Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Shopping ... and the Real Digging for Victory


I went shopping yesterday to Tesco, the things on my list were not food related at all so would not have come out of our Challenge shopping budget ... then I spotted the girl with the price reduction gun and lots and lots of reduced yellow stickered items being stacked on the shelves.

The store was quiet and everyone at the reduced shelves was being very polite taking what they needed and stepping away to watch what else was being added.  I picked up a couple of meat products and then carried on to the next aisle ... and there she was, another member of staff filling yet another trolley with yellow stickered items.  So I went back to the reduced price shelves a few minutes later and managed to get some more things.


Two packs of sausages.



Three packs of pork products.


Four packs of beef products.


And finally two packs of chickeny things.


My receipt showing a total spend of £26.62 ... GULP!!

But, and it's a big BUT, there is a reason for me buying all this dead flesh err meat!!


Maybe the photos of the now portioned up meat will give you a clue.



Items priced in individual portion sizes.



Prices carefully noted.


And what was one pack of meat portioned up ...


...and priced as three.


All neatly wrapped and boxed up, and now in the chest freezer ready for use in a couple of weeks.

Have you guessed what we had been talking about over the weekend and what we have just decided we should do.  I could leave you wondering until tomorrow but that would be cruel ... wouldn't it?

It would  :-)


We have decided that although originally this blog was to be about our kind of digging for victory, by which we meant growing our own food, saving money by not buying anything that we could possibly produce ourselves, it has grown in our minds over the first few weeks of this Challenge, that the original meaning of Digging for Victory as in the wartime years,  producing foods to supplement the small amount of food available on the rations is really something we at least want to have a go at.

  So with this in mind we are gearing up to a month (at least) of living on the actual rations from the war years, and as a start to getting ready for this it made sense to portion up the new supplies of meat with their monetary values so I can work out just what Alan's meat ration per week would look like. 

He will be allowed £4.66 worth of meat per week (this is todays monetary value of the 1s 6d allowed for off-ration meat purchases at the start of the war), alongside his 4oz of bacon or ham ... and some sausages if they are available, as these weren't on the meat ration just not always in the shops and if they were, they were shared out between a butchers customers, so you didn't know how many you would get.

This is going to get a whole lot more interesting over the course of the next few weeks. 

Our proper rationing will start on Monday 12th February, this is only due to us both being here, there and everywhere on business between now and then, and also us wanting to get it as accurate as we can.  Once we get going no doubt it will be okay but at the moment it feels a bit daunting.  At least there are a few bloggers on my sidebar who have done this in the past who I can turn to for help or advice.


One thing I did do after my shop was to fill in the 'Chance to win £1000' questionnaire on the Tesco website.  I guess I have little chance of winning but you do get 25 points for doing it.  And you can do it once a month, so if I remember to do it regularly it will be equivalent in points received to me spending an additional £300 at Tesco over the course of a year.  Not a lot really but as they say 'every little helps'.


Left in The Purse - £324.96


Sue xx

24 comments:

  1. I wish my supermarket here would have yellow stickers; no such luck.

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  2. Talk about being in the right place at the right time - how fantastic was that!!!
    And do you really get £300s worth of stuff from tesco for filling in the questionnaire? That sounds more than 'not a lot'!
    Really looking forward to the Digging for Victory project and feeling quite excited about what you will come up with!
    J x

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    1. No you don't get £300 worth of stuff from Tesco you get points as though you had spent that amount, which I think translates to £3 in vouchers.

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  3. Great challenge, great bargains. I think we eat far too much meat these days even compared to when I grew up in the 60's and 70's. I'm reducing our meat consumption and trying out new meals using pulses and lentils. I know I could never be a vegetarian but I can use it wisely.

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  4. Sue, just used the historic inflation calculator on my rations page and 1/6d now equals £4.80. The average of 1/2d is £3.73!

