There is a particluar pub round the corner from where I live and every year, there is a fair in the pub car park. This year, emblazoned across the posters advertising said fair is the slogan "BEAT THE CREDIT CRUNCH ALL RIDES £1!!!!" S'cuse me but the rides are always a pound, EVERY SINGLE YEAR THE RIDES ARE £1; I know this because it's advertised, so far I have escaped having to take the kids by lying; telling them the posters are old and "no, that's not the fair in full swing, they're just testing the equipment before moving on". "All those people? Why, they just enjoy visiting pub car parks...maybe". This year, I think it'll be different, d#1 is good at reading, she told me when the fair was this year, adding only "only 3 more days mummy, I'm counting!!" Anyway, I digress, the credit crunch thing stuck in my mind, I guess our family unit hasn't been too affected, but then we have always lived a credit crunch-esque lifestyle. As Sig. Other runs his own business, I tend to view the crunch as a bit of a sword of Damocles. So last week, I came to the decision that I too was going to "BEAT THE CREDIT CRUNCH" and spend as little a possible, only teeny-weeny, small amounts and fill my days rediscovering free and fulfilling activities, far from the Temples of Consummerisim. I started badly, shelling out over £700 to various tradespeople BUT the work was pre-contracted, I was just unfortunate that it was all happening during BEAT THE CRED...ohhh you get the picture. Anyway pre-contracted work doesn't count, as it will, in the fullness of time, add some market value to the house; so, in a round about way, I actually saved us far more than £700. A supermarket spree hmmm...that didn't count either because it nourishment and you have to be well nourished if you're gonna "BEAT THE blah blah" plus I hate supermarket shopping thus I never experince the thrill of frivolity in the asiles of Asda (or Aldi...the recession supermarket of choice). I did the library, lots of Georgette Heyer/Doris Lessing/Mary Wesley bliss for me. Actually, I had to pay off my library fines too, but as I was being good and attempting to "BEAT THE..." the angel on my shoulder urged me not to diddle the good people at the public library out of their £1.60 for much longer (especially as I avoided my last fine by blaming it on the new born). What else? I walked and walked and walked a bit more, appreciating the burgeoning spring atmosphere and inhaling the fragrant car fumes.
Anyway, all this austerity was duly rewarded when the lovely Shiny Red people sent me my AVEENO, AVEENO, AVEENO freebies: Aveeno bath stuff, Aveeno cream and Aveeno moisturiser. The bath stuff claimed to "harness the power of oatmeal", hmmmm, didn't sound very "come hither", so I decided to try it on the kids; actually I had already come to the conclusion that I wanted to mostly use these products on s#1, he has a bit of eczema, nothing too significant but enough to make him uncomfortably itchy at night. I had heard about the benefits of colloidal oatmeal and I can honestly say I wasn't disappointed. An added bonus was that, in the words of s#1, it "smelt like breakfast": he loves breakfast, bathing in it must be in the realm of "Jim'll Fix It" type fantasy. Thus, the kids had fun bathing in breakfast and I loved the fact the kids' skin (especially s#1) was moisturised sans the filmy, oil slick effect that a lot of prescription products bring. Next up the cream...the cream was the main reason I was eager to sample these product, as I have heard a lot positives regarding it's effectiveness. So, s#1, s#2 and d#1 got the treatment, jo beaufoix, hit the nail right on the head when she talks of her skin almost drinking up the cream. It sank into their skin like a dream, wasn't greasy, dealt with s#1's little patch of eczema and, most significantly, he wasn't up in the night with dry, itchy skin. RESULT! I saved the moisturiser for myself, a little treat in return for all my credit crunch beating, for braving all those walks in near gale force condition and forcing myself to read "literature". I liked the cream, it felt good, it absorbed well and had the psychological "Ohhh, get me? Using natural products." thrill. I used it on my hands too, believe me, when I say my hands are the hands of doom and that's putting it is mildly. Having been ravaged by cleaning products and, with little in the way of little in the way of TLC, Aveeno had it's work cut out. It, however, rose to the challenge admirably and, I have to say, the cream did them the power of good (not out of the woods yet but I if I keep applying I can see a light at the end of the tunnel). So, all in all a resounding success AND, I believe that the products can be obtained on prescription so all you MAT leave mums can get your own little freebie! Final word to goes to d#1, "D#1" I said "make up a rhyme about Aveeno and I'll write it down for you"; "ok" replied d#1 rising to the challenge; "Aveeno, Aveeno rhymes with The Beano". Indeed it does and it's just as good.