This week bought its usual share of expenses, most of which were not a surprise. I went to the dentist for an initial check-up and will have some work done in a few weeks time. Our dentist is very reasonably priced so it’s not going to blow up our bank account.
I bought some seedlings for the first time in ages because I just hadn’t gotten around to planting seeds over the holidays. The weather has been so terrible that pretty much every good-weather day was spent out and about making up for the bad days.
I went to a cafe as a treat, and I must admit I find this a hard habit to break at times. It’s really interesting though, because it highlights my ‘need’ to have a treat. I’m working on where this may have come from, because it is a strong impulse.
I went with friends to the lovely Ashley Park (petting zoo, picnic area) , and had a great time feeding the animals and watching the children enjoy themselves. I think Ashley Park is really cheap compared to similar places, and I thoroughly recommend it.
I bought Sausage a bookcase for her room, as she has more space now Chip has vacated his cot for his big boy bed. Sausage, like all children, has various trinkets and treasures that seem to multiply overnight. Due to lack of space they would invariably end up on her dressing table or the floor, but now they are nicely corralled into the bookcase. I found a small, low bookcase which I think is made of rimu at a second-hand store for $45. This is a bit pricey for the size of the bookcase, but I’d rather have that than the MDF options that were available. It has the bonus of being low enough to fit under most windows, so it may come in handy if we ever move house. Which looks likely in a year or three.
Our biggest expense was shoes for the children. They both outgrew their shoes at the same time, so inconsiderate of them. Finding decent shoes in New Zealand is a problem. I often have to source mine online, which I don’t like as I do prefer to shop locally when possible. Most department stores here get cheap shoes from Asia which a) don’t fit properly and b) fall apart if you so much as sneeze in their direction.
Fortunately we can find good shoes here in Whanganui for children, although they are two or sometimes three times the price of the cheap shoes. My tots trash their cheap shoes really quickly, so it is a false economy to buy them. Buying the more expensive shoes saves us money in the long run as they withstand all that play quite well.
With Sausage, we’ve often needed to buy two different-sized pairs of shoes because she has a club foot. Even though her foot has been treated successfully, it will always be smaller than her other foot. In her case her foot is one size smaller than the other, and in some people it can be up to three sizes smaller. As you can imagine, buying two pairs of $80 shoes that she’ll grow out of in a few months gets me right in the wallet. Not to mention have to chuck out the two shoes that are perfectly fine!
Fortunately one of our local stores has a great range of Bobux shoes. They are quality, NZ made shoes that are recommended by podiatrists. At the visit this week, I discovered that they hold Sausage’s feet so well, I didn’t need to buy two sizes. Her smaller foot is totally fine in a slightly bigger size. Phew. Oh, did I mention the shoes were on sale?
I got Sausage a pair of Mary Janes and a pair of sneakers, and Chip got a pair of boots. He is almost out of his sneakers, so I’ll be back for more soon. I reckon tots only need three pairs of shoes: a good, serviceable pair that they can play in and that might do for a special occasion, a pair of sneakers, and gumboots in winter/sandals in summer. And that’s extravagant in many countries.
So yeah, buy quality. You know this. A good pair of shoes will outlast several cheap and nasty pairs. I think it’s getting harder and harder to find goods that quality these days as brand names are no longer an indication of something well made, but that’s a rant for another time!
This week I saved money by:
- Staying home a lot. I pottered around the house and garden with Chip. He spent an hour and a half playing in his sandpit or watering the plants the other day! Which is 2.7 years in toddler time.
- Packing lunch and snacks when out/at work
- Having an at-home date night
- Baking (I made a THM cheesecake, which was terrific, hooray!)
- Meal planning
- Inventing whanau night. Our friends hosted this week’s dinner, and we bought a side and dessert. It’s a fun and simple way to catch up on a weekly basis.
Next week will involve lots of jam and chutney. I have a surfeit of plums and grapefruit. Yeehah!
I am not affiliated with Ashley Park or Bobux shoes in any way. All opinions are my own. They both rock.