Week four: four birthdays and a christening

Belle of the ball: I know, how gorgeous is my goddaughter?


Wake up with: £40

Go to bed with: £33

With a £53m jackpot promised for tonight’s Euromillions lottery draw, £2 seems like a fair investment—besides after last week’s overspend, I could do with a swift cash injection—so I break into my brand new budget to enter the office syndicate. The husband sends me an email just before I leave work, the subject is ‘one day…’ I open it to find a link to Rightmove. I click through and it’s the most beautiful country house—and way out of our price range. Come on Euromillions. Come on.

I bought the husband tickets for Belt Up Theatre’s Macbeth at the House of Detention in Clerkenwell for our anniversary, so I pedal off to meet him at the venue after work. I buy him a little interval beer and he picks up the tab for dinner at Pho after curtain down. What a date night: it was an incredible production, dark and innovative and the curry went down a treat too. The only dampener is when I have to get back on my bike and cycle home, leaving the husband at the bus stop with my Oyster card.

At this point, I should point out that the reason I have been limiting myself to a budget of £40 for the last three weeks (cough, except for Amsterdam, cough) is so I can buy birthday/ christening/ anniversary presents without going over budget. I’m afraid you’ll just have to trust me on this one, making a public note of how much you spent on a present just seems wrong (besides, it would ruin the surprise).


Wake up with: £33

Go to bed with: £13

The husband is working today, so I get up with him and manage to process the enormous pile of laundry and tidy the house before I’m due to meet a friend for brunch. It’s her birthday weekend, so the eggs are on me at café Z bar. After, we order take-out coffees and go for a walk around Clissold Park.

In the evening, there’s some big football thing on that is extremely important. I won’t attempt to explain what it is or why. I was hoping to escape to the two birthday parties I’ve been invited to but I’m feeling yucky and not at all sociable, so I (rather dramatically) take to my bed for the afternoon and emerge only to chow down a burger with the lads that have gathered for this momentous occasion. The husband has decided it’s barbecue season, sunshine or no sunshine—or should that be no sunshine or no sunshine (where is summer?)—and the barbecue goes down considerably better than the football, which is a disaster. Cue one very depressed husband. Poor boy.


Wake up with: £13

Go to bed with: £13

It’s my gorgeous god-daughter’s christening and the proud parents, godparents and spouses all gather at The Holly Bush in Hampstead to coo over the beautiful baby and the magnificent roast that has been laid on to mark the occasion. We have a wonderful time writing lists of all the films, albums and books Isabel should discover when she grows up, the food she has to try and the places she simply must go.

It turns out to be a very late lunch, and we get home just in time for some eggs on toast and a couple of episodes of The Bridge before bed.


Wake up with: £13

Go to bed with: £8.72

Supper club tonight and I’m not sure who is in the house… we’ve been promised a guest appearance, two of the regulars are flying in from Canada and another has a backgammon tournament and may or may not grace us with his presence.

Mmmh—potentially I’ll be catering for six. My mental inventory of our current food-stock reveals we have sausages leftover from the barbecue (and an extra pack in the freezer from the husband’s bank holiday bonanza). My mind is made up: meatballs with a difference. I pop to the shops at lunchtime and score a pack of parma ham, some tinned tomatoes and a huge tub of cherry tomatoes for £4.28.


Wake up with: £8.72

Go to bed with: £8.72

Sunshine! Finally, I can turn off the central heating. This is an all-time record, normally I turn it off in March and on in October and, as I have explained to the husband on numerous occasions, this is non-negotiable—or in other words PUT ON A BLOODY JUMPER. This year, however, with temperatures plunging below 10C at night, we’ve been naughty and every time the doorbell rings my pulse races as I’m currently hiding from the meter man.

I treat myself to a G&T and a long gossip with my sister on the new-and-improved balcony when I get home (and use the last of the tonic, alas) then the husband and I have our very first outdoors tea of the year. Bliss.


Wake up with: £8.72

Go to bed with: £0.37

Good grief stamps are expensive! It’s my other lovely god-daughter’s first birthday tomorrow and, naturally I need to send a card. Card and stamps purchased and this week’s budget is pretty much exhausted.

Now I have to work out a way to buy the cleaning supplies I need (Thursday is cleaning day in the LoveRichCashPoor household) with £2.37. The pound shop it is. I love the pound shop—I find exactly the same brands that I would have bought at the supermarket anyway and snap them up for a pound a piece.


Wake up with: £0.37

Go to bed with: £0.37

Out of necessity, this is a no-spend day, although I do take out the week’s remaining £40 to pay for the husband’s first birthday treat, which is lined up for this evening: a screening of Dog Day Afternoon in a pop-up cinema in Stoke Newington Town Hall. I treat him to a katsu curry and a beer to boot (lucky boy) and, with that, possibly one of the longest weeks in the entire world (budget-speaking) ends.

  1. I really loved reading this article. I’m a big fan of the EuroMillons, as such the Jackpot is a really exciting! I will certainly buy my ticket today at http://bit.ly/yXZfdt

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