Total Pageviews

Monday, 4 December 2017

Powershop- a Fantastic New Way of Saving on Electricity

If you are looking to trim off your budget, then Powershop is a good way forward. I recently did an energy price comparison, and spotted Powershop; a new energy company on the market, and offering a new way to save money.
Basically, you need to download the app, or monitor on your PC regularly. I tend to send a reading every other day. Unlike other electricity accounts they update your bill on the spot, so no getting out the calculator!

One thing I have learned, to make the savings you really do have to purchase in advance. Easy once you know how! They have powerpacks on offer, so worth checking back daily for this. Let me give you an example; over Black Friday week they offered a pack saving 39% ish, and Friday 13th. There have been some random tropical packs, and seasonal packs. The other way of buying packs is to buy the future packs, and you are allowed five of these and the savings vary- The February pack (which will actually cover me from Jan 4th to February 3rd) is offering a 23.7% saving on their standard tariffs.

Now, the first month I ended up paying around 11p per KWH for my electric. I could have brought that down to 10, but was still working out how to use it! Once you get into the swing of things it is easy, as long as you check back regularly.

I like the element of control it offers, and all the graphs and such. It has helped me to bring my consumption down a little, as I know more about when my energy consumption is high.

I liked the fact that customer services were easy to email, and got back in the day with an answer to my question. Very quick switchover too.

If you want to give it a go I have a £25 referral link here in which you will receive £25 when you are switched. What's not to love? If you are paying more than 11p per kilowatt hour you will definitely make savings, plus no unexpected bills. In the last two months it says: ''In the last 2 months you've saved
off Standard Tariff Rates.''

Friday, 10 November 2017

Christmas Money Saving Ideas

When there are a lot of people to buy gifts for Christmas can be daunting, and not to mention expensive. It doesn't have to be. Already this week I showed my mum how to save £7 on her purchase with the help of Google! Not to mention introducing two of my eldest to Topcashback on 'have to purchase stuff.'
First things first though, I do start in January. Stuff is sold at knockdown then.
I will share some of the ways I have saved money this year:
1) Closing down sales in the summer. (75% off stock prices)
2) Buying random Poundland purchases throughout the year. (Stock changes)
3) Groupon etc for stuff like gift vouchers. ( recently purchased two Curry's gift vouchers for £10 instead of £20)
4) Amazon Warehouse deals, and 'seconds.' (often just scruffy packaging)
5) Googling the item you are looking for for the lowest price, and possibly getting it secondhand. (I just got a book for £3 instead of £12)

My golden rule is that I never buy a large item without pricing it online first. Often you can consider a secondhand, or refurbished version too. Great if you are on a budget!
Please share any tips you have in comments. Oh, and don't forget topcashback!

Saturday, 14 October 2017

Everyday Moneysaving

Just last week, Morrisons launched their wonky veg box. You can now buy it for £3, which I believe represents excellent value. I had a huge califlower, swede, carrots, potatoes, parsnips, onions, and cabbage.
They also do a £5 box which contains courgettes, onions,leek, swede, cabbage, cauliflower, carrot, and potatoes, and an organic box for £7. I haven't tried the organic one, but it looks to be exceptional value.

Also, thinking ahead to Christmas, and chocolate tubs (I like to have some on hand for rewards, and gifts) The Morrisons ones are only £3 at the moment (usually £4) and include just over a kilo of chocolates. I have really been getting fed up of shrinking sizes; it seems the Quality Street ones have shrunk again this year, plus they are £5.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Mom Strong

I was recently fortunate enough to get a sneak preview of Heidi St John's new book, 'Mom Strong'.

To be honest it couldn't have come at a better time, as I was feeling quite discouraged due to an awful lot of setbacks, and trials. This was just the thing to remind me that we need to be firmly rooted in God's word. Heidi points us first to the word of God, and encourages us to know God's word, and read it often. That is what we need especially living in times such as these.

Each chapter is honest, sometimes raw, sometimes funny, and often you say to yourself, oh, been there too! She also has a lot of children and can identify in a way I think only mums who have had more than the average number of kids can! I really do think she is more honest than a lot of writers would dare to be! However, it makes it realistic, and definitely not sensational. There is much food for thought.

The book comes in Kindle form, or hard copy, there is a Bible study, and a journal you can buy. (I can't wait to get the Bible study, which isn't just based on the book, it is designed to get us really into the word of God)
Here is the link on Amazon

My favourite quotes from the book are:

Thursday, 7 September 2017

Back to School?

