Friday, 25 February 2022

So I Fell at Two Hurdles

 

The first hurdle.

I had a feeling that I would fall at this particular hurdle when I read one of Bovey Belle's blog posts  recently and she spoke about buying plants ... gosh she even called it Temptation at the Garden Centre.   I thought to myself straight away, while I was still reading it ... I didn't really think about that one did I?

Alan loves to go for a coffee and a meal out and of course I had worked that part of it into my No Spend Challenge rules by saying every time that happened I had to repay his paying the bill for both of us by providing either a home-cooked meal for him, done or a sweet treat or snack ... also done, out of my food supplies.

What I had forgotten to consider is that two of the places we regularly go to, one of them where the dogs are welcome even inside on these cold blustery days, are two of the best places for glorious plants, garden accessories and colour ... and boy oh boy have I been missing colour in the garden.


I didn't realise how much until I saw this photo  that I took last week.  It looked so brown and dreary.  Yes the little Tete-a-Tete daffodils in the small pot have opened up now and that has helped enormously, and the Snowdrops look so pretty now that they are all out, but I wanted colour ... no I needed colour!!

So on Wednesday one trip to the Daisy Clough tearooms and garden centre just up the road from us and next to where I had The Van, was all it took for my hurdle to come crashing down, my blinkers to come off and some glorious Spring colour, a black wooden planter that was reduced to £7.50 and a plant support in my shade of green to come home with me.  Fail number one.

The next fail I hadn't even considered ... Alan's need for sunshine and a complete get away from it all holiday.  Because of lockdowns, moving house and my bad health we haven't even been able to consider getting away for the last few years and it's actually over ten years since we jetted off for some proper sunshine.  He's really feeling the need to chill for a good ten days with nothing to do but sleep, eat, drink and bask in the sunshine.  So how could I say no when he's been working so hard with our company for so long.  Being company owners we just don't get fixed holidays, we just take a day here and a day there in amongst all the work days.
 
So as of the start of this week we have a holiday booked for ten days in Alcudia, Spain.  
So officially ... fail number two!!

In everything else I am going to continue trying not to fail, my food money is the same, my not wanting to buy anything unnecessary is the same but I have relaxed my rules somewhat in a bid for this Challenge not to fail completely.  After all it's my Challenge and my rules so if something comes up I must try to adapt and continue rather than just throwing in the towel. 

Now if it would just stop these intermittent and very heavy hailstone showers I could go out and plant the last couple of pretty plants in the apple tree barrel and spread a little bit more joy around our garden.  I'll try and take a better photo once it's all done.


Sue xx



28 comments:

  1. You haven't failed, Sue, you've adjusted to provide some much needed pleasure in your (and Alan's) life. We all need something to look forward to, to make us smile and give us a little lift, or else life becomes too much of a struggle. I know! Your planter looks lovely, so cheerful.

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    1. Thank you, yours and all these comments have really given me some perspective on this.

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  2. Your ok, don’t worry about it too much. I have just returned from Hiroshima with the intention of not spending too much as I need to buy a new buggy. I drastically failed in that department, I bought lots of local produce that I cannot get back in Tokyo and I found a bookstore that sold English books Uber cheap so I filled my boots . Hence one unhappy husband, but he did get some for his healthcare training Cheap.
    It’s odd we don’t really have garden centres here and I miss them. We are trying to get a cheap flight before I can no longer fly. But Paul is watching the Ukrainian situation. As a lot of planes fly over there.
    Do you keep a journal of what you spend? I do now. It keeps me Grounded

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    1. You have just given me a fantastic idea, thank you.

      A journal listing what I do spend this year is an excellent idea :-)

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  3. Spring is coming and a holiday in the sun is just what is wanted.You and Alan just go and relaxxxx.Val

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    1. It's only a few months off so we have something to look forward to, and something for me to try and get myself fitter for.

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  4. I agree with Sooze. It's not a fail, it's a couple of necessary adjustments to what is still a roaring success. A holiday in the warm sounds just the ticket and that planter is so very pretty and such great value - how could you ever have said no? Anyway, it's garden, not food! Your challenge is focusing on food really, isn't it?

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    1. Hopefully the garden will be some of my food for Summer so it all helps out :-)

      The new planter is going to be specifically for some French Beans, and yes, I think the Challenge going forward will centre on teh food but keeping tabs of what I spend on other things.

