24 April 2012

Live Below the Line: Intro

I'm a frugal momma, always looking for another way to stretch a pound and cut corners without cutting quality.  This ties in with my loathing of waste -- I try to buy second-hand as much as possible (and practical, sometimes it's just not worth the effort of tracking a second-hand item down when it's hard to find and more expensive) and follow the ol' depression-era conservation motto, "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without."

For instance, I dropped my iPod *again* the other day and the hard drive died.  I swear -- I am totally not kidding here -- after I dropped it, it played the song "F*ck Off" by Mindless Drug Hoover before kicking the bucket.  I could have just bought another one (new, refurbished, or used), but I decided to fix it.  Myself.  *gulp*  I did it, too, although at one point, I was really unsure as to whether I would ever manage to get the case off. I bought a refurbished hard drive on ebay and an iPod opening tools kit (that included a guitar pick!) and everything the total cost for repairs was just shy of £50.  I even sold one of my synths to fund the iPod Disaster Relief.  All in all, it was cheaper and less wasteful (even with the iPod opening tools kit) than ditching my old one and buying another.  I am handling my iPod with kid gloves from now on and will hopefully avoid any further disasters.

Where am I going with this?  [Other than bragging about my mad skillz -- I also fixed our masticating toilet (getting the rubber seal back on the toilet was the toughest part of the whole job because there was so little room between the masticator and the toilet) and didn't even flinch when a little sewage got on my face.]  Money saving, loathing waste, enjoying challenges...so when I got an email from http://www.bzzagent.co.uk asking if I wanted to join Live Below the Line, I signed up straight away.

Here's a brief overview of the whole she-bang:  The challenge is to feed myself with only £1 worth of food a day (that's the UK equivalent to the extreme poverty line) from 7-11 May in order to get "a glimpse into the lives of 1.4 billion people who have no choice but to live below the line every day – and who have to make £1 cover a lot more than food."

A lot of people are getting sponsors and raising money for various 3rd world-related charities, but I'm not.  I'm doing this as a personal challenge.  And since it has to do with food, I'll be blogging about it, as well.  So if you're wondering why I am nickel and diming my recipes for the next few weeks, now you know!

I'll try to post some frugal recipes and tips on buying cheaper food between now and then, so keep your eyes peeled!  In the meantime, consider signing up for Live Below the Line yourself and please do share your cheap food sources and frugal recipes in the comments.  :D