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Thrifty Thursday | Surviving austerity

The Aldi super-six this week are leeks (pack), new potatoes (750g), onions (1kg), broccoli (350g), carrots (1kg) and parsnips (600g). They are all 49p, the same as last week. The Thursday special buys today include a pressure washer with a 3 year warranty. You could start a business with one of those, cleaning patios.

In the every day essentials section they have oven chips (1.5Kg) for 82p. I bought some last week and tested them. I tend to cook more if I have straight chips rather than the crinkle cut ones, but they tasted alright. They didn’t brown as well as the Champion crinkle cut ones, but it’s the taste that matters. I cooked those in my Philips Air Fryer in about 10 minutes.  I actually bought a whole fresh chicken last week and that lasted me through the Easter weekend. I do like chicken, but that wouldn’t suit everyone!

Now is a good time to be out in the garden digging a runner bean trench. If you’re getting your housing benefit cut because ‘you have too many bedrooms’, you need to make full use of everything you’ve got. If you have to move to a smaller property, you will probably lose the garden so use it while your can. If you save money growing a few veggies, it will help pay the rent. You could start your own local ‘dig for victory’ campaign. It wouldn’t be the first time we have had  a ‘dig for victory’ campaign when being attacked by fascists. Runner beans are a great crop and salad is good too. You can even grow tomatoes, there is no need for a greenhouse, they will grow in the garden. You can pick them green and ripen them on a windowsill.

If you decide to grow your own, you might consider making your own wine and other DIY money saving ideas. Bartering is a good money saving idea too. You could barter your surplus runner beans for whatever your neighbours have. I have apple trees and I used to give my neighbours apples when I had a surplus. I never have a surplus of runner beans, I can eat lots of those too. Runner beans are one of natures super-foods, they are really good for you. 

Cooking is a great new skill to learn too, that can save you money. Learn new ways to make delicious meals from your home grown produce. You can even wash down your gourmet meals with a drop of home made wine. Do gourmet salads to take on picnics too, that will save you a fortune. It’s so expensive to buy food when you’re out. Experiment with drinks too, like making your own ice tea for your picnics. If you’ve never packed a picnic and took the kids to the park or a nature reserve, this summer could be a good time to start. Take your digital camera or phone and bring back a few memories. If you kids need tiring out, you could even take a football!

Do you have any ideas for surviving austerity? Please share your thoughts in the comments box.

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