There are lots of things that I enjoy doing that don’t always fall into a thrifty lifestyle.  Shopping being one of them, nights out being another, and pampering myself being a third.

However I am always on the hunt for ways to do what I love at a fraction of the cost.

For example, this weekend, I went to see the fantastic play Speed The Plow, starring Lindsay Lohan in London’s West End.  Tickets usually retail from around £59.50 in the stalls, but after booking last minute, we managed to snag second row seats at a bargain £12.50 each.

The play is amazing by the way; I recommend anyone goes to see it.  The chaps are amazing in it and the story is both thought provoking and incredibly funny.

Nights out can be tricky to do on the cheap, so again, I use the internet to search for meal offers, happy hours and cater the night around those, meaning I still come home with money in the bank.

There are lots of price comparison type sites out there that make looking for ways to save money easy.

Except when it comes to pampering…

Looking to find discounts on hair and beauty requires a fair amount of time on Google, with no one offering a simple site that allows you to search and book online comparing salons in the local area.

hair dressers

Unless you are lucky enough to live in Manchester or Leeds.

If you are a northerner, and like me, keen to find ways of keeping costs down but still enjoying a quality service (let’s face it – no one wants bad hair).  Then it is worth checking out Rock Pamper Scissors.  A new website that launched in 2013 with Leeds as its first city and Manchester as its second.

The premise behind the site is simple, to allow customers to experience an attractive site which allows them to search and find local salons, compare costs and book their latest beauty treatment or hair appointment.  The salons deals are included in the site, so you can see the best price to get a new do in that local area.

Genius!

To my southern thrift seeking readers, don’t panic, Rock Pamper Scissors plan on expanding throughout the rest of the UK slowly and steadily.  So this rather revolutionary fashionable idea will be available to us eventually.

Until then, I reckon I could find a way to get to Manchester for a cheap night out, and to get my hair done!

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This one is for all the dedicated shoppers out there who like to save but still buy new clothes. I know it sounds like an impossible dream….

But it isn’t…

This week I found out about Lovesales, an absolutly belting website, that allows me to both spend and save….

In short, what the site does is remember your favourite items that you are desperate to purchase and lets you know when you can get them on sale!

Blooming genius eh!

How does it work

Step one:

Sign up for an account – you can sign in with Facebook.

Then get the Love Sales button by simply picking it up and dragging it to your bookmarks bar.

Then when you are shopping online, everytime you see a product you like, click the Love Sales button and add it to your list.

As soon as it goes on sale, you will get to hear about it!

For more details on how it works, click this link.

What else

If that wasn’t enough, you can also browse the latest hot sales and see what is going for a bargain at the moment.

Right now there is a 40% sales on at Boden for one week, 50% at Warehouse and 70% at Miss Selfridge.

It is almost criminal to not go shopping.

Which is why…

The postman will be bringing this lovely dress to my house very soon.

Hobbs Dress: Almost 40% off

hobbs dress Beautiful isn’t it.

So what are you waiting for?

The site is simple to use, effective to browse through and cost saving for anyone who likes to wear beatiful things spending a fortune!

As I said…. Genius.

In association with Lovesales

Creating the perfect bedroom for my youngest daughter has taken a fair bit of time.

She wanted something magical, something that reflected her desire to be a princess…

And this is what we gave her…

bedroom duluxNext came a fairy tale bed, with disney sheets to continue the theme.  Her reaction was amazing, she has never fought to go to sleep since her dream bed arrived.

dreambedSo all I needed was the finishing touches, which were sent this week.

A doorbell, carefully placed in a castle surround.  So now we all have to ring for entry into my babies little palace.  She loves it, it makes her feel grown up (and her siblings don’t have one).  We may need to invest in shares in duracell because no one can resist pressing it as they walk by, myself included.

photoThen finally a light to soothe her to sleep.

photo (2)Obviously it is in theme with the Princess room, but it is activated by sound and stays on for two minutes.  So as I leave the room, leaving a kiss on my little ones cheek, I hear a clap (to activate) and a giggle as the light comes on and she gets a bit of playtime with the teddies at the end of her bed.

We were sent our finishing touches to review from the fabulous site, Worlds Apart.  Prices in the wall sticker range start from £3.99 and finish at £19.99 so don’t break the bank, but look incredible.

My journey from spending to saving has been bumpy, as readers of this blog will know.

But over the last couple of years I have learnt some lessons, certainly as we have traveled through a recession and back again. I have a savings account, the kids have saving accounts.

None of them have a fortune in them but they all have small amounts added to them each month which are growing steadily. Those accounts are Fscs protected, which makes perfect sense to me, because if something happens to my bank, I want to know my savings will be safe.

The Fscs automatically returns savings of up to £85,000 within 7 days if something happens to your bank or building society. Now, the trick is to figure out how to get up to £85,000 in savings!

Knowing about protecting your savings is important, and today I have the lovely Fearne Cotton on the blog explaining more about Fscs and how they can help.

True, you may never need them, but it is nice to know they are there! Featured Post

Trying to live a leaner life never sounder appealing. In fact when I gave up full time employment to look after the kids and their magical mystery box of illnesses I dreaded the thought of coupon cutting and eBay shopping.

But looking back over the last year, it really has not been so bad,

True, we are not flush or swimming in diamonds.  But I am debt free, confident in my ability to make money, and I am there for my kids when they need me.

And life is different but still the same.

We still have copious amounts of days out, being a blogger has perks.  But we always take a packed lunch, bring our own water and don’t stop for tea on the way home.

We still holiday.  Every year I collect clubcard points which transfer into avios points which turn into a break away.  Last year we had an unforgettable break in EuroDisney, this year they are just waiting to be spent on another exciting adventure.

disney
We eat well, but meals are planned in advance.  Clipped to the fridge on a Sunday night and followed religiously.

OmeletteSky TV has gone, replaced by a cheaper Netflix.  The kids need their iCarly and me, I currently can’t exist without my weekly fix of “Orange is the New Black.”

We laugh a bit more now finances are not the sole focus of our life.  I still work a little bit in my old day job, as a freelance recruiter I still help people find new banking jobs, sales roles, and admin roles.  But it is not as demanding as it used to be, less hours means 

We still worry about the future but live very much for the moment.

A tough year behind us,  and seeing troubles around us has taught me that for now, the present is a priority.

I am trying to embrace mindfulness along with thriftness. I embrace pleasure where I find it. A dog walk in a beautiful wood, a hug from one of my children, a rare moment of silence in my manic household.

I think I am starting to find balance in my world.

It feels good.

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