Tuesday, 5 February 2013

The Tenner Challenge: day five - date night

Only two more days to go until my week of living on £10 is over. I have to say, I'm quite looking forward to it - although this week has put my spending into perspective, it's not been easy and the old enthusiasm factor is starting to run a bit low. It probably wasn't helped by the fact that today was the first day since Saturday that I've felt like I've been really restricted - the little things are starting to get to me. I had a massive Diet Coke craving at lunchtime (it is the nectar of the Gods after all)  but managed to resist due to the 60p price tag. Constantly having to make decisions over the pennies rather than the pounds is beginning to wear thin.

I guess I'm one of the lucky ones though - for me, there is a very foreseeable end to such drastic budgeting. Come Friday, although I'll probably start thinking a little bit harder about being frivolous, I'll be back to a weekly spend that's considerably more than the amount I've got this week and I never have to think about where money for food, clothes, rent or bills is coming from. Living off £10 a week not out of choice, but out of necessity, for a long period of time isn't something I ever want to experience - and this week has bought home to me how tough it must be for those that do on a continual basis.

Anyway, back to today. Initially we had plans with friends for tonight, but unfortunately they fell through so we had to come up with another way to spend those few precious hours between work and sleep.

Every now and then Ash and I have a 'date night'. When you've been going out for close to half a decade and have been living together for two years, it's easy to get into a routine of eating dinner in front of the TV and mumbling a few words to each other every evening. Quite often we also have weeks when due to different commitments it feels like we pass like ships in the night. With Ash set to be working late for a few nights this week and me being off to London at the weekend, we thought it might be nice to spend some proper time together tonight.

Quite often "date night" consists of a meal out or a trip to the cinema, possibly a drink somewhere - you know, the usual sort of stuff. However, with £5.50 to my name that sort of thing was clearly a no go. So instead we spent the evening in.

To add a bit of spice, I splurged £1.92 on a couple of Gu desserts and Ash bought a bottle of wine - after much hmming and ahhing from me about whether accepting a glass would be cheating - but then decided as I'm basically a charity case this week it was ok. We turned the TV off, put some music on, lit some candles and made fresh Tagliatelle Primavera together (that's spicy tagliatelle with peppers, courgettes, red onions and thyme to you and I).

As I've mentioned before, Ash is a dab hand at pasta making these days and I'm exceptionally good at pouring red wine. Together we're a match made in heaven.             

The Tagliatelle Primavera was delicious - a  mix of olive oil, red onions, peppers, courgettes, chilli flakes and thyme fried over a medium heat for 8 minutes and then chucked on a heap of fresh pasta. Simple, yet perfectly formed.

Over dinner we made a pact to do more 'date nights' like these - although we both love eating out, there's nothing quite as satisfying as cooking a gorgeous meal at home. When Ash and I first got together I found it extremely hard to cook with him. He's exceptionally precise and ordered about everything, whereas I'm more of a chuck it in the pan and see how it turns out sort of girl. It was so bad that we almost broke up over how to chop an onion and the Kitchen Nazi was my not very affectionate nickname for him. These days though we've mellowed in our old(ish) age and cooking together is something we both love to do - who'd a thunk it?!

Anyway, after dinner we snuggled up together to watch a film on the sofa. It was lovely just to have a bit of 'us' time.

Then things moved to the bedroom. By that I mean that I  took my laptop to bed to write this blog and Ash switched the Xbox on to play Fifa. Who says romance is dead?!

On that note, night night! x

The Tenner Challenge day five
Total spent: £6.42
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