This is my favourite rocky road recipe – and undisputedly the most asked for food to bring (anywhere). Kids love it, adults love it, I love it and you will to. It’s not a normal rocky road, it was crafted for my nut anaphylactic niece. And she loves it! If you follow me on instagram you will see I recently made it for my babe’s 1st birthday as always it was a hit with the young and old!
500 g cooking chocolate
200 g snakes (chopped into 1cm pieces)
100 g marsh mellows (I brought mini’s so I didn’t need to cut them up)
1 cup rice bubbles
1. Melt 100g chocolate – spread a very thin layer onto bottom of the baking tray
2. Melt 300g chocolate – mix in snakes, marsh mellows and rice bubbles – layer on top of the baking tray chocolate.
3. Melt final 100g of chocolate and drizzle on top to join together.
4. Refrigerate for at least an hour.
5. Chop into rough pieces.
Let me know when you give it a go – I hope you love it as much as my family does!
It’s Tax Season!!! What are you doing with your money? Planning on spending it on new boots or maybe a weekend getaway? According to the ATO the average tax return is $2300. If spent right it could be worth a whole lot more! Read this to make you tax return last longer and save you a lot of money long term. How to best spend your tax return.
This is the list of how to save money long term by spending your tax return wisely. The average tax return is $2300 but it doesn’t matter if yours is smaller or larger the most important thing is that you spend your return wisely, and even better do it year after year. Reducing debt, not only reduces how much you are paying off but it also reduced how much interest you are paying which in many cases over the life of the loan can be DOUBLE the loan value! Here are some ideas on how you could spend or save your return. Either way you will save on interest and be prepared for the year ahead.
In future years you can add to your tax return every pay cycle. By even adding $10 a week you are adding $500 to your tax return. This is compulsory savings and all it takes is a form submitted with your pay office. The reason you may want to do this is that you aren’t getting the money back until your tax return. So you don’t ever have it in your hand and you won’t be getting it until you lodge your tax return. Perfect for people that can cover their living costs but are hopeless at saving. I use to do it when I worked my first job at Coles. I always paid $10 a week extra, my older sister worked in the pay office and told me this is what I had to do, and so I did it. She knew I couldn’t save money to save my life. So for the whole of high school and through uni I paid extra tax (long after she left). And how I wish I spent it more wisely…
When I was younger I would see something I liked and I would buy it. It really was that simple – I had a lovely lifestyle and a huge amount of debt. I had great friends, we would do breakfast, go shopping, go clubbing . Whatever we wanted and then occasionally I would go to Uni. But that lovely lifestyle costed a lot of money that I wasn’t making. I worked part-time at Coles but that wasn’t enough for my champagne lifestyle so I got myself a credit card, and then another one. You can see a pattern – I don’t need to go on! But fast forward to when I met my now husband and things were not looking great for my finances. So I had to pay off $10000 in a year.
I was roughly in about $23, 000 debt. A couple of credit cards, a car loan and a loan from my sister (I had a lovely 6 week European holiday!) and I was tapped out! My now husband (My Minister of Finance) was mortified! So I needed to clean up my act quickly! We bought a house after dating for 8 months, and we were in tough times because I was finishing uni and had to drop back my hours at work. So after I graduated it was time to as my father would say “tighten the belt” and sort out my finances. So I focused on paying off as much as I could as fast as I could – I paid off just over $12,000 in the first year after graduation. Here is how I paid $10000 of debt off.
So after a tight year I paid off $12,000 from my debt. I still had a little way to go (ok half) but I beat my goal and I was happy with that. After that I continued to pay off my debt by using interest free credit cards. Then I prioritising them and using any extra money to pay them off. I no longer worked my extra job but instead looked for other ways to make money at home and continued to pay off as much as possible.
I hope this inspires you to start paying off your debts so you can start saving and living! Once you have paid off your debt it is a wonderful feeling to be able to buy something knowing that it is all yours!
Do you have any other tips on paying off your debt quickly? Happy saving! I hope this helps you pay off $10000 in a year.
When online groceries first started to be available – I thought “you would have to be soooo lazy to do that! How hard is it to do the groceries!” Then my sister explained that she did it – and I re-thought it! Occasionally I think groceries online is great – it helps stick to a shopping list and it helps when spare time in non existent. Why it’s OK to order your groceries online.