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    1. Weird, I only did the calculation yesterday and I used the figure it gave me. Perhaps we are using different calculators. I'll use the one on your page when I'm back on the computer and then alter my figures. Alan will be pleased 😊

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    2. I've just used the calculator on your page and for 1940 ... which as we're living off rations in February we are taking as our comparison year ... it's £4.66. So I've altered this post to reflect that. Alan is still pleased at the rise in money though, so you're his new best friend 😉

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  5. Interesting challenge! On a (slightly) similar theme, I have been watching Foyle's War on ITV3 at night (didn't see it first time round). Rationing has popped up a few times in the story lines and I thought of you!!

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  6. What a challenge you have, it should be interesting and what a sense of achievement you will have. Apparently, people were generally a lot healthier during the war years because of the restricted diet esp sugar and being more active digging in their own gardens and walking most days to find food! We do, esp me , take the convenience of food for granted and are all too easily persuaded to buy and consume what we don't really need. Good luck! Chrissie.

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  7. Well done on all your reduced price meat. Our local Tesco never reduces anything much. My daughter-in-law used to work for Tesco and she says it is up to the individual store manager to decide the amount of reductions. I think ours must be a bit mean!

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  8. So if i have understood this right you are going to live off the rations they had in war time but supplemented with the good you grow and or have preserved?

    Wow what a challenge!
    It's always interested me how people survived on such little food and how they made it go as far as possible. A talent I think the majority of us have lost in todays society (given how much food this world wastes)

    I think they should teach it in school again!

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  9. But I do like how much variety and diverse food we can get now adays. I love tasting new foods mediterranean, chinese, indian etc. They didnt have such variety during the war years.

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  10. Couldn't do wartime rations - would miss my frothy coffees too much!
    Look forward to seeing how you get on

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  11. Hope all goes well, I am looking to cut the cost right down even more on the meals I produce, we don't eat meat every day, good luck with it all. It will all be worth it in the end when you have paid the mortgage.

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  12. A friend and I are doing something similar this year. I will be watching with great interest. I look forwards to reading more!
    https://hiproofbarn.wordpress.com/2018/01/19/striving-for-victory-living-2018-like-its-1942/

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  13. A really interesting twist on your original challenge. Looking forward to seeing how it goes. Quite tempted to join you! I'd struggle with the meagre tea ration though and my beloved baking would have to be scaled back, I fear. The milk ration was not that high either especially if you wanted to use any quantity in cooking. I'd struggle much more with these than the restricted meat, I think. Really makes you think when you start working out seriously what you'd be able to have and what not. Good luck and keep digging! Elizabeth

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  14. I'm also interested; Having watched the 1940's House now on DVD when it was originally televised, one of the factors mentioned was not only food shortage and rationing but a 95 percent inflation rate for things which were available after a certain point, and US efforts to help by sending in canned foods and items like peanut butter which was not available in the UK. The after segment was also interesting because members of the family discussed how the experience of living in a different time had changed their attitudes and some of their behaviors. This was done about seventeen years ago, and I wonder now whether the lessons stuck. Good luck with your project, Sue.

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    1. I'm halfway through watching this on Dvd at the moment.

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  15. Good luck with the challenge as it now stands. I will be reading to see how you are doing.

    Wonderful buys on the yellow sticker items.

    God bless.

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  16. I don't know if you do facebook but there's a really nice group called the 1940's hub rationing challenge. The people on there are mines of information and very friendly.

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    1. I'll look for that, thanks 😊

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  17. Oh I am so excited about this :), It's something that I want to explore this year myself. I've got many a notepad filled in with ideas and many a books and I know that myself and the other half could do it. What are your thoughts on the egg situation? I was thinking because we (and you) are basically in the countryside we would have had our own hens so they would be available to use and we wouldn't need egg replacer, but then it depends on whether you are being strict with the rations.

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    1. All the books I've read say that if you kept your own chickens you would simply surrender your egg rations, both fresh and dried, and instead you would get an allowance of chicken feed. We will obviously be doing it this way for our Challenge. As we live in the countryside everything we do will be geared to how we live now and transferred to how it was during the first year of rationing for rural folk. It means Alan would be allowed unlimited eggs really ... it also means that if we were really in the wartime rationing period all our non-laying girls would have very quickly found themselves in the pot.

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