Saturday, 8 June 2013


Sorry that it has been a while since I last posted. Last week I went away camping in Cornwall, so this week has been totally manic trying to catch up with everything.

Well, we are finally getting the sunshine I have been craving for. This is my youngest daughter about to cartwheel down the sand dunes in delight. There is nothing like sun, sea and sand to lift the spirits J

The week didn’t start out sunny, in fact we had a few grim days with very cold nights and even frost. (I didn’t think you got frost in Cornwall!) It was so cold in the tent that we spread an emergency space blanket over us, and slept in socks and jumpers, zipped up to our noses in mummy sleeping bags with blankets piled on top. (In case you ever find yourself in that situation, the emergency space blanket definitely felt warmer, though it rustled every time someone moved.) Luckily the weather broke and the last half of the week was spent on the beach in the sunshine.

I love camping. Despite the traipse to the toilets, getting covered in insect bites, being woken up by the rain, and everything being messy, I really love it. It must be all the fresh air, seeing the stars at night and waking up to the dew on the grass. It feels cosy, all of us together, snuggled in our sleeping bags, with the dog spread-eagled across us (She was only allowed in because she was shivering out in the living area!)

Camping makes you re-consider all the belongings and clutter that seems so necessary for everyday life. There is also much more time spent together, as you can’t shut yourself away for some privacy. So I am thankful to be home and planning more family time. I feel even more aware that a serious de-clutter is required soon and I am being very strict on any new stuff.

I had a small post about population featured on clickonwales just before I went away, which you can read here if you are interested.

I am planning the next post about energy again, especially with the increased energy consumption for us Brits this year, as a result of the pro-longed winter. My direct debit for gas has been increased by more than double, and I’m not alone.

There is a project that will run over the next 2 years and is aiming to save 15% on energy bills for community buildings. When you consider that the price increase predicted by British Gas for this year alone is 15%, then these savings will be needed just to stand still. So if your energy bill is £1,000 for the year, you will need to put aside an additional £150, just for price increases, unless you can reduce the amount of energy you use. I had a friend who would set a budget for his energy bills and if the bills were more than he budgeted for he would switch the gas or electricity off until the budget balanced. This is a fairly extreme scenario, so hopefully I will have some better suggestions than that for you in the next post.


  1. Glad you had a great time camping Judy. Lovely photo of your happy daughter! I am starting to feel the need for a better camping mattress as my ageing bones begin to protest about sleeping on the ground!
    Liked your article. Have you read Nevil Shute's novel Ruined City? It is a very good study of the physical and mental degeneration that happens to people (in this case, a whole town) who have to survive on a very small income, and what it does to their life expectancy. Even something basic like lack of proper dental care (in Australia dental work isn't included in our medicare scheme) can impact on health, and therefore, life expectancy.
    Looking forward to your energy article. Need help going into winter here!

    1. Thanks Jo. My bones felt that way, but I bought a Pakmat ( ) and though its quite expensive, I find it really comfortable.
      I haven't read 'Ruined City' but thanks for the recommendation. I'm just about to start reading the last book you recommended, 'Not Buying It'.

    2. I hadn't realised it was by the Nevil Shute who wrote 'A Town Like Alice', one of my favourite authors when I was a teenager. I will definitely be reading this!

  2. Hope you enjoy Not Buying It. A lot of bloggers who are obsessed by rules criticise her for not being strict enough on her no spend year, but I think her analysis of her feelings about being alienated in a consumption culture, and her gradual transformation from consumer to citizen is excellently written, almost as a kind of sociological study as much a personal biography. And i am more about personal transformation than rules anyway!

  3. We love camping too (but not the achey bones bit!). I agree with your point that it does make you much more aware of all the stuff you DON'T need. I really enjoyed reading Not Buying It too, particularly her analysis of the impact of not consuming not only material things but things like the arts and culture.

  4. Thanks for sharing your experience. Camping is very good idea for spending time together.

    Kellys Camping