5 Frugal things post 61 – Cars, energy balls and instant gratification

5 Frugal things post 61

February arrives with a cold but sunny week. I am feeling encouraged by the spring flowers I am starting to see everywhere, snowdrops, daffodils, crocuses. Spring is on its way, warmer weather and lighter evening will soon be here. I cant wait to start working my my garden office again!

I have dedicated this week to going through my business accounts. It has taken ages, 12 hours of spreadsheet creation later and I done my year two business account and have caught up on the first 5 months of year three. I am feeling most proud of myself! My deadline for submission is May but I am going to send them over to my accountant early.

Buying a new car

We have been struggling with logistics with just the one car for a while now and we have made the decision that 13 years of being a one car household has to end and we are buying a second car. Our current car also is six years old and has quite a few miles on the clock so we are going to sell our S-Max, replace that with a family car and get a second small car.

We know that we want to get 2 hybrid cars so are looking at Toyota for the two cars. I sat in a showroom for two hours this week talking prices, negotiation a million factors in a car leasing deal. I am after the best deal possible. It seems there is room to negotiate on many thing, the purchase price of the car, the residual value of the car, the milage you will do in the car, the exchange value of our car and the interest rate of the PCP loan agreement. I will write a whole blog post on this negotiation process and where we end up to explain just how the PCP product and car finance works.

I am excited about the amount of money we will save with a hybrid car and petrol. We currently spend around £200 per month on petrol which should reduce by 50% with the hybrid car.

Making my own protein/energy snacks

I am always on the look out for healthy treats and was sent a tasty recipe by my friend Natalie Seldon this week. She knows her stuff having written a book about The Goodness of Nuts and Seeds! The balls contain natural peanuts, oats, coconut, dates and honey and taste great. Here is the recipe for the energy balls, give them a go. They come in at about 35p per ball so are a bargain compared the protein/energy balls you can buy pre-made.

coconut energy balls

Packed Lunch Drama

I have started to reduce the amount of food I put into the boys packed lunch boxes after noticing that food was coming back uneaten. They get one sandwich, a yogurt and a piece of fruit. Moving over to packed lunches this past school year has saved us around £15 each week. School dinner would cost £25 per week, instead we switched to packed lunches with the ingredients costing around £10. I was asked to share my packed lunch box money saving tips on this guest post this week.

World Book day costumes for free

Next Wednesday marks world book at our school and we have been sourcing our outfits for free. Jack is borrowing a Robin Hood costume from a friend. Josh is in the process of making a Mr. Strong costumer from a box, I look forward to sharing that image with you next week. Dylan is going to wear a dress, borrowed from a friend. Done at no cost to me!

Instant Gratification versus delayed gratification

I wrote a post from the heart on Monday about the concept of instant gratification versus delayed. And explored how I have been fixated on instant gratification most of my life leading to spending all of my adult life so far in debt. I think its a mindset that gets many people into money trouble. Take a read of the post and think about how it relates to your money beliefs.

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

5 frugal things post 61




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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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12 Responses

  1. Packed lunches are great for saving money but not that great when they go to waste – it’s a problem I’ve had for ages with my son!

    1. Its mainly Josh my middle son…he comes home often with no food eaten. Hes 8 and they have packed lunch in their classroom unsupervised. Its a struggle

  2. I hear you about food coming back in packed lunches. I just like to feel like they have got plenty to fuel them up. Reality is they just want to get out to the playground with their friends and scoff their faces at 3pm when its home time!!

  3. Those energy balls look yummy. I have been buying all natural sugar free bars from Aldi which are great value and delicious . I like the idea of a hybrid car but nervous about leasing agreements or any type of debt.

  4. From a frugal perspective, hanging on to your current car, and adding a new-to-you second car bought with cash would avoid any interest costs. Appreciate PCP is massively popular but means you’ll always be paying out for car financing, unless you’re willing to pay an inflated amount at the end of the contract. Can absolutely see why it would be good to cut petrol costs.

    1. Argg current car just about to cost £1000 in repair bills though. We ended up going for the PCP deal (getting rid of current car for a very good price), but managed to save ourselves around £8000 off the list prices in the process.

  5. I was sooooo happy to receive a text message this week from school to say sorry we will not be dressing up for world book day this year due to so many other events we have on – yippeeeeee! (i didn’t just say that… if my kids ask i’m truly devastated!) 😉

  6. What car do you drive? I finally saved up on the corresponding car and now it remains only to choose the right model for myself. Who can share their experience with me with me and useful information. My work colleague recommended a portal to me http://cararac.com/ cararac com . Here I chose several models for myself. I liked Toyota the most. What do you say, is it worth taking such a car or not? It is important for me that the car was of high quality and beautiful.

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