Monday, 16 September 2019

Sneaky Supermarket!

I popped into Sainsbury's at lunchtime to pick up a few things.  I had around £24 cash in my purse and wanted to use that instead of my credit card.  I used the calculator on my phone to add up the cost as I went round (this really concentrates my mind on 'do I really need this?') 😄 My total was exactly £24.50.

However, when I went through the checkout the total was £26.65.  I had to use my card!  I checked my receipt and nothing seemed amiss but how did my shopping come to be £2 more than my total???

I'm guessing the shelf ticket prices didn't match the till prices.  Very sneaky! And I'm sure it's illegal!!

Since I'm making an effort to get back to more frugal ways, in future I'll be noting the ticket prices and comparing them to my receipt!  Then I'll be complaining 😠

Sunday, 15 September 2019

Preserving for Winter

The weather here is definitely on the turn and thoughts are turning to getting ready for Winter.  I was rather pleased that I successfully grew some outdoor tomatoes this year.  Sadly, not that many ripened before the vines succumbed to wind and disease.  So I have loads of green ones.  According to Pinterest they can be sliced and frozen for fried green tomatoes (dip them in cornmeal while still frozen then fried as normal) so I'm giving them a go.  I also made some pickled green tomatoes.  These will be stored in the fridge for a month before eating with cheese.  I'm looking forward to trying them!  And I still have plenty of tomatoes left for some chutney.

I also did some poached pears in white wine and stewed apples in vanilla and cinnamon.  My Lovely Mum grew them but the pears would not ripen.  She also gave me some plums that she'd already halved, stoned and froze for me.  So I have a few fruits preserved for Winter in jars and in the freezer.

I decided to reinstate the polytunnel in my back garden by buying a new cover.  Unfortunately the frame was an unusual size so I had to buy one that was 50cm too long!

I've pulled it down at the back and weighted down the excess with some heavy pots.  It survived last night's high winds so I'm confident(ish) it will last the Winter.  I'm hoping to add some hanging baskets to overwinter my strawberry plants without them getting eaten by the slugs!!

I had to pull out all the rasps and currant bushes to put the cover back on.  They really didn't do well at all this year.  Some have been relocated but most are done.  As I've been rather poorly this week (again!!) I hadn't got round to chopping them up for the compost bin.  The chickens have loved pecking at them so I don't feel too bad.  That's on this week's to do list.

I have some more Winter plug plants arriving this week for the allotment.  My plan is to put some in the polytunnel too so I can compare yields.   I've been watching some Youtube videos on using a  polytunnel throughout Winter so I hope to keep producing edibles for the next few months.

I think I'm getting my mojo back at long last 😊

Saturday, 13 July 2019

Here's the Skinny!

Saturday morning is my club weigh in.  I know it's not for everyone but I need the accountability.  So far I've lost 5lbs 😊 I really have been eating well and haven't felt deprived at all.  I've even eaten chips and crisps this week and had gin (!!) and Prosecco.  It's all about balance.  I think the digging at the allotment helps too.

On the way back I popped into TK Maxx.  They've just had a load of Skinny Syrups delivered.  I'd read loads of enthusiastic comments about them so thought I'd give them a go.  Yep, all true!  Just a wee splash of syrup and squirt of foam turned my healthy waffles and plain soya yoghurt into a breakfast treat adding zero calories.  I'm a convert!!

Wednesday, 10 July 2019

Girls Day Out (aka Gin Queens on Tour)

Yesterday I went to Edinburgh with 3 of my colleagues to do an Edinburgh Gin Distillery tour.  It was a riot from start (Prosecco on the train!) to finish (coffee and chips in Wetherspoons!!)

It cost £25 for a 75 mins talk and tour about the history of gin, tasting the botanicals used, inspecting the stills and finally tasting the many types of gin and gin liqueurs they make.  It was great fun.  The tour included a miniature of their classic gin and I bought the Seaside Gin and a tour exclusive orange blossom and mandarin liqueur.

Then we went to Tigerlily for lunch and cocktails.  We all had a veggie yellow curry.  It was delicious!

We had the Disco Ball cocktail for sharing! 🍸

After that we went to a speakeasy for a few more cocktails  then decided that coffee and chips were in order before heading back on the train.  It was a lovely day out for 4 ladies of a certain age.  We've decided to do it more regularly!! 😮😆

Monday, 8 July 2019

Allotment video

Here's a wee video I took this morning at the allotment site.  Blogger won't let me upload the one with me talking.

Try this link and let me know if you can access a quick tour of my corner in the communal garden!

Talking video

Thursday, 4 July 2019

Getting started

So I'm all paid up (£13 a year for the rent!) and the lease is signed.  I went back this morning to find my plot had been strimmed as promised!  I made a list of jobs to do and equipment needed.  First job is to fix the rotten gate post.  I was allowed to take a post from an abandoned plot but I had to wrestle it from a HUGE spider!!!

If I leave a path on each side, a seating area at the gate end and a compost area at back, I still have a veggie patch that is 4 metres wide by 12 metres long for planting up. The tower you see on the Ochill hills in the distance is The Wallace Monument

And facing the other way you can just see a wee bit of Stirling Castle in the top right hand corner.  It's just brilliant!!

I can't put a shed on it as it's part of the communal garden so I need to think outside the box re storing tools.  I have a few ideas I think might work.  Watch this space!