Wednesday 27 April 2011

A Frugal Swap

I was pointed in the direction of MrsYappyDog's blogswap by one of Michela's very rare posts(!!) and so I duly signed up, then forgot about it until my swap partner emailed me, and even then, I couldn't remember signing up! Poor old Elizabeth must have thought I was insane! Anyway - we swapped several emails and our frugal gifts, and here is the lovely lovely parcel that I received - all the way from gorgeous Brittany in France.
This postcard made me want to hop straight on a ferry across the channel. I love Brittany, it is such a pretty and colourful place.

I am sat with a cup of this delicious coffee as I type! I love a good cup of real coffee.

And look at this beautiful patchwork - and what gorgeous fabrics. It is supposed to be a coffee mat, but I dont want to put anything on it. Its beautiful.

Same with this gorgeous heart - now hanging on my wardrobe and fragranced with French lavender. Really beautiful. Many thanks Elizabeth, I love everything you sent. To see what I sent Elizabeth, click over to HERE.

As part of the deal, I have to give you my frugal tips. Here goes.

I think it makes a difference if you enjoy being frugal and "make do and mend" which I certainly do. I hate going to the shops and I love to get value for money. I also love the benefits it brings like peace of mind from having no debt and being that little bit "greener" etc

The Moneysavingexpert website changed my life. I realised that I was not a freak! I love the Forums - particularly the Moneysaving Old Style and the Freebies Forum. I never realised you could get so much for free! We are all going to the cinema this evening to see a movie for free (Water for Elephants) thanks to the freebie forum. Not only do you get to see movies for free, but you get to see them before everyone else does. One year, I got all of my Christmas presents for free! (apart from the kids ones). It was hard work, but very enjoyable and frugal.

I love to make food from scratch - even as far as picking the blackberries from the bushes. I spent a lot of time with my maternal grandparents when I was younger and learned a lot from them. Frugal was a neccesary way of life for them - and they lived a lovely life.

I have had times in my life when I didn't have to watch what I spend as much. I don't know if it is coincidence or not, but these times were the unhappiest in my life.

One of the biggest money savers for us as a family has been to reduce the holiday budget by investing in a tent - and at the same time discovering that this is the best kind of holiday EVER! I love holidays and discovering places and camping lets me do more and more of this. Ive done all the plush and lush hotels in a previous life - I once had a very corporationy job that let me travel 1st class and stay in some of the best hotels ever and I can honestly say that I am far happier under canvas in a field.


Deborah said...

Great swap presents! I'm with you, the simple way of life is always best :)

Bee happy x
Have a delicious day!

Josie Crafter said...

Aah, camping is just the very best, isn't it? I love waking up to nature :-)
Thank you for your lovely comment, Diane - It's great to hear I'm not the only one feeling rather resentful and guilty at the same time! I'm sure it will get easier - as you say, I'll soon adjust and the previous life will be a distant memory! The trick is how to maintain those aspects which are most authentically ourselves, eh?
Frugaldom is fab and I love the idea of the frugal swap - it sounds like you had lots of fun!
Happy days to you,
D x

Deborah said...

Hi Diane, it was Brookhouse. Thanks for the info on the fair.

Bee happy x
Have a delicious day!

Mister D said...

Just checking the tent out as we speak - Robin hoods bay is a calling !

Rosie said...

I wish I could love tents as much as you do but I have had some rather off putting experiences - mainly involved with constant torential rain or overflowing, smelly facilities or once galloping horses! This was many years ago I hasten to add and no doubt camp sites are much improved now. What lovely things to receive in the post absolutely agree about the joys of Brittany and a good cup of coffee:)

sea-blue-sky & abstracts said...

Lovely to read your thoughts on the material side of life Diane and also about the joys of camping.

Definitely would like to meet up when you come to St Ives - Tues, Thurs and Fri being the best days for me. x

petals and vintage said...

Some lovely goodies there.

We have some fabulous camping facilities over here in National Parks and on foreshores at the beach etc and we have just begun venturing out with the new tent.
Oh what a shame winter is coming :)

Have a lovely day - must be getting exciting over there!!
Pam x

John Going Gently said...

love your photos from the sculpture park!!!!

A garden just outside Venice said...

...and rare comments! Apologies but I'm having some problems at the moment :-(
Lovely swap parcels, sent and received.
I love reading your frugal tips, as you always com up with something glamourous!

Elderberry-Rob said...

Hi, am just catching up with all the Frugal/Thrifty swappers ... lovely goodies - so glad you joined in and enjoyed it. Thanks for the tips - I love MSE too and have made some lovely friends in the forums - for nearly a whole year I was able to coupon spend saving about £100 a week until Waitrose stopped taking the coupons unless you bought the specific products! I also won a billboard sign in London for my hubby's 50th through a link on the site. It has been fantastic to see how everyone saves money and to make new friends. Thanks for taking part, Bettyx