December 5

About Tartan Mum

Who Writes This Stuff?

Tartan Mum lives in Glasgow, city of her birth, youth and (though it hurts to admit it) middle age.  She is mum to two delicious boys (the Tartan Boys) and wife to Tartan Dad.  In previous lives she has worked in publishing as an editorial assistant, as a librarian and as a teacher.  She currently juggles part-time teaching with freelance tutoring and home-making. She enjoys gardening (inexpertly); dancing (badly), DIY and other creative pursuits (again, with more enthusiasm than talent), cooking, reading, and talking about herself in the third person.

What Do I Know About Saving You Money?

Thirteen years ago Tartan Dad left his job to do voluntary work for one year and we lived on my salary.  We made a lot of changes and over the course of that year we managed to live on our tiny budget. We congratulated ourselves on our success. When we have two salaries again – we vowed – we will live on one and save all of the other.  A year later, Tartan Dad found a new job and we had two salaries again.

worried gift-giverGuess what?  We spent both salaries.  Every month.  For years!  Four years to be precise, right up until we had our first Tartan Baby, and had to learn all over again how to live on less.  I am not embarrassed telling you this, because experience has shown me that most people do the same:  most people habitually spend as much as they can.  It’s only when the money runs out towards the end of the month that we start to wonder where it all went. Changing your spending habits is hard but keeping those changes up is harder.

Over the years Tartan Dad and I have weathered three periods of unemployment, a drop to part-time hours, the arrival of two wonderful but pricey Tartan Boys, and the same global ups and downs everyone else is riding. I have made it my job to figure out how to make lasting changes to our spending as a family. Changes we can keep up.  Changes that make a real difference to our outgoings. Changes that make us a happy household as well as a solvent one. That’s my qualification to offer you my advice – I have struggled to find a system that works for us and I think you might find it works for you. But – frankly – you could probably teach me a thing or two about saving money too. In which case I would love to hear from you – feel free to leave a comment or drop me an email.


  1. By Cathy on

    I was so pleased to find your website during a search for more information about beremeal! I visited Orkney for the first time this summer and some friends baked beremeal bread as part of dinner – delicious! I brought some back and now bake beremeal bread at home. I grow my own veg and try to apply permaculture principles to my lifestyle. I’m keen to manage my resources to reduce the waste of food, energy – and money! So will be reading your blogs on how to be thrifty.

    1. tartanmumBy tartanmum (Post author) on

      Hi Cathy, lovely to hear from you. Orkney is an amazing place – I hope you had a great time there. I follow a local group on Facebook called Orkney Past And Present that you might like – great for local information and a daily dose of amazing photos taken by residents.
      If you are already growing your own vegetables and applying permaculture principles I should be following your blog instead! Have you got one?


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