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    2. That sounds very workable and practical. xx

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  5. I don't see it as a fail either. The money you don't spend during the challenge allows you a bit extra for the joyful things. There is no point in being frugal if you don't get to enjoy the treats when the chance comes along.

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  6. Not a fail in the least. I think the garden should come under a separate budget a it isn't EATING is it? I think it totally comes outside of the remit of your challenge. We need beauty around us to feed our souls and bring pleasure. I hope I didn't lead you astray anyway! My garden is very important to me and the one I inherited here inclined along "low maintenance" lines - e.g. lawn and shrubs. NOT ME! So I am making mine into the sort of garden I love with lots of herbaceous plants and roses.

    You are overdue a holiday - again that is something totally out of the remit of eating frugally. Do it while you can. Once health problems kick in, as they have for my husband, sadly, there are lots of things we can't really do any more. Enjoy that sunshine.

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    1. Of course you led me astray, I blame you entirely ... only kidding. It was only when I saw all the lovely Spring plants in the garden centre that I knew I didn't just want some I needed some.

      I have just tracked back to our last Spanish holiday via my old blog posts and photos and it was in 2009, so we are WELL overdue some foreign sunshine.

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  7. I don't consider it a fail either - the planter is a permanent addition, so for me would come under assets and assets need a bit of an outlay in the beginning and the reward will be a lot of pleasure. The way you can now limit further future costs would be to make your own compost to fill it and grow your own plants to put in it for the summer.
    Enjoy that holiday - life is for living after all and you only get one chance at it.

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    1. I've been racking my brains about trying to fit in a small compost bin but can't figure it out up to now. My area of the garden for growing in is tiny ... I'll hopefully figure something out though.

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    2. You Tube has some answers on composting in small spaces - you could adapt some of the ideas - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DirmyYoGri4

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  8. Definitely not a fail, fail is such a negative word, I would say more welcome opportunities, treats, this world is so c**p at the moment so grab every welcome opportunity that comes your way. Every so often I set myself a little goal or challenge but I have upset myself by not achieving them that I have stopped doing it or reduced them to more short term which I find easier but you so enjoy your challenges so that wouldn't be for you ,the little " additions " are fun for us to read too !

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    1. It is isn't it, I shouldn't use that word on myself I wouldn't tell anyone else that they've failed!!

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  9. I don't consider it a fail either. The garden gives you pleasure all year round and both you and Alan deserve and NEED a holiday after the 2 horrendous years you have suffered along with the rest of us. Look forward to the holiday! I'm looking forward to seeing the photos of your garden!

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    1. There will no doubt be lots of photos of the little garden as it progresses this Spring and Summer. Alan has already planned to mend the wind damaged fence on Saturday and I'll be getting him to help me with a few other things while he's out there ;-)

      The first thing I want to do is to carefully move those large daffodils into their bigger pot, it is impossible to do it on my own and not disturb the bulbs.

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  10. SAying what everyone else has said....no failure! Maybe you ar being a little too hard on yourself. Gardens are such a source of help for our mental health.

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    1. You are so right.

      I have taken on board what everyone has said and it has really helped me to think about this and get things straight in my head.

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  11. I agree with everyone, not a fail. Besides flowers and color in the garden is so important. A small trip sounds lovely and it will good to take a break and enjoy the sun and warm weather.

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  12. Like everyone else, I don't think these are fails either. Thoughtful spending is exactly how we should all use our hard-earned funds.

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  13. No fail, don't be so hard on yourself. You both have more than earned a nice vacation away and plants are just a necessary part of life! ; ) Look at all the many other ways you are saving and be proud of those.

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  14. Definitely not a fail! I was doing Frugal February and then the chance of a week in the Lake District came up so we took it ( first break in 3 years ) and we've spent the last week in Ambleside. The only success was that I went into Hayes Garden Centre in Ambleside and came out without buying anything!! What's wrong with me? :-) :-) Fiona x

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  15. I agree with everyone that you need to take care of your mental health, too, not just your economic health. What good is saving if you cannot enjoy life and feel healthy inside and out.

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  16. I am so pleased that you are having a holiday - it is much needed after the last few years. Plants are also my downfall - what a lovely one to have!

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