You’re right, it’s not nearly as cold as yesterday. On days like this I actually enjoy walking the school run instead of popping up in the car. I don’t know how much I’m saving on fuel costs but given the price of diesel at the moment I imagine it’s at least a few of pounds a day.
If I’m honest though, I’m not really doing quite as well as I should or could for that matter. I have been somewhat scuppered by children’s birthday presents, there’s another party this weekend, but really, I think my main problem is that I’m possibly being slightly too stubborn about the food that I eat.
I know that I’m cutting costs all over the place, but I’m afraid that I just can’t compromise on the happiness of my meat. So yes, I’m still buying happy organic chickens at three times the price of the sad chickens, but I would much rather eat less meat than support the possibly shoddy farm practices that can produce a chicken for £2.50. Likewise, I know that I could save much more money if I would only buy non-organic milk, but there is evidence to suggest that organic milk contains far more nutrients and less saturated fats than the non-organic milk so for the sake of a few pounds I’m stubbornly sticking to the organic range.
I have stopped buying everything organic though. There was a time when everything that was possible to be bought organic was, but I am much less of an organic zealot now. Interestingly, once you leave the world of organic mania it’s really only a hop, skip and a jump to the basic range when talking about vegetables.
The basic range of vegetables claims that is the out-sized and ugly vegetables that aren’t pretty enough to be wrapped in the colourful packaging. When I briefly grew my own vegetables, I don’t think any of them would have won a beauty pageant, but what does it matter when they are going to be peeled and chopped? When I was young we had apple and pear trees in our garden and some of the sweetest tasting fruits were the ones that grew on the outer-most branches and had been exposed to the weather. They didn’t always look the prettiest and their peels were sometimes pock-marked, but inside they were magic. Personally I have nothing against an ugly fruit or vegetable so as far as I am concerned, if it’s not organic, it might as well be basic.
That rule doesn’t apply to tins to tomatoes though. I have tried the very cheap tins of toms but they didn’t contain as many tomatoes and the juice was exceptionally thin so although I’ve come down from the organic range, I can’t go all the way down to basic as I think it’s a false economy.
I have also reduced the amount of fruit juice we buy and I’ve started to buy the supermarket own brand squash instead of the branded versions. It’s true that you don’t get the same amount of nutritional value from squash as from juice, but I generally think we have our five a day covered so it’s probably fine. Having said that though, once this bottle is finished, I’m going to have to return to my beloved Ribena as nobody else seems to be able to make a blackcurrant squash that can hold a candle to it.
So yes, I could do better but accepting the fact that to live as cheaply as possible means that I have to compromise on my ethics and fussy love of blackcurrant squash is proving to be a hard hurdle to cross.
Oh, this is me. No doubt see you in the playground later.