Monday, July 27, 2015

Insourcing tally for the week....#13

 
The relevance of my insourcing was really brought home to me last week when our whole family was stricken with a particularly nasty virus. The mere thought of having to rise from our sick beds and feed ourselves, was almost more than we could manage.
 
As an experienced Mum of 37 years, I assessed the ailing family, and decided that it was indeed just a nasty flu with the predictable aches and pains, fever, headache and malaise so common at this time of the year. We could have all hauled ourselves to the doctor, but all he would have told us is that we had the flu and sent us home. Of course had our symptoms worsened, or vomiting and diarrhoea been in evidence, then haul ourselves to the doc we would. Common sense must prevail.
 
Disclaimer: Being sick is not usually a time for valuing money saving strategies over getting well, or seeking medical attention when warranted. I share the following information in the spirit of 'being prepared', and using common sense to help your family weather the usual ills and chills, flus and colds and general nasty viruses prevalent in the Winter months. If you are at all in doubt, or if your or your family's symptoms worsen, then do not hesitate to seek medical attention.
 
So given that were ALL under the weather, never was I more grateful for my well stocked refrigerator and pantry than over those few days. We had staples like milk and bread, plus powdered milk and gluten free bread mix had we run low. We had chicken soup galore, as well as miso powder (Japanese soup), and Bovril (beef stock paste)...covering all bases in the 'all I feel like is soup' brigade. Jelly (jello) featured heavily in the menu, as did Powerade icy poles made with the powdered premix I buy for The Diva, hot lemon drinks with lashings of honey and ginger, and good old fashioned peppermint tea for upset tums. All those good Nanna style home remedies did us the world of good, and in fact, for a bunch of sick people, we actually ate well. That's if you can call eating flavoured water in all it's forms 'eating'.
 
I always have some honey infused with lemon wedges and slices of fresh ginger on hand at this time of the year. This added to black tea or freshly squeezed lemon juice diluted with hot water, is really soothing and pampering too.
 
The main thing was, we focused on remaining hydrated, and slept when sleep called us. We banned visitors (even well meaning ones) and visited no-one, to diminish spreading of our illness. We stayed home. In bed. Rested. Drank water and soup and ate ice blocks.
 
And guess what?
 
We got better. We got better in four days. Friends of ours who were afflicted with the same virus a week or two ago (perhaps they shared it with US!), are still not well, having remained determined to soldier on. Now I am a fan of 'soldiering on', so I generally admire this. But sometimes, you have to say 'Ok...body telling me something. Stop now'.
 
So, the funny thing is, that being sick is certainly a novel way of limiting spending. If you don't go anywhere and you're too sick to care whether your milk is full cream or skim, and your eggs free range or just barn raised, then there really isn't a 'savings' strategy to report!
 
That said, I will mention the following....
 
Vicks on soles of feet to alleviate coughing saved on buying cough suppressants...saving $20...not an important saving, but rather one thrust upon us due to the fact that we were all too sick to leave the house and go to the pharmacy! The Vicks works well in case you're wondering!
 
The PowerAde iceblocks were a stroke of ingenuity, when I thought of asking my sister to stop at the pharmacy to buy Gastrolyte iceblocks to freeze, then remembered the PowerAde premix, which I intuited would be similar. A phone call to the pharmacy confirmed the idea. So I simply made up the drink, and froze it in iceblock molds. Frankly they tasted better than the Gastrolyte too. Saving $45.
 
The Musician Husband rang on his way home on Day One of not feeling the best, asking whether, since he was in the supermarket getting lemons, we might not want to stock up on ready prepared 'fresh' soups. Good grief, what was the man thinking? At $9 for 500mls, the answer was no, and anyway we had four litres of home-made-from-scratch Jewish style kill-anything chicken soup in the freezer. So let me see, that's the equivalent of 8 packets of the pre-made stuff, so a saving of $72.
 
 
I didn't grocery shop at all. You may recall from last week that I spent more than I usually would, so that was well timed. A top up shop would have been necessary though, and we simply managed without those things, or enjoyed the relief of being able to draw upon our stores of dishwasher tablets, body wash, shampoo and conditioner, toilet tissue and teabags. I guess we would have done that anyway, but in real terms, having those stocks (paid for with Flybuy dollars some months back) still generated a saving of  $100 on those items.
 
