I am so excited for our first Feather your Nest Friday after our "practice run" last week!
All week as I have gone along I have thought of things to write down that have made a difference in my home and saved us money. I have to say it served as an extra motivation too. I spent a lot of time in the garden this week and the flowers are beautiful! This is a lovely time of year. (Spring here) ANy time spent in the garden is good for me. Out in the sunshine amongst flowers is very uplifting and gardening is great exercise! Then I sleep well. Seeing things grow and flower is almost the same effect as the happiness of pets, both of these seem to make us happy.
These are my "Feather my Nest" tasks this week that saved us money and built up our home...
I removed a dying tree from a half wine barrel and turned this into another of my stacked pot planters. It is huge! It has 5 tiers and I planted them all. Some of the herbs I bought were out for $1 a pot. Between the wine barrel and the stack on top it makes a huge area for plants. If it is as successful as my herb stack (see last weeks post) then it will produce so much. Also it is near the back door so I will water it with left over household water. Tonight I watered it with water I drained from the pasta and run off from the hot tap in the kitchen.
I made Christmas decorations from free materials I collected. I will post pictures of them over the weekend. Here is a glimpse...
I also made heat packs. I used a dressing gown that doesn't fit as the material was so gorgeous and so soft. I cut it up to make quite a few. In stores these are between $20 and $30 and so far I've seen them in AWFUL material, not nice. To make they are costing about $3 each. These I filled with pearl barley. Wheat or rice work too. Warmed up they are so nice. Online you can find printable safety instructions to go with them for people who are unfamiliar. I couldn't live without mine they are so soothing to a headache. I guess I made half a dozen a year saving $100 or so. Lucy was wanting a new one and I took it to her, it felt so soft and nice and she was very happy!
I have been collecting jars as our apricot tree is covered in apricots... just little now but they grow quickly. When they are ready I made jam, stewed fruit, pies and we eat them fresh too of course. It is a busy week or two. This is how they are now, just babies but there are hundreds!
I rang our power company and asked for a discount and they gave me a further 5% off for the next two years. While I was at it I increased our gas discount.
Also made two meals that went into the freezer for emergencies.
I have a ring needing repairs. I asked in the city at a jeweller how much it would be and they quoted me $325. I said I would think about it. This week I rang the original jeweller who is interstate. They will do it for $45! Of course I have had to post it by registered post and pay for the return but still it is a huge saving! I was thrilled with this one as I haven't been able to wear this ring that Andy gave me.
Things I do all the time like... trim my hair, have a conditioning pack and re do my colour (I never go to a hair dresser saving over $1000 a year given I have colour etc) and paint my nails, toe nails etc.
Use water from the bath on the front garden and water from the laundry on the back garden. in the kitchen I keep a jug on the counter. When I am waiting for hot water to run I fill that jug instead of water going down the drain. This waters my pot plants and something in the garden everyday.
Make my own presents. Anyone can do this even if you are not crafty! You just need a plan. See my ebook, it has an extensive plan to identify what you could be making and what your family and friends will LOVE.
Always cook a little extra and pack my husbands work lunch and drinks the night before. He never needs to buy food or drinks in a work day. Plus this is healthier and he loves it.
Always travel with food and a thermo of coffee!
Shop at the times my supermarket marks down meat and bakery items. To find this out I just asked the staff. They were so helpful. In my case 2 pm was one of the good times so that is when I shop. I never pay full price, meat is about half price and bakery is way less... ie turkish bread was 50c for four instead of over $4.
Combine my errands to save petrol. If you plan you can save a lot of petrol and also stop running around like a headless chicken. Planning makes you see "ohh I will be going there... on the way I could do this and this" and cleverly combine things. Big time saver!
Make my cards and gift tags.
For all of us there are probably a list of things we always do and have been doing a long time that we don't even think about or consider great savings but they are! They still may be ideas others don't know about. And some things, like me doing my own hair, I probably underestimate how much it saves me as I get a shock when I here what others have been charged for a cut or colour and blow dry. Sometimes we are talking about almost $200 for an appointment!
But it all adds up, none the less, to help our households, reduce pressure and increase security. There are so many things we can do ourselves. When stuck I go to You Tube to see if there is a "How to" on anything I am needing help with. It is amazing!
How did you go this week? Please know your work counts. It adds up to create a safe, happy, loving home for your family. This all does not happen by accident! It is your hard work. Don't let anyone tell you that you are not contributing financially if you are working at home! It is invaluable and will affect future generations as well as the health and happiness of your family now. What could be bigger than that?
Have a lovely weekend.xxx