Hi, I’m Debbie. We moved from Johannesburg South Africa to Oxford in the UK in 2016, and, while it wasn’t anywhere near as hard as any of us expected, there were some fairly steep learning curves along the way.
I love wine and saving money, hence the name Pennies for Pinot! I’m a sucker for a bottle of Pinot Grigio, and honestly it doesn’t even have to be a good one!
We are a family of 3. Myself, my husband and our daughter, and we bought with us our 3 Labradors and 3 Cats (no specific breed and one of them still hasn’t realised we have moved yet!). That in itself cost a small fortune, and is probably worth a blog post of its own, so that will have to be a story for another day!
We are very lucky that we all have British Passports, so for us the process of emigration has been a lot easier and cheaper than it has for many other who have decided to move. It is still not without its challenges, and for me the hardest thing to get under control is housework, and also getting used to rent that grabs a huge majority of my monthly salary!
I work full time, and my husband works part time from home. In the UK, childcare is really expensive. Our daughter is in Secondary school, so we no longer have the convenience of the after-school club and holiday clubs that she went to when we first arrived in 2016, and she was in primary school. Brett was made redundant in 2017, and as that coincided with Liya going to Secondary school, we decided that I should continue to work full time a and he would work from home to provide stability and company for Liya.
We have become experts in living on the cheap (I hate the word frugal, but it is a good descriptor for us!) . We have a goal to feed the family for £30 a week, which usually includes lunches, and trying to keep out other assorted costs as low as we can so that we can rebuild our savings (emigration is EXPENSIVE) and also start building for our retirement.
The plan for this blog is to share some advice for those who want to save money on their grocery bills, but still eat really well, and also to share some of the trials and joys that come with moving to a new country!
If this sounds like the kind of content you would like to hear more about, please subscribe, I would love to share our adventures & spending ideas with as many people as I can! I firmly believe it’s possible to feed families well on the cheap, and I’m determined to prove it!
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