Saving money is something that is usually on at least one person’s mind in wedding season. It may be the bride and groom who are concerned that costs are getting out of control. If parents are paying, they want to appear generous but also have limited funds and are looking for ways to save wedding budget without looking tight. So many couples have children already either from their current or previous relationships and don’t want to put all their financial resource into just one day even if it is their Big Day. Every item on the budget can be considered as an area where savings can be made and wedding favours is one of them. You can spend a small fortune or check out wedding favour ideas for under £1 online.

History of wedding favours

Wedding favours certainly were given to wedding guests as far back as the 16th century often simple love knots made from lace and ribbon. European aristocrats gave fancy bonbonnieres containing sweet treats.  There is a tradition around giving five almonds representing fertility, longevity, health, wealth and happiness. Most of us will probably have received coloured almonds or bon-bons in tulle at a wedding  at some point. It is a pretty little memento of a lovely day.

My wedding favours

I have to confess I did not give wedding favours at my wedding. I wanted our day to be very individual and it did not include many of the traditional elements such as a first dance for example. I had always fancied having an outdoor picnic as my reception but as my parents were elderly by the time I tied the knot, I ruled that idea out in favour of a small sit-down dinner. My flowers were simple along with the cake. I did buy 6 wedding dresses which was not how to save wedding budget but that’s a whole other story! Anyway I guess I am saying do your day your way and if one item does not bother you, why invest money in it in the first place?

Home-made wedding favours

Of course, maybe I should have given my guests something to take home with them. I was not trying to be ungenerous. I simply put the focus on giving them a lovely day rather than something to take away with them. There are so many ways to save money on wedding favours with a little creative thought. My first suggestion is that you should not fall for the fancy marketing ploys seen in wedding magazines and at wedding shows. Wedding favours do not need to be pricey. You could consider giving a really personal touch by making something yourself for your guests to take home with them after your wedding. If you are a great baker, why not produce some yummy cookies which are bound to be welcome and a talking point too. It really is the thought that counts so a home-made treat made with love matters so much more than something pre-bought. If baking is not your thing, perhaps you could use your crafting skills in some way to create a memento of your day.

Shop around

Of course brides and grooms are very busy in the run-up to the wedding so perhaps you lack the time or inclination to go down the home-made route for wedding favours. If that is the case, do shop around to see what is available out there both on and offline. Look out for voucher codes, discounts and sales as you would for any other purchase.

Be inspired by ideas from around the world

If you want your wedding favours to stand out, why not take inspiration from other countries. In Spain, gentlemen guests are sometimes presented with a cigar. In Russia, you might get a tiny picture, a trinket or a candle. Mini wedding bells are given quite often in Ireland as favours whilst in India, you may be given a hand-crafted elephant. Perhaps your wedding favours could reflect the location of the wedding in some way or the place that you and your other half fell in love. Use your imagination and have fun with deciding on the perfect wedding favours for your Big Day.

So what will you decide? Will you take a bold decision like myself and do without wedding favours entirely or is that too harsh on your guests? Will you get creative and use your existing talents to make something very personal for your wedding favours? Or will time constraints lead you to look for affordable solutions online?

On reflection, I probably would give my wedding guests favours if I ever remarried. I did remember it was important to send thank-you letters and I did have party bags for the child guests so perhaps I did not do too badly really.

What is your favourite type of wedding favour?

Saving Money On Wedding Favours

 

3 Little Buttons

Have you had a great tenancy? My belief is that they are not as common as they should be. When they go wrong, it is stressful for both the tenant and the landlord. Advice on having  a great tenancy should be on the school curriculum in my opinion. When I worked for Citizens Advice about a fifth of problems concerned housing which is such a shame when homes are where we should feel safe and happy.

My renting experiences

I have rented homes since leaving university. To be honest, my best  experiences were living in a rented room with a resident landlord. I think that is probably because a resident landlord obviously wants to keep their home in a good state of repair so you benefit from that as a lodger. Also I think that when you are lodging you get to know the  landlord and vice versa so you understand each other that bit better than in a traditional tenancy.

