Valentine’s & weekly update

Today many of us will be feeling the love ❤️ Whether you are celebrating Valentine’s or Galentines it is always good to do it on a budget.

Normally, if we are celebrating something then it will be a trip to a restaurant or a night away. Lockdown put a stop to that and no spend dictates that we had to stay within our budget. This week I managed to get our grocery budget £20 under our usual weekly spend. This meant I had £20 to spend on valentine’s date night. I looked at purchasing items to make our own meal and to throw in a bottle of fizz, but this actually made it more expensive as Tesco/Asda/M&S all had Valentine’s meal deals at a really good price. I went for the Tesco option as it is my closest store and we usually shop there anyway. The options were good. They even had vegan alternatives this year! You were getting a starter, main, 2 sides, dessert & drink for £15! You have to be savvy with the items you pick as some items would mean you won’t get as good a saving.

We had our meal last night as Sunday is usually a relaxing, Sunday dinner kind of day for us. We did get properly dressed up. I even put on my heels! (This didn’t last long, and they ended up off before I started eating but it’s the thought that counts…right?!) The youngest child found them this morning!

Ru Paul eat your heart out

We chose a camembert with a garlic & herb bread for dipping as our starter. This was really good and normally would have cost £3 but we paid £1.55. A quick 10 minutes in the oven was all this needed.

Camembert with a garlic & herb tear and share bread

Our main was rump steak with pink peppercorn butter, triple cooked chips & I did grab some three cheese and chive cauliflower but we’re having that with today’s dinner, so we added some peas, onion and mushrooms.  The steak would normally have cost £8 and that is what we paid. The chips are normally £2.60, and we paid £1.34 and the cauliflower would also have been £2.60 but we paid £1.34. The whole course was really tasty, and I even have to agree that Doug cooked the steak perfectly 😆

Steak & triple cooked chips

Dessert was Belgian chocolate and orange pots. These would normally have set us back £3 but we paid £1.54. These tasted like Jaffa Cakes! They may look small, but they were quite rich so any bigger and they could have been quite sickening.

Belgian Chocolate & orange pots

To top off the meal we chose a bottle of prosecco for our drink. This would normally have cost £10 but we paid £5.13. It was a nice enough prosecco but needed to be a bit sweeter for me, so I added some Bloom passionfruit and vanilla blossom gin to mine. This made it taste delicious!

Passionfruit & Vanilla prosecco

We didn’t do gifts. For us this was about spending time together. We did have cards and as you can see there was no expense spared 🤣

Super expensive card!

I have to say that I didn’t miss being out. We didn’t have to pay more than £15. We didn’t have to wait on our food being brought to us, we didn’t have to worry about transport back. We could talk and just spend time together.

Once again, you could make it cheaper but for us we wanted to spend around £20 and this was the way for us to get a pretty much restaurant quality meal whilst keeping under our budget.

Now, on to our weekly updates. We’ve decided to update our savings total monthly. It has more of an impact that way and the children get more excited (We’ve promised them £1000 each if we reach £10k by summer 2022 🤦‍♀️. What I can say is we have not spent any extra money. We have purchased new kitchen knives and kitchen scales, but we used some Amazon vouchers we had to purchase them.

We are part of shop & scan which means when we scan the products, we buy using a little handheld barcode scanner and send the data to Kantar we receive vouchers back every few weeks. You can pick from multiple retailers and in this case, we chose Amazon. The data is used for things like when the BBC do a TV programme and they say in 1975 the Smith family spent 30p on bread and 2p for an onion. It gives them a view of what people are spending and what they are buying. Would it be helpful for me to do a post on Shop & Scan at some point?

We have added more money to our savings pot but from now on we will update around the 1st of the month on where we are with our savings and how close we are to our goal. What I can say at the moment is we are on track to hit our savings goal by June 2021 😮

If there is anything you would like me to write a post about then please let us know.


  1. Charlotte says:

    Love that Valentine’s card! Looks like a lovely meal too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Zara says:

      IT was so nice just to sit and talk. Children sleeping. The card is Doug’s work of art😆


  2. Sarah - SWB says:

    That’s my boy!

    Also what is the shop and scan and why do I not know about it?


  3. Zara says:

    Can’t believe I haven’t told you! I’ll send you an invite 🤣 You scan everything you buy and upload it once a week


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