My blog - January 2007

To market, to market

January 27th 2007, 3:59pm

Steenie wants me to blog about the mundane. So I shall try!

Since we're trying to save money, we've been looking on various websites, getting hints on how to save money. A lot of them are things we already do. One of the things we thought we'd try to do a little more of is shop at different places. So Thursday night we found a website that compares different supermarket prices, and it turns out that overall, the supermarket we use IS cheaper. Which is good, because we thought it was! But we decided we'd see what the local market has to offer. Good thing we did! We got a backpack of groceries for about 7.50. And it was fun! We found out which produce stall is generally the cheapest, which fishmonger is the most affordable and has the freshest fish, and which meat to buy from the butchers.

Oh, in case you're wondering, Sainsbury's is the cheapest overall (if you're comparing own brand, not name brand), with a few items at Tesco's and Asda's coming in cheaper. Check out www.mysupermarket.co.uk Sorry, Brits only! But I'd imagine there's a Canadian site somewhere that does the same thing.

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Comment posted by Rebekah at 3:59pm on January 27th 2007

Did you ever imagine your life would take you to where you are now? you are full of adventure so i am glad your marriage will bring you some adventure of your own. Saving Money...we just started giving each other $25 as allowence to have each month. Then we save for bigger things. Saving is fun.

Comment posted by Kristina at 3:59pm on January 27th 2007

See? That was easy! And it gives us glimpse at life in the land of the Brits! I'm thinking as I read this...man I spend way more on groceries that you do! Coop had a fabulous warehouse sale and oh boy! Not good! (But on the up side I won't have to do serious grocery shopping for a few months!)

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2008

January 25th 2007, 4:43pm

The New Year is in, and this is my first entry for the year. Sad that it took me this long, I know!

I am still jobless. I had an appointment for my NI number Friday the 12th, where they spent about 45 minutes asking me questions about when I'd been to and left the UK before, where I'd lived, where I'd worked. Then at the end I was told I would hear from them in 16 days as to whether or not they would give me an NI number! Maybe it's just me (and James), but it seems to make more sense that if you were being given a visa that allowed you to work that they would assign you an NI number at the same time. Instead of going through all the insanity of having to wait until you have an address you can prove you live at (rental agreement), that you have a job or are searching for one (letter of employment and letter confirming pay) and then waiting a month for your appointment. But at least I've had the appointment. Now we're just praying they give me a number so that I can become one of the working populace. It's funny, because the NI number people say you can work without a number, but no decent job wants to look at you without one. Even the job I worked for before Christmas is now saying they probably shouldn't have hired me without one, because it makes taxes harder for them! Luckily I just found out this morning that I have an NI number! So now I can get a REAL job!

On the flip side of things, James just got a new job! Which means he'll be working full-time for a company he's been wanting to work for for awhile, as opposed to the three days a week his current employer was giving him. So we're both really happy about that.

We've decided to be a bit crazy and aim high for next year. We're going to try and clear our debts this year, and save up some money, and do a self-build next year (which doesn't mean we build the house on our own). We were going to look into buying the house we live in, but at the price it would cost us to buy it, and then do all the things to it we'd want to, we could build a house for cheaper. So we figure "Why not?", we'll go for it! We think we'll do things like lay flooring and do painting on our own, and lay the underfloor heating. Some things have to be done by qualified people, like hooking up the underfloor heating after it's been laid, but we can save labour costs by doing some things ourselves. So... if you have been thinking of visiting us around the fall of 2008 or after, we'll hopefully have a nice little detached house for you to stay at!

I've been wanting to get into wedding photography (actually, I'd love to have National Geographic hire me, but that's a pretty long shot!) for awhile, and we have our first paid gig on March 17th! I'm really excited about it. I need to get out more and just mess around with the camera, though. Often on the weekends, James and I go for a drive in the country, stop to take pictures, look for places we might like to build, all that jazz. James' brother Matt bought us and their other brother, Michael (who was in our wedding party) a book each on wedding photography which has some helpful hints.

I've been told I need to blog more often. True. I just don't know what to blog about! So if you have suggestions of what I should do to blog about, be they mundane or exciting, please let me know!

On one exciting note (for us, at least), James and I will have been married SIX MONTHS on Monday. That totally snuck up on me! What with all the moving and applications for this and that and the other thing, it has flown by. And it has been a wonderful 6 months. I am married to a great guy who's been really understanding and patient through all the changes I've had to adjust to moving here. I gotta say, he's the third bowl of porridge!

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Comment posted by Sherry at 4:43pm on January 25th 2007

Yay for you. Speaking of debts how is that student loan working out for you? I just might have to put off the trip till 2009 so I can afford it, but we'll see what I can save:)

Super excited for you and happy half year anniversary!!

Comment posted by Kristina at 4:43pm on January 25th 2007

Great to hear from you! I keep checking your blog for anything at all and wind up disappointed! Yes, blog about the mundane, simple thoughts in life. Those work for me! I'm glad to hear you are able to work now and James has the job he wanted. And wedding photography! Exciting! You'll have to post your sample photography for us to look at.

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