This week was a good week for insourcing at Chez Mimi.
Lots of gifts were created, meals prepared, plants propagated or seeds sown, cleaning, washing, airing, polishing, and primping achieved.
I bought some gold leaf and applied it to some beautiful faux orchids, gifting them in an arrangement to a friend who is having a tough time. These arrangements sell for the most ridiculous prices of between $90 and $600, and they're so easy to replicate.
I buy my faux orchids from Koch & Co.
I source the gold leaf from discount stores and craft stores, although I find the $2 discount stores are the best place to buy it. Gold leaf is so much fun, and pretties up just about anything really. Edible gold leaf is even more fun, but that's a whole other topic!
It says on the packaging to use Gold Leaf Size, and to apply it and leave it till it feels 'tacky' before positioning segments of the gold leaf on the item concerned. I read that and thought...craft glue is 'tacky' straight away. Well I used the craft glue, and haven't had a failure yet! But it must be said, I haven't covered an entire item. I've only applied it as an embellishment, and usually on ornamental items that do not get touched much. So that's worth considering. A packet of gold leaf at my local discount store is about $5 for several sheets and you only use the tiniest amount at a time. I've also applied it to succulents with good success. Fun!
I estimate my faux orchid arrangement was the equivalent of one worth around $450. That's a saving of $425 after purchasing what I needed to make mine.
Pillow sprays were made using boiled water, essential oils, witch hazel and spray bottles sourced a couple of years ago from Aussie Soap Supplies. They don't seem to have these clear ones any more but they do have the divine apothecary style cobalt blue ones here. We give these as gifts to The Divas friends, and similar ones sell for anything from $25 to $55. We'll say ours are the equivalent of The Body Shop ones at $25, and say that's $200 we've saved after buying our oils and bottles.
And Fairy scarf necklaces created for gifting, wearing and fundraising for the dance studio.
Similar types of mixed media scarves sell on Etsy for anything from $25-$150, so I couldn't even hazard a guess at what the 15 The Diva and I have created so far are worth. The Dance Studio is selling them for $10, which I think might be a bit of a bargain ;-)
So let's call it $10 each as that is their true value here, and that's $150 worth.
I cleaned my house, saving $100 on a cleaner.
I pre-prepared all our meals, saving on pre-packaged foods and takeaway to the tune of at least $100 more.
I made The Divas school lunches every day except one, and on the one day I didn't, I gave her $20 for the school canteen and she told me after school that it wasn't enough! So yet again, it was plainly illustrated to me, that I save at LEAST $100 a week by supplying her with a home assembled, home made lunch. $80 though for last week as we missed a day.
I bathed the dog...saving $25 on a dog groomer.
I cleaned the car inside and out saving $65 on a car detailer.
We enjoyed Barramundi Tacos, Roast pork with crackling and King Prawn salad for Fathers Day. I made all that for 12 people and it cost me just under $100. A similar meal at a restaurant...well, it would have to be $60 a head. That's $720, so I'm calling that a saving of $620.
So this week was a busy one. But a happy-busy one. And I saved my family the mind boggling total of $1790!
To have earned that outside the home, my before tax, weekly pay would have to be $2556 (truly....check the Australian Weekly Tax Schedule), which equates to $132,912 a year. No joke. Truly.
Now this week was a good, busy, productive week. But I haven't even factored in my baking, the costumes I am making for the school Dance Troupe, which would easily retail for $100 each (14 of them), my walking and Zumba at home that save me on a gym membership or a class, and the herbs and vegetables I've planted, the home grown bananas that I've made into banana bread, banana relish, and banana jam, and my home manicure, pedicure, and hair treatment.
I DO however, treat my role in the home as a REAL job. I work through the day, taking only small breaks for morning tea and lunch, and manage my time without watching TV, or mindlessly shopping.
Contrary to what you might imagine, it's a good feeling.
You can do it too. Go on. Try it.