My complaint about landlords is probably mainly that they are not realistic. If you rent to a family with small children, the house will not be pristine 24 hours per day. Similarly do not rent to families with  pets unless you want to see the odd dog hair or two. Life changes from time to time so if someone loses a job there may be a delay in getting their benefits and they can’t help that. Pick the right tenant for your property and for your circumstances.

My other complaint is that landlords can be tardy to deal with repairs. That means things tend to only get worse and in the most extreme cases the wellbeing of the tenant and their family is put at risk.

I have had some good landlords but overall it has always felt that they were after money and did not really care about their tenant’s welfare at all. I find it amazing that I have never had the How to Rent  booklet that landlords are supposed to hand you when you take a tenancy with them.

The landlord’s perspective

Of course, landlords have their own pressures partly because they are maintaining more than one house with all the associated costs from mortgages to maintenance. Some tenants do behave badly causing damage or issues such as noise pollution with neighbours.  Great tenancies happen when both parties behave well and with respect. Sometimes it can be easier to have a letting agency such as HomeLet to help with this.

How to have a great tenancy

I think the first step is for both parties to act honestly and to communicate clearly. Yes there is the written tenancy agreement but it would also be good to see a good human as well as legal relationship in place too. Some things really help at the start such as reading the fuel meters together and agreeing the readings. That is one potential area for conflict sorted on day one.  Make sure the landlord or his/her agent shows you how to use the boiler and appliances, where the fuse box and stop cock is. These are so easily forgotten but you do need this information about your new place. Setting up a direct debit for rental payments is reassuring to the landlord and a great idea for the tenant as then the rent is prioritised over other  expenditure so securing their home.

Protection for tenants
  • Negotiate for the period of time you would like the tenancy for
  • Be realistic about what you can afford to pay in rent
  • Check that you are getting all the benefits you are entitled to
  • Collect proofs of identity, immigration and employment status so you have it ready for the landlord should they ask for these
  • Find out if your potential landlord is part of an accreditation scheme
  • Find out if the letting agent is accredited
  • Check out deposit protection schemes
  • Research bond and guarantee schemes to help you put your deposit together if you are struggling
  • Ensure the landlord has provided smoke and carbon monoxide monitors
  • It is a good idea to agree an inventory of the items in the house to prevent disputes later on
  • Make sure you have the landlord’s real address and find out if the property is mortgaged. I once had the not so lovely experience of a possession summons for mortgage arrears arriving on the doormat just after I moved into a house many years ago now.
  • You should be provided with a gas safety certificate, electrical inspections details and an energy performance certificate.
Who can help in a crisis?

The lovely news is that if everyone behaves with good intentions, you can have a great tenancy. If things do go wrong, you can seek support from the Citizens Advice Bureau or a specialist housing charity such as Shelter.

 

 

 

Lucy At Home UK parenting blogger

Cosmetic dentistry is not something I heard of as a child or teenager. My mum took me for regular check-ups with a great dentist. I loved to go and see Mr Shaw. I knew my mum had such faith in his expertise. His practice was based in Empire House and I remember going up the steps to his place and the magazines in the waiting room. He was always kind and I needed only a couple of fillings as a teenager and then some braces at one point. The best bit was that mum always bought me a present after a visit to the dentist.

Neglecting my teeth

To my shame, I let Mr Shaw and my parents down after going to university. I just did not make time for regular visits to the dentist and once you stop going it is so easy to forget about the whole dentist thing. Of course, time and age will catch up with you.

Post-natal depression

My teeth are awful. If I am honest, I hardly cleaned them at all when in the depths  of post-natal depression. Two teeth seem to be knocked back a little and they are not sparkling white. I do look after them these days but the damage is done.

Cosmetic dentistry

So for a long time, I have considered cosmetic dentistry and recently checked out Saving Faces as if anyone needs to save face it is me! It’s hard not to when the media is full of such white smiles and perfect teeth. Actually I don’t want a celebrity smile but I would like to see my own warm smile at its best again. This is one area where I might actually set money aside for myself at some point rather than for the family. I know that it would boost my confidence massively.

Taking the plunge

In fact, as I am planning a trip to Liverpool over the Summer, this may be the perfect time to not only have a fun weekend but perhaps to actually take the plunge and get my smile fixed. I did not really know what would be needed but apparently dental implants liverpool are just the ticket and a modern version of false teeth to replace my damaged ones.

