A composite image of Ruth smiling with the text my money

My Money explores how people across the UK manage their spending in a typical week.

As prices rise, BBC News has been hearing about their ways of cutting costs and the financial decisions they have to make.

Ruth Chipperfield is a 33-year-old jewellery designer and goldsmith from Birmingham.

She rents a house with her husband and 23-month-old child.


I spent £364.80 on the nursery, topped up to £456 with the government’s tax-free childcare scheme.

That covers two days nursery a week in February, although my mum looks after my toddler for another two days a week.

I bought a lint roller for £11.98 to hopefully improve the carpet edges in my rented house.

Finally, I spent £49.95 on battery lights, cleaning sponges, sticky seal to cover a crumbling window seal and some flexi lids.

My husband also did a mini food shop costing £40.09 at Asda, which included birthday cards for our niece and nephew.

We spent £466.82 in all.


I found some spare parts for my son’s climbing frame on eBay, spending £62.

My combined utilities went out, which was £191.86. This includes gas, electricity, broadband and two mobile phones.

I’m with Utility Warehouse and get a cash back card, so I get money off my bills each time I use it. This month I got £19.13 off so my actual bill would have been £210.99.

I feel blessed that recent increases in prices have been offset by the growth in my business.

I’ve got narcolepsy and 10 years ago I was collapsing about 30 times a day, so my husband was my carer.

I fell through all the cracks in financial assistance, so it’s taken years for us to gain financial stability.

Today’s total was £253.86.


Today was frustrating. I was on the way to my parents’ house to work on my website there, while my mum looked after my toddler. Then I got blinded by the sun and went up the kerb.

I waited for the RAC with my toddler in the back of the car.

I clipped two wheels needing two new tyres and a new alloy wheel. I went for a cheap tyre at £48 and found a pair of wheels on Gumtree costing £60. I’m hoping to sell the one I don’t need.

I was only able to get one tyre sorted yesterday before picking up the alloys, so that’s another job for tomorrow.

I also spent £9 on my monthly life insurance, £19.25 on car tax, £21 on contact lenses and £925 on rent. I managed to work on my website in the end though.

We’re building up a rainy day fund, then I’d love to save for a deposit to buy a house. We’ll get there eventually.

Today’s outgoings came to £1082.25.


Today was my day off to spend with my boy and it started by getting my car sorted with a new tyre for £59.

I wandered around some shops with my son while waiting for it to be fitted.

I found some nice toy cars in a charity shop and bought him a police car for £1.59. I then bought some crayons and paper in Poundland for £2.50, I didn’t know things in Poundland were no longer £1.

Today I spent £63.09.


I had a solid day working at the jewellers bench, so I didn’t spend anything.

But my husband did a mini supermarket shop, which came to £32.07.

Ruth working on a piece of jewellery at her bench



Today was mostly spent rearranging furniture and tidying the house, ahead of a new sofa arriving.

I spent £107.85 on a mattress topper, mattress protector and new pillows.

We also spent £2.99 on chocolate and an envelope at the corner shop.

That’s £110.84 for today.


We almost got through the day without spending anything.

But in the end, we had curry for £40.79. We rarely get a takeaway so it’s a treat, although we always spend more than what I think a takeaway should cost, partly because I’m gluten free so there are fewer options.

Our total spending this week was £2049.72.

Overall, this week has gone well. We’ve spent less on food this week but I’m sure we’ll make up for it next week. We’ve not needed to buy petrol for the car, so that’s made it a cheaper week too, although I didn’t plan on bursting tyres.

I’ve had my fair share of mental health issues but you have to stay positive because what’s the alternative, being miserable?

Finding little ways to be generous helps, like gifting something to a friend or family member when they’re facing challenges.

As told to Jamie Moreland. Design by Jenny Law.

Would you like to share your weekly spending with BBC News? If you’re living in the UK, email [email protected]

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Source: BBC

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