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Butter

July 16th, 2019 at 07:21 pm

Kitchen - We got half a bottle of cream in the fridge that will most likely go off in a couple of days, I've got no use for cream at the moment so I made butter. I just used a glass bottle with lid and got a good arm workout. It took me about 15 minutes. I think I will make some pancakes out of the buttermilk for breakfast tomorrow.

Garden - Just planted some seed of dill, coriander, Asian greens and wild rockets. I'm not sure how they will go but they are in my mini greenhouse. Everything are growing very slow at the moment which is to be expected in winter, not as much sun but we are getting a lot of rain which is great. They are mainly surviving though, no problem with frost. The only thing that died because of frost were my sweet potatoes, just the wrong time of the year for them. I'm trying to grow some slips again but no luck yet.

WEEK 22

June 11th, 2019 at 09:53 pm



Grocery =$128.83, we stocked up on coffee and meat, there were some good sales. I have a feeling that inflation is going up further so I'm buy thing on sale while prices are good.

Water Bill – for the quarter it is $205.67

Electric Bill – we have now accumulated $80.69 credit, I believe they will be sending us a cheque before the end of the month (which is end of our financial year) they seemed to do this at end of financial year.

Gardening – We had a 3- day weekend here (for Queen’s birthday holiday), the weather was fairly nice so DH and I spent a bit of time gardening. We built two more raised bed. We have been experimenting on making compost at home. We did one that we started few months ago, it is now ready and have used it for the new raised beds. There were so many worms in it, they were loving it in there.
Also, last week DH bought a new compost bin, it is supposed to be really good that it is actually recommended by our council and they are actually giving us (I think) $50-$60 if we register it and buy it online through this specific company. I have to ask DH for actual numbers but I think he mentioned that they sell them at our local hardware store for $220 but I think we only paid $165 for it. While he ordered this new compost bin he also asked our council to swap our general bin to a smaller size, which cost cheaper (again I don’t remember the amount – I’ll update, when I get actual amounts). Since we have been composting everything that is compostable we hardly have anything to throw out in the general rubbish bin. The new bin is so small it looks like a kid’s toy.

WEEK 32

August 15th, 2018 at 12:12 am



Grocery - $32.45, we only needed some stuff.


Second-hand Store – We checked out this store near this Aldi we went to on the week (not our normal Aldi), they were selling CD’s for $1 and I found a little Spanish/English dictionary for $2 and another book. We end up spending $14 there.

It was a quiet weekend.

Plumbing Issues

July 19th, 2018 at 09:43 pm

On the weekend we were starting to have the same problem with our sewage pipes as couple of months ago. The plumber did warn me when he unblocked the pipes that the problem might be bigger than blockage. He wouldn’t know though unless he put a camera in there (he didn’t have one with him and it would cost more) but when he was unblocking it he said it didn’t feel right. He thinks it might be a problem at the intersection where our pipes meet the main pipes. DH was going to try to call either the council and/or the water company to find out where that intersection might be located in our property. The plumber tried to look for it but he couldn’t find one, and when he asked me about it I had no I idea there is such a thing. Apparently, there should have been a pipe or a vent that sticks out from the ground, and that sometimes they can collapse and cause blockage. We have lived here for almost 20 years I’ve never seen one, neither has DH. So both DH and I were anticipating that if this is cracked/collapsed pipes then it will cost thousands. Few days later it was getting worst.

Yesterday DH called the water company instead of the plumber, he was fully expecting for them to say ‘to call the plumber’ but they were actually very helpful and came over an hour after the call, he actually got here before DH (DH left work early so he could be home for it). I explained to him what happened and what the plumber has said to me. He mentioned that some houses especially houses built at certain time, which ours falls under, might not have the vent pipe. And he also said that plumbers are only allowed to go a certain distance, so maybe he couldn’t go too far with his machine. This guy got so much better machines, it only took him less than 10 minutes and he had a camera, we got to see what was inside our pipes, it looked really squeaky clean and he also pointed out the intersection, according to him it looks good. Hopefully that is the end of it and we won’t have to deal with it for another 10 years.

He was really helpful and just before he left he suggested that next time it happens to call them first instead of the plumber; it won’t cost us for them to come to assess the problem instead of the other way around. Next time we will for sure. I’m just thankful it only cost us $250 for the plumber and we didn’t need to do any digging up and replacing pipes. We were so relieved.

WEEK 21

May 29th, 2018 at 01:31 am


Grocery – $97.40, we did a big shop but we are still under for the month.

Dog Food – Bought a 10 kilo bag of dog food and that was $64.

