Back in 2011, I was made redundant whilst on maternity leave with my first baby, and pregnant with my second. I panicked at the thought of living on just one income. To keep our home, my husband and I crunched the numbers and we found we had a mere $50 a week to spend on groceries. It was the meanest most horrible feeling in the world! At first I was so resentful of the fact. $50 does not get you very far – certainly not shopping like I used to – so I had to rethink how we ate, how we shopped and what we cooked day to day. I turned $50 a week into a direct challenge. I shopped like my grandmother used to. Lots of basics like seasonal fruit and veggies, flour, sugar, butter, eggs and cooked from old CWA cookbooks. Before then I had always cooked a lot of pre-packaged and convenience foods.
My husband started commenting on how good the meals were, in fact he said we had never eaten better! He actually loved my cooking for the first time! Life had never been more simple and enjoyable when I had next to nothing. I planted a garden and swapped the lemons on my trees for eggs from my Mum. I made and used all my own cleaning products from things like bicarb and vinegar. It felt good to know exactly what was in my food, and what I was putting on the table. I felt pride that my family were eating well, my house was clean and it wasn’t costing us a fortune to do it.
I started Stay at Home Mum so I could share all the tips and hints on living simply. I really wanted to make ‘being frugal’ – cool.
I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.