While I am not saying that I do my groceries online all the time – I like to shop around and rotate grocery stores. But I have used it when I had little spare time or when I had a budget to stick to.
If you collect your groceries you don’t have to pay for delivery. You still get all the catalogue specials, however some items are charged at premium pricing which is about 7% extra.
Can you put a price on your time? Sometimes it is great to out and do the groceries, but sometimes it is too much to fit into life. You can’t put a price on making more family time that isn’t being stressed at the grocery store. You make a time to pick them up and that way you don’t need to pay for delivery!
It is so easy to do the groceries online, and they have a favourites list for the items you buy weekly. And you can shop directly from the catalogue so you don’t miss any specials.
No chocolate that accidentally slips into the trolley. (Unless you want it to) For me this is always the killer, exactly what always happens! I can not explain how many times this happens – but with doing it online you can see your total as you go. Easy to remove items and super easy to stay in budget!
So why do you love online grocery shopping? I find it’s sooo easy to stay in budget.
This is my BUDGET $60 WEEKLY GROCERY SHOP and shopping list. This is the perfect shop for when you are totally skint and just need to make it until the next pay. I wouldn’t recommend this as a weekly shopping plan but it could be done monthly to get you through. I have included everything you need to be able to make the suggested meals, but I suggest you “shop your pantry” first to see if you can make any further savings or make these suggestions even tastier. If you already have some of these ingredients at home – perfect! I would suggest you buy some extra fruit or meat for lunches or some extra cereal with your extra money. All of these prices were from Coles Online in Queensland – so in store prices may be cheaper.
As I said before this is not meant to be “eating plan” I understand that it carbohydrate heavy. But if you are feeding a family on a budget this is the kind of eating plan that would help you get through the TIGHTEST of weeks. I would also recommend looking at your butchers and Aldi to see if you can buy cheaper there. I would love to hear from you if you have tried my $60 weekly grocery shop and how it went with your family!
Good Luck! What are your go to budget meals?
.Having a baby is a very exciting time – but it is also a very expensive time! So here are some tips on buying what you need and skipping what you don’t need! People are very generous when it comes to babies. So don’t be afraid to borrow items or get given second hand. You have 9 months to get ready so start looking early and be creative with how you go about collecting everything you need. How to save money when preparing to have a baby.
My first suggestion is to try to keep your buying to a minimum until your baby shower. If you hold your baby shower around 6/7 months it still gives you plenty of time to buy other items you may not of received. Don’t be afraid to give a specific list of what you would like to receive. So people buy you things you actually want and need. People often like to put in together to buy larger items and this can work in your favour, so don’t leave these off your list.
If you need to buy everything as you don’t have anyone to borrow anything from consider second hand for the larger items. Ebay and Gumtree can be your best friend, once babies outgrow things people are often keen to reclaim the room that they take up so will sell them for cheap. Be sure to buy gender neutral furniture and prams so when the time comes you can also resell! Nearly all baby items are washable so don’t be afraid of second hand – most baby seats, bassinets, swings and prams unclip for easy washing and line drying!
What did you find were essentials when buying baby equipment? I hope you save money when preparing to have a baby!
When you are trying to saving money – many people often think saving money on clothes means shopping at Kmart and not getting anything of quality. But actually shopping to save is quite the opposite. Long term you will save a lot more money if you buy things that will stand the test of time in quality, construction and style. So let me show you how to stop wasting money on clothes.
BUT first you need to clean out your closet. Like always if you have a messy, unorganised wardrobe then this is half your problem. Clean out all your clothes, I mean everything. Anything that you don’t wear or doesn’t fit get rid of it. Sell it or donate it but move it out of the way. If you have a maybe pile, put it into a spare room or space. If you don’t use them in 12 months get rid of them too! A clean and easy to use wardrobe will make it easy to find clothes and wear a range of clothes instead of the same old clothes that are at the front.
If this item cheap enough, then definitely consider it for a quick and easy update to your wardrobe but if it expensive and seasonal consider not buying it because chances are you will not get the value from the item.
When looking to buy clothes, wear suitable underwear and shoes to get a proper appreciation of what the clothes will look like when you are wearing them out.
Look for classic cuts and quality fabrics. Every summer in the January sales I buy a couple of tops that are in $100 range. Not something I would normally spend but I have found that these tops have become my go-to I wear them to work and out and every time someone comments on how nice they are. While these aren’t in my budget regularly they have all out lasted the Kmart tops that I buy regularly to ‘fill up’ my wardrobe and all wash and wear a lot better too!