We insourced entertainment, resurrecting old movies we hadn't watched in years, avoiding the DVD hire kiosk, and saving probably $60 in keeping our sick selves amused.
 
We used good old fashioned Panadol or Nurofen to manage temperatures, preferring to avoid the Cold and Flu type medications. Saving $30.
 
So all up, when being a sick family usually means all kinds of expenses, we still managed to insource as much as possible, and save ourselves some money. By being prepared, we saved over $300 on things that we may have considered 'essential' had we not had good alternatives on hand.
 
That's worthwhile!
 
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14 comments:

  1. I'm glad you are all on the mend. The powerade icy poles are genius.

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    1. Thanks...I thought so at the time....lol! We are all fine now, thanks for asking. Mimi xxx

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  2. Phew! We trust you're all on the mend and on the other side of all that "nasty" business! God bless you all, and good job $aving last week!

    Hugs from Manila where I'm Singapore/Malaysia-bound in a moments,
    Kelley~

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    1. Hugs to you Kelley! I can't believe you're still travelling! I hope you are home now...Mimi xxx

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  3. Glad you are all on the mend, Mimi. Flu season hits here badly after the Ekka where everybody shares their germs and brings them home. Really, when you think about it, if people really DO have the flu, they are too sick to go to the doctor anyway and even if they could, why take the risk of spreading it around. I don't think the 'soldier on' advertisements on TV are really correct as people should be doing what you all did...and stay home, rest, hydrate and recover. Very wise of you all :-)

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    1. Nanna Chel, therein lays the reason we avoid the Ekka! I'm with you. Soldiering on is ill advised in flu season. We are 100% fit and well this week...and no medicine, antibiotics or Doctors involved. Go figure! Mimi xxx

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  4. Glad you are all on the mend Mimi. At least your family was thoughtful enough to all be sick at once, although taking care of each other when you all sick not good. So far we have had the youngest ill and off school for a week, then on the day she was home "almost but not quite well well" her big sis came down with it. One week later big sis is ready for school tomorrow, fingers crossed Mum & Dad don't get it one by one.
    Yes those soldier on ads annoy me too!

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    1. Oh no....yes it does seem like dominoes sometimes, doesn't it! I hope you are all okay....Mimi xxx

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  5. Dear Mimi,
    There is an ad on tv about soldiering on. I think what they mean is go out, spread your germs to everyone else. I really resent that. What some people can kick the babies and frail and elderly might not. I just think it is dreadful!
    You did the exact right thing. And being prepared with things at home is so good at these times.
    Also getting ahead when we can as you did the week before keeps our heads above water in the not so good weeks! Meals in the freezer, well stocked medicine cupboard etc... its all common sense but common sense is uncommon mostly!
    I am so glad you are all much better. Take extra care for a while.
    Lots of love, Annabel.xxx

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    1. Hi Annabel. I've seen that advert too, and don't they just all look like people who should be at home in bed? I agree that it's all a bit irresponsible really. I think the other key thing is that even those so called Cold and Flu medications are a bit of a rort. Panadol, comforting drinks and rest, and are about all that's needed. My husband is a sole trader with his own business, and even he recognises that by resting for two days, he's saving himself two weeks of illness further down the track. Love, Mimi xxx

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  6. good to hear you are all on the mend. Another one here who hates the soldiering on - the people who turn up to work with thick crusty snotty noses and hacking coughs. A surefire way to spread it on. Fiona

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    1. Hehehe Fiona...indeed. Crusty noses and hacking coughs are just a hazard to the rest of us. Love, Mimi xxx

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  7. I'm so glad you are feeling better Mimi.

    This is a great post about being prepared. I would also add that everyone should stock up on tissues, cough lollies, vicks and eucalyptus oil Running to the supermarket / chemist when sick is not the time. You can;t think straight and are likely to buy anything.

    My daughter came down with a really bad cold this week - caught from sick friends at school. She spent three days in bed and went through countless tissues. I keep about 10 boxes in the shed.

    Also if you have pets, make sure you have extra food on hand for them.

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    1. Thanks Wendy. Yes! The Eucaplyptus oil, Vicks, Butter Menthols, and soft tissues or hankies are a must for being prepared as well. I confess that we resorted to rolls of toilet tissue when the tissues ran out...lol! When you consider how inexpensive they are, it seems silly that I didn't have more on hand. A great tip, thanks! Love, Mimi xxx

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I love hearing from you! I always respond to comments, so don't be shy! Mimi xxx