciate at some point an online shop may be required and won’t be a waste as I will save on time – at the moment I have the time). For £1 I got a lift to my day and my spirits.
For me it’s about conscious spending and eliminating waste.
What’s it about for you?
***This post is a little more morose than usual (which is demonstrated by the lack of exclamation marks!!!!)!!! – I’m not really into writing ‘heavy’ posts, I’m a light-hearted gal and I always feel a little reluctant to hit the publish button on my blog when I start getting down and dirty! So I’ll finish off with a little link love (and music!) that kind of inspired some of the above to lighten the mood…***
Motivated by Jenny’s endeavours I started tallying my unwanted goods sales – nowhere near as impressive as what the ex-consumer achieved
Faced with overspending on my groceries or looking at alternatives I choose the latter – do as Rachel suggests and be adaptable
If I see a penny, I pick it up, and my little spotty piggy bank is where I pop it – I do what Donna does and donate the pennies to charity
Even if you don’t donate it to charity, still pick it up – as Coingirl herself demonstrates even cent, dime and penny counts
For the final say… over to Jessie J