Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tripping through Tuesday

No ~ I didn't fall over...

I'd like to say there was no spending today but it is more realistic to say there was no unnecessary spending. Anything purchased was necessary. Petrol was an urgent requirement ~ $10 in the tank to ensure we get SmallBoy to and from school for the week. It's a 20km trip each way and unfortunately not connected to any bus route. Ce la vie ~ it is how it is.

With the start of the new school term there have been some expenses which needed to be finalised today. The biggest one was for the required NetBook ~ $130. Egad is the second word that came to mind - the first is not fit to print *grins*  As much as we had hoped to stall this payment, SmallBoy needs to using his NetBook from tomorrow and this cannot occur without payment. That ol' rock and hard place ~ so we 'borrowed' from the rates money and will replace it from the family payment on Friday. Also required was $55 for the Grade Six bomber jacket. If we had not ordered it last year, this would not be due. However, obviously as it was ordered it needs to be paid. Boy am I glad we got the rest of his uniform for under $40 at the car boot sale last year ~ saved over $180 getting everything for summer and winter, aside from the winter jacket. Hence the need for the Bomber Jacket.

Cheap Eats  

Tonight's dinner was scheduled to be baked potatoes but we've only got enough spuds for two meals. I've been a little 'creative' and using frozen sweet potato wedges - a free packet from McCains. On top I've used one serve of spaghetti bolognese and added kidney beans, cumin, a little chilli and made chilli con carne. A dollop of sour cream and its a yummy scratch dinner with left overs for toasted/Breville sandwiches tomorrow. Sadly, we are out of sour cream but delicious regardless.

SmallBoy is not one for new tastes, so with eyes closed Husband asked him to take a bite of the McCain's Sweet Potato Chips and guess what it was. First guess was carrot ~ said with a wrinkled up nose (because he doesn't like cooked carrot) ~ and when told no, he took another bite. This guess was pumpkin ~ another dislike. He was surprised it was not pumpkin either and said he did actually like the chips. So we said it was sweet potato and eating the chilli con carne with sweet potato chips was no struggle at all. Ahh McCains ~ you've done it again!!

The chilli con corne was easy to make ~ and uses a basic mince used for spaghetti bolognese or savoury mince.  Once every month or two Husband or I make up a big bulk mince using 1.5-2kg of mine, 2 onions, 4 cloves garlic, 800g tin of tin tomatoes, two scoops of tomato paste, beef stock, 6+ bay leaves, a heap of herbs and, once cooked, this divides into three or four portions for the same number of meals for 3-4 people.

1 portion basic mince
1 tin of kidney beans (drained)
1 tsp cumin powder
1-2 tsp fresh chilli (jar or two fresh chilli pieces)

I like to add a few spoonfuls of hot salsa to get the extra chilli kick, but while we acclimatise SmallBoy to the joy of hot, spicy foods, this version is mild enough for SmallBoy. This mix is yum over potatoes, leaving enough over to have on toast for lunch.

Other bits 

There's been heaps of night-crawlie activity with the up and down weather. It seems the rain, then heat, more rain and warm humid conditions has created a perfect environment for all sorts of bugs. I've no problem being inundated by crickets, bright green flying bugs, even the daddy-long-legs haven't sent this arachnophobic into a tizz. But the mosquitos are giving me the irates!!

With all the mozzie repellents on the market you'd think there was something on the shelf to allow a good night sleep and deter the buzzing torpedoes from falling from the ceiling to hoe into our poor tender flesh...  No so far!  We've used Rid, Avon and good ol' Areoguard and still we wake up eaten. Poor SmallBoy seems to be the mozzies favourite fare.

Simple Savings - my source of all things cheap, effective and less impacting on the environment - has suggested items like the Dettol Anticeptic no-water hand wash to deter the biting bandits. But at $6 a bottle on special, I looked at the ingredients and have made up a solution which really works a treat for half the cost

Using an old deodorant pump bottle, mix 50ml of sweet almond oil or another light nut oil, 10ml of dettol type antiseptic, 10ml of eucalyptus oil and the same amount of citronella oil and shake well. It doesn't stain clothes or the bed linen, is light on your skin and has kept bugs away for the entire night. Brilliant!!

Give it a go and if you find it a success, a little donation into the Spare Change Jar would be a wonderful thank you *grins* Oh we chip, chip and sweet potato chip away at debt bit by bit!!

1 comment:

  1. It is a shame the school doesn't let u pay off the notebook, there must be other parents in the same boat, keep up the great work:)