Five frugal things I did this week (15 Dec)

Picture of the hornbeam hedges in our garden covered in snow last Sunday to illustrate my 5 frugal things post

Snow scene last Sunday


How on earth did we end up so close to Christmas? I’m not ready for Christmas yet!

However, I still managed to nab a few bargains in preparation, so here’s my round up of our five frugal things this week.


Picture of 12 bottles of wine from Virgin Wines for my 5 frugal things post

Must be wine o’clock

Bagged some bargain booze

I was keen to stock up wine, as although we’re having a quiet family Christmas, we’re looking forward to friends coming over for New Year’s Eve.

Combining cashback, introductory offers and free delivery is often a winner for saving cash. This week I ordered a crate of wine from Virgin Wines. It was listed as normally costing £123.38, which works out as £10.28 a bottle for 12 bottles.

However, the price was already marked down to £99.88, plus TopCashback had an offer for £50 off a first order AND £10 cashback AND free delivery, which normally costs £7.99.

So I only actually paid £49.88, and after £10 cashback, that’s only £3.32 a bottle! 67% off! Cheers.

Plus as it arrived so quickly – ordered Wednesday morning, showed up Friday morning – I can even hand some out as teacher presents.


Picture of a Christmas T shirt with a price sticker showing it reduced from £7 to £4.

Sale bargain on a Christmas T shirt

Caved in on Christmas jumpers

I’m pretty bah humbug about Christmas jumpers, or in fact any items that only get worn or used a couple of times of year. However, with both children facing Christmas jumper events at school, Beavers and Cubs I was forced to cave in.

I actually picked up a festive T shirt for my son during the Sainsbury’s Nectar Double Up event – so I not only bought it using Nectar Points, but chose a style that can be worn more often, and gave it to him as a birthday present.

However, I couldn’t see anything my daughter would like at a time – then had to find something in a panic this week.

One of the few shops in Hadleigh selling children’s clothes is the M&Co that’s just opened at the back of the Co-op. In the end, leaving it so late paid off, as I got a long-sleeved Christmas T shirt reduced to £4 in a sale. Even more amazingly, my daughter judged the “Santa Game On” design acceptable. Phew.

Leaving it so late was a risky strategy as there were limited sizes left, but hopefully now we’re sorted for next Christmas too…


Picture of box of 6 Co-op mince pies, which cost 70p after 30p cashback on the £1 cost.

70p for 6? Job done.

Bought our first mince pies for less

Last week we were invited to Christmas drinks at Priory Hall with all our neighbours, and my son developed a distinct taste for mince pies.

I promised to buy a jar of mincemeat so we could make some. Standing by the display in the Co-op, I thought I’d just check the supermarket cashback apps for any money off mincemeat. Turned out TopCashback Snap & Save was offering 30p cashback on any brand of 6 mince pies – so I spent a pound on a box instead.

All I had to do when I got home was take a photo of the receipt on my phone, submit it to TopCashback, and the 30p is already available for me to withdraw. Click here* if you’d like to claim your own cashback on mince pies.

Don’t worry, I’ll be heading back for mincemeat nearer Christmas as well!

If you’re interested in cutting the cost of Christmas food, including 29p veg and dinner for a tenner, here’s my post.


Picture of a pack of 30 mini Christmas cards from Morrisons, to illustrate my 5 frugal things post

Resurrecting the cards bought right after last Christmas

Remembered the mini Christmas cards

This week, I have been incredibly smug. At school, the children all give each other sackfulls of Christmas cards. I not only remembered that I bought mini cards when they were on sale right after last Christmas – I even managed to find them! My daughter actually sat down, wrote all of hers and carried them off to school, but my son is rather more reluctant.

Still, at £2 for 60 cards, I’m not so worried.


Picture of WeightWatchers flex leaflets

Sadly, just having the books doesn’t mean instant weight loss

Cancelled my WeightWatchers subscription (for now)

Yes, I’m still paying £21.45 a month for WeightWatchers monthly pass since January. No, I am not now thinner than a twig.

