06/12/2017

Recent thrifting

I'm on a roll. First up:



This beaut now sits on top our only chest of drawers. We are pretty minimalist when it comes to clothing, but Mr PL's new work uniform takes up a lot of space, and I was struggling to find a taller chest of drawers that would fit the space. £2.50 later, another small house problem solved.

Also, check out that interior (before it got stuffed full of my undies and sundries):


 

A couple of books at 20p a pop, including an anniversary edition of 'The Little Prince' and a cute little book called 'A Hole is to Dig', illustrated by Maurice Sendak:



This household encyclopedia, published in 1932, teaches you everything from how to cook celery on toast to keeping axolotls as pets:




I'm reading it with caution, because old books like this make me want to go full vintage in all aspects of my life. I can't watch Miss Marple without getting the itch, and step by step instruction manuals are just plain dangerous to my tenuous grip on the 21st century.

This marble lamp, another £2.50 well spent, to replace a cheapo desk lamp that casts too much shadow. Vintage, but marble is all the rage these days so I'm bang on trend for once. Also, no shade please, we're millennials:




And finally this lovely little wooden pot for 50p - somewhere to dump my headphones and the earrings I've forgotten to take out in at bedtime:


And now I need to stop before the house fills up again.

03/12/2017

The run up


The festive season is upon us - the advent calendars are up, the weather is frightful and petitions to Father Christmas are being mentally written and rewritten.

Yesterday I made it to the my first ever 'Snowball Saturday', thrown by our exceptionally gifted hostess friend each year. I DIYed my own vegan advocaat for the Snowballs; which went down a little too well.




Mr PL ventured out to Lidl for provisions - their Favorina mince pies are vegan this year and were just the ticket for a hungover brunch - eaten in bed with a pint of coffee, because I just couldn't muster the energy to worry about crumby sheets. I reflected that I'm too old for this sort of thing, and vowed never to do it again.

This week will be a flurry of festive prep and for once I'm looking forward to it. A simple, thrifty and fun christmas that won't break the bank.

01/11/2017

Hallow


It's the (actual) most wonderful time of the year! Our neighbourhood is so welcoming and cheerful on halloween night, all of the children are out; and a good number of people dress up, open their doors and hand out goodies.

This year has been a mixed bag for me. I left a job I hated, the initial relief of which was quickly subsumed by the cloyingness of full time domestic life. Anxiety and depression followed, and it has only been the past couple of months I've managed to break free, hence the extended blogging break. 

Autumn is a great time for fresh starts - everything is slowing down. There is time to tie up loose ends and to make new plans, to build up reserves of energy for new projects; and plentiful opportunity for eating pumpkin soup and sweets and toffee apples - so that is what I plan to do.










07/09/2017

Autumn is here!

I'm back, just in time for autumn:



I really wanted to write something, I did, but I've been struggling to find the words quite frankly, or at least words that will be interesting enough to publish.

The past few years I've undergone massive personal changes, mostly good and needed ones. I'm a very different person to the young mum that started her first frugal and simple living blog seven years ago. I've cut out so much deadwood these past few years - clutter, activities and ideas about the world - I'm gradually deciding which seeds to plant in their place. Cutting out the Internet chatter has been wonderful for this - its hard to decide what you want and what is important when you are bombarded by 'influencers' and other peoples opinions and lifestyles all day. I thoroughly recommend unplugging once in a while.

September always brings me around to fresh starts. The temptation to abandon this blog and start over is strong, but I'm resisting my inbuilt fickleness and perfectionism. This place needs a fresh lick of paint and some new category tags, which I'll work on over the next few weeks. I have plenty of ideas to work with, I just need to get back in the swing of things.

Stew and dumplings for dinner - it feels like a storm is coming. I love this time of year.

05/07/2017

Pottering

I'm still living the low-tech life here. When the current charge for this bodged old laptop dies, that's the end of it - the charger fell apart last week. Perhaps that will light a fire under my rear to find a new laptop or netbook. I loathe shopping and always put ot off until the last possible moment - and truth be told my low-internet life has had it's perks. Back soon x

07/06/2017

Chillin' Tuesday

I'm almost fully recovered from my organisational meltdown. I'm back on a system and things are working well. I have a weekly plan to do certain tasks on certain days; and life is starting to run smoothly again.



I used to think that housework was a never ending chore and even though I had a lot of downtime due to procrastination, I never got to just relax. I always felt guilty for the things that I should be doing. Now even if the house is a sty, I know that I have a system and a schedule in place to deal with it. I still feel a little guilt, but it's lessening. I never thought sticking to a routine would be so freeing.

I've set aside Tuesday as my free 'day'. All of the kiddos are out at school, so I do my daily chores and the rest of the day is mine until school's out. It's taken me years to come around to the idea that I can take time off, but I'm just a better person when I do. The kids generally follow my lead and if I am calm, relaxed and happy I can respond to them as such.

Unfortunately yesterday was such an odd day weatherwise, alternating wet and biting with dry and mild all day, I stayed in for most of it.

I started rereading this book, one of my absolute favourites:


Written during the great depression, it always gets me out of a thrift-induced deprivation funk. And speaking of orchids:


Mr PL once rescued this one for 50p from the yellow sticker pile, it was in a sorry state. This is its 3rd year of flowering. I can have orchids on my budget.
 
I drank unholy amounts of tea and ate an unhealthy amount of coffee cake:



In the afternoon I risked the elements and took myself off to my local yarn store:


Lots of bright colours and greys, the picture doesn't do them justice.

And that was that.

04/06/2017

Apologies

That was a little longer blog break than I expected - we've had a tech meltdown here.

I hope that you and your loved-ones are safe and calm after the terrible events of the past few weeks; and I hope that you are keeping ahold of your sanity during this political campaign.



I can't believe we're nearly at the solstice already. The California poppies are blooming and they really are this vibrant. Little things are just the tonic at times like these.

Normal service will resume shortly.