the skinflint philosopher

Attempting to thrift our way to a better life, with a toddler in tow!

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“Arrrr, me hearties!” (part 1)

Ok so that may very well be a pirate catchphrase, but I not really sure what Vikings stereotypically shouted to each other. “Valhalla or bust?” perhaps? Another rainy afternoon sees Tiddler and I throwing caution to the wind and chopping up one of our large boxes we had collected for packing to create a viking longboat.

Tiddler had spent the morning pond dipping with a ginormous green net at a lovely glen to the south of the island, managing to dredge up some mayfly nymphs, larvae, and quite a few little shrimp-like creatures. Possibly shrimps.


The glen also boasts a play park, including a Victorian water powered carousel, and after Tiddler had spun around on the horses and the boats for a time, was quite adamant we had to make a boat when we got home. And as you dear readers know, Vikings and other such slightly vicious creatures are way higher than fairies and princesses in Tiddler’s pecking order of preferential role models.

So,  the first stages of the boat build begin. Obviously this suits our thrifty/ not buying anything new status at the moment before the big upheaval in a few weeks time.
Equipment so far: large box, tape, old broom handle, pillow case, silver foil (for viking shields).

We need to wait for a better day to take it outside to paint. Any preferences on a colour scheme or other things we should include on our model? Any thoughts on how we can improve it?

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Owl pontificates

As Tiddler hits the 2.5 year old mark she is developing a much greater ability to work on a project. Her attention span has improved, she understand the notion of an end product, and is quite happy to have my undivided attention, even if it is mostly to ensure I don’t end up with a full-body-glue-paint-sparkly bit-Tiddler-shaped-entity where Tiddler used to be.

Although our project this weekend was supposed to be a tiger, (see here for the explanation and our crocodile),  it somehow metamorphised into an owl.

Left over balloon from a party
Newspaper (free one that is delivered island wide. We don’t purchase newspapers. Radio 4 has got me covered)
Old drawer liner (a bit like sugar paper in texture for a final pale layer)
An old bottle of PVA glue (ideal for this purpose as I wanted to water it down so I could add in the water, shake it and get all the glue out so none wasted)
Marker pen

Cost: nothing new needed other than what we had in the house anyway, though I will have to purchase more glue now for the next project!

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Why did Tiddler choose an owl to make this time I wondered?  I couldn’t think of a book or a game  that we have been using with any mention of owls. Perhaps she was feeling her inner owl. Take your pick from below of what your inner owl is saying to you right now!