New Clothesline – DH calls it wind and solar powered clothes dryer, what a nerd! So we bought one and spent few hours installing it, that was $56.90

Allowance Money – We went to the Salvation Army and bought some books and CDs. All up we spent a whopping $38.70. I found 2 John Grisham newer books (2016 and 2017 copyrights) I have not read these yet. I think DH end up getting about a dozen CDs. And on top of those Grisham books I also bought another 3. I used up cash I got from last year’s birthday present and then the rest we took off from our allowance money. We hardly been spending our allocated ‘allowance money’ in the last couple of years. This year I allocated $800 for both of us for it and so far we’ve only spent under $150. DH has been really good at saying no to most of the eating out and drinking out invites with co-workers. The thing is that his company actually provide them with snacks and beer every Friday night so he does not feel left out. There are also the occasional lunches and dinners that the company organises and sometimes he gets taken out by suppliers for ‘meeting’.
So he is very selective to when he say yes to these invites and there are plenty at least one to two times a week. Last week for example he said yes to beer after work on Thursday because it was with his old boss that he doesn’t get to converse much anymore, due to restructuring in the company. That 1 beer by the way cost him $10, so yeah it get pretty pricey very quickly if he goes to every single one of them and most of the time they involve getting food. Sometimes he feels bad that he says no but then he also doesn’t want to drink too much during workdays, he wants to come home on time and get an early night sleep for the next day. So it is not just about the money.

Christmas 2017

December 29th, 2017 at 08:16 pm


Christmas Spending – We had a very low key Christmas, I used the $30 gift card and $100 EFTPOS card to buy groceries for Christmas celebration. It was more than enough I think in the end there was still few dollars left. So it was perfect. For few days after Christmas day we’ve been eating the leftovers, and we finally finish the last bit of the glazed ham for lunch today. As for gifts we mainly sent gift cards (online) and cash to our relatives. All up $820.05 spent on Christmas this year.

Credit Card Rewards – Last month DH signed up for a credit card to get a cashback reward of $300 (spending $1000). DH used it to pay our annual car registration ($800.80) and the recent water bill ($247.62). The other day they already credited the $300 into the account. They have also taken out $59 for the annual card fee. And I think paying off those bills with the credit card accrued less than 2% fee. So really we are getting around $220 cash reward.

Tassie Holiday – We already spent some of that cash reward. The other night we bought 2 returned airfares to Tasmania. The airline was having a nice Boxing Day sale. All up it only cost us $156, the last time it cost us $436, so it was a very nice saving. We won’t be going until early May; they weren’t any sales fare before that. I was thinking of making this as my birthday celebration since it will only be two weeks after my actual birthday. We are finally going to Cradle Mountain this time and then I can use that gift card I got from my brother from my last birthday.

New Mobile Phone – I got a new mobile phone, it won’t actually get here for another month but DH ordered one for me the other night. Before buying that phone we hardly spent money on our phones this year. We budgeted $360 for the year but we’ve only spent $120 so we decide to get me a new phone because my current phone is old and I can’t upgrade anything or put on any apps any it, there is just no room. The new phone cost $210 it is probably the only excessive spending this year really, well maybe apart from my 40th birthday celebration. No regrets though.


Pay Raise kind of

August 24th, 2017 at 02:35 am

DH got notice that he will be getting a pay raise, it is only for 2.5% so just in line with CPI. He has given up getting a pay raise this year so I guess this was unexpected. Not much really but every bit helps.


Grocery - This week we spent $74.02. One more week left for the month and we’ve only spent $185, which left us $115. I have plan to stock up some things this coming weekend.


Fitness Tracker – Someone at DH work gave him 2 brand new fitness trackers. The guy bought that it for himself and his wife but it never showed up so he decided to cancel it and bought it somewhere else and now long after he got his money refunded they showed up in the mail. It seems like everyone at his team already have them except for DH so he offered it to him for a beer or something small of value just to cover the credit card fee that he incured for international purchased. DH was happy to do it. He bought him some chocolates since he loves them, not even $5 worth. And next time they go out for drinks DH will shout him a beer or two.

1st Week of August

August 8th, 2017 at 10:05 pm


Grocery – We bought mainly staples, fruits and vegetables this weekend. All up it totaled $61.45. We actually end up buying a couple of whole chickens because they were really cheap at Aldi, it was only $3 a kilo, for two chickens we paid $9.76. We also got a big block of cheese (1kg) for $6.


Weekend – We occupied the rest of the weekend mostly reading, listening to music (mainly myself) and podcasts. DH is currently obsessed with podcasts, personal finance in particular. Since we paid off the house and most of our money is now put into investments/savings he has really taken interests. It is more fun than paying off debt. It has now become a new hobby for him, he is reading a lot of personal finance books too. He even went to the library on Sunday afternoon to borrow PF books, it really is amazing.


New Headphone – DH bought a new headphone on ebay for $25.30. His current one is broken from listening to too much podcasts, he is currently using an old crappy one in the main time.

Got rid of some stuff

July 20th, 2017 at 04:14 am

Groceries – We will definitely be over our monthly budget this month it will be mainly because this month has 5 Saturdays. I’m trying to see if we can get away with just buying the most minimum items that we need. The basic staples like milk and eggs. We got a couple of dishes in the freezer; bolonese sauce and pulled pork.


Annual rubbish collection – Currently we have our local council annual rubbish collection, this when we can throw out big items like and old fridge or old TVs. We throw out a really old computer monitor, an old trolley and some old broken items that we could fit in the usual weekly rubbish bin that we got.



Batch cooking – We are trying to do more batch cooking in the last couple of months, so far so good. That’s way we got the beef bolonese sauce and the pulled pork.


