Sunday, November 30, 2008
* 1 large suitcase, 7 pairs torties (Salvos Belconnen and Mitchell)
* 1 Robbie the Reindeer DVD to replace the taped-off-telly video I have(eBay)
* 1 Elle, 1 Elle Decor, 1 Inside Out magazine (subscription)
* 1 Real Simple magazine (newsagents)
* 1 NRMA Open Road magazine.
* 1 sheet for fabric.
Total In this week: 15
* 2 magazines: lunchroom at work
* 10 Real Simple back issues: Lifeline Bookfair
* 10 pairs knitting needles: Happy Spider for her school knitting group
* 1 holey sock: bin
Total Out this week: 23
* Socks. *sigh*
Net items out so far during Seven Things Spring/ Summer 2008: 69
Saturday, November 29, 2008
How's this for an example?
"the cost of hiring (a dress for an event) ranges from $50-180... It's designer wear at true discount prices — and no cluttering up the wardrobe either! "
How out of touch am I? I'd expect to BUY an outfit for an event for that amount. No, I take that back. The last formal outfit I bought for a cruise cost me $40. Including the footwear.
Then there's this:
"If you are cutting right back, Lawrence recommends the following essentials for every bathroom cabinet:"
Fair enough. But item number two states:
"Serum — "It can be pricey (upwards of $80), but an anti-ageing antioxidant serum is a brilliant investment, especially if you're cutting back on facials."
Yup, I can see that's a frugal essential. *guffaw* And "cutting back on facials"? That assumes you have them in the first place...
But wait! There's more! Check out item number five:
Oh yeah, that's really frugal. And totally necessary. Not.
And at the end of this list of "essentials"?
"Manicure — "There's a $20-a-pop nail bar on every corner these days. It's a lovely treat and time-out."
(Or you can do it at home for free if you're that hung up on them...)
Then there's this:
"She also suggests talking to your hairdresser about doing colour touch-ups at home yourself, thereby meaning you only need to pay for a professional colour every 12 weeks or so. "If you ask them, they will tell you how to do the touch-ups and sell you the products you need," she says."
(Or you could just not colour your hair...)
Oddly enough, I'm not awaiting part two with baited breath!
Friday, November 28, 2008
Today at work I was offered a free ticket to see Manon in Sydney next Wednesday. Not only that, but the bus trip each way is included (Australian Ballet apparently has a subscription option for Canberrans which includes transport up and back! Who knew?) Luckily I have a flexible boss so I was able to rearrange my work next week to allow me the time to go. I'm liking this being underemployed more and more!
And next Saturday I'm off to see The Red Shoes, the last of my 2008 Canberra Theatre subscription season tickets. Such culture all in one week. How will I cope? (Please note I'm not making puns which involve the use of the phrase "tutu much" or "making a pointe")
Sticking with culture, tonight was another CMAG opening. So here, without further ado is ye olde "knitting with free alcohol" shot: There were strawberries! They were massive! And to round off a very good day indeed, Taph gave me three casks of wine she's not going to drink before their use-by dates (or at least that's what she said to me) plus a collection of silverbeet and tomato seedlings from her mother. Which, hopefully I'll manage to keep alive...
And my laptop has had a whopping increase in RAM which is only frugal in that spending $158 has (hopefully) saved me from buying a new laptop for quite some years to come (fingers crossed).
Thursday, November 27, 2008
The rest is still sitting there. Next Tuesday I get my first pay from Job#2 under the Tax Free Threshold. And then I'll be able to do some sums and see where the lie of the land is. Or something... No sign of the Fuck Off Letter. Which I'm quite happy about as it means I can't take it down to Centrelink just yet.
Meanwhile I have a new regime. On the days I'm not at Job #2 I work for TSS until 12 noon (which usually means about 6 hours). Then I have an hour for lunch (I can cook lunch, eat lunch and read magazines). The afternoon, until 5pm is computer free and is a mix of sorting my house out and lolling on the sofa catching up with my reading. I think that might be called "relaxing". I'm not sure. Have to say when I do it I'm not feeling very relaxed at all... "OK, got an hour to deal with this backlog... On the couch... Feet up.... Shoulders down.... Lalala... Relaxing... Oh yes this is the life.... Lalala.... Will I finish this magazine in time or not? How many more to get through? Should I be trying to hook the video player up to the TV I was given in June and watch some of those videos I have piled up?"
