I’m a great advocate of that 1940’s war-time motto ‘make-do and mend’ and am ever challenging myself to see what unnecessary items of consumption I can drop off the list and make myself, without feeling like too much of a frugal bore.

This month, these items received the chop:
no op-shopped clothing (!!!!!)
no cafe-bought coffee – (ok, maybe I had three or four over the space of the month, but for liver’s sake, I’m trying!)
no shop-bought lunches

Leaving the house with two boys aged under 5, presents an added challenge, where the first question I’m currently asked upon getting into the car, is “can we get a treat today?”. I’m still not sure when we crossed the line from ‘treat = trip to park/visit to library’ to the current model of ‘treat = shop-bought toy/food’, but needless to say, preschool consumption is rife. And persistent.

Therein lies the challenge of finding compassionate solutions to the verdant grass of the Joneses; the nagging guilt-laden questions of ‘are we doing the right thing?’, ‘is it ok to be raising them under such a simplistic model?’. ‘are we scarring them by not letting them have the same as their friends?’. Even as I type these questions, I realise this does feel right for me and that all that really matters is that they are cared for and genuinely loved.

This hasn’t stopped me jumping online to seek validation that I’m being a good mum. My latest favourite finding comes from this mindful lady, who has some wonderful ideas able kids and pocket money.