Over the course of our year and two months without supermarkets we have been asked many a question about cleaning products. Where we buy them, what we use, where can others buy them and so on and so forth.cleaning 1

We have found that as a consequence of changing our shopping habits the types and the amounts of cleaning products we buy and use have changed. We have made our own washing up liquid (successful but not perfect), we have made several version of our own kitchen spray and we have started using washing nuts. In short we have really tried hard to be better cleaning product buyers. As you may know when we do buy cleaning products we purchase them from the really useful shop in Faringdon (it’s actually changed names but we will always call it the really useful shop as…… it is really useful), the same place that caters for our toilet roll needs. Whilst this is great as we are fulfilling our brief of local shopping the more into this new way of life we get the more we think about the cleaning products we buy and use (sad maybe but……… this way of life gets under your skin).kitchen floor

So……..it’s been on our mind for a while and then into our inbox flies a solution! We received an email from a lovely (and extremely clever) gentleman called Angus from a new(ish) company called Splosh!

sploshNow we get many requests to try products and endorse things (both paid and unpaid) and we pride ourselves on saying no to them (apart from our free holiday but you did forgive us) even though it is often very tempting. However, the email from Angus was very different, it simply said he’d heard about our project and would we like to be sent some of his products – no mention of reviewing or endorsing, more like a gift. So instead of hitting delete we clicked the link and……….. we were greeted with a website that was clean and beautiful and on the second section said the words:

‘give supermarkets the push’!!!!! As you can imagine we were delighted and excited. Ten minutes later  we had read all about it and emailed Angus back to say we would LOVE to try his products.

To give a little more context here’s a little from the splosh website about how it started:

‘The Splosh story story starts back in January 2010. I was standing in the Hay on Wye Co-Op car park throwing plastic bottles into a recycling container, and was struck by the thought that what I was doing was pretty silly. Ridiculous in fact. I was buying bottles for stuff like washing up and laundry products, my family were using them once and then I threw them away – in perfectly good condition.

I turned to look at the supermarket, where mothers with children were pushing trolleys through the doors piled high with plastic bottles from their weekly shop. Could it be that these multi-billion pound businesses, which dominate the retail scene and whose bosses are considered some of the greatest business people in the country, had a fundamental inefficiency at their heart? Driving away from the Co-Op that day, an idea started to gel in my mind….

It took many months before Splosh was born. Designers, chemists and fragrance experts have worked hard together to create an extraordinary new concept. The idea is to sell home care products direct to customers as concentrates. It’s never been done before, and a lot of complex chemistry has had to be overcome in order to achieve it.’

splosh 1So…… today the postman arrived with our gift and we were extremely delighted, even before we opened the box we knew this was a good thing – it looked right!

splosh 6So inside the box was some loo cleaner, kitchen spray, laundry detergent and hand wash. As soon as nap time was upon us Becksie set to work ‘making’ the products. This was so easy and dare she say it REALLY GOOD FUN (we know, Becksie is SAD). It’s simple, you put the pouch in the bottle (ours were already inside the right bottle) you run the tap until it’s hot and….. you fill it up. Leave it a minute or two and the capsule dissolves and you are left with a full bottle of cleaning product.splosh 3

As soon as the loo cleaner was ready Becksie bolted upstairs and gave it a go – the result were amazing. It smelt divine. Downstairs the kitchen spray and hand soap were ready. Guess what AMAZING too! They smell great and they actually work really well. Then it was time to do some washing – Becksie was delighted to do washing! These bad boys have even made cleaning fun! WOW!

So here’s the deal we are in one day 100% converted and we promise we haven’t been paid or even asked to say these things, we are saying them because they are true and how we feel. We know lots of you lovely people will love them too.

splosh 4Here’s how it works – click here to visit their website, chose a starter pack which arrives at your door from these lovely folk in Hay on Wye. Make up the products, use them, love them and then when you run out keep the lovely bottles (we haven’t even mentioned how lovely the bottles look – they are really stylish and simple) and order refills to your door to make more delightful cleaning products.splosh 2

And the best bit is they are extremely reasonable, for example kitchen spray works out at about 99p per bottle! AMAZING!