My WeightWatchers meeting actually closes for a couple of weeks over Christmas – so a couple of weeks ago I stopped my subscription, which means I won’t have to pay in December. WeightWatchers membership is quite tricksy, so it runs for loads of weeks after any individual payment. As you can perhaps tell from the references to wine, mince pies and chocolate, I’m not on the strictest eating plan right now. Cancelling in December also means I’ll be able to take advantage of any cheap joining offers in the New Year. Hurrah! Hope springs eternal, and all that.

Actually I’m rather liking the new Flex programme, as I reckon it’s easier to manage on a budget. Give me a shout if you’re interested, and I’ll bung up a post.


Now over to you – any festive frugal successes this week? Do say in the comments, I’d love to hear!


I’m linking up with CassEmma and Becky in this week’s ‘Five Fabulously Frugal things I’ve done this week’ linky.

*indicates an affiliate link, so anything you buy through it will help support the blog, as I will get a small commission at no cost to you. Many thanks!

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Pinterest size image of snow scene to illustrate my 5 frugal things this week post

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  1. Alice strang
    15th December 2017 / 7:24 pm

    What a wine triumph!

  2. 15th December 2017 / 9:06 pm

    That wine deal is amazing. I might invest in that too. Great frugal living as ever

  3. jackie Smith
    17th December 2017 / 8:43 am

    I would be very interested in any weight watchers recipes with flex.

    • Faith
      21st December 2017 / 8:34 am

      Thanks for letting me know! Will put a post together, once I can escape from the maelstrom of Christmas shopping, wrapping, posting, cooking etc. Rather looking forward to that…

  4. Eloise (
    17th December 2017 / 4:11 pm

    Years ago I used to go to WW but found it disappointing that they closed for two weeks over Christmas – the very time when members need the support most. I now go to Slimming World which always opens apart from Christmas day. This year (as my class is on a Monday) it is being run on Christmas Eve in the morning. I liker that kind of commitment from the group leader. Also, I felt that the pre-paid membership is a bit of a swizz given that there is likely to be a week or two during its run when you can’t go.
    We use Virgin Wines and find them very good to deal with but WOW – what a bargain you had! Even better to deal with at that price!

    • Faith
      21st December 2017 / 8:35 am

      Oooh glad you’ve found Virgin Wines good to deal with, I was certainly impressed by the speed of the delivery. Good luck with Slimming World. Our local WW leader is very inspiring and supportive.

  5. 18th December 2017 / 6:59 pm

    I don’t want to sound like Mrs Scrooge, but we don’t buy alcohol apart from perhaps a bottle of Cointreau or Gin (Plymouth Gin) because we’re not keen on it and if people come to see us they have a cup of tea or coffee and a slice of cake. It’s a pity that Christmas is now synonymous with booze, it needn’t be, and that would cut the cost down considerably – perhaps you read in the paper the person who has spend their winter fuel allowance on booze? I leave you to consider what I think of that.
    I’ve never bought a Christmas jumper and nothing on earth, not even one for under a fiver, would persuade me into one – I look a right t*t as it is, ha ha!
    However, the mini cards for your daughter were a real find. I remember when I was at my grammar school and my parents had a newsagents’ shop they kindly allowed me to have my own personally printed cards, Sharps Classics I think they were called, and I chose to have my full name printed and my address, very posh. Imagine giving that to the headmistress and staff and friends, I cringe when I think about it now! But it was a very smart card!
    One way of not spending money is not to be sucked into buying lots of things we don’t really need – snacks, extra decorations, loads more candles (we have electricity,don’t we?) We must all bear in mind Christmas isn’t for three months as the retailers would have us believe, it’s just for a day!
    Margaret P

    • Faith
      21st December 2017 / 8:32 am

      So agree that Christmas is just for a day, rather than months at a time! I’m just trying to do my food list, focusing on what we’ll actually eat rather than stocking up for an army of 5,000.

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