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“You owe me” June 29, 2009

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Hafiz.Love.Quote

Thriftily Frugal June 24, 2009

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I am declaring myself, from this day forward, a thrifter.

I am a consumer junkie. I buy magazines as if they were necessary to hold my house up. I buy yarn, fabric & embroidery floss because it’s pretty & I want it. I buy shower gel, shampoo, conditioner & hairspray for me & a whole other load (cheaper versions! tee hee!) for my fella. I used to buy clothes, shoes & books as if they were going out of fashion (some probably were!) but that started to change last year when my boyfriend & I moved into our flat. Back then I still smoked & would go out most weekends. Even now I think nothing about buying a bottle of Coke a day & eating out because i wanted an extra hour in bed and i didn’t have time for breakfast!

NOT ANYMORE!

I am too broke. It’s crazy. Our flat is roomy, it’s in a lovely area, but it’s expensive. We live in Oxford which is one of the most expensive places to live in the UK. The South East has the highest property prices in England after London. I’ve seen places to rent in Hillingdon (Greater London) cheaper than you can get in Oxford. The cost of eating out & drinks in bars are the same as london. The difference is in London you generally get paid more for the same job. (Not everyone in London is on a good wage I know!) So the reality is that I simply can’t afford to live the way that I have been.

These days we are all more globally & environmentally aware, we are informed consumers, but consumers we still are. More & more people are buying handmade, local, organic, fairtrade and so on. Handmade is great because it gave us Etsy! So with all the environmentally aware information floating about it’s not too difficult to make sensible choices. Given my own financial crisis i’m voting for local where possible, in season for food but not for clothes, and trades, charity shops & handmade for everything else!

I actually bought a tomato plant the other day, my first tentative baby step towards being more sustainable & having tastier tomatoes! I intend to buy pots of herbs too as they are expensive to buy “fresh” from the supermarket & they don’t last very long.

Soon my garden will look a little bit like the one above!

I will no longer buy magazines (apart from Frankie I can’t live without it) but I will reread the ones that I already own. (When we moved house I had 2 boxes filled with magazines!) Vogue, Elle Living, Zest, Giant Robot, Nude… they’re all great to revisit.

Books I will buy from charity shops. You get some amazing bargains that way. Why spend £7.99 on it when you can pick it up for £1.50? And if it’s a gift for somebody else I will slip off to a cool little bookstore I know of in Jericho, Oxford that sells brand new books for £2! Yep, you read that correctly!

Stack of old books

Kitchen stuff will be easy I will just head straight back to those charity shops.. Mr Joaly breaks crockery & glasses as though he were a Greek so its not worth spending much money on mugs & plates anyway!

Clothes… my theory here is to only buy them if I actually need them. I’m going to Mr Joaly’s brothers wedding at the end of August & I have to buy an outfit for that I don’t think baggy skater jeans & a Gremlins t-shirt would be deemed appropiate! That’s pretty much all I need though.

I guess I’ll just have to avoid BleubirdVintage then… 😉

I am also attempting to restrain myself from buying any more materials until I’ve used up the majority of what I have. My crafting hobby is costing a small fortune itself! Speaking of which i finished off my latest piece of embroidery out in the garden this afternoon.. pics to come!

Hope I haven’t bored you all to tears, just wanted to let you know that I’m entering the Thrifty World as my blog may well take a slightly different slant as I become increasingly desperate  inventive! Any great money saving/making tips you guys might have would be much appreciated!

Ciao xoxoxox

Animal, Vegetable, Miracle June 24, 2009

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What an amazing book! Have you read it yet? If you haven’t, you should! It’s a real eye opener.

Barbara Kingsolver, the author, & her family not only ate local but also grew/reared their own food for a year. Its not something everybody can go off & do in practice but eating local really is something people are starting to think about. Barbara’s writing style is quite witty & there are some interesting facts in there.. did you know that Turkeys these days are incapable of breeding all by themselves? Me neither!

No nookie for these guys!

Thats where ive been for the last few days, stuck inside the book! Ive finished it now though so it’s back to Harry Potter & the real world 🙂

I’m working on a gorgeous embroidery piece with the threads I won from Cymberrain which i’ll show you when it’s done & I got some fabric through in a trade with Erin

 

Haven’t decided quite what to make with it yet…

Gotta go we have to go out & buy food shopping!

Mini Catch Up June 20, 2009

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My new sunglasses…

HeartSunglasses

They’re fun aren’t they?? Silly though I know!

Raindrop keychain that I made…

Raindrop2

Available here

Colourful rainbow felt brooch that i put together…

Rainbow

Haven’t listed this yet as I can’t get the vibrancy of the colours… this pic was taken on my phone but the colour quality isn’t good enough, grrrr!!!

I also made a card the other day, I might make a series of them once I’ve got a wider range of felt… you can have a sneak peek soon…

Anyways that was your mini photo catch up, i’ve got to get to work!