Ok, so being perfectly honest here, and about to make a shocking revelation.........we haven't actually got that much done in the way of schoolwork this week. In fact absolutely nothing happened on Monday and Tuesday (yes, you did hear right). I am afraid life happens, and that is good, well I tell myself it is a learning opportunity. Tick lifeskills, tick PE, (they went cycling), Science, (new fridge delivered)and I am sure I can come up with more.....
Monday I had a new fridge, and you know how it is; the fridge has been there 11 years and all that jazz, plus the logistics of getting it out. Fun! Not....It really did start to resemble something out of the Laurel and Hardy film where they moved the piano.
I am also in the process of organising exams and have realised after filling out all the forms till after midnight that the essential documents I need have been sent off to get licences. Fail.
No one was really in the mood for book work, as they decided that Power Rangers was much more fun. Oh, and don't think of trying to answer two phones at once, it isn't good! It does not save time, just creates confusion.
Yesterday was better, we did get work done, and the teens did some work on grammar so I can evaluate where they are at, and what needs to be worked on.
In the midst of all this son 2 started his new job, which means really early starts. Son 1 starts a new job, but he gave me a headache trying to establish what size chest and arms etc. At one point he was absolutely convinced that he was a 30 inch chest; which of course would equal around age 10. It took me quite a bit of persuading, but it didn't help the tape measure stopped after a certain point. Daughter 1 can now drive herself, but it is complicated when three need to be North, South, and East at once. Short of cutting oneself in several pieces (my husband discovered as a child that it kills worms doing that) there is not always a solution.
So, as organised as I like to be (I always set my watch fast so I get places on time) I have to accept that I can't do everything. Ha, and I definitely can't do anything without acknowledging God first. I am not superhuman, but with God all things are possible.
On the positive side the men in white coats haven't got me yet, but there is no room for complacency. Ha ha.

Friday, 21 July 2017

This Week's Money Saving Tips

Topcashback! Yes, when I joined years ago I was convinced it was a gimmick, but years later I have pocketed £500 in Amazon, and High street vouchers, so I promise you it is not a gimmick.
Basically, you look for a retailer on their site, click through, make purchase, and hey presto the cashback will track within hours and be payable within weeks.
You can get cashback on Uswitch, insurance, groceries, shoes, clothes, lots of things really! This weekend they are offering. £2.50 bonus for a purchase of £10 or more after VAT. Check it out!

Now, it is the school holidays, and often home educators take a break around now. I find there is a tendency in some to think that children need to be entertained perpetually to stop boredom, but it is important they have their own freedom, and chance to develop creativity. Here are some ideas for free, or close to free things to do:
1) Check out your local woods and country parks. These are often free.
2) Take up cycling, it will keep everyone fit!
3) Set up an obstacle course in the garden, or plan a route at the park.
4) Check out free areas and places to visit, also don't forget clubcard vouchers can pay for fee paying places.
5) We put up a badminton net in the garden when it isn't windy.
6) Before you visit anywhere check online for free, or discount tickets or events.

Oh, and almost forgot, walking! I love it, and like to discover new places. Check out the footpaths on an ordinance survey map. Who knows what you might discover, plus you can teach mapskills. Take a compass, too. (I should heed the last advice, as I have been known to get very lost!

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Home Educating Highschool

Some of us become daunted when we reach the highschool years with our childrenšŸ˜‰. (Ok, well, maybe all of us actually!) It can seem quite daunting, as qualifications seem to be the be all and end all, but let's be honest, schools have got a pretty bad record of students getting good grades at GCSE, so school is NOT a guarantee of getting good grades, even if you send them to the £12,000 a year school down the road. From what I have gleaned in my experience teaching in school and out; the parents are the key factor as to whether or not the child fails. There is no way a class teacher can devote the one to one attention that children sometimes need, and this is still important even in the high school years. Even my son in college is finding that the tutors can only help so much, the rest is up to him, and that is why it is so important that we instill in our children a love of learning, and teach them how to learn independently. This is an important discipline that most haven't encountered until they reach university, and then they feel they have been dropped in the deep end.

So, my aim is by age 11 the children are capable of learning independently, meaning that they can follow books, and courses of study themselves. I find this gives them the opportunity to see what subjects they enjoy, and therefore they tend to concentrate on those in the last years. One of my sons is doing Electronical Engineering,and by age 14 he had decided that was what he wanted to do. Home education gave him the freedom to tinker, and use different computer programmes, and gadgets learning more about electronics.
Two of the others were not so keen on academic study, so they are working in hospitality, as that is where they feel they have been led. They still have a keen interest in film making, and of course the other also in writing. I know if they had the chance to do a job where those elements were involved they would jump at it.

So, this year I have a 14, and 12 year old in the high school pre exam years, and our main focus is Key stage three English and Maths. Now I am very familiar with the exams I know what we are aiming for, as they at least want to take English and Maths. As for the three exam students, yes, I am marking mock papers which I don't enjoy, but boy is it worth it when they get the grades they aimed for! It makes it all worthwhile, and remember there is no pressure to take exams, unless they want to go to university.....and to be honest, even my engineering son has found a way around university. Unless you want to be a medical doctor, nurse or lawyer etc I can't see the point. I definitely believe a degree is not worth now what it was worth in the 1980's or 90's. It is ridiculous some of the subject areas you can get degrees in now.