5 Frugal Things Post 30 – TV, mystery shopping and financial planning

5 Frugal Things post 30 – TV, mystery shopping and financial planning

Wow what a week!! For those regular readers and followers on Instagram you will have seen boozy awards nights out, hangovers, cocktails, TV appearances, spa reviews. What I didn’t show you was my meetings with a financial planner, mystery shopping experiments, writing lots, drinking lots of detox tea! Here are my 5 frugal things post 30 highlights.

Mystery Shopping can be too much hassle

I rather thoughtlessly agreed to do a mystery shop for a bread product on Wednesday and Thursday. All I had to do was build and shelf unit thing and fill it with 50p loaves. It sounded easy and was fairly well paid. The company called me and asked if I would do Letchworth, St Albans, Shefford and Welwyn Garden City. I agreed as it was going to pay me £60. I thought it cant be more than 2 hour work.

I was wrong. The shelf unit was a nightmare to put together, each shop didn’t want the stand, they wanted to display the promotion there own way. The shops took ages to get to. My hangover on Wednesday did not help. The app was a challenge to complete.

It ended up taking me four hours to do all four shops. Am sorry but my time is precious and that wasn’t good earnings for the use of my time. I will not be doing it again.

A positive Mystery Shopping Experience

With the negative comes the positive. I was desperate for some relaxation/me time and I got this on Thursday. I do some work for another mystery shopping company who sent me visit to a spa day including a treatment. It meant I got a day in a local spa, including a treatment and got paid. All I had to do was record me setting up the appointment and write a report about my experience. Not really a challenge for me as I am used to reviewing things on my website.

I dropped the boys at school on Thursday, drove straight to the spa. I was in the jaccuzzi by 10am. I swam 1000 metres, I went for a steam and a sauna. I had a healthy lunch (so did spend £10 on that) and then a facial. I lay on a heated bed for 1 whole hour and read a book (okay the book was how much money do you need for the rest of your life!) and I switched off mobile data on my phone.

Financial Planning

On Wednesday whilst croaky and hungover (hope he didn’t notice) I had a skype call with a rather amazing man called Pete Matthew. I discovered him when Damien Fahy of Money to the Masses fame interviewed him on his One Giant Leap podcast. This man is inspirational, he knows his money stuff, can explain it simply, is funny and get this lives in Penzance (where I am from!). I had to connect to this guy. I tweeted him to say I enjoyed the podcast and the dialogue began.

Pete is a financial planner who is one of the partners at Jackson’s in Penzance. I remember them when I was growing up as this scary suited people business that only helped out rich people. Sorry Pete, I was a teenager! It certainly wasn’t a place that my parents would use, particularly my dad who went and died without a will. Turns out they are a financial planning firm, that help you to plan your financial future, and by the grand age of 30-40 many of us have amassed enough equity/pension funds/savings etc to warrant help from a financial planner.

I am looking into our financial future at the moment, I have sorted out my pensions mess which I wrote about. But there was lots of things I am still confused about, what do I do about our equity, what about investments, what about a will (we don’t have a will..shock horror, reference the comment about my dad). I arranged an hour’s skype with Pete and talked about everything.

It was an incredible conversation (and Free!) where he put my mind at rest, dispelled some of my beliefs, corrected some assumptions. And told me I HAD TO GET A WILL SORTED. I have an appointment booked to sort that out now. So much content coming on all this stuff as I investigate and get things arranged. He also said focus on repayment of the debt we owe, work hard on the 2 businesses we own and to come back in 18 months time. He is good!

Called Sky and saved money!

I called sky on Monday to see if they could reduce our £75 a month bill. This is fibre broadband (I need this to do my job!), landline, sky sports and HD package and movies. They told me I was on a good deal 50% off TV stuff so all that could be done was remove things. I got sky movies removed which saved £9 per month.

I told all this to hubby, who told me to just cancel sky sports!!! A result that I really wasn’t expecting, he is into this money saving as well! We can go down to the standard entertainment package and save oodles of money. We have Amazon Prime anyways to access films so that will have to do for the children.

Co-op Orange Sticker shopping

Did I say Wednesday was a terrible hangover day. I got home at 2:30 am after the headline money awards. I was up at 6 am as hubby needed a lift to work at 7am…ergggghhhh. I managed to survive until school pick up time. I paid Co-op a little visit and got myself dirty burgers, dorito’s and dips for dinner for me and the boys. I know its not healthy and it didn’t make me feel better afterwards. But it did make me feel better for the 5 minutes whilst I was eating it. I managed to pick up pizza, lettuce and bread as orange stick reduced prices;-)

I hope you had a wonderful money saving week, share your best bargains.

I am linking up with CassEmma and Becky in this week’s ‘Five Fabulously Frugal things I have done this week linky.


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Lynn Beattie

Aka Mrs MummyPenny

Personal Finance Expert

I write about personal finance made simple, lifestyle choices that will save you time and money, as well as products and services that offer great value.

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6 Responses

    1. He was very good. Is very good. His podcast is worth a listen too. Im setting up stuff with the mystery shopping company so will let you know;-)

  1. Sounds like a good week for you! Nevermind about the junk food, it isn’t like you do it all the time and at least you’re honest about it!

    I’m so pleased you’re sorting a will. As soon as we had Daisy I just knew I needed to get it done, sort out a trust for her, plan guardianship etc. It is so important to get it all documented. Also, consider living a note for your family with your will. You don’t have to spend days on it. However, when my Dad died I wish there was a note, or something, more than just the formal things.

  2. What a great week – my husband is happy to get rid of Sky Sports now as the mighty Boro are not so mighty and have just been relegated.
    Thanks for joining in with the #5frugalthings linky x

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