So there you have a Team Pugh product review that was done because this company is wonderful and really fits with who and what we are! And as part of our year of less we will be slimming down our cleaning cupboard, using up the old (remember we hate waste) and simply having the few items we need purchased from Splosh, a lovely, quirky and British company.

BUT – don’t fear we promise to keep buying loo roll and other bits and bobs from the really useful shop 🙂


Team Pugh at The Good Food Show

Effortlessly a week has gone by since we last posted how time flies! Still no supermarket visits but lots of tasty food and a trip to The Good Food Show!

good food 6Our week’s shopping was done a week yesterday at Witney market and butchers and weighed in a total of £37! We got some dates from the market and to say they’re delicious is an understatement they are amazing!

good food 2So….. yesterday saw us up early and on our way to London. Lizzie wasn’t keen on the early morning (she’s like her mum and dad, a night owl) but when we explained our early start in the following way she was delighted and chorused the words ‘cheese, bic bic, choc choc’ all the way. Our explanation went like this:

Becksie: ‘Come on Lizzie we are going to London’

Lizzie: Yawns and makes grumpy face

Ian: ‘We are going to a big room where all day you will get to eat different bits of food’

Lizzie: Looks interested

Becksie: ‘Like sausage, yogurt, cheese, choc choc, bacon, jam, chutney, cake’

Ian: Lists more food

Lizzie: ‘Choc choc, cheese, cake, bic bic’

good food 1It seems that not only has Lizzie developed her mummy and daddy’s staying up late traits she is also very into her food. At not even two she understands that a day of tasters is a very exciting thing! She also seems to have expensive tastes and was (like her mummy and daddy) jolly keen on the truffle cheese and other such delights. There were 100’s of food producers there all passionate about good food! We might also have spotted a few foodie celebs. Turns out Paul Hollywood is much smaller in real life than he looks on the tv we must also add he was doing a great job of protecting Mary Berry from the crowds.



Becksie watched a cookery demo by Michel Roux Junior – it looked amazing and she picked up a few tips from the great chef mostly that the key to successful French cooking is butter, butter and more butter. Whilst Becksie watched this Lizzie and Ian went and found a park and by all accounts had a great time.good food 3

So we are sure you are all dying to know who Team Pugh voted as our favourite producer of the day (well probably not but we’ll tell you anyway) and…… just so you know this is a genuine fake award and not a paid product review. The winner of the Team Pugh London Good Food Show 2013 producer of the year goes (hands down) to The Great British Sauce Company! Their sauce was simple yet AMAZING. Lots of lovely varieties we loved the curry sauce and brown sauce the best. Show price was 3 bottles for £5 and so a bargain!

We borrowed this photo off their facebook page as we were so busy eating and buying we forgot to take any pics - we hope they don't mind.

We borrowed this photo off their facebook page as we were so busy eating and buying we forgot to take any pics – we hope they don’t mind.

The company owners were a) passionate about their product b) very knowledgeable and c) so friendly. So Great British Sauce Company please accept our made up award. They have a facebook page which we know you’d like to like and a twitter account that’s well worth a follow. If you get the chance please try some and report back we think you’ll love it!good food 5

Whilst we’re on our fake awards the most fed up celeb goes to…..Gregg Wallace – mind you when we saw a glimpse of him it was towards the end of the day and he had signed loads of books and done lots of shows. So his reward is a HUGE make believe sticky toffee pudding. Aww that’s better Gregg!

So there you have it a little report from our great day out and….. did we buy anything? Of course but they were Christmas gifts so remain a secret. And…. we avoided the Tesco stand but felt a tad guilty as they had sponsored some of it but….. as we’ve always said this is not a supermarket hate campaign it was more of an experiment that change our lives for the better.