Have you ever considered cosmetic dentistry? Perhaps you have had it done already and can leave me a supportive comment.

 

Post Comment Love

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We are a society of “all or nothing.” This is an attitude that costs us in our quest for a perfectly balanced, perfectly delightful life. In the mapping of the “all or nothing.” guide to life, many wonderful things were chopped off. Things that were enjoyable and indulgent were deemed unhealthy. Not only is this concept flawed, it also sets us up for failure.

Who makes these rules?

Health experts set up healthy programs, and in doing so, they cut away things that people enjoy and mark them as unhealthy. Things like chocolate, sugar, and carbohydrates. These things are not “bad.” In fact, in moderation and used correctly, they are quite healthy and serve a purpose. But, the experts do not seem to think we are strong enough or smart enough to know when (or how much) to partake in them, so they remove them from our lives and treat us like toddlers in a candy store.

Pleasure

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Exposing the truth

Natural sugar and carbohydrates provide the body with fast-acting energy. If you are on a healthy eating program and if you are expending a lot of energy through activities, you may find yourself in need of such an energy boost. Combining these foods with fruit, nuts, and dairy products increase their nutritional value.

The truth is, there is something good about all foods. It is moderation, not elimination that we should strive for. This is called, using the tools you are given. You are creating a healthy lifestyle. In reality, you will not spend the rest of your life without ever partaking in guilty pleasure food. You must incorporate them into your life.

Chocolate and other sweets are good for you

There have been many studies on the effects of chocolate and other sweets on the human body. You may be surprised to find out these delicious foods often have a positive effect on your body.

A study conducted by Harvard suggests that eating chocolate is good for your heart. In fact, they predict that a person who eats small amounts of chocolate 5-times per week has a 60% less chance of developing heart disease. The study concludes that this person will live longer than a person, and we might add, they are probably in a better mood.

Studies show that eating sugar while you are exerting yourself (like mowing the lawn or mopping the floor) gives you the boost of energy you need without the crash later.

If you are concerned about your blood vessels, eat cotton candy! In research, it is shown that melting down of cotton candy actually created new blood vessels in the body.

Conclusion

No one is suggesting you eat tons of candy and expect to be healthy. We are suggesting that in small amounts it is good for you physically and emotionally. You do not have to give up the candy you love, just eat it in moderation.

You do not have to walk through a candy shop, and it’s temptations to get delicious candy. Buying bulk candy online at SweetService.com is the answer. Have your favorite candy delivered to your door and reach for it when you need or want it. You will be able to maintain your self-control. After all, you are an adult with a fully functioning brain. Someone should explain that to the “experts.”

They say the kitchen is the heart of the home. Many families spend a significant part of their day in the kitchen. It is used for the preparation and the taking of meals. If you are have a large kitchen, your children might do their homework at the table and many a small business grew into a large one from dreams at the kitchen table.

Jazzing

So a kitchen is worth investing in but how do you jazz it up when funds are low? Let’s look at some budget ideas for jazzing up your special room.

Shop around

Don’t assume cheap kitchens mean you have to go without style. Do plenty of research  and don’t fall for the first thing you see. More affordable options will be available if you take the time to look.

Consider quick fixes

Do you really need to replace the whole kitchen? Could you perhaps just replace cabinet doors or even given them a fresh lick of paint? If funds are really tight, even some clever new handles can make you feel a bit better about your kitchen. Don’t forget accessories from places like Kitchen Warehouse as these can really add to your expression of self in the kitchen.

Charity shopping

You may not want to buy everything from a charity shop but there is always a good feeling when you purchase items that mean you get something new, someone has disposed of their “trash” and a charity benefits too. There are furniture stores run by big charities like the British Heart Foundation in most cities nowadays. On the other hand, you might like to check out bric-a-brac shelves for retro kitchenalia and quirky artwork to put on the walls.

Wonderful walls

I once had a friend who painted his kitchen blue on a whim and hated it. When he felt cheerier he changed it to terracotta which worked well. I have always fancied an orange kitchen. Make choices after due consideration and ensure all the family feel comfortable with them. You could paint the kitchen or invest in some wallpaper and one way to save would be to just have one feature wall in striking design.

Are you jazzing up your kitchen soon? I  would love to hear your plans.