I hope this gives you some ideas how to stop wasting money on clothes and start saving money!
I use re-usable nappies for a number of reasons but the one I keep going back to is the cost. If you are on the fence about this I suggest you buy a trial pack and give it a go – I think you will be pleasantly surprised about how easy it is! I hope you learn to use re-usable nappies and save money!
When I pregnant and thought about changing nappies I thought number 3 and poo-explosions – the worse case scenario. But it was/is rarely the case. Yes they happen but honestly it’s a bucket load more 1’s than 2’s and whole lot less of the 3’s! Using re-usable nappies is exactly like changing a disposable nappy, so not any extra gross.
When I use the re-usable nappies I normally also use a flushable bamboo liner. The brand of nappy I use Bonnibuns doesn’t require these at all. I only started using them because to be honest I was a bit queazy about re-usable nappies in the beginning – but they are so easy I continued using them. You lift them out of the nappy and flush, the liquid goes into the nappy liner and solid stays on the bamboo liner and into the toilet! I use these
Nearly all re-usable nappies recommend only a small amount of washing liquid (about half of a normal load) so there is no build up and the liners stay super absorbent! With my nappies the shell is super quick drying but the liner takes a little longer (liner clips out) you can buy extra liners if you need to. As I said above I use bamboo liners most of the time but when I haven’t and it was a number 2 I flipped as much as I could into the toilet and washed as normal (no pre-soaking needed just washing machine). Once I dried them on the line I couldn’t tell which liner it was – so they wear and wash very well!
Disclaimer: I did use new-born nappies. Think of all the land fill you will save if you use re-aseable nappies! Bonnibuns come with snap clips which are super easy and clips last longer than velcro on other brands! My babe has chunky legs but a small waist and they fit him no problems.
If you have a summer baby like me, a nappy and singlet and away you go. Heaps of different colours so you can match your singlet!
I own 12 nappies (which I find more than enough). I use on average 6 per day, and I still use a disposable at night. Bonnibuns come with an extra liner for night time, but I have never used them as Paddy sleeps through and we have never had a leak with disposables overnight. (If it ain’t broke – I’m not fixing it, or in this case making any changes to my baby’s sleeping patterns!) So I wash every night and I have 6 on the clothes line to dry the next day and 6 ready to go) The original outlay is about $270, a box of Huggies is about $28 on special. So a set of re-usables equals 9 1/2 boxes of Huggies! Trust me 9 boxes of Huggies isn’t going to get you through 2 years like a set of re-usables will. And you can re-use your re-usable nappies for all of your children or neices and nephews. Getting cheaper and cheaper ever time! If you choose to use the bamboo liners they are about 10c each and a disposable nappy is about 40c, so still ongoing cost but as I said before optional and not necessary.
These are my best reasons why you should at least give them a go. Most brands have trial packs that you can buy and see for yourself how great and easy to use they are! Let me know if you love them as much as me!
.Do you have a budget? When I was younger I thought budgets were for boring people. People who had a depressing financial outlook, people that needed help. I didn’t need a budget (so I thought) so why would I use one? But budgets are for everyone, are you to love your budget?
At first it is daunting to find out how much you spend of things like take away or groceries. These were our two categories that really got away on us when I didn’t use our budget. I was almost defensive about our spending and our spending habits and didn’t want things to change because I thought I was happy. But deep down I wasn’t happy I was embarrassed. As our income increased I was happy still “making it by” instead we should of been saving. It is important that as your income increases your spending doesn’t also increase without you noticing.
As I have got older I have found that having a budget is liberating. Yes you heard that right, LIBERATING. Fun – nearly. We use our budget to track our spending, it is how we have been able to go on holidays, buy our house and now live on one income. My point is a budget can be useful at any stage of your finances for any reason. It can be a way to identify areas to reduce to save for fun events or a way to build a much needed emergency fund so you are finally going forward.
It is comforting to know that you will have enough money at the end of the month to pay the mortgage. But it is also rewarding to live your life knowing that money is no longer a stressful part of it. Once you start making changes and getting closer to your goal it can be addictive and fun to make a game out of making more changes to get closer.
We use our budget in track all financial actions in our house. However once you are committed to your goal the implementation and rewards are awesome!
Do you use a budget? Let me know how you use your budget at your house and how it has made a difference in your life!