Monday Money is back after missing a week last Monday. We got back from our holiday on Monday and I have a brilliant post planned all about my holiday but not quite Monday Money appropriate. And the summer holiday have taken over making it not as easy to get work done every day!
We are now four weeks into the holidays and we had a week packed full of fun stuff last week, always keeping an eye on the budget. But how much did we spend?
Tuesday – Hatfield Galleria & Costa lunch
We took a trip to Hatfield Galleria for some shoe shopping. I need three pairs of school shoes and trainers for the boys. First stop was Clarks to get the boys feet measured. We did have a look around Clarks for shoes, honestly, but it’s a discount outlet and the selection was wasn’t great. So we at least know the boys sizes and headed to take a look in TK Maxx and Nike instead.
TK Maxx was a failure, Dylan was after some bargain Sketchers, but we didn’t find any. However we did find some bargain trainers for Jack, who got a very lovely pair of Nike Air Max for £20. A £30 saving. We had lunch at Costa Coffee as part of a piece of work I was doing, that one was classed as a business expense.
Wednesday was Playdate day
Josh spent the day at his friends. The moment you take one child out of the mix with three children the other two become very easy to manage. So we just chilled at home and I got some work done. A no spend day!
During my holiday I received a few packages of stuff, one was a box of skincare products, #6 the new branded range from Poundland! Serum, moisturiser, cleanser, eye cream and all anti-aging products. I did a little vlog to test out the products so you can easy they were to apply with my commentary on how they felt. And yes £1 each!
Thursday Trampoline Park
We have many trampoline parks near us but the boys favourite one is also the cheapest. Better Extreme in the Gosling sports centre in Welwyn Garden City is £7.95 for an hour. Read more here for a full review. It’s a great park that the boys love and I can sit and watch quietly with a coffee. The park is run by a not for profit organisation making it cheaper than the regular parks that are more like £11/12 per hour per child.
We then took 20kg of unwanted clothes to the weigh and sell hut in Tesco. We earned a huge (read as measly!) £9 for our unwanted clothes, but that was 3 bin bags gone from the house. Perfect.
That £9 was then spent plus a bit more when we had lunch at the cafe in Tesco. Josh wanted to make cakes in the afternoon so we cheated and bought some Betty Crocker cake mix to make some cookies and brownies. I met them at the Amazon Christmas Event and loved the taste of the desserts! We also found some school shoes for Josh, hurrah and the ones he found and chose himself were just £10. Add to the mix a birthday pressie for NikNik and a few essentials of bread, milk and icelollies and we were done.
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Totally made @bettycrockeruk brownies and cookies. As chosen by boys. And made by boys. Mostly eaten by me. Yep ive eaten 4 brownies🙈🙈 Thise brownies are perfect. Goey. Soft. Rich. Crispy top. I made them with rapeseed oil..maybe that made a difference?? Not done my gratitude for a while…#Gratitude to @emmadrewinfo for suggesting a uber power catch up. And sorted for saturday. Over carvery obvs. Cant wait. Gratitude to @thebookishbec for always looking out for me with messages. And gratitude to Ade for having josh for hours yesterday. He loved it. #3positivethings 1) decluttered 20kg of clothes. Got £9 for them. Good to get rid. 2) finished the retreat by @markedwardsauthor. Great book..bit scary. I didnt predict the ending😉 3) Josh found school shoes he liked today. Hard wearing pumps. £10 from Tesco. . . . . . . . #brownies #cookies #bakingwithchildren #cookies #foodgasm #chocolate #delicious #cakespinuptreats #foodporn #instagood #baking #foodphotography #bakery #chocolatechip #cookie #sugarcookies #desserts #instadessert #sweettooth #foodstagram #decoratedcookies #birthdaycookies #loa #karma #lawofattraction #bettycrocker
Friday at Buckingham Palace and Three
This day in London had been planned for ages. We were meeting up with my mate Gem and her children to visit Buckingham Palace. The tickets had been booked such a long time ago it felt like a free day out! I think we paid £80 for 2 adults and 5 children for a tour of the palace. I love a tour of a historical building and Buckingham palace does not disappoint. In particular I loved the art display curated by Prince Charles for his 70th birthday; art from his commonwealth tours, dotted with personal pictures of his family. Some beautiful pictures of the family.
I loved it, Josh got bored very quickly so did whizz through quicker than others. I loved the grandness and the beauty. The gold and the marble. But I will say very strict with rules. The boys were told off maybe five times for leaning on barriers, walls, sitting on grass. It was very over the top.
We did venture into the shop but the boys decided it was a rip-off, hurrah. They got an ice-cream as we left for £3 each. We sat on the benches overlooking the garden and ate our packed lunches. Money saving all the way.
Gems missing..but a funny picture. Jack was very tired by this point after a tour around the palace. No pics cause you’re not allowed in the state rooms. Great day in london with the kids. We chilled in the park with the kids. Went to Islington to learn Stop Motion at the @threeuk store. Ate at pizza express. Now on way home. A great day with the boys. Not too much moaning😬 . . . . . . . . . . . #buckinghampalace #london #queen #royal #royalfamily #royalty #godsavethequeen #monarchy #queenelizabeth #buckingham #britishmonarchy #dukeofcambridge #greatbritain #duchessofcambridge #meghanmarkle #britishroyals #hermajesty #londonist #londres #royals #attraction #hm_queenelizabeth
Later in the afternoon we headed to Three in Islington to learn all about how to create a Stop Motion video. This also meant our train travel for the day was paid for ;-). I wasn’t sure if the boys would like it, but Dylan and Josh absolutely loved it and really threw themselves into making a very good video with animation and sound effects and much creativity. Blog post coming soon on that event. But here is the very exciting wall of old phones!
We finished at 4:30 in Islington and the boys were starving so we went to Pizza Express for dinner. Not money saving in the slightest, although they did eat the £7 kids menus. And I got a nice pink gin to reward myself for a long day in London.
The boys have been talking about wanting to see the new shark film, The Meg for weeks and weeks. So I gave it and took them on Saturday. Of course using my Kidpass membership, this meant I saved £9 on our three tickets that cost us £17 rather then £28. You can join kidspass for just £1 on a 30 day trial using this link. Its totally worth it for the cinema ticket savings alone! There is also food savings and many other family day out savings.
And the film? It made me jump around eight times, it was scary. I had to hide behind my hands several time. And the boys loved it. Jason Statham, not the best actor, but was funny and very fit!
The total spend for the week was around £200. How are you doing with your summer holiday savings?