Oh: And I forgot to apply for any jobs today. Too busy working, grocery shopping ($25 for the week! Yay for practicing with Fiscal Fasts!) and taking my laptop in to the computer memory guru to see what he can do for me...
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
New company Bring it Home does that for you while you loll round at home eating chocolates (or anything else you'd care to spend seven plus hours doing!). Pop up to their website, tell them what you want and they'll pick it up for you on their next regular trip to the big blue and yellow box, and deliver it to your door.
And if you think their minimum charge of $60 is steep consider this: how much does it cost you in petrol and wear and tear on your car to do the trip? And does an under $10 an hour charge make it worth being able to spend that seven or eight hours doing something else?
I'm seriously considering using some of my package (when it shows up) and getting them to buy me the Udden workbench and a couple of Signum cable trunking organisers (which always seem to be out of stock when I happen to be at an IKEA)
(Thanks to Canberra's Got Style for the heads up)
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
Two care parcels in two days. It would seem although my friends aren't worried about me they're thinking of me.
Yesterday Tania came for lunch and brought a bag full of goodies from her cupboards that she's not allowed to eat at the moment (sounds strangely familiar...) And today J and I popped into the Indian store in Belconnen during our travels to picked up supplies*. And she wouldn't let me pay for mine (plus gave me some of the last pumpkin from her garden when I dropped her home) I've also been invited to join a food bank. When I said I really didn't think so as I wasn't in that sort of need it was pointed out to me that I was now official a Low Income Earner and therefore was entitled to use it. The mention of extremely cheap organic coffee was enticing but I think I'll probably pass. I'd love to hear you thought on the matter...
(Jobs applied for: 2)
(*Frugal alert: The Indian place in Oatley Court, Belconnen has a range of readimeals down to $1.50 each. As I've said before, these usually do me for 2 lunches making the cost per meal about 90 cents if you include rice. Bargain!)
(All photos courtesy of Beatrice)
Sunday, November 23, 2008
* 8 books, 3 school cases, 1 giant crochet hook, 1 bingo thingy, 1 children's singer sewing machine, 1 ball Jo Sharp DK tweed: (Last Saturday's garage sale/ fete/ op shop crawl)
* 1 new wallet to replace my old one which died. I would have waited to find one in an op shop but the coins kept falling out of my broken one. Oh well, at least I got 25% off it...
* 1 book (op shop)
* 1 Wallpaper magazine (newsagents)
* 1 book (garage sale)
* 4 boxes sewing treasures, 4 sets knitting needles (garage sale)
Total In this week: 27
* NRMA Open Road magazine: recycling bin
* 1 book: given to a friend
* 1 desktop toy (broken): bin
* 1 Mac lipstick: given to Taph to end her fruitless search for the perfect red lipstick
* 20 Real Simple magazines, 1 Real Simple 2000-2003 index booklet, 2 books: Lifeline Bookfair
* 3 books sold to Booklore
* 1 plastic chopping board, 1 top, 1 headband with wobbly sticky up things attached from Luna Park, 1 pirate hat from my cruise to Bermuda: op shop
Total Out this week: 34
* Would you be surprised if I said socks?
Net items out so far during Seven Things Spring/ Summer 2008: 61
It was Janet and hubby who were out garage saling and thought I might like to come along. I tried saying no, honest I did ("No, now I'm underemployed I'm not spending money except on the necessities") but her plea that she needed The Voice of Frugal Reason along had me heading up the stairs, out of my PJs and into some clothes.
