Friday, February 11, 2011

The battle of the lunchbox
I nearly forgot one. I picked up this old wall sconce for $25. I loved it even more when I got it home. Don't dare say it's shabby chic. I detest shabby chic. Well no, I love it, but I probably shouldn't - like sitcoms.

I'm doing a bit of  'jazzing up' today. I've got some rearranging to do, and I've got lots of things to hang on the walls.
The battle of the lunchbox is a constant in our house. I spend half an hour packing lunches in the morning and ten seconds every afternoon tipping it all in the bin.
However, I think I may have stumbled on a bit of gold. We made this muesli slice yesterday which is full of seeds, nuts and dry fruit, and there was quite a bit of high pitched chirping this morning when we tried it - always a good sign.

It's probably got too much butter in it, but rather butter than some weird, cheaper fat substitute.

No-bake muesli slice

1 1/2 cups rolled ats
1 cup desiccated coconut
1 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sesame seeds
125g butter
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup brown sugar.
Grease a tray and line it with baking paper.
Mix all the dry ingredients together. In a pan melt the butter with the honey and sugar and let it boil. Turn it down to simmer, without stirring for 8-10 minutes and pour into the dry mix. Stir and press into the tray and pop it in the fridge.

Yesterday I was in my local Woolies when a girl approached me and asked me how much I spent there each week. I would say we spend about $10,000-$12,000 there every year. That's $200-$250 a week. That's a lot, maybe not compared to what some families spend, but it's still a lot.
To cut a long one short, she was offering me a Mastercard which would give me 5% off at Woolies for a year and blah, blah, blah.
'Are you trying to give me a credit card?' I asked her.
'Yes', she said.
I told her I wasn't interested, and a few other things about it being morally corrupt.....don't you get enough money out of people as it're preying on the financially 'challenged' (those who don't understand what a credit card is).....this should be illegal.....etc....etc.
While I was picking out the fruit and nuts for my muesli slice, I heard all about some poor victim's financial status, how much he earnt, his investments and so on. It was so uncomfortable that I had to go back later for everything. It was completely inappropriate to say the least.
What does everyone else think of giving credit cards as prizes? I notice some fast food company is up to it too, only their credit cards are most likely going to younger adults who are probably even less capable of grasping how a credit card works. A credit card allows you to buy something you do not have the cash to buy, and it all has to be paid back sooner or later, with interest.
Cash is king as they say. It's always good to carry some. 
Anyway the whole experience has inspired me to forgo the supermarket all together and hunt and gather in other pastures. I've tried this experiment before, I won't lie to you, it's bloody hard work going to the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker, but it's in everyone's best interests.
Here we go again. How do I get this damn bee out of my bonnet?


  1. Oh I hear you on the supermarket. I think I was probably in the same one - a big newish one in a suburb that starts with an A and they asked me about the credit card too. I politely declined. Then when I was at the checkout I saw a young family who looked hard up, small baby, nobody was wearing shoes and the Dad was telling this young 20 year old guy his employment history and earnings - the information was not good and I felt like yelling out to them "Don't do it". I have two children and a husband and spend between $200 and $250 a week on groceries too. I would love to do all my shopping at various spots but I am time poor and I get home late from work. I do my fruit and veg shopping at weekend markets - either Kelvin Grove or West End and gourmet treats I buy at Rosalie Gourmet Market. When I have time I buy meat from a butcher (they tend to be cheaper than the supermarkets too) .

  2. P.S. The school lunches are a nightmare and my favourite thing about the school holidays is the freedom of not having to make those lunches every day. I would love to make your muesli slice but our school has a VERY strict no nuts policy.

  3. The recipe doesn't have any nuts. I just put some flaked almonds in mine because I had them on hand.

  4. Almost every slice I make has that much butter in it.Have to try this one,I would put those craisins in everything!Yum. We do $200-$250 for six only because I make everything from scratch and #3son buys half of his own food.If I had more hours I'd do a vege patch.

  5. I spend so much money at Woolies that I thought stuff it I will become a Shareholder and went online to my friends at Comsec and got me some Woolies shares. I am not going to lie to you- they are far from my best performers but at least I am getting a (minute) share of the profits.

    I have no time to source stuff from all over the traps as I work full time but I salute your commitment and hope it works out for you! Good luck!

  6. I think it (the wall sconce) looks very French chic...and there is nothing shabby about you my dear, ha xx Katherine

  7. Same thing happened to me at Woolies. Twas deep in thought choosing eggs when a young girl approached me about this credit card and launched into a lecture of how this card would change my life...piffle.
    I was annoyed but told her politely that I don't normally frequent Woolies, just popped in and much prefer shopping at Coles (the truth by the way). Well she turned on her heels quick smart didn't she after deciding I was a waste of time!

  8. I refuse to buy home brand fuel, milk etc. I pass a Super IGA on my way home from work and tend to go there a lot. There's also a butcher and baker so I can support the independents. Alas, there is no candlestick maker.