A Bloody Good Cry June 19, 2009

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Do you sometimes feel a bit blue for no reason? Or sometimes you find that a multitude of little things (& some not so little) all build up & you feel kind of low, a little bit depressed..? The solution is Grey’s Anatomy. At least it is for me! Once in a blue moon (no pun intended) i get low. I feel frustrated & tired & irritable & my boyfriend starts feeling like he’s done something wrong when he hasn’t. And then I watch Grey’s Anatomy.

GA reliably makes me cry. I generally can’t get through an episode without a sniffle. Ghost Whisperer is another one. But todays episode was without doubt one of the most cathartic episodes ever! Todays episode was the wedding between Izzy & Alex. Oh my God did I cry. Like really cry. I bawled into my duvet. & now I feel so much better!  A good cry is sometimes all you need. Thank you Sky for great television!

its-official

So now I feel great. Ready to start all over… oddly its bed time & my renewed energy is going to be spent sleeping, but it should be the best nights sleep i’ll have had for a while!

Sunny Saturday! June 13, 2009

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Today is such a beautiful, sunny, warm day… made even better by the fact that they over-staffed at work so instead of pulling a double shift ive been sent home & don’t have to go back til 5! Whooppeeeeee!!!!

Here is some sunshine for you…

Mr. Sunshine  -  ♥ by Warm 'n Fuzzy

By the very talented Warm ‘n’ Fuzzy

personal sunshine by smallandround

By smallandround an absolutely fabulous artist & one of my flickr faves..

Felt Sunshine Happy Sun Brooch by lova revolutionary

And this gorgeous brooch by Lova Revolutionary

I haven’t taken full advantage of the sunshine yet, yesterday I was still beavering away on my raindrops theme…

TeddyBearsPicnic

This one is called Teddy Bear’s Picnic . Its so tiny, in a little 4″ hoop, so cute!

I’m still working on my secret project so i can’t post any pictures yet… & I’m doing another new embroidery piece which i should get done today before i head back to work. I do have a pic of my new Japanese Lucky Cat money box… I hope it sorts my finances out!

JapaneseLuckyCat

This week I was lucky enough to win a giveaway! I’ve won some hand dyed yarn from Cymberrain (aka Diane Cransac) which is absolutely gorgeous…

I get the top one, Sahara, which is the name & colours I chose as part of her competition &…

… you guessed it, I’m also getting Fuschia Sun, which is beautiful!

I also blagged myself an ad on this Raven‘s gorgeous blog, check out her artwork whilst you’re there, it’s stunning, as is her hubby’s, Mikie.P.

I am off to get me some sunshine… hope you’re all having a great weekend!

Yart Sale! June 10, 2009

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Art + Yard = Yart according to Etsy so they are holding a Yart sale! I’ve joined in with a Yart Section which is here where every item is under $5 (That’s under £3 for us Anglicans!) so have a peep as you’ll be in for a bargain!

*For those of you who don’t know etsy but are happy with ebay, etsy works the same way except it is all priced in dollars & it’s all handmade! You pay at the checkout at the end with paypal exactly the same as ebay. Happy shopping!*

So i’ve been a busy little bee the last couple of days…

RaindropMagnet1

Cute Raindrop magnet available here

LilyThePink1

Lily The Pink brooch available here

PlayingInTheRain

More raindrop fun “Playing in the rain” available here

Dinosaur2

And a bit of dinosaur customisation! I love this bag now it’s totally adorable! Probably won’t sell this one as i think it’ll be fun to use myself when the sun comes back out!

I’m in another treasury too, courtesy of the lovely EnchantedQuill, a Twitter friend…

etsy_treasury_

I think that’s all my news for today… I’m working on a secret project right now so i’m off to work on that…. see you all soon!

Domestic Goddess June 9, 2009

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So yesterday I was a Domestic Goddess.

I washed up (I never do this).

I baked. Rock cakes. Scrummy.

rockcake2

My rock cakes don’t look like this however. Mine are flat. Puzzling. Still very tasty though! (These are by Carolyn.)

I also made dinner later on in the evening, chicken in white wine sauce, cauliflower & broccoli cheese & roast potatoes. Yum. My boyfriend is wondering what came over me!

I completed another raindrop-inspired wallhanging, “Playing In The Rain”, a raindrop magnet & a dinosaur bag. And 3 more applique dinosaurs. Unfortunately you will have to wait for the pics as i no longer have usage of a camera & am using my phone but i can’t find the lead that connects my phone to my laptop, doh!

Since I currently have a total inability to post any of my own pics I will leave you with some cute flickr dinosaurs…

 Crochet dinosaurs by planetjunecrocheted dinosaurs by planetjune.

Dinosaur cupcakes by neviepiecakes

Dinosaur Cupcakes by neviepiecakes.

Dinosaur stickers by Elsie

dinosaur*stickers by .elsie*cake..

Unbelievably cute cupcake by Bev

Dino Baby Cupcake by Bev (Sugarbloom Cupcakes).

That’s enough dinosaur goodness from me, I am off to make more dino-themed goodies & maybe I’ll find that lead…