I declared I'd only spend what was in my wallet. Which happened to be a whopping $5.75. Which was all fine and dandy until we got our first garage sale which had a huge stack of CDs for $2 each. But I was strong. Picked out just one (The best of Nick Cave) and wandered round a bit. Found a book for 50 cents then spotted these:which would be perfect for trying to deal with the mountain of stock which has invaded my home over the past month or so. Asked the price. $5. The CD was returned to the rack and I staggered off down the drive happy with my $5.50s worth.
The next garage sale was small and disappointing. Until I noticed an interesting looking case in the corner. And since Frugaller's Rule Number One is "Always look inside things" I did. And discovered an old sewing machine which the owner declared I could have for free. Of course I said yes as I know Janet's hubby is a dab hand at sewing machine sorting out and Janet is always looking for more machines for a craft group she runs. Once the owner saw how excited we were she mentioned she had another machine inside if we wanted that as well: which turned out to be a beautiful old Singer. Janet was ecstatic!
At this stage we swung past home to drop off my drawer unit. I should have stopped then, right? Budget spent, fun had? But no. Somehow I found myself over the road at the ATM picking up another $20 before we were off again down the road to the Holy Cross Fete at St Margaret's in Hackett. Where I spotted a carton full of interesting looking boxes:which were full of interesting looking sewing bits:Under the boxes were knitting needles, including some torties and some other random stuff.Rather than pick through the contents I figured it was easier to just ask a price on the whole carton. And for $5 it was mine. I paid before I considered the impact this might have on my Seven Things tally this week...
And then I went home. And we sorted the contents over cups of tea. And I was very happy.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Of the five, I have (or will be) chasing up three. One is 5 hours a week so won't keep the Bank Manager from my door in the long term but it's a home based role with very flexible hours and is such a weirdly perfect match I just have to explore it further. One is working with someone I've known professionally for years: slightly outside of my comfort zone but I think will be fun and interesting. The third is exciting and scary and if I (by some twist of fate) manage to get it I'm sure there'll be at least one meltdown behind the filing cabinets in the first month (always, I think, a sign of a good role: I say to people: jobs are like jumpers when you were a kid. Always slightly too big for you so you can grow into them. Therefore it's pretty much compulsory that you, at some stage in the first few weeks, feel like bursting into tears and wailing "They're got the wrong person! There's no way I can do this!" This is a sign of a good job fit in my opinion.) But it's a six month contract.
Still waiting for my money. Silly me, I forgot to ask when exactly I was going to be paid out.
And I'm thinking there may be a rather unexpected "Fiscal Fast: The Spring/ Summer Edition" happening round here soon as I pull my head in big time...
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I scoffed when Madison told me that November 11th was going to be the "most romantic day of the month". Sure, I got to drink champagne and eat nice food (at DJ's Civic Christmas Sale Night). I got chatted up by a very cute bloke (who was trying to sign me up for the DJ's American Express card) but that's not really what I think the horoscope was meaning.
But maybe I should scoff no more. Madison told me:
November: a month to... manifest a life-changing period for anyone who really wants to shake things up. But it doesn't happen by itself, so ask yourself what you want and what is required for you to achieve it. Then get to work.
AU marie claire added:
You have so many planets onside this month, it's hard to know where to begin. There are a million things to do, with every one of them jockeying for position. Fortunately, November's feeling energetic, and you might just finish a little bit of everything. There'll be some testier moments, but you're about to set off a chain reaction that holds the promise of tremendous success. If this brings in extra cash, spend it - guilt-free.
And today I was offered redundancy from Job #1. Since not more than 4 weeks ago I counseled someone that "being offered a package with the option of staying and deciding to stay is the same as being told by your boyfriend he doesn't want to go out with you any more and you hanging around" I felt I had no option but to take the Fuck Off money and run.
So on one hand I'm kinda wishing I didn't just pay $800 for my sponsored kids, $630 for my rego, $384 for next year's theatre subscription and $124 for new towels. On the other hand I'm very glad I have an emergency fund and have transferred my credit card debt at lovely low rate. And getting paid to do nothing 3 days a week until the end of the year is pretty damned good...
