Dollar Diet: Swapsies

I’ve been a bit quiet of late due to sick children and leading an advent study at my church.  Sausage has come down with a virus, but the advantage of having a kid who is only fit for sleeping and watching TV is that I get a chance to blog.

We’ve been a little spendy of late, but some of it has been in the cause of getting chickens.  D put together a coop, which we plan to move around with a run so our chickens can live the good life, and keep the weeds down around the place.

Chickens are go!

Chickens are go! D putting the coop together.

We hope to pick up some chickens this weekend.  I already have some ridiculous names picked out for them.

I spent money on new pyjamas for the kids, but I did get them at 50% off.  If I could have gotten them second-hand I would have, but decent pyjamas are actually quite hard to come by at charity stores.  They tend to be quite battered or missing either the top or the bottom.

D spent money taking me with him to a Chamber of Commerce dinner, where local business owners can network.  As D’s business is new, getting his face and name out there is important – especially in a small city like ours, where word-of-mouth recommendations are key.  We hit it off with the couple at our table and had a really fun night.  I relished the opportunity to get dressed up, eat a fancy dinner, and talk with adults!

We have however, continued to be frugal whenever possible.  I attended a clothes swap recently which was a tonne of fun and my word, were there some stylish threads to be had!  I got rid of a whole pile of clothes which were gladly snaffled up.  I gained several tops and cardis in the next size down (which I am tantalisingly close to getting into, come on THM), because I know that I will need them in the next few months.  I also picked up this fabulous dress.

Spoils of War

Spoils of War

I absolutely love the print; it’s William Morris-esque, and that’s a good thing.  Anyway, clothes swaps are simply the bees-knees for people on a Dollar Diet.  Update your wardrobe for free, reduce your carbon footprint, and give the fast-fashion industry the fingers.  What’s not to like?

I have been trying to bake more – which isn’t always easy with my active wee boy under foot – but I’ve managed to make pikelets and THM muffins so far this week.  None of which remain after being gobbled up quickly.  Fancy Chamber of Commerce dinners aside, our entertainment has been going for walks, hanging out with friends or pottering around at home.  Much easier on the pocket than cafes, movies or the like.

My biggest challenge coming up is Christmas.  I am making a dress with a digger on it for Sausage, while D is making Chip a busy board.  We try not to go overboard with gifts for our kids at Christmas, but I do have quite a few friends I give gifts to.  I could tell them I’m not doing gifts this year, but part of why I embarked on the Dollar Diet in the first place was to stretch my creativity.  I have a couple of low-cost gift ideas in mind, and will share what I came up with after the season has passed.

As part of my Advent study, I have been looking at the consumerist nature of Christmas, and it has made me even more mindful that usual to not get sucked into the buy, buy, buy mentality of it all.  Many people overspend, some go into serious debt, while others run themselves ragged preparing an elaborate feast for Christmas day.  The pressure to have the ‘perfect Christmas’ is intense, and completely nuts.  So I will be sharing some ways to reclaim Christmas and enjoy a meaningful holiday over the next few weeks.