Challenges are a great way for saving for something quickly for something specific. It could be a family holiday, a looming bill, starting an emergency fund etc. Your challenge could be to lose weight or something similar. Whatever it is, a challenge can help but could you do it week in week out - for a very long time?
This is what many families have to do nowadays as prices continually rise, your favourite products might remain the same price but have become smaller and don't last as long because of this reduction in size. There may have been a time when you could afford to have your central heating on high in winter and sit around in tee shirts and shorts (I know people who still do this). You might have been able to eat out all the time or quite often, go to the cinema, meet friends in the pub, go on several holidays a year. Spend what you liked, when you liked.
You may have credit cards coming out your ears, are drowning in debt but hey, its okay, you are both working and can manage. Are you about to take on a mortgage? Before you do, ask the bank how much your monthly repayments will be should the interest rate double, or even treble, could you still afford it? You may have some savings already and in particular an emergency fund, then wham! One or both of you lose your job, what then? How would you cope, how long will your funds last if you can't find a job soon?
You may already be unemployed or about to be, getting made redundant, retired, working but not earning enough, on zero hours contracts, or a whole myriad of different situations that have put you in a flap, stuffed between a rock and a hard place and have no idea what to do.
Unfortunately, although I can't help you with some of those problems, others can, both here on blogland, the internet in general or agencies, both government and otherwise but be careful who you approach, there are a lot of sharks in debt filled waters!
What I would say is do not despair, there is light (and often help) at the end of these long tunnels, you just have to find your miner's lamp, dig and get to the other end, by whatever means you can. It may be soul destroying at times, but you have to fight and keep on fighting.
This post came about because whilst we try to live a simple life, save hard for what we need, we find food prices (as well as utility prices) are rising fast. DB's annual pension rise doesn't even cover the monthly rise in council tax let alone other bills, so we still have to be very careful. Despite or because of this 'frugal' life, we are still managing to save each month. Whatever is left on pay day, gets put away, doesn't matter if it is pennies or pounds.
Our menu has also become a little staid and we are in need to some changes. Looking around for some new sites for recipes, these two in particular struck a chord:
here and here
Have a nice weekend folks.