Cotton Fresh Produce Bags FTW!

Perhaps I missed the memo on this, but I was pleasantly surprised to spot these (reasonably priced) fresh bags for sale at Sainsbury’s, for use with their weighing scales.

They are apparently made of cotton and can be recycled alongside other textiles if required.

I thought they seemed a bargain at 30p a pop, so immediately purchased a few and made my way over to my local greengrocers to test them out…

Probably not quite what Sainsbury’s wanted me to do, but hey, I’m on a tight budget!

If only the greengrocer staff weren’t so incredulous about the bags; surely they have missed a great business opportunity here?

When it Rains…

A small family ‘adventure’ went downhill in a typically rapid fashion this afternoon, when a walk to the park followed by lunch in a cafe turned into full-on food refusal and a supermarket temper tantrum – because which toddler doesn’t love being dragged along the floor? I think someone may have been a bit overtired.

The grand finale was getting absolutely drenched on the walk (jog) home. Poor toddler was sitting on the buggy board with only a hoodie for protection. Guilty mummy moment right there. It was shortly after he fell off the buggy board too.

The weather forecast predicted a maximum of 30% chance of rain for the hour we happened to be walking home. I fancied those odds as the sky looked pretty clear…

On the plus side, once we had got home and changed into dry clothes we had yummy hot chocolate to warm up.

The raincoat is now going to live in the buggy between uses for the forseeable future. Lesson learned!

How Do You Identify an Overspending Problem?

How do you tell the difference between a genuine overspending problem and well, just having kids?

As I’m currently on maternity leave, my income is obviously significantly reduced, so of course the last thing I want to do is to develop unhealthy spending behaviours.

It’s fair to say that I’m not sticking to the budget that I spent many a wee hour tweaking thanks to my pregnancy-related insomnia. I really want (need) to get a handle on my spending before things get problematic.

I don’t think I’m spending compulsively, as I often spend hours or days pondering whether I can really justify buying something. I usually end up buying it sooner or later.

Ultimately though, the sense of whether I really ‘need’ to buy something is pretty subjective, right? Maybe the ‘compulsion’ isn’t determined by the degree of consideration but rather by my motivation for buying it?

Perhaps then, things are more nuanced than I thought?

Justifications for purchases include:

  • “it’s educational” (building blocks)
  • “it’s an investment” (adding to DVD collection)
  • “I read in X that this might help with Z”
  • “it’s cheaper overall to buy in bulk”

After reviewing my recent purchases, I have noticed that most of it is for my feral toddler. He is currently exhibiting the usual ‘terrible twos’ behaviours, plus there’s the arrival of a younger sibling also thrown into the mix. Poor little guy has had a lot to deal with. I’ve witnessed my angelic little soul turn into a defiant little monster overnight and I probably didn’t handle it very well at first.

I honestly think things are improving now as I have a better understanding of what he is going through, but maybe the reason I have spent so much on him lately is partly because I am placating him?

Or maybe I am buying things for him because I am feeling guilty?

Retail Therapy

One of the benefits of selling via online auctions is that it helps to motivate me to leave the flat.

Most of us have been there, feeling too tired, anxious or lethargic to make that trip to the post office, but the threat of negative feedback on the site is apparently just the kick up the backside that I need.

Such trips have been harder for me lately, with the practicalities of both a (suddenly) feral toddler and a breastfeeding newborn to consider. I hadn’t realised how much my confidence had been eroded by my job until it was too late. I found myself on maternity leave with zero resilience, feeling like a failure once again.

However, I am determined to get to a point where I am confident enough to take both kids out for the day by myself. That’s how I always imagined my maternity leave would be, not me dragging my poor partner around every time I need to go outside! The poor guy needs a break now and then.

Anyway, as he took the toddler out all day yesterday, I tentatively offered to venture into town with both kids in tow to allow him some time to study in peace.

This morning I was braced for the worst.

But you know what? The worst never came. The baby slept peacefully most of the time. The feral toddler was tamed (mostly by Smarties, no judgement please!). I didn’t even have to change a messy nappy or stop to breastfeed. I was surprised and elated. Maybe I could do this parenting thing after all? Maybe there was hope for me yet?

Slightly baffled, I quickly made my way home soon after completing my errands, before my ‘best case scenario’ shopping trip was marred by something ridiculous – like my toddler flipping out over the sky being the wrong colour, or suddenly bolting in the opposite direction.

Hooray for online auctions! And Smarties.