I took the now standard knitting with free alcohol shotwhile Taph filled out her application
Sadly, we then spent half an hour wandering round looking for something to spend our $100 windfall on. With very little luck. We managed to knock one of the vouchers off but then gave up and went home after I sulked a little over the fact they not only didn't have the L'eau de Issey EDP gift packs I usually buy in either of their Canberra stores but Woden was completely out of L'eau de Issey EDP in single bottles too...
I cheered up somewhat when I got home and read an email from Sola Rosa offering me a free download of a track off their new album (due for release in February next year).It's very good. I've played it too many times already!
(* Here's the deal: if you apply for a card on a Christmas Sale Night you get given a $50 DJs gift voucher. But if your application is successful you get charged $99 in fees on the first statement. Which isn't good (especially as a normal DJs card is fee-free). So what you do is apply, get the gift voucher then cancel your application a day or so later. Preferably after you've spent the gift voucher!)
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
On World Toilet Day, Plan is highlighting a radical approach we have been implementing that is bringing real and lasting change to communities. It's called Community-Led Total Sanitation.
Rather than providing or constructing toilets, Plan facilitates the community to analyse their sanitation conditions and the impact of open defecation on public health. This kindles feelings of shame and disgust and provokes urgent collective action to eliminate it.
Find out why building toilets is not the only solution for total sanitation.
Who poos where?Provoking change in community behaviour
Community-Led Total Sanitation involves a unique style of facilitation which involves using the crude local word for defecation such as "poo". It encourages local communities to appraise their practices which can be shocking to them. This style is both provocative and fun and is hands-off, leaving decisions and action to the community.
See CLTS in action around the world in this slideshow Communities lead the way in ending open defecation
In 2004, Plan introduced Community-Led Total Sanitation in over 200 villages in the Dinajpur District of Bangladesh. By 2007, all villages in Plan's target area had eliminated open defecation and the entire population now has access to hygienic latrines.
Watch how they did it in this short video clip How you can help -Donate to Plan's Appeal for Water and Sanitation in Tanzania
Your gift today will help Plan work with communities in Kisarawe District to establish sustainable, community-managed water systems and improved sanitation practices, with more than 70,000 people expected to benefit from better access to clean, safe drinking water and improved sanitation over the next three years.
Make a secure online donation now
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
While reading Inside Out magazine a month or so ago a subscription offer card fell out which offered a deal "Save 50%: subscribe and get 1 year free" (ie: 2 years for $42). I set it aside planning to deal with it later in the week. It got buried in a pile of other things to deal with and I forgot all about it.
Until last Friday, when my Inside Out subscription renewal notice turned up, offering me a 2 year subscription for $70. Not nearly as enticing.
I dug out the 2 for 1 card which had, of course, expired. But rather than throwing it in the recycling I called the Inside Out subscription line and told them my sad story, finishing by asking if they would be prepared to honour the offer even though it expired over a month ago.
And, after being popped on hold while the person I was talking to asked her supervisor, I was told they'd charge me $42 for two years because I'd been such a "long time subscriber".
One phone call, one cheeky request and $28 saved!
(Which reminds me of something the nice chap at the marie claire subscription department told me: if you subscribe to a magazine and see a good deal advertised you can extend your subscription and get the deal even if your subscription isn't due for renewal just yet...)
Monday, November 17, 2008
Not much has happened this week with the Triang. I did manage to clean the bottom floor level which is a major improvement:It took two rounds with a damp sponge to get the dust off (that was some super-sticky dust) and, once it had dried, some attention with a white eraser to clean the paper in the kitchen. The hall carpet was cleaned with a lint roller, the ancient sellotape removed from the flapping paper edges and they were glued back down securely.
I'd hoped to get further but I appear to have misplaced my favorite dolls house dusting brush for the moment and I'm looking into options to safely (and inexpensively) clean the front windows.
Here's a link to my interview on the YouSendIt File Delivery Service. Unfortunately the link will expire on Friday (or after 100 downloads). Hopefully by then I'll have worked something out...
