Life has been pretty expensive recently. We bought a house, followed by a truck load of furniture and now we're about to start planning a wedding. With every spare penny going into our savings, life is pretty much on hold for another year and we have become experts at creating the perfect budget night in.
Now that the evenings are beginning to get a little bit darker and chillier I'm sure I'm not the only person who quite enjoys spending their evenings indoors so I thought I'd share with you my perfect ingredients for a budget night in.
Who cares about fashion?
A proper chill out for me involves putting my PJs on. Always a size too big and extra cosy, you'll quite often find me bundled up on the sofa in my pink fluffy M&S dressing gown and covered in my bunny fleece. With some extra thick socks finishing the party I wont be winning any glamour awards but nothing beats slouching around in your comfies.
It doesn't cost much money at all to feel truly relaxed at home. Just light a few candles and spend your evening in their comforting glow. This time of year is my favourite for scented candles and I have been known to crack out the cranberry or ginger from my Christmas collection a little earlier than I should. Yankee have just brought out a new Halloween range that I have my eye on, I'm quite curious about the candy corn scent.
Lazy activities as a couple - online gaming anyone?
Simon and I try to spend quality time with each other when we're having a night in. This means shutting our phones away in another room to avoid the temptation of social media so we can give our full attention to doing things that we can enjoy together.
We have a pretty vast DVD collection to pick from and take it in turns to pick out our favourite films (predictably a chick flick for me and an action film for him) or we spend our time enjoying something on our laptops like online bingo games at 32 Red Bingo or 888 Ladies. 32 Red's roster of bingo games gives you plenty of choice - plus you get a free tenner to play with just for joining. As we're pretty competitive with each other it always leads to an evening of fun.
Settling in with a good book
If we fancy a quieter night in we'll usually reach for something from the coffee table. I have a collection of books I love dipping in and out of and Simon usually has a little stash of gaming magazines to work through. After a busy week at work it can be really lovely to chill out in the peace and quiet.
Comfort food that doesn't break the bank
Of course no night in is complete without food and when we're enjoying a budget night in we steer clear of expensive takeout and instead pick ourselves something that we can easily cook at home. This means pizza (our current favourite is the Ristorante Mozzarella) with a glass of wine and then some naughty snacks for later in the evening.
How would you create a perfect budget night in? I'd love to hear your ideas.