We will shut up shortly but just one more thing…… on the way to London we were discussing ideas for a new challenge, a new experiment – so  far we have drawn a blank – anyone got any ideas? Do leave us a comment or email us.

Scoop and Save (Jump and Wave)

scoop and save 1Is it just us or when you think scoop and save do you immediately want to say jump and wave – as in….. ‘Scoop and Save, Jump and Wave’!?? Ok yes then! Anyway if you didn’t before you will now!

scoop and save 5A digression indeed…… the question is what happened to ‘scoop and save (jump and wave) shops’? When Becksie was young in the mighty metropolis of Skegness there was a scoop and save (jump and wave) shop. Becksie clearly remembers going with her Grandad and being allowed to scoop the items into the bags. The bins were red with a plastic white scoop. Ian also recalls a  similar shop that he used to visit with his Nan.

scoop and save 2Nowadays the only place we ever see this kind of shopping is on trips to Devon! What’s Devon got that we haven’t? Now Millets Farm have frozen ‘scoop and save, jump and wave’ selling fruit, vegetables and baked goods but……. what about everywhere else?

scoop and save 3Questions are:

1) What happened to these shops?

2) Does anyone know of one local to us?

3) Do you have fond scoop and save, jump and wave memories?

4) Are they not around for hygiene reasons?

5) Do they actually help you save (wave)?

6) Can someone open one in Faringdon?

scoop and save 4

Pigs in Puddles

So the results are in……and…………we had a clear winner in our poll we set yesterday to see whether we should visit Open Farm Sunday or not, with a massive 87% of you saying that Open Farm Sunday was ok for us to go and visit, despite the whole day being sponsored by several supermarkets.

Custard and Daisy

Custard and Daisy

And so, after a leisurely breakfast of toast, porridge, muffins and more toast we set off for Southdown Farm just outside of Witney. Now we had not heard of this farm before and a quick glance at the write up on the Open Farm Sunday website suggested it has something to do with cheese. Being somewhat fond of cheese we decided that it was worth a look! It also showed us that this farm didn’t supply to supermarkets so we felt good to go and… Continue reading

A Shop of Three Halves

shop 1

Shopping part 1 and 2

This weeks shopping has been a tale of three halves (you know what we mean)! Firstly we really needed a few bits and pieces that are harder to come by at the market so we did a quick stop by our lovely local community shop the other day. We then visited The Really Useful Shop in Faringdon for loo roll and some loo cleaner (we’ve been using alternatives cleaners for a while but are planing a spring clean at the weekend so thought we’d treat ourselves to the real mccoy – please don’t judge us ;)).

shop 4

The lovely fish people

Today it was over to Witney to visit the really great fruit and vegetable stall, butcher and……… there was a new fish fellow in town (well new to us as we are not normally Thursday Witney market shoppers)! Whilst at said fish stall we picked ourselves up a something new to try, some Cod cheeks! Now we know that cod is not the most sustainable fish and we regularly buy other fish for this reason, but cod cheeks do at least mean as much of the fish once caught gets used. Now we had not tried theses before, so after getting a bit of advice from the stallholder we went on our merry way to pick up the rest of our delights!

In the butchers, but  definitely fake!

In the butchers, but definitely fake!

We picked up some lovely minced pork in the butchers which we watched them mince, so we know there is no horse in it! We realised that for the past few weeks we have been getting a whole bird (chicken, pheasant etc) and making it last the week, and whilst we love doing this and it works out very economically we (well Becksie) felt a little in a cooking rut, so something different this week!shop 3

All shopping done and £3.14 change for the week, not too bad at all and we have a fridge full of lovely lovely food!

shop 2

So for tea tonight we had our cod cheeks and they were very very good. Becksie coated them in a little flour and shallow fried them and they were really tender and tasty, so tasty in fact that we failed to take any pictures of them as we snaffle them all down – oops – you will just have to use your imaginations with that one!