I was back at CMAG yesterday watching movies for the second Sunday afternoon in a row. This week the presentation was Selling the capital: reflections by David Kilby
Since the 1930s a number of short films have been produced promoting Canberra to tourists, potential residents and unwilling public servants being relocated from other capital cities. David Kilby will explore how the capital has been ‘sold’ in 16mm films from the 1930s to the 1980s. As a collection, the films provide a remarkable record of how The Garden City has been promoted nationally and internationally.A must-see for long-term Canberra residents and newcomers alike.
There were quizzes and prize lollies: it brought back memories of going to the Saturday flicks in Riccarton as a kid, which was more about the prizes and the games beforehand than the actual movies. Pity CMAG doesn't do a movie every Sunday afternoon: it was a most agreeable way to spend a couple of hours...
(Picture courtesy of Paul Webb)
(EDITED TO ADD: Interview is now available to listen to on the CMAG site)
Sunday, November 16, 2008
After an 8am pick up, our first stop was the YMCA Garage Sale. Which I found quite disappointing. We figured it's probably because they're now so regular I'm starting to recognise the same items over and over again: items I chose not to buy on my first visit and also passed over on visit two (and, possibly, three)
I forgot to take photos but I suppose one YMCA Garage Sale is pretty much like another. I spent $12 on a gift (so no photo, sorry) and $3 on this little orange school case which I plan to decoupage with images from 1960s annuals. The giant crochet hook was free (biro to show size)
Next stop was St Paul's Fete in Manuka where I remained *ahem* on the case:
Two brown cases to add to my ever growing pile ($2 each) and, also in a case, a fabulous child sized battery operated Singer sewing machine ($10)Is small. Is cute. It had to come home even though it was a little expensive!
Also picked up for $1 was this set of carafe and glasses destined for a friend:I actually only paid for the carafe. The glasses were free: I think they felt bad for me that 4 intact glasses became three intact glasses and one smashed glass when I set them down to pay for them :-(
Speaking of feeling bad, this is what was in one of the cases:someone's treasures from the Masonic Lodge. I'll be passing these on to someone who will deal with them properly.
There was book buying too (one a gift, one which you'll see later)
Back down Adelaide Avenue we headed, to the St Andrew's Village Fair where we were piped in by a kilt wearing bagpipe player. Taph found the perfect tool to deal with handknitted ack bears (I suspect she's imagining a sacrificial fire under it)I found a completely useless but utterly entrancing round thing full of round things ($5)and bought 6 books for $12. This one I picked out for the cover alone:It looks so good (pity it's full beauty is hidden by a swan's bum, huh?)Next on the list was a visit to Tuggeranong. We started at Salvos as the Arch Bishop was visiting Vinnies doing the official stuff so we thought we'd miss the crowd. But the crowd appeared to be at Salvos (I've never seen it so full!)
Shirley, one of my favorite Salvos Ladies, was there and had a choice of two lots of headgear, this: and a spangly pink tiara.
There were mammoth amounts of Da Vinci Codes(sorry, couldn't help it!):
I bought 2 Simple Minds CDs for $3 each (and ended up giving one to Taph as I realised when I got home that I already had it with a different cover), 2 books ($1.50 total: they had 50% off all books, bric a brac and manchester) and 1 banded ball of Jo Sharp Silkroad DK tweed (50 cents! Yes, my Jo Sharp frugalling Fairy was obviously in town again)
Here's the Vinnie's extention. Not sure if it looks like a castle or a prison...
Inside it's all bright and fresh and smells like new carpet:This dinner set stayed right where it was (aren't I good?):And so did this lounge set (but note the covetous and calculating look in my eye...):I did buy a book, though.
Oh yes, books...This was yesterday's haul:Don't the colours go so nicely (including the wool)?
