Saturday, 14 May 2011

Frugal fun

I have had a week off from work, which for once coincided with family visiting - which in turn, for once, coincided with another week of fine weather. Usually we end up spending a small fortune when we visit people or they visit us, possibly because we feel like kill joys if we say no. A steady stream of eating out, coffee and cake, small gifts and visiting various attractions that are usually less entertaining than the blurb suggests gradually eats away at our budget and leaves us short for the rest of the month. This was not a month however for overspending our budget and we explained the situation with as positive a spin as we could.

Sometimes (funnily enough, usually always coinciding with time away from my paid employment) I manage to get my act together, make a plan and stick to it. A few hours work resulted in our contribution to a delicious and frugal picnic lunch, all made from scratch (mayonnaise and all, including the first salad pickings from the garden). In a word, I am...smug.

We ate the picnic lunch in the garden of the holiday cottage and then paddled in the sea at a lovely sandy beach in Sussex. We tried to engage toddlers in a sandcastle building project that was blatantly more fun for us adults than it was for them. We went to the woods for a barbeque that didn't get rained off.  We have spent a fair amount of time driving around beautiful countryside, just as the hedgerows are in full bloom and the spring babies are out in the fields. We had cream tea in a quaint little tearoom followed by (slightly wistful)  window shopping around an equally quaint town.

In short, I have spent more time gadding about in nature than I normally would being city bound - and I realize I need to make an effort to get out more to green leafy places. I have eaten more strawberries and whipped cream in one week than I normally do in a whole year. All very frugal, all very relaxed, all great fun; which is just how I remember my childhood holidays to be.

What frugal fun have you had this week?


  1. It sounds like such lovely way to spend the week. And your picnic lunch looks amazing! Now that the weather is getting nice here, we are spending most of our days doing yard work and gardening, then relaxing outside in the evening enjoying the outdoors. Playing ball with the kids, barbecuing, watching the chickens and cats playing, those are some of frugal ways we have fun :)

  2. The food looks fabulous and your holiday sounds relaxing and fun.

  3. Lovely, well done for sticking to the budget and having a wonderful, stress-free, guilt-free time!

  4. Thank you all, if I had had my camera to hand you could have seen the other half of the spread (not made by me) - it was lovely. Not even slight guilt afterwards, which make the whole thing so much better! Hopefully the weather will hold and we can get some more outdoor meals in, such a lovely way to enjoy food.

    Enjoy your weeks!

  5. What a lovely spread - I love the (Hornsea?) bowl and spotty tea towel (I have the latter myself and think the dots are lovely shades :) ).

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  7. Louisa - that is a Hornsea bowl. We have a pair for them. I will always regret the day I saw another pair and a set of storage jars for £20 in a charity shop and didn't buy them. You can be too frugal (read stingy, sigh).

    As for the tea towels, damn that well known reasonably priced Swedish home wares retailer kitting out all of our houses in perfectly coordinating spots :) They are very pretty.


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