Netflix – We decided to turn it off for the month of August. I haven’t really been watching as much been busy with reading and listening podcast these days. I’m sure we will put it on again for Sept and Oct and then probably have a break again in Nov when we will most likely be away.

Not much else is really going on here.

Just answering some questions

July 13th, 2017 at 01:39 am

Holiday Destination – I was asked about our holiday in my previous blog entry. Our holiday plans have changed a lot since we planned about it last year. We initially thought about going to Mauritius and South Africa and we thought this year might be a good time to do it. Mauritius was our (really mainly mine) honeymoon destination but we couldn’t afford it 10 years or so ago so we kind of made this promise to do it when the house is paid off. Well I guess things you plan to do 10 years ago can change, it kind of doesn’t have that much appeal to me anymore, I mean I would still love to go one day but just not as eager. The problem is twofold; if we go we want to do for at least 3 weeks or more to make it worthwhile but right now DH can only really take off work for a week or so and the other reason is we don’t want to leave our for that long. The last time we went overseas we went for about a month and we really missed her and she really missed us (according to my mom). So anyway we are forgoing Mauritius and South Africa for the moment, maybe in another 10 years.

But we still really wanted to get away this winter, somewhere warm. So we thought about going to maybe New Caledonia or Vanuatu, a lot closer from home so we will not need to spend 18+ hours just travelling to get there. We came up with this idea just before Easter, this destination would have been a lot cheaper than Mauritius and SA and gave us time and money to do the NSW/Sydney holiday during Easter break. But for some reason it has taken us a lot longer to get new passports that we decided to just forgo the idea of going overseas at all this year.

Side note: I don’t know why I’m learning basic Spanish? I just realised I should probably learn basic French since both Mauritius and New Caledonia are French speaking countries. Maybe one day. It will be an incentive to learn French and then visits these countries.

The idea of going somewhere warm was still really appealing to us since we are in the middle of our winter so last month DH actually mentioned that maybe we should just head up north to Cairns for a week in late July to early Aug. We started looking into it until my brother came for a visit two weeks ago.

Back story about my brother since I have not mentioned it here before, he moved to Tasmania last year to be with his girlfriend. They were doing long distant thing for over a year and since it is easier for him to move and she owns a house there and she can’t move because of her work he made the move last years. Not long after, just few months after he moved there they got pregnant and the baby is due mid-September. We planned to visit them and see the new baby early Nov when we have a public holiday in the first Tues of Nov (Melbourne cup day), just for 3 to 4 days. But when my brother came he give me a gift voucher as my belated birthday present, it is for this place called Cradle Mountain about 4 hours away from Hobart where they live. I’ve never been to Tasmania and this place is a must see destination in Tassie. So, now our plans have changed yet again. So now DH is going to take the rest of that week off and it should give us 8-9 days to visit Tassie. I think instead of flying we are going to take our car and take the Spirit of Tasmania boat instead. We are just starting to look into planning it. I’m really looking forward to it but it just means we can’t really get away this winter, oh well another 7 weeks and it will be the start of our spring season.

Security Deposit Box – This was another question I got in my previous blog. We got this box about 2 years ago now. We decided to get one when DH got that job overseas so we didn’t have to take some important stuff with us. Anyway, even though DH had to eventually quit that job we decided to keep the box for now. It’s a small box don’t really remember the exact size of it. The box is kept in a private company instead of in the bank, we could get one from the bank they have a really long waiting list apparently. The ones at the bank would have been cheaper probably 40% less but anyway we got one for now and I don’t know we will always keep it but it’s not really too bad price wise (got to remember this is in Australian dollar, we tend to always pay for more here). Maybe we will try to sign up with the bank again, something we will look into next year.

Gas Bill – got the recent gas bill for $89.03 this is for two months’ worth.

Netflix – Just got noticed from them that the prices will be going up starting early August. The one we get will increase from $11.99 to $13.99 per month.

Away

April 15th, 2017 at 04:53 am

We are away at the moment and I got limited internet connection. I will finalise holiday spending when we get home.

Last weekend we didn't really do much, grocery shopping was under $50 (can't remember exact amount).

Found really cheap work shoes for DH so we could pass up on that, one is for suit and the other boat shoes that he can wear with jeans for Friday casual days. Total $30.

After shopping we splurged and got some Vietnamese, $26.50. I used my allowance money, I hardly use my allowance money these days the only thing I use it for is on books and I haven't spend much.

Extra grocery for VD

February 14th, 2017 at 10:39 pm

Not much is happening here.

Grocery – Spent just under $100 ($98.26) bought some special stuff for Valentine ’s Day dinner; steaks, fancy cheeses, oysters, and some other yummy stuff that we don’t normally get. We prefer to have nice dinner at home instead of going out to restaurant for Valentine’s Day.

Takeaway – At the market where we did our grocery shopping this weekend we got a couple of dim sims and croissants to take to the nearby park where we walked the dog. There’s a café at the park where we bought a cup of coffee to share to go with the croissants.

Fuel – got some fuel, it was for $55.80.

Other - we got some fabrics to use to cover the couch, $44.00. Also spent some money for the garden just under $40.