From top to bottom: $8 (Vinnies Tuggeranong), $2 (St Andrew's Fete), 50 cents (Salvos Tuggeranong), $2, $2, $2 (St Andrew's Fete), $2 (St Paul's Fete) and $1 (Salvos Tuggeranong - I'm rather pleased with this one as I've never seen a copy of Alison Holst's Meals without Red Meat second hand before)
* 14 pairs knitting needles, 1 vintage knitting jenny (Trash & Treasure)
* 2 sets of towels (eBay)
* 9 items dolls house furniture (almost the last of the stuff I was buying off eBay before the exhibition opened)
* 1 Madison magazine, 1 US Vogue (subscription)
* 1 AMEA Tiny Times magazine
* 1 Muppet Show season 2 DVD (at 40% off, damn those Borders coupons!)
* 1 Living Etc magazine (newsagents)
Total In this week: 31
* 2 skirts: donated to a colleague at work
* 3 Real Simple magazines, 7 bags of pompoms: given to a friend
* 2 doona covers, 2 sheets, 1 valance, 6 pillowcases, 1 cotton blanket (all from the spare bed I no longer have): given to a friend
* 1 jacket, 1 skirt, 1 cushion, 1 new writing pad, 1 lanyard, 1 brag book, 1 wire basket, 1 pair foot pillows: op shop
* 2 metres of fabric from the stash: sold
* 7 Real Simple magazines: donated to Lifeline Bookfair
Total Out this week: 41
* Socks, socks and more socks.
Net items out so far during Seven Things Spring/ Summer 2008: 54
But, as usual, I thought it would be much easier to embed than it's turning out to be.
If you have embedded audio into your blogger blog successfully please let me know how you did it!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
I washed my fabbo new towels. I bought myself a DVD I've wanted for ages (40% off coupon expires today) I did a wee interview with ABC 666 at CMAG (I've been promised a copy of it which I'll then try and work out how to load here for your edification).
I met a lovely fellow Canberra blogger for the first time. I ate a fabulous afternoon tea (you really should join as a member of CMAG if for no other reason than their stunning catering!) and took the leftovers upstairs to a meeting with Craft ACT to talk about a(nother) mad plan I have. I visited Olivia's pears and gave them a pat.
I came home and bought some wine on special. And now I'm going to ignore the fact a few of you are waiting with baited breath for me to list the rest of the Lundby Gotland range and
Odd concept really: crawl into my bed which has just been changed to summer attire (interesting that that link also includes a CMAG event, the fact I was having trouble getting my proposal for the exhibtion written and the certain belief that I was going to be in Vienna in 2008!), knit some gifts, read some magazines and listen to some music. And maybe have a glass of wine.
(All photos thanks (again) to Roving Reporter Rowan. More coverage of the day from CMAG can be found here)
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
L for ligging
... at the same event.
M for museums (and history)
... Saturday afternoon saw The Old Flame, Taph and I at Old Parliament House for the Dismissal Tour. Taph said it was essential as part of my quest to become more Australian. (So far I've managed to escape attending a B&S Ball which I've been assured is definitely part of this quest)There was knitting (I'm sure Taph will reveal the full story in time!)
There was silliness,but alas no ligging.
Still, it was all quite exhausting...
M for museums (and history):
Sunday I went to CMAG to get a proper look at the brilliant In the Can exhibition (did I mention I missed seeing it due to a tad to much ligging at the opening?) and attend a couple of events:
Out of the Shadows: Andrew Pike, former Manager of Electric Shadows, reminisces about the role of independent cinemas in the community and in the film industry.
Plus a screening of a rough cut of a documentary shot about the closing of Electric Shadows. Which was brilliant and should be posted to every household in Canberra forthwith!
No knitting: I forgot to take it. No photos. I forgot to take any. And the only ligging in sight was the bowl of Fantails they had on a table at the door of the theatre...
That's OK: the next two weeks are the DJs pre-Christmas evenings with free champers. Alas I bought enough Actil First Line sheet sets at last year's event to last a lifetime (seriously!). I just found a source for the Actil towels from heaven (and have at least a four year supply winging it's way to me) and as for perfume on the Christmas option, the card's a wee bit full of bed. Rats!
There's also another book launch at The Co-op bookshop next week which I know will include free champers...
All together now:
"Tis the season
to be liggin'
Falalalala la la lala!"
(All photos thanks to Taph)