Monday, 17 February 2014

Day 17 of Extremely Frugal February - Arty Vegetables

Day 17 - Phone Bills, Furniture Fun and Curious Cabbage.

Fabulous purple patterns, designed by nature.
There's one thing that none of us here can get away from and that is the fact that Internet access needs to be paid for, unless we are fortunate enough to live practically next door to a library and can keep our online activities to a minimum. We need unlimited access as this household derives much of its income from Internet-based sources, but I seldom use the telephone. Today was monthly bill day - 66p for 2 phone calls, both to the feed merchant! Who knows how many hours the computers are online, so it is just as well we now have unlimited, fixed fee access rather than having to pay by the minute! I pay line rental as a lump sum for 12 months, so the monthly part stays under £20.
Monday is meter-reading day for electricity and this week we have leapt up to 80 kWh units just by having a tiny, 400w oil-filled radiator set on low upstairs. The stove is eating logs at a rate of around £2 per day and the fire, when lit, gets through 10kg of coal to heat the radiators and a tank of water, so it's getting back to the whole conundrum of what is most affordable when you need to heat a house that has no wall cavities or lift to insulate. At this time of year it can easily cost £45 per week just to keep from freezing! Can you imagine what it might cost to warm the house to the Government's suggested 18C? I can't even contemplate it!
Sorting out the book collection
Today was shelf-moving day, as we started moving the huge book collection into the 'new' living room. It will take some time to move all the books but the shelves are now in place and they don't look too bad, all things considered. I've used the third set of free curtains to cover some and had to move the frugal mini-bar to the other side of the room, but it looks OK to me.
Red cabbage experiment
Dinner was the 'slow mince' after a very late porridge breakfast and an even later lunch of homemade bread, leftover pasta and hot dogs! Cheap and cheerful! The last one of the tiny red cabbages has now been cut and ready to cook tomorrow, but I'm thinking that I'd quite like to pickle it. I wonder if the remaining part will grow me any new cabbage? I'll let you know!
NYK, Frugaldom

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